FASHION – Style Post #1

D22

Starting this segment with something simple and clean. The classic leather jacket with one of my favorite printed shirts.

D33

The shirt is from Uniqlo, part of the Keith Haring collection. Uniqlo’s t-shirts are some of the most comfortable cotton I’ve ever worn. They’ve stayed soft and free of pilling or any discoloration of prints after many washes. Plus, I love the idea of trademarking amazing artist’s work , as Keith Haring’s one of my favorite artists.

STEPS – Running with Failure

I’ve probably run in to failure more frequently than the average person, primarily because failure and success are such subjective lines and the standards I’ve assigned to myself has always been decidedly high. I’ll save you the headache of preachy idioms and cliche lessons on how to deal with failure because we’ve heard them all and I’m personally not that optimistic. But, I have garnered some pragmatic perspectives and experiences I’d like to share from the failures I’ve strung up in the last few years of my life.

1) Enduring failure is a strength. The way  I see it, the quality that unifies the most successful people isn’t talent, intelligence or even uniqueness, but their willingness to fail. We’re accustomed to only take chances that are guaranteed. And that fear of failure hinders our own abilities more than anything else. When I look at someone I consider to be the best in their craft or most successful, I don’t judge them by their merits; rather, the weight of their burdens and failures they must have endured. Being able to withstand failure is a decisive quality of an individual when it comes to success.

2) Fail the right way. I sort all failures into two categories, the ones where you’ve given your 100%, and anything less than that. I’ve had plenty of failed attempts but the only ones that have been truly paralyzing were the ones where my failure was a result of me not doing enough. The trauma of those losses has kept me failing the right way moving forward.

3) Failure has its silver-linings. My attitude towards failure has also brought upon tangible opportunities in my life. Up until now, I hadn’t realized that my willingness to fail could translate to traits like gumption, vigor, ambitiousness and charisma in the eyes of others. And I find that those are the characteristics that people find me most appealing for. In personal life, it’s earned me respect and strength in relationships. And professionally, people are often willing to take a chance on me despite my lack of experience or qualifications for the position.

4) Willingness to fail unlocks your full potential. Not being afraid to fall has lifted many weights off my back and walls that previously hindered both my abilities and growth. Now I spend my time not calculating which action possesses the highest probability of evading failure, but what’s most creative, true to myself and beneficial for advancement. After all, I sleep better failing as myself than succeeding as a character.

Hopefully this gives you some fresh ideas on a generally very unfavorable outcome.

Cheers

FASHION – VanFashionWeek Feature

 

Got a little feature from Vancouver Fashion Week in promotion of fashion week coming in a few weeks. On a day that I where I was planning to stay in, I got called out to a meeting for work. Didn’t really think much about what to wear, just my usual get-up but somehow with some luck landed me a feature and two tickets to the show! Small milestone that’s worth a making a note of I think 🙂

#blessed

 


 

VanFashioWeekFinished

 

Street Style #15

We saw Lucas downtown this week in his very K-Pop inspired outfit! We had a chat with him and he told us that he was planing on coming to our event! No wonder why after we checked out his Instagram (@itslucastyle), he has over 1200 followers and has a very cool aesthetic to his page.

By: Elan Paris

STEPS – Sober

 

 

 

image

 

“Madly in Love”

I hate that expression because it insinuates that there’s another way to love. That’s the only way I’ve ever known.

It’s really a monster that’s too crude for our fragile bodies, and too complex for our limited minds.

It’s the bin of crumpled letters at 3AM; its in an infants first breathe but also a marriages last words; in hellos and goodbyes; words we say everyday and ones we never got to; the quietest Summer nights and the rainy afternoons in Spring; the drunken nights that conceive sobering thoughts; its ubiquitously everywhere yet also confined to our daydreams

It’s interesting how the most well documented phenomenon in human history is probably one that’s only meant to be felt. Including whatever this is.

“And now that it’s over, I’ll never be sober, I couldn’t get believe, but now I’m so high’

Happy Valentines

STEPS – Second Best

I would could never settle for second best. And I hope you don’t either. 

These are not words of ungratefulness, but ones of acceptance that you deserve what you desire most. (If you’re willing to take the risks and do the work)

Between you and your dreams, there’s so many shortcuts and temporary fragments of happiness at arms reach. And in the moment it seems like all agency of labour, waiting, fear, uncertainty, agony….washes away. But the feeling is short-lived. And I think the moment you’ve committed to a life far from what you envisioned for yourself, is also when you’ll realize it might be too late. I think, it’ll weigh heavy on your conscience, and eat you up. And what’s worse than having all these people, places, things around you and still be unhappy? 

BigWhite2

I think the generation that I come from is one that’s too obsessed with the idea of possession. Always needing to have something in our hands. Not having plans for the weekend means you’re a loser. Not having a job means you’re lazy. Not having the latest iPhone means you’re outdated. Having a small circle of friends means you’re unpopular.  These social expectations build fear and anxiety on the idea that “not having” is the absolute worst outcome in life.

Suddenly, it’s not worth the risk, the labor, the time to chase that career path or person anymore. Because we might not “have” in the end. It took me a long time to figure this out, and evenly longer to admit to myself. But I’d be happier “not having”, than to have what’s not right for me. And I’ve been learning to be content with myself to “not have”. Because I’m working for what I want most, and only that.

I’ve seen too many of my peers settle for “stable” career choices, stay around “safe” people, pursue “realistic” lifestyles, when they clearly have other ambitions in mind. And it’s a little disheartening to see themselves put out their own flame when they won’t even entertain the thought of how big it could get.

BigWhite3

I’m here to be that voice that tells you not to throw it away. Whatever you have in mind, I don’t think it’s silly or impossible. And it’s definitely not out of your reach, at least not forever. I’m not saying it’s wrong to reach for the low hanging fruits along the way, but don’t let it stop you from climbing to the ones at the top either.

Enjoy the spontaneity. Carpe Diem.  The small gifts of life that fall like snowflakes into our hands. But also, don’t let all of these distractions blur what you deserve most, the type of happiness that gently crawls under your eyelids first thing in the morning even before the sunlight does.

 

STEPS – Footprints

Have you ever thought about the footprints you’ve left on people?

Exactly which gesture you made or line you said that stuck with an individual and ultimately created the deepest memory of you?

I realized that it’s usually farthest from our expectations. Our lightest steps somehow causes the deepest footprints in people, and other times we try our hardest not making a dent.

I know for me, some of the people that aren’t even in my life at this moment are the ones that have had the biggest influence in my attitudes toward life, creativity and sense of self. And other faces I see on a consistent basis seem to pass through me like a breeze. It makes me ponder at which times have individuals taken memory snapshots of me. On a bad hair day? When I was feeling extra giving?  Without a doubt, a partial aspect of this awareness stems from wanting to appear favorable to my peers, but another component also arises from the desire to start leaving greater, more purposeful footprints in people’s lives. I don’t just want to be that forgettable whiff. I want to take careful steps in inspiring my peers, being the crutch of support when needed, and being a beacon of happiness that spreads as far as possible.

Because after we’re long gone, our footprints are the only pieces of us that will stay preserved. And if you walk carefully throughout your life, it can also embody a magnificent work of art that defines who you were.

FASHION – Two Birds Apparel [Brand Feature]

TBA3

Ever since learning about the impacts of the fashion industry (fast fashion in particular) socially and environmentally, I’ve been doing my best to make quality-over-quantity choices in my shopping. Yes, this means no more $10 t-shirts for me, but I’m more than happy to pay a little extra for a clear conscience. I’ve also been giving more attention to local designers as I think it’s imperative as consumers to not let corporate businesses smother domestic growth in fashion.

TBA1

One brand which fits both criteria is Two Birds Apparel, a brand that started in Toronto but later moved here in Vancouver started by founders Daniel and Tiffany Andrew. The brand revolves around a sustainable, eco-friendly business model, using high quality Canadian based fabrics such as organic cotton, bamboo and Tencel. Additionally, a percentage of their profits are said to go to the David Suzuki Foundation. They also house other brands that possess the same eco-friendly brand values that they do, such as EAU Good (reusable water bottle) and WeWOOD (watches).

TBA2

Even with a stringent business model, they’ve made no compromises with style in their clothing. They’re apparel – although to-the-basics consisting of t-shirts and henleys for now – have a vibrant color pallette and a comfortable fit.  I own a t-shirt myself and I can say the quality is definitely noticeably softer  than your average fabric and has not pilled or ripped over many washes and wears. Prices range from $40-60 through the collection which is not bad all considering all aspects mentioned. As of now, the store only houses menswear, but I predict that the collection of apparel will quickly expand in every sense. I think it’s  a perfect way to start if you’re looking to build a quality wardrobe that also takes a step forward into being ethical and environmentally responsible.

www.twobirdsapparel.com

#2016 #newyearnewyou

STEPS – Learning Patience

 

PatienceFinished.jpg

 

Someone once told me I was an impatient person. At the time I viewed it as the world slowing me down. I possess a personality where once I’ve decided I want something, I will pursue it earnestly. Putting the work in has never been a problem for me, but I always desired immediate results. I hated waiting more than the average person.

I hate waiting for people.
I hate waiting for purchases I’ve made online.
I hate waiting for a table at restaurants.

Most of the time, this shortcoming didn’t cause major complications in my life. As my impatient mind always found some method to hasten any process of waiting. If I knew I was meeting up with someone that was always late, I told them to meet up at an earlier time than intended to makeup for their tardiness. I pay for express shipping (sometimes, don’t judge me). I always make a reservation when I can.

It wasn’t until recently in my life that I’ve been put into a position where I have no other choice but to wait. Initially, I felt like my life was put to a complete halt and I tried everything I could to remedy the situation. It was really the first time in my life where efforts were returned with counterproductive results. The only card I had left to play was not one at all. So I wait and wait and wait… But waiting has become a companion of mine since then. Throughout this process, I’ve really learned that being patient doesn’t mean slowing down, it means to harness the ability to put yourself in sync with the universe. Sometimes the lack of present results does not signify a lack of effort. I’ve done my part, and now I need to let the universe make its adjustments. And sometimes the universe just quite isn’t ready for me yet. I still work just as hard, but I’ve learned to enjoy my time waiting for things. Enjoy the silence, the weather, reflect on my day, and create a better me until it’s my turn. Sometimes waiting is part of the work. I’ve never made that conclusion before. Perhaps the most fruitful trees take the longest to blossom.

I want this forever, so I guess waiting for a finite amount of time is more than fair.

STEPS – Signed and Sealed [Part 1]

In the midst of placing myself under reconstruction, there’s been many moments where I’ve found myself afloat in space, not really knowing where to go from one day to the next. I’ve acquired a lot of new building blocks the past year, but haven’t figured out a cohesive way to building upwards. The most confounding and difficult aspect of this process is retaining very vivid dreams in mind but having to draw the map on your own.

With this dilemma, I started watching documentaries and interviews, reading books, articles and autobiographies on figures who were successful in transforming their visions into existence. These figures were people who are considered first class at at their craft, being sushi chefs and violinists, and visionaries that changed society with their ideas like Kanye West and Steve Jobs. I learned a lot from their philosophies, work ethics and attitudes that I desire to share here. But the biggest lesson here  – and one that deserves its own post – is that the largest bridge that separates those who’ve made it and the ones on the other side is not talent, intellect or luck. It’s the audacity to put all the eggs in one basket. Observing these figures completely redefined the words “commitment” and “sacrifice” for me.  The two words together reveals a heart that  believes in a vision so strongly that it’s willing to put every other aspect of life aside to make it happen.

The truth is, most people are average at most things. We spread ourselves razor thin between many people, places, activities, hoping one of those paths will lead us to bliss. We also spend much of our time on moments that we won’t even remember the next day. Most of all we only allow ourselves to be susceptible to a fixed amount of failure. All of these elements indicate a normal, balanced lifestyle. But it was at the end of last year when I decided that that wasn’t really the life for me; at least not now. The individuals that I observed dedicated every minute, thought and energy into a singular goal. Yes it’s probably unhealthy, nonsensical and even selfish at times but don’t you wonder what you could accomplish if you focused all your resources into a single objective as well? It’s that dose of curiosity coupled with the ache of not yet having the things I want most, that pushed into taking that first step on that bridge.

So for the new year, the only diet I’m going on is anything in life that will take me a step closer to my destination. The only people I want to associate with are ones that have a piece to offer in my journey. The only activities I’ll be indulging in are ones that can service me in growth. And I’m not allowing myself to change course at anytime until I’ve reached my efforts have come through fruition or else I might as well go back to being average.

STEPS – Disconnected

image

A dilemma that I’ve been struggling with is feeling disconnected from the people around me. It’s not that I’m not physically around people enough or have a shortage of friends. But the activities that we partake in together hardly glide past the realm of “partying” and conversations don’t often dwell deeper than school and work. I miss the long random phone calls at 2AM on an accidental Wednesday or a coffee shop date with an old friend. I think all that time and energy has now be redirected into our thumbs that refresh Instagram pages and watching videos of people trying foods on Buzzfeed.

It makes me realize how disconnected we are as a generation. We have all the modern conveniences of communication that would have been unfathomable to our predecessors. We can reach out to anyone in the world at the tip of our fingers in a matter of seconds. But we use that technology to make sure everyone knows we’re at the club or what’s for lunch today instead.

I’ve become someone that has no qualms speaking to any stranger with confidence. Yet, I’m too afraid to reach out to the people that are on my mind the most. I’ve come to realize the emptiness of feeling disconnected from people and myself, is a much worse misery than the discomfort of really telling people what’s on my mind; so I’m going to try do that a little more.

I still don’t have all the answers, but I’m hoping this awareness and minute changes like this will facilitate me in reconnecting with people that mean the most. Everything else can wait.