Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Show your selfie style

March 20th, 2014

selfiegroupOur attempt at an Oscar-style selfie, with Angelo Bruno performing Bradley Cooper duties to snap this shot from our H&M photo shoot. Also from left, Nicole Fuertes, myself, Craig T. Kojima and Haylee Kam (no relation). Story's in the paper March 20.

Why are we smiling? Because H&M opens officially March 27, when you'll want to be among the first 500 in line to receive a limited-edition tote bag containing an Access to Fashion Pass valued from $10 to $500 for shopping the long awaited brand.

The selfie also calls attention to a new feature I’ll be launching in the paper to celebrate the selfie era.

Last November, the selfie hit the mainstream in a big way when the term was named "word of the year" by the Oxford English Dictionary. And, of course, Ellen Degeneres’ recent star-studded Academy Award selfie garnered 3.3 million re-tweets. Never mind that it turned out to be a promotion for Samsung, which, according to the Wall Street Journal, paid about $20 million for the product placement.

I’ve been snapping selfies—in the olden days they would have been called self-portraits, but today they have a quickie, ephemeral quality that's hard to take seriously—since 2008, mostly in the interest of self-protection while shopping.

selfie origI believe this was my first selfie, taken in the dressing room at Saks Fifth Avenue Off 5th at Waikele Premium Outlets. I wasn't going to buy this frothy dress, but had to see it on. Someone in the newsroom who saw this photo asked, "Why so serious?" These were not meant to be shared the look-at-me spirit of selfies today. These were experiments to see how certain clothes look on a body.

pradaTrying on Prada at Woodbury Common Premium Outlets in September 2009, just before the start of New York Fashion Week.

I often noticed that I looked terrific in the dressing room, but when I got home … not so much. I became convinced some stores use “skinny” mirrors or angle them in a way to make shoppers look taller or thinner than they really are. So I started taking selfies to confirm what I really looked like in the clothes.

My first was snapped in the dressing room at the Saks Fifth Avenue Off 5th at Wai­kele Premium Outlets. The dress was a frothy yellow that I would never wear, but I had to see what it looked like on a body.

After a while the aim expanded to the vicarious thrill of trying on clothes I could not possibly afford: “Look, I’m wearing Givenchy!”

Lately I’ve added a documentary element, creating a rec­ord of pieces actually owned, worn and styled.

selfietodayToday's selfie is more documentary: Zara tank, Elizabeth & James shirt, eyelet shorts, Valentino Rockstud sunglasses and Chanel backpack.

Now, I want to see your Selfie Style.

Snap pictures of yourself in some of your favorite looks and email them to To show the most possible, it's probably best to use a mirror, unless you have the arm extension of an ape.

Be sure to include your name and a description of what you’re wearing, including brands and shops, and we’ll pick a few of our favorites to run in the Today section and online.

Thank you! Look forward to seeing what you're wearing now.

JamsWorld hosts warehouse sale extravaganza

August 23rd, 2013


Who doesn't love a sale starting at $1!

Honolulu Night Market goes big on fashion

May 19th, 2013

Non-flash video link

The culinary community has Eat the Street to promote grassroots food purveyors, and Hono­­lulu Night Market, in the heart of Kakaako, promises to do the same for the retail and fashion community.

Every month, the event combines food and drink, shopping and fashion, including retail pop-up shops and a themed fashion show presented by an up-and-coming stylist who is given carte blanche to showcase his or her vision.

This time, Tyson Joines was tapped, and he created a study in black and white, inspired by Alexander Wang's Spring/Summer 2013 collection, with designs running the gamut of sporty and evening chic, utilizing apparel from Wang, plus local boutiques Basique Threads, I AM., and Bamboo Sky.

Over the eight months the monthly Honolulu Night Market has been in existence, the shows have grown, and this was the largest to date, with 21 models showing 42 looks. Past shows have featured about 25 looks on 12 to 15 models. It's great as more in the fashion community—from stylists to makeup artists—now have a large venue to showcase their work and turn their ideas into reality.

It's great for young artists and designers as well as Kakaako-area businesses, enabling people to come together in forging collaborations that will have lasting long-term benefits for the economy and community. Gov. Neil Abercrombie was there to show his support for the fashion community and contratulated Tyson after the show.

This month, the event took place May 18 at 683 Auahi St., where pop-up shops set up inside the Pinch of Salt warehouse. Among them were B.E.A.D.S. HI (custom bracelets), Deanna Rose's Indigo Elixirs (skin salves and balms), Padma & Pickles (custom jewelry), Bamboo Sky, House of Aria, Florencia Arias, Jenny Cao-Wu's, and more.

The next Honolulu Night Market will take place 6 to 11 p.m. June 15.

hnmkeikoNadine Kam photos
Keiko Bonk with husband Michael Christopher.

hnmChrista Wittmier and Sarah Honda.

hnmhokulaniThe fashionable Hokulani, in Doggles and polka-dot ensemble attended with Norman Dung. You can check out her Facebook page at

hnm tysonStylist Tyson Joines after the fashion show with Gov. Neil Abercrombie and First Lady Nancie Caraway.

hnmtiffBamboo Sky's Tiffany Young set up TiffHeartFashion's Preloved Clothes, and I scored her Elizabeth & James cropped silk top for $25. Yay!

hnmbskyFor those who like their clothes all-new, her Bamboo Sky pop-up was packed with shoppers.

hnmariaHouse of Aria was a first-timer at Honolulu Night Market. Owner Melody Domingo, second from right, was there with, from left, Adrianne Quiane, April Domingo and Jessica Tabucbuc.

hnmfreshJenny Cao-Wu's brought her pop-up to Pinch of Salt.

hnm pearlsYou could order customized black pearl jewelry from Kelsey Nishi's Padma & Pickles.

hnm florenciaFlorencia Arias offered her dresses for women and girls.

hnm leiIn time for graduation season, R&D was offering Sweet Lady candy lei. Find out more at

hnmartOut on the street, people could shop for artwork.

'Project Runway' recap to come

January 3rd, 2013

Even though hometown designer Ivy Higa was sent home from 'Project Runway All- Stars' last week, I'm continuing to write post-show recaps through the end of the series run.

Unfortunately I don't have Internet service at home so will be posting tomorrow. Thanks for understanding.

Closet Swap marks six years of many happy exchanges

October 29th, 2012

closet paperNadine Kam photos
Contestants in a zany reuse fashion show line up for photos during Fashionista's Market's 6th annual Closet Swap. I give them a lot of credit for theatrically parading across the stage!

Fashionista's Market 6th annual Closet Swap took place Oct. 21 at the Japanese Cultural Center Manoa Grand Ballroom, starting with the perfect breakfast of scrambled eggs, Portuguese sausage, rice, fresh fruit and champagne from Barefoot Bubbly, fun and games, a reuse fashion show, and finally, the mad dash for clothing donated by participants.

It was all for a good cause as funds raised will benefit the Leeward Domestic Abuse Shelter, and Amanda Stevens, from Goodwill Industries of Hawai'i was waiting in the wings to whisk anything that wasn't picked up by guests away to Goodwill, to raise funds for its vocational and community programs.

Before or after sitting down to breakfast, women could also shop for handcrafted accessories from ccdoodle's Christy Chung, as well as check out make-and-take stations manned by Cassandra Rull and Holly Boulay, who were showing guests how to transform unwanted threads into more desirable clothing and accessories.

By now, Closet Swap frequenters know a little of what to expect in the recycled fashion show, which comprises one item from the swap plus a whole lot of newspaper and tape, so having mastered the art of poufs and pleats, costumes have a lot more details to them. The only thing the women don't know is the theme, and this year it was Disney.

Apparently, everybody loves a beautiful princess. We saw a lot more of those than wicked queens. There were also Little Mermaids and Tinkerbells, and on the seamier side, a drunken pirate of the Caribbean and not only drunk but pregnant Tinkerbell (Kelley Porter), who managed to win the competition, along with a cute 5-year-old Minnie Mouse (Ayla Prather).

For the team effort involved in getting them papered up, their tables won 5 minutes early entry to the swap, a fun way to trade your trash for others' treasures.

I was able to grab a few chunky sweaters no one in Hawaii could possibly want, but that would come in handy during my trip to the chilly East Coast. Unfortunately, my flight Sunday was cancelled due to Hurricane Sandy, but I will still try to get out later in the week. In the meantime, I have a half dozen blog posts to catch up on, so I will try to get them done so I don't have to catch up in airports.

Non-flash video link

winnersAnd the winners were Ayla Prather, 5, as Minnie Mouse, and Kelley Porter as a drunk, pregnant Tinkerbell. For the team's effort in dressing them, their tables were granted 5 minutes early access to the swap racks and tables.

closet minnieIn quite the coincidence, was able to find this Minnie Mouse wallet during the swap.

closet3Fashionista's Market's Alyssa Fung, right, staged the event with lots of help from Anita Clemente and Aly Case.

closetccccdoodle's Christy Chung showed her handmade creations.

closet headbandHolly Boulay showed how to stitch up bow ties that could be worn any number of ways. I sewed a blue plaid tie with fabric from a scrap heap on the side.

closet wingsPutting wings on another Tinkerbell.

closet mermaidPutting the finishing touches on the Little Mermaid.

mermaid2This Little Mermaid costume picked up dozens of scales before it was completed. You can check it out in the video at top of page.

closet swap2After the swap, women returned to their tables to try on and trade some more. There were a lot of garments flying through the air as they tossed them to friends who might make better use of their finds.

closettiffAmong the swappers were Tiffany Tanaka, left, and Olena Heu.

Art and fashion merge at HiSAM

August 22nd, 2012

young3Nadine Kam photos
This wall-size painting (it's larger than it appears here) by John Young sold for $25,000 over the weekend.

The weekend marked a celebration of the arts as C.S. Wo & Sons hosted the opening of a retrospective of the work of the artist John Young, celebrating the late artist's 60-year career.

He was a prolific artist whose dozens of images of children and horses resonate today, and many of his calligraphic drawings, bearing his unmistakable bold brush strokes, are available for sale at the event, starting at about $3,500.

The exhibition will continue at the 702 S. Beretania St. store from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Mondays to Fridays, and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays through the end of September.

young1John Young's daughter, artist Debbie Young greeted well-wishers at C.S. Wo Aug. 17. Many thanks to another artist, Doug Ing, who loaned me his camera for these shots when my camera battery died!

The next day I headed to the Hawaii State Art Museum (HiSAM), where 2Couture's Eric Chandler and Takeo, with Dr. Caroline Hee, presented "A Celebration of Artist Hon Chew Hee," the unveiling of the artist's "King Kamehameha I Uniting the Hawaiian Island Kingdom," as part of the museum's newly open Sculpture Garden.

Hee was Caroline's father and he created the enamel-on-steel mural in 1976, at a time when the State Foundation on Culture and the Arts was looking for permanent works for public spaces, that would withstand the elements.

The colors and exuberance of the late artist proved to be an inspiration for Takeo, for whom a fashion show of five gown ensembles marked his comeback following his hospitalization and open heart surgery last spring, which had left him in a coma.

He now wants to leave his mark as an artist and has set ambitious new goals for himself.

And HiSAM's new Sculpture Garden area proves to be a beautiful new site for fashion shows, and I hope more designers will be able to use it. Right now, the cost of the garden rental in conjunction with another space is $1,000. You can learn more and file a request here:

tartHon Chew Hee's "King Kamehameha I Uniting the Hawaiian Island Kingdom" is a centerpiece of HiSAM's Sculpture Garden.

tcarolineDr. Caroline Hee with Gov. Neil Abercrombie in front of a detail of her father Hon Chew Hee's work.

tFrom left, Ron Amemiya, Takeo, Caroline Hee, Julian Lee and Eric Chandler.

tmodelsTakeo's models from left, Emma Wo, Pono Fernandez, Meshelle Hirashima, Brianna Acosta and Crystal Bell.

1 T.J. Maxx down, 2 more to go!

May 9th, 2012

Tj5T.J. Maxx photo
Opening morning at T.J. Maxx's Ward Village store.

T.J. Maxx must have seen a vacuum in the designer-for-less niche in Hawaii, wasting no time in opening three stores in three weeks here. The Oahu stores are Nos. 1,001, 1,002 and 1,003.

The first opened last Thursday at Ward Villages and tomorrow's opening will be at the Pearl City Gateway, 1120 Kuala St., and you can expect more of the same: lines outside and in for the registers. Festivities will start at 7:30 a.m. with a traditional Hawaiian blessing and a donation check presentation to Hawaii Literacy. They'll also be giving out 1,000 T.J. Maxx tote/shopping bags to the first who enter the store.

Last week, I noticed a few of those totebags hanging on the racks when their owners simply left, unwilling to brave the lines to the register that wound around the store's interior, with 45-minute waits all day long. I know, because I was there in the morning and back for more punishment after work.

When I was in the store for a sneak peek last Tuesday, I noted a couple of things I wanted to pick up for my trip to Maui that weekend, two dresses and a top. Got the striped summer dress and white summer top, but the Opening Ceremony denim dress I wanted was gone. Damn! I really thought no one except me would want those.

Scored a designer bag though when one woman, who had grabbed a handful, slowly started sorting through them while in line and started dumping them on to other racks. Thirty percent off luxury designers still isn't cheap, so that should keep resellers at bay and get things into the hands of people who actually want and will use these items.

As I wrote in my print story last Thursday, T.J.Maxx offers the same in-season merchandise as department and specialty stores, at 20 to 60 percent less. It's a treasure hunt for the brands you love, however, because items are carried in limited quantities and the great items go quickly. The Ward store is stocked with a lot of lightweight summer and active wear for men, women and children. And right now, there's nothing dressy for men.

The Pearlridge store will open next Thursday, and each store will receive 10,000 new items weekly, which is about three to four truckloads of clothes, so it looks like you'll have to return frequently for the best deals.

If you happen to find something great and are in sharing mode, you can upload to Maxx Finds at

TJAt a media lunch at Buca di Beppo in advance of last week's opening, stylist Alison Deyette had some of her fashion picks on display and presented a handful of looks, like this Helmut Lang jacket, on Courtney Coleman, that could be dressed up or down.

TJ2A "Maxxinista's" evening dress, and at right, a beach coverup that could do double duty as an evening dress with the right underpinnings.

TJ3Nahoku Keala in a sportier look, with summer's hot pink accessorizing.

The calm before the storm last Tuesday. I knew it was a bad sign when I arrived on opening day at Ward last Thursday, and saw people leaving empty handed. That meant the lines to the register were long.

The line as I saw it. Worth the wait for:


"Le Reve" the starting point for HCC designers

April 29th, 2012

hcc3Nadine Kam photos
A model for a junior designer walked down runway during the Honolulu Community College fashion show "Le Reve."

Here's a look at the Honolulu Community College senior fashion shows from "Le Reve," that took place April 28 at the wonderful waterfront venue of HCC's Marine Education & Training Center at Sand Island.

hccdtdDesigner Ramie Mariko Sagisi, with flowers, with models for her "Dawn Till Dusk" collection.

hcc tentThe tent as guests arrived.
hccwaterfrontThe waterfront setting made it perfect for photographing Jessica O'Neill's "Fire and Ice" swimsuits after the show.

hcc viewThe view before dark.

Non-flash video link

Non-flash video link

Non-flash video link

Non-flash video link

Non-flash video link

Recent Posts

Recent Comments