Second Hand is not Second Best

I’ve always been into mixing Vintage pieces with modern looks, but recently I’ve been trying even harder to be more conscious of my wardrobe, so I’ve been diving more into shopping second hand. I recently partnered with Goodwill San Antonio for their Influencer campaign, and in my research I’ve been appalled while learning the how harmful fashion can be for the planet. Although, I don’t live under a rock and am aware of the impact of Fast Fashion, but honestly it was alarming to see the statistics. I do go in depth with the concepts in the Goodwill SA Blog, so today I want to talk to you about one of the suggested ways to minimize your impact as a consumer. Second-hand shopping is a way to reduce over-consumerism and the answer to this Throw Away culture. One of the effects of Fast-Fashion is in the name itself. It’s fast, so the amount of fast produced, mass produced clothing is met with the demand of a fast changing trend market. So, what does that leave us with? A whole bunch of clothes, that get thrown away and sent to landfills. Did you know that 11 million tons of clothing is thrown away each year, in the United States alone?! I didn’t, not until I researched it; and it seriously freaked me out. So, I made the conscious decision, right then and there, to dramatically reduce my fast fashion shopping and give second hand shopping a second chance! 

Shopping at Vintage/Antique shops, Consignment shops, non-profit entities like Goodwill, swap meets, rack sales, and now online second hand sites like Poshmark, ThredUp and DePop are great sustainable shopping options. I know that shopping at stores like Goodwill can seem intimidating at first and you can get lost in a sea of clothing, shoes, accessories, handbags and even home goods, but there is definitely a trick to finding treasures. The first time I went in after I started my partnership, I went to the Goodwill close to my house, and was seriously overwhelmed, not noticing that the racks are divided by size and style. So, I kinda walked aimlessly for about 20 minutes not finding anything I liked. I was about to give up, until I decided to go around and start at the very front of the store again. What I was looking for specifically was a black sweater. Once I discovered where the sweaters were, (upfront, since winter was just starting) I found this fabulous Eileen Fisher v-neck sweater and the perfect black turtle neck for like $6.49 each! I was shook and so happy! The prices are shocking! After that awesome find, I went to the blazers and jackets sections, only to discover incredible vintage pieces. This velvet shawl cardigan immediately called my name, and there was also an uber fabulous puff sleeved gold damask bolero style jacket, that put stars in my eyes! For my second trip, I visited a Goodwill close to the big North Star Mall in San Antonio. This store looked more like a Department Store. It was gorgeous! Every section was perfectly styled and there were some seriously gorgeous finds right up front on display. I found this black silk skirt, an African print bomber jacket and the most gorgeous tulle full length skirt, fit for a Red Carpet! There were so many great home goods, too. Wine & Margarita glasses, holiday serving platters and cute coffee mugs. 

Photos by Saige Thomas Photography
Every Goodwill has it’s great finds! I hear the best store for home goods is Downtown and for designer clothes, the store at 281 & Bitters. The newest store on 1604 & Potranco Rd. just opened so I am so excited to check it out, as well. There are also donation stations all over town, friends, so instead of throwing away your stuff, consider donating to Goodwill! Right before the holidays, I donated 2 large bags of lightly worn clothing, shoes and even handbags. I must say, it felt good. I know it’ll all find a good home and it’s for a great cause. Goodwill’s proceeds help people in need of career assistance. The Goodwill Good Careers Academy offers quality certification programs in high-demand fields such as Pharmacy Technician, Medical Assistant, Nurse’s Aide and Commercial Truck Driver. Each year, at least 85% of the Good Career Academy graduates find meaningful employment. For more information on the wonderful things Goodwill contributes to our community, visit

This post is sponsored by Goodwill San Antonio. Their mission aligns with my views on sustainable shopping, but all opinions are my own.

Viernes Verde | Green Friday

Post Thanksgiving haze, it’s time to start prepping for all the Holiday parties we’ll be attending. I personally don’t engage in the practice of waking up at the crack of dawn to brave the cold in endless lines and overwhelmed by crowds trying to catch those impossible deals. I’d much rather stay at home, enjoying lighter versions of leftovers, Holiday movies and maybe some online shopping (if the deals are actually good). What I’m definitely doing today is shopping my closet. Since I have the week off, I’ve been going through my closet to do some inventory on clothes I either haven’t worn ever or in the last year, been photographed in or styled in a certain way. I recently wore a dress to a Holiday party that no one had seen me in but those who celebrated last New Year’s Eve in, so I styled it differently with pointed toe shoes and slicked back hair. I received so many compliments, I thought I really don’t need more clothes, just new styling to old pieces. For the look in this post, I combined a top I had purchased for the Europe trip but never wore and slacks I bought last Christmas. The green bra and shoes are newer, though, but believe that I’ll be getting a ton of use from them this season. Restyling older pieces is the most sustainable way of shopping. It’s funny how people really think that I never repeat clothes, but that couldn’t be farther from the truth. Restyling has been my trick for so many years. Another sustainable shopping option is vintage, thrifting or shopping at consignment stores, I’ll go more in depth about that in a future post. For now, here’s a Holiday party look I put together, which can also be styled with a camisole under for a more conservative look.


Luego de Acción de Gracias, ahora es el tiempo de prepararse para todas las fiestas que estaremos celebrando. Personalmente, yo no participo de la practica de levantarme al amanecer, hace filas interminables en el frío y agobiarme con la multidud de gente tratando de aprovechar las ventas imposibles. Yo prefiero quedarme en casa, comer sobras mas light, ver películas navideñas y tal vez hacer un poco de compras en linea si las ofertas de verdad valen la pena. Lo que sí estaré haciendo es ir de compras en mi propio guardarropas. Como he tenido la semana libre, pude entrar a mi closet para hacer inventario de las piezas que no me he puesto o no me han fotografiado y revisar combinaciones que nunca he intentado. Recientemente, fui a una fiesta y me puse el traje que llevé de Año Nuevo, pero lo combiné con zapatos, cartera y estilo de cabello diferente y recibí muchísimos cumplidos. Me recordó que realmente no me hace falta nada nuevo, sino que necesito re-estilizar mis piezas! Para este artículo, combiné una blusa que había comprado para el viaje de Europa, per nunca me puse con unos pantalones que compré las Navidades pasadas. El brasier verde y los zapatos son mas nuevos, pero créanme que les sacaré mucho uso en esta temporada. Re-estilizar piezas es una de las maneras mas sustentables de “hacer compras” y aunque mucha gente cree que yo nunca repito ropa, no podrían estar mas lejos de la verdad. Yo llevo haciendo este truco desde que tengo uso de razón! Claro, otra manera de hacer compras de manera sustentable es comprar vintage o tiendas de segunda mano o de consignación, ya entraré en ese tema más adelante. Por ahora les dejo con este look de fiestas que combiné, el cual también puede llevar una camisilla debajo para algo un poco mas conservador.  

What I wore | Llevaba puesto

Top: Shein
Pants: Shein
Clutch: Vintage
Necklace: Greece gift
Shoes: Just Fab

Photos by: 


Alamo City Studios

Sustainability is the New Black

This post is very special to me! I am so proud to be able to collaborate with a High Fashion Designer from Puerto Rico on a truly beautiful project initiated by students of my Master’s Alma Mater. As I shared in my post on my Ted Talk 2 years ago, I studied a Master of Sciences in Natural Resource Conservation & Management at the Ana G. Mendez System’s, Metropolitan University. I knew I wanted to eventually unite my passion for fashion with sustainable practices, but I didn’t really know what that would look like. Flash forward and by the power of the Universe I was aligned with Bea Rodriguez Suarez, a prominent fashion designer out of Puerto Rico. She’s been in the game for over 18 years and has presented collections at New York Fashion Week, Barcelona, Vancouver, and Cannes. With an established career and atelier in the fabulous Miramar neighborhood in San Juan, PR, Bea is currently teaching Fashion Design at the International School of Design of the University of Turabo, also part of the Ana G. Mendez System. Somehow the Universe brought us together and I am so happy, because I had been looking for continuous ways to support the island where I was raised and support the local fashion community while still keeping true to my love for the environment. Her recent project with her students, she had them present their Thesis based on sustainability, circularity, ethics, and local innovation.
Eight Fashion Design Thesis presentations had been worked on since August 2017, and as they went through the Hurricane Maria  crisis from September to December, having all kinds of burdens and difficulties their way, they still managed to accomplish their investigation. Truly admirable work ethic and passion was displayed on behalf of these incredibly talented students! From proposing an upcycled thread based off discarded jeans to high end embroidery training for local artisans and even a fashion truck park proposal to assist local shop owners who were affected by the natural disaster, these thesis presentations were beyond their time and have a true passion to elevate the Puertorican economy with their vision. I personally sat in the Hilo a Hilo presentation by Ambar Garcia via Facebook Live, and was absolutely blown away! She proposes to recycle worn out denim by extracting the cotton fibers and carding/spinning new upcycled threads. Her product is called “Hilo a Hilo” and her clients would be able to knit their creations with those threads. She plans to diversify by creating her original weaving patterns and make new super cool textiles for sale as well. The t-shirt I’m wearing in this post was designed by Ambar, and even though the jeans aren’t upcycled, I’m wearing the OLDEST pair of jeans I own. Years ago, I almost threw them out, but for whatever reason, I decided to keep them, and after 14 years, somehow I still fit in them! I know that when the time comes, they will be too worn out to wear and now that I know that turning them into new thread is an option, this is a total game changer. 
I am so excited to be able to work with this incredible group of talented women from Puerto Rico and will continue to support them in any way I can. Stay tuned for more on their projects, because I have every intention of continuing to share them with you and hopefully you guys are able to discover and support these amazing fashion innovators from the beautiful island of Puerto Rico!
Esta entrada es muy especial para mi! Estoy muy orgullosa de tener la oportunidad de colaborar con una diseñadora de Alta Moda de Puerto Rico en un hermoso proyecto iniciado por estudiantes de mi Alma Mater de maestría. Les había mencionado en mi entrada sobre mi Ted Talk hace 2 años, que estudié una Maestría en Ciencias en Conservación y Manejo de Recursos Naturales en la Universidad Metropolitana de Sistema Ana G. Méndez. Siempre supe que eventualmente iba a unir mi pasión por la moda con prácticas sustentables, pero no tenía idea de cómo lo iba a lograr. Gracias al Universo, me alineé con la diseñadora de modas, Bea Rodríguez Suárez. Con más de 18 años de experiencia y múltiples presentaciones en New York Fashion Week, Barcelona, Vancouver y hasta Cannes y una atelier en Miramar, Puerto Rico, hoy día Bea también es profesora de Diseño de Modas en la Escuela Internacional de Diseño en la Universidad del Turabo, también parte del Sistema Ana G. Mendez. De alguna manera, el Universo nos unió y estoy tan contenta porque he estado en búsqueda de diferentes maneras de apoyar a la comunidad de la moda en la Isla, aunque ya no resida allí. En este proyecto con sus estudiantes, para sus presentaciones de tesina el enfoque era sustentabilidad, circularidad, ética e innovación local.

Ocho presentaciones de tesina en Diseño de Modas fueron trabajadas desde agosto de 2017, y mientras se pasaba la crísis del Huracán Maria entre septiembre y diciembre, pasando obstáculos aún así lograron culminar sus investigaciones. Esta muestra de pasión y perseverancia de parte de estos increíbles talentos es verdaderamente digna de admiración. Proyectos desde convertir mahones descartados en hilos nuevos, propuestas de adiestramientos a artesanxs locales en bordados de alta costura, hasta propuestas para un lote de “Fashion trucks” para ayudar a comerciantes locales quienes fueron afectados por el desastre natural, mostraron una gran pasión por elevar a la economía puertorriqueña con su visión. Yo tuve el honor de estar presente en una de las presentaciones a través de Facebook Live y quedé impresionada de sobremanera! El proyecto de Ambar García se llama Hilo a Hilo y propone la construcción de hilos con deshechos textiles en Puerto Rico. Según la revista Indice, 400 millones de libras de textiles son descartados en Puerto Rico nada más y sólo el 15% son reciclados. Estas estadísticas inspiraron a Ambar a proponer un sistema de reciclaje de textiles efectivo a través de la creación de un filamento de mahones reciclados. Aparte de su proyecto que distribuye hilos nuevos, Ambar también piensa crear sus patrones originales y textiles divertidos para la venta. La camisa que llevo puesta fue diseñada por ella y aunque mis mahones no son reciclados, sí son los mahones MAS VIEJOS que tengo. Llevan 14 años conmigo, y aunque hace tiempo los iba a botar algo me dijo que no lo hiciera. Los encontré escondidos en mi closet y no puedo creer que todavía me sirvan! Yo sé que algún día van a estar demasiado desgastados para usar y ahora que sé que se pueden utilizar para una nueva creación me siento mucho mejor.

Estoy súper contenta de poder trabajar con este grupo de mujeres talentosas de Puerto Rico y de continuar apoyándolas de cualquier manera en que yo pueda. Manténganse al tanto de sus proyectos porque tengo toda la intención de continuar compartiéndolos con la meta de que ustedes también las puedan apoyar!

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