Spending the Day with Keith Haring

One of the things I adore about New York City? The art, of course.

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Spotted in Chelsea.
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Spotted in the Meatpacking.

Whether you’re on the Upper East Side, the Meatpacking District, SoHo, the Lower East Side, or in Chelsea, there are tons of galleries to be found here where you can enjoy art of various forms. I’ve had both positive and negative experiences at galleries, but this one is about a pleasant afternoon I had with Keith Haring.

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Sadly, I’ve never met the man, but I’m well versed in his fantastic contributions and impact on not just the art world, but New York City culture as a whole. I recently saw these awe-inspiring pieces by Keith Haring at a gallery in SoHo (sadly, I don’t remember the name).

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For the day, I wore a thrifted swan printed dress by Zara. It’s actually one of my favorite dresses to wear. It’s light, airy, looks lovely with simple black ballet flats or pumps, plus it has a casual 1950s vintage look that I love to pair with pearls and cat-eye sunglasses.

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Photo by Alexcia Foster

While I do own plenty of authentic 1950s pieces, there’s nothing wrong about paying tribute to a past era with a modern wardrobe. Personal style is what you make of it. There are no rules. Just have fun!

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Photo by Alexcia Foster
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Photo by Alexcia Foster

Zara no longer sells this swan dress, but I did find some (very few) cute picks:

These photos were snapped at a West Village garden that myself and BFF Alexcia encountered. Here in New York City, you’re bound to discover something new.

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Photo by Alexcia Foster

Sadly, Keith Haring is no longer with us. This genius of a man passed away in 1990 at age 31 in New York City of AIDS-related complications. However, his work will live on forever. And I can assure you that somewhere in New York City, there’s a Haring piece or two just waiting to be explored by you.

Bettie Page at Madison Square Park

Unlike my first encounter with Marilyn Monroe, I didn’t discover Bettie Page until I was much older, age 9 to be exact. I clearly remember her never-ending curves, those signature raven waves with a perfect fringe, and her red hot pout. There was also that barely-there leopard swimsuit.

The first image I've ever saw of Bettie Page on a postcard.
The first image I’ve ever saw of Bettie Page on a postcard.

I was previously told growing up that Bettie Page had died and was probably killed off by the mob. However, she was alive and living quietly in Florida at the time. She died in the year 2008 at age 85.

Warning: Some boobage below (for those catching up with me in an office setting).

My autographed photo of Bettie Page, also signed by photographer Bunny Yeager.
My autographed photo of Bettie Page, also signed by photographer Bunny Yeager.

My dear friend, renowned filmmaker and Academy Award nominee Mark Mori, made an amazing film on the life and legacy of Bettie Page. He actually spoke with her candidly and she herself narrates the film. You can score a copy of the documentary, along with some other goodies here.

For a Sunday morning stroll in Manhattan’s Madison Square Park, I decided to pay tribute to Bettie Page with a goth-meets-bohemian twist.

I actually used to be goth, but that’s a story for another day.

Photo by Jordan Race
Photo by Jordan Race

I wore a slinky, loose-fitting, label-less black dress, which I purchased from a thrift store in the West Village. For a similar look: A Liz Claiborne sleeveless sheath dress for $30 at JC Penny, a crisp cotton sleeveless black dress by UNIQLO for $19.90, a linen sleeveless black dress for $50 at L.L. Bean, or the more body-revealing wrap maxi for $34 at ASOS.

Photo by Jordan Race
Photo by Jordan Race

The black floral shawl is also a label-less one that I purchased at a West Village thrift store. For a similar look: A long black lace cardigan for $16.99 at Forever 21, a romantic purple floral kimono for $54.37 at ASOS, a metallic mesh floral kimono for $39 at Forever 21, or the super similar reclaimed vintage maxi kimono dress for $99.67 at ASOS.

Photo by Jordan Race
Photo by Jordan Race

The earrings are long golden chandeliers from H&M. They’re no longer available, but I’m really into these long ones for $7 or these gorgeous Art Deco ones for $9.95, both from H&M.

Photo by Jordan Race
Photo by Jordan Race

The lipstick is Milani’s Color Statement Moisture Matte Lipstick in Confident, also known as a bold brick red. Milani has it for $6, but I found mine at CVS.

Photo by Jordan Race
Photo by Jordan Race

The sunglasses are vintage, but you can easily find a pair for a variety of colors and prices on Etsy.

Photo by Jordan Race
Photo by Jordan Race

As for the Bettie Page tribute I spoke of? I wore my Bettie Page cameo necklace, which I purchased from California-based Etsy vendor Gretha of NeverGrowUpTreasures. She specializes in rockabilly and steampunk pieces, but she also offers these amazing cameo necklaces of old Hollywood stars and pinups that I adore. She can also custom-make a Bettie Page necklace just for you, so hop to it!

Kahve's Iced Vanilla Mint Latte in Hell's Kitchen.
Kahve’s Iced Vanilla Mint Latte in Hell’s Kitchen.

To cool off on a sizzling Sunday morning like this one, I highly recommend heading up to Hell’s Kitchen – no, seriously. You’ll find this adorable small coffee shop called Kahve where they offer this thirst-quenching iced vanilla mint latte highlighting real mint leaves to cool off. It’s my absolute favorite treat from this shop and I tend to pick one up after a long day at the office. It’s divine.

Photo by Jordan Race
Photo by Jordan Race

That’s all for now!