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Holiday Fashion Engages Senses From Head To Toe #2

Abby is sitting cross legged in her PJs (gray bottoms & white top with a gray collar) with a teal Abby logo laptop on her lap. Sporting her signature explosive hairstyle, she is wearing a headset with microphone and her white cane is propped up next to her.

Houndstooth, Fur & A Little Sparkle

While you may not be able to see the forest for the trees, you can be a vision in an ensemble with multiple textures. In my second installment on engaging the senses through holiday fashion I’ve taken three knit separates added faux fur, velvet, reptile texture, and gemstones to create an overall glamorous vibe.

When we view the world through the narrow lens of the majority we can miss out on brilliant nuances. The beauty in being able to see can hinder our ability to fully engage with our environment.

Being born without or losing a sense like sight exposes us to a whole new world of sensory experience. The environment which the majority of us can see with our eyes is viewed very differently from a person who is blind or visually impaired.

Take today’s outfit for example, looking at it with physical sight we can take in the bold black and white houndstooth pattern. The sparkle of the gemstones would catch our eye but how about the shape, cut, edges, and smooth facets on the crystals?

From the perspective of blindness or visual impairment imagine how delightful the feeling is of running the fingertips through the fur on the vest or how this texture differs in comparison with the knit top. Taking in the smooth, bumpy surface on the handbag provides us with an added sensory experience by hearing the jingle of the adjustable shoulder chain or the magnetic closure.

Then we have the soft, luxurious feeling of velvet ankle boots against the warm and cozy opaque tights. Yes, there is no denying that seeing with our physical eyes is awesome but even when we cannot see we can still, and in some cases even more so appreciate the beauty surrounding us. The difference is in our perception.

Description (clockwise from the top left):

  1. Black rib knit sweater with gem embellished neck – funnel neck and long sleeves.
  2. Black and white houndstooth skirt – wrap-effect front, patch pockets, black trims.
  3. Shaggy vest in jet-black crimped faux fur – three-quarter length.
  4. Black opaque tights.
  5. Black velvet heeled booties – chunky heels.
  6. Silver-colored shoulder bag – silver chain strap.

Here’s a little something to think about: Many people view blindness as a loss but there is another perspective seldom considered, the minority’s view.

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Guest Post: Lisa Salinger

Reach! 3 Invaluable Tips To Endure The Holidays

Originally published on BlindAlive

If I said I’m here to tell you about three unbeatable moves for the entire holiday season, what would your reaction be?

Maybe your heart does a little happy dance because you love the holidays in any way, shape or form. Maybe you feel almost nothing, and you wonder if it’s worth your time to keep reading. After all, retailers have been pushing “The most wonderful time of the year” since before Halloween.

Or maybe you passionately hate it all. Maybe you’re dealing with a job loss, a break-up, a life-changing diagnosis, or the death of someone you love.

I’d like to suggest that whatever your state of mind, you’ll love these three moves. In fact, I find them unbeatable all year-long.

First, let’s talk about the equipment you’ll need. You might want to wear comfortable walking shoes, but slippers, party shoes, or bare feet will also do nicely. You can sit, stand, or lie down.

The most important skill you will need for each of these moves is to reach! Here they are:

  1. Reach In!
    While this sounds like an anatomically impossible stretch to do with your body, it’s vital to do with your mind. Reach inside yourself. Are you incredibly sad, but are doing your best to put on a brave face? Or maybe you are keeping up the facade of acting coolly disinterested or hassled by the entire scene when you can barely contain your excitement and enthusiasm? You may not feel like you can let your feelings show, and even though it would be ideal if you could, you owe it to yourself to be honest inside your own head.
  2. Reach Out!
    Are you depleted? Reach out. Chances are, there are family and friends who’d love to lend a listening ear. Do you have energy and excitement to spare? Reach out. It’s important to be flexible and patient with yourself. Some days, some moments, you may be giving. Others, you may be receiving. Just do your best to keep reaching out and connecting meaningfully with others, both for their sake and yours.
  3. Reach Up!
    Have you ever listened to a workout where the instructor abandons particular steps and says something like, “Just move! Just do what feels best to you?” This third move is one that leaves room for lots of interpretation. For some, reaching up means taking time to connect with God and think about the significance of the season. For others, it might mean reaching higher — putting on that last burst of speed to complete goals first begun in January. It might mean reaching higher within yourself, to emerge victorious from struggles that seem impossible.

Whatever you do this holiday season, Keep On Reaching In, Reaching Out, Reaching Up!

If you’d like to share your story, we’d love to hear from you at Support@BlindAlive.com.

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Holiday Fashion Engages Senses From Head To Toe

Abby is sitting cross legged in her PJs (gray bottoms & white top with a gray collar) with a teal Abby logo laptop on her lap. Sporting her signature explosive hairstyle, she is wearing a headset with microphone and her white cane is propped up next to her.

Turn Heads In Blue Velvet & Ivory

What I love most about autumn and the approaching holiday season is the assault on the senses. From the sound of leaves delicately dancing across the ground on a breezy fall morning to the mesmerizing crackle and sizzle of logs in the fireplace, I can’t get enough.

I don’t know what it is about the onset of cooler temperatures, but it’s as if my senses come alive. It’s during this time of year when I especially take notice of the multitude of bold textures and I enjoy incorporating soft, smooth, plush, material with fabrics ranging from warm and heavy to hard, shiny, and sparkly.

Since the holidays are upon us, during the next few weeks I’ll share examples of outfits that offer tactile, pretty, and functional features that are especially pleasing to my bold, blind, and beautiful friends.

This week’s outfit is a classy combination of ivory and blue with red accents.

Blue Velvet
Description (clockwise from the top):
  1. Bejeweled flat – navy pointed smoking slipper enhanced with sparkly crystals at the toe.
  2. Reversible wool cape – solid navy one side, gray and blue striped on the other side.
  3. Ivory corduroy trousers – soft corduroy with zipped cuffs and shiny silver-tone hardware.
  4. Red patent round shoulder bag – metal feet, jewel details, tassel zip pull, convertible can be worn as a crossbody or shoulder bag.
  5. Cream lattice back knitted chunky sweater.
  6. Red graduated beads make up these drop earrings with post closure.

What types of special features do you look for in clothing and accessories?

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Freedom, Right & Opportunity

May we think of freedom, not as the right to do as we please, but as the opportunity to do what is right.  ~Peter Marshall

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Wishing everyone a Happy & Safe 4th of July!

Image: Design incorporates red, white and blue and includes the above quote with a black & white photo of Lady Liberty’s face.