onsdag 31. desember 2014

100 Days Of Positive Thinking: Day 45 (365 out of 365 = Hello 2015!)

2014 is over, and boy was she good to me! So many things have taken place and I have to give credit to God for taking me and my family through this year and bringing us to the beginning of a brand new one together. It is amazing. Stay tuned for some highlights of from fall 2013 and the full year 2014 (this time period flowed together for me).

 My beautiful sister and best friend moved to the States and to the same city as me in fall 2013. Having her around made this year one of the best I have had so far. I am excited for 2015 to be just as amazing as we make an effort to explore more of the city we live in.

 I got to spend another year of friendship with some beautiful humans.#loyalhoes

This year was spectacular in terms of the musical acts I had the privilege to see. I saw LadySmith Black Mambazo in February. It was amazing and I was super starstruck when as the icing on the cake, I got to meet them after and have them sign my t-shirt! In April, I saw Kelela at my school's spring fest. She was pretty awesome. In June, I saw Ms. Lauryn Hill! I cannot express the extent to which this brought me joy. It was truly a dream come to true to see, in my opinion, one of the greatest artists of all time perform. Then in Ghana, I was able to see two legendary acts, Wulomei and Agya Koo Nimo, perform. Koo Nimo came to speak to my class and I actually sat and had a chat with him. He imparted some knowledge about keeping fit as one grows older. 
Hint: lots of musical stimulation is essential!

 I had the privilege of being a resident assistant for a freshman dormitory, an experience that grew me so much as a person. I was able to express my creativity through crafting bulletin boards and planning community events. It also allowed me to get to know so many diverse and beautiful souls. I'll miss the warm light that flowed into my room at dawn and at dusk, accentuating my Tupac poster.

On a more shallow note (lol) think I made some progress in my sartorial development. A few of my favourite looks from this past year. I am excited to be more adventurous and confident with my style choices in the coming year, and brave enough to post more outfits on the blog.

My sister, two friends and I hit the road twice this summer. The first trip took us the states of North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin and Wyoming. The second took us to Illinois, Indiana and Kentucky, where we got to see our friend get married. It was awesome. We saw America's first wonder, Devil's Tower. We stayed in a creepy motel in a town called Deadwood. We saw Mount Rushmore. We sang at the top of our lungs while driving on winding roads lined with evergreen trees. 
It was blissful.

I received a grant from my university, and in collaboration with an organization started by my parents at my high school, set in motion the renovation of a school in Ghana's Eastern region called Sakyikrom United Primary School. You can follow the progress of the project on our Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/816078315070486/?fref=ts. This experience was challenging to say the least. I am so honoured to have worked with this community. They taught me so much! I am excited to continue working with them.

 I got to spend the semester at Ashesi University in Ghana. The memories made during this exchange are countless. The friendships formed will be cherished for a long time to come. I will miss the food a whole bunch (especially the plantain chips)! I hope I can go back and visit them soon. Or maybe they may even be able to visit me in Norway or in the US sometime? You never know .... 

2014 was a blast! I pray that 2015 will be a year of abundance, travel, learning, love and joy for everyone. Happy New Year! Godt nytt år!

fredag 26. desember 2014

Interior Inspiration: Industrial Domesticity

I love the industrial floors in this living space. I would have softened the interior further by adding a fluffy rug and going for even more plush seating. Perfection.

Image c/o Elle Decoration.

Song of the Day: 'The Charade' by D'Angelo and the Vanguard

D'Angelo is back and boy, oh boy, it's good. His new album Black Messiah (his first in 14 years), came out on the morning of my birthday. I was so so excited about it, I was having a hard time focusing on studying for my last exam. I actually had to take a break from listening to it, so I could successfully study my Africa Philosophy, and not fail my exam, lol!

My favourite song off the album so far is 'The Charade'. The lyrics are so poignant:

"All we wanted was a chance to talk
'Stead we only got outlined in chalk
Feet have bled a million miles we've walked
Revealing at the end of the day, the charade"

There are so many other amazing tracks on this album, so I am sure that my favourite will change over time. Welcome back, papa D'Angelo. You are truly one of the most spectacular artists of our time and I am glad you took your time to craft this musical masterpiece. 

What are you listening to today?

søndag 21. desember 2014

100 Days Of Positive Thinking: Day 44 (Welcome Home)

I am so excited to look out my window and see the fjord, mountains and grey, gloomy skies. However, I must admit, saying goodbye to the friends I made in Ghana was a lot harder than I had anticipated. I did my typical thing of smiling, and cracking jokes to stop the tears that were welling up from falling. As the car drove away, I got a text from a friend saying he would miss me. I could not hold the tear back any longer. My semester in Ghana was like dark chocolate, bittersweet. At the end of it, I feel so blessed to have had this experience. It has taught me so much about humanity, my identity and my personality. I am excited to take time to reflect on this experience over this next month at home with my papa, mama and sister.

Thank you to everyone in GH who helped make this time as amazing as it was. I loved singing, chatting in the dark, walking up/down the hill, grabbing food from Mannie's or Akorno, drinking fresh coconut, eating guinea fowl, doing laundry under the hot sun with you! I'll never forget you!

Stay awesome, Ashesi peeps!

Goals: Styleinspo a la 徐一个

I am officially home in the Nordic region and it is cold. After dressing for tropical temperatures for the past six months, I feel like I need some inspiration on how to keep warm, while not looking like a hot mess. I came across this incredibly chic lady through Rebecca's (aka The Clothes Horse) blog. I went to the Chinese style site where she share her amazing style, Ibaifang. While I am sure the site contains information about her, my poor Chinese language skills do not allow me to access that information.


 Nonetheless, her sartorial instincts are absolutely sublime. From the mix of masculine and feminine elements, the effortlessness of its execution, I am sold and trying to find ways to emulate her style with pieces from my own wardrobe.

 A great way to stay warm, while still looking chic: pair a collared shirt layered under shift dress. Throw on a pair of tights and boots to complete the look.

She masters the art of effortless, crisp looks. I love this one comprised of a floppy hat, oxford shirt and striped, formal trousers.

Where can I find a pleated skirt with suspenders? Seriously, someone tell me.

A navy mac, plaid shirt, black jeans, wooly hat and a pair of bright-coloured sneakers. This sums up my style goals for the coming semester. Minimalistic and put-together.

There is no doubt that her coat and dress/skirt game is so strong. I love the way she puts skater skirts (one of my addictions) or dresses,with thick neutral knits and a statement coat. That mustard coat!

I don't know whether this fella isr her friend or her bae, but she has a quite a few photos with him.  There seems to a very strong stylistic connection between them. 
They complement each other really well.

 She just exudes cool, free-spirited vibe. Dare I say life swag?

For more images of this stylish lady, you can visit her Ibaifang style profile.

søndag 30. november 2014

Swoon .....: The League of Gentlemen

Let me preface this by saying that I have no idea who these incredibly handsome and dapper gentlemen are, but I can say with certainty that I am madly smitten with all of them. Their style is what I like to call my ideal bae aesthetic. Particularly the gentleman who is second from the right, wearing the grey suit with high-waisted trousers. *Faints* I would like to personally thank my beloved friend Sophia, for sharing this photo with me. You know have the right friends when they know your bae aesthetic.

Image c/o: Facebook

Song Of The Day: 'Somliga Går Med Trasiga Skor' by Cornelis Vreeswijk

I am a  Scandi-kid at heart and a sucker for music that reminds me of my Nordic formative years. Swedish Cornelis Vreeswijk's sound is a go-to for me when I feel adrift. Though he is not Norwegian, his music makes me feel closer to home. If I close my eyes while listening to 'Somliga går med trasiga skor', I can almost smell the fjord. Can you tell I'm a little homesick?

What are you listening to today?

fredag 28. november 2014

100 Days Of Positive Thinking: Day 43 (US Day)

Happy belated Thanksgiving! Today was a day filled sharing the culture of my adopted home, the USA on the campus of my study abroad school. It went so well and I am filled with joy. The day was a labour of love, with so many people working together to make it happen. The community supported us so well by taking interest in our event and showing up. I could not have asked for a better outcome. We started the day off with breakfast (pancakes and bacon). Then we moved on to fact and Q+A session (we shared some general facts about the states and also took the opportunity to highlight Ferguson and the history of racial violence in the States). During this session, we served some tasters of US food with the community (chilli, beer bread, roasted potatoes, craisins and apple pie). After that we had a dance session (we did the Electric Slide, Cotton Eyed Joe, Cha Cha Slide, Cupid Shuffle, Soulja Boy, and just about line dance we could think of). We ended the day with a screening of the movie Crash. It was a wonderful day. I am so thankful to have been a part of making it happen.

Serving up some grub with my homie Clare.

I hope that wherever you are (and that if you celebrate) that your Thanksgiving was magical, joyful and full of love.

søndag 23. november 2014

Goals: Styleinspo a la the Knowles-Ferguson Nuptials

Solange Knowles got married to her very studly (and bearded) longtime beau Alan Ferguson last weekend and boy was this wedding a feast for the eyes. Now, I am an unashamedly a (longtime) member of the Solange fan club for a number of reasons. One major factor for me is that she lives the Carefree Black Girl lifestyle and does it so well. And her wedding effortlessly epitomized why this woman has come to be regarded one of the major style icons of recent times.

For one, Solange and Alan arrived on vintage bicycles. The bride was dressed in a stunning pant-suit with a cape that flowed beautifully, and the groom in a crisp white suit. I loved that both Solange and Alan wore white. Perhaps I am reading too much into it, but it felt like aa subtle indication of it being their day, not just the bride's.

Not only did the groom also wear white, but the entire wedding party wore white. And posed for these group photos with a background reminiscent of ancient Roman/Grecian aesthetics. Everyone is rocking a unique dress style, that tells you something about how they wanted to present themselves on this day. However, the all-white theme ties them all together. Uniformity and diversity.

The blushing bride.

She had the most adorable mother- son dance with her little boy, Julez. You can find it on Afro Bella's blog, where she did a post on the '5 Fabulous Ways Solange Reinvented Traditional Wedding Rules'.

 And she wore her natural hair! I have noticed that black women (even when natural) tend to straighten or in the very least braid their hair for their wedding festivities. Solange kept a natural picked 'fro throughout the day. To me, it was a powerful statement to young black women everywhere that your natural hair need not be put away or manipulated to be part of your wedding day. And she wore beautiful flowers in her hair. Like she was going to San Francisco.

Who says you have to pick one dress? Solange changed her outfit multiple times, rocking a number of beautiful white outfits over the course of their special day. If I ever get married, I plan to steal some ideas from Solange and Alan's wedding. Sorry, not sorry. #IdealAesthetics

Were you inspired by the Knowles-Ferguson nuptials?

Images c/o Google Images 

Song Of The Day: 'Cocoa Butter Kisses' by Chance The Rapper

I'm a Chance fan. I really wanted to go see him live when he came to my city, but as usual (Nerd Alert!) I opted to study for a midterm examination I had the next day. But really, why are concerts on Tuesdays? Or any other weekday for that matter? Don't they know some of us are still in school and too much of the goody-two-shoes persuasion to sleep in (and miss class) after seeing a concert? Anywho, this song is my jam! My dance group did a routine to the Elli Ingram cover last year. While I think Ms. Ingram's cover s epic, there is a certain je ne sais quoi about the original of this song that is inimitable. Chance has mentioned in interviews that prior to becoming a hip hop enthusiast, he was a jazz head. The influence that jazz music has had on him is evident in the richness of his music, particularly this track. Also, everyone loves some cocoa butta, doe. Amiright?

What are you listening to today?

lørdag 15. november 2014

100 Days Of Positive Thinking: Day 42 (Grey Pick-Me-Up)

Hello there! It's been a while since I did a positive thinking post. My semester abroad has not been without its challenges and I think I have struggled at times to maintain a positive outlook. However, that is the whole point of this challenge, right? To push myself beyond what I feel like feeling and make a conscious effort to approach every situation with positivity. So here is to a revamped effort to think positively.

A few weeks back,  I painted my nails this grey colour that I fell in love with over the summer. I had just finished a challenging presentation and it went quite well, so I decided to treat myself with a little pampering, a bit of me-time.  There is something so crisp and clean about this colour that makes every outfit look put together. Yay for little things that pick you up!

Hope you are having a wonderful day!

torsdag 13. november 2014

Goals: Styleinspo a la Freddie Tietcheu (aka Asos Freddie)

A couple of months ago, I was introduced to Freddie Tietcheu on the blog SimplyCyn, and I have been hooked on this lady's Instagram ever since. Freddie's style and her perfect hair have made me develop a bad case of  life-swag envy. Anyone who knows me well, knows that I love loose-fitting clothing. I think that often, there is the idea that loose clothes can not be put-together. Paris-born, London-based, Asos-stylist Freddie dispels that myth by rocking loose fits and making them look hella chic.

For one, Freddie truly knows how to put together a smouldering all-black look, with a bold 
red lip for a pop of colour.

I also love the way she mixes bold prints prints and colours, often purposefully clashing to make a unique style statement. And she is sneaker-lady, just like moi!

 She does tomboy chic oh-so-well! Mixing structured oxford shirts with plush sweaters, mum jeans, a lady-like flats for a touch of femininity.

Though she is a true jean-lover, she does not shy away from skirts. You will often find her pairing a flowy midi or maxi skirt with a pair of boot or sneakers.

The moment I knew that Freddie and I were destined to be besties (I am not creepy at all, right?) was when I saw this photo of her rocking a stunning mustard-coloured suit. Any lady who rocks suit is a friend of mine.

And of course, the 'fro. #madhairenvy.

Who are your style icons?

Images c/o: Freddie's Pinterest and Asos Fashion Finder.