Aces Interview: Jasmin of Vintage Vandalizm

My next Ace is a fellow blogger who's inspired me with her laser-like focus on crafting a personal style that's all retro but decidedly refreshing and different. I write once a week for the Independent Fashion Bloggers and thus pay a lot of attention to the fashion blogging landscape, and I can say with 10000% confidence that Jasmin Rodriguez's Vintage Vandalizm is one-of-a-kind. I had the good fortune to meet Jasmin in person at IFBcon, where I spotted her while speaking on a panel, and had to run up and tell her what a big fan I was of her blog. I was surprised by how humble and shy she was in real life! She's one of my favorite people to see whenever I'm in NYC.

She's got legions of fans all over the world just like me - and also critics, haters and copycats. Some try to emulate, others straight up duplicate - but none of Jasmin's imitators come close to her clear and unabashed love for rockabilly and other fine vintage eras. She lives and breathes the lifestyle as much as the modern world will allow. This is why she's no trendy throwback (what up Katy Perry) - Vintage Vandalizm is the real rockabilly deal. Her commitment to this life & style is what makes her one of my favorite bloggers on the interwebz.

Vintage Vandalizm-Jasmin Rodriguez

Vintage Vandalizm-Jasmin Rodriguez

What's on your playlist right now?

  • Lots of Lana Del Rey

  • Pervov Stelar

  • The Great Gatsby Soundtrack

  • The Weeknd

  • Niki and the Dove

  • Frank Sinatra

  • Ella Fitzgerald

  • and some rockabilly compilations.

Describe your style.

I'd like to think of it as a marriage of the timeless beauty of vintage & the gritty rawness of my vandalized city, NYC.

Vintage Vandalizm-Jasmin Rodriguez

Vintage Vandalizm-Jasmin Rodriguez

Who inspires you?

I am deeply inspired by the classic hollywood actress' of the 40s, 50s, and 60s like:

  • Debra Paget

  • Ivonne De Carlo

  • Diana Dors

  • Grace Kelly

  • Eartha Kitt

  • and of course Elizabeth Taylor.

What are you reading?

Right now I am enjoying listening to many inspiring TED Talks like my recent favorite by Shawn Achor, who says that we have to reverse our perspectives on success. He says that we are taught that "We must be successful to be happy;" but in fact..the happier and more positive we are, the more successful we will be :).

Vintage Vandalizm-Jasmin Rodriguez

Vintage Vandalizm-Jasmin Rodriguez

What are you most excited about in the coming months?

I am working on a few projects to be finished by next year but you will have to stay tuned to find out ;). I am also excited to be attending Lingerie Fashion week and NY fashion week before my big move to Vegas. I am pursuing my dreams and though it is quite scary to leave a place I called home for 26 years, I am ready for the big change ahead of me.

Thank you!

Find Jasmin at VintageVandalizm.com.

Read all of my Aces interviews here.

Fresh Style: Cherry Bomb

When the sun is out in Seattle, we do not take it for granted. It almost feels as if the entire city's mood is lifted when the clouds part! I took the opportunity to take some outfit shots during one of said sunny days last week. The anticipation of spring is creeping up on me, and was the inspiration behind this outfit.

This is basically what I look like when I'm out meeting with clients or working out of their offices. I'm a big fan of light, sheer shirts of all flowy shapes and patterns. I've always wanted a pair of waxed jeans, and what better color than in the perfect shade of cherry red. Simple but fresh! I'm accessorized with an amazing pair of sunnies I found at Beacon's Closet in Williamsburg, vintage heels and Europe's George, Gina & Lucy (GG&L)'s Felicitas satchel.  I can fit everything in that bag, including my tablet or laptop! 

There's a little music video for you at the end of this post, which this post is titled after. Enjoy a little Hawaiian music for your Thursday!

Cropped 3/4 trench (old, similar here) /  Quiksilver Women sheer printed topBig Star 'Scarlette Wax' jean, and George, Gina & Lucy (GG&L) 'Felicitas' satchel c/o Bollare / vintage heels / sunnies from Beacon's Closet / Stella & Dot 'Love & Light' bracelet

Fresh Style: Five Reasons for a Fancy Coat

Because you scored an amazing deal on this coat at Goodwill's Glitter Sale.

Because a local reclaimed/vintage furniture studio is the perfect backdrop. Hi Marian Built!

Because sometimes you're asked to dress up for a 60's-themed party, and you oblige for once.

Because one of your best friends is in town and life becomes infinitely more colorful.

Because it's the icing on the (cup)cake of a wonderful girl's night out.

Vintage long dress coat w/faux-fur trim / vintage gold brocade dress (beautiful similar modern one here) & over-the-knee boots (similar) from Nasty Gal / vintage clutch

Seattle: Worn to Be Wild Debuts at EMP with Project Leather

The EMP Museum's newest exhibition is a look through the history of leather's foray from the outskirts of culture to one of the most timelessly fashionable pieces in our wardrobes today.

Worn to be Wild: The Black Leather Jacket Showcases History of Iconic Garment is presented in partnership with the Harley-Davidson Museum in Milwaukee and runs through January 13, 2013. The EMP kicked off this awesome exhibition with Project Leather, a runway show featuring some of Seattle's established and upcoming designers. 

AlixRose and I had a blast at Project Leather and got to take a walk through the exhibition afterwards. Enjoy photos from the runway show below, and photos from the exhibition on the Fresh Jess Facebook page.

Mango wool belted coat (thrifted) / Umgee USA Autumn white splatter top via Flat 84 / Tobi vegan leather skirt (similar here) / Zara wedge platform booties

All photos below courtesy of EMP Museum

The YWCA Closet Treasures Sale 2012 Lookbook

Can you believe the YWCA Closest Treasures Sale is this weekend already? This year, the Sale has enlisted the talents of my dear friend and Seattle photographer Sarah Lovrien to create a whole editorial through several photoshoots taken over the past summer. The result is a lookbook that depicts Closet Treasure Sale pieces like you've never seen them before. 

Get the details on Closet Treasure Sale here. For more amazing photos from Sarah, visit the Sarah Lovrien Photography Facebook page.

Fresh Style: NYC Outfit Diary

I had such a fun week in New York for Lucky FABB, the Independent Fashion Bloggers conference & Fashion's Night Out last week! I'm catching up on real life and will crank out these NYC posts as quickly as I can. I took in the sights of the Big Apple, so I've got some posts coming about boutiques, markets and restaurants I enjoyed there. First off, the outfits:

Though I didn't attend any shows this season, I stopped by the tents for an obligatory photo after a blogger lunch one day. Trina Turk for Banana Republic top (similar BR top here)/ Vintage mandala print high-waist shorts from Everybody's Buying Vintage (similar here) / TopShop velvet studded flats / Vintage sunnies / J Project  wrap bracelet

My IFBcon outfit! Vintage orange hi-low tuxedo blazer from Kippy Ding Ding / Reconstructed vintage sheer print top from Moksha / Forever 21 faux leather shorts / Nine West strappy heels (similar here)

The perfect maxi for a low-key night out on the town. IntiMint black maxi dress & Flirt Catalog aqua skinny belt w/gold plate c/o Bollare / Dolce Vita t-strap leopard sandals / gold jewelry via Lucky FABB  

My Lucky FABB outfit: Yellow tiered tank w/lace back from Moksha / Forever 21 leopard print pants (similar here) / Julian Louie for Aldo wedges

After traipsing the streets of Manhattan & Brooklyn all day, I decided to keep it super casual for Fashion's Night Out. Quiksilver Women tank (similar here) / High-waisted harem pants from Moksha / Triangle necklace from Strut (Portland)

Sunday brunch in Williamsburg followed by Brooklyn Flea browsing & MoMA Quiksilver Women tank / Forever 21 necklace / Vintage Levi's cutoff shorts

Leopard flats & floral top for shopping with fellow bloggers in SoHo!

Floral print tee from Moksha / BCBG high-waisted leather shorts from Sell Your Sole / Dolce Vita leopard oxfords

Fresh Style: Bainbridge Rummage Sale finds

One Saturday in June, my mom, aunt, cousin & I decided to take a last-minute trip to Bainbridge Island for a rummage sale I'd read about on Yay Today.  Little did I know we were walking in on the largest rummage sale on the island, held yearly by the Rotary group there. It took over an entire middle school grounds. From the parking lots to the playgrounds to a few classrooms, Bainbridge Rotary packed the place full of housewares, furniture, clothing, jewelry, sporting equipment and yes - boats and cars.

This were just two massive rooms of many! Below are the books/toys/office room and the bulk clothing section. Mountains upon mountains of clothes!

We spent a few hours there but didn't get too crazy. In fact, we all felt totally unprepared for the onslaught and chaos of the Bainbridge Rotary Rummage Sale. Next time, we're bringing several big cars, sturdy shoes, a water bottle and a strategy!

My total haul for the morning came out to $8! A never-been-worn dress, handmade knit beanie, a few issues of National Geographic & four pairs of old Levi's.

I turned them all into cutoff shorts, and have been wearing them all summer!

Catch the next Bainbridge Island Rotary Auction & Rummage Sale - June 29, 2013.

Fresh Style: Sell Your Sole Consignment

Last month, I hosted a sweet summer shopping party at Sell Your Sole consignment boutique in Seattle's Belltown neighborhood. I had so much fun with my mom, sister and girlfriends chatting it up over champagne & bites. Natalia and her fiance Brent were the most gracious hosts. 

Here are a few pics of the night, plus the outfit I went home with that night and a $50 gift certificate giveaway below!

Tucked behind the Cherry St. Coffee location on 1st Ave. & Blanchard/Lenora, Sell Your Sole is an adorable loft full of designer consignment treasures. 

Natalia has an amazing eye for beautiful designer pieces. She opened Sell Your Sole to fuse her love of smart shopping with finding fabulous new friends in the city.

Natalia and I styled a few outfits for summer and fall with SYS's current inventory. As with all consignment shopping, you should come back often to see the latest!

I loved these earrings and this Tory Burch stacked ring set!

For the event, I wore a vintage Halston dress with Dolce & Gabbana gilded leaf heels. Disco queen :)

I love mixing prints!

At the top of the stairs to the loft, you'll see a beautiful wall of shoes and a giant mirror. A woman's dream loft!

I was totally eyeing this Dries Van Noten belted top. 

I went home with this ensemble! Blush pink shirt with black trim and BCBG faux leather high-waisted shorts.

I also couldn't resist this lambswool sweater. It's so soft and comfy! I'll be wearing it all winter.

 

Fresh Style: Eazy Breezy

After weeks of cold temps and even a few days of snow and ice, the sun came out in the Emerald City and decided to bring some (relative) warmth with it! In upper-50 degree weather, it only made sense to reach for some shorts, my vintage Eazy-E tee and my current staple, the denim shirt, for a few errands and a casual chocolate cooking demo at my best friend Sara's boutique, SPUN Sustainable Collective.

H&M denim shirt & faux leather shorts / Vintage Eazy-E tee / Marc by Marc Jacobs necklace / Steve Madden military boots (another staple of mine)

Traipsing the city & catching reflections

Illin at home after a great day!

Fresh Faves: TwinSistr Vintage

Sometimes the very best vintage shopping experiences are fleeting moments you stumble upon. In Seattle, one of the most beautiful of those moments is TwinSistr vintage. I first met Maria at BadWill Market, and since then have seen her at various other Capitol Hill flea markets, including Comet Tavern's, that empty space between Big Mario's Pizza & Caffe Vita, and her own monthly art showcase & market, ArtAche at the Vermillion. She's totally sweet and everything she sells is reasonably priced. While my girl Dana's Sustalux finds are in designer and eras before 1980, Maria fills in the gap with carefully chosen pieces from the last couple of decades. She's responsible for my Kelly Kapowski dresssweet raincoat and a good portion of the rest of my current wardrobe favorites.

Take a look at one of her latest photoshoots, with photographer Anastasia Kiryanova. These amazing shots were styled by TwinSistr & feature some Capitol Hill hotspots:

The beautiful Maria of TwinSistr!

I loved all of Anastasia & Maria's photos so much, it was so hard to decide which ones to post - so I posted the full set on the FreshJess Facebook page! Head over there to see them all.

Channeling Kelly Kapowski w/TwinSistr vintage

One of the greatest things about vintage is being able to channel style icons of eras past. There's a whole universe of celebrities and world leaders to look up to, and being able to pull style inspiration from them is just one of their many influences!

I picked up this sweet dress from TwinSistr vintage's Maria Martinez at the Comet Tavern benefit flea market a few weeks ago. It fits perfectly - which can be hard to come by as a petite lady! The halter top buttons at the neck and the skirt bellows out into a beautiful flower shape.

I think of Saved by the Bell's Kelly Kapowski or even Cha-Cha from Grease (RIP!) whenever I wear it. This time, I took this pretty frock out for a vintage shopping date with my girl Anisa.

Meet me at The Max?

Happy Birthday, Moksha!

Sometimes you meet people and you just want them to succeed. You have seen many of my inspirations covered here on Fresh Jess, and one of those I'm most supportive of especially. Moksha Clothing on the Ave in the University District has held it down for nine years, celebrating their anniversary last weekend. It's difficult for many small businesses to survive a couple of years, yet Moksha has stood strong throughout a recession and more.

I am incredibly humbled and honored to have the Moksha team (Elvia, Aleph et. al.) support me - keeping me stylish from my days as a brokeass college student to my life now. It has been a pleasure growing up with you, Moksha. To many more!

Shop Moksha now through Friday, July 22 and enjoy 30% off most everything in the store.

RSVP on Facebook

Here are some of my favorite outfits from Moksha over the last couple of years:

Dress & earrings from Moksha - HollyHood

Skirt from Moksha - SXSW

Dress & earrings from Moksha - illin on the Hill

Dress from Moksha - SAM Remix

Our event together in 2009!

Happy birthday Moksha! Love you!

Follow Moksha on TwitterBlogger and Facebook

Stylin with Sustalux

I love & appreciate vintage clothes but always had a really hard time shopping for it. Part of it is due to time & energy, but most of all, I just didn't know where to look and what to look for in quality vintage gems. Over the past two years, vintage has taken over my wardrobe thanks to my dear friend Dana, owner of Sustalux.

Basically, Dana's got many girls' dream job. She scours estate and garage sales, thrift stores, consignment shops & more for stunning vintage clothing, accessories, jewelry and furniture. She sends her finds off to photo shoots for Vogue, Travel + Leisure, Louis Vuitton, Anthropologie and the like. I've introduced many of my stylish friends who are now Sustalux regulars as well!

Dana invited me to her studio to play around in her massive closet during our very first conversation. Since then, she has literally added a whole new dimension to my style. While I spend much of my time in comfortable casual wear like Obey, RVCA, Lifetime Collective and H&M, Dana has added a lot of elegance and abstract fun to my wardrobe. Here are a few of my latest pieces from her:

Fringe fab!

Channeling Joan Holloway

Such a unique, fun striped skirt

Shop Sustalux online here. If you're in Seattle, friend Dana on Facebook to look out for her next Closet Candy party!

Seattle Weather Mood Swings

Seattle weather is absolutely, ridiculously bi-polar. Exhibit A: This particular day started out beautifully sunny and warm. So I work out, run my errands then make my way over to the BadWill monthly flea market at HG Lodge. I shop through fun booths with my friends, pick up some sweet vintage finds & say hi to my favorite boutique, Moksha:

Then I enjoy an afternoon treat at (new to Seattle) YogurtLand, one of my current obsessions:

H&M neon orange tee

f21 high-waisted striped shorts (gifted from  Clutch 22)

Vintage necklace (Sustalux)

Full-finger ring (Nasty Gal)

Jeweled ring (gifted from AnisaLeyla)

Diamond drop earrings (Moksha)

With my lifetime obsession:

:)

By the time I leave YogurtLand, it's finna downpour! Thank goodness for this sweet $5 find from Midnight Mart Vintage at said BadWill Market:

Raincoat (Midnight Mart Vintage)

Grey TOMS shoes

Vintage shoulder bag (Sustalux)

So I end up walking home looking like a confused beach bunny trapped in a rainstorm.

THANKS SEATTLE WEATHER XO

Fresh Style: Sunshine in the City

Sometimes luck is just on your side. This weekend, while I was leaving my neighborhood Trader Joe's I spotted a vintage sidewalk sale at an art collective house across the street. There I met Megan, owner of Bon Voyage Vintage and resident at this art collective. She was out there, as she is most weekends, with a couple of racks and tables full of her wares. Megan and I chopped it up and somehow I left with an Eazy-E cropped baby tee, red anchor sweater and this sweet faux-fur coat - all for $20!

I took the coat out for a spin on Alki Beach, where I spent some time blogging this weekend. Sunny but frigid, my city is beautiful. Check her out!

Vintage faux-fur coat, sunnies & boots

HUE thigh-high polka-dot socks

Target leggings ($6. got to.)

Not pictured:

Modern Assembly black cardigan

Vintage Easy-E baby tee

Coal fingerless gloves

IFB Evolving Influence Part I: The Pictures

When I first got into blogging and Twitter a couple of years ago, I found myself gravitating towards a specific group of Seattle girls who were also into blogging and social media: Jordana (Clutch 22), Sara (SPUN), Alix (AlixRose), Birdie (BonneVie) and Nadine (Girl's Guide to Seattle). It was through these amazing ladies that I learned about and joined the Independent Fashion Bloggers community. Though I don't consider myself a purely fashion blogger, IFB has been a great resource for blog trends, news and of course, networking with other bloggers. I've grown fond of IFB's founder, Jennine and her blog The Coveted and commend her for creating this community for us!

The Evolving Influence conference is IFB's bi-annual all-day workshop that coincides with Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in NY. Evolving Influence is chock full of valuable information for bloggers to really take their craft to the next level. This was my second time at the conference and I'm so impressed how much it's grown in the past year.

I've split up my coverage of Evolving Influence into three parts: The Pictures, What I Learned, and The Afterparty. Enjoy Part I!

En route to the conference. Cozy in my vintage fur hat!

The stylish crowding the sidewalks outside Milk Studios

Darling, understated Tavi (Style Rookie)

We're here!

The crowd looks on as Jennine introduces a panel

Me, Mary (Shop Glamarous), Nubia (Nubia's Nonsense) and Alix (AlixRose)

Playing with laptops at the Microsoft station

The Microsoft laptop station. Really wanted to take that art home & find it a new place in my living room.

Pamela (Market Publique), Taylor (Sterling Style), Alix, me and Amy (PunkyStyle)

Beachy keen in the Aldo booth. Those sweet wedges won't be on sale until March! I want

Me, Nichelle (StyleMom), Alix & Amy (Midtown Girl)

Super fun times with AlixRose in the Levi's "Shape What's to Come" booth

Proenza Schouler keynote

Ethan (Elle.com  / Titans & Co.) and I

What I wore:

Green & black checkered vintage duster coat

Vintage bib necklace

Urban Outfitters cream scarf

Vintage shoulder bag

JetSet latex high-waisted leggings

L.A. Made white double-V tee

Dolce Vita shearling boot

(not pictured)

Tete Couture feather headband

Moksha black double-rope belt

Vintage fur hat

Fresh Style: Thrifty & Witchy

I don't like Halloween. I hate costume shopping, mostly because I can't find any rhyme or reason in spending cheese on something you can only wear once, on one night, then never again. I can't do it!

I do, however, love Wishpot and Hotel Max, so when they teamed up to put on a Trick or Tweetup, I was happy to oblige with the costume-preferred dress code.

Still not wanting to spend a bunch of cash, I ravaged my closet. Ideally I wanted to be Bellatrix LeStrange from Harry Potter, but I spun it to reflect my body, style and what I already owned.

Voila:

All black everything!

Leather gloves: vintage (from Lucky Vintage)

Pearl necklace: F21

Tank: SPUN

Belt: Moksha

Skirt: vintage (from Closet Treasures Sale) - worn as a tube dress

Fishnet tights

Granny boots: etsy.com find - Magpie & Birdie

Thanks to the lovely Andria Lindquist & Beauty Revolution Magazine for the pic!