Best Gifts EVER.

I recently had a conversation with a client about gifting. She said, "I wish you did wishlists for gifts because I know you'd have great suggestions." That naturally led to a conversation about finding the perfect gift which leads me to this blog post. Yes! Of course I have ideas! And you, my Dear Reader, are about to hear/ read all about them. Off we go!

My Favorite Gifts for the People You Love.

Everything You Need to Get You Into the Pool in the Perfect Swimwear for YOUR Body

I recently had some readers mention to me how much they love insight about finding the ideal swimwear. We started chatting and it occurred to me that I've written quite a bit on this topic over the years. As a resourceful personal stylist for women in Seattle, I decided to Google PoplinStyle and Bathing Suit. Remember- if you have questions, Poplin probably has answers. And three years in, there's a whole lot of content on the interweb. So, here are some tips I thought you'd enjoy. Feel free to Google PoplinStyle and any topic and let me know how it goes. If you still can't find what you need, please reach out. Perhaps a blog post is in order! 

Enjoy the sunshine!

4 Helpful Resources to Help You Find the Perfect Swimsuit

Club Monaco is Moving & Marimekko is Closer Than You Think.

Mandy rocks Marimekko!

Mandy rocks Marimekko!

And Club Monaco!

And Club Monaco!

Two of my favorite brands are even easier to try on in person! 

First, Pacific Place is host to the only Club Monaco in Washington state. Looking for another? You'll need to go to San Francisco or Vancouver, B.C. The local is store is truly one of my very favorites to bring clients. The clothes are gorgeous, high quality, staples and the service is top of the line. The brand sells pieces for men and women AND the sales are exceptional. If you wish it were larger, your wish is about to come true. Look for the new Club Monaco opening later this month across the street from Barnes and Noble downtown (not far from the current location). According to the staff, we can expect to see a bar, bakery and a significantly larger space. 

Second, it's clear to me that all of you know how much I adore Marimekko from the endless stream of texts and emails about the exhibit at the Nordic Heritage Museum right now. This makes me happy. The biggest challenge with Marimekko is that online orders come straight from Finland... and need to go back there if they don't work. At the pricepoint, it can be frightening for a new customer to experiment without a store to try things on locally. The closest Marimekko store is in Vancouver, B.C. (which is where we purchased our Marimekko wallpaper). Pirkko is the only store in town (that I know of) that sells Marimekko pieces. Pirkko had a pop up in Bellevue Square to give east siders a little taste of Nordic fashion. The Seattle location has been closed temporarily for renovation and will reopen on April 20th!.

Not sure if either of these are for you? Well, my client, Mandy's photos can help with that. She's wearing a black and white Marimekko jumpsuit in one photo and a blue vest from Club Monaco in another. 

P.S. Today's newsletter has all this and MUCH more. Make sure you are on the list!
 

Look Your Best as You Pink Out for Planned Parenthood

Today's the day! Pink Out for Planned Parenthood. There are all sorts of ways to take action. As a personal stylist, my job is to ensure that you look great while supporting your favorite causes. So, here are a few of my favorite suggestions right now. 

Pink Out in Style

Must Know Now: 15 Fashion Forward Shoe Brands You've Never Heard of.

Are they weird? Are they cool? Are they both? As a personal stylist I'm all about channeling inspiration into reality. It's common for my clients to ask for comfortable shoes that make a statement. Here's a list of 11 brands that are worth your time, and it's highly likely you haven't heard of most of them. Yes! They are unconventional. Yes! They are works of art. And yes, you can just choose to admire them from afar. But, if you are feeling bold and are interested in something unexpected and perhaps avant garde, this list is gold. Enjoy!

 

15 Shoe Brands for the Bold Fashionista

Poplin at Large: Live Your Values Through Your Work

An unexpected byproduct of this work is discovering a sea of people doing extraordinary things out in the world. Every new client is an opportunity to meet someone who inspires me. It really makes stressful days become so much less stressful. Because of my work as a personal stylist for women, I'm fortunate to connect with all sorts of inspiring people beyond my client base and as often as I can, I like to share about these new relationships with you, Dear Reader.

Some time ago, I introduced you to

Do I Need to Buy Something New to Work with Poplin?

I get this question a lot, so I thought I'd address it directly in the blog. After all, what better way to communicate with you, Dear Reader? Often times, when looking at our budgets, prospective clients may wonder how to cover the cost of services plus new clothes. "Should I wait until I have a sizable budget for clothing," one woman asked. 

Well, it all depends. Here's the breakdown. 

Planning Your Clothing Budget for

Working with Poplin

7 Designer Collaborations You Won't Want to Miss.

Are you sensing a trend? Designers and celebrities have discovered that they can monetize their style by collaborating with brands. This development is especially fun for the rest of us as these bring fresh energy to existing brands. Collabs inspire us to try new labels, revisit some favorites or just put together our existing pieces in new ways. All hail the collab!

Here are a few of my favorites and of course, there are more coming everyday. Keep in mind, many of these are for a limited time as brands and collaborators expiriment. So, if you see something you like, don't wait. 

 

7 Designer Collabs to Check Out Now.

How Do I Wear a Fanny Pack (aka Belt Bag)?

This whole 80's resurgence can be tough to swallow. If you remember Regan, you also remember fanny packs. And, more importantly, you remember your horrified expression viewing photos of fanny packs out in the world on tourists and the like. Fanny packs became decidedly uncool. 

As your very own personal stylist, I'm here to tell you when times change, when trends emerge and which of those trends YOU can rock with confidence. 

On that note, I'm here to reintroduce you to the fanny pack.

 

Fanny Packs 101: How and Why You Wear a Fanny Pack, also Known as a Belt Bag.

Why African Gemstones Will Make You Look Beautiful Inside and Out.

How do you feel when you look at a gorgeous piece of fine jewelry? Beautiful, well-made pieces have the power to captivate and inspire. They also have the potential to make us feel guilty (thank you, Leonardo DiCaprio.)

As a personal stylist for women, it's vital that I respect every client's values. Responsible sourcing comes up often and when discussing fine jewelry and there's a sizable population that feels it's off limits because of the human cost involved.

However, since meeting Adrienne Krieger, owner of Everling Fine Jewelry, I've learned so much about where stones and metals come from. Since that initial meeting, I've been interested in ways that a woman can adorn herself while still being true to her values. Enter Monica Stephenson, gem dealer, owner of Anza Gems and the force behind idazzle

In my mind, I'm convinced that Monica's work will inspire young adult novels about a strong, smart Seattle-based gem dealer who heads to Africa to source gems. While that isn't actually in the works, sitting with Monica and hearing her tales about her work and how it relates to the rest of us is riveting. Who knew that gems could make the world a better place?

 

5 Reasons African Gemstones Sourced by Anza Gems Are Your Next Piece of Jewelry

5 Comfy Trends that Could be Sloppy or Chic, Depending on Your Pairing.

It's true. Sometimes you just want to wear something soft and cozy. The danger is that once you know the bliss of old sweat pants, you'll have a hard time convincing yourself to change out of them to head to the market. Thanks to fashion trends, there's some great news for those of us who would like to be comfortable and still fashionable. 

5 Comfortable Trends that you can Elevate.

This Guy.

Today is my husband's birthday. We've been celebrating for a week already. We affectionately refer to this as his birthday season. This is a very talented, thoughtful, innovative, hardworking and stylish man. To celebrate him, I thought I'd share some of his very favorite things with you, Dear Reader. Why? Well, because his picks are often solid recommendations for gifts for the ones you love. 

 

Things My Husband Loves That You Might Love Just as Much.

Stop. It's Slipper Time.

If you read this blog with any regularity, you know how much I adore my rubber Birkenstocks as the ultimate, "house shoe." After all, in the Pacific Northwest, most people don't wear shoes indoors. But, because we have wood floors, going barefoot simply isn't an option for me. The Birks provide support and look adorable.

Well, times are changing, my friend. 

I have become completely enamored with CP Slippers. Let me tell you more.

Why I Heart CP Slippers.

You, Your Personal Stylist & A Tailor Trained in Design.

As a personal stylist, I spend a great deal of time helping my clients strategize. The goal is for her to know why she's making each purchase and how each piece helps communicate her vision. If you've ever started at a dress in your closet that still has the tags on or looked at the shoe box in your closet with unworn shoes, you can relate to the need for strategy. If you don't use the clothes, the money is simply wasted. 

But, you don't always need to toss the item and start over. Many pieces can not only be salvaged, they can be celebrated. In fact, I've been thinking a lot about this lately as client after clients reaps the benefits of working with my tailor AND me as we bring new life to their existing wardrobes. 

5 Reasons YOU Need Time With Poplin andMy Tailor of Dreams

How to Inject Your Personal Style into your Work Attire

Yes! Yes! Yes!

Ever since I saw this photo of Minnesota State Representative Ilhan Omar, it's been on my mind. It can be very difficult to communicate you personal style while wearing your work clothes. In my experience as a personal stylist for women, this is especially true for women in male dominated industries. Technology, government and executive level positions can be particularly challenging because a woman often wants to be taken seriously and may worry that being perceived as feminine or fashionable somehow takes away from the content of her message.

Because of this, I'm always on the lookout for high profile women that can serve as examples to other accomplished women, when it comes to finding strength and self expression in their personal styles.

In the category of fashionable women in government, Representative Ilhan Omar is at the top of my list. Here are a few lessons you can take from her when getting ready every morning. 

 

Lessons for Powerful, Fashionable Women from State Representative Ilhan Omar

Introducing Very Well Designed Gear to Communicate the Resistance.

Local designer Lauren Wallace is a friend, an immensely talented individual and a force for good in this world. With all the upheaval as of late, Lauren decided to channel her art and make things to make the world better. 

If you've been struggling to style up your inner activist, worry no more. From totes to tees and everything in between, Lauren's looks are just for you. 

AND.... 100% of the profits go to organizations that protect the health, safety and security of women, the LGBT community, immigrants and the long term health of our planet. 

10 New Places to Find Inclusive Sizing (10 and up)

Let me begin by saying, I know what you are thinking: size TEN and up?! Seriously?

Indeed. Inclusive sizing is a new trend and I must say, I'm a fan. Rather than hitting the tipping point at size 14 and labeling anything beyond that, "plus size," brands are starting at lower sizes and going well beyond the size 18 or 20 of years past. As a personal stylist, I often find my clients struggling when they go from a size 14 to a size 16. Why? Because the brands they love aren't transitioning with them. Suddenly, a woman is not only coping with changes in her body, she's also dealing with changes in her shopping habits and perhaps her personal style. 

If you follow Poplin on Instagram, you've likely seen posts about brands we love with inclusive sizing. There's much more available everyday. For now, here are some resources if you are looking for hip pieces in size ten and beyond. Prefer a more personal approach? Just reach out! I'm here to help. 

10 Resources for Ladies Rocking a

Size 10 and Beyond

The Power of Being Seen.

When I write to you, Dear Reader, I write as if we are in a conversation with one another. Sometimes those conversations are light. Sometimes more serious. And, my goal at least, is that they are always useful. 

So, when the opportunity arose to contribute to Kari Gran's Wear Yourself In Campaign, I wondered what information would be especially useful. I've been a big fan of this campaign for some time now. Each month, a different woman shares her story about becoming comfortable in her skin. I appreciate the different perspectives and have found the essays I identify with as the most powerful for me. With that in mind, I opted to go with a very personal edit of my path to becoming a personal stylist. 

This is an emotional day and this piece felt like it was an opportunity to offer some hopefulness when many of us need it most.

With that, here's my story about, "Wearing Myself In." 

The Power of Being Seen. 

Support Pro-Women, Pro-Immigrant, Pro-Earth Groups with Your Purchase of Great Style

Style goes well beyond the clothes you wear. As a personal stylist, my job is to help get inside each client's head and help her express herself through her apparel. As we know, that's only one way to amplify your voice. It's always a good time to support organizations and brands that are consistent with your values. 

Yesterday, I visited with local gem dealer, Monica Stephenson, founder of iDazzle. She uses gemstones to help her build community and support ethical sourcing. You'll see more on that in a future blog post. My discussion with her was just another reminder of the importance of standing together to support issues we care about. Each of us can make a difference.

A tribe of brands are supporting pro-women, pro-earth and pro-immigrant groups right now. When you make a purchase from any of the following brands between now and Monday, January 23rd, 2017, twenty percent of your purchase price will go to support the ACLUPlanned Parenthood, the Center for Reproductive Rights and Earth Justice. 

Because I believe strongly in the work these organizations are doing, especially at this pivotal time, Poplin will donate 20% of all proceeds from now through January 31st, 2017. #whyimarch #imarchfor #womentogether

3 Reasons To Get Your Portrait Taken NOW

Hello Dear Reader! 

I'm a big fan of local photographer,  Amy Catherine.  She helps Seattle women look and feel beautiful. So, as we dive into the New Year, let's celebrate YOU. Below is a guest post from Amy as well as a super fabulous deal for Poplin readers. Enjoy! 

-Mellicia