Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Color Me Nana / Natalie off Duty x F21 Berlin Guide


Finally, here it is! The much anticipated F21xMe Berlin Guide from Natalie's and my trip to Berlin last month! We actually hit up a whole lot more during our 4 day trip than just what is featured below, but these were a few of our favorites! Thanks Forever 21 for following our #F21xMe adventures in Berlin :)
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The Michelberger Hotel
Warschauer Straße 39-40, Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg
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We've heard a lot about the Michelberger Hotel in Berlin and made sure to hit it up during our trip. It's in the lively Friedrichshain district of Berlin. This area is way hip and super built up, it still has the vibe of being an area full of squatters and artists. Both grungy and artsy. This hotel's lounge area was the perfect place for Nat and I to make a pit stop to regroup after our long walk along the Berlin Wall. With interesting and imaginative design including layered stacks of book next to the seating areas, the Michelberger Hotel is a feast for the eyes. The inside bar/restaurant, Honolulu Bar, serves delicious organic food, as well as the famous Fountain of Youth drink, fresh coconut water straight from the palm tree. It will blow your mind! 


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Kauf Dich Glucklich
Oderberger Straße 44, Prenzlauer Berg
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We randomly walked by this super cute crepes and Belgium waffle place on the way to a wine bar we wanted to check out, and instantly fell in love with this Kaug Dich Glucklich. The candy-colored chairs outside are super inviting, and the inside is just as lovely. But really, no sweet tooth can deny how delicious the treats are here! We decided on the spot to share a waffle and a crepe for dinner that night, followed with wine down the street. The portions are huge and the toppings are warm and generous. We were drowning in sugar love all evening. 


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Charlie's Asian Bakery
Orianientraße 187, Kreuzberg
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There really are small wonders everywhere you go, like this little hole-in-the-wall coffee shop and bakery in the heart of Kreuzberg, the hip and vibrant epicenter of creativity in Berlin. This Asian coffee shop is nothing like what you'll find in your everyday Chinatown. It's super quaint with pops of pastel colors in the corners. We chowed down on some Matcha green tea cake and Vietnamese lattes over the latest in Berlin fashion magazines before venturing on. What's also awesome about this place is that it also has a mini shop in the back where you can purchase gorgeously dyed kimonos and other lovely knick knacks. 


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Forum Weinerei 
Fehrbelliner Straße 57, Berlin Mitte
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We were looking for a casual and relaxed place to get some wine, so after a quick dig on the Internet, I found out about this place that had an evening long wine-tasting every night.  For 2 euros, you can get a glass of wine and feel free to help yourself to a plethora of different wines to drink throughout the night. When you are done, just leave a fair amount to cover what you think you drank. It's actually a sweet deal! The inside is warm and inviting, dimly lit with interesting art pieces hanging from the ceilings and covering the walls. It's very classy, but this is where all the cool kids hang for a chill night in Berlin. 



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Boxhagener Platz
Friedrichshain
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It was hard for Nat and I to choose which neighborhood we liked better, Kreuzberg or Friedrichshain. Both border each other, and have similar vibes, but guess you can say that Friedrichshain  is a little bit more grown up. It has Boxhagener Platz which puts on an awesome flea market on Sundays. This is the place to go for some souvenirs to take home with you, as well as some sweet vintage deals. Simon Dachstrasse is a street close by that is every food lover's dream. Filled with quirky shops and great people watching, Friedrichshain really made a great impression.
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Pho Hoi
Skalitzer Straße 95, Kreuzberg
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When in Berlin, eat . . . Vietnamese food?!? Why, yes, of course!! If you guys follow us closely on social media, then you know how much we crave a nice big bowl of pho soup on the weekly. It was a slightly rainy day in Berlin, and Vietnamese sounded like the best thing to keep us cozy until it passed.  The food was authentic and the portions were generous, and the little yellow stools we sat on were quite charming. What I love most about Berlin is all the food options you can find in such close vicinity to each other. Berlin is a city that thrives on its mix of culture, and getting the chance to eat our way through it was a divine experience. 

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Neue Heimat

Revaler Straße 99, Friedrichshain 

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Right next door to Boxhagener Platz is the amazing and mind-blowing Neue Heimat, an indoor food market every Sunday. Coming from Brooklyn, I have become quite familiar to my neighborhood's plethora of food markets and festivals, but let me tell you, they never get old. And I'm not going to lie, I'm pretty sure that Berlin's version of Smorgasbord gives Williamsburg a run for its money. Taking over what seemed like two large buildings, Neue Heimat was filled to the brim with delicious things to nom nom on from all over the world.  Today, trendy is non-traditional, and Neue Heimat is just that. You can find just about any sort of fusion combination here to go along with a wide variety of beers, of course. Hey, this is Berlin, you have to drink beer with everything. If you are visiting Berlin, make sure to keep a Sunday afternoon free to take in everything Neue Heimat has to offer. Your stomach will thank you!


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Santa Maria
Oranienstraße 170, Kreuzberg 
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Oranienstraße in Krezuberg is where it's all happening in Berlin. Coffeeshops, bars, clubs, restaurants, vintage shops, etc. can be found all along this street and the surrounding area. It reminded me so much of the East Village in NYC, except even more hopping if that is even possible. We walked by this place with hipster kids eating huge plates of delicious looking Mexican food and knew we wanted in, so we made plans to get dinner there the next day. Our last night in Berlin was rainy and completed with a Mexican feast. Eggs on our nachos?? Um, YES, please. A taste for Mexican food is in my blood, and I was pretty stoked to find out that one of the best places to fulfill my love for it would be in Berlin. 


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The Berlin Wall / East Side Gallery
 Mühlenstraße, Kreuzberg/Friedrichshain
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Berlin is full of history, and the Berlin Wall is a major part of Germany's past and the years ahead for the country after it was partially taken down. Today, what is left of the original Berlin Wall is known as the East Side Gallery, running along the border between Kreuzberg and Friedrichshain. Today, each part of the wall is covered in artwork and graffiti, the majority of which make political statements and/or create visions that force you to tap into your imagination. It really is amazing how many stories the wall tells. It's the heart and soul of the city. An expression of freedom. 


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Bagels & Bialys
Rosenthaler Straße 46, Berlin Mitte
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You can tell that Nat and I are definitely New Yorkers is because we live off bagels and try to scout them out on the regular. So leave it up to us to find somewhere to get our bagel fix all the way in Berlin. Bagels & Bialys is apparently a household name in Berlin's Mitte district, and for good reason. Toppings for you bagel are always fresh and there is no such thing as a combination that doesn't work. On top of just bagels, there is also a wide selection of sandwiches and Turkish delights that will be sure to suit your fancy. The place is pretty tiny, so if the weather is nice, take your bagel to a park down the street in Mitte and watch the pretty locals and confused tourists make their way across town.


And more posts to come on what we wore in Berlin, featuring Forever 21! But here's a sneak peek for now :) More to come!



Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Diesel Tribe


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Outfits by DIESEL
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When I think of the idea of my tribe, I think of the people with souls I love and personalities that make me smile. My tribe is always growing in this wonderful city that I live in. I come across new souls and personalities every single day, and I always find myself  connecting with someone beautiful when I least expect it. One of my best friends Kiara of Tobruck Ave is someone I have been lucky to meet in California two years ago on a surf trip we both happened to be on. We clicked instantly, and although we didn't see each other for nearly a year after that we always kept in touch. We reconnected at Coachella last year, always at fashion weeks in NYC, and then again this past Coachella for a whirlwind of 3 crazy days of music and late nights where my sister, her and I were inseparable the entire time. 

But this past summer was her true summer on the east coast, and we bonded over everything in NYC. It was a summer never to be forgotten. The longest and the best city summer ever. I'm so grateful to have this girl in my life, even if she is all the way in Vancouver. I can't wait until we reunite and can wreak havoc again in whatever city we happen to be in! Kiara is such a Cali girl at heart just like me, but we always both thrive off the energy of the city. 

We pair grunge leather with our denim. We live for elements of the 90s with chokers boyfriend jeans. We wear booty shorts with our chunky grandpa sweaters. I always get so much fun playing dress up with this girl, and this here is our interpretation of our tribe, thanks to Diesel's fall/winter 2015 collection. Leather and worn in denim represents our east meets west coast personalities and lifestyle. Nothing can ever take that away from us :) Love you Kiara!

Monday, September 29, 2014

In My Natural Habitat

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KAS top (SHOP HERE)
Free People halter bra
Paige jeans (SHOP HERE)
Birkenstock sandals from Free People
Sabrina SL choker
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As summer comes to end, and Indian Summer works its way in-between for a few sparse days, I try to work in the brightest pieces I can find into my daily wear to rub in the fact that I don't want summer to eventually disappear. Canary yellow might feel better suited for a vacation in Jamaica rather than a late summer stroll through Chinatown in NYC, but no one ever said there were rules when it comes to transitional dressing. I'll dress like it's still tropical out for as long as I want. Layering is definitely be specialty, so I most likely won't have a problem keeping up with this idea deep into winter, but we'll see what kind of mood I'll be in then.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Hunger of the Pine


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Michael Stars dress (SHOP SIMILAR HERE)
Stela 9 backpack
Birkenstock sandals from Free People 
Jenny Bird moon cuff (SHOP HERE)
Sabrina SL metal palm bracelet
LAS Jewelry wolf ring
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Sleeplessly embracing
Butterflies and needles
Line my seamed-up join
Encased in case I need it
In my stomach, for my heart
Chain mail

Hunger of the pine
Hunger of the pine 

Sleeplessly embracing
Yawn yearns into me
Plenty more tears in the sea
And so you finally use it
Bedding with me you see at night
Your heart wears knight armour

- Hunger of the Pine by alt-J

I love how expressive alt-J's music is. It's so multi-dimensional. It moves like the ocean in my ears. It's always unexpected and it makes me yearn for more and more. The way they tell stories through their music is so interesting to me. You really have to dig for the meaning, but that's the beauty in it. Hunger of the Pine tells the story of the pain of pining for someone . . . how draining it is of all our human senses, much like the physical experience of being hungry. It makes you think of things in new, artful ways.

F21 | The Outdoor Workout


Check out how I get fit outside with these moves featured on Forever 21's 21st Street Blog! See the feature HERE!