Shop Talk

Post-Trip Talk: So Much to Say

IslandofHawaii Trip Styler

[trip style = sun + luxury] 

These days, when I return home from a trip, I have so much to say I don't even know where to start. There's the luxury angle, the food angle, the family angle, or a trip styled guide of all the cool finds; however, all of this takes a lot of timetime that is in short supply when there's two little ones running around my HQ {and my mind}, and I'm continuing to contribute stories to numerous travel publications. So, instead of writing about everything here on TS, lately, I say nothing at all, which is a highly unusual statement for a blogger...

Trip Styler V. 2017
Enter Trip Styler, version 2017. I'm going to write more, write often, and write in the moment to avoid a backlog of prose and pictures. I'm going fling open the window into life as a Trip Styler, because not every day is spent at the beach with a bottle of bubbles! I wish.

In this spirit, let me start to tell you about our trip November 2016 to the Island of Hawaii: part reporting, part vacation, all fabulous.

On the Suite Life
Unsure of how to handle an infant and a toddler in a standard hotel roomwe'll get there, eventuallywe stayed in a two-bedroom suite at the Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows, a two-bed cottage at Puakea Ranch, and in two adjoining hotel rooms at The Fairmont Orchid. This was our {successful!} attempt at avoiding a chorus of night and nap wake-ups with little ones. 

Like a Supermodel
By design, we spent part of our time on the coast and part our time in the upcountry. The Island of Hawaii is best explored at all altitudes due to its unique blend of climate zones, as in, if you were keen, you could: play in the snow, play at the beach, go for a swim, hike to a waterfall, marvel at a botanical garden, ride a horse, pick a papaya, and walk beside molten lava all in one day. In short, the place is like a supermodel; blessed at every angle:  


Over the coming weeks I'll "unpack" the trip to guide you toward our TS Island of Hawaii faves. In the meantime, check out my photos on Instagram --> @TripStyler.

Alaska Airlines Adds More Aloha

[photos by @tripstyler]

Holiday Gift Guide 2016

As I write this gift guide, the forecast is calling for our first snow of the season and I'm two hot apple ciders deep. Dig out the wrapping paper and blanket scarves because it's beginning to look a lot like Christmas! This year, we've selected 10 gift ideas for travelers, from budget-friendly stocking stuffers to stylish splurges. Merry Christmas and happy holidays from the Trip Styler team!

1/ The Poglia Porter :: It's never easy traveling with a brimmed hat unless you're prepared to wear it on every travel day. This stylish tote solves that problem with its signature hat-holding feature. Fashion and function have never looked so good!

2/ Away Carry-On :: Speaking of fashion and function, we've had our eyes on this good-looking, tech-friendly carry-on all year. This start-up luggage company offers lightweight, flexible, scratch-proof hard shell bags with a built-in battery for usb phone charging. 

3/ Charging Cord Tassel Keychain :: Speaking of clever charging, this keychain is not only a handy charging cord, but also a superlative stocking stuffer.

4/ Aesop Rinse-Free Hand Wash :: Speaking of stocking stuffers, we haven't been this excited about hand sanitizer since our late 90s Bath and Body Works phase. Shout out to our favorite scents: cucumber melon and plumeria. This hipster hand sanitizer is a traveler's best friend.

5/ Herschel Supply Kids Backpack :: Speaking of hipsters, these backpacks are the perfect gift for the traveling tot whose wardrobe is already better than yours. Thankfully, they come in adult sizes too ;-)

6/ Reks Optics Sunglasses :: Speaking of adult sizes, this new line of bendy sunglasses claims to have 10 times the shatter resistance of glass and plastic. Create the look you want from six frames, three lenses and lots of color options. We like the round frame and mirrored, polarized lenses.

7/ Island Girl Cosmetics Nail Color :: Speaking of color options, we stock up on these fast-drying nail polishes at the ABC Store every time we hit the Aloha State.

8/ Lavanila Travel-Size Deodorant :: Speaking of fast-drying time, this natural, aluminum-free deodorant will have you smelling like a tropical cocktail as fast as you can say Mele Kalikimaka. Trip Styler Tip: If you're switching to a more natural deodorant for the first time, it may take your body a few weeks to adjust, so keep it on hand for a midday application just in case!

9/ Trip Styler Store Finds :: Speaking of the tropics, we picked up these beauties in Bali and Thailand. We love the flat-packing grass-weave clutch and stone bead tassel necklace. We also love the weight and texture of the 100% cotton towels we found in Morocco.

10/ Hotel Gift Card :: Speaking of Bali, how about a visit to the Fairmont Sanur Beach or the Four Seasons Resort at Sayan? Give the gift of a night away (or four!) with a hotel gift card — most luxury hotel brands offer them, and they're a smart way to give the gift of travel to those you love. Icing on the pillow-top cake? Offer to babysit {where necessary, of course}.

This post is written by Trip Styler's Assistant Wayfarer/Editor Heather.

Past Trip Styler Gift Guides
2015 / 2014 / 2013 / 2012 / 2011 / 2010 / 2009

Measure in Moments

measure life in moments

[trip style = any]

I realize it has been a month since I posted here. Time flies when you have two tykes under two, are recovering from a C-section, and have a sick dog to name just a few things currently going on at TS HQ. 

Somehow, through all of this, I had an epiphany, which I want to share as a lens to view travel and, well, LIFE. 

---> Measure {Life} in Moments <--- 

I'm sure some coach or sage or proverb preaches the same thing. In fact, Tony Robbins probably has a convention on the topic. Either way, through a series of events, I've concluded we put too much pressure on ourselves, as well as expectations on everything else to be near-perfect—think: our health, a trip, a night out, ANYTHING. And yet, hitches are inevitable, which is why I'm starting to count my blessings in moments rather than days, months or years. 

To use travel as an example: A trip is rarely Instagram-perfect. Seriously, do you know how many "takes" are required to capture that sultry sunset, mystical landscape, pouty profile shot or ba-na-nas brunch spread? There are always delays, inclement weather, a spilled drink, an off dish, or a botched hotel stay. Oftentimes these situations are one-offs; sometimes they happen in succession.

When we let ourselves get down by a frustrating event, or allow an unsavory situation to mar an entire journey, we sell it AND our enjoyment short. So, live in the moment, but more importantly, DWELL in the good moments, and know that the bad bits are also just moments.

turtle fairmont orchid hawaii

[photos by @tripstyler]

Introducing: Pink Styler

Pink Styler

[trip style = any]

Late last month a cute recruit was added to the Trip Styler crew: PINK STYLER! Joining Trip Styler, Mr. Trip Styler, Baby Styler {now "Blue Styler" since there's a new babe in town} and Dog Styler; at three weeks old, Pink Styler is newest member of the TS troop. 

Two Trip Stylers Under Two
With this, you may have noticed there has been less activity on Trip Styler as I transition to trip styling with two children under two! {Props to Mr. Trip Styler's first class dad skills AND A+ grandparents.} Rest assured, along with Mr. Trip Styler, we'll figure out life on the ground and in the air with deux tots. 

Turbulence Out of the Gate
While I don't share too many details about my life at home, the past few weeks have been a tad turbulent with Blue Styler AND Dog Styler both falling ill {unrelated ailments} causing mom and baby to hightail it to the hills in an attempt not to catch the multiday virus. Oy. Life; its highs and lows happen both at home and on the road.

First Trip
As for where we'll take our first trip, I'm not yet certain, though in the short-term I'm dreaming of a close-to-home cabin by the sea to capture the last rays of summer. Fast forward to fall: Thinking Santa Barbara would be an ideal locale to test out travel as a foursome.

Why California, aside from its sure-thing vacation status? It's two-hour flight from Vancouver, in the same time zonean important consideration {for us} as Pink Styler establishes her nighttime sleep patternsand a natural beauty bordered by beaches and wineries. Come wintertime, we have our sights set on the tropics {Aloha, Hawaii Island + Hola, Mexico}.

What's Next for TS
Stay tuned for a host of fabulous hotel and destination deets flying your way in the coming weeks. And to answer the obvious question of "Will TS add more family content?", the answer is: Likely. However, as always, my suggestions and stories will remain true to TS roots as a travel lifeSTYLE publication for jetsetters of all ages. {Case in point: Our first jaunt with Blue Styler took us to the Ace Hotel & Swim Club in Palm Springs, and our last trip prior to Pink Styler's arrival saw us exploring Stockholm's Scandi-cool cafes}. 

Beyond TS, after a short maternity leave I will continue to collaborate with industry-leading travel partnersthink: Expedia, Air Transat and Luxury Retreatsthat graciously allow me to wander throughout the world in style, and with my growing crew.

[photo by @tripstyler]

Holiday Gift Guide 2015

[trip style = any]

Ever since Trip Styler debuted in 2009, we've assembled a holiday gift guide. 'Tis the season once again! In past years it skewed gadgety or aspirational, whereas this year it's internationalhow à proposwith Italian, Japanese and Mexican finds to bundle you up, cool you down and transport you afar. 

{Clockwise from top left}

1/ Expandable Beach Bag :: Sourced on the palm- and juice bar-studded shores of Tulum, Mexico, enter the ultimate beach bag for those who like to pack smart. Featured in the Trip Styler Store, our totes sport leather straps and woven mesh that packs flat and compact, and then expands as you add your beach or pool essentials. 
Find our boho totes in yellow, brown, white, blue and pink in the Trip Styler Store

2/ The Kinfolk of Travel Magazines :: Flipping through the pages of this bi-annual magazine about travel and style is a journey until itself. Everything about the magazine is chic from the thick white-matte pages to the whitewashed photos from afar. 
Find it in select boutiques and online

3/ Modern Kimono :: Half blazer, half kimono, we spotted this tailored hybrid while in Japan, brought a few home for the Trip Styler Store, and wear ours almost once a week. It's chic, it's worldly and it's pulled together.
Find our mod kimonos in black and subdued black prints in the Trip Styler Store

4/ DIY Aperol Spritz Kit :: This summer in Italy we jumped on the Aperol train, and we never got off. It's a trip in a tumbler. Every time we drink Italy's libation of choice, we're transported to a cobblestone street in Capri. Gifting it to a cocktail-obsessed loved one is smart because it's easy to put togetherall you need is Aperol, prosecco and sodaand it will make it seem like you have your finger on the pulse of what people are sipping worldwide.
Find the recipe and ingredients in our That Travel Meal series

5/ Espresso Maker :: Another beverage {of the non-alcoholic variety} that became a regular for us in Italia was espresso, which we made in a Moka Express, an iconic, 1930s-developed espresso maker. So into the brewing technique and taste, we brought one home with us from Italy. Thanks to the wonders of the Internet, you don't have to go to the Boot to buy one.
Find it on Amazon {and watch this quick tutorial we put together} 

6/ Blanket Scarf :: Here at the TS HQ we've been wearing blanket scarves for ions because they keep us warm in cold climates and when the temperature dips at 35,000 ft.
Find them + a tutorial on how to wear these travel warm-ups in our latest Jetset Style dispatch

7/ Donation :: If you know the person who has everything or doesn't want things, consider making a donation in their name to an organization or cause they care about. {Not shown above}

Holiday Gift Guide 2014
Holiday Gift Guide 2013

[graphic assembled by @tripstyler]