Little Black Dress

Friday 17 July 2015
isabelmarant_dress1 isabelmarant_dress3
Outfit: Étoile Isabel Marant "Gemma" dress (on sale, additional 10% off with code SALE10) , Miu Miu sunglasses, Hermes Cape Cod watch, Birkenstock Arizona sandals (on sale, additional 10% off with code SALE10), Étoile Isabel Marant parka, Charlotte Olympia Kitty flats.

As you can tell, I'm wearing a dress which is something of a rare occurrence. Like a solar eclipse. In a bid to get in touch with my feminine side,  I caved in and bought myself a LBD (Little Black Dress). As someone once mentioned to me, the hemline of Isabel Marant's skirts and dresses tend to be well above the knee but they're never vulgar. The pleats are stiff enough to prevent a Marilyn Monroe moment which can be easily misconstrued as "flashing" if you're other than the siren.

2 things I've learned from wearing a dress. By the way, I should mention that while this is common sense to those who wear dresses on a regular basis (couldn't find the right words...), this is somewhat a revelation (lots of doh moments) to me. One. Knees together as you're getting out of a car. Ahem. Or wear your best knickers. Two. Do not get too comfortable while you're at a cafe. Especially if you're in full view of other patrons. Splayed legs and dresses do not go hand in hand. *facepalm*

Goldfinger.....I mean...Goldfeet (not to be confused with cold feet. Sorry. Couldn't resist)

Aubaine_raspberrytart aubaine_millefeuille

I had a mini reunion with a friend of mine who flew in from Singapore with her family recently. 5 years wheezed past in a blink of an eye. Our daughters have grown though in our minds, they'll always be toddlers. We tried to pack 5 years worth of conversations into a single day. I decided to book us a table at the newly opened Aubaine by Hyde Park where food is guaranteed to be excellent and the setting's cozy and intimate even for families with kids. We were famished by the time our food arrived and managed only a few snaps of the impressive dessert tray before we dug in.

Speaking of desserts, I'm sure I'm not the only one feeling like her body or internal organs have gone bonkers. Gorging on pastries and pasta or downing umpteen cups of coffee with milk never really had  a massive effect on me. I had to cut out milk for now after my tummy went spastic on me while I was just about to speak at a workshop. Perfect timing. NOT. Pffffft.....!! I hovered between blacking out and clenching the sides of my stool in a vice like grip throughout the entire 4 hours. Gluten knocks me out and puts me to sleep within minutes. Anyone had similar problems recently?


  1. I love this dress on you. You embody the IM spirit more than any other person I know.

    You are not alone, alas, about the body turning against one. I've had a tough time this past year. I first noticed that eating or drinking out made me sick every time back in September of last year. By Christmas, the consistency of feeling low or in pain was upsetting me, and it didn't help that I was putting on weight despite upping my exercise. I felt like my body was going berserk! By February, it was constant pain, so I started removing all kinds of things from my diet ...

    As of last month, I have the diagnosis: IBS. Thankfully there's now a diet for it—and it seems to work! I eat and eat without pain, and the bloating weight slipped off. But I can't eat or drink so much: alcohol, wheat, diary, soy, egg yolks, corn syrup, fructose, honey, fruit drinks, onions/garlic/shallots, leeks, etc., etc., etc. The idea of eating out is impossible as of now. If I take pain medication, I end up vomiting from irritation... The joy!

    So. It's no fun. But it's great to have answers. In the end, even giving up butter and pastry (my big weakness) seems just fine when grapes and blueberries make me feel so good.

    Take care and I hope you figure it out!

    1. C, you're my lifesaver!!! Thanks to you, I think I've found out what the heck is going on with my body. I went and checked the symptoms and yup...I ticked 95% of the boxes. The bloating is terrible. And the tummy ache. I've cut down on pastry and wheat based product but not all. I think I need to get rid of them from my diet starting from now. Can't really deal with carbs either though rice is fine. I never liked rice (yes...being a Chinese and all...) but now, it's one of few things that do not make my stomach go spastic on me.

    2. If my story could help at all, I'm tremendously glad. I couldn't believe how long it took to figure it out for me, especially as my digestive system has been a medical problem since a child. I also have a couple of other related issues going on (thus no alcohol and carbonated drinks...), but this knowledge has been a revelation.

      If you haven't yet discovered it, check out the low-FODMAP diet. It identifies the carbohydrate chains that IBS makes difficult for sufferers to absorb. It's that absorption problem that starts the pain. I can't eat everything on the "good" list, so it's still a bit of testing, but it makes the identification of "safe" foods far easier. For most of my life wheat has been safe, so taking it out right now is, for me, just wanting to make sure I'm giving the diet every chance I can.

      After a few weeks on it, if I break down and having something, I feel it like a punch in the stomach and then suffer for two days or more. So I've discovered the most fabulous thing I can eat like a rabid gobbler and be so happy: a mix of grapes, blueberries, strawberries, and cantaloupe/melon. I go through pounds of the stuff every week. Pounds.

    3. It's only after you've mentioned this that I put two and two together. I've had this problem since my teenage years but put it down to gastric/fussiness with food/etc. Eating became such a pain (literally!) that I would just eat a few spoonfuls to stave off hunger. In fact, I was taken to see a GP on 2 occasions and he couldn't figure what my problem was either.

      Thanks so much for sharing, C! I've checked out the low-FODMAP diet. Argh. Can't believe I'm supposed to avoid some of my favorite fruits and food. Noooooooo.

  2. I can recommend Buscopan if you are getting spasms n your gut. It's worked for me, otherwise I would sometimes be afraid to leave my house. Available on prescription from your GP. And yes, lots of food/drink has undesired effects on me as I have gotten older.

    1. I'll definitely keep that in mind, Catherine! Thanks.

  3. Oh that dress is gorge! You look fabulous :)

    Also a jacket Marlene? A jacket?!!! I would KILL to be able to wear a jacket! It's been 37°C what feels like a millionth day in the row here (38°C predicted for tomorrow with similar temps next week) and can I be frank? I'll be frank :) Icannottakethissh*tanymore. Seriously. And it doesn't cool off in the evenings so there is no respite at all.

    Which brings me to food and stomach issues. Lord almighty does it suck to get older at least when stomach stuff is concerned.

    At the moment what with the heat and all it's like one "normal" meal per day plus tons of water/ice cream/watermelon. And you'd think with all the sweating, I'd be losing weight. Hm no. I do feel your pain, it must be horrible. Milk does bother me, but not to that extent, only got a bloat (TMI? TMI soz :), but probiotics (the pills, not those yogurt thingies from the supermarket) helped with that. I should try what Aesthetic Alterations mentioned above, cut things from the diet and see what bothers me the most, but honestly at the moment can't really face it. Also we are so behind on food stuff here, gluten free/diary free anything is like almost impossible to find. Neighbour's kid was diagnosed with celiac and the options were so limited, not to mention she had to prepare almost everything from scratch.

    tl; dr

    I hope you feel better soon :)

    1. R, you beat me to it. Ageing sucks. I don't mean the wrinkles (though that sucks too) but the crazy changes the body goes through. Man...looks like we're both no the same popsicle (can't deal with normal creamy ice cream these days) and watermelon and small meals. And nope. Weight's not falling off either. I can't imagine being in 37˚C heat. That'll just finish me!! That's one of the reasons why I can't bring myself to fly back to South East Asia. Can't deal with that kind of heat though.....saying that, I will have to soon. I think I'll stick to the cool weather here.

      I'll go and get myself probiotic pills. You actually read my mind. Before I saw your comment a while ago, I actually dashed out to get those yoghurt thingies with probiotic. Nope. Didn't help so I'll haul my ass to the health store tomorrow.

  4. I had to look twice at the picture before aknowledging you...
    It does suit you, I mean the dress, especially with the flats (not the birk though). And you could wear it also with your sandals or your Acquazurra too.
    Well the dress is a bit too short for me now (especially when you have to seat in the public transportations erk).
    Regarding food and ageing....Well I definitely saw some changes in my diet: eating less, needing less. I started craving more and more for fruits and veggies.. while again starting to eat fat. I mean eating more butter, more sauce than before (meaning zero before).
    And the bloating yes, although I eat less, am still active. But well I do not have real issue.
    Sorry to know about yours, I do hope you'll find something to live better soon, it sucks to be in such pain.

    1. LOL! Me in a rare!

      I'm glad that I've finally found out that there's a solution to this problem. Thanks to Aesth. Alt. Literally sick of dealing with excruciating pain!

  5. Amazing post dear!

  6. Yeah, milk and I are no longer buddies, either. I used to eat SO much dairy...and yogurt! I put coconut milk in my coffee now, and that seems to work for me, since the majority of my milk consumption was via coffee anyway :) I do eat some dairy, though, because if I cut out all the things that kind of irritate my stomach I would go crazy. I know, I've tried!
    Good luck in sorting out your digestive issues, Marlene. I know how frustrating it can be.


  7. Loving you in the dress, why not wear them more often? You looked like you felt very comfortable in it? It looked great with the jacket too... Agree with the other poster.. the FODMAP diet may help.. good luck.. ps. Gold shoes are always good in my book xxx

  8. You look gorgeous Marlene! Its the perfect dress for you! I have a friend & her family coming over from Australia in September & I can't wait! Its been 10yrs since weve seen each other! Andrea x

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