Fashion Friday :: Summer Style With Heidi Merrick

{Editor's Note: One of my fave things to do in Vancouver is attend the Vancouver Art Gallery's seasonal FUSE events, and this summer's edition is going to be BIG: think dance, DJs and world-class art... Matisse, people! Comment on any Trip Styler post -- and like us on Facebook if you're not already a fan -- FOR A CHANCE TO WIN two FUSE tickets for Friday, July 6th (8pm - 1am), a $50 value. Contest open Friday June 29th to Wednesday July 4th at noon. Winner must be from Canada or the US, be over 19 and respond to the email with winner details by Thursday July 5th at noon.}

Summer: Hey you! I'm here now! Me: Finally, you little tease. Summer: I come at the same time every year... Me: I know, I just wish you were here all the time. I was ready for beach days, iced coffee and shorts forever ago. Summer: Well then move to California, why don't you? Me: Touché, Summer, touché.

It's officially summer. Unless, of course, you live in the Southern Hemisphere, but I digress. What was it the Fresh Prince said about Summertime? "The weather is hot and girls are dressing less". True that, Will Smith.

When I think of summer style, I think of Heidi Merrick. Raised in Carpinteria and based in Los Angeles, this true Californian creates beautiful clothes that are summer personified. Her spring 2012 collection is an homage to the glamour of 80s pro surfing, a culture that embodied her upbringing since her father made surfboards and her mother owned a surf shop. Her clothes have a breezy west coast ease to them, but always with a special touch -- a little somethin' somethin' that sets them apart. Bonus: they're made in LA within walking distance from her studio.

Here's a mini Q&A with Heidi, who believes that when dressing for the beach, you should dress to honor the beach. {I love that. Thanks Heidi!} And what better way to honor the coast than by rolling up in a pair of black lace shorts?

What does summer style mean to you? Summer is when everyone tries to look like Californians and Californians are their most cool and natural! I love to wear something beautiful, like exquisite, to the beach. Because the coastlines are the most beautiful settings the world has and they deserve it. Besides you only wear the clothes for a hot second of greetings and kisses, then you're off in the water.

What's your summer uniform? Right now {at work} it's the La Paz shirt, any pant and sandals.

What's your next summer travel destination? I think my next stop is Scorpion Bay.  A girlfriend of mine has the coordinates tattooed to her gorgeous body so I'm guessing it must be amazing!

*Heidi Merrick is available at as well as online and in store at {the lovely/must-visit} Oliver & Lilly's in Vancouver. Traveling to Los Angeles? Make an appointment to visit Heidi's studio in downtown LA. I mean COME ON -- how awesome is that?

{Fashion Friday posts are published on the last Friday of every month by fashion blogger Heather.}

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[collage by @heatherlovesit, images from]

LA Stories

LA Stories

[trip style = sun + sightseeing + weekending]

While galavanting through entertainment-ville this past weekend I read an article in Los Angeles Magazine called LA Stories. Fifty locals shared their views on the city. Jamie Lee Curtis' {whom I LOVED in True Lies} struck me most: "I am very protective of LA." Sure, the city of superhighways gets a bad rap, but it has SO MUCH to offer. No wonder an LA native is protective of her star-studded stomping grounds!

{Did you catch yesterday's post about eating, drinking and segwaying through LA's Downtown?}

From Tourist To Local To Tourist
I can't even count the number of times I've been. Thanks to its relative proximity to Vancouver, its forever So-Cal sun and a dear friend who has called it home, I've been fortunate enough to visit enough that everything now seems semi-familiar. Initially I went as a tourist, going to attractions and eating at front-and-centre touristy restaurants {remember Planet Hollywood? They had the best dessert burrito ever, sounds gross but soooo good}. Then with the help of my friend, I graduated to local tourism where I did things locals would do: hike Runyon Canyon, grab a coffee & cookie at Mani's, get my nails done at one of the many shops offering $25 mani/pedis, etc... My most recent trip was a local and tourist hybrid, fuelling up at incredible restaurants, expending energy on segways and museums, and conserving energy as I recharged at the pool.

Tavern LA, Bottega Louis, Getty, Grove

My LA Story

Aside from the day I spent exploring LA's re-envisioned downtown core, here are some highlights:

Must-Try Restaurants
Bottega Louie - Downtown *I just about lost my breath when I walked into this marble-floored, high-ceilinged, open-kitchen cafe, bar and high-end eatery. Every detail from the freshest, plumpest rasberries in the macaroons to the delicate brass detailing on every wooden counter base blew me away.

Tavern - Brentwood *I was equally swept away when I walked into Tavern for dinner. The farmhouse-chic decor meets cozy-corner-cafe fare was done with perfect execution. At dinner we sat under a tall indoor tree with clove-studded oranges hanging from every branch. Heaven.

Favorite All-In-One Night Out
The Grove - LA *Even though it's busy, busy, busy, what's not to love about shopping, dining, dancing fountain-watching and catching a flick all in one place?

Most Beautiful Vista + Museum
The Getty *The hilltop museum is not only a favorite with art and architecture buffs, but also with people who love a breezy, lazy afternoon of lounging on the grass overlooking multiple LA vistas. I was there for 3 hours, but could have come back everyday for a week in 3-hour increments to properly appreciate the art expositions, open-air cafes and stunning grounds.

$ - Find a hotel through Hotwire
$$ - Luxe Hotel Sunset Blvd {see my review here} or Sofitel
$$$ - Beverly Wilshire or Chateau Marmont

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[photos by @tripstyler & @nate_fri, except for luxe + tavern]