Neon Lights in the City of Angels

It is the time of the waning year. The sun is saying his last goodbyes as he gets ready to wrap himself in a shimmering, iridescent blanket of stars and slip into hibernation. The energy is twinkling as well, neon blues and pinks are in the air as the veil between this world and the spirit realm softens, smoothed out by a dose of glamour. October is around the corner, and with it the promise of darker days, shrouded in mystery and ties to parts of ourselves we seem to forget in the warmer months. 2-8590This is a time of exploration, of curiosity- a time of intense introspection and rebirth. The wheel of the year is shifting to a season that celebrates the light but invites and honors the darkness to come. The Equinox was last week, a day of intense balance and energetic equilibrium. It is officially Fall, and with that comes an extra dose of new, creative energy. 3-8591My sister Alexandra and I live down the street from the bookstore, plenty of stores and resteraunts, a cool newsstand and a Trader Joes. Saturday’s have been spent eating delicious food, walking around in the hot Los Angeles climate and bathing under neon signs. The energy this past week has been intense- I’ve felt like a snake shedding its skin. It’s been two years since I moved into my last apartment, two years since I started getting ready for London, two years since I had to do a lot of reevaluating with who I let into my life. All this energetic baggage I’ve been carrying the past two years is finally dissipating. The equinox was on the 22nd- I am 22, my birthday is on 2/2 and I’m a twin- so I really felt the weight of this seasonal shift and I’m using the momentum to move forward in a positive, beneficial and creative manner. Now I’m left with a new, shiny skin, a fresh set of eyes and an excitement for life that can only come from moving to a new city. 4-85921-8580I’ve been more intentional with what I buy- I am extremely picky with jackets and when I tried this metallic one on from Zara I knew I needed it, and that it’s not something I will probably ever get sick of. I’ve also been lusting after a pleated American Apparel skirt, so I bought this vintage cheerleader skirt from a local thrift shop as a dupe. A bandana, some sheer knee highs from Nordstrom Rack and my favorite cosmic bucket bag were the finishing touches on this look. I’m a firm believer in only wearing what you LOVE. There is nothing quiet as euphoric for me as spending the day in an outfit I love- very often other things I love will follow.5-86046-86057-8611grab1-8617img_86228-8625Spend time with people you care about. Go to the cemetery. Leave flowers at beautiful graves. Go outside. Talk to the trees. Make some art. Sit under the full moon.

All photos by one of my favorite humans in the world- Alexandra.

I love you.

Gabriela

Which Witch:: Gabriela Darko or Gabriela Ross?

The summer before 12th grade, a boy I was talking to told me to watch Donnie Darko three times in a row. I had never seen it and agreed blindly. I don’t think I’ve ever been the same. Almost every day for the rest of that summer, I would go to the guest room in the basement and put Donnie Darko on. I wish I could remember what I though the first time I saw it, or when I bought it on DVD, but I don’t. It feels like the movie has always been part of my life. I actually have to forget I own it, or I’ll watch it a million times in a row and neglect every other option on Netflix//DVD. I fell back into this pattern this past summer. 4ecdcac03de1fed257e9bb839114f67a

For those of you who haven’t seen Donnie Darko- shame. Who are you, what have you been doing? Anyway, I love this movie because it always leaves me in a weird mood. It leaves me fidgety, slightly uncomfortable, sad and happy at the same time. You know the feeling you get in your gut when things are about to change and everything feels slightly off but you can’t explain why? I call that “weird change-y feeling” and that, my friends, is Donnie Darko. A supernatural, 80’s teen love story featuring a giant bunny rabbit and time travel is exactly the kind of thing I’m into. Richard Kelly, who directed the movie, was fresh out of film school when he made this film. It was filmed Los Angeles in 2000 and was released the following year. I was living in Los Angeles while it was being filmed (which is something I just found out) and I’m moving back to LA in about three weeks. I’m planning on scouting some of the locations to relive some of my favorite scenes, but until then- here are two outfits inspired by my favorites…

Gretchen Ross

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Gretchen is elusive.. she’s mysterious, she’s tragic, she’s assertive. My personal interpretation of this movie is that tangent universe opened up so Donnie could fall in love- he wanted so badly to not die alone and even though he did, he died peacefully without regrets. Gretchen was this portal for him- “some people are just born with tragedy in their blood” after all. Gretchen’s relationship with Donnie happened because all he wanted was to love and be loved- aka not be alone- before he died. Gretchen and Donnie’s first kiss is one of my favorite on-screen snogs of all time. But, although I love Gretchen, she doesn’t really have the best style. I put my own spin on her look, switching out the hiking boots for oxfords and the track jacket for a fuzzy sweater. I think Gretchen would have been into cool, patched up mom jeans so I added that into the mix too.  1-66761-66781-66911-6664Gretchen-66691-66981-67061-6707Sweater:: H&M// Shirt:: Urban Outfitters// Jeans:: Zara1-6709

Donnie Darko

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Donnie looks as good in a slept-in tee as he does in his school uniform. It’s that brooding angst that really does it for me. Donnie is troubled, and he’s confused, but he’s also predictable when it comes to his wardrobe. I did his favorite look,tee shirt and jeans, in all black, with a simple leather backpack because Donnie makes his look ace and I wanted to channel my inner gothic school girl.  unspecified1-67271-67411-67391-67431-6749Shirt:: Basement band tee// Jeans:: Topshop// Sweatshirt:: Zara// Backpack:: Urban Outfitters1-6746

Sometimes I doubt your commitment to Sparkle Motion!
XOXO,
Gabriela

All photos by Alexandra Herstik

Queen of Hearts::: Forgotten Feather Valentines Day Lookbook

I’m disgustingly lucky to be surrounded by ridiculously creative and talented humans. Seriously. Last week I spent  my Sunday dressing up in Ivory’s vintage lingerie with my two best friends and my twin for this super special Valentines Day lookbook. We rearranged my room and got into character- we were going for a mixed era, vintage-esque look. Ivory recently launched an entire collection of this incredible lingerie, which was shot by my sister and styled by Ivory with some help from yours truly. Spending the day with my favorite humans, some fresh flowers and some rosé wasn’t too shabby.

So, do you actually need an excuse to buy yourself some lingerie? Absolutely not. You are your best excuse, and if you have a significant other who will appreciate vintage lingerie, then that’s just a lovely plus. But here’s the thing. If you’re ever upset or sad or if you ever forget that you’re a bad bitch, throw on some vintage lingerie and cheer yourself up. Making yourself feel good is important- and there’s nothing wrong with draping yourself in some silky threads to do it. Have a party for yourself- celebrate everything that makes you, you- wear something that makes you feel like a goddess. Valentines Day is just a wonderful excuse to love yourself, your girlfriends and everyone who loves you as much as YOU love you.

1 2 3 6 8 10 11 13 14 15 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 25  27 28 30 31 32 3337 38 41 42 4347 48 4951Models: Brittany Kirby, Ivory Woods and Gabriela Herstik
Photos: Shot by Alexandra Herstik , @alexyael

All the lingerie featured here is available through Forgotten Feather Vintage.

Happy Valentines Day!!
Gabriela

THE 6 LESSONS AND 1 GOLDEN RULE I LEARNED FROM MY MOM

November 30th may SEEM like an ordinary day, but alas- tis not. It’s my mom’s birthday-and she’s turning 61! If you don’t have the pleasure of knowing Silvia, you’re missing out. She’s the first one to dance, the first one to laugh, she always looks fabulous (SERIOUSLY- the women is turning 61 and looks better than yours truly) and she is the first one to love with all of her heart. My mom was my introduction to both of my passions- fashion and spirituality. The woman has been using crystals, meditating, doing yoga and the whole nine yards since before it was socially acceptable (hello 80’s). Silvia is where I get my unyielding, burning passion for lipstick, black, (faux) leather, high heels and a KILL EM attitude- so needless to say I am glad this Sagittarius Queen was born all these years ago! 11223337_10153510783296115_1145219058023697366_oMy mom has taught me a lot- so I decided to share my six favorite lessons and the ultimate gold rule she taught  me (get it 61??). So here you go- from Silvia Herstik to you!

1. NEVER UNDERESTIMATE THE POWER OF LOOKING (AND FEELING) GOOD

So what seem like a no brainer actually isn’t.  Ever since I was little, my mom has always looked fabulous. It doesn’t matter if she’s wearing an Express track suit or her favorite pair of AG jeans, the woman always looks perfect.  I think this is also a cultural thing- my grandma is the same way. I also thing my family just drank out of the fountain of youth because my god do humans in my family age well. My mom (who was born and raised in Mexico City) has always emphasized that there’s no shame in taking care of yourself- having pride in how you present yourself is good! It’s important and worthy- if it makes you feel good, do it! No shame at all.

2. YOU CAN’T GO WRONG WITH LIPSTICK

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One of my moms favorite stories to tell us (us being the twin and me) is of one of our closest friends Amanda and how she would always look at my mom, wide eyed and starstruck, while we were at temple at Friday night services. Amanda was constantly in awe of my moms perfectly pink lips and loved to play with her lipstick. Me? Not so much. It wasn’t until I was a senior in high school that I realized the power of a perfectly red pout. Ever since then I’ve been hooked. My mom was my first introduction to the wonderful world of MAC and all their fabulous hues. I like to call lipstick my war paint, and these days my lipstick choices also inspire my mom. I like to think of it as fashion karma! She introduced me to the tube of courage and I introduce her to So Chaud and Candy Yum Yum. Mutually beneficial for sure.

3. NEVER EVER APOLOGIZE FOR BEING WHO YOU ARE

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My mom is a 5’5 powerhouse with a thick Mexican accent. She graduated from college in three years and got her Masters degree in two. By the time she was 20 she owned her private practice and when she was 27 she came to the United States by herself- the first in her family. Silvia is the original power woman in my book, and if there’s one thing her kick butt work ethic and her fabulous nature has taught me it’s to NEVER apologize for being yourself. My mom is constantly underestimated because shes a woman and she has an accent, and you know what? She constantly proves those people wrong. My mom always dances, always sings, always loves and always gives hugs and kisses. She wears monochromatic outfits and has a really loud laugh and she’s kinda weird and you know what? That’s what makes her stellar! And she has never apologized for that.

4. YOU CAN ALWAYS CHEAT YOUR HEIGHT11188405_10152725438786207_3316539951769336462_n

My mom has always been a heel woman. Ever since I was younger I’ve always admired my mothers vast shoe collection. It wasn’t until I was around 13 or 14 and learned to appreciate style that I truly realized the power that a good shoe holds over mortal women. One of my favorite sounds growing up was the sound of my moms heels clicking on hardwood floor. A close second? The sounds of her acrylic nails tapping. My mother also taught me to appreciate comfort- you can look good and not want to cut off your feet. I’m definitely taking after Mama Herstik, I love my heels and tend to wear them whenever I don’t have class, Columbia doesn’t stand(!) a chance.

 5. THERE IS ALWAYS A REASON TO CELEBRATE12109007_10153042339996207_8033184614363986878_n

Actually literally, having a Mexican Jewish mother means celebrations are abundant. You got an A? CELEBRATE! Poochy (the pup!) got groomed? CELEBRATE! Extreme Home Makeover is on? Cry and then CELEBRATE! One of the most important lessons this fabulous lady has taught me is that it is a million times better to wake up with gratitude for each day and own it! Every day you’re alive and able to celebrate is reason enough. So whether you’re dancing your heart out in your car, or jamming at the club, celebrate. Never apologize for listening to the DJ of your soul!

6. ALWAYS GET A LARGE HOT SAKI WHEN YOU GO OUT TO SUSHI

A very special and IMPORTANT rule shared by my twin Alexandra. This goes back to rule number 5! ALWAYS CELEBRATE! BUT- make sure you have a designated driver if you do! This is for you dad, you’re the real MVP for letting mom get Saki! Also- my mom always sing “Nooobody knowsss the bubbless I’ve seen” when she drinks saki. It’s really cute.

 

And last but not least….

Silvia’s Golden Rule: YOU HAVE TO LOVE YOURSELF FIRST11043531_10152819335956207_4525293076084156283_n

You have to love yourself before you love anyone else or let anyone else love you::: easily the most important thing that this human has taught me and the golden rule of life. You have to love yourself. It’s not negotiable, it’s not an option. It’s a necessity.  You are worthy of the same love you give to others simply because you exist. Your soul deserves the same respect and admiration as every other soul you love. Loving yourself is a process, its a journey and it takes work, but as soon as you choose to embrace it, everything else becomes easier. You’re not fully receptive to love until you decide you deserve it (which you do!) I remember giving myself a hug in fifth grade in our old apartment building and learning to love myself (and all my weird “flaws”) because my mom had been preaching this rule to me since I was little. I can’t stress enough how much this simple sentiment has impacted to me. I can easily say I wouldn’t be who I am, shaved hair and sass and all, if it weren’t for my mother stressing to me that I MUST love myself. So here I am, passing it on to you! Love yourself! Treat yourself! Amen!

12278893_10153110476556207_1763825539203185300_nSo mom, mommy, mother, madre, mami, Silvia- I love you. You are a wonderful, beautiful, vibrant soul and I am so glad you love selfies as much as I do (literally, whenever any of our family is together you can be sure you’ll here Silvia scream SELFIE!) I hope 61 is the best year yet. You are as beautiful and fabulous and young on the inside as you are on the outside! OH- that could be another lesson! A young soul keeps you young. I could write a million more things you taught me but I’ll keep it short! I love you mami!

XOXO
Gabriela

Six Black Balloons: Breathing Fashion Turns SIX

This is a warning; this post will be sappy, it will be emotional and it will be filled with LOVE. I know, I know, sometimes I’m even surprised I have a heart, but alas, it’s not as black or icy as I make it out to be. Anyway, dear humans, today Breathing Fashion turns SIX. HA! I’ve had this little blog for half a decade and it’s grown up with me, and  you know, that’s pretty special. I started this thing my sophomore year of high school, when I realized that I wanted to pursue fashion journalism as a profession. Everything I read said to start a blog and I did.13

Breathing Fashion has always been my sacred space. It’s where I come to write my thoughts; on everything from collection reviews to tarot inspired photoshoots, to happenings in the fashion industry to little spiritual tidbits that I think would be helpful to other humans. Breathing Fashion, more than anything else, is also a visual diary of how I’ve grown up and into myself, all while living in small suburban Southern cities. This space has been where I turn to so I can try to figure out who the hell I am, how the heck I can find myself in this life and how I can express myself in a way that would be beneficial for whoever decided to read this damn thing. The journey through this blog has been more rewarding than I ever anticipated. I’m so thankful for anyone who takes the time to read my posts, anyone who’s ever encouraged me and anyone who’s believed in me. There would be no point in all of this without you.

Breathing Fashion has been with me through every awkward outfit, every horrible collection review and every awkward photoshoot I’ve been through. This has been the place I turn to when I need to write and  get away from the fact that I’ve been stuck in cities who don’t understand my aesthetic. Breathing Fashion has been the reason I’ve said I DON’T CARE that I don’t live in New York. This site was the reason I decided to grow thick skin and wear whatever I wanted to wear regardless if people understand it or not. This blog helped me learn who I am and that as long as I’m proud to be Gabriela Lorraine Herstik, whatever anyone else thinks is irrelevant. 11

Breathing Fashion has taken a back seat the past year because I’ve actually been able to accomplish what I started it for; fashion writing. Six years later, I’ve had three cover stories for MOD magazine, I’m writing and interning for my favorite online magazine The Numinous, I’m interning with Deux Hommes magazine and went to London Fashion Week as international press for them. I’ve interned with Rick Owens. I’ve helped launch a magazine for United Colors of Fashion, I’ve contributed to The Fashion Law, The Cult Collective and FIG Columbia. My first resume builders were accomplished simply because of this blog. I’ve worked with amazing brands like Birds n Bones and Social Decay, I’ve been able to collaborate with photographers like Mary DeCrescenzio and my sister, and I’ve met some of my best friends through this platform.

So for that, I say THANK YOU. Here are photos with six black balloons for six black and fabulous years of Breathing Fashion. I’m wearing an amazing skirt by Forgotten Feather Vintage and all photos are by my twin Alexandra Herstik. Here’s to the future of Death Queen style.

10121197654321Body suit: Junkman’s Daughter// Skirt: Forgotten Feather Vintage// Shorts: Target// Shoes: Jeffrey Campbell 8Thank you to everyone who’s helped make these past six years AMAZING. Here’s to the next six.

XOXO

Gabriela Lorraine