Little Miss Shopaholic, Photography, The organised chaos

Valentino, and of turning 30

Note: Before I go on with the next post, I just want to thank all those who emailed/tweeted/texted me their support and encouragement, as well as those who hearted and commented on the previous post. Reading those wonderful messages showed me that I have much to thank for. To those whom I confided in, thanks for hearing me out all these times and for giving me the much-needed fuel to continue on this road.

♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

When I was 19, I was convinced that being 19 was the best year of my life. The thought of turning 20 depressed me greatly and I honestly thought that my life was coming to an end. There might have been a tear or two shed.

On my 25th birthday, I revelled in my youth. My life was ahead of me, I had so many dreams and aspirations to work towards. Leaving my 20s behind was something that happened in the distant future.

I blinked and then two weeks ago, I turned 30. Quietly and without fanfare.

And the world DIDN’T END.

Of course, life is not exactly as I had thought it would be. When I was a kid, I believed that I would have a family with two children and a career that I love by the time I hit the 30s. Well, turns out that the children are not exactly here yet and I have an aversion towards climbing up the corporate ladder.

But that’s not the end of the world, it just means my path has taken a different turn. It’s not necessarily bad, it’s just different.

Well, guess what?

30s is the new black, my friends.

♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

On my 30th birthday, husband cleverly took me to see the Valentino, Retrospective: Past/Present/Future exhibition at Resorts World Sentosa. I had missed out on the Christian Lacroix showcase previously so I was super glad that he had made the effort to take me to see this.

The bad news was, we got there in time for the 7:30pm free guided tour and the exhibition closes at 8pm on weekdays. We didn’t exactly have enough time to wander around the dimly-lit aisles. The staff were kind enough to let us linger for a couple of minutes more but I would have preferred it if I had the leisure to stand and stare in hushed awe at these works of art.

The dresses were breathtakingly gorgeous.

I’ve adored Valentino since Julia Roberts wore his black and white vintage gown to the Oscars back in 2001. To me, it was the epitome of elegance, femininity and simplicity, and it made me realise that this was a designer who understands the female body well and makes clothing that drapes beautifully.

If you love and admire beautiful clothes as much as I do, please don’t miss this showcase. It runs until February 13 – and it’s so worth the trip to Sentosa!

(Methinks I missed out on a career in fashion, no?)


Audrey Hepburn collection, Spring/Summer 1968


Worn by Jennifer Aniston

Love the toga, corsage and red

More photos here.

Geek Girl, Little Miss Shopaholic

Epiphanie Lola

After three months of drama and immense frustration at Borderlinx, the Epiphanie Lola camera bag that I had ordered finally arrived!

I had placed an order for it in early September but it was backordered all the way till end October. Which was perfectly fine with me because I wasn’t looking to getting a new camera anytime soon. I had it arranged to be shipped via Borderlinx and what ensued was a whole month of drama that made me tear my hair out and swear off Borderlinx.

(If you want the story, let me know and I will share it with you.)

Anyway, thanks to Joel’s recommendation, I managed to get the package re-directed to the very sweet and helpful Rachel, who promptly shipped it to me with much less fanfare and stress. Phew. She even kindly waived her service charges for shipping the Lola to me after hearing about my harrowing Borderlinx experience.

Oh, did I forget to mention that I had gotten me a new Canon 60D? I got it at a sweet price, thanks to a well-connected friend and it’s been a smooth ride so far. Loving it!

This was delivered to my doorstep one afternoon as I was working from home:

Fished this out from the dusty box:

They have this in black and turquoise but I couldn’t resist the fire engine red:

The interior of the bag:

The bag is padded on the inside, ensuring that my precious camera is safe and snug. It also comes with velcro inserts that allow you to configure the compartments for your personal stuff, the body as well as the different lenses that you are bringing along.

The icing on the cake for a vainpot like me? Why, it’s this cute little bag charm:

I took it out on Christmas day and it was fab. There was space for the 60D with the Tammy 17-50mm lens attached, the 50mm prime lens, as well as my own things. It doesn’t hurt that the Lola in no way resembles a camera bag. I know, I could have gotten a Crumpler or something similar at a lower price but come on, isn’t this bag a thing of beauty?

Think I’m going to be bringing out the camera a whole lot more often!

Little Miss Shopaholic

Tea with me?

The venue where I have been going for my twice-weekly training sessions just happens to have a thrift shop, which is open for four hours a day. Whenever I can, I’ll make an effort to check out the shop during our ridiculously short lunch hours, just to see what treasures there are in that tiny little space.

I had spied a vintage turquoise suitcase going for $2 one afternoon. Silly me decided to deliberate about it (ie. post my dilemma on Twitter and expect some answers from my Twiends) and by the time I had made up my mind (BUY!), the shop had closed. And when I went back the week after, it was gone.

Lesson: NEVER think about vintage purchases – JUST BUY.

Anyway, one brief trip to the shop last week found me lugging this gorgeous set back into the training room. All my coursemates were amazed, they could not believe that I had actually bought something at the thrift shop. Heck, not all of them knew of the thrift shop to begin with.

Tea and scones for you, m'lady?

I was immediately captivated by a horrendous BIG pink prom dress and this elegant set of teacups. I didn’t buy the dress because it was just too ugly (even I have ugly limits) but how elegant are those rose prints? I feel all English already. Except these said “made in China”. Nobody does fake English like the Chinese.

English breakfast tea?

There are four very dainty teacups with matching saucers and lids. And by dainty, I mean, TINY. I could probably finish my tea in two big gulps. Which, of course, means that husband won’t be using it anytime soon. He’ll probably burp and cause the cups to break or something.

So that leaves me with a dilemma: should I store these away for use when I have girly guests over? Or should I just pretty them up and stick them into the display cabinet for…display?

Any girly person wants to come over for some tea soon? 🙂

Once more with vintage tint
Foodnotes, Little Miss Shopaholic

K.Ki and The Little Drom Store

I had a tough two weeks at work recently, when my boss went home on emergency leave and I had to cover her duties. On the second Friday of her absence, when I had to get to the TV studio at 715am to accompany one of the worldwide CEOs for a live interview, I was so tired that I asked to leave work early.

She, being a wonderful boss, of course said yes and I immediately knew where I wanted to go: k-ki and The Little Drom Store. Two stores under one roof, the former sells Japanese style cakes and pastries (“k ki” is Japanese for cake) while the latter is a wonderful trove of knick knacks.

k-ki is a tiny hangout place in comparison to the bigger coffee chains. There were probably only five tables in the air-conditioned store and on the Friday afternoon that I was there, all the tables were full. I had to settle for the outdoor bench, which was fine since the weather was cool due to the recent drizzle.

But the interior decor would probably appeal to those who are fans of Muji (me! me! me!). It’s minimalist with lots of sunlight, beautiful curves and use of light coloured wood. In fact, it could very well have been torn out from the pages of a Japanese interior decoration magazine.

The cake selection was interesting – there were mango mousse, white chocolate cakes and a delightfully light cheesecake souffle ($5.50) which I had. The teas were Gryphon and cost about $4 per pot, which was pretty decent. The service staff was amazing – they offered me ice water, apologized for not doing so earlier when I asked to add more hot water to the empty teapot and smiled and waved goodbye when I left.

Tea and cheesecake

On the other side of the shop is The Little Drom Store. If you love whimsical, vintage little knick knacks the way I do, then please fly down to the store. It’s stocked with gems like vintage glasses, old cameras, limited edition prints and picture books. I wanted to buy everything!

I decided to rein in my impulse though, because I kept thinking that I would end up being like Carrie, the (Fendi) bag lady, except I would be Yann the (vintage) knick knack girl. Instead, I went home only with a tissue holder made of the retro Good Morning towels. Oh, and a roll of expired film too, which I am excited! about.

I didn’t bring my camera out that day but I shall leave you with those lovely pictures from the flickr stream of The Little Drom Store.

Goodies in The Little Drom Store
Look at this stuff, isn't it neat?

k-ki/The Little Drom Store
7 Ann Siang Hill

Little Miss Shopaholic

What I wore in Tokyo #3

Oh yes, that trip to Tokyo. It didn’t happen too long ago, perhaps in October last year? Bear me with me, there is a light at the end of the tunnel, I promise you.

Top - Dorothy Perkins; Skirt - POA; Sneakers - Converse; Bag - Marc by Marc Jacobs

We were on our way to Asakusa Shrine, which was sort of fun but not great. After going to Kyoto and seeing those shrines, Asakusa feels like a touristy trap.

I’ve been very into stripes recently, I think it’s an aftereffect of watching Coco Avant Chanel. In one of the scenes, Audrey Tautou was wearing a white and black striped long sleeved tee with pants and boy, did she look classy.

Photo was taken by husband and I look like I needed sleep. But then again, I always look like that. Heh.

Little Miss Shopaholic

What I wore in Tokyo #2

I know…Tokyo was so last year. But I haven’t finished writing about my trip yet! I’m currently holed up at home due to the debilitating UTI so hopefully I can sit still enough to churn out everything.

(Yes, it has struck again and I now have brightly coloured pee…or is that TMI?)

Dress & Tights - Topshop; Boots - From Taiwan; Bag - Marc by Marc Jacobs

This was taken on our third day in Tokyo. We were on our way to the beautiful Meiji Shrine and boy, was the sun shining that day! I didn’t even need a jacket.

We were going to hit the trendy Harajuku/Omotesando area after that so I didn’t want to look dowdy next to the fashionably forward Japanese. You can’t really see from the photo but the dress has tiny prints of anchors and makes me feel like a sailor girl.

We didn’t buy much though – I was feeling the pinch and things were pretty pricey. But I did score a funky Balmain-esque dress with the big shoulder pads from H&M which I haven’t worn. I’ll probably be teased mercilessly by my friends when I wear it – I’ve been called “Christmas tree” a lot – but I don’t really care.

And as always, the photo was taken by husband.

Little Miss Shopaholic

One in garnet, please

One of the sites that I visit regularly is etsy. It’s like a treasure trove of all things beautiful, hand crafted and vintage. Things that I never knew existed or needed – like the helvetica acrylic jewellery – suddenly turned into things that I absolutely craved.

A great find that popped up today was One Garnet Girl. Her work caught my eye because they are so gorgeously hand made and elegantly simple. She hand carves the metal and best of all, she is environmentally conscious and uses recycled materials as much as possible. I love how “raw” the pieces are.

Red light ring, $128 (I so want one of these cos it's my birth stone!)
Red light ring, $128 (I so want one of these cos it's my birth stone!)

Blue Topaz and Argentium Sterling, $188
Blue Topaz and Argentium Sterling, $188 - Love the chunky feel to this ring

London Hue Stacking rings, $106 - Beautifully seamless
London Hue Stacking rings, $106 - Beautifully seamless

Little Miss Shopaholic

Everyone needs boots

I always hate it when fashion mags in Singapore tell us what they think are fashion dos and don’ts. Don’t wear boots because it’s too hot in Singapore and you look like a poser, don’t wear a fedora because it’s so yesterday, don’t wear leggings because you look short/fat/ugly in them. Who cares about what you think?

Magazines that I like to read include Nylon, Frankie, Lula and Lucky – and they never come up with silly lists like that. Instead, they just tell you how to work it better. A little positivity never hurts, right? It’s more constructive than reading something that’s condescending.

I got meself a pair of leather boots with flat heels when I was in Taipei earlier this year and that $150 was definitely well spent. These boots have kept my feet dry on rainy days and they kept my freezing toes from turning blue and dropping off when we were in Tokyo (of course I exaggerate! But it was cold at night!). I trampled all over Tokyo and Kyoto in them on an average of 10 to 12 hours a day and they did an amazing job in keeping my feet comfy and happy. Even my Converse caused them tootsies to ache a little.

So yeah, I love these boots of mine with those rockin’ buckles. Cos these boots are definitely made for walking. And they make me look good!

Skinny jeans + boots = Warm
Skinny jeans + boots = Warm

Little Miss Shopaholic

What I wore in Tokyo #1

Jacket - Uniqlo; Dress - Muji; Scarf - Loan from Trev, Leggings - Forever 21; Sneakers - Converse; Bag - Marc by Marc Jacobs
Jacket - Uniqlo; Dress - Muji; Scarf - Loan from Trev, Leggings - Forever 21; Sneakers - Converse; Bag - Marc by Marc Jacobs

This was taken on our second day in Tokyo, after a horrendous 11-hour flight onboard Malaysia Airlines. When we bought the tickets, it was not stated that there was going to be a one-hour stopover at Kota Kinabalu (!) and we had no clue until we boarded the plane. But it was partly our fault – we didn’t even wonder why the flight would take so long when looking at the itinerary, despite being aware that flying from KL to Narita would not take longer than seven hours. Sigh.

Anyway, back to the outfit. The weather was nice and breezy, and the sun was out! So as we walked and walked around the Imperial Palace grounds, the layers came off.

First it was the jacket and then the scarf came off shortly. Gah. Talking about the weather in Japan just made me miss the place more. The torrential rain in Singapore may be a welcome change from the sticky, sultry humidity of everyday but it’s drowning my plants and my shoes! Can I have some sun and less humidity please?

Thanks for the photos, Mr Thick!

Little Miss Shopaholic

yAnn loves…One Pint Please!

One of my favouritest persons in the world is this tiny munchkin named Beks. She’s insanely clever, creative and sometimes just plain insane.

When she first told me about the blog shop she was starting with some friends, I was skeptical. There are many such shops around, with many peddling the same old wares with bad workmanship and poor taste. But I should have known better – afterall, this is the person who writes and shoots such out of the world stuff.

One Pint Please is pretty cool and I am not saying it because she is my friend. For a team who is not doing this full-time, they have been churning out some nice stuff that I would definitely buy! In fact, I think I did.

Anyway, when Beks asked me to write about the shop, I said yes. She then handed me a pretty pink satin blouse with a ruffled neckline which is, admittedly, not really something I would buy for myself. But hey, I can always make something me, right?

One Pint Please

Top row: Drop crotch pants – Zara, Heels – Charles & Keith, Cloche hat – from Shanghai. Middle row: Skirt – POA, Heels – Aldo, Belt – from Bangkok, Hairband – Forever 21. Bottom row: Skirt – Tian, Boots – from Taiwan, Hat – River Island.

Gosh, was the humidity a killer today, I was literally melting. Coco was staring at me from inside the house and the look she gave me clearly said What the heck are you doing, woman? Maybe it’s because of the oversized pants I was wearing in the top picture – it makes me look preggers and I AM NOT PREGGERS.

But I digress. Do check out One Pint Please – I’m sure there will be something you like!