100% Ready

I am already feeling 100% full of anticipation for my first UK optical show. I will be flying halfway around the world to admire eyewear and explore new trends in vision care at 100% Optical, April 23rd -25th, 2022 in London

A live optical show has such a palpable energy, and after two years (and a few additional unanticipated months) of planning, this year’s event schedule is plentiful. The focus is all about eyes and the eyewear that frames them.  Showcased everywhere from the Catwalks to cataract seminars, some of the most renowned speakers from across the UK and around the world are scheduled to share their passion and wealth of knowledge. The true jewel of the event is all the new eyewear styles that will be on display. Many designers and brands will be new to me as some of the collections may have little to no Canadian representation. After perusing the vendor list I am most excited to see the following eyewear collections and accessories (just to name a few).

Nathalie Blanc Paris

This collection is steeped in influence from my favorite era of eyewear, the 70’s. A trend that is taking hold for 2022, as the shapes are gaining mainstream patient adoption. The frames invoke an attitude of opulence and I have my eyes on the  oversized beveled rimless sunglasses that are sure to turn heads.

COTI Vision

This collection is steeped in influence from my favorite era of eyewear, the 70’s. A trend that is taking hold for 2022, as the shapes are gaining mainstream patient adoption. The frames invoke an attitude of opulence and I have my eyes on the  oversized beveled rimless sunglasses that are sure to turn heads.

Lamarca

The way in which Lamarca pieces and fuses together acetate to create their signature frame designs is always impressive. I can always spot a LAMARCA frame from those unique characteristics. Eye Catching colorful eyewear is prevailing as a signature trend for Spring/Summer 2022 as eyeglass wearers are looking to draw attention on Zoom calls and express more personality through the exposed bits of their face. 

As I eagerly prepare myself for a new experience in an industry I find so familiar, a growing list of questions is compiling in my head…

How does the optical industry differ in the UK? And what are the distinct characteristics?

What are the biggest trends in eyewear in the UK? 

Is the role of an Optician in the UK the same as in Canada? 

Armed with these questions and many more I am collaborating with 100% Optical to find the answers and share the experience live at the event by way of my social media and my blog OpticianAboutTown.com. 

The #EyeStyle featured in article is heart shaped union jack sunglasses by Tom Davies

Tom Davies frames are made in his factory in London. Click the frame to watch how they are made.

Viva LAS VEW

Vision Expo West 2019 was the last Vision Expo that I attended. So it’s serendipitous that my first flight, and first days away from home and my optical shop in 595 days, is to Vision Expo West.

I have been loyally taking the pilgrimage to Vision Expo West for as long as I can remember, because I feel it offers insights into what is next in eyewear and eyecare, which is an  integral part of my development and evolution as an Optician and as an independent practice owner. Each time I attend I am reinvigorated by the experience and return with a better outlook on what comes next. Naturally after 18 months of conducting business during a pandemic I need a little change of scenery and a restorative trip to VEW is just what the doctor ordered. 

The things I have been missing most over the past 18 months are the very things that Vision Expo always delivers in spades.

Connecting with peers

You’ve probably shared (or vented) your challenges and struggles being an eyecare professional during a pandemic. Social distancing and working from home doesn’t really mesh in our line of work. But do those you confide in actually relate? You better believe that no matter your role in the optical industry you are going to find lots of people at Vision Expo West that are right there with you.

Connection event on my agenda: OWA Connection Series Luncheon Thursday September 23rd 11:30am -1:30pm
EyeStyle Influences Brunch Friday September 24th 11:00am

Learning Business Tips from the Best

Vision Expo offers the opportunity to get inspired and learn from titans of industry, and not only in eyecare. It never fails that I leave Vision Expo feeling inspired. I always return to my Optical with tangible tactics to improve my skills as an Optician and grow my business with new exciting products.

Educational events on my agenda: Eyes On The Prize: Revolutionizing How You View AR Eyewear Virtual Try On – Presented by Perfect Corp @Innovation Stage Presentation Friday, Sep 24th  9:45 AM – 10:15 AM
EYE2EYE Series: Art of the Collab @The Seen Thurs, Sep 23rd 3:45 PM-4:15 PM

Hands on Selections

Seeing so many frames in one place has enormous value, and not simply for convenience. By viewing collections one after the other in just a few days, Vision Expo is the venue in which I have been able to identify upcoming trends. The colors, materials, shapes and styles that are likely to become a mainstream staple in the next 12-24 months. How I choose glasses for the shop has changed a lot during the pandemic. I have been much more conservative with inventory, stuck with vendors I have pre-existing relationships with, done more re-orders and purchased frames sight unseen, which I didn’t previously do. I am looking forward to returning to a hands-on selection that cannot be duplicated.

Frame selection events on my agenda: Appointments with Article One, Andy Wolf, Morel, Etnia Barcelona, OGI and Masunaga (so far)

I am hyper aware that we are still operating in a pandemic and I did plenty of research prior to making my trip arrangements. What I learned about the safeguards in place both at the venue of Vision Expo West and in the state of Nevada left me feeling secure about my decision to attend. 

Nevada has a statewide mask mandate for all interior spaces. Regardless of vaccination status all attendees will be required to wear a mask.
The Vision Expo show floor is an expansive location. Equal to the size of multiple football fields. This year the layout has been adjusted and exhibitors have capacity rules in place to ensure booths don’t get overcrowded. * This year more than ever before it is important to plan ahead and make appointments
Sanitizing and cleaning will be a focus by Vision Expo and vendors to ensure that attendee’s can touch and try on frames.

There is still time to book your flights and hotel and join me at VEW! 

Vision Expo West will commence on September 22rd and runs through Saturday September 25th, both in person and Virtually through VisionExpo+ and ShopVISION.

Vision Expo+ East 2021, Virtually there

Free Registration link to follow below

Life has felt like it’s been standing still, suspended in a strange state of limbo, over the last 14 months since COVID restrictions took effect. Without the ability to travel, my feet have been firmly planted in my optical shop, while my passport collects dust. It has been easier to accept because all of us are going through it together, longing for the industry events we enjoy every year. Vision Expo East and West, are events which I have been attending religiously for the past 6 years. After I attended my first Vision Expo I was hooked. I was like a kid in a candy store (where calories don’t count), not only had I never seen so much eyewear in one place, I was surrounded by the best and brightest minds in the eyecare industry. Vision Expo has come to be an event that lights a fire in me, and being with so many like minded Optical peers, envelopes me in a bubble of enthusiasm for 3 days that results in me being a better Optician and business owner for months to come.

While these events had been postponed due to the pandemic, I could continue to mark my calendar and let my excitement grow. Vision Expo East 2021 was announced, June 2-5 in a new city and venue, Orlando, Florida. I could finally focus on a return to the event I consider a jumpstart of excitement for the new season in optical each time I attend.

Then reality hit, and all the excitement and anticipation for my return to Vision Expo East 2021 turned into a big case of FOMO, because international travel restrictions are still in effect and as a Canadian I can’t attend in person (without mandatory 14 day quarantine, which doesn’t work for a small business owner such as myself). 

But Vision Expo and The Vision Council is not going to let those of us who are unable, or understandably unready to travel, miss out on the experience of Vision Expo that we have all come to know and love.

Enter VisionExpo+, a free digital extension of the live in person event taking place in Orlando. From June 3-5 through the online platform ShopVISION registrants can participate simultaneously with the live events taking place at Vision Expo. All the events taking place at SEEN, a dynamic new main stage designed for collaborative learning will be simulcast LIVE on the shopVISION platform. This includes the massively insightful EYE2EYE series panels and discussions. I’ve marked my calendar Thursday, June 3 from 12-12:45pm EST (9am-9:45am PST), to watch liveBuilding a More Inclusive Work Environment“.  Moderated by the always fabulous Dr. Danielle Richardson. This panel will discuss diversity, equity and inclusion principles that can be utilized in any organization, regardless of how big or small your team is. A couple hours later I will be front and center at my computer screen at 4:30-5:30pm EST (1:30-2:30 PST), cheering on the remarkable Dr. Diana Canto-Sims, Optometrist and eyewear designer at La Vida eyewear, who will be moderating Removing Barriers Between You and Your Multicultural Patients”. The panel discussion will focus on exploring how to provide high quality care for a diverse population of patients and most importantly how to integrate cultural competencies in your approach to patient interactions. 

Then on Friday from from 2:30-4:30pm EST (11:30pm-1:30pm PST), I will be listening and learning more about the results of The Vision Council’s 2020 Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Survey Report during a panel titled, “Opening Your Eyes to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion: A Review of The Vision Council’s DE&I Initiatives and 2020 Survey Results.” The results of the survey and discussion by this diverse panel of industry leaders will offer insight on the balance and direction of our industries’ inclusiveness. 

The best part is if these times conflict with your availability, for the first time ever, you won’t miss out, because the recorded sessions will be available to view on ShopVISION platform starting Monday, June 7th. 

What is notably my favorite part of Vision Expo is seeing and selecting the newest frame styles to bring into my Optical shop, and this will also all be made possible through the ShopVISION marketplace virtual platform. You can source and stumble across new brands, just as you would walking the show floor. Search options results can be delivered by completing a quick questionnaire during registration and filling out each section of your profile will have you matched with the products you’re looking for. You can also browse by category, by brands or check out what’s trending to see what is exciting other attendee’s. 

Through the ShopVISION platform you can build relationships and chat with suppliers 24/7 via the messaging option and schedule meetings on your calendar. I think this is great because you can ask anything! I suggest writing a list of your top 5 questions to ask a new supplier. Save it on your notepad so you can easily copy and paste in the chat option when you come across a supplier you are interested in. I feel this year I am actually going to be able to connect with more vendors this way because I won’t be so tight on time. 

Lastly don’t forget to follow to engage with fellow attendee’s and share what you’ve found on social media by tagging @vision.expo @thevisioncouncil  #VisionExpo

For FREE registration the VISION EXPO+ click the link:  http://bit.ly/RegisterShopVISIONSheena

Shielding Yourself From The Elements

The resurgence of shield style sunglasses is coming on strong. Full disclosure, when I saw shield sunglasses start to sneak into eyewear collections I was not initially prepared to re-accept the trend. It was a popular style nearly a decade ago when I started in the optical in and my first association is more Real Housewives of OC than fashion eyecessory must have. 

What is a shield sunglass? Simply put a pair of sunglasses that has a single lens forming the entire frame front. One fused lens piece made of plastic or polycarbonate that creates the frame shape and overall design of the sunglasses. 

There is always a pair of glasses that changes my mind and opens me up to adopting a new style into my collection. When it comes to embracing shield sunglasses it was the introduction to the limited edition capsule collection between Andy Wolf and PinqPonq that made me see shield sunglasses differently. 

But isn’t that why collaboration is so wonderful?!

Innovations we haven’t seen before are born when two brands come together to influence one another, conceiving something that represents them both, while creating something new. Andy Wolf and PinqPonq came together on their shared values of unique product design, high quality standards and a responsibility for the people and the environment in production. Thus the limited edition Andy Wolf and PinqPonq capsule collection was designed.

PinqPonq, is a German brand known for intelligently designed bags and accessories. PinqPonq distills the design of their bags into the cleanest function based fashion. Innovative in the utilitarian insides, simplistic outsides and 100% certified sustainable fabrication. The collaboration between Andy Wolf and PinqPonq has resulted in a first for Andy Wolf, a sportier aesthetic in two shapes of shield style sunglasses. 

Both the PINQ and PONQ sunglasses have a curved, single Zeiss lens that forms the entire frame front. It appears to be floating, mounted on an invisible metal base, connected to the back of the lens. A dark, solid “Polished Black” or lightly, flash mirrored and gradient brown “Tonal Khaki” lens creates the overall frame shape. 

Each style of sunglasses are colour co-ordinated and carried by PinqPonq bag. “BOKS” is a bag with purpose; a fanny pack consisting of three components: one bag for the glasses, one for personal belongings and a matching belt. They can be worn together or individually.  

When these designers fuse together the identity of each brand, the result is special pieces that integrate flawlessly into a modern urban wardrobe. A unisex sunglass that adapts from the ski slop to the streets, offering an unappologetic futuristic frame style. 

*Optician Option; I can’t help but fear the disappointment an avid eyeglasses wearer will feel when they find out that making a pair of shield sunglasses in a prescription simply isn’t an option (in 99% of cases). So you will definitely have to pop in your contacts to truly enjoy this eyestyle

Summer EyeStyle Delights

pitt-meadows-photographer-sheena-17Round glasses have proven themselves as the must have eyewear shape for summer 2018. Although round eyewear has been steadily making their popularity known for nearly a year,  what those in the industry embrace early on can take time to be accepted by the mainstream wearer.

 

Round glasses are often thought to be reserved for the intellectual professor type or those looking to capture Harry Potter’s style. Yet round eyewear styles have now become widely accepted by a broader audience. I have no doubt that this comes from the introduction of many more round frame styles in thinner metals and lighter plastic colors. I have a saying when I fit someone with round glasses, and it’s “you have to kiss a lot of frogs”, meaning you have to be ready to try on lots of different round frames to find the one that suits you best. Although there are recommendations for frame shapes based on the shape of your face, I believe that everyone can wear a round frame, as long as the right proportions can be found.

It might be a round frame with a flatter top, a higher bridge or even one with a slightly more oblong shape, but if you have an open mind to try on many different round frames you can surely find one that suits you. One of the most flattering round frames I have found is the “Lisa” by Andy Wolf. A stylish, well thought out and carefully crafted frame that knows no boundaries!andy-wolf-light-blue-4710-Round-Frame-Metal-SunglassesOften with round frames the bridge (the centerpiece) of the glasses can be quite wide, and that can be a problem if your eyes are slightly more narrow set. Because a wide bridge will actually create the optical illusion that your eyes are closer together. Even those who have normal eye spacing proportions have to be aware that an incorrect frame fit can cause this.

In the delicate style that is the benchmark of the Andy Wolf SOUL collection the “Lisa” has an architectural bridge design, featuring a bend to it that is a truly unique and brilliantly flattering.

 

I want to make sure I make the most of these last few warm, bright evenings of summer. As someone who is typically stuck inside all day I love when I can close up the shop and still enjoy an evening outside with bare shoulders. I can’t help but think of summer picnics and days spent outdoors when I see gingham, it’s such a happy pattern. This adorable, off the shoulder sky blue gingham top was my color inspiration for the lenses. I love how lens features can really change the whole style of a pair of glasses, creating visually interesting, optically optimal and fabulously fashionable spectacles. The light blue of the lenses pairs perfectly with the shiny gold finish of the frame. The intricately embossed eyewire and temples add a delicate depth reminiscent of centuries old eyeglass craftsmanship.

pitt-meadows-photographer-sheena-48For a round frame with a little something more, look no further than these delightful frames by Etnia Barcelona. The “Shenzhen” frame has so many design layers, yet is light and fresh. The shiny pinky tone in this rose gold frame has me swooning at first sight.

5-SHENZHEN-PK-47_2

The round frame shape, complete with brow bar pulled me in and the two tone translucent pink acetate lens surround sealed the deal, they had to be mine!

 

To increase the eyestyle and up the comfort level, I added Transitions Signature 7 Lenses in brown, because they adapt to changing light conditions. From completely clear to a light rosy brown tone, to a dark chestnut brown in bright sun. So when an after work bike cruise is on the agenda I can make the most of the evening summer light without having to slow down and fuss with changing my eyewear.

pitt-meadows-photographer-sheena-52It’s such a nice feeling to finish work for the day and change into some denim shorts and a cute pair of flat sandals. I love a little flair in my fashion and this amazing geometric kimono has become a piece I find myself wearing again and again. I fell in love with this print when I bought it in jumpsuit, and didn’t have to think twice to buy it again. It has been a summer wardrobe staple for me adding an polish in an effortless way.

pitt-meadows-photographer-sheena-59I have paired it with both my Andy Wolf round gold frame with blue lenses and the pink Etnia Barcelona frame. With the all the beautiful colors in the bold geometric kimono print it is hard to say which pairing I like better, they both look so good.

I will no doubt pull the navy and yellow from the pattern to wear it into fall, now which glasses will I pair it with then…?

I encourage everyone to try a round eye style, you might have to kiss a lot of frogs, but it will no doubt lead to you finding your prince charming!

pitt-meadows-photographer-sheena-56.jpg

 

Palm leaves & Popsicle’s, The Transitions Xtractive Style Mirrors Launch

I believe that personal style is based on comfort and personality, and I love something that is adaptive to different situations.

styke-quote-e1534217931164.pngUsually people don’t associate style with Transitions Lenses, as an avid lover of these lenses I find most people dismiss them based on an outdated impression. But even the naysayers will not be able to resist the amazing style you can create with the new Transitions Xtractive Style Mirror Lenses.

Only a chic setting would do justice for the launch of the stylish new addition to the Transitions Lenses portfolio. The Addisions is a little hot spot, a venue with a cheeky story,

“Few people know who they are, and even fewer have ever made their acquaintance. They collect fine art and always have a stocked bar.  They have amazing food on hand, and their friends are all so charming. And their house – my God. Have you seen their house? They really do have it all. It’s just too bad they’re never around to enjoy it.”

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESIn The Addisons Hamptons inspired backyard, littered with pool floaties, skirted by black and white striped cabanas, overflowing with palm printed pillows; it was the perfect venue to lounge, listen to summer anthems spun by DJ’s Coco & Breezy, all while sipping on refreshing Prosecco Pop cocktails and trying on sunglasses by Coco & Breezy featuring Transitions Xtractive Style Mirror Lenses.

img_4741-Eyewear designers, DJ’s and Transitions Brand Ambassadors Coco & Breezy-

Because we all want to look fabulous from daylight to dusk. The desire to always be wearing the right eyewear is as crucial to me as wearing the right shoes! So I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to wear and share Transitions Xtractive Style Mirrors. A lens that amps up the style factor and elevates any outfit. These new sun lenses are an option that will appeal to both prescription and non prescription eyeglass wearers, because the responsive and adaptive nature of the lenses suits so many styles and situations.

Transitions Xtractive Style Mirror lenses change from a sheer translucent mirror in low lights and alters to an opaque, iridescent mirror when exposed to bright UV light.

These sun lenses are available in two Transitions Xtractive base colours, grey or brown, and 5 on trend fashion mirrors. So no matter your age or EYEstyle the light intelligent, hassle free nature of these lenses allow you to express your individual style, without missing a moment.

Tran8

I chose the gold mirror colour on a brown Transitions Xtractive base, when I put these lenses in my Alexander McQueen sunglasses I was blown away! Originally these sunglasses featured a plain grey gradient lens, which didn’t do much to compliment the green and gold frame design. With the gold mirror on the lenses, these sunglasses are next level amazing! The gold finish on the lenses blends perfectly into the shiny gold finish on the frame and made the unique green acetate of the combo style standout.

These sunglasses were the perfect inspiration for my outfit choice for the event. Coco & Breezy have been know to say “eyeglasses are the outfit, and clothing is the accessory”, in this case I couldn’t agree more!

The palm print pattern of this two piece set intensified the green of the Alexander McQueen frames. I added a contrasting pop of colour with these fun tassel earrings by H&M and my signature summer orange-red lipstick “Countess” by Kat Von D. A simple nude shoe let everything else shine.

Set your sights on looking stylish and enjoying every last minute of summer sunshine with adaptive sun lenses with Transition Xtractive Style Mirror Lenses.

-Be sure to tag me and show me how you EYEstyle yourself! #OpticianAboutTown-

 

 

 

 

Eyes on Las Vegas

I am excited to once again surround myself with Optical junkies, get together with industry friends and meet new industry insiders as optical enthusiasts unite in Las Vegas for Vision Expo West 2017.

This is west coast stop for Vision Expo, the event showcases the newest trends in eyewear and optical innovations. Regardless of which sector of the optical world you inhabit, this event brings us all together. From Optometrists, to Opticians, frame designers, sales reps and lens manufactures you name it! If it has anything to do with eyes you’ll find it at Vision Expo. All these optical professionals coming together to the share the products and services that help optimize vision.
I am returning to VWE for my fourth trip and each time I am discovering another layer to this massive event. As an Optician and frame buyer I focus on seeking out the latest and greatest trends and technology in eyeglass frames and lenses to bring back to my patients and share with eyeglass enthusiasts through my social media.
I’m like a kid in a candy store! The galleria is 173,000 square feet of space showcasing fabulous glasses and sunglasses. Each company utilizes the opportunity to showcase their brand identity in creatively designed booths displaying their products.
Here are my highlights from Vision Expo West 2017. Day 1 had me doing my first ever
Facebook LIVE. Alongside IntroWellness.com founder Dr. Ryan Corte and YouTube personality Dr. Zdogg MD. Dr. Ryan Corte gave Dr. Zdogg MD his first ever eye exam in real time, I then helped fit him with his first pair of glasses. With the help of his “dogg pack” and their live opinions we choose two great frames from Prodesign and matched them with the Essilor total lens package including a style addition of Transitions Lenses.

zdogg

Watch it here: Dr. Z Get’s His First Eye Exam

My favorite frames from the show this year are by Andy Wolf. A new collection to my shop, Andy Wolf’s frames are as unique and welcoming as the team that represents them. This brand stands out for the minimalist, yet in no way understated shapes and designs of their frames. Rose gold and 70’s inspired shapes from Andy Wolf are just what I want in my shop (and need in my life).


It’s not all work and no play, it’s Las Vegas after all and I cannot ignore the all the great dining and things to do after the show is over. These are a few restaurants I tried and would recommend:

Yardbird
The Yardbird; Not far from the Galleria I found this Southern style restaurant just the thing to appease the big appetite I had worked up after walking over 10 miles (special thanks to my step counter for keeping up). Deep fried avocado spears, chicken and waffles and a deconstructed fried green tomato BLT are a few of The Yardbird’s signatures dishes I just had to try. The delicious food and our attentive and charismatic waiter, reflects a deep and undeniable Southern charm.

wicked spoon.jpg
Wicked Spoon; It’s necessary to try at least one buffet in Las Vegas and Wicked Spoon in The Cosmopolitan Hotel has everything you could ever imagine eating in one place. Brunch at Wicked Spoon is one of my Vegas ritual, much needed fuel for a long day and a lot of walking. Even though it’s brunch, I suggest you don’t skip their gelato bar, with exotic flavors like strawberry balsamic and Thai tea or classics like chocolate and raspberry, it’s all you can eat, live a little and try something new.

Lacave
La Cave; This hidden gem in the Wynn doesn’t feel like it’s in Las Vegas, perfect if you’re looking to get away from all the hustle and bustle. La Cave is an intimate space with a menu featuring small plates, great for sharing. Inside you feel nestled in a cavernous wine cellar, on the outdoor terrace you can enjoy the warm Las Vegas nights. La Cave is a place to linger over a flight of wines and a decadent cheese and charcuterie board.


What I love most about Vision Expo West is after a whirlwind of frame buying I get to share all the fabulous new styles arrivals and the knowledge that the next Vision Expo is not too far in the future. I look forward to spring in New York for Vision Expo East 2018.

Transitions when travelling

20160205_Transitions_2860

A lifelong chronic over packer, only as I reflect on my last travels, one where the airline lost my suitcase, leaving me with nothing but the clothes on my back (for an trip where I would be meeting a lot of new people in my profession and making first impressions).

It forced me to ask….

What is really essential to pack? What do I have that I cannot live without? and in the same breath, What could I do without?

When you arrive at your destination, a new place, without all those meticulously planned outfits (I am fully guilty of listing each activity and layout options accordingly), plan B alternatives and beauty essentials, you have no choice but to pull yourself together and come up with a solution (or in my case a trip to Target, the only store open at 11 pm).

This experience in hindsight was a blessing. From this point forward I am a carry on kinda girl. I spent my last trip without all that baggage, literally! Let me tell you, that was liberating!

These are my essentials, the things that carried me through the first time and those I cannot (or choose not to) travel without.

Glasses with Transitions Lenses; Clear to dark the best multipurpose, situation adaptable lens. Having one pair of glasses that gives me full UV protection, the benefits and look of sunglasses is a daily must, but especially helpful when traveling. Going in and outdoors they change quickly from clear to dark to clear. There is no need to change to sunglasses and juggle two pairs. These are one of my favorite frames by Seraphin, the leopard print is a playful take on a classic tortoiseshell and the larger lens size lends itself perfectly to a sunglass look when my Transition Signature 7 graphite green lenses adjust to their dark tint.

Cross Body Bag;  The size of this Michael Kors bag is perfect and I love that the chain detail lets you dress it up for a flawless conversion from day to night.. A cross body bag keeps your hands free and all the essentials easily accessible.

Scarf or Poncho; Cozy for the flight and a lifesaver for unpredictable weather. A neutral poncho that can be used as a blanket, jacket or scarf is something I wont fly without.

Camera; Although we primarily rely on our phones to take pictures nowadays I love to travel with this Samsung NX3000 camera. It’s compact, but don’t let that fool you, it has many of the features of a much larger SLR. Removable lenses, a large screen (that flips up and rotates for selfies) and full menu of smart setting or manual options. I especially love the vintage look of the camera, that gives a a certain throwback feeling when wandering through a new location.

The common thread in my travel essentials? Items that transition for double duty, making traveling the joy it’s meant to be.