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When Fashion Kills

When Fashion Kills

Fashion Designer Kate Spade

Yesterday we lost another great fashion Icon, Kate Spade

Kate’s designs were bright and happy, and people stated you couldn’t be sad walking into a Kate Spade store. She projected an image of happiness in all her interviews, but we’ve since learned that it was a carefully crafted image to maintain “the brand.”

It can be dangerous when a person is also seen to be a brand. The pressure to maintain an image, at the cost of personal health, both physical and mental, can be unfair. People expect a certain image from the founder, and the public isn’t always forgiving of a bad day or a need for a time out.

Double down the need to maintain a public image, with the pressure of the current state of fashion, and the need to launch a new collection every week, and it’s no wonder that many designers are breaking down or walking away.

My own father was a fashion designer. (He died at age 36 of a heart attack) Back then, there was pressure to make beautiful clothes, but there was still seasons. Summer, Winter, and Resort. Then the industry moved to Spring, Summer, Autumn, Winter and Resort. Now, in our days of consumerism, and each brands need to keep it fresh, there are new clothes coming out every week. There is no longer distinct seasons, it’s just weeks.

I was going to launch a clothing line, and when I talked to a manufacturer, they asked where my next set of clothes were. I had designed a small capsule, because I honestly think you don’t need an unlimited amount of clothes. It seems like the more clothes people have, the more likely they are to say they have nothing to wear. The most important thing my Dad taught me was to dress for comfort, not for fashion. He believed in having a personal style, and that you should have beautiful basics, and you can add accessories if you wanted to be current. It’s better to invest in a few well made pieces, that are timeless, that fit well, and are well made, than buying some new cheap thing every week, that doesn’t fit well and will become landfill in a month.

Fast Fashion is bad for the environment, it’s dangerous for workers, and it’s stressful for the fashion houses and designers.

I urge everyone to watch the documentary The True Cost.

Look at your wardrobe, and make informed purchases. See what you have, what you need, and then just fill those gaps. Look for brands that are ethically made. Look for designers that pay their workers well, use sustainable fabrics or who give back to charity.

Buy clothes that fit well, and are timeless. There’s nothing worse than buying something you can’t wear again next year because it’s so trendy it instantly dated. You don’t have to stick to solids, there’s plenty of lifestyle brands that have prints that are still wearable season after season. Think Lilly Pulitzer, Island Company, Tommy Bahama. All bright and fun, all classic and wearable for years to come.

Living on a boat forces me to be really picky about my wardrobe. I’m not just a small person, but I also want to be Small on the Earth.

Lilly Pulitzer Summer new arrivals

Washed Ashore at Mounts Botanical Garden

Washed Ashore at Mounts Botanical Garden

Recycling Sea Trash into Art

Tropical Storm Alberto is currently passing  north across Florida, and we’ve got my husband’s parents visiting us from Texas.

We finally had enough sunshine today we could get off the boat for a while and go explore Palm Beach a little.

My mother in law loves gardens, so we visited Mounts Botanical Garden, which is right behind PBI, Palm Beach International Airport. It’s easy to get to from anywhere in the Palm Beaches.

Besides the beautiful gardens, there was also an art exhibit spaced out through the gardens. “Washed Ashore Project. Art to Save the Sea” created by artist Angela Pozzi.

The American Sea Star is used to bring attention to plastics used in Independence Day Celebrations.

Massive sculptures of sea creatures were to be found throughout the gardens, and when you got close, you could see that all the sculptures were made out of trash.

It was a fascinating exhibit, because not only were the pieces bright and colorful, but it made you realize just how much trash, of every kind, was to be found in the ocean. All the trash had been collected, removing a small portion of junk from the sea, and recycled into art. It’s beautiful and horrible all at the same time.

The exhibit makes you think about just how much trash we create, and discard.

Next time you go to the beach, think about what you really need to take with you, and remember to always take everything home with you again, or find a trash can at the beach to put your waste in.

Also cut down on the waste you buy in the first place. Say no to plastic straws, think about whether you need a plastic fork for takeaway food, don’t buy junk you’re just going to throw away.

If we’re all a little smaller on the earth, it will make a big difference to the Ocean.

The Washed Ashore exhibit will be at Mounts Botanical Garden till June 3rd, 2018.

Lilly Pulitzer Tennis Collection

Lilly Pulitzer Tennis Collection

Check out the new Lilly Pulitzer Tennis Collection

Introducing Lilly Pulitzer Tennis!

You’ve got your traditional Tennis Whites

Or you can be like Lilly and give your finger to the establishment, and go bright and colorful!

Don’t forget your Tote Bag!

And everyone needs a visor to keep the sun out of their eyes!

To celebrate the launch of the new line, there’s gift with purchase too!

With every $75 Spend, get Stackable 16oz Tumblers in 4 different motifs. Limited to 4 tumblers per purchase. Valid 5.26 – 5.28

Purchase a tennis item (Applies to dress, skirt, top, jacket and tote in tennis capsule) and receive a limited edition tennis towel while supplies last. Valid 5.24 – 6.16

Lilly does Tennis!

Lilly does Tennis!

Get Ready for Gifts with Purchase!


How cute in the new Lilly Pulitzer swim line?

It’s almost Summer, and it’s already swim season in Palm Beach.

Lilly is also gearing up for the Tennis season, and will be celebrating the line with gifts with purchase.

Purchase a tennis item (Applies to dress, skirt, top, jacket and tote in tennis capsule) and receive a limited edition tennis towel while supplies last. Valid 5.24 – 6.16

With every $75 Spend, get Stackable 16oz Tumblers in 4 different motifs. Limited to 4 tumblers per purchase. Valid 5.26 – 5.28

Shop Summer New Arrivals, starting 5/24!

So keep an eye out at Lilly Pulitzer for the new gear.

Lilly Pulitzer New arrivals

TABS Bermuda is turning Five!

TABS Bermuda is turning Five!

Happy Birthday TABS!

We all know my love for Bermuda, and also, the classic Bermuda short.

I’ve been to Bermuda three times now, and each time, my first port of call was the TABS Bermuda store. I show my husband all the colors and I pick which one I’m going to buy myself on that trip. I don’t go crazy, I use the one each trip as an excuse to go back again to get the next color!

My first trip I was headed to visit the family in Australia right after, so besides my own pair or Bermuda pink, I got my brother his favourite color of orange, with a matching pocket square, and got the niece and nephew kids ones.

My second trip I got the Sea Glass Green. They perfectly match real sea glass, as well as some of the painted walls in Bermuda.

My third trip, they had come out with the 4″ boaters, and the husband suggested they might be more petite friendly, since they show a bit more leg, so I got a Coopers Blue pair of those.

So now I’m busy plotting my next trip and which pair to get…

I got an email today that TABS in turning Five! I can’t believe they’re that young, but I’m sure they’re going to be around forever. To celebrate their birthday, they’re giving everyone 10% off for 5 days. Use code “Happy Birthday” at checkout to get your discount. They ship worldwide, so you can get your Bermuda on, even if you can’t make it to the island. 😉

Valid from Thursday, May 24 to Monday, May 28th midnight BDA time.

PSA: I’m not an affiliate or anything, and I won’t get paid if you click the links. I just really love TABS, and I love to support small businesses. They also look fabulous in my Instagram feed!  Plus, they’re super comfortable, fit my petite frame, and I just love them. So support a small company and get yourself a pair.

Allegedly now available on iTunes

Allegedly now available on iTunes

Hey Everyone!

So many of you have asked over the last two years when Allegedly would be available as an eBook. Many of you wanted to save trees, some like to read on the go, and many of you simply couldn’t access the book outside of Australia.

So I’m super excited to announce that Allegedly is now available on iTunes! Just click the book below and it will take you straight to the store.

Thanks for your support everyone.

Lilly Pulitzer and Pottery Barn

Lilly Pulitzer and Pottery Barn

Decorate your house with Lilly!

So y’all know how much I love me some Lilly Pulitzer. Sometimes I wish I could get way more Lilly into my life, and I absolutely drool over yachts that have been decked out in Lilly cushions and fabrics.

So imagine how excited I am to see that Lilly Pulitzer is teaming up with Pottery Barn!

This means there’s going to be home decor! Pillows, Throws, Towels and all kinds of goodies!

Whether you want to add some color with glasses, coasters and a drink tray for cocktails by the pool, or soap and candles for the bathroom, or a pen and stationary, there’s a bit of everything.

Lilly Pulitzer It’s going to be at Pottery Barn, Pottery Barn Kids, and Pottery Barn Teens. So whether you want it for yourself, or to make your kids rooms bright and cheery, there’s something for everyone.
Lilly Pulitzer Pottery Barn

There giving away gifts with purchase too.  How cute are these turtle string lights they’re giving away? You’re going to have to be quick though. I remember the last time Lilly did a collaboration. Target had people camping out front from the night before, and their shelves were bare within minutes. I was living in a tiny town in Victoria, TX, which you wouldn’t think would be a hub for Lilly, and even they were empty within a 1/2 hour.


Lilly Pulitzer Pottery Barn

So get online  or head to your local Pottery Barn early. I’ve got my eye on a throw…

Gifts with purchase at! At $75+, get Lilly Pulitzer for Pottery Barn Brands Sea Turtle String Lights; at $275+, get a Lilly Pulitzer for Pottery Barn Brands Throw in Let’s Cha Cha! Valid 3.16 – 3.17

Wardrobe Staple – White Linen

Wardrobe Staple – White Linen

White linen. Is there anywhere that it looks out of place? You need a few white linen pieces in your wardrobe. I could have my entire capsule wardrobe with just white linen, and add in some colorful accessories. It’s soft, comfortable, and is effortlessly elegant. It always looks classy. You can wear it in Palm Beach, Italy, Sydney, India or Bermuda and everywhere in between. It never goes out of style and you’ll never look back at holiday snaps and ask yourself “what was I wearing?” I’ve got shorts, pants, shirts and dresses that I take everywhere. They match everything, and they’re great for hot places because they breathe, and you can hand wash and they’ll dry quickly in a breeze. This cute @islandcompany dress kept me cool and effortlessly chic for both sightseeing and going out to dinner in Bermuda. Well, it’s actually a tunic, but on petites like me, it’s a full dress. 👍🏽 . . #shrimpwears #islandcompany #whitelinen #resortwear #islandstyle #travelwardrobe #capsulewardrobe

A post shared by Sarah Monahan 🦐 (@shrimptank) on

Yep, white linen is one of my favourite things. When I eventually create my own line, the first collection will be an all linen capsule, with all the essential pieces; shorts, pants, shirt, skirt, shift and blazer. You can then mix and match a few other pieces, and have the perfect summer wardrobe.

Some people are afraid of linen, because it wrinkles so easily, but honestly, that’s part of my love for it. I love that crushed look, just like I love eating messy tacos that leave stuff everywhere.

It’s classic, timeless, and always looks classy. When you see a man or woman in linen, you imagine they must travel to exotic locations, and probably spend time on a yacht. There’s just something old money about it.

I find my white linen shorts are probably one of my most worn items. They go with everything, they wash easily, and they just work. They’re also super comfy. Here’s a selection of pictures to show how versatile they are. Go classic nautical in white and navy, go all white, or add a splash of color. The really are the workhorse of my wardrobe.

Not into shorts? How about white linen pants. These are everywhere at the beginning on spring, and whether you prefer a baggy pair or something more structured, they are the quintessential linen item. If you only own one linen piece, this is probably it.

Tommy Bahama white linen pants and one piece swimsuit

I think a white linen shirt is also a must have. Above I let my bottom half be my neutral, but if you want to be a bit more festive on the bottom, or just want to look super crisp, a linen button down shirt is always a winner.

Linen dresses are comfy, flowy and effortlessly elegant. They go from pool side pina coladas to martinis at the yacht club. Whether you prefer a caftan, a button down dress, or just something breezy, you’ll always look fabulous.

Sometimes wearing white on white linen can make you look like you’re in a cult, so don’t go too bohemian with it, or talk to yourself….

One last pic, because I really do love the white and navy look. I guess it goes with me living on a boat.

Lilly Pulitzer Tunic and navy Lilly shorts

So now that the weather is getting warmer, have a look at linen.

Besides being beautiful, here a few fun internet facts for you.


“In hot weather those dressed in linen clothes are found to show the skin temperature 3°-4°C below that of their silk or cotton-wearing friends”. According to some studies, a person wearing linen clothes perspires 1.5 times less than when dressed in cotton clothes and twice less than when dressed in viscose clothes.”

Linen is a “stiff” fabric and is less likely to cling to the skin; when it billows away, it quickly dries out and becomes cool again. Summer clothes made of linen possess high air permeability, which allows air to flow through the fabric easily and allows the body to breathe.

Woven from the stems of flax, a vegetable fiber. Has twice the strength of cotton. Absorbs and releases perspiration quickly, thus allowing the fabric to “breathe”. Linen is one of the most breathable fabrics, making it especially cool and comfortable to wear in the heat.

Looking for some of your own pieces?
Try these: Amazon is so easy because you can order in your PJ’s late at night, they deliver to your door, and if they don’t fit, you can send them back. No weird fitting room lights!



Closet Cleanout!

Closet Cleanout!

Downsizing my wardrobe.

So the Shrimp currently lives in a fifth wheel RV. Here’s a picture of the ShrimpHouse.

The ShrimpHouse.

We downsized from a realhouse a couple years ago. I was stationed out of town and started in a vintage Airstream. When my hubby decided to join me, we got a toyhauler, which was cool for a while, but our needs changed, and we switched over to this bad boy. It’s a Cardinal fifth wheel, and it’s got 3 slideouts. It’s roughly the same square footage inside as my brothers 1 bedroom Sydney apartment. We consider it tiny living, but really, it’s about three times the size of the tiny house that lives where we are parked.

Big bedroom, with plenty of closet storage.
A section with built in drawers.
The kitchen and living area.
There’s even a fireplace, and a massive television pops up in front of those bottles.

We’re not lacking anything in the RV. It’s got a big living area, nice kitchen, with full size residential fridge, dishwasher, 3 burner gas stove, oven and convection microwave. It’s got an electric fireplace, huge pantry, and lots of closet space. A LOT of closet space.

While we’ve loved living in our RV, we’ve decided to start a new adventure, and it means downsizing even further… Which means getting rid of some of the stuff in my closet, because this girl doesn’t have nearly as much room for clothes. Plus, let’s face it, how many clothes will I wearing on it anyway?

Yep, we’re moving on to a boat!

I know it looks big, but that’s just cause I’m so small. She doesn’t look nearly as big once we dropped her in the water. We think our quality of life and adventures are going to grow, but I really need to shrink my outfits. There’s only a tiny amount of hanging lockers, and even less drawers. Good thing I was already planning to design a capsule wardrobe!

So I’m going to start putting up some of my petite clothes on here. There’s a bunch of really nice stuff that I bought for my book tour or other interviews, that I’ve only ever worn once or twice, and I really won’t have use for again. Keep an eye on my instagram @shrimptank and here for my gently used goods.

So, anybody else here live in an RV or on a boat? Let me know in the comments below and tell me how you manage a small wardrobe.



Small on the Earth

Small on the Earth

It’s not just what I am, it’s what I want to be.

As a petite person, I find it hard to find small clothes. There are so few people who cater to petites. Some department stores might have petite sections, but it’s all grandma clothes. Some other places have clothes for smaller women, but they’re generally fast fashion outlets that make cheap clothing that will fall apart in a couple of washes.

It’s not just petites that have problems. I know plus size girls also complain about being able to find things that fit that are also stylish. I decided to do something about it, and create my own line.

I discovered some horrible things.

Consumers complain they can’t get certain clothing, but we’re party to blame. As people increasing demand cheaper clothing, faster fashion, and constant variety, people who make clothing are looking for cheaper ways to make this clothing. They’re designing clothes to be disposable. They’re only making certain sizes, because now that they’re outsourcing to places like China, they’re obliged to make 1000 minimum item runs. That doesn’t mean that they make 1000 of a certain item. It means they have to make 1000 of each size, and each color.

So I want to make a 7 piece capsule wardrobe. If I want to be conservative, and make a couple of different color options, say white and blue, I then also have to work out how many sizes I want to make. Do I go with S, M, L or do size 0, 2, 4, etc. If I was to have my clothes manufactured somewhere like China, even if I only do two colours, and S, M and L, I am now looking at 4200 pieces I have to manufacture. For a start up line. How on earth would I sell 4200 items to petites? It’s insane. So if one tiny line has to make 4200 items, imagine what places like Zara or H&M are producing?

I don’t want to make disposable clothing. I want to go back to the days where you had a few beautiful items that you could wear over and over. Things that were slightly more expensive, but that lasted forever. Things that were timeless, and didn’t go out of fashion a week after you bought them. People make fun of preppies, but you’ve got to hand it to them. They’re pretty environmentally friendly when it comes to their wardrobe. They own staple items, and wear them for 20+ years. They mend things. They hand them down. Their stuff doesn’t go out of style. (Well, to them anyway) When my dad was a designer, there was a couple of seasons. Now there are 52.

As I was looking into where I could get small production runs, with high quality fabrics and manufacturing, and devoid of any type of sweatshop labour, I started knowing more and more that I didn’t just want to make small clothes, I wanted to be small on the earth.

There’s an amazing documentary on Netflix called “The True Cost‘ and it can explain the true cost of fashion way better than I can. I already knew I wanted to go small, make lasting clothes, and hopefully, manufacture right here in the US, but this doco reaffirmed everything for me.

Please watch it before you buy your next $5 t shirt.