Kate Lanphear [ICON]

Minimalism is any design or style in which the simplest and fewest elements are used to create the maximum effect (thanks, Wikipedia). Elimination of the non-essential and use of simple elements for maximum effect.

I've always loved the minimalist design. Influenced by the Japanese culture of Zen Philosophy, minimalism seems to transmit the freedom and essence of living. It is easy life and living to me.

In the deepest and dearest corners of my heart, I am a minimalist. I crave open space and clean lines. With fashion and styling, I love the challenge and simplicity of essentials that are carefully mixed and matched to presented in a refreshing manner. That certainty of style and presentation. I know who I am; I know what I like; I don't have to redefine myself every season; Forget the trends; Watch me work. I've always viewed minimalism as a mixing materials and textures on a neutral palette. Think sheer black blouse, black feathered skirt, black leather jacket, with black leather clutch and black leather shoes.

I can't say my closet reflects this ideology but.... yea.... it's something I genuinely aspire.

Minimalism is Kate Lanphear.

I'm Sort of a Book Hoarder...

I read all my books (eventually) but... yea... I have this slight obsession with new reads. I just don't have enough time in my day to devote to reading leisurely as I would like.

Anyway, I picked up these two books today. My favorite girl and my favorite hobby.

I bought a styling book. Because... you know... I like styling but I don't really know much about styling. Don't know the history or who the game-changers are/were or in what avenues they work. The book has gorgeous spreads and stories. I figure if I get bored, I'd at least have a very dope coffee table book to put on my coffee table once I acquire one.

Amy Winehouse was my everything. I feel like I loved her like most people loved Michael Jackson. I mean.. I was saddened by the death of the King of Pop but.. when Amy died? My heart broke. I remember standing near the door of Youth Church and greeting teens as they walked in. I casually looked down at my phone during an extended break in the flow of traffic.

"Amy Winehouse, age 27, found dead in her London home". 

My chest tightened up and I remember gasping for air. How could she be gone? She had begun gaining weight and seemed to be triumphing over her eating disorder. She seemed to be off the drugs; her behavior less erratic and frantic. She had finalized her divorce from her husband, the guy that introduced her to the hard drugs and altered the course of her life. She was in the studio recording her 3rd album. She was living that clean slate she so desperately needed. Seemed such more at peace. How could she be gone?

When I saw her dad wrote a memoir about her life, I immediately added it to my Amazon shopping cart. Since God favors me, I found the book on sale at Urban for $10 on Thanksgiving Eve. Popped it open on my third page in and started tearing up 4 pages into the Prologue.

That Girl. My girl. She was a special soul.

I can't wait to finish reading the book. It seems as if her father crafted something beautiful.

Dressing Room Diaries

When I received the email announcing a special 20% off all clothes in store on Thanksgiving Eve, my mind was stayed on only once place once I left work at 3pm on Wednesday: All-Son Camo Cargo Pants.

As the Queen Camo Aficionado and Enthusiast, I have been searching for the perfect pair of camo cargos to make my life complete.

While I love a good skinny pant as much as the next woman, I knew that I crave comfort above all. Because who knows the comfort of the best fit ever that looks just as amazing in a bold lip and towering 6'" heel as it does in blistex and Jordans than the closet of an unsuspecting male friend who happens to wear the size that best compliments your frame. There is so much life to be had in the boyfriend button up, boyfriend cardigan, boyfriend jeans, and... well... the boyfriend everything.Thus, my personal quest for the perfect camo pant was centered in the mysterious yet wildly amazing male clothing department.

Now, the problem with walking into stores on Thanksgiving Eve when Black Friday Fever is nigh is that just about everything is on sale. Including the perfect faux fur coat you were searching for online but weren't totally committed to purchasing yet but since you're getting it at 60% off then why not commit. And the leather sleeved denim jacket that is marked down almost $25 cheaper in stores than online sales would suggest were the better price and will, consequently, easily become your wardrobe staple.

And that is the riveting tale of how one became three.

Wearing: Deena & Ozzy High-Top Wedge Sneakers, All-Son Camo Cargo Pants, byCORPUS Outsiders JacketForever 21 Sweater, Marc Jacobs Watch, Sparkle & Fade Faux Fur Jacket, Mitchell & Ness Patriots Snakeskin Strapback


Macy's Thanksgiving Parade

My holiday season just doesn't every seem to feel right unless I start with the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade. So, as is my custom, I arose from my bed at 9:55am and glued my eyes to my television for the epic greatness that took hold of two hours of my life.


Fun Fact #1: I didn't know the Power Rangers still existed.
Fun Fact #2: I would have rather seen the Avengers twirling and tumbling on that green carpet.
Fun Fact #3: I was super low key kinda sorta filled with glee to see the Rangers. But the lack of Pink and Green/White was real shady.

I love all the bands that participated. NC A&T opened up the performances and did a wonderful job. The also had a a couple great performances from high schools and the Macy's Parade Band. 

This was my first time catching the parade in nearly... *thinks* ... probably a decade now. WOW! Watching the parade used to be my ritual with my mom (followed by football with my dad. why wasn't i in the kitchen you ask? that's a story for another day) but it's something I hadn't kept up with since I moved out for college. I forgot all about the thrill and excitement of seeing your favorite characters floating through the air. While I missed Rocky & Bullwinkle (RIP),  I was excited to see Mickey, Charlie Brown, and Kermit. It was also cool to see the newer trendier balloons (i.e. Hello Kitty, Kool-Aid Man, Shelf Elf, Diary of A Wimpy Kind) drawing in the younger generation into the festivities.

The Holidays Are Officially Here!

Happy Thanksgiving!

source: Terry's Diary
I'm thankful for sunsets and sunrise. The effervescent beauty found in the dancing of light and dark. The peace in knowing that no matter how dark and still the night, the dawn soon comes to restore light to the day.

I'm thankful for love. Late night texts and early morning Skype sessions. Hour-long phone calls filled with glee and gossip. All day text sessions surrounding prolific words learned in scriptures and archived sermons. Smiles and laughter. Art galleries and museums and history and astronomy for displaying the beauty of times past, present, and the wonders to come. Friends who are there in the good and hold you in bad. Support and encouragement and constructive criticism. For the ability to capture those bright moments and keeping them hid in your heart to balance those lonely moments. Compassion, understanding, happiness, and unconditional love from a myriad of avenues to cover my life.

I'm thankful for my grandparents. My first thanksgiving without my maternal grandfather. My paternal grandfather passed before I was even a thought in my father's mind so my mother's father was the only grandfather I have ever known. The patriarch of my family who, through his life and experiences and mannerisms, taught me all I ever needed to know and understand what true love is and how true love works. Love isn't perfect. It is commitment and courage. It is valuing and cherishing. It is understanding self-worth and knowing self-discipline. Honesty and trust. Hope. It is strength and perseverance  Belonging, sacrifice, honor, passion, and patience. And it is worth it. Every single day, every single moment, every single tear, every single smile. It is always worth it. My grandmother lost the only man she has every loved and shared life with. They shared 75 lives together as a couple; 66 years together as man and wife. Together since the age of 13 and 14. While I was deeply saddened and pained by the lost of my grandfather, I know the experience is something completely different for my grandmother. Seeing her tears and seeing her hurt breaks my heart entirely but...  her faith is unshakable. Her songs and prayers of thanksgiving to God instead of slipping in a deep darkness amaze me. She sings her favorite hymns through her tears. She finds her strength and comfort in God instead of becoming lost in the pain. Her smiles and laughter and strength despite losing the one person that fills (and was a constant factory in) every memory she harbors. Her resolve to keep loving and living. I'm thankful and grateful for being able to see that faith in and love of God. If I can be one ounce of the woman she is or experience a shred of the love she had, my life would be so much better for it. Philippians 4:7.

I'm thankful for life. To be able to explore my interests and passions. Life is meant to be lived in the ways you see fit. I'm thankful for parents and family who always allowed me the room to be who I am and support me in all I do. I know that is a gift not afforded to most.

I'm grateful for a God who loves... and cherishes... and supports... and seeks... and values all that is me. 
I'm thankful for this opportunity I have just to be. And have been. And will become.
I'm am thankful to God for allowing me to be me.

2020 Ave

Check out 2020Ave for some awesome items. Cute pieces at affordable prices.
Big ups to Simply Cyn for putting me on!!

*continues filling shopping cart*

TweetUp [Busboys on 5th & K]

tweetup - (n.) An organized or impromptu gathering of people that use Twitter; A meet up of people that 'tweet' using Twitter.

Although initially hesitant and leery against Twitter, I really have grown to love the social network. I've met great people, developed awesome friendships, and have even witnessed relationships and weddings blossom because of it! Here in DC, we occasionally have tweetups in order to get to be able to physically hang out and chat with the eFriends.

Zara top, F21 jeans, Chloe Sevigny x Opening Ceremony booties, F21 bag, Marc Jacobs watch

Never forget, dessert is the most important meal of the day. And Busboys & Poets simply knows dessert.

Find Me On Twitter | @BasedJane

Disney x Barney's - 'Electric Holiday'

the CUTEST thing i've seen for the holidays. i just had to share!


My twitter friends have been RAVING about the wonders of PHO for months on end. Posting pictures and testifying of the marvelousness of its' works. To me? It looked like ramen noodles with added onions, basil, and other fixins.

I have tasted and seen. The Lord is good.

I ordered Pho Ga, which is chicken broth noodle soup with shredded chicken. The broth itself was SPECTACULAR! The noodles were amazing. Everything was just... *Homer Simpson drools*. All and all, it was simple perfection. I'll definitely be visiting PHO DC more often, especially during these cooler months.

Get Into It!

Elisa Nalin [ICON]

Everything I know about Elisa Nalin, Garance Dore taught me. Well, mostly everything. Okay, actually, just a few things. A quick Google search brought me some (see: "most") things. A close friend of the famed photographer and fashion illustrator, this fashion icon is constantly chronicled on the pages of Garance Dore and The Sartorialist. And probably any other street style blog you've ever visited*.

source: State of Sunday
Having studied fashion design at the Instituto Europeo del Design in Milan, upon graduation she worked at Costume National and later went on to become the creative director for at Samsonite for their shoe line. Although born in Italy, she is currently a free lance stylist based in Paris.

source: Lee Oliveira

Oxblood, You Vampy Vixen

Spring and Summer's staple mint color has transformed to a beautiful oxblood for Fall and Winter.

If You Were Thinking Oxblood

Now, be ye not deceived...

Oxblood is really just a re-envisioned term for "maroon" and "burgundy". So, don't be up in arms running to acquire all things oxblood. Chances are you have a couple pieces in your closet waiting for their time to shine. Its their time. Bring them out!

Oxblood is a deep and rich shade that looks beautiful and lush in every single texture. I've always loved how it pairs so well with neutral shades like nude, gray, and olive green and juxtapositions awesomely with blacks, browns, navys, and whites. I like think of it as red's vampy, rebellious, and seductively sexy older cousin.

Here are a few looks that play along with the Oxblood trend.

Wearing Oxblood

Wearing Oxblood, Pt 2

Wearing Oxblood

Wearing oxblood, pt 4

How do you feel about Fall's obsession with Oxblood this year? Do you think the shade is here to stay?