Sunday, June 19, 2011

"it's a summer day, not a cloud in sight..."

You know it's summer when your jeans start to glue to your legs, when you have a constant craving for iced coffees and frozen yogurt, when you wonder how life was possible without AC, when you get cranky and sweaty from a mere 10-min walk, and when all you want to do is sleep through stormy rainy days...

Summer's supposed to be all sun and fun, but it just seems to have lost its appeal ever since my school days have passed and summer is no longer attached to word vacation. And in this sticky melting weather, the only things that keeps me excited are the summer playlists and new albums that keep rolling out this time of the year. Nylon's annual Music issue is something that I look forward to every summer; it's like an A-Z guide to up & coming bands and is especially great for discovering emerging indie talents complemented with its usual beautiful fashion editorials (thus making the front man look even more charismatic than he already is). If you have an iPad, go download Nylon's summer playlist for free now! That's 20 freebie new songs to add to your summer selection. One of my personal favorites is the Seattle based six-piece The Head and the Heart, which is part folklore and part pop and totally refreshing (hence also included in my new mix tape below).

I'm no music expert, but like most people, there's nothing more exciting than having discovered a new band or getting your hands on that much anticipated album from your favorite group. My vol. 3 mix tape features songs from both of the above, and more: new songs from old favorites and simply great songs from all-time favorites. It's mostly chillaxing with a bit of punch thrown in just in case you needed to shake off that summer heat. Me thinks it's perfect for any lazy summer afternoon on the porch as it is for the road trip you're gonna take in your convertible. So sit back, relax and stay cool!

Song List:
French Navy - Camera Obscura
I can Hear Music - The Beach Boys
Call Me Back - The Strokes
Daylight - Matt & Kim
Black Treacle - Arctic Monkeys
Heart of Glass - Blondie
The Air that I Breathe - The Hollies
StayYoung, Go Dancing - Death Cab for Cutie
Lost in my Mind - The Head and the Heart
Safari - Catpeople
Face in the Crowd - Cat’s Eyes
Ghost of this Town - Cavalcade
Battery Kinzie - Fleet Foxes

Saturday, April 30, 2011

savage beauty

The most anticipated exhibition of the year for me is surely this one opening on May 2nd held at the Metropolitan Museum of New York - Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty. The annual fashion exhibit at the Met is something every fashion junkie looks forward to, as it is always so well-curated and full of stunning costumes thoughtfully displayed within breath-taking set designs for us mere mortals to appreciate first hand. Not to mention that the Met Gala at the opening night is like the fashion industry's Oscars red carpet - except that it's even more chic and glamorous and even has a iPad app dedicated solely to this occasion. But this year - the anticipation is higher than ever, as the exhibit is dedicated to the work of the great Alexander McQueen, who had left such a great legacy and influence in the fashion world for the past two decades. Coincidentally Kate Middleton wore a McQueen dress designed by Sarah Burton for the Royal Wedding and there's no better way to pre-celebrate this epic fashion event than this.
Sooooo wish I could be in New York to see all of this in person. If these images already show the level of creativity and craftsmanship that the designer embraced, I can't imagine how the actual clothes look like in real life - probably utterly surreal and out of this world.

Long live McQueen.

images courtesy of the Metropolitan Museum of New York via

Monday, March 7, 2011

red and blue

It seems crazy but I had this huge urge to do a mix tape tonight despite my total lack of sleep and inhumane work hours lately. Seems like a few good songs are the only things keeping me sane these days. Then I realized I had some downloading issues with my selected songs and after experiencing some technical difficulties, decided that I should just leave it and get some beauty sleep instead. Or maybe I could just share one song instead of ten.

Mr. Blue is one of my favorite songs but I have never actually seen the music video until today, and it was lovely, and reminded me of the "The Red Balloon", another one of my favorites.

"Mr. Blue... don't hold your head so low that you can't see the sky......"

*all screen caps from Mr. Blue - Catherine Feeny. Click on above images for video.

Monday, February 28, 2011

color me mine

Prints galore! NYFW presents the biggest trend of the season - prints on prints. Come AW11 you shall be prepared to bid farewell to the blacks and the blues, and welcome a closet full of vivid prints - plaids, florals, stripes, polka dots, abstract patterns... and mix and match them like little girls playing dress up. No more rules to follow, just throw on the gorgeous prints and get ready for a bold winter.

From top: Thakoon, Diane von Furstenburg, Marc Jacobs, Mary Katrantzou, Proenza Schouler, Suno, Erdem

 images via

Thursday, February 10, 2011


Elle Fanning: Rodarte's Muse on

A little while ago I watched Sofia Coppola's latest film Somewhere, which was, of no surprise, quintessentially Sofia - the slow rhythm, recurring scenes, minimal dialogue, and of course the artfully thoughtful cinematography. Though it's one of my less favorite of her films, the visuals and the sets were still stunning. There were some scenes where I almost wanted to pause the movie and 'screencap' the scene to turn it into a still image because it would just make great photography. There's something dreamy and hazy and a tad bit surreal about her films that is captivating, but also always with a subtle sense of humor. And Elle Fanning was pretty cool in it, whom, by the way, seems to be getting the It girl spotlight lately. She served as Rodarte's muse in the label's collaborative short film with Todd Cole, in which she was wearing the Spring Summer 2011 collection while wandering around in LA's Baldwin Hills. Watch the video and you'd probably agree with me that the beautiful tiered calf-length skirt probably only looks good on an innocent looking teenager (and matronly on anyone else). Oh the joys of being a youngster again. In another part of sunny West Coast, another one of Sofia's favorite leading ladies Kirsten Dunst and Rodarte fan was modelling for Boy. by Band of Outsiders new collection. Love the crisp white outfits - it's clean and simple and just enough of girliness for me. The combination of Boy. + Kirsten + Barbar the Elephant + Polaroid photography -- need I say more? That's easily my favorite SS11 look book right there.

images via Somewhere, Boy.,

Saturday, January 8, 2011

and then he created women

Tom Ford SS11 Fashion Show

Tom Ford SS11 women's collection: Sexiness gets a whole new definition.

Love the seductive muses - love the belle epoque decor - love the classic silhouettes - and love Karen Elson's song in the background (one of my recent obsessions).

No better way for a grand re-entrance. 

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

lover boy

Alexa Chung's no stranger to such fashionable lists as "It Girls" and "Best-Dressed", but it wasn't until this tomboyish Brit moved Stateside that her laid-back look got blogged by just about every street style blog and snapped by fashion magazines around the globe. Her current residency in Brooklyn (Williamsburg to be precise) seemed to be a contributing factor to her soar in style icon status, as she has since then designed a collection for Madewell and even has a Mulberry bag name after her. But her open affection for Brooklyn is what I resonate with the most - and this video is a pleasure to watch especially for those who've been there/ lived there/ thrifted there. Visit Amarcord if you haven't (and no, it's not owned by Penelope Cruz... but by two awesome Italian owners)!
And Alexa's absolutely right - Williamsburg will always be the lover.

I miss you 11211 - my lovahhh boyy!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

jet. set. chow (ciao).

purple*bliss mix tape vol. 2  

Finally got my act together and compiled purple*bliss mixed tape vol. 2. This time it's all about travel - a little bit of the "every day is a holiday" mood - taking you on a musical journey around the world from the hectic streets of Tokyo to a quiet stroll in a Parisian park and across the ocean again to the South American festivities; from lounging on the beach on the Cayman Islands to getting lost amongst an Gaudi architecture in Barcelona and finally winding up in the amazing cities of Italy with one of my favorite songs - Beirut's Postcards from Italy.

'Gelato' may seem a bit out of context as this mix tape's name... but personally it symbolizes the freedom and pleasure that traveling gives me - that vacationing on a foreign land is the one time I will truly allow myself to indulge in decadent things I normally restrain myself to ... like gelato...
It could be gelato, or it could be a Swedish massage or a bottle of Cava... whatever it is, hopefully these songs will take you to some place where you can enjoy a bit of indulgence and relaxation from the hectic days before the year's end.

Songs List:
Departure Lounge  - Karminsky Experience
Rio De Amor ~ Feat. Pamela Driggs - Paris Match
Tokio - Doktor Zoil
L'amoureuse - Carla Bruni
Like Castanets - Bishop Allen
Cayman Islands - Kings of Convenience
Barcelona - Giulia y los Tellarini
Horchata - Vampire Weekend
Postcards from Italy - Beirut

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

slowly and gently

What makes a magazine worth reading?

Forget about the US Weeklies and OK!s for now. Let's focus on my areas of interests only: fashion and lifestyle. Is it the latest news coverage? The stylist + photographer dream team? The awe-inspiring editorials? Or the exclusive cover story/ interview subject? These are all the things I look for when I'm buying a magazine nowadays. Ever since I moved back to Asia and have no more access to bargain-priced magazine subscriptions for my monthly reads, I have become more picky with my magazine buys. I'm a self-admitted magazine whore, if you will... the kind of person who would would be happy to spend up to 20 bucks (or $160 hkd) for a good imported magazine, and we're talking about 3-4 per month. Most of my preferred magazines are non-HK ones, which means they will cost on average at least double the original price. So to justify spending that much money every month/ season on printed paper which most people consider as disposable goods, there needs to be some criteria for purchase.

News content is not such a big factor anymore as nowadays we can get instant newsfeed from blogs and twitter alike, so 'traditional' magazines will have to rely more on their relationships with celebrities and fashion insiders for exciting stories and interviews. Then it's really all down to the picturesque editorials and amazing styling - beautiful photos that will inspire you.

Everyone's been saying print media is slowly being taken over by the digital age, but I say a good magazine done 'with heart' beats any online webzine any day. The Gentlewoman is definitely one of my recent favorites. The magazine's been talked about quite a bit among fashion bloggers since its debut earlier in the season, but I still have to show my love despite being late in the game.

As an extension of its male counterpart - The Fantastic Man, The Gentlewoman is the perfect harmony of the man and the woman... a sweet, classy unisex vibe, which pretty much sums up my personal style motto. One word to describe it - refreshing. It's a breathe of fresh air from the frilly styling and pop star-as-models that so dominated fashion reads in recent years. The aesthetic is simple, yet striking (I suppose a brand equivalent would be Celine under Phoebe Philo's reigns?!) and it celebrates strong, well-respected women across all fields. One of the things I love most is the way the clothes/ brands are credited in the style stories. The shoes aren't just 'patent leather shoes, Christian Dior' and the dress isn't just a 'pleated silk-chiffon dress, Marc Jacobs'. Instead, the Gentlewoman tells a story about the outfit - that "Eniko's (model's name) nicely contrasting shoes are by Christian Louboutin and the vintage bag from a selection at Marlene Wetherell bears no label but is still very cute." This narrative crediting almost reminds me of fashion presentations back in the old days - where the MC would describe each outfit in flowery details as the models walk out. Just like that scene in Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day with the 1940's lingerie fashion show. Of course this would be considered dated and old-school to be used at shows now, but somehow when it's in print it seems fitting and with just the right hint of nostalgia.

Until spring 2011, I'll just keep reading my Vogue and Monocle and Elles to keep myself occupied.

Monday, November 1, 2010

then and now

I've always loved dressing up - so I realize...... 

not really Halloween per say, but a costume party circa 1988
little me dressed up as ballerina - my brother as Chinese gangster "Mark Bro" - and my sister as Madonna, of course

Halloween 2011: Amelia Earhart  (w/ DIY aviator goggles)           Halloween 2010: Carmen Miranda (w/ DIY fruit turban)

Can't wait for next year's Halloween already! Just a perfect excuse to get all crazy with my DIY projects. 

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

obsessed: color me flats

my dream world: gorgeous YSL flats in every possible color.

I've decided that YSL makes the most flattering squared-toe shoes, ever since I slipped into those impossibly sexy crimson suede squared-toe YSL pumps (complete with mini tassels) from the Amarcord vintage archive... and fast forward to 2010 these flats even come with an adorable mini heart! Oh! to die for... Towering heels may be that bad boy accessory you wanna take around for a sexy boost,  but flats - flats are your reliable BFF that you could always depend on anywhere anytime.

image via Female magazine Oct '10