Thursday, February 23, 2017

London Diaries: Day Three

Three days in and the only way to start the day is with a blowout. Sacrificing valuable suitcase space to pack a hair dryer is out of the question, so I head to Hershesons Blow Dry Bar for a blowout before starting the day. Located in the basement of Topshop at Oxford Circus, Hershesons is your best bet for a super efficient, quality blowout that will last at least two days, possibly three with liberal use of dry shampoo. I usually visit at least twice during my trips to London and I always walk out looking and feeling like a million bucks. And let's face it, the convenience of not having to do your hair while on vacation is priceless.

After my hair appointment, I hit the shops on Oxfords street including Miss Selfridge, Mango, Pull & Bear, Zara, River Island, and Next. The best part about shopping in the UK is the sizing. You can seriously find everything from petite to plus size, maternity clothes that don't suck, tall sizes in longer lengths, and a full array of cool kids clothes.

The three main fashion trends for women found in all the shops on the high street are the leather jacket, the concert tee, and florals with dark grounds, which are normally reserved for fall/winter. We're also still seeing the cut-out trend take on multiple forms this season including sweaters, t-shirts, and dresses. The sheer overlay trend is also going strong and morphs into flowy tops, skirts, and even footwear (as shown above).

If you have kids or want to shop for them while you're in London, don't miss Hamleys. Founder William Hamley opened his first store in 1760 and added a second shop on Regent street in 1881. The store was bombed five times during World War II and is still going strong featuring five floors of toys and games for children.

After hitting the high street it's a must that you visit Liberty of London. The store was originally opened in 1875 by Arthur Lasenby Liberty and is well-known for its floral prints. The store is an experience in itself and has a full Manolo Blahnik wall of shoes, a fabulous selection of printed silk scarves, a Le Labo perfume counter, a Nike lab, a gorgeous assortment of Needle and Thread dresses, plus a fabulous flower shop that looks beautiful and smells delightful.

Later that night Jeff and I snuck away for a date night in the city and headed to St. Christopher's Place, which is a little area off Oxford street with shops and restaurants. We ended up at a restaurant called Cocochan for sushi and dim sum. The ambiance was great, the food was delicious, and the service was excellent. We will definitely be back.

We've packed in a lot to our first few days in London and one thing is certain, my feet and legs are killing me. If you're heading to London you should know that you're going to walk miles every day. yes, that was miles with an "s" at the end. Despite getting around in a black cab of taking the tube, there will inevitably be walking involved so get ready for sore legs at the end of the day. I cope by stretching and soaking my legs in a salt bath when possible, it should be noted that I have not surrendered to wearing flats. Yet.

If you've forgotten something at home, don't worry. You can get anything your little heart desires in London.

If you forgot beauty products like face wash:

  • Look for a Superdrug or Boots store. These chain stores are similar to Bartell's or Walgreens and have everything from beauty products to pharmacy items. Some stores even carry snacks like fruit packs and groceries. You can also find adapters here if you forgot a converter at home and need to charge your electronics. 
If you need baby items:
  • Look for a Baby Care store. They carry everything from clothing to baby items like bath tubs, strollers, and high chairs. You can also get diapers, wipes, and bottles here. 
If you need to stock your mini fridge at the hotel:
  • Waitrose - For grocery items like milk, juice, fresh fruits and vegetables, and breakfast items for the hotel. They also have a great assortment of manages if you need to stock up. 
  • Tesco - Here in the UK Tesco isn't a gas station, it's a convenience store. You'll find chips, snacks, desserts including donuts from Krispy Kreme, and wine. 
Until next time!

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

London Diaries: Day Two

Jet lag is the worst. We woke up throughout the night despite our best efforts to stay asleep and finally woke up around 10 a.m. Fortunately it was sunny today which made it easier to get up and get going. Our first stop today was Kensington Palace. Originally my plan was to see the Princess Diana fashion exhibit, but we realized on arrival that it doesn't actually open until later this week. So instead we checked out Victoria Revealed. The exhibit is inspired by the Queen's own journals and gives an intimate account of her life. She was just eighteen when she became Queen of England. If you haven't been watching the series on PBS you should start right now. If you were a Downton Abbey fan, it definitely helps fill the void.

After the museum we walked over to the Princess Diana Memorial Playground. It's a beautiful place for kids to escape the city and play. The gated park has multiple play areas including a sand pit with a giant ship for kids to climb. There's also a cafe with drinks and snacks for kiddos who work up an appetite. This is a fun park to explore. (Note: The nearest tube stop is Queensway station)

After the park we took the tube over to Bond street for lunch at the Selfridges Food Hall. I didn't realize department store dining was a "thing" until I started coming to London. You can seriously spend the entire day shopping and eating your way through London via department stores. In addition to a rotating-themed rooftop restaurant, Selfridges has a casual food court downstairs featuring Yo! Sushi, EAT, Lola Cupcakes, grocery items, and more. Upstairs on level four you'll find a multi-vendor Selfridges Kitchen with salads, deli items, and other fast-food options, including a full Starbucks. There's also an Oyster and Champagne Bar, a sandwich shop, and multiple full-service dining options within the store. There's truly something for everyone which makes it an easy and convenient stop for families.

After lunch we shop the store and check out Material World which asks the question, "What on Earth Are you Wearing?" The campaign features 8 sustainable designers that each represent a different material including leather, denim, wool, cotton, and linen.  Featured brands include California-based Tortoise Denim, British Knitwear label Tengri, Swedish label Deadwood, and wool by Le Kilt. The Oxford street windows also feature displays from the campaign and are worth checking out.

Next stop: Harrods. If I were traveling alone I would allocate a full day just to explore Harrods, a luxury department store in Knightsbridge. The store occupies a 5-acre site and has over 300+ departments and over 300,000 people visit the store each day. It's kind of a maze inside so I would recommend downloading the store app or picking up a map when you arrive. This time we took the kids to see Toy Kingdom and explore new arrivals. When I have time to shop solo I'll definitely be back to peruse womenswear and of course, the shoe hall.

Last stop of the day, Byron Burger, which just happens to be close to our hotel. They have a cult following in the UK because it's one of the only burger joints that serves a decent American-style hamburger. I recommend the Bun-free skinny cheese burger, but if you're adventurous, you might like the "Cluckosaurus Rex", which is a fried chicken breast, onion ring, bacon, cheese, pickles, BBQ sauce and jalapeños. It's not for the faint of heart.

Until tomorrow!

Monday, February 20, 2017

London Diaries: Day One

Back in 2009 my husband and I visited London on our honeymoon and instantly fell in love with the city. The sights, the sounds, the shopping. There's so much to soak in and experience. When we decided to have kids, we agreed that we wouldn't give up our love of travel, so now we bring them with us. They love the journey overseas and together we savor every trip.

We arrived in London on Sunday via the red-eye from Seattle. It was a 9-hour direct flight that arrived at London Heathrow around noon. I've never been a good sleeper on a plane so by the time we arrive I'm exhausted yet excited to be back and determined to stay awake until the evening so that my body can adjust to the time change.

Once we take the 45-minute cab ride into the city and check in to our hotel in South Kensington we unpack and get settled in our room. We've stayed all over London on our trips, but always near Hyde Park so that the kids have somewhere to play. This time around we are at the Vanderbilt hotel but we've also stayed at (and loved) The Kensington Hotel, The Cumberland, and the Crowne Plaza. They are all within walking distance of the Victoria & Albert Museum, The Natural History Museum, and Harrods.

The most important thing to do upon arrival is to get to know your neighborhood. We always make it a point to figure out the nearest tube stop for the London Underground. It's the cheapest/fastest way to get around the city. This time we are closest to Gloucester Rd. so we head over to buy Oyster cards. You can buy these via the automated machines at the tube station and load whatever dollar amount you want. Then you just swipe in and swipe out to pay your fare. It's super easy.

Our first adventure was taking the tube to Leicester Square on the West End of London to check out the Lego store. It's the largest Lego store in the world and features two floors of Legos. We had to wait in a 10-minute line (aka a "queue") before getting inside. It was worth it. The store has several photo opps including a red Lego brick phonebooth and a wall featuring the city of London, in brick form. They also offer a "Lego Mosaic" experience that involves a quick pic in the photobooth and getting a mosaic Lego portrait back, made entirely out of bricks. It's pretty cool actually and costs 99 pounds.

After the Lego store, we rode the Tube back to South Kensington and headed to Waitrose, the local grocery store, to stock up on drinks and snacks for our hotel. (This store closes early on Sunday so be sure to check the store hours before heading over.) London is a picnic-ready town so it's easy to find things like half-bottles of wine, ready-to-go meals, and even pre-mixed drinks like rum & coke.

If you can, stay up as late as possible on the night you arrive so that your body clock adjusts to local time. We all passed out around 8 p.m. and woke up throughout the night before finally waking up the next morning around 10 a.m. That first night can be a little rough, but if you come without kids, I would definitely recommend a late night coffee or cocktail to get you through so that you are well-rested for day two.

See you then!

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Fashion Bloggers: Here are 5 Reasons you can't miss the Style Summit

My love affair with blogging started back in 2008 when I launched my first site, Seattle Boutique Blogspot. I have fond memories of staying up late into the night to publish posts about local boutiques and emerging designers. Back then this info could only be found on a handful of websites and I was thrilled to have a platform to help showcase all the cool things happening in the city. 

My blog was originally designed as a shopping resource to help readers discover new boutiques in their own backyard and encourage them to shop local. I spent hours writing shopping guides organized by neighborhood and spent weekends investigating new shops around town. It was through the blogging scene that I first came to meet some of my favorite like-minded lifestyle bloggers in the city including Jess Estrada of, Cassandra LaValle of Coco Kelley, Andrea Wingert of Skinny Purse, and Alix Rose of We would gather on the fringe of fashion events and talk about life, our day jobs, and of course, the fashion items we were currently coveting. 

Fast-forward nearly a decade and the style blogging scene in Seattle is now home to an amazingly diverse community of voices who are developing new niches and creating content that is keeping readers coming back for more. I am so proud to be part of this fashion blogging family and love any opportunity to bring the group together, meet new faces, and discuss the breakneck speed of blogging today. The Style Summit is an extension of that effort, designed to get people offline to meet in real life and talk about the things that matter. "How do you connect with brands you want to work with?" "How do you ask for money?" "Who takes your pictures?" "How do you grow your social media accounts?" These are the conversations happening at fashion events anyway, so who not bring style bloggers together for formal conversations featuring in-the-know brands and bloggers? 

#1- We just announced entrepreneur Alan Gertner as the Keynote speaker. He's been featured by Fast Company, The Globe & Mail, The Huffington Post, and Trend Hunter, plus he's got an inspirational message to spread about finding the work you're meant to do and embracing the journey along the way. 

#2- The Style Summit is the best place to connect with other style bloggers in the city who will help you grow your blog and get involved in the Seattle style scene. 

#3- SO MUCH has changed in the blogging world since we did this event last year and our featured speakers are ready and willing to share coveted insight from their brands that can help you stay competitive in a crowded marketplace. 

#4- You'll be inspired by our featured style bloggers who have leveraged their blogging experience to launch businesses. We are thrilled to be hosting Moorea Seal for the second year in a row. She's been featured by Forbes, Oprah magazine, Entrepreneur, The National Retail Federation, and countless fashion magazines. This year she'll celebrate the third anniversary of her brick-and-mortar store in Belltown and she's gearing up to share her top strategies for brand growth and development. 

#5- Because the Style Summit is a day to call our own. The top agenda is to connect, collaborate and come together as a community. It's going to be an epic day. Don't miss out on your chance to be part of the action!

// The Details // 

100+ style bloggers. Incredible panelists. Thoughtful discussions. One-day-only. 

What: Gossip & Glamour Style Summit, exclusively for fashion and lifestyle bloggers in Seattle

When: Saturday, March 25, 2017

Where: Thompson Seattle 

Time: 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. 

Tickets: Available via Eventbrite click here for more info. 

Hashtag: #SEAstylesummit

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Valentine's Day Gift Guide: Seattle Edition

Valentine's Day is Tuesday, February 14th and there's still time to find something local that your sweetheart with love. Here are 13 gifts that you can pick up locally because we all know you're a last-minute shopper. Guilty as charged. And yes, 13 is my lucky number. Enjoy!

Perfect for soft layering, this Superfine cashmere scoop sweater by local designer Paychi Guh is a sweet pick. Available locally at Juniper boutique in Madrona, $385.

Need something sweet and easy? Pick up a cheeky card and a box of Fran's Chocolates for a friend. With four locations in the Seattle area including Bellevue and University Village, there's definitely a store near you. Shown: 7-pc. salted caramels, $15.
For glamour girls, these Pink Sapphire and Diamond Halo ring from Blue Nile is a beautiful bet. Locals should also check out the Blue Nile Webroom at Bellevue Square for a full selection of Valentine's Day gifts.

Valentine's Day may come and go, but the scent of love and roses will remain in the ir with this sweet Olivine Atelier beauty mist. Available locally at Queen Anne Dispatch, Essenza, and Ship Song. 

Perfectly pink and sassy enough to brighten up any outfit, the Fusion Heritage shoe by Brooks Running is perfectly priced at $68.99. Also available in red. Pick-up locally at the Brooks Trailhead store in Fremont on Stone Way.

Jewelry fans will love the Druzy Quartz Ring from JJ Caprices, $98. Perfect for date night! Adjustable band for the perfect fit. Local pick-up available. Handmade in Turkey.

Brighten up an overcast day with these colorful Radient Bella sunglasses available at Moorea Seal in Belltown, $24. Multiple colors available. 

For the ultimate kissable lips, don't miss the limited-edition Saint Laurent "Love your Lips" 3-piece set $65 available at Neiman Marcus in Bellevue. Say goodbye to dry winter lips and hello to pigment-rich color and shine. 

You deserve a little TLC too, so splurge on the Chocolate, Strawberry, and Roses Facial at The Spa at Four Seasons. It starts with a hydrating cleanse using rose oil and follows with an infusion of antioxidants, and a chocolate mousse hydration masque. Available during Valentine's Week only. $150, 50-minutes. 

Perfect for jetsetters looking to travel in style, the Pink and Gray Herschel Backpack has a lifetime warranty and is available at Zumiez, $59.95. The interior features a padded pocket that fits up to a 13'' laptop. 
For something simple yet stunning, Robbins Brothers has you covered with the Lafonn Studs, $155. Sterling silver with cubic zirconia. 

Pretty polish never goes out of style, especially when it's non-toxic and free of pesky chemicals. Shown left to right: Hartleigh, Amanda, Caitlin, Drew, $14 each on

For your sweetie with a sweet tooth stop by Nordstrom to pick up a heart-shaped box of truffles by Charbonnel Et Walker, $39.99. 

Happy Valentine's Day!

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Fashion Preview: Brooks Running Spring '17

Brooks Running recently unveiled a colorful Spring '17 collection to a small group of style bloggers and editors in the city. The evening started at the Brooks Running Trailhead store on Stone Way with a short run for guests to test the new gear and get a better feel for the movement and functionality of each piece. The latest collection is designed with the athleisure trend in mind providing equal parts of style and performance on and off the run. Tops are breathable and lightweight, tights and capris feature flat waistbands and sweat-resistant interior pockets, while shoes are responsive with flexible soles. Comfort and convenience play a big role in the collection which includes a healthy mix of seasonal trends including bright, graphic prints, mesh fabrics, and breathable materials that wick moisture from the body. Details make the difference throughout the line with an emphasis on fit and fabric. The collection is designed to be mixed and matched, but savvy shoppers will notice that many pieces pair back to others items in the line including sports bras and colorful prints.

Highlights from the collection include the Fremont tank, the Ghost Crop Running Tight, the Dash Hoodie, and my personal favorite, the PureFlow 6 running shoes (as seen in my pic above). Here is an overview of the spring collection by category.

Sports Bras - Left to right: Uprise Crossback $44, Rebound Racer $50, Embody $68

Tops - Left to right: Fremont tank $50, Streaker Tee $55, Streaker Long Sleeve Tee $68

Jackets - Left to right: LSD Jacket $100, Fremont Jacket $110, Cascadia Shell $100

Bottoms - Left to right: Streaker Capri $85, Ghost Crop Tight $120, Greenlight Running Tights $85

Shoes - Left to right: Ghost 9 $120, Launch 4 $100, Neuro 2 $120

For newbies to the brand, Brooks Running is a Seattle-based company that sells performance footwear and apparel in more than 50 countries worldwide. Stop by the Trailhead store in Fremont to check out a full assortment of Brooks Running gear including the Heritage Collection, which features original styles that have been remixed for wear beyond the run. The company recently released a special edition Rock 'n' Roll Marathon Series shoe, the Adrenaline GTS 17, which features an all-over guitar print and retails for $120. 

Brooks Trailhead
3400 Stone Way N. 
Seattle, WA 98103

M-F 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. 
S-S 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. 

Monday, January 23, 2017

SoulCycle is now open in Bellevue

2017 will be the year I look back on and fondly remember as the year I finally embraced my own health and wellness. For the past few months, I've been slowly getting back into shape at Ian Fitness doing high-intensity interval training workouts and I'm always on the hunt for fun ways to mix up my routine. For years now I've been hearing about SoulCycle, wondering what type of spin class could possibly be so exhilarating that it's developed a cult following. "You just need to go!" said one friend. "Trust me, it's an insane experience." said another. So when SoulCycle opened its doors in Bellevue and my friend Julia from Style & Cheek invited me to check out a free class, I instantly said yes.

For those of you who are new to SoulCycle, the learning curve can be steep. You arrive, sign in at the front desk to receive your bike number, rent cycle shoes for a nominal $3.00 fee, then store your stuff in a locker before heading into class. The spin room is dark, which makes for a cool night club-style vibe- essential to getting lost in your workout. On the flip side, the darkness is somewhat terrifying for first-time riders who have no idea how to find their bike, how to adjust it, and most importantly, how to "snap in". Fortunately, the SoulCycle team spotted me instantly and swooped in to help adjust my bike and get my shoes snapped into the pedals. By the time I got my bike set up the instructor was already a few minutes into the warm-up, but I had no problem catching up.

So picture this: you're in a dark room, with *amazing* music, surrounded by your Soul Cycle sisters, pedaling like a maniac, sweating like crazy, and most importantly, you're smiling. In the dark. Because it's such a high. And that my friends, is the magic of SoulCycle. I can definitely see why people are instantly hooked after their first ride.

The instructors are amazing, literally glowing in the dark because of the lights illuminating their platforms. I was incredibly inspired by Britt, who had an epic playlist and amazing energy. Her positive mantras kept riders focused on feeling the music and having fun. It was a full body workout. Sure, there were points when I was sure I couldn't go on, but Britt made me feel like my pace was the perfect pace and that I could face any challenge that got in my way. SoulCycle is all about riding with your tribe, pushing through together, and savoring the experience. I highly recommend checking out a class. If I survived, you can too!

A few things to know before you go:
  • The ideal outfit for spin class consists of a sports bra, tank top, and leggings.  Too many layers may restrict your movement and it gets really hot, really fast in class. 
  • Drink plenty of water before you ride and during class. You'll be sweating like crazy so it's important to rehydrate. 
  • Easy parking is available at Lincoln Center. 
  • To celebrate the second weekend of being open in Bellevue, SoulCycle is having a complimentary yogurt bar at the studio on Saturday 1/28 to give riders a delicious way to refuel after class.  
  • Classes can be booked each week starting on Monday at noon. 

Ready to experience SoulCycle? Buy a BLVU Soul Starter Pack which gets you 3 classes for $60, available for a limited time only. To take advantage of this grand opening offer call the studio at 425.786.0004 or stop by the front desk. You can also keep up with the Bellevue Soul Cycle studio on their Facebook Fan page to hear about studio news and community events. 

SoulCycle Bellevue
10470 NE 4th St. 
Bellevue, WA 98004

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Colombia Tower hosts Fashion Lab January 31st

The Columbia Tower Club Art Committee is hosting a fashion show titled "The Art of Fashion" on January 31st featuring a variety of Seattle designers including SCHAI, Julie Danforth, Re-Sleeve, Mia Fioravanti, and more. The event will also include a shopping marketplace featuring JJ Caprices, Elke Couture, and Carole McDowell. Guests will have the opportunity to meet featured designers and shop styles featured on the catwalk after the show. Tickets are priced at $25 for Columbia Tower Club members and $35 for non-members. Limited seating is available. To purchase tickets, call the Club Concierge desk at 206-622-2010. 

This event is part of a larger series of "Fashion Lab" events tailored to highlight emerging talent in the Seattle fashion industry and other like-minded creatives and brands. The series is sponsored and produced by Suley Group and Tiger Mountain IT. 

Buki pop-up to remain open until April

You may already have seen the blogger buzz about Buki, but if not, don't despair because the holiday pop-up shop has been extended through April. Known for its forward-thinking about the wardrobe of the future, Buki has developed proprietary fiber technology and infused it into apparel and accessories for men and women. The collection, which launched last fall, is composed of 7 technical fabrics that use Kinoki-3.0™ technology to give Buki styles a variety of added benefits including breathability, moisture management, thermoregulation and ease of care.

"I've been interested in fiber technology for years," Joey Rodolfo recently told Geek Wire. "Buki is the perfect platform to merge high-end apparel with hyper-functionality. We call it the wardrobe revolution."

The pop-up located at 1826 Sixth Avenue stocks the full Buki collections for men and women along with limited-edition items like blankets, scarves, and branded gift boxes. Don't miss your chance to check out this great local brand and learn more about how fiber technology will shape our wardrobes in the future.

Buki Pop-Up Shop
1826 Sixth Ave.
Seattle, WA 98101
Open Tuesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Check out Buki on King 5's Evening magazine here

Pictured at top: Seattle style blogger Jorden Jakobs 

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Fashion Calendar: Jag Jeans Sample Sale

The Jag jeans sample sale starts tomorrow! Stop by for $5 denim in petite, missy, and plus sizes. The event runs for 2 days and stock is limited to samples on-hand. Help the team clear out excess inventory to make room for spring arrivals. All samples including denim, tops, and jackets are priced at $5, cash only. The Jag jeans sample size is 6, but there are also petite sizes available in 6P and plus size denim samples in 18w. Full event details are below. 

Jag Sample Sale

Thursday, Jan. 19th from  9 a.m. to 4 p.m. 
Friday, Jan. 20th from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. 

1725 Westlake Ave. N.
Suite #220
Seattle, WA 98109

What you should before you go:
Cash Only (No on-site ATM)
Most samples are a size 6 but there are other sizes available
Petite sample size is 6P
Plus sample size is 18W
Sample sale also includes select jackets and tops

Friday, January 13, 2017

Help fundraise for Planned Parenthood at Pink Carpet Project

It's time to mobilize, my friends. So, if you're looking for something productive to do on Inauguration day, join Seattle magazine and The Stranger for the third installment of Pink Carpet Project, a fundraiser for Planned Parenthood created by Seattleite Cameron Levin. The event will help raise funds for Planned Parenthood, which is under critical threat of being defunded by the impending administration. The evening will include music, food by Madres Kitchen, cocktails by The Rhino Room, art, performances, and words of inspiration by Amelia Bonow of #ShoutYourAbortion  (because whispering isn't working), House Representative Noel Frame, Senator Rebecca Saldaña, and more. Guests are invited to bid in the silent auction and shop a curated marketplace featuring merchandise from women-owned businesses with proceeds going directly to Planned Parenthood. Please note, this is a 21+ event.

// Details // 

Pink Carpet Project: Seattle Stands with Planned Parenthood

Friday, January 20, 2017

The Rhino Room 1535 11th Ave. Seattle, WA

7-11 P.M.

$25 via MercTickets

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Fashion Calendar: Goodwill Glitter Sale

The 33rd annual Goodwill Glitter Sale is going down Nov. 5- 6 at the Dearborn store in Seattle, a.k.a. the largest Goodwill store in the country. We're talking insane prices on designer, vintage, and one-of-a-kind clothing and accessories you won't find anywhere else. What will you find at the sale you ask? Is it worth waiting in line at 5 a.m. to be the first to shop the sale? Yes, yes, and yes. Last year shoppers found everything from Louboutin shoes to Burberry jackets and Coach bags.  A coveted Diane Von Furstenberg wrap dress? Yes, those have been known to make appearances at the sale too. Last year's Glitter Sale helped raise funds to support Goodwill's free job training and education programs which served more than 9,700 people in the community and helped over 1,000+ people obtain job placement. This really is shopping for a cause.

The sale runs daily from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. all weekend long and admission is free, so you can bet there will be a line, but trust us, it's worth the wait. Racks will be re-stocked over the weekend. Oh and the best tip we've heard for finding the coveted designer pieces at the sale? Follow the stylish people around the sale and wait for them to ditch items they've been carrying around.

What: 33rd Annual Glitter Sale
When: Nov. 5 and 6, 2016
Where: Goodwill 1400 S. Lane St. Seattle, WA (Free Parking)
Why: Because proceeds from the sale help support Goodwill's free job training
Time: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Photo credit: Brett Doss Photography

Monday, October 17, 2016

NUBE to host sensory shopping experience on Capitol Hill

In an overly-stimulated world, Seattle-based NUBE hopes to take shoppers in a different direction entirely, by allowing them to shop in the dark. Yes, you read that right. Shop in the dark. From October 31 through November 5, the Sense Up pop-up shop on 10th and Pine will become a pitch-black retail store, allowing customers to re-connect with their senses and inform their shopping decisions. Staff will be equipped with night vision goggles to guide shoppers through the store. The company hopes to bring shoppers out of their element and challenge the traditional brick-and-mortar experience by sparking a conversation about art, commerce, and the future of retail. Participating local brands include Woolrich, Peg & Awl, Porcelain & Stone, Prairie Underground, Baleen, and more. Don't miss your chance to experience this unique Seattle pop-up while shopping in the dark to support local brands.

What: NUBE Sensory Pop-Up Shop
When: Oct. 31 - Nov. 5 (Daily from 11 a.m. - 6 p.m.)
Where: 1527 10th Ave. Seattle, WA 98122
Why: Because you've never shopped in the dark before and there's a first time for everything.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Robbins Brothers to open new store in Bellevue

Good news fashion friends! Robbins Brothers just unveiled a beautiful new store at 33 Bellevue Way in the heart of Bellevue. Just in time for engagement season, the new 4,000 square-foot-store will be home to an array of coveted bridal jewelry brands including Tacori, Henri Daussi, Simon G., Verragio, and more. The store will also stock an assortment of E3 Diamonds, which are lab-grown, eco-friendly, and conflict-free. Seven years ago my husband picked out my engagement and wedding rings from Robbins Brothers and it's the only place I recommend to my friends who are in the market for bridal jewelry. The experience was fun, relaxing and most importantly, enjoyable. If it's been awhile since you have checked out Robbins Brothers, now is the time! They also have a beautiful assortment of sparkly diamond bands that are the perfect way to add a pop of color to your wedding band set.

To celebrate the grand opening of the new store Robbins Brothers is hosting a 'Love is Sweet' weekend of festivities October 21 - 23rd. RSVP now for your chance to get a first look at the new store. Guests will enjoy swag bags, sweet treats by Trophy Cupcakes, and a chance to win fabulous raffle prizes.

Robbins Brothers Bellevue
10429 NE 2nd St.
Bellevue, WA 98004
(Free underground parking available)

Follow the store opening festivities on Instagram @RBBellevue using the hashtag #FirstLookBellevue.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Fashion Calendar: YSL at SAM

The fashion community has been counting down the days until the Yves Saint Laurent exhibit The Perfection of Style opens at the Seattle Art Museum. Scheduled to run Oct. 11 - Jan. 8, the exhibit will showcase highlights from the designer's career spanning over four decades.

Intimate and comprehensive, the exhibit will feature a full range of garments including haute couture and ready-to-wear pieces, some of which have never been on public display. Divided into eight sections and spanning over 110 looks total, The Perfection of Style aims to reveal not only the designer's unique style but also his immense influence on the fashion industry. The museum will present a full calendar of programming in conjunction with the exhibit including talks by curators, fashion sketching sessions, and even YSL's favorite films. Highlights are below.

October 13th
The Perfection of Style with Florence Müller
Hear from the exhibition's guest curator, Florence Müller, as she discusses the legacy of YSL.

October 22nd
The Art of Clothing in French Society
This workshop is presented in partnership with the Alliance Francaise de Seattle, explores clothing as an extension of the body and as an object of study in both sociocultural antrhopology and art history.

October 26th
Sam Films: Yves Saint Laurent Selects
As he grew up, Yves Saint Laurent's personal and professional sensibilities were shaped by the art of film. SAM and Alliance Francaise de Seattle will present two of YSL's favorites including Les Enfants du Paradis (1945) and La Bella et la Bete (1946), each in 35mm film. French with English subtitles.

November 3rd
The Perfection of Style: Drop-in Drawing Sessions
Enjoy free drop-in drawing sessions led by fashion illustration instructor Lori Meyer

// Exhibit Information //

Yves Saint Laurent The Perfection of Style

Oct. 11, 2016 - Jan. 8, 2017

Seattle Art Museum 1300 First Ave. Seattle, WA 98101

Available online via SAM

Monday, October 3, 2016

Everything you need to know about Bellevue Fashion Week

In the absence of a traditional fashion week in the city, Bellevue Fashion Week has certainly helped fill the void. Yes, there is that pesky business of having to drive to the Eastside, but by this time next year the W hotel will have opened in Bellevue and Seattle will quite possibly be in the shadow of all things cool. Stores like West Elm and Robbins Brothers are moving in off Old Main street, Jujubeet's new location in the heart of Old Town is bustling, and the style set is regularly shopping indie retailers like La Ree and David Lawrence, and finding it quite appealing to see what's new at both The Bravern and The Bellevue Collection.

My PR brain is telling me I should consolidate this post and streamline my content so that I'm not including so many competitors in a single blog post, but the fashion influencer in me is wanting to paint the larger picture so that you fully understand the amazing things that are happening to the beloved Eastside. There is so much growth and development going on and it's a great thing for the local economy.

For those of you that are new to the concept of Fashion Week, it's pretty simple. The Bellevue Collection produces a full week of fashion experiences including runway shows, in-store events, cocktail parties, trend presentations, and special appearances by market stylists from the official media partner, Vogue. Yes, as in the Vogue magazine. This year the production team added several new experiences including a much-needed menswear-focused event called Sips & Suits.

All the events including Fashion Forecast and the Posh Party Trend Show (produced by Terri Morgan of TCM Models) are good, but my personal favorites are the Independent Designer Runway Show (IDRS) sponsored by Seattle Met and the Front Row Fashion Show presented by Vogue.

This years IDRS show featured nine up-and-coming local designers presenting carefully curated collections on the runway. This is an important show for the community because it is one of the only platforms local designers have to professionally showcase their work in a beautifully choreographed show produced by Terri Morgan. For designers, the most valuable part of this experience isn't just the opportunity to showcase their work on the runway, it's the invaluable occasion to receive mentorship from distinguished fashion industry members. Over the span of four months leading up to the big show, each IDRS designer receives critical feedback on their collection that will ultimately help them build momentum for their line. The grand prize winner received a $5,000 cash prize provided by The Kemper Freeman Family in partnership with The Bellevue Collection. The winner receives added visibility by having their collection displayed at Bellevue Square during the month of October. Past IDRS winners who have gone on to launch global brands include Paychi Guh and Ampersand as Apostrophe.

This year's IDRS winner was Devon Yan who designs collections for men and women under the brand DEVONATION. Other noteworthy IDRS participants from this year's show included Milano Mai by Oscar Milano Mai who showcased gorgeous outerwear and Dollstreet by Lindsay Moen who focused on swimwear. Over 600+ guests were in attendance at the fifth annual show and the energy at the event was undeniable.

The second event I adore at Bellevue Fashion Week is the Front Row Fashion Show presented by Vogue. The Saturday night show is the "anchor" of Bellevue Fashion Week in my opinion and is always a great fashion presentation. Hosted by Cara Crowley, market stylist for Vogue, the show features seasonal trends with looks pulled from Bellevue Square retailers. The show was a benefit event for Seattle Children's Hospital and raised over $100,000+. This year's presentation was only 30 minutes long, but showcased just under 50 solid looks.

Bellevue Fashion Week is a do-not-miss series that we are lucky to have in the Pacific Northwest. It's the perfect blend of local fashion and traditional retail. And since the event series is over for this season, here's what you should know before you go for next time:

  • The IDRS show always sells out first. Remember that for next year when you're on the fence about buying tickets. Do it. 
  • All the Bellevue Fashion Week runway shows take place at Hyatt Regency Bellevue so consider staying overnight after the Vogue show on Saturday and making an entire weekend out of your fall fashion experience. #GirlTribeGetaway
  • Obadiah Salon has a blow dry bar downstairs called O2 Blow Dry Bar. They are masters at beautiful blowouts. If you want bombshell hair, book one before a Bellevue Fashion Week show. 
  • Parking is free at the Hyatt for Bellevue Fashion Week events. Yes, free. So even though you have to drive to the Eastside at least you don't have to deal with circling the block several times looking for parking.