At-Last-Ka | Celebrating a Series of Firsts

An unexpected work opportunity arose marrying my bucketlist with a realized manifestation of my vision board wishes, welcoming moments of firsts: A first trip to Alaska, a first cruise, and a first time meeting O…yeah.

My first cruise came with an open invitation of camaraderie courtesy of O, The Oprah Magazine. The beauty of paths brought together; sharing soul moments filled with honest conversations of life experiences and learned lessons. People from all over the world, like totem poles, cemented through common ground and common goals, literally stacked, with faith, love, strength and friendship; some new, some renewed. The constant motion of cruising, docking, and setting sail again, and the relationships formed between, resembles a metaphor for life. In constant motion, we move slowly, adjusting, living, exploring, growing, and loving, along the way.

My first trip to Alaska, we set sail towards what would end of being a life affirming experience, nurtured by nature. A region so magnificent, garnering a respect and appreciation for the power of nature, confirmed to most certainly be a woman, and a mother. A pureness of life’s cycle, as the salmon attempts to outleap the bear, as land respects sea.  A literal reminder provided by Mother Earth, of the power of our presence in this world; a figurative nod towards respecting the beings around us, and their purpose and presence.

My first time meeting Ms. Winfrey was a powerful yet fleeting exchange, affirming the ‘how’ need not be questioned, as its answer lies in faith, the size of a mustard seed. If you can believe, I was literally left speechless. During her talk, I was humbled by her presence, as she spoke and I learned to listen to life’s whispers. Wisdom, whispered inward in words of our subconscious voice, guiding as gut instinct with glacial magnitude. Such advice supersized my soul, adding Angela Davis’ plea to ‘Stop cheating on your future, with your past,’ Glennon Doyle’s spirit of joy, the excitement of new friends, and an overall theme to live my best life, I left inspired, honored, full of hope, love, gratitude, and, well, cruise food.

xo,

Facemaid

Mother Nature, also known as Glacier Bay.

Catching beauty in Ketchikan, Alaska.

Giddy and grateful.

As delicious as it looks. Holland America Cruise eats…

I called them ‘O Notes’ left on our pillow each night.

Gratefully at the bottom of the totem pole.

This way…

View from the upper room.

A local coffee shop collects pins of people from ALL over the world.

Humbled.

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Sir Madame | Palais Lascaris

Imagine a home with its own song.  Envision a palace, a musical instrument museum with a collection of over 500 instruments.

Enter, into 17th Century grandeur of opulence, where baroque ceilings painted with images of fairies as Gods and Goddesses greet you, their stories brimmed in gold.   Climb the majestic staircase to the chapel filled with music inspiring part prayer, part poetry. Feel the warmth of rose painted halls, separating each room’s exertion of its own personality. Move from room to room of papered walls and 12-foot doors hanging on hinges, floating on the sounds of violin strings or piano keys, as if hoping to never cease dancing- withstanding the wear of time.

Marvel a boudoir, so magnificent one could only refer to it as a boudoir indeed, fit for a king, or queen; perhaps the home of its own passionate music.

A palace simultaneously modest, as it is grand, inspired a dress that could withstand its eloquence. Instrumental for the day’s theme, in vintage by Caprice, I channeled Stevie’s Wonder(ous) Sir Duke in celebration of sound, strings, and the Palace Lascrais.

~ FACEMAID

Bienvenue!

Details…

Amen.

‘An instrument is the sole and precious witness to music that was performed in the past.’

Perhaps a soiree of friends invited to sit in the salon listening to the melody of a harp.

String me along…

Boudoir…

When a dress meets its moment…

Madame.

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‘You Will’ | Words From Friends

I woke up confused; well maybe not confused, perhaps I should say in search of- something. Everything was perfect, but something felt off. I realized I missed New York a bit this morning. I missed my bathroom, my shower, the eggs I cook for breakfast. I missed my kitchen, my neighbor Sean, I missed familiarity.

I opened the first of a box of cards containing hand-written words of encouragement, from friends back in the States. I chose at random, sliding my hand in, eyes closed, the way a child does when retrieving a prize. Written on the card were two words: ‘You Will.’ The note, written by my friend Sarah, was encouraging, and uplifting. And I thought, ‘I will what??? What will I do?’

I walked downstairs to grab a coffee and write at the café that for some reason NEVER seems to be open, when it hit me. I will…EVERYTHING! I will explore. I will be open. I will… walk to a new café! (And realize on all four corners of my block, not one café was open!) As I walked back to the apartment I am living in, I discovered the one small, green market I have been meaning to pop into for weeks, La Petite Cagette was open! I WILL go in! It was lovely, and charming; and made me want to hop on the next train to Provence!

Instead, remembering a bottle of champagne in the refrigerator, I purchased apple juice, lime, cherries and of course one baguette. (I am in Paris after all.) Once back at the apartment, I made a random cocktail and decided to celebrate everything I will do today, starting by making myself a cocktail, at home.

~Facemaid

An suspecting yet charming market.

La Petite Cagette

Beautifully Rustic Produce.

The morning’s bounty.

Cheers!

A moment, at home.

 

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Madame Sophia | My Italian Beauty Muse

For years, before ever visiting, I imagined Italy and the beauty of its landscape, as Sophia Loren personified. The Sophia of the 1950’s. The Legend of the Lost Sophia- demure and mesmerizing. A perfect dichotomy between coyly aloof, and intensely passionate. Equal parts signora, and sex bomb, simultaneously.

Sophia Loren’s beauty and style is the embodiment of femininity… soft curls, turbans, head wraps, and scarves; chandelier earrings, and jeweled statement necklaces accessorize long, rounded brows, sitting against, sharp, carbon-winged eyes, and soft nude lips.

Chiffon draped shoulders and lace silhouettes, sweetheart necklines tucked into midi-skirts, where sex meets modesty. She oozes every color, and so, I themed shades of red, from the palest pantone pink to the boldest fuchsia. In skirts, scarves, lips, cheeks, nails, and embroidered details, dressed, and undressed, I channeled That Kind of Woman, Sophia.

Ciao, Ciao!

Facemaid

Inspiration from Sophia Loren's 1965 Vogue Cover

Inspiration from Sophia Loren’s 1965 Vogue Cover

Sophia, Sophia!!! Vogue 1965

Sophia, Sophia!!!
Vogue 1965

FACEMAID Four Roma.  My favorite products used to channel my inner Black Orchid. COVERGIRL TruNaked Waterproof Eyeliner Madina True Deep Eyeliner Bite Lipstick in Chai NYX Powder Blush in Pinched Dress: ASOS

FACEMAID Four Roma. My favorite products used to channel my inner Black Orchid.
COVERGIRL TruNaked Waterproof Eyeliner
Madina True Deep Eyeliner
Bite Lipstick in Chai
NYX Powder Blush in Pinched
Dress: ASOS

Color Overload!!! Vintage YSL Skirt Vintage Blouse from a Parisian Vintage Store Shoes: Miu Miu

Color Overload!!!
Vintage YSL Skirt
Vintage Blouse from a Parisian Vintage Store
Shoes: Miu Miu

My favorite nail laquer for travel. No top coat necessary!! COVERGIRL Outlast in Red-dy and Willing

My favorite nail laquer for travel. No top coat necessary!!
COVERGIRL Outlast in Red-dy and Willing

Muse.

Muse.

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Nonna Roma | Grandma Rome

Rome is a Nonna, (Italian for Grandmother.)  The matriarch of all cities, where the world visits, and people flock to hear her first hand anecdotes of love and war, art and fashion, family and food, and tales of an emperor, or two.  She is stoic, weathered by thousands of years of life, and millions of stories found behind the beauty of piercing eyes.

Her grandeur is awe inducing.  Ivy lies artfully laced over buildings like fabric, with ornate details, as if each Basilica were adorned in her ‘Sunday’s Best.’  Bougainvillea blooms throughout the city, hanging like vintage artwork, accessorizing piazzas. And a family’s tomato sauce is protected by confessional, but tastes like heaven.

In all of her statuesque opulence, lies a rustic-ness wrought by warfare, yet she still bore the most iconic historical fruit, whose cultural impact reverberates centuries later. Where Caesar periled, Michelangelo painted, Valentino’s brilliance was born, da Vinci invented, well, everything; and then, there is you know, the Pope

Amore,

FACEMAID

In Awe.

In Awe.

Streets filled with tourists from all over the world, for Nonna.

Streets filled with tourists from all over the world, for Nonna.

My name is Gladiator.  A peek inside the Colosseum, completed in AD80 and home to contests, animal hunts, and executions alike.

My name is Gladiator. A peek inside the Colosseum, completed in AD80 and home to contests, animal hunts, and executions alike.

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Bougainvillea can be found throughout the city sharing its beauty and color.

Sweet eats at Paticceria Boccione in Rome's Jewish Ghetto.

Sweet eats at Paticceria Boccione in Rome’s Jewish Ghetto. Address: Via del Portico D’Ottavia, 1, 00186 Roma, Italy

The ceilings of the Vatican Museum are beyond words,

The ceilings of the Vatican Museum are beyond words,

The beauty of Ivy-laced Hotel Campo di Fiori, and my Roma 'Home Away from Home.'

The beauty of Ivy-laced Hotel Campo de Fiori, and my Roma ‘Home Away from Home.’

A gun invented by the mastermind himself, Leonardo da Vinci.

A gun invented by the mastermind himself, Leonardo da Vinci.

Delicious Simplicity.

Delicious Simplicity.

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I Have This Thing with Doors. :)  Dress:  The Jet Set Diaries Scarf:    Zara Earrings: Mercedes Salazar Shoe:     Miu Miu

I Have This Thing with Doors. 🙂
Dress: The Jet Set Diaries
Scarf: Zara
Earrings: Mercedes Salazar
Shoe: Miu Miu

 

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Thunderbolt | Coup de Tonnerre

A night in the Marais filled with awful instrumentals that somehow still sounded so sexy, and laughter at idiosyncrasies, complimented by a smile as bright as a million moons; with perfect attention paid to every detail. Whispering in French, English, and Frenglish, while trading stories of wander and wonder of who we would be if we weren’t who we are, what ifs, what’s next and what feels right. It was one of those perfect Parisian nights ended by obligation, leaving behind a mental memento of the power of a mind or soul or body’s connection to another; indeed, magic, and the ultimate facemaidcapade.

Ouais, c’est magique…

FACEMAID

Le 153 Bar- Paris

Le 153 Bar- Paris

Bisous

Bisous

Mementos...

Mementos…

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Besos | Barcelona

It felt as though someone from everywhere in the entire world set out for the beaches of Barcelona that weekend; and it was the third stop on my own personal Eat, Pray, Love excursion.

Barcelona is warm, sexy, and casual. Where couples stop to kiss in the street, overcome with passion, defeated by anticipation.

Feminine details can be found within the city’s architecture, as if the buildings were stenciled in concrete lace; and floral elements embedded in the masonry, giving an air of romance affirming the passion of the culture.

And so, I adorned my hair with flowers, like Frida; and draped my shoulders with lace, mimicking the buildings around me.

Warm bright eyes, signature red lips, and big, strong brows, lure Spanish expressions whispered in Catalan…with words that fall deaf upon the ears, yet understood by the eyes…

Besos,Besos…Petons

~FACEMAID

…DONA...

…DONA…

…Lacy Details in the Gothic Quarter...

…Lacy Details in the Gothic Quarter…

Deep Red Lips, and Hair Roses… Eyes: Makeup Forever Lips: MAC Cosmetics, COVERGIRL

Deep Red Lips, and Hair Roses…
Eyes: Makeup Forever
Lips: MAC Cosmetics, COVERGIRL

…Floral, Feminine Inspiration...

…Floral, Feminine Inspiration…

An obvious feast of Sangria, tapas, and paella; and tapas, sangria, sangria, sangria…

An obvious feast of Sangria, tapas, and paella; and tapas, sangria, sangria, sangria…

…Romantic Details...

…Romantic Details…

…Esperanza...

…Esperanza…

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Black Pearl |Un Petite Rendezvous Avec Paris |

I needed an edit. I needed inspiration. I craved a change of atmosphere. I needed to be drowned by love. I needed a trip to Paris.

A long weekend spent luxuriating in fashion, art, and food; doing absolutely nothing, and open for everything. Making new friends, drinking Côte du Rhone, and discovering neighborhoods never explored. The weekend gave me everything I needed…

With Love,

FACEMAID

Champagne???

Champagne???

…Laruicci Showroom…. www.laruicci.com

…Laruicci Showroom….
www.laruicci.com

…Accoutrements… Lingerie: Witchery Shoe: Dolce & Gabbana

…Accoutrements…
Lingerie: Witchery
Shoe: Dolce & Gabbana

…Mood… Confetti Dance Mural!!

…Mood…
Confetti Dance Mural!!

I Spy Chanel...

…I Spy Chanel…

Standing at Fashion Heaven's Door with @firstclassbelongings

Standing at Fashion Heaven’s Door with @firstclassbelongings.

…Hold On, To Love...

…Hold On, To Love…

...Black Pearl...

…Black Pearl…

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Bay • Bae | She is San Francisco

She is everyone’s ‘Swipe Right.’ The attraction to her is instant. With an easy, relaxed energy, her minimalism negates any hint of arrogance. Her architecture draws you in with its charm. The hills and curves of her streets help balance brains and beauty; but her Silicone is cerebral. She is innovative, and artistic; cultured in cuisine, a master of Mandarin: the total package. If you want to court her, it will cost you. Fitting, when one harbors one of the seven wonders.

She is amorous, often leaving love notes scattered about like emoji hearts, reminding you to show love, to share love, to make love… And in between lovers, she is the best friend that feeds you after a breakup, whispering, ‘Rest here, reset here, control alt delete, then repeat love, here…’

Like hazy grey skies with rays of sunshine fighting their way through the fog, her style is ‘street smarts –meets- Celine.’ She puts a little cool on the classics. I tempered her crispness with neutral layers of taupe against bold lips, mimicking her shades of gray, and graffiti.

On our last day hanging out she initiated a dare. Wanting to impress her, I braved an internal battle, facing my fear of heights, and bridges, crossing her illustrious Golden Gate, to euphoria. But yeah, do not be fooled by her finesse; there are piercings and body art under her Bottega. And she keeps an island just off her bay…

High on Hill,

Facemaid

…Charming...

…Charming…

'…Love waits there...'

‘…Love waits there…’

'…Hanging on a Cable Car...'

‘…Hanging on a Cable Car…’

...Fifty Shades...

…Fifty Shades…

Love, is  this way...

Love, is this way…

'…Morning fog may chill the air...'

‘…Morning fog may chill the air…’

'…A western street, with eastern manners...'

‘…A western street, with eastern manners…’

…The stimulation of Chinatown...

…The stimulation of Chinatown…

…Call me Dumplin...

…Call me Dumplin…

…Fear-less...

…Fear-less…

…{un} Wireless...

…{un} Wireless…

'…Little cable cars climb halfway to the stars...'

‘…Little cable cars climb halfway to the stars…’

'…I left my heart in San Francisco...'

‘…I left my heart in San Francisco…’

…Euphoria...

…Euphoria…

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In Honor Of Yves | Morocco and The Jardin Majorelle

To commemorate the upcoming August 1st birthdate of fashion icon Yves Saint Laurent, I am reminiscing on Marrakech, Morocco, and moments in his Jardin Majorelle, or, Majorelle Garden.

To preserve the 40-year masterpiece designed and curated by artist Jacques Majorelle, Saint Laurent and his partner Pierre Bergé cemented their fondness of Marrakech, and the garden, by acquiring it and its residence in 1980, thus saving it from impending demise.

*Bergé said of the Jardin Majorelle,We were seduced by this oasis where colours used by Matisse were mixed with those of nature.’ 

The richness of the signature cobalt bleu Majorelle decorates the home of the garden’s Berber Museum, created to honor the history and culture of Africa’s most indigenous people.  Over a dozen species of birds, entwined with calming fountains, and various palms and cacti, share the spirit of Saint Laurent, and his, and Bergé’s cohesive expression of beauty, in various forms; cementing a respect, admiration, and vision, for Marrakech, and the Jardin Majorelle.

Exquisitely curated, each lily pad ostensibly placed by hand, the garden is quiet and serene. Its visitors navigate with a collective reverence for its beauty, filled with vibrant color, designed with the detail of an artist, by an artist, with a vision…Its equivalence to walking into a tropical Moroccan dream, with Yves

Joyeux Anniversaire, Monsieur Saint Laurent,

~FACEMAID

…Tea with Yves…  A capture from Pierre Bergé's book 'Yves Saint Laurent, A Moroccan Passion'

…Tea with Yves… A capture from Pierre Bergé’s book ‘Yves Saint Laurent, A Moroccan Passion’

Rue Yves Saint Laurent, شارع إيف سان لوران

Rue Yves Saint Laurent,
شارع إيف سان لوران

…Entrance to the Jardin Majorelle...

…Entrance to the Jardin Majorelle…

…Surrounded by bleu Majorelle… Caftan:  Marrakech Shoe:     Zara Turban: The FHBoutique-UK

…Surrounded by bleu Majorelle on the steps of the Berber Museum……
Caftan: Marrakech
Shoe: Zara
Turban: The FHBoutique-UK

…This Way...

…This Way…

…A Peaceful Moment at The Lily Pond...

…A Peaceful Moment at The Lily Pond…

…The Pavillion...

…The Pavillion…

*Footnote:  Bergé Quote from www.jardinmajorelle.com

 

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