Ethel first caught my eye at the Life & Style event a few weeks ago. She was the first person I shot for the blog and I immediately thought, this girl has style. The quiet, intelligent fashionista-type who marches to the beat of her own drum sans noise and pomp. I had no idea who she was or what she did but how she presented herself stayed with me enough for me to seek her out. Little did I know, seeking was an understatement! I drove 15 kms back and forth to her house one morning for the feature and right off the bat, I knew my instincts didn’t fail me. Ethel, despite her tall frame, is a gentle, “old soul” in her own words. She’s a couple of years younger than me yet it felt like we were in the same plane; conversing with her was easy and relaxing, a lot like her personal style. Ethel owns and designs for Style Me Little, an online specialty boutique for babies and kids. “We belong to the want category when it comes to children’s products.” Her designs are playful, kitschy, girly and fun—an outlet for her more adventurous side, quite a stretch from her sartorial. “I like kids to dress like kids. So I make clothes that they can have fun in and wear while they can. I’m not a fan of dressing kids up like grown-ups.” I totally agree as there’s plenty of time for that.

Here’s Ethel jumping out of her comfort zone. Driving the 15 kms was worth it.

What she does Entrepreneur / Business Owner of Style Me Little and The Body Spa & Waxing Lounge.

Personal style My style is always classic, relaxed and clean but I do like to accessorize and update with the current trend if I know it will suit me.  I also like to add feminine touches or a pop of color if I find my outfit a little boring.

On the importance of appearance I really do make an effort everyday to look presentable even if I’m just bringing the kids to school. But looking good to me means not just the clothes I wear but taking good care of my skin, my health, and putting on decent everyday make up.

Her days be like My days are spent bringing and picking up my kids to school then work, errands and meetings are done while they are in school.  My weekends are really spent with my family.  We usually eat out, watch a movie or have lunch with my parents and siblings. I don’t have a particular hobby but if I have spare time, you’ll always find me in my kitchen baking something healthy for the husband and kids to enjoy for the week.

Favorite designers and fashion haunts I’m a fan of the local ones like Filip+Inna and I like the featured brand Kaayo from the SOS event last weekend.  Someday, I’ll get to own a piece from them.  I don’t really keep up with designers both local and international but I have a few that I admire like Vania Romoff and Michael Cinco. 
I mostly shop online now.  I love local brands/shops like Unif0rm, Christiana Manila, Weave and Offbeat Alley.  I loved to wear accessories a lot when I was younger but stopped wearing big ones when I had kids.  There’s a lot of great accessories designers in IG now, I’m inspired to build a collection again! When I do errands at the mall, that’s the only time I check out my favorite brands like Zara, Mango & H&M.  I get my basics at Uniqlo and I love the jeans at Promod.  Thankfully, I’ve learned to stop hoarding clothes.  I  I just overhauled my closet recently and finally packed away all the clothes I don’t wear anymore.  I only kept what I know I will wear.  It made dressing up every morning a lot easier!

Top 5 closet staples 

Oversized Polos
Midi or Maxi Dress
Knit Top/Sweaters
Skirt or Cropped Pants

Celebrity crush  I like Jessica Alba’s relaxed, mom-chic style.

Online surfing I follow a lot of interior design-related accounts and travel.  Most of the time, I browse online for business and get inspiration.

Reading material I used to read a lot of the local fashion and interior design magazines during my 20s.  Now, I just spend time browsing thru my IG feed for inspiration or read articles online.

Current uniform My wardrobe has evolved a lot!  It’s more organized now in the sense that I know I can mix and match a lot of the clothes I have.  I used to own pieces that are nice by itself but I don’t really know where or how to pair it. Surprisingly, I own far less pairs of shoes now.

It was only 2-3 years ago when I finally embraced uniform dressing.  Before that, my wardrobe and outfits felt very “random” or spontaneous to me.  Then lately, I realized that as much as I love the convenience of uniform dressing, it felt very uninspired to me. After I cleaned up my closet, I noticed my clothes are all neutrals now (black, white, gray and beige).  I’m in the process of updating my wardrobe with more “fun” pieces that reflect my aesthetic and to spice up my basics. For a time, I believed in uniform dressing…I thought I could live with it for the next few years because it’s just so convenient especially when there’s a million things going through your head and choosing an outfit is the least of your worries. But after awhile, I felt I needed to inject more of my personality into what I wear.  I think I’m somewhere in between now—I like to keep and stick to basics that fits well but I’m working on adding more fun pieces to my wardrobe like a statement jewelry or a unique top.

Dress, Offbeat Alley; Shoes, Aldo; Clutch, Tory Burch.

Earrings, Seek The Uniq; cameo charm necklace, a handmade gift from her best friend.

Top, Uniqlo; Skirt, Uniqlo; Jacket, Gap; Shoes, Toms.

Glasses, Ivory and black, Owndays, tortoishell, Prada, cat’s eye, Tom Ford, aviators, RayBan.

Jumpsuit, Uniqlo; Jacket, Una Rosa; Shoes, Cole Haan.

Earrings, Seek the Uniq (left) and Merriam Batara (right).

Top, Mango; pants, H&M; Shoes, Annie & Lori.

Earrings, both Lily Jewelry.

Necklace from Merriam Batara.

Top, Offbeat Alley; Tanktop, Thread 365; Skirt, Promod; Shoes, H&M.

Her kids’ gallery wall. “We’re not allowed to take this down.” Cute!

Alisha, the family dog makes a cameo. Top, Offbeat Alley; Pants, Uniqlo; Shoes, Dune London.

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