It’s Friday, so you know what that means; we have another beautiful lady to be featured. This lady just so happen to be a fashion/lifestyle blogger; who I have had the pleasure of meeting a few years ago. Aquila Mendez-Valdez is also apart of the tall world for ladies who stand 5’10” and taller,and she wears it very well. I truly enjoy watching her style and how she make her height work so well with everything that she wears. As a mother of 2 daughters, she has definitely managed motherhood and fashionhood very well across the board. I’ll say no more. Here’s the lay of the fashion land in Aquila’s world.
As a mom, how did you maintain your sense of style beyond the maternity clothing? My style actually flourished after I became a mom! Before that I didn’t really pay it much attention, but I think having daughters made me realize that how I presented myself mattered. I want them to know you can have a sense of style, love beautiful clothes, and still be ambitious and brilliant. And I grew to love how developing my sartorial muscles helped me maintain an identity as more than just their mom.
Did you face any challenges getting back to your normal day-to-day wear? My mom passed on genetics that made it relatively easy for me to adjust to my post-baby body, but I have quickly come to realize that not everything is going to go back to where it was. I wish more women would talk about that and give new moms a more realistic expectation of their “mom bod.” Who cares if you have a little pooch or a little extra junk in the trunk? The most important thing is understanding there are little ones looking to you to see if you love or hate yourself. That, in turn, will become their inner voice, and it’s something I take very seriously. I always tell my girls getting dressed and wearing makeup is just for fun, and I make it a point to never mention the things I dislike about myself in front of them.
What was your best purchase of clothing/shoe/accessory in 2016? My husband actually came home from a trip to Italy with a Céline mini luggage tote and I about died. It was something I would never purchase for myself, but he knew how long I’ve been wanting one and it meant so much to me. The older I get, the more I value purchasing just a few items of great quality, rather than a handful of cheap pieces I’ll just have to replace in a few months. That bag is one I will treasure forever and hopefully pass on to my girls someday. Wait, I guess that means I need one more! 😉
Who is your fashion icon? Cindy Crawford was my idol when I was growing up, but present day I almost always love anything Alexa Chung or Olivia Palermo are wearing. I would wear Alexa’s wardrobe on the weekends and Olivia’s for the work week in a heartbeat. I think they’re both nailing what it means to be a modern-day woman and juggle all the roles we have in life.
What designer has your heart? Jason Wu is always my favorite for those feminine pieces I would just kill for. Oscar de la Renta was the designer that made me fall in love with fashion. But I can also respect what people like Olivier Rousteing are doing at Balmain and defining what the fashion industry is going to look like in the 21st century.
As a Tall Fashionista, how do you manage shopping for clothing? I’ve simply learned over the years what works for my body and what doesn’t. It helps that cropped pants have come back in style, because they usually are on me anyways. 🙂 I know I need longer torso tops, so I don’t even try on pieces that are just going to frustrate me. I prefer knee length or just above the knee dresses, and I know the heel height that works for me. It just takes a little effort to sort out your own preferences, but I think that applies to any woman. It’s just as difficult for a 5’1” woman to go shopping as it is for me, so we all have to adjust and find what makes us feel good.
What stores are your go to? Zara and H&M are my favorites for quick, on-trend styles. Club Monaco is great for quality investment pieces and classic essentials. If I need a formal gown or cocktail dress for an event I love Gautier in San Antonio. The owner Grace has a fantastic eye for unique silhouettes and styles you can’t find anywhere else.
What does your style say about you? I would hope it says whatever I want it to. I don’t believe in having a “uniform” or a “signature look.” Life is too short to wear boring clothes, right? So I want my style and closet to be constantly evolving, and to be a chameleon who can wear a feminine floral sun dress one day and a moto jacket with leather leggings the next. My style should never define me. Or any woman for that matter. 🙂