Comfortably Cool: The Most Stylish Sneakers For Every Occasion

This article was originally published on 20some.com.

For as long as I can remember, I’ve been more of a sneakers chick than a stilettos gal. Don’t get me wrong — I love a shiny, new pair of strappy heels just as much as the next girl, but I’m way more inclined to drain my paycheck on a new pair of Vans or Nike shoes. I just know when I lace up my trusty pair of sneakers in the morning, I’m going to be feelin’ so fresh n’ so clean à la OutKast all day long.

Sneakers aren’t just for the gym anymore, dear reader. Thanks to the ever-evolving world of fashion, there are literally thousands of shoe styles for every possible circumstance. Whether you’re getting ready for work in the morning or dashing out the door to run a million and one weekend errands, a fun pair of sneakers is the answer to your fashionable prayers. Keep reading to get see how sneakers can be worn for five different occasions, all while getting some serious shoe envy. Get those credit cards ready, ladies.

1. Sneakers for Work

Sick of those same old nude flats that somehow still give you blisters even though you wear them every day? A cool pair of sneakers is just what you need. I know what you’re thinking: “What the heck is this girl talking about… sneakers in an office setting?!” This suggestion is definitely dependent on your office culture, so if you work in banking or law, this would be a 0/10 do not recommend. But if you’re in a more laid back industry like graphic design or media, go for it. Muted colors are a safe bet, but don’t be afraid to go for fashionable patterns like animal print or geometric cutouts.

Work

Shop these shoes here.

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8 Vital Life Lessons I Learned While Living in New York City

*This article was originally posted on 20some.com.

This past summer, I fell in love.

No, it wasn’t with the cute boy I met on the corner of 4th Street and Lafayette or the hottie from my office that I always chatted up while sneaking another afternoon snack. I fell in love with the city that never sleeps — New York City.

This past June, I joined the throngs of ramen noodle-consuming interns who invaded New York City, ready to immerse themselves in the city’s culture all in the name of some good ol’ unpaid bitch work. It was finally my time to take a bite of the Big Apple — and man, did I bite that sucker to the core.

Among the hustle and bustle, I was struck with super useful life lessons, and it wasn’t until I let this summer’s experience truly sink in that I fully learned these lessons. Whether they came to me while I was waiting in line for greasy $1 pizza or people watching in Times Square at 3 a.m., these golden nuggets of wisdom are worthwhile for anyone with dreams of living in a new city.

1. Keep your mind on your money and money on your mind
Ludacris and Snoop Dogg said it best. There’s no denying that NYC isn’t exactly friendly on the wallet. Heck, my wallet was practically begging for mercy at the end of my summer, but the hole I burned in it would’ve been 10 times worse if it weren’t for my handy dandy budgeting app. Being able to see that I had already spent most of my weekly budget by Thursday made me realize I had to say no to that second drink at happy hour.

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The Intern’s Style Guide: 5 Fun Business Casual Outfits to Inspire You

Ah, summer internships. They’re almost always unpaid and seemingly impossible to get. Plus, applying to them is oddly reminiscent of applying to college. Yet most college students are more than willing to trade in their summers of fun in the sun in the name of resume boosting and connection making at a summer internship.

Landing that picture perfect summer internship is a multi-stage process filled with many ups and downs, all of which I’ve gone through by now.

The sleepless nights spent researching my options and endlessly refining my cover letters and resume layout? Been there.
Anxiously refreshing my inbox in hopes of an email from editors and hiring managers. Done that.
Casually hyperventilating before phone interviews and after that moment when I was formally offered internships. Done that, too. (Sorry lungs.)

As the reality of a summer internship quickly approaches (emphasis on the quickly… I’m packing my bags to move to NYC in one week!), I’ve realized that my wardrobe needs a bit of a facelift. My summery crop tops and high-waisted shorts won’t exactly have a place in the office this summer. If I want to make the most of this summer and be the best intern I can be, I’ve got to play the part, and that means dressing professionally.

The term “business casual” may leave a bad taste in your mouth, rendering visions of stiff white button-downs and grandma-esque kitten heels. But while indulging in a little internship shopping spree, I realized that business casual attire doesn’t have to be bland and boring. It’s totally possible to add your own flair and colorful personality to any business casual look, as I recently learned myself. If you’re in need of some fashion inspiration before beginning your summer internship, look no further! Using Polyvore.com, I created five internship-approved options that will have your hiring manager thrilled he or she hired such a chic intern.

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Pre-Summer Musings: Lessons I learned this semester and why I can’t wait for these next few months

Wowzers.

That’s the only appropriate word I can come up with to begin this blog post because this past semester has been a whirlwind of the following:

1. Internship-related emotional breakdowns (Boy oh boy is the journalism industry competitive…)
2. A whole month of 21st birthday shenanigans (I mean, #YOT21O—You Only Turn 21 Once—amirite?)
3. Exciting adventures in and around my college town of Gainesville (Gorgeous freshwater springs only 20 minutes away from campus?! Sign me up!)
4. Excessive consumption of caramel iced coffees from Starbucks (I may or may not have become certifiably reliant on caffeine… oops.)
5. Enormous growth both inside and outside of the classroom (With a team of 50 gals looking up to you for guidance, you really have no choice but to suck it up and take the reigns.)
6. One heck of a Spring Break adventure (I lost my voice halfway through my week-long cruise… #worthit.)

And that’s only half of it in convenient Spark Notes form.

Through the craziness and sleepless nights, I’ve definitely learned some lessons, and I’m here to impart my fledgling “wisdom” on the rest of the WordPress blogosphere.

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1. You are your own worst critic.
I’m always hard on myself, thinking that whatever I do, say or write isn’t good enough. If you’re currently nodding in agreement, I’m here to say that it’s time to let go of those self-criticisms. It’s one thing to have high expectations for yourself, but it’s a whole other story if you find yourself unhappy with everything you do. I learned the need to loosen up a bit on my self-expectations this semester when I submitted one of my stories for a local news website, WUFT News. I was completely unhappy with the final product and was later pleasantly surprised when my editors raved over the story. I realized that I needed to step back and look at the big picture of how much work and effort I had put into it to see that maybe my work wasn’t too shabby. Cut yourself some slack every now and then.

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Outfit of the Day: Not-So-Traditional Kimono

It really blows my mind how Americans have a way of… well, Americanizing things. Let’s take everyone’s guilty pleasure – pizza – as an example. When I had real pizza in Rome back in seventh grade, I was pretty shocked at how different it was compared to the Domino’s I was used to. My initial thoughts were, “Dang, Papa John is such a poser. This stuff is the bomb.com.” Authentic Italian pizza is lighter and less greasy, and the ingredients are actually fresh as opposed to the often frozen toppings that American pizza chains use.

Let’s be real. I could talk about pizza for hours (mostly because I’m having severe separation anxiety without Gainesville’s finest Pizza By The Slice just a mere five-minute walk from my apartment). But let’s bring it all back to the focus of my blog—fashion. A major style trend for the summer is the “kimono,” a lightweight jacket usually made of polyester or rayon. These Americanized “kimonos” are flowy, open in the front and are often used as a layer to add a little ~ooo lala~ to any basic outfit. I think it’s necessary to put quotes around the word when referring to these types of “kimonos” because they’re far from the real thing.

Our American version of a kimono pales in comparison to legit kimonos—floor-length Japanese robes that wrap around the body. According to an old article that I came across on BBC News, new kimonos usually cost nearly $2,000, which is just slightly out of my price range. I personally feel like it’s a bit of a stretch to call these cheaper American versions kimonos. I mean, look at this gal on the left. She’s covered head-to-toe in a killer garment that’s rich in Japanese culture. Though the girl on the right is no doubt stylish, her “kimono” just doesn’t stand a chance in terms of the real meaning of the word.

Image[photo credits: blog.coco-fashion.com and vampirextina.buzznet.com]

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