Thanks for stopping by! Here on BECOMING LOLA I share stories on becoming minimalist, as well as living a pure clean life as a style-obsessed digital nomad with a no BS approach to ethical fashion + travel. Grab a glass of wine and start here: Building A Minimalist Wardrobe.


Mar 26, 2014

i could never ever do this, could you?

It happens at sleepovers all over the country, one sugar-crazed girl party at a time (gay besties included). A not-so-innocent “best friend” holds up ten fingers and whines, “Never have I ever...” Yes, this was a sleepover rite of passage game more intoxicating than Truth or Dare that was meant for giggly girl talk and, let's not kid ourselves, a little bit of pride stroking as we went about informing our friends that we had, in fact, gotten to second base with our acne-covered lab partner. Who cares if it was on a bet, messy and in the dark? The guy like totally wore a size 12 shoe. Hello!

Mar 17, 2014

i don't need to become a peta vegan but i want faux fur

faux fur

Seriously, I don't know why two weeks later I am shit out of luck on the faux fur front for my capsule wardrobe. Where are these beasts hiding! Anyone have secret tips for where they hunt down their faux fur pieces that isn't downright hideous or breaks the bank? I've been trolling eBay for a hot minute. You know I can't wear real fur. Seeing as they have to kill animals for that and all. The day I realize being personally skinned alive is more soothing than a day at the spa is when you'll find me blissfully returning to the ignorance that is wearing real fur. #justsayin
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casual monday neutral and white fashion for the working girl


Happy Monday dolls! Here in New York the sun is out in full effect. I have impatient tendencies, and even after last week's blizzard I was dying to wear sandals. So I jetted out in peep toe pumps instead. If it's warm where you are, please let me live vicariously through you and wear some gladiators for the both of us! What's your work attire outfit look like today?

Mar 10, 2014

introducing the "lean wardrobe" for 5 piece french wardrobe builders

5 piece french wardrobe
You remember that time when you decided to launch a style blog and slaved over perfectionist business cards to hand out at the many conferences you'd be attending as part of the new career you couldn't even afford to have? Well, the fashion industry world is like that at every turn, in every spectrum, from the tiny worms who spin our silk to the godly designers who make Swarovski crystal face masks with deer antlers we don't need. It's all a facade. A show. An immensely bipolar vacuum of delight, and wonder, and pretend, and living beyond means like no one's business. A 5 piece french wardrobe is the butt of all jokes in that world. So this got me to thinking. Hard. If I can launch a lean startup (my fashion tech company that you can follow in the fashion ceo series every week) which is based on the lean startup method of creating businesses with very little mulah, then why can't I also apply that to my shopping habits, anti-consumerism minimalist philosophies, and wardrobe building?

I mean let's be real, I am no Rick Owens-cum-Acne loving girl from Scandinavia. I loved the 5 piece french wardrobe approach for its simplicity but it lacks the focus on budgeting. Then there's capsule this and classics that, but whose to say I give a damn about what my colleagues demand I buy every week based on a list they pulled out of their ass. Breton stripe tees and trench coats and wrap skirts need not find their way into my closet any time soon. I much prefer to blend all these orchestrated attempts at instructing us what to do or what life to lead and instead create a new method that inspires a universal approach to curating an ideal personal collection of quality clothing for work and play that is attainable, sustainable and affordable. Don't you agree? Well, let's take a step back and see what the rules of the game were originally:

Mar 8, 2014

pre-spring minimalist 5 piece french capsule wardrobe

This is my ideal foundation for a capsule wardrobe this season as we chatted about in my post below on how to dress like a French minimalist. What are your ideal pieces? Tell me in the comments!

Mar 5, 2014

spring 2014 wardrobe picks on a budget

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Just a peek at some new additions to my wardrobe. Stay tuned for the wardrobe challenge I'm imposing upon myself. How is your Spring curation coming along?
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Mar 1, 2014

depression is de rigueur when you aren't your true self

My name is Letitia. I'm an aspiring domestic goddess, but I was a homemade virgin. Here is my story.

Growing up as a seemingly intellectual young black girl in a statistically stereotypical minority neighborhood, everyone just assumed the budding journalist in me admired Oprah, and no one else. They always assumed it was her I wanted to be. And, for a long time, likely out of pure subconscious agreement, I thought the same. I'd dream of having a talk show, scurry at every chance to put together a make-pretend interview segment for Humanities class presentations, and even plan the different schools bearing my name that I would open when I got older. But it was all for show- a fleeting aspiration wrapped up in the world's perception of me like the airy strands of cotton candy. It wasn't until I became a pubescent teenager that my true idol emerged like a stark willow tree from the thickest of shadows. Martha Stewart is her name, domestic goddess is her game. And you know what did me in? Those gosh darn EasyBake Ovens! Yup, that was me: straight-A student, young, black, and obsessed with a small pink made-in-China pastry maker. I was like an anomaly. I represented everything I loved, but that just didn't exist at the time. Where were all the girls that looked like me on TV? Why wasn't there a legion of them baking away, throwing DIY sewing parties, or interviewing the latest fashion guru? It was Martha, and only Martha, and slowly over time, out of sheer disconnect with my identity, Martha and I grew apart.

Then one day in my twenties, I found myself content at home - a Ken & Barbie-like existence I had created with my then better half - perusing the web when I discovered that Martha was being sentenced to prison. Prison? Whaaat! Who knew money could get one into so much trouble with the law. Well, apparently not Martha, and off she went. It was then that I felt an almost gnawing feeling eating away at my being. Though it was me who voluntarily ended our relationship years earlier, knowing she would really be gone made it all the more real, and I realized then, that the gift of time, just as identity, shouldn't be taken for granted. If domesticity is what I yearned for, then I saw no reason why I shouldn't have it. I bid farewell to Martha, turned to take a look at my apartment, and my life, and set out to make something.

Make something. Ha! Sounds simple right? You'd be mistaken. In fact, no one really tells you just how hard it is to jumble together your maze of creativity with the actual non-procrastinating will to produce. And what...what on Earth could I even do? Little ol me with only the talent of thought and gift of writing to my name. What would ever come of that? I took a peek into my past, unshelving dusty treasure boxes and cracking open childhood diaries. Peeks turned into delves, and days became weeks. That whole period of self-discovery is wonderfully summed up by a chapter I read a while back from Molly Wizenberg's A Homemade Life. She wrote short and sweetly, "you are what you love". It was clear to me then as it should have always been, I was and am an artist, simply because I never go a day without aiming to produce exceptional aesthetically pleasing works.

In the summer of 2008, I woke up one morning and, the way a hungry person would decide to cook breakfast, decided I would work for or create a fashion magazine, as if it were the most natural progression - to barely be of drinking age and an editor. But just as I would bake a batch of cupcakes with sprinkled frosting and dulce german chocolate filling, I saw the magazine idea as a recipe and I would just have to concoct my own creation. My little magazine was as handmade as it gets, both figuratively and literally. I snatched up a domain name, and spent the next season engulfing myself with the project of building upon my ideas from scratch. Summer turned into winter, winter became spring, and before you know it, I was making something that went out into the world for all to read. But even with the magazine's overnight cult fame and global takeover, I felt something was missing, as I felt it always was, and it was the day I saw Martha Stewart Living at the book store, perched up on the shelf like a gleaming star on the holiday tree, that I realized just what it was.

To live a homemade life is to live a handmade one. The two couldn't exist without each other. Even when I think back on my most barren apartments with not a drop of paint on the walls, there was still the four poster bed we built together, and the Thanksgiving meal I slaved over from scratch, and the silly photo collage hanging for dear life on the wall. It was never much, but it was something. Before I knew it, I had a vintage Singer sewing machine which hijacked all the pennies from my rainy day piggy bank, and the kitchen foyer nook was inhabited by scraps of fabric strewn across the floor like rag dolls in an all-girl nursery room. I felt at peace. I felt at home. What came next was organic, but nonetheless horrifying. I discovered something on premium cable called the FoodNetwork channel. After that, life as I knew it would end. There were days I wouldn't leave the house; instead I'd be sunken into the couch, the source of an indeterminate foul smell I denied came from me. The days I did decide to rise up from my transient state and shower, I'd be in the kitchen with full force, testing my own original recipes for honey mustard breaded pork chops and caramel rocky road cupcakes.

These days, as I spend my sleepless nights doodling in my journal, harvesting new ideas for the pages of L Magazine, my only wish is that I would have discovered photography back then, the way it is so prevalent in my life now. Maybe then would I have proof of my Barney & Friends inspired curtains (don't ask!), or the half dozen Louis XVI chairs I reupholstered in Tiffany blue suede, or the housewarming party I threw that had a menu with more homemade dishes on it than the menus of Olive Garden and Starbucks combined; maybe then would I have proof that I finally became who I should have always been. For now, I'll always have the trail of written pages I leave behind. And that's enough for now.

p.s.- This post was inspired by two bloggers entirely more brave than I am and put it all out there. People always ask why I blog in a sea of blogs and my answer is (and sadly might always be) that there aren't bloggers who look like me. Hopefully that will change, but its made for a terribly unjust and depressing identity crisis growing up. As if fashionable intellectuals can only be porcelain. I mean, have YOU ever seen an Asian or Latin Martha Stewart-type on television? :)

What about you? Do you ever see a disconnect between who you feel you are and how you live your life?
© Beconing Lola • design Maira G.