An Indulgent Wednesday with Hero

Thursday, 26 March 2015
hero-goodybags hero-event hero-calligraphy hero-calligraphy2 2015-03-25 12.14.01 1 2015-03-25 02.23.54 1 2015-03-25 05.11.19 1 2015-03-25 05.08.55 1 2015-03-25 02.23.51 1 2015-03-25 02.23.50 1
Outfit: Isabel Marant jacket (similar), Uniqlo sweater, Zara jeans, Aquazzura Christy and Hermes Birkin.

Other than the intermittent mobile data which I'm desperately trying to conserve till the next month, I've been largely internet-less for the past 3 weeks and counting. The bungling EE (supposedly Everything Everywhere but coined by an ex colleague as NN - Nothing Nowhere) managed to disconnect my phone line too. I've learned something new about myself. I will NEVER survive as a hippie - "in touch with mother earth and universe" and all that jazz because internet withdrawal is pretty painful for someone whose fingertips are glued to electronic gadgets most of her waking hours. I'm starting to think that instead of a rain dance, I may have to perform an internet dance just so that I may have connectivity by April........ #firstworldproblems

My history teacher in high school used to complain about my "chicken scratchings" (translated from Malay - cakar ayam). In other AWFUL handwriting. If you know anything about the education system in Asia, you'd know that students spend gazillion hours memorizing and copying facts from textbooks. There's NO way any normal human can still write beautifully after scribbling non stop for a couple of hours.

I was invited by Laura who owns the lovely boutique in Stockbridge called Hero to attend a calligraphy workshop. It was the perfect opportunity to redeem myself. It was also such an indulgent way to spend a Wednesday. I was chauffeured to and from the event, spent an hour learning calligraphy which was very therapeutic, treated to a lovely mezze lunch and had the opportunity to interact with a few other like-minded women.

Rebecca from Betty Etiquette was a marvelous teacher. Infinitely patient and full of encouragement, she guided us ever so gently to try various strokes and how and when to apply pressure to the nib. I've certainly walked away with a new appreciation for calligraphy.

Every photographer knows to always pack an extra battery pack for the camera. Yes....well......  Mine ran out of juice after a few photos but thankfully, the smartphone came in really handy.  We were so engrossed in our chats and calligraphy that I forgot to introduce myself to a few others. Thank you, Laura for the fabulous workshop and lunch!

p.s. I interviewed the entrepreneurial and stunning Laura Turner of Hero a few weeks ago. Check out  Part 1 and Part 2 of the interview over at Swoon Mag.

Splurge vs Steal: S/S 15 Chloe Lace Up Wedges

Monday, 16 March 2015
Steal Splurge

Remember my previous post regarding these Chloe beauties? The ones that I can't take my eyes off and made me drool all over my keyboards? They're pretty, edgy and equipped with a VERY wearable heel. YES!!! 2 inches high and none of those ridiculously skinny stilts that will snap my ankles in two. The only problem is...... the price tag of £660 made me feel rather light headed.

Sure, these far more affordable alternatives from Zara aren't made of leather but heck, I'm not going to complain when they're only £39.99. The courier driver actually delivered them on Sunday. I love my Hermes courier guy. They make my short stumps legs.....look looooong. They're striking enough to look rather eye catching but not overly so, if you get my drift. Now all I have to do is wait for spring to finally arrive. 

11 Summer Essentials

Monday, 9 March 2015
Summer outfits

I'm officially over this winter even though it has been rather mild and sunny in comparison to previous years. I don't want to see my parka or heavy coats for another year. My legs are so pale that they glow in the dark.

I have trouble handing over wads of cash for denim cutoffs. They're essentially worn jeans or factory distressed; ripped, stretched and then snipped off. As I looked at the hordes of cutoffs available at online stores, it brought back memories of my early backpacking days when I stole my then skinny teenage brother's Levi's 501s and wore them till spring turned into summer. When I could no longer bear the heat, I borrowed a pair of scissors from the pension owner and made my own shorts. It didn't even cost me a cent.

When the weather's hot, I want my outfits to be airy, light and loose. Anything tight makes me feel like my innards are being squeezed. Since our summer days tend to be short and unpredictable, I rarely go crazy and shop up a storm. I've been mulling over my summer pieces and pretty much decided that anything I buy this year has to pull double duty. Well, other than the cut offs. What's on your summer shopping list? Do tell.

Comfort over fashion?

Friday, 6 March 2015
Outfit: Christys' fedora, Rick Owens Naska leather jacket, Uniqlo cotton/cashmere sweater, Icebreaker thermal vest, Zara jeans, Topshop boots, Louis Vuitton Speedy 35.

Lately, blogging has fallen wayward in lieu of family, work, traveling and life in general. I'm still very much alive on Instagram only because I don't have to be overly chatty and one picture says it all. It's a wonder that I still have something to write about after 4.5 years of blogging....... If anything, I've learned a lot from it. Made a ton of friends, have opportunities come my way that I normally wouldn't have, figured out to pose less awkwardly (banish the thought that this will ever turn into personal style blog. I love taking photos more than being in front of the camera).....

In fact, I was shocked that I can actually look half decent in front of the camera. Well, as long as I don't look at the mirror first thing I get up lest I scare myself to death. Actually, it wasn't too bad. Much like applying Photoshop  gaussian blur where everything looks airbrushed and fuzzy. That is........until I put on my glasses. The worst was wearing contacts. It was like.....WHOA! I really REALLY scared myself sh*tless then (I haven't worn contacts since).

I made several trips to London last week, the last being on Saturday where 18 bloggers came from all over and perched ourselves in a restaurant for hours on end chatting the day away. Just in case you're wondering why I was lugging such a fat looking LV was my overnight bag. Thank goodness I've downsized my camera which now takes up less space than my t-shirt. It was freezing. Okay, nothing compared to the crazy snowfall in the U.S and Canada so I can't complain. I was so grateful for my fedora because it rained....and rained....and rained. An umbrella would've been ripped apart by the wind within minutes. The Rick Owens leather jacket was a godsend too. Waterproof, windproof and kept me warm. I'm glad I didn't go with the brushed leather version which would've been ruined in the rain.

I wish I could dedicate this blog as an Ode to All Things Fashion but sadly, it ain't going to happen. As you can tell, I got lazy and wore the same few outfits again and again since......erm........early December? Anyone struggling with their outfits lately?

**A huge thank you to Sue of Susie So So for putting up with me when I made her take photos of me.

All about black: Semi Casual

Monday, 23 February 2015
black - leather jacket

Clockwise: Jigsaw striped top (similar), Rick Owens Naska leather jacket, Miu Miu sunglasses, Aquazzura Christy flats, Hermes Cape Cod watch, Hermes belt, Zara jeans and Chanel WOC.

I was in London recently to shoot some street style photos for Swoon Mag. I was probably the most underdressed person there, all wrapped up in my thickest parka and thermal, desperately trying to keep warm. I was lucky to have lovely Hana for company who'd kindly let me tag along as I covered street style for the very first time. My cheeks still ached from laughing as we cracked one joke after another. Her enthusiasm for people photography rubbed off on me as we navigated the craziness of Fashion Week where you'll find the elegant, wacky, chic and preposterous outfits, all on show.

A guy in 6 inch heels? A massive pig tail on a shaved head? Wackiness aside, there were plenty of gorgeous outfits and people to be seen including the formidable and accomplished New Zealand born fashion journalist, Hilary Alexander. I was too busy gawking in awe that I failed to take a snapshot of her. The photographers went crazy when Coronation Street star, Michelle Keegan (neither Hana nor I knew who she was until much later. I must buy a TV......) sauntered through the gates of Somerset House. Ditto when Yasmin Le Bon arrived with her daughter, Amber in tow, looking effortlessly chic and impossibly young in a semi casual outfit.

We met a few other bloggers, chatted to a couple that I knew. We alternated between Somerset House and a nearby cafe to defrost before braving the cold again. Let's just say that street style photography isn't as easy as it looks.............

All about black: casual outfit

Wednesday, 18 February 2015
casual copy

Clockwise: Uniqlo sweater, Miu Miu sunglasses, Aquazzura Christy flats, Zara skinny boyfriend jeans (the current boyfriend jeans at Zara do not fit the same but a very similar pair and equally flattering can be found here) and Hermes belt.

I always plan a fanciful outfit only to succumb to simplicity on the day. Heck, if ageing has taught me's hard to feel confident when I'm uncomfortable with what I'm wearing. This V neck Uniqlo sweater has served me well. I switch between the black and grey sweaters. They hold up incredibly well, wash after wash and after much abuse.

I'm re-introducing my eyesore Zara boyfriend jeans again after inundating poor readers with a million photos of them over the past year. My well worn Hermes belt was an eBay find 15 years ago. It had clocked in at least half a decade before it was mine. I'm sure the cost per wear would be 0.01 pence these days.

Fashion black out: Favorites

Tuesday, 17 February 2015
black on black
Clockwise: Miu Miu sunglasses, Aquazzura Christy ballet flats, Chanel WOC, Zara tuxedo jacket, Hermes Cape Cod watch.

I used to answer with lightning speed that my favorite color was blue but let's face it, I'm garbed in black head to toe most days. I had my colors analyzed nearly 2 decades ago. Black's definitely my color, particularly over the colder 6 months of the year when my pale skin matches a vampire's.

I've included a couple of new purchases on my favorite "black" list; the tuxedo jacket from Zara and the "Christy" ballet flats from Aquazzura that I've been drooling over the last 2 months. I've been searching high and low for a well fitted tuxedo jacket that doesn't cost the earth. The Stella McCartney "Melissa" jacket fits like a dream but it was slightly too long for a shorty like me. The price made my eyes water too.  The one from Maje was made of rather flimsy material. The shoulder of another from Claudie Pierlot was far too narrow and lumpy. I could go on...... However, every now and then, I manage to unearth a treasure from Zara like this tuxedo jacket with a rather eye-catching piping along the hem.

I nabbed a pair of Aquazzura Christy flats a couple of weeks ago before they were sold out everywhere. I rarely pay retail for shoes especially if they're in the high 3 figures. After tossing and turning, humming and hawing over these gorgeous pointed flats for the last month, I decided to bite the bullet and get them anyway. I'm over classic ballet flats these days. You know me and my obsession with statement shoes, particularly ones that are comfortable.

Forgive my sweet and short posts this week as I have family visiting over the school term break. I'll be playing tour guide (one that has a shocking sense of direction). If you see an Asian lady looking rather lost leading a gaggle of kids and a couple of adults in London, come and say hello. It'll definitely be me.


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