Oranges & Zippers

I promise I haven’t been neglecting my blogging.
I’ve just been doing it twice a week elsewhere, on for my internship.

Also I went to the Nan Desu Kan 2013 anime and video game convention, finished my finals, quit my old job, interviewed and got a new job and had one whole day off to myself and my hunni.

It’s really a wonder my head doesn’t explode from all this multi-tasking. (Does anyone know what it’s like to have a peaceful day? I grew up near farmlands and honest-to-betsy COWS and I forgot.)

So here’s a re-cap of my writing:
Denver YKK Zipper Trend Event
Orange at Mercedes-Benz Fall Fashion Week 2013
Fall/Winter Fashion Trends for Colorado 2013
Come visit me over on FCF and I’ll continue to cross-blog when I can! Gino Velardi, a local Denver designer, is having a show Oct 3rd (ironically, my last day at the old job) so I’ll be sure to have lots of great coverage from that!

xxoo ❤


Barrera International Autumn/Winter 2013/2014


In accordance with my shiny new internship, all of my follow-up coverage is posted on First Class Fashionista! Click for a link to my article, along with video and photos for the event. (I do have some photos I took personally I can post ASAP!) 😉

Barrera International – Autumn/Winter 2014 Collection Preview

I need to tell you what I’ve been working on.

Guess who will be representing First Class Fashionista this Thursday? (Because you’ll never guess, here, on *my* blog…)

Alright, it’s me! ^0^ I will be at the Barrera International Autumn/Winter 2014 Collection Preview down in the Santa Fe Art Districts, dolled up and ready to cover the event for everyone who has an interest in fashion, especially locally.

Barrera FlyerPhoto credits: Designer Juan Jimenez, Erroll Perkins- Beauty Director, Ted Medina- Hair Lead Stylist , Photo Credit-Kevin Alexander , Model-Oumou D

This Thursday will be an amazing fashion event not to be missed; we here in Denver should feel privileged to host this show.

Join fashionistas, fashion industry professionals, and other fashion-enthusiasts in a night previewing the Autumn/Winter 2014 collection of Juan Jimenez. Jimenez, only 22 (youth in vogue!) , is the designer at the helm of Berrera International. He recently graduated from Johnson & Whales and has interned at Tom Ford. I don’t normally do quote-for-quote from websites, but I love this:

“Every piece in the collection has been cut, assembled, stitched and sewn by hand to achieve perfection. From luxurious evening gowns to simple staple pieces, be sure to find a wide selection of items to covet. The beauty of this and every Barrera collection will be the availability to customize every look and make each piece unique.”
-Barrera International.

Berrera International throws out the power words “luxury, character & exclusivity”. What woman doesn’t want to be described in those terms?!

Those attending will be privy to the first glance at his Asia-meets-French-Couture collection, as well as formally introducing the designer’s Menswear collection and the newest pieces in the Barrera International’s Ready to Wear and Couture concepts.

So. My local people all need to be there. Seriously.

It’s going to be down in the Santa Fe Art District, specifically the Space Gallery (765 Santa Fe Dr, Denver, CO 80204), and doors are at 9 PM. Unless you go for broke and get a VIP ticket. They *are* a little costly, but you get a lot for your money.  Plus, who doesn’t want to feel like a red-carpet celeb for a night? (PS. I will be there getting mingly with the VIPs; black tie, camera, iPad recording software. I’m techno-chic.)

Doors are at 8 PM for  and hour of VIP reception. With that, you get includes a Latin/Asian fusion menu and specialty themed cocktails, private parking, and front row seating.

Black tie attire is mandatory. (But really, how often do you get to wear black tie? I’m excited!)

General Admission is $25; VIP is $100 for 2 guests.

A portion of the proceeds will benefit SafeHouse Denver, serving victims of domestic violence and their children since 1977.

If you’re still unsure, I suggest you watch this video, taken last year by the First Class Fashionista team (now I’m on the team! Yay!), to get a feel for what’s gonna go down in D-town.

For ticket information [you will 😉 ] visit or email

See you there! -xxo

A Taste of the Pacific

Well, I know it’s been a while, but I haven’t found much to inspire me lately.

After attending First Fridays:
(as always, you can click for bigger semi-decent photos)

Sante Fe Street FF
Down Santa Fe FF Tribal Drumming FF
Break Dancing FF First Fridays Gallery

But I couldn’t find a whole lot to do during the weekdays! (It’s one of the sad signs that summer is winding down here in Colorado. ;( )

However, whilst wandering around downtown in search of something interesting, I ended up fairly close to one of my favorite spots. So instead of moping about the excess of free exercise I got meandering atound, I decided to share one of my favorite places in downtown Denver with you.

Sakura Square

Sakura Square ExteriorSakura Square

Nestled in between 19th Street and Larimer Street, Sakura Square is a bitty little taste of Asia displaced among the skyscrapers and business buildings. Primarily, it serves as a small shopping center and entrance to the Tamai Tower apartments that loom over it, but there’s little points of interest for everyone.

A small Japanese garden rests in the center, which I always find a calming retreat from the bustling route of 16th street which I generally travel to get here. In this beautiful and simple garden are the busts of Ralph L. Carr, Minoru Yasui, and Yoshitaka Tamai. Each has a nameplate and a bit of history if you are interested in that, and it’s an enjoyable read just to get a taste of Japanese-American history in Colorado. I find Ralph L. Carr’s bust to be of particular interest; he was the only elected official in the US to issue a public apology to the Japanese Americans for their internment during and after WWII. (The *only* elected official to do this! What a fantastic guy. I always thought that was amazing, especially having seen the desolate site of Colorado’s Camp Amache/Granada War Relocation Center for myself.)

In the square, there’s also a Buddhist temple, a restaurant (Yoko’s), and a book store (and dental places, for some reason…).  Aside from that, Sakura Square also hosts the Japanese Cherry Blossom Festival in June, with traditional food and dances! It’s wonderful!

Personally, I can never pass by Sakura Square and not go buy myself a little treat!

Pacific Merchantile Company

Here is the Pacific Mercantile Company, an Asian grocery store located at the base of Sakura Square. They have things here I haven’t been able to find locally anywhere else, especially at such low prices. (And when I went this time, the huge blocks of curry mix were even on sale! ヽ(*▽*)ノ )  They’re only open until 6, so if you have work that day, you might have to book it, but it’s totally worth at least stopping by and giving this place a look-see.

Sakura Square Card Aisle Sakura Square Shelf Sakura Square Cold Drinks

They have cards, drinks, food, and cooking and dining supplies, along with a few beauty products and assorted miscellaneous stuff. (Try a Ramune, you have to push a marble into the bottle just to drink it! Or a Calpico drink. Or a delicious kiwi or mango-flavored mochi cake! ^w^ YUM!)

However! If you can’t make it out to my lovely Sakura Square yourself, I am pleased to announce…


Alright, to enter, just use the widget at the bottom. To enter, you simply have to leave a comment on this blog post. (It does have to be *relevant*! Or it won’t count. 😛) Why not leave your favorite place? Favorite Asian treat? Something you like about the blog?


You will be entered to win the Sakura Square Prize Pack!

(aka, I bought a bunch of small things any self-loving fashionista shouldn’t be without!)

Sakura Square Prize Pack(click for larger images!)

Sushi EraserTweezersDragon Tags

This prize pack includes:

1. An *adorable* eraser shaped like sushi. Sushi is so trendy, erasers are such a staple for designers, no?

2. A set of eyebrow tweezers- featuring an adorable manga-style print girl! Reminding you that beauty is maintenance.

3. Chopsticks featuring a schoolgirl motif. I couldn’t resist; sailor suit and all, her long socks make up the length of these fun chopsticks, which can be used as an eating utensil or to pull up your hair! (but please only do one…)

4. What fashionista isn’t a dragon inside?! These year of the dragon tags feature the Chinese zodiac figure along with writings on their attributes and dates. Who cares if you weren’t born year of the dragon- celebrate a strong year anyway!

Beauty Essentials for People with Zero Time

Here it is! See? I told you there would be two and there are. So…nya. 😛

Part of fashion is beauty, and beauty part of fashion. Like that rectangle-square relationship, they’re neither mutually exclusive or exclusive, but their traits tend to overlap. (It also doesn’t hurt that women love fashion and women love beauty tips. or that on the whole, fashionistas like things that are pretty.)

So, I offer unto you, my lovely internet readers, my secret to looking vibrant and alive despite my total lack of time to spend primping on a daily basis and the impracticality make-up serves in my work-related endeavors. (Usually I end up sprayed in the face with water at work. Every. Day. That’s what working with plants and flowers gets you. Pretty things are rude.)
The best part is, none of these items are over $15.

So without further ado, the four things that my life depends on [if I don’t want to look like death].

#1: Yes to GrapefruitYes to Grapefruit Brightening Facial Towelettes

These are phenom. They cleanse, they exfoliate, and generally give you that fresh-out-of-the-shower glow that makes your skin look healthy. Also, it helps get any oil, sweat, or cosmetics out of your pores to keep your face lovely. 🙂 I usually throw a bag in my purse and use one in the morning to get any grossness I might have missed, and then one mid-way through the day to freshen up.  Plus, they smell sweet and delicious! These only run about $5.99 for a pouch of 25 towelettes from their official website (or you can find them at Target if you don’t want to deal with shipping).

clean up your face!


Happy BoosterHappy Booster Glow & Mood Boosting Baked Bronzer

Because I don’t like cakey foundations and I occasionally look pale in the morning (thanks, anemia!), this compact is my BF. It’s Physician’s Formula, so it’s not full of things that are too horrible to be on your face, and it actually smells pleasant. They claim it’s violets, but it’s more of a baby-powder/perfume sort of mix. In addition to making you glow like you’re excited to face the day, it’s made with natural plant extracts that are supposed to promote happiness. I’m not sure if that’s true or not, but at the crack of dawn in the morning, anything helps. These will run you $13.95 for a compact, but if you watch the sales at King Soopers and Walgreen’s, you can usually snag them up for about $11.

get happy!


Pink Lemonadee.l.f. Essential All Over Color Stick in Pink Lemonade

I love this thing. Love. First off, it’s a whopping $1. And it’s actually GOOD. This is a quick, cheap, grab-n-go item that you can toss in your bag and use as blush, as lip color or even to brighten up your eyelids or temples. Pink Lemonade is my favourite color. Keeping in mind that I’m generally pretty pale (but yay, #2 bronzer!), but it makes a lovely blush and just a dab on my eyelids blended in makes me look more alert and awake. A little bit on your lips goes a long way though, it’s kind of pearl-y and shiny. You can order it online, or this is another good Target and occasionally Dollar Store find.

thirsty for some lemonade?


NatureLuxe Mousse MascaraNatureLuxe Mousse Mascara by Covergirl

I don’t wear eyeliner except very chic occasions, so this stuff is crucial to making my eyes look wide and alert. It’s natural (I think it’s made with bees wax), and you can completely tell that it doesn’t interfere with your eyelash health. I’ve had a lot of mascaras in the past, and what this one lacks in the falsies look, it makes up for with natural, long ad full-looking lashes. Plus, it washes off when you want it to and you don’t have to apply a million coats to look like a doe-eyed beauty. I would normally link you to the real page, but Covergirl sells primarily through others anyway, soooo… Pick it up from a Wal-Mart, Walgreen’s, Ulta, or anywhere else that sells Covergirl cosmetics. It’s only about $9.99 a tube.

lash up!

So, there you have it. Fantastical things I have found for you, on the cheap. They’re functional for running around trying to manage a busy lifestyle, or even just achieving a nice look with minimal effort, money, or too many icky chemicals. (also, it should be noted that all the images used are from their *official* product pages, and I was not given any money to endorse these! shame, really. ;P )

What about you guys? Do you have a favourite product you would love to share? I’d love to hear what else is out there!


The Ferocious Alebrije & the History Colorado Center

Sorry it’s been a while.
Originally I had intended to post Sunday or Monday and make a weekly habit of it, but that didn’t work out. (I need to get more comfortable posting from my iPad. But it’s weird. Does anyone else have trouble adjusting to on-screen keyboards?)

Anyway! To make up for it, here’s the first of two posts.

As previously mentioned, Denver is hosting the Biennial of the Americas, which is still ongoing. The public events are mostly winding down (and most of them were shoved into a span of a few weeks anyway; that’s how Denver parties hard!), but evidence of the increased art presence can be seen all throughout the Denver area.

Possibly one of my favorites has to be this big ol’ guy.


It’s partially because he’s whimsical, and partially because the butterfly instillation on the 16th Street Mall disappointed me. (We can make the ‘beauty is fleeting’ and ‘nothing is permanent’ cliche’s to make it less upsetting, but mostly, the butterflies escaped and left us with an empty net. Denver got dumped by butterflies.)

So! Instead we have this coyote-drago hybrid cheerfully waving one clearly clawed hand at young and old alike outside the History Colorado Center. Despite a lot of digging, I couldn’t find who made this lovely creature, and the History Colorado website basically makes me feel like I should be visiting somewhere that isn’t made of concrete and office buildings.

Thankfully, the artist was kind enough to clearly explain to us that this is an alebrije. I remember these guys from my fine art student days. Alebrijes are Mexican folk art sculptures, almost always made from copal wood and always brightly colored. There is nothing about this guy that isn’t vivid; I love the use of color. This guy is made from paper mache (which I suck at, so WOAH), and it does look made by hand. To me, that makes it look a lot more personal than a generically perfect piece of work might.

So, what do you think? Cute? Frightning? Super out-of-place in Downtown Denver? (I agree with that last one; that’s why I like it. :P)

fullsize fullfront

As a side note, Colorado turns 137 tomorrow! Happy Birthday, Colorado!

The aforementioned History Colorado Center will be hosting a celebration with free admission and events!

If you want to check it out, it runs from 10am-4:30am with various events happening throughout the day. For a complete list of performances and events, click here (because I won’t make you navigate that website!).