Month: April 2009

Chicago Street Style: Feathered Fedoras (vidisode1)

It’s one thing to see styles walk down the runway or sit on shelves of retailers, and another to actually see them on the streets. I don’t think a designer has truly made a mark for the season until their designs are actually purchased and worn.

To document what people are actually wearing, the right column of our blog has been utilizing a twitter widget to tweet LIVE photos of styles we see online and on the streets but for some reason, we felt a need to do more, so on top of our live tweets…

Introducing… (drum roll please)

Street Style Interviews!

In these short “vidisodes”, the tristinstyling video team will be hitting the streets to feature current trends that real people are wearing and where to get it all.

Chicago Street Style: Feathered Fedoras (vidisode 1)

This video featuring
Host: Christine Matsunaga
Director: Noel Dabu
Sound: Glenn Suravech
1st Street Styler : Bobby
2nd Street Styler: Christine
Boutique Interview: Nancy Becker

uNa Mae’S
1528 n. milwaukee ave.
chicago, il 60622

“God” by Mosaic feat. Kat Nakano
Mosaic Sound Recordings

Christine Matsunaga

Ask tristinstyling: How do I transition into spring wardrobe?


It’s still a bit chilly but I’m over my winter sweaters. Besides, it’s not too cold nowadays that I really NEED to be wearing such heavy clothing. How can I dress more in season with this up and down weather?

Also, where can I go to get some cute spring stuff without spending too much?


So maybe the midwest isn’t lucky enough to get the hundred degree heat that friends in L.A. keep whining about (right now) but hey Chicago, sixty degrees beats snow so I say let’s unpack your warmer weather threads and spruce it up with hot buys to get you stylin’ as we spring into summer fun!

For now, hold on to your lightweight layering accessories like scarves and tights so you can still keep from feeling chilly until the weather begins to stay warm a little more consistently.

If you want to give your entire look an update without having to buy a whole new wardrobe, buy a few interesting pieces like the ones below to make one stunning ensemble or… add just one interesting item to different simple outfits (like colorful shoes or a hot purse with jeans and a t-shirt) to create a “focal piece” that turns boring, into, “So cute! I love your shoes!” or “Where did you get that purse?”

Ruche is a great place to shop for inexpensive, vintage inspired pieces.

Pictured above:
1. Red Braided Shoulder Bag, $36.99
2. Brassica Seed Crochet Cardigan, $34.99
3. Coco Cabana Flower Print Dress, $34.99
4. Pink Studio “Winnie” Peep Toe Flats in Red, $68.00

Get Bella’s Jacket From the Twilight Forest Scene

You know that forest scene in Twilight where Edward and Bella are talking about…


I might spoil it for those who haven’t seen the movie yet…

Anyway, there’s a scene in the forest where Bella is wearing the same jacket she’s got on in some of the the movie posters (one of them pictured left).

It’s adorable with a roomy “layered look fakie” hood and big pockets.

To get one for yourself, you can place a pre-order at: for just $64 and for $79

Saffron Boutique Closing

I am usually ecstatic about liquidation sales and the bargains they have to offer but Saffron closing, is a sad thing for all locals and out of town clients who love to shop this beautiful space.

Owner, Padmaja Manerikar Maryanski, announced that she would be closing the 11 year old boutique upon deciding to take on the full-time position at home as Mama, to her adorable toddler!

Saffron has been known as Bucktown’s urban sanctuary for women who want to step outside of the daily rush to be surrounded by Padmaja’s visual vignettes of color, texture, and lavish scents. Before a “Store Closing” sign graced the window, every corner of the store was filled with hand picked designer clothing, accessories, home goods, bath & beauty indulgences, books, and stationery.

Now, even though a good amount of the inventory has been sold, there is still a lot of great merchandise and a number of beautiful fixtures and furniture pieces for sale so I had to take some photos before leaving Saffron.

Here is a slideshow of the photos that I took. Pretty much everything you see is for sale (if they haven’t been purchased yet) and if a piece interests you, feel free to call the store at 773.486.7753 to inquire about whether or not it is still available before the store closes toward the end of next month:

tristinstyling Boutique Review: Vive La Femme

With over 40 raving reviews on, and myself as witness to my own satisfied clients, you can believe the hype when you hear that Vive La Femme is the boutique for plus-sized shopping in Chicago… and possibly, the *world! So if you’re stepping into town, whether it’s for business or pleasure, skip the tours and head straight to this boutique.

A week ago, we had an out of town personal shopping booking from a young, stylish, twentysomething professional who was in Chicago for business from California. While we were able to find her a few great pieces at Avenue on State Street, the experience at Vive La Femme was just absolutely stellar.

Yeah yeah… there are a number of stores that cater to plus-sized clothing for women but none of them, and I mean none of them can cough up so many great pieces in one shopping trip! To top it all off, the staff is extraordinary! Vive La Femme owner, Stephanie Sack, is the best. I feel good about sending clients to her without the worry of whether or not they’re going to be taken care of with utmost care.

They haven’t been around for 7 years for nothing.

Vive La Femme will be celebrating its 7 year anniversary in conjunction with local author, Kate Harding, and the release / signing of her book, “Lessons From the Fat-o-sphere: Quit Dieting and Declare a Truce With Your Body.”

Stephanie says,”Kate Harding is a real heroine of mine, She is such a positive influence for women who shop at vive la femme and want to further explore the ideas we enthusiastically promote and have always promoted — to love, accept, and invest in oneself at the size one is right now.”

For more information on the event click here or scroll down to May 15, 2009 on our shopping calendar (right column of this page).

*Boutiques who would like to challenge our opinion of “best in the world”, please e-mail us and we’ll check you out!

How-to Make Raquel Allegra Inspired Pieces

I’m a huge fan of Raquel Allegra’s distressed pieces. When she was unable to find what she wanted at thrift shops, she shopped L.A. county jail and found t-shirts that were worn in just as she needed them to be. That’s right, all her pieces are made of t-shirts. Raquel distresses each creation by hand and turns each incarcerated t-shirt into a free flowing beautiful piece that drapes wonderfully over any outfit.

My favorite piece, the Shredded Caftan (pictured left) is retailing for $1,190. With other pieces like the ones seen in the screen shot below ranging from $198 – $590.

Thank goodness for Camille’s “Shredded tee tutorial” on Youtube below (scroll to the bottom of this blog entry to watch it)!

Click the image below to see Raquel’s scarves:

Click to watch a how-to video by blogger, Camille for Childhood Flames: