San Francisco Treat (Epi 2)


Monday, November 5, 2007

What another wonderful trip 2 the fashionable city 2 the north, San Francisco!
Where else in CA can u get seasons? It was beautifully sunny and brisk all week that I was there and I got 2 see my fashion inspirations (my SF friends) and check out some of my usual haunts and meet the new fashion brigade (hi Marc Jacobs kids!!!). I of course did a bit of shopping and a bit of trend shopping while there, and here is the report...

Maiden Lane

YSL: It was just happenstance that I run in2 my NYC friend J there, who did the trek West and is now at YSL on Maiden Lane! I am very impressed with how YSL has changed and evolved as a brand and as a fashion look. Everything is very directional and forward, with trendy styles (bubble skirts, elongated tunic tops, slim cigarette pants) but still friendly 2 the ladies-who-lunch crowd. I've got my hot little hands pining 4 the "Limo" heel, at a 7" height! Yowch! J tells me that its the HOT seller in their store and I can see why! Stiletto sharp heel, covered platform, and very comfortable!

Helmut Lang: Theory's new sister company/store, I had 2 stop on in and do some credit card damage! I like the SF outpost better than the LA store. It's more accesible and has a real urban feel. I had 2 scoop up the cashmere/cotton assymetrical vest, which I L-O-V-E!!!
(check out G in HL's great men's sherpa lined trench...Yum!)

Marc Jacobs: I had the 4tunate luck 2 grab drinks with the MJ team the night b4 @ new lounge hotspot Azul, and meet up again on Friday 4 their Spring Trunk Show. I love the colors that MJ is going with 4 Spring, with a deliciously vintage-inspired floral/animal/bug print in pop pink, green, and yellow, his Spring color palette. I loved the tweed cape with chiffon overlay, and my favorite piece, a balck beaded wrap top wprthy of the red carpet. I've gotta see who's back I'm gonna get that top on 4 the award season! Such a coveted peice, and at $6,000 it wasn't coming home with me!

Noe Valley

On a quiet Sunday stroll I took up the charming district of Noe Valley, home to the fabulous and my dear friend Ian, and checked out what the area has 2 offer. I stopped in2 Noe Valley Bakery and grabbed a cup of sweet micha and headed down 19th Street.

Ambiance: This is the stop if u wanna get a quick and thorough lesson in SF trendy shopping. I have been 2 their Haight-Ashbury outpost and delighted in the store's unique set up of colored rooms (greens in the Green Room, reds in the Red Room, etc) and find that the Noe Valley shop is a little bit more "boutique". Antique decor and GREAT bargains all around, Ambiance is a hot little shop and a fave of mine in SF. I found a hot leather tote 4 $62 and a great vintage-y dot tunic top 4 $65!!

Nisa: The simplicity of this new Noe Valley shop is what grabbed me. Then the "designed in San Francisco" tag clinched the deal 4 me. Oh my! There was a red plaid fur-trim vest in here that would make Alexander McQueen proud! The range is made up mostly of knits (of which I am a freak about!), all soft and supple and whipped-thin. I scooped up 2 white teees 4 layering and a great vintage mustard leather clutch 4 $23 (yes, only $23!). I'm heading back next week-end 2 pick up the large navy leather clutch, which at a steal 4 $25 is definitely hard 2 beat! Asia, the desgner/buyer searches high and low 4 unique vintage pieces and also designs such great and simple basics, that it's not hard 2 add a it of Nisa 2 your closet. Check them out at:

Mission District

House of Hengst: I can't come 2 SF and not stop in one of my favorite stores, House of Hengst. Their Spring 2008 preview collection is in true Hengst style: sexy, demure, alluring, HOT! Check the website as their update should be happening in the next coming weeks!

Castro District
After breakfast at Harveys (a MUST just 4 their pancakes and oatmeal!!Yum!!), I walked two storefronts down Castro Street 2 check out the only rival 2 Rolo 4 men;s clothes, Citizen (Castro St/16th St). Where as Rolo is full-tilt fashionisto, Citizen is young urban up-n-coming male. They have an eclectic selection, from Paul Smith trousers 2 Ed Hardy tees, and a whole lot in between. Z bought up 3 pairs of great boots that were on sale and at a steal at about $100 a pair! The staff is super-friendly and super-cute and this is such a great place 2 stop on in and see what the trendy boys r wearing...

I'm back 2 SF next week-end with another report 2 shell out. I'll be checking out the trendy Marina District and Hayes Valley, and taking another gander at Lower Haight and the Sunset District. Stay tuned 4 more!

SneakerPimpz (part 2)


Saturday, October 13, 2007

So here is the 2nd installment on my dissertation on men in sneakers. Last night at East/West Lounge with Z (the both of dressed "casually" in modern tuxs), I spied this guy in, yes, u guessed it, sneakers. Running shoes. He was well-dressed: fitted black collared shirt (Dolce & Gabanna), dark str8 leg denim (Prada), and, um New Balance sneakers. YUCK.
I went up 2 him and asked him about his shoe choice, from a fashion journalistic POV. I asked, "when u got dressed 2night, what made u choose your shoes?" "was your footwear choice the first or last decision in your outfit?". He told me it was his first. He purposedly wore those shoes with his outfit. He also told me he chose them because they were "comfortable" and it was "raining" and that he didn't wanna ruin any other shoes (I of course was in Manolo Blahniks in the rain but thats ME, along with all the other Euro-esque men in boots and loafers and shoes). I asked then what he would've worn if it were dry out. He told me flip-flops. MORE YUCK. He was the ONLY guy there in sneakers, um, no running shoes. He was the only drinking beer from the bottle as well.
There u have it...but my case isn't yet laid 2 rest...



Sunday, September 23, 2007

"I Love It!"

When I am styling someone, I may, by sheer excitement or sheer ecstasy or a true combination of both, will say "I Love It!" when I see an outfit or look come together. This is truly an exclamation of joy and elation more than flattery. I really feel the synthesis of bring clothes together and seeing the happiness and confidence on a client's face when the really know that they look GREAT. Its because the not only look great but the FEEL great. I love being the person who brings them to this conscious awareness, gifting them this, as it were. Perhaps, actually, showing them what I see, sense, know, and feel that they possess inside of them all along.
I try to stress this sensibility in other stylists or retailers when it comes to the talk of our business. I call it what it is: Love. And its true, you can't love everyone nor can everyone love you BUT we in this business should LOVE what we DO and it is very disheartening when I come across someone who has lost this love and/or is in it for not this reason.

You can trust in this: I Love It!
I Love It because it is me, it is art, it is passion, it is appearance, it is confidence, it is you, it is fun, it is real, it is fashion...


Finally Fall


The chill is now ever present in the evening air. We've had our season's first (and hopefully many) rains. I am wearing boots and have transitioned my closet, part one. I'm very excited now because it is Fall. And that means being able 2 bring out the big fashion guns and really dressing.
Layers. Chunky knits. Cashmere. Boots.
Spring may be eternal, but Fall is seriousy chic!!!

San Francisco Treat


Monday, August 6, 2007

When it comes 2 West Coast style, LA is king, as we who live here would like 2 believe...but when it comes 2 utilizing that style and making it more cohesive and fashion-conscious (not 2 mention eco-conscious and deeply rooted in liberalism and hippie-mentality), San Francisco has LA beat 2 a pulp!
On a recent and very lovely trip 2 the Bay Area, I was absolutely amazed and in awe of the style dripping off the citizens and inhabitants of the lovely city.
My great friend and fashion inspiration Ian lives there and he is the arbiter of SF style. There is a luxe-casual approach 2 dressing that is also deeply rooted in comfort. Here in LA we expose comfort by wearing flip flops (yuck) with everything but in my opinion, thats laziness, not comfort. Let's put on some sandals instead! Anyway, in SF, comfort is key-the temperate (okay, colder) climate dictates it and people get in2 it! My friend Fabian is never without a scarf, and he loves wearing Latin-inspired printed scarves tied around his neck, not draped, and in an interesting way. Almost cape-like and full and tasseled-amazing! Ian has inherited the scarf trend as well, and takes his more trad yet punk. There was a proliferation of skinny jeans on almost everyone but this trend is dying everywhere. Ian says, "no skinnys!" and I agree. Those in the fashion know are embracing the straight-leg jean, which I spied on the fashion saavy around town. And since the weather is dictating style in a certain manner, its no wonder that the sweater is a SF closet staple. I spied a fabulous sweater coat on a young woman at the deYoung Museum in Golden Gate Park last Friday and I snapped a pic. Take a look. It is by Hengst, a great label that, no surprise, is coming out of SF (unbeknownst 2 me of course! I bought 2 Hengst tops 4 Spring at Cusp in May and have even seen the knock-off at H&M!). I stopped by the shop/showroom at 20th and Valencia and browsed the racks. There were all sorts of great tops, dresses, and sweaters, and a select fashion pieces that I absolutely love. Example: the Forever Suit, the Gold Dust Dress, the Lattice sweater, and the Parasol top. I'll be donning the Forever Suit, which I couldn't resist leaving without, at my next bash! Check out Hengst at: .
The sense of fashion individualism is evident and strong in SF. The great array of vintage all over the city is hard 2 beat. The hub and best of them are found on Haight Street and u can find very one-of-a-kind pieces and mix them in 2 your 'drobe. I added another vintage hat 2 my collection which I found at Aardvarks on Haight. Everyone recycles in SF and clothing is part of the effort! U see lots of hipsters in their vintage/new mix all around. This is so great 2 see-the individual comes alive and comes out by this unique pairing and in SF, it is a key way of dressing. Check out the pic of my other SF fashion inspiration, my great friend Modesty. She takes this mixed bag of dressing 2 heart and it is the core of her style. She's wearing a vintage sweater with her Chloe pants and vintage-inspired (and green!) platforms! Fab!
In SF, it's not just the girls with style...the boys have got it on as well. There is one of the most wonderful men's clothing shop on Market, near Castro Street, called Rolo SF. This is the only place I can find Yohji Yamamoto next 2 Diesel next 2 Prada next 2 Theory in a one-stop shop extravaganza, outside of NYC. Each time I go 2 SF I check out Rolo and see what the style saavy boys r donning. I so happen 2 be there when thier summer sale was still going on and the prices were great! Ian has a McQueen jacket on his buy list 4 Fall which we found on the rack there at Rolo. Definitely worth checking out each and every time! The shopping culture in SF is also expanding and becoming a force 2 be reckoned with. The opening of Barneys in mid-Fall is sure 2 blow the door wide open, and SF has by far the nicest Bloomingdales on the West Coast in Union Square! The designer boutiques on Maiden Lane are also coming up a notch with the first West Coast Helmut Lang opening there in Fall! Wow!!
Also while I was in SF I had the chance (I wasn't going 2 miss it-ha!) 2 see the fantastic exhibit, "Nan Kempner-American Chic". I have always loved 2 see what Mrs. Kempner, a SF native, was wearing 2 her many galas, parties, and front-row outings in her adopted home of NYC. Nan was a true fashionista: she was eclectic, style-conscious, and classic and knew what the pulse was before it even began 2 beat. She had a distinct love 4 YSL and Valentino and her eye was on the art of fashion, not just the utility of it. She was a very discerning customer and a fashion collector and all the designers knew this. The exhibit, which debuted in NYC in Spring at the Met, is now housed at the deYoung this summer. I would've snapped pics if I could but it is a must-see!!! See it in person and just live in the memory, and let this true fashion connoissuer be an inspiration 2 u as she has been 2 me!
My trip 2 SF has me very excited 4 Fall and the onslaught of the great buys I can't wait 2 get! I can't wait 2 be able 2 wear sweaters and coats and heavier knits! that I think of it, why wait? I'll just have 2 travel up north and satiate my fix!
Wanna come..?

Sneaker Pimpz


Friday, July 6, 2007

I noticed a very huge phenom last night while having cocktails with my friend at O Bar in West Hollywood and it was a BIG shock 4 me: men in sneakers. Okay, not men in sneakers on its own, but men in sneakers out 4 a fashionable night out. Men in sneakers out at night. Men in sneakers.

Okay, what's happening? I'm talking ALL kinds of sneakers. Basketball sneakers. Tennis shoes. Running and Cross trainers.

I remember about eight years ago in NYC, u would see the occasional sneaker on a guy on a night out and they were always on the avant-garde, trend-forward, fashionable man direct from Europe. And he'd be wearing Yohji Yamamoto Adidas. It was forward and camp and sleek.
This NOT what I saw last night.

Have fashionable gay men lost there fashion edge? Is the culture so saturated with a "clone identity" that no one can wear a SHOE anymore?

There were 8 eight of us not wearing sneakers. I counted and re-counted over my two hour cocktail stint.
We were all girls.
In heels.


Los Angeles aka LA aka Lost Angels aka The City of Angels aka Hollywoodland


Tuesday, January 30, 2007

I am currently residing in Los Angeles aka LA aka Lost Angels aka The City of Angels aka Hollywoodland. Here is a town that thrives on youth and beauty, on class and the kind of car you drive and where you live, what 3 films u've seen in the past 2 weeks, and whether u drink coffee, tea, booze, wine or none or all of the above.
When I first arrived here from NYC I had a fashion nervous breakdown which subsequently had me seeking professional help for the lack (or supposed lack thereof) of high style and fabulocity. I didn't own more than 1 pair of jeans, which, 4 me, were utilitarian, and hated driving anywhere. Now, I own more than 98 pairs of jeans and only wear 5 of them in cycles and I still hate driving anywhere. Everything is so spread out and vast and my fear of getting lost in the fray has relatively subsided. The thrill of a vibrant, living, thriving city is sporadically quenched here in LA. Yet my thrill-seeking in the environs of LA style has become my first and foremost goal and since I have opened my eyes 2 it, I see it more and more and I see it everywhere.

LA style is iconic in the sense that it happens on the individual level. This individual level though also exists in the pop context. If your neighbor is wearing it, the chances of you wearing it are more than likely. Who hasn’t seen a soccer mom decked out in a Juicy Couture track suit? Who hasn’t seen the latest Playmate wearing the same track suit? The chances are the soccer mom saw the Playmate wearing that track suit on some reality show or at the local Bel Air Market in said track suit and thought “I can wear that too because it must be in!”. This is the pop context at work.
LA style and its context get transmuted and presented to the rest of us and the world via Hollywood and television. These two mediums are the lifeblood of this town-this big company town. We are the Entertainment Factory and what we see on the streets style-wise gets tricked out 4 the masses and presented. Some bumpkin will see Jamie Pressly wearing Seven jeans in her trailer park garb on “My Life Is Earl” and run out and buy it. Consumerism and pop context evolves and expands and Jamie’s outfit on last week’s episode will find its way to the local Louisville department store.
Where in this style-copping has individual style gone? Where has the individual expression gone?

Well, fair reader, this is where I come in.

I never studied fashion in the upper echelons of education, instead carving my own fashion education by watching and copying my fashionista mother( whose fashion height was the 1980’s and yes, that was a fabulous time 4 fashion!), my 4th grade teacher (Beverly Johnston who could wear the heck out of a jumper dress and a three piece box-cut jacket ad high waisted men’s trousers!), my grandmother( who was so sweet 2 pass down 2 me a Max Mara fur collared camelhair trench coat), Ian Grove (who still is my fashion sistah-iconic in Chanel *anything* and 4 a gay boy from San Diego, quite avant-garde), club kids, the 1970’s(polyester and high-waisted pants-nuff said!), Vogue and Bazaar Magazine, Madonna (a LEGEND) and Prince (androgyny par excellence).
I have had the esteemed pleasure 2 start my professional career not in the arts, as my education would have liked 2 have dictated, but in fashion, becoming a PR Rep 4 the likes of Ally Cappellino in London and then moving to NYC, where I worked 4 everyone from Calvin Klein and Ralph Lauren, to Showroom Seven, to Alvin Valley, and others in between and on the side.
I came 2 LA 2 go back 2 school, and again, despite my educational leanings, I could not escape the lurid call of the fashion animal. Now I never thought I’d be the kind of anthropologist who worked in the trenches and the dirt but I always knew I’d at least be an anthropologist who wore trenches.
I started fashion styling as a fun gig and came about it through some of my new creative LA friends. I had no idea that here in LaLa Land, everyone is a stylist(or claims 2 be). I knew I had 2 carve out my own niche and ride that wave until it hit the shore. Luckily, I have a great sense of personal style and am fearless in how I approach it and aim 2 do the same thing 4 my clients: carve out their own individual niche and still be in the mode of fashion.

And my time spent here in LA has been fun and interesting. I’ve dressed everyone: Paris, Nicole, Tia, Mary, Jessica, Michelle, Beyonce, Jennifer, Raven, Diana. I’ve dressed models, publicists, hairdressers, B actresses, footballers wives, Laker girls.
And it’s only just begun…

Fashion is the whole pie, style is the filling that makes you want 2 take a bite!

Introducing the LifeLine According To The FeelGoodGuru of Style


Friday, January 5, 2007

"This is who i am u can like it or not, u can love me or leave me but i'm never gonna stop, no no, u know it!..."
I was born in a foreign country but raised in the USA, I have a multi-racial (Filipino/French/African-American) background, I always dance like I mean it, I have lived in all the fashion capitals of the world and still have my own style, I have learned 2 water my spiritual garden and I nurture the seeds that grow there, I am naturally androgynous and am always blurring the lines between the genders, I am not a Queen but a King of Kings, my Soul comes from a distant star and yet I am grounded here on Earth, I've had so many lovers who have never settled 4 the thrill of basking in my Light, I'm homosexually-identified and heterosexually socialized, I am a student of books and a teacher of life, I'm not one 4 politics but I have political views, I'm luxurious like cashmere and simple like egyptian cotton, I'm awake during the day but come alive at night, I'm the outgoing social chameleon and am also the quiet solitary, I like it on my stomach and on my back and I can definitely take it like a man, I'm over dressed in public and always naked in private, I'm corporeal but can also be invisible, I am a candidate 4 Love, I am made up of different races and don't look singularly like one of them, I don't go by the thread count I go by the feel, I have small feet 4 a man and the perfect size feet 4 a woman, I have lived a number of years yet I am still ageless, I'm an adult who can wear kids sized clothes, I love unconditionally even when I'm hated because of conditions, I'll drink wine at a bar but will have cocktails at home, I'm a little bit of Country and a little bit of RocknRoll but baby let me tell u all of me is Soul, and, I live each day in the evidence of Love's brilliance and I am always amazed by it's Beauty and it's Light!!!
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