Wedding Guest Outfits…

As you get to a certain stage in your life; the people you went to school and university with, work with, socialise with and your family; well they all start getting married.  Obviously, I am happy for them but there is a sinking feeling in that petty little piece of me that says “Oh gosh…what will I wear?”  Also, if you are one of the lucky ones and receive a lot of wedding invites then the next question is “How many outfits do I need?”

Be like HRH Duchess of Cambridge and recycle your wardrobe.  That dress that you bought for one special occasion can be worn to another celebration.  All you need and this sounds so simple – rework the accessories that you wear with it.  This includes jewellery, shoes, handbags and how you style your hair and make up.  You can get plenty of wear out of that core investment piece.

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HRH Duchess of Cambridge shows how it is done

I had a recent opportunity to work with a HK based brand called The House of Folklore and one of the pieces that they had was a clutch that came in two different colours.  We thought as wedding season was coming, why not do a piece about how simply changing a clutch could change up an outfit.

In this case, I chose one of my go to dresses for pretty much any occasion (from first dates to working at PR events)  which in this case would be a wedding reception of a colleague.  These, I tend to go a bit more low key so the navy wrap dress from HK label WhattheFrock?.  Navy is a great alternative to black.  The cap sleeves makes sure you are covered and also for me, the wrap dress means that with fluctuating body sizes, the dress can still be worn.

Hair in this case was left simple and loose however, though we did not have time in this shoot, I would look at even just putting my hair up in a pony tail or a chignon.  If it was an outdoor wedding especially with the clear version of the clutch I would even look at wearing a fascinator.

Here is the look with the pink version of the Flutter Clutch.

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And here is a shot of the same outfit with the clear version of the clutch:

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OUTFIT POST: COLOUR AND PRINT CLASH – It’s OK for work wear (IMHO)

When I was younger…Just joking I will not start with that….

So where was I?   Firstly, thank you again to the talented Bryant Lee for this second outfit post shooting.  He called this the “professional look” so I apologise for some truly cheesy poses where I try to copy boss lady/corporate poses and head shots.  (Yes a bit cringeworthy) but the intentions were pure…the idea was to show you can be feminine, wear colour and print (with a bit of intentional clashing) and still be work appropriate.

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Would You Trust Your Finances to THIS FACE?  (No answers please…)

It is so easy to stick to dark grey, blacks and if you are lucky navy for your work wardrobe palette.  Yes it is the safe route to go and to be honest you can not go THAT wrong (do not make me eat my words!) with suits and shift dresses in those colours.  However, a question…would it not make you start your day with a smile on your face if you could add some colour to your work outfit?   Now, do not get me wrong, there are times when colour and patterns may not be appropriate.  I am not recommending lawyers to go and get a lipstick red suit or powder blue one and rock it to attend a serious High Court proceeding.  There are certain protocols and traditions that even this colour and pattern obsessive respects.

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I Feel Lady Like Yet Office Appropriate … The colours and prints also make me happy…

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Fit, Silhouette and Proportions Are KEY…

As I get older, I truly have learnt to embrace colour and print…I am lucky I guess that in my current role, I do not have to be so traditional in my workwear.  However, I believe any professional woman can add a little bit of print and/or colour to their wardrobe and still be taken seriously.  (Looking back, though I love it, my purple trouser suit might have been a bit too much of a throwback to Prince but hey you live and learn…right?)

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Just so you get a rough idea…but it was more fitted OK?

Anyway, if I was going to give any advice (and this is just from my own personal observations, mistakes and experiences and should not be considered to be gospel because HEY I am not an EXPERT!); then here is what I would say.

1)  Silhouette and Fit ARE IMPORTANT

If you are going to go for a loud colour and/or print (do it be adventurous!) then make sure the fit of the garments is right.  With anything that is ahem eye catching, if it is badly fitted you will just look like a hot (and not in a good way) scruffy colourful printed mess.  Stick to a streamlined silhouette (this kind of goes with the fit hence why I have put them together) and for example go for a pencil skirt (always a safe silhouette as can be super chic and lady like) or fitted trousers.  Too baggy trousers unless you are a supermodel, will make you look unpolished and is more suitable for casual outfits.  Though the neoprene skirt has a drape in my outfit post, it is still a pencil skirt silhouette so keeps it looking polished (hopefully) and professional.

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My serious face….?  This Marks & Spencer Limited Collection Skirt has a drape front but is still a pencil skirt silhouette and the orangey red is so on trend at the moment…

2)  Invest in Prints…

I cannot remember where I read it (if I remember I will edit and add the link) but fashion editors are right that you should spend a bit more if you are going to go for a print.  This Doll Memories printed silk blouse (http://www.doll-memories.com) is may be a tiny bit on the pricier side of my price range but you definitely are getting your money’s worth.  The print (whimsical cosmetics print) is detailed and crisp and clear on the silk.  The colour of the blouse is bright and consistent.  Not to be a snob, but printed clothing that is at a lower price range really can look cheap and would not probably pass muster for work.  Also it can look a little junior as well.

3) Keep Everything Else Simple…

With your clothing doing all the talking, keep accessories simple.  I focused on my wrists and fingers (accessories same as previous post) and kept it to one metal scheme…gold.  I avoided adding too much jewelry as it can just be a bit too much.  My hair is kept back in a pony tail and make up is quite simple.  A small cat’s eye and well I love my lip colour so an almost matching orangey red lipstick from MAC (matching to my skirt) are all that is needed.

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4)  Proportions

If you are going to play the colour and print game, then definitely pay attention to the proportions.  Simply put in my case I made sure that my skirt goes slightly below the knee and also rolling my sleeves up emphasises the skinniest part of my arm aka my wrists.

5)  HEELS HELP…

Something about a great pair of heels does complete an outfit.  Now do not go crazy and add glitter, bows or unwalkable heels (ideally not open toe either…strangely enough I find it really not professional looking even if your toes are beautifully pedicured.)  I was lucky that Voltage PR gave me this amazing pair of paint splattered snakeskin pump heels from Andrew Kayla.  They added a really nice contrast to my outfit and are actually quite comfortable.  The heel is not super high and the pointed toe helps to elongate my legs and make my ankles look relatively slim… A BIG YES in my book….

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Anyway…have fun…experiment and you WILL find the right mix…

OUTFIT POST: It is all YELLOW…

Sorry Coldplay, had to quote from your classic song.

So I totally fell in love with these Dagmar culottes (yes am currently obsessed with culottes -who would have believed it?)  I loved the stormy mountain scene painted on it and knew that this was going to be a focal point for the outfit.  (Yes, there is a danger having attention on my thighs and crotch area but the print was so PRETTY!)  I was gutted that the matching shirt was unavailable in my size but looking back in hindsight, I think for my personal style, it may have been a bit too much.  (Too much print for moi you say?)

354A6633These Dagmar Culottes are AMAZING…

For the top.  I took a complete departure from my usual comfort zone.  I would generally pair these culottes with a simple black T or a black silk tank/shirt.  Vein kindly lent me some pieces which really encapsulate the sports luxe trend as they are made from stretchy jersey.  The jacket is also in a bright yellow which I was nervous about it as it was quite fitted especially around the arms but in fact I am happy Vein pushed me.  The jacket is also from Dagmar.  The big push for me was to wear the black singlet from BACK by Anna Sofie Back.  I have seen her brand on many of the big blogger including such people like Susie Bubble.  However, firstly, I am wary of something with a big strip of branding but also something that is super fitted.  In fact, it really is too much of the “street” style that I can never seem to get the hang of.

354A6609Pushing Myself Out of My Usual Comfort Zone was GOOD

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354A6663Keep Accessories Simple

So what accessories?  I kept it all simple with my VOID watch, Filippa K black flats and bag by Baum und Pferdgarten.  The trousers and the colour palate of yellow is so much that I wanted some simple accessories to ground the outfit otherwise it could have been a hot Scandi mess!

354A6592Warning: Hot Scandi Mess Approaching!

All clothing and props apart from the lipstick (Thanks to MAC for my Heroine lipstick) and watch (VOID http://www.voidwatches.com) come from Vein in St Francis Yard.

Vein (address: Shop 301-302, Lee Gardens One, 33 Hysan Avenue, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong telephone:2528-4988)

Vein on the Yard (address: 2 St Francis Yard, Wan Chai, Hong Kong telephone 2804-1038)

website: http://www.bvein.com

Photos once again by Bryant Lee (www.bryantlives.com)

(Outfit Post) Life can be a Bunch of Roses…

This was my favourite outfit shoot out of the ones that I did with Bryant.  The simple fact was I was acting like myself and acting like a complete fool.  I know I won’t get prizes for my posing but it was felt so comfortable to act like a goof ball.  I also learnt a valuable lesson, a good prop is such a confidence booster.  A big shout out to Vein again for providing their clean white shop front for me to pose in front of and my prop which was “The Gentle Woman” with Bjork on the cover.

The pristine white back drop was perfect for the outfit I was wearing which was a rose print neoprene sweatshirt and skirt by one of my favourite brands Baum und Pferdgarten.  It was a lot of print and the  sweatshirt being in neoprene was a little bit bulky looking.  My mum does not like this outfit as she says it does nothing for my figure.  But I love it anyway simply for the print.  The collection has an amazing pair of trousers in the print which were sold out in hours on the brand’s online store and they have a coat in the print (disappointingly for me it really did not suit me.)  I kept things simple with my lovely black Filippa K black flats and hair slicked back and a fresh slick of MAC “Heroine” lipstick.  I think the silhouette (personally) would be more flattering if I had worn heels but that would have ruined the casual feel I was wanting to create – however it would be a simple fix to take the look into evening.  Only accessories was my trusty VOID watch.

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And then I got silly…but I learnt a good prop makes the difference.

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All clothing and props apart from the lipstick and watch come from Vein in St Francis Yard.

Vein (address: Shop 301-302, Lee Gardens One, 33 Hysan Avenue, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong telephone:2528-4988)

Vein on the Yard (address:2 St Francis Yard, Wan Chai, Hong Kong telephone 2804-1038)

website: http://www.bvein.com

Photos once again by Bryant Lee (www.bryantlives.com)