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Fashion Woodlands Makes Its Inaugural Debut
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Chasing Thrift Event with Stacks on Racks was #OnFleek
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Chloe Dao Spring 2015 Trunk Show
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Flower Walls and Flower Crowns
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Damsel White Label Creates Buzz for Alternative Brides
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Late Night Vintage and Antiques Shopping at The PLACE Upstairs
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Ladylike Brunching

Fashion Woodlands Makes Its Inaugural Debut

Crave Luxury Auto played host to the inaugural Fashion Woodlands “New York Style” fashion event earlier in the week, which benefitted the Greater Woodlands Public Art Foundation (maintains the sculptures located throughout The Woodlands) and The Way Home Project. The event was founded by Theresa Roemer- Houston entrepreneur, clothing designer and owner of the country’s largest closet. It featured six of Houston’s “top” designers- Chloe Dao, Jonathan Blake, David Peck USA, Amir Taghi, Lucho and Theresa Roemer. Guests were treated to a red carpet entrance and VIP pre-party full of exotic cars, luxury jewelry vendors, a bar and light bites.

The show opened with remarks by abc13‘s (and emcee) Sonia Azad, followed by a performance by hip-hop artist Rocko Stedy. He, along with models Thaddeus and Leslie; got the audience pumped up for the show. We were also treated by a celebrity appearance by Real Housewives of Atlanta ‘s Porsha Williams. She had been personally invited by Theresa and actually had two outfit changes (wearing Theresa’s brand). Porsha explained to me (earlier in the evening) that she ‘loves how [Theresa’s] clothing looks on women with curves. The shape, lines and fabric are flawless and comfortable.’

The show began with Chloe Dao, who’s collection of printed, color-blocked, easy-breezy dresses were a crowd-pleaser. It took her a mere week and a half to complete the collection. The prints resembled thick brush strokes that take on the dawn of perfectly angled geometric lines. We move on to view the latest trends in menswear from Lucho- a menswear shop located in upscale Uptown Park. I must say, the men in this segment were VERY easy on the eyes…just saying…Jonathan Blake and Amir Taghi showcased their beautiful collections that were also on the Fashion Houston 5 runways (read more about their collections HERE and HERE). Theresa Roemer presented her Spring/Summer 2015 collection for her True & Real brand, that focused on basic blacks and whites (which are staple pieces that should be in every women’s wardrobe), while accenting the line with blues and yellows. Roemer’s line is easily interchangeable, in that it can be taken from day to evening. The knit heavy line highlighted the point that the average woman-on-the-go now has a go-to brand that is comfortable and figure-flattering. The last brand to walk the runway was David Peck USA. His Spring/Summer 2015 collection is a continuation of Fall and reminiscent of David’s upbringing in New Mexico. It also paid homage to his Grandmother, who had recently passed away. The 70’s inspired gowns were colorful in hue, yet simple in silhouette. The ruffle detail and draping added extra femininity. Overall, each designer brought their own unique personalities to the table for The Woodlands first (and certainly not the last) major fashion event.

Fashion Woodlands will be held in the Fall every year. There will also be a second annual fashion show in October (2015).

Chasing Thrift Event with Stacks on Racks was #OnFleek

Local sustainable fashion start-up Stacks on Racks recently collaborated with Chasing Houston- a website that was created by locals to help residents and visitors explore the various neighborhoods of the city. The inaugural thrifting-theme party was held at Fill In The Blank Studio. Guests were able to not only shop sustainable threads that were hand-picked by the guys of SOR- Mazen and Lanre, but also learn more about Chasing Houston. With every purchase over $50, Stacks on Racks included one of their Thrift Tees. The Thrift Tees are their latest endeavor and feature recycled tees with fun slogans screen-printed on them, such as: “Thrift Squad,” “Thrift Game on Fleek” and “Do you even thrift.”

Along with loads of photo opportunities, guests also enjoyed bites by Mi Luna. For every item that was purchased, another was donated to various charities.

I went home with a buttery L.L. Bean vintage leather handbag…all for a mere $10, a small price to pay for amazingly delicious, high-quality recycled clothing and accessories. As far as Stacks on Racks is concerned, nothing is over $50.

Chloe Dao Spring 2015 Trunk Show

Local Houston designer, Chloe Dao held her Spring 2015 trunk show at her namesake boutique recently. Friends, family and fashionistas flocked to the intimate, yet packed event. Guests enjoyed mingling, shopping the collection, cocktails by Deep Eddy Vodka and sweet treats by Dolce Delights. There was also some informal modeling amongst the colorful butterflies.

Flower Walls and Flower Crowns

** Photos by Live Life in Style **

I’m wearing Vintage Harem Pants via an Arbor Antiques estate sale, a Vintage Top via Big Bertha’s Paradise, a Vintage Clutch- thrifted, Vintage Belt- thrifted, Heels c/o Sole Society, Flower Crown borrowed from Brittany/Pop Shop, Vintage Gloves- thrifted. I also want to mention that the lovely and very detailed floral backdrop was provided by Blome’s Paperie.

Damsel White Label Creates Buzz for Alternative Brides

The cold weather didn’t stop prospective brides-to-be and their friends from going out to Silver Street Studios Events open house this past week. The inaugural event, organized by Piper & Muse, was titled “The Creative Heart of Houston” and showcased several creative wedding professionals; including Cafe Natalie, Swift + Company and Flora Eventi. The event seemed to be quite interactive, ranging from mingling with industry experts, tasty food and cake sampling, a fun photo booth and a DIY station provided by Pop Shop.

The main reason I was there was to support friend and local bridal designer- Natalie Harris of the Damsel White Label, who hosted a runway show showcasing her latest creations. I would describe Damsel White Label, which launched in 2013, as ‘couture for the alternative bride,’ as her designs aren’t for the typical cookie-cutter bride. The rebellious yet sophisticated gowns feature unexpected details; such as killer stripes, edgy silhouettes, laces and bursts of color. The looks that evening also boasted bouquets constructed out of brooches and bits of fabric. Harris states that she designs for the Montrose/Heights/Austin-type gal in mind and creates styles that stay true to the wearer’s personality. She offers her client “Haute Custom Service,” where she takes her passion for design to the next level. She works one-on-one with the client, starting from the initial consultation and works with the bride to customize and make sure the dress is PERFECT for the big day. The entire collection that was showcased is customizable, from the hem length, a sleeve addition and even down to the fabric substitution. Harris showcased a floral print gown, where the print was actually designed by Harris herself, which that too, is also customizable. Harris goes on to explain, “Brides may order a custom print as a sentimental touch used as a print lining. Past clients have chosen everything from punk rock concert posters to a memoriam with a father’s army stripes or grandmother’s favorite flower. From the inside out, Damsel White Label strives to make gowns that make everyone say, “Oh, that’s so [insert amazing client’s name here]!”

If you are currently on the hunt for a fun yet edgy gown for your big day and want to break away from the tradition- definitely check out Damsel White Label.

Late Night Vintage and Antiques Shopping at The PLACE Upstairs

The PLACE Upstairs

3708 Main St.
Houston, TX 77002
HOURS: Thursday-Saturday 9PM- 1AM
FACEBOOK

“Beautifully Bizarre” is the tagline for The PLACE Upstairs- Houston’s latest and greatest late night antique and vintage shopping experience. With a tagline and offbeat shop hours like that, you just have to wonder…’What DO they have up there?’ and ‘Who goes antique shopping at 11:30 at night?!’

The PLACE Upstairs is located well…as it’s namesake states…upstairs and above the local neighborhood bar- Continental Club. The whole 2nd floor of the building is actually a hidden gem of local vintage shops, but The PLACE Upstairs just happens to break the mold and stand out just a tad bit more. It opened in September 2013 by husband and wife proprietors- Laura and Mike, who also own Replay on 19th Street in the Heights.

Them being long-time collectors of vintage, antiquities and oddities themselves, decided to cash in their ‘wealth of stuff’ or ‘401K’ as they humbly call it; when they found that perfect spot in the Mid-Main section of Houston. Once the space was established, coming up with a name of the shop was also somewhat of a daunting task. Though it wasn’t until one brief conversation with the owner of the Continental Club for the name to be set…

The conversation went something like this:

CC Owner: ‘What are you calling your new shop?’
Mike: ‘What, the place upstairs?’
CC Owner: ‘Yeah, what are you calling it?’

So you can imagine a gigantic lightbulb above Mike’s head going Ah HA! The name was vague, enough to make you question- ‘what is it’? “So we didn’t want to say what it was…but we did want to say WHERE it was.”

Then the shop was first opened, 100% of the merchandise was from their personal collections; though now it’s more like 85%. Laura recalls that when people would come up to the counter with an item, she would say, ‘Oh! This was above my sink for fifteen years!’ “Everything has a home to me still (in my head). Like, I know where it was in my house…”

Laura credits all her beautiful stuff softens the blow of Mike’s bizarre stuff (such as antique medical tools, doll parts, taxidermy). They have a running joke, “You might want to try on the rhinestone bracelet, but it might be on a raccoon paw!” She says the oddest things she has are the post-mortem photos. “I think it’s fascinating that that might have been their only memory of someone. And that they pose them like they were living. It’s just utterly fascinating. Morbid in a way, but in an endearing way.”

The earliest piece they have in the shop is a Roman coin, followed by pieces from the 1850s/60s and then up. My guess is that there is nothing really above the 1960s (and that’s even pushing it). I could literally stay there for a few hours, just looking at the 1800s/1910s beaded handbags, clothing and just…stuff… that’s the best way I can put it, because there’s just a hodge-podge of curiosities that could fit every category … Also, the best thing is that there’s usually a story (provenance) or two behind everything and usually Laura or Mike are happy to tell it. The average price- points of the shop are $30-40ish, but there are bits and baubles for $1 and apparently a item or two up to $8,000. “We want people to leave with something. We like to think of this place as an adoption agency. We are just finding homes for treasures.”

Ladylike Brunching

** Photos by Nicole Kestenbaum (edited by me) **

(Vintage Skirt- Arbor Antiques estate sale, Vintage Hat- Citywide Garage Sale, Vintage GUESS Knit Top- thrifted, Shawl- Ann Taylor, Shoes- c/o Cobb Hill Shoes, Fendi Handbag- thrifted, Wrap Bracelet- c/o Alden Rae Jewelry via Brunette Showroom.)

Despite it being a dreary day, I still wanted to add a tad bit of color to my outfit for brunch with the girls. I opted for a fun vintage Americana crinkled skirt and paired it with my knit sleeveless vintage Guess top. I knew I’d be chilly (as there was a slight chill to the air and despite 60/70 degree weather, restaurants and shops always seem to crank up the A/C) so instead of the usual jacket option, I decided to grab my incredibly soft crochet shawl I bought at Ann Taylor when I worked there several years ago. Not wanting to put my feet through torture on the last day of the weekend, I chose to wear my vintage style low-heeled pump by Cobb Hill Shoes (New Balance’s stylish sister company) and my feet were comforted by the cushiony insoles. The boy and I even took a stroll in our neighborhood park and the shoes did really well on the uneven ground. I thought the shoes and the hat played a huge part of my “ladylike brunch” outfit.

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