Style Stud: Paula Mendoza

CaptureRecently my jewelry infatuation has been taken to another level. Every piece of jewelry I pass I want to adopt and make my own. Perhaps it is because I have a proper place for them to live now (shout out to Home Goods), so they no longer have to co-exist in a tangled, mangled web of insanity on my dresser.

I wouldn’t say my taste in jewelry is conventional. The stranger the better in my book. I would rather wear a gold tiger around my neck then a simple piece from Tiffany. So with that being said, I would like to introduce this jewelry designer that I have been swooning over, and slightly stalking via Instagram, Paula Mendoza.

I can’t even put in to words how fantastic her line is. But every time I see a piece, I get this tingly feeling all over my body and start drooling … just a little (sexy, right?) I also start plotting how I can obtain a piece of her work by doing things like oh … you know … selling my body, selling family members, selling my soul. Yes. That is how much I adore Paula Mendoza jewelry. I know I’m a freak … I love me some obscure jewelry, alright?

So instead of freaking you out more with using imagery and adjectives explaining why I adore this brand so much, let me show you a few of my favorite pieces.

And if you have been looking to get me a little gift just for funsies, I would happily accept anything below … :::cough, cough::: Easter Bunny (Mom).



Style Stud: Charlie’s Jeans

KNEEBENDblackwhite-355x534Oxygen, food, water, alcohol, unicorns, chocolate, bread … and jeans. What I like to call the necessities of life. Finding the right pair of jeans can be like finding a needle in a haystack. Skinny jeans might be in style, but how do you know which ones will fit you best? And wonder if none fit correctly at all?! Wah!

So that’s why I took it upon myself to get to know the Philadelphia denim brand, Charlie’s Jeans. Sorry, rest of the US of A, Charlie’s Jeans is only located in Philly, but that just gives you another great excuse to visit, am I right? Premium denim fit perfectly to you? Umm yeah, add that to the list under cheesesteaks, liberty bell, and the rocky statue. (No I don’t work for Visit Philly, I just love me some City of Brotherly Love)

No matter who you are or what you believe in, every human soul needs a good pair of jeans. Not a pair that gives you a muffin top or lets the world see your underpants. A nice, fitting pair of denim that makes your ass look phenom. And the best way to do that is to get acquainted with the experts and let them work their magic.

So enjoy and get to know this amazing American-made brand, and my style stud of the week, Charlie’s Jeans … ahem …

1. How long has Charlie’s Jeans been around?
Charlie’s Jeans was established in 1997 – we’ve been specializing in premium jean fit for 17 years now.

2. How did the concept come to be? Did you feel there was something lacking in the jean market?
Sebastian learned early on after opening his first store that when jeans fit right, people feel more confident. But he saw that for customers, navigating the vast denim world alone was easier said than done. With all of the different fits, sizes, and fabrics, it was hard for them to know even where to start. He wanted to eliminate any source of frustration for them and make the process as simple as possible. So he took it upon himself to learn everything he could about the world of denim. He studied fabric content, stretchability, and all different types of wash processes. He became acquainted with all the varieties of fits and learned which fits worked best for which body types. His goal was to take the hassle out of jean shopping and instead make it a quick, easy, and most importantly, enjoyable experience.

3. Can you give me a little background about the owners and what inspired them to establish this brand.
Sebastian’s mother is a beautician, and growing up, he spent much of his time with her in her salon. Time after time, he watched how something like a simple haircut could transform a person – not just physically, but on the inside. What really stuck with him was something his mother would always say about her clients – “No matter how they seem when they come in, watch the smile on their face when they leave.” He developed a true appreciation for how happy these transformations made people feel, and ultimately, he wanted to create this happiness in others within his own career path.

After spending years working with all of the premium brands, Sebastian began to notice certain areas that were lacking in consistency – most prominently, the waist gap issue, pocket placement, and fabrics losing their shape. He decided to take his denim expertise one step further and create a jean that would correct these issues and fit perfectly on any body type, every single time. In addition, once the economy began to turn, Sebastian saw that many of the brands that he carried began to outsource their manufacturing, yet were still charging the same price for their product. He was known for carrying jeans that were made in the USA, and he wasn’t willing to sacrifice that. Sebastian wanted to create a jean that was made in America, with the highest quality fabrics and treatment, so that his customer would not be short cut.

4. Are you guys just in Philly? If not, do you have any plans on opening shops outside of the city?
We currently have two convenient locations in Philadelphia – one in the historic area of Old City, and one in the shopping district of Rittenhouse Square.

5. What is your best selling pair of jeans?
There has never been a better selling jean than Sebastian McCall Jeans. They are known for their consistently perfect fit. The waist band never gaps, the pocket placement is always perfect, and the fabrics hold their shape incredibly well.

6. Why would a woman/man go to your store over other retailers?
We make the jean fitting process as easy as possible. You don’t have to know your size, or even what you’re looking for! There’s no need to spend hours in the fitting room trying on dozens of jeans – we take the hassle out of jean shopping and make it a quick, easy, and a pleasurable experience.

7. What are your price points for a pair of denim?
Most of our denim ranges between $170 to $200. Our jeans are made in the USA, and the majority is American fabric.

8. Do you sell anything else besides denim? Are there any other brands sold here?
We also carry a wide variety of tops, dresses, and accessories, and constantly get new styles in! Most of our tops range from around $30-$80, and most of our dresses range from around $60-$120.

9. What new styles do you have out for spring?
White jeans are always a spring staple – the straight and skinny styles are perfect for showing off this season’s sandals.

10. Define style for spring 2014
Style is, and always will be, perfect fit. When your clothes fit well, you feel amazing, and there is nothing more stylish than feeling great about yourself! Perfect fit is seasonless!


Style Stud: A Four Year Old.

enhanced-2709-1393448697-18Yes. A four-year-old.

I realize I’m a day late and a dollar short on this one, and all of the fashion industry will open this post, yawn, eye roll, then close out of it … but I can’t help it. I just can’t. I HAVE to write about this little girl who may or may not be the most stylish person to ever walk this Earth. Wow I just embodied James Lipton for a second … sorry, I’m back.

She’s four years old people, FOUR and making paper dresses that I would have no problem rocking out in public … wanna know why? Because they are legit designer replicas. You know what I was doing when I was four? Probably trying to crawl back into my mom’s vagina and drooling on myself, not taking the fashion industry’s breath away, that’s for damn sure.

Now, traditionally, I’m not a huge fan of kids … unless I have some relation to them … and even then it’s iffy. But this little one kind of makes me want to toy with the idea of having kids one day. Just a little. She’s absolutely talented, smart, adorable (and not in an obnoxious kind of way), knows how to strike a ridic pose (and not in a toddlers in tiara’s kind of way), and her name is Mayhem. I mean … I can’t.

She’s making this kind of magic at a young 4-years-old … God only knows what she will dazzle us with by the time she gets to college. I mean I’m 27 and envious of her talent … kind of depressing, right … :::sigh::: But listen little one, from my mouth to your ears, don’t Lohan, okay? Stay focused, stay positive, stay clean. Frankenstein, have fun with you friends. Wait … what? (If you get that reference we are officially best friends)


Style Stud: London Fashion Week Street Style

loneliness-catwalk-useDon’t get me wrong, I love ‘MURICA! USA all the way … USA Olympic team … yadda yadda, red, white and blue.

I think us American girls have impeccable style, and yes I’m 110% biased. But I got to say, the girls of London have brought their style A-game for London Fashion Week. I mean they put us to SHAME.

The reason why I love street style, as do most, is that it inspires me. Fashion is all about taking risks and thinking outside of the box, and if you are looking for a little wardrobe jump start, I suggest you stroll through London Fashion Week street style photo galleries. I think it is so important as women that when we see another woman rocking a great look, no matter what country they are from, we should compliment them. And that’s why I’m tippin’ my caps to the ladies of London right now.

One thing I think the Brits have over us is they are fearless with their fashion. I mean yes, we have our moments, hello Marc by Marc fall 2014, but their looks have this air of severity to them with an abundance of bold pops of color, to straight up baggy-ass menswear to the point where you can’t tell the gender of the person. They are about mixing and matching the most insane things that you would never in a million years think would work … but 100% do to the point where you are drooling over them … like yours truly.

And let me say, after looking these looks over, I’m contemplating adding color into my wardrobe. I know, right? Who am I? GASP!

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Style Stud: Smak Parlour

sp-homepage-1-10-14For those of you not from the Philly area, well … first of all I feel sorry for you. But I also feel sorry that you don’t get the opportunity to enjoy one of my fave boutiques in the city, Smak Parlour. It’s not just because every time I walk in there I want to step up my style game and reinvent myself, it’s also because of the owner’s, Abby and Katie, who are two bad ass chicks that set their minds to something and turned out leaving a lasting impression in the world of fashion as well as on the city of Philadelphia

I had the ultimate pleasure of speaking with them and getting the lowdown on the parlour itself, their inspiration, and what we can expect from these fantastic ladies in the future.

What was the inspiration behind Smak Parlour? How did you come up with the name?
We met when we were 15, bonded over fashion and worked towards having a store together ever since then. Smak Parlour has been a lifetime in the making. We had a wholesale line of deconstructed and embellished t-shirts called “SMAK by abby and katie,” that we sold to boutiques across the country before opening our store. After finding our Old City storefront, we had tailors sewing SMAK in the back (in our sewing parlour). We were making SMAK in the parlour and just days before opening, “Smak Parlour” came to be.

Where are some chic places we can catch the Smak Parlour fashion truck in 2014? What is the best way to find it?
We recently just drove our truck into the Convention Center for the Tattoo Convention. We will be vending at The Porch (30th St. Station) on Fridays through the spring. We are vending at the Suburu Cherry Blossom event in April. In addition, we are booking plenty of fun private shopping parties! We will be posting our events on Facebook and Twitter. We will also have an event calendar on our website.

Tell me about any new designers/collections you will carry in the new year.
We are super excited about a jewelry line we just brought in from a local Philly designer named Angela. She handcrafts rings and necklaces featuring a range of images from iconic pop figures like Audrey Hepburn, Abe Lincoln and Darth Vader to animal-themed pieces with dog and kitten portraits.

If you could give advice to young girls starting out in the fashion industry, what would it be?
Fashion and retail is less glamorous then you think, it takes dedication, lots of time, hard work, and LOTS of creativity. We love it and feel if you have passion for what you do, you can overcome the hurdles!

How did you both get into fashion? What are your inspirations?
We both shared a love for fashion and have worked in retail since we met in high school. We grew up designing our own clothes from thrift store finds and safety pins. We went to Drexel University for Design and Merchandising. Our shared tastes have always been in the vein of a little bit girly meets rock ‘n roll.

Why did you decide to open your boutique/fashion truck in Philly?
We worked in New York’s garment district after graduation and realized we needed to be doing our own thing to be happy. Being from Philly, we wanted to open a shop in our hometown! The truck came 8 years later. It was a no brainer .. .going mobile is the future. We bring the best of Old City directly to our customers!

How would you define Philly style?
Philly style is very eclectic. There is a grittiness to it, which works perfectly with our brand. We have a definite edge to our style.

I’m in love with the design on Smak Parlour … how did you come up with its look?
We are inspired by Japanese Culture, Pin- up looks, Tattoo Culture, and Downtown New York in the 70′s and 80′s. We love using non-traditional ways to merchandise, such as glittering cinder blocks! The combination is truly unique and feels like a doll house.