Fashion Alert: HAALA denim…MADE in the USA

OK! So I know I am NOT the only one, that has issues finding that perfect fitting jean. I know for me it’s a challenge because of my curvy shape, usually the waist is too big (bunches in the back), the cut is just all wrong or the wash just makes the pants feel like a brillo pad! Up until now I figured this was just an issue for woman, but to my surprise men also have this issue. Who would have thought, men have the same struggle with jeans. I will admit their issues seem to be a bit more bothersome than ours, since their packaging is a tad different, LOL!

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A couple months ago, I had the absolute pleasure of meeting Darrin Haala, co-founder of HAALA denim (“HAALA”), launched in 2010 by him & his brother, Dustin. I was extremely impressed by the quality & fit of Darrin’s jeans that I felt compelled to share it with my viewers. Their jeans are premium quality denim & 100% American made. You can tell that a lot of thought, creativity, & love goes into the production of their jeans. They feel absolutely amazing & look great on, they have a distinct fit & seem to be extremely comfortable. I know one thing for sure is that Darrin definitely takes pride in their line & captivates you when he explains HAALA.

I had the pleasure of asking Darrin some questions about HAALA, to give my viewers some more insight on what they are all about. You can purchase their jeans online at www.haaladenim.com & also make sure to follow them on Instagram at @haala_denim

1. What inspired you guys, to come up with the idea to start HAALA denim?

We wanted to start a business that we could see ourselves pouring creativity and passion into.  Denim is an evolving fabric that can reinvent itself and take on so many forms. We liked the fact that we can provide iconic American style, or today’s newest unique trends.  Not to mention, we have been wearing premium denim since we were young teenagers.

Today, jeans can be worn with a t-shirt or a tie…the diversity within our line can accomplish both. We began doing custom washes on raw jeans and our creations started turning heads from the model crowd in NYC and LA.  As our excitement and vision grew for denim, so did our will to make jeans in the USA and dedicate ourselves to using only the best fabrics, sewing, and wash services that Los Angeles can provide. We wanted to be hands-on and guide our product along the way.  Denim jeans tell a story for all of us, it’s our goal to make HAALA denim not only our story, but the customer’s as well.  

2. Is it hard to find the perfect fitting jean, do men even have this issue?

Men can have issues finding the perfect fitting jean, just as women do.  However, for us it was more about combining all aspects…FIT, FABRIC, & FINISH. Many brands claim to fame is one or 2 of these 3.  Being able to put them all together in perfect harmony is what we classify as Premium.  Our goal for our fits is to provide a modern, sleek silhouette that forgives just enough on the front rise, and sticks to the waist on the back, preventing gaping, pulling, or bunching.  We do a lot of pattern work in the upper region of the jean to insure comfort, but the legs and overall look of our jean projects a youthful, tailored look.

3. What’s so different about HAALA denim? What sets it apart from all the others?

HAALA denim sets itself apart from many brands by simply using better fabrics, designing better washes, and crafting an overall jean that is built to last longer. All of our fabric comes from Cone Mills, NC.  Cone denim is a world-renowned fabric supplier and we have carefully chosen the best fabrics, including 2 shades of selvedge denim from their White Oak facility.  They are one of the oldest facilities and have a proven track record of fabrics that are woven, dyed, and constructed to the highest standard.

We use doubled layered belt loops (I fell in LOVE with this idea), doubled & fused waistbands, double needle sewing throughout the entire jean, lined back pockets and fly’s, 100% leather patches, customized buttons and rivets, and more.  Simply holding a pair of HAALA denim and comparing it to many of the jeans in department stores can show the difference of fabric integrity. I personally felt a pair & to be honest describing them does no justice! (it’s the little intricate details, that sets HAALA apart in my opinion)

We are also different because we design each jean for a purpose.  Each jean is made for a particular reason.  The fit, fabric, wash, all work together to make the jean special. Many big name brands are providing predictable washes that go from dark, medium, and light because it’s the safe way to go.  HAALA denim washes have more special characteristics and detailing within them to portray more of an exclusive look.

Lastly, we are different because of the diversity within our line.  Many other brands claim their niche to be one particular thing, whereas HAALA denim’s strong suite is being able to design any type of jean imaginable. Our variety within the line gives more of a ‘designed’ feel rather than just a pair of jeans in a few different washes.  We can accommodate denim nerds with our 13.5 oz. clean selvedge or we can keep up with the trends with our new acid washes, waxed denim, etc.  The variety of choice that will continue with HAALA denim is what will keep our brand fresh and intriguing.  We will never become stagnant.  We also make our jeans by hand in small batches, which gives us the best quality control possible.  

4. What sizes do you carry ?

We currently carry:

Waist sizes: 30,31,32,33,34,36,38

Lengths: 30,32,34

We plan to add waist size 29 on the next productions.  We accomodate in between waist sizes as you can see, which makes for more perfect fitting jean than just skipping from 32 to 34 waist. or 30 to 32. We promote towards a guy who leads an active, healthy lifestyle and wants to look his best in HAALA denim.  Our jeans have received many compliments on the ability to flatter a range of demographics.  

5. Do you carry women’s jeans? Do you carry plus sizes?

We have a women’s line in development.  Samples have been made and they are turning out excellent.  Look for 2014 and 2015 to introduce an entire women’s line.  We currently have a mid-rise skinny in dark and light washes and a legging in black and colors.  We will not carry plus sizes, however, some styles of our women’s jeans will have a quality stretch blend, which will allow forgiveness in waist size.

We are also looking forward to developing women’s styles with some heavier, 100% cotton fabric.  These days, we have only been seeing thin, stretch fabrics in the world of women’s jeans, which we understand and will also be included in most of our women’s line, but being able to provide hardy, heavier fabrics for women again is something at the top of our list.

6. Are their jackets, shirts, shorts, etc. in future production being made?

YES! Our plan is to develop other product categories.  In the near future, look for leather jackets, denim jackets, graphic t-shirts, pocket t-shirts, cotton twill pants, and women’s shorts. Some of the categories, such as leather jackets will be part of our higher price point selection.

7. Are the design & the business/production management handled by both of you?

Both of us are creatives and we collaborate to design our product, however, my (Darrin’s) strength is doing more of the design and production management, while Dustin is strong suited in business, concept, and overall product performance.  My brother, Dustin, is also our financier and has been the backbone of getting the business started.  We work well together because both of us are able to make creative decision and business decisions alike.  Our relationship is very close, we are best friends. The trust and belief that we have in each other goes along way while pushing to get to the top

We are 100% involved with every step of the process.  There isn’t 1 step from beginning to end that we haven’t put in place ourselves.  We set up the entire product and production from the ground up.  We don’t cut corners and we make the product as best as we possibly can.  We know that this will help us substantially in the long run and our customer will appreciate the American made craftsmanship.

8. Have you guys always been into fashion ?  When did your passion for it come about?

I (Darrin) have.  Living in NYC for 6 years influenced my fashion drive and my curiosity to create my own fashion.  Instead of modeling others creativity, I wanted to be the one making my own creativity come to life. I went to college for graphic design and that also inspired my direction towards fashion design. It also helped with creating all the labels, artwork, photo shoot layout and art direction, photography, that is also involved with our line.

Looking at fashion from the outside in while I was a model gave me a good direction and perspective of now looking at it the other way around.  For me it’s bringing a lifestyle to life and not being afraid of going with your gut.  You have to know whats cool and not second guess. There are many times when my intuition tells me to create a particular style and going with that instinct is going to give HAALA denim brand identity.

My passion for denim also came about when I started doing DIY custom washes on raw denim…the artistic nature of making something with my own two hands, which nobody else had and could re-create was exciting.  From there, I wanted to make my art my craft, and our craft is HAALA denim.

Below are some of their more popular styles:

CROSBY – Straight leg. Curved waistband that forms perfectly on mens hips. Little more room in the thighs for an athletic build. Gives off a straight, modern look, yet known as our most comfortable, forgiving fit.westerlyWESTERLY – Slim.  This is our most popular fit within the urban demographic. Fits close to the body with just enough room for comfort, yet highly fashionable. Made with a phenomenal stretch fabric, it gives you the high fashion look without sacrificing comfort.

varickVARICK – Skinny.  We have developed what we call a true skinny. Not a slim that most other brands call a skinny, and not a slim/skinny….an actual skinny. Skinny for us means on the skin, which is how our skinny works all the way down until it reaches the ankle area, where it leaves just a touch more fabric in the ankle/leg opening, projecting a masculine appeal.  Also uses our stretch fabric.ginoGINO – Straight tapered- Best of both worlds, a mix between a straight and slim.  The top half is a straight leg, that fuses into a slim towards the bottom half of the jean, giving it a nice V silhouette.  This fit uses our selvedge fabric, so the leg opening is more flattering when it is smaller to cuff the bottom and show off the selvedge edge.

 

COMING SOON: Swanky Habits (www.swankyhabits.com)

Hi! *taps mic* My name is Veronica & I am a shop-a-holic. I love to shop, I know, I know what woman doesn’t! NO but seriously if it was a drug, I would have died from an overdose by now. I am head over heels in love with fashion, there are so LEVELS to this shit! Do I know the history of every designer, every cut, fabric or stitch no but I know what works! It’s not cute having a gap between the arch of your back/backside & the pant waistline, or a shirt hugging all the wrong areas, too tight, too big, too short, too long it’s all just a huge cluster faak. I don’t care what size you wear, if you’re short/tall, thin/average, thick/chubby, fat or obese finding what works for your body takes patience.

I was definitely a late bloomer to the more trendier look, I was a hip hop head growing up so Jordan/Nike kicks, sweats & fresh tees was what my wardrobe consisted of. As my body started changing & my curves became curvier I had to lose the baggy clothes & started wearing more “fitting” clothes. It took me a bit to really feel comfortable in my skin & own my look. My style works for me, works for my shape & most importantly I rock my clothes not vice versa.

I like to look good but being a single mother shopping can be a challenge. I hate having that spending guilt, so I like to shop knowing that I am not breaking my pockets. One morning I woke up & three words popped into my head “online clothing boutique”.  A few days later I sent a text to my girlfriend, Jamie, & asked her if she wanted to join me on this venture. She said “Yes!” & from that moment we hit the ground running.

Swanky Habits isn’t just another online boutique, our goal is to provide quality clothing at unbeatable prices. We want to empower the everyday woman to step her sexy up,  feed into their shopping habit without the guilty conscience. We want every costumer to feel like they are getting their money’s worth & feel like a million bucks!

Jamie & I understand having to work within a budget, we totally get it. That’s what sets us a part from the rest. Swanky Habits isn’t about marking up prices 5 to 6 times, we are about making you feel sexy. We want to inspire fashion ideas, give you a little push to step outside of your normality when it comes to fashion. Think of us as your personal stylist, need some outfit suggestions with your purchase, or have something from your closet you want to match with something from our store, no problem send us an email!

If you live within 15 miles of Sherman Oaks, CA & would like to host a party please email us at swankyhabits@gmail.com for more details.

Here is a little sneak peak…we launch next week! Follow us on Facebook, Instagram & Twitter @swankyhabits

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BEAUTYCOUNTER: Beauty Products That Empower A Healthier Lifestyle

I have to say first hand that these products are absolutely amazing. They are not ONLY safe for your skin (our largest organ) but they educate you on their products which are all made here in the USA (Santa Monica, CA). It’s scary to know that 1938 was the LAST YEAR federal law passed to govern cosmetics safety & protect the people who use them.

The average woman in the USA puts between 12 and 20 chemicals on their skin 365 days a week. Sounds ludicrous but is it really? How often do you read the labels on the back of bottles, let alone Google every ingredient? I mean the average woman mostly like does NOT have the time to do so.

This is what is so unique about BEAUTYCOUNTER, they CARE & thrive on educating their consultants & clients. I can guarantee you will NOT be disappointed in any of the products. I personally use them from shampoo to facial cleansers. Most importantly I know if I have ANY questions my consultant is an email/call away. You can’t say that about any of the cosmetic companies you buy from now, can you? I am NOT just talking a toll free number, either!

Check out the video below & if haven’t been convincing enough I guarantee this VIDEO is!

To purchase products go to www.karrieanne.beautycounter.com

The Body Collection

LOVE LOVE LOVE — The four products you need to keep hair and skin looking clean, healthy, and beautiful. Clean shampoo removes build-up. Rinse conditioner helps restore luster. Wash body wash gently cleanses skin without overdrying. Hydrate is a lightweight moisturizer perfect for everyday use. All products are lightly scented with notes of citrus that enliven the senses at any time of day.

The Face Oil Collection

1 & 2 are my FAVORITES — Three luxurious face oils with unique scents to incorporate into your beauty regimen. All Lustro Face Oils promote the appearance of beautiful, healthy-looking skin.
Lustro Face Oil 1 – Calendula has a warm, earthy-floral aroma
Lustro Face Oil 2 – Jasmine has a sweet-floral scent
Lustro Face Oil 3 – Ylang Ylang & Wild Chamomile has a creamy, fresh, herbal aroma

Routine Clean Cream Cleanser

Feels AMAZING & very light — A gentle face wash for daily use. Organic coconut oil removes impurities and buildup. Aloe, green tea, witch hazel, and floral extracts promote the appearance of healthy, rejuvenated and toned skin. Purifying citrus oils add a refreshing scent.

Gentle Exfoliator  Polishing Cream

EXTREMELY gentle, unlike most exfoliators — A creamy, botanically infused face polish. Jojoba esters gently exfoliate while organic coconut oil and meadowfoam hydrate and promote healthy-looking skin. A blend of essential citrus oils adds a refreshing scent.

Every Day AM Hydrating Cream

I use this everyday & apply two drops of the face oil (I prefer 1 & 2) — Every Day is a lightweight, unscented face cream with organic coconut oil and aloe to hydrate skin. Açai berry, pomegranate, lavender and chamomile soothe and refresh.

Every Night PM Hydrating Cream

It is similar to the day cream & I apply it the same way w/ two drops of the face oil — An unscented nighttime hydrating face cream. Organic coconut oil and aloe hydrate to help soften and promote smooth-looking skin. Geranium, chamomile and green tea support the appearance of balanced, rejuvenated skin.

The Struggle: 10 Tips for Banishing Belly Bloat:

Summer is around the corner & I am almost certain everyone is on their SUMMER TIME FINE fitness mode. I came across this article on slimming down your stomach by eliminating certain foods. According to fitness expert David Kirsch here are ten tips to getting a flat, sexy stomach in a cinch. Get a flatter physique by banishing that belly bloat! Here’s how. (source: Heidi Klum on AOL)

ten tips to banish belly bloat

1. Stay away from heavy carbs like bagels and pasta. When you decrease carbs in your diet, you train your body to access stored carbohydrates and burn them off, and eliminate excess stored fluids. Try an egg white scramble for breakfast instead, and pack protein-rich snacks like seeds, nuts or turkey slices.

2. Switch out high-fructose fruits like honeydew, apples or pears for fruits that are low in fructose like berries, grapes and citrus.

3. Think diet foods will help banish bloat? Think again. These products contain sugar alcohols that cause bloating. To satisfy your sweet tooth try mixing a little bit of maple syrup with your Greek yogurt in the morning or snack on berries.

4. Alcohol is the enemy! Alcohol causes dehydration and may slow your body’s ability to eliminate excess waste. Alcohol is also high in acid that can cause swelling in your GI tract. Reach for a glass of water instead. (GUESS THAT MEANS NO BLAMING IT ON THE A-A-ALCOHOL!)

5. Try to do some kind of physical activity every day. It increases your heart rate and breathing stimulates the natural contractions of your intestinal muscles, aiding digestion.

6. Many people think dairy is the enemy when it comes to bloating, but foods like yogurt that contain probiotics can actually help with belly bloat. Try Greek yogurt, which is higher in protein than its counterparts, so you’ll stay full longer.

7. Eat foods that are high in fiber, but keep in mind that not all fibers are created equal. Get your fiber from fruits and vegetables, whole-grain rice, pasta and bread rather than from packaged high-fiber products. (FLAX SEED IS GREAT)

8. Eliminate diet drinks, as many of them contain sorbitol, which isn’t digestible so it causes bloating. (DRINK WATER WHEN IN DOUBT)

9. Try not to eat on the go. You tend to take big bites of food and don’t chew properly so you swallow tremendous amounts of air. Take 15-20 minutes to eat each meal, even if you’re sitting at your desk, take a deep breath after each bite and chew with your mouth closed.

10. Skip the salt. Salt causes your body to retain fluid, and the biggest culprit can be salad dressings. Try seasoning your salad with lemon juice instead – you won’t sacrifice flavor but you’ll cut down on sodium and calories. (ALWAYS SEASON YOUR FOOD WITH LITTLE SALT, USE KOSHER and/or PINK SALT)

 

Blazer: H&M

Tank: MurMur

Jeans: Forever 21

Shoes: Vince Camuto

 

Today’s attire:

Cropped jean pants by Beau Dawson ($20 at Ross)

Blazer by Marissa Christina ($16.99 at Marshall’s)

Boots by Shoe Dazzle ($34.99)

For more you can always follow me on Instagram “SXYVEE” or instagram.com/sxyvee

Starting something new today & adding an OOTD (Outfit of the Day) section to my blog. Since I always post my OOTD’s on Instagram why NOT post them on here too. Being a FULL FIGURED/THICK/CURVY/VOLUPTUOUS woman & dressing curves can be extremely challenging not to mention trying to HIDE problematic areas!  I get how frustrating it can be to dress for your size/shape.

Just because you wear DOUBLE DIGITS doesn’t mean you CANNOT look fly! On the contrary SEXY exudes from within, the trick is to rock what works for you & your shape. YOU can dress just as cute as a woman wearing a size 1…just takes a little more imagination to get the pieces flowing together!

This 1st post is dedicated to my girl @MsJilliana for giving me the push to do this! Make sure to follow her on Twitter, she is always posting great ideas on fashion for kids (little girls, she is a bit biased since her daughter IS ADROBS!)

Today I am rocking:

Black Blazer by H&M for $34.95

Blouse by Cynthia Rowley (found at Marshall’s for $16.95) loose fit, comfy & hides any problematic tummy issues

Pants by Ellen Tracy Slim Ankle Pants (found at Marshall’s for $24.95) fits under the waste, for the curvier built woman

Heels by Betsey Johnson

Rihanna Works The Cat Walk At The Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show

The “Diamonds in the Sky” singer looked perfectly at home among the leggy, barely clothed ladies who stomped down the Victoria’s Secret runway Wednesday night, even stripping down to risque lingerie in the spirit of the fashion house’s annual Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show. (source)

Here is a collage I did of some of the pics she posted on her IG (Instagram) www.instagram.com/badgalriri

Vogue Fall Fashion 2012

 

 

 

 

Sistas Jewelry: A Division of SHE Global Adornments

The owners, Sheena and Catalina, of Sistas Jewelry are my extended family. These two ladies have an amazing talent and knack for excellent taste. Not only is their jewelry hand crafted, they do not duplicate any design. Every single piece is one of a kind.

ABOUT THE SISTAS:

Sistas Jewelry, a division of SHE Global Adornments, is inspired by the love my sister and I have for all things beautiful and unique!

We have always been enamored with other cultures, the way they adorn themselves, their traditions and their artistry. With inspirations gathered from various travels, coupled with our backgrounds in the creative arts and design and our endless desire to create, Sistas was born.

 We use beads from different parts of the world, found objects, antique pieces, gemstones, handcrafted beads, bold centerpieces and intricate clasps to create one of a kind jewelry!

It is our mission to connect with other cultures through collecting, combining, and creating one of a kind pieces! From distant lands, through our hands, to you…May you enjoy each piece as much as we enjoyed crafting it!

Make sure to check out their online store Sistas Jewelry. During the month of July in honor of Sheena’s birthday month, Sistas Jewelry is offering 20% off on all purchases made throughout July. Make sure to follow them on Twitter, Instagram and like their Facebook page. Below you will find some of their pieces, absolutely stunning. If you love fashion like I do, and appreciate the finer things in life you will without a doubt fall in love with Sistas Jewelry.

Like us on Facebook: SHE Global Adornments
Follow us on Twiiter: @IAMSHEGLOBAL
Instagram: sistasjewelry

“ENGLISH GARDEN” Handcrafted Beaded Chandelier Earrings

“RAINFOREST” Hand-painted Wood Disc & Bead Earrings

The Time of Year Carved Horn Leaf Beaded Earrings

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