Anine Bing and Prima Jeans

1 July 2015

Anine Bing and Jeanswest Prima

I’ve been a little bit obsessed with my skinny black jeans at the moment.

I know it’s a weird thing to be obsessed about, because they’re not exactly a new thing and I’ve had many, MANY pairs over the years. What’s the big deal right?

I’ve just found myself waking up in the morning and wanting to wear nothing else. Blue jeans? Khaki jeans? Grey trousers? Neh. Black jeans it is then!

Then I’ll just throw on a knitted jumper, or a grey sweat shirt, or a denim shirt, or a checked shirt, or a white t-shirt, or a striped t-shirt… then some ankle boots and voilà my outfit is done.

I have a sneaking suspicion that my “obsession” is more from the result of winter laziness.

But I just tell myself that it’s very Kate Moss, except that I don’t have blonde hair, height, or a rock star husband.

Anine Bing and Jeanswest Prima

ANINE BING T-SHIRT

I popped over to the Anine Bing online store a few weeks ago – I just LOVE the style of her whole collection. It’s so casual, cool and everything seems to work perfectly together. I want to to buy everything!

I bought this Anine Bing striped t-shirt and chose the size XS. It’s supposed to be loose fitting, but in all honesty, it’s probably 1-2 sizes too big for me. It looked a bit like a nightie when I first wore it! The fabric is 100% cotton and feels nice, smooth and robust.

I decided that I was going to keep it, so I attacked it with a sewing machine and took a few cms off the body. It looks great on me now :P

JEANSWEST PRIMA JEANS

Last week I mentioned that I fell in love with Jeanswest’s Prima Jeans collection and now I have a pair in blue and black.

I went into the store to try on the Super Skinny 7/8 length jeans and found that they are a perfect length for my short legs – meaning that I don’t have spend extra money at the tailor to take them up YAY!

PLAID COAT

This Black and White Plaid Coat was such an awesome buy! I got it from Shein, on sale, for under $50.

I was actually going to buy this Black and White Long Cardi, or this Plaid Blouse, but I thought the coat would last me a bit longer through the colder season.

Peachbox Bangles

SILVER BANGLES

My wristwear is by a new-ish online shop called The Peach Box.

They have a pretty cool collection of modern and on-trend designs which are really affordable. They are only costume/fashion jewellery but their price points are very affordable :)

BLACK STRAPPY HEELS

These babies are from Styletread! They are the Libby Pair by Tony Bianco and they are half price at the moment.

Phew! I’m really looking forward to the weekend – bring on the school holidays and my birthday festivities already!

Happy shopping!

xxx


 

Chin’s Noodle House and their Famous Peking Duck

29 June 2015

My sister, who is living in London, was recently back in Perth for a short visit.

Whenever she is in town, she likes to schedule in a very efficient eating tour of all her (our) favourite childhood eats.

And I am always VERY happy to throw my clean-eating, gluten-free, carb-free, pseudo-paleo eating regime out the window and tag along – haha!

This particular day, we had an extended family dinner at Chin’s Noodle House in Leeming.

There were 22 of us all together and we ordered tonnes of our favourite Chinese dishes, including one of our favourites: Chin’s Famous Peking Duck.

Chin's Famous Peking Duck, Leeming

YUM!! It’s been YEARS since I’ve eaten Peking Duck!

I remember eating it in various Chinese restaurants throughout my childhood. We were always celebrating someone’s birthday, or someone being in town, with a 10 course Chinese banquet dinner.

I never liked the chili crabs, or the garlic prawns very much – Peking Duck was always my favourite.

This dish comes as a 3 Course Meal ($63).

Chin's Famous Peking Duck, Leeming

1st course consisted of sliced, crispy duck meat served on crepes with spring onions, cucumbers and a special duck sauce.

The duck skin was soooo crispy, with a little bit of tasty fat clinging to the underside of the skin. The duck meat was succulent, tender, and so yummy.

I was in absolute heaven!

Thankfully I was sitting next to my 6 year old son, who merely raised his eye brows at the thought of eating duck skin, so I snatched it up quickly and said something like:

“Aww you don’t like it? Okay Mummy will eat it for you…”

(There was none of that carry-on “Now you know the rules. Just take one bite and see if you like it. It’s really yummy! Come on, just try it. It’s like a mini kebab. This is crispy skin! You like chicken skin, this is kind of the same…”)

Chin's Famous Peking Duck, Leeming

2nd course was a clear duck soup, with preserved salted vegetables, sliced tomatoes and soft tofu.

So the duck pancakes were good, but this clear soup was even better. I sipped it slowly and ceremoniously, to prolong the flavour in my mouth. It was salty and sour, with hearty undertones from the duck and spices. It was utterly delicious.

My kids loved it too. My 6 year old had 2 bowls of it and demanded more. Too bad buddy.

Chin's Famous Peking Duck, Leeming

And lastly for the 3rd course, diners get to choose how the shredded duck meat was to be served. You can have the duck stir fried with bean sprouts and ginger, or with dry chilli sauce, or with rice/egg noodles.

We chose Sang Chow Bow, which was the stir fried duck served with lettuce leaves.

Again it was tasty and simply delicious!

We ordered plenty of other food, including roast crispy chicken and plum sauce, sizzling Japanese bean curd with diced chicken, salt & pepper squid, lamb, vegetables and bean curd in claypot, kai lan with garlic sauce and I think I might have missed one or two.

Chin's Famous Peking Duck, Leeming

And lastly, we ordered one of our childhood favourites: Fried Ice Cream!

It’s a ball of ice cream that has been dipped in breadcrumbs and quickly deep fried.

Actually… I have never liked Fried Ice Cream, nor has any of my siblings! It’s just one of those things that my parents, Aunties and Uncles ordered for us, because THEY liked it as kids, so we were made to eat it.

So to continue the tradition, I  ordered it for my kids and suggested very strongly that they should eat it too!

Chin’s Noodle House
51 Farrington Rd, Leeming, WA

Click to add a blog post for Chins Noodle House on Zomato


 

Pinching Myself

28 June 2015

Pink Sunset

It may be the middle of winter here in Perth, Western Australia… but the evening skies are simply magical!

I’m falling in love with the river all over again. And these last few weeks I’ve been making sure I fit in some running and cycling by the water!

Hope you all have a wonderful week ahead!


 

Bamboo Body Knit Collection

25 June 2015

I absolutely love bamboo fabric!

I adore the luxurious, soft, silky feel of it; and the lovely drape and weight of it oozes quality and comfort. I also like the fact that it is a natural fabric and an eco-friendly and sustainable resource.

The team at Bamboo Body sent over some amazing knits, which I’m so excited to share with you!

I also have a special discount code at the end of this post to share – yay!

BambooBody Knit Collection AW15

First up, this is this Bamboo Cashmere Scoop Knit.

It is made from 95% bamboo, 3% cashmere and 2% wool. I’m wearing the knit in Oatmeal XS, but it also comes in Black and Cacao (dark brown).

Oh my, it is sooooo lovely!

It is so luxurious, soft, comfortable, breathable and lightweight… yet it’s still slightly thick enough to be warming, without being too heavy or chunky.

 

BambooBody Knit Collection AW15

I found that this jumper was easy to dress up to create a modern and stylish outfit.

Plus it was easy to layer under my coats, because it wasn’t bulky.

I’m so in love with this particular scoop neck style and the oatmeal colour. It’s so elegant, chic and it falls very nicely. I just want to wear it everyday!

I’m also wearing a top like this Essential Scoop Tee underneath the jumper.

BambooBody Knit Collection AW15

This is the Bamboo Cashmere V Neck in black, and this time I went one size up to a Size S, because I wanted to wear it in a more slouchy, relaxed style.

Again the knit is made from 95% bamboo, 3% cashmere and 2% wool. And again the style did not disappoint!

I love the comfortable, smooth, soft texture of the knit and I just adore the way it falls on my body.

I have been wearing this jumper with skinny jeans, faux leather pants and pencil skirts. Love it!

I’m also wearing an Above Elbow Scoop Top underneath.

BambooBody Knit Collection AW15

Knits are tricky garments to buy, because quality usually goes hand in hand with price.

Until now I have struggled to find a high-quality luxurious knit that didn’t cost me $200+.

These bamboo cashmere jumpers tick ALL my boxes: high-quality look and feel, quality fabric, high in comfort, classic minimal style, zero itch factor and great price.

BambooBody Knit Collection AW15

Lastly I also tried on the Bamboo Duster Jacket which is like a long cardigan. Again I’m wearing the Oatmeal colour in Size XS.

It’s a lovely, flattering and lightweight jacket; it also has a slight taper in the waist to make it look more fitted and slimming.

Do excuse my awkward smile, I was trying to test how the fabric would feel next to my skin (without my top!) and now it looks like casual loungewear that you wear at home.

But of course, it easily layers over a camisole, t-shirt, blouse, shirt or dress, as it has an extremely versatile style.

I feel that it is polished enough to throw over your shoulders at an evening event, and it is perfectly suited to be part of an office wardrobe.

Bamboo Body Knitwear

You know, I’ve never actually heard of bamboo knitwear before. I’ve only ever been familiar with the soft bamboo / jersey type fabric that is often made into basic tees, tanks and yoga pants.

I’m so pleased to have reviewed this range, as I’m utterly hooked on these knits!

Check out the whole Bamboo Body Knitwear range here.

** Special Discount Code **

Bamboo Body are offering all my readers 15% off your whole order (including sale items).

Just enter the code “karencheng” at the checkout to get your discount.

The promotion will run for 2 weeks.

This is such great value!

Do check out these bamboo garments that I recommend:

Essential Bamboo Scoop Tee, in black, white, grey, taupe and lichen (khaki).

Bamboo Cami, in black, white, grey marle, navy & white stripes

Bamboo Tops, in all colours.

(If you’re interested, I actually reviewed some of these bamboo tops in this post and this post a few years ago!)

Happy shopping and I hope you find something you like!!

xxx

 

 

 

 


 

Trilogy Gentle Facial Exfoliant

24 June 2015

Trilogy Scrub

I’ve been a big fan of Trilogy products for years, and I particularly love their range of rosehip oil products.

So when this new Gentle Facial Exfoliant landed in my mailbox, I almost fell over myself to get to a wash basin to try it out.

For the last few months, I’ve been using exfoliating products that are more like chemical peels.

Combined that with long, cold winter days, and the fact that I’ve been sitting in my office with a heater on all day… my skin has been feeling really BLAH.

I needed to switch up my skin care routine… and I was in desperate need of a good scrub!

The Trilogy Gentle Facial Exfoliant doesn’t use plastic microbeads, it features natural, biodegradeable and non-abrasive jojoba wax microspheres, which are good for your skin and good for the earth.

It has a nutrient base of sweet almond, evening primrose, rosehip oil, active honey enzymes and camellia oil.

I have used it for a few days now and I really like it as a gentle daily scrub.

It polishes and cleanses very well. It is non-foaming and non-drying. My skin feels so lovely, clean and plump after using it.

But most of all, I love the smell… so much so that I look forward to washing my face in the evenings :)

You can buy Trilogy Products online here

Hope you like it too!

xx


 

My Favourite Dukkah Recipe

23 June 2015

Dukkah

I love eating dukkah! I sprinkle it on everything.

Dukkah comes from Egypt and it’s a dry seasoning blend made from roasted nuts, seeds and spices. Traditionally Egyptians use fresh bread to dip into olive oil and then into the dukkah mixture.

For me, I use it on my lamb, chicken, salmon, warm salads, eggs and on my avocado on toast in the mornings. I’m totally addicted to it.

I prefer a hazelnut base, but you can make it with pine nuts, pistachios, almonds, cashews, pine nuts or macadamia nuts.

My Favourite Dukkah Recipe
(Adapted from this recipe)

2/3 cup hazelnuts
1/2 cup sesame seeds
2 tablespoons coriander seeds
2 tablespoons cumin seeds
2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon sea salt

Preheat oven to 180°C. Bake hazelnuts in a tray for 3 minutes until toasted. Then rub the hazelnuts between a tea towel to remove the skins. Coarsely whiz the hazelnuts in a food processor and then transfer to a bowl.

Place the sesame seeds in a frying pan, heat up over a medium heat and stir for 2 minutes or until golden brown. Toss them into the bowl with the hazelnuts.

Then place coriander seeds and cumin seeds in the frying pan and stir for 2 minutes. Transfer to a mortar and pestle, pound until finely crushed. Add to mixture in the bowl. Add the pepper and salt, mix well.

Store in an air tight container.

Enjoy!


 

My Best Slim Fit Jeans

22 June 2015

Jeanswest Prima Jeans

Being a jeans lover, I’ve shopped and owned quite a few pairs of jeans in my life.

Over the last 5-6 years, I’ve tried on skinny jeans from Acne Studios, Frame Denim, Ksubi, Sass and Bide, IRO, Rag & Bone, Levis, J Brand, Lee, Current/Elliot, Cheap Monday, G-Star, Sportsgirl, Zara, Country Road, Witchery – and today I’m declaring that I have found the BEST slim fitting jeans with the BEST price tag, I’ve ever worn!

(Now I know that everyone says that about their favourite jeans, but I’m serious… you have to give these a go!)

They are from the Jeanswest Prima Denim range, made from a high-quality, soft, Turkish denim.

Jeanswest Prima Jeans

The jeans fit SO WELL around my waist, bum, hips, thighs and calves.

They seem to have an amazing stretch in all the right places, without being too tight. The fabric is soft, stretchy and firm. They don’t pinch or cut into me, and I can move around in them comfortable and easily. I can wear them all day!

The only problem was that they were a bit long in the leg for me (I’m 160cms/5’2″).

But since I was so utterly happy with them, I went to a tailor to get the leg lengths turned up. I also paid extra to put a taper effect at my ankles, since I was chopping off a good 12cms off!

I paid $75 in total for tailoring (eeep!) – because I felt they were worth it.

I have since picked up another awesome Jeanswest Skinny Denim in black and in a 7/8 length, so I don’t have to spend extra to tailor them! So happy!

Also wearing:

Alexander Wang Blazer from The Outnet
Zoe Karssen Tee from Hunter and Gatherers
Tony Bianco Heels from Styletread
Ray-Ban Sunglasses from Vision Direct

 


 

Say Hello to Mount Lesueur!

19 June 2015

Hello Mount Lesueur!

I know you’re not really a mountain… you’re more of a cute looking mesa (a flat-topped, elevated landform)… but you still gave us a fun afternoon!

Mount Lesueur, Lesueur National Park

During our recent camping holiday, our family and some friends took a drive to the Lesueur National Park.

We did a 4km return hike up Mount Lesueur, walking along the marked bush trail – it was really lovely!

To be honest, the park is not particularly famous for anything phenomenally iconic. It does boast of an exceptionally diverse range of flora (like 900 species!) which makes up 10% of the total floral known in Western Australia!

But er, if you look at the photo above, you’d probably need a very. keen. eye. to appreciate this “biodiversity hotspot”, as it is known to botanical geeks.

Anyway, so because of the very unique formation/location/conditions of the area, there are some species of plants that are absolutely unique to this area.

Meaning, that you won’t find them anywhere else in the WORLD!

Mount Lesueur, Lesueur National Park

This is the Djanda (Hakea Neurophylla) and according to the botany geeks, if you look at the leaves with the sun behind them, you’ll see a web of “nerves” from which the scientific name was derived.

SO COOL! I love this geeky stuff.

Mount Lesueur, Lesueur National Park

The bush tracks were covered with small rocks and sand, which made the hike accessible and interesting.

It can’t remember how long the whole 4km walk took us… maybe 2-3 hours, with a few breaks?

The other family that came with us have 5 year old twins… who walked (and sometimes ran) in pink sparkly sandals, with my 6 year old all the way to the top and back! It’s a fantastic mini-hike for families with small children.

This photo above shows my husband having some “man time” with one of my sons..

I spent some time with my other son, telling him about how it’s really important to walk on rocky ground so you can strengthen the vestibular system (motion, spatial orientation, balance) in your brain – *cue eye roll*!

Mount Lesueur, Lesueur National Park

Even though I’m a city girl, I really do LOVE all this outdoor adventuring under the big blue sky!


 

Midweek Shopping Inspo

17 June 2015

Sale - Fashion Bunker

I spied some cute fashion buys by C/Meo Collective (Cameo), Keepsake, Finders Keepers… that are up to 75% off at Fashion Bunker.

These are my favourites:
Keepsake Sublime Bodice, Keepsake Spiral Skirt
Snow Leopard Bustier, White Skirt
Finders Keepers Dress

 

Sale - Senso Shoes

I think I sound like a broken record… going on and on about Senso shoes. But I love my Sensos!

So if you’re a fan, you can get some of these styles at 50% off here.

Senso Riley V (Leopard Print) – Was $275, $137.50
Senso Riley I (Black) – Was $249, now $124.50
Senso Rhiannon II (Black) – Was $265, now $132.50
Senso Vanessa III (Leopard Print) – Was $265, now $132.50

 

Sale - The Outnet

And lastly, a few months ago I wrote about my epic score on an Alexander Wang blazer from The Outnet.

So I thought I’d share a few more similar blazers that have popped up on The Outnet again!

Happy shopping!

xxx


 

Mini Orange and Almond Cupcakes (Gluten Free)

15 June 2015

Over the last few weeks, I have been trying to perfect my baking and cake decorating skills.

I’ve been enjoying myself SO MUCH and I think I’m getting better.

Anyway, I have been struggling to find a truly moist cupcake recipe, with low sugar. So the other day I used an Orange and Almond Cake recipe, and made them into cupcakes. They were simply amazing!

They were so moist, so soft, so fragrant, and SO lovely to eat.

Mini Orange and Almond Cupcakes

I reduced the amount of sugar in the cupcakes, but I decorated them with a little blob of butter icing.

That little bit of creamy sweetness on top really rounded out the mellow orange flavour of the cupcake.

Mini Orange and Almond Cupcakes

Omh nom nom!

Mini Orange and Almond Cupcakes

So moist and so delicious!

Mini Orange and Almond Cupcakes (Gluten Free)

Ingredients (Makes 24 little cupcakes)

1 large orange
100g brown sugar
3 eggs, beaten
125g almond meal
1/2 tsp baking powder

Butter icing
125g butter, melted
1 1/2 cups of icing sugar
1 tablespoon of milk

Boil a large pot of water. Clean the orange and place into the boiling water and simmer on low for 2 hours. When done, drain the water and cool the orange to room temperature. The orange pips add a bit of bitterness to the cake, which I like. But my kids don’t like the taste, so I tend to scoop out out the pips for a smoother taste.

Puree the boiled orange (with skin) with a hand blender or in a blender, or in a small food processor. I used my high-speed Nutri-Bullet blender.

Add brown sugar and beaten eggs to the orange puree and give it a good stir.

Stir in the almond meal and baking powder. Pour out into cupcake molds or mini cupcake cases.

I spray cooking oil into two silicone 12-mini cupcake molds and make about 24 mini cupcakes.

Bake at 160°C for 30 minutes, until golden brown on top or skewer comes out cleans!

Mix up the butter icing, and decorate with a little slice of orange.

Enjoy!

xxx


 

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