Stay Swathed in Denim with H&M’s Conscious Collection

Sandra Rieder and Chloe Wheatcroft (Muse) wear H&M Conscious Collection. Photos by Jaesung Lee.

We live in our denim — there’s simply nothing else that makes more sense for our lives. H&M has given us new reason to stay swathed in the stuff with the launch of the new Conscious Collection, available to shop now in stores and online. The materials that make up the collection are more sustainable than ever, and the processes used to create each wash are scrutinized for minimal environmental impact. To top it off, the collection is gorgeous. Smart and pretty? Sounds like the perfect package.

Sandra wears an H&M Conscious Collection cardigan, H&M zipper turtleneck, and refurbished jeans by Rialto Jean Project. Chloe’s overcoat by H&M Conscious Collection.
Chloe wears H&M Conscious Collection bra top, embroidered button down (worn over the shoulder) and skinny jeans, Sandra wears H&M Conscious Collection jumpsuit and sweatshirt, and Cosabella bra.

Photographer: Jaesung Lee
Models: Sandra Rieder and Chloe Wheatcroft (Muse)
Stylist: Alyssa Shapiro

Hair: Jason Murillo
Makeup: Dana Rae Ashburn
Stylist Assistant: Emily Ovaert

Shot on location at 13 Eight Avenue, a West Village townhouse available for sale now. For more information, click here. Special thanks to the Eklund Gomes Team and Clayton Orrigo.

Is the American Dream Dead or Alive?

James Marshall photographed by Jaesung Lee for BlackBook Magazine

If you listened strictly to the news pouring out of televisions and newspapers across the country, you’d think America was in the pits. Political tensions run high, incomes are low, and that’s to say nothing of the inequalities rampant in minority communities. It’s bad news all around. James Marshall, whose other projects include West Village restaurant Whitehall, wanted to know if the bad news rang true: Was the American dream dead? Marshall called up Cole Haan and recruited friend and photographer Todd Williams to accompany him on a monthlong motorcycle ride to visit eight American towns and cities and staying along the way with people met entirely through social media. The resulting series, The American Dream Project, shows a more hopeful, persevering side of the United States not often seen in the news. Marshall, by the way, learned to ride a motorcycle only three weeks before embarking on his journey. 

What gave you the idea for The American Dream Project?

I had one too many of those days spent barraged by bad news in the media. This is such a great country. I’m from Windsor, about 25 miles west of London, but moved here seven years ago. I thought, No, I’m not going to just listen to this. Let’s find out if this news is true. Is the American dream dead? That seed grew into The American Dream Project.

What were your views of America before you moved here, what did the American dream mean to you then?

Actually, when I came to New York with a little bit of cash, I was so convinced I would be robbed that I split my money–it wasn’t so much, a few hundred dollars–into socks and distributed it around my apartment. I was living in the West Village. I just had an address and a key, and I moved here with that worry. JaesungLee_JamesMarshall_ColeHaan_BB
James Marshall photographed by Jaesung Lee for BlackBook Magazine

I’m surprised you had those worries about moving to a safe neighborhood like the West Village.

But within a few months you realize it’s the safest city in the world. You realize that Americans like people who work hard; they want you to succeed. And if you work hard, you can go somewhere, you can be successful.

Were you ever afraid this project wasn’t going to happen?

This was the biggest project I’ve done so far. I didn’t fully understand how expensive it was to pull a crew together and go across the country for a month. I approached Cole Haan because their philosophy and mine were almost identical. Like me, they believe that substance and quality mean something in today’s world. Cole Haan is also an iconic American brand, founded by immigrants just like me. This project would not have happened without them.

In filming The American Dream Project you met your hosts through social media.

I wanted this to be as genuine as possible. I wanted to meet real people, and the best way to do that was via social media. We sent out blasts on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook, hashtagging like crazy in the hope that people would reach out.

Were you surprised at how warm and inviting these total strangers were to the request of hospitality for two guys on motorcycles riding across America?

I was blown away. Complete strangers invited Todd and I into their homes, and in some cases, they put up the entire crew.

We’re all human; we want to connect. Yet it’s always a surprise when you connect with people outside of your normal day to day.

The media fills your mind with whatever they are putting out. We are bombarded with sensational or salacious news that doesn’t really feed us anything positive. If you’re not careful about what to listen to, we do tend to, or I tend to, think we are very different. But actually, we’re not. Most people want the same things: security, safety, validation, and to dream. My experience was that we really do have much more in common than we are told we have. It is kind of liberating. ColeHaan_JamesMarshall_JaesungLee_BlackBook_3
James Marshall photographed by Jaesung Lee for BlackBook Magazine

Was allowing social media and chance to dictate your project a different kind of creative process than what you are used to?

I’m used to having an idea and being able to direct something well produced. Here, I didn’t know what the end was going to be. It was refreshing because it was, “Who am I going to meet today?” It was very exciting and nerve-racking because this thing could have been a bust. It could have been one sad story after another.

How do you view creativity?

The new creativity is freedom–people are making movies on iPhones. Social media allows you to collaborate globally. You could have musicians in one country provide music for a Web series that is being made in another country. Everyone can be a creative talent. That could be good and bad because there is a lot of content out there. We need a creative revolution, which we’re in the midst of. With so many online outlets and cameras on every phone, people can make what they want, when they want, and get it out there.

How has this new wave of creativity altered the American dream?

The new wave of creativity has actually enabled people to dream and be inspired by other people’s work because they can see it within minutes of being made. It’s doesn’t have to be an executive in Hollywood but a kid in bumblefuck nowhere making things happen. There are no walls anymore; the walls have come down. 

Did your idea of the American dream change throughout filming?

It definitely evolved as I went along. But I think before I left, I had a view of the American dream that I think most people have, which is this postwar idea of a big house, white picket fence, 2.4 kids, and a dog. That is a prescribed American dream that is put in the minds of many of us, and that’s gone. But what I’ve seen replace that is staggering because it’s evolved into something better. Rather than people aiming for a preprescribed dream, it’s become an individual pursuit. People have now taken up the mantle to think of their own dream. Now the American dream is absolutely individual to each person, which I think is great. For people to be enabled to really dream is exciting. Discover more about the series here.

This story appears in the spring 2015 issue of BlackBook Magazine on stands now.

The Fashion We Loved from 2014: The Year’s Top 10 Moments

Start the countdown…

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10. Weather wise, this men’s sweater story shot by Rémi Lamandé still feels apropos.
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9. Consider new ways to wear an all-time favorite: denim. Photos by Jaesung Lee.
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8. Ben Rosenzweig captured social media heartthrob Jessey Stevens in the coolest leather looks.
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7. Cozy up with the warmest winter outerwear, shot by Adeline Mai at The Ludlow in NYC.
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6. 2014 was the year of athleisure, and Justin Bridges shot a few street-ready looks you can wear to the gym.justinbridgesdknyportrait1

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5. We love a pop of electric blue. Ben Rosenzweig captures the boldest fur accessories of the early fall.
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4. The Fifth Harmony girls have incredible, adorable style. See their exclusive photos for BlackBook, shot by Justin Bridges.
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3. Glitter in the daylight? Hell yeah. Rodolfo Martinez shoots the sequins to wear before the sun goes down.
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2. It’s the middle of winter, so we’re looking at Logan Jackson’s depictions of the brightest, hottest summer beauty to warm up.
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1. Jaesung Lee captured all the best spring 2015 beauty — our favorite look, right this way.
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How to Get Fashion Week’s Dreamiest Beauty Look

Ah Delpozo, how we adored this collection. The dreamiest, floatiest, most magical sequined and embroidered pieces… it was, as we noted then, worthy of bank robbery (though we don’t condone it and you didn’t get the idea from us.)

The kind of collection a girl could rob a bank for. @officialdelpozo FTW

A photo posted by Alyssa Shapiro (@alyssashapiro) on

If the garments are a bit out of range, at least we can replicate the makeup from the show — a wash of green with a dash of pink liner, hardly visible without a wink. Makeup artist Dana Rae tells us how it’s done:

Gather your supplies. You’ll need:
MAC Chromacake in Magenta
MAC Chromacake in Landscape Green
MAC Chromacake in Pure White
Water
A plate for mixing
Wet/Dry eyeshadow brush (like #49 from NARS)
Extra fine eyeliner brush (we like Make Up For Ever)

The Steps

1. On the plate, mix Pure White and Landscape Green with a few drops of water until the desired pale green is achieved.

2. Using the wet/dry eyeshadow brush, sweep a wash of green on the lid to just below the crease.

3. With a wet liner brush dipped in the Magenta Chromacake, dot pink liner in between the lashes, and line the top lashes, keeping it delicate.

4. On the plate, mix the Magenta Chromacake with a bit of water and dab color in the center of the lip, working your way outward.

5. Wink and smile.

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Want more beauty how to?
Get the Proenza Schouler look here
Get the Marc by Marc Jacobs hair here
Get the Altuzarra makeup here
Get braids we love from Bibhu Mohapatra here

Photographer: Jaesung Lee
Style Editor: Alyssa Shapiro
Makeup Artist: Dana Rae
Hair Stylist: Jason Murillo

Models: Sandra Rieder and Chloe Wheatcroft (Muse)

Chloe and Sandra wear bralettes by PRAE NYC.

This Is How You Turn Wild Runway Makeup into a Sexy, Real Life Look

There was a time during NYFW when all we cared about was covering up our dark circles — and then Chromat sent models down the runway lookin’ all fierce with this ultra bright and distracting dot of eyeshadow that really, if we’re getting technical, was almost almost on the side of the nose.

 

In our sleep deprived haze we thought, ooh, I could do that! But now we’re thinking more like, ok, how do I do that for real life?

Let makeup artist Dana Rae show you how.

Gather your supplies. You’ll need:

A cream shadow (in a slightly more subtle shade than orange). We like fall-appropriate bronze Caviar Stick Eye Colour by Laura Mercier.
Highlighter — who can go wrong with Nars Illuminator in Orgasm?
Lip balm — if you’re feeling luxe, go with Chanel (it makes for a fun reapply).

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The Steps

1. After moisturizing, take a moment to think about where the sun hits your cheeks, dotting the illuminator along the cheekbone and patting it in until you’re looking extra dewy.

2. With a steady hand, draw a half moon shape on the lid with the cream shadow near the lashes, starting from the inner eye and reaching about a third of the way out.

3. Fill in the half circle with the cream shadow.

4. Dab on some lip balm. Stay hydrated, friends.

Photographer: Jaesung Lee
Style Editor: Alyssa Shapiro
Makeup Artist: Dana Rae
Hair Stylist: Jason Murillo
Model: Sandra Rieder (Muse)

Want more how-to action? Click here to get extra sultry, pretty gal lashes + matching pout. Or here for the ultimate cool girl hair. 

Are You Cool Enough for Marc by Marc Jacobs Raver Girl Hair?

Tied for first in coolest hair of New York Fashion Week? The raver girl buns that Katie Hillier and Luella Bartley had the MBMJ models wearing on the spring runway. This look ain’t exactly for the shy… but we’re not complaining. Let hairstylist Jason Murillo break the look down for you.

Gather your supplies. You’ll need:
Comb
Three hair ties
Spray bottle filled with water
Bobby pins
Shine drops, like L’Oreal Smooth & Shine

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The Steps

1. Start with slightly damp hair using the spray bottle.

2. Using the comb, section the hair into three parts equal at the front, middle, and back of the head, securing each in a ponytail.

3. Twist each section and wrap the hair around the base of each ponytail, securing with a bobby pin or two. Hide the loose ends with pins.

4. Pour 3-4 drops of shine serum into the palm of the hand, rubbing together to coat both palms, then lightly smooth over hair and buns to help maintain a wet look throughout the day.

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Photographer: Jaesung Lee
Style Editor: Alyssa Shapiro
Hair Stylist: Jason Murillo

Makeup Artist: Dana Rae
Models: Chloe Wheatcroft and Sandra Rieder (Muse)

Chloe wears choker by Gabriela Artigas and Expose long line bra by Kiki di Montparnasse. Sandra wears Helene cross-back silk bralette by Prae.

Want more how-to action? Get the Proenza Schouler surfer gal swoop here.

Get the Hottest Beauty Look from the Spring Runways Right Now

What was the biggest beauty trend we saw on the spring runways? Braids. Middle-parted plaits, cornrows, French…. they were all over the place, everywhere, and we liked it. For an updo that feels both cool and lady, we turn to Bibhu Mohapatra, whose models wore personalized variations on the look — that means you can be on trend, and still do you.

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Gather your supplies. You’ll need:
Hair gel, like Bumble and bumble’s Bb.gel
Shine spray, like Bumble and bumble’s shine on finishing spray
Bobby pins (a bunch of ’em)
Comb
Hair tie

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The Steps

1. Start with damp hair, working a dime to quarter sized squeeze of gel from roots to ends.

2. Separate out the top portion of hair, and from that, use the comb to section off hair to the desired plait or cornrow sections — whatever suits you best!

3. Start a French braid close to the forehead, continuing back along the section and to the end of the hair. Pin it in place for now. Repeat for however many sections you’ve created.

4. Comb the lower portion of hair into a low ponytail, securing with a hair tie. Wrap the loose end o the pony around the base, and secure it with bobby pins.

5. Wrap the loose braids from the top section around the bun you’ve created with the low ponytail, and pin into place.

6. Finish with shine spray to keep the style in place and looking fresh.

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Photographer: Jaesung Lee
Style Editor: Alyssa Shapiro
Hair Stylist: Jason Murillo

Makeup Artist: Dana Rae
Models: Chloe Wheatcroft and Sandra Rieder (Muse)

Chloe wears Infinite Tusk choker by Gabriela Artigas and edge cotton soft bra by Cosabella. Sandra wears the 14K Yellow Infinite Hook earring by Gabriela Artigas and Talco convertible logo soft bra by Cosabella.

Get Gorgeous Lashes and the Perfect Pink Pout as Seen at Altuzarra

The beauty look at Altuzarra for spring 2015 is hyper feminine and pretty — there’s nothing that shouts girl! quite as sweetly as doll-length lashes and pouty pink lips. Makeup artist Dana Rae spills everything you need to know to get the look.

Gather your supplies. You’ll need:
An eyelash curler
False lashes (we like these) and eyelash glue
Nail scissors
MAC Haute & Naughty mascara
MAC Trend Forecast Spring 15 Lip and Cheek Palette

The Steps

1. Curl eyelashes, holding at the bottom and then the center of lashes for about 7 seconds each.

2. Prep the lashes by using the nail scissors to cut the edges away, and keep about a 1/2 inch in the middle of the strip and apply to the center of the top lash line with lash glue.

3. Bottom lashes get a light Haute & Naughty mascara treatment, concentrating only on the bottom middle lashes. Leave the top lashes bare.

4. Make a mix using the lip/cheek palette for a pink that suits your skin tone, and apply with your fingers to the apples of the cheeks, blending in well. Dab onto the lips, adding more on to bump up the color to your preference.

It’s like spring come early!

Photographer: Jaesung Lee
Style Editor: Alyssa Shapiro
Makeup Artist: Dana Rae
Hair Stylist: Jason Murillo
Models: Sandra Rieder and Chloe Wheatcroft (Muse)

Sandra wears the 14K Yellow Infinite Hook earring by Gabriela Artigas and scarf by CG.