Friday, December 20, 2013

fashion friday :: red and green reimagined (via trip styler)

there's something endearing about even the tackiest christmas light display---blow-up snow globe on the lawn, reindeer on the roof, blinking lights and all. i feel the same way about christmas sweaters, battery-powered santa brooches and frosty the snowman ties. december is the only month we can get away with wearing red and green together. my favourite way to dress festively is to take those colours and move them a little to the left {to the left}. let's call them olive and cabernet. those are my christmas colours---reimagined---and also my top holiday meal... these looks are perfect for a cozy cabin getaway, hot chocolate date, après ski, or wherever your plans take you this holiday season.

men (clockwise from top left)
j.crew homespun henley, gant by michael bastian the mb down vest, wallace & barnes cpo jacket, new balance mustard 574, billy reid military chinos

women (clockwise from top centre)
pendleton the portland collection north plains tunic, aritzia dennis hat, current/elliott the vintage sweatpants, madewell driftstitch sweater, new balance high roller 574, artizia meribel vest, corgi for j.crew cashmere socks

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Thursday, December 19, 2013

homeward bound :: weekender bags (via trip styler)

weekenders are the goldilocks of the bag world, sitting pretty between totes and carry-ons. they're juuust right for quick jaunts home for the holidays, cozy mountain retreats, or sunny escapes.

a good weekender bag is roomy enough for a few costume changes and rugged enough for a beating in the trunk or overhead compartment. look for features like handles and detachable shoulder strap, plenty of interior pockets and zipper closure. bonus points for water-repellant fabric, dark colours to hide dirt and leather that gets better with age.

travel in style this winter with any of the eight durable and design-forward weekend bags shown above at price points you'll love ... and love to hate.

top row: stephen kenn encounter collection travel duffle, WANT les essentiels de la vie hartsfield weekender tote, filson small duffle bag / middle row: JADEtribe maroc traveler, lo & sons the catalina, baggu weekend bag / bottom row: joshu + vela xl boat tote, clare vivier leather weekender

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Thursday, December 12, 2013

holiday gift guide 2013 (via trip styler)

you won't find a kindle in our holiday gift guide---everyone else has that covered. you won't find rimowa luggage or louis vuitton city guides either {cha-ching!}. you will, however, find 10 practical and moderately priced gift ideas for avid and armchair travellers. merry christmas and happy holidays from trip styler!

1/ KILLSPENCER camera strap
this made-to-order camera strap by los angeles leather goods company KILLSPENCER is the perfect accessory for the safety- and style-conscious shutterbug. {$89}

2/ stephen kenn encounter collection ipad case
this gorgeous ipad sleeve by LA-based canadian designer stephen kenn is crafted from vegetable-tanned leather. it's the ideal case for tablet-toting men and women and a trip styler favourite. {$85}

3/ dci utility charge tool
a genius device for avid travelers and mobile device users, this multi-charger is the swiss army knife of the electronics world. one arm connects to your computer with a usb and three other arms charge your devices via an iphone connector, a micro usb and a mini usb. sadly, no bottle opener. {$16}

4/ fresh sugar lemon eau de parfum rollerball
this compact and versatile rollerball is one of my all-time favourite scents. whether i need to freshen up after a long flight or get energized before my morning coffee, this sweet citrus perfume with notes of bergamot, yuzu, orange blossom and lychee always does the trick. and in a pinch, it's the perfect deodorant substitute. {$23}

5/ frends headphones
want to kick up your headphone game? nothing makes me want to ditch my earbuds more than these jewelry-inspired white leather and rose gold-tone headphones. {$150}

6/ earth tu face skin stick
goodbye dry skin. apply this 100% natural plant-based skin salve to your face, lips and body. earth tu face was created by two herbalists in california and has quickly developed a cult following. it's so popular, this multi-use skin stick is constantly sold out at my local retailer. {$34}

7/ nike free 5.0+ running shoes
these ultra lightweight and comfortable runners in classic black and white are the perfect shoes for travel. not only can you wear them this winter with boyfriend jeans, an oversized sweater, a toque and a wool coat, you can also wear them to the hotel gym. no need to waste space on extra workout shoes in your carry-on. customize them online for an extra-special gift! {$100}

8/ cuyana monogrammed leather tote
a step up from the preppy-chic, monogrammed lands end carry-all, this tote is made from local leather in argentina and comes in various sizes and colours. simple, personal and well made. {$150}

9/ turkish towel
ideal for the beach, a picnic, the plane and anywhere else you could use this compact, fast-drying cotton towel. i brought one to croatia earlier this year and used it constantly. comes is various colours, sizes and styles. {$18-$28}

10/ restoration hardware bag light
every christmas restoration hardware carries the best items you never knew you needed, like this mini LED light that attaches to the strap of your handbag. sure to save you the embarrassment of jingling your bag to look for your keys every day! {$8}

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Friday, November 22, 2013

fashion friday :: shop seattle (via trip styler)

i must confess that i've been cheating on seattle with portland for the past few years, but the emerald city has been calling me back. while portland has tax-free shopping and killer restaurants, its larger neighbour to the north has more to offer than nordstrom and corporate coffee outposts. here are a few neighbourhood picks -- both shops and eats -- away from the established shopping zones of downtown, bellevue and the u district, where you'll find unique clothing and lifestyle goods for the discerning, fashion-forward shopper.

totokaelo makes an impact even before you've set foot inside its doors. it's the kind of shop you can't just walk past; it calls you in. the store has three separate spaces for women, home goods and, most recently, men. beyond the incredible selection of items from designers like dries van noten, acne, rachel comey, apiece apart and henrik vibskov, totokaelo {pronounced toh-toh-kye-oh} sets itself apart with impeccable customer service. cruise your favourite items online before coming in and save them in your online account to try on in store. buy a few items and get a beautifully designed card in the mail to follow. it's details like these that keep me coming back -- especially during sale season!

**more great shops on capitol hill's 10th avenue: elliott bay book company and nube green

trip styler tip: rest and refuel at oddfellows cafe & bar next door and molly moon's homemade ice cream shop around the corner.

prism is a retail and art space on one of my favourite streets in the city, ballard avenue. this restrained yet gorgeously curated lifestyle shop carries home goods, jewelry from local designers like iacoli & mcallister, apothecary items from blackbird and both new and vintage mens and womenswear. only a little over a year old, prism is the sister space to capitol hill's cairo. on my first visit, i couldn't help but leave with two necklaces, the bangles shown above and a list of must-buy items for my next stop in town.

**more great shops on ballard avenue: ketch and the palm room

trip styler tip: take a load off and get your eat on at the walrus & the carpenter, la carta de oaxaca and hot cakes.

a few more seattle gems
- e. smith mercantile {pioneer square}
- les amis {fremont}
- hammer & awl {madrona}

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Friday, October 4, 2013

fashion friday :: high/low fall trends (via trip styler)

if you're going to get one piece this season, get a big coat. that's the advice of flare magazine's senior style and market editor, truc nguyen, who was in vancouver this week presenting fall fashion trends.

the clothing trends the magazine identified on the runways for fall/winter were mid-century silhouettes, pastels, oversized coats, 90s revival punk, new structuralism, strapless or off-the-shoulder, jumpsuits and plaid. the accessory trends included novelty bags, thigh-high boots, functional flats, t-straps, short leather gloves and fur mittens.

i think of trends as something fun, not something prescriptive i have to follow. but remember that we follow trends whether we know it or not. there's a great scene in the devil wears prada where second assistant andy sachs laughs at a few editors deciding between similar-looking belts until she -- and her sweater -- are schooled by fashion editrix miranda priestly:
you think this has nothing to do with you. you go to your closet and select, i don't know, that lumpy blue sweater, for instance, because you're trying to tell the world that you take yourself too seriously to care about what you put on your back, but what you don't know is that that sweater is not just blue, it's not turquoise, it's not lapis; it's actually cerulean.... it's sort of comical how you think that you've made a choice that exempts you from the fashion industry, when in fact you're wearing a sweater that was selected for you by the people in this room. 
here are a few of my picks for the season, at both high and low price points, inspired by the three things to remember for fall: big coat! cool flats! fun bag!

big coat
wear this coat style with a fitted silhouette underneath, like skinny jeans and a t-shirt, along with one of my own favourite trends of the season: sneakers. an oversized coat may feel like a burden when you're travelling, but it never has to fit inside your luggage. from left: asos oversized wrap front coat, rick owens lilies quilted sail coat, zara masculine coat, forte_forte coat

cool flats
here's the perfect excuse for not packing heels in your carry-on. instead, bring along interesting, functional and comfortable flats. left column: isabel marant lilo ballerina flat, dieppa restrepo laura oxford, pour la victoire zandra monk strap flatsright column: urban outfitters t-strap flat, topshop mave metallic points, dv by dolce vita monk strap oxford flats

fun bag
novelty bags are not meant to be a serious investment item, but they are meant to add whimsy and colour to any outfit. they're also great treasures to bring home from your travels that will always take you back to wherever you bought them. clockwise from top left: alice + olivia zebra clutch, zara iridescent messenger bag, santi pom pom clutch, kneeland mercado meché correa lucky milagros bag

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Friday, August 30, 2013

fashion friday :: make a statement (via trip styler)

the best-kept secret in packing isn’t the scarf (because everyone knows to pack a scarf by now); it's the statement accessory. fine, your statement accessory can be a scarf, but you have lots of other options to make your basic travel staples pop.

a simple long weekend packing list of jeans, a couple tops and a sweater can be complemented by a hat, a statement necklace, a pair of bold socks or stockings, great eyewear and a bandana that doubles as a pocket square. just like that, two outfits turn into four.

this approach to packing has significantly reduced my suitcase real estate. i can actually pack for a weekend in a weekender bag now! (except for shoes, but that's why God invented oversized handbags...right?)

trip styler tip: stick to a couple colours to make your packing even easier. in this case, it worked out that everything i sourced was turquoise with neutrals. so chic and unexpected for late summer/fall.

(clockwise from top left) 
target limited edition wool rancher hat, norse projects wool 6 panel cap, y's by yohji yamamoto triple layer stole, kenneth jay lane turquoise stick necklace, strathcona stockings turquoise roses trouser stockings, apolis washed linen bandana, d.l. eyewear frames, ladies & gentlemen bloc necklace

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Friday, July 19, 2013

fashion friday :: western spirit (via trip styler)

rodeo season is in full swing and whether or not you plan on catching a chuckwagon race this summer, or just embracing the western spirit, i thought it was high {noon} time to wrangle my favourite country-inspired looks, plus a few rodeo style tips to boot.

styling tips 
  • rodeo season is hot. to beat the heat and show a little leg, go with a western-inspired bootie instead of a traditional cowboy boot.
  • the canadian tuxedo is encouraged, but mix it up with light and dark washes.
  • you're not going to a costume party, so instead of head-to-toe cowboy, add a couple western touches to your everyday style.
  • "top it, belt it, stomp it." fashion advice from brenna hardy, stampede stylist at calgary's core shopping centre.
  • always store your hat upright; otherwise, the brim will relax. time to invest in a hat box!
  • add a little fun to your bum and place a bandana in your back jean pocket.
  • accessorize with turquoise, a southwestern staple, or weave a piece of leather into a fishtail braid.

if all of this western style has inspired you to take a rodeo getaway, check out the upcoming cheyenne frontier days (WY), pendleton round-up (OR), or wrangler national finals rodeo (NV).

women (clockwise from top left)
madewell perfect chambray ex-boyfriend shirt, free people serra do mar tunic, frye carson tab mid boot, velvet farley dress, vanessa mooney open road ring, madewell barnwood boot, ralph lauren hand-tooled leather belt, imogene + willie elizabeth stretch jean

men (clockwise from top right)
RRL buffalo twill western shirt, to boot new york hawthorne boot, imogene + willie natural plus bandana, imogene + willie barton rigid jean

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Friday, June 21, 2013

fashion friday :: the summer staple (via trip styler)

jean shorts cross the borders of fashion. they can be worn boho with a tank and kimono, classic with a white tee and a leather jacket, grunge with a half-tucked flannel shirt, or preppy with a blazer. styling is everything when it comes to cutoffs, and with so many look options, they're the perfect staple for summer travel.

styling tips
this season, look for a pair that's ripped and slightly high waisted, either cuffed or frayed. gentlemen: keep them long and slim. {short cutoffs on men are not cool! i can never erase the vision of a dad in short jean shorts strolling around town on the croatian coast. keep that look on your sailboat only, sir!}

in the same way that you wouldn't wear a loud necklace with big earrings, you should avoid wearing tiny cutoffs with a tiny top. balance out your leggy look with a more conservative top half. and don't forget to match your footwear to your look -- flat strappy sandals, mid-rise wedges, moccasins and sneakers work well with jean shorts. and if, like me, you wore wedge sneakers and booties all year long, there's no reason to stop now.

buy or DIY?
denim cutoffs are the perfect style for both the budget conscious and the big spender. if you decide to DIY, use jeans with little to no spandex, as they won't fray well and will cling to your thighs. for a flattering fit, instead of cutting the legs straight across, angle your cut so the inside seam is slightly lower. reduce, reuse, recycle, right?

trip styler tip: call me the modesty cop, but when your pocket linings are hanging out the bottom of your cutoffs, they're too short. often less is more ... but not with jean shorts.

(left to right)
j brand high rise shorts, zara high waist shorts, madewell high rise denim shorts, cheap monday short skin blue rinse [at vincent park], 6397 slouch short

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Friday, June 14, 2013

tastes like summer

there are some things awaken our senses to summer. for me, it's the smell of sunscreen, the sound of the ice cream truck and the taste of watermelon. with summer officially arriving next week, what better way to welcome the season than with watermelon popsicles? they're ridiculously delicious, dead simple and they taste like summer.

my mum's go-to warm-weather dessert was always homemade popsicles. my family's favourites were classic 80s flavours like limeade, orange juice, or raspberry yogurt. this christmas, i was given a zoku, which freezes popsicles in under 10 minutes. this could be the nostalgia talking, but it's truly magical and it has resuscitated my love for healthy, homemade popsicles.

i've made these for the past two weeks. it's probably time to try a new flavour [roasted banana? mexican chocolate? cantaloupe agave? pineapple sriracha?] but i thought i'd share this one first.

watermelon, mint & lime popsicles
  • 1/2 a small seedless watermelon or about 3 cups, chopped
  • 1/2 a lime, squeezed
  • 2-3 stems of mint leaves, torn up
  • 1/3 cup water

place watermelon, lime, mint and water into a blender. blend until frothy [but don't overblend]! pour into popsicle molds, freeze and enjoy. 

this recipe yielded 4 popsicles in my zoku, and i had just enough left over for a glass of watermelon juice -- just toss in a few ice cubes, re-blend and drink [or freeze lightly, stirring occasionally, for a summertime slushie]. you can use a good old fashioned popsicle mold as well; you'll just have to wait a little longer for your pops!

adults only...
these popsicles would be extra delicious with a splash of tequila if you're so inclined.

one more thing...
you'll want to make more of these because they're just that good, so buy extra ingredients :-)

food for thought...
our children will never experience the joy [and pain] of spitting watermelon seeds at their friends like we used to; they'll only know seedless watermelons. which, let's be honest, are not as good.

Friday, May 24, 2013

fashion friday :: white chucks (via trip styler)


you know that moment when you're traveling and a tourist asks you for directions? or that moment when you're able to carry on a basic conversation in a country's native tongue? those moments make you feel like you belong in the place you're visiting. fitting in with the locals is always at the top of my travel goals. if i'm mistaken for a local, i've succeeded as a foreigner under the radar.

if you want to look like a local in europe, there's one element that crosses more borders than the european union: white converse chuck taylor sneakers {"chucks"}.

i know that's a bold statement, but you can trust me as i've just returned from three weeks in europe, where, moments after stepping off the plane, i observed an entire group of teenaged girls wearing them on the train. i saw them on the feet of high-end shop girls in amsterdam, tapas servers in barcelona, zara-chic twentysomethings in croatia and supermodel moms inside charles de gaulle.

in europe, chucks aren't a trend, they're a staple. here's my favorite look, as seen on the riva in split, croatia's second-largest city.

  white chucks 
(clockwise from left) equipment signature shirt, asos pleated maxi skirt, retrosuperfuture lucia francis puma sunglasses, converse chuck taylor all stars

trip styler tip: shoes are arguably the most important and agonizing item when packing for europe. white chucks are versatile and they'll save your feet during the inevitable miles and miles of pounding the {very old} pavement.

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Tuesday, April 16, 2013

dude, sweet - north shore, oahu

i scored the deal of the year this winter: bellingham to honolulu for $200 return. coupled with hotel deals, it was a cheap getaway and my first trip to hawaii. but i must confess something. whenever anyone asked me where i was going, i told them "oh, just oahu." i had this idea that it was the lamest and most commercial island. but let me tell you what i learned: it's beautiful and if you get away from waikiki, you can find a true hawaiian experience.

just over an hour up island is the lush and scarcely commercialized north shore, where the bohemian heart of oahu beats. north shore culture is surf culture. it's the breeding and stomping ground of some of the world's best surfers. a place where you can find 30-foot swells and fit in a surf before and after work; where you can mingle with pro surfers, colourful characters and barefoot, wet-haired locals fresh off their boards in the grocery store; and where dressing up literally means throwing a dress over your swimsuit.

here are a few suggestions for a trip to hawaiian hippie heaven...

sample roadside delights
it's worth pulling over for the food stands along kamehameha highway. from haleiwa to kahuku, you'll find family fruit stands, acai bowl shacks, shrimp trucks, shave ice and haupia pie. it's not fancy, but it's delicious. must stops: ted's bakery at sunset beach for bbq chicken plate lunch and chocolate haupia or banana cream pie, matsumoto for guava, pineapple and lilikoi shave ice, fumi's for garlic or coconut shrimp plate and cholo's for mexican.

visit hawaiian green sea turtles
a couple miles north of haleiwa on kamehameha highway, pull over at laniakea beach and see the basking turtles who crawl up on shore daily. you'll also meet volunteers from save the sea turtles international, who protect the turtles from ... tourists. stroll along the beach and try to catch sight of a few more turtles, minus the tour bus passengers.

watch surfers in action
the best workout on the island has got to be a walk on the beach, where the quicksand-like pebbles not only make your legs burn, but also give you a killer pedicure. my favourite activity was strolling on the beach, flip flops in hand, stopping along the way to watch throngs of surfers paddling out in the late afternoon. check out pipeline, sunset beach and the break off turtle bay. visit between late november and early december to catch the vans triple crown of surfing. if you'd prefer to get out there yourself, rent a board in haleiwa, where you'll also find surf schools and calmer waves.

fall asleep to the sound of crashing waves
there is one major hotel on the north shore: turtle bay resort. despite this, you'll still see a hand-painted sign on the side of the highway that reads "no more hotels!" the resort sits on the northern tip of oahu. you may remember it from forgetting sarah marshall. while the property is beautiful, it looks much nicer in the film thanks to the magical wizards of production design. the hotel has multiple restaurants---including one on the beach, golf courses, stables, pools, and a surf school on site. stay in the beach bungalows if you can, but if you leave the lanai door open, the soothing sound of crashing waves means any room will do. i booked turtle bay on hotwire for a discounted rate. if you see a four-star beachfront hotel on the north shore, it's turtle bay. if you'd prefer to stay in a house, try the basic ke iki beach bungalows or one of the many homes rented out by owners. 

ride the pineapple express
it only takes an hour to drive from honolulu to the north shore, but you'll probably want to stop and ride the pineapple express along the way. not that pineapple express ... this is a train at the dole plantation. it's a total tourist trap, but worth stopping for a cone of delicious pineapple dole whip.

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Sunday, April 14, 2013

très cool

i'm travelling to europe this spring and i've been using blogs as my go-to travel guides for what's cool beyond the getting there's and must do's of a traditional travel guide. this kind of exhaustive research is a lot of work, but it pays off by directing you to all the local favourites and hippest neighbourhoods. i recently discovered some travel guides that speak to me on an aesthetic and cultural level, combining both substance and style.

this independent, barcelona-based company has published european city guides for amsterdam, barcelona, lisbon, london and madrid. their books have been called "guidebooks for people who hate guidebooks" (the guardian) and "your hippest good friend" (the independent). they're suitable for locals who want to rediscover their city and tourists who wish they were locals. buy them online or in shops across europe.

this series-in-the-making of american guidebooks, launched last fall, has captured my attention with its choice of cities to cover -- nashville and austin -- and its clean look. each pocket-sized guide is "equal parts travel guide and tribute" and is packed with best-of lists, hand-drawn maps and interviews with locals. watch for upcoming guides on all your favourite american cities: seattle, new orleans, san francisco and brooklyn are in the works. buy them online or in shops across nashville (the austin field guide publishes next month).

[images via le cool and wildsam]

Friday, April 12, 2013

in print :: kelli murray

san diego illustrator kelli murray is hands down one of the cutest gals on the internet. she's got killer california style, an adorable family and great platinum locks. plus she's super talented and seems as nice as can be. 

go buy her prints via her etsy store or society6. the hardest part will be choosing your favourite...

bonus jonas! some prints are available as iphone cases, laptop skins, stationary and more. #imean #comeon #girlcrush

don't forget to follow her blog for gorgeous photos of her personal style, family and work, as well as sweet DIY projects and printable cards.

[all images via kelli's blog and online stores]

Friday, April 5, 2013

fashion friday :: cycle chic (via trip styler)

cycle chic 

i'm heading to amsterdam this month and recently a friend jokingly asked if i'd go to the red light district. i confess i hadn't even thought about it. when i think of amsterdam, i imagine stylish cyclists on dutch upright bikes with tulips in their baskets riding alongside picturesque canals. i suspect the same thing of copenhagen, and i refuse to think any differently until i'm proved wrong. part of this confidence comes from my faithful addiction to street style blogs and their sub genre, cycle chic blogs, birthed in copenhagen in 2007.

there's something magical about cycling in a bike-friendly city, smiling at passersby, having moments of fleeting flirtation at stoplights with fellow cyclists, all while getting in some light cardio. of course bike commuting is only magical until that moment it begins to downpour, you're splashed by passing cars, yelled at by impatient cyclists and you knock down a whole row of bikes while locking up your own. that's when you go inside for a heineken. speaking of dutch beer, i'll have to drink some and i'll have to go to the red light district. it would be disrespectful not to...right?!

amsterdam milan cycle chic
amsterdam cycle chic
new york paris amsterdam cycle chic
milan copenhagen cycle chic
amsterdam milan cycle chic
copenhagen milan cycle chic
amsterdam cycle chic

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Thursday, February 14, 2013

stylish snaps

over the past few years, i've almost exclusively used my iphone as my camera. whether using it to snap pics of recipes in magazines or gorgeous hawaiian sunsets or obnoxious latte art, i've neglected my digital SLR in favour of my apple device [which i hear you can also use for phone calls? probably just a crazy rumour, though].

lately, i've been wanting something better than an iphone but smaller than an SLR. good timing because there are tons of options on the market right now: medium-sized cameras with retro or holga toy camera styling. here are just a few of my favourites...

1. leica M9 hermes  2. leica X2 paul smith  3. pentax Q kit black  4. pentax Q10 zoom lens kit white  5. fuji X100S
6. fuji X10  7. fuji XF1

PS. i just had to post the first camera...but it costs $50,000, so unless you're married to a saudi prince, you're better off setting your sights on the rest of these stylish snappers!

Friday, February 8, 2013

fashion friday :: surfer style (via trip styler)

fashion friday

puka shell necklaces are back, y'all! just kidding---thank goodness---but surfer style is alive and well and living on oahu. last month, i took my first trip to hawaii, where i rediscovered my high school love for all things surf. once you get past the tommy bahama shirts and the wear-it-30-different-ways sarongs of waikiki, there's a whole island of beach style to embrace---lest you look like a haole.

  Surfer Style

women (clockwise from top left)
reef creamy leather sandals, quiksilver lamrocks butler shorts, quiksilver stavi hat, spell cambodian tribal bag, free people big dipper oversized tee, billabong only good vibes blanket towel, billabong sunset ryder hat, free people sunkissed flora racerback tank

men (clockwise from middle right)
quiksilver railed long sleeve shirt, quiksilver malone sweatshirt, reef warrior stripe, reef suicides chino, reef kitchi kah mi win shoes

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