West Coast Craft 2015

This is not my first time at the rodeo, you may recall that I previously documented going to the West Coast Craft show way back in 2013! I like attending this show not because I’m on the hunt to purchase more things, I actually love going because it inspires me to create!! I like to sew (still learning), exploring embroidery, trying to kickstart my calligraphy again, crochet, home decorating, and crafting in general – that I get to see trends and just get inspired. I have been to several other craft shows as well, and definitely felt that for a few years some creators were relying heavily on jumping on a bandwagon of making things out of canvas and leather – I’m happy to report that bandwagon  has scaled back significantly finally.

So here are some fun photos of things I enjoyed!

A cute hanging shelf with a hole for your small planter – I can see one hanging by the window at home.
West Coast Craft San Francisco 2015

This booth had a lot of embroidered clothing – something I have been hoping to do (currently on the hunt for some vintage Levi’s!)
West Coast Craft San Francisco 2015

An up close photograph of one of the wool weavings we saw – the tufts are very large and billowing, unlike many of the structured weavings we’re used to seeing. Once I get the right materials, I’m definitely going to try this!
West Coast Craft San Francisco 2015

I absolutely loved the leather products at this booth! The aged leather had a gradient of color that was so beautiful in person. The black and brown leather together was just divine.
West Coast Craft San Francisco 2015

West Coast Craft San Francisco 2015

Who can resist a flowery print?
West Coast Craft San Francisco 2015

We saw a lot of ceramics – these marbleized ones were very cool
West Coast Craft San Francisco 2015

This booth consisted of rugs created by students who just used their imagination to create – I say that the results are actually really creative and artsy!
West Coast Craft San Francisco 2015

Not the best photo unfortunately, but I loved the printed silks inspired by nature at this booth
West Coast Craft San Francisco 2015

Hovering above one booth, they were really trying to make a point I guess, this giant shirt loomed over us :)
West Coast Craft San Francisco 2015

Hope you enjoyed the pictures and get inspired to create too!

Spotlight on: Amour Vert

You’ll be able to follow all of these spotlight posts here, but also keep up with my Made in the USA series here.

For this Made in USA spotlight post, I thought it would be fun to post about local favorite, Amour Vert. If you’re ever in San Francisco, you’ll want to head over to their little shop in Hayes Valley that is full of great wardrobe classics.

Their ABOUT US states

Amour Vert means ‘Green Love’ in French, but it also means American manufacturing, non-toxic dyes, sustainable fibers, innovative fabrics, a zero waste design philosophy, and above all enduring style.

Amour Vert is the fashion brand for a 21st century consumer. We don’t just care about looking good, we’re committed to doing good.

Just look at this little video they often share

Their story is quite fascinating – I highly recommend reading this profile on them by Fast Company. Ever since I walked into the store, it was fashion love at first sight. But let’s let the clothes do the talking -

Amour Vert

Amour Vert

Amour Vert

Amour Vert

Amour Vert

Amour Vert

Are you familiar with the brand?

in the garden

Some simple weekend cruising through a garden supply store to look for succulents – but alas, my golden slippers always seem to add a nice touch to any outfit! I’ve been working hard to bring more green into the apartment and needed some inspiration.

Item From Made in… BUY
Three Dots top Shopbop.com USA in white HERE
Gap jeans my sister China HERE and HERE
Loeffler Randall flats Shopbop.com Brazil HERE and HERE in nude
Rayban wayfarer sunglasses thrifted USA HERE
Madewell purse Shopbop.com China HERE

Thrift Eye

Thrift Eye

Thrift Eye

Thrift Eye

wow 9 years blogging!

So where did the time go? When I started this blog 9 years ago, I didn’t picture myself this deep into it as I would be now. Each year has been excitingly unique in both these sense of the state of blogging and my own life – that I’m surprised I’m still doing this! I’m happy to share my little piece of the world with you guys.

When I started my blog in Las Vegas, I was lonely and the internet seemed interesting in opening up the worlds of other people online. I jumped on the wagon, not knowing what I could share that was unique or different. In the span of these last 9 years. I want to be real here with you guys and open up – I want to honestly & sincerely share with you all 9 (in honor of 9 years) things I hate and love about blogging.

9 things I hate about blogging
1. It’s difficult to be transparent about real life – and some bloggers are really, really bad about it. Life isn’t all macarons and Starbucks. I try to be as real as possible, but it gets hard sometimes. We all have things going on, it’s really easy to share the good bits and hide the hard stuff. The pressure to be perfect is overwhelming. I’ve gotten better at ignoring that though.

2. The push to be and seem like a non-stop consumer. I don’t think I do myself or you reading any service by only buying and wearing new things. Real people don’t live like that. But I’ve definitely felt the pressure, and I’ve seen a lot of people succumb to it, and even quit blogging over it!

3. Blogging is another full time job that doesn’t pay. I’ve always had another job while blogging, at one point three jobs! And then somehow still had to find time to squeeze in all this stuff. Some people have the luxury of blogging as work, I don’t. The compensations I get from it barely pay for the upkeep of the blog (hosting and such). But when I’m beat from my day job, I still feel bad for neglecting the blog!

4. The cattiness that some bloggers exude when trying to climb to the top. Luckily I’ve never had anything personally happen to me, but I’ve seen other bloggers fight tooth and nail with other bloggers to get fame and fortune. Whether it’s talking behind their backs, sabotaging partnerships, or just “you can’t sit with us” attitude of exclusion – it can get real nasty. Ans as stated above, I don’t get paid much to do this, so I’m definitely not going to put up with it.

5. Non-stop emails from people who want me to do things for them for free. Worse yet, they don’t get my name right or bother getting to know me before asking. Delete, delete, delete! Don’t get me started on spam emails.

6. Bloggers who are terrible at shilling products for the $$$$. I feel like they give other bloggers a bad name.

7. Not having enough time to turn this space into what I want it to be. Sometimes I see other people’s blogs, and wish I could be like that too. But it’s a lot of work, and this is a one woman show. I’ll take baby steps.

8. The pressure to be perfect manifests itself in taking photos too. I have a lot of outfits and photos that never make it on here because I didn’t think they were good enough after they were taken. I’ve learned the hard way to shoot outfits as many times possible in case something goes wrong. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve uploaded photos to my computer to find all the photos blurry…Other times, the idea I had in my head didn’t translate well on camera, then it gets scrapped. Then I feel like I wasted my time!

9. I dislike that at it’s worst, the state of blogging seemed very homogenous. Bloggers felt like they all had to jump on a bandwagon, wearing the same shoes, getting the same haircut, wearing the same damn outfit. When this started to change, I felt like the reader backlash really broke through. Readers were tired of being played. I don’t blame them.

9 things I love about blogging
1. I’ve expanded my world and knowledge in using cameras & its equipment, but also editing photos. First I was using a dinky little point & shoot camera to get terrible pictures like this, now I get to take much better photographs and do fun things with them, like my Halloween series!
Magritte Son of Man costume

2. I’ve singlehandedly taught myself the whole behind the scenes work of making a blog run well – adjusting the site, doing a solo transfer from Blogger to WordPress, designing my own logos, running all social media accounts. When it’s all working, it’s real fun :)

3. Interesting partnerships and collaborations. I’ve had the chance to get to do some real fun stuff. The work I did with Intel was fun, remember this video?!

I got interviewed for a SF Chronicle newspaper story on bloggers in San Francisco. Worked with Bare Minerals to show off a new line of makeup. Among other little things here and there in getting to know companies and brands.

4. Exploring the world of Made in USA has made me a much more conscious consumer. I’ve enjoyed all my posts on that subject and hope to keep doing more! I feel like continually addressing this subject and this Fashion Revolution that’s going on, I give light to a heavy subject that most other people aren’t willing to discuss.

5. Bringing my passion for books into this blog! I’m glad I can mix my love of being a librarian in various posts here – especially reviewing all the books I have gotten my hand on. I also hope to keep doing more! I’ve connected with lots of readers with similar passion for literature and books, it’s a great community. Which brings me to…

6. Meeting and interacting with some wonderful people, both online and in person. I’ve made some great friendships through blogging! (Oddly enough, in spite of what I said about some people being catty. I think because I try to be supportive of others and stay out of drama). I’ve had the pleasure of meeting all sorts of wonderful people, including some designers and celebrities too, all because of this little blog.

7. Being inspired by others – I’m a blogger that LOVES reading other blogs. I have a full RSS feed each day. On the mornings I can indulge, I go through the feeds with my coffee. When I can’t, I do it when I get home from work. I like seeing trends across cities, states, and countries! I also love discovering new blogs that are fun and inspiring, send any of them you have to share my way!

8. Having a catalog of my outfits and style, is more fun than you might imagine. If I wanted to remember how I wore a certain item with another, I have photographic proof! A digital version of your closet can be fun, it lets you bounce ideas around. It even challenges me to wear things in ways I haven’t before! One day I want to print a photo book for myself of all my outfits.

9. As someone who went to school for writing, I was sad that I never was able to channel that into anything. Blogging allowed me to create something, even if it’s a tiny blip in the ocean. More so, that I get to share it with all of you! Blogging is the ultimate creative writing, I get the freedom to make this space whatever I want it to be. Yeah there are weird and strange, even difficult parts – and the payoff may not be monetary, but it’s so worth it for me. Even when I’m tired, I want to work on this project. I could have given up 8 years ago, but I didn’t, I’m glad. I can’t say what the future will look like. But at least I get to shape it into whatever I want it to be!