its-been-real

A Lesson Instead of Resolutions, Plus 2016 Style Goals

A twist from making New Years resolutions!  Screw them; let me instead share my most major lesson of 2015.  Yes I’m a bit late to the party, but I’ve been putting off writing this because 2015 just wasn’t a very good year for me.  Denial!

its-been-real

top: Urban / shorts: AEO / bag: Marcbymarcjacobs

A Lesson in Relationships

Being in the fashion industry I’m as materialistic as they come and I have no problems saying it out loud – in fact, if I’m not, I wouldn’t be very good at my day job.  I love my clothes, I love my shoes, and I love rolling around on the closet floor that’s full of my favorite things when I’m too lazy to hang them up.

But I consider my friendships priceless.

Throughout 2015 I encountered many attempts to put a price on one of mine, and I found myself thinking about the nature of that relationship.  Friendships are the results of 2 parties having mutual affection in its interactions with each other.  Most would agree that a good friendship is balanced; how much you get out of it depends on how much you put in.  There exists a mutual understanding and caring that goes beyond simple association.  But when one party doesn’t see it that way, how do you deal?  When he or she sees your friendship as a materialistic one, one that they can pay off and feel they owe you absolutely no time of day after what they would consider debts repaid, the relationship is broken.

The off balance relationship felt like one giant void of karmatic nothingness in which I was depositing into on a regular basis; it saddened me and left a sour and bitter bite on my mind and soul.  I took a long hard look at myself; maybe I was expecting too much.  If I offer my time and talents for free in the name of friendship, then maybe I deserve nothing back.

Who am I kidding, that’s bullshit.

Therefore, my lesson – you cannot control the cards you are dealt, but you can make decisions on how to play them.  I cannot control the action of others, but I certainly can control my own reactions.  Have more confidence in my own actions and talents, and stop letting others place value on something that deserves no price tag.  And never align yourself to values through the eyes of others.  The relationships dear to me will always remain priceless, and nothing will change that.

2016 Style Goals

Anyway, life does go on.  Let’s move on to the fashion side of things, 2016 winter style goals featuring oversized silhouettes, monochrome palettes, and minimalism.

6f062449d4e3c2628f72095ca9286287

Culottes be chic in over sized silo

Continue reading

zara bag 4

Shopping Habits and Fast Fashion – Where Do You Draw the Line?

It’s an upsetting reality of the industry – shoppers can balk on social media and shake their sticks all they want at the soul sucking fashion empires that profit off of undeveloped countries destroying both environment and lives, but the very next day we’re skipping into Zara or H&M because the prices  and owning something new are just too irresistible.   I too am dead guilty of this, but my goal today is not to focus on the impact of fashion fashion (which we should all know by now) but rather where we choose to draw the line and consciously decide to shop for something of better quality, something longer lasting, or to not purchase at all.

hm las vegas

The definition of excess (Caesar’s Palace, Las Vegas)

The idea for today’s post spawned from this Zara bag (similar here) I recently acquired by chance.  It hung innocently on a nearby rack as I stood in line to do a return – it was minimal, black, roomy, and fit the necessities of a new bag I was casually scouting for.  I looked at the price: $29.99.  And it certainly felt like $29.99; the thin and cheap polyurethane felt smooth under my fingers as I turned the bag over and over, inspecting the thin woven interior lining and its surprisingly acceptable overall construction.  It even included a longer shoulder strap.  Should I?  Or should I not?  The struggle was real.

zara bag 1

zara bag 3

The Race to the Bottom

I think at some point we all kind of pause and wonder just how low can it go, and how comfortable we are spending those hard earned dollars on a garment or accessory that’s potentially water soluble let alone the fact that it was made by a person earning pennies an hour.  I have no problems admitting just how thrilling it can be to bring home a haul of new trendy things and knowing you didn’t break the bank, but how satisfying is it really, to be filling our closets to the brim with items still smelling like factory grime that torques terribly and disintegrates in the wash?  Should we be buying just because we can?

Buying Smarter?

There comes a time where something’s just too good to be true.  You know the feeling; when you pick out a garment, check the price tag and accidentally choke on your Starbucks, exclaiming “wait how much is this??” Laws of the universe will dictate that there’s most likely something significantly wrong with this item, like I don’t know, the threads holding it together is actually silly string.  But seriously,  chances are it’s held together with Elmers and and will come apart after 2 uses.  That’s where I draw my line; at this point you might as well flush money down the toilet.  Like my beautiful but unfortunate Forever 21 choices from awhile back, below.

SONY DSC

forever 21 flats 1

Money. Down the toilet.

The old adage – quality over quantity

But occasionally something like this Zara bag comes along, where after some heavy inspections, I can see that it would actually hold up.  The price attracted me, but ultimately it was its acceptable and solid construction quality that made me commit.

zara bag 2

zara bag 4

Occasionally I’ll still make unwise decisions, but over time I find it easier to balance the emotional appeals of fast fashion against the knowledge of its value, thereby making better purchases and stretching my dollar.  It’s a balance between spending spontaneously and respecting value.

Zara Tote Outfit

A blend of fast and steady.

Aritzia Jacket (Similar) // Aritzia Del Mar Tee // H&M Skirt (Similar) and Tights // Zara Boots (Similar) // Zara Blanket Scarf // Both the Aritzia items above have been worn to death for multiple seasons now, and I still love every single minute!  The leather Zara booties were one of their pricier shoes, but it’s also lasted me 2 seasons so far of heavy use.

What is your thought process when confronted with rock bottom prices?  Would you tend to be more impulsive or air on the cautious side?  Drop me a line below!

 

bag-contents

Wanderlust Holiday Wardrobe – An O What Fun Travel Outfit Survival Guide

wanderlust-title

Now, maybe there is NOTHING wrong with dashing through the madness of the airport during the holidays in your Lululemons (your mother isn’t going to give a sh*t what you show up in as long as you show up right?) but in case you don’t have the luxury of such a casual arrival and have visions of a chic landing dancing in your head, read on.

bag-contents

What in your bag?

Before you can sip on that delicious mai tai and really enjoy the fruits of your labor, first you need to survive getting there.  Flying on a regular basis is bad enough, it’s exponentially worse during the holidays.  Grumpy travelers, harassed workers, and angry parents yelling at their uncontrollably bored children.  Insulate yourself from this black hole of emotions also known as the airport by dressing chic, being prepared, and proceed to sail above it all.

Get ready for my piece by piece guide to the perfect traveling outfit from easy to find sources and your favorite local retailers.  And the best part is, you most likely already have a few of these in your closet!

Tops

Layering is key to staying comfortable. It can be tempting to throw on a big warm chunky sweater and call it a day, but unpredictable temperatures throughout the airport and on the flight itself can make you sweat your make up right off if you’re wearing too much or have you shivering in a long miserable flight if you’re wearing too little.  Try these soft tees below, and go tunic length if you’re planning on leggings or tights.

tops-collage

01. Zara Tee – soft graphic tee, so comfy // 02. Modcloth Henley Tunic – Henleys are casual and chic at the same time! // 03. Aritzia Split Hem Tank – perfect to layer on and chic on its own. // 04. Free People Cowl Neck Tunic – long and cozy. // 05. Free People Swing Tee – comfortable with sporty details. // 06. Betabrand Two Piece Tunic – an asymmetric tunic tank and a separate crop long sleeve top, a perfect traveling ensemble!

2nd Layer / Sweaters and Cardis

Looking well put together is easy with the right second layer, AND it keeps you cozy when it’s chilly and removable if that plane cabin gets stuffy!  Try a cropped length sweater if wearing a tunic length tee, or a cool asymmetric hem cardi for some variation.

2nd-layer-collage

01. Zara Graphic Sweater – Soft and adorable. // 02. Oak Funnel Neck Sweatshirt – funnel necks double as a hood and scarf // 03. Betabrand 50/50 Cardigan – Another Betabrand invention, convertible from a sweater to a cardi!  // 04. Betabrand Red Eye Shurg – A handy hood for shut eyes, and hidden pockets for traveling essentials. // 05. Aritzia Ionic Cape – short open sleeves make it a breeze to layer. // 06. AllSaints Itat Convertible Shrug – can’t get enough of these convertibles, from cross front to a keyhole back cardi.

Bottoms 

I like to stay away from jeans on flights and go with softer fabrics.  Stretchy leggings allows for comfy movement while looser wovens like joggers feel totally lived in and pairs great with sneakers or boots.  Winter weight maxi skirts are also an ultra comfortable option.

pants-collage

01. Aritiza Feliz Pants – Minute details make these joggers casual yet stylish. // 02. Nike Printed Leggings – a staple pair of fun printed leggings. // 03. Aritzia Skirt – be prepared for attention in this faux suede asymmetrically cut skirt. // 04. Betabrand Dress/Yoga Pants – dress pants details in the comfort of yoga pants fabric?  Better believe it! // 05. Aritzia Joggers – classic pair of woven joggers. // 06. Free People Leggings – piping details and a cute crop length make these the perfect runaround leggings.

Shoes

This ain’t time for those glitter heels – but that doesn’t mean your feet can’t be dressed!  I personally always opt for boots; it’s nice to have socks on so you don’t have to walk barefoot over that nasty airport TSA carpet.  Ugh.  Anyway, check out these stylish functional options below.

shoes-collage

01. Asos Mouse Face Flats – Too adorable for words. // 02. Free People Ankle Boots – so soft, and easy to slip off. // 03. Eileen Fisher Mid Calf Boots – Mid calf length gives the illusion of tall boots with the benefit of gymnastics-free removal. // 04. Zara Ankle Boots – contrast elastic panels makes these a breeze to slip on. // 05. Zara Plimsoll – the classic simple sneaks every girl should own! // 06. Mango Slip On Sneaks – go hipster with these, pairs well with anything!

Travel Bag

I recommend not going with your usual bag unless it’s big enough to fit your valuables like laptop, camera, etc.  Keep those out of the carry on, just in case your carry on ends up getting checked due to a full/overbooked flight, which like, never happens.  And God forbid it gets lost.  Check out some roomy bags below.

Bags-collage

01. Zara Tote – Large and spacious for all your travel essentials. // 02. Street Level Tote – love the smaller interior organization pouch, plus it’s reversible! // 03. Fossil Satchel – classic good looks. // 04. Asos Shopper – bang for your buck with wide comfy straps and braided detail. // 05. Forever 21 Tote – simple and straightforward. // 06. Herschel Supply Tote – a dependable bag that’s shaped to fit your laptop and all other goodies.

Accessories

Running through the airport is a hot mess, and you’ll want to avoid easy to break jewelry – anything that’s too delicate or breakable that can catch or get yanked during TSA or hauling your carry on to and from those pesky overhead bins.  Keeping it simple here is the key to happiness; there’s already too much on your mind without adding the stress of losing or breaking a favorite piece.  A few layered necklaces, stack on your favorite rings, and throw on a pair of low maintenance earrings.  Grab a seasonal scarf, and you’re off to the races.  Find some of my favorite travel accessories below.

accessories-collage

01. Madewell Ring // 02. Inconnue Double Layer Necklace // 03. Aritzia Scarf // 04. Aloha Gaia Ear Jackets // 05. Betabrand Purse Wallet // 06. Zara Blanket Scarf // 07. Pinch Provisions Shemergency Kit // 08. Topshop Fringe Scarf

A Few More Inspirations…

Here are some additional idea boards to get your creativity flowing:

 

A few last minute tips for your carry on: always keep a “disaster bag” in it with items for night survival like mouthwash and fresh wipes in case of canceled flights and you have no access to your checked luggage.  Kits like the Shemergency from Pinch Provisions are great; you can easily make your own though to save some money, but only if you can pass up that adorable little tiny pouch.  Throw in a pair of fresh underwear too, trust me on this one.

There you have it ladies, these fail proof wardrobe pieces are your guide to navigating the skies with style; you’ll be sure to catch jealous glances from harassed travelers as you breeze through the grounds slowly sipping on that nice hot latte.  Mmm…bliss.

What are some of your tried and true travel outfit tips?  Drop me a line below!

Check out Inconnue’s Style Goals Pinterest board for more similar options if you liked today’s pieces!
wpid-dsc01930.jpg

Monday Coffee and Instagram Feeds

Happy Monday guys!

This morning while doing my usual daily ritual of coffee pounding, I look at my IG feed and thought to myself, wow everything looks fantastic!  I couldn’t hit the like button fast enough.  So I thought, why not share my feed with you guys?

So without further ado, here are some solids from my IG feed.

@moomooi

@freshtangerine

@wearforest

@basicsnyc

@basicsnyc

@thebloomerie

@_nutssss

@thehautepursuit

@heyokreal

@maxxsera

@redwolfpdx

@honeybellewordblog

@megmunro_

@small_text

@top_fox_prints

@house.inconnue (that’s me!)

A healthy dose of art, fashion, motivations, and locations.  It’s a good Monday indeed!

Until next time!

DSC01184 1

Out and About – Facebook HQ, Some Stripes, and Good Food

5/16 Lifestyle Round Up of the Poor and Unknown! (that’s me)

I actually had my camera with me this time when I visited my friend at the Facebook HQ, it’s an amazing work space with art, good light, and relaxing work nooks in a welcoming hometown city like setting with touches of modern industrial over at their new campus.  It’s quirky and I love it!

DSC01054 1 DSC01060 1 DSC01061 1 DSC01062 1 DSC01063 1 DSC01072 1DSC01070

 

Friday was lovely as I went about some errands down in San Jose and met up with the boy after work for dinner in downtown Stanford.

DSC01178

Guava Green Tea.

 

DSC01184 1

DSC01190 1

Scallops Ceviche.

DSC01191 1

Ahi Tuna.

DSC01193 1

Zara Stripe Button Down / H&M Tights / Zara Booties / Old Abercrombie & Fitch Scarf

Not a bad week!  This upcoming week I need to really button down and get some things done.

Don’t forget to check out Inconnue on Etsy, get 10% off your entire purchase in May with code MAY10!

Until next time friends, don’t forget to drop me a line!

 

bfr4

A Quick Sunday Roundup from the Sickie

#ONTHETABLE

Sorry for the lack of posts this week friends…I don’t usually get sick but when it happens it HAPPENS.

Anyway, do you guys ever have hashtag go-tos?  One that you can always rely on to give you quality photos at any time of the day?  #onthetable is that one for me, have you heard of it?  If not, you’ve got to check it out.  As the hash states, people post about contents that’s on their table whether it’s breakfast or work or some sort of mystically unachievable lush arrangement of expensive objects.  The quality of most photos are superb, and it’s free of weird spam (for now, anyway).  I’m a regular contributor myself, although my photos never quite get that lush.  Below are some recent good ones:

Continue reading

1505002000_1_1_1

Living on the Trend: Beautiful Whites

White really isn’t so much a trend as it is just a normal fashion cycle, but every year during Spring/Summer it starts to trend and everyone salivates over it.  Including me!  It’s like the ultimate validation that yes, we can finally have after work drinks and dinner on that restaurant patio once again.

Below is my list of some cool, cool whites:

Diarte

diarte

Aritzia Essonne Skirtaritzia

Aritzia Gardanne Dress

cd4edf1fd0c7d021c375b0a7fe99a118

Mandula Deconstructed Jacket

Mandula-Mag-1-3 Continue reading