Saturday, January 31, 2015

The world is what we make of it, part 2

the ball was good fun, and I loved wearing my Zara space dress (although faux leather feels majorly hot and sweaty - do not try this in summer)

The world is what we make of it

my space nails (don't look too closely I did them myself)  - O.P.I Cement the Deal

Bag from Shenzhen
Tabitha Simmons shoes
Zara dress

I have to go to a ball tonight. Not particularly glam, it's just a school fundraising thing. The theme is space, and some people will be dressed up - I am told there will even be a Princess Leia at my table. I must once again confess to be a grinch - I properly dislike costume parties. So I am faking the space thing with a faux leather Zara dress and Tabitha Simmons sparkle shoes. I will pretend they are stars in a galaxy far, far way.

Speaking of space and galaxies - I spent a lazy afternoon re-watching the movie Contact with Jodie Foster and Matthew McConnaughey. I always love the scene in which Jodie Foster's hypocritical boss tells her the world is not the fair place she hopes it is - to which she responds Funny, I always believed the world is what we make of it. If you haven't seen it, give it a try (watch the trailer HERE).

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Claudia Schiffer in 1990s Chanel

Early evening in the Chinese border city of Shenzhen - a city of 10 million people

A visit to the shopping mall at Luohu (the border crossing from Hong Kong to Shenzhen) got me thinking of the 1990s super model era - a lot of the goods on offer were in bright happy colors or pastels reminding me of the Versace and Chanel opulence of those days. I dug up my old copies of TopModel magazine (they have moved with me from New York to London and then to Hong Kong) and I came across these pictures of Claudia Schiffer.

Claudia with Karl

look at those lined lips... so funny we once thought that was attractive - I do still love the eye make-up though

how cute is this bouclé dress

real life Barbie

Monday, January 26, 2015

A grey day in Hong Kong - sometimes pollution can be quite beautiful

From top to bottom: Hong Kong pollution soars to record highs, Saint Laurent grey velvet and snakeskin sneakers from Saint Laurent's Chater Road store, O.P.I nail polish in Cement the Deal from Mannings at the IFC mall, sad eyes, and J.Crew suede flats from J.Crew at the IFC mall. Click on photos to enlarge.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Tabitha Simmons on Sale

There are some really lovely Tabitha Simmons shoes left in the sale at mytheresa. Have a look HERE.

They have unwittingly become retail therapy in the most literal sense because my father-in-law died on Friday. I knew him for 26 years. He was the most decent man I have ever known. He selflessly took care of his sick wife for more than 15 years. He rejected politics as usual as the mayor of his village, where he built a brand new water system for the residents and a beautiful park for children to play. He welcomed me into his family as a daughter from the very first day we met.

For two days I have walked around in an oppressive cloud of existentialist angst. I even had a horrifying dream of being trapped in a small space with a fast moving unpredictable snake. Why are we even here and what is the point of anything we do. And then a considerate neighbor sent us two beautiful photos of my daughter at her first ever violin performance - and it was if someone snapped his fingers and let me out.

I looove these sparkly shoes. To hell with basic black - this life is for living.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

The Guardian's Hadley Freeman hates flares!

This is a page in one of my old scrap books - I yearned after these black wide legged Marc Jacobs trousers for many years after he designed them (and the little blouse and pointy mouse flats too)

After a bit of Daily Mail guilty pleasure every morning, I check out the Guardian to read Hadley Freeman's column. I always love it. Her funny and frank views often make me see things from a new perspective.

But now Hadley has condemned flared trousers as  d i s g u s t i n g . Yes, she emphatically used the word disgusting, and ridiculous, and horrible too.

But she couldn't possibly have meant wide leg trousers as well, right?

I am sure she was just talking about the 70s styles that are tight around the upper leg but then flare out dramatically below the knee... right?

She couldn't possibly have meant my fave Rebecca Taylor trousers, the ones that make me look like a super model? Not possible, right?

I did a post very recently on the return of wide leg trousers (read it HERE) but now I am feeling rather down about the whole thing. There were numerous comments on Hadley's article agreeing with her about the disgustingness of flares - so many that I am worried my trousers will never make me feel like a super model again. It's so much better not to know what people really think.

The rest of Hadley's article was brilliantly snappy as always - I love how she calls out fashion magazines for their lack of critical thinking. Read it all HERE, and then tell me what you think? Cos you fabulous girls definitely like flared trousers... right???

Monday, January 19, 2015

Don't ever buy anything unless you truly love it

Some of the things I truly love

Saint Laurent boots, J.Crew vest, COS jumper and Zara skirt

It's January, the happiest of all seasons looms, so of course I have been spring cleaning my wardrobe. Last week my husband shared his stern thoughts about the importance of saving money so I thought I would do a thorough check of what I have already, which will hopefully kill the urge to get more.

I have neither bought nor sold anything on Ebay or Vestiaire Collective, but started looking into the possibility of selling some shoes. After all, that's what all the smart girls do, right? They wear something for a bit, then sell it and buy new things with their fashion investment gains?

But that's not exactly how it's working for me. I have three pairs of Isabel Marant Dicker boots I wouldn't mind selling, but there are already scores of those on Ebay without any bids whatsoever. I checked what sort of price my barely worn, very expensive Lanvin sandals could fetch, and it seems $60 is about as much I could hope for before the shipping and commission costs are deducted. The unpleasant truth is that fashion is rarely an investment, unless you are talking about Hermès Birkin or Kelly bags, and Chanel classic flap bags. These bags still sell for very substantial prices even when they are old and worn.

My own sad unsold boots and shoes were once the hopeful fresh evidence of the new season's me, the me who would be more organized, who would pay all her bills on time, who would always wash her hair and put make-up on. Yet a few seasons later they are unloved reminders of money spent, or wasted, and they go back into their boxes, pushed far out of sight so that hopefully they'll be far out of mind. Finding a large amount of such reminders did actually kill the urge to shop very effectively. Too often I have bought things that I have liked enough to hand over a credit card, but not quite enough to still wear today.

So my serious January message to all you gorgeous (I LOVE) FASHION girls is this:  never buy anything unless you truly love it. I mean looooooooove it so much it makes you giggle.  Looove it so much you want to wear nothing else all season. Apply this rule to your underpants and your tank tops, and apply it to your socks and tights. Don't ever buy anything unless you truly love it.

Friday, January 16, 2015

What will you try for Spring? Denim skirts, thick heels, eyelet dresses?

while you sort through what is new for spring, and what is coming for fall (see Valentino's pre-fall collection HERE to give you an idea of what is coming in 6 months)...
why not buy some fun sunglasses to cheer up your winter clothes

Gentle Monster sunglasses at the Peak Lookout in Hong Kong

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

R13 Punk Rock loves J.Crew Charms

When I made the pledge to use only my own photos on this blog, I did not realize how hard that would be. Luckily, Hong Kong itself is quite a stunner.

early evening in D'Aguilar Street

I should spend more time taking pictures and less time eating. Or maybe I should combine the eating with the pictures? This Victoria Sponge was made by my friend Natasha - in her personal Hong Kong version she has substituted regular cream (Hong Kong's cream is not good) for butter cream icing. You have not lived until you've tried it.

I am having a balance crisis in my wardrobe. First I had too many pants, so I had to get more tops. Then I had too many girly nice tops, so I needed more casual tops. And then when I put on a casual top I want to turn it into a girly top, because that's when I remember I am just not a casual person (and maybe I need more skirts instead).

I kind of love it like this - Italian faux punk meets Run-DMC. 
T-shirt by R13 - find it HERE
Necklace by J.Crew - find it HERE

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Hallelujah Come On Get Happy

On this almost clear day in Hong Kong the stores are filled with happy peach, orange, yellow and greens. Fashion's fast pace and the way it can render clothes bought just weeks ago entirely obsolete often annoys me. That said, a new fashion season has a way of moving us on, letting us forget about the horrors of yesterday. And the horrors of today's yesterday were grave - 12 journalists were shot in Paris because the satirical articles and cartoons they produced were considered offensive by a few religious extremist barbarians. Today I'd like to say thank you to those journalists and writers in Europe who risk their lives every day while protecting our most meaningful freedom - freedom of speech.

If this season's fashion could be represented by a song, I'd say it would have to be "Get Happy" by Judy Garland (see her perform it HERE). In COS the cheerful palette tempted me enough to try a few things on. But pasty pale winter skin and orange do not mix well - these clothes will have to wait until summer but they made me happy nonetheless.

Very cute, but probably a short-lived gimmick... These bags are for people with way too much money on their hands.

A sales woman in Céline waved her hands wildly in front of my phone trying to stop me from taking this rather innocent photo. But she was too late. And when she rushed to find her manager, I took a few more just because I could... A bit of innocent defiance always brings a smile to my face. Funnily enough, I find the rules often most strict in stores with creative directors who like to present an image of bohemian nonchalance and free spirit. This one's for you, Phoebe Philo. I absolutely love your wonderful clothes and shoes - they make me fall in love with fashion all over again, every single season. And yes, I did take a picture - actually I took three.

Céline's beautiful shop in the Landmark in Hong Kong

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Kora Organics by Miranda Kerr for post-holiday face fixing

dark chocolate soft ice cream at Oddies in Wanchai

I don't like dairy but during the holidays I always find myself trying it again, just to see if there is something else full of animal fat and sugar I can add to my diet. In Holland I had too much whipped cream, and even on Saturday night after an adventurous trip to Wanchai to have hotpot, I was tempted to try some ice cream. When I eat fatty dairy products, I instantly break out and wake up with a T-zone full of spots.

Miranda Kerr to the rescue - yes, Miranda Kerr, that tiny childlike thing with the soft-spoken Australian accent and a rumored past liaison with idiot of all idiots Justin Bieber. I didn't have a whole lot of confidence Kora Organics would be good, but when these two products appeared on I gave them a try anyway as I have looked in vain for clay masks in Hong Kong.

Miranda's judgment when it comes to men may really suck, but these products are fabulous! I use them for a day or two when the spots appear, and woosssshhhhhh, spots are gone... Purifying Day and Night Cream for Normal to Oily skin and Clay Purifying Mask for Normal to Oily skin, both some of the loveliest products I have ever used. Find these and more HERE.