Archive for Fashion & Shopping

 

day of week

Soaking Up The Last of Autumn

30 May 2017

Shen White Dress

I’ve been keen to soak up these last few days of autumn!

The recent spell of warm daytime sunshine has just been glorious for my soul.

But I have been racing around like crazy woman, working till 1 am then setting my alarm clock for 5am, so I can get an extra hour of work done before the kids get up.

I knew I was headed for a meltdown soon. So I booked myself in for a facial treatment and almost fell asleep on the chair. It was simply divine. It was such a perfect way to recharge.

This weekend is a long weekend, and we are headed off on a camping trip with friends to Sandy Cape, in Jurien Bay, hoping to do some hikes and caving.

Can’t wait to SWITCH OFF for a few days!

Wearing: Bell Sleeved White Embroidered DressClare V. leather bag and K.Jacques Sandals.

 

 


day of week

It’s Getting Hot in Here

28 May 2017

Uniqlo Heattech

When I was staying in London, everyone talked about Uniqlo’s Heattech Range like it was some kind of miracle drug.

What were they talking about?

Thermal Underwear, my friends.

Cold? Uniqlo.

Feeling the chill? Uniqlo.

Going skiing in France? Uniqlo.

My mother and I travelled to London together, and yep, very often we found ourselves at a Uniqlo store… because she was keen to stock up on a few winter items. She bought a vest, a jacket, lots of thermal tops and bottoms. I think she spent about $200 – $300 there?

I resisted the temptation. I didn’t need specialised thermal underwear. I have only owned one top + bottom set in my life – which were from the crazy-expensive Icebreaker brand, made out of merino wool and cost me $99 each! And they weren’t even that great!

Anyway, I bought one white Uniqlo Heattech singlet for $15, I think.

I wore it once. It was ok. I found it a bit thin and it pilled where I tucked it into my jeans.

At the end of my London trip, I borrowed one of my mum’s Heattech Extra Warm Tops…. and WOW it was surprisingly good! So warm! Quite amazing really!

Uniqlo have 3 different levels of warmth: Heattech, Extra Warm and Ultra Warm.

So now that I’m back in Australia and the weather has turned cold, I jumped online and bought myself an Ultra Warm top and bottom set, and I am FREAKING SOLD.

This stuff is soooooo warming, comfy, soft, snuggly, breathable. I can’t get over how warm it makes me feel. It’s sooooo good and I want more of it, for me, my husband, my kids.

Good thing they have a mid-season sale on now. Just in time for winter!


day of week

What I Wore: Tularosa Berkley Dress

24 May 2017

Tularosa + Aquazzura

I swooned over this vintage-inspired Berkley Dress by Tularosa for ages!

I first saw it worn by the gorgeous Negin Mirsalehi (last year) but it was sold out. I thought it was not to be. But I recently spotted it back in stock and I grabbed it while it was available (courtesy of Revolve)!

While I might not be a bronze Persian beauty like Negin, I love that I can make this dress my own.

I love it’s delicate, yet natural feel. I love the soft, gathered fabric, the fluted sleeves, the panels of embroidery and the overall nod to boho, French countryside. It is just adorable!

 

Tularosa + Aquazzura

I’m wearing the XS and it has a strangely small head hole.

At first I thought it was a mistake, but I read a few reviews and a few people mentioned it too. I have to cover my head with a thin scarf and then gently give it a firm tug to get it over my head. Then I have to rearrange my hair and double-check my makeup after that too! It was very weird.

It fits perfectly every where else though!

I’m thinking I could wear it over-the-knee boots for the cooler evenings, or hey, just wear it with jeans and sneakers :)


day of week

Outfit Planning: Wedding Guest Looks

22 May 2017

In collaboration with Shopbop, I’ve put together THREE wedding guest looks to share with you all.

I have two weddings coming up this year and I’m eagerly putting my outfit ideas together!

I’ve chosen three Self Portrait dresses, because you can’t go wrong with a drop-dead gorgeous lace dress.

Any one of them is an amazing addition to your wardrobe, as you can wear it as a wedding guest, a fancy Christmas party, a cocktail function, an awards dinner, a special occasion high tea, and a special birthday dinner at a nice restaurant.

That’s six wears already! Think about that cost per wear!

Shopbop Wedding Guest Looks

Self Portrait Laelia Dress – This soft purple is just magical!

Kenneth Jay Lane Dangling Sphere Earrings – I think crystal chandelier earrings are a little dated, so I’d try to keep my look modern with these dangling orb earrings, or something similar.

Furla Metropolis Mini Cross Body Bag – In this case, I’d chose a neutral and simple looking clutch to let my dress and shoes stand out.

Rochas Flat Slides – This pastel coloured dress has the potential to look washed out. So I’d wear metallic or silver statement shoes to add some cool to it. OKok maybe I wouldn’t wear these Rochas silver slides, but they look so awesome.

Shopbop Wedding Guest Looks

Self Portrait Azalea Dress (Burgundy) – Oooh I loooove this dress! I prefer this deep red colour rather than the bright red version.

Native Gem Blast Earrings – I’d definitely choose gold tassel earrings or these sparkly pointy drop earrings. Something that drops down vertically.

Star Mela Malu Embroidered Clutch – I love the idea of a colourful clutch with floral notes, and this embroidered clutch goes perfectly with the dress. I think it’d look much more interesting than a gold clutch.

Aquazzura Sexy Thing Cutout Booties – With bling on the ears and colour on your wrist, it’s best to match the outfit with a nude, understated heel. A classic indeed!

Shopbop Wedding Guest Looks

Self Portrait Azalea Dress (Navy) – The burgundy version of this dress is my first pick. My second pick is this navy colour. That guipure lace is simply stunning.

Elizabeth Cole Georgy Earrings – I picked out some crazy statement earrings to bring some fun into the outfit! Love these sassy flamingoes! They would look awesome with an all black or all white outfit too.

See by Chloe Nora Clutch – This understated box clutch works well to tone the outfit down – after all, bold floral lace and flamingo bling is pretty clashy.

Schutz Cadey Lee Sandals – And again, a simple pair of strappy nude heels will keep things classy. I own a pair of these Cadey Lee Sandals and wear them all the time. It’s a fab wardrobe staple.

Hope you enjoy my outfits and find some kind of inspiration!

Have a great week!

xxx


day of week

What I Wore: Blush Off Shoulder Knit

17 May 2017

Blush Off Shoulder Knit

A big trend for the new season is… the statement top.

Think big sleeves, flared sleeves, big ruffles, voluminous shapes, off shoulders, one shoulder, stripes, florals, tassels, bright colours, sheer panels — it’s all about going over the top.

But winter is coming in Australia, and I’m not really an OVER THE TOP kind of person when it comes to my daily dressing.

So here’s how I keep my everyday look fresh — with a Blush Off Shoulder Knit from Majorelle, courtesy of Revolve.

A few weeks ago, I featured the WHITE version of the knit here, and I loved it so much that I picked out the same top in BLUSH.

Strangely, this is a size XS (the white was also XS) and this runs a little big. So the sleeves were a little long and one side tends to fall off my shoulder.

I have to roll up my sleeves and roll up the length for a more polished look, otherwise it looks a little sloppy and slouchy, which is a different look.

Blush Off Shoulder Knit

Other than that, it is a gorgeous trans-seasonal knit!

The colour is just beautiful and so many people mentioned how nice it was when I wore it out. The fabric is soft and luxurious. It drapes and sits really nicely. The clinginess is nice too, it hugs all my curves and looks very flattering.

It’s very easy to wear. I just wear a strapless bra underneath. I give it a gentle hand wash and dry it flat in the shade. I’ve already washed it 3 times and it hasn’t buckled, loosened or lost its shape.

In terms of looking smart for an everyday wardrobe, this Blush Off Shoulder Knit is a winner!

I’m also wearing: Grana Silk Ankle Pants, Stuart Weitzman Heels, A.P.C Half Moon Bag.


day of week

What I Wore: Spotty White Dress

15 May 2017

Shen Spot Dress

A few weeks ago, I featured a pretty, floaty off-shoulder dress.

This week I want to show off a more affordable option and picked out this Spotted Off-Shoulder Dress, courtesy of Shein.

It is a super pretty dress, that is comfortable and fits really well. It is lined throughout (not in the sleeves though) so it isn’t see-through. I received a lot of compliments when I wore it out the other day.

Best thing about it: I didn’t have to iron it and it doesn’t crease easily. I love that! I just pulled it out of the bag, aired it a bit, threw it on and it looked fantastic!

Not so great thing about it: The fabric looks a bit cheap. But the whole garment has a good weight to it, the stitching is good, and the fabric feels nice and soft… so it doesn’t FEEL cheap.

There might also be too much fabric at the waist, because it bunches up and makes my hips and bum look a bit bigger than they are haha. Maybe it would look better if I was taller? Because it doesn’t look that bad on other customer reviews on the site. Or maybe I’m just imagining it because it’s such a flowy and ruffly dress?

I’m wearing the XS and I’m usually a Size AU/UK 6.

Overall, it’s a lovely spring or summer dress to wear to a special occasion.

Check out more Off Shoulder Dresses from Shein. They have lots of cool and affordable styles!

 

Shen Spot Dress

I have to be honest, Shein is potentially quite hit and miss, because their product photos tend to look much better than the actual product. They do have sone good stuff. But you have to look REALLY carefully at customer reviews, customer photos, product photos, product measurements and fabric details. Then google the item for more customer images or blogger reviews.

Shipping also takes some time too. And I’ve read that that returns can be a bit of a headache.

Personally I’ve never had any bad experiences, in fact, I’ve only had excellent shopping experiences and customer service when I’ve bought from them in the past.

I also wore: Meli Melo Rosalia Bag and Tony Bianco Heels.


day of week

What I Wore: White Silk Pants

12 May 2017

When I was a Stay At Home Mum to my little boys… I used to go to the park every day, sit on the grass, brush past my dusty car, sit on dirty park benches and have my boys wipe their tomato sauce fingers (or drippy noses) on my pants!

Suffice to say, I almost never wore white pants.

So NOW whenever I wear white pants, it feels like a super special occasion!!

Woohoo, look at me, all grown up!

Grana Silk Pants

 

Anyway, I’ve been looking for some nice, cropped white trousers, with a slight cuff. I tried on a few at Witchery and David Jones, but they weren’t quite what I wanted, in terms of fit and fabric.

It occurred to me that I already had a pair of white Silk Ankle Pants from Grana that fit really well.

So I wore them out the other day, rolling up the cuffs to make them look a bit more like cropped trousers. It worked out quite well!

I’m wearing the Size XS “Regular” in Off White. They are more Off White (with a hint of Cream) in real life, not a “bright white” as it looks in this photo.

They fall to just above my ankles, which is a really good fit for me. They are nice and comfy around the waist, and not too tight. Here’s my original post about the silk pants.

They are double lined, 100% silk, not see-through, comfy elasticised waistband, not staticky, lovely to wear… and uh, honestly a bargain at AU$99.

They are also a social conscience brand, believing in being transparent with ethical manufacturing, their low cost business model, their markup costings, and upholding a code of conduct when it comes to their apparel supply chain.

(Omg that sounded like such a hard sell, sorry! I’m not getting paid to say any of this! I genuinely love the brand. They occasionally send me stuff to review. I occasionally get some referral credit too. And I keep buying more stuff because it fits me and I love the quality. Plus I’m slowly heading towards finding brands with an ethical fashion conscience… but more on that another time.)

I just checked on the site, and Grana are now offering XS with a “Short” leg length, which is 5cm shorter in the leg, and would be more like cropped pants for me.

(These silk ankle pants are different to these silk culottes for AU$142, which – I believe – have a more satin like silk.)

Anyway I’m not buying another pair for myself – I really like these pants rolled up in this way!

(If you’re keen, you can use my code to get 10% off your order and free worldwide shipping, just use the code “KARENXGRANA” and head to this page!)

Outfit details:

Hello Parry Off Shoulder Top
Melimelo Rosalia Bag
Habbot Studios oxford shoe (old)


day of week

What I Wore: Mellow Yellow

9 May 2017

Privacy Please Dress from Revolve

Hi everyone!

A lot of people tend to stay away from yellow, because they say it looks terrible against their skin colour.

But I’ve seen gorgeous girls with pale, porcelain skin and girls with beautiful, dark skin ROCK the colour yellow and totally own it! Seeing and knowing this has helped me be more comfortable wearing yellow over the years.

So I think it’s all about confidence and feeling good in a particular colour.

It is certainly a bold, vibrant, happy, confident colour!

And you definitely have to be in a certain mood.

Generally, I really like wearing yellow, even though I haven’t worn it in a while, because these days I tend to reach for my black, white and neutrals.

Privacy Please Dress from Revolve

But every now and then, it’s fun to wear something that POPS with colour and fun.

(I wore this outfit to the circus last week.)

I picked out this dress by Privacy Please (courtesy of Revolve) and it is exactly the same style as a dress I featured previously here, only in a different print.

It’s called the Delta Dress in Mustard.

It is a wrap style dress, with a pretty, delicate floral print – it’s so cute. It is lined, drapes nicely and is such a lovely quality dress. Unfortunately, this style is sold out.

But you can get the same print in different versions in this: maxi dress (super pretty), short ruffle skirt (on sale) and cute romper (very low v-neckline though).

Revolve are having a special sale for AU/NZ customers, where you can receive 20% off your whole order by using the code “FALL20″. Sale ends 12 May and there are some brand exclusions.

Privacy Please Dress from Revolve

I was talking to a girlfriend about yellow dresses… and about 5 years ago, yellow/citrus/fluoro colours were very popular.

I had LOTS of yellow in my wardrobe… so I hunted down some photos of me in a few bright yellow dresses and even a gold dress haha!

These were taken in around 2012 – 2013. Look how long my hair was!

Yellow Dresses


day of week

Hello to Shoulders

3 May 2017

Hello Parry Dress

Hi everyone!

I’m having a great run with dresses at the moment.

I’m not sure whether it’s because the latest trends are particularly flattering on me (off shoulder, bell sleeves, mini flare skirts) or I just have a good eye for picking the SAME KIND OF DRESSES all the time haha!

Anyway, I picked out this cute Steph Off Shoulder Dress, courtesy of Hello Parry, and I’m so in love with it!

I love that the colour is a warm, browny blush, rather than a pinky blush.

I’m wearing my normal Size 6 and it fits really well across my chest and shoulders.

The loose, flowy fabric hides everything, making it very comfortable and easy to wear. Most off-shoulder dresses are smock-style, which makes me look like I’m wearing a pillowcase. But this dress has an elasticated waist that makes it look slimming and flattering.

Hello Parry Dress

The sleeves are very flared – which adds a bit of drama (visual interest and the fact that it *might* dip into your soup – drama indeed!)

The fabric is soft, silky, lightweight and drapes well. It’s not pure silk, which is a good thing, as I can give it a light iron – without damaging the fabric – to get the creases out.

(I found that it needs a good iron before I can wear it and it seemed prone to creases.)

The skirt part of the dress has a soft, cottony lining underneath, which has a lovely feel to it, makes it NOT see-through and gives the dress a good weight.

Hello Parry Dress

The quality of the dress is equal to dresses I’ve tried on from Witchery, Picnic, Myer. I think it’s higher quality than Zara or Topshop or Sportsgirl.

I’d be really happy to wear this to a special function, to a wedding, or just out to dinner with my girlfriends.

I love that it goes so well with my rose gold and gold accessories :)

I’m wearing :
Hello Parry Steph Dress (also comes in Khaki)
Alexander Wang Marion bag (black version here)
Stuart Weitzman Pumps
Earrings from Kookai


day of week

What I Wore: Casual Days

28 April 2017

GRLFRND Boyfriend Jeans

Hellooo! Ahhh the kids are back at school and my home office is deliciously quiet again!

However, instead of being home and enjoying the peace, I’ve been out and about – running errands, going to the gym, having lunch with my sister (who is back in Perth after 9 years living in London!) having meetings and getting shit done.

Most days, I try to dress up and look polished, mainly to convince myself that I’m running a legit business.

But today, I decided to feature myself in my casual glory :)

My t-shirt is by Sportsgirl and I think this is it. It’s a linen-style t-shirt, which is slightly see through. I bought it a few years ago for $30 and it is like THE perfect t-shirt. I have worn it so many times, that it has tiny holes in it and buckled seams that would impress any Kayne West fan.

Jeans are the Karolina High Rise Skinny Jeans by GRLFRND. I wish I could say that these jeans are the best loose fit jeans ever, but they are the ONLY loose fit jeans I own, so I don’t know what I’m talking about.

I DO know that I desperately want these similar Karolina High Rise Jeans in Black. But I might have to skip my smashed avocado for a few months to afford them.

My beloved slides are by Raye; they are my summer favourites and I’m happily wearing them right into Autumn.

Have a great weekend everyone!


day of week

What I Wore: Pinafore Woes

26 April 2017

Pinafore Woes

Hi everyone!

Last month, I was very curious to try out the whole “pinafore” or “overalls” fashion trend.

While it looks very similar to wearing a white t-shirt under a slip dress, I suspected I wouldn’t like it.

To make matters slightly ironic, I already OWN a pair of sand-coloured, linen overalls, which I bought when I was, um 16. However, it’s in storage. And I was slightly bigger back then (size 8-10), so I think it would be a bit baggy on me now.

I decided I wanted a black, mini, pinafore dress, with thin straps, no buckles (just a button), thick cotton but not denim. Damn it was hard to find!

I eventually found one and purchased this Pinafore Dress from The Iconic ($80). It’s by a brand called All About Eve, which is an Australian label that I quite like. Unfortunately the exact one has been sold out, so there are some similar ones here (ASOS).

This one (Forever New) and this one (City Beach) are almost exactly the same as the one I bought. This one was another of my options (ASOS) but it was denim and it had buckles. This one was quite nice too (SurfStitch).

Pinafore Woes

Anyway, this All About Eve Pinafore Dress was SO CUTE!

Looking at these photos, even I would say: Yep this is a cute look! Styled perfectly! Definitely a keeper!

But fashion is less about how it looks, and more about how it makes you feel…

And I felt WAY TOO CUTE.

I felt like I was 16 again?!

I felt like I was trying too hard to look young.

I didn’t feel comfortable at all haha!

In terms of styling – I tried the pinafore dress with a white t-shirt, a black and white stripe t-shirt, a navy v-neck t-shirt, white button down shirt (all my wardrobe staples!) and I didn’t like how any of it looked on me. I only liked wearing it with this white off-shoulder top.

So if I would only wear it with this one top, then it really wasn’t worth keeping in my wardrobe – especially since it cost me $80! I returned it, and The Iconic were fantastic with their returns.

Oh. I also bought a pair of black overalls with this order. And that was a fail too!

I’ll post about that soon :)


day of week

Online Store Based in Australia / Singapore : ELONE

23 April 2017

Dress from Elone Online

I haven’t reviewed a new, independent online boutique in ages!

I’d like to introduce everyone to ELONE, an online store that stocks Australian brands specially chosen for their quality clothes, on-trend styles and affordable/reasonable prices.

Best thing about it: Edit of high-quality dresses. There are some really pretty stuff here!

Dress from Elone Online

The founder of ELONE is Elif, who is half Singaporean and half Australian. Even though I’m not Singaporean, my parents were originally from Singapore, and I spent some time working and living there in my 20s – so Elif and I have a lot in common and love to talk about our greatest love – FOOD haha!

The first time I met her, we were at a mutual friend’s dinner together. I forgot my purse and she paid for my meal – which was so kind and generous of her and so embarrassing for me!

Anyway, she is a lovely person in real life, with a beautiful personality and an equally gorgeous personal style.

You can see her style reflected in the choice of clothes in her store – feminine, classic, fun, polished, and stylish (but not over the top). Safe to say, I love everything in there!

Some brands you’ll find: Steele, MLM Label, C/Meo Collective, Suboo, May The Label, Talulah, Senso and more.

Dress from Elone Online

I’m wearing the Steele Agatha Dress in Jardin print (courtesy of Elone).

I’ve seen lots of girls on Instagram wear Steele dresses before, but this is the first time I’ve tried one out myself.

It is a stunning dress. It is really good quality in terms of its fabric, cut, stitching, construction, draping, and ruffles.

It has a fantastic weight. It’s not lined, but it’s not see-through.

The fabric is 100% rayon, so it’s easy to iron/steam and not overly delicate. It is easy to wear, effortless to move around in and has a lovely flow and drape.

It doesn’t have weird bunches of excessive fabric at the hips or chest, which is often a feature of cheaper-made dresses.

I absolutely love it! I think it looks best with nude or black strappy heels, or white even sneakers.

Dress from Elone Online

ELONE has free shipping for Australia, Singapore, Malaysia and New Zealand for orders over $100.

Head over to see their insanely pretty collection of Dresses. They have shoes, knits, leather jackets too. Like I said, it’s a great edit.

And check out their Sale section to grab a bargain.

If you’re keen to buy, you can use my code “KAREN15″ to receive 15% 0ff your whole order!

(Also wearing my trusty Mezi tassel earrings (old) and Schutz Cadey Lee Heels.)

Have an amazing week!

xxx


day of week

What I Wore: Easy Breezy Cotton Shirt

21 April 2017

Easy Breezy Cotton Shirts

Woooo the weather has been glorious lately!

My big boys have been hanging out with their own friends lately – catching a bus to the city, or catching a bus to the movies or just hanging around (yikes, that’s a whole different blog post!).

So I have been spending time with my little boy – doing “little boy” things like… taking a walk through Kings Park to catch Pokemons haha.

We invited another little friend along and wow, the dynamic was so nice. No fights. No complaints. No whinging. No nagging. No squabbling. No winners and losers. No insults. No swearing. No sarcastic comments… that often come with teenaged boys.

It was a lovely park date, just like the good old days for me.

Easy Breezy Cotton Shirts

Another simple outfit.

I prefer to wear long sleeves when I’m out and about in the afternoon, as I don’t like to get too much sun on my arms, shoulders or chest.

But my legs? As long as I’ve got SPF30+ on them, they can have as much sun as possible.

I’m wearing Hello Parry Embroidered Shirt, Levi’s 501 Shorts, Clare V Bag, Betts heels.

The embroidered shirt is such an awesome, relaxed top. It’s made from a thick 100% cotton so it feels divine. It’s soft, breathable and doesn’t look cheap. It runs a little big though, as it’s a relaxed, loose fit. I’m wearing a Size 6, but it would be better for someone who is a size 8 or 10.

These Levi’s 501 Shorts have an amazing fit! I ordered my usual jeans size (Size 25) and I was quite skeptical they would fit me. But they hugged my waist/hips/bum so perfectly! They have a great soft, stretch without being too tight, or too stiff. They also have a slightly loose fit at the thigh, so they don’t create rolls in my thighs haha.

Have a great weekend!

xxx


day of week

Statement Earrings for the New Season

18 April 2017

Statement Earrings 2017

I bought myself a few statement earrings recently!

I was looking for gold, bold earrings that had a nice weight to them.

I didn’t mind paying a bit extra, as I don’t like the cheap and nasty, lightweight fashion earrings that you can buy these days.

Statement Earrings 2017

These gold crosses are from a cool, little Perth boutique in Claremont, Perlu. They have an online shop, and I actually put the order through online and had it sent to me. Love online shopping!

They are just gorgeous. They have a good weight, they feel like real quality jewellery and they are much nicer than the el-cheapo versions.

For the others – you’ll have to scroll up to the top photo – the top earrings are from Sportsgirl (ok these were a bit cheap), and the other two are from Kookai (these are SUPER nice and I’m totally obsessed with wearing the bottoms ones).

Have a great week everyone!


day of week

What I Wore: Sushi Lunches

15 April 2017

Off Shoulder Knit + Hello Parry Dress

Hi everyone!

It’s currently the school holidays and this is what usually happens every morning…

I get to sleep in until 7:30am! Sometimes 8am! Oh the indulgence!

My boys make themselves a big, hearty bacon + eggs + croissants + baked beans breakfast. Yep, every morning. They love their bacon. And I keep the fridge well stocked.

I have to dodge and weave through my own kitchen to make myself a cup of coffee.

Then we all sit down and plan our day. Who is meeting up with friends, visiting family, watching a movie, any outings, any sports, trip to the shops, major and minor chores for the day, how many hours of work I need to do, how many hours of computers games they can get, where are we having lunch, what is happening in the evening…

This particular day, we all went out to have sushi for lunch!

(We had sushi because I didn’t want to spill laksa on my white jumper haha!)

Simple outfit today:

Hello Parry Woven Dress as a skirt.

Twister Sweater by Majorelle

3.1 Phillip Lim Bucket Bag

Adidas Stan Smiths from ASOS

Hope you all have a lovely Easter weekend!

xxx


day of week

The Classic Moto Leather Jacket

13 April 2017

Hi everyone!

Back in February, when I was in London and Paris, I spent weeks searching for a classic moto leather jacket.

I tried on leather jackets in All Saints, The Kooples, Acne Studios and a few other high-end brands while I was shopping in Paris. I also tried on jackets at Zara and Topshop.

I almost bought one from All Saints. And I also wanted to get one from The Kooples, because they were having a 25% off sale. They looked SO GOOD when they were hanging on the rack!

But in the end, they just looked too bulky on me. The jackets were lined with a quilted padding and they felt big and puffy. I was very warm – almost too warm – and I just don’t think they were suitable for Australian winters, and how I dress in winter.

Also the styles were very boxy on me and the sleeves were slightly too long for me.

I wanted a leather jacket that I could pop over a light sweater, or a long-sleeve t-shirt, or a floral dress.

I wanted a slightly, slim-fit leather jacket, with 3/4 sleeves (which would be normal fit for me), not too cropped, not too long, with a thin lining, no padding, minimal hardware, smallish lapels, smooth and soft leather, and no quilting or patterns in the leather. Picky much? Haha!

In the end I came back to Australia empty handed.

OAK Leather Jacket

Months later, lo and behold, I decided to take a bit of a risk and bought one online (after reading heaps of great reviews!) from Shopbop.

Oh my goodness, it was such an amazing buy!!!

This is the LA Rider Jacket by OAK, a New York label.

It was AU$640 and best of all I got it on sale!

Shopbop is currently having a 3 day sale. Just use the code EVENT15 to receive 20% off when you spend under US$500 or 25% off when you spend over US$500.

OAK Leather Jacket

As you can see, it’s EXACTLY what I wanted – a slim fit leather jacket that fits my arm length!

Leather Quality: The leather is beeeeautiful! It’s smooth, soft and buttery.

It looks so, so good. Definitely looks better than the Zara and Topshop leather jackets that I tried on. And it looks JUST AS amazing as all the high-end leather jackets I tried on. Although it is a lot lighter than the high end ones, because this one doesn’t have so much hardware and padding.

OAK Leather Jacket

Even with my arms out, the jacket looks slimming and flattering.

The lining is 100% cotton, the sleeve lining is 100% polyester and there is no extra padding anywhere on the jacket (eg. on the shoulders).

Oh and it also had snap buttons on the lapels, so they SIT FLAT – I hate it when my lapels curl outwards and catches on my arms and bags.

Sizing: I bought the size XS. I’m 160cm and 45kg, and I’m a pretty standard Size AU6.

A few reviews mentioned that the sizing was small, and that it felt tight across the back and arms.

But I found it to be perfect. I can wear a long sleeve top underneath, and I can hug myself and it stretches nicely and comfortably across my back.

If I wear a t-shirt and a knit sweater, it feels a little tight at the arm holes, and the fit is snug but not uncomfortable.

OAK Leather Jacket

The crop is just right. It’s not awkwardly short (or long) on me. It sits just above my regular fit jeans, so it looks nice and proportionate on me.

If you’ve been looking for a leather jacket for a while now, this is a fantastic time to buy.

But if you’ve just started to think about it, it’s probably best not to hurry into it. Read reviews, google to look at other photos or other blog reviews. Maybe wait for the next sale.

Remember, if you’re buying from Australia, you have to pay a tax for anything coming in over AUD $1000.

Here are some awesome jackets that qualify for the 25% off discount!

Leather Jackets from Shopbop

From left to right:

IRO Ashville Leather Jacket – This is one jacket I tried while in Paris! But they didn’t have my size in the store.

Acne Studios Mock Leather Moto Jacket – Oh my mistake! This jacket is excluded from the sale, sorry about that. Looks so good thought, right?

Ganni Biker Jacket – This is the other jacket I was considering to buy from Shopbop. But it didn’t have very much info on the web, and it didn’t have any reviews, so it was difficult to decide on the fit. Those sleeves looked like they would fit me!

 

Leather Jackets from Shopbop

From left to right:

VEDA Jayne Classic Jacket – This one looked a bit long in the body and sleeves for me, but a nice one!

Scotch & Soda / Maison Scotch Leather Biker Jacket – This one looks amazing and slouchy. The price made it very appealing.

VEDA Dallas Leather Jacket – I liked the minimal design of this one.

Hope you find something you like. Happy shopping!

xxx


day of week

Trends to try at FWRD

10 April 2017

I love experimenting with fashion trends!

And these days, once I find something that suits me, I like to save up for a quality item, rather than to get lots of cheap items.

Most times I like to make a mental list, so that when a sale pops up, I can take advantage of that extra % off. I very rarely buy things at full price.

Here are some trends I like and are on my current watch list –

– Off shoulder tops or dresses.
– Cropped pants that are slightly flared.
– Voluminous sleeved tops.
– Embroidered cotton tops.
– Lace up details or stud details.

I popped over to FWRD (because they are having a 20% off sale) and found some items that sit nicely in my watch list.

(I bought myself a pair of Rag & Bone Cropped Jeans in the end – which were 30% off, then an additional 20% off! I’ve never tried Rag & Bone jeans, so I hope they’re good!)

FWRD Sale

From Left:

Suno Smocked Embroidered Blouse – such a beautiful looking top! Love the colourful little flower embroidery.

March 11 African Embroidered Top – Ahhh absolutely love the gold/bronze embroidery!

Rag & Bone/Jean Vintage Crop Flare – I bought black cropped jeans, but these were my second choice.

FWRD Sale

The Great Promenade Top  – I think this style is a modern classic. It’ll be a beautiful addition to anyone’s casual wardrobe.

Jonathan Simkhai For Fwrd Knit Lace-Up Dress – Ok I don’t know how “smart” a purchase this is, but I’m just loving that lace-up detail.

A.L.C. Madison Dress – Perfect dress for those cold nights!

If anything, the styling of these outfits are just spot on. It’s great just to browse and get styling tips haha.

The FWRD Sale details are:
Enjoy 20% off sale items with the code EXTRA20
Promo runs from 10 April – 12 April 11:59pm (AEST)

Hope you find something you like!

 


day of week

What I Wore: Press Stud Details

5 April 2017

Privacy Please Dress

It’s not often that I go out of my way to pick out a casual dress.

I always bypass the casual dresses and go straight for a statement or a floral dress, or I look for something fun and a bit different.

Well, Revolve gave me the opportunity to pick out a dress, and so I chose something I wouldn’t normally choose… a BLACK, CASUAL dress (this one!). And what do you know, I want to wear it everywhere now!

I wore it for a few hours to the hairdresser, then I wore it the next day while going out to lunch with my girlfriends. I washed it. I wore it several days later while doing errands. I washed it again, then wore it again the moment it was dry haha.

No need to iron it! Just wash and dry flat. So good.

Privacy Please Dress

It is the Rue Dress by Privacy Please, which comes in a light pink or black.

It is like a tube, jersey dress, with cap sleeves, a low neck line and a subtle stud button details.

Fabric: The label says it’s 95% rayon 5% elastane, but I don’t really know what that means. Basically it feels like a smooth, ribbed, kind of jersey. But it’s not shiny or fuzzy, it’s like a lightly ribbed t-shirt.

It is double lined, and it has a really good weight to it and a high quality feel. I think it feels awesome.

Fit: It isn’t tight at all. It just sits and hugs my body very nicely and it just feels SO GOOD to wear. I’m 160cm and 45kg wearing a size XS and Im usually a size AU/UK 6.

If you want, you can do up (or undo?) all the buttons. They are pretty stiff/strong, so I guess they are good quality. More importantly, I have no fear of them popping open unexpectedly haha.

Privacy Please Dress

I do have two other jersey style dresses (both $20 from Cotton On). Yes they were cheap and I have found the fabric to be very thin, so you can kind of see the outline of my bra and underwear. I have to wear seam-free underwear so it doesn’t show up. The fabric on those dresses have pilled and the seams have started to buckle after a few washes. So I am quite reluctant to wear them out.

So I think that the quality of the fabric and fit of this Rue Dress is definitely worth the price. Oh I can wear my regular underwear and there’s no obvious visible panty line.

It’s so easy and effortless!

OK, if I had to say something negative about the dress, I’d say that 1) maybe it’d look better on me if the length of the dress was a bit shorter? I kind of like the midi length though. 2) Maybe you need to have an hourglass or inverted triangle body shape to wear this dress? It’s a very figure hugging dress! Having said that, I’m not an expert on dressing to different body shapes.

As for the rest of my outfit, I’m also wearing: Meli Melo Rosalia Tote Bag, vintage scarf, Adidas Stan Smiths from ASOS (on sale!) and Celine Baby Audrey Sunglasses from Vision Direct.


day of week

What I Wore: Blue on Blue

31 March 2017

Blue on Blue

Hello Friday!

This weekend, my 12yo boy is having his Basketball Grand Final for Under 14s — omg I’m so excited for him! As much as I tell my son that it’s not about winning, it’s about the journey… I really want the team to win haha!!

I’m so nervous for them; my stomach is so fluttery, I might actually throw up. But of course, I have to hold it together, and play it cool.

I have two birthday dinner parties and a couples dinner this weekend. Yay for actually having a social life again!

One birthday party is for my mum, who turns 70 this year.

I’m a bit bewildered by this fact, because she is the most active 70 year old lady I know. Are all 70 year old Asian aunties this active?

She’s constantly dancing with her friends (for exercise), doing tai chi, looking after her garden (climbing up trees with a chainsaw?!), cooking a banquet for 16 people at the drop of a hat, caring for her own mum, and much more.

Did I mention we both went to Paris together and she and I walked for 10 hours in one day. Then 5-6 hours the next day. I was complaining about a sore lower back and she had zero complaints, sheesh.

I definitely want to be like her when I’m her age.

We’ve booked out a Chinese restaurant and we’re going to have one helluva seafood banquet!

This weekend, I’m also going to a 50s dress up party.

I’ve been to a 50s dress up party before, and that time I wore a conservative Mad Men style tailored top + skirt with a big faux fur coat.

But this time, I’ve bought a curly blonde wig and I’m going to dress up as Bad Sandy from Grease – haha!

I’m sure there will be lots of Bad Sandy’s, so I’m hoping for lots of twinsie pics.

Stay tuned for photos!

Blue on Blue

I’m running lots of errands today in my gorgeous Hello Parry Cali Palm Tree Top – which is so pretty, slinky and easy to wear. It feels so effortless and comfortable.

I think it’s the perfect shade of blue to match denim jeans. It has that denim-on-denim cool, but without that awkward feeling of double denim haha.

The top runs a bit small. I’m usually a size 6, so I’m wearing this top in a size 8.

I’m actually wearing it backwards – just for fun and it works!

Also loving my A.P.C Half Moon Handbag, my Adidas Stan Smiths from ASOS (on sale!) and my no brand denim mini skirt.

Have an amazing weekend!

xxx

 


day of week

What I Wore: Off Shoulder Knit

30 March 2017

Marjorelle Sweater + 3.1 Phillip Lim Bag

Whoa! Don’t you just LOVE IT when you stumble across a top, or shoe, or in this case, a knit, that is such an amazing addition to your wardrobe, that you want it in ALL colours – black, white, grey, blush, navy, maroon?!?

I’ve definitely found my latest staple knit.

This is the Twister Sweater by Majorelle.

Not sure why it’s called a ‘twister’ sweater, because it doesn’t twist at all. It’s an off-shoulder ribbed knit, but expertly cut, and made from a beautifully, heavy knit that sits nicely and feels luxurious to wear.

The fabric is 80% cotton and 20% nylon, it feels soft, smooth and has a good weight and substance to it. It’s not see-through at all.

I am always dubious when it comes to non-casual knits – because to me, knits are in the casual category – but this one has a really polished and sophisticated look to it, and I think it looks really lovely.

I’m wearing a Size XS and it think it’s a tiny bit big for me. But I have a short torso and arms haha. It is quite long in the body, as it’s supposed to cover your bum, but I just rolled up the hem at the bottom to make it look more proportionate on me.

It’s flattering, a bit sexy and a little different to the standard V-neck knit.

Marjorelle Sweater + 3.1 Phillip Lim Bag

I’m also wearing this Elijah Mini Skirt by Lovers + Friends.

It’s 100% cotton and it has some distressed denim details which I really like. The model on the product page is also wearing this exact off-shoulder knit and denim skirt combo and she looks positively hot!

I’m wearing a Size 25 and I’m usually Size 25 in jeans (Frame, Paige, AG, Acne) so it was a pretty easy for me to find my fit.

I actually bought a black Cotton On Denim Mini Skirt last summer, but after a few months of wear and washes, the cotton pilled (which is strange for denim) and the edges curled up and it didn’t sit nicely. The cotton also went stiff and hard, and it didn’t seem to soften with age.

So this Lovers + Friends skirt is a much better quality denim skirt (well it feels like it’s much better quality!) and here’s me hoping it keeps its shape and feel over time.

It’s another brilliant wardrobe staple.

And that brings me to my other TWO wardrobe staples…

3.1 Phillip Lim Soleil Bucket Bag is getting an excellent workout lately.

I love the size, it fits everything I need and my camera too. I’ve forgotten how much I love bucket bags. I’m also getting so many compliments for its unique shape and design.

I wore my Acne Studios Jensen Booties all over London and Paris when I was there earlier this year. But ever since returning to the Australia summer, I haven’t worn them till now. With the weather cooling down, I pulled the boots out, half expecting them to be stiff and hurt my feet, but nope. The leather is still soft and comfy, but rigid enough to keep its shape.

It won’t be long until winter!


day of week

What I Wore: Lace Up Dress and Shoes

28 March 2017

Zara and Aquazzura

While I was out sightseeing in London, there were so many instances where I found myself stuck indoors waiting for the rain and weather to clear up.

That’s right! I was forced into a Zara store and compelled to buy something! Haha!

This dress was in impulse buy. I saw it, I tried it on, I loved it and I bought it.

I don’t usually buy black dresses. When I do, the black dress would have to be pretty special for me to consider it.

So yes, I thought this was pretty special.

Zara and Aquazzura

It’s called the Bow Sleeve Dress.

I consider it to be a fantastic winter dress – as it has long sleeves.

It’s made from thick, warm, ribbed jersey fabric. It’s stretchy, comfortable, hugging, flattering, hides any bumps and lumps.

The eyelets and lace-up details make it pretty standout, edgy and sexy. But not too much.

Zara and Aquazzura

I wore the dress with my lovely Aquazzura Lace Up Heels (which I got on sale!) and there are a few other similar Aquazzura pairs on sale too.

I also wore some new earrings from Kookai too.


day of week

What I Wore: For Weekend Chilling

25 March 2017

Boyfriend Jeans by GRLFRND

Hi everyone!

This weekend, my husband is participating in a Perth to Rottnest Island, a 20km open water swim, well, his friends are swimming, he’s just kayaking!

It all sounds quite exciting. I’d love to do something like that, because it sounds so far out of my abilities and comfort zone haha.

It’s Saturday afternoon, I’m preparing for my 8 year old’s birthday bowling party: baking cakes, preparing party bags, making party food, and meal prepping for the week ahead.

My older boys are helping me with chores around the house: mowing lawns, mopping the floors, washing toilets, vacuuming, folding thet laundry.

I also have to take my boys to their basketball games.

Ok ok it’s not actually “a weekend of chilling”… but after all our jobs, I usually let my boys play computer games, hang out on social media for a few hours, while I jump on my screen or read a book on the couch.

Boyfriend Jeans by GRLFRND

I recently picked up these Karolina High-Rise Skinny Jeans (courtesy of Revolve) and eeek, they are amazing!

GRLFRND is a fresh take on vintage denim styles. The collection has 10 silhouettes, all named after iconic models like Cindy, Helena, Linda, Naomi and more.

Yes they are a bit more expensive than usual, thus I was very keen to see how the jeans compared to some of my other higher-end jeans.

I chose the size 25 (as I’m Size 25 for Paige Denim, Frame Denim, AG Jeans, Acne Studios)

How do they fit? I have to admit, they don’t look the same on me as they do on the model. (The model looks like the jeans were made for her legs.)

Maybe I should have chosen the Petite Karolina High-Rise Skinny Jeans instead?

Anyway, these jeans are slightly loose around my hips, thighs and calves. Ideally I would want to swap it for a size 24.5 (but I don’t think jeans come in “half sizes”!). Yet as I walked around in them, I fell in love with how comfy they were. I loved the baggy feel.

They seriously gave me a slouchy, rock star swagger haha.

Recently, I have been keen to experiment with baggy-styled jeans, mainly because, they look so good on other people! But I’ve tried so many different kinds: Boyfriend jeans, mom jeans, straight leg jeans. They all seem to make me look short and dumpy.

These Karolina Jeans are cut to be skinny jeans, so even though they are half a size too big for me, they still have that tapered and slim look, so I’ve decided they are a keeper.

The no stretch denim is out of this world. The fabric hangs so nicely and it’s insanely comfortable. These jeans are so different to the “stretched and hugged denim feel” that I’m used to.

Button fly, thick fabric, distressed details and faded colour for a vintage feel… they remind me of my old Levi 501s.

So how do they compare? It’s a bit difficult to compare stretch jeans to non-stretch jeans. So I will just say are just as fantastic in cut, feel and quality as my other high-end jeans.

I’m also wearing:

Grana Silk Camisole Top, ASOS Pointed Toe Slides, Sportsgirl Straw Hat, and Meli Melo Rosalia Bag.

Have a fab weekend everyone!

xxx


day of week

That Ultimate, Classic White Shirt

20 March 2017

White Poplin Cotton Shirt by Grana

Hi everyone! Ok, I’m not being paid, gifted, or sponsored for this … nor have I been asked to write this blog post.

This is totally off my own initiative, because I love sharing my awesome finds haha.

I bought this shirt myself… and I freaking love it.

It’s just a PLAIN, CLASSIC, WHITE, COTTON SHIRT.

You’d be surprised how hard it is to find a plain one?!

White Poplin Cotton Shirt by Grana

It is the White Poplin Boyfriend Shirt by Grana.

I do apologise for sounding like a crazy, Grana fanatic. But as I said, I bought it myself, and I also have it in a checkered/gingham pattern and a pinstripe pattern too.

The material just like a man’s cotton business shirt. It’s crisp, strong, really smooth, soft and opaque.

I have worn it by itself on a hot day, or layered with a singlet underneath and a knit over the top… and each time it feels soooo lovely to wear.

The XXS size is PERFECT for my Size AU6 frame.

The sleeve length is perfect for me. It sits just a touch beyond my wrist. The body length is perfect too. Not awkwardly long.

It has a relaxed fit. Not too baggy. And it fits nicely across the back and shoulders.

Best bit: Cost for quality.

It’s mind-bogglingly difficult to find a good quality white shirt at a reasonable price these days.

At AUD $79, it is such great value!

It also isn’t the end of the world if I spill something on it.

I’ve seen white shirts in Country Road (all have trendy details and over $100), Cue (styles are too fitted, over $100), Witchery (no plain styles), Myer (one was $550, hit and miss quality), Basque Petites (too fitted), Zara (quality wasn’t great), Shopbop (most over $100), The Iconic (trendy styles – big sleeves, embroidery), Forever New (trendy styles)… where else can one buy a plain white shirt? Er, not sure!

It seems as if all the stores assume you already have a plain, white, cotton shirt, so they all want to sell you ones with trendy details.

But I haven’t had a plain white shirt until recently. Most of my shirts have trendy details haha.

Anyway, even though this post isn’t a sponsored post, I did a sponsored post for Grana a fortnight ago and my discount code is still valid. So if you’re interested to buy, you might like a discount?

Get 10% off for New Customers

If you’re a new Grana customer, I have a special code for you to use to receive 10% off and free worldwide shipping. Simply enter the code “karenxgrana” at the checkout. Valid until the end of March 2017.

xxx


day of week

Grana Activewear Review

8 March 2017

Brought to you by Grana

Grana Move Activewear

The kind folk at Grana sent me a box of goodies to review, featuring a subject I’m very interested about – ACTIVEWEAR!!

I have loooots of activewear, all different brands, different prices, different fabrics, and different features. I’m not an ambassador for any particular brand, or anything like that, so I’m not particularly biased or loyal. I just like buying different stuff.

I asked the Grana Team to send a variety of sizes to try, so I could get my sizing right and try out a few different comfort levels.

OK here we go!

First of all, what kind of prices are we talking about?

Grana in general seem to focus on excellent quality fabrics at an affordable price. Considering that their silks are pretty awesome… you can get a nice silk button down shirt for AU$77 – that’s pretty good value! So they seem to be true to their word.

Grana have pitched their activewear at a mid-level price point and claim to have not compromised with the quality of their technical fabrics. Tops/crop tops are AU$36 – $42, leggings are between AU$56 – $65.

How’s the quality? 

Let’s get this out of the way. The leggings are NOT like Lululemon, in terms of their luxury stretch fit, super soft to touch, amazing hugging and butt lifting properties. (However Lululemon leggings start at AU$119 a pop.)

In my opinion, the Grana technical fabric is a pretty good, “middle of the range” quality.

The fabric is soft yet firm. It is not too plasticky or scratchy. (I’d say some of the inner seam stitching is a tiny bit scratchy though). The outside of the fabric is soft to touch, like jersey. But the inside is smooth and slightly slippery/spandexy like regular activewear.

The fabric feels nicer, stronger (and will probably last longer) than gear I’ve bought from BigW, Target, Kmart, Cotton On, Jeanswest, Sportsgirl.

Another nice thing: No logos whatsoever. Nice simple, minimal, clean designs. Love that.

Style: Because of this clean and minimal design, the Grana range has a very subtle, simple and understated style, which I like. Whereas Lorna Jane and some other brands are a bit loud, bold, electric and girl powerish… these Grana styles have quite the opposite vibe.

Grana Move Activewear

Many months ago, I saw a girl in my hot yoga class wearing a light pink (blush) bra top with cool cross-back straps. I wanted to get something similar and I looked the world over but couldn’t find anything like it (which I thought to be strange considering blush colours are all the rage now)… lo and behold, Grana have got that colour and I was SUUUPER excited to try!!

1) Active Crossback Sports Bra – Vintage Rose

I am so in LOVE with this style. It has bra hooks at the back. It gives your chest a nice lift. It has boob padding for a bit of extra shape and lift. I think it suits women with smallish boobs. But who knows, it might look amazing for women with bigger boobs too.

I definitely want this style in a grey or black!

The top stretched diagonally across my body and shoulders due to the cross back straps (which makes it feel slightly differently to a regular bra top). So I wouldn’t want to wear a smaller size or I think it would be uncomfortable and I might pop out during a work out??

Sizing: I am a very standard AUS /UK Size 6. This is a size SMALL. It fit me perfectly. As I said, I wouldn’t want to go smaller. It also comes in size XXS and XS. Which totally confused me, because ALL my other Grana clothes are size XXS or XS. So make sure you read the sizing info carefully before you buy.

Are they worth it? I’d say yes, for the price. But it’s more of a fashion choice. Do you need a hot looking bra top? Probably not haha.

2) Active 3/4 Leggings – Vintage Rose

When I got back from my UK trip I was about 48kgs, I struggled to put on these leggings, and when I did, they were so tight that they showed my panty line at both my hip and bum, they pinched at my leg crease and made my legs look horrible and lumpy. UGH!

Then I lost 2.5kgs and was back to my normal weight and now they fit beautifully! No lumpy legs!

Sizing: These are XS. They feel tight and like true compression tights. Great for working out in. If I wanted a more relaxed fit, I’d definitely buy S instead. I don’t think I’d be very comfortable lounging around in these XS all day.

I honestly didn’t feel any specific, ergonomic contouring or butt lifting. But they feel nice so that’s ok.

I like this style because it fits me in the leg length. No need to turn it up or bunch it up at my ankles.

I might get these in the Port colour too, because I can team it up with my black tops and they’ll look great.

Are they worth it? AU$56 for middle of the range quality 3/4 active tights, I’d say YES.

 

Grana Move Activewear

3) Active Racerfront Crop Top – Port

Oh wow, I really like this top style. It’s my second favourite item of the lot.

They are designed for low impact activities like yoga and pilates. They have no padding. They are SUPER comfy. And they look great!

That Port colour is divine!

Sizing: I’m wearing Size S, which feels perfect on me. It doesn’t feel too loose. Just comfortable. I wouldn’t want to go smaller with this style, again because I’m afraid I would POP OUT during a downward dog.

Are they worth it? Yes! Again, do you really need another cute yoga top? Probably not. But if you go through so many cheap Target activewear tops, this might be a good option to try next. For AU$36 you can’t really go wrong!

I definitely want this top in a black and grey too!

4) Active Full Length Leggings – Port

As i mentioned earlier, when I got back from my UK trip I was about 48kgs; I put these leggings on and they fit really well and were lovely and comfy (although they were too long in the leg).

But after I lost about 2.5kgs, they are a bit loose for me now.

Sizing: This is a Size S and like I said, I think they are too big for me. They are definitely too long in the leg and I will have to get them altered (which will cost about $15). They are actually really comfortable AROUND my legs. It’s like a hugged feeling, rather than a tight compression, and I actually prefer this level of compression on my legs.

But they are too loose on my tummy, hips, bottom and waist… and after a bit of walking around they slide down a bit.

They felt lovely and comfy, and I could definitely wear them all day around the house.

Are they worth it? Hmm. Personally I’d say no, because I’m short and the full length means I have to spend more money to alter it to my size. However, if I was taller and I got the Size XS, they would definitely be great value activewear at AU$65.

NOTE: I managed to tweak the fit by scrunching up the leg and folding over the waist (see below) and I made the leggings fit really well – so I kind of made 2 styles out of the 1 item. That might be a reason to buy a size up?

 

Grana Move Activewear

So these leggings are the SAME as the ones above!

4) Active Full Length Leggings – Port

As I said, I just scrunched up the length of the legs at my knees and folded the tummy part down. Looks and feels much better. It’s a much more relaxed fit for me. I could hang around all day in these leggings.

Are they worth it? Not for me. I’d rather buy the 3/4 leggings in a size XS for compression, and S for relaxed fit.

5) Active Structured Sports Bra – Grey

A very, very simple, standard bra top with racer-back design.

The fabric is nice, soft, yet strong.

It has some inner, mesh lining with a tiny bit of moulded boob padding.

Overall, I really liked this bra top.

The grey colour is nice too. It’s not marle grey. It’s more of a grey with faint dark grey stripe to add a bit of texture.

Sizing: This top is sized XS (while all the other tops I tried were Size S) and they felt a bit too tight for me. I struggled to put it on over my head. I’d feel better in a Size S.

Are they worth it? Yes! If you like a cleanly designed, super simple, comfortable bra top, with no logos or mesh panels or reflective random stuff, and with a tiny bit of lift and padding – this is a good one for AU$42.

Would I buy one? Er, probably not because I have so many sport bra tops. But hey, I might buy when my old ones eventually wear out.

 

Get 10% for New Customers

If you’re a new Grana customer, I have a special code for you to use to receive 10% off and free worldwide shipping! Simply enter the code “karenxgrana” at the checkout! Valid until the end of March 2017.

 

Hope you enjoy my review. Enjoy!

xxx


day of week

3.1 Phillip Lim Soliel Bag and Shopbop Sale

2 March 2017

3.1 Phillip Lim Soliel Bag

While I was in London and Paris, I had my heart set on buying a new black bag, in a bucket style.

I did lots of window shopping and visited lots of luxury stores, but in the end I bought online because of Shopbop’s Go Big Sale (which is on until 4 March).

I had my eye on this gorgeous 3.1 Phillip Lim Soleil Bucket Bag for months… and to finally get it with 25% off was icing on the cake!

It has a modern, sleek design, clean lines, structured silhouette, with a super cute box shape. At 23cm x 24cm, it’s a perfect size to fit all my stuff.

I like that it is light on hardware and very minimal.

It’s not an everyday bag for me. It’s more of a special outing bag for me.

If you’re looking for a special black bag too, this Shopbop Go Big Sale is a great place to start looking.

Simply enter the code GOBIG17 at the checkout to receive 15 off orders of $200+, 20% off orders of $500+ and 25% off orders of $800.

Here are a few black bags that I really like.

Shopbop Black Designer Handbags

A.P.C. Half Moon Bag – I have this bag! I absolutely love it. It’s a small crossbody handbag, just big enough to fit a purse, phone, keys and lipstick.

3.1 Phillip Lim Pashli Mini Satchel – This was the other handbag I had my eye on. It’s an older style, but it’s a classic 3.1 Phillip Lim bag. I really like its cool satchel look.

 

Shopbop Black Designer Handbags

Meli Melo Medium Thela Bag – I was just talking about Meli Melo a few days ago… and how the Thela is a lovely classic. This medium size bag is currently on 20% off sale, then use the Go Big code for another 20% off. Woot.

Alexander Wang Mini Rockie Bag – Ah I have been eyeing this bag for years! I LOVE the chunky but slouchy look to the Rockie Bags. It has a cool, sporty, casual look to that gets me every time.

 

Shopbop Black Designer Handbags

Furla Stacy Drawstring Bucket Bag – I really like the shape of this bucket bag, and the price was a lot friendlier to my wallet too. I saw it in a London store and it was lovely in real life.

Charlotte Olympia Pussycat Purse – Ok you can’t go wrong with a Charlotte Olympia purse to elevate your outfit, whether you’re dressed up or dressed down. Super duper cute!

Shopbop Black Designer Handbags

Karen Walker Milly Camera Bag – I’ve been thinking to get myself a boxy camera bag. I have a few in mind and this Karen Walker one is a particularly cute one. Of course, when they say “camera” bag, they mean compact camera, not a DSLR!

Mackage Keeley Bag – OK this is a recent addition to my wishlist. I totally dig that arrow charm, cool shape, and pebbled leather. It looks a bit like my Loeffler Rider Bag, so I probably shouldn’t get it haha.

 


day of week

Investment Lover Lace (Thanks to the Revolve Sale)

28 February 2017

Brought to you by Revolve

Lover Lace from Revolve Clothing

Sometimes all you need is one beautiful top to make yourself realise that you probably shouldn’t have blown your last month’s fashion budget on cheaper, trendy tops – oops!

Over the past few years, I’ve tried to be a bit more considerate about what I buy.

I’m trying to stick to a few rules and you’ve probably heard them a zillion times:

Go for the investment piece. Go for the classic. Be deliberate. Buy something that you absolutely love.Lover Lace from Revolve Clothing

I recently purchased this stunning Arizona Lace Top by Lover (which is still on sale).

I really ummed and ahhed over whether I should buy it.

Because when you think about it, it’s essentially a lace top and lace tops are quite common. I could probably get something similar from Topshop, Forever New or ASOS. Why spend all that money on ONE top, when I can have FIVE tops?

I took the plunge, and all I can say is… would I rather have five MEH tops or one BLOODY AMAZING top that makes me feel like a million dollars and that I can wear again and again?? I’ll take the latter thanks.

Wardrobe investment all the way!

Lover Lace from Revolve Clothing

It is a beautifully slim fit. It has zero stretch, but thankfully it fits me perfectly (I’m a standard size AU 6 and 45kg). It has a hidden zip all the way down the back, but it was still a bit tricky to put on.

The lace is out of this world. It’s so soft and cottony to touch and not scratchy at all. It does feel a bit delicate to wear and there are some movements I wouldn’t do – like twisting at my waist to grab something behind me or hugging myself (??) as there’s not much stretch.

I absolutely love how versatile it is!

I wore it dressed down, with a denim skirt, just like the model on the product page and it looked awesome.

This particular day, I’m wearing it with Black Culottes by Hello Parry and Pointed Flats by Charles and Keith.

Lover Top from Revolve Clothing

Revolve Clothing are having their BIG sale of the year for AU/NZ customers only. It’s an amazing time to get that big ticket investment item you’ve been eyeing.

Hit up the Revolve Sale Here and take 20% off everything (including sale items), but some brand exclusions do apply.

Just use the special promotion code 20OFF at the checkout. Sale ends 3 March.

Happy shopping!!

xxx


day of week

Meli Melo for Timeless Style

22 February 2017

Brought to you by Meli Melo

Summer Woven Bag by Meli Melo

Hi everyone!

Since the start of the year, I’ve had the pleasure of having several “omg somebody pinch me” moments in my life and work.

(Having said that, I think watching a nice sunset is a pinch-me moment haha!)

Anyway, one of those pinch-me moments comes from my latest collaboration with Meli Melo.

Meli Melo is a London bag brand, created and founded by Melissa Del Bono in 2005, who sought to create beautiful, timeless and practical handbags (without showy logos) for everyday women.

The brand has a strong focus on timeless Italian craftsmanship mixed with a London understated cool.

I first heard of the brand a couple of years ago, when Olivia Palermo was snapped carrying one. The bag caught my eye because it looked surprisingly “everyday” for Olivia. But it seemed to hit the magic trifecta – it looked really practical, stylish and effortless – like the perfect everyday bag! I didn’t recognise the brand, so I went to check out who designed it.

Meli Melo Thela Bags

Turns out it was the classic Thela Tote Bag – so nice right?

The style is considered to be one of Meli Melo’s Signature Bags and it’s easy to see why with its simple and timeless design.

Summer Woven Bag by Meli Melo

For my review I decided not to choose the Thela, because I was looking for a tote bag and something a bit more different (but not too different!)… so I chose this Rosalia Woven Bag – another of their signature bag styles.

I wanted a tote style bag with no top flaps, with a nice big opening and a discrete zip.

The Rosalia Woven Bag features an embossed woven leather, evoking the rustic wicker baskets of Sicily, where the designer Melissa grew up.

I love this unique texture! It’s so eye catching, because it looks like a woven basket and captures a sense of whimsy, wanderlust, uniqueness and like it holds a story from my childhood. It looks like it has lots of personality!

Usually woven basket textures give a sense of casual/resort styling, but because of its sleek shape and the long shoulder straps, it fits really well with city and urban styling.

Summer Woven Bag by Meli Melo

It isn’t a delicate, thin and slouchy kind of leather bag, that collapses into a puddle of buttery, soft folds.

The leather of the body is beautiful, luxuriously smooth and very thick, making it strong and structured, so it keeps its lovely shape when you place it down.

I loved putting it on a cafe chair next to me – because it stood straight and strong and opened up easily so I could quickly see and grab my things inside.

It seemed pretty resistant to scratches, scuffs and bumps, so it was nice to NOT have to worry about that when using it.

The thickness of the leather handles and straps are slightly thinner for comfort and usability, but still thick and strong.

Perhaps the downside of the bag is its weight, which is 1.1kgs. So it’s a solid weight, but not too heavy that it hurts my arm or shoulders.

It really feels like a luxury quality, leather handbag. It will last me years and years and it feels like the kind of bag that will get better with age.

meli melo Rosalia

The Rosalia Bag comes in nine different colours – lots of lovely pastels and subtle shades. I’ve shown my favourite 4 colours above: Light Tan, Taupe, Heron (light blue), Midnight Blue. It also come in Elephant Grey, Sand, Khaki, Lime and of course Black.

It also comes in a smaller “Mini” size which can be worn in a cross-body style. That’s super cute too!

If you buy from the Meli Melo website, they offer free worldwide shipping.

Or you can also buy Meli Melo from Shopbop (and you might be able to nab it on sale).

I absolutely loved using this tote as an every day bag for doing all my errands. Look forward to lots more photos of me and my bag haha!

Happy shopping!!

xxx


day of week

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


day of week

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.


day of week

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




meli melo Severine Collection