Guest Post: How to Care for Your Leather and Suede

You might as well bookmark this now. I’ve asked one of my favorite people, Maggie Burns, co-owner of re-souL in Ballard to give us the low down on taking care of leather and suede. I’ve had LOTS of questions from clients about this lately. Maggie is the first person I think of for such things as re-souL carries very high quality shoes and accessories made from Italian leather including the re-souL shoe line made in Italy and designed by Maggie, right here in Seattle. (Maggie also volunteers with me styling homeless youth each month at YouthCare.) strongly suggest you swing by the shop (or go online) to order leather care products that re-souL stocks. I like to pick up Otter Wax, for example, as a stocking stuffer each year. And while you are there you might as well pick up some shoes, jewelry, handbags, socks…….

How to Care for Leather

Ilhan Omar Shows How to Look Great at Work Without Sacrificing Your Personal Style

Whether your workplace is incredibly conservative (suits for men and women) or equally casual (there are folks in sweats on the daily), showing up as your best and most authentic self can be a real challenge. As a personal stylist for women, I see this everyday. It’s really helpful to find women who inspire you. You can learn from them, even if your style is different.

That’s why I wrote this post taking some lessons from the Minnesota’s own Ilhan Omar. Here’s a little something from the archives that will help you figure out how to get dressed for work in a way that’s just right for YOU.

How to Dress Your Authentic Self at Work.

P.S. If you are a Washington resident (like me!) you should have received your ballot in the mail. Make sure to vote! Don’t wait. Make it happen. Want to get more involved? Take a look at Swing Left, Wall of Us, Resist-bot or any of the local campaigns for candidates and initiatives you care about. Many folks who don’t vote, skip it because: they think they aren’t informed enough about issues, they don’t know how to vote, they forget or just run out of time. The time is now. You’ve got this. And if you need a little help, consider the google or heading to a local resource that is aligned with your values for some suggestions. For example: Progressive Voters Guide, Seattle Times What You Need to Know for Election 2018, The Stranger’s Voting Guide 2018

P.P.S. In 2004, Christine Gregoire was elected Governor by a margin of 129 votes! Every vote counts, folks.

Need Some Beautiful & Powerful Signs for the Women's March?

Hello Dear Reader!

I'm looking forward to seeing so many of you at Saturday's Women's March. It sounds like we'll have a large turnout for equality. I'll be in the front of the march in support of

Giving Tuesday- Helpful Tips About Giving Including What to Wear.

I trust these last few days have been a whirlwind of making lists, buying things, getting geared up to give them and the realization that there's much to do in these next few weeks. A treasured holiday season tradition is to donate to your favorite nonprofit organizations. Whether you do it on Giving Tuesday or some other time this year, I thought you might enjoy some guidance on giving from your very own personal stylist for women (who happens to have also had a career in giving, does philanthropic consulting and serves on a nonprofit Board.) Please enjoy and hey, let me know what you think. 

What You Need to Know About

Giving Back

Shop Small Seattle: Pick a Neighborhood. There's Something Just for You.

Well hello there, Dear Reader!

I trust you are gearing up for the holiday weekend. If you are on the Poplin email list, you received word earlier this morning about some hot spots for Small Business Saturday. If not,

What are Some Super Cool Products Made by Veterans and Their Families?

Veteran's Day is a thing at our house. Our 7 year old is a big fan of patriotic songs and sings them often. Veteran's Day is his, "favorite singing holiday." We also try to call up vets that we know, including my Dad, to just check in because we're thankful they are home.

On the fashion front, it's a good reminder to check out the wealth of businesses owned by vets and their spouses. Moving every year or even more often can be brutal on a spouse's career, so I'm a HUGE fan of the innovative businesses that allow spouses to work from home wherever they happen to live. This ensures that they won't miss out on income or job stability from a move. And, if you are a long time reader, you are familiar with my adoration for the folks at Combat Flip Flops- a local company started by two former Army Rangers who had served a number of tours in Afghanistan started with a mission to, "To create peaceful, forward-thinking opportunities for self-determined entrepreneurs affected by conflict." It's incredible and produces equally inspiring results: 

  • Every product Combat Flip Flops sells puts an Afghan girl into secondary school for a day.
  • Each Peacemaker Bangle or coinwrap sold clears 3 square meters of Unexploded Ordnance (UXO) from a region rocked by long-term war (those are landmines, folks)  - saving lives and providing economic opportunity. 

You can hear all about it from one of the founders and friend of Poplin in his TedX talk. SO good. 

Flip Flops are only the beginning. Check out the high quality products (we have several including a necktie my husband wears regularly) and pick some up as early holiday gifts for the ones you love and, naturally, a little something for you. 

Combat Flip Flops, affectionately known as CFF, is just the beginning. 

Very Cool Products Made by Veterans & Their Families. 

Random Acts of Empathy

Hello Dear Reader!

As a personal stylist for women, I have all sorts of conversations with folks. Topics range from skincare to hair and makeup referrals, of course. But, we also talk a lot about our kids, the schools they attend, giving back to the community and so much more. Recently, I was honored to share my thoughts on empathy with the Simple Intentions audience. If you haven't checked out Simple Intentions, now is the time. The force behind the company is Jae Ellard. Not only is she a friend and client, she's also a successful author and teacher focusing on mindfulness and balance. 

Here's the post. I hope you enjoy it and have an opportunity to check out Simple Intentions. Happy Monday.

Practice Random Acts of Empathy

Should I Get Rid of Clothes That Don't Fit?

Ah, the eternal question. It doesn't fit right now, but it might fit again. It was fill in the blank (expensive, from a special trip, a gift, a go-to, etc.). 

One thing I can count on discussing during a Closet Edit is the fate of that special piece. Or, in some cases, those special pieces. For whatever reason, it isn't working anymore. What it is doing, is taking up space in your closet and in your mind. So, here are a few tips on determining how to deal with the dreaded item that simply doesn't fit.

What I've Learned from Styling Homeless Youth.

Below is a blog post from 2014. Several media outlets are sharing stories about efforts to end homelessness throughout the day as part of the Homeless in Seattle Project. The goal is to encourage policy makers to see this issue as a top priority. There's so much good work happening in this area and yet so much more is needed. Share these stories, donate to organizations doing this work, reach out to your electeds about this issue- share the articles with them. If nothing else, when you are out and about today,

3 Brands Reinventing the Way We Shop

Things are getting crazy in fashion land. Just when you think you know how to shop- in person or online- brands continue to innovate. That means lots of fun for me. Here are three fresh approaches to shopping that you just might love. 

Three Innovative Approaches to Shopping. Go!

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

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. 

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

Getting Organized in Style for the New Year.

I'm a freak for office supplies and as it turns out, I'm not alone. Beyond the graphic prints and sleek design, I look for tools that will actually help make my life easier. This time of year I get especially excited about all the opportunities for a fresh start. Here are a few of my favorite products to get you there. Have some of your own? Please share!

 

Organizing the Stylish Woman's Life for 2017

Cocktail Dresses, Your Prom and How a Dress Can Change Your Life.

I would never allow someone to talk to me the way I talk to myself.

-Anonymous/ A large number of people on the planet

 

Feeling beautiful on the outside has an indisputable impact on the dialogue happening on the inside. 

Let's Kick Things Off With the Peacemaker- Stunning Pieces Made by Vets & Their Families

Sometimes Veteran's Day can feel like a random day to get last minute childcare for the kids or discover the bank is closed. But, it only takes a minute or two to be reminded of how fortunate we are for the men, women and their families who put our country before themselves. Really. Sure, we thank individuals for their service and are generally referring to their willingness to put themselves in harm's way. But, it goes well beyond that incredible gift they give to our country. The spouses who forgo career advancement because of necessary moves or scheduling to accommodate a spouse who is deployed are only a few of the really impressive choices these folks make. So, in the wake of our recent election and on this national holiday, I thought I'd focus on some fashionable pieces that support our military families. If you have some other suggestions, please send them my way!

Enjoy the day. I hope you get to spend it with someone you love. 

Very Hip Products

Made By Vets and Their Families

Chloe + Isabel Ups Your Style Game & 100% of Proceeds During October Go To Fight Youth Homelessness

Without question, my very favorite combination is fashion and purpose. Whether it's the upcoming fashion show for the Ruby Room that raises money to ensure local teens have hip prom dresses or re-souL's generous donation of brand new shoes for homeless youth, looking good makes everyone feel better. 

So, I am THRILLED to partner with Mitra Ramen from Chloe + Isabel for the month of October. If you haven't checked out Chloe + Isabel, now's the time. Representatives host pop up shops each month that bring stylish, classy accessories into your life. Mitra is an engineer who channels her love of fashion through her work making us all beautiful with Chloe + Isabel. AND she donates 100% of her profits each month to a different nonprofit. Seriously. 

This is officially the perfect time to check out the brand, up your style game in a way that is authentic to you AND help end youth homelessness. Every dollar counts and it feels amazing to show off your pieces while sharing a few words about the impact you've made. Enough talk! Below, I'm highlighting some of my very favorite pieces. This is only the beginning, be sure to peruse the site on your own. No special codes needed. Every purchase supports YouthCare. Happy shopping!

 

Some Things to Keep in Mind When Doing Your Shopping With Chloe + Isabel

Dear Etsy, It's Time to Make Art Out of Headphone Wires

I finally upgraded my iphone last night. Hooray! Huzzah! During the purchase, I told my salesperson all about my idea for making use of the soon to be useless iphone cords. It occurred to me, I should get the word out with your help, Dear Reader. If you like it, please share.

Dear Etsy (translation genius makers who sell via Etsy),

Should I Get Rid of Clothes That Don't Fit Anymore?

Ah, the eternal question. It doesn't fit right now, but it might fit again. It was fill in the blank (expensive, from a special trip, a gift, a go-to, etc.). 

One thing I can count on discussing during a Closet Edit is the fate of that special piece. Or, in some cases, those special pieces. For whatever reason, it isn't working anymore. What it is doing, is taking up space in your closet and in your mind. So, here are a few tips on determining how to deal with the dreaded item that simply doesn't fit.

The Ruby Room: Because You've Had the Power All Along.

You’ve always had the power, my dear. You’ve had it all along. – Glinda, the Good Witch, Wizard of Oz

If you read this blog with any regularity, you are well aware of my love for helping out. As a personal stylist, I have the incredible opportunity to help individual women seize control of their personal style, the way the world perceives them, the way they see themselves. 

I love this feeling and am very fortunate to have a job that allows me to experience it on a regular basis. Equally gratifying is empowering other people to give back in a way that is meaningful to them. A little inspiration goes a long way. So, today's post is all about celebrating local treasure, The Ruby Room. It's much more than you can imagine. Off we go!

The Ruby Room: It's More Than Just a Dress.