Pregnant. Face Tats. Pearls. Florals. Haute Lupe.

Lupe. Marin County Fair. San Rafael, California. July 2017.

Lupe is pregnant. She wanted me to know that, and as a woman, I understood right away. Any of us who’ve been pregnant, know we want to ensure all humans realize, we’re not heavy in the mid-section – we’re growing a person in there.

When I was pregnant, after three months, I announced it to some work people. One of them thought it would be flattering to let me know this, “Mara, you don’t look pregnant at all, you just look really chubby!”. Apparently, my reaction caused her to volunteer to enter a witness protection program.

I love staring at tattoos. It’s art, only on human skin – it’s weird to stare though, but so hard not to stare. I feel like I need to understand the protocol here – I mean ya get a tattoo, and usually its statement about who you are – tattoos to people are what bumper stickers are to cars. Am I right?

Lupe has so many tattoos, but they are spaced so well, it just looks so beautiful & stylin’.

And her feminine, floral dress (with skeletons) paired with a loose bun and an old school 1990’s pearl choker…perfection!!!! Love this. Pregnant and two kids on a burning hot day – and look at her!!!!

This kid is so gorgeous and didn’t complain once, it was soooo hot – not one complaint. Meanwhile, my kid was not into being his mother’s PA – too bad, I said, ya want a funnel cake? then help me!!

Floral mixed with skeletons….

I even love how Lupe’s hair is on her face – – so pretty.

 

Haute Havana in Marin County….

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Nina and Felix. Fairfax, California. Spring 2016.

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Felix grew up in Cuba, I was very excited to connect with him – because he obviously reminded me of Miami. Nina (who also has roots in Cuba) and Felix are actively involved in making Cuba a better place for its citizens. They founded the organization, Bay Area Cuba Community Alliance, www.baccagroup.org

Most of us who grew up in Miami, consider ourselves partially Cuban – we were lucky to be raised with so many people from different cultures, and with a large percentage of Cubans making Miami home – we got to start our mornings with a Cafecito and pastelito and grew up speaking “Spainglish”, the unofficial language of Miami. So when you meet someone who’s Cuban outside of Miami, you feel like you already have a great deal in common.

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Adorable family style…

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Nina grew up in Northern California, but lived in NYC for a long time – she has that natural New York sensibility (her parents are New Yorkers) mixed in with the open minded California spirit. When you have tattoos this large, you’ll never come off as uptight – only creative and cool (even if you are the opposite).

Haute in Japan

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Japan. February 2016.

My friend Jan, who lives in Mexico City travels a great deal. She doesn’t let three kids stop her from experiencing new cultures and seeing the world. Jan also happens to be stylish and have an incredible eye. Here’s her view of Haute Drop-Off in Japan.

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Patagonia looks so cute on kids. Do you notice all the American brands? For some reason it looks so much cooler in Japan. It’s a sense of fashion, that you just don’t see in large quantities in other countries.

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Rome Parents = Sex Appeal.

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North Miami Beach, Florida. December 2015.

This was taken at Miami Beach’s famed Bal Harbour Shops, http://www.balharbourshops.com.  Bal Harbour Shops is home to luxury brands such as; Chanel, Gucci, Goyard, Intermix, Miu Miu, John Varvatos etc..

Growing up in Miami, we would come to Bal Harbour because Saks Fifth Avenue always had the best sales..it was also a bonding time with my mother (and usually brothers) to walk around, eat a big lunch and feel like a slob among Miami’s “well dressed”. I say that in quotes, because you will also see some amazing outfits, where every single designer is displayed on their bodies.

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If you ever want to get a semi-understanding of Miami, and its people – visit Bal Harbour shops. Yes, it’s not totally representative of this city, because most people can’t afford to walk into Chanel and spend $12,000 on two handbags. Oh and usually, that’s in actual cash.  Bal Harbour Shops is Miami’s version of Rodeo Drive (only in an outdoor mall form) and apparently is more successful.

Dressed in cut off’s, a plaid torn shirt, moccasins and a bikini peaking through – I looked like the official “Bal Harbour Slob”.  Oh, did I mention my hair was larger than Gloria Estefan’s in the late 80’s… (thank you ocean water). It’s an inside joke, between me and well, me – that I always look like a mess when I should look “stylish”. I think it’s the rebel in me, saying I don’t need to conform to your fashion standards – or maybe it’s bad time management. I walked into Chanel, and everyone looked gorgeous – like they all got their hair blown out for this expedition. I stood there, and waited to be helped – and observed the mind blowing idea that there is such a discrepancy of wealth in this Country – but quickly I realized most of the shoppers were tourists – with lots of cash.

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As I walked around, I met this fun, stylish Italian family – who moved from Rome to Miami. The Italian fashion sensibility is natural and always comes with a smile.

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The little boy wanted me to capture his remote control car. Italian men can even make sneakers look chic.

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This is how we shop – practical shoes.

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This mama, like me was super excited about her new Valentino mini-backpack. Remember, I told you these are huge again. Jump suit by Missoni (obviously).

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Happiness right there!! And I hear happiness makes your butt look better in photos!

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The thing I discovered, which differed from my younger self – I didn’t care about looking like a slob in a designer obsessed land. I’m pretty darn comfortable in my skin, even when it’s not dressed “cool”. Obviously, it’s because “cool” comes from within, and part of that is having fun, being spontaneous and living life without the worry of always having to look your best.