Archive for Fashion & Shopping

 

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Back to Summer with Majorelle

15 February 2017

Majorelle Salsa Dress from Revolve

So I’ve been back in Australia for a week now and ooooh how I’ve missed the heat!

I’m definitely celebrating summer (again) and wearing every summery dress I can find.

I recently picked out this Salsa Dress by Majorelle (courtesy of Revolve) and it’s one of those fun, flirty dresses that ticks all the boxes.

Majorelle Salsa Dress from Revolve

Cute as hell. Beautiful print. Ruffles, off-shoulder, a bit of criss-cross wrap action. Adjustable straps.

Low at the front, but not too revealing. Short, but not too short. Perfect dress for a shortie like me.

Majorelle Salsa Dress from Revolve

The fabric is a silky, smooth polyester. It actually feels like silk, but it’s a lot more hardy, in that I could easily iron all the creases out on a low heat setting on my iron and it took me 3 minutes flat and no fuss at all.

The dress is lined, really well constructed and designed. It sits nicely on my hips, it doesn’t ride up my legs when I walk, it is super comfortable to move around in.

This is a Size XS and I’m usually a standard AUS 6.

Majorelle Salsa Dress from Revolve

This Salsa Dress also comes in a long sleeve version (a bit like a short, wrap dress) called the Tropicana Dress, with the same pattern.

And also a maxi dress, wrap style, in the same pattern called the Cubano Dress. They are all so pretty!

Also wearing my Rebecca Minkoff Quilted Handbag and Schutz Cadey Lee Heels.

I actually have a wedding to attend soon, so I might wear it then. Yippee!

xxx


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What I Wore: Tate Modern

10 February 2017

London

When the kids are all grown up, I’ve decided that my husband and I are going to do an Art Gallery Crawl across all the major cities of the world! #LIFEGOALS

I haven’t told him yet. However I might have to negotiate with him because he’d probably want to drag me to all the maritime and war museums too. And um, I don’t know if I’m up for that.

But what a life that will be right? Haha!

Yes the days have been cold and I’m actually enjoying all this rugging up in 4-5 layers thing.

I think I might actually miss it.

Here’s what I wore while traipsing through the Tate Modern.

I won’t be getting points for fashion creativity, but hey I was warm.

Uniqlo Heattech Singlet – I didn’t think it at first, but these are so handy for a bit of extra warmth without the bulk.

Grana White Linen Shirt – Not ironed and crumpled from being stuffed in my luggage, of course.

Uniqlo Cotton Cashmere Grey Sweater – These are no longer on sale, but here’s a similar Grana Crew Neck Cashmere Knit.

Topshop Double Breasted Coat – Oh man, this coat was so nice and affordable that I wished it came in a navy or dark grey. It comes in a Pink Blush and Light Grey, and I already have coats in those colours. They’re on 20% sale if you’re keen!

Frame Le Color Skinny Jeans – As I mentioned before, I pretty much lived in these jeans haha.

Rebecca Minkoff Julian Backpack – Great size for travelling and spending all day out and about.

Acne Pistol Boots – You know when you’ve bought well when you crack a quite smile whenever you put that item on. I’ll be smiling for years with these babies.


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Paris Dairies: Tularosa and A.P.C

2 February 2017

Tularosa Tunic Dress

After a few weeks in London, my mum and I popped over to Paris (my first time there!) and spent 3 days exploring the beautiful city.

We stayed in a gorgeous boutique hotel called, Hôtel François 1er, just off the Avenue des Champs-Élysées (area with lots of cafés and luxury shopping), within walking distance to the Eiffel Tower, the Arc de Triomphe, Grand Palais and a long walk would have taken us to the Musée du Louvre. It was also 3-4 minute walk to a Metro station.

(Hotel wasn’t sponsored, it was recommended by a friend and a little mishap saw us being upgraded to a massive executive suite wayhey! I completely recommend it!)

Tularosa Tunic Dress

I loved wearing this gorgeous Arabella Tunic Dress by Tularosa during my travels, kindly gifted from the team at Revolve.

I adored the embroidered details, the little fringe and ruffled sleeves, making it look very unique and understated.

It was a bit thin for London and Paris, so I did have to wear a Uniqlo Heattech Top underneath.

I chose the size XS, which was nice and loose on me, however, I don’t know if I would wear it as a dress on its own, because it’s a bit short. I think I would wear black shorts underneath it and – like the model on the website – I’d wear it with over the knee boots.

But who knows, I might change my tune by the time summer comes along.

Tularosa Tunic Dress

I used my A.P.C Half Moon Bag everyday while I was in Paris. I just needed something small that I could wear close to my body, that would fit my purse, phone and keys. I avoided using my backpack, as there were so many warnings about pickpockets. My camera was slung around my neck for most of my outings, like a true tourist!

My Jensen Booties by Acne Studios proved to be an excellent travel accessory because it was both a “comfortable walking boot for the DAY” and “a smart looking winter boot for the EVENING”. I brought another pair of boots, but they were a bit on the chunky side and not exactly suitable for a fancy restaurant. So I probably could have saved a bit of room in my luggage and just brought these Jensens haha.

Also I lived in my black Le Color Skinny Jeans by Frame. They were just so comfortable, they were slightly thick to give me a little warmth and they looked great.

I have hundreds of photos from my Paris trip! Can’t wait to share my highlights!

xxx


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Quilted Handbag

28 January 2017

Rebecca Minkoff Purse

It’s the Chinese New Year and according to tradition you’re supposed to buy a new outfit to wear. Sounds pretty good to me!

While not exactly an outfit, I picked out this new Rebecca Minkoff Quilted Mini Affair Bag as my go-to clutch for simple, evening dinners. A lot of my bags are medium-sized and in a casual style. I’ve never owned a black leather clutch for more “dressed up occasions”.

Anyway – yay – this quilted bag is a great size, made from lovely leather, and it’s a classic style that goes with everything.

I can fit my purse, phone, lipstick, keys and compact camera in this baby!

Rebecca Minkoff Purse

I was tossing between this Quilted Mini Affair style, or this Geo Quilted Crossbody Bag or the Love Crosbody Bag.

I eventually chose the Quilted Mini because of its smaller size (20cm x 15cm), the chain on the shoulder strap is thicker and it has a 2-length strap, which means I can easily change the length of the strap (long crossbody style where the bag sits below my hip or having it sit above my hip).

Yes, it’s very Chanel-esque without the Chanel-esque price tag, which is why I chose it, but it means I get to save for another bag I have my eyes on — oops!

Also pictured here are my Marc Bale Rose Gold Watch and The Peachbox Pearl Orb Bangle and Acne Studios Suede Pumps.

Happy Lunar New Year!


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What I Wore: The British Museum

24 January 2017

Topshop Khaki Coat

This is me at The British Museum! My lovely mum and I stood against this white wall and tried to dodge the huge crowd of of visitors, tourists and school kids – which was close to impossible!

I’m showing off my new Double Breasted Coat from Topshop.

Love the colour! So affordable and great quality too.

I wasn’t actually planning to buy a coat during my trip. I have so many at home in Australia.

You see, I didn’t pack a nice, wool coat for my 4 week stay in London, because my sister said I could borrow her coats. She and I are the same size, so it made sense to reduce my luggage weight, which actually just meant I brought 5 pairs of shoes instead of 4.

Anyway, when I found out her only wool coat was a Burberry one – I borrowed it once, wore it for 7 hours, walked around all day doing some shopping and sight seeing, slinging my backpack over my shoulder – I KNEW that I would scuff it up and wear it out at the shoulder (from the constant rubbing of my bag strap).

So I didn’t want to damage her coat, so haha that was my excuse to buy myself a new coat.

Not a Burberry one though!

I’m also wearing a Turtleneck Wool Sweater from Country Road (old season), Uniqlo Heattech Top (lovely and warm!), Frame denim Jeans, Adidas Stan Smiths (on sale at ASOS), and my Rebecca Minkoff Backpack.


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What I Wore: COS and Burberry

20 January 2017

At the Victoria and Albert Museum

This is me looking like a school girl at the Victoria and Albert Museum, the museum of art and design.

Not so hilarious, because I was acting like one… reading every panel, examining every detail and taking zillions of photos.

That place was AWE-INSPIRING! Loved it so much! We spent hours there!

As for my outfit…

I went shopping on Regent Street the day before and I bought this dress from COS, a Straight Cut Crinkle Dress (on sale too!).

Wearing a BambooBody Scoop Singlet under the dress for extra warmth.

I have my lovely Acne Studios Jensen Booties, which were so comfortable to wear all day.

My Rebecca Minkoff Julian Backpack, just to make myself look even more like a school girl :P

And I borrowed my sister’s Burberry Wool Cashmere Coat, which was flipping amazing.

Tee hee, it’s very cool that we are exactly the same clothes size and shoe size. Too bad we both live on different sides of the world though!


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What I Wore: Out to Buy Milk and Layering Up

16 January 2017

London Street Style

When I left Australia, the weather was a glorious 35°C… so yes, I’m a little surprised by the 5°C winter days here in London.

I’m not going to pretend to be a stylish fashion blogger, extravagantly jet-setting around the world, effortlessly transitioning from season to season, country to country, like I was fluent in international living!

I just want to wear my comfiest and warmest clothes, that are practical for what I’m doing and try to look somewhat OK haha.

Here I’m heading out to the shops. I’m going to buy almond milk and to put money onto my Oyster Card (a smart card for using London transport).

On this particular day, it snowed!

I was walking to the bus and I had my first experience of snow falling on my face. Wayhey!

I’m wearing:

4 Layers On Top:

BambooBody Scoop Singlet – Lovely, smooth bamboo fabric. Nice and tight to keep me warm.

BambooBody 3/4 Sleeve Top – Feels lovely on my skin. Fitted but not too tight. Great for layering.

Grana Cashmere Sweater – I love this sweater! Feels amazing and so warm. Use my Grana link for 10% off + free shipping!

Obermeyer Tuscany Jacket – This is my water-proof jacket (for sports/hiking/skiing/everyday wear), which I bought in Mountain Design Australia, a few years ago. I’ve worn it mountain climbing in Scotland, hiking in Tasmania, and I’ve worn it every weekend in Perth in winter while watching my boys play football in the wind and rain! I like its simple / minimal design and it has a fur hood, which makes it look a bit stylish!

It’s been my best practical winter purchase ever! It was a bit expensive (AUD$350) but oh man, it has been worth the money so many times over.

 

Bottoms Layers:

Frame Le Skinny Jeanne Jeans – Probably not the warmest jeans to wear in winter, as my thighs were probably the coldest part of my body, as they got wet from the rain, snow and wind. But hey they are nice and comfy otherwise.

Acne Pistol Boots – I bought these secondhand off a private seller. I have been stalking these boots for years on eBay, and finally found a lovely girl in Sydney (on a Facebook designer sale group), selling hers in my size at my kind of price (under A$200). They are ridiculously comfortable! I walked around for 5 hours in them!

 

Other Layers:

Acne Narrow Canada Scarf – a bit of a splurge, but oh my it’s so warm and feels soft and smooth for a 100% wool scarf. Not itchy at all.

Pom Pom Beanie – Just some no-brand, cheap and cheerful beanie from a department store!

Leather Gloves – I bought these in Copenhagen, at the first high-street store I walked into, Pieces.

 

So after layering up like this for a week, I’ve gotten used to the bulkiness and walking around as if I’m wearing a sumo suit. Our apartment, shops, cafes, museums and buildings all have heating, so I just end up taking most of my layers off. I don’t mind it at all now :)


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What I Wore: Woven Slip Dress

12 January 2017

Hello Parry Checked Dress

Hello hello, I have one more summer look to share before I head off to the UK :)

I have fallen crazy in love with this Ellie Woven Slip Dress from Hello Parry. It’s a slightly different take on the usual slip dress and I think it’s a great summer dress that’s not floral!

Slip dresses are not for everyone, as they can be quite low at the chest, low at the back, the material can be quite flimsy, thin and see through, they can be a bit shapeless and they can look like pyjamas!

Hello Parry Checked Dress

This dress is still a bit shapeless… but it’s fitted at the top, so it’s quite flattering.

It has a high neck and high back (I simply wear a strapless bra), and it also has adjustable shoulder straps so you can change the height of the neckline. I’m wearing it quite high in this photo, but worn low also looks great.

The material is lined with an oh-so-soft cottony material (it feels super lovely on my skin), it’s thick and not see-through. The houndstooth print is handwoven, not printed, so it has a kind of rustic and natural look to it.

I love its effortless shape and cute raw-edge details – it’s very summery. It comes in a blue or black too.

Hello Parry Checked Dress

I wore this to a birthday BBQ in the park, but I didn’t get to stay long, because I had to rush to the shops and then go home to pack.

I got heaps of compliments on the dress, I think because it looks very unique.

One stranger, a well dress lady in her 50s, asked if she could touch it, to feel the fabric, but she was feeling my thigh (omg!) and she asked if she could buy it off me? For her daughter. Er like right now? What did she think I was going to do? Just buy it yourself from the online store maybe?? Haha it was so strange. I wrote the URL on her phone.

Anyway, if you’re looking for a more standard silky slip dresses, Hello Parry have some nice ones, like this Nellie Hoop Dress and Omalia Silky Dress.

Also wearing Clare V Handbag, K Jacques Sandals, Sportsgirl hat, Ray-Ban Aviators.

Happy shopping!


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The Peachbox Bangle and Marc Bale Watch

11 January 2017

Peach Box Watch and Bangle

For Christmas, I was given a really lovely gift, this Marc Bale Rose Gold Watch and a Pearl Orb Bangle in gold. They are soooo pretty – both in photos and in real life!

The rose gold watch came with a matching rose gold strap AND a free Peach Leather Strap, which was a colour combination that I have been eyeing for months too. It’s super handy to have two looks with one watch, but at the moment I’ve just been using the mesh strap.

The watch itself has a good weight to it and doesn’t feel cheap. The bevel and the overall finish looks good, stylish and adds a gorgeous touch to my outfits.

I have bought bangles from The Peachbox before and I’m pretty happy with the quality of their fashion jewellery and customer service. In fact, I bought this Silver Urban Bangle last year (my blog post about it here)… I still wear it all the time and it still looks as new.

If you’re looking for a piece for yourself or for a gift, I have a code to share!

Get 15% off your whole order, just use the code “karenlycheng” which is valid until the end of January.

Enjoy!

xxx


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What I Wore: My Last Day of Summer

9 January 2017

Off Shoulder Top By Shein

In a few days, I’ll be off to the UK for four weeks… where apparently the weather is going to be a chilly 4°C during the day. Crazy cold right?

But I’m from Australia, and I have no idea what 4°C actually means? What do I even wear?

Do I wear leggings under my jeans? Do I really have to wear a thermal top under my shirt + sweater + coat? Can I get by with ankle-grazing jeans and sneakers?

Haha I’m sure I’ll be fine. I’ll just throw a bunch of stuff into my suitcase and see how I go.

In the meantime, I’ve been savouring my every last minute of the glorious 35°C West Australian heat.

This Multicolour Off Shoulder Top from Shein has been on high rotation! I’ve already worn it to 2 birthday picnics and 2 playdates!

I didn’t think it was very “me” at first, but I absolutely love it now, because it’s so simple and cute.

In fact, the only reason I picked it was because, on the product page there are all these girls who have submitted photos of themselves wearing the top and THEY all look hell cute.

Now I’m desperate to find another top like it but slightly different?

I’m also wearing Le High Skinny Jeans by Frame Denim, Tory Burch Handbag from Shopbop and Tan Heels from Betts.


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New Year, New Gear

8 January 2017

Fitness Gear and Workouts 2017

Hey hey!

So I’m back from our family holiday… and I wish I could say that I had a few days to recover and settle down, but I’ve been running around like crazy trying to GET SHIT DONE before my trip to the UK.

I did manage to squeeze in a proper run one evening (yay me!) and I tested out some new gear too.

1) Zayn Reversible Puffer Vest from Betty Basic

I’m sooo happy with this vest. I’ve been looking for one for ages.

It’s lightweight, fits really well, soft, practical, good quality, good material, it’s not too shiny (or plastic looking) and it’s not too fashiony with buckles, zips, fur and pull ties. It’s nice and simple, I like it.

2) Sun Salutation Bra Top by Free People.

I am loving the activewear styles by Free People (via Revolve). These days, a lot of active wear feels tight and are made from compression, swimsuity material. But Free People seem to do softer, jersey fabrics, without the “specialist yoga” price tag.

I loooove the back of this this bra top.

Fitness Gear and Workouts 2017

3) Hotty Hot Shorts from Lululemon

Ok aside from the ridiculous name, these running shorts are pretty awesome.

I have a few pairs of runnings shorts, and they are made from that lightweight, parachute material (or whatever it’s called). Basically they are really noisy and they go SHH SHH SHH SHH whenever I run, so much so I have to turn up my music, so the noise doesn’t irritate the hell outta me.

I’m happy to report that these Lululemon shorts are nice and quiet. Super comfy too.

4) Sonic Sneakers by Adidas x Stella McCartney

After being a bit precious with these sneakers – only wearing them indoors – I finally took these babies outdoors for an actual run. They were fantastic! However I have to admit that I didn’t run on grass, sand, or any dirt whatsoever haha!

Happy running people!

xxx


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What I Wore: Blush Jumpsuit

31 December 2016

Jumpsuit by Picnic Clothing

Jumpsuits and playsuits are pretty huge this season… and they are fast replacing the dress as my go-to party outfit.

Because I’m short (160cm), I usually reach for a playsuit over a jumpsuit… mainly because playsuits make my legs look longer, thus they make me look somewhat taller. So as long as the playsuit is short, I’m pretty lucky that I can get away with any style, any cut, any fabric and any pattern.

But when it comes to jumpsuits, I’m much more selective with my styles + cut + fabric + colour, because there’s always a danger that the jumpsuit will overwhelm my small frame and make me look like a blimp!

Jumpsuit by Picnic Clothing

Having said that, strapless jumpsuits work really well for me. My bare shoulders and arms balance out the great big blob of colour across my body :)

This gorgeous Bria Jumpsuit was kindly gifted to me by Picnic Clothing. The moment I saw it in the store, I ran straight to it and grabbed it in all colours – blush, khaki and charcoal – to try on.

I had a hard time trying to decide between the blush and charcoal. But in the end I chose the blush, because I have too many black / grey clothes and I wanted something a bit more unique.

The quality, thickness, weight, feel and drape of the fabric is really lovely and worth the price.

Those not familiar with Picnic’s quality, I’d say that the quality is comparable to Witchery and Country Road, rather than Cotton On, Zara and Sportsgirl.

Jumpsuit by Picnic Clothing

And just to see in the New Year, I’m also wearing Alexander Wang Heels from FWRD and Rebecca Minkoff Quilted Bag from Revolve.

Have an amazing start to the new year everyone!

xxx


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Keeping Your Playsuits Classy

28 December 2016

Seed Playsuit

Playsuits have been around for ages, but they are particularly popular this summer!

However, scrolling through my instagram feed and seeing this trend explode before my eyes, I have to say two things:

They don’t suit everybody and it really depends on the style.

Some playsuits are REALLY revealing with super low-cut necklines, completely backless, cropped at the stomach, teeny tiny bits of fabric to cover your chest and no support whatsoever for your boobs.

Sure if you have the confidence, the body, the legs, the boobs, the tan, the skin – them omg girl, go for it!

But if you’re a bit unsure, a bit picky, a bit undecided whether they will suit you (like me) then here are some tips to keep your playsuits classy.

1) Don’t get a tight fitting playsuit. Nothing pretty about an obvious camel toe. Stick to a loose, baggy one with a clinched waist.

2) Try one with longs sleeves. Or off shoulder.

3) Find a pretty colour or pattern! May as well embrace the summer vibe, or else it’ll just look like another one of your many, boring black dresses haha.

4) Make sure you’re comfortable and relaxed with walking and sitting in one. If you’re not, then it’s probably best not to buy it. You don’t want to be fidgeting and pulling on it all day.

Seed Playsuit

I’m wearing an Embroidered Jumpsuit from Seed.

Clave V Tan Handbag from Revolve.

Nude Schutz Cadey Lee Heels from Shopbop.


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Fitness Update: A Bit Too Busy For Exercise

16 December 2016

Stella McCartney Running Top

During the big sales, I picked out an Adidas by Stella McCartney running top from Revolve.

It was on sale, and it was surprisingly cheaper than any of the Nike running gear I had my eye on. (In fact, some of the Stella McCartney pieces are still on sale, even though the “massive” sale events have ended.)

This one is called the Studio Cool Running Top and I actually did something a bit different — I bought a size bigger than my usual size. Mainly because I want to feel relaxed and comfortable during my long runs. Not tight and suffocated.

The top itself feels amazing. It’s smooth, breathable and light. Love the quality!

I also wanted a high neck running top, because even though I put LAYERS and LAYERS of suncream on my face, neck, shoulders, arms and chest before my runs… my chest seems to be the most sensitive to the UV rays and I get more spots on my chest than anywhere else.

Stella McCartney Running Top

But anyway, haha the truth is… it’s the end of the year and I’ve been trying to finish up a whole lot of projects and freelance jobs before Christmas. I’ve been too busy to exercise!

Yes! That old cliche.

In the last couple of weeks, I haven’t been going to any yoga or pump classes. I’ve just gone for a few runs and lifted a few weights in the evening. That’s it.

I’m not stressed or tense. My schedule is just really, really FULL of family events (graduations! class parties! assemblies! parent meetings!), sitting in front of a computer, meetings, hanging out with my husband and kids, house work, and me time (which involves reading or getting pampered).

I’m balancing it all fine. Just have to get back on track once the busy period is over.

Have an amazing weekend everyone!

xxx


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Window Shopping: Playsuits from Seed

15 December 2016

Last week, I walked into a Seed Clothing Store and my eyes popped. I wanted to buy THIS, THAT, THAT and THAT!

They have done so well with their new season designs and have managed to create a collection that set my heart racing :)

I grabbed handfuls of dresses and playsuits and tried them on in the change rooms.

(I’m usually an online shopper, so this was really novel for me!)

Seed SS16 Playsuit
This is the Broderie Jumpsuit in navy. Really good quality, soft lace.

Such cute, cuuuute details. I really wanted to get this one haha.

 

Seed SS16 Playsuit

This is the Flare Sleeved Jumpsuit in white.

Love the flared sleeve. Love the cotton. I kind of wanted this one too.

 

Seed SS16 Playsuit

And this is the Embroidered Jumpsuit in Ice Blue Chambray.

Big sleeves, roomy, comfy, flirty and fun.

It was so well designed; it fit me perfectly across the shoulders, waist and length, and the fabric was lovely and robust.

I loved this one so much that I bought it on the spot!

I tried on a few dresses (ones with pom pom detail), and some embroidered tops too.

It’s definitely worth a look. Happy browsing!


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What I Wore: All Black with White Sneakers

14 December 2016

Wearing Black on Black

On this particular day, I was on my way to my son’s Graduation Assembly. That’s right, my second son will be in HIGH SCHOOL next year!

I didn’t really know what to wear that morning, plus I had a meeting to go to after… so I just wore ALL BLACK. And I threw on a blazer because it was a “formal” occasion.

As I ran out the door, I thought, maybe I should wear some nicer shoes.

You know, make myself look a bit more grown up?

Maybe a pair of pointed toe, mid-heeled, black pumps?

Nah. I was happy with my white hi-tops. I don’t need to look more grown up than I already am, haha.

After all, I have to deal with the fact that MY KIDS ARE GROWING UP!

Wearing:
Alexander Wang blazer (similar)
Sportsgirl tank (similar)
Frame Denim jeans
Ecco Shoes sneakers (similar Converse hi-tops for $100)
Loeffler Randall Medium Rider Bag.


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How to Afford Designer Fashion for Your Wardrobe

13 December 2016

FWRD Dec Sale 25% off

OK ok. I’m not exactly the embodiment of designer living and fashion haha! But I do like to mix up my wardrobe with a few designer items.

A couple of years ago, I decided that I wanted some high-quality, timeless designer pieces that would last me years.

Personally, I’m not rolling in money; we have a mortgage, we have 3 kids, we live off 1.5 incomes. But we’re comfortable, we live a fairly simple life, we love simple pleasures, we save money.

And what is life, if you don’t get to spend a little proportion of your savings on what brings you a bit of joy?

Overseas holidays, fun experiences with the kids, a car upgrade, new gadgets, music concerts, furniture, gym membership, designer fashion… each to their own, right?

So how does one start? How does one afford it?

The short answer:

1) Know what you want. Make a list.
2) Budget and have a separate savings kitty.
3) Ebay is your friend.
4) Keep track of sales from designer boutiques.

I bought my first series of $300+ items from Forward by Elyse Walker (FWRD). Not sponsored, not gifted.

I knew what I wanted, I had saved for it and the item came up on sale. I liked shopping from Forward, because the sales were – quite frankly – UNBELIEVABLE.

 

FWRD Dec Sale 25% off

I bought my Alexander Wang Heels at 60% off, Acne Studios Pumps at 50% off and my Isabel Marant Silk Blouse at 60% off.

I wear them ALL the time. It’s been two years and I’m still super happy I have them in my wardrobe. I’m hoping to get 10+ years from them.

Anyway now, as it turns out… I’m working with FWRD and pleased to let you know about a FWRD Sale Event for Australian residents only.

From 13 – 15 December (3 days only) you can get up to 25% off the entire site by using the code “GIFTFWRD” at the checkout.

(15% off when you spend $750, 20% off when you spend $1000 and 25% off when you spend $1500.)

It’s fantastic for big ticket items. Combine with a friend. Or take advantage of the already “On Sale” items in the store.

Here are a few very popular, cult fashion items that you might have on your designer wishlist!

FWRD Dec 25% Sale

Acne Studios Jensen Booties

Valentino Mini Lock Flap Bag

Aquazzura Sexy Thing Suede Heels

Acne Studios Raya Mohair Sweater

FWRD Dec 25% Sale

Zimmermann Tropicale Antique Romper

Sophia Webster Evangeline Leather Heels

Chloe Drew Leather Bag

Saint Laurent Monogram Clutch

FWRD Dec 25% Sale

Rick Owens Classic Knit Wrap

Proenza Schouler Mini PS11 Classic

Isabel Marant Dicker Leather Booties

Aquazzura Marilyn Suede Heels

Enjoy!


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The Vyshyvanka Dress: Vita Kin and March 11

10 December 2016

Ukrainian designs, patterns and traditional embroidery techniques are HUGE at the moment.

Last year, Ukranian designer Vita Kin became an global sensation as she began to introduce a fresh, modern take on the Vyshyvanka – the traditional Ukranian national costume.

She mixes bright bold colours with a seventies Bohemian feel, uses luxurious fabrics and threads, and she is dedicated to meticulous couture craftsmanship. Her dresses, blouses and skirts can be bought from Matches Fashion, for quite a price!

They are certainly unique, bold and beautiful. Check it out.

Vita Kin Vyshyvanka Dress

Vyshyvanka Dresses by Vita Kin

Vita Kin Vyshyvanka Dress

March 11 is a New York brand which also specialises in creating modern day Vyshyvanka dresses and blouses.

They embrace the spirit of travel experiences, discoveries and memories, drawing inspiration from the lively scenes, sunsets and colours from Mykonos, to Maldives, to Florida. I love that idea!

March 11 clothing can be bought from Net-A-Porter.

Vyshyvanka dresses and blouses by March 11

Vyshyvanka dresses and blouses by March 11.

Vyshyvanka dresses and blouses by March 11

I love these last two, because they have a slightly more modern style.

Honestly, I’m a little wary about modern interpretations on traditional costumes.

As I said, the designs and patterns are bright, bold and very eye catching. I’ve never seen Ukrainian traditional costumes before, so my eyes are immediately drawn to them and I can’t stop staring at the lovely embroidery.

Yet I can’t stop thinking about the history behind them… and how much I DON’T know about the country and culture.

Apparently the origins of vyshyvanka embroidery is centred around spiritual safety. The embroidery was believed to act like a protective charm to that particular area of the body (chest, neck, arms) to ward away evil spirits and bad luck.

Designs, patterns, colours and pictures were all specific to regions and villages too.

Like tartan! Very interesting!

Anyway, my ethnicity is Chinese and when I see old, traditional Chinese costumes… I feel a warm nostalgia mixed with a pang of  awkward, old-fashioned dowdiness.

Yet when I see the Chinese traditional designs being translated into modern fashion and worn around the globe, how do I feel?

Is it an unseemly rip off? Is it poor taste? Is it tacky?

I’m not sure how other people see it, but for me… I feel a bit of pride, knowing that other people from around the world have embraced another culture and (hopefully) made an effort to know a little bit about my cultural heritage.

The world could do a bit more of embracing other cultures.

Global fashion trends move so quickly, especially through social media, that an image can be seen all over the world in an instant. And sometimes a style, or design, or item can lose its original meaning and get lost in the digital translation.

I both love and hate the speed of fashion trends… but at this moment I’m googling Ukrainian Culture, educating myself and discovering a bit about Slavic History… and I feel that little bit connected to a world that I’ve never known.

So if that’s one upshot of modern global fashion design, then I’m all for it :)


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Vegan Candles and Organic Teas for Christmas

9 December 2016

Generics Candles and Tea

Just wanted to give all you fellow Perth Peeps a heads up!

GENERICS Urban Apothecary has launched a special Christmas pop-up store at Enex Perth (Level  2, Hay St Mall Entry).

The shop offers a whole heap of gorgeous vegan soy candles, organic teas, organic perfume oils, vegan lip balms, organic skincare (all handmade here in Perth), gift box ideas, a range of cult green beauty from around the world, and men and women’s designer fashion.

My favourite candle scents are Wild Pear + Freesia, Ring-A-Rosie, Monet’s Garden and Carrot Cake… and have been mentioned on the Huffington Post too.

It may be a cliche, but I simply loooove tea and candles and think they’re the best Chrissy presents ever haha!


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Finding An Outfit with Sass & Bide

5 December 2016

I mentioned that I was invited to a Swim + Resort Fashion Event last month.

One of the designers featured at the show was one of my all time favourite Aussie labels – Sass & Bide.

Well I was also invited to pick out a Sass & Bide outfit to wear to the event! Eeeeep!

Every time an offer like this happens, I think — Say what? ME? Dorky, yoga pants-wearing, Karen?? Don’t they know how goofy / mumsy / not a typical fashion blogger I am??

Ahh, anyway, I gratefully accepted the offer and I proceeded to tell them how short and small I am. Why? Because I’m an idiot that’s why.

Sass & Bide Resort 16

Ok so I turn up the the Sass & Bide Store at Claremont Quarter, meet the team and we dance around the store picking out items.

Sounds like a champagne-in-hand, Hollywood movie scene right? Nope. It was more like a 5 minute dash, trying to solve a tricky costume problem.

Where did we start? I said, I wanted something SHORT. Because long dresses off the rack, almost NEVER fit me.

(Above) We picked out these gorgeous white shorts called, Hill and Mountains High Waisted Shorts. These were amazing. They fit me perfectly. Loved the texture of the fabric and the embellished detail.

The silk top was called, The Green Gardener. It went really well with the shorts, but was a bit too low and see through for me.

Sass & Bide Resort 16

Next I tried this loose fit top with a very “different” neck line, called Lion Heart.

It was kind of cool (it looks SO COOL on the model on the website), but the chest bit was too low for me and showed my bra. I guess I could have gone without a bra…?

And the shorts were called, Missing You Fitted Shorts. It was ok. It fit me fine, but it just wasn’t front row worthy haha.

Sass & Bide Resort 16

At the last minute, I saw this dress hanging on a spare rack, because someone else had tried it on. I grabbed it and loved it.

This is me in the change rooms!

(I was wearing my own Sass & Bide silk polka dot dress from 3 years ago.)

Sass & Bide Resort 16

So this is what I chose – the Before You Go Bustier Dress.

It was GORGEOUS! Understated yet stunning!

I’m wearing the Size 36 and it fit me perfectly. Loved the fitted bodice and the silky skirt layer.

I had so many compliments and it was such a honour to wear an item from their latest collection!

So much for NOT wearing a long dress haha.

Big, big thanks to the girls from TPFF and Sass & Bide.

xxx


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New Kicks And No Where To Go

3 December 2016

Adidas  x Stella McCartney CC Sonic Sneakers

Last week I nabbed these gorgeous sneakers, from a Shopbop Sale Event (I think the sneakers are still on sale here, but there are no more white ones left).

These are none other than the Adidas by Stella McCartney CC Sonic Sneakers. Eeep, they are so pretty!

They were 40% off so in the end, so they worked out to be the same price (perhaps cheaper) than regular Nike running sneakers.

Yes they are all white.

Yes they are rather impractical.

Yes I will only be wearing them to the gym. Or to run on polished tiled floors with no dirt haha.

I’ve always wanted a pair of all white sneakers and these are definitely an amazing addition to my sneaker collection!


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Swim + Resort Series 2016

30 November 2016

I recently attended the Swim + Resort Series fashion event by the Telstra Perth Fashion Festival and Fashion Council WA.

The event was held at the infamous Bather’s Beach House in Fremantle and showcased swimwear and resort wear by Australian and West Australian designers.

TPFF Swim + Resort Series 2016

I loved it! The vibe, the fashion, the people, the outfits, the sunshine – it was all so different to night time fashion shows, where the atmosphere can get pretty moody and serious.

There was an ABUNDANCE of white dresses, fake tans, body shimmer, legs, legs, legs, bronzed cleavages, sunglasses, white lace, and lace-up gladiator sandals!

TPFF Swim + Resort Series 2016

Lots of beautiful and sexy dresses by Natalie Rolt.

TPFF Swim + Resort Series 2016

Stripes, sequins and gold pants by Sass & Bide.

TPFF Swim + Resort Series 2016

And lots of thought provoking designs and engaging colour schemes by Budgy Smuggler… ha!

It was a fun show. It’s open to the public, so anyone can purchase tickets and see the show, enjoy drinks and watch the sun go down by the beach. Tickets for next year via the TPPF website.


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Fitness Update: New Activewear for Yoga

28 November 2016

Activewear from Revolve

Happy Monday!

I kinda, sorta was accidentally talked into signing up for a $49 unlimited Hot Yoga deal recently. So I’ve been doing hot yoga 3 times a week, and regular yoga once a week.

That’s a lot of yoga. And that’s a lot of sweaty active wear!

I thought I would take advantage of all the online sales and pick up some new activewear.

So.

Black activewear. What do you think? It looks hell boring, I know.

I like the idea of cool, funky, colourful prints… I love seeing other girls wear colourful prints… and I have quite a few brightly coloured items myself. But I think in reality I’m just an all-black kind of girl.

I found some black pieces with different detailing and eeeeek, I’m loving them so much!

Activewear from Revolve

Wearing: Free People Moonshadow Bra and Varley Vincent Compression Tights.

So affordable! Not as luxurious and contouring as Lululemon, but still great to wear.

Do have a peek at the Cyber Monday Sale at Revolve, with additional 20% Off Sale Items + Free Express Shipping. Just use the code CYBER20 at the checkout.

Enjoy your week!

xxx


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What I Wore: Cashmere and Stripes

26 November 2016

Grana Cashmere + Italian Cotton

Just showing off a few details of my outfit from the other day — basically the most comfiest outfit combo ever!

The weather may be warming up, but I find that the mornings, air-conditioning in offices and cars, are all enough to make me throw on a light cardigan to get me places.

Wearing:

Grana Cashmere Longling Cardigan

Grana Stripe Boyfriend Shirt

A.P.C Half Moon Bag from Shopbop

Frame Le Color Skinny Jeans

Black Pointed Flats from Charles and Keith

xxx


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My Weekend Super Stars

25 November 2016

Clare V Bag

With the hot weather well and truly settled in, I’ve pulled out a few of my favourite sandals, including these super cool Raye Slides from Revolve.

Ah toe ring slides. They’re weird looking. But once they’re on your feet, they feel so right and they look pretty cool!

I’ve been wearing them with everything – denim shorts, black cropped pants, a simple, black tank dress! I love high rotation items.

They definitely look much more stylish than my rubber flip flops :)

Clare V Bag

I have been eyeing a tan leather bag for a really long time… and at first I was looking for a tan leather tote.

But I had to be honest with myself, I’d hardly use a big “casual” tote.

Nowadays I zip out the door with my phone, keys, purse, a little beauty case with lip balm + compact and a pair of sunglasses on my head. So these 4-5 items would be rattling around in a cavernous tote, which is a bit silly.

So instead I looked for a bag that could double as a clutch and found this gorgeous Clare V. Fabienne Bag from Revolve.

Clare V Bag

I’ve swooned over Clare Vivier’s bags and clutches for ages. Two of my girlfriends have a Clare V oversized clutch and a Flat Supreme Clutch and the leather is really soft and lovely.

This bag’s leather is just beautiful too and the natural, warm camel colour is divine.

I love the size (not too small!), the cross body length, the structured shape, and the minimal style.

Revolve are having their Black Friday Sale today and offering up to 65% off and free express shipping so pop over to take a peek at the great sales!

(Also wearing  Tularosa x Revolve Amelia Lace Top and Cotton on Shorts.)

Have an amazing weekend!

xxx


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What I Wore: Simple with a bit of Statement

22 November 2016

Aquazzura Heels

I was off to a meeting the other day, and outfit-wise, I was feeling reeeeeally lazy. I threw on a simple and casual top + bottom combo, with a sharp blazer and a structured handbag to make it look smart.

I was going to wear white sneakers, which would have been O-K.

But at the last minute, I decided to throw on some special heels instead – my Aquazzura studded pumps.

Woo hoo statement heels! What a difference it made to my mood!

Aquazzura Heels

Outfit details and shopping links:

Alexander Wang Blazer from The Outnet

Rebecca Minkoff T-Shirt from Shopbop (I bought this tee 5 years ago and I still love it!).

Stretch Denim Skirt by Cotton On.

Michael Kors Selma Bag from Shopbop.

Celine Sunglasses from Vision Direct.

Aquazzura Heels

Lastly, the shoes that changed my mood – these are my Aquazzura Belgravia Lace Up Heels, (link goes to the plain black version), which I scored on a sale!

Shopbop is having a Buy More, Save More Sale from 22 – 29 Nov. Enjoy 15% off orders over $200, or enjoy 20% off orders over $500, or if you’re game, indulge in 25% off orders over $800. Use the code “GOBIG16″ at the checkout! There are some brand and product exclusions, so check out the terms and conditions on the site.

Enjoy browsing or shopping!!


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Grana Cashmere Cardigan and Boyfriend Shirt

21 November 2016

Grana Cashmere + Italian Cotton

Hi everyone!

I’m working with Grana again to show off a few basic (and lovely!) additions to my wardrobe.

I picked out two items.

Longline Cashmere Cardigan in Heather Grey.

I had a long grey cardigan for many years; I bought it from Country Road, it’s 100% wool, I wore it every year (all through Autumn, Winter and Spring), but now it has moth holes in it and I don’t really wear it anymore. I do still wear it out on the weekends or out to buy groceries… but I certainly don’t wear it to meetings or any where I have to look smart or professional.

So I’ve had my eye on replacing it, because as I said, I pulled it out of storage to wear it every year. It was always in high rotation for 9 months of the year. It was definitely a timeless wardrobe piece for me.

Grana Cashmere + Italian Cotton

I don’t have much experience with cashmere. I have a few cotton cashmere blend jumpers, a bamboo cashmere jumper and I have a longhair cashmere cardigan (which is really soft and fluffy).

But what I CAN say about this Grana Cardigan is — OH MY, it’s beeeeautiful!

It’s so refined, luxurious, super soft, not itchy at all, warm, yet lightweight and a bit breathable. It really does say this is a luxurious product.

Grana Cashmere Cardigan

I really like the cuffs too. It’s ribbed and double layered, so there’s a feeling of a superior finish to it – rather than floppy, cuffs that might/warp stretch over time.

The cardigan is not thin or flimsy. And it’s not itchy at all. Wool tends to be a teeny-weeny bit itchy, but it’s bearable. This cashmere is soft and smooth. I’m so happy to wear it against my skin. The knit feels really strong, tight, firm but super soft.

I did a quick search online (um, at Nordstrom and Shopbop) and found some “high end” brands offering something similar. Their price point ranges between $300 – $700. So this Grana one is pretty affordable in comparison.

I’m wearing a size XS, which I chose based on the chest measurement from the info about the garment measurements – very handy. I wish all fashion stores would have individual garment measurements!

The quality is just fantastic and I can’t stop raving about it!

Grana Poplin Cotton Shirt

The other item I chose is the Poplin Boyfriend Shirt, in Blue Stripe.

It’s made from 100% Italian Cotton Poplin – which HONESTLY means nothing to me. I have no idea what that is. It just feels like a man’s business shirt. A really nice, smooth one.

This Poplin Shirt has a lovely roomy, casual and relaxed feel to it. Yet because of the firm cotton, it has a business-like, polished look to it. I really like it! It’s a real classic piece.

I can definitely seeing myself wearing it for years.

(As long I don’t spill coffee on it!)

I measured my chest, compared it to the garment measurements on the site… and chose the closest matching size, which was XXS.

I thought, maybe I could try going two sizes up and go for the BAGGY look… you know, like I just spent the night at my boyfriend’s apartment, and I had nothing to wear so I grab his shirt and wear nothing else underneath — HAHA.

In the end, I just wanted a shirt that DIDN’T make me look fat, so I chose the size with the measurements that fitted me best. Ha!

10% Off Discount Code

Grana has extended the discount code for my readers until the end of December!

You can get 10% off your total order and FREE Shipping, by using the code “KARENxGRANA” at the checkout. Valid until 31 December 2016.

Enjoy!


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Oily Eyelids and Liquid Eyeliner

18 November 2016

Rimmel 24Hour Colour Precise

I have been using liquid eyeliner pens for about 10 years or so.

I’ve tried so many brands in that time!

I prefer liquid eyeliners over pencil eyeliners because, my biggest problem is that I have OILY EYELIDS.

This means my eyeliner tends to transfer to my upper eyelid and smudge off throughout the day. I also find that eye primers and eye bases don’t work for me.

This is what I do to manage my oily eyelids: I apply the eyeliner. I dust my whole eyelid with skin-coloured eyeshadow or powder — but of course, as I sweat throughout the day, the powder wears off, so I’m constantly having to find a mirror and apply powder to my eyelids during the day, and I’m also wiping the black transfer off my eyelids all day too. Haha it’s such as hassle.

I found a few brands that are pretty good: Bobbi Brown Long Wear Gel (brush and gel pot is a bit fiddly though), Dior (bit too expensive!), Revlon (pretty good for the price!). They all still smudge after 10 hours, and I manage this by giving my eyelids a dust around the 5-6 hour mark.

Lots of big name brands DON’T work for me; they smudge and transfer after 1 or 2 hours of wear – Clinique, NARS, Sephora, and lots of drugstore brands like Maybelline, L’Oreal, Max Factor, Covergirl to name a few.

ANYWAY – Rimmel sent me a 24 Hour Colour Precise Eyeliner – in black, blue and white.

Of course I had my doubts (because of its low price), but turns out that it’s really good! It has excellent staying power!

This is what I do now: After applying this Rimmel eyeliner and dusting my lids with powder in the morning (say at 8am), my eyes will stay smudge-proof for around 10 hours, till 6pm. So good!

If I’m going out in the evening, I will just clean the top of my eyelids (leaving the eyeliner in place), reapply the eyeliner, reapply the powder, and it’ll last all through the evening.

Then at the end of the evening, a simple wipe of Gentle Eye and Makeup Remover (I use L’Oreal) and the eyeliner comes off REALLY easily. In two swipes! No need to rub again and again and again and again!

It claims to be “24 Hours Wear” but I haven’t tested whether it stays on for 24 hours! Maybe it does?

The tip is softer than usual. A lot of online reviewers say it’s flimsy and crap, but I really like it! It feels like a soft brush tip.

It costs $13.95 from Priceline, but I saw them on 50% OFF at Coles, so I bought two… and put one in a little makeup bag to leave in my car!

I’ve been using this eyeliner for a few months now. I was sent the product as a free sample, but I believe it’s a winner for the great price, and I’m super happy to share!


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What I Wore: Lace, Fur, Bling

12 November 2016

Lace Dress + Fur Clutch

I’ve had quite a few events this week. In fact, I’ve been going out every night of the week….

Monday (Hot Yoga), Tuesday (Hot Yoga), Wednesday (Event), Thursday (Event), Friday (Dinner party).

My dear husband has been THE BEST HUSBAND EVER – as long as I have dinner ready to go, the moment he comes home at 6pm, I can head out the door, he takes the kids to the park, feeds, cleans, helps with homework, puts them to bed and cleans up. What a guy!

Anyway I was determined to wear some of my old dresses to these events.

This is a Petite Lace Dress from ASOS that I bought last year. And can you believe it… it’s still available online, in black. It was brought back into stock by popular demand, several times.

It’s on sale for 45% off and ASOS is having a Click Frenzy Sale with an additional 30% off!

But if you’re looking for a white lace dress, here’s an equally pretty dress.

My faux fur clutch is by London brand Whistles, also from ASOS, but it is no longer available.

My shoes are from Styletread, again they are not available any more, but the flat version and block heel version are on sale.

Enjoy your Saturday!

 

xxx


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What I Wore: Bell Sleeves + Dion Lee

11 November 2016

Flare Sleeves

Last week I went to an event, and I wore a new top, this Shein Contrast Bell Sleeve Top.

I have a few flared-sleeved tops, but none with sleeves THIS FLARED! They are REALLY big! Ridiculous really.

Honestly I see these kind of tops as a temporary trend and know they will be gone in 1-2 seasons. So I’m very reluctant to spend a lot of money on them.

Anyway, recently Shein asked me to pick something from their new collection, which is how I have come to own this top.

Err… and it looks really cool!

It looks SO fun, flirty and unique, that I have to admit that I’m changing my tune now!

I kind of want to wear it every where.

Things I love about it:

I like that it is slightly fitted. Most flared-sleeve items these days are really baggy and I find them too overwhelming for my frame.

I love the simple white with black detail. It instantly goes with any of my black pants, skirt, and jeans in my wardrobe… and it gives my outfit a lovely, modern lift. Personally I wouldn’t wear it with denim shorts, but that’s just me. I’d stick to tailored pants, pencil skirts and cigarette cropped pants.

It fits really well – I’m wearing Size XS.

Not so great things about it:

The price is rather cheap. It’s US$11.

But you know what, the material is ok.

It’s a smooth, stretchy, 95% Polyester 5% Spandex, with a slight shine to it. The stitching is just passable. It’s a teeny-tiny bit see through, but I’wearing a nude strapless bra, so it looks completely fine.

It’s fitted, but it’s also loose in areas. Which is why I tucked it into a skirt.

The sleeves are totally impractical, and just a bit of fashion fun.

So… after wearing this top, I might actually look around for something similar, but in a higher quality.

But having said all that, I was complimented 3-4 times during the night for it!

Also Wearing: Dion Lee Skirt

I also recently bought (from a private, pre-loved, designer online group) this Dion Lee skirt.

I don’t know what the retail price was, but I estimate it was AUD $390 judging from something similar online. I managed to buy it for $50, which was pretty amazing.

Admittedly, from the photos online of the skirt, I didn’t realise the split was so high on the leg. It turns out that the split went all the way up to the waist!

However, being Dion Lee (the Australian master-tailor prodigy) this skirt fell and moved SO well with my body and legs – that there was no danger of any peek-a-boo action… just a very sexy thigh split.

I don’t know if you’ve ever worn something so completely and utterly amazing and well made, that you just walk around, looking down at your clothes thinking – it this for real??!?

That’s what I was doing for most of the evening haha.

I gotta get my hands on another Dion Lee item!

 

Have a great weekend!

xxx