Nasty Gal haul

Hey, everyone! I wanted to do something different and make a haul post for the first time.

I figured I'd do one since this is my first time ever ordering anything from Nasty Gal and I'm so excited about the items I purchased.

The main reasons why I never ordered from there is because I just got my first job a little over a month ago and your Christmas money can only get you so far on this site. I was actually going through F21 and H&M looking for some items and I noticed there were a lot of products that had a Nasty Gal vibe (ie. lace up everything). So I finally decided to just give it a try.

First, I went through the sale section and added things to my wish list and shopping bag. Then I went through the general, non-sale sections (clothing, shoes, accessories) and added more to my wish list. I eventually paired down from an initial 10 items almost reaching $1000 to just these 4 (all on sale) costing a little over $100.

nasty gal shopping cart affordable clothing haul


Holiday Party Outfit

This is the perfect holiday party outfit. I initially planned to wear this with black stockings and the removable fur hood of my L.L. Bean puffer coat attached, but the weather in Jersey, and all of the East Coast apparently, has been really warm (literally, no snow fall yet). So a simple pair of spandex shorts underneath my dress, just in case there's a draft, was just enough.

Hotline Bling Sweater = Xmas Sweater Goals

Move aside dusty, old Christmas sweaters. I want my winter nights comfy, stylish, and with a side of Drake.
It's time to brush off those ugly Christmas sweaters that have plagued your holiday photos every year in all of their itchy, snowflake adorned glory. This year, take your sweater game up a couple notches by wearing these awesome 'Hotline Bling' themed sweaters, sans the itchy wool.

H&M $5 Gift Guide

H&M $5 Gift Guide

With Xmas coming soon, I'm doing a series of gift guides that will make you the best gift giver out of all your friends and family at a low cost. Think of it as "A Bomb Ass Santa Clause Experiment on a Budget" - or at least that's what I'm calling it! 

Today's gift guide is specific to H&M. Never knew any of these awesomely cheap items were available at your favorite clothing stores on this earth? That's because you never cared to look. But don't worry, I'll do all the sifting and searching for you. (You're welcome.) So here is a list of a few items that will make for a great gift bag, all of which are under $5 each. Ikr, cheap af!

Blog Status Update

Hey guys. I haven't posted in a while and that's for a lot of reasons. One being that I'm in the middle of developing another blog! Crazy, I know. But it's been something sitting at the back of my mind for a while now and there's no better time to pursue your creative ideas than the present.

So as of right now, I'm not sure about the state of Born in the Know. I was planning on further developing my self-named blog Sierra Stridiron, for now, as a more personal blog where I could talk about a variety of topics and the general happenings of my life. Kind of like an online journal. I want to develop my voice more as a writer and possibly have something in the works for a future in publishing, who knows! I plan on pursuing Born in the Know as my brand with a more direct focus: fashion. After a while, it became strenuous trying to push down all of my ideas about recipes, DIYs that have nothing to do with fashion or lifestyle, and general advice/commentary on the going-ons in media and my personal life. My new blog is going to be my way of doing everything all at once without much structure going into it while developing a format and voice along the way.

The Secret to Fashion Week: Snapchat

I've always liked Snapchat even though I was kind of late jumping on the ban wagon, considering I only started an account my Freshman year of college in 2014. I used it more and more over time because it allowed me to see into the lives of my friends from High School as we parted ways and went to college eventually I started adding clothing stores and fashion editors and realized that I could also see into the behind-the-scene moments and personal lives of fashion influencers. Here are some Snapchat accounts you should be following during Fashion Week.

Fashion Newsletters Worth Subscribing to

With so many events that have taken place within the last two weeks alone, (the Emmy's, all of the shows for NYFW, and the shows of LFW still taking place) I've realized to what extent fashion newsletters are useful. It gets tiring having to keep up with the various forms of media coverage just to stay in the know. So fashion newletters definitely come in handy. Here are a few options for really great newsletters for you guys to check out and subscribe to.

Summer into Fall

Summer Trends Not to Ditch in the Fall

3 Chic Labor Day Looks

Here are three looks featuring fashion bloggers Gabi Gregg of GabiFresh, Mary Seng of Happily Grey, and Danielle Bernstein of We Wore What.

Dorm Decor + Organization

These are some useful desk decor and organization tips for going back to school.

Boxy Crop Top + Culottes

Boxy Crop Top + Culottes


I was inspired by my previous post and decided to style an outfit around the boxy crop top option for the checked pattern look. This outfit is great for the summer to fall transition. I generally like the look of crop tops and culottes. This pairing is especially great because the boxy shape of the crop top balances with the rounded hem of the culottes. I paired this with simple black accessories. The angular cutouts of the hand bag and peep toe ankle boots are an easy way to add a modern edge to the look without making too much of a statement.


Grid Pattern Shirt

thrifting finds vintage grid pattern shirt

vintage grid pattern shirt from thrift shopping

Came across this shirt while thrifting. Of course it didn't fit, since thrift shops never really seem to cater to people that are on the more curvy side and especially not mid-size queens like me! So I went online to search for a look alike.

After some searching and a little bit of outfit creating, I realized I was more in love with the pattern than the top itself. So here are a couple of my finds.

Pink Shirt + Patterned Skirt

One style tip Amy Phan once gave was to have 4 to 5 outfits set up that you can go to when you are in a rush or not really in the mood to figure out what to wear. This way you can look good even on your "off" days. When thrifting, as usual, I came across this displayed outfit and felt that I should finally take on Phan's challenge. So while I'm sifting through my closet to figure out some go-to outfits for the fall, you guys can gawk at this display as we officially wave goodbye to summer.

Harmony Society

Harmony Society is an independent department store that carries vintage clothing and modern handmade goods. Owner Amber Martin strongly supports American, Fair Trade, and sustainably produced goods. So these secondhand items are chosen with a focus on condition and material.

Post Summer Denial

As summer quickly comes to an end, I am all too aware of the problem that comes with it: post-summer denial - otherwise known as PSD. Basically, PSD comes in the last few days of summer and the first few days of fall when we just aren't ready to let go of the heat, the poolside convos, and fruity cocktails that is summer. So I've come up with a few ways to help you cope when PSD starts to kicks in. 

 1. Use pool floats as furniture.

Why store away all of your perfectly good pool floats when you can use them as furniture! That way, you can add a unique summer flare to your apartment all the while striking up some of those poolside memories. Just remember to rinse your pool floats off (holding on to summer is great and all, but the smell of chlorine isn't cute any time of the year!)

Summer Inspo: Instagram

These are the Instagram accounts that will make you wish that summer will never end.

crop top + skirt

crop top + skirt

crop top + skirt by Sierra Stridiron featuring H&M FOXES Collection

Graphic Crop Top // H&M

Leather Skirt // H&M


Nude Lips for Black Girls

NUDE Wet ‘n Wild Megaslicks Balm Stain Moisturizing Lip Color in Nudist Colony
LOOK1 Maybelline Color Sensational The Buffs lipstick in Touchable Taupe
LOOK2 Black Opal Color Splurge Patent Lips in Uptown Brown
LOOK3 Wet ‘n Wild Megaslicks Moisturizing Lip Color in Caffeine Fix*

*lined and filled in lips with lip pencil before applying lip color for a richer color and longer wear

You do not know the struggle of a person of color trying to find a nude lip colors that doesn't make you look like you ate 10 powdered donuts before smearing on some lipstick! First you have to comb through the endless array of options under the "Nude" shades in the aisle. Then you put in painstaking effort comparing the lip color to the back of your hand and your wrist. And then, pure disappointment strikes when once again you either can't stand the runaway-ICU-patient look or you try to convince yourself that matte is the new black and settle on the shade.


It is very clear that anything labeled "nude" is meant to suit white women. This extends to beauty and fashion. But now the never-ending struggle bus has come to a stop thanks to the tips of celebrity makeup artists Tatiana Ward a.k.a. "Beat Face Honey".

One major tip: When looking for lip colors get the word "nude" out of your mind. Lip shades labeled as "java" or "coffee" or "chocolate chocolate yum yum" is what you should be going for.

Here is a good list of products to keep your eye out for:

Photos via Buzzfeed

Boardwalk Celebration

So I spent the 4th of July down by the Jersey shore to see the fireworks at Ocean Fest at Long Branch board walk, one of the top Jersey shore destinations. It definitely was a lot of fun. There were a lot of people on the beach, plenty of storefronts to eat and shop at, and in the middle of the day there was live music. I even got to eat a shish kabob, something I used to always love to have when I was younger during the summer. I was going to record the fun that everyone was having dancing and partying with the live band but at that point I was having too much fun. So the only real recording that I got done was of the fireworks.

Here are a couple of the images of my time there:


I'm pretty sure that everyone is catching wedding fever now that same sex marriage has been legalized in all 50 states. It is without a doubt a major milestone in American History and a push toward equality for the LGBT community. #LoveWins

To Switch, or not to Switch...

Hey guys. So I've been thinking for a while now about what platform I want to use for my blog. Going into this, I had no help and got tired of going through YouTube videos telling me all of the same things about hosts, and coding, and blah blah blah. After a while I noticed the trend of having WordPress and Blogspot as my options, and I went with Wordpress because I was impressed with the community and the quality of the websites I previewed.

What I didn't know was that there is a difference between and With you don't get to edit code or have all of the plugins. I was fine with that when I started out because I figured there was just a fee for around $100 and I could finally own it and use Google Analytics. So I just paid for the name. But apparently it doesn't work like that. Apparently you can have a WordPress blog under a host and then use Google Analytics. So I've been looking into Bluehost.

But honestly, it all feels a little too overwhelming. So I've been looking into Blogspot blogs to see the quality of some of them and whether it was worth the switch. Apparently, Blogspot is connected to Google Analytics, which I wanted in the first place!

So I'm still trying to figure everything out, as you can see. But in the process I'm coming across blogs that are pretty interesting, so that's always fun. If you have any advice, please help!

7 Shoe Hacks from Buzzfeed

The newspaper trick also works for when you get your shoes wet. You can just put newspaper in them and it sucks up all the moisture. I'm always shocked how well that works every time!

Spring Outfit: Orange Jumpsuit


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