What I’m Wearing This Fall

September 19, 2019

We’re well into the month of September, Vogue’s September Issue has been out for weeks, and retail has been rotating in their fall looks since like the day after the first official day of summer, so I thought I’d share with you what I’m wearing this fall. I don’t have beaucoup bucks to spend on an entire new fall wardrobe (plus I’m trying to 100% thrift and/or buy sustainably-made independent designer), so this is more of a how-I’m-making-items-of-clothing-I-already-own-as-well-as-a-few-new-things-I-bought-and/or-thrifted work for fall 2019. I’ve noticed a few new trends cropping up this season and sneakily implemented some of those trends into what I wore in San Francisco a few weeks ago so that I could make a fall lookbook video and this blog post out of it.

Knit polo: House of Sunny
Plaid mini skirt: Capulet
Sheer socks: Urban Outfitters
Sneakers: Nike
Headband: Urban Outfitters
Purse: Prada (vintage from eBay)
Sunglasses: Le Specs

Friday, my mom and I arrived in San Francisco and walked around the Mission in the latter part of the afternoon. With the reboot of Gossip Girl in the works, I pulled inspiration from the classic prep girl style and wore this yellow plaid mini skirt with a hot pink knit polo. To tie in the ‘90s which has been a popular trend for the past year or so, I wore my Nike Air Force Ones but paired them with sparkly sheer socks for a schoolgirl twist. My neon pink polo is also pretty ‘90s as well as this amazing vintage Prada nylon bag which I found on eBay for $60. To channel my inner Blair Waldorf, I accessorized with a velour headband. I like to think of this outfit as Cher Horowitz meets Blair Waldorf.

Striped slip dress: Reformation (sold out, similar)
Crewneck top: Reformation
Necklace: Munbeibi
Pom pom hair ties: PIDOUDOU
Sandals: Birkenstock
Black purse: Prada (vintage from eBay)
Sunglasses: Joel Ighe x Chimi (sold out, similar)

Saturday, we did tea tasting at Song Tea and walked around Lower Pacific Heights and Japantown. I was still on the ‘90s train and wore this midi length slip dress from over a slim ribbed crewneck top. The midi dress has this fabulous disco stripe pattern that feels very fall and wintry to me. I love the versatility of slip dresses and have seen them worn a multitude of ways: as a skirt, over jeans, and with a jacket over it. I twisted my hair into two low baby buns and added these funky pom pom hair ties from Amazon that serendipitously matched the pinks in my dress. To top off my ‘90s look, I wore these white narrow lens sunglasses and my Prada nylon bag. I don’t think I’ve ever felt more like Phoebe Buffay in an outfit.

Graphic rose tee: Paloma Wool
Denim bucket hat: Vintage (similar)
Shorts: Outdoor Voices
Sandals: Birkenstock
Fanny pack: BAGGU
Sunglasses: Sunski

My mom and I started Sunday morning off with yoga on the beach. When I asked on Instagram if you wanted to see me style something specific in this lookbook, some of you said you wanted to see how I style athleisure. I love the look of a dressier t-shirt tucked into a pair of baggy nylon shorts—keyword “dressier t-shirt” or else otherwise you’ll end up looking like one of those kids at Disneyland with overprotective parents who have them wearing a backpack with a safety leash so that they don’t lose them. I wore this mustard graphic tee to offset any gym shorts vibes given off by these royal blue nylon shorts. I topped it off with this vintage denim bucket hat that looks almost identical to a hat I wore when I was 5, a fanny pack, and my trusty white Birks.

Graphic rose tee: Paloma Wool
Wrap skirt: Ali Golden (sold out, similar and similar)
Big Business Socks: Working Girls x 69 (sold out, similar)
Slingbacks: Idee Fixe (sold out, similar and similar)
Circle studs: Colleen Mauer
Beaded necklace: Birte Dedeyan Klug
Beaded purse: Susan Alexandra
Sunglasses: Le Specs

Later that day, my mom and I saw a movie, so using the same tee as the control in the scientific experiment of my outfit, I dressed up the look with a wrap skirt. I paired these indigo dyed thick socks with cream colored slingbacks and a rainbow beaded necklace by a jewelry designer I met through Instagram. I tied together the beads in the necklace with my favorite Susan Alexandra crossbody that literally fits two things in it but at least it looks cute. I have to say, this was one of my favorite outfits from my trip.

Heart sweater: Reformation (sold out, can’t find a good similar, you’re best bet is looking on a resale site for the Reformation Daisy Sweater boo)
Pink trousers: Rachel Antonoff (sold out, similar and similar)
Sandals: Miista (almost sold out, similar and similar)
Locket necklace: Tiffany & Co. (sold out, similar)
Barrettes: ban.do (sold out, similar and similar)
Beaded purse: Susan Alexandra

Monday, my mom and I went to the SFMOMA and then to Chinatown. Both places have tons of color and I wanted to match the vibrant locations by wearing something bright myself. I paired these hot pink trousers with a short sleeved sweater. The sweet heart pattern on the sweater reminds me of something vintage from the ‘60s. Topping off the colorful outfit, I wore my Susan Alexandra crossbody again.

Sweater tank: Creatures of Comfort (sold out, similar)
Mesh top: Stelen
Jeans: Acne Studios (sold out, similar)
Shell earrings: Aurelie Bidermann
Charm necklace: Tiffany & Co. (sold out, similar and lower price point similar)
Sneakers: Nike
Brown purse: Coach (vintage thrifted)
Sunglasses: Sunski

Tuesday was our last day in San Francisco. As much as I love dressing up, I love a good casual day as well. I went for a cozy monochromatic look in this yummy oatmeal color. I found this Creatures of Comfort oversized sweater tank secondhand at Crossroads and I’m too modest to wear it alone, so I layered it over a mesh turtleneck which is something else I would never wear alone, but actually works out well because you want an extra layer of fabric to stay warm in the fall.

The back of the vest has these ties which are a nice touch. Short story: This Coach purse is my first thrift store find ever and remains to this day the best thrift store find I’ve ever scored. I got this for $10 which is roughly the same price as a piece of avocado toast in San Francisco. I must admit this was one of those outfits I put together in my head and wasn’t sure how it was going to turn out, but I actually really loved the way it came together.

I hope these looks gave you inspiration for putting together outfits for fall. Putting together outfits for different occasions is one of my favorite things to do in the world, so I had fun shopping my closet for some new looks to wear this coming season. Comment down below what you’re looking forward to wearing this fall!

Weekend in San Francisco (+ vlog!)

August 30, 2019

Last Friday (the day after I finished my second-to-last class ever at SCAD), my mom and I took a 5-day staycation in San Francisco. It was longer than a weekend, but shorter than a week, so I’m just calling it a weekend even though it wasn’t really, but I digress.

There are a few reasons why I love a staycation: You don’t have to travel far, if you forget something, it’s not too hard to go home to get it, and it gives you the opportunity to go to all those places and try all those restaurants you always said you’ll go to, but the whole the-closer-you-are-to-something-the-less-likely-you-are-to-go complex takes over and you end up never going.

Weekend in San Francisco

I’m an only child and up until 4 years ago, my mom was a stay-at-home mom, so naturally we’re very close. We have a business together, my mom takes all of my outfit pictures, and she puts up with all of my anxious Type A control freak antics—believe me, there are a lot of them. She’s the Yin to my Yang, we’re best friends, and all that sappy business.

I moved to the Bay Area from Connecticut now 13 years ago. When we had just moved to California, one of my parent’s friends told me that the place you spend your formative teenage years is the place you will grow most attached to. Coming the suburbs of New York City, I couldn’t believe there could be a city as incredible as New York, but lo and behold, San Francisco stole my heart. It was the first big city I explored on my own without my parents and the city that made me discover I was truly a city person.

Weekend in San Francisco
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Yes, I changed my brand name for the 5th time.

August 20, 2019

Yes, I changed my brand name for the 5th time.

Two weeks ago, I didn’t think I’d be writing this blog post. Not. At. All. Just in January, I rebranded my blog/YouTube/Facebook to Fruit Salad and carefully crafted an entire brand around the tagline “Keep it sweet and make your own salad.” This is the 5th time I’ve rebranded myself. With Fruit Salad, I invested in an awesome graphic designer to create all the deliverables and I didn’t even last a full year with the name before I rebranded it. Awesome.

Why the name change? After I rebranded to Fruit Salad and started my YouTube channel, I became increasingly aware of how terrible the name Fruit Salad was for SEO. Try Googling “Fruit Salad” and you’ll see what I mean. In my Fruit Salad Quarter 1 Audience Survey, some of the feedback I received was that my YouTube channel was difficult to find. The easiest way to find me was to search “Micaela Hoo” or “Fruit Salad Micaela Hoo.” I toyed around with the idea of renaming my brand to “Fruit Salad by Micaela Hoo” the same way celebrities sometimes have the “by _____” following their brand name.

The main reason I didn’t want to change my brand name to my actual name was because I thought it was kind of weird in an egomaniacal way to have your blog name be your actual name. When I started blogging in 2008, the majority had these creative blog names. A lot of people—including some of my favorite bloggers—still do. Same with YouTube and any other social media platform. However, I’ve noticed it’s becoming more common to keep things simple and just go by your first and last name.

Almost exactly one week ago, I had an acupuncture appointment. I consider my acupuncturist a built-in therapist and we always chat about my work, life, gut health, stress levels, and anything else on my mind. She’s not on social media a lot, but I know she’s seen my Instagram and watched some of my YouTube videos. She casually asked me how Fruit Salad was going. I told her I loved everything about the name and the meaning it holds EXCEPT that the SEO is bad. She agreed that searching “Fruit Salad” will serve you up a million recipes before you stumble upon little old me. She asked me why don’t I use my actual name? She said it was catchy. I told her that tons of creators go under pseudonyms and she asked me how many people I know have both a product-based business AND a personal brand and their personal brand name is another pseudonym? Ummm hiiiiiii LIGHTBULB MOMENT. Everyone I could think of who had a product-based business and a personal brand went by their real name for the personal brand. It’s so much more authentic that way. It’s enough to have to remember a product name and then throw another brand name in there and it’s confusing. I love it when owners of companies have their own personal brands that are their actual names—you get to know them better and feel a deeper connection. Why was I so blind to this when it came to naming my own brand?

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