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)

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

pre-fall favorites

The world of fashion often confuses me by being two seasons ahead. So while I'm lamenting the freezing cold, somehow I'm still wishing it's Fall/Winter because I want to try out the F/W 2011 trends... It's a contradictory world, but I can deal with it.

Karl Lagerfeld and his teddy say, "Deal with it."

I'm aware that F/W 2011 shows are coming up, and I really wish I could go to NYFW, but I think I'll manage this year by watching the shows online. Even though it'd be really amazing if I could go one day... Something for the future, maybe. (Or, the truth is, I'm really just not cool enough. Insert crying face.) But before we get ahead of ourselves, there's already plenty to feast our eyes upon with the pre-fall collections...

Proenza Schouler Pre-Fall 2011

First, the PS boys bring us this amazing print-ful pre-fall collection. Even as a supposed minimalist myself, I find myself slowly gravitating towards the idea of print mixing (okay, I'll admit it, I'm easily persuaded). Whether or not I pull it off is another thing, but this printastic collection has me wanting to try (and, well, most likely breaking myself in the process). I really love that long dress that I have pictured in the middle - it's a really nice Bohemian look! Again, blowing my expectations away. But these are the geniuses who brought us the PS1, so...

3.1 Phillip Lim Pre-Fall 2011

Next, the 3.1 Phillip Lim pre-fall collection. This was a collection that catered more towards my minimalism-leaning tastes (but, let's be honest, my tastes change pretty much season to season anyway so...) Lots of neutrals shades, earth tones, etc. I like how it's put together on the left. Oh, and the cape-jacket-blazer thing, you know, where you don't actually wear your blazer or your jacket, and instead leave it hanging off your shoulders, leaving open sleeves. Something we saw street-style do at the S/S 2011 shows. I've done it.. it leaves sore shoulders the next day if you have a heavy jacket. Rather painful (but I'd still do it, because it looks cool!.. story of my life).

Helmut Lang Pre-Fall 2011

Next! The Helmut Lang pre-fall collection! It was very utilitarian and I liked how they experimented with lengths (length indecision for the win!). Also, this collection spoke very "fall" to me with its earth tones, the suede, the boots, everything. Made me want to go trekking in forest trails and step on fallen leaves, you know.

rag & bone Pre-Fall 2011

Second-favorite pre-fall collection. I love the asymmetries. The experimenting with no sheer then, surprise!, sheer! But, to be honest, this collection spoke more summer to me than fall - but then again, I think in fall we'll be wishing for summer again, so why bother anyway. Because, in reality, in fall I'll still be wearing summer clothes. rag & bone can read my mind too well.

Chanel Pre-Fall 2011

Automatic favorite. Chanel pre-fall hit me spot-on. The theme of the show itself was a sort of Byzantine influence already, but the elegance and aristocratic feel it gave off was overwhelming. Part of this may be due to my deep-seated liking for things that are "royal" or "aristocratic." Blame it on Disney princesses or whatnot, but my favorite color is still purple, no, royal purple. Anyway, the gold + charcoal thing really, really worked for me. Karl Lagerfeld = forever genius. Enough said.

Photo Credits: Google Images for the Karl Lagerfeld picture, and for the rest

Monday, January 10, 2011

school days revival

Alexa Chung looking fab as always

In high school, we had to write these persuasive essays on the ACT about whether or not schools should have uniforms. The purpose was to gauge our writing skills, so I didn't actually give the question a serious thought, but now... I don't think I actually would have minded if we did have school uniforms. I mean, just look at the English schoolgirl look Alexa Chung is channeling... The collar! The knee-length skirt! The pull-over! So! Much! Schoolgirl!

Alexa Chung for Madewell.. looking prim &proper&chic!
Now, before this turns into an Alexa Chung appreciation post (though it might as well be one), I'd like to say that even if school uniforms of the chic-est kind were to be employed in some public high schools, the amount of fashion disaster occurring there would still be the same. I mean, this is high school we're talking about - girls who think leggings + uggs = fashion. Or $40 Abercrombie shirts. See what I mean?

The original school girls that popularized the look

In the midst of this revival of "menswear womenswear" (see what I did there?), a nice middleground between is the territory of the schoolgirl - the blazers are still there, the button-ups are still there, but there's the added effeminate touch. This obviously doesn't mean all of us should start dressing like we are 16 and still in the "ohmygod!" and days of idle gossip (okay perhaps some of us are still guilty of such things), but I like this touch of nostalgia influence!

UO's DIY Decorative Collars

One thing I love best about this school girl revival is the more effeminate collar - how they've rounded it out or made it more decorative, to give it a cuter look. I love the decorative collar the best - it adds something interesting to the classic button-up. Click here if you want to make yourself a cool DIY decorative collar.

Rochas S/S 2011 and PFW Street Style Snap

So, go! re-live those days of carefree innocence!

Photo credits: Google Images for first three, UO Blog,, Refinery29

Saturday, January 8, 2011

indecision much?

 Chopsticks or... chopsticks?

I am an indecision wreck. It takes me at least thirty minutes every day before I go to bed, to decide on my outfit for tomorrow (granted that I wake up for classes or even decide to go out.. I feel like I've become more and more unsocial, a la college academics).. And shoe shopping is a complete disaster.

But it's good to know that I'm not alone! Designers seem to be suffering from it too..

Long v short or refined v... meditating swimmer?

Diaper pants and long dresses. It's like after last season, certain designers couldn't decide between going long or going short, so now we have both. Long and short. (To be fair, I think diaper pants or extremely-short-shorts-that-aren't-even-shorts-'cause-they're-swimwear can be tastefully pulled off. Not sure if I would jump onto that bandwagon right now, but it's possible.. maybe... Don't judge me.)

Clash of the prints v clash of the color schemes

On days where it's tough to decide between one print or another, or one color scheme or another, no worries, because.. you can just mash it all together! Although, I wish I had the skills to creatively mash together prints and colors stylistically (it really is an art), but upon further inspection of my wardrobe.. it's not very colorful. Nor very print-tastic. Needs further improvement (and wallet dents)..

Speaking of wallet dents (and other uncontrolled spending habits), I'm only just beginning to realize how much money I will (probably) indecisively spend for indecisive pieces... Great.

Photo credits: UO Holiday Catalog, Valentino S/S 2011 via NYMag,, Suno & Jil Sander S/S 2011 via NYMag

Friday, January 7, 2011

bonjour, chicas

 Fashion blogging, just like all the cool girls

I think it's about time I get serious about my blogging. Which is why I've deleted all previous posts, so now shreds of my past dilettante ways are erased!

After all, that's what the new year is for, right? Goodbye, past. Welcome the new!

Until then, auf wiedersehen!

Photo credits: Nylon Mag