The Stylish B’s At #FWSD

The long awaited 10 year Anniversary of Fashion Week San Diego happened last week, and it was five days full of fun and fashion!

The Stylish Bisou babes (10 beautiful dogs and 10 beautiful girls) hit the runway last Friday October 6th, at the Broadway Pier in downtown San Diego, to showcase our Spring 2018 Collection.

For our second year on the #FWSD runway we featured a collection named “The Stylish B” which had a variety of vintage inspired women’s dresses and matching dog apparel that had touches of bumble bees and spring florals. (Get it: The Stylish “B”, The Stylish “Bee”- ha!)

It was a long evening for the pups, but they waited backstage and then strutted on that runway like the true professionals they are! We hope you enjoy the photos and stay tuned for the official runway video of The Stylish B’s, coming in November.

Backstage

#BTS at The Port Pavilion on The Broadway Pier, San Diego

(Special thanks to all of the dog pawrents for the pics!)

Model: Penelope, @adventuresof_penelope on IG

Models: Cricket, @cricket_the_bostonterrier IG, and Kaiya Miller

Model: Kingston, @kingstonthepug on IG

Sir Ruffles flirting with the FWSD models

Models: Kingston, @kingstonthepug on IG and Cora Leonard

Model: Lulu, @lulu_and_coco on IG

Models: Emma, @emma_rose_the_fancy_frenchie on IG and Catherine Waczek

Model: Sir Ruffles @hrm_sir_ruffles on IG

Model: Penelope, @adventuresof_penelope on IG

A very tired Miss Emma Rose…

Model: Kingston, @kingstonthepug on IG

Models: Lulu, @lulu_and_coco on IG and Anna Baretta

Model: Cricket, @cricket_the_bostonterrier on IG

Lulu and Kingston… besties or date night???

Gooey! from @TheStylishBisou

Models: Emma, @emma_rose_the_fancy_frenchie on IG and Catherine Waczek

Gooey is read for a nightcap!

My shoes and the CEO, Chief Stylist, Miss Chloe Bisou herself.

The #FWSD17 Runway

The Port Pavilion on The Broadway Pier, San Diego

Photo cred: 656 Photography & Fashion Week San Diego

Models: Max, @ourbugslife on IG and Andrea Revilla

Models: Cricket, @cricket_the_bostonterrier on IG and Kaiya Miller

Models: Sir Ruffles @hrm_sir_ruffles on IG and Brooke Evangeline

Models: Gooey, @TheStylishBisou, and Kelly Lenahan

Model: Penelope, @adventuresof_penelope on IG

Models: Emma, @emma_rose_the_fancy_frenchie on IG and Catherine Waczek

Models: Emma, @emma_rose_the_fancy_frenchie on IG and Catherine Waczek

Models: Chloe Bisou, TheStylishBisou.com, and Cami Snelling

Models: Emma, @emma_rose_the_fancy_frenchie on IG and Catherine Waczek

Models: Kingston, @kingstonthepug on IG and Cora Leonard

Models: Gooey, @TheStylishBisou and Kelly Lenahan

Models: Penelope, @adventuresof_penelope on IG and Sierra Manos

Models: Kingston, @kingstonthepug on IG and Cora Leonard

Models: Sir Ruffles @hrm_sir_ruffles on IG and Brooke Evangeline

Models: Lulu, @lulu_and_coco on IG and Anna Baretta

Models: Cricket, @cricket_the_bostonterrier on IG and Kaiya Miller

Models: Lulu, @lulu_and_coco on IG and Anna Baretta

Models: Gooey @thestylishbisou, and Kelly Lenahan

Models: Max, @ourbugslife on IG and Andrea Revilla

Models: Penelope, @adventuresof_penelope on IG and Sierra Manos

Models: Niko, @ferdinand_the_frenchbulldog on IG and Bri Kruis

Models: Niko, @ferdinand_the_frenchbulldog on IG and Bri Kruis

Models: Emma, @emma_rose_the_fancy_frenchie on IG and Catherine Waczek

Finale look models: Chloe Bisou of @TheStylishBisou, and Cami Snelling

Trunk Show

Hotel Del Coronado

Special thanks to 656 Photography and Ericka Casanova for all pics!

Bentley, the daughter of FWSD founder Allison Andrews, took Chloe Bisou on a fabulous stroll.

Emma Rose and her new baby sister, Fiona Rose.

Special thanks to:

  • All of the dog models and dog parents for being so wonderful backstage and during the show!
  • All of the human models who were so sweet with the dog models. 
  • Fashion Week San Diego and FAB Authority for sponsoring our journey to #FWSD17 this year.
  • Everyone who attended the show and featured us on social media.
  • All of our online friends for joining us on our LIVE IG feed of our show and our social media adventures during #FWSD17.
  • Our Kickstarter backers who made it possible for us to be at Fashion Week SD in the first place. 
  • My husband for helping me load, unload, and then load clothes and pop-up shops over and over again. (Thanks for all of your support hon!)
  • Chloe Bisou and Gooey for being the kindest, most patient pups any girl could ask for. They make MUCH better Executives of The Stylish Bisou than I ever will- ha! 

Fashion Week San Diego is over, so now what?

We are spending the next two weeks to catch our breathe a bit before the holidays. We are also catching up on our Etsy orders, cleaning our studio, adding more fall dog apparel items into our Etsy and getting back into sending out more of our long overdue Kickstarter orders.

We also have two of the women’s shirts featured on our runway on Pre-Order in our Etsy Shoppe:

If 15 or more of each shirt is sold before October 31st, we’ll be able to ship them in November (or sooner). Feel free to click the shirts above to purchase!

And finally, we’re gearing up for the holidays… yes, I said the holidays! We are doing our 3rd annual “12 Days of Christmas Dresses” this year and will make an announcement very soon, so stay tuned!

Wishing you all a blessed week!

An Autumn Blush

We lament every year about the approach of autumn. We did last week, we are this week, and we will probably again next week.

Despite our resistance to anything relating to fall, the fact is that the first official day of fall is this Friday.

So, we are (begrudgingly) welcoming fall wearing one of Pantone’s 2017 fall colors: Ballet slipper. It’s a beautiful, rosy color and the perfect way to tiptoe into the season.

We’re calling the color of our outfits “autumn blush” though. And no, I’m not wearing boots yet, but I’m wearing a tuft of faux fur on my shoes. Baby steps, right?

You might recognize Chloe Bisou’s dress; it’s the dress she wore to Fashion Week San Diego last year and one of my absolute favorite’s from her closet.

As you can see in the pics below, she loves this dress too. She gets so excited about being in her dresses and runs around like a crazed fashionista for the first few minutes of our walk! Ha!

Wishing you all a healthy, happy and prosperous fall!

Heather: Blush pink mini dress, handmade by The Stylish Bisou. Gold bow belt, from my closet, find a similar bow belt here. Pink glitter & fuzz heels, originally from ASOS, find your fave pair by shopping here. Pink sunnies, from my closet, find a similar pair here. Handbag, found in LA’s Fashion District, find a similar plaid bag here

Chloe Bisou: Handmade dress and pearls by The Stylish Bisou. 

Summer Isn’t Going Anywhere Yet

Summer isn’t going anywhere yet…at least not as far as I’m concerned. I say it every year, but I’m just NOT a fall person. I refuse to give up on summer, even if Labor Day is the supposed unofficial end of summer.

So if you expect to any autumn outfits on our blog this month, you’ll be sadly disappointed. To boots, sweaters, and pumpkin spice lattes everywhere, I say NOPE. Not yet homies.

It’s partly because I’ve never liked fall, but also because San Diego is notoriously hot in September and October. People try to pretend that fall happens in Southern Cali– the retail stores put out their knits, thick socks and boots– but in reality, this is the best time of year for many of us to hit the beaches. The temps are balmy, the sunshine is abundant, and the ocean is warm.

In any case, this week we’re extending our summer 2017 with blue florals, pom sandals (a fun DIY project with pompom trim from Joann Fabric that I fell in love with), and my fave white sunnies.

And can I just say… I love Gooey to pieces in his matching jacket! He’s truly the gooiest little luv nugget.

What are your thoughts on autumn? Are you excited to say goodbye to summer or refusing to let it go like we are? Feel free to leave us a comment below!

Heather: Blue floral off-the-shoulder dress, handmade by The Stylish Bisou. Colorful statement earrings, originally from Neiman Marcus, find your own favorite statement earrings here. White sunglasses, ZeroUv. Blue handbag, from my closet, find a similar bag here. White pom shoes, a DIY project using white shoes from my closet, and pom trim found at Joann Fabric and Crafts.

Gooey: Blue Floral jacket, blue gingham undershirt, floral bow tie, all handmade by The Stylish Bisou. (Please note: these pictures were taken on a 75 degree day in the evening. Please dress your pups responsibly in the summer heat!)

 

It Always Comes Back To Flamingos

Chloe Bisou and I promised ourselves this year that we would stay away from flamingos. We’ve been flamingo obsessed for the past several summers and this year, we thought enough was enough.

But on one of my trips to Joann Fabric and Crafts this summer, there it was, staring me right in the face: the most perfect, colorful flamingo print. AND… it was on sale.

So OBVI, I couldn’t help myself. What can I say? Maybe it’s because flamingos are always pink or because I tend to gravitate toward tropical prints– either way, I’m still infatuated.

Last year’s flamingo skirts were flirty and full, but this year we decided to use our flamingos to make peplum style dresses.

We also hear a lot of style “gurus” talk about how peplums are a tired “played out” style, but I disagree. Peplum skirts and dresses are SO flattering and universally stylish. Anything that nips in at the smallest part of a my waist and has a ruffle that masks my trouble areas (hips, butt, and stomach), I’m happy to wear!

Chloe Bisou and I also added a tie-back to control how snug we want the fit of our dresses. Such a comfortable dress for both us! We can’t wait to wear these dresses through the warm days in San Diego this fall.

In the end, it always comes back to flamingos… perhaps we’ll try to break our obsession next year (although it’s not likely-ha!)

Heather: Flamingo print dress, handmade by The Stylish Bisou. White heels, from my closet, find a similar pair here. White cat eye sunglasses, ZeroUV.com. Drop earrings, originally from Forever21, find your own pair of favorite earrings here

Chloe Bisou: Flamingo print peplum style dog dress & white pearls, handmade by The Stylish Bisou.

On The Corner of Ups and Downs

I’ve been standing for entirely too long on the corner of ups and downs.  

To put it simply, I’ve spent the last 7 months battling depression. It’s not something I’m super comfortable admitting and to be honest, I have no idea why I’m even sharing this.

It’s probably against my better judgement to admit anything so personal on our fashion blog. After all it doesn’t exactly bode well for me to say,  “Hi, my name is Heather, I love pugs and fashion, and oh yeah, I’m f-ing depressed. But come see our fashion show! Or visit our blog!”

Most people would likely advise against putting this type of honesty on our blog, but I guess it’s my attempt at sharing something real about me. It’s ugly and uncomfortable, but it’s real. I don’t expect anyone to understand, and it may change the way people view me, but that’s the chance I’m taking.

And trust me, the struggle with depression is a silent journey that I wouldn’t wish on anyone.

 It’s been a culmination of several things that have lead to my recent bout of depression; ie. losing my “day” job and not being hired for another yet, financial troubles, failing miserably at my KickStarter campaign, having a chronically sick dog, a heartbreaking death in my husband’s family… And more existential stuff like not knowing where the hell I fit into the world and wondering if things will ever get better. Even above & beyond that, feeling discouraged with this hateful, hostile world lately and not knowing how to help.

Regardless of the reasons, I’m no stranger to depression, I’ve struggled with it intermittently throughout my lifetime. But I’ve also had a particularly rough life. (Haven’t we all?)

This round of depression has been extraordinarily beastly however.

I’m not sure if it’s my age (and thinking that I should already be the person I’m meant to be by now), or if it’s something more physiological happening– either way, it’s been deep and dark.

Like any physical illness, I have good days and bad days–Some days it takes all the strength and courage I have to get out of bed in the morning; other days I laugh, feel strong, and see glimmers of hope. And let’s be honest, I’ve spent nearly an entire lifetime grasping how to fully function with depression. So, I know how to smile through my pain.

But over the last few months, it keeps coming back. And somewhere in this dark cloud I’ve been living under, I dropped my self confidence on floor… and then stomped on it with my stilettos.

Which if you’ve had any type of conversation with me or listened to any of my words lately, has been painstakingly obvious.

Losing my confidence leads to an awful cycle that goes as such:

  • I falter in confidence and express that I’m feeling cruddy about myself.
  • People around me (even sometimes those closest to me) lose faith in me or are uncomfortable around me.  I hear a lot of…

“C’mon, get yourself together”…

“Stop being so negative”…

“I’ve been through tough times too, and you don’t see me crying about it…”

“So many people have it worse than you, start being more grateful.”

“You have the choice to snap out of it.” All of which is probably true, but doesn’t help to hear.

  • Instead, I feel less inclined to share that I feel like crap with anyone, because I don’t feel as though anyone understands.
  • So, I fake that I’m happy for as long as I can…
  • And I feel alone in my pain.
  • Until I can’t help but falter in confidence again.

And ultimately I just want to crawl under my duvet with my pugs and hide from the world.

I’ve also discovered something called “high functioning anxiety,” which is not an officially recognized term by the field of psychology, but is something I found myself resonating with.  When I read this article in particular, I practically exclaimed to myself, “holy crap, I’ve been dealing with this my entire life!” You can read it here: https://thoughtcatalog.com/kendra-syrdal/2016/10/11-signs-you-might-have-whats-known-as-high-functioning-anxiety/

Reading it made me start to wonder if in fact, I have both anxiety and depression–which is not unusual, but eye-opening for me to realize.

My anxiety tells me “nobody likes you,”

“You’re a no talent hack.”

“You talk too much, just shutup.”

“You try too hard and it makes you look pathetic.”

And my depression says  Things will never get better…why even bother?”

It’s just a constant barrage of negative thoughts I have to battle nearly every day.

In any case, I’m not out of the woods yet, but I’m working on finding the best way to manage my depression. My future is undetermined, but here are a few things I can share with certainty:

First, I’ve been vigilant in seeking a variety of treatments, as well as taking time to work on myself.

Depression & anxiety medications have NOT been a pleasant experience for me and they made me quite sick and fatigued. They are known for working well on others, but are not the path to recovery I will be choosing,  (I’ve had problems with medication intolerances in the past– I can’t even take pain medications other than ibuprofen because I get so violently ill.)

I am under the care of both, my family physician and a licensed therapist who are well aware of my depression. I unfortunately had to stop my therapy sessions because I can’t afford the co-pay, but I was given a lot of great tools to get me by until I’m able to pay for therapy again.

At the end of the day I’ve had to truly understand that not many people are never going to KNOW me, UNDERSTAND me, CARE about me, or LOVE me.. or even care enough to try. No one has walked in my shoes.

But I have. I’ve stomped out miles in my fabulous heels. And I know myself very well. I understand, care about, and love myself… well, myself and my pugs- Ha!

As cliche as it sounds, loving myself IS truly what matters most.

I’m impulsive, but I’ve had to learn that progress in healing myself and patching things up in my life is slow going. Maybe I’m not the successful go-getter I once thought I was, and I’ll still feel like a “flaky loser” at forty. But that’s okay, because there’s still hope that I’ll be living a meaningful life at fifty. (And what determines a “flaky loser” anyway? Wealth? A steady job? Who really knows?)

Also, in the past I would dig myself out of a depressive state and happily wipe my hands clean of it. “Whew, glad that’s over and I never have to do that again” I’d say to myself. And then I’d immediately go to work on achieving things outside of myself– things that would appease society– to make me “happy” and “whole again.”

Now I have a more realistic view on my depression and an understanding that it might be a lifetime battle. And I absolutely, 100%, MUST work on myself every single day. And that sounds bizarrely selfish but I think of it like this: if I wanted to set the goal of running a marathon, I would have to train for it and exercise every day. I couldn’t run a few miles here and there and then expect to easily pop out 26 miles on race day.

The same goes for the well-being of my mind. Every single day of my life moving forward, I will need to intentionally take the time to work on myself.

A few simple things that have helped uplift me a bit:

Spending more time outside,

Exercise,

Eating right but also indulging in a few treats (because I love food dammit!),  

Playing with and loving my sweet little fur family,

Meditating (taking time for spirituality & prayer),

Journaling,

Adding a few new vitamins to my daily routine,

And getting enough sleep.

They aren’t cures, but they do temporarily improve my mood and sometimes snap me out of my negative funk.

I probably won’t talk about my depression again, but just know that somewhere behind the pretty pictures of Chloe Bisou on Instagram, I’m fighting hard to love myself, and working to be a “normal” (do I want to be normal? Ha!), happy, and healthy person.

So. If you know me, please be patient with me. I’m not trying to be an asshole on purpose, I’m just fighting to get through this the best way I can.

I’m not who I used to be, but I’m also not yet the person I’m meant to become. (Something I heard from Michael Bernard Beckwith.)

Wishing you all a loving, prosperous and joyful week!

 

 

 

 

(Thank you in advance for your understanding and compassion… Any negative comments in response to this blog or in an attempt to shame me publicly will not receive a response. Let’s keep it kind darlings!)

 

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