July 31, 2006

SS06 Shoe Trend: Platform Sandals

Ever since I bought a pair of brown platform sandals at the Miu Miu sale last month, I've been seriously in love with platform sandals. Platform sandals make you feel so much taller, and they're really fun to wear!Usually when people see the shoes, they question how I can still walk as fast as I normally do. The lovely thing about my sandals is that the sole is curved, so you can sort of roll foward in them.

Anyways, here are so nice and mostly affordable choices of platform sandals: (Btw, I know the photos below only show one shoe each, but I'm just going to refer the sandals as 'a pair' below.)

OK, let's start with this pair of Chloe-lookalike wooden sandals by Top Shop. These are seriously platform-ed! Just imagine wearing them with the lovely and oh-so-trendy dresses. Sigh...

Another pair by Top Shop, but this one is inspired by Christian Louboutin. This pair is a bit lower-heeled than this season's trend, but I'm sure one could walk longer without feeling too tired in these.

This Bebe pair would look great with jeans, denim skirt, and basically most casualwear. (But be warned that they are oddly expensive for Bebe.)

These white sandals by Miu Miu may seem a bit similar with the Bebe ones above at first glance, but these Miu Miu ones are def more suitable for daywear, and a lot more funky!

These Strappy Patent Stacked Heels are from Urban Outfitters. The straps don't look like they're made of patent leather to me (since they're not even shiny,) but the white pair looks ok from the photo. This is a good affordable choice to wear with casualwear.

Oops I'm cheating here. These BCBG Max Azria Metallic Leather Sandals aren't platforms, but they look so daytime-glamorous that I couldn't resist mentioning them. And they're on sale now!

Another fun and funky pair of very high platform sandals, but this one is by Marc by Marc Jacobs. Depending on your personal style, these would look fantastic with bohemian clothes and liven up a trendy plain outfit.

I love this pair of Marc by Marc Jacobs Ankle Wrap Sandals -the golden colour matches all my outfits and the wrap is so summer-y. It's just soooo pretty and fabulous for daywear. Now that I think of it, I can't remember why I chose the Miu Mius over these. Hmm... I think it's because they ran out of my size.

The only thing I must warn everybody about is that the ankle straps are usually quite uncomfortable. But if you wear your sandals enough, the straps should stop hurting your ankles. Transparent band aids help too. So girls, have fun being tall and funky! Oh, and don't trip!

July 30, 2006

Summer Reading Goal

Most people I know have specific book genres that they favour and read a lot. Which is why I think it would be cool if everyone in our little I am Fashion community set themselves a summer reading goal. Let me explain:
The aim is to choose a book that you normally wouldn't choose. This does not mean you only read this book this summer and ignore the books you normally like reading. Nor does it mean picking up some random thick book and forcing yourself to read it. Choose a book that actually interests you; a book that you've always wanted to read but you haven't had the time to; a book that challenges you in some ways. Now I'm not saying we should all completely not read chick lits this summer, but it's fun to try something different every now and then, you know.

For myself, I chose The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath. I admit I really don't appreciate, nor understand most poetry. But Sylvia Plath's poems are the only poems I actually sort of understand and genuinely love. And Sylvia Plath herself fascinates me. We all know she was a depressed person, but was she always like that? How did she feel and react to things and events around her? This book basically consists of 12 journals Plath wrote, including two that were just released a few years ago. I just love reading about successful females.

So how is this a challenge? I've read the first few pages already and let me tell you, it's not easy! It's not like the language or topics are too difficult to understand. It's just that reading through someone's journals means that you don't get a smooth, connected story.

So go set yourself an aim and let us know what it is!

July 28, 2006

The Lancome Launching Event

The other day I went to the Lancome Secret de Vie launching event. I know, it isn't exactly my kind of product, but hey, it was an event and I thought they were promoting new make-up! Who knew what "Secret de Vie" meant from the looks of the invitation?

Anyway, the event started at 7pm and was located in an unit in a luxury complex in the fancy part of town. We arrived fashionably late at 7.40pm and was ushered in for drinks and tiny sandwiches. Although the unit was large by most standards, the event itself was rather small. The crowd was thin, with the photographers interviewing small local starlets who I have no idea who they are. But I did admire the decor of the unit. Mostly white and glass, white marble floors, white grand paino and white flowers + petals on the glass table- very elegant. We thought it was a very smart PR move to launch a new product in a house- they get to advertise two things in one move! There were also make-up artists there to help you put on a Lancome logo "tatoo", which I thought was neat. Oh and the lychee cocktail was yummy.
Then the "presentation" started. I was beginnng to wonder how one "presents" make-up in a dark balcony when I finally realised that Secret de Vie was actually their new rejuvenating face cream. People made speeches and then this guy (who turned out to be a magician) started to explain what was so special about it. Something about how it rejuvenates the 6 layers of skin we have using yeast (and he started adding these ingredients into a bowl), sugar, algae, yadeyadeya and POOF pink smoke and ribbons started coming out of the bowl and out comes a bottle of Secret de Vie! Expecting a boring recitation, that was an awesome surprise. LOL. And doesn't the design of the jar look so cool? Like an atomic bomb?

Anyway, over all it was a fascinating experience seeing the "pros" at work launching a cosmetic (it must be hard as there is really nothing much to show!) and my mom was very happy with the huge jar of Secret de Vie I got when I left.

July 27, 2006

SS06 Fashion: Eyelets

We all think we know what the eyelet print is when we see one, but while I was researching on this topic I got confused. Was it the print or was it the holes? So just to satisfy your thirst for knowledge, here is the dictionary definition:

1a. A small hole or perforation, usually rimmed with metal, cord, fabric, or leather, used for fastening with a cord or hook.
1b. A metal ring designed to reinforce such a hole; a grommet.
2. A small hole edged with embroidered stitches as part of a design.
3. A peephole.
4. A small eye.

So we were only half right. Anyway, the definition no.2 part of eyelet has been all over the place, which is fab because it is just so pretty, delicate, feminine and cool. Here are a few of this season's picks:

I simple ADORE these two looks from Diane von Furstenburg and Tracy Reese. The cut is so neat and pretty. But alas, one has to be careful with these shirts because if worn the wrong way, one may look pregnant. Wear it with more fitted bottoms.

More pretty shirts from Urban Outfitters and Anthropologie. Black or white eyelet shirts have the best effect.
My favourite place for eyelet- on camisoles. It gives it that extra oomph of intricacy making it even more feminine and delicate looking. These two from BCBG and Rebecca Taylor are great to wear alone or inside.

These shirts are also very neat and pretty. And no, they are not the same shirt even though they look incredibly similar. The left is from Anthropologie and the one on the right is from Tracy Reese. Maybe great minds do think alike?

The other great way to wear eyelet is on blazers, the subtle pattern makes them look so elegant. I love this beige one from Classique Entier, my mom has something very similar from BCBG, its great for everyday wear. The white one from Carmen Marc Valvo on the otherhand is great to keep warm in the evenings.

They look gorgeous on skirts too, like this cream one from Nanette Lepore and this grey one from Robert Rodriguez. Looks incredible!
For one piece eyelets, these white eyelet dresses from Laundry by Shelli Segal and DVF are great for the daytime. I especially love the eyelet wrap dress from DVF (who else?).

For evening wear, we have these elegant creations from BCBG and Cynthia Steffe. Again black and white eyelets are the best!

Eyelets are even found on trench coats (DKNY) and BOOTS (Anthropologie). But frankly I just think it looks strange for such a summery material to be used on such wintery items.

Have fun with eyelets everyone!

Packing Troubles

Normally I am a brilliant packer. This is not because I’m a super-organised person, but simply because I’ve had loads of practice. One of my very few talents is that I’m very good at packing only the necessary things, and not packing the ‘what if I need it’ things. So here I am, packing to go to the States tomorrow and I’m actually having trouble!

You see, the problem is that I have to pack for three places and too many different activities. I’ll be going to New York, Boston and San Francisco, so that means I’m going to need:

- Nice clothes, shoes and bag for nice dinners in NY.- Sneakers to tour colleges (for my sister). You didn’t think I was going to walk around colleges in heels, did you?- Pretty, comfortable shoes (like low wedges, low-heel sandals or kitten heels) to visit pretty, indoor places, like shops and museums.
- About 10 outfits, since I can wash some of them in San Francisco at my aunt’s house.
- A travel set, which needs to be big enough for 2 weeks, of oh-so-important colour-protecting shampoo and conditioner.

-See the Jane blog about my skincare products.

Oh my gosh, I don’t think I’ve ever brought more than 2 pairs of shoes when I travel. Nor have I ever brought that many beauty products. This is going to be seriously a lot of hassle. Hmm, I think blogging this down actually helped me get a clearer picture of what to pack. Now I have to go do the actual packing. And I still haven’t finished my list of what-to-buy yet!

July 25, 2006

Summer Make-Up Fun

For me, one of the most fun things about make-up is the eyes. For summer, I like it to be summery, colorful and cheery. Here are some my favourite summery looks for your inspiration.
This look from Smashbox is summery with an edge. The strike of electric blue under the eye contrasts brilliantly with the nuetral color on the top lid, making the colors and the eye pop out more.
If that is a bit too edgy for you, try this softer version from Lorac by using a lighter, softer shade of blue. This is great for the casual daytime look.
Another way to use dual shades also from Lorac. I think this look is more dramatic than the last, because of the contrasting shades and the abrupt change of colors on the lids. Notice how green/blue has been very prominent in these few looks.
Another summery look I am in love with was inspired by Harrods Girl's visit to the Lancome counter. They covered her lids with a shiny white base and the upper lids with this gorgeous shade of pink that actually showed very well!! I've tried it with the shades I already had at home, but unfortunately due to the different textures, the effect has not been the same.

And lastly, for something more this season (its all about the nuetral palette) try these looks from the Shiseido Golden Kiss collection- but only if you have a tan (natural or self), otherwise it would just not be the same.

Have fun with these summer looks everyone!

July 24, 2006

Colour-Protecting Shampoo & Conditioner

Last Friday, I decided to make the most out of my holiday from work and get my hair dyed. While the technician was applying the dye into my hair, he warned my that the hair dye might come off (after many washes) and the hair colour before would show up again. He said that colour-protecting hair products do actually prolong the hair colour, and I believe him because he didn't introduce the hair product line the hair salon sells. This totally freaked me out of course, since I did just pay to get the hair colour changed. So I did a LOT of online research after I got home.

OK, so my problem is that I need a brilliant colour-protecting shampoo and conditioner. Sounds fairly simple, but with all the products available out there, I really need more information and opinion.

My first thought was to buy the Reflection line from Kerastase, (my favourite haircare brand). But I have heard that Kerastase shampoo is a bit 'thick' for summer and I'm concerned that it might not wash my hair thorough enough. On Friday, I only ended up buying a tiny travel pack for my trip to the US next week. But I got a bit curious so I already tried the shampoo this morning and my hair felt clean enough. Maybe I'll go buy this tomorrow.

Another colour-protecting line I am considering is the L'Oreal Professional Vitamino shampoo & conditioner. I have used another product line by this brand a long time ago, and even though I can't even remember which shampoo it was that I used, I remember liking this brand. Also, a lot of hair salons use this brand, so it must be somewhat good quality. But this brand is fairly expensive, and the MUA reviews didn't seem overly impressed (or disappointed), so I don't feel absolutely sure about this line.

And of course, how could I not mention a deep hair treatment. This is oddly the only product I don't have to waste any more time researching on. Since I'll be going to the US soon, I'll definately be buying Terax Crema. I've heard only positive things about it -it's supposed to make your hair super soft. Hopefully it will save my seriously dehydrated hair!

So if you have used any colour-protecting hair products, let me know which brand and product it is, and your opinion of it please!

July 22, 2006

Dior Shades

Always on the look out for the perfect shades, this season I am loving the Dior collection. The shape is gorgeous and it fits so well (at least for me it does).

I especially love these Dior Couture shades- in black that is, this color just does not compliment me. The shape and fit is fabulous and the "D" on the sides with flowers on it is just adorable and oh-so-pretty!

Another one with a cute logo is this Dior Extralight I, where a heart replaces the "o". Although the shape looks a bit flat for my tastes.
I also love the rounded shape of these Dior Glossy. Unfortunately I do not have the face shape for this, but if you do, it'll look awesome!For something more subtle and different from the classic plastic frames, there are these Toreadior aviators with swarovski crystals on the side.
I know the heading is "Dior" shades, but I can't resist sticking these Chanel shades in. I am not so hot about the shape though, maybe they have a different style. But I just adore the quillt and camelia flower on the side, its so pretty!

July 21, 2006

Summer Shorts

With the intense heat waves sweeping all over Europe and the States, I read somewhere that people were actually encouraged to wear shorts to work. To make sure that everyone stays cool stylishly, I've picked out some of the best shorts around! These two, from See by Chloe, are my favourite short looks. The striped shorts on the left paired with that pretty white blouse is simple and ladylike- perfect for work. The structured beige shorts matched with the more casual top is just so cool. I love these two looks!
Other stripey shorts include these ones from Charlotte Ronson and Cacharel respectively. I especially love the Cacharel one because I have something very similar from Vanessa Bruno and its been fabulous.
For more officey and simpler choices, there are these two from Paul and Joe and Twelfth St by Cynthia Vincent. The length and the more structured cut makes it easy to pair with the rest of your wardrobe. And this classic style may even last you for the seasons to come!
For that extra feminine touch, I am loving these white ribbon belts on these Armani Exchange and Ya-Ya shorts. The material of the A/X shorts looks very nice and breezy. And the satiny shiny material of the belt on the Ya-Ya shorts even make it look a little glam!
For something a little special and more cool, I like these ruched up shorts with all the strings and zippers. Pair it up with a punk tank and heels. annd you're ready for a concert. Or put on a blazer to give it a more ladylike balance. Either way, it looks cool. These two are from Top Shop and Armani Exchange.

Stay stylishly cool everyone!

July 20, 2006

Two Timing

With summer finally here, everyone's been travelling a lot. The best, more brainless and prettiest way to keep up with the time are dual watches! Here are a few stylish ones around.

The Hermes Cape Cod Deux Zones Series looks classic and elegant. And I love how one of the clock faces of the Fendi Secret Dual Time watch is always very subtly covered.
Of course, when it comes to double time watches. one must not forget Philip Stein. There are classic ones like the white one or fun ones like the purple one- whatever combination you want.
And if you really travel ALOT through multiple time zones, there is this funky multi-faced Moschino watch on the left. The other day I saw someone at work wearing it and it looked so cool (and hence inspired my blog). I know, it doesn't have much picture appeal, but it looks very cool on the wrist.

Goodbye Rochas

I'm in shock. I've been summing up the best FW06 collections in my head in the past few days and so far, my list consists of Balenciaga, Rochas and others yet to be decided. Rochas has one of THE top fashion designers, Olivier Theyskens as its creative director and even Anna Wintour loves him. Which is why yesterday's news came as a shock: (from telegraph.co.uk)

Proctor & Gamble, which owns Parisian fashion label, announced the closure of the house of Rochas. A statement from Parfums Rochas said: "After four years of support, Parfums Rochas has decided to cease further investment in the fashion house as it does not represent a core business for the company. Rochas fashion is a beautiful brand. However, we must make tough choices on where to focus our resources.”

(Pictures above and below are from the SS06 collection.)
“It is really very unfortunate,” said Anna Wintour. “It seems Proctor & Gamble was not the right company to capitalise on Theyskens’ design strengths and was not willing to go the extra distance to support him. If he’d been with LVMH or Gucci, it would have been a different story.

“He (Theyskens) is exceptionally talented and so brilliant at understanding that fashion success is not just beautiful ballgowns. He can do well-crafted, well-made suits and clothes that women really want to wear.”

I absolutely loved the Rochas FW06 collection (above), especially the gorgeous dresses at the end. The white dress is so angelic in an elegant way, and the black dress appears to be swirling around the model. The perfect word to describe this collection: divine.

The FW06 collection will make it to the stores as scheduled, but after that, it's goodbye.

The big question is of course, where will the CFDA 2006 International Award winner go. With Anna Wintour as his big supporter and three succcessful years of reviving Rochas under his belt, he's certainly got an excellent resume. Let's hope we see his designs again soon.

*Sigh* Now who's going to make those beautiful dresses Rochas was so brilliant at?

July 18, 2006

SS06 Fashion Trend: Puffy Sleeves in the Shops

I didn't realise until reading your comments from yesterday's post that so many people didn't like the puffy sleeves trend! I have a round face myself and I don't think most puffy sleeve tops make my face rounder, although it does differ from top to top. Retailers must have known that huge puffy sleeve tops wouldn't sell well, so only tiny 'puffs' made it to the shops.

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You might have recently noticed a lot of shirts that have sleeves like the one above. It's more 'scrunched' than 'puffed', but I think it's just a variation of the puffs.

This is what I mean by tiny puffs -they're basically just tops with slightly fatter sleeves. These two tops are from Forever 21.

And these tops are from Miss Selfridge. These two are definately more edgy than the Forever 21 tops.

Here are two other tops from Miss Selfridge. The puffy sleeves on the black and white striped top on the right is quite long, so it should be pretty flattering and easy to wear. As for the red and white flower one... well, you better have really toned arms.

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Both tops from Anthropologie. The puffy sleeves look loose and comfortable to me, just like the rest of the tops, especially the black one. And just in case you didn't know, grey and black are very fashionable colours right now.

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Yes, it's my beloved Marc by Marc Jacobs top again -remember I talked about it in the Empire Waist Tops post? The sleeves are slightly puffy like it would in a dress for dolls.

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Another similar but more basic top by Marc by Marc Jacobs.

An oh-so-fashionable white, puffy sleeve Lux House Dress from Urban Outfitters. I like the Victorian ruffle design near the neckline because it blends couture style with street style so it's easy to wear!

An empire wasit dress by Derek Lam. It's pretty but for some odd reason, I just don't totally love it. Maybe it's the material; or maybe I can't think of where and when to wear it to. Anyways, this sleeves of this dress are examples of 'deflated puffs.'

A puffy sleeve printed top by Blumarine. The printed flowers are just a bit too much, but this is an excellent example of how puffy sleeves can look pretty in real life!

You probably noticed that for once, the high street versions of the puffy sleeve clothes look extremely different from the high end versions -talk about lost in translation!