BECOMING A BETTER BLOGGER

Happy 2018 everyone!  Hope your new year’s celebration was more eventful than mine.  Not to mislead you, it was great and with wonderful company, but my new year’s eve wasn’t full of dancing, raging and taking fun pictures until the wee hours of the night.  We pretty much called it quits after countdown, went home and fell asleep.  Haha!  It’s what happens when you get old.  I didn’t put much effort or time into planning NYE, and this got me thinking about what other stuff I’ve been slacking on…like my blog.

To be honest, I’m not that great of a blogger, and I find it hard for me to offer blogging tips when I don’t follow through myself.  It’s not so much my lack of passion as it is my lack of focus.  It was really hard for me to focus on KANGTHROPOLOGIE when I had to work 3 other part-time jobs.  However, that’s no longer an excuse, and now I want to concentrate on the things that I can do to become a better blogger (BBB).

BBB #1: READ

I don’t read enough.  Period.  It’s not just the books I own, but I need to start reading more online news articles, blog posts, newsletters, etc..  There is so much information out there, and I’m missing it all by watching Netflix marathons.  I think the more I read other blogs of fashion and lifestyle bloggers similar to myself, the more I can figure out what works and what doesn’t.  Why are some blogs more successful than others?  Are there new topics that spark people’s interests?

If nothing else, reading other content will inspire me to create new content and come up with better ideas and topics.  By reading other blogger posts, this will also help me become a better engager, which leads me to the second thing I need to improve on…

BBB #2: ENGAGE

I’m really bad at this.  REALLY BAD.  (Sigh).  It’s really important for me to engage not only with my readers, but with other bloggers and brands.  I have a blogger friend that’s really great at this.  I’m always at awe of her when she tells me so-and-so wrote about this on her blog, or sends me articles that I would find interesting.

It’s not hard.  It’s just a click away.  I need to be more proactive and reach out to other bloggers that I find interesting or have similar aesthetics.  People respond better when they know that you have an interest in what they have to say.  It’s a two-way street and it’s always good to support your fellow bloggers.

BBB #3: PLAN

My best collaborations and content have been those that were well planned.  The idea, the concept, the mood have all been laid out before the execution, and the images that come about are some that I will remember and treasure forever.  Obviously, I’m not referring to OOTDs but the trips and seasonal campaigns.  I would like to plan out more trips in advance and come up with seasonal campaigns at least a month before execution.  Mood boards and media kits are very helpful when you’re reaching out to brands, and those take time to curate.  My goal is to put in more effort into all of my events, no matter how big or small.

 

These are the top 3 #BBB things I can improve on that I can think of off the top of my head.  I’d be more than grateful to hear your thoughts on how I can improve.  I want to put my best blogger foot forward this year, and your input would be much appreciated.  Thanks for being so patient with me the last 2 years.  Here’s to 2018!

Top: Reformation (similar look on sale) / Jeans: H&M / Boots: Forever 21 (similar look) / Sunnies: ZeroUV / Necklace: Gorjana / Earrings: Sugarfix by Baublebar / Bag: Vintage Chanel / Lipstick: 100% Pure

Photographed by Laci Havens

CHRISTMAS RECAP 2017

This Christmas season has been full of celebrations, gifts, food, friends and family.  I got to celebrate Sagittarius birthdays (TheLuxiLook & StripesCollide), an engagement (GlamaRosh), and births of new Kangs into the family, (congrats David and Kristine!).  I had fun photo collaborations with The LuxiLook, (as seen in these photos), shot by the wonderful Laci Havens.  I am very grateful for all the love I have in my family and I’m happy to share with you some of my favorite moments this Christmas.

GIFTS

Let’s start with the good, materialistic stuff.  I am a Taurus after all.  These are the wonderful and fabulous gifts I got this Christmas from my friends, family and bf:

DR. MARIO

My brother-in-law got my sister the old Nintendo system for Christmas and we spent the entire Christmas day and afternoon drinking about 4 bottles of red wine and playing Dr. Mario with my nephews.  It brought back so many fond memories of my childhood.  This game is ADDICTIVE!  I can’t wait to set it up at home and play it with my bf.  It’s just more fun playing it as an adult because now we get to add wine and alcohol into the mix.  Haha!

DAD

My parents currently live in Shanghai, China with my little brother, so any amount of time I get to spend with them is memorable.  My dad is about to turn 70 and has gotten to an age where everything is nostalgic for him.  I don’t blame him, because I started thinking about all of our childhood Christmas’ in Dallas.  My parents would throw the biggest Christmas party on the block, and all their friends and kids would come celebrate.

This Christmas, only my dad was able to make it back to Dallas.  I loved shopping with him at his favorite store, T. J. Maxx, and eating with him at his favorite restaurant, Olive Garden.  They might not be his actual favorite, but they were the places we went to as kids, and I think he likes remembering those moments.

NEPHEWS

My nephews and I have a Christmas tradition that we started 3 years ago.  I usually fly into Dallas a few days before Christmas.  I borrow my sister’s car, and I take the kids to Dave and Busters and Toys R Us.  The D&B portion is to celebrate their birthdays since I live in LA and am never able to attend their actual birthday parties.  Then I take them to Toys R Us, where they can each show me 5 toys that they would like for Christmas.  I then send them to the books sections, and I buy them a gift each from their selections.  I’m not the best Santa Claus, but at least it’s still somewhat of a surprise.

 

These little moments are what I treasure the most from my Christmas time spent at home with the family.  I hope each of you had a wonderful Christmas holiday, and that Santa brought you lots of goodies this season.  I have one more holiday post before the new year, so be sure to let me know what you’d like to read in 2018! Xoxo!


Dress (on me): Reformation (sold out | similar look) / Sunnies (on me): ZeroUV / Sunnies (on her): Quay Australia / Earrings (on me): Charming Charlie / Necklace (on me): Mejuri / Choker (on me): Mejuri / Socks (on me): H&M (sold out | similar look) / Heels (on me): Steve Madden

Photographed by Laci Havens

I’M NOT A PLAYER I JUST CRUSH (VELVET) A LOT

Every winter I bust out my “winter-ish” fabrics: corduroy, faux fur, and of course, velvet.  The crushed velvet look is just perfect for those holiday parties and events.  It screams done-up without being too much, which is why it looks great as a maxi dress, as a pair of flare pants, and especially as a jumpsuit.  Here are some of my favorite velvet and crushed velvet items of the season:

I fly home to Dallas, TX this Friday, and I’m weary of what to pack.  The weather there keeps fluctuating and I’m scared that I may not pack enough warm clothes or vice versa.  I’m definitely bringing my HAH jumpsuit, (as I’m seen wearing), for the Christmas party my sister is throwing at her house on Saturday.  It covers just enough skin so my father doesn’t think I’m a hooker in LA, but it’s fancy enough to say, “Hey, I’m from LA”.

Sorry folks, but I’ll probably be MIA on the blog until after Christmas.  However, I’ll still be active on my Instagram as I have lots of great outfits that I’ve just shot and can’t wait to post and share.  If you like any of my outfits, you can shop it at my Poshmark account or follow my LikeToKnow.It links!  Merry Christmas!

Jumpsuit: Hot-As-Hell (on sale) / Shoes: Nasty Gal (sold out | similar look on sale) / Sunnies: Crap Eyewear / Necklace: Mejuri / Choker: Mejuri

Photographed by Laci Havens

KEEP IT ON THE DOWN LOW

One of the hardest things for me to do during the holidays when it’s full of parties and dinner celebrations is to keep my weight down.  There are endless plates of desserts and sweets, lots of boozing and wining, and it’s just cold enough outside to where I don’t mind the extra layer of fat.  However, I made it a point this year to not only not gain weight, but also to keep my weight on the down low-end of the scale.  I am going to try and lose weight this holiday.

I can already feel your glares and sneers as I say that I want to lose weight.  No, I am not trying to promote an unhealthy weight or image.  Yes, I know that I “look fine”.  However,  I want to look more than fine.  My goal is to look the way I did two years ago when I first started blogging, (see EARTH FRIENDLY for reference).  I felt my best then.  I was working out a lot more: 5 to 6 days a week, and I wasn’t working in the service industry, so I wasn’t eating at odd hours of the evening.  I don’t have the time or the energy to do what I did then, so what options do I have to achieve my goal?

OPTION ONE: HOT YOGA

Yup, hot yoga is the answer to all my problems.  “What are you up to tonight?”  Hot yoga.  “Wanna go out for some drinks?” Hot yoga.  “Want to go workout?” Hot yoga.  As long as I answer with hot yoga, I can feel better about myself that day and the morning after.  My boyfriend doesn’t believe in toxins of the body, but I do, and I think sweating helps remove toxins from your body.  By choosing hot yoga over going out or having drinks, I automatically consume less calories, and lose a lot of water weight.  This is a win-win situation.

OPTION TWO: EAT AT NORMAL HOURS

I know there are studies that prove it doesn’t matter what time of the day you eat, but the amount of calories you consume.  However, I personally feel like I eat less when I have dinner at a normal dinner time (i.e. 6-8pm).  It’s hard for me to eat at these normal hours when I work at the restaurant.  I tend to eat when I get off work, which is 9-11pm.  Thus, another reason why I have scaled back the number of days I serve.

OPTION THREE: NO DRINKING AT HOME

 This by far is the hardest thing, but I’ve managed to get over the idea of having a glass of wine by myself at home.  (Trust me, you’ll drink plenty at the next holiday party event).  Of course it’s relaxing to come home from a long day of work and just have a glass of wine while you make dinner or have it with your dinner.  But that one glass usually turns into two, into another half, into “f*ck it, I might as well drink the whole bottle”.  90% of my pudge is from my diet, and my diet consists of a lot of wine.  By taking the extra wine-at-home out of my diet, I have seen a significant difference in my tummy.

OPTION FOUR: 7:30AM

A lot of you may already wake up this early, if not earlier, but 7:30am is early for me.  I don’t have kids, and I don’t have a 9-5 job that requires me to get up this early every weekday.  I do this voluntarily because it gets me up and out of bed and doing things.  My 4 part-time jobs keep me busy enough to where I need to be up this early in order to get things done, but it also gives me time to get my fancy coffee, post and engage a bit on Instagram, run errands (ie dropping off Poshmark packages at the post office), check emails, online shop, and go to a workout class.

POINT IS…

By implementing these four new things, I have already noticed a difference in my body.  I don’t own a scale so I have no idea how much I weigh, but I do know how I fit into my clothes and my clothes feel more relaxed.  I want to reiterate again that I don’t want to promote an unhealthy weight image, and this is just a personal choice that I’m sharing.  If keeping the weight off during the holidays is an issue for you, try one or more of these things and let me know how it works for you.  Just one more week til Xmas!  Good luck!

Coat: YFB On The Road / Bodysuit: Hot-As-Hell / Skirt: TopShop / Boots: Aerosoles / Sunnies: Ray-Ban / Necklace: Mejuri / Lipstick: 100% Pure

Photographed by Laci Havens

SANTA’S LITTLE HELPER: HOLIDAY GIFT GUIDE

Season’s greetings everyone!  Shopping for the perfect holiday gift for your loved ones can be like shopping for the perfect boyfriend.  There are plenty of options, but none that seem to really stick out or stick around (aka “sold out”).  So I’ve composed a list of items that I have personally selected to gift my good girlfriends, boyfriend and family members.  Best of luck everyone.  It’ll all be over soon.

YOUR BEST GIRLFRIENDS

YOUR BOYFRIEND/BROTHER

YOUR SISTER

YOUR MOM

YOUR DAD


Dress: Hot-As-Hell / Coat: Cupcakes and Cashmere (similar look) / Boots: Nasty Gal (similar look) / Rings: La Soula from The Box of Style / Lipstick: 100% Pure

Photographed by Laci Havens

CHANGES

I just got out of a 50 minute massage at The Now.  My mind is clear and calm, and I feel like I can breathe for the first time in two weeks.  I have made some difficult decisions in my life that I’m starting to slowly implement, and it has already made my life much simpler and happier.  I wanted to share these personal life choices with you in hopes that you will consider what changes you may need in your life.  Especially with the new year abound, maybe now is the best time for you to start thinking of your new year resolutions.

Career Change

I have mentioned in previous posts that I’m juggling between 4 (sometimes 4.5) part-time jobs.  They come and go in terms of their own busy season, but the past two months have been nightmarishly busy with all 4 jobs.  Nothing in particular that would make one want to jump off a building, but enough to make one consider quitting.  I’m just spread too thin, and can’t focus on any one job.

I have decided that the server job is the one I have to let go.  For those of you who have never served, it is quite tedious.  Not the bussing of the tables or memorizing the menu, but dealing with the people itself.  People can be quite the pain when they want gluten-free, cilantro-free, onion-free or any other dietary restriction at a busy restaurant.  I’m a pescatarian.  I know what a pain I can be.  Point is, I am letting go of the one job that I know I can make considerable cash per shift.  As an actress and blogger, I can’t guarantee when I’ll get paid, but as a server, I know exactly how much I’m going home with each night.  This was a heavy decision to make, but I think freeing up my evenings will make my other jobs more enjoyable during the day.

Lifestyle Change

I don’t have much free time working 4 PT jobs, so when I do have time off, I’d like to make the most of it with eating out and having wine…and lots of it.  I decided to scale back on my shifts at my server job last week, and noticed that my lifestyle habits stayed the same. I still wanted to go out for dinner and drinks, but now with half the cash income.  Thank goodness a good girlfriend suggested that we go to hot yoga instead.  I’m so glad I took her suggestion.  I felt 10x better after class, and I went home and made myself a salad.  I didn’t have the hangover I would have the next day, and I woke up early and refreshed for my day jobs.  It was just a slight change, but that decision made all the difference.  SO, my recommendation is this: the next time you decide to take your work stress out on a bottle of wine, to instead try going to a workout class or even just yoga.

Love Change

I haven’t been in a long term, serious relationship in a VERY LONG time, (since 2007 to be exact), so now that I am in a committed relationship of 9 months I feel like a fish out of water.  I know how to go on dates, and I know how to date short term.  What I forgot was the stuff that comes with dating long term (ie. family issues, living situation, thoughts on how to raise a family).  I have to now train myself to be okay with caring for someone without expecting anything in return.  I have been just one for so long, and I don’t know how to not be selfish.  This will be a work in progress, but the more I care for him than myself, the happier I am.

Appearance Change

As you all know, I decided to chop off my beautiful, long hair back in August.  I chopped it off even further in October.  I am now reminiscing my long hair.  Most of my friends have long hair, but I do see that I stand out more as an actress with short hair, (at least that’s what my agents are telling me).  I’m trying to tell myself that hair grows back, that Kim K. also chopped off her hair, and that I will book more jobs with this new look.  However, there’s this pit feeling inside that says a lob is better than a bob.  I’ll probably grow my hair to shoulder length as a compromise.

Point from this is that don’t let others tell you how you should look.  As an actress, I’m always judging myself and comparing myself to other actresses.  Why did they get booked and I didn’t?  Was it my hair?  Was it this?  Was it that?  I have to remind myself daily to stop these thoughts.  That the only thing I can control is my performance.  Chopping off my hair did separate me slightly from the crowd, but my ability to act will dictate whether or not I do well.  So focus on your strengths and talents, and don’t let something like the length of your hair hold you back.

Happy holidays everyone!  My next post will show you some of the gifts I’m giving to my friends and family for Christmas, and hopefully that will give you some ideas for your own holiday shopping.  Thanks for reading!

Dress: Hot-As-Hell / Sunglasses: zeroUV (they’re only $10!) / Purse: Chanel / Shoes: Steve Madden

Photographed by Laci Havens

ENTICEMENT

Happy Black Friday everyone!  Hope your bellies are full of turkey, and those extra 5 lbs will look just fine in your new Monrow loungewear.  I’ll get right to the point and entice you with some great Black Friday deals since I know you’re itching to go shopping.  Here are some of my favorite #BlackFriday sales (online and in stores):

  1. Monrow – 30% off EVERYTHING (use code GIVETHANKS30).  These are simply my favorite comfy loungewear…EVER.
  2. Free People – One Day Only: 50 dresses at 50% off & 25% off select jewelry.  Discount will be applied at checkout.  Here are my personal picks:
    1. I KNOW WHAT’S UP DRESS
    2. SEQUIN PANTSUIT
  3. Luv Aj – 40% off EVERYTHING (use code BLACK FRIDAY)
  4. ZARA – 30% off your entire order (online and in store)
  5. Stone Cold Fox – 40% off their Fall 2017 line

Have fun.  Shop lots.  Can’t wait to hear about what you purchased!  xo, Linda

Jacket: WhoWhatWear / Bodysuit: Hot-As-Hell / Jeans: Levis (on sale) / Glasses: Illesteva / Necklack: Charming Charlie

Photographed by Anthony Newen

SAMPLE SALE QUEEN

KANGTHROPOLOGIE was built on the premise of sample sale finds.  I have become quite the sample sale queen since I first found out about them 5 years ago.  I believe one of my first LA sample sale was with Revolve.  It had brands like Lovers + Friends and NBD.  It was love at first swipe (of my credit card).

I must have attended at least 20 sample sales since then, and I have picked up some tips that I will now share to those who are curious about going to one of these bargain events.  (BTW, I post sample sales and online sales I find worthy on my SALES page.  Be sure to check back often so you don’t miss out.)

Tip #1: SHOW UP EARLY

This is probably the most vital advice I can offer.  If you’re going to a sample sale of a popular brand with a cult following, odds are people will start lining up as early as 4 hours in advance.  No joke.  Girls will travel far, and they will bring chairs, blankets, books, etc while they wait.

I remember going to my first Stone Cold Fox sample sale.  I went with a friend and we showed up maybe an hour before it started.  We ended up waiting in line for 3 hours.  Literally 3 hours.  By the time we made it in, all the good stuff have already been purchased and everything was picked through.  Showing up early will guarantee you the pick of the litter.  You get to sift through all the merch while it’s still nicely hung up on racks.

Tip #2: GRAB FIRST, TRY LATER

If you never been to a sample sale, be mentally prepared for a stampede of women who will push and shove past you to get the latest and greatest.  Walk through quickly and pick out stuff that instinctively jump out at you.  Don’t waste your time on deciding if it’s something you really like.  You can figure that out later when you try things on, which is another thing we will discuss in tip #3.  Everything is at a “first come, first serve” basis so if you grab the item first, you can decide if you want to keep or toss later.

Tip #3: WEAR APPROPRIATE UNDERGARMENTS

Rarely will you find a separate dressing room at these sample sales.  They’re usually held at some open space warehouse, and you might be lucky if there’s a mirror or two for you to try things on and see how they actually look on you.  A lot of girls like to bring their boyfriends as well.  With that said, wear undergarments that you wouldn’t mind being seen in by a lot of strangers, male and female.

The first time I brought a friend with me, I forgot to tell her that there were no individuals dressing rooms.  She didn’t wear any underwear that day, and basically couldn’t try anything on because she couldn’t take off her jeans.  I personally find it weird when girls bring boyfriends to these kind of things knowing that there will be a bunch of half naked women trying on clothes, but maybe they’re not the ones that are forking over the dough to pay for the clothes.  (Touché).

Tip #4: DON’T BUY FOR THE SAKE OF BUYING

It took me a while to get use to tip #4 because everything was so heavily discounted that I didn’t want to miss out on not buying something and regretting it later.  Here’s the thing, half the stuff you buy, you won’t end up wearing and it will just pile up in your closet collecting dust.  A lot of the stuff you find at sample sales are overstock items from past seasons.  There’s a reason the stuff didn’t sell when it was in season.

Be selective about what you actually will wear.  I like to bring a friend with me to these things because they’re usually my voice of reason.  Do I REALLY need another swimsuit or jacket or black dress?  Will I be able to wear this more than once?  Is the item worth purchasing “as-is”?  A lot of the stuff are also returned items or have a missing button or slight tear.  Yes, it might cost just a fraction more to have it fixed, but is it worth it?  Ask yourself all these questions before you buy. Just because it’s heavily discounted doesn’t mean it’s free.  You’re still spending money.  The only exception would be if you were purchasing for the sole purpose of reselling it on eBay or Poshmark.

Tip #5: THERE WILL BE ANOTHER ONE

I use to freak out whenever I would miss out on a fabulous sample sale, but know that there WILL BE another one, and probably within the same year.  Brands are constantly trying to offload their inventory after the season is over.  You will most likely find sample sales happening during big seasonal transitions, like from winter to spring (for winter stuff), and from summer into fall (for summer stuff).

Besides, you don’t want all of your wardrobe to be last season’s stuff.  Intermix the items into your closet slowly and you’ll be able to rock the coolest brands without looking like last year’s September issue.

Hope you’ve found these tips helpful and best of luck on your first/next sample sale excursion.  Happy shopping!

Dress: Hot As Hell / Earrings: Sugarfix by Bauble Bar / Necklace: Starletta / Briefs: Tiger Mist

Photographed by Stefanie Meier

FOLLOW THE WHITE RABBIT

White ankle boots.  They’re all the craze this season.  I want them.  You want them.  We all want them.  I wish I could say I came up with the trend two years ago, which was when I purchased these IRO boots you see me wearing in the pics, but I’m just following the white rabbit down the rabbit hole.

I like that the ankle boot style is what’s popular because white knee high boots can look very go-go dancer slash an extra parading around in an Austin Powers film.  Forever 21 made a fabulous faux leather boot this season, and it caught like a wild forest fire.  Needless to say, other brands caught on and now Sam Edelman and Jeffrey Campbell are also in the game.  Their prices are obviously higher than Forever 21, but I’m sure the fit and quality will compensate for the price difference.

Here are my favorite white ankle booties of the season:

Are there other fall trends this season that you’re in love with?  I’ll be showing off some crushed velvet and holiday wear soon.  Be sure to subscribe to my blog to get first notification of a new blog post, updated sales and sample sales.  Thanks for reading!

Dress: Bardot / Boots: IRO (sold out | similar look) / Sunglasses: Illesteva / Bag: Coach / Necklace: Gorjana / Bracelet: Gorjana / Watch: Mockberg

Photographed by Stefanie Meier

IT’S ALWAYS SUNNY IN LA

Hey!  What’s up?  I’m back…  Yeah.  Sorry I’ve been MIA…again.  [Sounding like a guy who you dated for 3 months then suddenly ghosted on you].  I’ve got no excuses.  Well, I have a few excuses:

  1. I’m working multiple part time jobs, and they’re just taking up more of my time.
  2. I’ve got a boyfriend that I like to spend every free moment with when I’m not busy with my multiple part time jobs.
  3. I ran out of stuff that I wanted to or felt relevant enough to talk about.
  4. Editing and selecting photos to post is a bitch.
  5. I’ve lost motivation and
  6. I’ve gotten lazy.

So there.  But with that said, it’s not so much the fall as it is the rise back up, right?  The question to ask here is not why I disappeared, but why I decided to come back.  What has actually motivated me enough to type up this blog post?

Well, I don’t want to give you one of those “top 5 ways to stay motivated about your blog” kind of BS post.  The real reason I felt motivated to blog again is that I’m working with a new photographer, Anthony Newen, which shot these beautiful images that I felt necessary to post and show everyone. I also felt guilty about dropping the ball on my blog.  It’s only been just a little over 2 years, and I’m already losing my mojo.

As an actress in LA, I don’t have much control over my life.  I don’t get to make the judgement calls on whether to cast me in a show, film or commercial.  However, in blogging, I have full creative control in my content, in my verbiage, my theme, my style, my everything.  So why would I want to give up on the only thing I can control in beautiful, sunny LA?  I don’t, and thus I’m back.  I guess I just took the roundabout way of saying I took for granted what I had, and it took me a whole month to realize that.

I want to apologize to you, my readers, for leaving y’all for so long.  To make up for it, I want to let y’all know there is a Reformation Sample Sale this weekend in Culver City!!  (See SALES for more deets).  You see, it’s always sunny in LA.


PS, I’m sure you’re aware that I’ve chopped off my hair even more!  What do you think of it?  Do you like the new haircut?  Be honest and let me know!

Bodysuit: Hot-As-Hell (similar look) / Denim: Urban Outfitters BDG / Hat: Hat Attack / Boots: Aerosoles

Photographed by Anthony Newen