4/16/17

THE NEW 501 SKINNY JEANS

THAT LOOK LIKE MOM JEANS
Levi's 501 selvedge skinny jeans in summer dune, Levi's boyfriend trucker jacket
A classic pair of blue jeans is one clothing article that is always worth the investment. Mom jeans in particular, have been back in style which are jeans with a destroyed or vintage color wash, higher-waisted, and fit loose around the crotch and legs. I've been loving Levi's lately and got myself a pair of 501 selvedge skinny jeans in summer dune and love how they fit and look. I consider my 501 skinny jeans a more stylish version of "mom jeans". They're 100% cotton so have no stretch, but the fit and quality make them comfortable to wear and it helps that they're not body hugging either. I've been living in these mom jeans that pair well with anything casual especially basic tee's. Ladies, it's time to ditch the boyfriend jeans and get yourself a pair of mom jeans. Below are some of my favorite finds. 
  1. PacSun Favorite Blue Ripped Mom Jeans $60
  2. Zara mid-rise vintage jeans $70
  3. Levi's wedgie fit jeans in desert delta $98
  4. Levi's 501 selvedge skinny jeans in summer dune $148
  5. AGOLDE high-rise cropped jeans (great for shorter people, like myself!) $148

4/12/17

THE KNOTTED TREND

WAYS TO WEAR IT, WHERE TO GET IT
Stolen Hearts button-down dress from Forever21, Gucci Princetown loafers, Ships Ginza handbag
One basic way to make an oversized shirt or button-down more trendy is by adding a knot to it. I do this a lot to my oversized shirts by pulling on the bottom of the shirt and giving it a single knot, usually in the center or one side of the shirt (examples via Cosmo here). You probably unintentionally do this trend too, such as when you tie the bottom ends of your button-down together (shirt example here). I love how various brands have started incorporating this twisted trend into more classic clothes like the shirt dress I'm wearing. The extra fabric helps make the knot dramatic, easier to tie, and more comfortable to wear. Although most fashion trends come and go, I don't see this trend disappearing anytime soon so if you're looking for a way to spice up that basic shirt in your closet why not upgrade it with a knotted version of it? Below are some of my favorite picks in stores right now. 
  1. Zara plain knotted t-shirt $20
  2. Zara faux suede sleeveless top with knot $36
  3. Bar III striped knotted shirt dress on sale for $54
  4. Free People striped tube top with knotted front $78
  5. Topshop casual oversized tie waist dress $85
  6. LNA plain deep v-neck shirt $90
  7. T by Alexander Wang front twist short sleeve shirt $150
  8. 3.1 Philip Lim striped knotted shirtdress $475

4/2/17

MUTED COLOR TONES

THE BEST WAY TO MAKE A LOUD TREND MORE SUBTLE
Missguided choker sweater, Balenciaga sunglasses (available in black here), Coordinates Collection open air bracelet, Chanel classic flap bag
Muted color tones such as blush pink have been trending over the years. With minimalism gaining popularity in design and fashion, it only makes sense that subdued color tones have been trending as these colors compliment minimalist design and are less harsh on the eyes. This color trend can also be evident in Pantone's color of the year award. In 2016 it was rose quartz and serenity both beautiful, muted colors. The nice thing about muted colors is that it goes well with everything and automatically brings calmness to your attire. Take my sweater for example. A top with an attached choker is often a bold statement piece, yet the color drastically reduces the boldness and instead softens it making the sweater subtle and in fact, soothing. The next time you're shopping and love the piece but feel like the style is too loud or bold, try finding it in a muted color tone. I guarantee you'll feel more at ease and even more confident wearing it. 

3/28/17

OFF THE SHOULDER & CULOTTES

AT THE PALACE OF FINE ARTS
Forever21 top and scarf, Zara culottes and heels, vintage Gucci boston handbag (similar one here)
Off-the-shoulder tops have been increasing in popularity and growing in variability and are one trend I can't get enough of. With summer and Coachella right around the corner, I've been eyeing more off-the-shoulder crop tops like the one I'm wearing now. The best thing about off-the-shoulder tops are that they can be dressed casually or formally and if you don't know by now, I'm all about clothing versatility. If I wanted to dress my outfit down, with the same top on I would swap out the culottes for high-waisted distressed denim and ditch the heels for some boots or sneakers. Regardless of how you style it, I'm all about this trend and think you should be too. Therefore, below are some of my favorite stores with some of the cutest off-the-shoulder tops on the market. 

3/27/17

MY VERY FIRST CHANEL

IN CLASSIC FLAP, LAMBSKIN LEATHER
American Apparel shirt, Levi's Made & Crafted boyfriend jeans, Vince suede "paulette" pumps, Chanel classic flap bag in lambskin leather and gold-tone metal
Ever since I was little I dreamed of owning a Chanel yet never thought the day would come. My parents immigrated to the states from South Korea in the early 1980's and restarted their life in America barely knowing how to speak English to live the American Dream. With my dad working 2 jobs and my stay-at-home mom, we grew up very budget-conscious and practical, where purchases were based on needs not wants. The thought of owning a designer piece worth more than 4 digits was far beyond my reach. Yet when I discovered that the classic flap bag was also my mom's dream bag, I knew I had to get it. I've always aspired to be successful and have always had an extremely self-motivated mindset where I set goals and don't stop until I reach them. This Chanel flap bag is another depiction of that. After purchasing my Chanel flap bag I realized that at the end of the day, a bag is just a bag but it's the meaning of this purchase that made this moment so special to me. My parents sacrificed everything to raise me and my brother to live our American dream and I am now successful enough to afford the wants not needs. This timeless Chanel will always remind me of my humble upbringings and that you can literally do anything you set your mind to. 

3/22/17

WRAPPED IN A CASHMERE SCARF

IN SAN DIEGO
Cashmere Scarf from TrekFix, TNA sweater form Aritzia, J. Brand jeans, Zara leather jacket and boots, purse from Korea

I took a short weekend trip to San Diego last month to visit one of my best friend's 30th birthday at a beach house (rented on airbnb) along Mission Beach. We ironically visited during one of San Diego's coldest weekends but my cashmere scarf courtesy of TrekFix helped keep me warm. The scarf was convenient to pack since its thinner in material, and the triangle shape made styling it extra easy since it's designed to wrap perfectly around your neck. Scarves have become one of my travel necessities because it makes for a great layering piece and I always end up wearing them. The next time you're traveling somewhere chilly or with fickle weather pack a scarf, you won't regret it. 

3/21/17

FLORAL ROMPER PERFECTION

A SPRING MUST-HAVE
ASTR romper from bloomingdales,  Cuyana clutch, ettika choker necklace, Coordinates Collection open air custom bracelet
If you were to ask what clothing article is a spring/summer necessity, a romper would be on top that list. Floral rompers in particular are great for the beach, when traveling somewhere sunny, or for outdoor festivities such as music festivals or picnics. The great thing about rompers is that you can literally throw on one piece of clothing, put on some shoes and be out the door ready. If you need help finding the perfect romper to take you into spring, I've curated some of my favorite picks below just for you. 
  1. Forever21 Reverse Floral Print Romper $58
  2. Missguided Floral Bardot Romper $61
  3. Kiss The Sky Lace Sleeve Romper with Ruffle Details $61
  4. Anthropologie Vada Paisley Romper: $128
  5. Privacy Please Goodwin Romper $178
  6. Lovers + Friends Isabelle Striped Romper $180
  7. Mara Hoffman Baya Off-The-Shoulder Romper: $295
  8. Joie Weldon Romper $398

3/19/17

SATURDAY IN PACIFICA

IN MY LACE-UP BODYSUIT
Cotton Candy LA bodysuit from Bloomingdales (similar Missguided one here and Alexander Wang one here),  J Brand alana high-rise jeans. Levi's denim trucker jacket, pearl earrings from eBay

I've had this lace-up bodysuit for over a year and wore it for the first time on a day trip to Pacifica. Although bodysuits are inconvenient to wear, I love the way they fit and how they keep everything in place. The main reasons I dislike bodysuits are because it shows your VPL (visible panty line) and because using the restroom is such a hassle (you have to take the entire top off, or unbutton the crotch area). Yet, I've learned some key ways to style your bodysuit to make it less annoying to wear. Here are some of my favorite ways to wear a bodysuit. 
  1. Paired with high-waisted jeans: when deciding what jeans to wear strive to find jeans with larger butt pockets as they do a better job of hiding panty lines. Darker colored denim also help.
  2. Paired with a circle or loose skirt: the loose skirt hides any trace of VPL and the volume of the skirt adds a fun vibe that contrasts well against a tight-fitting top. 
  3. Paired with a denim skirt: denim skirts are becoming more popular and instantly add that California cool-girl vibe to any outfit. This Levi's denim skirt is currently one of my favorites. 

3/13/17

EVERYDAY WEAR

AND DOUBLE CHOKED IN GOLD
Aqua top from Bloomingdales, Zara leather jacket, J Brand denim, choker courtesy of Ettika, Vince Camuto heels (similar here), Burberry clutch
My go-to outfit when I don't know what to wear consists of a simple black top, skinny jeans, a leather jacket and statement jewelry. Time and time again, this outfit has never failed and continues to be in style for all occasion. It was easy for me to accessorize this outfit because of the beautiful gold choker I received from Ettika. Chokers have been back in style for a while, but I've enjoyed wearing unconventional chokers including this double gold chain one that also falls down your chest. If you're looking for that perfect statement jewelry to take your outfit to the next level, a choker will do. See below for some of my other favorite chokers that are anything but ordinary. 

3/7/17

SWEATER DRESS

OVER SOME OVER THE KNEES
AllSaints sweater dress (similar here and here), FreePeople boots, Gucci boston handbag, necklaces courtesy of ettika
The things I prioritize when dressing myself during the winter are comfort, simplicity, ease of wear, all while looking effortlessly fashionable. I've found that oversized sweater dresses paired with some killer boots has mastered this fashion priority. It's especially convenient if you're lazy because all you have to literally throw on one piece of clothing and you're ready to go (two if you want to wear a slip or cami underneath). What I particularly love about sweater dresses is that it's functional just as much as it's fashionable. It sucks when trendy apparel (like off-the-shoulder-tops) just aren't comfortable but sweater dresses are the most comfortable you can get and are always in style. Sweater dresses trace back all the way to the 1960's (and earlier) with iconic fashion models such as Twiggy in her pink dress. Just another reason why sweater dresses should be part of every fashionistas closet. 

2/28/17

CUSCO, PERU

A SWEET ENDING TO OUR SOUTH AMERICA ADVENTURE
HM dress, Proenza Schouler wallet on chain, Prada sunglasses, Kenneth Cole kam sneakers


If you were to ask what city I loved the most, out of all 6 cities visited in South America Cusco was my favorite. Cusco is one of the oldest cities in South America (founded in 1100) and was the capital of the Inca Empire before it's invasion by the Spanish. Architecturally, its easy to get a sense of all the historical impact just from walking around. Cusco is full of narrow/cobbled streets, Incan, colonial, and Spanish architecture, plazas surrounded by buildings from different eras, and locals dressed in traditional quechua clothing. There was so much to explore in this quaint city and I loved wandering around and walking into all the random storefronts. During my time in Cusco, I discovered some things that I wish I knew prior to traveling, so I've shared them below so you can learn from my experience.
  • Bring change in small bills: most locals that sell you stuff on the street or market will hustle you. They'll tell you a price, and when you give them a bill they'll frequently say they don't have change. This happened to me several times and I kept getting ripped-off because I'd pull out bills from the ATM and although what I kept purchasing was a fraction of the price they'd claim they don't have change and just keep my bill.
  • Pictures cost money: In Cusco, it's rude to take pictures of locals (especially those in traditional Andes clothing) without offering money. There are also locals who walk around with alpacas so you can take pictures with them, but this also cost money. Hence, carry change with you. 
  • Alpacas galore: The city thrives on alpacas. Almost all markets have alpaca souvenirs, lots of businesses have some sort of alpaca symbol/logo, you can buy almost anything wearable made of alpaca wool, and even order alpaca meat at restaurants. I had the most fun buying an alpaca wool sweater because it was so soft, comfortable and only $13 USD. 
  • Coca tea: Order this everywhere you go. It's an herbal tea made of coca leaves that's very soothing, tasty, helps with headaches, and even helps prevent altitude sickness. In terms of taste, it reminded me of green tea but earthier. I wish we had this in the states. 

2/27/17

MACHU PICCHU

THE LOST CITY OF THE INCAS
Nike flyknit running shoes, Girlfriend Collective leggings, bralette from PacSun 

Traveling to Machu Picchu was the most exhausting part of our South American trip. It took us a total of 18-hours to arrive here from Santiago, Chile when it should have taken 12. For starters, our flight got delayed 3-hours which caused a domino effect on all other things booked. We missed our scheduled PeruRail train ride and also had to re-coordinate other planned activities. Although I wish we had more time, we still got to explore Aguas Calientes and hike Machu Picchu which was our primary goal. For those seeking to travel to Machu Picchu and have a limited amount of time, below is how we did it along with tips on how to travel with ease into the rainforest. 

2/20/17

COLORS OF SANTIAGO

VIBRANCY AWAITS
Shirt and handbag from a street fair in Santiago, AEO shorts, Steve Madden sandals
We stopped in Santiago which is the capital of Chile for 2-days after our Patagonia excursion. I didn't know what to expect since I did seldom research but I fell in love with Santiago and felt the most at home here out of all places in South America. The differing neighborhoods, vibrancy, and streets filled with art and culture reminded me a lot of San Francisco. One of the first things we did was stop by Centro Artesanal Santa Lucia to buy souvenirs, which was such a fun market to explore. I also ended up getting this top for 9,000 Chilean pesos ($14 USD) and a purse for 19,000 pesos ($30 USD). Some other favorite activities consisted of visiting Cerro San Cristóbal which is a steep hill you walk up to see the cityscape, going to the Metropolitan Cathedral, and walking around Lastarria which is the area we stayed in. We stayed in Hotel Ismael 312 which had a cozier room but the overall hotel was super hip and the location was walking distance to so many great places. Overall, Santiago was such a vibrant city and left me with a great impression of city-life in Chile. 

2/8/17

PATAGONIA ADVENTURES

 CROSSING BORDERS FROM ARGENTINA TO CHILE
The North Face hyperair GTX rain jacket, Under Armour cold gear long sleeve shirt, Girlfriend Collective leggings, Nike flyknit running shoes, Ray-Ban aviators
If you're into nature and adventure, Patagonia is a must-do. Patagonia is a huge region (402,700 mi²) that crosses through the south of Argentina and Chile with the Andes Mountains dividing the border. Due to the scale of Patagonia you can experience it in so many different ways. Josh and I only had 4-days to explore Patagonia so decided with the stop-and-go route rather than the week long hike. We planned everything independently of each other and created our own itinerary to do all the activities we wanted to do. Perito Moreno Glacier and Torres Del Paine were high priority items on our list. Planning Patagonia wasn't easy, so I'd love to share my itinerary with you along with some tips. See below to see it all. 

2/6/17

JUST ARRIVED IN PATAGONIA

EL CALAFATE
Lucca Couture ruffle off the shoulder blouse, vintage earrings from Austin, American Eagle shorts, Apple Watch stainless steel with pink leather buckle
Patagonia is breathtaking and nothing like I could have ever imagined. Seeing pictures of it is one thing, but being situated there is another. Josh and I started our Patagonia adventure in El Calafate which is a small town on the edge of the Southern Patagonian Ice Field. We stayed at Design Suites Calafate which was one of the nicer hotels here, yet still affordable. Getting here was quite the journey since the suite was located on the outskirts of town with nothing but dirt and land around it. We also had a crazy cab driver driving 90mph over dirt roads, cutting other drivers off, and the rickety car didn't help either. Regardless, once we got to our destination we were in complete awe and soaking it all in. I would definitely recommend staying here if you travel to El Calafate as the view is priceless. See below for more pictures taken at our beautiful suite. 

1/31/17

EXPLORING PALERMO

IN BUENOS AIRES
Dress from Azalea San Francisco, Kenneth Cole kam leather sneakers, Prada sunglasses

Day 2 in Buenos Aires was spent exploring Palermo which ended up being my favorite part of Buenos Aires. Known as the trendier area, Palermo was full of vibrant and colorful alleys, bars or cafe's on every block, and amazing shopping. Open air markets, cute boutiques, mainstream stores, you name it they had it. It was New Years eve when I traveled here so unfortunately most places were closed, but on the bright side the emptiness of the city made for great blog photos. We also rang in the New Year in Palermo at a cooking class dinner, The Argentine Experience which was a blast. We learned to make cocktails, empanadas, and alfajores, while being accompanied with an open-bar with other travelers. One of my highlights was sharing life stories with other travelers and somehow teaching everyone slang terms such as "it's lit" to ring in the New Year with spunk. That along with champagne toasts at midnight made it an unforgettable start to 2017. Click below to see the photos.

1/29/17

2017 IN BUENOS AIRES

A SOUTH AMERICAN SUMMER
HM silk camisole (similar here), American Eagle shorts, Steve Madden sandals from 2016 (similar herehere), Proenza Schouler PS1 wallet on chain, Prada cat-eye sunglasses, Free People headband
I spent my New Years traveling through South America, starting off in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Did you know that Buenos Aires is the 4th largest city in the world? A large reason why Josh and I decided on South America was because December-March is their summer. Little did we know that it'd be 90°F with intense humidity. To help bear the heat I wore a simple silk camisole over a bralette, and a headscarf to help with sweat. This outfit worked out favorably in allowing me to explore Buenos Aires comfortably. Some of my favorite times included just roaming the city and admiring all of the Spanish colonial architecture. Click below to see some of my favorites while exploring Buenos Aires.


1/24/17

DRAPED IN WOOL

NOT A ROBE
Zara draped jacket, suede vest, and boots, Paige Premium denim in vertugo, HM silk top, Gucci marmont belt, Louis Vuitton speedy bandouliere handbag, Cartier trinity necklace
This draped wool jacket that I purchased from Zara in 2015 is still one of my favorite go-to's. I find it rare to love a piece of clothing years after owning it so when I find myself having favorites, thats when I know it's a good piece. I think it helps that draped wrap jackets are extremely comfortable because of the bagginess, they're great for layering, and the style helps polish your look. It's ironic because I call this my "robe-jacket" because whenever I wear it, it feels like I'm wearing a robe but it's definitely not casual like a robe. Although this particular jacket is no longer available, below are some other draped jackets that I've fallen in love with. 
  1. AYR the robe wool long coat: $595 
  2. All Saints portere parka$468
  3. Trouve polyester slouchy jacket: $89
  4. Abercrombie & Fitch wool-blend wrap jacket: on sale for $72
  5. Forever21 draped open-front cardigan: $27.90

1/22/17

ALL ABOUT THE BELL SLEEVES

GO BIG OR GO HOME
StyleWe off the shoulder bell sleeve blouse, Paige Premium distressed denim, Kate Spade stud earrings, Zara sandals
The one blouse style to look out for in 2017 are bell sleeves. This 70's trend got re-introduced in 2016 from designers such as Chanel and Chloe, yet it's coming full force in 2017. Retail companies have caught onto this runway trend and have been producing their own version. StyleWe in particular has done a great job offering a wide selection of bell sleeve tops at affordable price points. This top in particular caught my attention because you can wear the sleeves loose and long or tie the ends together. I figured if you're going to wear this trend though why not go all out? So I decided to double tie the ends and bring them up to my elbows for extra volume. If there's any top that can give you an instant fashion-forward look it's definitely bell-sleeves. 

1/17/17

WINTER IN PORTLAND, OR

IN LAYERS
HM beanie and tank, Zara parka, J.Crew chambray shirt, Paige "verdugo" jeans, Zara leather boots,
Nordstrom scarf (similar here), Louis Vuitton speedy bandouliere 30 in Monogram Empreinte Leather
I travel to Portland, Oregon often since Josh's parents live there and have found it increasingly comforting to visit. It's always nice gathering with family and Portland in general has amazing food and great shopping (since it's all tax-free). It's also only a 1.5 hour flight from San Francisco which used to be the same travel time it used to take me to get to work. Definitely can't complain about that! While my visit to Portland was short as I was only there for 2.5 days, I've mastered the art of packing light and bringing just what I need. Most importantly, I've learned to minimize the amount of thick apparel that I bring and maximize luggage space by bringing layers and winter accessories instead. In this particular outfit, I'm wearing 3-layers plus my scarf and beanie. That alone kept me warm and comfortable enough to brave the Portland cold.