Wednesday, May 16, 2018

My Moroccan Adventure & Links a la Mode, May 17th

We're about one month away from our next big break from school. Summer vacation! Such a perk, I tell you. I love being a teacher for the summers away (among other things).

So, in light of the fact that I have been flat out busy and don't have any outfit photos to post, and the fact that this trip to Morocco was a dream come true, here are just a few of the images.

The sad news is that right at the end of my trip to Morocco (like on the plane in Hong Kong), I lost my big SLR camera with all my own photos from the trip. I was gutted. It was such a dream to be there and I was so excited about learning to use my camera better along with all the photos that I took. I couldn't sleep. Enough time has passed now that I've forgotten what images were even on there and I realize that while I don't have the pictures, I'll always have the memories.

These pictures were taken by my friend Tomas Ovalle, a photographer I met on the trip. He along with my buddy Geoff the photo teacher at school (seen below) taught me many new things on my camera which I will some day have the opportunity to learn again. See more of Tomas's pictures here.

So, while I sit and dream of our summer vacation and all the adventures we'll have going to places we know, I will also dream about the places I don't know and having opportunities to explore them. The blue city Chefchaouen seen in all these photos was by far my favorite. As a girl whose favorite color is blue, I was transported. When I close my eyes and think back to my week in Morocco, I see blues.

Links à la Mode, May 17th, 2018
SPONSOR: Shopbop Zimmermann, No. 21 Shoes, Private Party Swimwear, McGuire Denim, Tome, BaubleBar, Striped Bikinis, Embellished Slides, One Shoulder Gowns, Men's Sundek USA

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

How to Wear a Jacket When it's Not Jacket Weather & Links a la Mode, May 10th

I have more jackets and coats than I care to admit, so needless to say when the weather warms and I have to tuck them away for the season, I get a little sad.

But then I remembered the sneaky way I keep wearing some of my layers. First, it helps to have light jackets in your wardrobe. This white mesh like jacket was a hand me down from a friend. It came with matching shorts that were a little too tiny for my comfort, but the jacket has the perfect element of structure and shape that I love.

I have a few other lightweight jackets and kimonos that I've been mixing in since the weather has turned. 

The other trick to wearing a jacket when it's not jacket weather is to keep your layers underneath nice and light. Tank tops are a perfect layer for warmer weather. I still feel so lucky that I have mild weather that allows this kind of dressing. I don't miss freezing winter temps or soggy spring days.

Another trick to continuing to wear jackets in the warmer months is to style them up with short skirts, culottes or even shorts! The blazer/jacket and shorts or skirt vibe is such 80s goodness.

And finally, ditch the boots or booties and throw on some sandals to complete the warmer weather jacket look.

Links à la Mode, May 10th, 2018
SPONSOR: Amazon's Shopbop Alix, Mar Y Sol Beach Bags, Le Specs Sunglasses, CLONE, Krewe, Katharine Kidd, One Piece Swimwear, Denim Skirts, Slides, Men's TOM WOOD

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Who Wore Your Clothes?

I know last week was Fashion Revolution week, marking the 5th anniversary of the Rana Plaza tragedy. It's normally a week that I dedicate my blog and Instagram posts to highlighting the issues of textile waste and over consumption of fast fashion.

But I didn't this year. I took a posting break and I needed it. There is still just too much going on personally at the moment so I wanted to focus on those things and find a way to feel refreshed.

Last weekend, I took a short girls trip to Bali. The planning had been over half a year in the making, so the ladies and I were all excited to finally see the weekend arrive. Just being in the company of some girlfriends was the rejuvenation I needed. It is true about women building each other up; we nurture. We all should take time to spend just being us again (without other disruptions).

I am thankful for that sisterhood of friends and for the laughs we share. The Future really is Female, I think. And, my sisterhood of women friends extends beyond just those in real life. I have so many who I've connected with via Instagram, too. Real, supportive, amazing women.

One such lady is Kenia, who runs two gorgeous Instagram/Etsy shops: @smallneeds and @retrorhapsody. This vintage silk tropical fish robe came from her shop, and when she sold it to me, she shared the story of it's owner. Apparently, the previous owner was a local artist in the Miami area, where my girl Kenia is based. Conni Gordon was a well respected and eccentric art teacher with distinct style who believed age was just a number.  Read for yourself, here. She sounded awesome.

I hope that I can embody that same spirit as the new owner of this garment. 

I know Fashion Revolution week wants us to ask Who Made My Clothes and I do, but as a lover of secondhand/vintage clothing, I'll always wonder Who Wore My Clothes, too. 

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Spring Pastels

As a self professed lover of color and bold prints and everything bright, I found myself quite at a loss this morning when I was trying to get dressed and looking for pastel shades to wear. First, I was looking for pastels. What? And second, I had none.

Okay, not none. Some. Just not the color I wanted. I have peachy pinks, but lately I want pinky pinks. And lavendary purples and buttery yellows. Or baby blues. BABY BLUES! I've never really loved baby blues. I prefer stronger blues like royal blue. So, this has me thrown for a loop.

And the really frustrating thing is that I don't really have a nearby thrift shop to poke through like I do when I visit the States. At times like this when I long to pick up just a few on trend pieces, I miss being able to pop into Savers or Salvation Army. Or an estate sale. A charity shop! Sigh.

But, this serves as a good reminder that I don't need to rush off and fill my closet with more clothes. It reminds me that there's a good bit of creativity involved in a challenge like this and I remember to shop my own closet. So, I did.

I bought nothing new. I wore what I had. I got my pastel fix. I was able to dig out this lightweight blazer from Vic & Lily and my Thrifted Sisters peachy skirt.

Okay, it helps to have a few new accessories to play with. The sunnies were too fun to pass up, so I grabbed them. The slides are actually from a shop that sells super local, cheap stuff like pegs, hangers, kitchen towels, etc. I couldn't decide if they were super ugly or super cute. Maybe they're both. They came in two colors, red or lavender. 

Sometimes a few fresh accessories make everything feel like new (even when they were never new to start with). Go on, try it. Shop your closet and change things up with some small new thing. It will work, I promise.

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Muumuu Love

There is no way to make the word muumuu sound attractive, is there. I don't think so. But I'd argue that wearing a muumuu doesn't have to be unattractive. Certainly, if you refer to a muumuu as a caftan, that helps, but I don't think this one counts as a caftan. I looked up definitions of muumuu and it distinctly says "shapeless", "brightly colored" and "floral print" in many of the results of my searches. A caftan just sounds more exotic, if you ask me.

Wearing a muumuu has many benefits. First, it's shapeless and ladies we all appreciate that, right? It's a great way to just feel relaxed in an article of clothing without worry that something isn't sitting right, or protruding or clinging in an unsightly way. Feeling uninhibited or anxious about fit is really liberating, right? 

Another benefit of wearing a muumuu in our Hong Kong climate is that it doesn't cling to your body. With the humidity making a fast return, I know I'll really appreciate this aspect of the dress.

The trick to making sure I'm not sitting around in a housedress like Mrs Roper is to style up a muumuu with dressy details. I decided this would be a fun dress to wear for my uncle's lauch event for his new book on Hong Kong food called Hong Kong Food City (click title to order a copy).

And as I look back on these pictures, it's the details that made the outfit pop. Black heels with my glitter pink socks, my secondhand Alexander Wang handbag, and of course a hat. I feel like the outfit is equal parts boho and chic which was just right for hanging with some pretty cool chefs and other foodie type influencers. And, of course there were some yummy nibbles,  but I didn't have to worry about my waistline (yet another benefit of wearing muumuus)! I went to this event with my dad which made it all the more special.

I have a sneaky confession to make, though. The dress is not vintage or secondhand. It's H&M. I justified buying it with the coupon I received for donating some clothes for their recycling program. That still makes it a little eco-friendly, right?  Please say yes.

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Defining Style: The Culotte Coord, Sport Socks & Velvet Platforms Edition and Links a la Mode, April 5th

Style is always evolving. As such, I find myself in a reflective moment as I make an attempt at defining mine. Oh, you mean you don't do this? Okay, well indulge me this rambling will be akin to my musings about the terms fashion blogger vs. style blogger.

I mean, as I look at these pictures from a shoot several weeks ago, I kind of scratch my head and wonder. How would you describe this look? This sport sock with velvet platforms with a culotte coord and patterned coat look!

When I tell people I blog about vintage fashion, I feel like a certain image accompanies that description, but I'm not sure that really fits me. Yes, I love vintage clothing. I love those vintage bloggers who can channel a decade - from head to toe - to the tee. I'm not that kind of blogger, though. I mix decades and often get them confused. I mix vintage pieces with contemporary pieces.  And, I tend to be inspired by character looks not decades, though I know as soon as I say that, it's not quite right either.

Take this look, for example. I cannot tell you what character I'm inspired by, but I can tell you that I was going through a phase of being super inspired by over the top costume-y clothing, specifically drag queen looks. Velvet platforms, huge sunglasses, velvet, overdone embellishments like faux fur or sequins. Literally everyday, I was incorporating some of these things into my outfits.

Now that it's spring and the weather has changed, those embellishments are harder to mix in. Don't worry, I haven't given up. I'm still wearing them with my spring florals and pastels.  So yeah, not purely vintage, though certain decades provide lots of character inspo. And, I'm mindful of trends, though not driven by them or a follower of them, per se. 

I recently reread an interview I did with Baglady Basics years ago and when I was asked to describe my style, I said "vintage-inspired, eclectic and feminine." I remember saying feminine because at the time, the dress was my go-to article of clothing always. I wouldn't say the same is true now, but I also wouldn't say that how I dress is not feminine. Rather, it's a new way of realizing what feminine dressing is for me. It's bold. It's outspoken. It's unexpected and confident.

So, there you have it. I'm not sure I've quite defined my style, but I have acknowledged it's evolution. And, I've said what it's not, which is as good as definining it in my book.

This post has been selected by Independent Fashion Bloggers for Links a la Mode for April 5th. Have a read of some of the other posts.

Links à la Mode, April 5th, 2018
SPONSOR: Shopbop, Moschino, Rebecca Taylor Dresses, Kate Spade Swimwear, BaubleBar, RHIE, DONNI, Raw Denim, Flare Pants, Army Jackets, Men's Polo Ralph Lauren

Monday, March 26, 2018

Styling The R Collective

When my friends from Redress asked if I would style up one of The R Collective upcycled blazers, I knew exactly what I wanted to do. These blazers all have fun cut outs on the back and I thought how interesting it would be to showcase that detail by wearing it backwards.

So, that's exactly what I did.

Most outfits I post are real outfits that I actually wore, but I have to be honest, this one was perhaps a bit to avant garde to wear to work.  I love it, though.

Because wearing the blazer backwards is already outrageous, I thought playing up the accessories would be fun. Big tassel earrings, a flower pin, fishnet socks with faux pearl trim and these wacky Zara mules. 

I'd wear this on a night out with the hubby. Some kind of date night, for sure. He'd probably roll his eyes at the fact that I'd be wearing my blazer backwards, but love me all the same.

I love how wearing it backwards creates a kind of sexy back detail. To play that detail up, I made sure to wear my tube top. It also helped with the horizontal cutouts at the back (styled in front) not be cluttered with other layers. 

This blazer is designed by Redress Design Award winners Kevin Germanier and Victor Chu and made from rescued luxury fabrics as part of The R Collective's first Trailblazer Collection. Currently, The R Collective also features some lovely knitwear from most recent winner Kate Morris. 

Submissions for the next cycle of the Redress Design Award just closed this month and I'm already looking forward to seeing what sustainable fashion designers emerge. Stay tuned!

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