Sarah: Drop Your Anchors at Portside

Thursday, January 31, 2013
Follow Sarah on Twitter: @sarallin

This past Sunday I somehow lucked out and was tasked with going to the media preview of Portside, the latest venture by Mark Brand.

Located in Gastown, Portside hopes to bring East coast pub culture to Vancouver. Right off the bat they had my interest, as Vancouver isn't exactly known as the most friendly place.

With a name like Portside, it's quite obvious that they're going for a nautical vibe, and there are all sorts of cool artifacts to check out in the space. On top of being a bar, Portside also has a stage for live music acts, filling a void of medium-sized venues in the city.

Some highlights of the night, including me stuffing my face (as per usual)
The menu sticks to the basics, but is definitely a step up from your average drunk food. Highlights include the pulled pork, and hot dogs. Drinks are definitely the main attraction though, as Porside features an impressive 24 beers on tap, with 6 selections each from: local, Canadian, American, and international. Needless to say,  I didn't get a chance to try them all, but that will certainly be a goal of mine in the coming weeks.

Overall, Portside has an awesome vibe, and great food and drinks to back it up. I'm looking forward to checking out a live show and getting closer to my beer goal.

Things Not to Miss About Vancouver

Friday, January 25, 2013
And of course, there are always things that you won't miss about the place you're leaving.

- Translink delays and countless break downs (I will, however, miss their social media presence)
- Grey days when you can't tell the time of day
- The Yaletown scene
- Having so many hills (riding your bike or walking gets so tiring!)
- Vancouver's complete lack of snow preparedness
- Driving along: West Georgia, South Granville, Denman, Broadway, 41st, Robson
- Having simultaneous construction on all major routes from Burnaby to downtown
- Donnelly bars (same bar, different name)
- Always having to carry an umbrella because it could rain at a moment's notice
- Getting bombarded by people handing out the dailies and charity canvassers at/around Burrard Station
- $40 cab rides to Burnaby
- Trying to just find a cab
- Bandwagoners - from the Canucks to the Waldorf, Vancouverites love a cause, even if they have to make one up
- Archaic liquor laws

What are some thing in Vancouver that you wouldn't miss?

Things to Miss About Vancouver

Moving to a new city is, of course, bittersweet. On one hand there are so many new experiences to look forward to, but on the other, there are so many habits, favourites, routines, etc. that are already in place.

Here's a list of just some of the things I'll miss about Vancouver:

- Good gelato
- To Die For Banana Bread
- Specialty places like Bombay Brow Bar, Noir Lash Lounge, and Stripped Wax Bar (come to Ottawa!)
- Bar Method
- Leather jackets in January
- Kafkas coffee
- The ocean
- The cocktail scene
- The brunch scene
- Not really having to worry about massively changing my closet from summer to winter
- Summer default plans - "What do you want to do tonight? Grab gelato and hang out at English Bay? Yep ok."
- Whistler
- Cranberries Spa
- Proximity to the US (particularly for shipping to your US PO box - YOU ALL DO IT!)
- The lemon loaf from Revolver
- Cartems doughnuts
- Patio season
- Holt Renfrew (don't even try to convince me that the one in Ottawa is the same. It's NOT.)
- The Room at The Bay
- Gastown
- Hubbub Sandwiches
- Topshop
- Lululemon Lab
- Walks along the Seawall
- Local blogs like Vancity Buzz and Vancouver is Awesome
- The Board of Trade Co
- All the dive bars/awesome concert venues

What would you miss about Vancouver if you had to leave?

Fashion Education: Rad Hourani Couture

Thursday, January 24, 2013
Please note that this is not a review of Rad Hourani's Paris couture show.

Jordanian-born designer, Rad Hourani, was recently invited to become an invited member (membre invité  - guest member) of the French Federation of Haute Couture Paris, the French fashion industry governing clothing (yes, that's a thing). The Federation is comprised of 3 different areas: fashion houses that produce only haute couture, houses that produce both men's RTW and couture, and houses that produce both women's RTW and couture.

Interestingly enough, Hourani spent some time growing up in Montreal. While some people consider him to be a "Canadian designer", I opted to go the "Jordanian-born" route since I can't say what he identifies with.

I recently learned that there are people who read my blog but don't always know what I'm talking about (thanks and please continue reading!). So, I'm sure you're curious what haute couture is. Literally, it's "high fashion". If you think of all the crazy designer clothes you see, it's likely that it's couture. However, haute couture isn't something to be taken lightly in the fashion world. You see, haute couture is actually a designation. The term is protected by law, and is defined by the French Federation of Haute Couture Paris.

Couture designs are custom made to order. The designs consist of the highest quality fabrics and the attention to detail is so high that oftentimes things are stitched and sewn by hand.

So what, right?

Not only had Rad Hourani been invited to become un membre invité of the Federation, he is also the first unisex haute couture designer in fashion history.

So, that.

Images via - from the FW12 couture shows.

KnowShow - Proof Style and Function Aren't Mutually Exclusive

Tuesday, January 22, 2013
Follow Sarah on Twitter: @sarallin

Hey Vancouver, dare yourself to dress better, why don't ya?
Vancouver has a couple of reputations (aside from the overpriced housing, but that’s a whole other story): active lifestyle, and terrible fashion. Sadly these two things seem to have a direct correlation, and often you can’t tell if someone has just come from yoga or if they always look like that.

Last week we attended KNOWSHOW to check out the Fall/Winter 2013 collections from various lifestyle brands. There were a lot of great finds, and believe it or not, a lot of well-dressed people at the show. In a way, Vancouver is the perfect city for KNOWSHOW, because it acts as proof that lifestyle and fashion don’t have to be at odds with each other.

Here are some of my key takeaways from KNOWSHOW:

Unexpected materials: Whether it was sunglass frames made from skateboard decks at Proof Eyewear, or mesh looking surprisingly awesome when paired with denim for the Mavi/Chalayan Denim Capsule Collection, there was usually something interesting to learn about each item of clothing or accessory the more you looked into it.

Bold prints: Lifetime Collective showed sweaters with woven patterns that would make even Bill Cosby jealous. Quiksilver Women put out some great print pants that looked ready to be lived in. More specifically, blanket prints were a popular showing. I’ve always been a sucker for a good plaid item, and blanket prints seem to be a natural progression from there.

General awesomeness: I’ve been to my fair share of tradeshows, and I think KNOWSHOW has to be the most fun. Exhibitors are genuinely excited about the brands they’re representing, and want to share it with people. The only downside is that you have to wait for all these clothes to hit retailers.

So listen up Vancouverites, now that you’ve learned what the KNOWSHOW exhibitors have to offer, you really have no excuse for wearing leggings as pants.

In the Know (Show)

Follow Emily on Twitter: @em_rossco

KNOWSHOW is a bi-annual lifestyle tradeshow. What does that mean you ask? It means all of best looking, most rugged, well-dressed men get together in one room in Vancouver and drink caesars.

But really, it’s a relaxed tradeshow where lifestyle brands showcase their upcoming collections so buyers purchase pieces for their stores and bloggers (that’s us!) get a sneak peek at upcoming trends.

Here are my picks (excluding dreamy men and enviably-dressed women) from KNOWSHOW.

Clockwise from top left:

Sitka Surf, Skate & Apparel had a killer booth. Rustic touches complimented their upcoming line that featured cozy knits and lots of pattern.

The classic Fjallraven Kanken, is the best backpack (next to the local fan-favourite, Herschel). Tons of great colours available and the square design makes shoving in all your essentials super easy.

Pendleton prints are as good-looking as they are cozy. This duffle coat was definitely my top pick.

A line from Boise, Idaho, Proof Eyewear brought sustainable glasses and sunglasses (think wood and eco-plastic) and charming reps to KNOWSHOW. Check out their glasses for the perfect classic shape in a material that will make you feel good.

A Vancouver staple, Herschel Supply Co. carries on the neon trend in their backpacks. Super into this outdoorsy shape too.

Uranium jewelry out of Quebec brought unique pieces made by housewives and stay at home moms. They also brought an amazing cat shirt on a cat hanger.

Burnette Showroom had the most shoes at the show, making it my favourite stop. Booties, sandals, wedges, oxfords and more, I’m hoping to see these styles soon.

KnowShow: A Show Worth Knowing About

Last week Emily, Sarah, and I stopped by the KNOWSHOW to check out what was in store for the Fall/Winter 2013 action sports, fashion, and lifestyle brands.

What's great about KNOWSHOW is that it brings together roughly 300 local and international brands under one roof. With some of the brand's having only part of their collection available in certain stores and sometimes even dealing with exclusivity, it provides us with a great opportunity to get a more fulsome look at what these brands have to offer.

I love surfing (but I'm not good at it. Sidebar: Does anyone remember the short lived MTV show Surf Girls from 2003???). So imagine my surprise when I find out that there's a "more mature" Roxy/Quiksilver line, Quiksilver Women. Sarah has more on them.

TOMS was so good. Though, as usual, I had a preference for the men's collection. I love this casual take on the wingtip. A bit dressier than regular TOMS, but more casual than a leather shoe. Fun colours and patterns, but nothing overwhelming. The women's collection has cute new boot styles.

The Reef Resrv mens collection was amazing. I love how men's footwear is a thing now. The menswear scene is a weird combination of fashion, sports, and hiphop (seriously - why do you think Amar'e Stoudemire is pals with Anna Wintour? Do you think it's just for fun? There's always an agenda), so I can definitely see how menswear has evolved into what it is now.

Proof had amazing sunglasses - for both men and women! They also had a couple cute sweatshirts. 

Check out these super awesome slip-on brogues from Seychelles. Toe-caps! Patent! Prints! I don't usually care for Seychelles, but these I want so bad.

And these smoking slippers from Seychelles! I really want to Union Jack ones. Can't you just see Taylor Swift prancing around in these (probably holding on to a 18-year-old's hand)? They would go so well with her J.Crew fox sweater.

While this coat wouldn't keep me even a little bit warm in Ottawa, I'm so into it. It's BB Dakota and would make for a great fall or spring transition piece. Or, I suppose if you live in Vancouver, you could wear it all winter without problem. The (faux?) leather detailing is great.

Herschel Supply Co has a few new styles for Fall/Winter 2013. There are a lot more colours and, as you can see, a whole whack of new patterns. So support local!

Golden Globes Best/Worst

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Follow Sarah on Twitter @sarallin

Here’s my Golden Globe fashion recap, and first Haus of Hybrid contribution (!!!). Because I’m totally qualified to write these things while sitting at home in sweatpants, baggy sweater, and a topbun.

Best Dressed

Rosario Dawson
The look on her face sums up how I feel about this dress.
Lucy Liu
Love it or hate it, at least Lucy Liu takes risks. Her Emmys skanky disco ball dress didn’t quite hit the mark, but this dress sure did.

Kerry Washington

Kerry Washington looks so good, I may have to start watching Scandal.

Jessica Alba

Is it just me, or does she just get better and better looking?
Amy Poehler
 I don’t know if it was her dress, or just how funny they were, but Amy and Tina looked great, with Amy’s red dress being the best of the bunch. Side note, I want Tina Fey’s hair.

The So Close Award

Jessica Chastain

Could someone please get Jessica Chastain a tailor? Someone’s boobs should never be best described as “baggy”.

Worst Dressed

Giuliana Rancic
This dress looks like a low-rent Beyonce at the 2011 Met Gala.

Julianne Hough
 Miley Cyrus goes to prom. Also, why are you even invited to this award show?

Halle Berry
 This dress reminds me of that terrible early 2000s trend of faux newspaper print clothes.
Debra Messing
 Speaking of things that were popular in the early 2000s… here’s Debra Messing.

Lena Dunham
 Is this dress made out of neoprene?

Odds and ends:
To Sarah Hyland, do your boobs hurt in that dress?
To Christoph Waltz, when did you get so attractive? Please keep wearing those glasses.
And finally to Bill Murray, your facial hair confuses and amazes me. Never stop being you.

Images via THR, The Cut, Vulture

Golden Globes: Best Dressed

Like I said, let's hope the Oscars are better!

Olivia Munn in Giorgio Armani
 Love the column. Love the simplicity. Love the colour. It's not over-powering, that's the key.
Kerry Washington in Miu Miu
 I certainly wasn't a fan of those weird highlights in her hair, but the dress... I'm not usually big on sparkly gowns (but sequin pants...), but this one is done in a way that isn't all up in your face.
Jessica Alba in Oscar de la Renta
 I don't usually like what Alba wears, but the colour of the OdlR was great (amongst all the black). It's flattering (hello, Jessica Chastain) and fits so well.
Lea Michele in Elie Saab
 I'm just as surprised as you that I like Lea Michele's dress. Though her shoes are something to be desired (she must've borred them from Jennifer Aniston). It's simple and flattering; things Lea Michele usually isn't.
Nicole Kidman in Alexander McQueen
 Simple, but standout. Love the midriff. Nicole's body is ah-maz-ing. Damn.
Lucy Liu in Carolina Herrera
I don't like ball gowns as a general rule. But the print on this dress is fun and casual, somehow making the formality of this dress irrelevant. I love the side braid.

Golden Globes: Worst Dressed

So I had planned on making a collage for this, but since I have no idea how to use PhotoShop and have no interest in actually taking the time to figure it out, it didn't happen.

So, the Globes! Was anyone else as underwhelmed with the red carpet as I was? Seriously. Let's hope for a better showing at the Oscars (Feb 24)!

Halle Berry in Versace
 It looks like Kardasian Kollection for Bebe. Did I just write that? What happened to Halle? Blame Gabriel Aubry and Olivier Martinez.
Giuliana Racic in Celia Kritharioti
Who? Who is she wearing? And she's on TV for every awards ceremony and always looks like crap. Who's allowing this?
Julianne Hough in Monique Lhullier
 The skirt. I just can't.
Alyssa Milano in Ports 1961
 What in the WHAT is this? I can't even.
Kelly Osbourne in Zac Posen
You would think someone who is a fashion critic would dress better. But then again, when you actually watch Fashion Police, they're not saying anything about the actual fashion. So pretty much, I could have her job. 
Rachel Weisz in Louis Vuitton
The dress is a hit until the polka dot skirt. If you cut it off there, it would be great...for the office. 
Lena Dunham in Zac Posen
Lena Dunham needs a stylist. Every time I see her, it's cringe-worthy. Or maybe she should go on "What Not to Wear" like Mayim Bialik. Juxtapose her to Allison Williams and Zosia Mamet...

The Party

Wednesday, January 9, 2013
So the cat's out of the bag and you all know I'm leaving.

I got a new job and my start date is January 30 (so soon!). I will be heading out January 27, which leaves me less than 20 days to get my life together. And by "together", I mean in boxes and shipped via Greyhound.

Since I won't have time to see all your wonderful faces before I go, I will be hosting a Goodbye Party in conjunction with my homies at Vancity Buzz at Hubbub!

If you want to spend some one-on-one time, let me know ASAP! I take bribes in the form of: rent money, shoes, jeans, and the entire Spring 2013 collection from Club Monaco.

poster by @sarallin

Come for a drink, come for 6. Just come say hi (or, I guess bye, in this case)!

And yes, I know. Hockey's back that night. Well, you lasted a 100+ day lockout, I'm sure you can miss one more day. Just kidding..?

New Year, New City

The rumours are true!

I'm moving!

To Ottawa! Our fair nation's capital.

I've been waiting rather (im)patiently to share the news with you all. If you follow me on Twitter, you may have seen some tweets hinting at something changing. I got the news just before Christmas - it really was a Christmas miracle.

Since August, but more so since October, I've been campaigning pretty hard to find a job in Ottawa, and it happened and I couldn't be more stoked. Ottawa's a lovely city, the 4th largest in Canada (immediately following Vancouver), so I'm convinced that I'll like it (start placing your bets).

So, what does that mean for Haus of Hybrid?

Well, expect more diverse content. I'll be posting regular features, so that content will stay the same. Plus I'll be throwing in some stuff from Ottawa to show you all it has to offer. But to cover events in Vancouver, I've asked 3 friends to help me.

Sarah (@sarallin) & Emily (@em_rossco) will be covering events around fashion and general lifestyle.

Mary (@marydotwu) will be covering anything about food.

They're all nice, but most importantly, they're funny. So play nice and follow them on Twitter, ok?


Looking Forward: 2013

Monday, January 7, 2013
We're finally fully into January. Did you make a resolution for this year? What is it?

You read about my 2012 resolution, and though it's a good resolution (and I succeeded at it), it's become a part of my life (going outside my comfort zone and saying 'yes' to new experiences and opportunities).

Sooo...instead of a resolution for 2013, I've decided to go with an over-arching theme.

I kind of did that for 2012, but in an informal way. Knowing all the things I wanted to do and accomplish in 2012, I had dubbed 2012 ‘The Year of No Sleep’. And while I did end up getting a lot of sleep, I sort of sacrificed a social life. But, I wouldn’t trade that for anything. I was very fortunate to have been a part of all the amazing things and to have accomplished all that I did last year.

So, what will 2013 be?


Yeah, I totally snagged that from the 2012 Obama campaign.

Happy 2013 everyone!