Monday, April 30, 2012

A Hand-Me-Down & A Gift

I received my load of goodies the other day, courtesy of my winnings from Beso.com (eee!) and I've been relishing in all the new possible outfits I will be putting together with my Tiny Closet.  

The Tiny Closet- "oh the possibilities..."  
And my, it's true!  
A lil closet full of great pieces and a lot of imagination really can take you far.  In fact, except for my trip in Asia, from the time I began chronicling my closet adventures to now, I can count on one hand the amount of times I've gone shopping (psst, it's 3 by the way).  And if that's not amazing for a girl-addicted-to-retail like me, I don't know what is.  And you know, it's fun having a small wardrobe to work with and it's even addicting thinking up all the different ensembles I could make with the same clothes.  Why do you think I started this blog anyway?  Whoever said it was right, the less you have, the more creative your mind is inclined to be.

Anyway, yesterday, I decided to dress down one of my new items, a pair of Castaner espadrille wedges from Yoox.com.  Seeing how it's still wintry outside, it wasn't totally the right time to wear them but I totally had to anyway right?  So, I decided to make a subtle debut on Sunday and save the bup-budda-bup-bup-bup-baaah showcasing for a warmer, sunnier day.  For now, they give my easy, chilaxing, Nantuckety feel vibe a nice chic touch. 

Espadrilles have never quite been my style however, these pointy oxford-like wedges have my name written all over them.  The pointy toe is classy and gives the espadrille style a tinge of formality, which mama likes.
 Theo had this chainmail cuff custom made for me by Riaria, a jeweler in New York.  It's ma' fave.
 This shirt is Theo's.  It's actually double layered cotton/linen blend.  So warm and comfortable to wear.  Why wouldn't Diesel make this for women?

 shirt: Diesel Men / pants: Zara / cuff: Riaria / ring: H&M / earrings: Firelily Jewelry / wedges: Castaner

Hope you had a great weekend :)


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Friday, April 27, 2012

Comfort Food & Comfort Clothes

Last night was date night.  Yeah!  Bow-chicka-wow-wow...  But no.  
I mean yes!  

Theo just loooves me in my eccentric-version-of-sweats outfit.  He shakes his head as I write this...sigh.  Don't know what fancy sweats look like?  Check it out:

So comfy!!!  
If I wasn't so vain, I would wear real sweatpants like a champ but, you know.  I am, so... I gotta wear these pretentious things: my dear harems.  I also wore them here while in the Philippines.  And here too.
These glossy flats have been in the Tiny Closet fam for a long time.  I also wore them here.
 My Tiny Closet and I have had these earrings since H&M first opened in the states.  I love them, obviously and after all these years, they are still in tact.  Amazing.  And this scarf?  A staple.   I've said this so many times and I'll say it again.  Leopard goes with almost everything.  That's a lot, right?  See for yourself, I wore it here with a pair of peach pants.

top: Asos / scarf: Zara / jacket: Muuba / harem pants: Philippines / bag: Dooney & Bourke / flats: Taryn Rose
 Walking around town, I got a little Seattle nostalgia and decided to take a picture in front of the original Starbucks.  Ah, back when Starbucks was just a lil mom n' pop coffee shop.  As the sun went down, we finally decided on a restaurant for dinner:
 La Medusa.  

Eating comfort food in my comfort clothes.  It was the perfect date night.  And Theo was there too :)


If you're in Seattle, this place is yummy.  Order Grandma's Greens!

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Wednesday, April 25, 2012

These Shoes Were Made For Walking

I walk.  A lot.  

I take buses, subway, taxies you name it, I take full advantage of public transportation.  

I'm a city girl.  You know, like Carrie.  

Right?

Carrie Bradshaw.  You know the city girl who walks her dog in Manolos?  Yeah, she's the city girl who complained about walking 15 city blocks in her Jimmy Choos.  The city girl you can literally count on one hand the amount of times you've seen her wear a shoe that didn't have an incline.  Yes, the city girl we all know who frolicked endlessly for a decade throughout Manhattan, from dusk to dawn in stilettos...  Yep that's me.  

Or wait a minute, no that's actually not me.  Or you.  Or anyone.  

Ah, Carrie - the quintessential city gal that none of us can or will ever be like so let's just stop trying shall we?  And you're probably saying to yourself, "I never even liked Carrie/the show, Miranda was the only real one."  Well, Miranda, stomped her feminist feet all over town in stilettos too.  And so did Charlotte and so did Samantha.  Why?  Because it was attractive!  And if I was enthralled with their juicy, unpredictable personal lives, I was doubly enthralled by their wardrobe choices.

Anyway, the reason why I'm bringing up this amazing, media-saturated show is because, even though I'd like to think of myself as an intelligent woman, the Carries, the Victoria Beckhams and the Kardashians of the world can, over time, make me believe (even subliminally) very silly things about my own life.  And before I know it, I'm making up "rules" in my head on what defines a woman. 

One rule being heels.

To say "Heels make the woman" is just as untrue as saying "The suit makes the man".  None of my friends wear heels as much as I do and I look up to all of them as they are strong, beautiful smart women. Heels don't make that.  But heels are so preeeetty.  Yeah, cool - I get it, I love them truly, madly, deeply but lately, I get the feeling from everywhere that heels are the only shoe of choice that will complete a great outfit or a make a "statement".  Now that aint true!

I notice fashion blogs don't really showcase flats so much.  At least not nearly as much as heels.  And we eat it up, yeah?  But the truth is, I'm no Carrie.  And when I walk through downtown, midtown, sodo wherever, the majority of women are in flats.  And so am I.  My heels are neatly in my bag waiting for the right moment of course.

So in an effort to be a bit more realistic with myself going forward, I thought I'd share my lil collection of "Skippers".  

Psst, I call them Skippers because no one wanted the Skipper doll.  Skipper's feet were flat and she couldn't wear heels.  Everyone wanted Barbie because she had longer legs and her feet were made for heels... Oh, Mattel.  Lol-sies :)


from left to right: Taryn Rose / Bass / King - romwe.com / CMG

Get ready to have your mind blown with these fab flats. 
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Tuesday, April 24, 2012

A New Hairstyle & Some Sage Advice

Sunday turned out to be even sunnier as Theo and I zoomed off to Capitol Hill to meet a friend for brunch at Odd Fellows.  When we showed up, our friend, as always, looked absolutely fabulous.



As my curls grow longer, I realize I can finally wrap them up like I used to.  Being that it's the only other style I can tolerate doing daily, I am very happy.  

me: jacket: Free People / top: Zara / pants: Zara / scarf: Zara Mens / brogues: CMG / bag: Dooney & Bourke -- her: top, shorts and all accessories: Forever21 / boots: Lucky Brand

About a month ago, I wrote a beauty/lifestyle piece for The New Fairy Tale.  I actually decided to post it for The Tiny Closet as well since here at TC, I'm all about maximizing on what I got.  Basically the piece was about looking like a knock out every day.  Because there's absolutely no reason not to.  I believe and have always believed that any woman can feel great about the way they look every single day if she wants.  And who doesn't want that?  So I gathered together all the best tips and advice that I could ever remember receiving through the years and listed it for others to read and hopefully feel as inspired as I did.  As we were all brunching it up, I realized every time I see this lady she blows me away with her style and a signature glamour. In fact, I was thinking the whole time, dang, this girl totally embodies everything I wrote about!  So of course, I asked her if she wouldn't mind being in some photos with me.

Later on that day, we got to talking about the reality of "looking good", how it doesn't have anything to do anyone but you, and also just how simple it really is.  I became totally inspired and empowered by what she explained "looking good" was for herself.  One comment she made was that wearing heels won't necessarily improve or even give you femininity.  This was something I hadn't really thought too much about and perhaps have been giving heels too much credit (gasp!).  Some women can't even stand wearing them!  I'd always just lumped those ladies together in a group that I figured I'd never understand buuut she had a point.  And actually, I only wear heels 40% to 50% of the time anyway so what do I have to say to that?  She and I both happened to have opted against heels that day (as do millions of other women every day) and I still felt attractive and womanly in my brogues.  As did she in her boots.  Hmmm.


So perhaps I should make an amendment to this helpful list of mine...  Maybe the formula for that "x-factor" look doesn't always have to include the heels ingredient.  Because I feel pretty damn great in a good pair of flats.  

What do you think?

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Monday, April 23, 2012

A Day of Festivals


After a week of rain and dark clouds, Saturday was bright and warm.  Theo and I dropped everything to experience the miracle.  And while the anniversary of the day we met came and went without either of us noticing, instead of a bouquet of roses, Theo drove me to an acre of tulips.  

Dramatic huh?  Eh, the man knows how I like it :)


Months ago, in my "A Thrifting I Will Go" post, I came across a rather matronly long navy crepe skirt with white polka-dots from thrift store favorite, Value Village.  I thought I would alter it myself and make it into a cute flirty dress for Spring and Summer but with belts on my mind so much lately, I went ahead and took a crack at doing something different this time...

"Why not wear this skirt as a skirt?", I asked myself.  

Clever.  

How's that for thinking inside the box, eh?  This skirt has buttons that go all the way to the bottom.  BORING!  Who wants that?  I opened them all but six (as I am after all, a lady) and showed off some knees and ankles.  And one thigh.


skirt: Value Village thrift / belt: Ross / woven shrug: Bebe / tee: James Perse / necklace: Philippines / sunnies: Anne Klein / shoes: CMG / bag: Gustto 

I was so pleased to be able to wear my wooden necklace again.  When I first got this in the Philippines, I wore it here.
And this is me geeking out over the mobs of flowers all over me.  

After an oily burger and a bucket of fries, I thought it best to step out of focus of the lens and let the flowers do their thing.  Literally, acres of vibrant tulips all around us.  So preeetty!

I hope your weekend was lovely.

Oh, and before I forget - did it really happen if you don't Instagram it?  Here's some poor evidence of my farm town adventures:



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Saturday, April 21, 2012

Wear a Belt

It's been drizzling all day.  Like it does.  A great day to sit inside and talk about belts!

Okay, a friend of mine asked recently if I could help her find creative ways to wear belts.  Specifically in an office environment.  Um, totally.  What I love about belts right now is the fact that, thanks to hit shows like Mad Men, belts are sliding their way up to the natural waistline and cinching us to a more classic, ladylike silhouette - a trend that should never go away.  As well, belts are making their way outside outerwear again, and very becomingly buckling in thicker materials like coats and cardigans.  Very fresh and stylish things happening.  And plenty of ideas to choose from!

Shall we get started then?

Let's start with simple.  The traditional duo of dress and belt:


Okay - I love sash style belts.  For those of us who gravitate towards wider belts but don't always like a big buckle staring right back at you in the mirror, I like this bohemian take.  Plus, with a knot instead of a notch method, you can customize just how fitted or loose you wish your cinch to be.  Tie it any ol' way you want, baby.  I also like the idea of using a scarf or thick textury ribbon for a more romantic style.
And then there's the subtlety of the super-thin belt.  Why not wear a bright one to give your outfit a pop of color or to mix up your patterns, like for example a geometric dress with a thin leopard belt.  You can also be elusive with your thin belt and blend its right in with the rest of your ensemble but have a contrasting texture.  This gives you a more dynamic look.


And what about wearing belts over our coats and sweaters?  Belts worn over outerwear can bring eccentricity, drama and sophistication to an otherwise too casual, or shapeless look.  But don't take my word for it, check it out for yourself.


Are you maxed out with belts yet?  No?  Me neither!  My all time favorite way to wear a scarf is actually tucking it into my belt.  Gorgeous.  It's a glamorous effect really.  Like you're simply oozing with luxury and class.  And then you can also take the style down a notch (haha, get it? - you see what I did there?) and make it more casual simply by the clothes you wear.  Here are some examples:


So, there you have it!

A variable plethora of belt styles to run to your closet and try.  Don't have many belts to choose from?  That's the beauty of these accessories - cheap ones can still look stunning with the right outfit.  If you're going out on a limb, hit up your local vintage, thrift and budget stores - they're usually treasure troves.  And look forward to seeing me in more belted outfits.  I love wearing belts in the Summer!

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Thursday, April 19, 2012

Mall-ing

Taking a break from working our butts off, Theo and I decided to take a trip into the suburbs and go mall-ing today...

For those of you who don't know what the term "mall-ing" means, I will explain.  It is a leisurely walk with 2 or more people; walking through the mall, not with the intent of buying anything substantial but of course a Pink Berry or Red Mango ice cream - or the notorious Cinnabon or Orange Julius.  So basically...

Mall-ing = :)

Mall-ing is literally like a long walk on the beach for me.  Or actually, it's more like a long walk on a boardwalk.  And this is mall-ing in the suburbs that I'm referring to.  I love the novelty stores, I love overhearing the teenagers talking, I love the families of 12 that come all together, the window shopping, ah.   It's become kind of a past time with Theo and me because, get this - he happens to like it too!  Aint' that perfect?

Anyway, taking some pictures outside, things got silly.

I've been wanting to pair brilliant blues with leopard in some way but wasn't sure exactly how to pull it into an ensemble.  I finally settled on these gray pants as to not upstage the vibrance of the patterned shoes and blue layers up top.  These lil spiky, leopard monsters are my all time favorites and suggested by an amazing style/shopping blog Style The Luxe.  Go there!
This shirt has actually turned out to be bomb.  

When I received it in the mail, I was pretty disgusted disappointed with the cut and design of it and never ever wore it.  I got it from StyleMint, a collaborative retail line designed by Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen.  I was originally completely taken with the concept - you know, like with designers of the year like the Olsens I was thinking the fit would be much more flattering than normal tees buuut, as it turned out for me, the tops are quite roomy, border lining on frumpy and not true to normal sizes.  Me thinks the only reason the top works now is because I tumble dried it and it shrunk to coincidentally, a better size.  

Well played, shirt.  I suppose you will live to see another day.

coat: H&M / scarf: Ross / top: StyleMint.com / pants: Zara / shoes: King from Romwe.com / accessories are thrifted
Okay so to explain this awkwardness above, Theo is always telling me to "play with the camera"... who am I, Gisele Bundchen?  Jeeez.  When he says this, I always go blank and just keep posing.  This time, I wanted to impress him by voluntarily playing around and "interacting" with the lens.  What you see in this photo above is what happened.  Oy.  He was like, "What are you doing?"  I then stopped immediately.  Thought I'd share the embarrassment.

Anyway, returning from Asia, I saw that I'd failed to cancel my StyleMint membership before leaving.  I racked up a ton of credit, bought the first things that caught my eye and cancelled my account for good now...  You'll see the new items later and you can be the judge.

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It's Business Time

Dressing for a meeting in downtown yesterday morning, I don't know what came over me.  For some reason, I remembered that deep in my storage closet I had folded up a pair of Victoria's Secret high-waisted, wide leg slacks...Folded them up for good.  But all of a sudden I just had to wear them.
Now, usually I would opt for a cropped blazer but not with these high-in-the-sky waist pants.  No ma'am.  To counter the "highness" and give some balance, a longer blazer did the trick.  With a long blazer, the waist isn't suuuch a focal point.  Because it doesn't need to be.  You know, like, I was being subtle and stuff.
Feeling conservative and elegant when I slid those babies up up up, I decided these pants from the past would be best paired with my favorite comfy heels!  The elegant drape of these pants mixed with the wooden heel on these Jill Sanders is Phoebe Philo perfection.  Do you think she'd agree?  I can only dream...
 You've seen this shirt and this bag before.  Reduce, reuse, right?  They go with everything and that's what my Tiny Closet and I are all about.  I wore this drapey top not too long ago here.  This bag that I also found in storage has started becoming my best friend.  I wore it here.  And this blazer, I wore previously here to a meeting of the legal kind...
blazer: BCBGMAXAZRIA / top: James Perse / pants: Victoria's Secret / earrings: handmade / bag: Dooney & Bourke / heels: Jill Sanders

As  I traipsed down 1st avenue feelin' like a boss lady, I was giddy with excitement.  It was business time.  

But more on that later ;-)

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Wednesday, April 18, 2012

The Boyfriend Look

And I'm talking about the "boyfriend" look, not the androgynes, collegiate hybrid that follows close behind.  

For years, I've been on the sidelines watching the "boyfriend" trend countlessly re-emerge into the spotlight and show its sexy self - and each time, with a small update in lines, color or styling.  As it's made it's way down the runway at least once a year in it's usual suspects: oversize cardi, loose rolled denim and a pair of scuffed brogues, why would I not want to try that?  A girl in boy's clothing is just so damn attractive.  But then in the privacy of my home, trying out those sexy masculine lines for myself, the I-stole-this-from-my-boyfriend-isn't-it-cute look doesn't tend to translate attractively on this lil frame of mine.  Humph!

Buuut as I was browsing through the AllSaints website the other day thinking my thoughts and daydreaming of dressing my unborn child in AllSaints Kids, I realized, just because menswear lines don't do my body good doesn't mean I can't replicate the "boy" look using my own pieces built for tiny girls from my Tiny Closet! 

And so I did.





brogues: CMG / denim: AllSaints Mens / top: James Perse / tie: vintage Gucci / outerwear: Muuba / hat: Philippines / bag: Dooney & Bourke

Okay, so I cheated a little and did actually end up borrowing Theo's jeans...and his tie.  But I made this boy look fit for the girls!

By the way, the leather jacket in this spread I purchased with the generous gift certificate I won from Beso.com.  I got this sumptuous item from Yoox.com during their Winter sale and love love LOVE it.  The graphite color goes with everything, it's tailored beautifully and the zipper additions give it the grit and edge I like in the "urban, leather jacket" look.  

And if you think the jacket is where it ended, we've only just begun.  Keep visiting for more items I got for free from Yoox!

So did I pull it off?  Are you feeling my boyish charm?  
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Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Fashion of The Igorots

Going through pictures of my travels through Asia, I paused on this one.  It dawned on me that not only was I experiencing something very rare and special (sitting above the secluded terraces of Ifugao with some Igorot ladies in a tiny mountain province) but I was also able to observe, in person, their fashion sense...

So this is definitely not the most flattering picture of me (aaaahhhh!), let's just say my Tiny Closet was thousands of miles away okay?  And let's also say that white rice does NOT suit me... Jeeez.  Regardless, I am so glad Theo was able to take a picture of these women.  At the time, I was conscious not to stare even though their outfits were amazing - so now with this photo, I can stare as long as I want, studying each article and accessory and facial expression.  And guess what?  So can you!

I love the blazers with the traditional hand woven skirts and loin cloths.  And I wanted that scarf for myself!  But I settled on a hand woven blanket for my bland white bed back home.  Red is a traditional color in Ifugao and with jungle surrounding you at all times, the bright color was a beautiful, strong accent.
I'm so glad I decided to wear my red Toms that day.


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Sunday, April 15, 2012

Happy Birthday, Melissa!

Saturday night was a series of annoying events...   But you just gotta laugh you know?

Last night, after thoroughly enjoying some time with a dear friend - I looked at the time, saw that it was past 8pm and raced home to get dressed for a birthday party.  Unfortunately once I got home, I got wrapped up in recording the alcohol I had consumed into my iPhone's calorie-counter app (180 calories?!  Come on!) and then fell asleep...

Next thing I hear is "What are you going to wear?" as Theo woke me up and I slowly made my way to my Tiny Closet.  I had planned to take pictures of a more thought out ensemble but things don't always happen how you planned.

And speaking of plans, once we parked and waited in line at the bar, I realized my ID was sitting pretty in my purse at HOME on the other side of town.  
As you will see in the pictures below, I am sans bag and sans ID.  

FAIL.

Needless to say, we took my 18-year-old looking self home.  Happy Birthday, Melissa!  Hope you had a fun night :)

Here was mine:

When time is of the essence and you're trying to look fabulous, I say quit while you're behind and go to your go-to's.  Then work (fast) from there.  From your go-to's try a new top, a fun accessory that you never wear or a jacket that pumps up your usual wear.
My accessory of choice were these huge, ornate AllSaints earrings.  Never wore them but since it was my new year's resolution to wear more jewelry aaand because I was wearing a go-to outfit, I felt them perfect for the occasion.
 Also, I felt it fitting to pump up this ensemble with a feather vest.  Sadly though, I never actually put it on for you to see just how amazing it is... yep, just wasn't all together last night.  Oh well, you will surely see this fierce feathery thing in a future post.
denim: United Colors of Benetton / booties: Jessica Simpson / asymmetric top: Asos.com / earrings: AllSaints

Here's to an anti-climactic night and a good laugh.

Hope you're having a wonderful weekend!


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