Friday, April 15, 2016

How to 'toughen up' (or dress down) a pink and/or girly dress

Are you one of those people that looks a really pretty and feminine dress and thinks: "Oh, how beautiful! If only I could wear something like that", but feels they could never wear something that girly?  I am one of them.  Not my sister, she wears girly, frilly, lacy and floral with not one moment's hesitation, even with strappy feminine sandals.

Or, perhaps you have a beautiful dress hanging in your closet but feel you can only wear them on the rare 'formal' occasion?

Either way, for those who would like to wear a feminine girly dress (and yes, even in pink), here are some ideas on how I would wear it.  For some reason I don't feel comfortable in a girly feminine dress and strappy high heels, I need to pair them with something sporty or 'biker chic', or roughen it up a little.

Case in point: this beautiful and romantic pink broderie anglaise dress by Philosophy di Lorenzo Serafini, via Avenue 32.  As you may know by now, I am a huuuuuge fan of online shopping, and Avenue 32 is one of all-time favourite stores.  Not only do they stock some of my favourite designers (Roksanda, Preen by Thornton Bregazzi, Maticevski), but also amazing new designers that I absolutely love discovering (e.g. Litkovskaya, Anna K, and more).

 I loved mixing the delicate and feminine broderie anglaise with some texture, like fur (and further down, leather), and tough 'motorcycle' boots
Jacket: Dries Van Noten (old), Boots: Balenciaga, Dress: Philosophy di Lorenzo Serafini (available at Avenue 32)
Pair a feminine dress with a little something sporty, I'm a big fan of bombers, and this is my new favourite, from Zara (!), love its beautiful embroidery!

I paired the dress with two sporty pieces, the bomber jacket and my trusty sneakers...I live in flats and sneakers, comfort is paramount, and not just for my feet, I feel more comfortable in my own skin too...
Dress: Philosophy di Lorenzo Serafini (available at Avenue 32), Jacket: Zara, Sneakers: Adidas x Topshop (similar here)

 Nothing like a good black leather jacket to pair with a girly Helmut Lang jacket is one of my favourite buys of 2015, it goes with almost everything!
 Frilly details...
 And of course, one of my favourite footwear choice for a feminine dress: none at all, cozing up at home with a sweater thrown over, or barefoot on a beach (I will be bringing this dress with me to Byron Bay next week), love the contrast of cozy with girly...

In a nutshell, my favourite pieces to wear with a feminine dress are:

*Sporty-chic jackets like bombers, and silk hooded jackets
*Leather motorcycle jackets Faux-fur or denim jackets 
*Oversized chunky knit cardigans
* Tee-shirt, turtleneck or fine knit crewneck sweater under the dress
*Footwear of choice: mid-heel boots (with a chunky heel, like Isabel Marant Dicker boots), sneakers, Oxfords (like my favourite Dieppa Restrepo Cali oxfords), perhaps flat strappy sandals.

How about you, how do you wear your pink and/or feminine dresses? 

Outdoor photography by: Kevin Khaw
Indoor photography: me

Happy Friday everyone!

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Thursday, April 14, 2016

Uniqlo x Lemaire - a match made in Sartorial Heaven

Hello there! I am still here, and apologize for my absence! Life's been a little crazy lately!

But I have decided I will try my best to keep this blog updated from now on...

So thought I'd start with one of my all-time favourite 'designer' collaborations ever, which was Christopher Lemaire's final collection for Uniqlo.  Since last year I have been a huge Uniqlo fan, with its affordable basics for the entire family, from my little ones, to Mr Brigs. I especially love their Heattech range (of thin yet warm thermal clothes), which I first heard about from Susie Bubble many years ago.

And of course, I am a huge fan of Christophe Lemaire's work, not only for his own label, but also during his stint as creative director at Hermès.  Love his crisp, paired-back simplicity and flawlessly tailored designs, and wonderfully edgy silhouettes.

Now I know I am a little late to blog about this collection, but since it is almost all I have been wearing lately, I thought I'd share anyway.  I put in countless orders in for this range, as I became enamoured with the entire collection (and not just the womenswear, but the menswear too, some of which went into Mr Brigs wardrobe, but some actually went into mine).  I zero-ed in on the mustard yellow pieces, as it is a colour I love but cannot find often in silhouettes I like.  Not only were the pieces beautifully designed, the quality was impeccable, beautifully tailored, timeless and classic but with an evident edge to them.

 This yellow mesh polo sweater is one of my favourites of the collection, I'm so glad I checked the store the night before the range was meant to be released, as it (and the rest of the collection) was already there, so I pounced on it before it sold out.

Bag: Balenciaga Navy Pochette (available at Matches), Sandals: Sydney Sandal Co. (the comfiest sandal ever, these are so delicious on!), Swimsuit: Seafolly,
Here I layered the v-neck knit over the milano sleeveless rib dress, for a double-dose of yellow, in a beautiful ribbed fabric - love the texture and quality of these, so luxe!
Bag: Mansur Gavriel backpack (love it in pink!), Shoes: Adidas Superstars (available in b&w here)
 Lemaire's expert tailoring in 'gaucho' culottes and blazer
Borrowed from the 'boys': Chambray blouson 'shirt/jacket' and pleated elasticated pants, with a cashmere-blend sleeveless tank from the women's range (oh so soft and versatile!)
 I also got the cashmere-blended bodysuit (and in white too), these are so comfy, cut beautifully and so versatile!
Bag: Proenza Schouler PS11 (available at Net-a-Porter, Forward, and My Theresa ) , Bracelet: Céline

I'm embarrassed to say this is only a fraction of the items I got, anyone else a fan of this collaboration? Or of Lemaire? Or Uniqlo?

For daily updates, you can follow me on Instagram.

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Monday, December 14, 2015

All I want for a Lekker bicycle

 Growing up in Brazil, I vividly recall a TV ad of a little kid writing to Santa: "Não se esqueça da minha Caloi" (Don't forget my Caloi - a Brazilian bicycle brand).  I wrote such a letter to Santa, and a few years later received a bicycle that I rode to school everyday,  I absolutely loved the freedom that gave me.  When I later moved to Cambridge (UK), my parents bought me a £10 vintage fixie bicycle which I rode everyday and everywhere, rain, hail or shine (less shine, more rain).  Despite the lack of gears (worked up my quads!), I loved cycling everywhere in my repainted black vintage bicycle (not so much in the cold rain though)...

It's been 21 years since I moved to Australia (ok, showing my age here, eeps!), and it is only this year that I started wishing for a bicycle for myself.  Mr Brigs is an avid bicycle rider (the serious kind that goes on crazy rides down narrow winding roads up the hills), and my little ones started riding their own little bicycles (Lil' Brigs #1 has foregone her training wheels and is mad about cycling now - you should see the joy on her face when she is pedalling!), and I wanted in on the fun...that feeling of freedom while riding around, wind in my hair...

I immediately knew what style I wanted, a vintage 'fixie' style bicycle, but with gears (because I live in a slightly hilly part of town), and one I could add a cute little wicker basket know the kind you carry flowers, a baguette and perhaps a fluffy dog in?  Ok, maybe no fluffy dog (for now).

When I discovered Lekker bicycles, I fell in love with their vintage style bikes.  They are built to last in a light, 100% rust free aluminium frame in gorgeous colours that made it really hard for me to choose which one to go for.  I decided to pay the extra $200 for the Jordaan bicycle with extra gears due to my hilly surrounds, otherwise the Sportief would have suited just splendidly (or the Amsterdam bicycle, a beautiful more modern version).  And the colours! Oh, the colours! I have to say that even though I chose a gorgeous shiny candy red bicycle, the pastel green set my heart aflutter (I don't think pictures do it justice), and the black is so beautiful and classic!

As if the bicycles weren't gorgeous enough, Lekker also have their own beautiful range of accessories (from which I purchased the Andalas wicker basket).  Even though I saw cheaper baskets at bicycle stores, the quality and look did not compare with that of the Lekker baskets...And even though I love the white handles and seat on my bicycle, the lush leather handles and seat that Lekker have on their website has me eyeing those as well.

Lekker (Dutch for 'yummy'), is Dutch in design.  Its founder Meindert Wolfraad is originally from The Netherlands but moved to Australia in 2009.  He saw the need for beautiful Dutch classic bicycles that combined with the Australian beach culture (parts that are more beach friendly and don't rust as easily).  The high workmanship quality and focus on comfort is greatly appreciated, with the wide oh-so-comfy seat on my bicycle putting any fear of a sore derriere to rest, and the upright sitting position and thick tires ensuring a comfy and smooth ride.  Now I can ride for a quick trip to the grocery store, into the city, along the river...

With the recent changes in Adelaide's bicycle laws now allowing cyclists to ride on the pavement, I am so excited I can now enjoy my city on this easy enjoyable ride, with and without my little ones in tow.  Oh, and they even have cool children's seats so I can cycle them to school and not have to battle for a carpark during crazy drop-off times.

  Love Lekker's iconic Dutch 'ding-dong' brass bell
 Please excuse the cheesy grin.
 Lekker's own brand of beautifully woven baskets
Free to explore this city where one would not ordinarily reach by car... 

(all images by me and my trusty tripod)

"Querido Papai Noel (Dear Santa Claus),

Obrigada por não ter esquecido minha Lekker (thank you for not forgetting my Lekker bike).


Has anyone else asked for bicycle for Christmas?

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Monday, November 16, 2015

Everlane is shipping Internationally for ONE week only (trial)! Run, don't walk!

Ok, the day we have all be waiting for (well, I certainly have) is here!

Everlane is offering international shipping (and for a flat rate of only $15!!!) for one week only (for now, here's hoping the trial goes well and it becomes a permanent thing soon).

For years I have been using forwarding companies to get my beloved Everlane wares here Down Under, so as soon as I caught wind that they would be shipping directly to us for one week, I had my items waiting in my bag ready for me to click 'pay' before you could say 'hello'.

Sadly I had to cull my shopping bag right down due to the horrendous state of the Australian dollar against the US dollar, but ah well! I am doing my happy dance nevertheless.

I ordered their Short-sleeved silk crew and the men's card case (I have discovered my love for card cases after using a 'disposable' one for almost a year now! Time to upgrade to leather).  I am leaving behind their long-sleeved silk tee and their slouchy black trousers (anyone have either item? Would love to hear your thoughts on them), and really, I practically want every single item in their store!

International shipping started today and we only have T minus 6 days left, so I suggest running, not walking!

 shop now at Everlane

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Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Ralph Lauren Pink Pony

October is breast cancer awareness month, and every year Ralph Lauren raises funds for regional and rural programs to ensure treatment is available to all at an earlier, more curable stage, by giving 25% or more of every Pink Pony purchase proceeds towards this worthy cause.

Sneakers: Adidas Superstar, Tee: Ralph Lauren, Overalls: Edit the Brand (old season), Backpack: Mansur Gavriel (available at Ssense, Barneys and Forward in the mini-version)  , Sunglasses: Shuron

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Wednesday, September 2, 2015

I found it: the Instagram bag!

Ok, it is no secret that I have a bit of love for Instagram.  The beautiful images in square format (from landscapes to food, and occasionally, fashion) and the lovely community there make it an amazing and inspiring platform.

When I first spotted this Instagram-inspired leather bag on Vogue Italia Fashion (Gioellio) Editor Georgia Tal I had hearts for eyes (I am an emoticon over-user, not using them feels like talking without any expressions on my face).  At long last, I tracked it down, placed myself on the waitlist, and when it came back in stock, I pounced.

Sure, I will get strange looks when I use it outside of my house, and will probably get glared at by Mr Brigs (who is not uber fond of Instagram, or the time I spend there), but I just couldn't resist...

How could I?

 photo of Georgia Tal (Vogue Italia) by UrbanSpotter

So in love with the No. 21 Bow Mule Sandals (available in a beautiful olive colour at Selfridges

 photo by Tommy Ton for

Me - Jeans: Frame Denim Le Garcon (available at Forward, and Net-a-Porter) , Pumps: Isabel Marant Poppy (leopard version available at Forward), Bag: Mua Mua (from Browns Fashion)
Bag: Mua Mua Leather App bag (from Browns Fashion)
Photo: by me.

The leather is uber soft, and I love the chain.  Sure it is uber kitsch...but sometimes it is good to have a bit of fun!

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Wednesday, August 19, 2015

I Love Mr Mittens - I so do!

Belgian-born Stéphanie Caulier learned how to knit at an early age, a passion that was reignited following a visit to a small knitting cafe in New York in 2007.  On her return to Belgium, Stephanie started by selling her knitwear to friends and family, and launched her label there, before moving to Perth with her partner (now husband, Stephanie got married just this last week! Congratulations again Stéphanie!).

Each garment is hand knitted with love by Stephanie and her team, fulfilling I Love Mr Mitten's "Heartworking" philosophy.  The team's common objective is to execute  Stephanie’s vision of how knitwear should be, simple, elegant, timeless and fashionable.  Quality over quantity.  Knitted in beautiful yarns of chunky wool or pima cotton, the range includes cute knitted shorts, dressesbeanies (I bought my black beanie last year and love it to bits), to cropped sweaters and 'The Cardigan'. Oh, The Cardigan! How long I have been enamoured with this piece, with its billowed sleeves, chunky wool knit, and oversized slightly draped silhouette...It is: