7 Things I Love About Yoga

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The Dalai Lama once said, “Happiness is the highest form of health.”

I think this is something everyone knows, but often times struggles to achieve.

Let’s be real— you can’t always be happy. But to know oneself, to find peace within amidst an unpeaceful situation, to empathize with the outside world, to feel emotions and remain balanced is happiness.

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While this is much easier said than done, these are just a few things I have learned to stay focused on through practicing yoga.

All my life, I was a dancer. I spent more time at my studio practicing tap, ballet, jazz, hip hop, modern than at my own home sleeping. I always appreciated the escape, artistry and focus dance gave me and began practicing yoga a bit to keep up my flexibility during my high school years.

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In college, my dance practice dropped drastically. I sought out stress relief in yoga but wasn’t consistent and wasn’t healthy. My workouts consisted of running late to class, balancing in 5 inch platforms in snowstorms to frats and talking to hundreds of girls in a heatwave during sorority recruitment. I would eat at odd hours and be constantly stressed, which inhibited my health as well. It was only in my most stressed out of times that I would finally seek out yoga for some relief and I would always feel better after.

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Over the past few years since graduating, I’ve become more fond of working out and more consistent with yoga. Since that time, I’ve felt so much healthier and soo much stronger! I truly couldn’t even pick up 5lb weights after college thats how weak I was. But there are many other things yoga has been teaching me as well and they go as follows:

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Steady practice leads to steady results: I have never felt stronger since keeping up a daily yoga practice and can see results in my body.

 

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Peaceful mind: While sometimes I do need a good angry workout at the gym and blasting music to relieve some stress, practicing yoga really allows you to quiet your mind and work through your body.

 

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Intention setting: I love yoga teachers that prompt you to set an intention for your practice at the start of class. I often have so many thoughts and intentions and goals in my head that by being prompted to focus on one intention, I feel simplified and lighter.

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Being more attune with how emotions effect the body: This is one thing I am just starting to delve into but find it fascinating. By learning about energy centers (or chakras) in  yoga, I am able to see where my emotions are making my body more tense or out of whack. Your mind has so much control over your body and I think it is fascinating to take realization in that. For example, my calves right now are very tense, which is associated with trauma, emotional pain and family— thus a block in the root chakra.

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Perseverance and progression: A year ago, I could not do a headstand. With persistence, a lot of falling over, a lot of bruises and a lot of practice I finally feel confident in a solid headstand and even feel confident now to start playing in them.

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Yoga clothes: What’s better than leggings, yoga pants, and fun prints? There are so many fun places to get great yoga wear right now that I am obsessed with. These leggings are from ALO yoga— who also have a great Instagram.

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Community: Whether it is in your studio, in a free outdoor class or even on Instagram. There is a true sense of understanding and admiration in the yoga community, which is just priceless in this crazy life.

So in regards to happiness being the highest form of health, this was a shoot I did with Philadelphia photographer Pano (Check out his awesome Instagram) and it was a very happy day.

The photos were taken in Rittenhouse Square and some quaint neighboring alley roads, some of my favorite spots in Philadelphia. It was a great day. Sunshine, Philly, yoga and lots of play.

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Find what makes you happy but know you are the center of creating your own happiness. I suggest practicing yoga.🙂

Xo,

Kiera

 

 

 

Pinrose Perfumes

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To me, perfume is one of the most difficult purchases. It’s very hard to “impulse buy” a new fragrance. Everyone has their signature scent, and sometimes trying something new, like many things in life, is hard to get used to.

Scent is a powerful thing. It evokes emotions, memories, feelings and responses. So choosing a new perfume is a lot like choosing a new identity. However, a girl should always have multiple perfumes and thus multiple identities to choose from. Every girl needs an everyday scent and a going out scent.

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Which is why I love the brand Pinrose. Pinrose recently launched two new fragrances, Gilded Fox and Wild Child, at Sephora at both Cherry Hill and King of Prussia mall. However, you can purchase the perfumes online as well. In fact, I highly recommend visiting their site to take their scent quiz and find out your Pinrose identity. Via the Pinrose quiz, I was identified as “the ruler” matching with the Treehouse Royal Scent. I tried the fragrance out through a “petal pack” and absolutely loved it. Not to mention, petal packs are a great way to test out a perfume. They come in little packets with a mini wet nap of the fragrance— they are also great for travel and fit right in my toiletry bag.

I also enjoy that these fragrances match with a beverage. They suggest Treehouse Royal “sips like” a Pinot Noir— perfectly, one of my favorite selections of wine.

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As for their new scents—- I love Wild Child for its floral and fruity notes. It contains hints of gardenia, jasmine and plumeria. It is suggested to “sip like” a cosmopolitan and “unleash your inner troublemaker.” This perfume is great for a flirty night out and is a great alter identity to my everyday fragrance.😉

 

Introducing the Wild Mantle Summer Collection

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You know I love this amazing local brand by now. Well Wild Mantle, founded and designed by our own Narberth native Avi Loren Fox, has done it again with their fantastic new summer collection.

Previously, the hooded scarves only came in warm weather material like alpaca, fleece and up-cycled sweaters but now they are available in bamboo terry cloth, herringbone terry cloth and microfiber.

They are perfect for summer beach cover-ups, or throwing on when there is a chilly ocean breeze.

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The Dreamer Mantle is a light and breezy bamboo terry cloth throw over that easily transitions from poncho to sarong.

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The Explorer Mantle is a bit more snuggly and contains wrist loops for added warmth around your arms and hands.

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The Nurturer Mantle is incredibly useful for those summer swims or showers when you just want to air dry your hair. I have incredibly thick, long hair and can’t wait to use this one to dry and defrizz my hair whilst air drying and keeping my shoulders and clothing dry at the same time.

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Lastly, The Bohemian Mantle I am obsessed with. The herringbone terry cloth is so chic and the grommets and tie make it such a great casual statement piece.

I hope you will join the Wild Mantle tribe and Take Up the Mantle! Let’s get this company off the ground and support this amazing homegrown girl boss. I guarantee you’ll love these products as much as I do.

To purchase a Mantle, check out here Kickstarter— you have 30 days!

(Oh and you might catch a glimpse of me modeling in this Kickstarter😉

Xo,

Kiera

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When it’s still cold in April…

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Since we are still in the spring transition weather-wise, outfits range from shorts and t-shirts one day to sweaters and boots the next. It’s a strange combination and there’s nothing I dislike more than having to pull out boots and a heavy coat in April.

So here is one way to make it look like spring while still keeping warm…

Lightweight sweater with a cowl neck for adjustable warmth, cuffed jeans to show a little skin (since it is after all spring) and a pop of color. Think coral shoes and coral lips.

Jacket-wise I am done with the down for the season, so I will opt for a nice leather jacket for a little more boost than a denim or linen one.

I love this jacket from El Quetzal with an awesome aztec pattern on the back that also has a little pop of color.

How are you keeping spring in your wardrobe but still staying warm?

Xo,

Kiera

 

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Boho Wall Hangings

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This past month, I’ve been seeking new forms of inspiration— DIY crafts, interior decorating and collecting my favorites for upcoming spring fashion.

One of my favorite DIY interior decorations right now are boho wall hangings. I crafted this from a large stick I found on a walk with my dog and a few different bundles of yarn and it filled this blank wall space in my room perfectly.

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To add a little extra flair, weaving is also a cool option I would love to try. Like this option on Pinterest.

Another boho wall hanging trend I love right now (and have since I was a little girl), are dreamcatchers!

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My dear friend Lisa Cohen Smyth makes these ultra-chico, ultra-boho dreamcatchers for order. Check out her website to purchase and while you’re there check out her awesome abstract and colorful paintings.

Have more cool wall hanging ideas for me? Let me know!

Happy spring!

Xo,

Kiera

 

 

Valentine’s Red

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Last week temperatures in Philadelphia reached 60 degrees! This weekend, it is expected to feel like 1 degree….

While the change in temperature may be drastic so is this outfit post for this week.

Was feeling a bit inspired to show some skin last week, so I threw on a lacey black trapeze dress from Francesca’s with a red fur vest from Forever 21 and my signature booties.

I’m excited to wear this dress in the summer, but to give it a winter flair I added this fun red fur vest, one of my favorite items to add a pop of flair to a drab winter outfit.

As Valentine’s Day is this Sunday, what is better than adding a little red to your look? Red fur, red lips or red jewelry are great accents for the romantic holiday.

Xo,

Kiera

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Poncho Sweaters

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One of my favorite sweater style’s this winter is the wrap-around poncho sweater.

These sweaters are great to throw over any outfit for added warmth as they almost have a blanket look to them and are a great statement piece.

Let it dangle open or throw it over your shoulders as a poncho. It’s extremely versatile and extremely stylish either way.

This tan Aztec printed sweater is from Nordstrom. Booties Lulus.com.

I usually pair a cozy oversized sweater like this with a pair of leggings or tight skinny jeans and a pair of booties so the big sweater doesn’t bog you down.

Have other ways to style wrap-around sweaters? I’d love to hear!

Xo,

Kiera

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Snowcessories

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If you haven’t heard by now—- winter storm Jonas is a mere hours away!

After panicking, running to the grocery store, liquor store and hardware store to stock up on supplies, take a minute and think about how to stay warm and fashionable.

Two of my favorite winter accessories to stay warm and chic are fur collars and hooded scarves {aka Wild Mantle, a Philadelphia born brand that you’ve heard me talk about before!}.

So grab your fur and grab your scarves, this snowpocalypse headed our way is said to be a big one!

Dressing cute is probably the last thing on your mind, but throw on a pop of color like this cranberry red turtle neck with a little lipstick and it will instantly make your pale winter skin come to life.

This amazing fur infinity collar is from Target and my hooded scarf can be found here.

Stay warm, stay chic!

Also special thanks for the amazing photos taken by my dear friend Olivia  to be featured on my next few posts! Check out her blog LivelyLiv.

Xo,

Kiera

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New Year, New You— Session with Lianda Swain

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Sisley Cosmetics

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Here’s the thing about makeup— it’s expensive. Even if you’re just going into the drug store to pick up a few things, you come out feeling like you’ve just broken your bank account on items you deem essential. Because lets face it, statistically, 60% of women do not leave the house without some sort of makeup on.

Here’s the other thing— a lot of the ingredients you’re putting on your face are ingredients you can’t even sound out that leave your skin broken out and unprotected. Many of you have probably tried some sort of organic makeup line to combat this, Bare Minerals, Origins, Arbonne etc. However, the originator of organic makeup hails from Paris circa 1976.

Hubert d’Ornano co-founded Lancome in the 1930s before starting Orlane in the 1950s and acquired phyto-cosmetology brand Sisley in the 70s with his wife, Countess Isabelle d’Oranano. Today the family still privately owns Sisley Cosmetics allowing them to take the brand to the high end of the market by focusing on what goes in to each and every one of their products.

For Sisley, it was never about offering a low price, it was about creating a product that uses the highest quality natural ingredients to bring results. In fact, researchers are not even permitted to check the cost of ingredients, lest it influence their decisions to include or not.

While spending a lot on makeup crushes my heart and soul, for a product that works and will last a long time, it is totally worth it.

In the past Sisley has not been marketed to a 20-something audience. Their boxes are plain, their logos are not flashy and many of their products have always seemed more geared toward an older audience. This isn’t the case any more.

With a new line like the Phyto-lip and Eye Twists, younger customers are finally discovering the wonders of Sisley. Allison Williams, aka Marnie on GIRLS, was even caught in action using a phyto lip twist on her Instgram.

A photo posted by Allison Williams (@aw) on Oct 16, 2015 at 12:50pm PDT

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This line is a tinted baum and comes in 3 different colors, nude, pink and red. The tube comes in a trendy zebra pattern and can be sharped by simply rolling it around in a tissue (same goes for the eye twists). The twists contain antibacterial ingredients as well as kokoum butter for moisturizer. They are truly one of my favorite makeup products right now. The color lasts a very long time and it gives moisture to my lips (and I’m an avid Chapstick user, you wont find me without it). The eye and lip twists are both $50.00 each and the botanical ingredients paired with the great usage and length of time makes it worth while.

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Another Sisley product I use every day is the Hydra-Global Hydration Intense Anti-Age moisturizer. The name of this product sounds super serious and not for someone my age, but really it’s important to start using an anti-aging moisturizer in your 20s for preventive measures in the future. Especially if you’re like me and like to be out in the sun all summer. This product plumps up the hydro cushion of collagen, activates water circulation in the epidermis and keeps water in the stratum corneum (the outer layer of skin). Like all Sisley products, it is made up of natural plant extracts, malachite extract and essential oils.

Lastly, I am obsessed with Sisley’s self-tanner. It adjusts to every color of skin so you don’t have to go looking through shades and evaluate whether you are “fair to light” or “medium to dark,” it never works. This product does not have that “tanner” smell and gives you a bronze glow. I especially love the Phyto-Touche Gel for my face because for whatever reason, my face never ever gets tan!

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Moral of the story is, makeup is expensive whether you buy it from a department store or a drugstore so you might as well spend a little more for an amazing product that will keep your skin healthy in the long run. Neiman Marcus at the King of Prussia Mall will help you with all your Sisley dreams and wishes.

Also, Christmas is coming up…put some whispers in your relatives ears for some expensive makeup that you wouldn’t normally buy for yourself, you won’t regret it.

Xo,

Kiera