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It’s all about the Olympics: In and Around London 2012

I don’t like sports that much but love the Olympics. So much that I watched the entire opening ceremony on my 5.5-hour flight to Los Angeles last weekend. I love this event because it brings people together and help us celebrate all the talents and hard work athletes have put into their sports year after year. Here are some notable events/ideas at and surrounding London 2012:

– Women’s gymnastics is a lot of fun to watch, especially when I’m obsessed with the sports after the whole 3 seasons of ABC Family Make it or Break it. Brava to the US gymnastics team for winning gold, and Gabby Douglas for becoming the first African American to win an individual gold.

– Men and water sports = the best combination. I was very impressed by the tanned, boyishly handsome Tom Daley (British diver) who carried the flag at the opening ceremony. Ryan Lochte has a great smile but he was a bit cocky in the interview after winning gold. I love comebacks. So congrats to Phelps who won gold in 100m butterfly.

– All brands try to make themselves relevant during the Olympics season. But the event is not all about making profits. It aims to promote fairness in sports despite the injustice that still exists in the world. That’s why I love this campaign, which uses the five Olympic rings to demonstrate the inequality among the five continents:

– Save the best for last. This P&G Thank you, Mom video brings tears to my eyes. This is a GREAT example for successful branding and connecting with consumers. The campaign speaks for itself, garnering more than 755,000 likes on Facebook. It’s accompanied by the Raising an Olympian interview series.

Brandy & Melville: Italian boutique brings breath of fresh air

Inside Brandy Melville

I recently discovered this boutique after moving to Westwood. Like everyone who comes here would agree, I fell in love. I’ve been there a few times and never fail to witness shoppers exclaim at how “cute” the clothes are and how much they are “obsessed” with the store.

The fabrics are extra soft and light-weight

From Italy with love: Brandy Melville was started 30 years ago in Italy and spread all over Europe. It only opened in the US since 2008 and currently has four locations. One is NYC’s fashion district SoHo while the other three are in California (Westwood, Santa Monica and Newport Beach).

The appeal: Vintage, minimal and sexy sum up the irresistible appeal of Brandy Melville.
If I have to pick, the store’s vibe is closest to that of Urban Outfitters. It is unique with loose, over the shoulder tops, sheer tanks and nautical stripes. Even though the clothes are all one-size fits most, there are still body-con dresses with strategic cut-outs and criss-crosses.

Who wears it: Brandy Melville has been a big hit among celebrities, including Olivia Palermo and Anna Paquin. Nevertheless, it is totally affordable. For $15 to $30, you can own one of its cute items.

Where to buy: With only four physical locations in the US, Brandy Melville is also retailed through Nasty Gal and Revolve Clothing.

Check out the pictures and decide whether you’re a fan!

Off-the-shoulder top is a Brandy Melville signature

... so are stripes

Brandy Melville is not without more body-con pieces like this cross back dress

The clothes have a youthful, beachy vibe to them

Brandy Melville's signature sheer top. The brand also retails on Nasty Gal and Revolve Clothing