Fall/Winter 2021 • Vol. 21, Issue 2
LETTERS Life as we once knew it has changed forever. The past two years have been a whirlwind of ups and downs, adaptation and perseverance. In a time of adversity and uncertainty, there are times when we all wish we could escape. In a fantasy world nothing can hurt you. On an evening in winter, three friends are reading the classic novel, Alice In Wonderland when they fall asleep and awake to find themselves in a twisted version of reality. Escape to Wonderland takes you on a journey to the whimsical and the unknown. A place where the worries of tomorrow do not exist. I am so grateful for my time at POLISHED Magazine. Ever since I joined the team as a stylist I found a home in the creativity and drive that encompasses the entire publication. I am so honored to have gotten the opportunity to grow with the magazine as Lead Stylist, and now Creative Director. Getting to see my visions come to life has been the most rewarding experience of my life. I will cherish the memories made the past three years forever. Thank you to everyone who helped make this magazine a beautiful reality. I cannot wait to see what comes next for POLISHED as I pass on the Creative Director position to Sydney Pesaturo.
CONTRIBUTORS Publisher Lasell University Founder Richard Bath Creative Director Emma Ingenohl Managing Editor Kiersten Brown Associate Managing Editor Liah Brown Art Director Anna King Associate Art Director Dylan Wilson Art Editor Brianna Ricker Associate Art Editor Nicolas Brown Editors Cesia Miranda Ava Neely Maggie Powers Anna Richardson Lead Stylist Sydney Pesaturo Stylists Caleigh Bain Abigail Brown Nicole Catania Jacqueline Minasian Charlene Moossa Editorial Photographer Dylan Wilson
Models Randi Guscott
We all long for a form of escape. Some find this in literature, food, or fashion. Being quarantined and under the rule of a worldwide pandemic, has restricted our bodies from wandering about, but has allowed our minds to dream of faraway places or even dream of our return to a “new” normal. In these pages, you will find articles about different ways we as humans have fostered the idea of escape throughout the pandemic. Whether it be updating our wardrobe with “Sounds like Veevaunt”, or enjoying the rich taste of a pastry in “Escaping Flavors”, we have all found a way to distance ourselves from the negative reality, and instead bask in the positivity of our dreams and fantasies. This issue holds a special place in my heart, as it was our first issue back together as a team. I could not be happier to share this issue with the world, and I have to give so much credit and love to not only the writers and editors but to the graphics team as well. Everyone worked so hard to create this issue, and I hope that you fall further down the rabbit hole with us, and explore our wonderland.
Eric Robinson Jenna Talbot - Maggie Inc. Media Directors Jaqueline Cordeiro Madison Cormier Jacqueline Minasian Social Media Team Chataranny Chap Faith Costa Rebecca Donovan Julia Figueiral Alexis Gatto Simone Landry Elizabeth Lopez Sophia Mazzone Kim Nguyen Kiley Pippa Nicole Reusch Alexandra Stevas Sydney Veilleux Madison Whiteley Blog Director Faith Costa Blog Writers Rebecca Donovan Leanne Nosiglia Samantha Vega-Torres Sydney Veilleux
1844 Commonwealth Avenue, Newton, MA 02466 | lasell.edu polishedfashion.com | polishedblogger.wordpress.com Polished Magazine | @bostonpolished @bostonpolished
Spencer Villinski Faculty Advisors Lynn Blake Stephen Fischer Patricia Roy
28 14 FASHION A LIGHT IN THE DARK 4 Designer: Dylan Wilson Writer: Emma Ingenohl
MARIE GALVIN MILLINERY: CONFIDENT COUTURE 6 Designer: Nicolas Brown Writer: Liah Brown
DECEMBER THIEVES 8 Designer: Terrence Theus Writer: Ava Neely
SOUNDS LIKE VEEVAUNT 10 Designer: Griffin Bryan Writer: Griffin Bryan & Spencer Villinski
LIFESTYLE TREND REPORT 12
Designer: Emma Ingenohl & Anna King Writer: Faith Costa
ESCAPE TO WONDERLAND 14 Retailers: Global Thrift Store, LIT Boutique, SoWa Vintage, & Vivant Vintage Photography: Dylan Wilson
STUDIO1851 & CALENDAR 22 Designer (Left): Lauren Martin Designer (Right): Julia Bolton Writers (Right): Lucy Baldino, Sarah LaPierre, & Maddie Young
NOEL HERBALS: POWER TO THE PLANT 24 Designer: Ciarra Chasse Writer: Lucy Baldino & Kassie Fisher
THE NEW AGE OF PIXELS 26 Designer: Brianna Ricker Writer: Angela Defelice
ESCAPED FLAVORS 28 Designer: Katie Johnson Writer: Tala Khoury
CONSULTING THE CARDS: THE POWER OF TAROT 30 Designer: Caelan Watson Writer: Kiersten Brown
ON THE COVER
POLISHED Magazine is produced by the Lasell University School of Fashion with graphic design support from the Graphic Design League at Lasell University. Visit us at graphicdesignleague.com POLISHED Magazine is printed by Wing Press - firstname.lastname@example.org
Jenna Talbot Dress: Sydney Pesaturo Photography by Dylan Wilson
MISSION STATEMENT The mission of POLISHED Magazine is to promote and highlight the diverse and vibrant culture and fashion scene of Boston and the surrounding area.
A Light in the Dark: L Y S t h e L a b e l
ometimes light can be found, even during a dark time, and LYS the Label is the perfect example of a luminescence in the darkness. LYS the Label started as a passion project born in the depths of the early pandemic. “I’ve always wanted to have my own clothing brand”, says twenty-three year old entrepreneur Alyssa Corrente. Corrente graduated from Lasell University in 2020 just as COVID-19 was taking its hold on the world. In search of a creative outlet, Corrente recalled her life-long dream to have her own brand. Despite the uncertainties, she decided it was the perfect time to pursue such a dream.
LYS the Label is an e-commerce retailer based out of Cumberland, Rhode Island that features fun and trendy fashion pieces sourced from online vendors. Most of the clothing comes from women-owned and smaller, more niche companies. Corrente says she buys in smaller quantities in an attempt to limit clothing waste and overconsumption. Some of the current product line includes dresses, skirts, tops, hair clips, socks, masks, and sportswear, such as leggings and sports bras. As LYS the Label is still a startup company, Corrente does all the work herself including website creation, product selection, and social media management. She completes all of these tasks while juggling her full-time retail job at the same time. When first starting out, Corrente said she would watch Youtube videos on website design, running a small business, and marketing in order to learn more about what she needed to know to get her business off the ground. She researched for hours and hours to discover what she needed to do to make the dream of owning her own clothing brand into a reality. When asked what is the most challenging part, Corrente was quick to answer: Balance. One can never truly know how much work goes into owning their own business until they really do it. “It’s all the things you don’t think about when you go on a website to shop,” said Corrente. Photo editing, adding tags inside garments, and even modeling most of the clothes herself for her website, Corrente works tirelessly behind the scenes to make LYS the Label great. But she is transparent about the amount of hard work and dedication that is needed to be successful. “I never could have anticipated just how much goes into it. I will say I love packing the orders. The hard work really pays off in the end,” said Corrente. Sustainability is extremely important to Corrente. As a former fashion student, she learned all about the details and dangers of fast fashion, and though LYS the Label cannot be considered a sustainable company yet, Corrente is striving to make it so in the future. She uses compostable mailers to incorporate eco-friendly practices as part of her brand. Purchasing from women-owned, smaller wholesalers is a way for LYS the Label to support fellow small businesses. Corrente is also
conscious of pricing and wants her products to be accessible; therefore, all the items featured on LYS the Label are under fifty dollars. “I want as many people as possible to be able to buy something if they want to. That is really important to me”, said Corrente. Despite some of the challenges of running a company at age twentythree during a global pandemic, LYS the Label has had more than six product launches with restocks in between. The company has gained a small following on social media platforms and with each new drop, new customers are flowing in. Corrente often conducts surveys on Instagram stories to get feedback on products and to learn what her customers are looking for. Corrente’s extra effort makes buying from LYS the Label a more personal experience. The items you vote for may just end up in the next drop!
When it comes to owning her own small business, Corrente most enjoys sourcing affordable, quality pieces, and then seeing those pieces on her customers. Having the ability to choose the products herself ensures that her customers are getting only the best. “It is so rewarding to see how many people enjoy my clothing. The amount of support from everyone has been so overwhelming. It’s the most incredible feeling. I never thought I could do something like this now at this point in my career. Thanks COVID! No but really, the one blessing from COVID was that it allowed me to be my most creative self. And even though I was forced away from my friends, I feel like I have so much more love for them now,” said Corrente. Photography Courtesy of LYS the Label
What’s next for LYS the Label? Corrente hopes to grow the brand and create more brand awareness through marketing and making connections. She also hopes this will eventually lead to the integration of fully sustainable products and practices within the brand. Corrente also wants to increase her size range, which will require her to use a greater variety of vendors. Right now most products come only in sizes small, medium, and large. As the business expands, LYS the Label will be able to potentially find vendors with product ranges that have a wider variety of size options. “I would love to make this
my full-time career,” Corrente says. She dreams to one day design her own products, with the help of a seamstress to make her visions come to life. “Starting LYS the Label has definitely been challenging, but I have gained so much knowledge and confidence in myself. It really puts into perspective what I’m capable of and why I love being in the fashion industry,” says Corrente. LYS the Label is a growing small business with a lot of potential. Behind the brand are great values and goals backed by a passionate founder who has plans to take the company very far. In a time of darkness, Alyssa Corrente creates a shining light with LYS the Label. @lysthelabel; shoplysthelabel.com
Emma Ingenohl 5
Marie Galvin Millinery
arie Galvin is a millinery designer who aims to create something new and refreshing that can empower those who wear her headpieces. Galvin believes that creating your identity as a designer is what sets you apart in the industry, and doing something similar to what other designers create makes you disappear into the background. This year marks 20 years of Marie Galvin Millinery being Boston’s Premier Milliner; her years of doing what she does best have simply not gone unnoticed. Her first big break as a designer was back in 2001 at the annual Fresh Faces in Fashion show, where she was selected as one of eight designers to compete. Everyone in the industry was there that night, fashion designers, merchandisers, and more. She even got the chance to work alongside famous fashion designer, Zac Posen in the competition. Additionally, this competition happened only weeks after the tragedy of September 11th, and even though there was still an imposing fear and shock from the attack, people showed up to pull the competition together. That same year, British Hat Magazine had been accepting applications for their annual Hat Designer of the Year, and Galvin was chosen to be a finalist. This was a watershed moment for Galvin’s career. Despite being the only one who had not gone to a top fashion design school to learn her craft, she received first runner up. Galvin was ecstatic. As a
self-taught Irish milliner, the win was a huge acknowledgment of everything she had worked for. Galvin loves the confidence that she can give to those who walk into her store to buy one of her headpieces. Some of her customers may never have thought that this would be a fashion piece in their closet. With her creations, Galvin believes that the beautiful designs on each hat can transform any outfit. These couture pieces are gently priced items, meaning that her headpieces can provide that feeling of empowerment and confidence on a budget. “A good headpiece commands the room. That’s what I love about my brand.” said Galvin. Though Ms.Galvin likes to create larger scaled headwear for events like the Kentucky Derby, she also believes that a smaller piece can convey that same amount of drama that many look for when in the market for headwear. Galvin tends to lean more toward crafting delicate floral designs in unusual positions to create a surreal effect for clients who are going to wear the piece.
The most unique creations are the ones that you least expect to be your favorite. These pieces could be be a mash up of scrap fabric that was going to be thrown away, old paint that you don’t want to waste, etc. For Marie Galvin, it was just that; finding a challenge that would make her think of new ideas and step out of her comfort zone. She has established that she is an eco-minded and cruelty free designer, and has made a labor intensive project from found, damaged pheasant feathers, left over lining fabric and other miscellaneous objects to create a couture piece inspired by late forties and early fifties fashion. That piece still sits high on a shelf in her studio inspiring her to create more excellent and unique wearable art. For many brands, challenges and obstacles are common, and you have to learn how to play the cards that you have been dealt. Marie Galvin was in New York City for September 11th, the 2008 economic crash that damaged small businesses and the New England “Snow-pocalypse” (as Galvin puts it) in 2015. At the end of 2016, her business was flooded for 10 days straight due to climate change driven storms, rising tidal floods, and century-old Boston infrastructure. Most recently, the COVID -19 pandemic has left many small businesses fighting for their lives because of the difficulty to have clients within the stores. It began to feel very lonely being shoved to the side with everything going wrong. Galvin was completely broken, financially, physically, and mentally, but she never let any of these challenges stop her. Instead she started to work harder in her craft. She never asked for help during these rough patches, which she believes to be the Irish in her telling her not to. “I’m like a bloody phoenix rising again and again,” said Galvin. This takes power to get up again and again, after everything in the world is telling you to stay down. Despite all of this loss and sacrifice, there are still new beginnings and success. Such as, the joy of hearing how special her creations make her clients feel. In a way, it makes Galvin feel as though she is a fashion therapist because she is helping clients feel good about themselves through what they are wearing. Galvin believes that she can help make a difference in the confidence that people feel in their lives, especially with demand from the media to constantly look a certain way.
As for the future, Marie Galvin doesn’t exactly know what is ahead for her right now. All she knows is that a change is coming and she is ready for whatever life throws her way. Galvin has always, and will continue to be original, authentic, and transparent about everything she does. She has spent her entire career diving deep into her craft and ensuring that it will be nothing but excellent. Galvin may not always remember the names of every client that she has had over the years, but she will always remember the emotional connection she had with each client and the outcome of how the piece made them feel. Galvin likes to remain approachable and lighthearted with her customers and uses social media where she is authentically herself, adding in her cheeky sense of humor to relate to clients. Marie Galvin Millinery is a place where confidence is born and nurtured into something incredible, touching the lives around her. Though this is not something she mentions all the time to her clients, Galvin likes to donate a percentage of her sales to her favorite charities. She wants to make sure that she can give wherever she can because she was once in a position where she needed the help. “One should give for the sake of giving, not for the sake of recognition of the giving. What I’m trying to get comfortable with is the customer actually feels this makes their purchase more meaningful and socially aware.” Galvin says. Whether it be a special event, or just a piece to have, Marie Galvin Millinery has a headpiece that will help support your confidence and help you simply stand out instead of blend in. Diversity is praised, so why not be your most authentic self with a brand that will support you? @mariegalvinmillinery; mariegalvin.com
“These clients come to me damaged by a society that demands you to look younger. That has a profound impact on aging women, their confidence and how they feel about themselves.” said Galvin. Oftentimes, the media tears down women for looking older or not looking thin enough. The love of drawing attention to oneself has been replaced in these clients and has forced them to blend into the background because of their broken confidence. If a simple yet elegant headpiece can help someone’s confidence and make them feel powerful, then Galvin will do anything to make sure that she contributes to the process, and to make them look fabulous.
Photography Courtesy of Marie Galvin Millinery
This confidence doesn’t apply to just women. As a brand, Marie Galvin Millinery has always made sure to work with a diverse and gender fluid selection of models from the very beginning. Galvin works with models of all colors, gender identities, ages, shapes, and sizes, to ensure that her clients are represented in everything that she creates. This decision allows customers to feel like they can better identify with her headpieces because they see themselves represented in every aspect of her brand. With this process, Galvin likes to get to know each of her clients, to really understand what they are looking for in their price range. This extra step is time-consuming, but Galvin wants to help guide her clients through the process of getting to know them in order to help them pick out a piece that will make them feel extraordinary.
ith avant-garde fashion on the rise in the Boston fashion scene, Lana Barakat has taken the reins with her original brand, December Thieves. Located on Beacon Hill, this small, upscale fashion boutique has changed the retail game for brands and designers alike. Barakat’s fashion sense stems from her background and international travels. Barakat grew up in the country of Georgia and came to the United States as a young adult to study advertising and marketing at Boston University . After graduating she moved to Mexico City, where she worked for a multinational ad agency. In Mexico, she also produced her own brand of jewelry, and eventually jewelry became her side business. The ad agency moved Bakarat to London, and after settling down in the UK, she decided to launch her own business. December Thieves was born out of Barakat’s aesthetic, which she describes as “...very diverse and global as a result of my international upbringing and work and life experiences.” Design and art have been at the forefront of Barakat’s life since she was young. This passion grew into an interest in fashion, and the art of clothing, which helped launch her start up. Although conceived in London, she wanted to debut her new business endeavor back in Boston. Her brand, December Thieves, initially opened in the South End’s SoWa district, but quickly transferred to the storefront on Beacon Hill alongside its new sister shop, Thieves Next Door, a home decor and jewelry brand. Barakat ran both stores for a few years before deciding the location was December Thieves’ forever home. She describes it as a place where people do not necessarily expect a store such as December Thieves to be located, but that the location helped her to achieve the dream of having two side-by-side storefronts.
Barakat and the December Thieves’ team work with independent and emerging brands and artists from across the globe to support and promote their work to a wider clientele. “I’m very passionate about small brands, and working to nurture them and help them grow. In many cases we have been store #1 for these brands in the US, and it is exciting to watch them grow,” says Barakat. December Thieves focuses on individuality, spotlighting pieces that are always very limited in quantity to preserve the originality and uniqueness of each item. Not only are the selections unique, they are also genderless. No garment in the shop is sectioned off or labelled by gender. December Thieves is one of very few stores to embrace this important, yet rare trend in fashion.
To curate the fashion for retail, Bakarat frequently travels to shops and showrooms across the globe, incorporating her international
experiences into her line of work. She is very fond of Mexico. She describes Mexico as “magical” and explains that there is great talent coming out of the country. Barakat has spent a lot of time working with indigenous people of Mexico, specifically working on sustainability for their brands. She expressed her admiration for each and every artist that she works with. “Every designer’s journey and story are so exciting for me personally, and I appreciate their willingness to work with me, as well as the symbiotic relationship we have, the way that we work, and everything that goes into it. They know we will represent them in the best light possible.” said Barakat. This focus differs from the recent surge in the culture of fast fashion, and works to redefine the way people see fashion and their shopping choices. Bakarat explained that she has met a lot of younger people that have told her December Thieves changed their stance on fashion. They have changed their perspective on fast fashion, and are focusing on investing in staple pieces for their wardrobe. Barakat and her styling team work with these customers, suggesting different ways to let these pieces live longer. She chooses garments that can be re-worn in different ways to completely change a look. These items give the customers a sense of individuality, offering them a chance to stand out. Very few people will own these pieces, and that is the beauty of Barakat’s brand. “They are wearing something limited in production, versus tens of thousands of units circulating worldwide,” said Bakarat. Barakat strongly values switching things around and keeping things fresh. She is always excited to be able to offer different items to her customers, and she never wants the shop to be predictable.
“In my own personal life, I never want things to be stagnant. We encourage people to explore their own personal style and push themselves out of their comfort zone,” said Barakat. In addition to always keeping things new and different, Barakat’s brand endorses stylistic changes within her customers, as it allows for a wide variety of aesthetics to exist. She described a theme of her brand as “the need to feel individual and different.” Just like her brand, Barakat’s own fashion is very carefully curated, with lots of statement pieces. “I wear far too much black but I love it. I wear anything with interesting details, big pockets, large drawstrings, hardware, and lots of the same things, styling and layering them in different ways,” Barakat says. December Thieves carries its vital aspect of individuality into gender non-conformity as well, wanting everyone, regardless of gender, identity, or sexual orientation to feel represented and comfortable in their clothing and accessories.
Photography By Julia Figueiral & Dylan Wilson
“We don’t really gender anything. This is important because we want everyone to feel safe, included and welcome in our space. We have had some people tell us it is the only store that they feel safe shopping at,” says Bakarat. Being both a gender neutral and high fashion brand is a trailblazing effort that is much needed and appreciated. We are fostering a society that is working to open the lens of how we see and appreciate others and our differences. @decemberthieves; decemberthieves.com
Sounds Like V
ivant, French for “living it up,” serves not only as the namesake for Justin Pomerleau and Emmy Sawich’s vintage store, but perfectly encapsulates the prevailing culture of the shop and its staff. Located in Allston on Lincoln Street, the store is quickly identifiable by the beautiful mural that dresses the bricks of the building. Vivant strives to create a “fun and eclectic atmosphere” according to Pomerleau, from the clothes, decorations, and upbeat music to the dedication and kindness of their team. In the often over-saturated apparel industry, Vivant offers a unique shopping experience that allows for a deep exploration of the history of fashion. Every inch of its 1,200 square foot space is packed with a masterfully curated collection of treasures that introduce customers to styles and ideas not present in a typical retail environment. This store carries one-of-a-kind garments that reward the buyer for spending the time sifting through endless racks of clothing. The shop offers everything from staples such as perfectly worn-in jeans and footwear to retro vinyl records and magazines. The shop also features flannels of every color and pattern, antique pins and sterling silver jewelry. In addition, Vivant’s focus on supporting the Boston community has driven them to offer a myriad of local artisan-made products as well. Regardless of the day, shoppers are guaranteed to find something in the store to catch their eye. A visit to Vivant feels like an adventure, more like visiting a museum than a clothing retailer. Justin Pomerleau or “Le Pants King’’ began selling his vintage collection in 2011, with what can only be described as an unorthodox means of transportation; a tricycle pulling a cart he constructed to resemble a small house. He proudly dubbed this mobile clothing store of his own design “Tour De Pance,” and began making his rounds through the greater Boston area. A year later, he launched his first pop-up shop in the Sowa Vintage Market. To keep up with an increased number of sales, Pomerleau hired Emmy Sawich as his personal assistant. Unbeknownst to them, the two would get married in Mexico five years later. By the spring of 2014, Justin secured their current residence in Lower Allston, on a more permanent basis. The new kid on the block, Vivant Vintage, opened its doors on Wednesday, June 25, 2014 under the leadership of Pomerlau and Sawich, who demonstrated a knack for sales and a plethora of retail experience respectively. In 2017 Pomerleau traveled to the Roundtop Antique Show in Texas and the Brooklyn Flea in New York City in quick succession, in the hopes of spreading the word about Vivant across the United States. Sawich has been making in-house products under the moniker “Emmy Ember ‘’ for four years now, and her products are currently offered in-store. The brand carries things like hand-made earrings and orgonite pyramids, as well as a beautiful line of upcycled flannels that sport new cropped
styles and bleached ombre patterns. This is just one of the many local start-up brands that you will not be able to find anywhere else. Vivant attempts to “accommodate a unisex audience as much as possible,” says Pomerleau. They do this by not separating garments by gender and by having their own in-house sizing metrics. Vivant’s team measures each piece and creates new labels that clearly indicate the exact numerical measurements rather than the brand’s assigned size. This is also beneficial as many vintage garments do not match their original labeled size due to wear and older methods of construction. As the fashion world becomes more androgynous, Vivant can be identified as one of the strongest local proponents of this movement. Alongside Vivant’s impressive stock of garments and antiques, an even more amazing group of employees are responsible for the shop’s charm. Pomerleau’s natural charisma and kindness have rubbed off on his
employees, creating an environment that strives to develop a “person-toperson connection” with the customers. Educated and familiar with the store’s vast selection, every member of the crew is ready to answer your questions or just have an interesting conversation. Whether or not you end up making a purchase, everyone that visits leaves with a positive memory. While Vivant does prefer to focus on in-person transactions, it is beginning to move into the online marketplace and expand the brand in this manner. Vivant has digitized a massive portion of its stock and has a comprehensive e-commerce version of its physical location. The website is updated each season with a hand-picked assembly of products that
represent the current trends in vogue. While it is completely worth visiting the physical store, the virtual catalog is a great alternative to experience the magic of Vivant remotely. In addition to their brick-and-mortar and online stores, Pomerleau and Vivant are known for their involvement in the antique flea market scene. In May of 2013, Pomerleau was offered the opportunity to sell at the prestigious Brimfield Antiques Show, a massive weeklong flea market held three times a year in Brimfield, MA. The event attracts thousands of collectors, designers, and vendors. Vivant’s booth continues to be a staple of this event and has grown over time. Today Vivant even hosts its own event known as Allston’s Greatest Yard Sale. This is a weekend journey that begins at Vivant and leads to a secret location filled with remarkable bargains just waiting to be discovered. Today’s fashion zeitgeist is being defined by thrifting and the do-ityourself influence, and passionate companies such as Vivant Vintage are responsible for sustaining this culture. The circular economy that is created by second-hand clothing is sustainable, non-judgmental, and does nothing but create positive ripples throughout a community. So, next time you’re in the market for a completely one-of-a-kind piece at an affordable price, give Vivant Vintage a try! They’re open every day (except for major holidays), from 11:00am-6:00pm. For web inquiries, they can be reached at ShopVivantVintage@gmail.com, for shop inquiries at Vivant.email@example.com, and their phone number is (857) 228-8565. @vivantvintage; vivantvintage.com
Photos Courtesy of Vivant Vintage
Griffin Bryan & Spencer Villinski 11
Two years into the global pandemic, we look at our closets and evaluate the trendy pieces that were bought solely out of boredom. Something that we can work toward as we make our way into our “new normal” is limiting the purchases that are made impulsively. In the United States, any item of clothing is worn on average seven times before being discarded, which raises the question of how much a trendy purchase is necessary. We can counteract overconsumption and waste by repurposing staple pieces. Instead of giving into microtrends, purchase staple pieces that can be worn with multiple outfits and in many ways. In this anti-trend piece, we show you a couple of different ways in which you can style a basic slip dress, a button-up, a pair of cargo pants, jeans, and a blazer. Faith Costa
Models: Sasha Davis, Brian Allen, Tyson Buggs, Alycia Montrond-Bullock, and Darian Morgan Photography: Dylan Wilson
Escape to Wonderland
Jenna (Left) Coat: Vivant Vintage Shirt: Global Thrift Store Skirt: SoWa Vintage Mirror: SoWa Vintage Eric (Right) Coat: Vivant Vintage Shirt: SoWa Vintage
Randi Head Scarf: SoWa Vintage Shirt: Global Thrift Store Pants: LIT Boutique Shoes: LIT Boutique
Randi Coat: LIT Boutique Shoes: LIT Boutique
Eric Coat: Global Thrift Store Pants: Vivant Vintage
Jenna (Left) Coat: SoWa Vintage Dress: SoWa Vintage Shoes: LIT Boutique Eric (Middle) Vest: LIT Boutique Pants: Vivant Vintage Randi (Right) Skirtsuit: SoWa Vintage Belt: SoWa Vintage
Randi (Right) Skirtsuit: SoWa Vintage Belt: SoWa Vintage
Eric Coat: Global Thrift Store Shirt: Vivant Vintage Pants: Global Thrift Store Shoes: Global Thrift Store
Jenna Coat: Vivant Vintage Shirt: Vivant Vintage Pants: Vivant Vintage Bag: Global Thrift Store
Images Courtesy of Studio1851
Store Hours: Mon. 1 - 4 pm, Tues. - Fri. 12:30 - 4 pm Website: studio1851lasell.com - Instagram: studio1851lasell In-Store Shopping - Delivery - In-Store Pickup 1844 Commonwealth Ave Auburndale, MA 02466
Event Calendar December 2021 Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat 28
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19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 1 New Year’s Day Brunch Cruise on the Northern Lights Ship See historic Boston sites while sailing the Northern Lights ship to celebrate the New Year. The ship departs from 60 Rowes Wharf in Boston. The cost per ticket is $70. The cruise starts at 12pm, and it lasts for 2 hours and includes a 3 course brunch with delicacies such as baked goods, fruits, fish, and meats. Drinks and adult beverages are not included in the price. Boston Wine Festival For Friday January 21st, and Saturday the 22nd, the event will take place at 70 Rowes Wharf in the Seaport District. Guests can dress up in semi-formal attire to enjoy different vintages and types of wine. Check out https://www.bostonwinefestival.net for ticket details.
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llustration by Caelan Watson
Pi Day Virtual Marathon On this Pi Day, March 14th, run a 5K (or 3.14 miles) to celebrate! This race is virtual, meaning you can choose your own course and do it on your own time and the cost is $18. So whether you love Pi or pie, get outside, enjoy that Massachusetts spring weather, and run for a cause! High Street Place High Street Place, located at 100 High Street in Boston is becoming a food hall. It was recently announced that the hall will be officially opening in March of 2022. There will be nineteen vendors with Boston’s new and finest eats available, ranging from bars and taps, to breakfast sandwiches, and gelato.
Bright Lights: No Straight Lines: The Rise of Queer Comics This film is about five comic artists who break down gender, queerness, race, and intersectionality from 1970s until now. The film is a virtual event on December 1st and 2nd at 7:00 PM. The film is 79 minutes and free. Frida Kahlo: POSE The Rose Art Museum at Brandeis University has Frida Kahlo on exhibit from June 25th to December 19th, 2021. The exhibition examines Kahlo’s life and identity, as well as how she broke societal and gender norms through her art. Also featured, is art from other queer artists who are inspired by Kahlo.
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Romantic Valentine’s Day Jazz & Champagne Tasting Cruise February 11-14th, take your lover on an unforgettable boat cruise on Boston Harbor! The 1920’s inspired cruise departs from 60 Rowes Wharf. You and your significant other can create Valentine’s Day memories sipping champagne, and enjoying music. $78 per person includes three high quality champagne testings, and two decadent chocolate-covered strawberries. Concerts Popular artists such as The Weeknd, Dua Lipa, and Billie Eilish are all hitting TD Garden, February 8th, 18th, and 20th. Discover new indie talent by seeing Courtney Barnett on the 8th at the Wang Theater or Still Woozy at the Royale on the 8th or 9th! More of a comedy person?
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Authors: Lucy Baldino, Sarah LaPierre, and Maddie Young
Power to the Plant
he secret success for all-natural skin care brand Noel Herbals rests in its empowering female message.
Shannon Noel Curtis, an esthetician working in the skincare industry for over 15 years, found herself unhappy with new ideologies and chemical approaches to today’s skincare products. She decided to make a change, and introduce a new line of products to the world, products that she fully believes in. Noel Herbals is Curtis’s all-natural skincare brand that conveys an empowering female message. She aims to make a name for her brand by focusing on quality self-care products. Curtis has been working with popular skin care brands over the past decade, in order to learn how to cook up a recipe that aligns with her own holistic views. After some experimentation Noel Herbals was born. Growing up, Curtis always had a drive for bettering herself and others within her community. With her strong beliefs that holistic views bring people closer to nature and health, she found it easy to connect with the earth. All products in the Noel Herbals line rely on natural ingredients like oat milk and honey, as well as herbs such as chamomile, lavender, and basil. The honey used is Manuka honey from New Zealand, and she partners with an aromatherapist in Vermont who makes the essential oils used to naturally fragrance the products. When asked about how she keeps her products environmentally friendly, Curtis explained that the packaging used is sustainable. All of her creams and masks are packaged in glass jars and have biodegradable paper wrappers to reduce the shop’s ecological footprint. Having this connection between the sustainability of her products and the packaging keeps Curtis and customers feeling good. Curtis states that she uses all materials from eco friendly vendors because using these materials helps to keep the products pure and improve your skin.
As Curtis continued her experience as an esthetician, she realized how many bad products were out there. “Don’t trust a brand just because the label says it’s all natural. So many of us put ourselves into a category, thinking that we know what our skin needs,” said Curtis. When making a sale, a customer might choose to purchase online or schedule an appointment. Curtis explained that she likes getting to know her customers so she can establish trust, opinion, and perspective. The Noel Herbals website provides descriptions of the products, what they do for your skin, and the ingredients. Curtis discloses everything in her ingredients list, keeping her clients informed. The brand’s first ever and still the most recommended product is the “Golden Love Oil”. This serum can be used for any type of skin. It is made with chamomile, helichrysum, marshmallow, jojoba oil, and kukui nut oil. This product helps to moisturize the skin and heal inflammation. When speaking with first time customers, the “Golden Love Oil” is always Curtis’s first recommendation. “This oil is for anyone. Picture a golden light surrounding your entire face with love,” said Curtis. The product description paints a beautiful picture of how this product will make you feel. Curtis uses similar statements in the first sentences to every one of her product descriptions, to help make the customer feel more grounded and connected to the earth and natural roots of the products. These emotion provoking descriptions and details show how all of Curtis’s products are produced with positive and loving intentions. With the success of women owned businesses during the 21st century, Curtis takes the time to support female entrepreneurs. The shop’s website highlights local women-owned businesses with similar products in “Meet the Makers”. Each product that she supports
includes a link to their website. Some offerings reach beyond the world of skincare, but somehow, they all support self-care for the body and mind. The range of other self-care essentials includes candles, pottery and jewelry. There is something for everyone to help connect back to the earth and find inner tranquility. All the hobbyists and business owners included on the Noel Herbals website share similar views, and while they are selling a product, many continue to learn from each other, and provide an encouraging environment for women to share their ideas for success. On top of all the work Curtis does with skin and self-care, she provides a journal on her website for all of her clientele to read through. Every month Curtis sends out a newsletter to all of her customers highlighting seasonal transitions and updates to products. Curtis wants to make sure to stay connected and provide her customers with honesty, integrity, and a sense of personalization. In this journal, she includes a welcome to the new season, tea recipes that promote different types of health and wellness, and a playlist to help musically cleanse away the stress of daily life. In today’s society where so many people only care about themselves, it’s refreshing to find a business owner and company who care about making connections with and providing helpful resources for their customers. After dealing with a pandemic and all the repercussions from such a stressful time, we should all learn to take a little bit more time for activities that we enjoy, slow down, and take care of ourselves, especially as we check in with others again and go back to our new normal. Begin your new journey with Noel Herbals as it is the perfect start to getting yourself back on track. firstname.lastname@example.org; @noelherbals
Lucy Baldino & Kassie Fisher
Photography Courtasy of Noel Herbals; Illustration by Ciarra Chasse
The new age of Pixels I
n the new digital age of perfection, we all have been guilty of searching for the perfect shot, the perfect lighting, or the perfect angle for our Instagram and Tik Tok pages. We long for something to get our names into the algorithm for thousands to see. We are constantly trying to find those 15 seconds of fame, but look no further because tucked away in Cambridge, MA is Go Pixel Yourself. POLISHED sat down with John Carter, the owner and founder of Go Pixel Yourself, to discuss this modern concept. Carter has fostered this hybrid, pop art business where anyone ranging from influencers, families, and students alike can go to take professional digital content of themselves with 16 dazzling theme rooms, neon-colored backdrops, and trippy set pieces that engulf you in a truly immersive environment. Carter discussed that ‘Go Pixel Yourself’ wasn’t his first business endeavor, but that his previous experiences were the stepping stones to this truly unique experience. Angela Defelice: What experiences lead you to the foundation of Go Pixel Yourself, and what skills do you feel contributed to its creation? John Carter: I was a street artist in New York City. I was a large-scale installation artist using found objects like school buses. I made found object art furniture out of bowling balls, boxing gloves, and don’t walk signs. Not only did he spend a lot of his time creating art, but he also dabbled in working with light shows which had a big part to play in his newest business venture. JC: I also ran an advertising agency and oversaw the design of the majority of the New York City Christmas windows for about five years. Parker 3D, (his previous business,) has done video integrated and interactive large-scale displays worldwide from Dubai to Shanghai to the Caribbean and all throughout North America. So if you take this group of skill sets, you can see most of it at Go Pixel Yourself. AD: When you created the concept, what were your initial thoughts? JC: As an artist, you don’t have much choice but to do something with your creative urge! I have always navigated back-and-forth between commercial and artistic endeavors... And recently recognized that
there’s a model where people will pay admission to interact with these things I’ve been building all along. And people did exactly that. They paid for admission and entered this wonderful artistic experience. Upon their opening, their primary goal was to be more like an amusement park. Carter wanted to give people a place to pretend and let loose to just create anything they wanted. AD: What is your business’s motto? JC: The message is always multilevel of course. Primarily, I’ve gathered art by other artists and invited the public in to create their own art within it. AD: Not only do influencers grace the presence of “Go Pixel Yourself,” but also photographers, and families as well, due to your rising fame on the short video platform “Tik Tok”... How does it feel being a part of something that contributes to long-lasting feelings, whether through internet fame or family memories? JC: Our experience is more than just photography. People come out of their shells and get to know each other better. I’ve seen families interacting differently by the third room than when they came in. We also are a place where musical acts have come to shoot their videos and express themselves that way. So, while the Internet, Instagram, and Facebook can have negative connotations... We believe we are taking it out of the phone and creating real-life experiences. As the creative director and designer, as well as an artist, it’s clear that John has a passion for the construction and thought process behind each of these interactive exhibits. I was interested to see if there was anything else he had a strong hand in creatively, like the photography in each exhibit. JC: In general, the design process starts with an idea, then my team may come up with some of the ideas and I might as well. So for example, for the airplane room, I started thinking about the golden age of travel. And how there used to be spacious seating and luxury and a spiral staircase and a bar etc. In some rooms, I would dictate the general idea of the background and my team would create it. I was doing selfies long before anybody called them that. I used to do a lot of selfies with Polaroids. I also fell in love with Photoshop and photo editing software as soon as it came out in the 80s. So between all of those interests of mine as well as my talented designers, we tried to use everything we had in it! AD: What would you like to see for the future of Go Pixel Yourself?
Photography Courtesy of Go Pixel Yourself
JC: We are still in the early stages, but ultimately I would like colleges to get involved with creating content and making content there. I have been talking to Harvard and local tech companies to get involved, and eventually, I’m hoping to make it a charitable outreach organization. I’m heavily influenced by Andy Warhol and his theory that in the future everyone will be famous for 15 minutes, and that future has clearly arrived. Angela Defelice: Lastly, which of the rooms was your favorite to create? John Carter: Probably the airplane room because I have been obsessed with flying since I was three and flew with my grandfather from Alaska to Chicago. I think it’s where you completely forget that you’re still in a shopping mall and it’s the perfect vehicle to begin your imaginary journey. With a multitude of different, unique and galvanizing rooms to choose from, starting with the first-class “Airplane room”, express your creativity and see it for yourself! @gopixelyourself; gopixelyourself.com
lose your eyes. Think of flowers in a fresh garden but next to brownstones. Hear birds singing but also car horns honking. You’re smelling a fresh roast along with the musk that follows a large crowd. Where are you? Possibly someplace congenial, but with history. A fairly calm corner in a big city. A warm home with lots of neighbors. Have you figured it out yet? Let’s pin our location at Jonquils Café & Bakery on Newbury Street, in the heart of Boston, MA. Known for its molded desserts and fine teas, Jonquils has been delivering a whimsical escape through its dine-in and catering services since 2019. The café is named for the flower, as owners Khalid and Hamad Al Ahbabi find the jonquil inspiring. Jonquils originated as a simple café focusing on quality coffee choices. It wasn’t until Khalid and Hamad came across pastry chef Dinara Kasko that their bakery was transformed into what it is known for today.
“When they [Khalid & Hamad] actually met Dinara, who created the molds for pastries, they were so into it and decided to fully add desserts to the menu.” said Ahmed Abdalla, General Manager. The final decision resulted in a menu of varying beverages and desserts. It’s these fine drinks like Oolong tea or Ethiopia Odola coffee and exotic pastries such as an apple caramel treat or the origami cake that bring Jonquils to the next level. Kasko, their Brand Pastry Chef, can be credited for the uniquely molded and crafted desserts found at the bakery. Born in Ukraine, Kasko originally studied an entirely different craft from baking. She went to university for architecture and remained in her profession as a 3D visualizer for only a short period of time. She later combined her craft with her love
of baking to develop techniques involving a 3D printer with which she designs the molds used for her cakes and desserts. “Her works of confectionery art employ the mathematical principles of the Voronoi diagram and biomimicry.” (jonquilscafe.com). A Voronoi diagram is used in mathematics and is based on the minimal distance needed to reach a point or landmark. Kasko uses this strategy in conjunction with biomimicry, taking innovations from nature and applying them to technology, to create her 3D pastries. Kasko has the lucky advantage of working with locally sourced goods, primarily the ingredients she uses or needs to bake her desserts. For the coffees and teas, however, Khalid and Hamad want you to experience the flavors and quality of ingredients from abroad. For example, their highly sought after iced Flora Tea comes directly from London. “We prefer to work with local goods as much as possible, but some of our key ingredients are imported internationally,” said Ahmed. Jonquils Café and Bakery doesn’t just want you to love their exotic pastries and exquisite drinks. The Al Ahbabi brothers want you to feel part of their luxurious home and heritage while visiting the café. They want their menu to invite you to taste the richness of the many cultures they’re inspired by. Upon entering, you’re welcomed by soft hues that coat the space and delicate designs throughout the shelves. You see their menu filled with fascinating treats and beverages from “Exotique Spheres” to “Flying Snow Flora Tea.” The café is an escape from reality, yet it brings life from cultures worldwide. Ahmed continually speaks about the fact that they are able to share this concept with the heart of Boston and those who come from abroad. Being on Newbury Street, locals and tourists of all kinds come together to have the fortunate opportunity of experiencing the café with one another. The diversity of both Boston and Jonquils allows the two to come together and offers history, culture, and luxury to anyone who enters. The team at Jonquils is passionate, theatrical and willing to pursue their craft for the pleasure of their consumers.
The café, a delicate, calm, and warm home with surrounding neighbors is just that: a home. But like homes around the world, their family dynamic took a massive shift amid the worldwide pandemic. While we all are on the road moving forward, it’s important we recognize the strength and perseverance that has come from such a tragedy. Jonquils had to close for several months and suffered the expected financial loss. However, reopening may have been just as hard as closing down, if not harder. Business was extremely slow, and the reality of an unmasked society was no longer just an idea and kept thousands of people in their homes. Jonquils was left with no choice but to adjust to massive challenges and learn how to make their café a home again. “COVID-19 affected nearly every business in the world. We are no exception. But we had to adjust to these kinds of changes. We did our very best and the belief of our owners put the business back on its feet.” said Ahmed. Prior to the pandemic, Khaled and Hamad thought about expanding the business to a second location. The pandemic put an unfortunate pin in that idea, initially. Covid fueled the incentive to franchise and has the team working that much harder to make it happen. The current and only location prepares and serves all menu items. The owners hope to expand so they can have a space large enough to serve beverages, baked desserts and pastries, as well as cook the original items and possibly develop new ones. Khalid, Hamad, and their team are more determined than ever to make this next step for the business possible. Jonquils Café and Bakery on Newbury Street invites you to their house of luxury, delicacy, and warmth. They share the sounds of china clinking and tea steeping with bustling streets outside. This cozy location is a breath of fresh air after trekking through the streets. The drinks and treats at Jonquils bring flavors from cultures around the world, allowing you to escape from your own reality. @jonquilscafe; jonquilscafe.com
Photography by Terrance Theus
onsulting the Cards: The Power of Tarot
s the uncertainty of the pandemic looms over society, it is no secret that many of us have been anxiously awaiting the events of the future. With many still afraid to step foot outside, having been locked away in isolation and quarantine, many of us have sought an escape to the realm of fantasy. We found ourselves indulging in fantastical movies, television, books, and other media that served up sensory overload of gorgeous landscapes and mystical creatures. For some, these fantasies inspired an interest in mysticism as an alternative source of knowledge and wisdom. This is where the tarot comes in. The tarot is a deck of 78 cards, painted with often colorful and symbolic images that are used for the purpose of fortune telling. Created in Italy in the 1430s as a simple card game, the depictions and symbols found on the high contrast colored cards can be traced back to ancient civilizations. The symbolic language of the tarot transcends time, and can help a seeker, (the person seeking guidance from the tarot,) understand their lives beyond scientific explanation. The tarot is a fantastical view into the rewards and inner workings of the universe and its corresponding elements and energies. While the cards may be a vehicle to comprehending our future, the message they give should not be regarded as the final destination. The future is not bound by the cards, nor is the person receiving the reading. Even the smallest shift in energy, internal or external, can change the fate of the seeker at any time. Reading the tarot is not difficult, although most seekers look for a professional reader at some point. The seeker can ask the reader to focus the energies toward information about a career path, a current or previous love relationship, or a difficult decision. With the current state of the world, it is no wonder that tarot has risen in popularity as a form of both entertainment and insight.
Photography by Viva Luna Studios; Illustration by Caelan Watson
Lady Charlegmagne Tremont is an experienced tarot reader and practitioner/teacher of the mystic and healing arts. She has traveled around the world, tapping into her mystical nature and Romanian gypsy heritage, trading her knowledge and talent of reading tarot for lodging and food. Tremont practices a variety of alternative healing and spiritual modalities from Wicca to Reiki. She discussed with POLISHED the influence tarot can have on one's daily life, as long as they open their minds to possibilities far beyond the known.
Tarot uses many of the same icons as fantasy media, using images of wands, swords, pentacles, and cups to represent the four natural elements of fire, air, earth, and water. These court cards are considered the Minor Arcana, where the area of focus is on the surrounding environmental influences of your life, like career, money, conflicts, or relationships. These minor archetypes of the tarot are not bound by a strict set of meanings, but represent different possibilities with endless combinations of cards and outcomes. The Major Arcana, cards like the Hierophant, the Sun, and Strength, are more about your inner energies and your understanding of the power of your innermost thoughts and actions. For example, some depictions of the Sun card feature a sun rising above the horizon and include two hands cupping and embracing the light, which might stand for embracing new rising opportunities. The imagery for the Sun in more traditional Rider-Waite decks shows the sun rising over a sunflower field, shining down on a cherubic figure riding through the rising sun on a horse. All of these images represent hope and moving swiftly toward joyful abundance. The most colorful and powerful deck according to Tremont is the Aleister Crowley Thoth deck. With paintings by Lady Frieda Harris featured on the cards, the bright colors and detailed imagery takes readers and seekers alike through the importance of small details that contribute to a whole picture. This powerful deck allows the seeker to evaluate the finer features of their reading, and how these smaller details are affecting the larger contribution to the answers they seek. Everything in our universe is connected, and many of us would like assurance of our future, but certainty is never a given. Human nature will always look for answers about the unknown, but we must remember that tarot is not about cementing your fate; it is about reflection. Remember to consult the cards with purpose, feel with everything you have, and connect to your energies for reflection. May the images of tarot lead you to your highest self.
“We are very scared creatures, and we are often wanting to know the future of our lives, but the universe is a beautiful and weird place, in which we cannot understand the future, but we can learn to connect to the elements and create a number of pathways and open-minded attitudes,” says Tremont. While Tremont speaks highly of the importance of tarot to the seeker, after reading for so many years, it has become a lifestyle for her. From using the cards as a means of daily meditation, to teaching the art of tarot to those eager to find a higher state of being, Tremont takes the art of tarot to heart and explains what tarot is to her. “Reading tarot is about sharing knowledge and helping, using the healing and power of serving. It's never been about elevating your chakra to the highest self. It's about giving other people the opportunity to further explore their inner self. Tarot cards were originally books of wisdom, and the longer you read, the more important it becomes to share that wisdom,” says Tremont.
Jenna (Left) Coat: SoWa Vintage Dress: SoWa Vintage Shoes: LIT Boutique Randi (Middle) Skirtsuit: SoWa Vintage Belt: SoWa Vintage Eric (Right) Vest: LIT Boutique Pants: Vivant Vintage