Category Archive for Fashion
Hats Off to Israeli Fashion & Bloggers! Tel Aviv style tour: glitter fruit headbands, Art Deco jewelry.
Israel rocked my socks! I had an incredible time exploring Tel Aviv and Jerusalem with my filmmakers. The Tourism Board went beyond our expectations, and put together a dream press trip for the three of us.
If you think Tokyo fashion is the epitome of cool… then read on. You’ll be amazed at what Israel’s young designers and style influencers are up to.
We went on a fashion adventure with Galit Reismann of TLVstyle Boutique Tours. She gives guided style tours that are perfectly tailored to your interests; she’ll introduce you to insiders, and help you find the best shops. I wouldn’t have found any of these labels without her.
Let’s begin with what I wore. So nice to escape the winter weather…
Blue colored hair: by Stephanie Hoy, Avant Garde Hair Vancouver. I put it in two small buns.
Sheer panel little black dress: Gladnews, from Shibuya 109 in Tokyo. Very Metal, for sure.
Gothic cross tights: gifted by UK Tights – here are the exact cross suspender tights I’m wearing
Mary Jane Goth shoes: Demonia; purchase them for only $46
White crown handbag: Baby, the Stars Shine Bright
I met Tel Aviv-based designer Tami Bar-Lev, and we immediately hit it off. She custom-makes headpieces that would feel at home in Harajuku. Fruits, flowers and sequins are just some of the gems that she pulled out of her hat-box.
We filmed at Eden House, a charming and LGBT-friendly boutique hotel, run by two sweet locals. I wish I could have spent more time in the Victorian doll-like tea room.
Tami brought several big boxes. I was amazed by the array of hats and headbands inside.
Photography by Melissa Rundle. (So grateful that I’m able to travel with my friends, who happen to be pro filmmakers and photographers.)
And here’s a triad of Tami’s works — aren’t they adorable? Her hats are sturdily made, and stay on with adjustable combs or wires. Each sequin is sewn in by hand, to form the patterns.
At the top of the staircase is Israel style blogger Korin Avraham of Ya Salam fashion blog. Love her feathered skirt and infectious smile.
Pineapples, fish bones, flowers… oh my! The designs are fun and poppy, but not overpowering, so you don’t wind up looking like Carmen Miranda.
Korin and I modeled these flower hats on the balcony, which overlooks this fascinating city.
Galit joins us on the bed for a hat slumber party. From banana splits (one of Tami’s first creations) to fairy bridal crowns, and turbans with fabric ties… there’s something for all tastes.
A salute to my talented new friends! We could have hung out all day, but the tour was only beginning, and I had three more places to visit.
Galit took me to the fashion-centric Noga district, and introduced me to jewelry-maker Shelly Dahari. I was drawn to her bold pieces, influenced by Art Deco and African art.
Shelly hand-crafts accessories from carefully sourced and limited-edition materials, such as vintage buttons and shekel coins.
She showed me around her store, and offered us coffee and cookies. Everyone I met in the Israeli fashion scene was so hospitable. There’s a close community here that encourages creativity.
Shelly generously gave me this necklace, featuring a row of transparent stars. It has a Sailor Moon vibe, no?
I also loved her rings with retro cars symbols and lion heads.
Close up of the vintage, romantic detailing. Shelly Dahari’s Facebook shows more of her imaginative collections.
Thanks to Galit for these behind-the-scenes photos of our filming (my friends are working on a video about Israel). And this is only half of her personalized style tour… Coming up, I’ll take you inside two more Israeli boutiques.
Did you know Israel has such an exciting fashion and indie scene? What do you think of my “Very Metal” outfit and blue hair?
Great balls of lighting! My mind felt like it was exploding with color, when I went shopping in Bangkok’s Chatuchak Market.
Seby and I spent a morning at the largest market in Thailand (also known as Jatujak, or J.J.). What type of designs are sold here? Did we buy anything cute? Let’s shop and see…
Take note that Chatuchak (Kamphaeng Phet 2 Road) is only open on Saturdays and Sundays. We were grateful to have Sylvie from Destination Asia as our guide, since there were over 15,000 stalls to explore, and the narrow walkways were packed with shoppers!
I’m wearing a cut-out black top by TwoPercent Hong Kong, and studded ankle boots by Yosuke from Shibuya 109. The round orange sunglasses are vintage Gucci.
The little shops sell everything from Buddhist items to home goods and food. We asked Sylvie to take us to the area featuring hip local fashion, and spent about an hour browsing. Fortunately we were there early, as the market can get very hot and packed around noon onward.
Some Asian markets, like “Women Street” in Hong Kong, sell poorly made goods. This is not the case at Chatuchak. Most of the boutiques sold lovingly crafted designs with a touch of cute. This Queen’s Guard necklace is a great example.
I’m always on the lookout for Scottish Fold cat items. When I saw these rings by Good After Nine, I simply had to have one.
The store is run by two young Thai jewelers, who are passionate about making unconventional pieces. Basil Farrow says: the painted lines on the face, folded ears, and slightly angry expression are spot on!
Like in Siam Discovery Mall, a lot of the young, Bangkok designs have a twee and vintage feel.
Spotted another Scottish Fold item. I didn’t get this shirt, as the print is a bit much.
However, Seby and I went nuts at Le Petid Print shop. All their t-shirts are 100% cotton and chemical free, with soft screen prints. I got the Halloween bunny tee, and he got the Stormtroopers one, among others.
Tip: if you buy more than one item, you get a discount – which ends up being about $2-4 US per shirt! Insane, considering the superb quality and prints that we found.
Another tip: some stores sell the same or similar items, so it’s worth walking through the halls first to see what’s available. However, if you come across something remarkable — like the cat-face jewels — get it right away, as you may get lost on the way back.
Among my favorites were these sweet, character-print scarves and bags.
A smiling fox family. See what I mean about the natural, charming vibe of the stores?
Put a bird on it, as the hipsters in Portland do.
These glowing ball lights would be great for home decor, or a photoshoot.
Love the faux flower crowns and My Fair Lady hats.
On the darker side, you can find studded Goth-metal clothing. Many Bangkok designers start out at JJ Market, since it’s not too expensive to rent a space here. It’s a great way to present their works and gauge the reaction.
Many items are handmade one-offs, which lets the creator experiment and gives the consumer something special.
A final tip: stock up on souvenirs and small accessories here. Since prices are so low, you won’t regret spending baht and supporting these local businesses.
Look for illustrated iPhone cases…
Nightmare Before Xmas t-shirts, printed with Jack Skellington’s face…
And don’t you dare leave without a funny t-shirt or two… or eight. (I think that’s how many Seby and I got!)
I leave you with a peek inside a rockabilly store. Skulls and subcultures are everywhere around the world now.
Isn’t Chatuchak Weekend Market inspiring? Did you know there was an indie design scene like this in Bangkok?
Coming up next: a video of my poppy Bangkok travels. For all my Thailand coverage, including temples and restaurants, check out the SE Asia category.
Blue-Green mermaid hair in Portlandia! Vegan restaurants, Hawthorne hipster shopping, vintage stores.
It’s official, I want to keep my turquoise and blue hair! I’m having fun trying different outfit colors and makeup combinations, to match the new hues.
In this post, I explore the vintage shops, health food cafes, and hipster districts that Portland is known for. Or dare I say… Portlandia?
What La Carmina wore:
Green-blue hair color and style: Stephanie Hoy, stylist at Avant Garde Hair in Yaletown, Vancouver
Flower clips: made for me by Angelica Brigade
Makeup: from Annabelle Cosmetics
Turquoise Victorian dress: Carina e Arlequin, Tokyo Lolita brand from Closet Child
Laser cut boots: Yosuke Japan, similar to these boots
Faux fur eggplant purple scarf: Holt Renfrew Canada
I posed for these outfit photos in front of the Bagdad, a pub and movie theater. This Portland district, Hawthorne, is filled with quirky-cute boutiques and cafes.
The Portland tourism bureau invited us to Harlow for lunch. (3632 SE Hawthorne Blvd, Portland, OR). The restaurant specializes in casual but delicious vegan, gluten-free and organic meals.
Since it was the day before Halloween, this cut-out H pumpkin stood next to the healthy desserts.
The drink menu changes all the time. At the time, there were haunted concoctions. Instead of blood, the Nosferatu Cocktail is stained red with beet juice.
The staff wore costumes, and prepared all the juices and meals fresh to order. This is a great place for anyone who is gluten-free, vegan, or has food allergies.
Harlow is all about conscious local choices, but without the pretension. Food is simply fresh and flavorful, served in an airy space.
The coffee is by Trailhead Roasters, a bike-powered organic collective that supports female farmers. My pretty juice is a mix of grapefruit, apple, celery and mint.
At Harlow, vegan and gluten-free choices aren’t an afterthought – they are the stars of the show. The photo above shows how tasty and filling our lunch was. (No meat served here, but you can order eggs and dairy products.)
Be adventurous! Try the creative house-made specials at Harlow, such as bourbon BBQ tempeh, jalapeno cashew cheese, and hazelnut milk.
Naomi also took us to Paradox Organic Cafe for vegan brunch. The meatless biscuits and gravy are through the roof.
Again, you can order animal products here. But as the wall clippings show, Paradox takes pride in serving ancient grains and organic produce.
Brunch is a big deal in Portland. On the weekend, popular cafes have 1-2 hour long waits for a table. Paradox isn’t overrun by hipsters yet… I hope it stays that way, lest this blog post bring on a “brunch-pocalypse”!
Vintage shopping is also a major activity. Across the street from the Jupiter Hotel — remember my astronaut costume shoot? — there is a row of concept and secondhand boutiques, including Haunt Studio. (811 E Burnside St #113, Portland, OR)
Nothing beats cut-out Lolita boots, and autumn leaves in the Pacific Northwest. Photography by Naomi Rubin, Melissa Rundle, and me.
As soon as I entered Bombshell Vintage, I saw a puff of tutu skirts, and Courtney Love (or rather, someone dressed as her) at the counter.
Hattie’s Vintage Clothing had a magnificently curated selection from past eras. I simply had to get this 1970s disco winter coat, made from white leather and faux fur. It’s by Alan Cherry, a Toronto upscale boutique that closed in the 90s. (More photos to come.)
I recommend strolling on Hawthorne, Belmont and Mississippi — a huge variety of kooky shops here, including a Third Eye hippie house, and a craft studio for handmade masks.
The Portlandia joke, “Put a bird on it,” rings true. A lot of products were stamped with birds, even this skull jar.
Since it was around Halloween and Day of the Dead, there were spooky skeleton items everywhere.
Portland is a great place to pick up funny gifts, eco-friendly bags, twee jewelry…
… and a Mexican sugar skull or two.
What do you think of PDX’s hipster culture? Are you fond of vegan food, vintage shops, and the TV show Portlandia?
Shh. Even though I live for exploring new countries (Israel and Jordan right now!), it’s no secret that I miss Tokyo whenever I’m away.
I was in Japan around Christmas-time, which gave me an opportunity to take photos with light displays. Enjoy these street shots of Shinjuku after dark.
In Tokyo, I’m one of the tallest people around…
Hello Kitty and friends sweater: from last year’s Forever 21 x Sanrio collaboration
Short plaid purple skirt: Peace Now, from Closet Child
Blue fuzzy animal purse: Mercibeaucoup, bought at Shinjuku Marui Annex
Art Nouveau print tights: Innocent World x Alphonse Mucha
First Mate fixer Naomi took these cool purple effect photos by shooting between the escalator rail. Using a prime lens on a DSLR, you can achieve nifty effects like this.
The background blurs out, and the little Xmas bulbs turn into “bokeh”, or glowing balls of light.
This little hallway of lights is located by the West Exit of Shinjuku Station (near My Lord department store). There’s an Anna Sui store and a Ne-Net boutique in this area.
I rode the escalator at least three times for the sake of taking outfit photos!
In the center, there were three trees covered in lights. Naomi shot through glass for this reflected image.
Lost in a Japanese winter wonderland.
Since I know you enjoy seeing Tokyo city life, I went on a long stroll through Shinjuku with my camera, and captured the night-time action. Here, a traffic guard in a helmet whistles and waves his… light saber?
A man in a cap is silhouetted in front of a drink vending machine. In busy areas like Shinjuku, there are literally vending machines every few meters.
My favorite drink is not usually found in machines, but at convenience stores like 7-Eleven. It’s yuzu, of course (the Japanese tangy citrus). This little “pet” bottle is hot, sold near the check-out counter.
Near the entrance of Shinjuku Station East Exit, a ska band gave a free performance. The lead saxophonist twirled and jumped around. This concert was actually part of a vitamin brand promotion, perhaps explaining their manic energy.
An anime-cyborg girl overlooks the business commuters.
Shinjuku is filled with little narrow streets, lit up with neon signs. Many of these advertise restaurants and bars.
Flashing billboards with anime characters are a common sight.
The eye-catching designs are so varied. A Japanese-style tiger leaps at a butterfly.
Shinjuku Doori is one of the main streets, and leads to the various 0101 department stores. (For a peek at the street style boutiques found inside, see my post about Marui Annex.)
How have you be dressing up this winter? Would you wear a Sanrio sweater like this?
Close-up on my Chococat sleeve. He’s one of my favorite characters.
Naomi holds up a Jrock / Visual Kei flyer, to demonstrate how we “pull focus” with the camera lens. By focusing on something in the foreground, the background blurs out with this cool dotted effect.
I leave you with a Japanese girl buying a drink from a vending machine.
Are you enjoying these mood photos? Do you take late-night city walks like I do?