Timeless Wardrobe | The Chino

A timeless wardrobe consists of versatile, high-quality clothing that lasts for years because of their simple and contemporary look. And, creating a timeless wardrobe does not have to be hard or expensive; quite the contrary, it is as simple as purchasing quality pants, shirts, jackets, etc. that work in all setting. This will actually save you money and time in the end because these pieces will last for ages, and you won’t need to continuously update your wardrobe because of wear-and-tear or the ever-changing fashion industry.

Developing a timeless wardrobe has allowed me to cut back on spending, create simple yet sophisticated looks that align with my minimalist lifestyle, and gain confidence in how I look. Additionally, I’ve cut my wardrobe by a 1/4 and saved $100s over the past four years from it. No really, my freshmen year of college I had three closets and two dressers spread out between my dorm, home, and grandma’s place. Now, I use half a closet and tiny dresser in my apartment.

From reflecting on my journey toward a timeless wardrobe, I found a keen desire to develop a series of posts which will help other’s create their own if they are interested. As you can tell from the title, this series is known as “Timeless Wardrobe” (saw that one coming, didn’t you?). The first in this series: The chino.

For those who are not familiar with chinos, they are lightweight, cotton pants that can be worn throughout the year. Their lightweight material makes them great spring and summer pants because they’re breathable, but the fact that they’re pants make them perfect for the crisp fall and freezing winter weather. They can be dressed up with dress shoes and a blazer for work or an event, or they can be dressed down with a jacket or sweater and sneakers. Chinos come in all colors — gray, navy, black, green, white, maroon — and work well for literally everything. I am a HUGE fan of chinos. I own navy, gray, black, forest green, and khaki chinos, and I wear them every day of the week without fail.

Neutral-color chinos that are slim-fitting and made of high-quality material make a great asset to your timeless wardrobe. You can dress them up or down for any occasion, the cut and style make them acceptable in all settings, they work wonderfully in every season, and they’ll last for years because neutral colors will never go out of style and the material will stand the test of time.

I, personally, am obsessed with Banana Republic’s “Mason Athletic Tapered Rapid Movement Chino.” The athletic build gives the thigh-area enough room for your thighs to breath and not be hugged, but the tapered legs create a slimmer silhouette and eliminate the bagginess. Not only does the fit allow for comfort at all times, but they are also water-proof and stain-proof. These particular pants run for ~$100, but Banana Republic always has sales that knock these babies down to ~$55. Another alternative would be J.Crew’s “484 chinos,” but they range around $70 and are a bit tighter on the thighs. A budget-friendly pair of chinos would be H&M’s “slim chino,” which cost $30 but are low-quality and uncomfortable. Remember, part of a timeless wardrobe is quality because high-quality clothing will last without ripping or tattering, so I wouldn’t recommend the latter option. But, they are a good start if you cannot afford more expensive options like the first two.

If you want to build a timeless wardrobe, I urge you to start with the chino. The pants/legs are a prominent focal point, and starting with neutral-color, properly fitting pants will make it easier for you to find a shirt and shoes to pair with it. I find the pants the centerpiece of an outfit; first, you decide the color and style of pants, then you determine the shirt and shoes to go with it (spoiler alert: I always go with white sneakers). What is more, it’ll be significantly easier to build your timeless wardrobe once you have the pants down because you’ll know what kind of shirts/sweaters/jackets and shoes will complement your pants.

Take the first step toward your own timeless wardrobe by following my blog and signing up for email notifications. That way, you’ll never miss a post and can ensure that you follow me on this style series journey.

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Review: JuneHouse Backpack

You ever feel like Instagram giveaways are just fake and meant to promote an account? Like, you’re 98% sure that they never choose a real winner, just a dummy account? Well, you good sir or madam, are wrong. They actually are authentic giveaways and real people win! I know because I won two giveaways within two weeks, and I am pretty sure I am a real person…!

The first Instagram giveaway I won was this beautiful fashion backpack by JuneHouse. Shoutout to my man Hunter Vought for choosing me! (The second one was a phenomenal three-piece safari-inspired collection by Marcel Floruss, but that is for another blog. Shoutout to Marcel, as well!)

I remember exactly where I was when I received the Instagram “winner” notification for the former giveaway. I was in a Clarke Student Association (CSA) Executive Board retreat. And, during the middle of reviewing the constitution, I got the notification. Let me tell you, I was hyped/pumped/ecstatic. I never won a giveaway before, let alone for something of this magnitude.

In General: This fashion backpack literally screams “Kyle Majerus.” It is rose red with light brown leather straps and a white JuneHouse logo that just pop, very high-quality, and minimal in design but with a rediculous amount of storage space and compartments… I mean, there is so much room I fit three days of clothes and necessities inside with room to spare. What is more, the backpack compliments my style perfectly. I can pair this backpack with literally everything I wear — from blue chinos with a mustard sweater and white sneakers (example below) to gray chinos with a black sweater (or white long-sleeve and blue jacket) and dark brown boots. No matter what outfit I am rocking, this backpack only adds to it.

Junehouse bookbag match

Exterior: Just admire the rose red color and the light brown straps. They pair so well together and compliment one another. In addition, the white JuneHouse logo on the front compartment gives this backpack that three-color vibe that y’all know I love to do every single day.

Next, notice the pull-over folds on both the large and small compartments; this is a great fashion niche that not many backpacks can pull off. On the other hand, both side compartments have zippers, which gives the exterior a little diversity.

Finally, the back of this backpack. Oh, my L*rd. I cannot convey how freaking comfortable this backpack is because of the thick pads located on the back and straps. When I visited Chicago last weekend, I walked for hours around Downtown and Lincoln Park with this backpack on, and I did not experience discomfort once. On the contrary, I welcomed the padded feeling on my back and shoulders, it was rather pleasant.

 

 

Interior: I. am. in. love. with. this. interior. The number one thing I absolutely adore about this interior is the black, padded, and fleece-lined laptop sleeve. Not only does it comfortably hold my MacBook Pro, but it is also entertaining to stuff your hands down to feel the fleece.

The second detail I love about the interior is the red and black stripes that run along the whole inside. It is such a unique addition to the bag that I have been obsessing over since day one. I think it makes this bag stand out even more because not many backpacks do a design on the inside. I can really only think of Herschel right now…

Next, I like that there are two hidden compartments along both sides of the backpack. They are just perfect for me to store my Warby Parker eyeglasses inside. Further, I can stuff my iPhone in the right one and pull headphones through an opening designed for just that! Not having to hold my iPhone and get to listen to music? Winner, winner, chicken dinner. And, finally, the front compartment has a rose red hook to put my keys on so I don’t lose them. I mean, come on, this backpack has everything.

Overall: I cannot be more content and happy with this backpack. Sure, I did win this backpack, but for roughly $70 on Amazon, I would purchase it in a heartbeat because you really can’t get a better deal; it is high-quality at a low price. My JuneHouse backpack is everything I have ever wanted, and I cannot see myself using a different backpack for a long time. When you see me, look for the rose red color, because it will be with me every step of the way on my life’s journey.

– Kyle Majerus

What to Pack for a Weekend Trip

As this blog goes live, I am in Chicago for a three-day weekend to visit my buddy, Matt, and work on content for my internship. It will be quite an active and fun-filled weekend; I am exploring downtown, finally trying the pizza pot pie I’ve wanted for over a year, shopping (of course), enjoying one too many beverages, and taking many photos around the city. It is important to pack accordingly for such a busy weekend getaway because you don’t want too many or too few items. When going away for a weekend, only pack the essentials for the trip. It will save you a lot of space in your bag and energy to keep track of everything. Below I give you the top items one should bring on a short or long weekend trip.

  1. Two pairs of chinos

    Everyone should bring a pair or two of chinos because they are such a diverse piece of clothing; they are lightweight pants that are designed to be worn in all seasons, and they can be dressed up for a fancy dinner or dressed down for a night at the club or exploring the city. They are just that stinking diverse, everyone!!

    Especially since it is summer, I will advocate for chinos over jeans on a weekend trip because you can wear them even if it is boiling hot outside or extra windy and cool. Since I will be in the Windy City at the beginning of August, I do not know what to expect. Will it be stupidly hot or rather breezy? I have no idea, so I packed both my navy and gray J.Crew chinos. It can be pretty warm outside or a bit windy, and I will be dressed accordingly either way.

  2. One long-sleeve t-shirt

    You can NEVER go wrong with a white long-sleeve t-shirt. They are aesthetically pleasing, minimal, and fashionable. Just like with the chinos, you can wear this shirt in any weather and for many occasions. Is it chilly outside? Perfect, this shirt is long-sleeved. But, is the sun beating down, too? Excellent. This shirt is white so the sun will not be attracted to it. Without a doubt, I packed my J.Crew white long-sleeve t-shirt to wear downtown one of the days.

  3. A belt

    One of my biggest pet peeves is people not wearing a damn belt. They have two important uses: one, they hold up your pants/jeans/shorts, which, you know, is crazy important and convenient. And, two, they are the perfect accessory to finish a look or give your outfit some extra color. Personally, I am a huge fan of light brown belts, and I definitely will be wearing my favorite belt all weekend.

  4. Basketball shorts

    Instead of wearing pajama pants to bed and waking up sweating like crazy, I advise bringing a pair of comfy and breathable basketball shorts to sleep in. Also, you never know when you’re going to the gym, so why not have them just in case? (Sorry, I am a “gym rat” who sure doesn’t look like it…)

  5. Underwear and socks

    Kinda obvious…

  6. Comfortable shoes

    If you know you will be moving about or walking a lot, please, please, please bring a sturdy and comfortable pair of shoes/boots. Do your feet and yourself a favor and make sure you pack shoes/boots that won’t destroy your feet or back. For this trip, I decided to bring my Aldo brown dress boots that have high-quality Dr. Scholl’s in soles inside them. They are soooo comfortable and great for walking (surprisingly!).

    Seriously, I cannot convey how important good walking shoes are. Take it from someone with a fused tailbone from an injury whose ribs pop out of place and hips and ankles get out of alignment. Wearing shoes that support your back and feet are a life saver.

  7. Grooming/Bathroom essentials

    It is necessary to take care of your personal hygiene at all times. Whether you are home, on vacation, or just away for the weekend, bring what you need for proper grooming and hygiene. For this weekend away, I brought body wash, my beard oil, a comb and a brush, deodorant, my toothbrush and toothpaste, Q-tips, lotion, floss, and my beard trimmer. You know, the essentials. I take my personal grooming and hygiene very seriously…

  8. Your Everyday Carry Items

    These will be the items you cannot go a day or even an hour without. You can read about my ECI and what I brought with me to the city here.

  9. Sturdy Backpack

    While some people prefer actual luggage bags, I fancy a comfortable and high-quality backpack. I like backpacks over luggage bags for several reasons. One, it doesn’t feel like you actually have to carry it; rather, you can sling it over your shoulders and go about your day. Two, they are smaller than luggage bags, so you do not risk over-packing for a trip. Instead, you bring what you know you need and will use. Again, less is more! Three, they are pretty dang fashionable. Rocking a fashion backpack will never go out of style. You all already know that I brought everything in my JuneHouse Rose Red Backpack.

    This backpack is amazing. It is very fashionable, high-quality, super comfortable, and goes great with my style. I love to rock very minimal and three-color outfits. So, the pop of rose red from this backpack gives my looks the perfect touch. Just look at how great the combination below works. (Review coming next week.)

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There you have it, folks. What I advise you should bring on a nice weekend trip. Just remember to pack the essentials because you don’t want to have an abundant amount of clothing, shoes, or items wasting space in your backpack/luggage. Also, you want to leave space in your backpack/luggage in case you buy something and need to store it! And, the Lord knows I will come back with quite a few things and will need the space…

– Kyle Majerus

Who are Saturdays For?… Me!

I look forward to Saturdays after an exhausting work week because I dedicate Saturdays to me, myself, and I. My Saturdays are meant for running errands, spending time alone, enjoying my past times, and essentially doing whatever I want. No obligations to anyone or anything but myself. Boy, do I love my Saturdays.

And, since tomorrow is Saturday (YAY!), I thought I would bring you all along on a typical Saturday in my life. It is filled with fun, adventure, and experiences. While this is a “typical” Saturday in my life, I want to note that sometimes I may just make coffee at home or eat out for lunch/dinner, etcetera, so, this is not exactly what I do every Saturday, but most of them!

This particular Saturday you all are tagging along on was this past Saturday, the 24th of June.

  1. Make a mean breakfast

    One thing I pride myself on is my cooking skills. I was blessed to receive the cooking gene from a parent of mine, so it has always been something I excelled at. After my natural alarm clock wakes me up around 06:00 (…), I jump out of bed and make myself a hearty, delicious breakfast. I aim to hit all the macro groups — carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. For this previous Saturday’s breakfast, I made scrambled eggs with onion and lettuce, a sliced Honeycrisp apple drizzled with cinnamon, toast topped with peanut butter and sliced avocado, and cold-brew coffee. Let me tell ya, it was worth every. single. bite.

  2. Clean up and get dressed

    Trust me, no one wants to see this face in the morning. I have bed head, morning breath, and a sleepy demeanor. Before I head out to tackle the day, I go through my morning personal hygiene routine. It normally takes about an hour or so, but it really depends on how long my shower is. And, then I get dressed and head out. The photo below shows what I wore this Saturday, and the links to the items are provided.

    Shirt: J.Crew White Long-sleeve T-shirt

     

    Pants: J.Crew 484 Navy Chinos

    Shoes: Gray Converse

    Watch: 38mm Series One Apple Watch

    Eyeglasses: Warby Parker “Stockton”

    Belt: Target Cognac Belt

    Socks: Nike Black Socks

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  3. Head to Charlotte’s

    I go to this coffee shop at least once a week. Shocker, right? This experience will vary based on whom I am going with and why. If I go alone with the intent on getting some work done, I will order either a 16-ounce hot coffee or cold-brew coffee, head to a corner of the shop, and work from my laptop. This place is perfect for it because it sparks my creativity and inspires me to strive for greatness.

    On the other hand, if I go because I am going on a coffee date, then it is a whole ‘nother ball game. I laugh, talk my butt off, and truly get to know the person/people I go with. I will order the same drink but maybe with some food too (like an acai bowl!), sit in the middle of the coffee shop where the traffic is heavy, turn my iPhone and Apple Watch on silent, and truly enjoy the company I am with. It doesn’t matter if I am doing the former or the latter, I will be at Charlotte’s for well over an hour. For this past Saturday, I did the latter, and it went quite well and was truly enjoyable.

  4. Write in my blog

    When I graduate, I intend on becoming a copywriter. In order to improve my writing to be well enough for this type of field, I must write, write some more, and then write even more. I write for at least thirty minutes a day, whether it is for my blog, in my journal, or for my marketing internship. This way, I can find my weaknesses as a writer, get used to the demands of being a writer, and improve my writing skills. On the 24th of June, I wrote for at least two hours and created both blog posts for this week.

  5. Make lunch

    It has been a pretty productive day for me so far, hasn’t it? And, it is not even noon yet! Between 12:00-12:30, I will begin making lunch. Without fail, I make myself a homemade pizza for lunch on Saturdays. On these pizzas, I use Sweet Baby Rays for the sauce; top them with turkey slices, lettuce, onion, sweet relish, pineapple (WHICH DOES BELONG ON PIZZA.), and shredded mozzarella cheese; and season them with basil, pepper, paprika, sea salt, and garlic salt.

    Yeah, my mouth is watering too. Below I have pictures of all the ingredients and the finished product. I also enjoyed my pizza with some tasty lemon water and honey mustard pretzels. 

  6. Watch a movie

    As you could imagine, I am pretty tired from how productive my day has been so far. So, I decide to lay in bed and watch a movie or two. It all really depends on the mood. For some odd reason, I have been on a Twilight kick lately, so for this past Saturday, I watched part one and two of Breaking Dawn. Makes me reminisce back to when I took my cousins to see it in theaters… Ahh, good times.

  7. Go for a walk

    Because I am a fitness freak, I have to exercise some way, shape, or form every day. Since I refuse to lift weights on the weekends or run on a dreaded treadmill, I will walk the Clarke Drive stretch and back — which comes to about 2.5 miles. A decent walk if you ask me. This also allows me to clear my head and relax. This past Saturday was perfect weather for walking. It was not too hot, not too cold, the sky was clear, and the gnats were minimal.

  8. Devour some dinner

    Dinner time for me is 06:30, and I always make this meal a large one because I know I will not be eating for at least thirteen hours. I focus on protein and carbohydrates for this final meal. This past Saturday I decided to make a honey-drizzled chicken breast, baked beans, cinnamon oatmeal, a mixed salad topped with honey mustard, and lemon water. It was pretty healthy and very filling, which is the goal. Of course, I had a cup of coffee after because, well, coffee is life and I’m addicted.

  9. Take a bath

    Oh, yeah. I am a huge advocate for baths. I will take baths until I am not physically able to. I was feeling a good, calming bath last Saturday, so I took in my cup of coffee, lit my Suit & Tie candle, dimmed the lights, and truly, truly enjoyed myself. 10/10 recommend you all give it a go.

  10. Get ready to take on the night**

    As a 21-year-old college student, you all know what I do on weekends. I go downtown to enjoy an adult beverage (or six). The summer squad and I like to have a couple drinks before we go downtown so we can save some dollar bills. Getting ready and the pre-game session goes from about 22:00 to 23:00, and then we take on the night.

  11. Go downtown**

    Our routine for going downtown is this: start off at Easy Street playing bags and enjoying some drinks (I like brass monkeys), head to either Lot One or 1st & Main to socialize with myriads of people, and ending at the Venue so we can dance. We normally return to the apartment building around 01:45 – 02:00. It is always a good time.

**This is typically what I do on Saturday nights; however none of my friends who go downtown with me were in the area this past Saturday, so I just stayed in and prepared myself for the busy work week and extremely fun weekend ahead. I played a lot of Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate, which was just as fun as going downtown if you ask me.

Well, there you have it. A “typical” Saturday for me. I, personally, love it and have no desire to change it. Some say, “Saturday’s are for the boys,” but I say that they are for “me.”

– Kyle Majerus

Three Must-have Colors in Your Wardrobe

It is 2017, people. It’s time to throw out those graphic Walmart t-shirts and American Eagle jeans you’ve worn for the past four years. They are a part of the past, and it is time to leave them there. With fashion ever-changing and new trends popping up every few months, it can be difficult to keep your wardrobe up-to-date. I thought I would help guide you all in the right direction. I will provide you with the three most versatile colors you need for your wardrobe. This way, you don’t have to keep buying what is “in” because these colors are classic, versatile, and will never go out of style.

1. Navy

I am a huge advocate for the color navy. I wear navy almost every day because is a phenomenal color that it is versatile, eye-catching, and downright classy. What is more, it is the perfect color for every piece of clothing you own – shoes, chinos, shirts, sweaters, suit, etcetera. No matter what, navy pieces of clothing are timeless and can be incorporated into your wardrobe. I, currently, have navy socks, two pairs of navy chinos, a navy v-neck sweater, and a navy rain jacket. I am also looking at getting a navy suit because it is excellent for every occasion. Now, I can incorporate these five pieces of clothing into over 100 outfits. Trust me, it is just that stinking easy. Navy will also always be part of fashion trends, so why not always have it around?

2. Gray

The next color I advise getting your clothes in is gray because it is a wonderful color for every piece of clothing you wear. My two favorite pieces of gray clothing are my gray 484 J.Crew chinos and my Natascha Myers baseball cap. They go well together, too! Nothing like the baseball cap, a light gray sweater, the chinos, and some converse to have a well thought-out, put together look. I encourage you all to get a cap, a sweater, a long-sleeve and a short-sleeve shirt, chinos/pants, and a jacket in gray. Not only do they all pair well together, but they are excellent pieces to pair with black, navy, and white. Just like navy, gray will forever be in fashion.

3. Black

The final must-have color is black. Notice the pattern? The neutral, dark shades I suggest? That is because you simply cannot go wrong with them. They will always be in style. I highly suggest black sweaters and chinos/pants. They can be worn to a more formal event or dressed down for a lunch with a colleague. I wear my H&M black chinos at least twice a week. I love going for a monochromatic look with a black sweater and the black chinos, but then add a pop of white with my sneakers. The other look I normally rock is more random; I will throw on a light gray sweater, black chinos, and my white sneakers. The variety of color makes every piece stand out and a focal point of their own. You really can never go wrong with that.

There you have it, ladies and gentleman. My three must-have color suggestions for your wardrobe. You can wear them for years and years without any worry of them fading in popularity.

– Kyle Majerus

Minimal and Versatile: The V-neck Sweater

Hello, all,

It has been quite some time since my last post. Sorry about that, I have just been bombarded with schoolwork the past two semesters, working three jobs,  tutoring students, attempting to start a podcast, serving as Co-Editor-in-Chief of a literary magazine, and working on getting published in an online news magazine. Busy, busy, busy!  While that may be the case, it seems to be time to get back into my blogging. So, I decided to make a quick post about my minimal and versatile v-neck sweaters.

As stated in my previous blogs, I tend to draw towards outfits and pieces that can be used on several different occasions, can be dressed up or dressed down with the slightest of changes, are minimal, and are neutral in color. And when I came across these two v-neck sweaters, I just knew they were must-haves in my wardrobe.

I would like to note that both of these sweaters are the same brand, Nautica, and retail at $59.50. However, I went to the local TJ-Maxx (God bless them, right?), and bought both of them for $20. I know, what a steal. I instantly had my eyes on these sweaters because they were not only wonderful pieces for my wardrobe, but they also were affordable.

I have put together three different looks with these sweaters that cover every aspect of society:

The formal event: One way you can wear these sweaters is dressing them up for a wine tasting party downtown. Wearing a black sweater over a crisp, white dress shirt; dark gray chinos or trousers, and black oxfords is a safe and minimal look that everyone appreciates. (If you want to go for a more “hip” vibe, you may switch the black oxfords for a pair of brown dress boots like I tend to do.)

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Walking the streets: Or, maybe you want to blend business casual and street wear. An excellent way to do this is to wear a navy sweater over an untucked white dress shirt, light gray trousers, and white sneakers. This look is for those who want to feel a bit edgy and attract some attention. I have rocked this look a few times this year, and, surprisingly, I get positive feedback every time. So, take the risk, blend these polar opposites, anything can be worn as long as you wear it with confidence.

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Downtown clubs: These sweaters also work for a night downtown. Wear either the black or navy sweater over a same colored t-shirt, some dark gray or navy chinos, and white sneakers or brown dress boots. But be wary, your white sneakers may not be so white after an hour or so – trust me. When I went to the clubs for the first time, I wore the look below but with brown dress boots, and, I kid you not, I was the best-dressed guy in the club.

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The v-neck sweater may appear to be for formal events or business parties only, but as you can see, they can be easily dressed up or down. It all depends on what you wear with it and how presentable you attempt to be. It is all up to you with these outstanding pieces.

Black and navy v-neck sweaters: Nautica                                                   http://www.nautica.com/v-neck-sweater/SR6430.html?dwvar_SR6430_color=713#uuid=fa3ff91f95e155375a9c25a312

White dress shirt: H&M Strech Shirt Slim fit                 http://www.hm.com/us/product/48533?article=48533-B&cm_vc=SEARCH

Dary gray chinos: JCrew 484 stretch (currently not selling gray) https://www.jcrew.com/p/mens_category/pants/484/stretch-chino-pant-in-484-fit/e1589

Light gray trousers: H&M                                                        http://www.hm.com/us/product/55624?article=55624-A&cm_vc=SEARCH

White sneakers: Steve Madden Ringwald (discontinued so I put two similar pairs). http://www.stevemadden.com/product/BONDED/242366.uts?selectedColor=WHITE OR  https://www.net-a-porter.com/us/en/product/729009?cm_mmc=ProductSearchPLA-_-US-_-Sneakers-Shoes-CommonProjects-Google&gclid=COvG34ChvdICFUe5wAodSNMESQ

Dress boots: Aldo (Also discontinued so I put a link to their books and Thursday Boots). http://www.aldoshoes.com/us/en_US/Men/Boots/c/230  OR https://thursdayboots.com/collections/boots

 

I hope you all enjoyed this blog. I truly intend on getting back into the groove of posting once a week. I want this hobby to become something more someday. More to come!

P.S. Terribly sorry for the horrendous photos. I do not have the funds for a high-quality camera or a photographer; instead, I just rely on my iPhone and setting it up with a timer. Hopefully one day I can upgrade to either a real camera or a lens for my iPhone.

 

-Kyle Majerus