NYFW AW19 Recap

Happy weekend, everyone! I’m starting the day off with my NYFW AW19 runway shows recap! Today I’ll be discussing each show’s theme and trends where I had the pleasure of attending this season. This was my sixth season going to New York Fashion Week - only three years which is nothing… BUT I am definitely humbled from this season's experiences and opportunities as this has been the most successful fashion week by far, for me! I have a long way to go, but am extremely thankful for everything as every passing season teaches me something, and I learn and grow in the fashion industry, amidst while making new friends/connections and expanding my network. All in all, I’ve worked very hard to get to where I’m at, and it is such a pleasure to reflect and see how far I’ve come. I’m still just a Midwestern girl at heart! (Okay, okay… with maybe a little New York attitude now HA HA, kidding!)


I always love kicking off NYFW with Laurence & Chico. The duo’s collections are always over-the-top with outrageous styling and a touch of humor. Not to mention the wonderfully crafted pieces, this season’s theme was all on the culture and beauty of Thailand! The result — traditional Thai silhouettes reinterpreted with bold, rich colors, intricate beading and embroidery. Exaggerated volume, beautiful textural embellishments and richly colored, seasonal fabrics and prints were woven into the collection. Once you take a deeper look into the individual pieces and styles, you’ll discover the brand’s overall theme: Whimsical, fun, and that it knows how to take itself not so seriously in a very serious world.


Kate Spade New York delivered a refreshing lineup that veered away from its signature aesthetic. Electric colors of yellow, emerald and burgundy’s, with plenty of animal prints and a hint of the 70’s made up most of the new look. I loved the grown-up approach from its signature girly brand with sleek coats, pantsuits, shirt dresses and wrap dresses. The smattering of motifs that peppered the lineup, from coats and billowy dresses to accessories including cheetah prints on croc-embossed bags and turbans were the icing on the cake. I truly adored the double-bag situation along with the little hint of sparkle, from the tights to the nail art, that paid a subtle homage to the late Kate Spade. A definite lasting touch and quite sentimental. A truly stellar collection!


The Son Jung Wan Fall-Winter 2019 collection was inspired by the “romantic mood of retro art and culture.” Son’s collection featured mixed faux fur, bold prints, sequins, velvet, ruffles, and embroideries in the bold colors to create a romantic mood full of playfulness. The color palette boasted a combination of bold, dark, and pastel hues. Bold, vibrant colors included orange pepper, placid blue, sulphur, and spring crocus; light pastel colors included harbor gray and potpourri; the addition of dark colors such as adobe, windsor Wine, and peacock created a uniqueness to the visual feast that was the collection. Great examples of this retro glam look were the sequin dresses and striking outerwear towards the finale of the show.


Concept Korea, an initiative that celebrates young local designers on an international level, through support from the Korean government. Chungchung Lee, a Central Saint Martins graduate and the founder of LIE, showed tailored prêt-à-porter, while brothers Kevin and Terrence Kim (the duo behind IISE) reinterpreted Korean heritage through contemporary streetwear, with Instagram-famous Luka Sabbat opening the show! First set of photos are LIE, the latter, IISE. As a Korean, I’m proud to share such talent through my platform. Probably one of my highlights every season in New York Fashion Week.


A juxtaposition of eccentric prints and materials Claudia Li’s AW19 collection embodies everything the designer loves most. From its flamboyant patterns to its bold and playful color palette, Li’s artistic background is prominent in her latest collection. The collection carries a strong sense of singularity, each design feels unique despite the collections recurring fabrics, shapes, and colors. It is the artistic eye combined with a keen knowledge in street style that makes Li a master of craftsmanship and design. I loved the androgynous overall tone playing with Li’s new idea of femininity as well as with the perfect masculine combination. Strong accessories played an important role within the collection such as vibrant weaved tassel bags, Mongolian sheep sterling pillow-style bags, and black leather purses.


One of my favorite shows to attend every season, if you are not familiar with Tibi, I would describe the brand as minimalism for the maximalists. Tibi presented us a beautiful color range of deep browns, chalky grays and charcoal blacks combined with lavenders, mints and orangy tones. In true Tibi fashion, the show gave us clean and classic silhouettes with a twist. Tibi revamped powersuits, croc boots, skirts and double-breasted coats, in addition to the revival of the dickie, monochromatic pastels and slides. Top favorite was the ovelapped knitwear on top of some of these looks. Another nice touch was some of the leftover materials from the desingner’s studio were accessorized within the hairstyles, which I talk more about the beauty trends of NYFW here.

3.1 Phillip Lim

If I had to use one word to describe Phillip Lim’s latest collection, it would be “workdrobe”. Opening the show was a classic cosmopolitan chic look of a full-skirted dress with a trench coat on top: sleek, elegant and timeless. The palette of slate greys, navy, black and optic white with the occasional earth tone and dark seafoam was a collection made for the working city girl. Chic and streamlined, the collection was reminiscent of the old Celine collections. The attention to practicality without compromising on style can be seen through the playfulness of the structures and silhouettes; layering belt-cinched jackets and cocoon coats over voluminous skirts and wide-leg trousers, creating the ultimate variety of volume and proportions. Other highlights from the outfits were oversized carryalls tucked under one arm, cinched booties, double strap heels and one pair of rather amazing furry flats.


Sally LaPointe’s Fall 2019 drew style references from Elvis' 1968 Comeback Special and applied them to modern day dressing. Strong monochromatic palettes of bronze, ivory, jade, lavender and oxblood, the collection’s attention to utilitarian yet feminine details with nods to clean menswear-inspired tailoring and strong silhouettes became a purposeful uniform for the modern woman that exudes confidence, attitude, and sex appeal. Snakeskin and leathers were found throughout and in a wide array of styles and treatments, including as a print on silk jacquard and embossed leather. Highlights: Leather jumpsuit, and stripe-stitched lavender sequin textural dreams,





NYFW Beauty Trends in Hair, Makeup and Nails

Hi, everyone! I’ve been meaning to get this up on the blog, but amidst travels and also my laptop having a nervous breakdown, it’s been rather trying to get this up and live. But it is finally here: my recap of all the beauty trends I noticed during New York Fashion Week for Fall/Winter. Some have been around since the dawn of time, as most trends in fashion are refurbished, reused and recycled. But there are several trends I truly loved and will definitely be partaking in the upcoming season. So without further ado, let’s jump on it and start with the makeup trends spotting around from NYFW.



If you noticed one thing about my makeup abilities as of late, I am all for color. The more vibrant the better. Which is what many makeup artists played around with backstage this season. For example, the makeup direction to Kate Spade with Romy Soleimani and Maybelline was filled with vibrant, friendly pink shades ranging from blushing pink to burgundies. Sally LaPointe’s show also displayed heavy wine colors, interestingly applying an iridescent pink liquid highlighter - the Hyper Real FX to the cheek bones which gave such a beautiful subtle quality to the look.


You know what’s a trickery in eye makeup? Mastering the art of a smokey eye without looking like raccoon eyes! What makes this difficult is the subtlety of the smudge, but not too much where it becomes overkill. Tom Ford always does this technique so well (need to try the Tom Ford beauty line) but my favorite was the intense smokey eye in Jeremy Scott’s Show. Maybelline did the full eyelid smokey, but also carried it down to the inner corners of the eye to give it a more dramatic effect. Rest assured, smokey eyes aren’t going anywhere anytime soon.


Another favorite, MUA Cassandra Garcia played with a subtle green smudge for Tibi. Using Bobbi Brown Cosmetics, the look was inspired by the perfectly imperfect look of slept-in makeup and the watercolor green is something cool and different. It looks slightly messy, but in a chic unpolished way. Other shows that really played on watercolors more intently were Eckhaus Latta and Collina Strada where the models’ eyes were a wonderful canvas to blend on. Literally reminded me of Monet’s brush strokes and definitely got my heart palpating.


3.1 Phillip Lim’s lead makeup artist for the show, Diane Kendal was all about precision when it came to eye makeup backstage this season. Using only three colors of white, khaki and purple and with the help from a new makeup brand, Unframe the Beauty, their eyeliners are an innovation 1200 years in the making. The brush is created by traditional craftsmen from the Kumano and Nara region of Japan, with custom-made fibers that are entirely hand-blended for firmness, flexibility, and softness. Only seven people in ALL of the world can skillfully do this delicate and precise work.


Makeup artist Tom Percheux described the beauty as “eyes that wouldn’t lie to you” for the Brandon Maxwell show was very reminiscent of Twiggy’s signature look. And it’s as simple as it can get, but will bring the eyes to life with an added illusion to bigger and brighter eyes. Something I can totally get on board with - the key is to do both the top and bottom eyelashes. I have to say out of all my favorite makeup trends, this will be probably the first one I will want to re-interpret.



If you’ve been paying any attention in the hair accessory scene, you know barrettes, bobby pins, clips of any kind are all making a huge comeback. But there’s been a transitioning period here at NYFW where the accessories are more about letting women SHINE. Justine Marajan did the hair backstage for Christian Siriano where we saw chains mixed in with braids, giving it a cool and edgy vibe. Area had a gang of 70s rebels take the runway with likeminded hairdos beaded in jewels, literally. I am really into anything in the rebellious family so this trend is definitely something I would like to re-create for myself!


Probably my favorite hairstyle that I saw backstage this season, it’s not a difficult hair style to achieve. Nowadays with all the top hair gadgets/tools you can get a heat iron with the shape embedded into the tool that will ease the process of getting the waves in the crimped hair. However, one way to achieve this as well is to braid the hair then flat iron the braid before brushing it out. This gives it a more froofy overall look, leaving it more modern in my opinion. I saw this technique done by Aveda, led by Gary Gill for the 3.1 Phillip Lim Show.


Or rather a splash of paint, Jeremy Scott’s fake news theme was quite cheeky with the hairstyle to go along with the message behind his collection. The models all wore wigs which were all trimmed backstage before what looks to be a bucket of paint spilled all over the tops of the models’ heads. It obviously was painted on, however. Philipp Plein also used neon green streaks in the models’ hair, giving it that pop of color.


The 30s are back and I couldn’t be happier! Finger waving is the shaping or molding of hair while wet into "s"-shaped curved undulations with the fingers and comb. These waves, when dried without being disturbed, will fall into deep waves. Finger waving differs from marcel waving in that there are no heated irons used on the hair. Prime example was Sally LaPointe’s show, giving the models’ a suitable look to go with the Elvis theme. Zimmerman and Maryam Nassir Zadeh also demonstrated this look but in a more relaxed way either with softer waves with a shorter cut or ruched ponytails. Overall, another favorite hairstyle I need to try and do soon!



At Kate Spade New York, manicurist Julie Kandalec (for Essie) paid homage to Kate, “she leaves a little bit of sparkle everywhere she goes.” by subtly applying bronze glitter to a nail prepped with a base coat for a naturally shimmery look. Tibi also took an understatedly sparkly route: Jin Soon Choi painted the top half of the nail in a rich toffee beige shade and filled in the bottom half with a mélange of holographic silver flecks. To tone down the shine, Choi finished it with a matte top coat. Which is what is next in terms of trends.


I noticed several other nail looks aside from Jin Soon Choi’s such as Maryam Nassir Zadeh powdery blue matte nails, which were also a favorite. Phillip Lim also worked with Jin Soon Choi to create a peachy nude matte finish as well, bringing a modern woman essential vibe. I love the non-streaky look to a matte nail, as it looks more polished and sophisticated. You can bet you’ll be seeing a lot more of this trend come this fall season.


Jeremy Scott worked with Ms. Pop to do a monochrome monogramming in an effort to keep up with the graffiti-inspired textiles. She lent her expert brushstroke to write out "New York" in black-and-white lettering, creating a newsprint effect over seven fingers. Definitely made headlines. ;) Other statement nail looks included Alice + Olivia where they literally hand-painted 3-D acrylic butterflies on sets of burgundy nails. And last but not least, Adeam went with gluing pearls of all different sizes on blue and pinks nails, which were definitely delivering something extra to the table.





Running with Scissors




Ever willfully act in a reckless, foolish, and/or dangerous manner? Alluding to the literal act of running with a pair of scissors in one's hand, which can cause severe injury, yet for whatever reason, one keeps running around with 'em and that is without a doubt stupid. But why? Most might say, it's easy. You just don't know any better. You like to live dangerously. Maybe you just don't give a damn and don't want to stop. But I don't think everything is that crystal-clear either though. Sometimes you have to dig deeper in search of the answer as to why. I'd say my blatant honesty are those pair of scissors sometimes, and that first cut can be rather sharp. I am fiery and passionate even impetuous at times, especially when emotions are running high. Especially in matters of the heart. 


I'm an all or nothing type of gal. I never half-ass in anything I do, if I'm in it - I am all the way, 100%. This applies to all sorts of relationships, either professional or personal. But those very personal ones? I have to be into you. No, it doesn't have to be a romantic relationship, this also relates to friendships, to even companies/brands I work with. The relationship has to be REAL. And it should go both ways, so if I'm interested in them then it should be equally reciprocated. How else are you going to build what you have together? Is there such a thing as mutual interest though? Or is it always one having a little bit more of an interest than the other? I think that's what makes relationships unique and difficult simultaneously. And when you find those rare, great ones, they're all the more special.


On another scissoring-note, the cut of this ribbed top by s a k u New York is my latest fave! The mustard yellow is not a normal color hanging up in my closet and I am completely obsessed with the lace detail on the front and back end of the top! s a k u New York is one of my favorite Korean clothing brands. The designer, Lissa Koo, never plays it safe - as do I - on top of her talent and creativity. And I think playing it safe in life isn't the best approach either. You've got to be a little reckless and wild to be free. Because it will open you up to so many amazing things! So I say run with those scissors from time to time. Just don't intentionally hurt anyone with them. 


Do you ever feel like you've got those pair of scissors around you too? What do you do to get them to 'disappear' and have it more 'together'? Is there a way to do that with a fiery and passionate person like myself? Because I'm pretty difficult to tame... and who's to say frankness is such a terrible trait to have? I'm always saying, so long as you're not hurting yourself or others, I'm fine with it. So scissors, honesty, schmonesty - just don't be deliberate in causing pain. I'd love to hear your insights on today's topic! Comment down below and follow me on Instagram for more of my everyday life. See you guys back here on Friday! 







Stripes and Heavy Hearts




Since waking up Monday morning to hear of yet another senseless tragedy in America, I am left with a heavy heart and can't stop crying these past few days. What is happening in our world right now? I can't stop thinking about everyone affected by this. Think about it. Over 500+ injured, 58 dead... triple that amount just to get a perspective on how many people have been touched by this awful incident. As much as I love my work, creating and publishing content without as much as a discussion, let alone a stupid fucking meme with hearts and prayers, is definitely hitting below the belt. I've never seen so many fashionista's Insta-stories and/or social media posts giving 'shoutouts' to the victims and families (or nothing at all, just completely unacknowledging them)... only to go on about their daily lives and not even mention any ways to help like donating blood, contacting your elected representatives to support mental health or stricter gun control policies, or other ways to donate, such as natural disaster relief funds to the victims of Hurricane Harvey. And why do I feel like the ones that preach the most about this shit are the ones that aren't really helping to begin with? I know that sounds pretty harsh, but it is sort of the reality of the situation. Now, I AM NOT saying that there isn't anyone out there, with the power and reach, to spread information like wildfire in a scenario like this, because there are, and kudos to you for taking the time to do so, but there's a lot of you that really don't care about anyone but yourself. And I can attest to this because I'm seeing it unfold right before my very eyes, unfortunately.

Whenever something tragic like this happens, I immediately think of my loved ones. Family first. Don't you? Now for those who don't know me that well, I don't have any family. They're all gone. Either physically or through tough life predicaments, I am left with no one but myself. I don't have a single soul to call and cry about my problems to or have a mommy or daddy to help me out when I'm financially in a pickle. I've been on my own for a long time now. So I tend to get pretty depressed sometimes and will shut down. Especially in a time like now where all I want is to talk to my parents and hug them and tell them how much I love and miss them. I need some form of solidarity when feeling alone and confused. There is no love like one from a parent. A good parent. The most important family is not the one you were born into, but the one you choose. I have a small circle of friends that I trust and hold very dear to, but very few have entered into this circle and have stayed there. Loyalty is hard to come by these days and I'm finding myself losing more and more hope with the world we're living in. 


Sure you can be an advocate of some kind, whether it's donating your time, money or both to organizations that will help carry that through, but to me, the best and most important way to help right now is to constantly BE KIND and LOVING. Everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about. So be good to each other. Hug your loved ones extra tight and never forget to be grateful for your life and others. And be forgiving. I've talked about this in the past, because it really hits close to home. It's not about forgiving and forgetting what's hurt you, but more about letting go and being able to move forward. Self-love is something I too have struggled with my whole life, and I'm slowly but surely starting to see my worth and will no longer waste my time on those who don't see this. If they don't look at you like you're magic, walk away... or rather, RUN away. Doesn't matter if they're blood-related or not. 


Steve Sisolak, Chair of the Clark County Commission, has set up a GoFundMe page to raise money for the victims and their families. It had collected more than $3 million as of Tuesday morning. Officials in Las Vegas say there has been an overwhelming turnout for blood donations -- some donors waited in line for more than 6 hours -- and no more blood is needed right now. Those looking for information about loved ones still missing in the Las Vegas area can call 1-800-536-9488. If you live in the Las Vegas area, you can volunteer transportation and other help to victims through this Facebook page. Please help in any way you can, it's not just about the immediate support, but for the more trying, long-term ones. The victims need us and we need them. Please remember how amazingly special you are and that you are LOVED. Want to talk? Leave a comment or send me a private message through social media or email. I'm here for you. 

*Go to Direct Relief to donate money or American Red Cross to donate food and/or clothing for the victims of Hurricane Harvey. They are also asking people to donate coloring books, puzzles, and other toys to the shelters for the kids. 







How I Went from Criminal Justice to Fashion





Happy NYFW! Let the fashion commence! Who is as excited as I am to see all of the SS18 collections for the upcoming season?! Since today is our first day of New York Fashion Week, I wanted to share with you guys a little more about my journey. What led me to here? Well, the title of this post sure must have caught your eye. Yes, you read correctly. I once almost became a cop instead of any of pursuit for a career. Instead of Detective Spiegoski, I'm Fashionista Spiegoski! So, how did I start from where I began and ended up here where I am today? Continue reading to find out more why I took such a leap of faith and why I am so, so, so grateful for my crazy (but intuitive) decisions. 


Once upon a time, I grew up in an environment that was rough, both in and outside the home. Because of my surroundings as well as life experiences, I initially chose a path in law enforcement, even receiving a B.A. in Criminal Justice from Michigan State University. I even traveled to distant lands to learn more about the cultural diversity as well as the different types of government and policing procedures. My '5-Year Plan' was to get my degree, move to NYC and join the New York City Police Department, and quickly climbing the ranks from Sargeant to Detective. Specifically? Homicide. But once I moved to the city of my dreams (I had wanted to live here basically my whole life), I didn't know a single soul. I came here with $300 bucks in my pocket, 3 full suitcases, with a place to share in Spanish Harlem. My first apartment in New York was literally a closet. Okay... walk-in closet: Enough to fit a full bed, dresser, mirror and a clothing rack. I didn't need much else. 



Because I didn't know anyone yet, I became lonely rather fast. With that, I began writing again, something that's been in my life since I was very little (my father taught me how to read and write at the age of 4) and I always found solitude in the power of my voice and the freedom to express my thoughts and feelings through words. And while doing so, my gut switched a flip. I no longer had the desire I once had in the career I chose. I felt lost. Confused. Young. Undiscovered. I gave it a good hard look before changing my mind, but I'm tellin' ya, even to this day, I can't tell you how thankful I am that I took that jump and decided to explore my options a bit further. From this, I've given back, teaching figure skating and working with kids for nearly a decade, wrote and published a novel, have had my photographs published around the world, and learned so much about myself in the process. 


I just surpassed my 2-year anniversary of my blog, MaQ + Suz. Since then, I've only attended 2 seasons of NYFW [this week being my 3rd season (!)] and am starting to receive invites to other fashion shows globally. Now, for those of you wondering... have I always been a die-hard fashionista? Not exactly... but it's always been with me, so to speak. When I was very young, I used to illustrate what campaigns I saw from the Korean fashion magazines my mother had. I'd flip through them, find inspiration and would recreate my own version, with even the prices of each piece of clothing! From there, I became more interested in the world of fashion while in college (where I started to read Vogue religiously) but that fizzled once I decided to do something else in my life. It's funny now looking back because even at the age of 6-7 I was already studying fashion when I was creating collages of them on my bedroom walls. 



I believe within a person's life, one will change many times over. Hopefully for the better. As you grow older and discover more about yourself, you will find out what you want, what you don't want, and who you really are. Part of the evolution of the path to self-discovery. And here I am now, a writer and photographer working full-time in the creative field and I couldn't be happier with my choice. Is it hard work? You bet your ass it is and I'm completely dedicated to it. Here's to making life's grand decisions and to fashion & style. Shoutout to this vintage teal blouse that belonged to my mother, the label says 'Avanzara–b House of Kimberly' but I can't find the brand on the internet. It's from the 80's back in Cali... and to these favorite new rose gold metallic boots from Ego, I feel like Wonder Woman strutting around in these. Hope to see all you other fabulous selves strutting around town as well this week! Happy Happy Fashion Week! :)