Boring in the Morning

I had a rare opening shift yesterday and could not find my creative mojo. Went with total matchy solids. At least the bag added some punch on the way to and from the car, and the sneakers injected some personality. I still felt good, in a subtle way, but I suppose I am not a morning person, lol. 

Took the trusty Burberry in case of the rain the forecasts promised, but it remained dry. Funny, I took such care to make sure both Burberry coats were water resistant, yet I have worn them way more just to go out on dry nights and have yet to baptize them in rain - maybe today!

Theory blazer - Marshall's during Shoptoberfest
Pleione tank - Nordies (gratis)
Gap jeggings - Gap (wow, these have lasted a long time!)
Kate Spade satchel - Ebay
Ash wedge sneaks - Lord & Taylor
Burberry trench - Ebay


Big Kitty Tango

Busting out he last of my Argentinian souvenirs today: this tiger/jungle print blouse. The tiger heads are upside down on the front, bit DH and I thought it still looked good and was an interesting reminder of the questionable quality control measures of the area (I saw in blogs by expats that they felt the same regarding clothing QC). I initially wanted to wear sandals, but cold and impending rain inspired a tiger-leopard tango!

Tiger blouse - Buenos Aires
Gap jeggings - ebay
Matise Nugent booties - Zappos
Kate Spade satchel - Ebay


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For those interested in Buenos Aires for travel

A couple of people mentioned on my Fashion Report that they might consider BsAs as a future destination, so I thought I'd share my photos so that you might get a better idea of the area. 

The waterfall photos are from another city, Puerto Igazu. We had to take an extra flight there - about 2 hours of travel each way. But! Very worth it. If I were to do it again, I'd spend more time here. 

My 2 cents on BsAs: if you have been to Rome and have limited opportunities for International travel, you can probably skip Buenos Aires... it is very, very similar in feel, just on a slightly smaller scale and without the Colosseum. Lots of Roman-type pizza, pasta... even the same general vibe going from the touristy center to the upscale residential areas with the pretty parks. Of course, if you love Tango or Argentine wines, that is another case. 

We didn't get to go here, but looking back it would might have been cool to do Bariloche and Puerto Igazu. Bariloche was recommended highly by a client of mine - great Euro vibe in South America, only Swiss instead of Italian. 

Hope this might help someone in the future!


Scarfing Cats Triple Pattern Mix

I had tacked this cheapie tank onto an order to get free shipping. The cardigan I ordered is going back, but I really liked this fit and subtle cat print IRL, so it came with me on my errands today. 

I don't know when I became one of Those People Who Wear Scarves With Tank Tops... I used to think it was super seasonally confused and ridiculous. But now it makes total sense for SoCal. What was I thinking all those years??

Threw my jersey moto over the top just in case of chilly breezes or a/c. 

I ought to do a proper review of these sandals when I review my travel undies, but for now I'll say they were a huge sole saver! Super duper comfy.

Navigator sunnies - The Rail at Nordies
Cat tank - ModCloth
Ella Moss Frankie moto - Nordies
Men's belt - swap meet
True Religion Cameron jeans - Amazon
Yellow plaid scarf - JC Penny (gift from Mom)
Kate Spade satchel - Ebay
Crocs mini wedge sandals - Crocs store


Pale Blue: the Rae Way

Ok, if I'm honest, it's not really pastel. But I always feel true pastels look "dirty" against my skin, so this mid tone (and shiny!) blue feels much more flattering while still giving off the pale Spring vibe. This was a $10 find at the San Telmo flea market in Buenos Aires - my favorite of the trip! I love the not-too-boxy fit, the sheen, the metal zippers, and the black plaid running through that keeps it from feeling too sweet. 

To keep a longer line, I paired the jacket with my favorite faded, 100% cotton blue jeans. And as an extra nod to spring, I half tucked this hi-low white blouse underneath. At first I was not sure about the tuck with the length of the jacket, but somehow it felt better than a full tuck or untucked. The citron bag hearkens back to Angie's New Year's post, where she paired her pale blue sweater with an apple green jacket. I loved the extra jolt of edge that the sour color brings to the soft blue. 

In other news, this was my first sandal-wearing for the year (in the US, at least... vacation doesn't count). I have to say I get a kick from my black patent toes matching my black patent shoes. ;)

Throwing in #3, too, since I forgot to post it before leaving. Really loving these Big Star straight legs with mega cuff!

Unbranded jacket - $10 BsAs swap meet
H&M sleeveless blouse - $10 H&M clearance
Cycle jeans - Yoox
Kate Spade bag - Ebay
Sole Society sandals - $15 at Nordies clearance sale
Men's belt - $3 at swap meet
Navigator style sunnies - Nordies Rail


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Buenos Aires Fashion Report 2014

Here we go!

DH and I just spent a week in Buenos Aires, Argentina! Naturally, I could not help but be curious about the differences in fashion and local style compared to Los Angeles, the USA, and the rest of the world as delivered through my Vogue and Bazaar issues. 

The large shopping centers contained some really, really beautiful things, although much of it was fairly expensive compared to the rest, where you could find $10 tops and shoes on every corner. There seemed to be a big price jump for quality workmanship and materials. The higher-end stores were showing layers, embellishment, graphics... kind of a Kate Moss-ish rock-n-roll-bohemian-grunge vibe. Their summer is just ending, so the windows look to be done up for the coming winter. 1-6 show some of my favorite window dressings. I tried on both the dress and skirt from #7, but sadly they did not have my size. You can sort of see the real-life prints in #8. 

Local Style
The locals in the streets/subways/restaurants, however, didn't seem to be wearing the items in the mall stores, or they didn't seem to be styling them in the same ways, even when compared to the S/S sale stuff rather than the F/W items in the windows. Since there is some economic turmoil in the area, I can't help but wonder if it was because locals could only afford to shop at the trendy strip malls geared toward teens, but to be fair that is only speculation and generalization. Artsy areas like Palermo Soho showed a lot more interest in the fashions displayed in shops... though curiously, it seemed like we only ended up talking to French women finishing school there, so perhaps that is where the influence comes from? 

The uniform on the streets was very casual; skinny jeans with a fitted, embellished knit top and platform/flatform sandals. Tight and/or short fits ruled - loose dresses or pants were for the tourists. No Vince or ALC-type "boyfriend brands" here. #5 shows a typical shoe window - no slim heels in sight for this walking city. Hair was almost universally long, even on older women, and matching your shoes to your outfit was common. #10 was the only street style photo I had the nerve to snap, but it shows the matchy element and typical flatforms. Her top is looser than most, though. #9 is the local artist who made my stone necklace, selling at the huge San Telmo market. Her look is on the softer, flowier side compared to the norm. The looks reminded me a little bit of some parts of Eastern LA. 

Shopping opportunities presented themselves everywhere in Buenos Aires. DH not-so-jokingly complained at times that the city was made for women, without including stores that men would be interested in. Honestly, I had to sympathize with him since we only found one lonely comic shop, and that was far away from any of the nicer shopping areas. 

For an overall shopping experience, the San Telmo market was the best! The market was situated on a street lined with Antique shops, good quality shoes, and a decent variety of clothing stores. Nothing as posh as those in the malls, but fun to pop into to get out of the sun. The market itself went on for many blocks, holding everything from beer souvenirs to fine jewelry hand-crafted by artisans. This is where I found 3 of my four souvenirs: the $10 pastel plaid jacket in 14, my leopardite necklace set, and a beer tee. ;)

The most fun for me fashion-wise was to browse at the Abasto shopping mall - the largest in BsAs (if you follow the link, click on "local," then sort by Women's Casual Clothing, and click on the store names to see photos of the storefronts). This is where DH had to leave me for an hour so that I could fly about and shop For Serious. As I said, I didn't end up finding my size in the items I liked (for the right price), but the eye candy abounded. Those of us in big US cities would find it small, but it was nice to have so much good quality in once place. Second place was Palmero Soho, the neighborhood I mentioned earlier with the French sales clerks. Similar selection and where I found my last souvenir: a jungle/tiger print sharkbite blouse. 

There were also leather shops everywhere! Shoes, bags, jackets, and general leather stores that housed all three. But I was not tempted by these items... given the huge beef industry in Argentina, most of the jackets were heavier cow leather, too warm for my climate. And all the soft, supple, thinner lamb leather jackets I found at Abasto cost $300-$500 and up even on sale... not that I need another leather jacket right now anyway. The designs of the bags and shoes simply didn't fit my style at the moment, but there were some fun florals and monster platforms.

For fun, 11-13 show some of the costumes on display at the Teatro Colon, a fabulous historical opera house, still running. Our guide was fantastic, and it was so interesting to hear about how Argentina rejected Spanish influence, destroyed all the colonial buildings, and instead built everything modeled after (mostly) Italian and (less so) French fashions. It really made the mass of pizza and pasta shops in the area make sense!

I hope that I didn't yammer on too long about this, but I found it very interesting to contrast the fashions here with what I saw coming out of Fashion Week! Almost the complete opposite from the runway's oversized fits and dainty shoes. I would be curious to see if the runway looks ever make it to BsAs or if the bodycon fits are more entrenched in a cultural preference. 

Stay tuned for my blue jacket's maiden voyage today!


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Back in CA: camo with leopardite

I feel like I have been gone a long time and have been having severe YLF withdrawals! I can't wait to show you my two vacation clothing purchases, but I have promised to Dryel them before wearing. :(

For now I have styled this chunky necklace/bracelet set, handmade by knitting stones onto silver wire. There were many colors available, but DH thought the leopardite stones were the most me.

Paired with camo pants, mostly to hide the mosquito bites I incurred abroad (note: apply big spray AFTER lotion). Paired with Mom's tortoise bangles and sparkle booties... Wanted to bust out sandals, but I have not gotten around to a pedicure.

Stay tuned for the Buenos Aires fashion report!


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WIW Vday in Buenos Aires

Quick post from the hotel!

Basically was my travel outfit as well if you switch the pants for jeans and this scarf for yellow plaid. Sooooo tired from the flights, but we still got out and had a beer tonight after exploring this afternoon. Some computer time is just what the doctor ordered right now.

Fashion wise here there are some good prices on leather goods and cashmere. Taking it all in to decide what my souvenir shall be.

Miss you all!


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Alley Cat Scat

This is me after a long day of product research (got to meet Cookie Johnson this morning!), appointments, miscellaneous work stuff, worrying, and general chores leading up to le Vacation.

DH pretty much thinks the sweatpants are a sign of Dire Mental Burnout. o_0 He is partially right because, instead of being at all creative, I pretty much copied something I remembered from a Vince lookbook and zombied out the door looking for (decaf, watered-down, yearning-for-caffeine-yet-trying-to-avoid-it) coffee. 

I have been avoiding using this leopard bag pretty much since I got it, because there is a small section of strap that is starting to fray/tear. I keep meaning to get it fixed, but I forget about it. I finally gave up and wore it again... if it breaks it will still need to be fixed, but at least I will have enjoyed it some. 

Spiegel leather jacket - Spiegel
J. Crew tank - $1 at flea market
Sweatpants - ~ $15 at Nordies (free with Nordies note)
Report booties - Amazon
Leopard bag - 4 Euro at Italian swap meet


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Color within the (horizontal) lines

This is not a typical outfit for me and won't be everyone's COT, but it's what called to me. Again I liked the jacket halfway zipped, seemed to emphasize the cropped shape more. Some may not like the brown shoes, but I liked how they sort of matched the copper hardware on the jacket.

Current & Elliott jacket - ebay
Cream jeans - BR
Linen tee - F21
Report booties - Amazon (?)