These are some older photos taken because I was featured in a regular  "People of Houston" piece on 002 magazine, you can see the segment here.   What the magazine didn't know is that I was moving to NYC only days after the photo shoot!  I'm happy with the way the segment turned out, but embarrassed I didn't plug the name of my own damn blog!  HELLO.  I have a degree in marketing and use those skills every day, I even remembered to use the name of my trainer, but didn't think to link to my blog.  C'est la vie.  

Thanks to Anthony Rathbun for the excellent photography, I really miss having blog pics taken with real camera's by other people than me!  



A Christmas Story

As I sit at my parents house enjoying a Christmas dinner coma, watching A Christmas Story, still in my pj's from last night (even style bloggers have a day off) I'm inspired to blog about the holiday traditions I grew up with as a kid.  My family and I still replicate them every year, from silly rules my brother and I made up as kids about opening presents to our Christmas meal, it's good to know some things never change even as everything changes around us.

So here's a peak at my Christmas Story...

As long as I can remember, we decorated our tree with plastic candy garland, colorful lights, ornaments  we collected and made over the years, and on some lucky years tinsel.  It was a childhood holiday dream and I still love the eclecticism of a colorful tree.

These two Rudolph were waiting for me on the guest bedroom night stand, welcoming me home upon my 2am arrival home.  My Mom had purchased several  Rudolph reindeer from the dollar store and as soon as the decorations came down from the attic six year old VividVoltage would locate them and clank them around on the tile floor enjoying the sound they made and imagining a Rudolph Ranch.

If you've read my blog at least once, you probably know I LOVE MY BEAUX, how could any one not, look how adorable he is.  Our dogs get presents and also enjoy a little bit of our Christmas dinner in their dog bowl.  We like to spread the Christmas Cheer. 

ThirftstoreBrandwhore strikes a sexy strict school marm pose in her holiday present from me, a Christmas plaid, quilted dress complete with POMPOM's I found at a vintage mart in NY.  She knows I love my Westie, so she gave me this beauty:

She also crocheted this adorably macabre crochet potholder! 

Which in turn inspired me to get stitching, a rocking chair by the fire also provided some inspiration...

I feel all warm and cozy on this holiday with my family and friends, I hope you too are enjoying special traditions or making new customs to observe.  Oh, I've managed to wrap this up just in time for The Grinch that Stole Christmas, perfection.   




Happy Chanukah

I've decided to start letting my friends shave designs in the side of my head, it's fun (and saves money, win-win).  This was the first go round, after a few trial and error buzz by's on the back, this pattern started to emerge, it vaguely reminds me of the Star of David (perfect timing for the Chanukah festivities).  

All I was hoping for was to not storm out in tears or end up screaming at each other.  For someone who has never cut hair before, it turned out pretty rad and has garnered me many compliments, including a loon on the subway this morning who proceeded to ask me on a NYE date, I politely declined.  

Any ideas of what designs to do next?



I walked out of my apartment ready to take on the day feeling like Sandy, the good girl gone bad in my favorite childhood movie Grease, and it was a gorgeous day.  But as I am coming to realize in NY, it's all about layers.  Layers.   And then even a few more layers.  As Sandy and Danny sang, "I got chills, they're multiplying!" but fortunately I found an amazing deal on a cashmere sweater while out shopping, so I threw that on and became a French Sandy....

Chambray Button Down: Gap
French Stripe Cashmere Sweater: J. Crew
Spanex Leggings: Century 21
Crazy Faux Shearling Clogs: Jeffery Campbell, via Solestruck

And French Sandy was perfectly dressed for an indulgent Sunday evening dinner party of racelette, which is a deliciously unhealthy French dish you can read more about here,  




This is my very cartwheel in the city!!  For those of you that don't know me,
I have documented cartwheels across the nation and world.  It is my goal
to cartwheel on every continent, I have three left.
It was a day that required many cartwheels.

SantaCon is when 5k-6k fools (I'm including myself, here) dress up in their silliest holiday wear and stalk the cities bars for a good cause, food is donated to shelters and a portion of participating bars proceeds are donated to Toys for Tots.  That's great and all, but really, I just want a chance to dress up!

Happy Holiday's Y'all!



Pattern Play

Leopard print sweater: BCBG (easily 7 years old)
Stripe Tank: Madewell, sale rack 
Society style scarf: sample
Cords: Joe's Jeans
Oxfords: Madewell, similar style here
Leopard Socks: Forever 21, similar style here

Quick post before a busy weekend of thrift-ing, SantaCon-ing, and playing.



365 Days of WOW

Socks: Sockdreams
Shoes: Jeffrey Campbell, via solestruck
Belt: Vintage

You might think a title like "365 days of WOW" means I'd be talking about how this outfit just won't stop, which is true, but not my point today.  No, I'm talking about chronicling all the little wow things that happen every day in life.  

Effective today, I'm challenging myself to tweet at least once per day for my first year about all the everyday adventures I encounter as I settle into a new city, make new friends and explore a city of 8 million people.  365 days of wow isn't all sunshine and puppies, it'll be the good and bad, clean and dirty, unexpected and unbelievable that happens every day.  Why?  Because it's fun, it's a way to force myself to enjoy the experience of adjusting, and hopefully encourage others to see the daily adventure in their life.  

Follow me on twitter (@vividvoltage), check back to the blog daily (I installed a new gadget for non-twitter folk), and also on Instagram (you guessed it, @vivdvoltage).  (Mom, Instagram is an iphone photosharing app, but you'll be able to see the pictures via the Twitter feed on the right).  



Urban Explorer

Field Jacket: Trouve
Houndstooth Scarf: Banana Republic
Westie Sweater: J. Crew
Jeans: Gap
Rainbow Socks: Happy Feet
Shoes: Chucks

There was a time when I made a New Years Resolution to be out of town only 2 weekends of the month.  If I didn't have at least two flights in queue, showing up on my elite status airline account, I would have a mild panic attack and book some sort of quick getaway.  Now that I am a recently transplanted New Yorker I've been "grounded" for a month and for the foreseeable future, and guess what, there is no panic attack.  

Don't get me wrong, my life has not slowed down one second, but now I am an Urban Explorer.  I'm contented wandering my local uncharted territory, staking out clean bathrooms across the city, and mapping out my new locale.  For now.  


ps.  I love my sweater, it has a lil' Westie right by my heart, where he belongs.   


Sheer Ruffle Top:  J. Crew
Wool Mini:  Banana Republic
Socks:  Japan (the country, see this post for my sock obsession)
Shoes:  Madewell
Necklace: Vintage, via Manhattan Vintage

Sometimes I have a lot to say on my blog, other times my mind is somewhere else or nowhere at all (like my recent velvet post).  That's the fun thing about blogging, it is a web log of my style and it will reflect a fraction of my crazy life onto the crazy interwebs.  I'm not a machine or a team of people making this happen (as is clear by my recent iphone self portraits), which gets me to my "point", this self pop tart tumblr is hilarious!



Happy Thanksgiving!

Silk Top: J. Crew
Wool Maxi Skirt: Vintage
Belt: Anthropologie find
Boots: Frye

I'm thankful for many things and I am thankful for them all the time, not only one day of the year.  Today, I am thankful for fun friends to celebrate an orphan Thanksgiving in my new home of New York who all cook really well.  I suspected this would be the case, so I wore my new/vintage skirt that is a teeniny bit to small so I wouldn't be tempted to completely overindulge in the good food.  I did over indulge in good times, but one can never fill up on too many of those.

I included a close up of the plaid on this crazy Puritan style maxi skirt, the colors were not getting their proverbial day in the sun in a full length shot.



Tulle and some tease

Dress: Clearance Rack at Foley's (circa 2004)
Coat: Vintage
Boots: Lucchese

Aquanet-you do wonders for my hair.

When I purchased this dress it beaconed to me from a crammed pack clearance rack, it was $20, I had no idea what I would ever wear it for but I knew it was going home with me.  Since that fateful day I have worn it to a 5 year old's birthday party, on stage to shake tambourines and clang triangles with Kennedy Bakery, (it's possible I might occasionally put it on to swish and sway in secret in my apartment when I need a pick me up as well) and now a Cajun Debutant party in Williamsburg and all around the East Village running a general muck.  Good times are always guaranteed in tulle and teased hair.


Velvet and not much else.

Velvet Minidress: Sample
Gold Belt: J. Crew
Thigh High Knit Socks:  Sock Dreams
Boots: Frye
Coat: Vintage

I'm sorta in love with the texture of velvet right now.  And that's all I got right now people, nothing clever or introspective.  I love velvet.  

That's all folks.



Sweater Dress:  sample
Neon Belt: Gap
Tights: Clothes Swap
Boots:  Frye

Is it weird to get tights from a clothes swap?  It feels weird to admit to y'all I'm wearing someone else's tights, for a split second I considered lying, but I can't lie to you guys.  They were my best friends before they became mine, so that somehow makes it less weird, right?   


Lazy in Lipstick

Houndstooth Scarf: Banana Republic, 2005
Shrunken Sweatshirt: J. Crew
Sunnies: Ray-Ban
Tank and Leggings: American Apparel
Shoes: Chucks

This is a lazy sunday morning outfit, which actually looks pretty glam thanks to the lipstick.  It's amazing how lipstick can totally change an outfit.  But I have a secret, the lipstick is left over from last night, that's how lazy today is.



All WOW, no sham

Sweater: Anthropologie
Tank: American Apparel 
Jeans: Gap
Glasses: Betsey Johnson
Earrings: samples :)

I feel like I can't help but sound like an infomercial today, "in two easy steps take your outfit from sad to super!", or something cheesy like that.  If I had thought of that this morning I would have taken a silly sad "before picture" in my tank and jeans!   But it really is that easy to take some simple things and wow them up a bit, but this wow isn't a sham.  



Labor of Love

Work Version
Evening Version

New shoes can really pick a girl up out of the dumps.  I had ordered these NEON orange beauties with the exact intention of cheering me up during the dreary winter to come, plus they are gonna look AH-mazing with my new/vintage bright pink coat (no I did not think of how I would walk in the snow while wearing them, that would be too damn reasonable).

Breaking in new shoes is challenging, it's mostly a labor of love (I have loved ALOT, as proven by the many scars on my feet).  Blogging is also a labor of love; always feeling though you're writing to yourself, people leaving mean comments, and only having 1/5 of your normal wardrobe can all be a drag.  As I try to find my way in a hectic new life, blogging can border on chore some days, but a few fun things have happend recently where I feel the love picking back up, which isn't surprising, love ebbs and flows like most things in life. One thing for sure, I will always ride the tide...



 Silk Zip Vest: J. Crew
Grey Long Sleeve top: ummm.....I don't remember
Silk Chiffon Skirt: Banana Republic
Argyle OTK socks: Japan
Spectator Shoes: Madewell

Fun socks have always been a weakness for me, so when I was in Japan a few years ago I spent all my shopping money on socks because that country LOVES accessories almost as much as I do.  

The first time I walked into a department store there I was in awe at the size of the accessory department.  They sell matching umbrella and fan sets from designers like Anna Sui, plus a whole section of designer/fashion hand towels, in addition to a WIDE assortment of all our traditional accessory items.  Which, yes, we have "designer" towels in America, but in Japan women carry fans and washcloths in their handbags.  Fans because the temperature is warm and A/C doesn't flow as freely  and washcloths because the public bathrooms never have paper towel dispensers and those high powered air dryers can dry our hands after repeated use.  So Japanese women carry these personal accessories on a daily basis and have several sets to compliment the various outfits, so chic!

My sock fetish will certainly grow here in NYC, as layering is important and socks can provide extra warmth and pattern/color to a winter outfit.