Sunday, May 10, 2015

SPOTTED: Come hang out with SK-II Brand Ambassador Cate Blanchett and local influencers‏ online!

From 1pm to 1.30pm on 14th May, SK-II Brand Ambassador and Academy award-winning actress Cate Blanchett will be hanging out LIVE on Google+ with our very own local influencers. Come find out beauty tips from celebrity Cate and stand a chance to win SK-II products when you watch the session live! You can even instantly shop the products she loves with Luxola.

All you need to do is:

  1. Follow SK-II Singapore on G+ via this link: google.com/+skiiofficial
  2. Watch all the action LIVE on 14th May, 1pm to 1.30pm by RSVP-ing via this link: http://bit.ly/1KQYZjR

Good luck! (:

Saturday, May 9, 2015

SEWING: She Wears the Pants「気分はマニッシュ」

She Wears the Pants「気分はマニッシュ」is the first English-translated Japanese sewing book that I owned. All my other Japanese sewing books are in well, Japanese, and it's actually quite a challenge to try and 'decode' it. Heh. So it was really with ease when I wanted to pick my next (Japanese) sewing project from this book; I didn't have to worry that I didn't understand a particular term or piece of instruction. Heh.

The book is penned by Yuko Takada and it's meant for ladies who are opting for the boyfriend look. The clothes featured are simple and classy. And even though there are completely no frills, there's still a hint of feminine sophistication - which I really like. (:

There are 20 different projects altogether. At the end of the book, there's also a small section that shows you how to choose and make the patterns, and teaches some basic sewing techniques.


No. 05 Velour Blouse

This piece is a combination of velour and knit - 2 fabrics which I have yet to work with. I really like the sailor-looking collar though, which takes structure from fusible interfacing.


No.06 Square Top and No.07 Fleece Jacket

The square top is an interesting piece - it's basically a long rectangular piece of T-cloth (Google says that this is a plain-woven cotton fabric.) with 2 arm holes. I'll probably try making this during the holidays!


No.12 Draped Mini Dress and No. 14 Semi-flared Culottes

I love, LOVE culottes! This year alone, I have bought 4 and we haven't even hit June. Haha. It's a real pity that I can't wear them to work but anyway, the one above is stitched from corduroy and fusible interfacing.


No.16 Tippets

These tippets are adorable and dress up any outfit in any instant! They do look a tad more challenging though, because of all the curves.


No.18 Dotted Blouse and No.19 Semi-flared Culottes

Culottes again! This is the same pair as the aforementioned one. And a dotted blouse that's made from a fabric with a dotted pattern in 2 different colours.


No.20 Belt Stole

The book ends with a knitted belt that comes together with a big safety pin, which is a little strange but I suppose it can double up as a scarf as well.


The small little section on 'Basic and Techniques'.


The patterns which come in 2 double-sided sheets.

There's a good mix of simple and more challenging projects, and various fabrics are explored. Instructions are succinct but there were some tiny bits which beginner me needed help figuring out.

The patterns for all 20 projects are compiled in just 2 double-sided sheets, which makes tracing the patterns a tad difficult. So I use Pilot Frixion pens (Pictured right above.) to go over the patterns first. These pens' ink goes away with some heat from the hair dryer. (:

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No.10 Pompom Blouse

For my 2nd 'major' sewing project, I tried making the Pompom Blouse, without the pompoms. Didn't quite like the idea of having little fluffy balls hanging around my neck. Heh. But I do like the strip of contrasting fabric!

This blouse is a lot simpler than the previous one, so it took a shorter time to complete. The most challenging bit was actually sewing the bottom seam (Haven't erased the chalk marks above!). I must have tried sewing it close to ten times. Haha. And the front neckline sags a little. I think it was meant to cater to the pompoms but because I don't have them, it looks a little strange. Heh. I'm probably gonna make a little fold in the centre or at the side. Still very not perfect but yay, I did it! :D

She Wears the Pants (ISBN No. : 978-4-8053-1326-8) will be available from May 12th onwards here.

Saturday, May 2, 2015

ATM: Say 'Grazie mamma!' with Dolce&Gabbana!

May 10th is the day when we celebrate the love that comes from the core of every family, our mother. (: She is endlessly inspiring and resourceful, and she was the woman Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana celebrated in their Fashion Show.

This Mother's Day, Dolce&Gabbana is all ready to spell thanks to every mother with their fragrances:

  • Dolce Floral Drops
    To celebrate your Mother's kindness and caring vitality, full of love and a gentle sensibility.
    Dolce Floral Drops preserves the harmonious signature of white flowers found in Dolce, combining the same floral notes but enriching its character with the lively and crisp green opening of Neroli leaves. The scent is infused with White Amaryllis, a rare white floral scent used in perfumery for the very first time with their creation. This precious ingredient forms the heart of the fragrance, just as every mother is the heart of her family.

  • The One
    For the one who is always there for you, the one whose strength is present throughout the entire family.
    The One opens with a sparkling and modern interpretation of fresh top notes of zesty Bergamot and Mandarin combined with juicy Lychee and Peach. The heart encompasses the timeless and feminine scent of the Madonna Lily, Lily of the Valley, and Jasmine. The scent unfolds to reveal a deep base of rich Vanilla and resinous Ambery notes combined with smooth Musky notes. Beautiful and timeless, yet modern and unmistakable, The One is a work of contemporary luxury. Beaming in gold, it is meant to be seen, celebrated and adored, much like any mother.

Dolce Floral Drops comes in 30ml, 50ml and 75ml for $99, $138 and $156 respectively. The One comes in 30ml, 50ml and 75ml for $107, $153 and $178.

日本ラブ:日本語

Earlier in January, I decided to pick up Japanese again. This is actually my 4th attempt. Haha. I have been trying to learn the language properly since forever. But laziness and procrastination proved to be very massive stumbling blocks. BUT BUT now that I'm an adult with supposedly better discipline and have no exams to be used as excuses, I'm hoping that I'll finally learn the language. *fingers crossed*

To keep myself going, I am creating this new little corner on my blog - Nihon Love「日本ラブ」. This is where I'm going to ramble endlessly about all things Japanese as I learn more about the language and culture. And I hope you will enjoy it as much as I do penning these entries down. ^^

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I am currently studying at Ikoma Language School. Come July, I'll be taking my JLPT N5... Which is actually quite 'worrying' because I'm so useless with the vocabulary. Everything sounds so similar and I swear it's more difficult than Mandarin. Haha. Anyway, before Ikoma, I tried 2 other schools and I thought I write a little about my experience with all 3 here. I hope it helps you if you're looking for a school to enroll in!

  • Bunka Language School
    This is the first Japanese school I attended. They have their own unique way of teaching the language; they use the 'New System Japanese', which is based on the progression of the learner's level of interest. So basically when you first start and are all excited about the language, you are taught the Hiragana and Katakana, and the 6 main conjugation of verbs. I think this works if you are very disciplined, but I wasn't then. Haha. Anyway, the school's located at Delfi Orchard which was really far for me then, so I gave up pretty quickly. Heh. Oh yeah! One thing that's really cool is that the school holds cultural events every now and then, such as mochi making and calligraphy. (:

  • Cambridge Language School
    Hmmm... I'm not quite sure if this school is still around. Anyway, I signed up for it because it was really close to home then. I think the school focused more on conversation and the pace was a whole lot slower than Bunka's. A tad too slow actually, especially since I already knew the basics. I stopped when my course ended (I think I skipped the last lesson. Heh.).

  • Ikoma Language School
    Ikoma's pace is in-between the 2 aforementioned schools' and is the most comfortable to me. The school uses the Minna no Nihongo 「みんなの日本語」books. There are 5 different levels, and each comes with 2 terms. You learn Hiragana in Basic 1, Term 1 and then, Katakana in Basic 1, Term 2. The conjugation of verbs is slowly introduced throughout the levels. I joined the school 2 years ago and had the most adorable and knowledgeable teacher, Yamauchi 先生! But then, school got in the way and I stopped last March, after completing Basic 1. This year, I took the placement test and resume my studies under the very sweet Kenjo 先生. And I'll be completing Basic 2, Term 2 soon! ^^

Sunday, April 26, 2015

SEWING: Simple Summer Clothes 「夏のかんたん服 」

Last December, I decided to pick up sewing. It was something that I had always wanted to do, but was afraid that I didn't have the flair for it and would waste a whole lot of money. BUT given that I was already 'wasting' a whole lot of money on clothes and skincare products, I might as well divert my expenditure to a skill... RIGHT? Haha.

Anyway, the first sewing book I bought was 「夏のかんたん服 」, which means Simple Summer Clothes. This was recommended by dear Enid. Though the book is completely in Japanese, it's relatively easy to follow once you have had some help interpreting the diagrams and some terms. Enid taught me, but you can also refer to this online tutorial here or purchase this very helpful e-book, How to Sew Japanese Sewing Patterns.

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No. 11 ノーカラーのブラウス

The clothes in this book are simple, comfy and feminine. I tried making the checkered blouse featured on the front of the book and it took like... 12 hours. HAHA. It was my first time working the sewing machine, so I had to keep ripping seams out because of really bad sewing. :\ The most challenging part was sewing round the curves, especially when it came to attaching the bias tape on the neckline. Still, it was really fun!

I have since bought several other Japanese sewing books, both in Japanese and English. Will be penning down more reviews in future! ^^

Sunday, April 19, 2015

EVENT: Watsons' Girls' Day Out

Back in March, I attended Watson's Girls' Day Out with Fel. It was the drugstore's 27th birthday and they were launching several new brands/ products and also, their very own Watsons eStore! ああ~ Shopping in the comfort of my own home is the best thing ever. No crowds, no sweltering heat, no lugging of heavy bags... Really, everything should be done online (Though convenience does spell trouble for the pockets... Ahem.). Haha.

Anyway, here are 5 brands/ products that I'm really looking forward to discover:

  1. Asience
    This hair care brand has been with me since secondary school (Well, on and off. I still like Shiseido Tsubaki best.) because Mum loves it. They are revamping their formula to include a new Beauty Serum, which is a concentrated infusion of precious oils and essences. 2 ranges are available - Inner Rich for dry, frizzy and unmanageable hair and Nature Smooth for oily scalp and tangled ends.
  2. Bioderma
    I have been using the Créaline H2O Micellar Solution for about 2 years now and it cleans off makeup effectively and without any irritation. Last month, they launched the Sensibio Lait Cleansing Milk which contains the Toleridine patent. It increases skin's tolerance level and reduces skin's sensitivity over time.
  3. Béne Premium
    This line is created by award-wining professional hair care brand, MoltoBene. It is formulated to be enzyme-rich and free from silicones through the use of only the best natural ingredients. 2 ranges are available - Bluria to restore hair health through deep cleansing and Rougeria to rejuvenate damaged hair with intense conditioning.
  4. Honeycé
    Another line under MoltoBene, this one targets both the hair and the scalp with the use of different types of honey. 2 ranges are available - Moisture Repair Series contains 8 different types of honey to care for even the most damaged hair and Juicy Spa Series which improves overall hair and scalp conditions with clay, sea salt lemon, royal jelly and honey.
  5. Kustie
    Formulated in France, this brand uses a potent concoction of specially handpicked flowers, essential oils and natural nutrients for an indulgent and luxurious shower. 4 ranges are available - Rose, Chamomile, Cherry Blossom and Lavender. They are suitable for all skin types.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

REVIEW: Skinfood's Moisture Egg Hair Pack

Though it was only recently that I started using Korean beauty brands 'seriously', Skinfood has always a brand that I trust. The few products that I have used thus far worked well for me and I do gush over them quite a bit to my friends (HEH.). And the latest product that has got me all excited is the Skinfood Moisture Egg Hair Mask.

The Skinfood Moisture Egg Hair Mask is a hair mask that contains protein-rich egg extract, and vitamins. It nourishes hair that has been damaged by chemicals and heat, so that it becomes healthy and resilient. After shampooing, I apply the mask on the bottom half of my hair for slightly more than the stipulated timing of 5 minutes. Sometimes, I apply this on dry hair half an hour before I shower. Haha. I'm not exactly sure how much more effective the 2nd method is, but it's something that I do with all my conditioners and hair masks. Heh.

After washing and air-drying, my hair feels airy and stronger, and it stays that way for a day or two. Unlike other hair masks that I have used, this seems to give my hair some volume and hence, some 'life'. Haha. Also, it makes my hair smells like yummy custard (Don't worry, it isn't that strong!). :D I'm halfway into my tube and actually placed an order for 2 more last night, because Cosmetic Love is having a Skinfood sale now.

Have you tried this or any other Skinfood hair care products? (: