May 2016 | Mermaid Waves | Chicago Fashion Destination

May 31, 2016

Garden Girl

I had an amazing memorial day weekend filled with delicious food and lots of treasures.  I went to the first outdoor Randolph Street Market of got some amazing goodies.  I found this rainbow vintage dress and a vintage Dolce and Gabbana bag (her name is princess), which I decided to show off on this sunny turned stormy day.  This vintage rainbow dress is the perfect piece for all your summer events.  I highly recommend heading out around your area and searching for vintage treasures, it is such a fulfilling experience knowing that you will never see someome wearing the same thing as you.  I doubt you will find a dress as charming as this one in a giant department store! I paired this dress with some vintage inspired cat-eye sunnies, the perfect way to mix the old with the new.  

What are some of your favorite vintage finds? Let me know in the comments!

Dress - Vintage 
Purse - Vintage 


May 29, 2016

Summertime Adventures

It has been such a crazy month but I am back! I am so ready to take on summer and relax a little before my next big adventure.  Between prom and graduation my looks have been more dressed up than usual so I am excited to bring you a super casual day time look.  You know I love my overalls but one of my favorite things about them is I can wear them all year long! I layered my Free People overalls (similar here) with a bralette underneath (similar here).  In the summer months a bralette is the perfect layering piece.  I have been in a kimono rut lately, when I put one on I felt like my sophomore year self (I went through a kimono phase) and I couldn't figure out a new way to style this piece.  I love how this kimono (similar here) looks thrown over overalls, it gives the look a summery-vibe.  My latest accessory purchase is this bandana (shop here) , I kind of feel like a train conductor but I also love how playful it is!  If you follow me on snapchat (danimikay) you know these Skechers (shop here) are my goto.  I wear them 5 out of 7 days a week and I am not ashamed, they are so comfortable.  My goal this summer is to hit all the Chicago destinations I haven't visited, I started with Chinatown!  
Where else should I visit? Let me know in the comments.


May 26, 2016

Memorial Day Sales

I've rounded up the best sales of Memorial Day Weekend.  Kick off your summer wardrobe with these killer pieces on major sale. Woo!  Let me know what sales you are shopping this weekend. 

Wildfox Couture:
20% off site wide with code OMGREEN.

Free People:
Additional 25% off all sale items.  I shopped this sale myself!

20% off with code HISUMMER.

J. Crew
30% off with code WEEKEND on selected styles.

Up to 40% off.


May 21, 2016

Mermaid Waves Graduates!

It has been my dream since the first time I watched Legally Blonde to speak at my graduation.  With a little bit of studying and lot of good grades, I was valedictorian of my graduating class!  Yesterday was a super exciting day that I have long been anticipating.  I am so proud of the person I have become over the past four years and I can not wait for the next chapter in my life.  I wore this amazing marbled dress (shop here) from Topshop.  While wearing that heinous graduation gown my shoes had to shine.  So, I went with the most "Dani" shoes I could find, these fluffy pink heels (shop here) from Topshop were perfect.  Also, check out my dad's amazing seersucker suit! 

Coming from a fashion blogger my speech was going to be a little different than your average valedictorian.  Since it focuses a lot on social media I thought it would be relevant not only to my fellow graduates but to my readers!  Scroll down to the bottom of this post to read it, let me know what you think in the comments!

One of the most valuable lessons we learn at the academy is that nothing is binary.  And from that lesson we come to the realization that no choice we make is “right” or “wrong”, but simply the next step.  We first see it in the classroom, learning to search for opposition or a “gray-area” as opposed to an answer.  We learn to see art as “descriptive” and not “prescriptive” where the answer isn't neatly laid out for you, but instead compels the audience to question what they previously thought.  What we learn in the classroom begins to reflect how we look at ourselves.  We learn that we can be more than just a dancer, an actor or a scholar, but we can shape our individuality based off all angles of ourself.  This can be internalized and reflected through things as complex as gender and sexuality or as simple as being the “smart” blonde.  By learning to look past binaries we have the ability to create ourselves in an original way.  But with originality comes uncertainty — it is easier to take a path that seems “right”, instead of choosing the more difficult path of creating our self.  This is a beautiful but daunting prospect: where do we find validation and comfort, when there is no basis for comparison?  If we live everything as it comes, if life is but a sketch for a life never to be lived, it seems easy to lose sight of the importance and worth of each step we take.  
Maybe it’s the only child in me speaking but I believe the validation we should be seeking is from the very self we are in the process of sketching. It seems like the closest thing we can get to a physical sketch is social media.  Social media is so prevalent in the way our generation sees ourselves, it seems our Instagram “feed” is just as good of a sketch of ourselves as anything.  I know what you’re thinking: its just brunch and cat photos, and yes, you can argue that its just a bunch of self-indulgent snapshots, but as social media becomes part of our daily lives and engrained in our culture it has begun to take on new and potentially important meaning. The image we portray to the outside world through social media is often the idealized image of ourself.  But what really is the difference between our true self and our selfies?  If you go on Instagram right now you will see shots of perfect brunches and beautiful people edited to perfection.  But why are we so quick to say that these moments aren’t “real” and are dangerous to our sense of self worth?  We can learn a lot from our selfies: we can strive to be the most ideal version of ourselves.  Is it really so bad to treat ourselves with picturesque meals or feel confident in our outfit of the day? Once we move away from binary thinking and stop seeing our self and our selfie as different beings, we can recognize that they are both important facets of who we are. There is something aspirational about the moments we choose to share and they can become the sketch for how we shape ourselves.  
So the moments we broadcast aren’t meaningless, we share them where we feel like our best self.  I believe it’s mindless to be so quick to brush off the meaning behind social media, it’s the perfect “miniature” outlet to test out the version of ourselves we want to create.  These tests — changing our username, cropping a photo, sending a photo that will only last five seconds — are all ways we can find our online aesthetic to then apply to our own life.  After today we will meet new people and enter new places, but can use our “selfies” as maps to navigate these unknown territories. Simply ask “What would my selfie do?”.  Let that simple question guide you to make the most self-aware decisions you can. Using social media in our lives this way does not only apply to how we can think about ourselves, but also how we can think about and understand those around us. The lessons we have learned from our selfie can help us create stronger relationships in the future. We have the ability to view other people’s sketches in a way that was not possible before social media. Social media gives us a lens to look into other people’s worlds and understand them on a deeper level.  Once we have developed our own sketch, we can recognize that it is something we aspire to, and we can recognize that to be true in other people.  That is, we can understand that although it appears that each day begins with a perfectly crafted latte, they too have doubts and insecurities — but we can now have empathy as they too are creating their own sketch. 
The selfie is no longer just for Kim Kardashian, it is an important facet of all of us.  It is a medium to better understand ourself and to find empathy for those around us.  


May 14, 2016

Prom: Denim Jumpsuit

Last night was my senior prom so obviously I had to go out with a bang.  I decided to take a different route than my previous prom looks and wear a jumpsuit.  I decided on this denim, flared jumpsuit from Asos.  This jumpsuit (shop here) has the perfect 70s glam vibe I was looking for, complete with an ultra flared pant and deep V neck.  Clearly one denim piece is never enough for me, I found the most amazing shoes from Nordstrom that look like denim patchwork by Marc Fisher (shop here).  I have literally had to keep these in a box under my bed to keep myself from wearing them before prom.  For my accessories I wanted to keep everything super 70s, my momma made me this amazing choker using fresh flowers (shop similar here).  Bye Bye flower crown! For my earrings I found the largest hoops on earth from Akira (shop here),  I could barely turn my head the entire night because of the size of these things.  

Since I didn't have a date I decided to bring someone I really care about, pizza.  

Jumpsuit - Asos 
Shoes - Marc Fisher
Earrings - Akira
Choker - Similar at Asos

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