Archive for June 2012

 

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The Garden Party Dress

29 June 2012

Club Coutture Dress

When I put on this dress to go out the other day… I thought of a lovely garden party with white table cloths, roses, fine china tea cups, high tea nibbles, sunshine, fluffy clouds, white hats, birds, butterflies, cupcakes and confetti!

It was such a lovely image and feeling to embrace!

This mirror print floral dress was given to me courtesy of ClubCouture.

It’s so graceful, sophisticated and gorgeous. It’s perfect for a more grown-up, feminine style. It is fully lined, has a satiny smooth finish and it comes with a black silky belt.

Perfect for garden weddings, daytime luncheons, and just general walking around in the sunshine feeling fabulous!!

Club Coutture Dress

My silver necklace is courtesy of Lovisa.

You can buy Lovisa jewellery from The Iconic… who are offering a new discount 20% off your order (min spend $50). Use code “20AFFMOpW6″. Valid until 11 July 2012. Click here to use the code.

Two tone teal heels with metal sequins, by Gorge Shoes.

Silver Cuff by Wanderlust + Co.

( See all my Daily Outfits here )

Check out more of my favourite online shops in my Women’s Online Fashion Shopping Guide.


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What I Want For My Birthday

28 June 2012

Dawn Cycle June 2012

I took this photo during one of my recent morning cycles.

I woke up at 6am (in total darkness!) and as I rode, I saw this breathtaking sunrise over the river.

It made me feel so small, so grateful and so inspired. I felt so alive. So peaceful. So happy.

I was thinking about my big Fundraising Ride and how I have committed to ride… 200km. It still sounds crazy!

It doesn’t seem possible at this stage… but I’m slowly working towards my goal.

I can feel the excitement and courage of pushing myself mentally and physically. Overcoming my fears, self-doubts and anxieties. Mixed up with feelings of drive, pain, and euphoria. The journey has been amazing so far!

But what has really surprised (and stumped) me… is the fundraising. It isn’t going too well.

A handful of generous people have already donated, to whom I’m very thankful. But I’m just not reaching my fundraising goals… it’s surprisingly *really* hard work!

So…

My birthday is next week and well, I thought that I’d take a moment to be all bold and brave (since its my birthday)… and ask if YOU would like to donate $10 ($20 or maybe $50?) to my fundraising bike ride?

I’m trying to raise $10,000 for cancer research and I need all the help I can get!

If everyone who reads this blog donated just $10 to the cause, I’ll DEFINITELY be able to reach my target… and that would really be the best birthday present ever! :)

You can go to my donations page and make any donation amount you wish. You can leave a public message, or a personal message to me, or just do it anonymously. And you get a receipt, so you can claim this against your tax.

The money goes immediately and directly to cancer research.

Thank you sooo much!


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FashionJunkee Evening Dresses

26 June 2012

A few weeks ago, I published a photo of myself wearing a red evening gown. I received so many emails from people asking me: WHERE DID YOU GET IT??

It is a Sweetheart Shaped Dress is by US based fashion house, FashionJunkee, who ship internationally of course.

That red dress is one of my favourite dresses, because –
1) It’s a simple tube dress.
2) It’s figure hugging and flattering. And looks great on.
3) It has lots of rouching so you can pull it up or down (to suit your height) and it disguises any bumps and lumps.
4) The fabric is robust, yet soft and slinky. It might need a little swipe with an iron along the bottom of the dress, but other than that, you can roll it up and bundle it into a suitcase. I love dresses like that.
5) It’s really affordable ($48!!)

The dress comes in lots of different colous: black, white, red, cobalt blue, dusty pink, purple and leopard print!

You can even get them in a short version, in black, white, red and blue.

The team at FashionJunkee sent me a few colour variations (that I chose) and a few other items for me to try out!

FashionJunkee

This is me showing off the purple evening gown. I was going to style it with a neon accessories – a yellow belt, big neon statement necklace and shoes… which would have looked fab!

But I chose to go with the dark, vamp look, with black jewelled accessories. I loved it! My husband really liked it too :)

FashionJunkee

And this is the Dusty Pink version of the dress. It’s such a lovely pastel colour. I could have gone crazy with white gold bling, but I went with a simpler choice of accessories – with my woven pearl necklace and fur coat.

The website suggests that this style of dress (in long and short) is a great choice for bridesmaids looking for a more affordable alternative.

For sizing, I’m a size UK6, and I’m wearing a listed size SMALL. It’s a really good fit on me and a bit tight so it stays in place!

FashionJunkee

And check out this new dress! I chose it from the site because it just looked so CRAZY YELLOW and sexy at the same time (I didn’t fancy looking big and frumpy like Big Bird).

As I took it out of the box, I thought, WAYHEY – THAT is pretty damn yellow! Even I felt a bit shy… thinking… am I really brave enough to wear this in public??? It’s backless too, so you need a stick-on bra, or to go bra-less.

My verdict? It is a very cool dress and I felt fantastic in it!! Yes I would wear it… but it’s a tiny bit big under the arms for me. I’m wearing the listed size SMALL, but I feel it would fit a size 8 person better.

I think I’ll take it to my tailor to get it taken in a little bit – so I can wear it :)

There are other colours of this dress too: white, red, blue or leopard print (if yellow doesn’t agree with you).

For my shoes, I’m wearing the Orange Suede Heels, which are pretty comfortable for platform heels.

And I’m holding the Quilted Purse in Blue-Green – LOVE the colour and the cross body strap. You can also get it in burgundy, mustard, grey and black.

Hope you find something you like! Happy shopping!

( See all my Daily Outfits here )

Check out more of my favourite online shops in my Women’s Online Fashion Shopping Guide.


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Making Pretzels

25 June 2012

In Perth, you can go to the shops and buy a bread pretzel for $4.80. If you want a cheese and bacon pretzel, I think they are $5.40 or something like that. A bit expensive if you ask me.

Sooo, if I were to buy 1 pretzel for each of my 3 children, it would cost me around $15!

I looked up the recipe and made my own pretzels this afternoon. It was super easy. Baking with yeast is NOT scary at all. I even modified the recipe to make it even easier (it asked for bread flour, which I have NONE).

Pretzels

My little blobs of pretzel dough!

Pretzels

Ready for the oven.

Pretzels

My plain pretzels. The bready smell is DIVINE!

Pretzels

My cheese pretzels. Soooo soft and tasty, with a bit of crunch on the outside. YUM!

So when the kids come home from school, they can nom on some hot and freshly baked pretzels. I am so awesome.

Pretzel Recipe

Ingredients
Makes 12

• 2 teaspoons of dried yeast
• 1 ½ tablespoons of sugar
• ½ teaspoon salt
• 1 ½ cups (375ml) warm water
• 4 ½ cups (590g) plain flour

• 2 cups (500ml) warm water
• 1 ½ tablespoons bicarb soda

• 30g butter, melted
• 2 tablespoons coarse salt

Method

Preparation: 1 hour 30 minutes
Cook: 10 -15 minutes

1. Dissolve the yeast, sugar and salt in 1 ½ cups of warm water, into a large mixing bowl.

2. Stir in flour, and knead dough on a floured surface until smooth and elastic, for about 5 minutes.

3. Place in a greased bowl, and turn to coat the surface. Cover with cling wrap, and let it rise for 1 hour.

4. In a 20 cm square pan, combine 2 cups warm water and bicarb soda.

5. After the dough has risen, cut into 12 pieces. Roll each piece into a 30cm rope, pencil thin or thinner. Twist into a pretzel shape, and dip into the bicarb soda solution.

6. Place on baking paper covered baking trays, and let rise 15 to 20 minutes.

7. Bake at 230C for 8 to 10 minutes, or until golden brown. Brush with melted butter, and sprinkle with coarse salt, garlic salt or cinnamon sugar.


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Shopping at The Iconic – With Free Shipping and Returns

22 June 2012

The Iconic is a fairly new online fashion store – and it is HUGE. MASSIVE I tell ya!

It sells lots of on-trend fashion products and lots of different high-end to low-end brands. It’s like a great big clothing department store, and you can filter by size, colour, brand etc.

It’s really well laid out, easy to navigate, the photographs of the products are very good, and there are lots of different sizes and colour options, AND there seems to be a good amount of stock of each item.

They also sell LOTS of shoes, sportswear, surf and skate brands, lots of accessories, and they are moving into beauty products and homewares too.

On the weekend, I finally got around to browsing the whole store… I looked around for ages! I was very impressed… it gets FIVE stars from me, for easy and enjoyable shopping!! And yes I did buy something…

(By the way, The Iconic is offering 20% off your order (min spend $50). Use code 20AFFMOpW6. Valid until 11 July 2012 Click here to use the code.

Iconic Stylestalker

This is what I bought. A Stylestalker Top in Blush , on sale from $89 to $61. It’s a simple knit top with a semi-metallic thread. It arrived in a few days… and I LOVE IT!!

(And I wore it 2 different ways, in a casual outfit and a party outfit.)

THE BEST THING about the Iconic

1) It is HUGE!

2) Free shipping within Australia – Yep, nothing beats free shipping. They also do free over-night shipping Australia-wide, meaning you’ll get your package the next day in most big cities.

3) Free Returns within Australia – According to the website, you just fill out a form. Print off a label, the label is postage paid, drop it off at the post office and you’re done!

I was thinking that I could “purchase” a whole heap of items for my husband … and the items he doesn’t like, we can just ship it back for free. My husband and I hardly get to go shopping together… and I buy a lot of clothes for him, but I always get the sizing wrong! Mens clothes shopping is impossible!

ANYWAY… I organised my “want” list from The Iconic site into some categories. Enjoy!

Iconic Wedding Guest Dresses

What to Wear to a Wedding

Pastel muted florals, soft flowing drapes, just add a bit of bling and I’ve got a perfect wedding outfit.

Abyss Belted Dress by Cooper St

Tokonoma Assymetry Dress By Cooper St

Bedlam Dress by WISH

Iconic Winter Wardrobe

Building a Casual Winter Wardrobe

I’m looking for a few simple additions to my winter wardrobe.

Sherpa Jacket by Mimosa

Olivia Ruffle Blouse by Blue Juice

Cascade Blazer by Blue Juice

Iconic Sandals

Must Have Sandals

Lizzy Sandal Heels by Verali

Bettina Sandals by Rebecca Minkoff

Gladys Calf Leather Sandals by Rachel Zoe

Iconic Lusting

Lusting After

Wallpaper Skirt by Manning Cartell

The Big Deal by Sass and Bide

Mid Rise Skinny Jeans by JBrand

Iconic Heels

Very Affordable Heels!

Elise in Yellow patent by Verali ($59.95)

Elise in Pink Patent by Verali ($59.95)

Rocha Nude Heels by Nine West ($149.95)

( See all my Daily Outfits here )

Check out more of my favourite online shops in my Women’s Online Fashion Shopping Guide.


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Join me on Instagram: @karenlycheng

21 June 2012

I’ve been on Instagram for a good 6 months now, and I am absolutely addicted!

So I’m finally coming out with an open invitation to everyone :)

Please join me on Instagram! You can find me with a search:

karenlycheng

(The LY is my Chinese middle name)

I do have a bit of a theme: Daily pics with a sense of humour. Life with kids. Cycling and exercising inspiration. Fashion finds. Cooking adventures. Here are some of my more recent pics.

Liam Gluing

This is Liam and I doing a bit of “craft time” at home. He was working on his name and his favourite numbers “4-2″  when he saw what I was doing, and promptly switched places with me. So here I am in front of his work (which I’m not allowed to touch) while he spells out names on my work :P

Asian Herbs
Me making dinner… Using limes, coriander, mint, and spring onions from my garden!

Vietnamese Dinner

Dinner for me and my 4 men!

I made Vietnamese chicken, lime and nut salad with coconut rice. Whipped it up in 30 minutes and felt like a star!

Neon Sandals
I spotted some awesome neon sandals from Forever New!!

Unfortunately there were none in my size :(

Flooded

This was me on a wet and stormy day, cycling around the river.

I reached a path that went under a bridge, but had to slam on my brakes when I realised that THE PATH DISAPPEARED INTO THE RIVER!

Four

My little 3 year old is *obsessed* with letters and numbers. He insists that we do maths “worksheets” every day, just like his big brothers. And this is him being a smarty pants!


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Frockaholics: Up to 60% Off Sale

20 June 2012

Frockaholics

Yep, the sale silly season is upon us!

Frockaholics are having an amazing sale, with up to 60% off clothing and accessories. Scroll down for details.

The team at Frockaholics sent over a huge box of sale items for me to borrow and style. I picked out my absolute favourites – things I would buy to add into my wardrobe (if I had the money)!

This Gold Willamina Dress by Rachel Gilbert is just gorgeous! It is glamorous, striking and sophisticated. Its style is simple, classic and oh-so flattering!

I would definitely pick this dress to wear to a glamorous event, or a fancy party. After wearing it 3-4 times, I’d keep it in my wardrobe for a few years and then bring it out again for a new lease of life. Good long term investment.

Gah the dresses by Rachel Gilbert are stunning! See more items by Rachel Gilbert

Frockaholics

When I first saw this Magdalena Velevska Embroidered Top, I thought it was “interesting and unique” – which is my other way of saying “MAYBE A BIT TOO WEIRD”.

But once I put it on and looked in the mirror, I feel in love with it! It’s so INTERESTING AND UNIQUE!!

It’s funky and cheeky, mysterious and bold, colourful and fun – and a real statement. It goes great with dark jeans, black pants, a pencil skirt and other dark coloured bottoms (which I have a lot of in my wardrobe).

I picked this top because it’s perfect for work, play and the weekends.

See more items by Magdalena Velevska

Frockaholics

Ok this next top is goooorgeous! It’s a sheer silk shirt by Antipodium.

The print is unique and colourful. The colours are a bit muted. It’s one of those shirts that can be for work, for day time outings, evenings, worn tied into a knot, worn open, tucked in, worn loose.

Would go well with a pencil skirt, shorts, skinny jeans, wide leg pants and more.

The jeans I am wearing are Jegging Jeans by Red Valentino. Admittedly it is the first time I’ve ever worn jeggings… because I am of the view that you either wear JEAN or LEGGINGS thank you very much.

But OMG I am kicking myself now… because they are so so SO FRICKING amazing and comfortable and lush and soft and firm and… possible the nicest pair of skinny jeans that I’ve ever worn… that now I have changed my view on jeggings :)

Sigh I wish I could afford them.

Frockaholics

Lastly, I really liked this dress by White Suede. I liked the cut-outs and the deep red colour. It’s a simple and understated shift dress, with a bit of a twist. It was lovely and easy to wear too.

With a blazer and heels it’d be great for work. Then a quick shoe swap would make it perfect for after work drinks and cocktails too.

View all the Frockaholics Sale Items

Happy shopping and hope you find something you love!!

( See all my Daily Outfits here )

Check out more of my favourite online shops in my Women’s Online Fashion Shopping Guide.


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Behold My Pink Baboon Bum Pants

19 June 2012

While training for my Fundraising Ride, I’ve noticed that…

Cycling makes my bum really sore. And I mean REALLY sore.

Everyone I have spoken to, instructed me to get some proper cycling leggings – with padding!

My first thought – OMG there’s no way I’m going to wear BIKE PANTS! They were a hit in the 90s, when I was 12 years old. I had 3 pairs, one in fluoro pink, orange and green. Not doing THAT again!

Anyway, after a few more sore bottoms from my training sessions… I reluctantly went to a bicycle shop and found a pair to try on.

I stepped into the shop’s change room and inspected it.

I had never seen one in my life.

Cycling Padded Pants

What the? It was like I was looking at the pants of a kinky cat-woman suit with fake muscles and lifty-up bits in *totally* the wrong places.

Cycling Padded Pants
Hello down there!

Padded cycling tights are just that. They have an ergonomically shaped padding, special countoured grooves and specially designed bumps and lumps in all the right places for maximum comfort.

Cycling Padded Pants

I turned it inside out. Looks like a baboon’s ass! Eeew!

How are people supposed to walk around in these things?

AND GET THIS… they have been specially designed so cyclist are not supposed to wear any underwear with them. Ahem.

Cycling Padded Pants
Ewww lumpy.

It’s like I wedged a cushion down my knickers, and I have to walk around with it between my legs!

The lumps and bumps make my ass feel like a LEGO BIT that click-fits onto a bike seat!

(I guess that’s the whole idea.)

Cycling Padded Pants

I’m so not impressed.

But we shall see.

AND… apparently you can buy bum creams to reduce chaffing!

This cycling business is crazy I tell you!

….

Please help me raise $10,000 to help find the cure for cancer!!

You can go to my donations page and make any donation amount you wish – $20, $50, $100, $500! You can leave a public message, or a personal message to me, or just do it anonymously. And you get a receipt, so you can claim this against your tax.

The money goes immediately and directly to cancer research.

I want to make a difference! Please help me?


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Inspired by Poo

18 June 2012

Warning!: This post contains explicit images of art inspired by poo.

A minor plague of diarrhea has swept through my kid’s school. Probably a minor winter flu thing.

But of course, the kids brought the germs home… so now we have all had it in varying degrees.

We all lovingly refer to it as “The Squirty Poos”.

It isn’t life threatening. And it isn’t really a problem for anyone in our house… except my 3 year old Liam. He tends to ignore the signals coming from his bottom till it’s very, very close to being too late. A couple of times, it HAS been too late, which is awful for him (he is embarrassed) and awful for me (I have to clean it up!).

As it turns out, he needs to do Squirty Poos very frequently. In fact, it is SO frequent that going out of the house is a problem. And it’s been fraying my nerves.

For example.

Driving along in the car. Liam happily chats to me…

“Hey Mum, I saw a SIX and a ZERO. Hey Mum, I saw a blue bicycle! Hey Mum, look at that big PINK truck! Hey Mum… I HAVE TO DO SQUIRTY POOS!!!!!!!!!!!! NOW!!!!!!! NOW! NOW! NOW! NOW! NOW!

Panic attack in the car. Tires screech. Public toilets. Tearing his pants off. Pointing his ass at the toilet.

Explosion!

His butt sounds like a cappuccino machine as it spray paints the inside of toilet with explosive flecks of runny, Squirty Poos.

Even as an experienced mother, I find this both repulsive and humiliating.

But he isn’t embarrassed, or stressed. Far from it, in fact. Once it’s all out, he looks down between his legs at the spattered mess, and it’s like he is reading tea leaves or something.

He gets really grumpy if I wipe his ass and flush it all away before he gets a chance to study it properly. And he wants to talk about it.

“Look mummy, I see a bunny rabbit!”

“They look like pineapples.”

“This one is just a man in a boat.”

“OH I see a smiley face!!”

So I take a look, just in case, by some miracle, there is a picture of something there.

But no. There isn’t.

To me, it just looks like shit. Every time.

I guess I just don’t have that much imagination.

So, here is a picture he drew (with one of his brothers) of his toilet tea reading.

He calls it “Brown Stars”.

Brown Stars

So now I am inspired to teach and train him to wipe his own ass, so I don’t have to suffer his taste in art.

(Maybe he will be a famous painter one day.)


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A Princess Moment with Aelkemi

15 June 2012

The other day we inherited a beautiful chaise lounge, which is in the style of an 18th Century Méridienne French lounge chair. It’s not actually from the 18th Century… nonetheless I’m so in love with it!

I thought it was the perfect place to perch elegantly, to show off some gorgeous dresses by Australian designer label Aelkemi.

Aelkemi Dresses

This Silk Indigo Gown is so sophisticated and stunning, yet so simple in it’s style. I really liked the high neck, the pleats and folds, and the way the dress fitted on my upper body – strong and secure. Yet I loved the way the silky skirt folds across my legs as I walk.

I felt like a million dollars hehe! I also felt like I should be dripping with diamonds and that someone needed to peel grapes for me pronto!

Aelkemi Dresses

And same with this dress. I’m wearing a Champaign One-Shoulder Pleated Gown. It was also such an elegant and stunning dress. I seriously had a Cinderella moment (which doesn’t happen often).

The dress fit me wonderfully. The pleats were luxurious and the one-shoulder was feminine and modern. It would be perfect to wear to a wedding, a ball, or some grand and elegant function.

What I love most about Aelkemi’s dresses (and overall style) is the clean and strong designs, the sophisticated and stunning looks that are all so beautiful and classic.

Do check out the Aelkemi website for more info.

(PS – I had a blast with these photos. I don’t often pose with props in my self-portraits!)


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This time she let me keep my underwear

14 June 2012

The other day I went to a “Full Body Massage and Signature Facial (by Ella Bache)” courtesy of Red Balloon.

I chose this experience over something like “Racing V8 Supercars on a Race Track” (to my husband’s disappointment) because, well… 1) I’m a girl and 2) I was very keen to test out a reputable salon that does massages and facials, with the possibility of me going for a regular pamper. And by regular, I mean once a year. Ok maybe twice.

The last time I had a massage and facial, it was awkward. The woman wanted me to wear some paper panties. I was running late, so I was stressed and tense. We used the wrong type of cleansers for my skin – my fault, I think. I had to wolf down the lunch provided. It was not great.

Anyway, facials (and spas) are a bit too expensive for me to do on a regular basis, so when I DO go to one, I want to know that it’s a really good one.

What am I looking for in a salon? Firstly I don’t like home salons. And I don’t like pretentiously superior salons with staff who are so trendy and glamorous that I feel butt-ugly just BEING there!

I just want a highly regarded and established salon that’s clean, modern and inviting, where the employees are happy and friendly… and where they give a damn good massage and facial.

Ella Bache

Bring on Ella Bache Beauty Salons. These guys have been around for ages and I’ve heard good things about their “Signature Facials”. Admittedly I don’t see them advertised in the glossy mags or media. There doesn’t seem to be any big name celebrities endorsing their products. Or any reviews about them by trendy beauty bloggers. Nonetheless, I was really keen to give them a go.

I booked in for a 10am appointment, which turned out to be perfect. I dropped my 2 kids off at school in the morning, I dropped my other kid at my mother’s home… and I drove over to the salon in good time.

I met my massage therapist who was a lovely, young lady.

She was very warm, friendly… and OH MY, she was gave me the BEST MASSAGE I’VE EVER HAD! It was AMAZING. It was out of this world! It was possibly better than the occasional hot oil massages my husband gives me in front of the fire place (haha, hmm hang on, I might have to think about that).

It was a Swedish Relaxation Massage, starting from my back, to my shoulders, both arms, legs, feet, neck and head. In that order I think. I wasn’t really concentrating, because my brain was wonderfully spaced out.

Best hour ever.

Ella Bache

After the massage, she went outside to get some things for my facial.

I rolled over like a sleepy animal, reached down to my handbag, propped myself up on my elbows and took a snap of my very content smile – haha.

Ella Bache

Oh and check out this little baby here – a towel warmer.

If you’ve ever had a beauty treatment, you’ll know the magic that lies within.

Next up.

The facial was just as fantastic as the massage.

It also lasted an hour. I think.

All the while she was cleansing and exfoliating my face, I was thinking – how can I make this last for ever.

And – how can I convince my husband that a massage and facial is most definitely better than racing a V8 Super car? Could I convince him to take a professional course in facial massage and skin care, so I can get this at home?

These thoughts are probably a good indication that I was very happy with my treatment.

The result? My skin felt soooo soft and plump. She used a gentle exfoliating gel which had rose petals as it’s exfoliating medium. ROSE PETALS! It was lovely!.

Overall, I was very happy with the experience. I’d do it again in an instant.

.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.:.

The team at Red Balloon are offering my readers a special promotion!

If you would like to give this gift to someone, or buy it for yourself, or any other gift from Red Balloon you can…

Receive $30 off when you spend $129 or more on ANY experience.

To redeem: Visit www.redballoon.com.au and enter the promotional code REDKC12 at the checkout to receive your discount.

Terms and Conditions: Offer valid until 31/12/12. Promotional Code can only be used once per person. All purchases are subject to RedBalloon T&Cs, for full details read here.


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Wrapped Up in Love

12 June 2012

The team at GlamRockChic sent over a few pairs of shoes for me to get excited about.

(Also you can receive “$100 off when you spend $300”!! Scroll down for details.)

What I love love love about this brand is their dedication to making glamorous-looking shoes that are comfortable (and affordable).

These shoes are called “Wrapped Up” and it are an absolute delight to wear. They feel so soft, smooth and comfortable. They have a mid heel and… I can wear them all day – for work and play.

They are especially great for wearing in countries with warm weather, since they feature open toe and open sections for the foot to breathe. But really, I wear them in cold weather too :)

AND they come in three different looks. Behold!

GlamRockChic Shoes

This is the Black Wrapped Up shoe, with a dash of zebra print! Very edgy glamour, but still chic.

Made from sheepskin + zebra printed calfskin hair… this is definitely more striking than your normal peep toe black pumps. This design would be the most versatile shoe, since they are black and white, and will match and compliment many different outfits and looks.

GlamRockChic Shoes

I styled this shoe in two outfits. One being a very classic, simple and chic look (in all neutral colours) – black jeans, grey top and black blazer. My staple outfit. The shoes added just a touch of extra style and statement. I love!

The other outfit was a bit more fun and flirty. A party look, that is still simple and not too over the top. The shoe looks great for both outfits!

GlamRockChic Shoes

This is the Beige Wrapped Up shoe. I love the colour combinations of beige, tan and leopard print.

It is described as “a different twist to your standard nude pump”. I’d say they would be great for the office (if you can wear open toed shoes).

When I saw it I instantly thought of wearing it with blue jeans and a crisp white shirt. Or white pants and a coral coloured top. Or navy cropped pants and a nude top. The possibilities are endless with this shoe, especially when worn with whites, creams, nudes, tans, navy, reds and oranges.

GlamRockChic Shoes

Again I put together a neutral coloured outfit (all-white!) and the shoe looked fabulous with it.

And I also to prove that it can be worn at night time, I wore a more party-ish outfit – you can’t get more party-ish than a body con dress and fur coat!

GlamRockChic Shoes

Lastly, this is the Fuchsia Wrapped Up shoe.

I’ve had this pair for quite a few months and I can say for *certain* that they are super comfortable and lovely to wear.

I’ve worn them quite a few times and they have been great for colour blocking. I’ve worn them with a tangerine dress, an aqua dress, a silver sequin dress, a lime top and black jeans. Excellent shoes to wear with colourful outfits.

GlamRockChic Shoes

The outfit on the left shows that yes, the fuchsia shoes can look great with a simple neutral coloured, semi-casual outfit.

Most times when you have a “very colourful” dress, you tend to wear neutral coloured shoes (black, white, nude, grey, silver). But these fuchsia shoes go with heaps of different colours. A really nice buy!

**SPECIAL DISCOUNT CODE**

Get $100 off when you spend $300!!

With any purchase of shoes worth USD300 and above on GlamRockChic’s website (does not include shipping), apply the code PAMPER100 to get USD100 off the total bill.

Then select ‘Postal Shipping’ at checkout and we will upgrade it to Courier Shipping (which is faster and more secure!)

Code: PAMPER100 (big caps all the way)

Promotion duration: 12 – 26 JUNE 2012

Happy shoe shopping my dears!!

( See all my Daily Outfits here )

Check out more of my favourite online shops in my Women’s Online Fashion Shopping Guide.


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A Mummy (or Mommy) Monster in the Street

11 June 2012

The other day we were messing about on the street outside our house, with the other children who also lived on the street. It’s a cul-de-sac, so no traffic to worry about.

Some kids were riding bikes and scooters, others were playing ball games and some were playing on the swings.

Chalk on the street

Liam, my 3yo, and I were chalk drawing.

I traced around his body and he – surprisingly – lay still for enough time!

Chalk on the street

Then it was my turn. Liam insisted that he trace around me too.

Chalk on the street

Now to finish off the eyes and mouth.

Chalk on the street

All done!

I look like a Pokemon-ish Monster!

(He can’t write “U” for MUM, so MOM it is!)


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June Buys and Wants

10 June 2012

Here are a few new additions to my wardrobe!!

Leopard Print Heels

These were a recent purchase. Aren’t they gorgeous?!

They are 100% leather, handmade in Australia. They are a beautiful colour, the print is awesome, they have a soft pony-hair texture and amazing craftsmanship.

No they are not Louboutin’s, but hey, they are pretty damn close. They are by a brand called BellaModa, who are no longer in business… so they had a massive clearance. I bought them for $40 people!!

Zara Floral Top

Floral sheer blouse from Zara.

The hem has an elastic all the way around, which gives the top a nice bubble look. I like it because it gives it a bit more structure, as chiffon can look very loose and shapeless. And the sleeves are 3/4 so they don’t look too long on my (short) arms.

This print is very pretty! And I can’t wait to wear it with jeans and ankle boots.

Yellow Sheer Shirt

I picked out this sheer yellow shirt courtesy of YesStyle.

Again, this blouse is made from a lovely sheer chiffon, which I’m very into at the moment. It’s light, breezy, effortless, and slouchy.

And I’m currently WANTING to buy –

   

Classic leather pointed-toe pumps by Steve Madden ($89.95)

I’ve been looking for a classic pump in a blush colour, that didn’t break my credit card. These look perfect!

   

Strappy flat sandals in lemon by Ralph Lauren (only $59)

I can’t wait for the warmer weather to come back! Brights and neon accessories are hot on-trend at the moment!

   

Turquiose Cross Shoulder Bag by Rebecca Minkoff

I’d really like a brightly-coloured, casual-looking, mid-sized handbag… and I have my eye on this bag. I’m a big fan of Rebecca Minkoff too.

Also these Lilac Skinny Jeans from ASOS!

Happy weekend everyone! xxx

( See all my Daily Outfits here )

Check out more of my favourite online shops in my Women’s Online Fashion Shopping Guide.


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The Evolution of Karen’s Bikes

7 June 2012

Bike Mummy

I call her “The Mummy Bike”

I’ve had this bike for a few years. My husband found it dumped by the side of the road. He put a child seat on the back of it, so I could ride with my toddler to the river. But this was when I was riding with my other two kids on their bikes, and we would go very slow, about as slow as a fast walk.

When I first became serious about cycling, I simply rode faster, without the toddler. And it was very, very hard work. Even without the toddler, the sheer wind drag of the baby seat was huge. I was exhausted and disheartened.

Then my riding friends explained it to me – I was crazy trying to make the bike go faster…it just isn’t designed for it. It is made of heavy steel, it is rusty, and it has huge, knobbly tires. And a baby seat.

I was only riding distances of 5 – 10kms on this bike. Veeeeeeery slooooowly.

Bike Huffy

HUFFY the Trainer

When I decided to do my Fundraising Ride to Conquer Cancer – I was given a new(ish) bike!

It just so happened that a friend of a friend of a friend happened to have a small sized bike they wanted to get rid of (which was my size). They gave it to me and I was soooo excited.

Why? Well, it was much newer than my Mummy Bike, it was lighter, it had low resistance “slick” tires, and a bike computer that actually told me exactly how SLOW I was going. And no baby seat!

I called this bike “Huffy” but I couldn’t decide whether it was a “him” or a “her”.

I had it for a few weeks and I started riding distances of up to 20-25km.

But I was still really unfit. After a 20km ride, I felt totally trashed and my whole body would ache for a week!

However, as I got fitter, I was inspired. I could go faster, and it felt good!

And then…

Bike Monzi

MONZI came into my life! (Swoon!)

(Monzi is definitely a he.)

I was researching to buy myself a proper road bike, just like the ones that kept going past me on the bike paths. It looked like it was going to cost me $2000 for a reasonable entry-level, road bike. Yikes!

I was very reluctant to make a purchase before I even *tried* to ride a road bike.

Anyway, in the midst of my deliberation, some friends (Hi Lia and James!) kindly offered to lend me their son’s road bike. Their son had just turned 13, and he was too busy being a teenager to ride the bike right now. That’s right, I am borrowing bike from a 13 year old boy!

So, this is my current bike and it is still *slightly* too big for me. I will be riding Monzi for a few months, before I decide what to buy.

And what can I say? Monzi is glooooorious to ride. I am absolutely *hooked* on cycling now.

I feel like I’m running – no, flying through the air – as opposed to crawling.

Excuse me while I go technical for a moment… He has a rigid, light-weight alloy frame. Rigid, light-weight wheels. High pressure, rigid, skinny tyres. He’s very rigid all over, actually. Noiseless, finger tap gear changes. And other stuff I don’t understand, but love.

After riding this bike, I can say that I’m now a cyclist for life.

I’m looking forward to more training!!

Bring it on!!

Oh and in case you didn’t catch it… Please help me raise $10,000 to help find the cure for cancer!!

You can go to my donations page and make any donation amount you wish – $20, $50, $100, $500! You can leave a public message, or a personal message to me, or just do it anonymously. And you get a receipt, so you can claim this against your tax.

The money goes immediately and directly to cancer research.

I want to make a difference!

Please help me?


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New Looks from LOEF

5 June 2012

LOEF Fashion

The team at LOEF sent over a heap of samples for me to play with and feature on my site.

The LOEF eboutique specialises in very affordable fashion items – mostly dresses, tops and bottoms, with a price range of $24 – $52. They are based in Singapore with international shipping.

These were my favourites:

This Grecian Evening Dress is pretty cool. It looks like a big sock when laid flat… but once you put it on, it drapes in all the right places and it looks quite stunning.

The quality of the jersey is much like a dress you would buy from Cotton On or ASOS. The fabric is lovely, light, drapey and not clingy. It’s very nice to swish in.

I found the length to be just right on me (I’m 160cms). And apparently you can turn it into a short bubble-style dress by taking the hem of the dress and hitching it up on your waist.

The royal blue dress is out of stock at the moment, but the black version is available.

LOEF Fashion

This Mint Midi Dress wasn’t quite my usual style. But after wearing it, it grew on me and I really liked it in the end.

Designed with lovely tailored pleats, an A line style skirt, this dress is fully lined, easy to wear and suggests an understated, preppy style seen from labels such as Ralph Lauren and Tommy Hilfiger, and also has the details of 50s Madmen style.

It’d make a great office outfit or a casual day dress.

Love the colour!

LOEF Fashion

Lastly, this Leopard Print Chiffon Top is great for casual wearing, or throwing over your bikinis by the pool.

It’s light, sheer, loose and airy – perfect for warm weather.

Do check out the rest of the dresses on offer, and hope you find something you like!

Happy shopping!

( See all my Daily Outfits here )

Check out more of my favourite online shops in my Women’s Online Fashion Shopping Guide.


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Life, the Universe and Everything

4 June 2012

Dunsborough 2012

On the weekend, we joined 10 other families  for a little holiday down south.

We stayed in a holiday park on Geographe Bay,  in a villa surrounded by trees, parks, playgrounds and THE BEACH!

The whole holiday park was dotted with wooden climbing frames and swings for all ages, and a massive tarzan rope.

The photo above was a very cool flying fox, which the kids (and adults) played on until sunset.

Dunsborough 2012

The beach down in Geographe Bay is amazing!!

We spent the weekend… paddling in the beach, building a huge sand castle, playing beach soccer, having barbeques, playing mini golf, eating ice cream, visiting wineries, cycling, having picnics, chatting and hanging out with wonderful friends.

Dunsborough 2012

We also drove out to the Cape Naturaliste Lighthouse and did a 3km walk to Sugar Loaf Rock (the right lump in the photo above). The walk was so much fun.

Then all the adults and children in our group climbed over the rocky hill (the left lump in the photo above).

I stayed behind because I was looking after my 3yo. But he ALSO wanted to climb the rocks. He was frighteningly good at negotiating his way up the cracks. He was so agile and coordinated! The rocks were tinted subtle blues and pinks (his favorite colours).

Dunsborough 2012

After 30 minutes of climbing, we perched ourselves on a rock… and looked BACK at the rocky face we just climbed down.

Which we now had to climb back up!

Dunsborough 2012

The weather was lovely the whole weekend. I even went for a 35km cycle with a friend along some awesome coast line.

Dunsborough 2012

Oh and back on the beach…

For some strange reason, my 3 year old is obsessed with the number “24”.

So, in the beautiful Geographe Bay, while sitting in the gorgeous sunshine, looking out over kilometres of calm, flat, blue ocean, surrounded by friends, family, happiness and laughter… I absentmindedly molded his favourite numbers for him in the sand. With a twist.

I made it “42”, not “24”, to see if he noticed, or cared. He didn’t.

Then a friend pointed it out that “42” is supposedly the answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, The Universe, and Everything  in the book The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy.

Coincidence, or not?


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5 Ways to Wear Glitter Heels

1 June 2012

Betts 5 Ways to Wear

The team from Betts sent me an amazing pair of glitter heels and set me on a challenge to style it in 5 different ways.

Yup, they are very glitzy, glamorous and great for a special occasion.

I had SO much fun styling them. They really added a pop of glam to each of the outfits.

Each time I changed into a new outfit, I stopped and imagined wearing a pair of plain black shoes.. then instantly thought “Gosh that’s a bit safe and boring”. But with the silver glitter shoes, haha I felt like dancing and strutting around. Shoes really do transformeth an outfit and mood.

And the silver colour of the shoes made them very versatile to match lots of different looks.

Here are close ups of the outfits and a breakdown of what I’m wearing!

Betts 5 Ways to Wear

Right
Red Dress: Fashionjunkee
Necklace: Sportsgirl
Ring and bracelet: Wanderlust + Co

Left
Black and White Bandage Dress: ClubCouture

Betts 5 Ways to Wear

Right
White blazer: SOL
Lilac Camisole Top: Prada
Black Crop Pants: AL&ALICIA

Left
Faux Fur Coat: Guset (via YesStyle)
Mint blouse: Redopin (via YesStyle)
Leather Skirt: Sarah (via YesStyle)

Betts 5 Ways to Wear

Dot Top: AL&ALICIA
FloralPants:ASOS

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend xx!

( See all my Daily Outfits here )

Check out more of my favourite online shops in my Women’s Online Fashion Shopping Guide.