“A Life In The Day of Andrea” Is The Featured Blog @ ENK Social Media Lounge!


ENK, the international leader of fashion trade shows, hosts their Intermezzo and Accessorie Circuit shows this week, from January 6 – 8 in New York City. The shows bring out the best contemporary collections and accessories to the West Side of Manhattan, while buyers and editors alike come to see what is next in fashion.

With social media being increasingly important on the fashion end, the folks at Janine Just Inc. have decided to join forces with Sircle Media to bring about the first ENK Social Media Lounge, a place where exhibitors and other attendees can get tips on how to better engage in social media to grow their business.

The ladies at Janine Just asked if I would participate as a featured blogger, and of course I obliged! The lounge is open all days from 9 AM – 3 PM in the Pier 92 lobby, and I will be present on the 6th and 8th at noon to discuss how I have used social media to connect my blog to my favorite brands. If you will be at Pier 92 this week, definitely stop by!


FIAF Presents, Art de Vivre “The Power of Style”. April 2013


One of my favorite cultural institutions and former hub of my French language education, FIAF (French Alliance, Alliance Francaise), hosts their Art de Vivre series this April. The theme is “The Power of Style” and they have a great line-up of guests and talks. Check out info below as per their website.

Art de Vivre
The Power of Style

April 10, 15, and 22, 2013

Once considered just a reflection of our wardrobes, style has become an expression of our lifestyles, an agent for social change, and an inspiration for innovative businesses. Meet the fashion experts, designers, and entrepreneurs re-imagining the significance of style.

Style for Social Change: Fashion’s New Philanthropists Mary Alice Stephenson and Rachel Roy

Wednesday, April 10, 2013


FIAF, Florence Gould Hall

Celebrating the Little Black Dress with André Leon Talley

Monday, April 15, 2013

FIAF, Florence Gould Hall

The Entrepreneurs: Christiane Lemieux, Áslaug Magnúsdóttir,and Stephanie von Watzdorf

Monday, April 22, 2013

FIAF, Le Skyroom

FIAF Fashion Talks 2012

FIAF (French Institute, Alliance Francaise) is a cultural institution in NYC that teaches French to students of all ages and hold various events in the realms of food, fashion, and cinema, among many others. I took a course there last fall and was so excited to get first dibs (and discounts) on their events. One such event is FIAF Fashion Talks. FIAF Fashion Talks is a series of three talks with various designers, moderated by Pamela Golbin. This past may hosted Tory Burch, Lorenz Baumer, and Oscar de la Renta, and I was pleased to attend all three! They have announced the line-up for 2012. Info below as per the FIAF website.

Reed Krakoff
Wednesday, March 21 at 7pm
FIAF, Florence Gould Hall
In English

Designer Reed Krakoff made his name in fashion as the President and Executive Creative Director of Coach, a title he still holds. In 2010, he made headlines with the launch of his Reed Krakoff collection of luxurious American sportswear and accessories. Krakoff takes you behind the scenes of his exciting new venture.

Stefano Pilati
Tuesday, March 27 at 7pm
FIAF, Florence Gould Hall
In English

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Music or Fashion? An Introspective.

The crowd as seen from the balcony at Webster Hall for a Lupe Fiasco show
If you had to choose, what would it be; music or fashion? – Jason Chandler

This question was posed to me the other day by my good friend Jason (@PotentialNY), and my immediate response was not words, but the facial expression of a deer in headlights. Since pursuing these two realms from an academic and professional standpoint, I had NEVER been asked this question, as seen by initial reaction. I really could not imagine choosing between the two, so I told Jason “that’s a really unfair question to ask me”. You like how I got around that one right? I did not do that to avoid the question, but because both spheres are equally a part of who I am. Let’s bring it back to the beginning, starting with my family and upbringing.

In Belize, my uncles (father’s brothers) were/are all musicians, and toured the country in their adolescence, driving all the girls crazy (fo reals). They all came to the United States, and mostly settled down in California in the LA area, and continue to tour with various bands as instrumentalists. My uncle Junie (Rudy Cas) is most active as an instrumentalist and vocalist, and I always see him when he is in town for a show. My touring uncles exposed me to music at a young age, mainly the music that they played that had a heavy reggae/ska influence. The Hip Hop side of me, was first introduced to me via my three older brothers circa 1988 via Video Music Box. Hosted by Ralph McDaniels, Video Music Box was one of the first Hip Hop music video shows that showcased the music of talent in NYC, along with the teachings of culture by Ralph McDaniels. I would watch this show religiously with my brothers, basically since the time I could walk, because it was exciting and we could all connect with the lyrics, and “look” of what Hip Hop was during that time. Any given day in our household, there would be a mix of Hip Hop from my brothers, reggae and funk from my father, and soul and folk being played at a rather high volume. I document my life through music, as I have always been surrounded by it. My love for music led me to performing and singing; I was a part of various choirs in church and school, and was a fixture at holiday festivals and talent shows, but recently decided to move away from performing as I believe I am better at documenting and sharing stories of performers, as opposed to being one.

Fashion is something that lives vicariously through my mother, and her side of the family. In Belize, her father owned a tailor shop, and as a child, my mother learned how to sew at the age of 12, her first creation being a blue cotton dress. With the introduction of “ready to-wear” clothing in the 1960s, my grandfather’s tailoring business suffered, as people were now able to buy work clothes off-the-rack, as opposed to having pieces tailor-made. This decline led my grandparents to New York City to seek out a better life. My grandfather never started a new business here, but worked in the Garment District. My mother continued to use your sewing skills throughout her work as a home economics teacher at her alma mater in Belize City, and as a part-time seamstress in Brooklyn. Between her and my grandfather, I was always surrounded by fabrics and patterns, and took an interest in fashion very young, co-designing special occasion dresses with my mother. I picked the patterns and fabrics for my 8th grade and junior prom in high school, along with special dresses for parties and other holidays. It wasn’t until college that I decided to truly delve into designing, creating my first collection of casual dresses and sportswear in 2007 for a campus event entitled “Epicenter”, which was a fashion show/concert mash-up.

A look from my "World Town" collection circa 2009. All silk with Ikat waist insert

I have created two more collections since, focusing on women’s cocktail dresses that have a clear bold vision in color palette, texture, and motif prints. Eventually, I plan to focus on bridesmaid dresses, as I’ve been asked by numerous indivuals to design looks for their bridal parties. In music, I am the eyes and ears, more so for my friends and family members that are musicians. I help them choose the right songs and wardrobe to best convey who they are. Along with this, I interview artists, and share my experiences of live shows and whatever songs may be on my mind at the moment. So why choose? I think it would be a disservice to you all, and to myself, if I decided to choose between both worlds. I chose to double major in both Music Industry and Fashion in undergrad because I truly believed I can meld both seamlessly. They are both extremely competitive fields, filled with many egos, and at times “fake” personalities, but I do it because I am passionate about it. The love for the madness and excitement pushes me forward. I will carry on.

RACHEL Rachel Roy, Fall 2011

Image from the RACHEL Rachel Roy Fall 2011 lookbook

What comes to mind when you think of fall? The changing colors of the leaves? Crisp breezes? Or just the rolling out of fall collections? Whatever your preference, the team at RACHEL Rachel Roy captures the essence of fall in their new film Beautiful.Imperfect.Life. The film is a video lookbook of sorts, showcasing their Fall 2011 collection. Directed by Cameron Duddy (known for his work with Bruno Mars, among others), the film features a cast of young people, enjoying an evening by the camp fire during the summer to fall transition. The atmospheric still campaign (above photo included), was shot by Harper Smith. Check out the video below to see what they have in store.

Also, from now through August 29th, be sure to check out the lookbook exclusive sale (yes, SALE!). You can score your favorite RRR fall pieces for 30%, woo hoo! Happy shopping and cheers to fall!

Kanye West: Fashion Designer…for real though


If you are one that keeps their ear to the streets in the realms of music and fashion news, you would have probably heard chatter of Kanye West starting a clothing line. A few years back,  in his Graduation” era, there were talks of Pastelle, a contemporary men’s line in the same vein as A Bathing Ape. It never saw fruition. I believe the reason for this, simply put, is that he was trying to do too much. The ideas were not fresh, and in a way, looked like everything else. Pastelle was not “special” from a retail standpoint, hence its disappearance.

In the past year or two, post Taylor Swift VMA meltdown, we’ve heard more news of Kanye on the fashion front, more so of him being a student. In this time, he interned at such prestigious companies as Louis Vuitton and Fendi, and became chummy with the staff at Central St. Martins, one of the top design schools in the world. These hints brought about the natural question,  “Is he starting a clothing line?”, and now, it is confirmed.

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Sample Sales this Week: Milly, Tocca, J.Press and More

via Clothingline

Starting Tuesday, June 21

  • For Women
  • Spring/Summer Merchandise


SSS Sample Sales
261 W 36th Street
(between 7th & 8th Ave)
2nd Floor
New York, NY 10018

Payment Methods: Visa, MasterCard, American Express, most ATM bank cards and cash.

via NY Mag

Gryson leather handbags

6/22–6/23 Handbags are up to 70 percent off at the Gryson sample sale. Prices start at $100. The Cybelle bag is $315 (originally $795) and the Olivia Harris by Joy Gryson convertible tote is $198 (originally $498). 180 Varick St., nr. King St., Ste. 916; W–Th (11–6).

Looks from J.Press

6/23–6/24 Menswear is 70 to 80 percent off at the J.Press sample sale. Samples and defected items are $5 to $20. Button-down shirts are $21 (originally $70) and ties are $18 (originally $60). 530 Seventh Ave., twenty-ninth fl. (212-997-3600); Th–F (11–6).

Bird Williamsburg

 6/23–7/19 Men’s and women’s spring/summer merchandise is 25 to 60 percent off at Bird. 316 Fifth Ave., nr. 2nd St., Park Slope (718-768-4940); M–S (noon–8), Su (noon–7). 220 Smith St., at Butler St., Cobble Hill (718-797-3776); M–S (noon–8), Su (noon–6). 203 Grand St., nr. Bedford Ave., Williamsburg (718-388-1655); M–S (noon–8), Su (noon–7).

The Weekend in Photos

The weekend was a whirlwind, starting with Theophilus London at the Brooklyn Museum on Friday evening. He, as well as openers, Phony Ppl, put on a high energy show, which ended up being a huge dance party at the museum. I didn’t get the photos and videos I would have liked (rats!) as I was blocked for the most part by guys that resembled NBA players. I did snag a photo with Theophilus which you can see below. Saturday I attended the Blue Marlin Launch party in DUMBO with the lovely Natasha. The weather was less than spectacular, but the vibes were good all around. The event was sponsored by Brooklyn Brewery, Purity Vodka, and Grace Foods, with live performances by Riot in Paris among others. We even got to chat it up with Tyson Beckford, who would have thought! A great weekend indeed, and just the beginning for what summer has in store.

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Cole Haan x Les Toiles du Soleil: Launch & Outfit Inspirations

Les Toiles du Soleil wall in the Cole Haan SoHo store

Cole Haan launched a glorious summer collaboration this week with French textile giant, Les Toiles du Soleil.

Les Toiles du Soleil was founded 150 years ago in the Catalan region of France and produces fabrics in vibrant colors and striped patterns on old-world traditional looms.

I was fortunate to pass by the launch event on Tuesday in their SoHo store. Bubbly and sweet treats were passed and tunes were played by DJ Josh Madden, brother of Good Charlotte front-men, Benji and Joel. The crowd was super fun and GORGEOUS, but the star of the evening was the product. The collaboration includes a range for men, women, and man’s best friend. Key items are the Jack & Jill chukka boots, Soleil stripe Kendra large tote, bow tie, and dog leash. Product price ranges from $38- $328, sold exclusively online and the SoHo store for a limited time, so get it while it’s hot!

DJ Josh Madden
Cole Haan Custom Peoples Pops

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Sample Sales This Week: DVF, Opening Ceremony, Mara Hoffman

Via NY Mag

6/7–6/10 Shop discounted ready-to-wear from the fall 2010 and spring 2011 collections at the DVF sample sale. 260 Fifth Ave., nr. 28th St.; T (9–6:30), W (10–8), Th (10–7), F (9–3).

Opening Ceremony, New York
6/9–6/11 Merchandise from Acne, Alexander Wang, Vena Cava, Rachel Comey, and more is 60 to 90 percent off at the Opening Ceremony sample sale. 148 Lafayette St., nr. Grand St.; Th–S (11–8), Su (noon–7).
Mara Hoffman Swimwear
6/10–6/12 Dresses are $25 to $200 and bikinis are $25 to $85 at the Mara Hoffman samples sale. The Peplum dress is $100 (originally $301.40), the twist-front maxi-dress is $200 (originally $561), and the ruffle bustier bikini is $85 (originally $220).236 Elizabeth St., nr. Prince St.; F (11–8), S (11–7), Su (noon–5).

Site Love: The Style Blogger

Dan Trepanier, Photography by Alex Crawford

For the men, and lovers of menswear, one site I highly suggest you all take note of is The Style Blogger. Founder and blogger, Dan Trepanier, started the Style Blogger in 2009 to “share men’s style tips and answer frequently asked questions from friends and colleagues”. He is very insightful and offers great style tips, along with sharing the personal style of himself and his readers. Having an affinity for menswear, I was immediately drawn in to the site because it was so well thought out, and had more of a purpose than a mere shopping guide. Key categories for me are “1 Piece/3 Ways” (which I have adopted for my own site), “Body Type Tips”, and “Fabrics”. You can expect great clothes, great advice, and great imagery. What’s better than a well-dressed man?

The Style Blogger Sites







 *All images courtesy of The Style Blogger

1 Shoe, 5 Ways

Guys, I know it’s hard to find a great pair of dress shoes. You may think that you need an array of colors, but I have taken the liberty to help you out. I have chosen a tan, YSL Derby Shoe, which retails for $545 on Mr. Porter. Here I show the shoe’s versatility by providing five looks for different occasions with this one amazing pair of shoes.

What I’m Wearing: Lunch on a Hot Day


What I’m Wearing: Lunch on a Hot Day
  • Ray Ban Tortoiseshell Wayfarer sunglasses
  • Opal earrings purchased from a local artisan in Belize
  • Gant floral print silk voile blouse
  • Swiss Legend ivory ceramic watch
  • Rebecca Minkoff MAB satchel in almond
  • Madewell Rail Straight white denim jeans
  • Gap champagne colored floral t-strap sandals

I tweeted earlier:

Andrea K. Castillo

@andreakcastillo Andrea K. Castillo
Today’s outfit: Gant floral printed blouse, white @madewell1937 jeans, champagne flat Gap sandals and @RebeccaMinkoff MAB satchel in almond
And received this response a little later:
Rebecca Minkoff

@RebeccaMinkoff Rebecca Minkoff
Thank you Rebecca Minkoff for approving my outfit today!

What to Wear: Festivals and Summer Concerts

While browsing my million emails from various retailers this morning, I received one from ASOS highlighting a contest to win a trip and tickets to the Ibiza Rocks festival.  For those of you that are not familiar, ASOS (As Seen on Screen) is a British multi-brand online retailer that sells mens and womens clothing worldwide. They have a sister site, ASOS Fashion Finder, which I like to call a “fashion social network”, similar to Polyvore, in that you can create different themed outfits with items sold on ASOS. The Festival Competition asks users to create their best festival outfit, for a chance of winning the big prize. I entered (of course) styling a mens and womens outfit, and felt that it was the perfect time to showcase a few fun concert/festival outfits for the guys and the ladies! Click on the images to see an enlarged image, and check out my page here.

“Denim After Dark” at Madewell Fifth Ave

Madewell 5th Ave

Hey Ladies! What you doing tonight? You don’t know, you say? Well I’ve got a little something here that you should check out. Madewell, one of my favorite stores (obvi), is hosting their “Denim after Dark” series TONIGHT, May 19th, at their super new Fifth Avenue store. What’s Denim After Dark?  I know that was your next question. It is an in-store shopping event that features a live DJ, sweets and treats (and when I say that, I mean cocktails), free denim hemming, and styling tips from experts. Sounds like a great time right? Hours of the event vary, so be sure to call them up for definite times. Check out the flyer and store info below. Hope to see you there!

Madewell Lower Fifth Avenue
115 Fifth Avenue
New York, NY
(212) 228-5172