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Cobblestone Stroll


An unexpected stroll through the cobblestone streets of downtown Lowell. Busco invited me to the New England Quilt Museum for the opening of their new exhibition, SILK! So I channeled my inner Carrie Bradshaw for an impromptu outfit of the day moment.

  • Vintage 1980’s knit dress (thrifted)
  • Vintage 1980’s patent leather check-style bag
  • Banana Republic open-toe heels
  • Betsey Johnson knotted belt
  • Goldtone cuff and earrings 
  • 14K gold necklaces

Mira Menos

NY Stroll: Straight into Hell’s Kitchen

A weekend in NYC, crossing paths with Busco. We made a stop in Hell’s Kitchen. I felt like I was 21 again. But better dressed.



  • Vintage 1980’s coat (thrifted)
  • Opaque monogram tights (TJ Maxx)
  • Kenneth Cole patent leather platform heels
  • Black Fendi baguette
  • Moschino scarf

Mira Menos

Sinspiration: Jody Watley - Still a Thrill


I was very excited to hear that my friend P was going to see Jody Watley at Yoshi’s in San Francisco last week. I’ve only seen her perform once in Boston, long before the concert-going compulsion I developed in the last 5 years. I was going to one of the local gays bar on a whim. There was no standing for hours to get a spot at the front. There was no CD cover in my pocket for an autograph. No pictures taken. I was too cool for school, and it’s on my list of concert-going regrets.

I enjoyed her music very much, but my taste in music changed in college, so music from my childhood and adolescence became background music to the music I was listening to at the time. One day on the hunt for CDs, I came across a house music compilation CD with a remix of Saturday Night Experience. Being the househead that I was at the time, I was able appreciate the idea of her working with house DJs like Little Louie Vega and Ron Trent. I bought it the compilation CD just for that song, without even listening to it. I knew I’d like it, but I was wrong. I loved it. Soon thereafter I bought Midnight Lounge. The jazzy, vibey, house-tinged CD was very current, very contemporary, and a great CD, but I appreciated her vision and evolution as an artist and musician.


In retrospect, this was nothing new for her. Looking back at early career music videos and images on the internet, she has been quite the forward-thinker with her music and personal style throughout her career. I read a magazine article once where she described how she styled her looks for album covers, I became impressed at how multi-faceted she is regarding to her style, image, and artistic identity. I remember once in high school my cousin describing a look she wanted to put together, to which I replied “Oh, like Jody Watley.” It stuck with me because it was one of the few times that you can ascribe a look to a musician. Cyndi Lauper had the skirts and hair, Madonna had the mid-drifts and bustiers, and Jody had the powersuit and hoops.

My favorite look (and music video) is Friends. Not only does she serve Eastern influence, but the video was also very fascinating. Runway, drag queens, voguers, hip-hop dancers, and of course, the incomparable Rakim.

So It was only fitting that I style Mira in the spirit of Jody Watley, another one of my all-time style favorites. I follow her blog and on Facebook, and am very hopeful that I get to see her perform again. But this time I’ll be front and center. With a sharpie, some vinyl and a CD cover in tow, but I will bring my excitement, most of all.





  • Blazer (thrifted)
  • Sparkle & Fade palazzo pants (Urban Outfitters)
  • Fergilicious patent platform heels
  • Vintage 1960s silver clutch (thrifted)
  • Vintage 1960s Las Vegas feather headpiece (thrifted)
  • Sterling silver hoops; thrifted pearls

Busco Mas

Caped Crusades

We love to travel, and every time we travel, we include some time for thrifting. The hat and cape came from two separate thrift sources in two different states over a thousand miles away. Vintage from two different periods. Put them together, you’d think they were a set. Reunited and it feels so good!


  • Vintage 1960’s Kathryn of Fort Lauderdale pillbox hat (thrifted)
  • Vintage 1980’s Lord & Taylor cape (thrifted)
  • Vintage 1960’s black leather handbag (thrifted)
  • Forever21 black & white striped sweater
  • Betsey Johnson faux leather white belt
  • Kova&T jeans
  • Obsession Rules suede booties with goldtone heel
  • Assorted vintage and contemporary wood, plastic, and brass bangles
  • Vintage 1980’s black & white polka dot earrings

Mira Menos
Busco Mas

Fiesta Wear

My company holiday luncheon was last week, gave me an excuse to wear shine, sheen, and sparkle to work. The color palate says day, but the shimmer in the skirt and the whimsical clutch made it perfect for evening.



  • Vintage 1980’s Christian Dior button-up blouse (thrifted)
  • H&M shimmery brocade-style skirt
  • Calvin Klein orange suede and cork heels
  • Custom made clutch by The Sin Embargo (
  • Goldtone chandelier earrings (gift from Lalita); wicker and wood bangles; orange plastic ring

Mira Menos

Holiday Stroll

For the past 5 years we have celebrated Holiday Stroll in NYC. (Holiday Stroll is spending family time doing something non-retail.)  This year we decided to stay local and experienced our town’s holiday festivities. It’s not Times Square, but there was a good, fun, crowd of people out on the stroll.


Our favorite snack!image

Trash cans used as instruments.image


The Clauses strolling in our ‘hood!image


  • Isaac Mizrahi for Target reversible coat
  • Forever 21 Hat with thrifted vintage flower brooch
  • 1980’s vintage Belt (thrifted)
  • 1980’s vintage red gloves (thrifted)
  • Silvertone bangle
  • 1980’s vintage red enameled hoop earrings

Mira Menos

Kimono? KimoYES!!

El Pecado de Oyuki is a Mexican soap opera, or “telenovela” from the 1980s.  This was one of the many Spanish-language soap operas that we watched with our mom. You’d think that we’d be too young to watch soap operas, but as long as there wasn’t any nudity, mom was OK with it. Violence? OK. Drugs? No problem.

It quickly became one of our favorites. The story takes place in post-war Japan, and is about a Japanese girl turned geisha who falls in love with an English aristocrat, against the wishes of their families. Her English love gets killed by her brother, but she is accused of the murder by his parents. She is sentenced to 20-years but released 5 years before the end of her sentence as a result of her brother’s deathbed confession.

We were fascinated (and couldn’t understand why) they spoke Spanish. But we later learned that the actors were Latin actors with facial features that could pass as Asian. Adding to the fascination was learning about the world of the geisha, pre-Memoirs of a Geisha. We were fascinated by costume, hair, makeup, the way she spoke, danced, behaved. We’re not sure how accurate the portrayal was, but we didn’t know. To us, she was a walking work of art!

And ever since then, we’ve been inspired by Japanese culture, collecting decorative objects, books, and vintage kimonos/robes!

  • Vintage child’s kimono/robe
  • Vintage child’s tuxedo cummerbund
  • Joe’s Jeans denim jeans
  • Nine West shoes
  • Emilio Pucci handbag
  • Plastic plum bangle, painted wood bangles & earrings

Busco Mas
Mira Menos

Sunday Stroll

Today I strolled over to the new premium outlet mall.  It’s about a 10 minute ride, versus the 1 hour and 15 minute ride to the other premium outlet mall.  I didn’t want to go on opening weekend because of the crowds.  It’s not so much that I don’t like people, but I didn’t want to have to fight anyone at a sale.  Not in this dress.

  • Vintage silk dress
  •  H&M Belt
  • Guess black slingback platform shoes
  • Vintage purse
  • Gold plated cuff, 14K gold & glass ball earrings, 14K gold chains

Mira Menos

Camp Stamp

I’m a city girl. I grew up in a city, (albeit a small city). I do appreciate and enjoy the beauty of nature, but in small doses.  I never went camping as a kid. I went to a day camp, which was really going to a community center in the projects, the local park and swimming pool.  Mom grew up on a farm, so she was always surrounded by nature. She couldn’t comprehend why people would want to sleep outside when they have perfectly good beds. But with my mom hat (and shoes) on, my goal is for my children to have as many experiences as I can provide. Which includes the wilderness. Which means I had to go camping.

Camping trip #1 wasn’t fun for me. It was Memorial Day weekend, 2009. It was the worst year of my life for allergies. Bugs everywhere wanted a piece of me. Every leaf that touched my skin was potential poison, since I wasn’t sure what poison plants looked like. And it was COLD as a mofo’.  At night, I’d hear rustling noises from nearby trees and bushes, and so I kept thinking about how I could strategically get my kids and I into the car as fast as I could. I didnt sleep a wink! We had no experience with camping as a family, and relied on friends who lent us their equipment (tents, air mattresses, lighting, and grill). Despite all these modern amenities that our friends graciously loaned to us, I could only take 1 night. Once the sun came up, I woke up my family, packed our stuff and headed home!  Needless to say the kids didn’t have a full camping experience, so that meant at some point in the future I’d have to make up for it.

Fast forward 3 years later when my daughter (aka Cynthia Starr), asked me for a camping trip for her birthday. After hesitating to use the voting method, majority won, and we decided to give it another try. I already started to think of all the disastrous things that could happen.

We asked for recommendations on the best campsite closest to home, in case we needed to implement plan B: GO HOME. I also wanted a campsite with electricity and running water. Luckily the waterfront campsites (with no water or electricity) were all booked.  This was actually husband’s first choice. I’m not sure how I could have survived!  I needed all the help I could get, so I went online and printed out a camping checklist (which looked like it was from the 80’s) to make sure we had all our basis covered. We went for a weekend, which I believed would be enough time for the kids to form an opinion as to whether they’d want to go back or not. If anything, they will chalk this one up on their life list of things they did once. 

We arrived at the site, set up, and explored our surroundings.  I saw the hardcore campers. But is it really camping when your in an RV that has a nice bed, running water, your own bathroom, air conditioner and satellite television, and internet? Yes!

Our experience with camping this time was pretty smooth and uneventful, except for the torential downpours on Saturday early evening.  We did a little fishing, swimming, hiking and alot of eating. The best part was after sundown and when the rain stopped, roasting marshmellows, making smores and just spending time with my family!  I was even surprised that we were all able to sleep 8 hours. I was a little OCD this weekend asking husband every 10 minutes if he would make sure there wasn’t any food on the ground, so we wouldn’t get unexpected visitors at night!

  • Son’s khaki shirt
  • Gap cropped flare jeans
  • Marc Jacobs scarf used as hair accessory
  • Dolce Vita for Target wedge espadrilles
  • Wood earrings from NYC, vintage brass bangle, plastic Amrita Singh bangle, gold-plated cuff
  • Gucci prescription sunglasses
  • FIDM Tote

Mira Menos

Sunday Stroll: Birthday Dinner

  • Catherine Maladrino dress
  • Badgley Mischka shoes
  • Vintage patent leather clutch
  • Diamond ring, bracelet, and earrings

Mira Menos

The State of Independence Shall Be…

Mira: 4th of July. Parades, Fireworks, BBQs and family gatherings.  A celebration of Independence. Red, white, and blue. I was never one to dress in holiday colors. As I got older, holiday dressing became more of a challenge, figuring out certain color combinations that might not fly on a regular day.  Red, white & blue doesn’t seem so bad after all.

Busco: As an kid I dressed in holiday colors on holidays, usually by request of teachers. In the 7th grade the country was celebrating the bi-centennial of the Constitution. Our Social Studies teacher asked us to wear red, white, and blue, and we were going watch the televised event. At the time I wore khaki-like elastic waist pants, because they were cheaper than jeans. I had a pair that was navy blue, with red and white piping along the side. I wore these with my brother’s stars & stripes sleeveless t-shirt, which was a little too tight. When I got to school, no one else was wearing red, white, & blue. As of that day I decided never to dress in holiday colors. Maybe next year it will be my turn.

  • Vintage dress
  • Vintage red clutch
  • Vintage white multi-strand necklace, vintage red button earrings
  • Vintage plastic bangles: blue/clear, clear with suspended pearls, and beige Amrita Singh bangle
  • Gucci Prescription Sunglasses
  • Kanna Wedges

Busco Mas
Mira Menos 

Strap On: DIM Custom Camera Strap

A few months ago when The Sin Embargo was in its infancy, I decided to upgrade my standard digital camera I’ve had for years, to a better digital camera that had more zoom and features. I noticed the standard strap that comes with the camera was a little blah. My camera needed a little DIM pizzaz!

I had thrifted this J Crew silk men’s belt last year, for $1.99 in excellent condition. I was going to use it as a belt or headband, but instead I thought it would make a great camera strap. 

The JCrew belt links were a little too thick to hook onto the camera, so I used the links of an old green belt and sewed them on to the J Crew belt.

and 15 minutes later….

From crappy to strappy!

Mira Menos

Sunday Stroll

A hot, bright, summer day and a fun-filled weekend of family birthdays. Enjoy!

  • Vintage dress
  • Vintage Coach handbag
  • Franco Sarto Heels
  • Vintage white skinny belt
  • Pearl earrings, necklace and bracelet, silver watch, sterling silver pearl dome ring

Mira Menos

Street Style, Contested

Today’s photo shoot is a contest entry for a magazine, sponsored by Puma. Prize is a trip to NYC to style a photo shoot. So I street styled Mira Menos, keeping true to her love of mixing vintage, low end, and high end.

As far back as I can remember, I have always admired street style, even before “street style” came to be a fashion look. It represents taste in clothes, music, recreation, culture, art, and has been a big influence on my own style. Street style is usually associated with a youth culture. But I’m not one to give up anything from my childhood or adolescence so soon.

  • Puma sneakers and top
  • Paper Cloth + Denim white jeans
  • DKNY Jeans jacket
  • Fendi handbag
  • Gucci prescription sunglasses
  • Vintage headscarf
  • Sterling silver cuffs, necklaces, hoop earrings, and rings; Marc Jacobs plastic black bracelet, Amrita Singh plastic bangle

Busco Mas

Sunday Stroll - Father’s Day 2012

It was a perfect 70 degree, New England weather kind-of-day. Perfect for a sweater dress for my Sunday stroll.

On this special Sunday, Happy Father’s Day to all the dads (past and present), step-dads and baby-daddies (those who actually take the time to care for their kids). Enjoy your day!

  • Vintage sweater dress
  • Vintage purse (rummage sale purchase for 40 cents!)
  • Nine West peep-toe heels
  • Vintage brass bangle, plastic Amrita Singh bangle

Mira Menos

J. Raul Cornier as Busco Mas Sandra Cornier as Mira Menos. Second-hand vintage and designer fashion sourcing. For sale at: