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I’m in The Purge TV season 2: NOLA set visit! Mexico Day of the Dead trip: Borderline Projects & Morbid Anatomy. Raven Goods dark decor.

goth fall outfit skull umbrella

When leaves hit the ground, the veil between the living and the dead is at its thinnest… and I am in my element.

Happy October, everyone. I’ve missed the fall so much!

I have several Halloween tricks and treats for you, including a major trip…

black white skull umbrella parasol ravengoods

My skull umbrella from Raven Goods is a hint at where I’m heading at the end of October.

I’m thrilled to announce that I’ll be celebrating Day of the Dead in Mexico, on a cultural tour with Borderline Projects and Morbid Anatomy! I can’t wait to share our Yucatan journey, which includes intimate encounters with the brushing of the bones, and Dia de Los Muertos.

Scroll to the end of this post for the full info about my deathly travels in Mexico, and how you can join next year’s adventure.

the purge television season two trailer, costumes

I’ll also give you a teaser of my Purge TV show adventure: I’m making a little cameo in the finale episode. (Above: I had the hardest time figuring out which one was my trailer…)

the purge blumhouse tv show new orleans horror

Blumhouse Productions and USA Network flew me to New Orleans, so I could get a behind-the-scenes look at the TV production. In our downtime, we did a little purging on Bourbon Street!

Keep reading to see my exclusive set visit, and… new tattoos??

(Season two of The Purge TV show begins airing October 15, on USA Network. I’m in the tenth / last episode.)

how to style white sneakers outfits gothic

First, let’s welcome the spookiest time of the year with some devilish outfit photos. 

OOTD: Goth umbrella Raven Goods, demon tee 1991NewYork, corduroy skirt Forest Ink, stockings UK Tights, hair scarf and sneakers Lola Ramona.

goth umbrellas, gothic skull skeleton umbrella

Isn’t this grinning cranium umbrella fabulous? It’s my new favorite accessory, from indie Goth boutique Raven Goods

Raven Goods has a magnificent curated selection of items in black or dark tones: perfect for creatures of the night like ourselves. Their web shop includes dark and Gothic home decor, jewelry, and crystals.

raven goods goth lifestyle home decor store

I’m all about supporting small businesses like Raven Goods, which is owned and operated by a husband and wife team. Their dark fashion and home design products are offered at reasonable prices, and they give friendly and fast personal support to their customers.

day of the dead umbrella, morbid anatomy borderline projects trip mexico

I love the reflecting crystal in the center of the skull (it looks a bit like a nose ring). The retractable umbrella is perfect for traveling, and doubles as a parasol: the black SPF fabric protects you from the sun.

Take a peek at RavenGoods.com if you fancy items like Victorian anatomy plates, Rococo Gothic bedding, ram’s head rings, and dark angel wing earrings.

I invite you to see more on their Instagram @shopravengoods and Twitter @ravengoods.

japanese devil t-shirt, 1991NewYork 1991 new york streetwear

My scowling Japanese devil mask top is by 1991NewYork. It’s actually a Hannya, representing a jealous Shinto female demon!

1991 New York is a streetwear brand by NY tattoo artist Hiten Damodar. His screen printed tees are 100% cotton and made in the USA, and feature his tattoo designs based on mythology. (You can see more of his striking designs on his site.)

japanese devil shirt top, fall goth style

How do you like my “white demon” look of the day? As you can see, it’s possible to do a Gothic look without wearing black.

This is also an example of how to style white sneakers with an outfit. 

white lola ramona sneakers, retro cute designer leather sneakers

Lola Ramona sent me these Serena Bullseye white leather sneakers, and they’re the cutest kicks I’ve ever seen. In love with the mesh heart on the sides, and red ribbon design in the back. The bouncy sole and comfortable lace-up style makes these sneakers perfect for fall walks.

I matched them with Lola Ramona’s retro polka dot scarf, which I wore as a headband. My stockings with keyboard symbols is by UK Tights.

Click the thumbnails below for more shoe styles from Lola Ramona:

kiss me the purge mask costume halloween

Now, let’s talk about NOLA! I was invited along with several other journalists to visit the set of The Purge TV, which was shooting its second season after a successful debut.

Before flying to New Orleans, I felt inspired to put together a Purge cosplay. Using caulking and paint, I DIY-ed a Kiss Me mask like the one worn by  Kimmy the Candy Girl, in “The Purge: Election Year” movie.

My mask and I sat down to delicious New Orleans lunch: blackened cod po’boy and salad. On this press trip, I got my fill of grits, mahi mahi, gumbo, catfish, and Sazerac cocktails… but boy, are portion sizes immense in the South. Ironically, I was so full from these meals that I was close to Purging!

the purge bad candy girl, masks cosplay kimmy election year

Quite fittingly for a horror television show, The Purge (season 2) is shot in New Orleans. Many of the new episodes make the most of the city’s spooky vibe.

I hadn’t been in New Orleans since my first visit in 2014, and it felt great to be back right before Halloween. We only had a few days here, but it was enough to explore a few spots — like Marie Laveau’s House of Voodoo. 

voodoo blues sign, new orleans skeletons

With its vampire and voodoos connections, New Orleans is one of the Goth-est cities on the planet.

For more travel tips, see my NOLA Gothic guides from my previous trip. I covered the graveyards, haunted places, alternative nightlife and art galleries, you name it.

halloween horror new orleans costumes

I’ve got the urge to purge…

Horror fans will be familiar with The Purge movies by Blumhouse Productions. In this universe, once a year for 12 hours, pretty much all crime is legal.

Some citizens love the annual bloodbath, and get creative in the ways they commit murder. Others hide in fear, or fight against the “New Founding Fathers” that implemented the Purge.

the purge season 2 movie, shooting new orleans

The Purge is now also a highly-rated TV show. The second season follows several characters in a year between the Purges, leading to intertwined storylines. I’ve watched several episodes of the new season so far, and it’s bloody fantastic — better than the first, IMO.

As an invited journalist, I got to go on set while The Purge was filming, and meet the actors and crew.  I can’t reveal any spoilers, but soon, I’ll give you an inside look at the masks, daring stunts and more. 

press set visit the purge tv, makeup masks

I also got to be an extra in the final episode, in a scene with actors Derek Luke and Rochelle Aytes! (They play a husband and wife whose perfect life is shattered when an assassin breaks into their house on Purge night.)

the purge tv behind scenes, actors new orleans filming

My lips are sealed when it comes to exactly what I do in my appearance on The Purge TV show. You’ll just have to wait until the last episode for my big scene…

However, I can show you this “Kimmy the Candy girl” costume I put together, in tribute to the evil schoolgirl from The Purge: Election Year film!

skull temporary tattoo, goth tattoos hand

Here’s a wink. I got to wear fake tattoos for my scene in the Purge TV finale!

The makeup artist put this temporary skull tattoo on my hand. I told the crew they could go wild with my hair and makeup, and so they did, as you’ll see…

upside down cross tattoos, reverse crucifix tattoo

I made sure this crucifix tattoo was upside down. So much fun to embody a different character, and have giant Gothic tattoos for a day.

the purge kimmy candy girl costume mask dress

Here’s another look at my Kiss Me mask, and Purge Election Year candy girl outfit.

the purge candy thief schoolgirl tutu corset mask hair

Compare my cosplay to the character in the Purge movie, above. I think it turned out quite bloody well!

purge election year kiss me masks

“This is your emergency broadcast system announcing the commencement of the Annual Purge.”

The Purge TV show (season 2) starts airing Oct 15 on USA Network. Give it a watch; I assure you that you won’t be disappointed. (And you can see me on-screen in the final episode, which will be broadcast Dec 17 at 9pm ET.)

fashion blogger fall leaves autumn outfits instagram

I think you can tell I’m loving Halloween season… Next, I can’t wait to celebrate Day of the Dead in Yucatan Peninsula!

Every year, Borderline Projects and Morbid Anatomy offer a curated tour that lets you experience Dia de los Muertos traditions with local communities in Mexico.

I’m joining this year’s Mayan Rebirth trip, which will take me to Merida, Campeche, and surrounding areas. Take a peek at our 4-day Mexico itinerary: it includes a “Food for the souls” ritual, a “Festival of the Souls” celebration in a cemetery, and a “Cleaning of the Bones” ceremony in a small town.

gothic outfits fall leaves fashion blog

Gracias to Borderline Projects for inviting me to take part in this Death In Mexico travel series; I can’t wait to learn first-hand about Mayan rituals and folk traditions.

This year’s tour is sold out, but there is already a RSVP list open for the 2020 edition. You can email info@borderlineprojects.com for more info and to reserve a spot for next year.

lola ramona sneakers, pin up shoes bows

A last look at my nylons from UK Tights, and cute white leather sneakers by Lola Ramona. (See more shoe styles below from this designer.)

1991 new york hannya mask shirt print

Can’t wait to get my hands on more Mexican sugar skulls!

(Gothic umbrella Raven Goods, skirt Forest Ink, hair scarf Lola Ramona, Japanese tattoo t-shirt 1991NewYork).

Sugar Skull Umbrella, gothic umbrellas

Stay tuned to my Instagram/Twitter @lacarmina to see my adventures in Yucatan for Halloween and Day of the Dead. I also invite you to add Salvador Olguin & Borderline Projects on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter for updates on their cultural journeys.

I’ll be stopping in Mexico City as well, so please let me know if you have any travel tips for me. See you at  Dia de los Muertos… and watch out for The Purge!

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Fashion blogging Year in Review! Looking back at 2017: best style blogger outfits, travel recap.

la carmina goth girl clothing style

Here we are again… looking over our sunglasses at the year that was!

Can’t believe it is time again for the annual blogging Year in Review. In the past 12 months,  I made it to some of my dream destinations and landmarks. These include India (Taj Mahal), Romania (Dracula’s Castle), Switzerland (HR Giger museum and bar) … and we mustn’t forget our pilgrimage to the Amsterdam Miffy store!

Enjoy this 2017 flashback, which includes previously unreleased outfit photos. (Above, I’m wearing Iron Fist in Athens, Greece. Click to shop more from this brand here, and below.)

langkawi malaysia beach ocean sand

But before the retrospective… let’s look ahead to my upcoming travels in January 2018. Can’t wait to escape the winter by heading to three new countries: Cuba, Panama, and Dominican Republic!

I’ll be spitting time between relaxing on Caribbean beaches, and investigating the local culture. Get ready for stories about Havana vintage cars and Santeria rituals. As always, if you have travel tips for me (Havana, Punta Cana, Santo Domingo, Panama City), please leave me a comment or message.

purple hair asian model chinese girl

2017 was a meaningful year, as it was my 10th anniversary of blogging! I can’t believe I’ve been at this for a decade now.

We’ve come a long way since the site’s original focus on Japan and Gothic Lolita. In fact, I didn’t step foot in Tokyo at all this year. Although I adore Japan and still get inspired by every visit, the subculture scene isn’t what it used to be.

bellu cemetery graveyard bucharest

But there’s a whole world out there to discover. This past year, I continued to partner with travel companies and tourism boards, which let me visit new destinations worldwide (including off-the-beaten-path places like Romania, above).

Crazy enough, I’ve been to over 60 countries by now. Still pinching myself that blogs and the Internet have let me live this life.

award winning fashion style blog blogger

Other milestones include being interviewed for the BBC’s radio documentary about Goths, and winning the Best Blogger of the Year award from Auxiliary (as well as being on their magazine cover). Once again, a huge thank you to all of you who voted for me, and for your continuous support. Every comment, share and like makes a difference to me.

goth girl tattoos arm

At the start of 2017, my friends and I were saddened to say farewell to Rose, who had long been fighting gastroparesis and complications brought on by undiagnosed Lyme disease. Many of you got to know Rose through our early adventures on this blog, and her spirit made an impact on everyone she met.

pier sechelt british columbia

There’s a tribute to Rose herewhich includes our boat trip to Sechelt, BC for her last hurrah.

mid century modern apartment decor ideas

I finally hunkered down and completed my apartment decor project, which I unveiled in my house tour. I was happy to hear your kind feedback on my interior design, which is inspired by Zen minimalism, mid-century modern and kawaii. (And yes, it’s always this clean and sparse… death to clutter!)

miffy bunny ears bathrobe robe

Since I’m a Miffy fan, I included a lot of the minimal Dutch bunny in my apartment. It was fitting that my next was to her home country…

a'dam skyscraper architecture amsterdam

The Netherlands! It was great to return to Amsterdam after many years, thanks to an invitation from the tourism bureau. I had come here over 10 years ago, but when I was a less experienced traveler, I stuck to the tourist landmarks.

This time around, I sought out the artistic, off-the-beaten-path districts including Noord (above, the EBM music A’Dam tower) and De Pijp. I also made it to the Miffy / Nijntje store, and Mr. Maria’s lamp studio. If you missed these Holland blog posts, find them here.

fashion blogger acropolis parthenon greece

And then… Acropolis Now. I partnered with Visit Greece to showcase both the ancient and modern sides of Athens. This photo by Joey Wong is one of my favorites from this trip, since it captures the “Athena the Greek goddess” feeling of being here.

fashion blogger santorini greece

After, it was time for some sunshine in Santorini, Greece. There’s nothing like staying in a classic white villa, with a private swimming pool and patio.

pink haired asian model influencer

We went sailing around the islands, and witnessed the magnificent sunset in Oia. I wore blue to match the waves at Perissa Beach in Santorini.

(Catch up on all my Greece travel articles here.)

the shining carpet set

This year, I had the good fortune of meeting up with friends from over the years, in various places. I made it to Austin, Texas for the first time — I was keen to check out the alternative sights in Texas’ most liberal city.  Weird Austin” did not disappoint, with gems like Satanic karaoke and floppy disk bars.

travel bloggers taj mahal women travelers

Yukiro and I had long dreamed of making a “Passage to India.” This summer, we toured Delhi and Rajasthan in style (would you expect anything less from us?)  Seeing the Taj Mahal was one of my favorite memories of the past year.

women traveling india what wear clothes

India is an onslaught for the senses, and we adored it. We got to meet hijira (the third recognized gender in India), dress in saris for the first time, see cremations on the banks of the Ganges, and take care of elephants at an ethical sanctuary in Jaipur.

All these stories can be found here, under the India category.

kuala lumpur luxury hotel pool

Yukiro and I also journeyed to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (crazy that I’ve been to most countries in Asia by now). Can’t complain about the pool and spa at the Ritz-Carlton KL.

malaysia beaches travel blogger

We also enjoyed sipping dragonfruit cocktails and drawing pentagrams in the sand, in Langkawi Malaysia. All our adventures in Malaysia are compiled here.

nyc empire state fashion blogger

I ended up spending more time in the US this year. It’s always fun to return to NYC… 

visiting magic gardens philly

… and see the Magic Gardens and Mutter Museum in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

old ancient romanian cemetery graves

Right before Halloween, I was invited to Experience Bucharest, Romania (click for all stories). The land of Dracula and vampire lore was on my bucket list — and it was as dark and delicious as I hoped! (Above, I’m wearing Moitie and Peace Now inside Bellu Cemetery).

experience bucharest invited influencers

It was an honor to speak at the event for travel bloggers, influencers and media / tourism.

cyberdog camden market store design

2017 was one hell of a year for Halloween. I reunited with friends in London, England; we haunted Highgate, saw The Exorcist play at the West End, and made an obligatory pit-stop at Cyberdog in Camden Market (above).

space jacket silver puffer

As an Alien fan, I couldn’t resist making a side-trip to Switzerland… to see the H.R. Giger bar and museum in Gruyeres! I haven’t released these photos yet, but above is a synthwave space-jacket outfit from Montreux.

cute chinese buns hong kong restaurant

I leave you with some bonus Xmas /  holiday snaps from last year in Hong Kong. I bit into Frosty and Rudolph at Yum Cha, the cute dim sum restaurant.

cute themed yum cha hong kong

At Yum Cha cafe in Hong Kong, you can order smiley-faced animal buns and other adorable “kawaii” decorated food.

hello kitty daruma toys

And how cute are these Chinese Hello Kitty plush dolls, which look like daruma? These round, lucky figures are objects for goal-setting — a great way to prime yourself for the New Year.

high rise view curve earth horizon

Here’s to a soaring, successful 2018! Let’s all dream big, and make it happen in 2018.

As for me, I’m getting ready to fly to Havana Cuba, Panama and Dominican Republic! Let me know if you have travel tips for these places. I’ve also updated my Travel Destinations page (everything is listed by region and country). You can easily find all my travel guides / stories about each place I visited, such as Japan, Korea, Morocco, Iceland, Vietnam.

nu goth outfits alternative grunge blogger

Leaving you with a bonus holiday outfit remix. The top is Morph8ne, skirt Long Clothing, and shoes Swear London (you can customize every aspect of their footwear).

More by Morph8ne Clothing below, or click here to shop.

long clothing sad face sweatshirt emo

What were your favorite moments of 2017? Despite what my Long Clothing sweatshirt says… let’s make it a happy New Year!

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