Dec 28, 2008

Don't forget to send a nice note!


There is nothing better than opening presents on Christmas morning with your family. I love watching my little sisters expressions as they tear off the wrapping paper and freak out when they realize they got exactly what they wanted (spoiled brats!)

This Christmas send a sweet thank you card to let friends and family know how much you appreciate their gifts. Handwritten cards are somewhat of a lost art form and that makes me like them even better! PLUS, it’s always nice to get something other than bills in the mail. Right?

Undies & Outies on Queen Anne has an entire selection of adorable cards that offer the perfect way to send a note of gratitude. Or better yet, check out Luxe Paperie, an online boutique that carries a variety of novelty cards including an entire selection of cards by Natalie Eden, a Seattle-based designer, www.luxepaperie.com/natalieeden.html

If your New Year’s resolution is to “go green” save a stamp and send an e-card instead- just make sure you write a thoughtful note!

New Year Fashion Resolutions


2008 flew by… I got engaged, the economy collapsed, and we elected Barack Obama as our 44th President! In terms of fashion, 2008 was marked by an emergence of the green fashion movement as designers continue to redefine what is means to “go green”. Black and grey dominated color stories of fall fashion while pop colors like magenta and blood orange attempted to lift the solemn mood.

The New Year is an opportunity to redefine your personal style and make resolutions for every aspect of your life including your relationships and your wardrobe.

You know the drill. Get rid of those old, ugly workout shoes. Freshen up your hair with playful satin headbands from American Apparel and of course, swap out those winter boots for a pair of seductive stilettos.

My fashion resolution for 2009 is to wear more color. I’ve been mourning the state of our current economy by wearing entirely too much black so my goal will be to incorporate more color into my wardrobe through all means necessary (handbags, head bands, shoes, dresses, tights, accessories).

Here are some of the resolutions my girlfriends are focusing on in 2009:

“When i lived in New York, I lived in 3" heels... I miss the click-clack as I walked down the street... the height that somehow lengthened my monstrous calfs... the uncomfortable, yet satisfying pain of knowing you've spent a day in complete and utter misery... because your shoes demanded the sacrifice.... and paid for it with one secret glance in a window as you walked by..... because they deserved the looks... because they were THAT special....My New Year's Fashion Resolution is that, despite the fact that the majority of Seattleites live in NorthFace gear - it should not (and WILL NOT) oppress my desire to wear f-ing adorable footwear!!!! -Nikki

“My resolution is to focus on me, and really take in what 2008 offered me, and run with it. I also want to purchase a pair of Manolo Blahniks.”- Daisha

“My fashion resolution is to wear more classic pieces." -Marina

“My fashion resolution is to save money and work with what i got. Maybe make my clothes with fabric laying around!” -Jenny

“My fashion resolution is to wear more lingerie. I love the way the silky, soft fabrics feel on my skin. It makes me feel sexy and feminine. And, of course... the husband doesn't mind. It's freezing right now, but the second the weather warms up a bit, I'm wearing more silk.”- Jessica

“I plan to add more stilettos to my shoe collection. I have basic heels that are plain boring and I want to spice it up a bit. I used to be so savvy about shoes but since I work so much I tend to buy basic heels that will pretty much be comfortable to wear everyday and go with many of my work outfits. 2009 will be my year to show off my playful side.” - Grace


"Fashion resolution? Oh god! How long should it be? LOL...I guess it will be to wear matching lingerie under all my outfits and to make sure to wear my CFM boots more often!"
-Evelyn


"My resolution is to take more time to accessorize!!! And buy a great handbag."
-Linda


"In 2009 I want to focus on a nice workout wardrobe. Thank goodness Victoria Secret is investing in designing workout gear for those of us who want to be comfortable and look fabulous!"
-Youa




Dec 19, 2008

Fast Fashion is not a Trend



The concept of “fast fashion” is buzzing throughout the fashion industry. Retailers are changing their business models to take part in it, and consumers are breaking their loyalties to companies who don’t carry it. It’s undeniable that the speed to market approach results in retailers enjoying a higher profit margin because of the simple fact that they are capitalizing on fashion that their competitors either don’t carry or don’t have in stores yet. Fast Fashion is a topic that will continue to define the Fashion Industry over the next decade because it’s span spreads over a variety of areas within the fashion industry and will have a direct effect on the way consumer’s shop and react to trends in the future.

Although it’s a relatively new concept for many consumers, Fast Fashion has been around for years. In 1999 American Vogue Editor Anna Wintour sent a personal letter to all major international designers notifying them that photographs taken at their recent runway shows would be appearing on Style.com. This move was seen as a “demystification” of the fashion process and the catwalk then became a public arena. The Internet began to make it possible for the average consumer to gain access to runway shows that had previously been conducted behind closed doors. In the words of David Wolfe, one of the leading trend correspondents at The Donegar Group in New York, “The hunger for “instant gratification” on the part of some fashion-aware consumers led companies such as Zara and H&M to steamline their methods of production to rush copies and interpretations of runway items into their store faster than ever before”.
This meant that instead of waiting 4-6 months from concept to delivery, companies like H&M were able to rapidly react to runway trends and put new product into stores within 2-3 weeks.

It’s undeniable that fashion trends are peaking faster than ever before. The rise and fall of fashion trends comes and goes in the blink of an eye and even consumers attempting to keep up have a hard time keeping pace. Marketing firms depend on selling consumers on the idea of ‘Here Today, Gone Tomorrow’ via Limited Edition Collections and low quantity production runs of special items that encourage them to visit the stores more frequently. Fast Fashion creates excitement in a store and it separates one storefront from another as consumers stroll down the mall. Under the “fast fashion” model, product life cycles are much shorter, meaning that customers see a constant turnover of a store's clothing assortment. Retailers who carry fast fashion collect higher margin profits from the sale of their fast fashion merchandise because they are able to sell through it so rapidly that it skips the entire markdown process altogether. After the merchandise sells through the company then has more money to do it all over again. They key for retailers is the “speed to market” approach that comes through vertical integration throughout the supply chain in order to achieve greater flexibility to market changes. Companies are also addressing the speed to market approach by setting up design offices and distribution centers in the countries they are producing in. Developing counties like Bangladesh depend on the fast fashion business model to survive. In fact, nearly 80% of Bangladesh's foreign earnings are derived from the garment industry. Although it could be said that companies take advantage of cheap labor and production costs in countries like Bangladesh, it should also be said that the citizens of Bangladesh benefit from fast fashion by having stable employment through the creation of jobs in the industry.

Fast Fashion has been a great way for retailers to keep pace with their customers need for rapid self-editing. Consumers have always showcased their social commentary through their choice of personal dress by making style statements with pop culture t-shirts, fashion forward accessories or even a head to toe “look” styled after their favorite celebrity. Annamma Joy, a Professor at Hong Kong Polytechnic University’s Institute of Textile and Clothing thinks that fast fashion sufficiently caters to the needs of postmodern consumers. “Fast fashion allows personal editing of not just the wardrobe but also personality,” says Joy, “In the US for example, consumers have “closet consultants” who help them throw away clothes that no longer reflect their lives”. Fast Fashion provides consumers with the freedom to be themselves through instant style editing while allowing businesses to cash in on the transformation.

The “speed to market” approach in the Fashion Industry doesn’t come without red flags from Environmentalists who can easily identify the concerns and issues regarding the sustainability of the fast fashion movement. Fast fashion is regarded by conservative consumers as “wasteful’ because rather than buying one high quality item to satisfy a wardrobe need, consumers are buying multiples that are lower quality and then throwing out old items just as quickly as they are bringing in new ones. In fact, many Consumers report that the fast fashion apparel they are purchasing is actually cheaper to buy than to wash because they would rather dry clean it than risk putting it through their own washing machines and compromising the garment integrity. This trend is a sharp contrast to the rest of the pop culture trends that exist today including the Green Movement and the concept of Sustainability.

Fast Fashion just might be one of the only things in the Fashion Industry that is here to stay. Consumers love instant gratification and companies will go to great lengths to provide it. Meanwhile, the Internet will continue to drive the fast fashion trend and solicit consumer interest in fashion hot off the runway, while the excitement of fresh new fashion will be a focal point in storefronts as they attempt to differentiate themselves from their competition. Fashion will continue to follow the evolution of consumers who are constantly changing, growing and editing not only their values and personalities but also their wardrobes.



Dec 14, 2008

Rocco E Dante Christmas Handbag Sale!


A great wardrobe always starts with style staples. For women this includes a great outfit paired with stylish shoes and of course, a fabulous handbag. You should never underestimate the power of a great bag because it’s the one item that can truly pull your entire look together. Tara, from Rocco E Dante handbags knows this concept very well and on December 19th, 20th and 21st she’s offering her bags for up to 60% off their normal retail prices. This is an amazing steal you won’t find anywhere else and of course, it’s only on Queen Anne at Rocco’s boutique tucked away at 812 5th Ave. North (just a few blocks up from 5th and Mercer). Doors will be open from 12 noon until 8pm for 3 days only. Pencil this into your agenda- you won’t want to miss out on a sale like this!

Dec 3, 2008

Shop in the City and Save This Weekend!

Seattle City Stimulus

A few months ago I wrote a paper on retailer consolidations. At the time, the economy was on the brink of a major recession and Macy’s had just announced they were closing their buying office in Seattle. More than 750 employees were laid off (including some fellow classmates who graduated with me from The Art Institute of Seattle). As the retail industry continues to consolidate itself consumers are left with fewer choices and centralized buying offices begin to control more territory than ever before. The hardest hit retailers are the small independent boutiques because they generally have less room to deeply discount their prices and they don’t have multiple locations to help balance out the hardships of a tough retail climate. I’m a huge advocate for Seattle’s boutiques and small businesses because I’ve worked closely with many of them over the past five years while working on Fashion First (www.fashionfirstseattle.com). These businesses are the heart and soul of our city and without them the fashion choices in the city would consist of big box stores and mall-based chain retailers.

You can support some of Seattle’s best small businesses this weekend by shopping with a "City Stimulus Card" available at:
http://citystimulus.com/index.html
It’s totally free to sign up and all you need to do is log on to the website and sign up with your name and email address to get a shopping pass that will get you discounts all over the city- just in time for all your weekend shopping!

The pass is good December 4-7th and I highlighted a few of the noteworthy deals and discounts below:

Thursday 12/4
Belltown Bistro- Half off all bottles of wine (excluding champagne)
Havana- Free cover and happy hour all night
Palace Kitchen- Free wings with the purchase of a cocktail (Keeping it Classy!)
Suite 410- Happy Hour All Night

Friday 12/5
Dahlia Lounge- 50% off your lunch tab
Boat Street Café- 15% off your bill
Matt’s in the market- Free appetizer with the purchase of any entrée
The Saint- Happy Hour All Night

Saturday 12/6 (Everything listed below is valid all weekend long Saturday & Sunday!)
Baby & Co- 30% Off
Clutch- 20-50% off select regular price items
Café Vita- Free 8 oz. drip coffee all day! (Capitol Hill location only)
Sway & Cake- The first 50 customers receive a free gift bag with purchase
Snowboard Connection- 20% off Streetwear
Goods- 20% off everything except shoe release
Tulip- 25% off all purchases

Sunday 12/7 (Everything listed below is valid all weekend long Saturday & Sunday!)
Kuhlman- 10-25% off select items
Retail Therapy- Buy 3 items and get a 4th of equal or lesser value free
Snowboard Connection- 15% off outerwear
Goods- Free red Goods new era cap with purchases of $50 or more
Polite Society- Various deals throughout the store


For a full list of participating locations check out
http://citystimulus.com/locations.html

Nov 27, 2008

Black Friday = Wear Flats So You Can Run if You Have To

The holidays are the best time to shop for others and pick up a few things for yourself! (I mean really, who can resist the gift sets and great deals that only happen once a year?!)

Obviously if you are shopping on black Friday my suggestion is that you bring a friend AND a healthy dose of good old-fashion patience (which I can never seem to find…) When it comes to picking out your black Friday outfit I would suggest wearing flats because that way you can run if you have to. (Trust me this tip is probably the most important on my list). The next step is to put together a plan of attack so that you can map out which places to hit first.

In an effort to support local Seattle boutiques in the city I would suggest hitting Blackbird in Ballard to pick up something for the boyfriend. They have great outerwear and accessories and they recently added a limited assortment of women’s wear. While you’re out there you can check out Duque Salon and pick up some gift certificates for your friends and then hit Horseshoe next door to pick up a little something for yourself. If you don’t feel like making the trek out to Ballard and you still want to shop at Blackbird you can shop online at http://www.blackbirdballard.com/. Save 20% on your purchases if you shop online by using Coupon Code: BLKFRIDAY at checkout on Black Friday.

If you’re headed downtown to Pacific Place don’t forget to head across the street to Sway & Cake. Everything in the store is 20% off including 7 for All Mankind, Rich & Skinny, Loomstate, Rock & Republic denim and more. They also have a fabulous assortment of delicious Voluspa Candles which make great gifts for the holidays.

When you’re Downtown I’d also suggest heading to the Aveda store for a box of their Comfort Tea ($14 for a box of 20 tea bags). The tea is100% certified organic, tastes amazing and is a great way to unwind after a long day. If you get a box of this tea for a friend may I also suggest picking up a copy of the Elizabeth Gilbert book ‘Eat, Pray, Love’. Wrap them up, put a bow on it, and all of a sudden you have the perfect gift. I'm telling you, this book is better than therapy. It will change your whole life. Laugh now and thank me later.

If you are shopping online in your pj’s on Friday, don’t forget to check out www.sephora.com. Just in time for the holidays (and Black Friday) Sephora is offering free shipping on all orders over $50. That’s like one YSL lipstick and a Dior Show Mascara. Or a Nars Eyeshadow Duo and a tube of Benefit’s Bad Gal Lash mascara. The combinations are endless and let’s face it, $50 bucks doesn’t go very far when it comes to cosmetics at Sephora. This season they have some of the best gift sets I’ve seen in a long time and they always do free gift wrapping. I suggest checking out the limited edition Vincent Longo “Sexy Things” kit. It contains a beige, pink and gold eyeshadow trio, a sheer lipstick, a bronze pink lipgloss, a tube of basic black mascara, a pink blush and a duo eye pencil. That’s a lot of makeup for $58 and since it’s over $50 it ships for free! A MUST on my shopping list is the Lancome Rose Fishnets Juicy Tube set which contains 5 glosses for only $35. That’s like buying two at full price and getting three for free. It’s insane. For the girl who loves makeup and games pick up the Sephora Monopoly Game. It launched last year as a “limited edition” but came at half price for Holiday ‘08 due to the high demand. At a special price of $23 it’s a very chic way to say “Merry Christmas” to the girly-girl on your list. Last year the only thing I wanted was the Clarisonic skin brush because it cleans 6 times better than washing your face by hand. Made by the same company as the Sonicare toothbrush, the Clarisonic skin brush is durable, waterproof and guarantees to improve your skintone and texture. Think of it as a daily mini-microderm treatment right in your own home. If you don’t have one…add it to your list immediately.

My last recommendation is for Endless.com because they have a ton of shoes and handbags for majorly discounted prices. The best part is that they ship everything overnight for free which means less waiting and more time breaking in your brand new shoes.

Happy Shopping!!!

Photo: Danielle Meder Illustration

Nov 9, 2008

I love Fashion Magazines

I love to read and when I travel I find myself entirely self indulgent in fashion magazines. On Friday I went to LA and bought 8 new magazines (and 1 new book!). Let’s face it- I’m a total magazine whore, but hey, I always learn a few good tidbits of information.  

Here’s a brief summary:
From Glamour Magazine/October Issue- How to be your own Dermatologist by using products like St. Eve Elements Microdermabrasion scrub ($7 at drugstores) and swapping expensive in office laser treatments for at home versions like Clinique Even Beter Skin Tone Corrector ($40 at Clinique.com). Although I have to say- being your own dermatologist is risky and I could never give up my laser treatments at Calidora with Carolee.

From Shape/December 2008- An amazing quote that I need to tape to my desk: “Dare to be yourself in the face of adversity. Choosing right over wrong, ethics over convenience…these are the choices that measure your life. Travel the path of integrity…for there is never the wrong time to do the right thing.” Love, love, love it!

From Women’s Day Magazine/November 2008- How to Give Back on a Budget. ‘Tis the season for showing your gratitude with or without a lot of cash. Some of the tips were pretty creative including walking dogs from the local animal shelter, donating blood, putting up decorations at a local senior center, picking up trash around a neighborhood park and making get-well cards for kids at your local children’s hospital.

From Elle Accessories Magazine- Menswear Watches. How to Coordinate this season’s catwalk looks with a statement timepiece. I love the Dior Yellow Gold and Tiger’s Eye but the gold Rolex was a close second.

From Instyle/November- How to make an herb roasted turkey with maple-orange glaze. Although I don’t think I could ever pull off this recipe, the article does succeed in making me very excited for Thanksgiving dinner!!!

From Travel and Leisure/October 2008- How to Pack in 5 Easy Steps. 1) Distribute weight intelligently (i.e. put heavier items at the bottom), 2) Use Bags to Organize your stuff, 3) Roll your Casual Clothes (like t-shirts, jeans, etc.) 4) Fold Sweaters and Delicate Items, 5) Bring Ziploc bags for laundry so that you can easily unpack when you get home.

From Marie Claire/November 2008- The best way to handle your 10 year high school reunion? Skip it and join Face Book instead.

From Lucky/December 2008- The best sites for global street style: 
1) Copenhagen- www.copenhagenstreetstyle.dk 
2) Tokyo- www.style-arena.jp 
3) London- www.glamcanyon.blogspot.com 
4) Berlin- www.stilinberlin.blogspot.com 
5) Paris- www.garancedore.fr
6) Tel Aviv- www.thestreetwalker.blogspot.com 
7) Buenos Aires- www.onthecornerstreetstyle.blogspot.com 
8) San Paulo- www.freakstyle-freakstyle.blogspot.com 
9) Manila- www.mnlstyl.blogspot.com 
10) everywhere- www.facehunter.blogspot.com

Nov 2, 2008

Queen Anne Dispatch + Friends & Family Sale- FRIDAY!!

My favorite boutique on Queen Anne is Queen Anne Dispatch aka Undies & Outies Boutique. Tara, Sabrina, Mercedes and team (including Chico, the store mascot/watch dog) are fabulous and this Friday Nov. 7th they're hosting their annual Friends & Family sale featuring 20% off all purchases! 

That means 20% off their amazing selection of shoes (including the navy blue Oh Deer! pumps with the reptile skin gold toe (see above picture!) and 20% off all of their apparel & accessories.

DJ Darnell Sue will be on the turn tables spinning your favorite tunes and you'll be treated to cocktails while you shop compliments of the Queen Anne Dispatch team. 

The fun starts at 6pm but the sale lasts all day. So stop by and take advantage of the amazing discounts they are offering for 1 day only!

When: Friday Nov. 7th

Where: Queen Anne Dispatch. 2212 Queen Anne Ave. N. 

Time: 6-9pm (But the Sale lasts all day long!)


  

Oct 28, 2008

Maple XO Jewelry


The annual Thread show happened over the weekend at Fisher Pavilion in Seattle. Due to the current state of the economy the show was smaller than it has been in the past- but it still featured some of Seattle's best fashion labels including Sabrina Love Handbags, Jeepney Clothing and a full range of dresses from Suzabelle. 

My favorite find at the Thread show was jewelry from the Maple XO line by designer Lindsay Holmes.  Her business concept is simple (and eco-friendly):
1- Collect old, discarded and damaged skateboards from local skate shops
2- Assess the damage of each board and review pieces of the wood that can be salvaged
3- Create fabulous jewelry by recycling the wood and wheels

Lindsay makes earrings and bracelets and since every item is one-of-a-kind it goes without saying that it's, well, limited edition. 

In recent months Lindsay has also added adorable make-up mirrors to her product mix. 

For more info check out www.maplexo.com


Oct 20, 2008

Rocco E Dante Trunk Show



Come join the girls at Clutch Handbag Boutique for an exclusive Rocco E Dante trunk show featuring the latest Fall handbags. Designer Tara Sauvage will be on hand to showcase the latest designs from her Italian handbag collection and if you are lucky Rocco and Dante, (Tara’s pet pugs/muses) may stop by and make an appearance. I highly recommend coming to the trunk show and then prancing across the street to Purple for a nice glass of wine and some delicious sea salt caramels……


Date: Thursday November 6, 2008


Time: 5-8pm


Location: Clutch. 1212 4th Ave. Seattle, WA 98101 (206) 624-2362



Oct 19, 2008

Heelarious Baby High Heels


Well first I have to thank my girlfriend Amy for being pregnant with a little baby girl because otherwise I might not have had an excuse to buy satin pink baby high heels. LOL. You may have seen these Heelarious Baby High Heels on The Today Show or in The New York Post (who wouldn't want their baby to be fully decked out in high heels for a long stroller ride in the park?)

I'm happy to annouce that I got the last pair off Amazon.com but don't worry- there's a ton of local boutiques that carry them including Curtsy Bella (2920 NE Blakeley Street). The baby high heels are so popular the staff at Curtsy Bella can barely keep them in stock.
The company is called 'Heelarious' because that's generally people's first reaction when they see babies wearing high heels. For more info check out http://www.heelarious.com/


Oct 16, 2008

Seattle Fashion Events



When it rains it pours and in this economy even the savvy girls can appreciate a good sale. In Seattle we are fortunate enough to have an entire slew of regularly scheduled shopping events including Thread, Unzipped and of course, the Crave Summer Sample Sale. Below is a brief list of upcoming fashion events that you’ll definitely enjoy if you love to shop.


Saturday October 18th- YWCA Shop Sale
From 9am-3pm the public is invited to the YWCA Closet Treasures Sale which features deep discounts on gently-worn designer apparel and accessories from Jimmy Choo, St. Johns, Donna Karan and more. Many items are under $50 but come early because the best items go first. Proceeds benefit Seattle’s YWCA Dress for Success Program so come early, spend generously and enjoy your "new" winter wardrobe. For more info visit www.closettreasuresale.com
Date:
Saturday October 3rd
Time: 9am-3pm
Place: Langston Hughes Performing Arts Center. 104 17th Ave. S. Seattle, WA


Saturday October 25th- Eco Lavish Fashion Show
Join the Half Past Lavish crew for an eco-friendly fashion show sponsored by Dry Soda, The Urban Fashion Network and Seattle Picks. Tickets are $10 cash at the door and include a reception following the show. I believe this is their first annual show and they have not announced their line up for the runway show- but it still sound awesome and the tickets are cheap. For more info visit www.halfpastlavish.com
Date
: Saturday Oct. 25th
Time: 8pm
Place: Abbey Art Center. 4272 Fremont Ave. N. Seattle, WA


Sunday October 26th- Thread Seattle
I love a great shop sale and this is one of the best the city has to offer. My suggestion is to grab some girlfriends and head to Pesos for brunch and then wander down the hill to the Seattle Center. You can generally find some great underground designer fashion at the Thread show and also other well know labels like Jeepney, Suzabelle, Michael Kors, Upper Playground and more. Tickets are $10 at the door and you can also check out more info at www.threadshow.com
Date: Sunday Oct. 26th
Time: 12-5pm
Location: Fisher Pavilion. Seattle Center.

Oct 15, 2008

New Ballard Boutique > Dolce Vita


I love weekends for several reasons but mostly because it gives me time to SHOP. Recently I stopped by the Ballard Sunday market to pick up some fresh flowers for the apartment and stumbled upon a great new boutique called Dolce Vita. This store is part of a chain that carries women’s apparel, accessories and footwear and has locations in New York, Santa Monica, Los Angeles and now….Seattle! Designers carried in the store include Black Halo, Bravo, Doma, Douchette Duvall, Rory Beca and Twelfth Street by CV. They also have an amazing assortment of shoes under the Dolce Vita brand and also several styles by DV. If you are in the neighborhood you should check it out. It’s a great store and the merchandise is worth the trip off the beaten path. You can also check out their website at www.shopdolcevita.com

Oct 10, 2008

Spring 09 Trends


Spring 09 Fashion Recap

Spring 2009 is going to look amazing. Plan to wear hot pinks, bright purples, royal blues and lemon yellow.

One of the hottest trends seen at New York Fashion week was the jump suit. It was seen all over the runways in a variety of shapes with a plethora of features including zippers, exxagerated sleeves and a rainbow of colors. Designer Donna Karan celebrated her 20th anniversary collection (which includes jump suits and minis) and the party was only briefly interrupted by animal rights protesters who felt the need to protest during the finale. (Which was slightly ackward considering she didn’t feature any fur in her spring collection…..) Miuccia Prada did another solid collection for Miu Miu that featured everything from pleated burlap skirts to graffiti.

Ok, well first of all I have to say that my co-worker Beth loves DVF…I mean, you can’t go wrong with a wrap dress and apparently thousands of people feel the exact same way because the Diane Von Furstenberg Fashion Week show was packed to capacity and some of the fashion editors in attendance said it felt more like a concert than a runway show. For Spring 09 DVF channeled the 70’s and adorned her models hair with flowers and feathers. (So adorable!)

My favorite collection was from BCBG Max Azria they kept it light and that’s exactly what we needed when it comes to Spring 09 fashion. The color story, the outfits and of course the accessories completely rocked the runway. It’s all about pant suits and pockets. Period. Highlights from the BCBG show included champagne colored wrap dresses, monochromatic greys, ruffles, corals, jumpsuits, high waisted trouser pants and royal blues.

Badgley Mischka did a nice collection for Spring that included a flat palette of taupe, black, white and grey. The monotony was saved by shots of hot pink and turquoise.
This was not my favorite collection. The evening wear dresses all seemed a bit overloaded with scallops and ruffles and even the floral prints looked a bit forced.

The Lanvin collection was another favorite of mine. The volume aspect of each piece makes it looks impossibly trendy and absolutely beautiful for women of all shapes and sizes. The main focus of the entire collection was balloon sleeved blouses and one-shoulder tops. There was also some great detailing in the nude colored stiletto shoes with a bow at the ankle and rhinestone detailing. I also loved the overly dramatic chandelier earrings featured on a handful of models.

The John Galliano collection reminded me of Marie Antoinette meets British Dollhouse. Everything from the rainbow colored wigs to baby pink cheeks made the models look like dolls. At one point in the show a second wave of models with spray painted Mohawks pranced the runway in printed blue, green and neutral colored dresses. This was a very whimsical collection with many points of underlying social commentary I’m sure.

We can’t do fashion without Zac Posen (although I know some people beg to differ) so I saved the best for last. The spring 09 collection did not disappoint. Every show he puts on is a celebrity photo op and this time around was no exception. Special guests including Jada Pinkett, Venus and Serena Williams and Claire Danes were in front row attendance. Zac Posen always has me at HELLO but this time around what really sealed the deal were the pink champagne colored dresses, the chandelier earrings and the volume in the hair. I also loved the cheetah print (always best in moderation) and the embellishment on the dresses that took them from innocent to uber sexy. The color combinations of lemon meringue and grey suede was a great update for spring.
* Photo courtesy Style.com. The image features a high heel from the Lanvin collection/spring09.

Oct 8, 2008

Sway & Cake Featured in LUCKY Magazine

Seattle boutique Sway & Cake was featured in the November edition of Lucky Magazine (in stores now). Lucky Editor Kim France even mentioned the boutique in her Editorial notes by saying that "Sway & Cake is just the type of boutique that makes you feel loved". The boutique was also listed as a "Reader Favorite" on page 131.

Sway & Cake has been in our Fashion First runway show for 5 years in a row and they have a fierce following among Seattle's fashion elite.

Sabrina Love Trunk Show


Handbag designer Sabrina Love will be hosting a trunk show at Canopy Blue on Friday October 17th. Enjoy 20% off all Sabrina Love Handbags while you shop. The trunk show runs from 4-7pm so be sure to stop by and get a handbag to complete your fall wardrobe. Sabrina's handbags are amazing. She was featured in our Fashion First 2008 runway show and the set was amazing. Canopy Blue is located at 3121 East Madison St. Suite 108. Seattle, WA 98112. Be sure to tell Summer at Canopy Blue that I said hello! :)

Oct 5, 2008

Fashion First- Seattle's Best Runway Show



In order to understand boutique fashion, you have to know a little bit about why I’m so into Seattle’s independent boutiques. For the past five year’s I’ve worked as a producer for Fashion First and that is precisely when I fell madly in love with boutiques.



Fashion First started in 2004 by Jared Seegmiller and Joan Kelly. The original goal was to provide much needed exposure to the small, independent boutiques in the Belltown neighborhood of Seattle and give them the opportunity to participate in a fabulous runway fashion show. Many of them had great apparel and accessories but just like many small businesses they had very little money to do marketing or promotions. Fashion First helped to fill that void and five years later continues to showcase the best designers and boutiques in the Seattle area.



The first show was held in 2004 at the Bada Lounge on First Avenue. The slogan was "There is only one style that suits you- your own". The lineup consisted of Sway & Cake, Ian, Baby & Co., Endless Knot, Moda Express, Ottica Seattle, Kuhlman, Karan Dannanberg Clothier, Alhambra, Carol McClellan, Maxwelton Aerie Apaca, Nuvo Moda, Mercer & Co., David Lawrence and J.Gilbert Footwear. The show was a huge success and even before the evening concluded guests were inquiring about next year’s showcase and how they could buy tickets in advance.

Tragically, eight months after the first show co-producer Jared Seegmiller passed away from cancer. It was then that Joan Kelly and I made the decision to continue doing the show in his memory as a tribute and also as a benefit event for The Seattle Cancer Care Alliance. The 2005 show was bittersweet but it was beautiful. We upgraded the venue from a bar into the Palace Ballroom on Fifth Avenue. We even got to work with a larger lineup of boutiques including Ian, Encanto Barcelona, Alhambra, Nuvo Moda, Betty Blue, Cinti Jewelry, Lizzie Parker, Ottica Seattle, Moda Express, Great Jones home, Endless Knot, Mercer, Planet Lulu, Carol McLellan, Sway & Cake and Butch Blum.



The 2006 show was sold out just like the first two and our scope of boutiques changed from Belltown Businesses and expanded to all over the city including West Seattle and Downtown. Our line up that year included Karan Dannenberg Clothier, Ericce, Blackbird, Canopy Blue, Nuvo Moda, Lizzie Parker, Furla, Carmilia’s, Renee Bassetti, Ottica, Manhattan Boutique, Cintli Jewelry, Moda Express, Alhambra, Derek Andrew, Encanto Barcelona, Promesse, Sway & Cake, Riveted Jeans and a finale set by Mario’s.

By the fourth annual show (Fashion First 2007) it was clear that we were the biggest and best runway show in Seattle and the best part was, we were still having a fabulous time doing it! This was the year we upgraded the venue to Fremont Studios and gave VIP guests a lounge of their very own. The lineup included La Ree, Polite Society, Illi, Posh on Main, The Finerie, Carmilia’s, Ragamoffyn’s, Marqsmen, Lizzie Parker, Tatters, Renee Bassetti, Pine IV Denim, Alhambra, Riveted Jeans, and Sway and Cake. The event also featured a finale with a special final dress by students at The Art Institute of Seattle worn by former first lady of Washington, Mona Locke.

This past year was our fifth annual show (Fashion First 2008) and we’re proud to say it was a completely sold out as expected. We moved the venue to Lake Union and prayed our plan to naturally air condition the building by keeping the windows open all day would work. We had a solid line up including Sway & Cake, Marqsmen, La Ree, Tatters, Opal, Illi, Canopy Blue, Ragamoffyn’s, Rock Star Jewelry, Marilyn Berg, Petaline.net, WCM Belts, Rocco E Dante, Shoefly, Clutch, The Finerie and a final dress by students at The Art Institute of Seattle worn by celebrity model and former Melrose Place Star, Josie Bissett.

Working with the best and brightest boutiques in the city has given me an immense amount of respect for all of their hard work bringing the hottest apparel and accessories to Seattle. It’s truly a labor of love and I’m honored to have been able to spend the past five years working amongst them in order to produce Fashion First.
Since then I've moved on from Fashion First and have been focusing on working in the industry as the Mens Private Label Sourcing & Production Manager for a local apparel company and of course, doing freelance writing for fashion publications in addition to writing for my blog. But with all that being said, Fashion First will always have a special place in my heart!

Taking it From The Top





For the past 5 years I've produced the largest runway show in Seattle aka Fashion First. This past year we hosted our 5th Annual Show at The Lake Union Naval Reserve Building and welcomed over 1,000 guests. The goal of the show has always been to feature Seattle's best and brightest boutiques because they are the ones who truly bring the best fashion into the city. Over the years we've worked with Ian, Karan Dannenberg, La Ree, Marqsmen, Sway and Cake, Alhambra, Polite Society and The Finerie just to name few.

This blog is dedicated to the boutiques in the city who work hard, play hard and strive to keep Seattle fabulous. We love you!

Oct 3, 2008

The Engagement Party

Photobucket


We had our engagement party last night at The Triangle in Fremont with 25 of our closest friends! Beth made white sparkly cupcakes with faux diamond ring and Ciel brought mini-cheesecakes and other amazing desserts! It was a lot of fun! Thanks for everyone who came out to help us celebrate. And thank you Sarah for the nice bottle of champagne!

I'm getting married!!!!

Sep 24, 2008

Fashion Group International


Yay! I just joined Fashion Group International and I'm really excited to meet and network with other people in the Fashion Industry!!!



Sep 12, 2008

OMG!


Ok. I have to interrupt my usual fashion blogging to annouce....I'm engaged!!! We are headed to Maui today for my birthday so this is the only picture I could get but it's beautiful and I am so happy!!!!
More details to come!

Sep 9, 2008

Top 10 Fall Fashion Trends





It occurred to me that before we can review Spring 09 trends from Fashion Week, we must first circle back on what the must-have items are for Fall 2008.


Here's a quick list of the top 10.....


1- Colored Tights
* You can buy any color that works for you. The important thing here is to tie them back to a great outfit and pair them with a hot shoe or a slouchy suede boot.


2- Lace

* I love lace. It always looks classy as long as it's done right. Lace can come in the form of a sheer lace shirt paired with a nude tank or even in the form of a maxi dress with leggings. If you are still stuck on how to incorporate lace into a casual wardrobe- cut yourself a little slack and buy a headband with lace detailing.


3- Plaid

* The buffalo plaid shirts in reds, yellows and purples are everywhere for Fall but plaid doesn't have to be overwhelming or even reminiscent of the late nineties. Plaid fabrics are everywhere from casual jackets to wrap dresses so finding something that is the right color for you shouldn't be an issue. If wearing plaid scares you it might make more sense to start with something a little less committal like a plaid scarf.



4- Fall Florals

* Florals work for me any time of year- but once you get past the summer months it's important to update your floral wardrobe with pieces that reflect a fall color palette. Go for neutral floral colors with rich jewel tone colors.

5- Head to Toe Neutrals

* Almost every designer showed head to toe neutrals in at least a handful of outfits that were part of their fall collections. Jean Paul Gaultier showed neutral everything from the scarf to the knee length boots.


6- Purple

* Our Fashion First theme for the 2008 runway show was "The Ultimate Color Tour", mostly because we knew purple would be huge. Purple is the hottest color for Fall so it's important that you have at least 1 good piece that covers this trend. My suggestion would be a purple dress that fits you like a glove- but I'm partial to my new Delia*s dress that is purple with front button closures.....The point is, get something that you love and wear it- often.


7-Metallics

*The metallic trend spans across a variety of categories. I've seen this trend in handbags, shoes, special occasion dresses and blouses. Jewel tones like gold, purples, silvers and teals have been very popular in metallics but the trend doesn't have to be worn in apparel it can also be worn in the form of a handbag or a belt.



8- Bows

*This is one of my favorite trends from Spring 08. I fell in love with my Rachel Leigh bracelet that I forced my boyfriend to buy me in Boston over the summer. I just can't get enough of cute little bow headbands, necklaces or even the rhinestone Juicy Couture bow earrings. They are simply adorable and seemingly innocent! For fall I suggest you get a blouse with bow details or possibly a gold necklace with a metal bow detail.

9- Menswear Fabrics

* Herringbones and tweeds will be popular for Fall 2008. If you don't want to sport menswear trousers or a menswear inspired blazer you can still get the look with a menswear vest, a herringbone pencil skirt or even a tweed jacket.


10- Monochromatic Gray

* I love grey eyeshadow any time of year- but mostly in the fall. Sheer greys and cloudy silvers are going to be the one color (aside from PURPLE) that you will want to stock up on. Boots, cabbie hats, sweaters and even tights in shades of grey will help update your wardrobe for Fall.








Sep 7, 2008

I love September

There are many fabulous things that happen during the month of my birthday, but 2 of my favorite are New York Fashion Week and The MTV Video Music Awards!

Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week (aka New York Fashion Week) started on Friday with collections from BCBG Max Azria (a MUST see collection), Perry Ellis and Nicole Miller. Saturday's shows included Spring collections from Lacoste and Rock & Republic, and Sunday was a full day which included DKNY, Tracy Reese, Miss Sixty and DVF.

The VMA's started their red carpet coverage this evening with opening fashion commentary from country singer Taylor Swift. She is absolutely adorable but when they asked her what she was wearing she accidentally mentioned the wrong designer and then remembered she was wearing Blumarine. Oops.

You can expect full recaps from New York Fashion Week and the VMA's coming soon!

Welcome to my blog. Congratulations. You've arrived.

The thing I love most about the fashion industry is that it's constantly evolving. Change is constant- and everything "new" inevitably gives way to something even better. Whether it's a fresh color palette, a new fabric or even a spin on an old favorite, I love it all. I have been in love with fashion as long as I can remember. It's always been what I wanted to do when I "grew up". As a child I spent my free time drafting princess outfits on sketch pads and during junior high I spent my summers studying Fashion at the Seattle OSC in the Fashion Marketing program putting together trend boards. In high school I took fashion courses at the local community college and participated in DECA to learn business skills. I seized any opportunity to immerse myself into the world of fashion- including serving on the Nordstrom Fashion Board my Senior Year in High School so that I could give feedback on product carried in their stores and work at special events. I truly loved every aspect of the industry from putting together marketing plans to interacting directly with customers on the sales floor. During college while I was earning my AAA degree in Fashion Marketing I worked in retail at a Juniors boutique called Juxtapose.

By the time I was 22 - I wanted to "retire" from retail (or at least the sales floor) and I took a job working for a Seattle based retailer doing production for their private label clothing lines. Outside of that gig I was also co-producing a runway fashion show in Seattle called Fashion First that focused on featuring independent designers and boutiques from all over the city. This past year was my 5th year co-producing the show and I'm pleased to announce that we had another sell-out show.

My experience in the industry is diverse and that's why I decided to start a fashion blog. Experience equals perspective and that's exactly what I feel I can provide to fashion lovers everywhere. I've had the opportunity to see multiple sides of the industry and I can share my insight and expertise with all of you.

I hope you enjoy my blog.









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