Tag Archives: shopping

Exploring Honolulu

Honolulu is the capital of Hawaii (which itself is made up of eight main islands). It’s at the south end of Oahu, the most populated island. The island has close to a million residents, with more than 1/3 living in Honolulu. Visiting a big city might be a strange way to “get away from it all,” but being city folk, it’s was a nice transition stop for us.

Friday Morning we awoke to a gorgeous view. Hawaii really is the Rainbow State!

rainbow in Waikiki

First stop: Diamond Head, a volcanic cone at the edge of Honolulu. The crater is a 1.1 mile winding hike up to the top, where we were rewarded with a 360 degree view of the city and ocean.

view from Diamond Head

If you go, go early. The throngs of tourists slowed us down a bit on the way up. We passed most of them and even ran the last portion–99 steps straight up–to an old military lookout.

Jean with Honolulu in distance

After descending back to our rented Jeep, which I fell in love with by the way, we drove to Chinatown for lunch.

lava wall

Top: Gifted
Purse: Shiraleah
Pants: Calvin Klein via swapped
Shoes: Naturalizer
Sunglasses: Corner store in Santa Fe

My dreams of vegan dim sum were shattered when we found out the restaurant had changed hands and was now just a regular dim sum place. So we wandered around until we stumbled on Adega Portuguesa. Hubby and I ate and drank and prepped for the afternoon.

The highlight of my day was finding a cluster of shops near the restaurant, in the Chinatown Arts District. First stop: Roberta Oaks. I met Roberta, who designs, sews and sells all the clothes in her store.

RO womenswear

RO menswear

I bought a chambray dress from her, as well as a upcycled cuff made in Namibia of old PVC pipe. It’s hand-carved and looks like bone or horn–but it’s vegan and sustainable! The fair-trade company, The Base Project, enables artisans to hone their crafts, helps their communities, and earns them money for education, healthcare, and food. Hubby bought aviators, and I also got a leather-look rubber wrap bracelet, a ring made by a friend of Roberta.

My purchases at RO

Around the corner was Owens & Co., which I’d read about in Lucky Magazine. Missy, owner of the shop, has a wonderful collection of gifts and accessories. I found books and onesies, bags and stationary.

Owens & Co

Owens collage

I bought an upcycled, locally made make-up bag, two sparkly hair clips, and an adorable pair of earrings by Umi, another local designer.

purchases from Owens

Next door is La Muse, another great store. By now I was trying to reign in my spending so I only grabbed a pair of earrings and two stretchy spiked bracelets.

purchase from La Muse

Owner Juli Chu makes all of the jewelry in the shop–many pieces with Swarovski crystal, and also stocks it with fresh casual wear perfect for Hawaii.

La Muse

We stopped back at the hotel so I could change my top and shoes–mostly because even though I’d packed lightly, I was afraid I wouldn’t wear all the things I’d brought, which would prove I’d hadn’t packed light enough.

Jean and Teddy

Top: Target
Shoes: Timberland

We walked from our hotel to the shopping center of Waikiki. It was hugely popular, but I just wasn’t interested. After meeting local designers and shop owners, big name brands didn’t cut it. I can buy a designer handbag in Seattle or any other city. But it was fun to grab a latté and wander around the avenue, people watching and taking in the warm breeze.

designer stores in Waikiki

Walking all day in the heat tired us out so we grabbed a quick nap at the hotel before heading back to Chinatown for cocktails. We’d heard great things about Hotel 39, and stopped by for drinks on a rooftop courtyard. Inside, the DJ spun house music and we watched the regulars mingle and dance. I wore my new Roberta Oaks dress.

Our trips might be short, but we sure do cram a lot into them. We didn’t stay past midnight; we had another busy day ahead of us.

Next stop: Kailua to check into our cottage on the beach!


Filed under Fashion, Travel

Shopping with Friends in Santa Fe

Arriving in New Mexico was terrific. The sky was blue, and the temperatures were in the high-70s. After eight months of winter, my three Seattleite friends and I deserved a break from the rain.

We ditched our dreary, dull NW clothes and arrived in NM with our luggage full of sunny SW colors. On our first morning, Cheryl and I climbed a hill with a nice vista of Santa Fe. It was windy, but gorgeous. Cheryl wore a bright orange sun dress with embroidered accents at the waist and paired it with braided strappy sandals and a coordinating brown Hobo bag.

orange dress

Dress: Max Studio
Sandals: Madden Girl
Cross-body bag: Hobo (at Burnt Sugar)

Here I am on the same hill. I chose a sunny marigold tank top and a reversible skirt. This side, with its orange, green and gold florals, looked nice next to Cheryl’s orange dress.

reversible skirt

Tank: Wet Seal
Purse: Coach (via thrifted)
Reversible skirt: Zand
Sandals: Naturalizer
Sunglasses: Target

Later, we met up with our friend, Autumn, who embraced the southwest vibe with a turquoise tank and matching pedicure. We were on the Turquoise Trail after all! Jewelry purchases wouldn’t be far behind.

turquoise tank

We walked to the Santa Fe Farmers’ Market where we found pastries, herbs, jewelry, paintings, textiles and yarn, and lots of other neat things. Cheryl grabbed coffee that even a Seattle coffee connoisseur would approve of, and I found a giant goose egg!

goose egg

Jacket: Betsey Johnson via thrifted
Earrings: Shirazi

We walked back to Santa Fe’s plaza, where we found more street vendors, musicians and dancers, and our other friend, Laura. Laura wore a sky blue dress, white cardigan, and black accents. From afar, you might not be able to see the neat bee and honeycomb design on the dress, but check it out in the close-up. It’s really unique!

blue dress

bee dress

Dress: Smoking Lily

By the end of our day, we all had jewelry (among other purchases). I’ll devote an entire post to all the great accessories we scored in Santa Fe. But first I have to finish start tomorrow’s post about the Santa Fe art scene.


Filed under Fashion, General