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Hey, Chicagoland friends and DC-Metro friends! Starting tomorrow, you can check out a FREE screening of this kick-ass documentary about kick-ass women doing awesome things.

Chicagoland: October 20 (that’s tomorrow)-October 24
D.C.-Metro area: October 27-31

Here’s a complete list of screening times and locations.

The summary:
Five funny, smart women drive 7,000 miles from Los Angeles to New York in 30 days, meeting and interviewing positive and powerful women leaders across a variety of lifestyles and industries. To name a few:

  • • Astronaut
  • • Mathematician
  • • Pilot
  • • Professional Athlete
  • • Chef
  • • Architect
  • • Social Entrepreneur/Founder of Girls on the Run
  • • The First Female Four-Star Admiral in the U.S. Navy
  • • Miss USA 2012

Along the way, they share their insights about how women define their success, what it takes to be a woman in a position of power, and valuable advice on how to improve the female role in the workplace. They also turn the cameras on themselves, capturing their transformational journey and letting us get to know them as artists, as professionals and as people.

Sounds amazing, right? If you’re interested, learn more about the filmmakers and the project, and maybe you can bring the film to your school or town!

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October 17, 2014

Friday Dance Party

Happy Friday! If you had to pick between a roller skating video and a cannibalism video (you know, for Halloween), which would you choose?

Yeah, we couldn’t decide, either. You’re welcome.

October 10, 2014

Friday Dance Party

Happy Friday! It’s only the second week of October, but we’re already feeling full-on Halloweeny here at BP. HQ. Which is a happy coincidence, since the new video from SUBTRKT (and Ezra Koenig!) just so happens to suit the mood perfectly.

 

We have a thing for local musicians here at Nordstrom, often inviting local bands to help us launch a special event and pump up the crowd. Last spring, Susy Sun played at our Rebecca Minkoff Spring Launch and we fell in love. We recently caught up with Susy to talk about her musical career and her latest video, Grey Skies

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Q: In a nutshell, how do you describe your musical style?

I’m a classically trained pianist and singer/songwriter. My voice has been described as “bell like.” It’s a sweet voice, mixed with lush music and poignant and emotional lyrics. The songs are heartfelt and uplifting. I write songs that are diary entries. I’ve always used my music as a form of meditation to cope with my own emotions. Currently, I’m recording a new album and adding some edge to my musical style. So, stay tuned. ;)

Q: What motivates you to create music?

It’s definitely an intrinsic motivation. I started singing before I could talk and eventually my parents took notice and gave me private piano lessons. The composing part came when I was around 13. I struggled my whole life with bullying and not fitting in. I always seemed to skirt on the outside of the “in crowd,” which was tough growing up. Music and writing at that point became my outlet for all of this inner angst that I was dealing with. No one sat me down and told me to start making music. It was something that my inner being willed me to do. It was just me.

Q: Take us through the song-writing process. Where do you start? Then what? How do you know when a song is complete?

Generally, I start my songs with one line and melody. You could say that it is generally the “hook” that randomly comes into my head via the universe. I always sit at the piano and write lyrics and music simultaneously. I believe that the music’s mood is directly related to the message that I am conveying in my songs. Generally, I like to get a song done in one sitting. However, given my Gemini disposition, I have a tendency to start things and never quite finish them. I have a million songs on my iPhone recorder that are sitting as ideas and have never turned into songs.  A song goes through many cycles. It is complete after I finish the piano/lyrics/melodies. However, when I bring it to my band or a producer, it takes on another life.  Sometimes, years later, I take an old song and rework it too. There is no finality with art. That’s exciting, isn’t it?

Q: Where do you turn when you feel creatively drained? Why there?

I think that I’m still trying to figure it out! I’ve realized that getting away helps. I grew up in a small town in eastern Washington. Though I love the city life, going out into the country always gives me a sense of peace.  The ocean is very inspiring for me, too. Sometimes it’s easy to get caught up in yourself—narcissism runs in our veins. But, the ocean is beautiful because it’s so vast and deep. It is bigger than us and has a power of its own. I like being constantly reminded that I’m not that important. The world doesn’t revolve around humans. We are merely a piece of something much grander. This feeling gives me peace, and also inspiration. I love that feeling.

Susy Sun

Q: Your latest video, “Grey Skies,” was shot in one day. Tell us about that experience! 

Our intent for the music video was that the journey would guide the filming and the video’s ultimate direction. First, we drove out to eastern Washington to shoot in the desert. When we got there, it was pouring rain. So we shot anyway. To us, this was part of the journey and represented the subject of life and death perfectly. It’s bumpy and it’s unclear. It’s scary sometimes, but in the end it’s beautiful. That desert rain was unpredictable, but so perfect. We also shot up in the mountains where I was surrounded by the forest and snow. In the beginning and end of the video you see me standing at the edge of a cliff throwing flowers from an urn. This signifies giving over to the grand scheme of things and accepting the unknown. In letting the wind guide your feet, you’ll never be afraid.

Q: You gave up “cubicle life” to follow your musical dream. How would you encourage our readers to pursue their own dreams?

For me, it took quitting my job with Microsoft to completely delve into becoming an artist. My whole life I felt that I had been making excuses as to why I couldn’t do music. If I hadn’t jumped off the cliff, music would have remained my hobby. It took a lot of hard work to get to this point. I had to conquer my personal demons to break through those barriers I had built around me. And, I’ll be honest, when I finally did commit my life to my art, it didn’t get any easier. Every day is a challenge. But, every day I am also one step closer to achieving my dreams and self actualizing. I’m investing in myself and I’m right where I need to be. That’s a great feeling.

Pursue your dreams. What do you have to lose? Be confident. Make friends who are doing things similar to you. Build a community. Support is the groundwork for success.

Q: Any other advice you would give to your younger self?

Don’t wait to pursue what you want to do. Stop thinking about it and just do it.  Also, be patient. The most important thing I’ve learned through pursuing my art is to be present. If you are constantly chasing something, how will you know when you get there? You won’t, because “there” does not exist. “There” is right now. “There” is the present.  If you can learn to be content in this moment, then you have succeeded.

If you live in the Seattle area, be sure to catch Susy Sun at The Crocodile as she opens for Carbon Leaf on Friday, October 10! Need a teaser? Watch Grey Skies now:

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October 3, 2014

Friday Dance Party

Happy Friday! What did you say? You’d like to see another amazing roller skating video? That is so cool.* We have just thing for you.

*Seriously. We had no idea that you love roller skating as much as we do. How have we hung out all this time and not known?

September 30, 2014

Beauty How-To: Game-Day Makeup

I love experimenting and trying out new makeup looks but, for game days I always stick to the same neutral smoky eye, simple liner and “better than your lip color” lipstick. Whether you’re in the stands or cheering from the sidelines, this makeup look will work for  you.

Performance/show makeup is slightly different than everyday makeup because it needs to be visible to a lot of people from a long way away. So here are some quick tips that I use to get ready for games:

1. Always wear eyeliner. I am not saying wear extravagant winged eyeliner, but at least add a little line on your lid to define your eyes and help them “pop” from the stands.

2. Always wear a lip color. Regardless if it is lipliner, tinted lip balm, or full-on lipstick, like the eyeliner, it will help add definition to your face.

3. Blush and contour. This is not as essential as the first two tips, but I would suggest it. Again, when viewed from the stands, your face will look pretty and well-defined.

For everyday makeup, my biggest recommendation is to wear what you are comfortable with. If you like doing your makeup and wearing a neutral smoky eye is comfortable for you, then do it. If you only want to wear concealer and mascara, then do it! I am the biggest believer in the philosophy that makeup should highlight your natural qualities, not mask them. So be you and stay true!

Mahal,
Bella

September 26, 2014

Friday Dance Party

Happy Friday! We’re feeling nostalgic today, so we jumped in the Wayback Machine and turned the clock back to 1993. Where we promptly rocked all the way out with some of the decade’s fiercest, foxiest ladies.

Put on your boots, sharpen your attitude and get your sneer ready. It’s on.

September 19, 2014

Friday Dance Party

Happy Friday! We spotted this new release from Treasure Fingers (and BOSCO) over on the Vogue website and of course it’s impeccable. Here’s to a weekend filled with ’90s house music, shiny shoes and visions of rainbows dancing through your head.

Do you love Pretty Little Liars? Have you ever wondered how to achieve the perfect smoky eye? Are you now wondering what these two things have in common?

Our friends at Teen Vogue got PLL star Shay Mitchell’s makeup artist, Daniel Martin, to show us exactly how to create Mitchell’s casual, beautiful smoky eye—with bonus tips for creating a gorgeous red lip. Check it out:

What you need to achieve the look:

• Lancôme Le Crayon Kohl Eyeliner in Black Coffee
• Dior 5 Coleurs Designer Palette in Nude Pink
• Dior Diorshow Mascara in Black (this is a great substitute for the Revlon mascara Martin mentions)
• M·A·C 31 Lash false eyelashes (another great substitute)
• We’re sold out of Nyx matte lipstick in that luscious red, but we like this Bobbi Brown matte lipstick just as well
• M·A·C Lip Pencil
• Koh Gen Do Natural Lighting Powder

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September 16, 2014

Isabella Rose Taylor at NYFW

One of our favorite new fashion designers, Isabella Rose Taylor, just survived her first runway show at New York Fashion Week! Lucky for everyone, she kept a video diary to share with her fans:

Want to learn more about IRT? You know you do.