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Online Travel Magazine

When it comes to travel, we believe people are interested in more than just the latest gear and reviews of ludicrously expensive resorts. We know that not every female is in search of the world’s perfect facial. And that people without trust funds travel too.

See our
contributing writers

Worldly Style

Stylespotting around the globe: travel not only brings new experiences, it can
bring us ideas for fashion, interior design, lifestyle, and entertaining. Check back
often for ideas to help your journeys transform you into a chic style maven.

Spotted something awesome on your trip? Email us a photo, your name, and a brief
description and it could be featured on Worldly Style!
Tuesday
Feb222011

Goods That Do Good: World of Good

It’s one thing to want nice things. It’s another when buying nice things do nice things for nice people. That’s where World of Good comes in. A one stop shop for buying artisanal and socially, environmentally responsible goods, this eBay shop gives back with every purchase.

Sometimes, though, it’s not enough to say something “does good.” Consumers often have to do some of their own research rather than rely on a product’s marketing. Luckily, World of Good verifies all of their products, sellers and producers; each item tells you which Trust Provider (”an organization with a stated mission of promoting social or ecological good”) verified the product.

What more, you’ll also see what kind of impact you’d make when purchasing the product (eBay’s Goodprint system). Goodprint breaks down positive impacts by category. People Positive promotes empowerment of a culture, producers and communities. Eco Positive goes beyond “going green,” letting consumers know if a product is carbon neutral, can be recycled or is sustainably harvested, amongst other things. Animal Friendly is exactly how it sounds, while the last category, eBay Giving Works, lets consumers know if sales of the product go to a non-profit organization.

There’s a lot to check out at this extensive online retailer, but we thought we’d highlight just a few of our favorites. 

[1] Kionda Bag made from recycled plastic: The Sisal Sister, a collective of 60 women in Kakuyuni, Kenya, craft these traditional bags from recycled plastic. This process is indigenous to the village and though traditionally used to carry vegetables and other goods, they make for colorful, well-made totes.

[2] Mata Traders Fair Trade Tie Top: This easy, breezy tunic is just one of many sale-priced items from Mata Traders, which sources fair trade goods handmade in India by women co-ops and artisanal groups. These producers are paid a livable wage and work from home or in small workshops, as opposed to factories. Mata’s goods also utilized fair trade certified cotton, which benefits small family farms. The clothing itself uses traditional materials, like eco-friendly vegetable dyes.

[3] Hemp SnoTire: Made from certified organic cotton lining, hemp uppers, PET laces (from soda and water bottles and rubber from old car tires, these shoes are insanely eco-friendly. Simple Shoes are simply worth checking out.

[4] Recycled Feed Bag Messenger Bag: Recycled feed bags are crafted into these cotton-lined messenger bag. Colorful as well as durable, no two bags come out exactly the same. The best part? They’re handcrafted in Cambodia by disabled and disadvantaged women, who are paid in excess of the fair trade guide minimum wage standard.

[5] “Atlantis” Handmade Hammock:  This handmade hammock is beautiful, utilizing traditional Mayan techniques. The Maya Artists of the Yucatan pay above the fair trade minimum while also employing marginalized ethnic groups, according to the Trustology system.

Check out World of Good for more planet-positive goods.

Wednesday
Jan262011

Fashion Your Seat Belts - A history of flight fashion

There was a time when “stewardesses” had a mystique, a lure, an awe inspiring glamor. They walked down the terminals in fleets of white smiles, perfect hair and uniforms that accented their curves, much like a sports car. The image and grandeur of flight attendants didn’t just come from a jet-set, worldy lifestyle but from designers seeing a new canvas for fashion. From capes to Lacroix, from Ralph Lauren to gym shoes, here is a look at fashion in the air through the years.

 

 1930s : In the 30s, sexism and racism were alive and kickin’. The original stewardesses all had to be nurses. They were to be younger than 25, under 115 pounds and being single was also a must. Here’s the kicker: they also had to be Caucasian so the staffing appeared more “exclusive” than that of the popular railroad.

Their uniforms were inspired by the military uniform style of the era. The first stewardesses wore capes to symbolize their nursing background and the deep pockets of a cape enabled them to carry essential tools such as chewing gum and railroad timetables.

1940s: The 40s were a boom for both the airline and fashion industries, leading to more fashion forward uniforms and taking steps away from the military style we saw in the 30s. More feminine lines and cuts were created, hinting at the future glamor associated with flight attendants.

These ladies no longer had to be nurses, but the stringent aesthetic expectations were still adhered to. Sophisticated femininity was the look.

 

1950s and 60s: This was the glamour era of the flight attendant. Again, fashion and flight were on the rise, both representing new opportunities for women. Flight attendants became sex symbol, with certain powers and freedoms.

Major designers like Emilio Pucci, Christian Dior and Calvin Klein created fabulous designs for various airlines. Boots got higher and hem lines got shorter. Tan, thin, confident women floated gracefuly down the aisles as they were adored by passengers. Women wanted to be them and men wanted to be with them.

1970s: A strong feminist movement coupled with growing unionization lead to more traditional and practical uniforms. These uniforms turned down the sex appeal but still stayed fashion forward.

Designers like Ralph Lauren and Bill Blass moved flight attendants into the “career woman” look. This more tailored and professional look usually included the feminine touch of a neck scarf. Pant suits, polyester and great prints adorned these ladies.

 

 

1980s and 90s: The 80s brought back a totally conservative and military-esque look. Sexuality went out the window and “power dressing” took over. Professionalism was the marketing tool that shoved the “sex sells” mentality of the past aside. Fashion was most definitely left to the way side as the “bell hop” look filled the skies.

Today: The modern day flight attendant’s garb is a far cry from the Puccis, pantsuits and playful styles of the past. Today, the skies are full of gym shoes, polos and khakis. With the pressures of safety, customer care and professionalism, there is little room for fashion or sex appeal. Today’s poor flight attendants share a look with the likes of zoo volunteers and scout leaders. Perhaps one day we’ll get back to the happy medium of the 70s, when fashion and sexuality weren’t a crime.

 

Thursday
Dec092010

Gift Guide: For the Design-minded Traveler

Travelers are notoriously hard to shop for. Sure, you can by them what they need (luggage, bags, tools, gizmos and gadgets), but where’s the fun in that? Why not buy them something they’d want? For that sophisticated jetsetter in your life, here are some gifts that’ll picque their aesthetic sensibilities.

[1] Henri Cartier-Bresson is the legendary photographer who defined “the decisive moment,” that magic convergence of the aesthetic and emotional in the creation of beautiful photography. Any aspiring photographer (wanderluster or otherwise) would be well-served by this DVD which features not only his incredible work but the voice of Cartier-Bresson himself offering observations on the photographic medium. [MCA Store, $24.95]

[2] Maps are some of the most interesting yet underrated pieces of art. The amorphous countries, the colors of the land, the empty blue spaces representing the ocean: this is the world we travel. Turning the idea of maps on its head is design company These Are Things. Started in 2009 after being unable to find modern maps, Columbus, Ohio-based design duo Jen Adrion and Omar Noory created their line of simple, modern yet nostalgic maps. Choose between their city maps or world maps; a particular favorite is the above pictured, a dark-motif with landmasses in silver ink and compass rose. [These Are Things, $75]

[3] Yeah, yeah, Audobon’s Birds of America is the world’s most expensive book. We get it but there are other bird lovers of note with work just as beautiful as the ubiquitous Audobon. Take, for example, American Modernist artist Charley Harper. His stylized prints and works are beautiful in their marked difference from Audobon’s naturalist leanings. Neither is better but the differences are keen. This collection of Harper’s birds also features the artist (who died in 2007) as a humorist, rounding out an already playful work with the musings of a charismatic artist. A taste: “What will happen if a buzzard, which eats only dead meat, comes upon a possum, which plays dead when threatened? The answer has to be that the mild mannered marsupial will win his Purple Heart - possumously.” One of 1000 which includes a silkscreen print of Harper’s Snowy Egret, this work would be the envy of any design-obsessed birder. [MCA Store, $100]

[4] To wit, a digital SLR is probably already in your arsenal as a savvy, photo-happy wanderluster. You already take beautiful shots, which you promptly post on your blog, online album or Facebook. This is all very well and good but what happened to the art, patience and joy of slow-photography? Enter the Lomography Lubitel 166+. It’s a complicated piece of plastic, no doubt. As the site says: “Shooting with the Lubitel+ is different than anything you have shot before. The combination of its glass lenses, the flexible 120 or 35mm format, fully manual everything, fully automatic nothing, peering into a waist-level finder, slowing things down with focusing and dialing in the correct exposure settings, and a myriad of other analog factors make it a full-bodied experience that activates all of your senses and brings you into a special and very intimate place.” No better words have been spoken about a camera. [Lomography, $350]

[5] This roundish grenade of a clock is incredible: 24 major cities are incribed on the 12 sides of the clock, representing the world’s timezones. Roll the clock to your desired city and you’ve got the local time for that timezone. Yes, your iPhone has a World Clock function, but this clock has way more class. [MOMA Store, $72]

Monday
Dec062010

Goods That Do Good: TOMS Shoes

The concept is simple: buy a pair of shoes and by proxy, give a pair of shoes to a child in need. That is the philosophy behind TOMS shoes.

Founder and traveler Blake Mycoskie started the company after visiting Argentina and met kids with unshod feet. Since its inception, TOMS’ “one for one” philosophy seeks to combat this seemingly simple problem. For us, shoes are taken for granted; they are an afterthought to the outfit or otherwise a regular splurge. For those that don’t have them, though, shoes are a life-line: protection from cuts and infections from the ground, a chance to walk unhindered.

The original TOMS shoes are adapted from the traditional alpargata farmers’ shoe. Comfortable and easy to wear, they are $44 online. TOMS has since expanded into different styles, as well as offering Vegan shoes to more discerning customers. And as if you need more convincing, TOMS have been heavily featured in trendy magazines like Elle, More and Seventeen.

No need to worry about manufacturing, either: TOMS “require that the factories operate under sound labor conditions, pay fair wages and follow local labor standards. A code of conduct is signed by all factories” while “production staff routinely visits these factories to make sure they are maintaining these working standards.” Currently, TOMS produces in Argentina, China and Ethiopia while giving shoes in 23 different countries. According to the company’s most recent Giving Report, one million pairs of shoes have been given away.

Seeing as it’s the holiday season, why not forgo buying that questionably ugly sweater and buy a pair of TOMS for your kids, cousins etc.? You’ll be in the know while also giving back.

 

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

 

Video from MSNBC interview with Blake Mycoskie

Thursday
Dec022010

10 things every traveler should splurge on...

By Maren Hogan

I recently received an email from lifestyle community Excelle that said “10 Things You SHOULD Splurge On”. And it got me thinking, what are the MUSTS for travel splurges? So because the Holiday Season is upon us and because I LOOOVE the word splurge, here goes:

- A great smartphone with awesome service. It’s no secret that smartphone can ruin travel with its inevitable pings, dropped calls and general “ruining of the moment” buzzing. But truthfully, few things provide a traveler with more information, guidance and frankly, something to do on long train rides (cough Words with Friends cough). Don’t forget: a little insta-charger or extra battery. Invaluable.

- Kick-A$$ Carry-on. It should be crushable of course but doesn’t have to be hideous. I like mine big enough to hold a laptop, toiletry bag, one change of clothes, my cover up, and my purse. Whether you’re a backpacker or a luxe traveler, ensuring that your carry-on is reliable, attractive and not malodorous is worth a few bucks. Don’t forget: It’s nice to have a carry-on you can wipe down. Ditto for your toiletry bag.

- Cover-ups with style. It doesn’t matter what your style is, so long as you have a hoodie, cashmere sweater, slanket or wrap that works for you. Trains, Planes and Automobiles are uncomfortable enough without being freezing cold (which they inevitably ALSO are), so invest in something that not only keeps you warm but looks and feels awesome too. Don’t forget: This should be wrinkle resistant, long enough to cover muffin top when needed, and can double as a crushy, comfy pillow.

- Moisturizer/Primer/Lotion. It’s far more important to splurge on this this than any other beauty product when traveling. It can double as a hand cream, hair product, and is especially handy when flying the friendly (but dry) skies. Don’t forget: Grab a formula with sunscreen so you’re doing double duty AND if you’re taking it on the plane, snag a travel size that you can refill.

- Great mileage credit card. Not paying your annual fee may sound great up front but will that card sync with your other rewards programs, is it accepted on the airlines you actually fly, will it be accepted around the world? If not, consider paying the fee or calling in and asking it to be waived. Either way, making sure your program fits your needs and you use it every time is worth peace of mind AND hotel points/airline miles/upgrades. Don’t forget: To program the service number into your phone so you can call and let the CC company know you’ll be out of the country.

- Fancy Footwear. I’m partial to great easy in, easy out boots, but a lot of folks I know won’t leave the house without their trusty (often pricey) athletic shoes. Walking is usually a pretty big part of traveling, whether you’re cruising the shopping district, hiking or pedanting from club to club, you’re gonna need to protect those tootsies. While I love flip flops for the plane, heading to the airport without socks is becoming more a health risk than it’s worth, so opt for close toed, full footed coverafe and save the slingback sandals for the club. Don’t forget: There are all sorts of toning shoes that are supposed to make your bum look fab, so…maybe try those?

- Brain Food. Many will go back and forth on this issue. Some insist on a Kindle, others will die without a paperback, still more think overpriced magazines are the way to go. Either way, make sure you take the time to feed your brain during layovers, long flights, nighttime train trips and more. Don’t forget: To stock up before hitting the airport, especially on heavy magazines and paperbacks. And if you want a little extra karma, leave your already-read treasures in the seat back pocket for the next traveler.

-The Gastro Experience. Sometimes after a trip has emptied your pockets and maxed out your credit cards, it can difficult to remember that you may never walk this street again or have the chance to hit up that Michelin rated restaurant again. You don’t have to go crazy but a bowl of soup, glass of wine at the bar with an appetizer or lunch special can create memories that last a lifetime. Don’t forget: When that restaurant is reviewed in a posh magazine or visited by some Travel Channel star, you can say ‘I was there!’

-Transportation. Let’s face it, flying by the seat of one’s pants makes for a very sore rear after a while. Whether you splurge on a bike rental, van for all your crap, a subway card or tiny motorbike, it’s nice knowing that you have it handled ahead of time. Nothing spoils a day of sightseeing faster than realizing it costs 70 Euro by cab to get where you need to go. Don’t forget: Splurge by using your valuable time to research the best and easiest ways to get around. Also wear a helmet.

- Insurance. Every traveler should know that every trip that is taken is a chance for he/she to lose his/her most valuable “things”. Cover your back with travel insurance (so your route is covered), “Find Me” apps for your smartphone, easily read-able bag tags for your luggage, making photocopies of passports, credit cards and visas (both sides) and making sure that you send copies of all applicable data to an email account that can be accessed from anywhere (cough GMAIL cough). Don’t forget: A little firm kindness goes a long way. Don’t be afraid to say “no I won’t be gate-checking this bag” or “Um, yeah I’m going to get a lower price” or…

Honorable Mentions: great hat, pricey lip balm, glam purse, perfect big scarf, cute flats, lightweight laptop, matching luxe luggage, and sweet sunglasses.