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Don we now our gay apparel: A guide to this season’s trends

30 Nov

by Jessica Dawkins

Festive and fashionable

With the holiday season now upon us, dinner parties and photo ops are also in full swing. And with Facebook, Instagram and Twitter the essentials for documenting such events, partygoers might be interested in what’s trending this season to stay ahead of the internet shame game. (Why is it that pictures I’m tagged in are never as flattering as those I post myself?)

My new fave: Covergirl lipstick in #360 Euphoria. The best berry for my own skin tone.

My new fave: Covergirl lipstick in #360 Euphoria. The best berry for my own skin tone.

Tis the season to be berry

When the weather gets cold, the makeup goes dark, and lips are no exception. This time of year is all about the berry lipstick. As so accurately writes, “The [berry lip is the] perfect colour choice for those who need an easy way in to something more daring on the lips, with its natural raspberry tones that compliment all complexions, whiten teeth and make things look a bit wintery – in a good way.”

For more winter cookbook inspiration (including eye makeup and more), go here and here.

Heedless of the wind and weather

Wyoming residents understand: looking put together is nearly impossible when nature is bent on pulling you apart. So we put our hair in ponytails and cover up from head to toe, but that doesn’t mean we can’t look good doing it. Refinery29 has some great tutorials on dressing up the everyday pony, and Polyvore has endless inspiration when it comes to clothes for every season. It may not be easy in Wyoming, but it’s possible. After all, sweater weather is better weather!

Walking in a winter wonderland

Perhaps the most important aspect of fashion in Wyoming wintertime: boots. Snow boots, rain boots, cowboy boots, comfy boots, leather boots—boots. They may not always be visible in snapshots, but a good pair of boots is the difference between walking with confidence and slipping on the sidewalk.

The perfect pair of boots is hard to find, and often out of budget, but with holiday sales at their peak, your dreams might be in reach. A few good places to look for boots include Kohl’s, Target, and the Frontier Mall, but my favorite place to spend time (and money) is Similar to Zulily, events are only on the website for 3 days, but host astonishing markdowns during the sale period. Styles and products can run out quickly, so sign up for emails to make sure you stay on top of the sales.

Nailed it!

Last but certainly not least, the perfect accessory is at your fingertips. Specifically, your fingernails. Whether it’s a clear coat or a gel mani, putting something on your nails gives your entire look a polished effect. (Yeah, I went there.) Bonus points if you can match your nails to your classy berry lip, or offset a dark pout with taupe. Let your inner diva shine!

Now you know

So now you’re all caught up on what’s hot this year for Christmastime. Let us know in the comments below: what are your favorite trends for sweater weather? Is there something “hot” you think is “not?”

Just remember to be yourself and you couldn’t be any more gorgeous. Happy holidays!

DIY Thanksgiving Family Portraits

25 Nov

‘Tis the season to show off


My own DIY family portrait

Everyone wants one of those nice framed family portraits hanging above the fireplace; and what better time to get them done then Thanksgiving? For it is a time when all the family gathers. Only problem is, portrait studios are becoming few and far between, and if you do locate one it just might cost you an arm and a leg. I say to this, why not take this cherished memory yourself?

Great gifts can come in frames

This idea may be an odd thought to some folks, but I can assure you that if executed correctly these family portraits can come out great. Also, if you are still trying to come up with a Christmas present for someone dear to you then why not put together a family portrait as a gift for them? In fact, I have done this myself a few times for several folks, my own mother being one of them. When my mother received this portrait she excitedly said qoute 1Wow! This is something that I can cherish forever, and quite possibly can be passed down though the family for centuries!qoute 2
In conclusion, if you got the reactions I got it will be well worth the effort. Now sense this is going to be done on Thanksgiving I am going to show you the best way of getting great/simple family portraits, because the last thing anyone needs around this time of year is another huge project.

Professional not required

Remember simple is the key with these homemade pieces, so this means using what you have around you; so let’s go through what I mean by this shall we?

  • First, A live person — This live person, no matter how uncomfortable with a camera they are, will be able to produce more dynamic shots then a camera just sitting on tripod with a set timer. Make sure that the person takes a lot of pictures, this way you have a wide selection to choose from.
  • Second, Sunlight — It is your new best friend, let this friend help you. Sunlight, at its best times will give you the closest thing to professional lighting. If possible, I would stay away from trying to set up any kind of inside “DIY Portrait studio”. Because without proper diffusers and just lights in general, shadows and blown out spots are going to be a major struggle.
  • Third, Have fun with your shoot. The liveliness of this shoot will be the success of it. That being said don’t be shy, go crazy, make each other laugh and bring props that are fun or you feel could add something to the portrait. The best part is your photographer is a friend, or family member, not some random person you might not feel completely comfortable with.

My Last tip for this project is – plan ahead. The simple fact is we do live in Wyoming, we don’t always have perfect sunshine with 75 degree weather, not to mention that it is winter time. Play it smart, avoid the running noises and heavy winter jackets in you pictures. Check ahead find out what day is going to work best and be the warmest for you and your family.


Sorting through the stash: a head start on post-holiday organization

7 Nov

by Jessica Dawkins

The meaning of the word declutter

The definition of declutter might be the cleanest thing about it.

Sorting through the stash

We’re coming into that time of year I like to call the “holidaze” (at least, when I’m being clever and can get away with it). This is the season when wish lists are handed out and Santa’s elves are hard at work. But whether or not you know what you want this season, knowing where to put it is a big part of the aftermath—and often the most stressful. In this post is gathered an overload of organization DIYs and also a video to show off my own cosmetic storage, both specifically aimed towards dorm room and small apartment living.

Where do I start?

If you thought you didn’t need anything for the holidaze, you weren’t thinking hard enough. A lot of people say they don’t want anything, but the truth is they either don’t know what to ask for or are too timid to ask. Being a lover of fashion and cosmetics, I know I have to put it all somewhere in the end, especially when I can’t bear to part with my favorite pieces during spring cleaning.

My organization board on

This is a screenshot of the hand organization board mentioned in the post.

Cue the Pinterest board. Pinterest is the ultimate search engine for DIYs and clever uses of ordinary things and organization is not an area lacking in imagination. From purse organization and traveling to everyday apartment and dorm living, there’s something for everyone when it comes to organization and a personal style to find during the process. I’ve put together a board specifically addressing these issues, one that is brief and shouldn’t take too much time away from “studying.” (You know how it is.)

But this all looks so complicated.

It isn’t. You can DIY and you can do it fabulously. You can repurpose and upcylcle what you already own and you will be successful. You can buy storage equipment at reasonable prices and it will work. Organization is the very key to lessening stress in everyday life, but it often comes with its own sets of struggles. It took me a while to find the kind of storage system that works for me (follow the link for a video). Now I can apply my makeup with ease and I know where everything is going to go when it’s done being used and where it will be the next time I need it. What to aim for: a place for everything and everything having a place.

Simple yet significant: the jars I repurposed for my vanity top are a part of my everyday life.

Simple yet significant: the jars I repurposed for my vanity top are a part of my everyday life.

I don’t have time to organize.

Then don’t organize—declutter! It may sound intimidating to start cleaning out the things you don’t need anymore, but it really feels amazing when you’re done. You may not even have to remove them completely, they may be in the wrong place at the wrong time (like the jars I use to organize my vanity counter). Just remember to take a deep breath and ask yourself if you’re better off with or without it. Often times, this simple repetition can accomplish a lot.

So get your cosmetics in order and cleaned out, because my next post will conquer cost-metics and the DIY beautician. See you then!

Costumes to take over student lounge

24 Oct

by Jessica Dawkins

Only seven days left

With Halloween now dwindling one week away, I took some time to let my inner makeup artist shine and try on new looks inspired by those seen on one of my favorite Pinterest boards. I also gathered inspiration from Youtube’s gurus for some very creative costume hacks, a few of which I can’t wait to show off at LCCC’s HalloQueen Costume Contest next week. Don’t go batty this year worrying about a last-minute costume—this post has you covered!


Mime makeup look

With my dark hair and eyes, this mime look was a bit more difficult to pull of.

Cheaper than store-bought, duplicated outfits at the store, homemade costumes give off the best vibes of individuality and creativity. There are so many ways to make your own costume, from makeup to clothes to pure attitude. This Halloween my favorite homemade option is the cosmetics route, because it’s for any range of talent, it’s inexpensive (if you have what you need or know where to get it), and I can transform in ways I haven’t been able to with clothes alone—a fairy, mermaid, mime, superhero, or even a fairy-mermaid-superhero-mime (it could happen).


Feline inspired makeup

Of the many Halloween makeup looks I tried on, Femme Feline was my favorite.

Here are some of the video tutorials and inspiring pictures I most adore:


As with school spirit and the ZombieFest, your costume can be as drastic or demure as you like. I personally discovered that even though I’m comfortable wearing a lot of makeup, the looks that require more facial coverage are more difficult for me to pull off, so I cut back to somewhere in the middle.

Second annual HalloQueen contest

A well designed poster for the HalloQueen costume contest.

A well designed poster for the HalloQueen costume contest.

LCCC’s Student Alliance for Equality (S.A.F.E.) is sponsoring their Second Annual HalloQueen Costume Contest. The contest consists of four categories: Best Gender-Bender Costume, Most Creative Costume, Best ComiCon/Sci-Fi Costume, and Best Horror Costume. HalloQueen will be held in the Student Lounge this Wednesday, Oct. 29 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Hopefully this post gave you plenty of ideas to use and put together something unique—and have fun doing it!

Know of any other costume or Halloween events taking place in Cheyenne? Got a favorite haunted house? Share it in the comments below!

No Matter The Distance

24 Oct
By Taylor W. Snell


Officially engaged.

Can’t run from fate

Near the end of last year if I would have been told  that I was going to be engaged to a girl that lived in North Carolina, 1,700 miles away from me, I would have replied with “yea, right…”.
Destiny/miracles really do have an amazing way of working out sometimes.

Meet me?

Well coincidentally, a website called meetme is how I met my, now fiancée, Sierra. A friend had told me about this website and said it was interesting so I tried it for myself. To my surprise the website did not interest me, in fact it did the opposite and annoyed me. Yet right before I gave up on the website completely I ran into Sierra’s profile. Thus, on that day, December 3rd 2013, I sent her a message — And we have talked everyday since.

Taking flight

After only four short months I’m flying out to North Carolina to meet this girl, face to face finally. This was the best decision I ever made, because not only did the whole trip go great, this is when I found out I couldn’t be without her. I guess all of the tears we shared at the airport told her the same thing, because a few months later she packed her bags and flew out to Wyoming to live with me.

So, It was my turn to make the big move and ask her to marry me.

Here is how I did it.

Dreams really can come truth no matter the struggle.
I believe our story is proof of that, and is why I decided to share it.

Fly Like An Eagle: LCCC Spirit

10 Oct
Model poses to show off Golden Eagle spirit inspired makeup.

A student takes a moment from studies to show off this Golden Eagle inspired makeup.

By Jessica Dawkins

Let School Spirits Carry Me

Homecoming is in full swing at Laramie County Community College! You may have noticed the special events being hosted around campus, many held in the student lounge. Students have been encouraged to participate in eating contests, timed competitions, team dodgeball matches and more. But maybe this isn’t enough for you to get into the spirit of being an Eagle. If that’s the case, keep reading for inspiration.

Tutus and Tattoos

Some students prefer to show their spirit in sublte ways, such as clothing or accessories sporting a logo. Others (like myself) may be open to more umistakeable gestures of enthusiasm, like face painting and hair dye. Sure, toole tutus in school colors are eyecatching and easy to DIY, but I prefer the makeup route when it comes to showing support for something I love. Cue the tattoo! The slideshow in this post will provide all the knowledge you need to create your own temporary “ink” for soccer and volleyball games, LCCC’s homecoming dance, and everyday fashion statements.

Why Cosmetics?

Makeup is relatively inexpensive if you know what brands to look for and exactly what products you need. Especially if it’s for a onetime use like a pep rally, you don’t need to buy Sephora brand cosmetics. Makeup is also a household item that can be used on anyone, guys and gals, young and grown, for special events and on different areas of the body as well. For example, my models include both sexes, one sporting a prominent facial “tattoo” and the other a more sublte bicep decoration.

Instead of clothes and accessories that usually come one way for everyone, makeup designs can be as discreet or as drastic as desired for each individual’s taste. The limit truly is your imagination, so the results are completely your own.


Here’s a list of the items that I used for both pieces of artwork and thought you might want to include in your toolkit.

Eyeliner Pencil

Cream Eyeshadow or Eyeliner (both blue and black colors)

Powder Eyeshadow (I used dark brown, gold glitter, and gray)

Small Fluffy Brush (my favorite is the Setting Brush by Real Techniques)

Angled Brush (for cream bases)

You’ll also need a picture for inspiration. I just Googled images of golden eagle wingspans and found several useable photos to rely on for colors and shape. For the bicep tattoo, I found a great image of our lovely logo and went from that.


Primer (before applying makeup)

Foundation (after the primer, but before the makeup. I found this helpful for the eagle mask to stay on better)

Setting Spray (after the makeup is complete. This is helpful for making the excessive product stay on for more than a selfie, but not required for good results)


Here is the link to my how-to slideshow. Directions are in the description box of each photo.


And if you try out my techniques—great! Send us a picture in the comments below, or just share your favorite part of homecoming so far.

P.S. I apologize if you have the Steve Miller Band playing in your head after reading this post. Here’s a link to the lyrics if you want to sing along!

Halloween Date Night!

10 Oct
Halloween Date Night Banner

Sierra And Taylor: What our Halloween date night might look like.

By Taylor W. Snell

Cheyenne “Spooktacular”!

On this Hallows Eve what will you be doing with your significant other? No idea? Well here in the city of Cheyenne, Wyoming big events occur very rarely. Luckily though,  I live to please so, I will be sharing what I think would be a: fun, frightful, and totally enjoyable way to spend this night together.

Fun (within a 20 mile radius)

  • First, just shooting off the most obvious — Go to a scary movie. This is something that is relatively inexpensive, there is a variety of choices, plus couples love holding each other during those tense moments, admit it. Adding on to this idea, to make it a little more interesting, put all the names of the horror films playing in the theaters, at the time, shake it up, pull one out and that will be the one you go and see. Keeps it fun/playful and if there is a particular film one is hesitant on seeing – It becomes very interesting.
  • Second — Movies don’t put the fright in you? Why not go through Cheyenne’s one and only haunted house, The Nightmare on 17th Street? Once again this is a very affordable option, only costing $10 per-person. This haunted house was also voted #1 in haunted houses within a 100-mile radius of Denver, Colorado for 2 years running. It’s a lot of fun, there are some great scares to be had there, and this is why I believe it would make for a great date.

Let me elaborate…

Now If you are planning on going to the theaters, I have one suggestion… Go see


It only got a 30% on Rotten Tomatoes, and not much better by any other film critics, take my word when I say that I recently watched this movie, and well… Lets just say, I didn’t sleep much that night.

Now, some more information on The Nightmare on 17th Street.

  • In addition to the $10 per-person entree fee, they do offer a 10% discount to military.
  • They are located Downtown Cheyenne across from the City Parking Lot
    (312 1/2 W 17th Street Cheyenne, WY 82001).
  • They bring in about an average of 2,500-3,000 attendees a year.

Contact info:

Tel: 307-778-7609

Cell: 307-630-8680

Or, check out their Facebook.

Here’s to hoping your Halloween date night turns out great!



Dates? Film making? WHO IS THIS GUY?

11 Sep

Who is Taylor?

Happy 7th Month(Square)

Taylor and Sierra – Friday-night date

Well, I could just tell you the basics like, I’m a full time student at LCCC or that I work part-time at our local Sam’s Club Photo Center. But I thought I could be a little more interesting on how I approach this. So . . . I’m Tay, at least that is what everyone else calls me, I love anything that invokes the sense of excitement/joy inside myself. This could be something crazy like jumping into a pile of snow in only my underwear, or taking my lovely girlfriend out for a Friday-night date.

What you are all about?

This is a bit trickier for me to answer because I am about a lot of things. I am very family oriented, always wanted a big family like the one I grew up with. I like to express my creativity as much as possible, through all types of platforms. My at-most favorite happening to be film making. I also do a lot of long-boarding – well I mean, in the two days of the year that we don’t have snow here in “Chey-Town“. . . But hey! Then there is snowboarding which I also do now.

I’m bringing the heat!

I will try my best to keep it interesting. This means “interesting to me” — So, I think I’ll focus on the creative side of things: film making, photography, certain types of contests, long-boarding, and maybe just some exciting things happening in my life (which may also tie into some of the other categories mentioned).



Artsy, will work for ego (not Eggo)

9 Sep

Chaundra Paice has done graphic design and web development work for local nonprofit companies and small businesses for the past 2 1/2 years in Cheyenne, WY.  She is also a traditional artist and has completed many commissioned pieces, ranging from family portraits to fantasy drawings and paintings.  However, Chaundra hasn’t always received monetary compensation for her work.

Will work for egoFacebook Hippo Painting

Before Chaundra got her first big break with the graphic design and web development work for Historic Cheyenne Inc.; she relied on Facebook “likes” and “comments” to boost her ego and encourage her to pursue her art and design work further.

Today’s undertakings

Today, Chaundra has several notable commissioned design works to her name and is pursuing her dreams of becoming an accomplished artist/graphic designer even more.

Key accomplishments include:

Chaundra has also sold several traditional artworks. She uses a variety of different mediums to complete her traditional art including: charcoal, graphite, acrylic, Letraset markers, spray paint, colored pencils, and water color.

However, Chaundra still enjoys posting her work on Facebook and receiving “likes” and “comments”, she has even started a Twitter account for this purpose – sadly, a bloated ego never rests.

Life at HomeLife at home

When Chaundra isn’t busy with design work, homework, or with her job as an Office Aide at the Children’s Discovery Center; she is busy taking care of her three wonderful children at home.  All of her children enjoy art too, they have even had some of their art projects selected for special displays at their school, Afflerbach Elementary.

College offers help to students in need

3 Dec

Other programs offered by LCCC: