OOTD: 1/2 Black 1/2 Boricua

Representing your Ethnicity through Fashion
A lot of people have the common misconception that to be fashionable/stylish, you have to be on trend, and follow the latest styles to a t.  Well, that's not entirely true.  In order to be fashionable, in my eyes, you have to be able to carry yourself with confidence and pride.  In the great words of my fashion icon, Victoria Bechkam, who has a stunning name I might add,

"Looking good isn't about money, it's about style. And style never goes out of fashion!" 

Well said Mrs.Beckham,  but we must also never forget to never forget ourselves, who we are, and where we came from. I learned everything I know about fashion and style from my travels around the world, I was blessed enough to be able to visit many countries already with my parents, when I was a child, and explore more of the United States with John now.   I've visited Germany, Czechoslovakia, France, Austria, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Mexico, Canada, and of course Puerto Rico.....but that's a given.  Everywhere I go I learn something new and get inspired to wear something different.  From the typical Parisian woman, with her stereotypical scarf, skinny pants, and beret to the traditional attire of your everyday Guatemalan woman.  Although Lederhosen aren't "fashionable" in most people's eyes, they're really just glorified overalls, so thank you Germany.  And in Puerto Rico I learn how to put a cute outfit together in 100° weather, that's not just a cami and shorts.  Showing off your ethnicity or cultural background doesn't have to be literal, or the forefront of your outfit, like wearing a t-shirt that says 'Kiss me I'm Irish'.    Either way, I have the privilege of being Puerto Rican, and us Boricuas are some of the proudest people I know.  I mean, my sister has the TaĆ­no sun tattooed on her shoulder blade.  So needless to say, we are very loud and proud.  All three of us sisters and my mom have the little Puerto Rican flag hanging from our rear view mirrors, and I have a pair of mini boxing gloves too.  Anyways, I was rummaging around in some boxes John and I still hadn't unpacked after our move and I found about 7 or 8 "ethnic bracelets"  from Puerto Rico, Guatemala, and Costa Rica.  I actually Instagramed them and asked how I should incorporate them into a blog post.

Later, when I found my San Juan shirt, the outfit idea just hit me and I instantly got the idea for this whole post.  Wouldn't it be fun to create a whole look around my ethnicity?  So this is what I put together.  I took my plain grey t-shirt, and to add some spice paired it with burgundy jeans from Target, and a fun, cut tuxedo blazer from Love 21 brand for Forever 21.  It would have been really easy to grab jeans or black skinnies but the burgundy is what ties in the bracelets to the whole outfit, helping look fashionable and not so much costume-y, plus, it's right on trend for fall.  For some height and added cuteness I chose my Ivanka Trump patent leather pumps.  The clutch some of you may recognize from my recent Target haul, and that is what allowed me to add in a little touch of turquoise into my arm candy in the ring.  Becuase of the ring, I was able to wear my fab find skull bracelet from Ebay, also turquoise, which bring it all full circle back to the rest of the bracelets.

The bracelets add just the perfect amount of flair to the outfit, dressing up the plain old t-shirt just enough.  Obviously since we are wearing a t-shirt though, they compliment each other perfectly, wearing pearls or diamonds would just seem too out of place.  The bracelets also serve as the main color pop in this outfit, which draws the attention of anybody passing you on the street to your arm, where it should be drawn.  Not only does this whole ensemble look adorable , but your arm candy will make for the most perfect conversation starter.  And I'll explain how.....

All of the jewelry that I'm wearing has a full story behind it, but here is the nutshell versions of it all:

From top to bottom: (refer to above picture)
The Antigua Guatemala bracelet: I got while on a mission trip with my church to an orpahange in Guatemala.  I picked up that bracelet form  a street vendor after I visited a mile deep trash dump where I saw children digging through trash to survive.  It's  a great reminder every day to be thankful for what I have.
The Brown Tribal cuff:  I got while in Costa Rica with my school.  I got bullied on that trip, and the girl who did that whole trip, can waste her energy hating all she wants.  It's a constant reminder that I love myself and my life and nobody can take that away from me.
The Beaded Bracelet: I bought while in Guatemala, same trip, different year.  I bought that from the shop within the Orphanage.  The proceeds go directly to the children.  I know it's not much but it reminds me of all the kids who drew me pictures and hugged me every morning.  I still have those drawings to this day.
The Puerto Rican Flag Leather Cuff: Reminds me of who I am and where I come from, also, why I love my hair so much and all of its crazy curliness.  Women pay hundreds of dollars to get my hair, and i get it for free :)

The Colorful Woven bracelet:  I got on my trip to Guatemala, the very first year I went. 
The Ring:  I got while in Costa Rica
The Earrings: My John got me while in Chicago, we took an impromptu road trip to Chicago about 2 weeks after we started dating because I had never been.  While in the 8 story Macy's, John snuck away and bought me these little Bestsey Johnson camera earrings, since I am a photographer and he knows I love Betsey he got em, and surprised me afterwards while we were at America's Dog. 

I hope you all enjoyed this post, never be afraid to break the boundaries of everyday fashion and show a little unique flair by expressing your ethinicty through your outfit and accessories.  


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