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Beyond the Cover

NEW YEAR, NEW YOU You know her from The Skinny on Health. You’ve read her science-based takes on your wellness. Now really get to know who she is. For this issue, Lisa Eberly, MPH, RD, gives you the skinny on Nourish by Lisa, her latest demonstration of her true commitment to health. What we love most about Lisa


BALMAIN X H&M is how seriously she takes her work and her dedication to the science behind taking care of yourself. Plan an appointment with the Seattle-based dietitian to get to know her in person (and so she can get to know you and your health!) or visit NourishByLisa.com to find a plan for wherever you may live!

Tastevin Magazine December / January 2015/16

We may have waited in the cold for the Balmain x H&M collaboration, but the December/January cover shoot of the collection took place in sunny Los Angeles. Photographer Breana Powell (also Tastevin’s Fashion and Beauty Editor!) brought along her boyfriend Matt to act as her assistant for the day, having him help shade

ROOTS OF BEAUTY and bounce light to make sure the Balmain pieces truly shone. Fun fact: the shoot location was an office building courtyard where Breana and her father have conducted their own shoots. Find out more about the Balmain x H&M designer collaboration in this issue’s “You & Me” cover story!

Cover Photo by Breana Powell

Sarah Kalb has lived in Los Angeles for about three years and has discovered, beyond the glitz and glam of Hollywood, the city’s love for the natural and organic. She took the city’s two loves a step further with her cosmetics line, Roots of Beauty. Now, you can enjoy both glamour and nature rolled

into pretty, responsibly-sourced packaging. We love how Sarah is a master of the kitchen, whipping up both goodfor-you cosmetics and yummy snacks like the spaghetti squash in this issue’s “For the Love of Food.”


CAROLINE A. WONG Editor-in-Chief

BRANDON GAMBLE Creative Director



ARTS AND LEISURE Arts and Leisure Editor EMILY VAN GUILDER Arts and Leisure Writers ERICA MAU & SARAH KALB

ART Photography Director ALEXANDER HERMAN Assistant Photographer HAIL NOWAK


HORS D’OEUVRE CONTRIBUTORS: Say hi to some of the people behind this issue THINGS WE LOVE: Find out what we’re excited about this season FROM THE DESK OF THE EDITOR: ”Teamwork”

BEAUTY & WELLNESS ROOTS OF BEAUTY: Return to the source of pretty NOURISH BY LISA: Learn the simple, honest truth about your health {BEAUTY} TRICK TO TRY: Fix your broken lipstick fast

ARTS & LEISURE FOR THE LOVE OF FOOD: Satiate your hunger with a spaghetti squash snack PUPPY DIARIES: Get to know our playful pups



SHARE YOUR WHERE: Let us take you to Switzerland SHARE YOUR WEAR: Be inspired by our staff’s holiday fashion YOU + ME: Brave the world of Balmain x H&M






2015 / 16

Breana Powell photographed this issue’s cover story. She was bummed she didn’t get anything from the Balmain x H&M collaboration. Maybe you can send her something for the holidays!

Lisa Eberly, MPH, RD, is our resident Wellness Editor and founder of the newly launched wellness source Nourish by Lisa. Get the simple, honest truth about your health at NourishByLisa.com

Erica Mau has profiled life as a doggy mom, but she felt it was about time you truly got to know more about the pups behind the madness. For profiles about her dynamic doggies, check out this issue’s “Puppy Diaries”!

If there’s anyone on our staff that’s a true jetsetter, it’s Features Editor Amanda Chi. She’s taken Tastevin readers to the Swiss alps before, but for this issue, she explores Switzerland a different way for her “Share Your Where” column.

Creative Director Brandon Gamble runs Tastevin’s New York office and oversees the visuals of each and every issue. For all his hard work, he simply asks that Starbucks makes Pumpkin Spice Lattes available year-round.

Arts & Leisure Writer Sarah Kalb values the art of creating. This issue, she not only brings you a tasty recipe for an easy afternoon treat, she also presents Roots of Beauty, a holistic crop of makeup and skincare products.

Tastevin Magazine December / January 2015/16


Things We Love CAROLINE A. WONG / Editor-in-Chief Egyptian Magic Cream “I’m sure I’ve talked about my love for Egyptian Magic cream [$31 for 4 ounces, amazon.com] before, me along with Lauren Conrad, Kate Hudson, and anyone with any type of beauty blog ever. Its celebrity cult following aside, this cream works wonders on winter hands. I develop harsh, bumpy rashes on my wrists in the cold season, and Egyptian Magic cream buffs it right out with a truly magical formula of natural ingredients. I love that I can use it as a lip balm too. If you’re a one-and-done type of person, you really need this cream in your Christmas stocking!”

BRANDON GAMBLE / Creative Director

“I love the modernity of Movado timepieces, and this year Movado suprised everyone by bringing in acclaimed industrial designer Yves Béhar to create a new line that I’m obsessed with. Béhar was able to create a visually stunning and modern timepiece while paying direct homage to the classic Movado 1947 Museum Dial (which itself has a permanant place in the MOMA collection).” $495-$995, movado.com


Tastevin Magazine December / January 2015/16


Movado Edge

The Tastevin editors share their monthly obsessions

COLETTE CHOI Beauty Editor Victoria’s Secret Cozy Slipper “Cozy sweaters are IT for me this year. Cozy sweaters for my feet? I’m so there.” $30, victoriassecret.com


from the desk of the


Many of my editor letters focus on the seasonal...fall fashion for more layering, seasonless dressing...you get it. Part of that is because the bimonthly format of our magazine lends itself to talking about the change of weather and how to dress for that. So as I sat down to write this issue’s letter, I was tempted to go that route...the chill in the air, the bite of winter... But really what I want to highlight is my awesome Tastevin team.

From Creative Director Brandon Gamble with his time-consuming job of laying out each issue and crafting it into beautiful final projects to Fashion & Beauty Editor Breana Powell who will drop everything to meet me with less than a day’s notice for a full-blown fashion shoot, the Tastevin staffers are dedicated and passionate. There’s Lisa Eberly, MPH, RD, with her shiny new credentials and fresh wellness venture, and Erica Mau, whose playful pups provide just the right amount of inspiration for her always witty writings. I’m really so grateful to everyone on the team, even those whose names don’t regularly appear on the masthead, like Matthew Vine and Anthony Strasburger who both step in as set assistants when needed. 2016 is going to bring changes...for me, for you, for Tastevin. And one of the best parts is knowing I have so many amazing people as a support team. We want you to know you’re a part of the Tastevin family too. Tweet us @TastevinMag or leave us a Facebook comment so we know you’re thinking of us, just like we’re thinking of you. Happy holidays and happy new year!

@tastevinmag 6

Tastevin Magazine December / January 2015/16



Have you ever used clay in your beauty regimen? Perhaps pre-teen sleepovers had a group of your girlfriends donning green clay masks and painting toenails. Or in your young adults years you ay have tried the bentonite clay detox of Aztec influence. Regardless, I bet you’ve never used it in makeup. I’m a small business owner and actress who started “Roots of Beauty” after experiments to make my own makeup when horribly...right! Using some kitchen spices, arrowroot powder, and an assortment of clays I was able to create a loose powder that keeps me shine-free all day long. Next up? Lipstick. Using Australian red reef clay and some cocoa butter with coconut oil I created an organic, fair-trade lipstick that is free of chemicals, animal parts, and cheap

colorings. Using French rose clay I was able to create the same product in a lighter shade that went on to star in a friend’s wedding between herself and the bridesmaids. Okay, she was the star, but the lipstick was a close second. I’ve made men’s pomade that calls them to the wilderness with it’s cedar scent. Dry shampoo is in the works, as we find packaging to allow the perfect sprinkle across your roots. Speaking of packaging, Roots of Beauty uses all sustainable, made in the USA packaging materials. Except for the lipstick and chapstick tubes everything is compostable, including the labels and recycles bookpaper inserts. But the tubes are BPAfree and easily recyclable. Instead of plastic shrink-wrapped seals we use

Tastevin Magazine December / January 2015/16

old-fashioned ribbon and wax seal, with a custom “RB” seal. Long story long... you’ve gotta come check us out. If you’re in Los Angeles come to the Glassell Park farmer’s markets on Saturday mornings for a free sample. New customers get 40% the first product with code “newroot.” In the meantime, check us out on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. We’ve found the products and their magic from nature, from the outside looking in. Now we invite you to treat your body with confidence. Check out RootsOfBeauty.com for more info and to purchase natural products from the line.


by Sarah Kalb


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Introducing Lisa Eberly, MPH, RD! Formerly of The Skinny on Health and now armed with a masters degree in the very topic she loves, Eberly has pulled all her passions together into a streamlined, targeted place just for you. Here, learn more about Nourish by Lisa.



very person on this planet thinks about their health on a daily basis. Whether you are a starving mother in a developing nation wondering about how you’re going to feed your children, a body builder in Ohio going for an extra rep on the bench, a software developer in Silicon Valley trying to lose a few pounds, or a teenager struggling with acne, you think about your health in one form or another, daily. Today, our health is a hot topic, and there’s an enormous amount of information at our fingertips—this blog, that TV show, this doctor/”expert”/coach preaching that diet/workout/product. It is overwhelming and, to be quite honest, mostly unreliable.

The answer to being healthy and balanced is not in a fad diet, crazy workout plan, or overpriced skincare line. It is easy; it’s simple; and it stems from decades of scientific research— and you can learn all about it from me at Nourish by Lisa. I am a public health and nutrition masters and registered dietitian in beautiful Seattle. I love adventures, cooking, yoga, and sunshine. I am also a total science nerd. I grew up wanting to be a doctor to pursue my passion of helping and healing people with science. I received a human and evolutionary biology degree from the University of Southern California. There, while researching fasting for cancer and Alzheimer’s therapies, I realized that the best way to help people was through


Beauty & Wellness


preventative medicine—food, sweat, and mindfulness. In blogging and learning about health, I was saddened by the overwhelming amount of education on the web and TV that was not based on science or medicine, but was created for profit or fame. There was a serious gap between the dense scientific journals I was reading and the latest fad diet on the blogs people were talking about. I wondered why there wasn’t a place for everyone to find trustworthy and accurate information about their health from a licensed professional they can relate to and understand.  I needed to fill that gap and become the professional the public could trust.  Following this passion to make the world a healthier place, I went on to the University of Washington, from which I now I have my masters degree in public health and clinical nutrition. There, I also researched dietary interventions for diabetes patients and completed my clinical internship with cancer, stem cell transplant, and cardiac surgery patients. I obtained my registered dietitian license and completed a traineeship in pe-

diatric pulmonary and high-risk infant nutrition. With my education, research, and clinical experience in tote, I created Nourish.

Nourish is not a fad. It is not a quick fix. It is not a gimmick. It’s not a paycheck. It is based on real, evidence-based science. To put it simply, it is the truth about your health. Just the simple, honest truth. Finally. For a free healthy living starter kit, free initial health consultation, and updates with the simple, honest truth about your health, be sure to regularly check my site www.NourishByLisa.com!

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{Beauty} By Colette Choi

Trick to Try

To this day, one of my favorite beauty mishaps involves our Tastevin team members Caroline A. Wong and Jessica Harris. The two were enjoying a club in Paris, the music loud and the drinks plenty. Alas, they proved to be too cool for school and were kindly escorted out of the club. Clearly the security staff was too intimidated by how well these awesome ladies could party. Anyway. While Jessica and their newfound French friend Clovis were looking up a new, more hip club, Caroline opened her favorite tube of lipstick, Kat Von D’s Studded Kiss in the Cathedral shade. And that’s when disaster struck.

The ladies ended up finding a MUCH better club at which to party....and Caroline purchased herself a new tube of Kat Von D’s Cathedral. Now, if she breaks it again, she’ll have a quick #beautytricktotry!

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The smooth stick split in two, tragically falling (probably in slow motion) to the ground right next to a pile of cigarette butts and a few crumpled wrappers. Noooooooooo. There’s nothing worse than a broken stick of your favorite lip shade, as Caroline will gladly attest. How to fix the day? Assuming your lipstick hasn’t fallen into the Parisian pits of hell, take the broken part and warm it carefully with a lighter, making sure to not burn your fingers. Immediately reattach the broken half to the rest of the tube, cleaning the edges with a toothpick. You can also use a cotton swab, but I find that they sometimes leave stray bits stuck to the lipstick. Voila. This simple trick to try will solve all your broken lipstick woes.

love food for the


Story and photos by Sarah Kalb

ROSEMARY SPAGHETTI SQUASH INGREDIENTS • 1 spaghetti squash • 4 cloves garlic, minced • 6 tbsp extra virgin olive oil


• 4-6 tbsp fresh rosemary, chopped • 4 tbsp balsamic vinegar • Salt and pepper, to taste

1) Cut open the spaghetti squash, length-wise. 2) Remove seeds and slimy membranes. 3) Drizzle the olive oil and balsamic vinegar over each half of the squash, dividing evenly. 4) Sprinkle on the garlic and rosemary, dividing evenly. 5) Sprinkle with salt and pepper. 6) Cook in a pre-heated oven at 400 degrees for about an hour.

Time: 15 minutes + 1 hour to bake Serves: 4-6

7) Remove the squash and cool about 15 minutes. 8) Drag a fork across the squash, short-wise to gather the “spaghetti” strands. Dump scratched-up strands into a serving bowl.



Puppy D

Photos and Story

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ry BY Erica Mau



Arts & Leisure



hose with dogs know: each breed and each individual dog has a distinct personality. Just like people, pups are unique gems just waiting to be loved by you and your family. So, I think it’s time you were introduced to my boys.

MEET TEDDY REX Teddy Rex is very independent, stubborn and intelligent. He could probably live without human contact, getting fulfillment purely from playing with other dogs. He may or may not have small-dog syndrome, where he thinks he’s a mighty monster when he’s a mere twenty pounds. He’d probably try to take a pit bull. The Ted Man is a barker with some attitude. If he sees the mailman walking up the driveway, he will bark. If he hears the phone ring, he will bark. If he senses ghosts, he will bark. Pretty typical terrier. #woof Teddy can be moody and temperamental in the same ways you’d associate those terms with humans. Like me during that time of the month, T Rex should not be bothered when he’s tired or grumpy, or he might snap at you. And don’t try to get in his space when he’s resting, whether it’s cuddling, petting, or just shifting your legs. It’s not pretty. With Tedster, you are almost guaranteed to receive back-handed compliments from strangers who get to know him. At daycare, he’s known as “The Beast,” and is often greeted at the door with remarks like: “Ready terrorize your friends today?” Once we picked him up from the hospital and the nurse who brought him to us said, “this dog is…somethin’ else…” Thanks? 20 Tastevin Magazine December / January 2015/16

MEET JB JB is the quintessential Golden Retriever you see in quintessential family movies. He’s happy-go-lucky, gentle, and loving. He can entertain himself with a ball for hours. The best part of his day is when we come home. The only thing JB loves more than love is food. I don’t think he was born with that innate sense that tells you when you’re full. When a bowl of kibble is put in front of this dog, he eats as if he’s been starved for months. He’ll also eat pretty much anything, including things that aren’t eatable. Dog food? Yes, please! Lettuce? Sure, why not? Grass? Sounds great. Toy stuffing? Mmm, that’s pretty tasty. I’m pretty sure he’s gnawed on my arm a few times. The Jaybster is well known for his loud breathing, panting, and snoring. When he’s happy, he breathes loudly and pants. When he’s hot, he breathes loudly and pants. Those two scenarios cover 50% of the time, and the other half he can be found sleeping, breathing loudly, and snoring. When folks get to know JB, they instantly fall in love and want to steal him away. He’s got a way with people where he looks into their eyes, gives ‘em a smile with his floppy tongue hanging out, and makes them believe he loves them the most. It’s a bit unnerving to think he’s just giving me the same look as he gives the rest of the world, but I guess I have to trust that he most appreciates the hand that doles out the kibble.

No matter the object, Teddy's main prerogative is to steal it. It's a loselose situation for JB.


Arts & Leisure


THE DYNAMIC DUO Part of the reason we added JB to our family was to get Teddy Rex a brother to play with. While they do play sometimes, most of their time at home is spent on opposite corners of the bed. The most common interaction between the bros is when JB finds a great toy or bone to chew on. No matter the object, it then becomes Teddy’s main prerogative to steal it. Being a gentle giant, JB often gives in to his older brother, relinquishing the beloved toy and moving on to a different one. To his dismay, any new toys he finds then become the new fixation of T Rex. It’s a lose-lose situation for JB. We attempted to remedy the situation by purchasing multiple and identical toys and bones. What we quickly learned was that, despite how identical the toys seemed to us, the true differentiator was that one was in JB’s mouth, and that was the one Teddy had to have. Teddy Rex doesn’t often seek out human attention, so when he does it’s quite adorable. When there are pets and cuddles being given out, though, JB’s got to be there. Right there, in the middle. He will butt his way into anything to get his fair share of lovin’, and since he’s so much bigger than Teddy, humans often have no choice but to start petting JB, leaving poor Teddy on the side with nothing. While it may seem from my description so far that Teddy is a bit of an asshole and JB is extremely adorable, JB is actually the one who is the misfit within our family. At the end of the day when we come home and complain about our days at work, Teddy just seems to understand our daily struggs while JB sits there, tongue out, optimistic and happy. On weekends when we like to sleep in, JB’s right there, pawing my face, saying, “Hey mom, time to eat breakfast! Time to play outside!” while Teddy snoozes away. Having dogs that are such polar opposites, ultimately, has been a fun time. The fact that they are so different just makes for funny stories and more situations you can say, “that’s such a JB move,” or, “oh, that Teddy.” And just like kids, you end up loving them for who they are. Barking, snoring, and all.

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Dimitri James





Share Your Where

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Story and photos by Amanda Chi 27

Fashion & Features



raveling in Swiss Winter

For a visitor such as myself, the virgin snow of outskirts Geneva is a gorgeous, picture-perfect scene. The snow is asking to be jumped into and everywhere you turn is a postcard snapshot. However, for residents of these snowy hills, it’s most likely a grumbling morning of shoveling and snow blowing just to drive to work. Houses are thickly draped with at least three feet of snow, scaring residents with a potential of 1.5 kilo of snow that can come crashing down on them at any moment. Thanks to old family friends, I was able to spend a week up in what my hosts fondly call ‘hillbilly country’ to experience Swiss living in the dead of winter. I had the most amazing and hospitable hosts who would put even the Phaiakians of the Odyssey to shame. Jennie is my mother’s high school friend from Hong Kong who moved to Geneva with her partner Hans, a Swiss native. Every morning, Hans and Jennie would trudge to the nearby village of Saint-Cergue to buy fresh brioche, or what they jokingly call ‘nipple bread’, from a Korean immigrant who bakes the most fantastic pastries. While munching on my nipple bread, I strain to see a view of Lake Geneva from the window. As the fog and thick storms abate, rays of sunshine break past the clouds and I catch a glimpse of the mountains on the other side of the lake. After each delicious breakfast, Hans and Jennie would take me somewhere new each day. From Gruyères all the way to Annecy, I was introduced to all types of cheese, chocolate, and snow sports. Driving up and down mountains in hillbilly country can be a tedious task, particularly in snowy -6°C weather. Despite living in Switzerland where snow is likely to come at least once a year, some cars seem inept at driving in icy conditions. For Hans, a former Swiss army lorry driver, he glides past the roads with ease, yelling what I presume is a French swear word in stop and go traffic. At

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Fashion & Features


“I know I essentially just drank cheese as a meal, but of course I make space in my stomach for Swiss chocolate”

times, driving a 15-minute stretch will take over an hour in icy conditions. After a two-hour scenic drive past Lausanne and along the edge of Lake Geneva, we arrive at cheese town, or Gruyères. A quaint yet touristy village sitting atop a hill, Gruyères is best known for its cheese. Going right to the source, I had fondue moitié-moitié for lunch. Translating to fondue half-half, it’s a bubbling pot of half Gruyere and half Vacherin fribourgeois cheeses melted with garlic and white wine. Hans instructed me on standard fondue etiquette, telling me to dip the bread into the pot with a skewer and swirl it through the cheese. Once you lift it out of the pot, twirl the skewer so the dripping cheese wraps around your piece of bread. Then enjoy! 30 Tastevin Magazine December / January 2015/16

After what I can say is the heaviest meal I’ve ever eaten, I explore the village and its castle. I buy a 2 Swiss Franc postcard to commemorate my visit and our next stop is the chocolate factory of Maison Cailler in Broc. I know I essentially just drank cheese as a meal, but of course I make space in my stomach for Swiss chocolate. I tour my way through what can be described as a Swiss Disneyland of chocolate history. From an interactive room of cacao’s Aztec history to bags full of raw beans showing its production into chocolate, I finally end up in the tasting room where I sample as much as I can. I end my cheese and chocolate-filled day with extra to bring home and with slight indigestion.

I repeat the next morning with a hazy view of Lake Geneva while eating my nipple bread and listening to the snowplows make their morning routes. This time after breakfast, my gracious hosts take me to Annecy, France. The fantastic thing about traveling in Europe is its proximity to other countries. Switzerland has so much natural beauty, bustling cities and history, and it also borders France. Without snow, the drive from Geneva to Annecy is only 40 minutes. Unfortunately our drive took about two hours, but it was worth the wait! Annecy is a small town located on the edge of Lake Annecy and can only be described as a fairytale village. It could be the dusty snow on the roofs that add to the magic, but the lakeside back-

drop certainly makes everything look spectacular. We have amazing French food for lunch, tour the local food markets and take a drive around the lake. I sample some of the creamiest and smelliest French cheeses imaginable and have the opportunity to continue savoring the aroma on that two-hour car ride back to Saint-Cergue. Switzerland is made of four main cultural regions that speak German, French, Italian and Romansh. All are official languages of the country, but most people predominantly speak German and French. You can see the influences of each culture on the major cities in each region whether it’s through language, architecture or food. While Geneva is located on the French side, 31

Fashion & Features


Bern is found on the German side. We took a day to visit the Swiss capital, eating various types of sausages and attempting to see the famous bears at the Bärengraben. To contrast the German-influenced city of Bern, we visited Geneva the next day, traipsing past the United Nations headquarters and touring the Patek Philippe Museum’s history of watches. I ended the day with a meal of raclette, a cheese you heat until it bubbles enough to scrape onto your potatoes.

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To work off all the cheese I’ve cumulatively eaten throughout my trip, I thought I’d try some winter hiking. Armed with snowshoes and a pair of poles, I trekked through that fresh powder with my hosts as my hiking guides. It’s harder than it seems! Yes it merely is hiking in snow, but there is technique in pole-usage and how to step in those shoes to balance. Embarrassingly I toppled over several times and twisted my knee attempting to get back up. Trudging through knee-high fresh

snow is difficult and a great method of resistance training. Talk about sore thighs the next morning. Cheese, chocolate, watches, scenery, and sore thighs. It was a wonderful Swiss experience that I’ll never forget. There are so many fantastic things to do in Switzerland, especially near Geneva. You can venture to nearby Swiss cities or even cross the border and pop into France. I wouldn’t have known the proper way to eat fondue and raclette, or attempted to snowshoe in the woods

without Jennie and Hans. It was a blessing to have locals who knew their way around. If you ever find your way to Geneva, try renting a car to explore the surrounding area. The natural scenery alone will be worth it!


share your WEAR

The Tastevin staff share their holiday style inspiration

COLETTE CHOI / BEAUTY EDITOR “New Year’s Eve calls for something sparkly, but rather than go the mini dress route I usually veer toward, I thought shiny pants, like these Express sequin leggings, would be a nice change. With a black tuxedo blazer and strappy heels, you really can’t go wrong.”

Photo credit: EXPRESS.COM

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EMILY VAN GUILDER / ARTS & LEISURE EDITOR “My boyfriend and I recently got a new puppy, Archimedes, aka Archie! Puppy and I are wearing matching outfits for the holidays. He was a good sport.” Photo Credit: Emily Van Guilder


Fashion & Features


AMANDA CHI “For New Years I plan to keep it classy and simple. I’m wearing an Elie Tahari Mila Birdseye Colorblock dress with a J. Crew necklace and Kenneth Cole strappy heels.”

Photo Credit: Esther Chi

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LISA EBERLY / WELLNESS EDITOR “This year has been all about the midriff peek, so I thought this outfit would be perfect for the ‘glitz and glam’ NYE party I’m going to!” Photo credit: ALICEANDOLIVIA.COM


Fashion & Features


BREANA POWELL / FASHION & BEAUTY EDITOR “I’ll probably wear something dark and oversized so that I can eat all of the party snacks without being forced to hide a subsequent gut in photos. I can always jazz it up with fun makeup and accessories.” Photo credit: ASOS.COM

BRANDON GAMBLE / CREATIVE DIRECTOR “Nothing says New Years Eve in NYC like a tailored tux, and this dark navy and black jacket is one of my favorite pieces from Sandro’s current collection. I’ll pair it with slim black pants, a white shirt, and my favorite YSL black velvet tie.” Photo credit: SANDRO-PARIS.COM


Fashion & Features


SARAH KALB / ARTS & LEISURE EDITOR “What will I be wearing this holiday season? Ideally... some version of THIS!” Photo credit: Courtesy of Sarah Kalb

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CAROLINE A. WONG / EDITOR-IN-CHIEF “I first saw this Mason by Michelle Mason jumper on Stacy London (of TLC’s Love, Lust or Run) and knew I had to have it for the holidays. I got it at Intermix in February and I’ve been saving it for ten months to wear. Once my family’s Christmas party comes around, it’s coming off the hanger for sure!” Photo credit: LYST.COM


Fashion & Features


JESSICA LOCHER “For the girl on a budget, stores like H&M are the perfect place to find quality and fashionable pieces without having to spend all of your holiday savings. I found this long sleeved maxi dress which is elegant and sexy and perfect for my upcoming holiday parties!�

Photo credit: HM.COM

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big. BOLD.

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BEAUTIFUL. by Caroline A. Wong Photos By breana powell

Fashion & Features



ince the 1940s, Balmain has enchanted the fashion crowd, but with hefty price tags reaching $20,000 (the reported price of Kim Kardashian’s beaded bachelorette frock), the brand is not necessarily for the masses. That is, of course, until H&M steps in for a designer collaboration. Much like the design house’s Kardashian fan base, Balmain went big and bold for its partnership with H&M. Yes, the line boasts lots of sequins and sparkle, but it is also literally big, as H&M’s largest collaboration to date. The collection also chose a big-name, it-girl cast of models (you know, Gigi, Kendall, Jordan) to trumpet its cause.


With more pieces, more menswear, and more styles at a wider range of prices than its predecessors, the Balmain x H&M line understandably drew a larger crowd. Shoppers that were used to lining up at 5:30 in the morning found that, even when they arrived before 5, they were farther back in line than they had been for past collections. Another surprise was the number of men, comprising more than half of the Balmain devotees in line. The menswear options included luxe leather goods and seasonally appropriate coats that prompted fashionablyclad men to leave their beds before dawn. With coats, shoes, pants, bags and more, the collaboration ensured its male followers should go home happy...but did they?

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Fashion & Features


THE BOLD The line sold out in mere hours (less than four at the Beverly Center location in Los Angeles). In the past, the store used strategies such as staggering goods to ensure more availability, a strategy that appeared to have been forgotten as more than half of the styles were unavailable by the second hour of sales. One male shopper even confessed

Shoppers congregated like vulutres. An employee was scared to bring returns from the cash register to the rack.

that he went home empty-handed because all the men’s clothing had been sold by the time he got a chance to shop. Even before all the groups had been let into the store, scalpers were already buying and selling goods for cash ten feet from the storefront. Security guards repeatedly asked them to leave, yet one scalper boldly asked, “What are you going to do about it?� Later, on the last day H&M would accept returns for the original form of payment, shoppers once again congregated like vultures, eyes peeled for people entering with Balmain x H&M shopping bags. An employee divulged how she was scared to bring returns from the cash register to the Balmain x H&M rack. When employees undressed store mannequins to sell the last of the line, two women fought over the green sequin dress, clawing at each other and tugging at the garment even as security escorted them out of the store. 48 Tastevin Magazine December / January 2015/16

Worn throughout: Balmain x H&M colorblock top, $60. Balmain x H&M green suede purse, $300. Faux leather leggings, Forever 21, forever21. com for similar styles. Black heeled boots, ShoeDazzle, shoedazzle.com for similar styles.


Fashion & Features


THE BEAUTIFUL It’s no surprise that this designer collaboration resulted in fistfights for fashion. Balmain carefully crafted its designs for a result that is simultaneously luxurious, expensivelooking, seasonally-appropriate, and surprisingly versatile. One might think, “Well, how often am I going to wear green velvet pants?” Let us count the ways. There are the obvious Christmas parties and New Years parties, where white and sequins would add a festive touch. The pants would also be an unexpected choice for drinks out with friends and can even work in a creative office with a blazer thrown on top. The fabric quality throughout the line is top notch, and the sizing inconsistencies seen with H&M’s Isabel Marant and Alexander Wang lines were not as pronounced (one size up for Balmain versus two or more sizes up with its predecessors). If you weren’t lucky enough to get some pieces (or weren’t crazy enough to line up so early to fight the crowds), there are still goods for sale on eBay and resale apps like Poshmark. Prices will just keep dropping as interest quiets down, so by January you might be able to purchase pieces for close to original retail. Good luck and happy shopping. We’ll see you at the next collaboration!


3 50 Tastevin Magazine December / January 2015/16



While we adore the fit of this particular collaboration piece, you can sub out another neutral mock-turtleneck top to take advantage of this holiday style inspiration!



For Christmas

Go with shiny, bouncy waves in your hair along with sparkly studs. Add a deep red midi and black kitten heels, and you’re ready for holiday parties for the office, family, and more! J.Crew crystal burst earrings, $65, jcrew.com


For New Years A sleek ponytail adds edge to an already-futuristic top. With sequin pants, sky-high heels, and dangling earrings, you’ll shine brighter than the fireworks. A white faux fur stole keeps you warm if you’re watching from the pier. Eliza J faux fur stole, $98, nordstrom.com


For Back to Work After your office takes its winter break, you want to return in style. Slip on a blazer and a pencil skirt, but jazz it up with bright printed pumps to herald in the not-too-distant spring. Or, go with slacks and flats to extend that cozy holiday feeling in an office-friendly way. JustFab fit and flare skirt, $23, justfab.com


For Valentines Day It’s never too early to start thinking about your fashion options! With a flirty skater skirt and strappy heels, the top is a fresh, unexpected choice. Jessica Simpson “Claudette” d’Orsay pumps, $59, jet.com


Something Sweet

solidaritĂŠ The American Red Cross works closely with the French Red Cross and is ready to assist if necessary. The French Red Cross has mobilized 300 volunteers so far. They are supporting first responders, providing first aid, and working in close coordination with officials to determine how they can best help the community and emergency workers as the situation continues to evolve. Visit http://www.ifrc.org/en/what-we-do/where-we-work/europe/french-red-cross/ for more information.


Profile for Tastevin Mag

Tastevin Magazine Dec / Jan 2016  

A Fashion and Lifestyle Tasting Menu

Tastevin Magazine Dec / Jan 2016  

A Fashion and Lifestyle Tasting Menu