Hot Cheetah in the City


THIS POST IS SPONSORED BY ZEFINKA, MARC FISHER & EVVE MILANO, BUT ALL OPINIONS ARE MY OWN.

Happy almost Friday! In today’s post I’m sharing a few essential pieces that’ll bring an edge to any look. They are staple pieces any girl can have in her closet: Budget-friendly, chic and actually all comfortable to wear. I’m sharing a pullover, jeans, boots and a cross body bag that I know any girl will appreciate - regardless of your personal style. And one of the most trending prints of the season: Leopard - is definitely featured in today’s post! The rocker chic vibe from this look is casual, but you can definitely bring it up a notch with different pieces from your closet. Continue reading to shop the direct links while learning more about each piece that you too should have in your wardrobe palette very soon, if not already!

Introducing a timeless, beautiful collection by a master American shoemaker for a modern woman of purpose. Effortless. Luxe. Forever. Chic. These Marc Fisher black suede boots are a dream! They literally go with everything! I would love to style these pair of boots with a mid-length dress or midi skirt. Even with pleats - it would be so good! But in today’s fierce, edgy look, I paired them with my favorite Levi’s Jeans. These are the only Levi’s I own and they’re the 711 skinny jeans. They’re the perfect cut and length for someone petite like myself. But back to the boots - the heel height is high, nearing at 3 and a quarter inches, but walking in them are actually super comfortable! They retail at $289 - but worth the investment as classic suede boots as such can be worn with nearly every outfit, and they’ll last a lot longer than buying a less expensive pair of boots.

Now if you know me and my personal style by now, you know I love a good leopard print. And ever since I discovered Zefinka - a fast-fashion online brand that’s been around since 2014, I’ve been a big fan of theirs! They carry a lot of great quality items that on mostly trending pieces, but the prices are even hotter! I love their tops, such as this leopard print pullover. It’s a mix of mohair and cotton, but overall the material is soft and cozy. The sweater would look amazing with leather pants, a black skirt, even wide leg - the possibilities are endless. I love a good piece as such - because it’s essential to my style and can be worn in a variety of ways. Plus, tell me you don’t love a good warm fuzzy sweater during the winter?! ;) Zefinka also did a lovely feature on me and my brand - check it out here now!

I also want to share with you another brand I discovered that’s really great - from Italy. EVVE Milano is a vegan handbag line that’s all about rocker chic, a mixture of Italian and New York style: Expressions of freedom. Each bag has an emblem of a snake, derived from the Adam & Eve story, embedded into it, symbolizing the woman’s inner ‘EVVE’. The BONN Crossbody has a semi-rigid but spacious shape to carry everything you need. Lasered details enriched with metal eyelets on the flap and shoulder strap embellish even the simplest look.

To keep with the edgy vibe, I wore certain kinds of makeup such as a bold red lip and cat eye. I’ve been doing more of a winged eyeliner lately - it makes my eyes look bigger (especially when one is TIRED lol) and gives a more dramatic look - what do you guys think? Also, seriously contemplating on whether or not I should grow out my bangs. I love my bangs but I also love no bangs as well. I used some hair clips (definitely in search of statement hair pieces right now) as this can give a more polished feel - but still edgy and rock and roll. Think it ties up the whole outfit together pretty well. Hope you guys enjoyed today’s fashion post! Leave your comments down below. Catch up with y’all again soon!

LOVE & XX’S,

 
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What I Learned from 2018


STAY ON THE TRAIN, THE SCENERY WILL CHANGE.

Life is a continuation of sorts - uphill battles, downfalls, and all the in between. And sometimes even in life’s most ordinary cycles, it seems nothing will ever change, improve, progress to your liking. Even if it is at a snail’s pace because yes, amazing things take time to cultivate I still struggle with the idea of remaining patient while continuing to be diligent in whatever I’m trying to accomplish. I truly sometimes think that no matter how hard I may try at something, it’s never going to be ‘good enough’ and that perhaps I will never grow. But after this year, I couldn’t be farther from the truth. Learning my strengths in the face of adversity definitely have shown that through discipline, perseverance and yes, a little bit of stubbornness will take you places. But you have to stay on the train.

YOU CANNOT CHANGE PEOPLE, ONLY YOUR REACTION.

And if you can’t change your reaction, then change your environment. For example, when you have to repeatedly tell a friend what they’re doing wrong (we’re talking moral values and such). If at some point they’re not getting it, it’s not your issue it’s theirs. Distance yourself from people who suck the living life out of you. There are all sorts of leechers out there and no one deserves to be taken advantage of. This goes for money, emotional manipulation and then some. Another example, I did a test shoot with a model a while back and was trying to take a street style shot with the person in the middle of the street with the Empire State building in the background. But no matter how I reacted in directing this person to be ‘in the middle of the street’, I shit you not, they did not understand. At some point I had to literally pin the person at the very center of the street and said, “Don’t move”, “stand still”… and YES they moved. So I eventually changed my environment because I knew it wasn’t working. Hahaha! :)

YOU CATCH MORE FLIES WITH HONEY THAN VINEGAR

Unfortunately, life doesn’t always turn out they way you thought it was going to turn out. And it’s easier to be spiteful, bitter and even down right vindictive over life’s unfairness. Sadly, I even saw this in my father near the end of his life. The first time I took a trip to New York, I came back so excited to share my experiences and all the photos I took. My mother found it exciting, even courageous, to want to venture out into the world. My father couldn’t barely stand to look at the photos, only to say one thing, that he hated New York and when I asked him if he had ever even visited the city and said no, he had no reasons other than negative ones to behave this way. I, too, can sometimes get angry at what life has thrown at me, like how I lost both of my parent before the age of 30 and yes I ask all the time, “why couldn’t You just have left me at least one?!” Or why I don’t have a single family member to even call when I’m feeling down. You just have to look at it this way, in that things don’t just happen. There’s a reason and rhyme to everything, and with a more positive, I guess sweeter, perspective, you’ll be sure to find your way. If I stayed bitter over my losses in life, I never would have found my way to my husband, my dog, MaQ, or even this blog that I consider to be my baby! And yes, in the caption’s saying - it is always better to be nice rather than rude too.

ALWAYS STEP OUT OF YOUR COMFORT ZONE

I challenge myself on a daily basis in this living mantra. Especially when life’s daily routines become a bit too routine and nothing exciting is really going on. This year I took my very first solo international trip to London for work (loving it so much I did it again six months later). And even though for most people, it’s not a big deal, for me, someone who does suffer from anxiety, had a lot of nerves about it. But I took a leap of faith, and just went! Best decision ever, as it has really helped me grow personally and professionally. Not ready for something like that? Start small. Go to an event or party, be more social if not already - or start a new hobby you know that’ll make you a little nervous… maybe archery? That would make ME nervous! Ha ha! I think sometimes being impulsive is a good thing, because it pushes you to your limits (NO shopaholics do not apply LMAO) and you discover that you’re capable of so much more than you could even imagine.

EMBRACE YOU!

Yes, I still have trouble in loving my whole entire self. We all have flaws, insecurities, weaknesses, vices, etc; but you know what is truly amazing? No one is you and that is your power! How incredible is that… you’re one of a kind and unlike anyone else on this planet?! No one else can be you - you are loved and amazing just the way you are. I think too with age, you accept yourself more and more because you know that’s the way it’s going to be. So you might as well love your eccentricities, quirks and all - inside and out! I’m starting to more and more share this side of me on the blog and I think you guys too, really dig it! So yes, I always think the topic of self-love is a self-realization in growth for every year of my life.

I don’t want to go on and on about what I learned from this past year where I start to sound cheesy or too lecture-y. So, I’m going to leave it off with see you soon, wishing you all the best in the New Year, and yes, sending you Love & Light with all my heart. MaQ + Suz would not exist without its readers and we are extremely grateful for each and every one of you! So thank you as always, for the continued love and support of our brand, as we truly work very hard every single day to try and bring you the best styled creative images in the world of fashion, beauty, lifestyle and more.

Side note: ha ha! The paisley blazer from this post is by Saku New York, the cream fuzzy sweater is from H&M and the jeans are Levi’s. Hope you guys enjoyed our very first post on MaQ + Suz for 2019! What are some of the lessons you have learned from this past year? Don’t forget to drop them down in the comment section below! We would love to hear yours! Happy New Year, Happy 2019 and many, many blessings.

LOVE & XX’S,

 
 

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How to Deal When the Holidays Aren't Exactly Happy

I don’t know about you, but the holidays can be a very bittersweet time for me. It’s not the most wonderful time of the year, I am not jolly and I normally am counting down the days until it’s January 2nd. I skip a lot of holiday events and parties because I’m never in the mood to socialize. Why? Am I the grinch? Nah. This time of year we remember people we’ve lost, especially the older we get. Both my parents are deceased, so this time period always brings up a lot of memories and mixed emotions. I’m grateful for the family I have made for myself, given the fact that my own estrangement from the rest of my family is not a choice I have made, but more so one that they have made, but since my parents have been gone, it just hasn’t been the same. There’s nothing like the season’s festive messages of peace, love, and togetherness to really make us contemplate our existence, our relationships, and what really matters to us. Hence, the Holiday blues do tend to creep in on me. But instead of passing through and keeping quiet, I decided to write to those that are in the same boat as me. Because you’re not alone. So here are my 5 tips on how to deal when the holidays aren’t exactly happy.

1. TAKE CARE OF YOU

With all the added pressures the holidays bring, one activity I’m not much a fan of is holiday gatherings. So I tend to skip out on a lot of them. Not because I’m a no-show kind of person, but more importantly, I have to take care of me. So if that means I don’t feel like going to someone’s shindig - I just won’t. Life’s too short to spend all your free time at parties anyway. Plus I always feel guilty. Celebrating anything relating to family is difficult for me. And with a hubby and a dog I cherish so dearly, I quite frankly really enjoy just spending time with them around this time of the year. For those that actually care for me will understand and for the ones who don’t, who cares, honestly.

2. ‘TIS THE SEASON FOR GIVING

Whenever I’m feeling down I always make an extra effort to think of others before myself. Because as much as my problems are as big in my head, to the next person, who know what they’re facing as well. So a tiny act of kindness, whether it’s helping an elderly person walk across the street or giving away clothes to Goodwill, there’s always something to be done to help others. I always like to believe that whatever energy you project and also be whatever is paying it forward to the next person. So perhaps if my act of kindness inspires the next person to do the same, my work is done. Well… so to speak. :)

3. TREAT YOURSELF

Hey, they don’t call it retail therapy for nothing! If all else fails, you can always splurge on yourself too. Eyeing that new piece of jewelry that just can’t seem to get off your mind? Don’t regret the things you didn’t buy! Big or small, getting a gift for yourself is an act of self-care/self-love. Kind of goes along with the first, in that taking care of yourself and that it doesn’t hurt to buy something for yourself every once in a while. Money doesn’t buy happiness, though!

4. FOCUS ON THE GLASS BEING HALF-FULL

It’s quite easy to fall into the trap of missing what you don’t have in your life. We are all going through something, and no one’s life is 100% perfectly complete all the time. So when you start to get into a funk, I always try to think of what’s going right in my life rather than what’s going wrong. I think of the people and things I’m grateful for and I have learned to appreciate the smaller things in life. It’s all in the mindset and the way our perspective is in that given time. If you change the way you look at things, things you look at change.

5. LAUGH, AS THIS TOO SHALL PASS.

Laughter is the best medicine. Whenever I travel for work and am alone in my hotel room working, I always have Friends of Big Bang Theory on in the background. The white noise makes the room feel less empty and I can always count on a few chuckles to be had afterward. Watch movies, listen to music that make you feel good and will inspire you. Whatever makes you smile, hold on to that just a while longer, because before you know it, the holidays will be over just as quickly as they began!

If you’re in the same boat as me and are not a huge fan of the holidays for perhaps similar reasons like myself - YOU ARE NOT ALONE. I’d say try and make the most of it but it’s okay to not be feeling it as well. If you have any other great suggestion on how to get out of the holiday funky blues, feel free to relay your tips down in the comment section below. I love hearing from you guys, especially on more personal posts as such. Hope you enjoyed, until next time… take care of yourself and others. Love always.

LOVE & XX’S,

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NYFW AW 18 Outfits

DAY 1

WEARING: MKT STUDIO RED LEATHER JACKET | VIP SHOP PLAID WIDE LEG PANTS | CHLOE BAG
H&M TURTLENECK | GUCCI BELT | ACCRUE KANDINSKY SUNGLASSES | FOREVER 21 BURGUNDY BOOTS
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DAY 2

WEARING: SAKU NEW YORK BURGUNDY FOX FUR COAT | CHLOE BAG | LEVI'S JEANS | 
FOREVER 21 BURGUNDY BOOTS | ACCRUE BONNIE SUNGLASSES
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DAY 3

WEARING: NA-KD FASHION LEATHER JACKET | SAKU NEW YORK LACE TRIMMED SLEEVE KNIT TOP | 
SAKU NEW YORK WIDE LEG PANTS | CHLOE BAG 
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DAY 4

ROSEGAL DOUBLE BREASTED PLAID TRENCH COAT | THACKER NYC BOYFRIEND SHIRT | 
VAGABOND HONEY JAKARTA DENIM PANTS | STELLA MCCARTNEY OVERSIZED GLASSES | 
BRAHMIN MELBOURNE CROSSBODY | KOIO CAPRI BIANCO SNEAKERS
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DAY 5

WEARING: SAKU NEW YORK COLOR BLOCK LONG WOOL IVORY COAT | WHO WHAT WEAR™ SWEATER | 
GENUINE PEOPLE BELL BOTTOM CROP JEANS | EGO METALLIC BOOTS | 
MAD-STYLE PEARL MULTI RING CHOKER | ACCRUE BONNIE SUNGLASSES | 
DRESS LILY FRESH BLUE CROSSBODY BAG
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DAY 6

WEARING: MKT STUDIO JUMPSUIT | ZAFUL STRIPED JACKET | ASSEMBLY NEW YORK BLACK COAT | 
ALLES BAGS FRINGE BUCKET | EGO BOOTS | DIOR GLASSES | FOREVER 21 BELT
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LOVE & XX'S,

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Trend Alert: Iridescent Oil Slick Handbags

WEARING: ROMWE PURPLE DROP SHOULDER TEXTURED SWEATER | 
HUGO BOSS EASY IRON LIGHT PINK COTTON DRESS SHIRT | ROMWE DOUBLE BREASTED 
LONGLINE COAT | LEVI'S JEANS | THACKER NYC SAGE TOTE | FOREVER 21 BURGUNDY FAUX 
LEATHER ANKLE BOOTS | ODETTE + ODILE GIGI BLACK BLUE SUNGLASSES | 
MELROSO WIRE CHOKER WITH DANGLING OPAL 

THIS POST IS BROUGHT TO YOU BY ROMWE, THACKER NYC & MELROSO

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Happy Monday, guys! How was everyone's weekend? I spent the past couple of days preparing for the next couple of weeks. It's going to be a busy rest of the month when it comes to working. I will not only be attending NYFW this season but also LFW! All my London babes, get at me with your recommendations/suggestions on where to eat, drink, etc.! I'll be in town for a few days so if you'll also be around I'd love to meet up! I'm not going to deny that I'm super-duper excited, but also a little nervous. It's just jitters, I just can't wait to experience it all and just travel more! On another high note, I was also featured on Nine West's Instagram page yesterday with their Yemetra pumps! I don't know if you remember me explaining to you guys about how much I've always wanted to work with them, and I just can't believe it literally happened! I'm just so thrilled, stay tuned for later this week as I'll be attending their 40th Year Anniversary Party during fashion week! Now onto today's post: I'm discussing the latest trend that will be all over the place this spring season; iridescent oil-slick ANYTHING, but more so especially in this look, a tote bag! Continue reading to see how I styled it with other trending colors while keeping it casual.

Named for the LA blogger, style guru Anne Sage, the Sage tote is super chic and versatile to take on the goes-everywhere-with-everything tote. Roomy enough to fit your favorite flats (a girl needs shoe options!) as well as your daily haul, current reads, and a laptop. (Perfect for travel.) A large exterior slip pocket and interior slip and zip pockets keep your sunnies, keys, and phone within easy reach when you're on the go. Wear this brilliant beauty on the shoulder or crossbody by the adjustable leather strap, or simply carry in-hand with their signature ring handles or on its own folded like an extra large pouch/clutch. Made out of Italian leather, it's perfect for the secret type A who likes to keep it casual. 

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I styled the tote with similar colors from the iridescent oil slick. This purple drop shoulder textured sweater is super cozy and is a great trending color for spring. Trust me, when I tell you this, guys – lavender and other similar shades in this family will be popping up everything this season. I guess you can say I like to get a head start on things... lol. Keeping the look cool and casual, I wore my favorite Levi's (yes, I wear these jeans almost every other day, that's how much I love the comfort of them!) with a simple but chic double-breasted longline navy blue coat. The actual coat is sold out! But I linked a bunch of similar ones at different prices for you guys to shop here!

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To keep the purple and blue scheme, I wore the Gigi Black Blue shades from Odette + Odile and my favorite burgundy boots from Forever 21. Lastly, is this gorgeous choker from Melroso.com 18 karat gold vermeil with an opal prong set charm, I've always found good luck in opal when wearing them so this year and from now on, I think it's time I start wearing a whole lot more! There's a really cute opal ring too here that would go perfect with the choker, but this piece was so incredible on its own, I just wanted to show it by itself. I love how elegant this choker would look with any outfit! What kind of gemstones do you like? I'm also into Aquamine and sapphire, but opal has always been my favorite. Don't forget to drop your comments below and shop directly any of the pieces there too! Have a great week. Be back on Wednesday with a really cool look collaborating with a Parisian brand! Here's a hint: Melrose Place :)

LOVE & XX'S, 

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