Posts in the culture category

 

Letting other cultures across the world inspire me and my style has never failed.  No matter how many times I look at a colorful photo of a ceremonial ritual in Africa or of a holy man in India, a flutter in my heart occurs.  It may be the lack of interest in their part to please us westerners with their fashion, that is so appealing to me, or the intimate connection that their clothing has to their spiritual lives.  This month’s mood board draws from striking images I’ve compiled while browsing through Pinterest and Tumbr, conducting basic searches like “men in India” or “people in Africa”.  I specifically kept the search vague and open in order to eliminate the fashion riff raff I may have otherwise encountered, and really focus on the essence of these people and their cultures. The images struck a cord in certain instances due to their colors, in others it may have been the expression on ones face, or simply the diligence in which their faces were painted with perfect little dots.

Enjoy!

 

Chelsea Art Walk

As an avid lover of art, I always try to take advantage of the fact that I live in a city so full and readily available inspiration on every corner.  When I heard about the art walk in Chelsea last week I knew I had to attend.  I had been meaning to check out several galleries in Chelsea for a while now, but kept procrastinating, this was finally my chance!

Overall impressed by the variety and concepts I took in that night, my general feeling is that there is definitely a preoccupation with the old while nostalgia reigns in concept, drawing a ton of inspiration from the way things were. Another major theme seemed to be re-purposing of old materials.  I find this interesting as someone who is in tune with the undercurrents of fashion, because it seems to parallel exactly what’s happening on the streets and runways.  Below is a slide of some of my favorite works, including the amazing index paper installation at Pace Gallery by Tara Donovan.

And for those interested in future art walks check out the Chelsea Art Walk site for updates.

I don’t wait it to be true but all good things must after all come to an end.  This has been a magical experience that’s not only taken me to various neighborhoods in the city and shown me so much culture, fashion and coffee, but it’s also brought a new friend in my life and I feel so lucky to have been a part of it!

The last stop in Coffee + Thrift takes us to the LES, more specifically alphabet city, where our wild card coffee shop 9th Street Espresso provided us with some warmth and comfort from a snowy day.  I had not had my morning coffee on that day and I ended up having a drip cup just to get me going.  This cup was so damn delicious that I ended up ordering a second one (shameless).
Following our coffee session Chermelle and I headed to my FAVORITE thrift shop in the city.  I’m sure you’ve seen me rave about it on multiple occasions.. cause I seriously find the best stuff there.  Of course I’m referring to No Relations.

Here are our notes from the day:

Coffee Shop: 9th Street Espresso 
Coffee:Three-Bean Brazilian Blend
Thrift Store: No Relations 



 

Coffee Notes:  Though I sleep through the night, coffee is my reset button at the beginning of the day. I like it drip; I like it dark.
Thrift Notes: Bold, loud, crafted.
Thrift Notes: I would never need a second impression after this first one. These bold, hand-woven colors in a classic shape were an immediate obsession. My mind raced, when I caught up with it, we were both in the happy place of Brazil. I’m ready for a statement now.

Coffee Notes: Coffee + Milk it’s such a great pairing. Your what I simply want, but you can often be simply complicated –  like a good pair of blue jeans. 
Thrift Notes: Don’t fool me.
Thrift Find: Tried, true and blue is my sum adjective description of a great pair of jeans. Hard to find, but once found you can’t get enough of ‘em. With trademark Wrangler stitching and as Stefany said, “a great butt” these jeans became not just the wildcard but a smdlr style staple. Awesomeness!



And now for some sweet out takes from the day:


Thank you so much for checking out our post and taking this wild ride across New York City to explore some of the best coffee and thrift around!!

Xoxo,
Stef + Chermelle
 

 

HEY!!!! Whats up?!  Day 3 has arrived.. yes I know time flies when you’re having fun reading my blog.  So here we are, Chermelle and I making our rounds in New York, and today brings us to one of my favorite neighborhoods in Brooklyn,  Greenpoint.  Besides Lena Dunham saying so, I’ve loved hanging out there for ages.. It’s quaint but gritty, there are fun bars and hot men.. what else could we want?  Oh yes.. how about good coffee shops and vintage stores to shop at?

Here is a recap of our day:

Coffee Shop: Café Grumpy Greenpoint

Coffee:  Deri, Kochoha, [Sidama Region] Ethiopia.
 
Thrift Store: Fox and Fawn 
 
Coffee Notes: You handle me with strength and gentility. Your floral flavors in my face so beautifully, I welcome how you demured my spirit – as if I were dried flowers contained and beautiful just the same. 
 
Thrift Notes: balanced beauty, feminine, complex
 
Thrifting Finds:
Gasp! Exaggerations escaped me because the Victorian goodness of this lady number went viral in my heart. Its detail, its fit was perfect. It was a message in a bottle from a faraway place and it said, “meet me in sidama.’
 
Coffee Notes:Your wild and I like it! I’m humming to the tune of guava and tobacco in a field of grass. Is this true, it must be, you give me the memory.

Thrift Notes: punch of something, high

Thrifting Find: I almost didn’t find you. You were subtly tucked somewhere with perfect imperfections, giving you the kind of character that begets the story of a history before I came. A petite hole here, a missing sleeve there. I spin in you and flowers from Sidama seem to appear in my hair.
What did we think? Are we in love with the idea of shopping at Fox and Fawn  and of course having a cup of joe at Cafe Grumpy? Do it, do it!
 
Here are a few of my favorite outtakes from the day:
During our cupping!
Can you believe we both found dreamy white dresses?

Hey guys?? Did you miss me??
Well that’s no longer necessary cause I’m here and I have the second post from our journey through coffee and thrifting and it takes us to a cozy little neighborhood in Manhattan called the West Village.  
We choose Stumptown Coffee as our coffee destination and proceeded to shop at Monk Vintage that was conveniently located across the street (yeah maybe we are lazy so what!)

Without further ado here are our notes and finds from the day:

Coffee Shop: Stumptown Coffee Roasters 
 Coffee: Guatemala Finca El Injerto, Bourbon [Direct Trade]

Thrift Store: Monk Vintage


Coffee Notes: You’re such a sweet thing. You whispered flowers on my nose, and that’s when I knew fragrance could talk. 

Thrift Notes: Sweet, smooth, hint of flowers.
Thrift Find:  Super[girl]power.  With florals on my heart, it didn’t take long for my search to bring me to patterns and prints. The warm red and docile creams of this Italian needlepoint travel bag was a visual passport to Guatemala. That’s where I am, with a few, delicate weekend getaway essentials.

Coffee Notes: Am I in a dream world? You’re so uncommon, yet familiar. I breathe you in and you light my petals.

Thrift Notes: pretty woman, blooming.
Thrift Find: Super[girl]power.  As soon as I saw you, I knew you were mine. You’re an accent to a style that I already know, florals and stripes – cross the pattern and keep close to my heart. I’m at once caught up and no, I am not looking for a savior. 
 
 
Playlist: ‘you called me’, mayer hawthorne, ‘don’t save me’ haim, ‘don’t sweat the technique’ eric b & rakim

 

And now the outtakes:

Don’t forget to check out Stumptown and Monk vintage for a great explosion of culture in the West Village!

Xo,

Stef + Chermelle

I can’t tell you how excited I am to share this journey with you guys.  Chermelle of Smdlr and I met via Instagram and it was friendship from the start, based on mutual appreciation and love for culture and fashion.  Soon after, we decided to meet in person and that’s how this Coffee and Thrift project began.

We decided we were going to explore various neighborhoods of NYC and within each go to a roaster/coffee shop and then follow it by going thrifting.  We were convinced that the experience during our coffee outing would affect our moods and in that manner also affect what we would pick out while shopping. In the process we both learned a lot about coffee, fashion, culture and each other.  It was a beautiful marriage of creative minds.

Our first stop was Williamsburg, Brooklyn where we had a formal cupping (tasting) at Toby’s Estate followed by some shopping at Stella Dallas Vintage.

Here are both Chermelle and my notes from the day, along with our vintage finds.

Coffee Toby’s Estate

Coffee: Ethiopia – Nyeri Kenya, Gatombaya


Thrift Store: Stella Dallas

 
Coffee Notes: You demanded my attention. And, once you had me, you gave me warmth like a blanket – balanced, cozy and sweet but not overpowering.


Thrift Notes: masculine, warm, comforting.
 

Thrift Find:  Boy’s vintage plaid shirt that settled me right into my element.  I put it on and I’m far from Brooklyn. I’m camping in the woods, sitting by a fire, roasting marshmallows. The shirt’s masculine and utilitarian qualities are so easy and feel so right, they settle me right into the dead of winter, equipped to take on whatever it may bring.

Coffee Notes: There’s a deep husk in your scent that cuddles my thoughts. Pleasantly disoriented, I am yours and you are mine. Now, stillness comes.

Thrift Notes: rugged, aged, close.
Thrift Find: An oversized leather vest by Open Road – Made in Korea – with tassles that swing and shimmy. With you on, I’m again in grandpa’s backyard. We rock slow, we rock steady in a wooden chair. Memories of him, of us, float in the air. My arms in, are his around me, around thee Gatombaya.

To set the mood for our adventures listen to our mixtape from the day.
Playlist: ‘my girl’ temptations, ‘the boss’, james brown ‘knife’ grizzly bear

Check availability of coffee on Toby’s Estate website and don’t forget to follow your outing with a visit to one of my favorite vintage stores in NYC,  Stella Dallas!!!

Before I made it into the world of fashion I spent 6 years of my life in the hospitality business, which is fancy for being a waitress and bartender. The money was great and I met a ton of fantastic people along the way. So it may not come as a surprise then when I say I spent a bulk of that time hanging out with people from Mexico. If you’ve ever worked in a restaurant this makes perfect sense. They are the ones running the show after all, so if you want a piece of pie or an amazing Mexican meal after your shift you better be boys with the kitchen boys or you’ll get nada. During this period of my life I developed a fondness for the culture and food and people of Mexico.  Their work ethic, love for family and life is contagious and I’m a much better human for being exposed to it.  Besides the food being simply incredible.. (I’ve stated in the past that if I was stuck on a deserted island and could only eat one thing it would be fish tacos) the clothes also have an amazing array of color and so much life to them.  I’m always on the hunt, especially during the brutal summer months for the perfect Mexican embroidered dress. So light, easy, comfortable and cool, I feel like they have become one of my summer staples. As an added bonus you can rock them with converse, boots or even the sexiest of pumps.
Below is an amazing one that’s available for purchase. Just clickity click right HERE.

Outfit Notes: Vintage mexican dress (www.omniavintage.com) Vintage bangles (www.omniavintage.com), Vintage DKNY handbag (thrifted); Converse; MAC RED LIPS.

And just cause… here is a great recipe to make your own fish tacos!  YUM!

http://allrecipes.com/recipe/grilled-fish-tacos-with-chipotle-lime-dressing/