Fashion Feature With Sabina Sysantos

20120981_1739243309436875_453296638_nSabina from Folly and Misfortune is a stylish soul who I met at university, and instantly clicked with. It was one of those spontaneous and unexpected moments, where you meet someone at the right time and happen to both have a zest for fashion. Winter in Auckland has been on the icy side with the wind and grey clouds, but it was a beautiful clear blue sky today. It seemed like the perfect time to take photos, wander around the lovely suburb of Parnell and satisfy our sweet cravings with a delicious nutella dessert from Casa Del Gelato. Read on to discover Sabina’s thoughts on fashion, her favourite designers and style icons.

When did you become interested in fashion?
As a child I didn’t want to dress up and only wanted to wear comfortable clothes, I’d even go to the mall in pajamas. My interest in fashion started when I discovered the kids clothing store Orange Juice, and from that one store I stopped hating clothes. I put together this outfit when I was 7; it was an outfit with blue pinstriped shorts, a white top with a blue bandanna tied around my head. I remember I didn’t think about it, and just put it together and my Mum was amazed of me going from not wanting to dress up, and then dressing up. She told me I could be a fashion designer or a stylist. I went from hating clothes as a child to unintentionally realising that I was good at it. My family and friends would ask me for fashion advice.


How would you describe your personal style?
Recently, I’m just starting to hone it down. I feel like it’s been the same ever since, but I just didn’t execute it accurately until now. It’s developed throughout the years, as I’ve discovered more places to get my clothes from, whereas back then it was just from the mall. Now, I go thrifting, online shopping and searching for rare pieces. I’m now wearing clothes that really reflect my style. In terms of “describing my style”, it clicked last year when I had a job at the Body Shop and we had to wear all black as our uniform. When I left, the manager gave me a necklace as a parting gift and said “I think it really suits your style”, it was funny because she’d only seen me wearing black clothes, but even then she was able to tell my style, describing it as edgy classy which I agreed with and that’s what I’ve been using to describe my personal style.

Do you have any beauty and fashion icons?
I love a French beauty YouTuber called Violette, and I love the way she does her makeup. She’s definitely one of my beauty inspiration. In terms of fashion, I love Alexa Chung’s style and I also take inspiration from model street styles such as Kendall Jenner. There’s the IT girls in general like Jeanne Damas, but I also have styling inspiration from film and television.


What’s your beauty/makeup routine?
My makeup and my style has evolved. In the past, I used to wear a full eye shadow and eyeliner. It was a more intense look, with full contour, highlight, eye shadow and lashes. I steered away from that, and now I wear the least amount of makeup, focus on creating shapes for such as structuring brows and wearing lip colour for more definition. I definitely take inspiration from french beauty and have steered away from heavy layering. Now, I have a more natural look, but still wear colour and take a less is more approach.

What are your favourite fashion brands?
I’ve recently been getting into NZ designers, after being exposed to them when I moved to Auckland. I love the Cooper range by Trelise Cooper and Karen Walker. I also love Miu Miu and Gucci.casa1

What’s fashion like in the Philippines?
A part of why my style has evolved in recent years is because I was more able to wear what I wanted only once I left the Philippines. It’s very populated, and there are only so many people in the fashion industry who will go all out. Everyone else wears for comfort as much as possible, especially cos it’s so hot. Outside of school, most people wear denim shorts, tank top and sandles. Everyone wore the same unspoken uniform. Being someone who’s interested in fashion, I wanted to steer away from that, at the same time you can’t go outside of that without drawing unwanted attention. I’d wear clothes outside the usual combo, and people would always say ‘You’re such a fashionsta’ because what I wore was different.

Back then, I wasn’t wearing clothing as fashionable as I do now, but people always saw me as that fashion girl. Everyone would say you should be a blogger, you’re style goals and even though I dress a lot crazier now, it feels more myself. Fashion was always my thing, but then I felt like what I wore wasn’t good enough because it wasn’t what everyone else was wearing. There was a time I decided I’m just gonna dress normally and maybe I’d look better, so I’d just wear the tank top, sandles and shorts combo. I did it for a week, but it was depressing. By doing that it stripped my personality.


What motivated you to choose a Bachelor of Communication?
It appealed to me because ever since I had an interest in fashion, I knew my approach was to be in the media side, as I didn’t want to be a designer. I wanted to be talking about fashion, looking at it in depth, creating conversations about it, conceptualising and putting together shoots. I knew exactly what industry I wanted to be in, but I wasn’t sure what degree you were supposed to choose to get there, so I thought about English for a while just because I didn’t know what else was there.

I got the application pack and I checked out the list of degrees. I saw Communications and just remembered when I did a Summer workshop on Fashion Journalism after my second year of high school, and I was told that a Communications degree would be a good way to get in the industry. Only at that moment did I decide on my degree, a week before applications were due. I had only spent a mere moment deciding on the big question of what to do for the rest of my life and it has been one of the best decisions of my life so far.

Follow Sabina on her Blog and Instagram

Who Do You Have A Style Crush On?


The kinds of crushes we have when we’re young tend to come and go. However, there are style crushes that come and go, and then there are the ones that stay year after year. We just can’t seem to let them go, we might admire them from afar and appreciate their sense of personal style. Victoria Beckham is my ultimate style crush because everything she wears looks effortless and chic. I also admire Olivia Palermo, Cate Blanchett, Talisa Sutton, Audrey Hepburn, Chloe Hill and Susie Bubble’s style.

Alexa Chung

Alexa Chung recently launched her own label and browsing the clothes, I felt that it reflected her personal style very well. I remember going through a Peter Pan collar phase, and Alexa just makes me think of them, as well as ballet flats, denim, collars, bows, shirt dresses and small handbags. Her style is tomboyish and cool.

Alicia Vikander

After watching The Man From Uncle, I fell in love with Alicia. Her style is feminine, delicate and simple. Alicia’s off-duty look is chic and she’s often seen in Louis Vuitton. She wears clothing that compliments her petite figure from well-cut dresses, tailored trousers, floral patterns and the classic black and white.

Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen

They are often seen in their signature classic black, however, as the designers of The Row, they have a distinctly sophisticated style. Mary-Kate and Ashley are lovers of artful layering and pairing an outfit with statement pieces or letting it speak for itself. I love how their outfits always compliment one another.

Sara Donaldson

Sara from Harper and Harley is the Queen of minimalism. I admire her personal style and can relate to it. She dresses in a black, white, grey, denim and occasional khaki and camel palette. Her simple style shows that there are multiple and endless ways of matching these colours.

Victoria Beckham

Victoria Beckham has a distinctive style that exudes modern elegance. Her clothing always compliments her figure, and she wears the clothes in an effortless manner. My favourite looks from her are the ones when she wears long pants, oversized coats, tailored shirts and anything in black.

Taylor Pre-Collection SS17/18

taylor-summer-17-18-pre-collection-lookbook-print-39.jpgTaylor is a New Zealand fashion brand that designs garments that are incredibly stylish and wearable. The brand was established by designer Vicki Taylor in 1999, with each garment carefully designed and manufactured in New Zealand. Vicki grew up in a fashion industry family and is passionate and continually inspired by fabrics and textural combinations. Frequent trips to Europe and Japan allow her to source high-quality, leading-edge fabrics from some of the best mills in the world.

The Taylor Pre-Collection SS17/18 has an incredible range of styles, some gorgeous patterns and features a beautiful glacier blue.  Simple yet elegant and easy to mix and match within the collection, my favourites would be the Duplex Pant,  Intermittent Dress, Modified Top and Relief Pant. Black and white are the staple items including dresses, tops, pants sweaters, shirts and tunics. There’s hints of blue as well as green, khaki and grey for those who like to add a little bit of colour.

Photography from Taylor Boutique

Staple + Cloth Vice Versa Collection 2017

lookbook_1_with_words.jpgStaple + Cloth recently launched their new season collection, Vice Versa. The event was held tonight in their Ponsonby Boutique, with each piece of clothing made in New Zealand. The Slip Dress and Jacket are my favourite, and the fabrics are sleek to touch. The wonderful thing about this collection is the versatility of dressing from day to night. Whether it’s for a special occasion, casual wear or mix and matching to cater your own style. Staple + Cloth is a minimalists love at first sight, that features designs for those who love beautiful patterns and prints.19420434_1131774646956190_3492287485937256572_n19424430_1128703457263309_2152054845360707855_n19510507_1134835159983472_5478316345724225212_ng19511069_1132965700170418_105809760556432661_n19642808_1138618776271777_6286425625146239499_nPhotography from Staple + Cloth

The Wardrobe Staples For Black Clothes

74bee823b8b2a94abf3b8eac529f4604It’s rare that no one has at least one item of black clothing in their wardrobe, even if it’s a black pair of socks! Unless of course, you have a colourful rainbow of socks which would be perfect for mix matching. You might have a coat, t-shirt, pants, hat, bag, dress or shoes in black (or all of the above). The great thing about black clothing is that it matches and compliments well with nearly any outfit.

Black pair of shoes come with an endless array of styles from ballet flats, boots, loafers, sneakers to heels, sandals, lace-ons and slip-ons. Shoes like ballet flats and boots are a staple that you wear year after year.

Black Coat is a perfect addition during the colder season. It keeps you warm and looks effortlessly stylish. There’s a black coat to suit each person, just like a little black dress to suit anyone. You can opt for a trench coat, blazer styled coat or leather jacket.

Black pants Whether it’s a pair of sweatpants, tailored pants, crop wide pants or leggings, they can often be one of our go-to pieces of clothing. Pants work well for wearing to work and on a casual basis just by switching from a blouse to a t-shirt.

Black t-shirt and sweater Turtlenecks are perfect in Autumn and Winter, especially because they keep your neck warm! The classic black t-shirt is so easy to match with your clothing, that it’s just one of those staple pieces you can wear again and again.

Black skirt A Black skirt might not be for everyone, just as a pair of denim shorts might not be for everyone. Skirts are great for a wide range of occasions and can be styled in different ways. You can pick a suitable length that you prefer.

Black handbag Similar to Black ballet flats, my first handbag was a black handbag. I still remember I wore it until it started tearing and the zipper broke. It was just one of those bags that matched everything and was comfortable to wear.

Style File: Mary-Kate & Ashley Olsen

920e9f1b0cbe66a98a0e1fbf9d3904d8.jpgMary-Kate and Ashley Olsen are the designers for the luxury fashion brand, The Row, which was established in 2006. The brand includes a range of ready-to-wear, eyewear, handbags, and footwear. In 2012 and 2015, The Council of Fashion Designers of America named Ashley and Mary-Kate as Womenswear Designers of The Year. In 2014, they were awarded the title of CFDA Accessory Designers of the Year. They wear black effortlessly and embody structural designs that compliment the figure. They wear printed fabric and detailed patterns, but are known for layering and wearing a minimal style that proves less is more.4e55d2edfb55764eb4d627e0f51b61d4.jpg01220302000004101_1.jpgc868a8b265bfeecdffb2bcca079ab7a3.jpg8d3893af4de5461e87044a49a37fc57d.jpg8bf5394e47c817826342cdcf0a9b389d.jpgolsen

How Would You Describe Your Personal Style?

5250293e2587e6ee302c64c5838250c1.jpgIt’s been such a lovely week, even through all the windy days and umbrellas going inside out. It’s the kind where you walk around feeling your mind smiling because even though it’s cold there’s a certain positive feeling inside of you that you can’t quite explain. Even when they’re days where I felt a bit down, they were simple reminders of what I’m grateful for. Over the years, I have more appreciation for the saying, less is more. This means purchasing items you really know you’ll wear again and again over the years, rather than a sporadic purchase. It also means letting your style speak for itself.1202153Personal style reflects how we may feel, how we choose to express ourselves and sometimes it might evolve or change over the years. I recently talked to a dear friend about personal style. The most important thing is wearing things we feel drawn to, inspired by and comfortable in. They’re simply pieces of clothing that we feel we’re ourselves in, and they express our personality at a glance. What we wear should stay true to ourselves and who we believe we are. The personal styles I like are Rooney Mara, Cate Blancett, Alexa Chung, Alicia Vikander and Victoria Beckham to name a few. 1483821262.jpgPersonal style is more important than trends. There’s nothing wrong with purchasing things that are trending if you genuinely like it, but if you only purchase things because they are trending, then it’s trickier to develop your own style. That is the great thing about thrifting because you can find some treasures that may no longer be sold in most stores. I remember going through a stage of peter pan collars, florals, lace stockings and red nail polish. Over the years, I feel most myself in black, grey, nude, navy and white. Although, sometimes it’s nice to add a splash of colour!harper-and-harley_ruffle-white-top-sleeves_cropped-pants_style_outfit_2-mmvys00q4fh1oc8l1m398z29csosf2msw8rm6oy78o.jpgMinimalism is a lifestyle that encourages living with less, and more of things that we value. My first introduction to minimalism started when I discovered Harper & Harley three years ago. Sara embodies the nature of minimalism and wearing a black, white, nude and navy palette with elegance, simplicity and feminity. Before I discovered her or heard about the concept of minimalism, I used to buy an excess of clothing that I only ended up wearing a few times. Personal style can express the lifestyle we inhabit and how we want to express ourselves.

How would you describe your personal style?