Saturday, August 20, 2011

denims & cowgirls

Despite the heat, somehow I am still craving for this...

As usual, this is another case of me falling prone to trends. Trust me, the denim revitalization has not fallen on (my) deaf ears. But it makes sense, as I've been lately more into the sort of stiffer silhouettes, and denim, being a stiffer fabric, is only a logical next step.

It's been a slow process. I think I've always been somewhat prejudiced towards denims. It's reminded me of my not so glorious days, so I associate denims with something inherently careless and unfashionable. Honestly, currently, I have zero pairs of denim jeans in my wardrobe. I have been looking for a nice pair of skinny jeans, but I guess my proportions are just messed up and I haven't found any that are satisfactory. Or I probably need to lose weight. Or both. Anyway, it was ingrained into my head that somehow denim was associated with all that was unfashionable. But slowly, it has changed for me.

Adding a touch of boyishness to the menswear inspiration these days

I know I'm behind, but I still want that denim button-up and denim vest/jacket. And the wish list grows ever longer... But denim can add so many different "flavors" to your outfit. On one hand, it can add a touch of boyishness, going along with the menswear inspiration these days. On the other hand, with a dash of heavy eye make-up, it gives off a stronger, punk feel to your outfit. Or, take tips from Christine Centenera, and use denim for layering effects. After all, denim just adds another layer of versatility to your wardrobe, no?

Christine Centenera & her amazing style, as usual

Credits: Tumblr, Garance Dore x2

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

07.19.2011 wish/want/need

07.19.2011 wish/want/need
clockwise from top:  Miu Miu shirt, Equipment Sophie striped silk-chiffon shirt, Reiss oversize t-shirt, By Malene Birger Zellu high-waisted carrot leg trousers, Costume National shorts, twill shorts; center: Prada pumps

So whenever summer hits, and I'm talking about the heat, it's really easy to be lazy. I mean, who wants to go outside where it's 100 degrees when you can enjoy the cool breeze of AC blowing in your apartment? 100 degrees also makes it really hard to dress properly - not on the weekends, but I'm talking about weekdays, when I have to go to work, where the AC is notched up to a 50 degrees. I mean, how are you supposed to dress for a 50 degree difference? I have a pair of leggings I bring to work every day, to minimize the amount of changing possible, but it's still a total hassle.

And to account for all of that, I mean, I've got to look somewhat work appropriate, so all those sheer shirts I have say bye-bye during the weekday... And the more I look at my wardrobe the more I think, "god, I really have nothing to wear [in this goddamn blasting heat outside and still look work presentable]." Which is a dreadful feeling known to many and is known to cause shopping impulses, empty wallets, closets full of clothes that may or may not be wearable next season...

So of course the logical step is to make a wish/want/need-list. Stuff I really want, possibly need... but for a poor college student working this summer, I'll probably just make do with my closet, feeling lazy and uninspirational, and save some money at it...

Saturday, June 25, 2011

summer spring!

First of all, apologies for this unannounced loooong hiatus of mine yet again. Finals came up, the end of the school semester was hectic, then I went home and basically went into lazy vacation mode, which apparently I still haven't gotten out of even though I've come back for work. But, considering the insane amount of things that need to get done during the summer, I'm hoping to get back to business, do some studying for the GREs, get myself into the gym, and do some blogging!

So even though it's almost July, the weather here has been spectacular! And by spectacular, no, I do not mean real summer weather. I'm talking about spring weather, which is my idea of spectacular - mid 70s, high 60s, sunshine here and there, I'm willing to put up with rain as long as it's cool like this. Which means, not so fast with the short shorts and the tank tops, I can still wear clothes meant for this great weather range... Which also means yay for the bright, eye-popping colors and the floral prints. Time to celebrate when it's still not too hot outside...

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

eye see!!

A sketch I made last night in the wee hours of the night..

A short post, but I got these sunglasses a while ago from Aldo and have been loving them! I was actually looking for more Ray Ban Wayfarers, but instead I saw these. I love the detailing... and it's finally light outside for long enough so I can wear my sunglasses for longer periods of times...

Friday, April 22, 2011

like fine wine

Weather, when can I pull out the maxis??

While the weather is still in limbo, I can't wait until it's actual spring weather so I can pull out the spring/summer stuff I've been wanting to wear all winter. I just want to go around wearing a maxi skirt, run around in a field, not have to wear winter coats and just have some sunshine...

Who am I kidding, I still want to run around in short shorts!!

It's really interesting how we acquire our tastes and how these tastes and preferences eventually evolve and mature into our personal style. Last spring/summer, I wanted to wear short shorts all day every day, and now I've made a fast break for the long dresses, hah! Also shows how easily I succumb to trends...

The Sartorial man who is painfully missing in my life... love the collar!

A few days ago one of my friends told me he bought the Esquire handbook for dressing or something like that. I told him to read The Sartorialist more often. I think it's hard to define a style for oneself. And while I appreciate that he is caring more about his appearances via some Esquire handbook, in the end, true style points come from how you define what you wear: you wear the clothes, the clothes don't wear you.

I can always recognize Emmanuelle Alt, too

I think it's skill to be recognizable by first glance on the street - Anna Dello Russo, anyone? It says a lot about how you've incorporated style into yourself.

To some (a lot) people, all this that I'm talking about sounds like rubbish. Clothes will be clothes, pieces of cloth at most. But clothes are a huge contributor to your outward appearance. What you wear, how you wear what it is, whether you like it or not, makes you. And these outward appearances make the biggest difference in terms of first impressions. This is why you will wear the suit to the interview and not the pajamas - you want to appear proper and reliable for your job.

I find myself inexplicably attracted to the current more western/Cali trend going on...

But who am I to speak? I have barely found my true style niche. At this stage I'm still flitting between trends... Style, personal taste, these are all things that take time to mature... like fine wine.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

to bob or not to bob?

Arizona Muse: owner of THE most amazing bob...

As a Danish prince knows, that is the question. But before I get ahead of myself, are you guys noticing the revamp? I like that the design is cleaner than before. I had to get rid of the cool background image because I couldn't get it to be static... what? Okay fine I'm incompetent aka lazy so now you guys get a simpler design. And for those of you who use bloglovin, the link is on the side!

Appealing to my nerd sensitivities.....

And speaking of revamping, now that it is spring (even if the weather would like to protest otherwise), I'm feeling for a haircut, a la welcoming the new spring with the end of winter. I need a haircut anyway - before the split ends start creeping in. The question is whether or not I'm willing to try something new this time... One of my new favorite models, Arizona Muse, has probably one of the coolest bobs ever. So much so it's tempted me to possibly consider getting a similar haircut. But my hair is stick straight (typical Asian hair), which would require me to perm my hair... I've had stick straight, long-ish hair all of my life it's so hard for me to picture myself in any other hair. I love how Muse's hair is so naturally wavy in all the right spots to give the bob a more refreshing, young feel (and NOT Anna Wintour bob-y)...

Maybe the question should be, "Do you want to look cool or not?"

So should I? To bob or not to bob (Arizona Muse style, of course), that is the question... ugh she looks so cool with that haircut!!!!

Photo Credits: Arizona Muse for Dazed & Confused; Arizona Muse for Madewell (x2)

Friday, March 25, 2011

forever "it"

The Bag To Rule Them All.....

First of all, apologies for being MIA for so so long... once the new semester starts, everything starts catching up and I had little time to update. Although it was probably for the better that I did not update as I've been lacking inspiration these days - as it is spring break and I'm being unsocial, I'm lounging around at home in my slouchy sweaters. But I will try my best with updating from now on! This blog will not be a fad... (and I need to be better about photographing)... Anyway....

Chanel, a classic beauty I will never admit to owning a knock-off of

One of the dilemmas of being a poor college student is not knowing when to invest in a great bag. I have a love-hate relationship with the so-called "it-bags." On one hand, I'm totally smitten, but on the other hand, I know it will inevitably cause a dent in my wallet. Dilemma. That's why I turn to "perennial-bags." These are bags that stay "it" all the time and you won't have to worry about buying yet another bag for next season.

The PS 1 - Forever "It" aka the perfect satchel bag, ever.

Signs of a "perennial-bag":
1. Minimalistic - a simple design with nothing that really stands out in particular. The real beauty of these bags come from their simplicity as a whole
2. They literally go with everything. (Note: everything does not really mean everything. If someone catches you in ugly slouchy sweatpants, ugly sneakers, and a high school team t-shirt, not even that Chanel bag will save you. Am I speaking from personal experience?....... Maybe.)
3. Versatile - you can wear them for different occasions, when you want to look professional, or when you want to be simple and casual
4. Great quality - it's gotta last a long time if you plan on wearing it for years on, right?

The Michael Kors Hamilton tote... another favorite I wish I had...

Speaking of great quality and long-lasting finds, I always hear stories about people discovering great vintage finds in their mom's closet. I think I'll always be thinking about what I'd want my daughter to find in my closet (I know, it's early, but it's still fun to think about), stuff I'd like her to steal from my closet then proclaim to her friends she found it in her (tres tres fashionable) mother's closet.... which means I need to get rid of that knock-off asap but there is no way I'm gonna be able to afford that bag in the near future....

Photo Credits: Jak&Jil Blog, the rest all courtesy Google Images

Saturday, January 29, 2011

chunky pumpy

 Shoe cravings...

I am glad to say... gone are the days of the stiletto and hopefully we can now finally move onto the days of more comfortable heels that are not out to break our ankles at every sidewalk crack. The chunky heel is in (thanks to the clog)! I mean, look at the UO shoes pictured above. I want them so bad, so bad for the spring, when I can finally reveal the skin on my feet without my feet getting frostbite...

Time to update my shoe closet (yet again)....

I am so ready to chuck away my old pumps and replace them with these snazzy pumps for the summer. I love the colors... Clearly I have been online shopping on UO too much, but I just love the pumps they have! They have it in this great green color but also in this coral-ish orange color... Dilemma. I'm getting sidetracked, but the point is, I love this pump-clog hybrid. It makes pumps so much more attractive to me. Totally loving this revamp. My old perception of the pumps was something not fun, totally professional, and serious. And now I am finally seeing the playful edge and the younger side.... finally!

Viktor & Rolf camel pumps I wish I could afford..

Part of it, though, is because I have a rustic love for leather and wood. I blame the clog phenomenon, where I fell in love with the thick wood heels and now, naturally, I've fallen prey to these chunky pumps.. But say what you may, I want a pair of these for the spring and I want them now!

Photo Credits: UO x2,

Monday, January 24, 2011

japanese ファッション

The spirit of Japanese fashion - kawaii and individualistic

Japanese fashion has this really distinct feature about it that makes it recognizable from a mile away. You can't miss it. And you'll always recognize it. The same can be usually said about other places, too - i.e. you can always tell if a girl is from Paris or if a guy is from Italy - but it's uncanny how distinguishable Japanese fashion is. Like smelling fish a mile away....... okay, not the analogy I was going for. But you know what I mean.

Everything is sooo cutee...

This is the land of avant-garde. Over the top? No no no, that is encouraged. Costume? Please, roleplay is a basic. As opposed to the emphasis of fit, it's the thought that counts. People dress with a concept. Flamboyance! And everything still looks so cute!!

Love this take on vintage, pure Tokyo

The Japanese are great at layering. Layering different prints over each others. Layering different lengths over each other to create interesting juxtapositions. Layering weird shapes over each other. Layering interesting colors together. There is no taboo in Japanese fashion because it's all encouraged. They're a walking modern art museum.

Kenzo S/S '11

Of the big Japanese names, my personal favorite is Kenzo (it aligns more closely to my style and I'm not daring enough to really delve into abstract, complex shapes and layerings). This brand really grew out of an East meets West mixing of Japanese traditional patterns. Just looking at the S/S '11 collection, you see the abundant pattern mixing, the length layering (on the left, also something I would probably never wear in real life unless I was costuming..), and the Japanese, oriental prints and even geta-like flat platform sandals (on the right). Love it.

The famous CDG drop crotch pants

If there's a Japanese brand that really describes Japanese fashion for me, it's got to be Comme de Garçons. Just like its name suggests, it is everything boyish. Oversized and hapless layering makes it seem like clothes a little, attention-seeking boy who wants to grow up would wear. This is Japanese fashion to me: forever young, cute, hapless. It's stuff we would try to put together when we were younger, playing dress-up, at a loss for dressing appropriately. Love clothes for what it is, without a care for whether or not it fits us or if it looks costume-y or ridiculous - we wear clothes, we love fashion, because it's fun!! There should never be any airs in fashion, because in the end, we are just a bunch of people who love to wear clothes..

This is what Japanese fashion embodies.

What I would give to go to Tokyo...

P.S. To be fair, I was in Tokyo..... when I was six months old. And lived there until I was one. But I don't think that really counts.... 

Photo Credits: Street Peeper, The Sartorialist, Street Peeper,, Street Peeper (Verbal of Teriyaki Boyz), The Sartorialist

Sunday, January 23, 2011

milan favorites!

 One of the best jobs, ever. Seriously.

Soo, sorry that this is a late post, but I have to say, fashion weeks are super overwhelming. I still have like fifty shows' pictures to sift through for Paris... Needless to say, I'm still running behind. Also, this is the first time I've really nitty-gritty paid attention to menswear. Menswear is definitely a different creature - it is so so detail-oriented with the styling. Tough, but also helps train my eye for detail, haha...

Bottega Veneta F/W 2011

My favorite collection from Milan was Bottega Veneta, hands down. After sifting through hundreds of photos of the collections, this was one of the few that actually stuck out to me. Not sure why, but I felt like show after show, I was looking at the same thing over and over again - everybody had the same silhouette shape, everybody had the exaggerated proportions. Everybody had camel and standard fall colors. But Bottega Veneta had this great crumpled look that was closer-fitting on the models than the boxy look from the exaggerated proportions. It's relaxed, it's refined... And I love the velvet - although, a lot of shows had velvet.. It was like everybody rediscovered it at the same time. This is the male look to look forward to..

Jil Sander F/W 2011

Jil Sander, though, won me over with its great colors. I love, love, love the bright colors. It's great for uplifting any fall or winter, since inevitably everybody will be wearing the same camel, the same brown, the same black.. boring (even though I am guilty of such boring-ness in the winter). Also, I loved the tweed workings. But again, we see the exaggerated proportions... same old, same old.

Missoni, Roberto Cavalli, and Burberry Prorsum

Honorable mentions, though. Burberry, as usual, is a big outerwear collection. I love the oversized coats (soo London boy look) and I would love to have one for myself... although I'm not sure that is supposed to be the purpose of a menswear collection (eek). But I love the textures, the materials.. Cavalli was a really 70s look that was super retro and had great accessories. I loved the dusty color palette and I love the combination of bohemian-cowboy with the air of refinement and polished 3-piece suits. And Missoni... great print mixing and I like the African/tribal look.

P.S. Could you guess who's my favorite male model? Haha... no prize even if you guess correctly.

Photo Credits: Tumblr and The Fashionisto for all the runway looks

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

so, what's your favorite color?

"Orange" you glad we have so many colors to choose from?

Remember those personality quizzes, where they try to determine what personality you are based on trivial questions like, "What's your favorite color?" And then they'd try to classify your personality based on the color you've picked, like, pink means you're outgoing and social, and blue means you're reserved and quiet, or something overly simplified but still worded positively (since nobody likes being told they have a bad personality). I had a problem with those, because my favorite color fluctuated from time to time, which, according to these frivolous personality quizzes, probably meant I was guilty of schizophrenia....

 Having trouble choosing?

It's tough picking a favorite color! To me, different colors elicit different emotions and therefore different outfit options, different seasons or different moods I'd like to convey.

Red on red! Le gasp!

Red! I used to not like this color, but my mom really likes it (I like to attribute it partly to the fact that she is Chinese, and the color red brings good luck in Chinese culture). She used to buy this color for me a lot (back when she still could buy clothes for me) and I'd never wear any of it. But now, I'm slowly changing my mind.. I think the problem was that I lacked the proper pieces in this color (and probably good taste, back then). Red, especially a more wine/burgundy red, has the potential to look really classy and elegant. It's a great color if you want to look luxurious, elegant, something more ala red carpet look, evening gown...

The original color of chic

Black is a color for cool elegance. Nothing does it like black - cold, edgy, punk, tough, refined, cool. You can use it for anything and I love how versatile this color (or non-color) is! That's probably why much of my wardrobe is black (so versatile), but I am still not cool, not at all, so....

Camel, camel, everywhere!!

Currently, my favorite colors are blue, camel and other neutral/nude tones. Blue, mostly because I've realized, depending on the shade, it's another easily versatile color. Camel and co are great for the winter/fall because they bring a degree of softness to whatever you wear. The color is so perfectly feminine and elegant. I'm still looking for a camel coat... I know, I'm behind, but I also have budget issues, so...

Remember when it was still warm and the sun didn't set at 3 PM?

But now I can't wait for spring/summer and start busting out pastels and bright pops of (obnoxious) color! Except I need to buy the clothes first (ahh, my wallet).... My wardrobe is really conservative, color-wise. But, let's be honest, how much time have I got until it's no longer socially acceptable for me to be wearing these colors? I need to get on it!!

P.S. Please tell me which of my blogposts you've liked the most so far - I'm thinking about entering Refinery29's style blog contest! Also, any suggestions on personal taglines would be great too - I really hate describing myself in terms of a sentence. Merci!

P.P.S. Still working on the Milan menswear post... and then Paris starts, ugh.. Really getting behind......

Photo Credits: Jak & Jil,, Street Peeper, The Sartorialist, Garance Dore (x2)

Monday, January 17, 2011

art of dressing lazy

 Large knitwear sweaters, my lazy love

When it's freezing cold outside and you feel like hibernating for a few days in your nicely heated room, it's hard to feel motivated about getting clothed. I mean, why get dressed when you can just lay in bed, or better, lounge around in your fluffy bathrobe? I know it's tough for me. But I designate a section of my wardrobe to what I deem "lazy clothes." You know, stuff that you wouldn't mind lounging around the dorm in, looking casual and totally relaxed while still looking fashionably sensible.

Tres chic and tres easy

My favorite for the winter is the large, knitwear sweaters. You just need to wear a pair of leggings or tights to keep your legs warm (or not, if it's warm enough). I love this lazy outfit because it's straightforward and comfortable - when you're being lazy, comfort is top priority, and the loose, large knitwear sweaters are everything but tight and constricting (which is also why I don't wear jeans for these occasions... or that many occasions to be honest). Might I also say, j'adore that sweater pictured above, everything from the knit pattern to the red color..

Breezy, cool, relaxing, and great for laziness

When it's warmer, I also like to pull out the cropped, lighter sweaters (or shirts) and pair them with a pair of short-shorts.

Improvise with your favorite little brother sweater

But in the end, it's up to improvisation and experimentation with comfort. Vive la laziness!

P.S. I'll be doing an upcoming post on Milan menswear F/W '11! But it's so difficult picking pictures and not be biased about my favorite male models...

Photo Credits: Turned Out, Hanneli Mustaparta, Turned Out, Garance Dore

Saturday, January 15, 2011

my wardrobe essentials (part 1)

A girl's favorite button-up

If there's one thing that can't be missing from my wardrobe, it's a nice button-up. And usually more than one, for multiple purposes. It's a great classic addition and adds the perfect touch of sophistication or elegance to any outfit. I love its versatility - you can pair them with even short shorts and still look (somewhat) refined.

How to look like a... boy?

You can also steal one from your boyfriend (or if you don't have one, your dad works too), and go for the tomboy look! I wasn't a big tomboy person, but I think androgyny has really grown on me. And it doesn't help that some of the coolest girls are self-proclaimed tomboys, i.e. Agyness Deyn, Alexa Chung.. I really like the mens button-ups because they're larger and fit looser, which adds more to the careless vibe, since we all know finding clothes that fit us are seasons behind. C'est tres cool!

Layering essentials, or playing peek-a-boo in the winter

It's also great for layering! Especially in the winter, just add a pullover or that to-die-for Stella McCartney dress on the left (sidenote: I also really love that Chanel purse in that orange-yellow shade). Having even just the collar stick out adds a nice detail to your outfit!

Loose-fitting v starched, two different looks

I have two (actually more like three) white button-ups in my closet right now. But one is a softer material that allows me to achieve the loose-fitting look, and I like how it creates a nice feminine silhouette since it sticks closer to my body. On the other hand, the starched, stiffer button-up is nice to create a more professional look. Or a boxier, more geometric look.

Variations on a theme

Of course, if you get bored of the ordinary white button-up, there are plenty of ways to change it up. Finding great patterned blouses is tough, though. And I really love that lacy, sheer button-up. I need to get myself one of those (totally regretting not getting something similar at H&M the other day).....

Photo Credits: Vanessa Jackman, The Sartorialist, Hanneli Mustaparta (x2), Vanessa Jackman (x2), Hanneli Mustaparta (x2), The Sartorialist (x2)

Thursday, January 13, 2011

getting into the flare

Back to the future I mean the 70s

I guess the latest trend in fashion is to rehash old trends. And, to my horror, the latest rehash is the flare leg. I thought I was forever done with the idea of the flare leg from junior high - back in my Dark Ages, pre fashion Renaissance - like the flare leg jeans. Then Renaissance and skinny jeans happened and I thought I was saying good riddance, but...

What did you say? Good riddance to who?

Suddenly I'm starting to have second thoughts. Maybe, just maybe these pants could be chic. Maybe....

 Covering up our feet with flared pants is the latest trend

This is like back when the clogs started trickling back. I make it sound like it was a long time ago, but I think it was last year. Maybe this time of the year, too. I groaned when I saw them hit the runways. But guess what I almost considered buying online yesterday? Yeah, that's right, clogs.

The clogs that started it all... Chanel, as usual

I think the key to any trend is to find the proper execution. Without the proper execution, anything has the potential to look like crap. I think, in that respect, it's really hard for me to dislike anything in fashion, as long as I can find a good execution of it. Call me an optimist, but I have faith in these trends. Viva le fashion!

Photo Credits: Vanessa Jackman blog for the first two, The Sartorialist, and Garance Dore (all blogs I adore)