Something pretty and cute, like these floral knit ear warmers and colored leg warmers from Urban Outfitters. Personally even though they are not that expensive, I wouldn't spend too much on such items that I may or may not wear next season. But if it were a gift....then I definitely wouldn't mind! I especially love the floral ear muffs! Is this a strange train of thought on my part? I also wouldn't mind getting more basics in different colors. Namely, opaque stockings in bold colors (black, purple, pink, maroon) and quality plain colored tees, like this one from American Apparel. One can never have enough of these! (especially the stockings which always runs!)
Catering to vanity, we have this very pretty mirror from UO (though personally I'd like one of those SERIOUS vanity mirrors with the light surrounding it). Then there is this set of photoframes. When I get to design my own room, I aspire to have a wall of simple photoframes just like this with pictures of fashion inspiration, artsy photos I've taken, my family and my friends. This set is also from UO. As much as I don't really like the quality of UO apparel, I DO love their furnishing and bits and pieces. They are all so funky, funny and cute, yet affordable. They make the perfect gifts!
More photo related things, there is this photo clutch and this snow globe frame. I LOVE the snow globe frame. I bought two this season and lugged it all the way across the Atlantic.
Another thing I wouldn't mind receiving would be a fun board game like this Grey's Anatomy and I've Never board game. A few months ago, I would've scoffed at the idea of board games as something little kids played. But after a really quite excellent house party this Thanksgiving, I'm a convert of board games. Its a great way for a large group of people to bond and have fun.
Gift cards is also a very good idea. As unpersonal as it sounds, it really is the best thing to give if you have no idea what the other person wants. Better let them get something they like than get them something they don't like that will end up cluttering the back of their closet. Choose a store they like, and if you have no idea what that is, department stores like Bloomies and Saks are a good idea. For the younger generation who shops online, Shopbop is also has gift certificates. Ok, so this might not be exactly THAT affordable, but it does come in different price ranges!
Happy Holidays Everyone!
Image Sources: Saks, Bloomingdales, Urban Outfitters, American Apparel,
One of the things I've thought about FCUK were that for a highstreet shop, it has really pretty clothes. But I also feel that its clothes never quite justify the original prices, which is why I always try to wait for the things to go on sale. Anyways, onto the dresses:
The dress that everyone has probably seen is this sequinned dress. The white version is SO gorgeous! If only we had the events that celebs go to to wear shift dresses...
I really like how the studs are of the same colour as the dress (so the dress wouldn't look like one big mess) but they're just light-reflecting enough to see the pattern. The problem with sequinned and studded dresses though are that I can't really get a tailor to cut the dress shorter. The dress ends at almost the knee for me, when I think it's supposed to end mid-thigh. Sigh.
I've only seen this dress online before. I like that it looks so cute and summer-y and party-ish. Tube dresses are hard to wear though, and the bubble effect at the bottom doesn't make it any easier. But still, if you were partying on some hot and resort place, then you might want one for the parties!
BG and I like to imagine we have fancy dinners to go to (without going out afterwards,) so we thought these dresses would we perfect for the dinners. I really liked the silk, block coloured dress on the left, and BG like the knit dress on the right. Unfortunately, hardly anyone dresses up for fancy restaurants in Hong Kong so the only place we would get to wear dinner dresses would be in the States and London. Perhaps the two of us should organise a fancy-dress-wearing dinner sometime.
Two other dresses that would be great for dinners.
Now I thought this lime green dress looked pretty chic when I saw the model wearing it. However on me, it wasn't short enough and it felt and looked like I was wearing a green box -wide and flat.
The difference between two colours of one dress never looked so apparent until this dress. The light-coloured one is so much prettier. No wonder it's sold-out whereas the pink/purple dress is now on-sale in stores.
Pretty by itself, but not sure how pretty it looks on a person.
I really like colour-block designs and the sequins make the design look young and 'now'. I still haven't managed to try it on yet, although I did notice that it was accessorised with a wide belt at the FCUK window displays.
The two dresses which I seriously condsidered buying were these two. The black chiffon dress (left) is so cute. It looks sort of prim (black, chiffon) but it's also modern because it ends at mid-lower-thighs. It's a nice LBD for dinner and formal cocktails. On the other hand, the sequinned dress (right) that I liked is the navy blue version because the pattern shows up better. It's such a sparkly, party dress. The problem with sequinned dresses though, is that they fall out really easily, so it would probably not last more than a few wears. Nevertheless, if only I had the occasion to wear it...
Overall, I thought the quality of girls this season was better than the last and that they were in general more likeable. There was really nothing much to complain about, it was a decent round of ANTM. Not terribly compelling but not horrible either. I DO love the fact that they went to China though. China looked really pretty, exotic and fun through their lense. I've only personally been to Shanghai once a few years back (well..maybe 5) and didn't quite get the vibe that they portrayed...maybe its time I go back again!
I thought the final runway for Qi Gang in this exotic palace next to the Forbidden City (is that what they said?) was very awesome with the dancers on stilts etc. It was all very oriental and grand. Though maybe the whole entourage thing following Tyra down the runway to her throne was a bit too much..... Qi Gang's dresses were also really gorgeous in an oriental couture sort of way. I especially loved the grey dress Chantal wore on her second run!
Judging from over all performance, I do think that Saleisha was the right choice between the two finalists. I mean, both girls were there for the right reasons, both were very loveable and both took very good pictures and all, but Saleisha clearly rocked the runway. Even minus the tripping the stilts guy with her dress incident, Chantal's walk wasn't that inspiring. Random thought: doesn't Saleisha look like a model even before her makeover? Though I think her new hairstyle is very cute. It took her a while to grow into it, but she eventually did. I wish I can carry that off without looking like a mushroom head.....Oh and you got to admire her make up application. In some scenes in the show, she totally had huge eye bags. But she covers it up so well. What did Tyra say? Brown eye liner on bottom lid?
Saleisha's continuously good photos. I loved the jumping one at the Great Wall, she really went out of the box there. The only one I didn't like was probably her Garden of Eve one, which had really dead eyes.
Besides her catwalk, I think I was secretly vouching for Chantal, just because she's soo cute and I like her personality just a teensy bit more. She also did a better job in the Covergirl commercial.
I loved the dragon dance photo shoot. The colors were just so exuberant and she just looked so edgy here.
Then there was Jenah who came out third. It really was too bad about her misunderstood personality. She indeed takes very very gorgeous pictures- I especially love how she looks in this rock climbing one. I thought her come around speech in the judging room about why she's misunderstood was also very eloquent and well done. Too bad her competition was just too strong.
Now here is a girl that I cannot believe lasted for so long. I thought she did a good job at the Go See's and was very professional and really wanted this. But to be honest, I just didn't like her look. I don't mean to be mean or anything, but I just didn't think any of her pictures made her look very good (edgy wise or pretty wise) no matter how much make up, super photography, angles and photoshop applied. She looks kind of....scary manly.
And then there was Heather. Ah Heather. There was no question that she was amazingly pretty and effortlessly took beautiful pictures (if only we all had this gift). And it is indeed very brave and incredible that she was able to overcome her Asperger Syndrome in this competition. But I thought in the end, she really just couldn't handle the stress of being in the competition. Especially when she had so much trouble with the Go Sees and getting along with the girls. The modeling world and the fashion industry really don't cut anyone any slack.
Other random thoughts. I can't believe that Ebony just gave up like that and she really DID have an attitude problem no matter how much she said she was misunderstood...Hmm what else is there to say about the show this season... there really isn't much. As I said, it was a "not bad" season. None of the photoshoots were terribly exciting, but then maybe I am just getting jaded after having seen 9 seasons of this show and the countless photoshoots.
Maybe it is time to make a graceful exit Tyra. 10 seems like a nice complete number.
Image Source: CW
Another tights-related style I'm thinking about are coloured tights. Now I've never been an adventurous dresser, so I'm certainly not thinking of wearing colourful tights with crazy coloured shorts and tees, (80's style.) I'm thinking more of the girly, simple way like the images (above and below). I think the key to this look is really to keep the outfit simple. Basically, keep everything else but the tights black or neutral-coloured.
To be honest, wearing colourful tights seem like a lot of effort to me. I mean, do you know how many colours and degrees of sheerness of tights there are out there? What is the difference between '50 den' and '80 den' tights? What does 'den' mean anyways? Just the thought of buying a pair of coloured tights is enough to keep me away. But the argument of you're-only-young-once, and you can't exactly wear coloured tights when you pass a certain age is making me consider having some fun with this trend.
Are you wearing coloured tights this season? If so, how are you wearing them?
Image credit: www.urbanoutfitters.co.uk, www.fcukmail.com, www.topshop.com
So just as a fun exercise, I thought I'd look at more rings from Tiffany. They DO make great presents after all *hint hint*. For a more elegant and delicate design, I am loving these two (left: open heart, right: closed heart). Though as girly a girl as I am, even I find the heart a little bit too girly for daily use (hmm maybe unless it meant something....). The closed heart is more versatile since it really looks more like a oddly shaped bean than a heart.
Even simpler, there is the Cushion (left) and the Torque (right). There is no question the versatility here. The Cushion is a little TOO simple for me (if I'm going to spend that kind of money, I'd like something with a bit more design and effort). I love the twisted design of the Torque, though I do wonder about how comfortable it is with all the odd angles.
I think out of all of them, these two strike the best balance between versatility and design (left: Somerset, right: Knots). It is simple yet unique. Though personally, I think the Somerset is a bit too bulky for my fingers. I much prefer the Knot, with its feminine yet simple design.
So yes, these are my just some of thoughts on Tiffany's silver rings. And the best thing about these choices in my opinion is that they are not the typical Tiffany designs. We have enough of those floating around as it is.
Image Source: Tiffany
Luckily for me, judging from the Phillip Lim 3.1 (left) and Alice + Olivia (rght) catwalk above, the waistcoat trend is still here with us this season.
So I started out looking for one and almost bought this very classic tweedish one (right) from Urban Outfitters the other day. As far as waistcoasts go, this would match with a lot of outfits and the fit was pretty decent. I think the back is also a black satinish material, which I thought was interesting. Only downside was that the tweed material was really rough and since this waistcoast was not on sale, I didn't think it was worth the $42. They need to consider repricing UO...... On the other side of the Atlantic, we have this other classic waistcoat (left) from Top Shop.
Another very classic option for waistcoats are pinstriples (they are a derivative of suits/tux after all). I like these two from Alice + Olivia (left) and Top Shop (right). Though the Alice + Olivia one while more fitted looking (since the model is wearing it) might have a bit too much detail (pockets and collar) for me. I think I prefer something cleaner, since for me, a waistcoat IS a detail and it IS already striped....
Something more interesting, we have these two from Top Shop. Not too sure how flattering the blue one would be (left) but I LOVE the military inspired one (right).
Something more party-ish, we have these colorful shiny options from UO (left) and Vena Cava (right)- a great way to add some character to your party outfit. Though I think for satin, the cutting is very important and you can already see thee poor cutting from the picture here for UO (I do like the color though)- so be careful!
Remember the dress Kate Moss wore to Fashion Rocks this year? Think of a short, non-volume mini-dress; think beads and drop-waist. The two featured above are the examples I like (from Kate Moss Top Shop and Oasis).
So along with these dresses, high street shops are selling 20's style bags. While these bags don't seem very modern, in my imagination of a fancy world, I imagine one could carry these in a very glamorous, stylish way. Think Mary-Kate Olsen. (Oh btw, I'm not an expert on fashion, so excuse me if I say or feature items from the wrong decades.)
One of the main features of 20's style bags are frame bags. The first one that caught my eye is this golden, embroidered one from the Kate Moss Top Shop collection. It's more casual than the other ones and so pretty. Plus, doesn't it look like I had to go through vintage stores to dig it up (minus the effort)?
Another feature of 20's style bags are beaded bags. One that caught my eye is this black beaded one, also from Kate Moss Top Shop. It's simple but with just enough pattern detail.
Warehouse has one which is a bit more fancy -lots of gems. Not really my style though.
Oasis also has a range of beaded bags. My friend just bought the one on the left in black. One good thing about these bags is that if matched right, they can be carried in 'usual' functions like to cocktails and even clubbing, or to more dresses-up functions, like weddings and dances.
Even though it's kind of plain, I would like to see this bronze pouch in real life. If it's big enough to be somewhat practical (although I suspect it's not), at 18 pounds, I might just buy it.
If these aren't fancy enough for you, how about this box-bag from Top Shop?
French Connection has this very interesting bottle-bag. The design is pretty unique, isn't it? (Plus, the photo of the model holding it shows that you can match these 20's bags with your very contemporary dresses.)
And if you're really into the whole dressing up thing, this feather hairband from Accessorize is a fantastic accessory to add onto your outfit. It's easy to wear and adds just the right amount of dressiness. Just make sure you don't put too many things together and wear the accessories to stuiable events.
Do you like this whole 20's style party clothes revival by the UK high street?
Image credits: www.oasis-store.com, www.topshop.com, www.asos.com, www.accessorize.com