The Inside Look Behind the FUNARI NEW YORK Collection

I am always drawn to collections that have a deeper meaning.  The FUNARI NEW YORK collection that walked down the runway at Style Fashion Week AKA the Fearless collection was epic! It was all about being fearless, never hiding behind a mask and being brave even if you think you might fail.

You should always be bold, strong and powerful.

I was so excited to interview Designer Janelle Funari, the heart and soul behind FUNARI NEW YORK. I wanted to find out more about her collection and touch on what makes her such a unique designer.

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Photo by Style Fashion Week

Here is our exclusive interview:

Jenny A. : Tell me a little bit about your Fall 2018 collection. What was the inspiration behind it?

Janelle: I was inspired by both the David Bowie exhibit I saw and also the 1980s! I loved David Bowie’s bold, daring attitude and the risks he took as a performer! This collection is about fun, bold punches of color, functionality, technology, & couture finishes. The line is inspired from the 80s where women were bold, strong, and powerful. I wanted to empower both woman and men to be who they want to be and not hide behind a mask. The collection is about freedom, excitement, and liberation!  There is a nostalgic feeling of that 80s carefree attitude. Reminiscing about enjoying life, spontaneity, and dancing in the streets or at an iconic club!<

Jenny A: Tell me a little bit about yourself as a designer. What makes you stand out from the crowd? 

Janelle: My newest endeavor is the couture performance market. The line stands out as it is elegant, timeless, comfortable and practical! The line can be worn all day and all night. You can go to the gym or out to dinner, just put on a pair of boots or heels! The brand is about versatility, technical advancement, and functionality. The FUNARI line is for both Men and Woman and represents quality, style, and innovation.

Jenny: What makes you fearless? What is your story?

Janelle: What makes me Fearless is trying new things and not being afraid to fail. Many people fail before they even try. They let others tell them it’s not possible. I say, “block out the noise!”  I give 200% in everything I do in life!  My mantra is to never look back, never regret, and to always give it your all! I believe that, in life it is better to try, then to not try at all. LIVE like there is no tomorrow & we only have today, so make it happen! Never say “no” or “it is not going to happen”

Anything and EVERYTHING IS POSSIBLE! Put your heart and mind towards your goals and you’ll see that dreams do come true!

Jenny: What is your hardest challenge as a designer?

Janelle: Making my collection in New York City and sewing it in the USA! The cost is much higher for me because it is all made here in NYC.

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Photo by Style Fashion Week

I want to thank Janelle Funari for inviting me to her fashion show. It was fantastic. You can check out her collections here .

Be sure to subscribe to my blog and follow my blog’s Instagram @newstylemode 

XOXO,

Jenny A.

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I am Fearless : The Fearless Collection by FUNARI NEW YORK

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Photo by Style Fashion Week

In celebration of my fashion blog’s birthday, I wanted to do a special post on FUNARI NEW YORK. 

I was so pumped after watching the FUNARI NEW YORK collection at Style Fashion Week. All I could feel was the energy and excitement flowing through the air. The show left me dancing in my seat and wishing that I was also up on that runway.

I’m no stranger to FUNARI NEW YORK. Last season I saw her show and was very impressed. This season, designer Janelle Funari took it to the next level with her Fearless collection.

When I asked Janelle what makes her fearless she answered, “I try new things and I’m not afraid to fail. Many people fail before they even try. They let others tell them it’s not possible. I say, “block out the noise!”  I give 200% in everything I do in life!  My mantra is to never look back, never regret, and to always give it your all!” – Janelle Funari

My absolute favorite part of the show was when 2 of the models opened the show by dancing on the runway. They were doing flip and splits! They were jumping around and just lighting up the runway. I was completely gripped when they walked to the end of the runway, posed, looked at each other, turned their backs towards the cameras and clasped hands. I felt as though they were standing together and blocking out all the noise around them. They walked back up the runway hand-in-hand before running into the distance.

They were fearless

I wanted to be them.
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Photo by: Noel Valero Photography

The couple’s outfits were so cute! The Fearless collection is elegant, comfortable and practical! It can be worn all day and all night. Can you imagine you and your partner going to the gym together and then going out to dinner in these matching outfits?!

“In this crazy world, we all need someone to turn to.” – Designer Janelle Funari

My Favorite Looks:

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Photo by: Style Fashion Week
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Photo by: Style Fashion Week
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Photo by: Style Fashion Week
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Photo by: Style Fashion Week
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Photo by: Style Fashion Week

I want to thank Janelle Funari for inviting me to her fashion show. It was fantastic. You can check out her collections here .

Be sure to subscribe to my blog and follow my blog’s Instagram @newstylemode 

XOXO,

Jenny A.

 

Crimp My Style : Model Carley Beck Tells It Like It Is

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Photographed by: NYFWMagazine (Instagram)

Crimp my Style

Model Carley Beck’s hair is crimped for designer Alexandra Popescu-York at New York Fashion Week

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! This season I decided I wanted to switch it up and try something new. Usually I ask fashion models questions that I come up with during New York Fashion Week. This time, I wanted to make it a little fun and asked my friends to come up with questions that they were dying to know about fashion models.

My friend, Mara from the Upper West Side wanted to know : Does all of the runway prep – like dressing up and getting your hair and makeup done – take away from the fun of doing it on your own free time? Watch the video to find out!

 

Thank you so much for your question Mara!

A little backstory behind the video:

I was behind the scenes at Couture Fashion Week when I saw model Carley Beck getting her hair crimped for her next fashion show. While I’ve seen different crimping videos online, I’ve never scene it in person. So I wanted to get an up close view. I started talking with Carley and we really connected. When we exchanged Instagram accounts, I was so surprised. I was already following her!  I looked up and saw that she had the same look across her face. Apparently she recognized my logo and was already following me too! It was so funny! While we didn’t figure out exactly how we know each other, I have a pretty good feeling that it was probably through all my work at past New York Fashion Weeks.

Watch Carley getting her hair crimped by hairstylist Ramika Guillory:

 

 

I want to hear from you! What do you think about the crimped hairstyle? Be sure to subscribe to my blog and follow my blog’s Instagram @newstylemode 

For more of Carley’s fashion adventure, you can follow her on Instagram @carley_beck

Love always,

Jenny A.

The Tougher Than Diamonds Collection by Emuleos at New York Fashion Week

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Photographed by Emuleos

“Upon the onslaught of doubt, lift your chin and raise your gloves.” – Emuleos

Channel your inner boxer because designer Emily Prozinki’s Tougher Than Diamonds Collection by Emuleos was kickin’ ass at New York Fashion Week. My jaw dropped open when the first model strutted onto the runway and modeled like a female boxer. She wore boxing inspired hand wraps and threw some “punches” in front of the cameras while wearing a beautiful off the shoulder black dress with diamonds on the side of her torso.

Glamour meets a fighter. Each piece was a mix between a stylish diva and fierce warrior. I noticed that all of the models were wearing either wearing boxer inspired hand wraps or bedazzled boxing gloves. Every model wore a sparkling visor protecting her eyes along with one of the shimmering outfits from the collection. I really love the fact that each outfit has a killer name like Dimond ClassRival, Monarch and Showstopper. 

When I saw Emuleos’s collection on the runway, I immediately knew that I needed to get the inside scoop. The collection represents facing yourself and shattering your inner demons. Designer Emily Prozinski asked me “what’s tougher than diamonds? Women are!” She explained to me how as woman, we often doubt ourselves and we shouldn’t.  We should say “I can” and not the words “I can’t.” All of her pieces were influenced by female boxers who fight their battles. The message behind her collection was extremely empowering.

Her collection really spoke to me since the past few months have been challenging for me both personally and professionally. I have to remember that I am tougher than diamonds and no matter what comes my way, I need to stand my ground. Sometimes you just have to raise your gloves and fight for what you believe in. I can tell you that I might not literally be wearing boxing gloves but there is a fighter inside of me. I am so glad that Emuleos expressed the female warrior though her collection.

Behind the Scenes:

Here’s an exclusive interview I had with designer Emily Prozinski where she explains the inspiration behind her collection. Standing next to Emily is model Alicia Ann, modeling the outfit named Diamond Class, the collection’s signature look. This is the first time that I added subtitles to one of my videos, so if you would like to use that feature, it is available to you. Just click the little “cc” button on the bottom of the video and the subtitles will appear.

My Top Runway Looks from this Collection:

  1. Rival

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Photographed by Jenny Alweiss

2. Monarch

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Photographed by Jenny Alweiss

3. Showstopper

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Model Maggie Doyle, Photographer Sean McCoy

 

If you want to check out more of the Emuleos collection, you can click  here to see more!

I’d love to know… What are your thoughts on this collection?

Love always,

Jenny A.

Model Victoria Summer Whetzel Speaks Her Mind

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Photographer: Jake Pierce

Back in January, model Victoria Summer Whetzel and I were both fashion show judges for PLITZS Fashion Marketing’s Model of the Year competition. I admire how sincere she is. First off, she had a really cute Betsey Johnson telephone purse which has a removable phone set handle that plugs into her cellphone. Basically, her purse can turn into a working phone. How cool? But in all seriousness, Victoria is a really sweet and down to earth model.

During the competition, she pointed something out to me that I didn’t realize. For the Model of the Year competition, there were 3 categories – petite female models, male models and 5’8″ female models. She mentioned how PLITZS Fashion Marketing didn’t have a plus-size category for curvy models to compete in. As a curvy model, Victoria hopes that the next year’s PLITZS Fashion Marketing’s competition will have a plus-size/curvy category.

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Photographer: Jake Pierce

Meet Victoria:

Jenny A. (Me) : When you were a judge at the PLITZS Fashion Marketing competition, what were you looking for in each of the model candidates?

Victoria Summer Whetzel: I was mostly looking for someone who could command the space as soon as they hit the runway. This is the modeling industry, so everyone is beautiful. But I believe the standard of beauty is changing. It’s more than a pretty face and a physique that lives up to society’s standards. Beauty is taking care of yourself and being proud of who you are.  Beauty is being able to walk a runway and silence a room by your presence. Beauty is being kind to others and being kind to yourself. That’s what I look for in a model.

 

Me: Is there something you are looking to see more of on the runway? A specific look, personality, walk…etc? 

Victoria: I would love to see more plus-size and curvy models of course. Models like Ashley Graham, Denise Bidot and SO many more. Plus-Side models are body activists and I think their activism has moved mountains in the modeling industry. They have paved the way for many emerging models, including myself. I hope one day I can be a leader in this movement too.

 

Me: You’re trying to break into the modeling industry as plus-size model. What is the hardest challenge you’ve faced so far?

Victoria: I think the hardest challenge I’ve faced so far, is proving to myself that I have what it takes. Far too often, we are the ones holding ourselves back. Sometimes it’s important to take a moment to remind ourselves that we are enough and celebrate ourselves for all that we have to offer.

Question from Liana in the audience: What kind of food do you usually eat? We hear all these stories about how models don’t eat to stay thin because “thin is in.” How do you cope with that kind of mentality?

Victoria: Being thin has never been a part of who I am, so I just try my best to put foods into my body that make me feel good.

Me: Do you eat certain foods before modeling?

Victoria: I don’t eat anything specific. I eat whatever I feel will make me do my best work that day.

Me: If you could be a fruit or veggie, what fruit or veggie would you be?

Victoria: I would be a watermelon. They have a ton of seeds that represent growth and they are better when shared in the summertime. 🙂

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Photographer: Jake Pierce

Me: Overall, do you find it difficult to be a plus-size model? 

Victoria: Being a plus-size model is hard. Being any kind of model in this industry is hard. But you just have to remember that you get to tell people who you are. They don’t get to tell you who you are. One example of this comes from a recent experience here in New York City.

I attended an open call for an independent designer’s showcase for their swimsuit line. Most of the girls at the call were sizes 00-6, but there were a handful of plus-size girls there too. Probably around 5 or 6 in all. All of the petite model’s took turns modeling a bikini from the designer’s line. The designer then decided she wanted me to also model one of her designs. She said I was the most ‘fit’ of the plus-size girls and she wanted a curvy model. She gave me a swimsuit to put on, and as soon as she handed it to me, I realized it was the same exact bathing suit she had the petite models wear. This swimwear was not designed for girls like me. It was made for a model probably around a size 6.

At first, I felt embarrassed because the swimwear didn’t fit, but I put it on anyway. That day, I saw my first real glitch in the industry. I was being asked to wear this suit, so the designer could say she designs for plus-size models. But I am not a Size 6. I am a Size 12 and I am grateful for designers out there who celebrate me for being just that.

 

Victoria modeled for New York Fashion Week at PLITZS in Feb 2018. You can follow her on Instagram @theofficial.vsw

Be sure to subscribe to my blog and follow my blog’s Instagram @newstylemode 

Love always,

Jenny A.

 

 

 

 

 

New Hairstyle? New Me? Maybe Not Exactly…

Sometimes it’s the little things that make a big difference.

Have you ever felt like you just wanted to switch things up a bit? I don’t know what came over me but, I really wanted a new look. I had bought a LMAX Salon Spa promotion for a wash, cut and dry about a couple of months ago and I thought it would be the perfect time to use it. After all, a new hairstyle can make you look like a new person.

For weeks I was googling all types of hairstyles trying to figure out the best one. Did I want to try something completely extreme and chop off all my hair? Nah. Did I want to have shoulder length hair? Too frizzy. Maybe I should get bangs? Nope, too much work.

What I really wanted something beautiful, classy and fit my face.

When I finally sat down in the chair and the hairstylist asked me what I wanted, I still hadn’t made up my mind. After chatting about all the different trendy hairstyles, I decided to go with “long layers.” The hairstylist looked at me, looked at my hair and then back at me. “You already have long layers!” she laughed “They’re just really long layers!”

The hairstylist trimmed my hair and curled it at the bottom for some volume. When she was done, I looked at myself in the mirror and my hair looked so healthy. I had gorgeous long layers cascading down my shoulders and onto my back.

Before                             After

 

While my hair didn’t look so different, I definitely felt different. It’s amazing what trimming a few inches can do!

What are your thoughts? What do you think?

Be sure to subscribe to my blog, follow my Instagram @newstylemode and like my Facebook page!

Love always,

-Jenny A.

Happy Holidays from Model Darien Willardson

 
I met up with model Darien Willardson in the middle of New York City to find out what he loves about the holidays! Between all the holiday festivities and decorations, New York City is such a beautiful place to celebrate the holidays. Fun fact: Believe it or not, I was really excited that it was snowing in the background during our interview. What better way to feel swept away by the spirit of the holidays as the snowflakes start to fall?

You can follow Darien on Instagram: @darienwillardson

Love always,

-Jenny A.