Monday, June 27, 2016

Meanwhile, back in Hong Kong

Here's a reason I wish I was in Hong Kong right now...

Starting this past Friday the 24th, eleven independent designers launched Urban Couture, a multi-brand pop up store located in Central for two weeks. These eleven designers, most based in Hong Kong, but a few from Canada and one from Columbia, have collaborated to put together an amazing collection of items for your shopping delight.

There is a little something for everyone, even you fellows! Have a look (and click on the brand names to get more info about their products):

Flirty womanswear from What the Frock

Some Hong Kong inspired accessories and bags from Louella Odie 

Upscale lingerie from Columbian designer Suki Cohen
 Luxury swim wear from Mer Culture Swimwear

Some classy men's timepieces from Nordic

Organic babywear from Cicogne Bebe

Contemporary womenswear by TwS

And, even some vintage from Granny Puckett Vintage

Also at the pop up are accessories for men and women by Protest A and Flawless Beaux and high end handbags and belts by Awad.

After an exciting opening night, they will stay open from 11am to 9pm each day until July 7th. If you're in the neighborhood, you really must hurry over to see some of the lovely items these designers have curated for you at this pop up. 

I've got some of my Hong Kong designer favorites with me this summer. It's not quite the same as being able to browse through the selection at the Urban Couture pop up, but I'll pretend I did and live vicariously through those of you who are lucky enough to pop in.

Friday, June 24, 2016

My Vintage Road Trip: Summer 2016

Summer vacation in the United States. Think road trip. You need snacks. You need a good playlist. And, you need a destination.

There hasn't been a summer that hasn't had some kind of road trip for our family. Whether it be from NYC out to the Hamptons, from Denver Airport up to Estes Park, or the usual shuttle between Oglesby, IL to Madison, WI, it's a quintessential part of our summer holidays.

A few weeks ago, the hubby found an awesome website called The Vintage Map, which has listings for some excellent thrift shops, flea markets and vintage boutiques in major cities around the world. Seeing this website gave me an idea for a different kind of road trip this year. 

A vintage road trip.

So, that's what I'll be doing this summer. I've plotted out some of my favorite spots and planned to visit some new ones, too. We're going to explore a bit of the scene here in LA and then head to the Midwest, where hidden treasures abound. I'll be sharing my vintage road trip here, with posts that detail my experiences, tips and the treasures I find. I'll be visiting antique markets, vintage boutiques, estate sales and thrift/charity shops and I'll share my observations about each experience.

So, fasten your seat belts and come along with me. You're in charge of keeping the music going and letting me know about any stops you'd like me to make along the way.

*** All pictures from previous summer travels and vintage treasure hunting.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Fashion with purpose: Les Sublimes 
 When people ask me what I'm passionate about, what always jumps into my head is sustainable fashion. It's the reason I wear vintage and secondhand clothing. And it's one way that I like to minimize my impact on the environment, given that the fashion industry is the second most polluting industry in our world. 

I'm always excited when I see fashion brands embracing sustainable techniques and making the environment a part of their ethos. It's encouraging.

So, here's good news then...there's a brand new fashion brand on the scene, launching today. They're a French brand based in Paris and they're challenging the traditional sustainable fashion model with their no compromise consumption. They want you to have it all.

Les Sublimes has a small collection of wardrobe essentials that definitely channel that classic Parisian chic style. I'm confident they're the pieces you'll be reaching for most in your wardrobe to mix and match and make your own. 

This start up collection is made up of six pieces: two tanks, two tees and two dresses. They use two different sustainable fabrics and all manufacturing is in France, by Confection Perard, a second generation family-run atelier in Renaison, outside of Lyon.

And have a look at their designs; how can you pick a favorite? I think this black dress is high on my list. I really love how each piece is so simple and classic that you know that it will get many wears and look different with each styling.
As I mentioned, they're launching today June 21st and the entire collection is available for pre-sale over on their Indiegogo crowdfunding page. Here is the link

If I haven't given you enough good reasons to check them out, then let me give you one last incentive: for piece they sell, the company will work with their non-profit partners to provide education for one underprivileged girl for one month. It's feel good fashion at it's best.

For more information about this new brand, visit their website here.

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Links a la Mode, June 16th

Talking summer style over on Independent Fashion Bloggers, including my post on wearing vintage through the summer months. Sneak some time away for yourself today and read some of these other Links a la Mode posts.

LALM June 16 Post

Links à la Mode, June 16
SPONSOR: Shopbop Lisa Marie Fernandez, SUNDRY Tops, Salvatore Ferragamo Bags, Chloe Oliver, PARTYSKIRTS, Shaffer, Cutoff Shorts, Hats, Flip Flops, Men's Oakley

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Sustainable gift guide for Father's Day

 I really think that Mother's Day and Father's Day gifts should come from the children and be small tokens of love, but every once in a while it's nice to buy a gift. I usually only get a gift on Father's Day when there is something for my hubby that has caught my eye and I need a little excuse to get it for him. My kiddos take care of us very sweetly, and all on their own. I love my little breakfasts made entirely by them.

Still, if you're looking for some ideas for a last minute Father's Day gift, here are a few Eco-friendly ideas for you:

If you choose to go the route of clothing, then I'd suggest some casual basics that you know will always get some wear. Khaki shorts or a denim chambray button down shirt will always work in this situation. To do this sustainably, you can head to a store like Grana, where pieces are produced in small quantities with careful consideration of quality fabric. With classic design, these are sure to get 30+ wears and will not go out of style. You can also visit a store that is local to your own area, too. Supporting local is always sustainable.

When I think of my hubby, I know that he would love a good vinyl record. This is an easy thing to do sustainably if you know of a good vintage record shop. You can also try your chances at thrift stores or estate sales, but you may not be guaranteed to find the artist you're looking for. Record shops usually have a section for used records at reasonable prices.


Another fun and nostalgic gift to find secondhand is a vintage pint glass. The older and more retro the label, the better. What dad wouldn't use and appreciate a pint glass. It's sure to get lots of use.

 Another way to think sustainably for Father's Day gifts is to buy a gift that guarantees a fun experience as a family, like movie tickets. Summer is a perfect time for family movies with so many new kids movies on offer. Our kiddos are looking forward to seeing Finding Dory. 

 These are just a few suggestions for gifts that I know my hubby would like, but of course you should consider what you know about the dad you're buying for. When I think of a gift for my own Dad, I'd be looking at books since he's a voracious reader. Those are easy to find second hand.

I tend to avoid the gifts they normally advertise for dads -- things like gadgets and electronics -- because they tend to be gimmicky. The kind of thing that a person thinks is a good idea, but it gets taken out of the box once. The best kind of Father's Day gifts are the ones that the kids make. I've taken a peek at what the littlest one has made for her dad. He'll love it.

***This post was inspired by Tommy John, also a good place to get some Father's Day gifts.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Beating the heat in vintage

After my last post, where I lamented the end of vintage blazer season in Hong Kong, I decided to return to my more cheery way of looking on the bright side and remind you (actually, myself mostly) about what vintage you can wear for summer.

You see, all is not lost! Summer is a time to simplify and de-clutter. That means less costume jewellery, fewer layers, sun hats and less complicated vintage styles. I love a good vintage dress,  so I all I have to do is rethink my silhouette and fabric. That's good news! Over the last few summers, I've found some really neat vintage pieces, perfect for summer.

 Lately, I look for natural fabrics when shopping for vintage, like vintage linen and cotton. And I look for looser silhouettes, like the drop waist dress style or oversized shirt dress styles.

My go-to vintage shop of late is Retro Rhapsody on Etsy. Store owner and vintage curating genius Kenia has the best selection of beautiful pieces in cottons and linens (among others). Her shop has some lovely minimalist dresses, skirts and blouses both in solid colors and subtle prints. She helped me discover a new love for earth tones like this latest rust colored dress.

With a few carefully selected accessories like my cuff from The Mauve Hour, a vintage Salvatore Ferragamo belt and this secondhand Cambridge Satchel, I'm ready for the warmer temps.

I'll definitely be packing some of these along with my vintage for my summer holiday.

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Blazer-ing hot

Much as I want to think I can keep wearing my vintage blazers in this warmer weather, I just can't. The Hong Kong humidity has beaten me. It wins. Grrr.

I mean, I gave it a worthy effort. I really did. I thought I'd be oh so smug and write a post about how you can still wear blazers in summer weather. It was planned out perfectly in my head.  All you have to do, I was going to say, is wear shorts and a tee.

Heck, it's so foolproof that I can even wear my booties for a little while longer, I thought. And I managed to survive for most of the day dressed in my blazer and booties with my shorts and tee. And my hair down. All day! That is until I asked the hubby to help with taking these photos.

We were catching the end of the daylight which made the lighting difficult for photos, and there was absolutely NO breeze. After cooling off in our car, we snapped a few pictures only to realize that they didn't turn out and we had to redo them all.

I was dripping. Let's just say glistening (I'm sure you can see).

Goodbye vintage blazers, I'll see you again in October...if I'm lucky.

Vintage blazer comes from a friend Jade's mother's collection.

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