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Graphic Shirtdress: Now and Later


I've always found February and March to be difficult months to shop. The stores are full of spring apparel and it's still freezing outside. (If you live in a part of the world that experiences four actual seasons.) My remedy for this is layering. To satisfy my need for shopping, I find something that layers well for cooler months but still works once the temperatures climb. In this case a colorful yet graphic shirtdress would be perfect with leggings and a comfy sweater now while being equally at home with sandals and a straw bag come summer. 


Beauty Blast: A Trick to Luscious Locks

Some people have bad hair days. I've been having a bad hair year. With wavy/curly hair, it's always unpredictable, but my hair had been dry, fine, frizzy and limp for all of 2014. I didn't what to do about it, so I tried all sorts of products and nothing really worked. Most things weighed it down, so I realized I needed to stick to one thing, my go-to curly hair gel: Arc Angel by Deva Curl. But even using that alone wasn't quite cutting it. Something was missing. And now I've realized what it was: a deep conditioner. 

In the early part of 2015 I had a chance to test out Hair Repair, an $11 hair conditioning mask by Urb Apothecary, a Santa Cruz-based line. "I slowly infuse coconut oil with sage, horsetail, rosemary, and bay laurel, endowing the oil with the herbs' beneficial properties. Cocoa and mango butter make this a hair conditioning power house," explains the owner, Leyna, on the company's Etsy store. 

Here's how I use it: on the nights that I'm going to wash my hair, I use about two thumbsize scoops of this conditioner, rub it in my hands, then spread it through my hair and put my hair up in a clip for an hour or so. After washing and conditioning my hair using Deva Curl products, I then scunch my Arc Angel into my hair and let it air dry. This extra conditioning step has been transformative to my hair and my curls are finally having a good day. I think all they needed was some TLC and some Hair Repair

Urb Apothecary is sold online, at Stripe in Santa Cruz and at Little Paper Planes Shop in San Francisco. 


Giveaway/Eco-Event: The Penny Rose + Whole Foods + Synergy  

Eco-Beauty Contest/Giveaway

Gleaming brightly on the horizon, springtime beckons with the promise of the new and the fresh. It’s the perfect time to sprout a new look and plant the seeds for a more Earth-friendly beauty routine and wardrobe. 

Here in Santa Cruz, there’s an upcoming event that captures this spirit of possibility quite fashionably—“Spring Style Preview: Natural Beauty & Fashion,” a joint effort by the local Whole Foods stores and Synergy Organic Clothing. It takes place from 6 to 9 p.m. on Friday, March 13 at Synergy’s flagship store in downtown Santa Cruz (1229 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz).

I can count at least five irrefutable reasons for buying a ticket:

1. You’ll get a sneak peek at Synergy’s spring line. The story of Synergy Organic Clothing is a Santa Cruz fashion fairytale. This local clothing company started small—selling their eco-friendly threads at festivals—and has blossomed over the years into a multi-location store with online sales across the world. Their signature designs (especially the simple, solid colors with whimsical applique) are recognizable favorites among women who love to be comfy, eco-friendly and boho chic. Synergy’s new spring 2015 lineup promises more of this and also some exciting new looks, including four items that were designed in collaboration with The Penny Rose.

2. Whole Foods will be showing off new eco-beauty goodies with free mini makeovers. The beauty departments at our local Whole Foods Markets are ripe with amazing natural products. It’s where I go to peruse the latest from my favorite lines; my current obsession is anything from the 100-percent vegan and cruelty free company Pacifica. They’ve got the goods from Pacifica, Mineral Fusion, ZuZu Luxe, and much more, and will be showcasing some of their wares with free mini-makeovers at the event. 

3. A representative from evan healy will be doing skincare demonstrations. 

4. There will be small bites, wine and a photo booth. What else could you want? 

5. The icing on the cake—and what sweet icing it is—is that all proceeds are going to the Walnut Ave Women’s Center, a nonprofit that’s been providing women and children essential support services for more than 80 years.

Tickets are $10 and are available at the door and at both the Santa Cruz and Capitola Whole Foods locations. But if you buy online, you get a free gift. What are you waiting for?

Have we got a prize pack for you! To celebrate this great local event and the new products being rolled out by Whole Foods and Synergy, we are giving one lucky winner a bundle of amazing freebies:

-Two tickets to “Spring Style Preview: Natural Beauty & Fashion”

-A Whole Foods eco-beauty gift bag stuffed with three Pacifica 7 Free Nail Colors, Mineral Fusion SPF 30 Brush-On Sun Defense and Gabriel Lipstick in Currant.

-The Christina top (pictured), a The Penny Rose X Synergy collaboration from Synergy’s Spring 2015 line.

To enter to win leave a comment below or on the giveaway posts on our Facebook or Instagram by Tuesday, March 10. We will announce the winner on the blog and across our social media on Wednesday, March 11. The prize winner will need to pick up their package at the event.


The Penny Rose X Synergy: A Design Collaboration

One year ago we pitched an idea to Synergy, a beloved organic clothing company in our hometown of Santa Cruz, Calif. What if the international brand teamed up with The Penny Rose to create an exclusive capsule of co-designed items? They were game. Synergy, ever supportive of its local community, was a perfect match for our first clothing collaboration. We’ve been longtime friends and fans of the company whose philosophy behind fashion design is one we admire: steadfast eco-consciousness.

After meeting with Synergy’s owner/designer Kate Fisher, over the course of several months together we designed four items that you’ll see rolling out for spring 2015. Included in the group are two tops and two dresses and each has a timeless, distinct, versatile flavor. We hope you’ll enjoy our capsule as much as we did in creating it.

Look for upcoming posts on the blog featuring each of our four collaborative designs as well as a short film about the project in April on The Penny Rose and on Synergy’s blog. And tomorrow on the blog you'll see the first sneak peek of one of our tops in an exciting giveaway between The Penny Rose, Synergy and Whole Foods. 


Stripe Style

Stripe Style is a monthly column written by Dana Rader, co-owner of Stripe and Stripe MEN, beloved lifestyle boutiques in Santa Cruz, Calif. 

At Stripe and Stripe MEN we carefully select and curate our products featuring them in elaborate seasonal displays. We work with remarkable independent designers and makers, many who live locally. For years now, we’ve worked closely with Christa Martin of The Penny Rose in a variety of ways including a new project where Christa comes into the shop a few times a month to choose a few of her favorite things we are currently carrying and we hang a tag that says “The Penny Rose Loves This.” To expand on this collaboration, I will be writing a monthly blog on why we love her picks, the designers behind these products, and why we carry them.

This month The Penny Rose loves our Alternative Apparel sporty satin jumpsuit, RAEN sunglasses, candles by Apotheke, and the Big Sur Ring by Monica Squitieri.

Not only are we huge fans of jumpsuits, but they’re a versatile, effortless, one-piece outfit. This sporty satin version has just the right amount of fun and playfulness to be worn with a pair of converse and enough sass to be worn with heels.  

I sometimes get caught up for hours on Instagram looking at clothing designers, jewelry makers, fashion stylists, artists, and occasionally I strike gold with finding a new product for our stores. I stumbled upon jewelry by Monica Squitieri and literally struck gold. She currently lives in Southern California but will be moving to Santa Cruz this summer. Her striking jewelry is inspired by California and rock ‘n’ roll. This Big Sur Ring, with its height and texture makes it a stand-alone piece or a stand out piece when stacked with smaller rings. Look out for a trunk show soon!

Apotheke started three years ago in Brooklyn when Chrissy Fichtl stole her husband/chef Sebastian’s cooking pots and started making soap. From that first bar of soap they now make natural handmade candles, lotions and skin care products. Their candles burn super clean, and the fragrances are nice and light. We are currently lighting the basil sage mint fragrance—it smells just like a warm afternoon walking through an herb garden.

RAEN sunglasses are inspired by vintage styles and created with modern technology to ensure the quality needed to protect your eyes from the sun. This version, Flowers, reminds us of the groovy ’60s while looking fashion forward like the Olsens with their round frames. Living in Santa Cruz we take the sun for granted, but we can’t take our eyes for granted. These shades have Carl Zeiss lenses that offer 100 percent UVA/UVB protection.