A Hawaii Style Blog

Category: Advice

Encapsulate: Style is Creativity

I started the year cleaning out my old closet. I sifted through all the clothes, created piles and kept the clothes that I felt were keepers in January. I also promised myself that I would do less clothes shopping and use what I have in my closet. I also set a goal to not shop for clothes for the first four months of this year. On my birthday, I took a step back and realized that I could possible go without shopping for the rest of the year. I cannot remember the last time I bought clothes. Honestly, it feels liberating to not shop for clothes for a while.

I have this belief that to have style, one works with the items they already have and it should be a set of items carefully curated by them. I also feel that pieces in one’s closet should have multiple purpose and can be styled in many ways.  Style is creativity. That’s where someone’s personality shines. I’m hoping to work towards that in the coming months.

These past couple of months, I have been missing in action on my blog but I’m working a few things at the moment. So stay tuned….

XOXO,

Michelle

 

 

Shoe of the Month: Alexander Wang ‘Antonia’ Sandals

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Hi Everyone,

I decided to start something new on the blog. Each month I’d like to feature and review pairs of shoes. I have done reviews before  this time I’m going to try to do them on a monthly basis

Details about the shoe: 

Packaging: 5/5

 Shipped in brown shipping box with tissue paper padding to prevent shoe box damage. Shoebox is sturdy cardboard with black on black printing. Alexander Wang printed tissue paper covers the shoe. Tissue paper is  used to stuff the shoes so that the straps on the ankle and the toe box area keep their shape.

Fit:  4/5

STS. I’m a size 4.5 and the size 5 fit me well. The ankle straps have an adjustable buckle.  If you are in between sizes, I recommend sizing up because these run small.

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Quality: 4/5 

The pair of shoes is of high quality leather. It has a full grain leather insole, leather sole and suede body. It is stamped with Vero Cuoio at the bottom of the size stamp. The shoes uses Italian sizing but they are not made in Italy. Actually if you flip the strap for your toes it says Made in China. The suede upper is soft and supple and does not cut into your skin or create blistering.  The leather insole is black which is easy to clean and will not darken over time with the oils in your skin.  The outsole of the shoe is made of  black leather. Overtime this will wear so rubberize outsoles will need to be added on. Also I recommends spraying some waterproofing protectant on these to protect them from water/moisture damage.

Comfort: 5/5

My first pair is Orange and orange is not a easy color to pair. I have worn them several times and the curve of the arch actually fits the curve of my feet so they do not ache after a few hours of wearing. The height of the heel is about 3 inches and they are fairly comfortable to walk in.

Price: Depends on when and where you guys these.  I bought mines at Bloomingdales and at the Alexander Wang website. The original price of the shoe is runs about $475 full price. But I have found them for more reasonable prices. Seasonal colors and styles go on sale at the end of the season.

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Is it a Shoe for Everyday?

The style is definitely classic and wearable for various occasions. I suggest investing in a nuetral pair without embellishments because you may get more wear out of them. It is a pair of sandals that I would purchase again. Yes, because I have. The silhouette is classic and many brands carry similar styles so if this one does not suit your price point then there are similar ones out there for you.

I hope this helps you decide if this is a sandal for you . If you are deciding to purchase this for yourself it would be a great addition to your collection as it is a versatile shoe.

antonia6Have a great Tuesday, take care and happy shoe shopping.

XOXO,

Elle

P.S. I shared an unboxing video. Check it out on Youtube!

SHOP:

***This post contains affiliate links

A New Chapter Begins…

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Happy New Year everyone! I hope everyone had an amazing New Year’s Eve and you had an opportunity to spend it people that you care about and love. A New Year always promises a clean slate and the promise of a new beginning full of opportunities. I personally cannot wait to get this year started on the blog.

I’ve officially spent the first couple of days of the new year cleaning out my old room. So many nostalgic memories come with cleaning out an old space. I wanted to start the year right with a clean slate. Some pieces will be thrown away, others will be donated and sold and a few pieces will find a new home at our apartment.

As the New Year begins, its nice to set some goals as resolutions often fall on the wayside. Here’s a few of mine.

  1. Enjoy Life. Taking the time to be grateful for the things we already have and the things that matter: family, great friends, and the little things in between.
  2. Be Healthy.  Focusing on eating right and healthy, taking time to exercise, as well as overall well being.
  3. Creativity is Key. Creating and being creative has been an integral part of my life and work ethnic. I would like to put more effort in creating a better creative space for myself.

Let’s have an amazing year full of gratefulness, laughter, family and friends. Put great effort into making 2017 the best year ever for you and for me.  Cheers!

XOXO,

Michelle

.:Outfit:.
DRESS forever21 (love this one and this one)
SHOES  christian louboutin (similar here)
BAG tj maxx find (similar here)

Holi-daze and New Year’s Cheers!

 

 

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The year is winding down with family and friends coming home, family gatherings, lots of food and drinks, and time to reflect on another amazing year of life. Whether this year was a challenge for you or an amazing one, take time to reflect and grow.  It is officially two days until the end of the year, let us all start the new year with goals not resolutions.  But regardless of what you plan do as the year ends, always remember to keep your love ones close, enjoy every moment with them, and to celebrate life.  Let’s take the last few days to celebrate renewal, hope, and inspiration in 2017.

So pick out an outfit that will like you shine. Wear fringe, a flattering LBD, a lacy top, something velvet or a bottom with sparkling sequins and welcome the new year with some fireworks.

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TOPS zara fringe & lace tanks similar here unbranded  beaded satin cami 

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SKIRTS forever 21 & banana republic (old)  similar here

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PANTS seven for all mankind (old) similar here

But whatever you choose always  bring out a pair of shoes that will let you stand out in the crowd.

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SHOES:  gianvito rossi and christian louboutin (pigalle follies (similar here), tobaggon, simple pump (black version here))

And add some accessories that make you sparkle.

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ACCESSORIES

HAIRPINS
purchased at a craft store

BAG
avela jamila purse

NECKLACES
j crew crystal necklace
leslie danzis tear drop crystal drop necklace
aloha stadium market ribbon and pearl necklace  

EARRINGS
t & j designs double pearl studs on sale now!
j crew crystal earrings similar here
j crew crystal leaf earrings (old)

Thanks again for reading and for all your support throughout all these years. Have an AMAZING and HAPPY NEW YEAR everyone!

Cheers,
Michelle

Review: Tieks by Gavrieli‎

Hi Everyone,

I have not done a review in a long time and I’ve been wanting to do a review on this particular pair of shoes for a while. Tieks Ballet Flats has been the talk of the shoe world. Oprah talked about it on her show, several bloggers have talked about it, and major bloggers wear them on their blog. I was curious so I bought my first pair about two years ago after reading about them and studying their website. I wanted to see what the hype was all about and if it really lived up to its reputation as a very comfortable and portable pair of shoes.

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While shopping for my first pair, I thought more about color, material, and pattern. I wanted a color that would go well with the rest of my wardrobe but I really did not want to pick up the basic black. When you first login to the Tieks website you find several categories: Featured, Prints, Patents, Classics, and The Vegan Collection. Figuring out which category to pick from took me a while.  I eventually choose a pair from the Classic Collection. I debated over a neutral pair versus a colored flat. I eventually choose the Cardinal Red.

tieks

Details about the shoe:

Packaging: When it first arrived it came in a Tiek Blue Box wrapped with an elasticize band and a flower matching the shoe in the box. The packaging was pretty and instantly put a smile on my face. I felt like I was opening a present for my birthday. After opening the box the shoe comes folded with  drawstring bag for packing and storing (not pictured). In all honesty, I’ve only used this bag maybe twice when I needed to pack them for travel. The box also contains a care guide, a card for sharing Tieks on Instagram, a folded Tieks tote, and a personal note to you, the buyer.

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Fit: TTS. I’m a size 4.5 and the size 5 fit me well without slipping in the heel area despite my narrow heel. If you are inbetween sizes, the recommendation is to size up. If after ordering Tieks you are not happy with the sizing, there is an easy return policy and customer service is helpful in helping you find the right size for you.

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Quality: The pair of shoes is of high quality leather. It has a full grain leather insole, leather suede lining and the upper is  made of Italian leather. The leather upper is soft and supple and does not cut into your skin or create blistering.  The leather insole eventually darkens over time because of the oils in your skin. If this is not something you like you can prevent the discoloration with some insoles or ballet flat socks. I did not mind it.  It shows that I wear them often. I usually wiped them down with baby wipes and a cotton cloth. The outsole of the shoe is made of leather but attached to it is a rubber split sole that minimally scratches over time and wear. There is cushioning throughout the insole of the shoe which provided added comfort when worn and a cushion heel for days when you are on your feet and walking. I am constantly on my feet at work. The inside of the shoe does not have lining so the leather is raw except for the throat of the shoe where there is fabric lining. This is to lessen the wear of the shoe where your toes meet the leather. While this fabric is is unbroken the leather at the top of the throat will remain in good condition. Once this fabric breaks the leather will start to wear.

Comfort: After two years of owning my very first pair of shoes from Tieks, I would say it is extremely comfortable. It feel like your walking on pillows. I have never gotten any pain or blistering from wearing them. It has my been time and again my go to pair of flats. In an average week I wear then about 3 to 4 times.

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Price: $175.00-$295 is expensive but if you calculate price per wear and comfort I believe it is worth every penny. Tieks never go on sale and it is truly an investment shoe.

Is it a Shoe for Everyday?

Yes! It is the one pair of flats I will purchase again and again for the sheer fact that it lives up to the quality of the shoe and comfort and I’m saying that after two years of wearing them three to four times a week and traveling. I highly recommend it to anyone who loves flats and would like a pair that’s worth every penny.

I hope this helps you decide if this is the shoe for you. If you are deciding to purchase this for yourself or give it to someone it’s great gift to give yourself or someone who loves style and comfortable shoes.

Hope you are having an amazing weekend and that you chose Tieks as a gift, now or later. Take care and happy shoe shopping.

XOXO,

Elle

Shoe Tips: Learning Your Shoe Anatomy

We’re examining shoes today. We often go through life not knowing the one outfit accessory that covers our feet, the foundation of our outfits. Today, we are going to take a closer look at shoes.

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Shoes can be divided into two major areas: the upper, the part that covers the foot and the outsole or outersole, the section that touches the ground (As seen in the figure below.)

UpperOutsole

Most shoes have similar parts depending on the style. The upper part of the shoe consist of two sections, the vamp which is the section of the shoe that covers the front of the foot and extends to the middle of the shoe. Within the vamp area is the toe cap, the area nearest the tip of the shoe and the throat, the area of the shoe before the toe cap.  The quarter is the back portion of the upper, it covers the back of the shoe and extends to the middle of the upper meeting the vamp. The top edge of the shoe is called a topline. At the heel of the upper is the counter, it is usually a firm piece that strengthens the heel area of the shoe and helps it to maintain its shape.

Upper

Where the upper and the outsole meet at the heel is called a seat. This is often more prominent in high heeled shoes. It is where your heel rests. The heel is the part of the shoe that raises the heel. The part of the heel that faces forward is called the heel breast and is located opposite the arch, curvature of the sole. The bottom of the heel is often called a top heel or top piece, most people know it as a heel tip or heel head. This is the piece of the heel that comes in contact with the ground. The pitch, is the height of the heel and often helps to determine the comfort level and walkability of a pair of high heels.

Heel

The sole of the shoe is the area between the upper and the outsole. It consists of the waist which has two parts the in-step the front of the sole and the arch  which is supported by the shank which is a piece of metal that helps to support the middle area of the shoe.Outsole

In the inside of the shoe is the shoe lining which covers all of the vamp and the quarter of the shoe. It helps to create comfort as well as increase the durability of the shoe. Insole or the sock of the shoe is the layer that covers the sole of the shoe and often hides extra padding and provides added comfort while hiding the sole of the shoe. Also in the inside of the shoe under the vamp is the toe box.

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By knowing all the components of the shoe, it will help you understand how to shop for shoes as well as converse with your cobbler. I hope you learned a lot about your shoes and let me know what you think.

XOXO,

Elle

Encapsulate: Starting Out

 

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The picture above is about 6 months old. A lot can happen in six months. It feels like life happened in fast forward. A new adventure started, so many goals came into fruition, new perspectives and a lot of changes. I’ll be sharing some of them with you in the next couple of posts.

While life was happening, my wardrobe for the past six months can be described as simplified. I’m so use to working with a closet full of clothes and I’m finding myself working with the few clothes I packed for the big move. No, I’m not  going anywhere different, just a few life changes, a new chapter and  a new apartment with very little space.

Space is definitely an issue, especially in Hawaii. It’s a small island with limited space and not a whole lot of room for houses and apartments. This got me thinking about Capsule Wardrobes and their utilitarian minimalism. I’ve been drawn to them lately and Pinterest is helping me figure it out somehow. I like the idea that less means more style.

It is said that the average women’s wardrobe about a hundred years ago consisted of about 35 pieces, 35 quality investment pieces. The advent of mass production and cheaper materials led to changes in our access to clothing and our wardrobes became larger and more cluttered. We live in such a surplus world that we never really think we can do so much with so little.  Surprisingly, I thought that 35 pieces was such a small amount until I started to see what I could do with it. It is simple math really, it’s something we learned in grade school, it’s all about combinations and permutations.

The French know it as the 5 piece wardrobe,  we call it the Capsule Wardrobe, some people want the feeling of a simplified life, others want to declutter and reorganize, while others want it to be packable for a journey.  Whatever the reason, it’s definitely something to consider.

Everyone is going to have their own reason. I’ve been intrigued by the idea for a long time, but the most important thing is to begin somewhere. Caroline from Un-Fancy did it in 2014.  I don’t want to re-invent the wheel so just click on the link above and you can check out her blog. Other bloggers have done it or are doing it. I’m not jumping on the bandwagon. I’m here just to share my story and my journey. I hope you join me.

So where do you begin exactly? First things first, don’t feel like you have to go through your whole closet and start donating everything you own. It’s not feasible, this is  a process that you just can’t jump into and go cold turkey, your just trying to live a clutter-free life filled with style so take your time and work through the process.

I CHALLENGE YOU to take this journey with me. Try it out and see where we all end up. We all need support groups and friends to help us along the way, why not do it together and create a space to share. I just want for you and me to help each other learn how to work with our wardrobes and live a stylish clutter free life.

I’ve starting this blog feature to hear from you and to share ideas as we go through this process.  I hope you join me in this journey.

XOXO,

Sign_0(3)

 

 

.:Outfit:.
TOP forever 21
BOTTOM forever 21
SHOES christian louboutin
JEWELRY jcrew

Shoe Tips: Adding Buckle Holes

Hey Everyone,

After several conversations with friends, I decided do a feature on my blog about how to take care of your shoes and sandals. It is actually inspired by my friends Melissa and Balbino while we were doing the photoshoot back in March.  The conversation was about shoes and shoe care and with their encouragement, I’ve been in the process of developing this new feature on my blog.

Let’s start with something simple like adding buckle holes to sandals, belts, and bags. Being petite, sometimes regular sizing does not work with my measurements.  As a kid, I would get my dad to punch holes into my sandals, shoes, and belts so that they would fit. My dad usually used a awl but the finish was never as clean as the rest of the holes on my sandals or belts. In college, while walking around the craft store I found a leather hole punch.

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It was a godsend. One, it made punching extra holes in leather so much more easier. Two, the finish was much more neater than an awl.

Below is a tutorial on how to add buckle holes. I purchased these sandals from Asos about a month ago. I really loved their single strap construction but when I tried it on, the ankle strap was a little loose. It needed a simple fix, so I’m using them to show you up to add buckle holes on belts and straps.

materials

.:Supply List:.

SANDALS asos finlay or a belt
a leather hole punch
Pencil
Measuring Tape

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First measure the space between two holes on your sandal strap or your belt. For this sandal the space between holes is half a centimeter.

Place the measuring tape on the last existing hole and measure out the space for the next hole using the measurement taken earlier.

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Mark the measurement with a pencil.

adjustSet the leather punch to the size of the hole needed to make the hole.

leatherpunchPlace the leather punch on the pencil mark on the strap. Make sure that  it is aligned with the rest of the holes on the strap.

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And Voila! Extra buckle holes with a nice finish.

Hope this was helpful. Let me know what you think.

XOXO,

Elle

Birthday Wishes: Polka Dots and Pencil Skirts

Hello Everyone,

Another year older and another year wiser. I’ve learn so much about life and fashion in the past year and I hope that I can continue to share this journey with you.

This is the third installment of the collaboration with Vivid Foto.  This particular set is my favorite, it reminds me of old Hollywood Glamour and that true style, never goes out of style, we just update it often.

 

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Thanks again for reading, and here’s to more amazing years of style with you.

XOXO,

Michelle

.:Outfit:.
TOP forever 21
BOTTOM old navy
SHOES christian louboutin
NECKLACE pearls
BRACELETS j crew
NAILS by  manoa nail salon

Photography Balbino and Melissa Canoy from Vivid Fotos

Victorian Elements

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Hello All,

I’m restyling old pieces that I found in my closet this past weekend. Every season before I go to purchase any must have styles, I peruse my closet to see what I already have that work with this season’s trends. I found this chiffon piece that I bought a while back. It has the puffy sleeves, ruffles and the ribbon tie closing at the neck, elements of the Victorian trend that was found on the runway for Spring season. I also found a mermaid skirt that reflects  early and late Victorian skirts styles. I kept  the colors dark in this outfit and I played with cloth textures and weaves.

Thanks for reading.

XOXO,

Elle

.:Outfit:.
TOP papaya clothing (old)
BOTTOM forever 21 (old)
SHOES  christian louboutin (old)
PEARLS flea market find

 

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