outfit: winter puffer


I was in need of a warmer winter coat and nabbed this puffer by Everlane before they sold out.  I had to replace my old Zara puffer that I had for 4 years after it caught a feather spitting hole.  It was also never warm enough on windy days anyway.  The design of this new puffer is well thought out.    Continue reading →

good cause: everlane donates helmets to Vietnamese factory workers on black friday

fullsizerender-1I wasn’t going to post anything during my vacation here in Vietnam, but I couldn’t help myself when I found out Everlane has decided to donate thousands of helmets to Vietnamese factory workers on black friday.  I was so struck by how chaotic traffic is here in Hanoi and how many motorcyclists dangerously go without helmets completely or with inadequate helmets.  I took the above picture of a mother and her child during my taxi ride into Old Town Hanoi. The Vietnamese people have suffered a great deal over the last several decades and continue to struggle, especially with the worsening environmental impacts of manufacturing the clothes on our backs.  It’s suiting we find ways to give back.  I was already planning on purchasing Christmas gifts from Everlane, but I am now more encouraged to do so.  I’ve been thinking of re-purchasing their texture tank to replace my  worn down one that I bought a while back too.  I highly recommend it if you’re in need of a basic tank that is a bit elevated and flattering to any body type.

finding solace in simplicity after the election

This election has left me deeply saddened.  When faced with so much chaos, so much uncertainty, my drive to simplify grows even stronger.  Let us be reminders that there is still good in this world.  We will get through this together.  Progress will prevail.

wardrobe: my go to leggings this season (+ an announcement!)


When the weather gets cooler, I begin to put away my ankle cropped trousers and start wearing warm leggings again.  At any given time, I have 5 pairs on rotation.  My favorite so far has been the “winter leggings” by American Apparel.   Continue reading →

1,2,3 Links


If you follow me on this blog, you will probably enjoy these three links I’m loving at the moment:

1. A stressful work week and a tense neck led me to planning a retreat at the Zen Mountain Monastery in upstate New York, for a peaceful weekend of extreme simple living.   Continue reading →

product review: Achy Breaky Balm – an American version of Tiger Balm


One lesson I learned from decluttering my beauty and body products is that it pays to use things up.  Burn those scented candles and be generous with those creams!  It is better to use up your products than to let them expire.

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wardrobe planning: 11 necessities for the freezing cold


I’m going to dress for winter right this year, dang it.  For the past 7 years, since moving from LA to NYC, I’ve been freezing my ass off every winter.  It took some traumatic experiences and nearly being frost bitten to convince myself to finally invest in the dreaded “poofy” coat.  I also went years without any proper winter boots.  I can’t really explain why it took me so long to learn how to dress well for winter.  Maybe it’s denial? Continue reading →

3 minimalist kitchen tools that I can’t live without.


A good friend of mine moved into a new studio apartment and was in need of basic kitchen supplies.  This was the perfect time to declutter my kitchen.  Always look out for opportunities in your life to unload stuff onto other people who are in need.  It’s a win-win.

In the process, I thought about which kitchen tools added the most value to my life and picked these 3 finalists.  They were chosen for their simplicity, effectiveness, and durability.  It just so happens that all these tools originated in Asia ages ago and can be found at your local chinatown or online for only a few bucks. Continue reading →

good reads: on the peculiarities of two giant ethical clothing brands


This weekend I read two old New Yorker articles on the peculiarities of two behemoth ethical fashion brands, Eileen Fisher and Patagonia.  These two brands are like the godparents of the whole ethical fashion movement.  I was so intrigued by the stories of the people behind them.  (I actually do not own a single thing from either brand, but I do follow a lot of bloggers who wear them regularly).

It turns out Eileen Fisher employees are even weirder than I imagined! (I say that fondly).

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outfit: for a rainy day


I’m prepping my wardrobe for the fall/winter months.  This weekend, it rained quite a bit, so I pulled out these waterproof Ariat boots from the back of my closet to go run some errands.  I invested in these boots last winter when my feet nearly froze off when I was stranded by a stalled subway train at rush hour.  It was very painful and I never want to be in that situation ever again.  I did a lot of research on weather proof boots and read a lot of reviews before purchasing.  Ariat is known for making high quality horse riding and outdoor work boots. Maybe I overdid it, but I have to say these are the most high tech shoes I’ve ever worn.

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outfit: ’tis the season for socks and sandals


Fall is upon us people!  Every fall, I desperately look for ways to keep wearing sandals long after every sane person in New York has  transitioned to boots.  Last year I got some judgmental looks and overheard New Yorkers outright teasing me for wearing wool socks with Birkenstocks in public (sometimes I just don’t care how I look ok).

This year, I decided to fem it up a little bit with cutesy socks (maybe that will be more socially acceptable?). I think girly seasonal socks  look great peeking out of ankle booties or with 70’s style wedge sandals, with an otherwise simple outfit.

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