Category: Style

July 19 2017

Caroline Constas’ Gorgeous Rainbow Colored Clothing

I was browsing through Moda Operandi when I came across these rainbow colored clothes by New York-based designer Caroline Constas. How stunning is that gathered top with the ruffle skirt? As a person who loves ruffles and rainbows I almost cried when I saw these! (Not really, but it did make me emotional…like buy, buy, buy! But then, no, no, no.) I put these clothes in the, “Really beautiful but too expensive category.” (I should make a board called that on Pinterest!) The gathered top goes for $420. Yeah….no.

I have this theory that the retail industry is currently pushing out the middle market. High end luxury brands with beautiful unique designs will stay in business as will fast fashion brands that rip off the luxury market’s designs. With the rise of Instagram, I think a lot of women love following trend setting style influencers like Aimee Song or Chriselle Lim. I remember after seeing Aimee wear that black and white Self-Portrait blouse, I was like, “Where can I buy that?” The influencers know how to put their outfits together, they look A-MAZING so they amass a legion of fans who want to dress just like them too.

So who are the big losers? Coincidentally, they’re the same ones who built too many physical retail stores. BCBG, Bebe, J.Crew, The Limited, Abercrombie, Guess.

On the luxury end, it’s fun to discover new designers (or at least new to you/me). Browsing by designer, getting to know who they are is interesting too. In this Vogue article I learned that Caroline Constas is known for her off-the-shoulder tops (ok, like everyone) but ones that are “well priced, flattering, and not too flimsy as to pose a wardrobe malfunction risk.” She has a “straightforward signature—classic shirting with a twist.”

The woman is a force! “Constas is also savvy in that her business is vertically integrated, so her patternmakers, sewers, and seamstresses are all in-house. Not only does that maintain high margins, but it means she can be involved in every step of the process, from the size of the buttonholes to buying strategies. ‘Getting my hands in production and sales has been so important,’ she says. ‘I can’t imagine having a label and doing it differently. As a designer, you have a vision for what you think will do well in the market, but it’s great to be in those sales meetings and hear what buyers’ needs actually are. At the end of the day, it’s a business.’

That’s my kind of gal!

P.S. Sorry about the lack of posts! I’ve been swamped with Skylar Yoo, the fashion brand for bold women coming out in mid-October. I’ll try to post more!

    July 7 2017

    A Stunning White Dress

    The rabbit hole we call the Internet led me to this online store called Ellis and Friends. I was perusing their website when I came across this stunning white dress. I love the bare shoulders, how it’s A-line (hiding my big hips), and how it’s made in lace, crochet and organza. I’ve never seen anything quite like it.

    P.S. My favorite ruffled blouse, from Self-Portrait, is now being sold online. You can buy it on the company’s website.

    July 7 2017

    The Prettiest Purple Top

    I recently discovered the store MILLE. They sell clothes that are a little pricey but worth it for the unique style. This purple top with balloon sleeves, ruffles on the arms and a tie at the neck is so pretty! It’s called the Rayne Tie Shirt and it’s by Thierry Colson.

    Though sold out, I noticed that now a lot of sites let you enter your email address to get on an email list. They’ll notify you when they get a new shipment in. Genius!

    July 6 2017

    The Perfect Beach Cover-Up

    I’m not a big fan of crochet but when I saw this, I was immediately drawn to it. Isn’t it so pretty? I love the scalloped edges. Five out of five stars with 16 reviews. One person wrote, “This cover-up is stunning. Lots of compliments on it. Well made too.”

    It’s called the Crochet Cover-Up Tunic and it’s by Surf Gypsy.

    July 5 2017

    The Prettiest Chair (is Comfortable Too)!

    I have this weird fascination with chairs. If I had all the money in the world I would start a chair collection. So far I have the Sayl Chair by Yves Béhar (in white and red), the Eames rocker in red, and I have an accent chair for my office, a pretty turquoise Eames chair.

    One of my dreams is to get the classic Eames Lounge Chair in black. It’s the epitome of cool.

    Just to note, now that I’m moving (I only have one month left!), I’ll be scouting out cool furniture. Hope you enjoy seeing more posts like this (home decor).

    I just spotted this fancy gem on Room & Board’s website. It’s called Chloe and it’s made from luxurious velvet. It looks gorgeous in dark blue and in pink.

    It got really high reviews on the R&B website, 5 out of 5 stars, with people saying things like:
    “Such a great yet simple design and it’s comfortable looks excellent.”
    “Beautiful fabric! Gorgeous design. Perfect color. I love it and may get another.”
    “A good friend of mine has this chair in a different fabric. When we were looking for a good comfortable chair for our guest bedroom, I didn’t hesitate. This is a chair you can spend hours in. I just love it!”

    June 23 2017

    The “Secret” Magazine That I Really Love

    Let it be known that I subscribe to A LOT of magazines. I remember my older sister, Grace, had a countless number of magazine subscriptions when she was a high schooler. Since we’re four years apart, that would mean I was 10 when I first got exposed to these “glossies.” I experienced the rise of grunge, hello Kate Moss, goodbye Cindy Crawford. One of my fondest memories would be running towards the mailbox to try and get my hands on one of her magazines before she could. I loved the feeling of holding a crisp version of Vogue, Elle, and Allure. Oh and those Fall tomes! The September issue would be the best – picture after picture of gorgeous models wearing outrageously expensive outfits. I wasn’t materialistic, it was about the art of the clothes, the fashion photography, and even, sometimes the articles.

    Fast forward a few decades, (ok, three), and now I get these delivered to my door: Vogue, Elle, Allure (ah, still love these three), InStyle, Oprah, StyleWatch, Bazaar, W, Time, Bloomberg Business, Fortune, Forbes, Fast Company, Wired and Inc. It’s a weird mix between fashion and business. My recent purchase is also my favorite….get ready for it: Teen Vogue.

    {Awkward Pause} “You know you’re like 40, right?! (That’s my head talking..or maybe you. Stay with me.)

    Not sure if you’re aware of this but Teen Vogue has gotten really political and its articles are captivating.

    Per The Atlantic:
    “In May, 29-year-old Elaine Welteroth took over as editor from Amy Astley, who helped found the magazine in 2003. Welteroth, the digital editorial director Phillip Picardi, and the creative director Marie Suter have moved the magazine more aggressively into covering politics, feminism, identity, and activism. Together, the three have shepherded a range of timely, newsy stories, including an interview exploring what it’s like to be a Muslim woman facing a Trump presidency, a list of reasons why Mike Pence’s record on women’s rights and LGBTQ rights should trouble readers, and a video in which two Native American teenagers from the Standing Rock Sioux tribe discuss the Dakota Access Pipeline protests.”

    It feels like Teen Vogue is on the pulse of what’s cool but not in a “trying-too-hard” kind of way. Outside of politics, it also shares some interesting articles like Solange’s letter to her teenage self. I was taken aback by her beauty, her boldness, and her creativity!

    Read the whole thing here.

    My favorite phrases:

    “there will be fear. a lot of it. there will be triumph. a lot of it. there will be constellations you want to reach for but can’t put your finger on. you will trace them like the scars on your body you got from trouble and the times of your life. you will take the long way to get to these Orions. the long way will become a theme in your life, but a journey you learn to love.”

    “because you have your mama’s blood, you are fiercely independent and outgoing. you’ve been starting petitions, building tree houses, and starting clubs since as long as you can remember. sometimes in the midst of juggling all this, you put a lot of pressure on yourself and often crash and burn. you shut down. you go into your room, lock the door, put on music, and you do not move for 8 hours straight. it will feel like the heaviest and bleakest darkness you can possibly feel, and when you ask everyone to leave you alone and let you be, what you really want to say is ‘i want you here’ and ‘i need help.’ sometimes it is ok to say just that. it won’t make you less strong or less powerful. no one you love will criticize you or blame you; in fact, they will lift you up.”

    Now I want to cry.

    Photo: Julia Noni for Bazaar

    June 21 2017

    Why I Failed as a Lifestyle Blogger

    After I left the art blog My Modern Met, I had big plans for myself. I was going to be like my Internet idols Joy Cho of OhJoy!, Joanna Goddard of Cup of Joe, and Bri Emery of Design Love Fest. I would showcase to the world my beautiful and exciting life! Look at my colorful, well-put together outfit, listen to the latest podcast, be on the cusp of what’s cool. I have total respect for them, but lifestyle blogging just wasn’t for me.

    Did I not remember that I’m a total introvert? That I have a hard time taking a selfie? That I treasure my privacy? How was I ever going to make it as a lifestyle blogger? Two years passed and I gained about 300 followers on Facebook. About 100 people come to my blog every day. Who are you, people? Why would you be spending time on my site when there are so many more interesting blogs out there? 300 fans on Facebook is not a bad number, mind you, figuring I hardly post there. I was too afraid of criticism, and since I didn’t get many likes on any of my posts, I figured people didn’t care anyway.

    Then, I had this revelation. Though I still like my privacy, I could be bolder in my life. I could share with the world my failures, my vulnerabilities. A few days ago, when I told all of my 2,000+ Facebook friends that I was starting a new company I was scared s***less. Yet, I did it. Why? Because I think sometimes you have to put your life’s goals out there into the universe. Will some people laugh at me? Probably. Now I’m accountable for my actions. The business could implode and never launch but what’s so bad about that? A little lost money but lots of lessons learned.

    What happened next? I chopped off my hair (it was long for over 20 years), dyed it pink and started wearing more fashionable and expressive clothes. I fell in love with fashion. It’s a beautiful form of art!

    Now, I feel like I’m back in my element, emailing or talking to artists on the phone about their passion. These people just love their craft, they are completely engrossed in the world of hand lettering. And why wouldn’t they be? It’s fascinating what you can do now – taking a rough pencil sketch and “vectorizing it” to create a colorful, unique work of art.

    “Lettering, in short, tells a story by using drawn letter shapes. These letterforms are not fonts that can be bought and simply used over and over again. Rather, they are custom-created for one particular piece and purpose. In this sense, they can be compared to illustration – an illustration consisting of letters.” (From the book, The Golden Secrets of Lettering by Martina Flor.

    My UK agency and I are working on the target market right now. Who will wear these statement t-shirts? At first, I thought maybe the market. The really young millennials. Now, though, I feel as though it should be someone who’s fashionable but also mindful and authentic. There’s a story to be told there. Just wait and see….

    June 15 2017

    Predicting the Future of Fashion

    Staff writer for Fast Company, Liz Segran, met with graduate students at the Fashion Institute of Technology to ask them what they think is going to happen to retail stores. In the beginning, Skylar Yoo will be strictly an online store but I plan on selling the shirts to big department stores as well as (possibly) on Amazon. In the future future, I’d love to have brick-and-morter stores but ones that are totally unconventional. I want people to come to the stores to see incredible, cutting-edge art on the walls, I want one-of-a-kind art installations where people can interact with art, and I want a DJ to be playing some jammin tunes. In this day and age, don’t we or shouldn’t we expect more from a retail store?

    Here’s what the graduate students said:
    “Department stores must think of themselves as entertainment centers: In Korea, some malls are more like amusement parks, complete with rides and art installations. Some brands should become landlords, leasing out part of their space to smaller startups, which will give customers a reason to stop by the store to see what’s new. For other brands, turning unproductive retail spaces into local distribution centers might be a good idea, since it might allow them to get products to customers within hours at lower shipping costs.”

    Will the industry adapt and change? All I know for sure is that we’re living in a fascinating time for fashion.

    June 12 2017

    New Clothing Brand: Skylar Yoo is Secretly Coming Alive

    Though I’m still a few months out from fully launching, I wanted to give you a sneak peek of what’s to come with my new clothing company Skylar Yoo. Currently, I’m working with around 20 different hand lettering artists and have about 50 completely original and exclusive designs. Though most won’t make it to the site (I’ll only launch 10-20 shirts and hoodies and I’m being highly selective), it’s still a thrill to see the designs start coming alive. I’m working with Big Fan Agency on the brand identity and website. I think they deserve a shout-out. I’ve worked with them before and they’re just an unbelievably creative, efficient and reliable team. I also have to thank Christopher Jobson of Colossal and Jeff Sheldon of Ugmonk for giving me priceless advice on how to run a successful online shop.

    Now for the fun stuff: We’ve chosen the colors of the brand – it will be a combination of millennial pink and red. Together, they look bold and beautiful. The tagline of the company is simply “Be Bold.”

    Yesterday, I put up an Instagram account (@skylar.yoo) so that you can start seeing some initial designs. Also, because of my love for art, design, photography and powerful quotes, I’ll be including those in the feed. Follow it if you want to see a start-up fashion line become a worldwide brand. (Yes, I’m ambitious and proud of it!)

    Which hand lettering artists am I working with? I know it may seem like I’m giving away all of my secrets, but I believe in transparency and openness. Everyone can have an idea, ultimately doesn’t it always come down to execution? Fortunately, my experience in working with artists and my love for art has now found a new home. I want you to feel like you’re a part of this exciting journey. Plus, while working at My Modern Met for seven years, I gained the utmost respect for the creatives in the world. As French artist Henri Matisse once said, “Creativity takes courage.” That’s why I’ll be crediting every artist I’ll be working with both on the website and through all social media channels. The talented artist who hand lettered “Girls to the Front” is Maddy Nye. Tobias Saul is another talented artist who I’m working with for three designs. He just completed two for me and, let me tell you, I was speechless when I saw them. I am working on signing on Luke Lucas and Jessica Hische, who are both rockstars in the art world. It would be a total dream to even be associated with them.

    Let me quickly explain why I decided that, in this first collection, I’m only working with hand lettering artists. I bought several books on the art form. It’s like marrying the old with the new. The artists start with a sketch, which could be in pencil, pen, marker, or paint and then they scan their work onto a computer. From there, they use software like Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop or After Effects to make a refined, and oftentimes colorful work of art. The artist must be adept at both drawing words and using software. Watch this awesome video, by Noah Camp, to see a piece go from a simple marker drawing to a spinning, rainbow colored 3D model. Isn’t it fascinating? If you want to learn more about the art of hand lettering, read In Progress by the queen Jessica Hische.

    Why the name Skylar Yoo, you might be asking. Skylar is the name I would have given my daughter if my second child was a girl. The first time I heard that name I instantly loved it. I would have nicknamed her “Sky”. It reminds me of the saying, “Reach for the sky.” To me, it means set very high goals, aspire to be the best.

    As I’ve mentioned previously, Skylar Yoo will be a clothing brand dedicated to bold women and girls. The feminists. The ones who stand up and take action. The creative entrepreneurs who pursue their dreams. The women managers and CEOs of this world that work their a**** off to get to where they are. My current rockstars? Tina Roth Eisenberg of SwissMiss, Joy Cho of Oh Joy!, Bri Emery of DesignLoveFest, Jaime Derringer of Design Milk, Chriselle Lim, Aimee Song of @songofstyle,
    Gabrielle Stanley Blair of Design Mom and Alt Summit and, of course, Jessica Alba of The Honest Company.

    It also includes women that have inspired me throughout my life like my wedding photographer Jessica Claire, my wedding planner Jeannie Savage of Details Details, and my event planner Sunny Ravanbach of White Lilac. These are creative, powerful women who’ve built their businesses from the ground up.

    Have you heard about the movie Dream, Girl? I’ve only seen the trailer but it gave me goosebumps. Women are starting 1,200 businesses a day! That’s incredible and inspiring.

    Now about Skylar Yoo…there’s more to come! Keep up with “her” on Instagram.

    I’ll leave you with this: I just read the book We Should All Be Feminists (yes, there was a TED talk and a book before there was a ridiculously priced Christian Dior shirt) and it explained that a feminist simply means this: Advocating social, political, legal, and economic rights for women equal to those of men. In this day and age, is that too much to ask?

    June 8 2017

    New Bathing Suit in My Favorite Colors

    Have you heard of the company Summersalt? They create affordable (under $100) bathing suits that are made from recycled materials. This design, called The Sidestroke, caught my eye. I love the look of the one shoulder and it’s in my favorite color combination. Pink and red.

    Our family trip to Hawaii is now less than a month away so it’s time to buy a bathing suit. I like this one and Mara Hoffman’s one piece. (See how this one looks on a model. So elegant!)

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