Category Archives: men’s clothing

Go Kailua Style

Beyond thrilled to be a featured personal stylist in the current Go Kailua magazine. I shopped Kailua and selected this outfit from three of my favorite shops in Kailua. Olive Boutique, Oliver Men’s Shop, and Fighting Eel.

Everything I picked is versatile. A men’s chambray shirt works for so many occasions, and it’s durable too. In Hawaii it’s a perfect light jacket for cool days. My gorgeous model Maisa sports the classic M.Nii drowners shorts, rolled up and a little bit sexy. No matter where your day takes you, you’ll be prepared, you can even swim in these trunks.

Ladies, don’t be be afraid of shopping in the men’s section! I promise you won’t look butch if you style these pieces in a feminine way. Add feminine details like this chunky coral (plastic) necklace and some gold bangles and glitzy bag and you’re good to go.

Special thanks to Sarah Honda at Honolulu Magazine, Go Kailua magazine for featuring me!

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How to shop the new Nordstrom Rack in Honolulu

It’s no secret that some of my best finds happen at Nordstrom’s the Rack, specifically the Rack on Oahu. Great designer and bridge merchandise at a deal coupled with Nordstrom’s great customer service, it’s been a win win for me over the years. But for many the Rack is a huge warehouse chock full of overwhelming choices. And just because you found it at the Rack doesn’t always make it a bargain. Here’s how to make sure you strike it right when shopping at the new Honolulu Rack at Ward.

My Favorite buys at the Rack:

  1. Designer lingerie by brands Chantelle, Natori, Wacoal, Hanky Panky, and commando.
  2. Designer jeans by brands J Brand, Hudson, Paige, Habitual, Mother, and Current Elliot.
  3. Jersey blazers by Gibson.
  4. Layering basics including tees from James Perse, Vince, and Soprano.
  5. Shoes of all kinds including Haviana slippers.

The Layout: First things first, the new Rack is now 2 huge floors in the new building across from T.J.Maxx. Main floor is Men’s, top floor is for Women. When entering from the parking garage, the first thing you’ll see is the huge accessories department, lingerie, sunglasses, and home to your left. Then you’ll be bombarded with plenty of rounds of juniors, ladies and then women’s wear with a nice little pad of designer. I was a bit disappointed with their selection of designer, as the gals were really pumping up my expectations before the new store opened. Beyond the dressing rooms, and another large pad of accessories including handbags and body, you’ll find yourself immersed in shoes. It feels a bit more claustrophobic than before, with the aisles longer and taller, and at an angle. Designer shoes are separated like before, but now boots are also sectioned off which is nice.

The tag is your clue: The Rack has buyers that select merchandise directly from suppliers much like the main line Nordstrom does. Sometimes it’s from the same collection, but perhaps a different style. Things that come directly to the Rack can be much of the same that you’d find in their main line stores, but at 30-50% off retail. The real savings come from pieces that were originally meant for the main line stores and either got reduced and didn’t sell, or were customer returns after the merchandise already left the floors. These tags are marked differently, and usually have a red sticker, and usually go directly to the clearance racks.

Amazing savings. Look for tags like these, meaning they came from the full line store first, with further reductions.

Amazing savings. Look for tags like these, meaning they came from the full line store first, with further reductions.

New Designer Pad: The day I stopped in to the Rack the designer pad had racks of Helmut Lang, Rag & Bone, Trina Turk, Vince, Nanette Lepore, Kate Spade, Burberry London, Eileen Fisher, Element, Diane Von Furstenburg (DVF), Tory Burch and I’m more. These racks had some basics, but mostly wild prints or strange cuts that you can understand why they were leftovers. The main exception to this rule is Vince. Though this last visit the rack was loaded with sweaters that unless you were hopping a plane to snow, you couldn’t imagine wearing in the tropics.

Start with Clearance: Always a sucker for the best bargain, I start my search at the clearance racks. They are fairly organized, sorted by size and sometimes by section from the main store. My favorite finds are usually in the Indy, t.b.d., savvy rounders. On my recent haunt I found a Tibi silk top that normally runs $225 for $36, Coach platforms for a mere $34 (normally also $225), and a pair of current elliot cutoff denim shorts for $22, normally $156. I also found a perfect cropped 3/4 vince tee for $39 and a knit Rag & Bone blazer for $159, they run at $495. Now unless you need these things, it’s not really a bargain. But these are all great deals, and ones I plan on getting a lot of use from.

Some things to remember when shopping at the Rack:

  1. Shopping early in the day the racks are tidier, and often less busy before lunch time.
  2. Always check for quality. Sometimes seams don’t line up straight, you don’t want a crooked seam on your butt, so double check.
  3. There’s a 15 item limit when trying on, so be strategic with what you chose to try on with what. Dana is often working when I shop, and she helps make the process smoothly for me and my clients.
  4. Some shoes are re-soled if they were previously worn by a customer. These are often the best deals and often up to 85% off retail. I’ve spotted Prada, Jimmy Choo, and Feragamo. And they will be in the regular shoe section, not designer, so take a second look.
  5. Alterations can be done on the spot at the rack, and their seamstresses are just as good as their full line counterparts. Salva and I are on a first name basis.
  6. If you don’t feel like waiting to check out in line, look for any team member in the green shirt, and they can check you out if paying with credit or debit card.
  7. You have 30 days to return unworn merchandise. Though I find even if you pass the 30 days, they graciously take back your items for a full refund with proof of payment.

Nordstrom Rack 1170 Auahi St, Honolulu, Hawaii 96814; 808.589.2060

Olive & Oliver boutiques celebrate milestones

On Friday Ali McMahon of Olive Boutique and Parker Moosman of Oliver Men’s Shop celebrated major milestone achievements. Olive has now been making Kailua women stylish one outfit at a time over the past 5 years. Oliver is the sole Men’s shop in Kailua and already has a loyal following both in Hawaii and Japan after just one year of being open.

Olive took over the old Ali’i florist space on Kihapai when you could count all the independent boutiques in Kailua on one hand. Now it feels like a new shop is popping up every month. Kailua has always been a destination for locals and tourists alike, but mostly just for it’s famous white sandy beaches. Now its visitors are seeking out more than just a beach excursion, they’ve come to shop and eat too. Kailua has become more lively as a result, it’s a win win.

What really make Olive and Oliver special is the unique character of the shops, an enjoyable well curated experience carrying local, national, and international brands. Olive is the only place on Oahu stoking Tilvaro Designs, made by hand on the North Shore. Oliver was the first and only shop on Oahu to stock URSA major men’s products from Vermont. Casual and comfy, their shops often become a hangout for the effortlessly cool ladies and gents.

If you haven’t stepped inside their doors yet, what are you waiting for? Then again, these characters aren’t going anywhere. The shops have been embraced by their followers making their presence a standout in a sleepy beach town. We’re excited to see what the next five years will bring for our two favorite east-side shops.

Olive Boutique 43 Kihapai street, Kailua, Hawaii 96734. 808-263-9919. IHeartOlive.com

Oliver Men’s Shop 49 Kihapai street, Kailua, Hawaii 96734. 808-261-6587. OliverHawaii.com

What to wear now: MAN

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A look for you men out there. It’s a simple formula: layer a knit with a woven, a slim jean, a nice rugged shoe, and pop of something unexpected (polka dot socks)! These make up one of my favorite looks right now. A slender black jean (Nudie), some of the most comfortable shoes available (Timberland), fun Happy Socks, and a great 100% cotton printed snap shirt made by Honolulu’s own Roberta Oaks! Don’t forget a nice workman’s style jacket in 100% cotton too (Nau). Ladies: Dress your man!

Find me at Roberta Oaks Hawaii

Happy Veteran’s Day!

Today I’ll be helping out my good friend at her shop (Roberta Oaks) in Chinatown. Stop by and say hi. But most of all check out the awesome new men’s shirts in cool limited edition Hawaiiana prints. Cut trim for those lean surfer bods you know, it’s a total crowd pleaser either way.

Patriotic spirit: Show your military ID for 20% off at Roberta Oaks (valid 11/12/12 only).

19 N. Pauahi St. Honolulu Hawaii, 96817

info@robertaoaks.com

FASHIONxt Portland, Oct 10-13, 2012

Next week another Fashion Week is unleashed on Portland. Last year I went and had a blast. This year’s lineup looks even mightier. For a fun and very atypical Portland experience, I suggest you attend, and get the VIP seats. It’s worth it. Enjoy!

FASHIONxt is a fashion forward lifestyle showcase and runway show. Fashionxt debuts fashion designers collections on the runway while launching the latest in technology in our adjoining lifestyle plaza.

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Stylist for Hire

Here I’ll keep you in the know of the my current obsessions, musings, and hilarious fashion encounters. I am totally obsessed with making sure you look your best, and feel the most confident every day, so you don’t have to!

Men, women, kids, no matter how big or small, I work with everyone. This venture is a work in progress, so there might need to be some changes along the way. If you have any questions about what I can offer you, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

Let’s get started!

Stylist James Rockwell and I strike a pose.

Stuff for a Buck: TODAY at Buffalo Exchange

Score some of the best thrift for just a buck! It’s the $1 Save Wildlife from Trash sale today, Saturday, April 28 at all Buffalo Exchange locations (nationwide)! 

Throughout the year sale items or out of season goods that didn’t sell are collected and put out for this awesome one day event. Chaos yes, but I’ve been advised it’s one sale not to be missed!

Give Thrift a Chance

Bargains can be had anywhere, but your best and most frequent chance comes at a thrift store. And seeing that today is Earth Day, help the world by recycling fashions!

For example, a recent find at Goodwill, SW Portland at 10th & Taylor, makes thrift shopping more thrilling than walking into a department store. Yes, a task such as this does require patience, but the quest for the loot keeps me guessing, and I always have fun in the hunt.At this one and only Goodwill Boutique in Portland, the best day to hit the racks is Wednesday. The designer goods seem to appear most frequently then, though new merchandise is unloaded Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.

Don’t expect to find the discount color tags here, if the goods don’t sell within a few weeks, they get packed up and sent back to the regular Goodwill shops around town. The boutique is run by a few great folks that have an eye for yummy stuff amongst the junk. The sales staff here are friendly and honest, not always the case.

The only downside to this stellar store-front is that it’s too often packed with numerous have-to-haves. I only say too much because I’m often torn at what I can ultimately afford. You just can’t have it all, all the time.

But seriously, just how can you say no these pretties? Moschino black patent leather pumps with red bow detailing and a four inch matching red heel make these pumps a home run! Certainly Carrie Bradshaw would be happily caught wearing such a pair.

Helping to save the planet, one pair of shoes at a time.