turning out to be a disorder

i don’t know if it’s just me or that others may be able to relate to this but sometimes when i’m feeling apathetic or severely confused about what to do, i think about buying shoes. i used to laugh at movies where the heroine resorts to shopping, shoe shopping to be more specific, to alleviate their stress but i think the same thing is happening to me. the fact that this may be my fourth or fifth post about those wonderful creations is already a solid sign that i have got a slight disorder. 
in a day, i’d usually think about them or look at online shops and ponder about buying a new pair. there was a time last week where i was lying in bed and i was feeling restless then i thought i needed to buy a new pair. luckily, there is still a conscious voice in my head that reminds me that i don’t need a new one as i’ve still a got a couple of pairs i haven’t worn yet so i think i’m still safe.
i hope i’m not alone in this. if you think you have this disorder, raise your hand. *wink*
peach blazer – thrifted
graphic tee – night market, bangkok
black leggings – random
black cuban heels – parisian, sm dept store
work watch – esprit
dog tag necklace – custom made
rings: bow tie and flower cluster – carbon finds | white stone – borrowed from sis

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the deafening silence

despite how talkative i am, i always still tend to drift off into my own space and sometimes avoid talking to other people. when my sister was out playing with the other kids in our neighborhood, i’d stay at home and watch captain planet or ghost busters while eating instant noodles and crackers. in high school, instead of spending summer out with friends, i’d while away the afternoon writing a novice novel or different short stories. i appreciated alone time and made sure to have a few hours to myself just to keep myself sane. however, on the first night alone in our house — with both my sisters having moved out, i found the time alone to be utterly sad. i finally, after 25 years have the room all to myself but it felt weird. so i succumb to the one game i avoided the most — plants vs zombies. God help me.

photo taken at banilad town center, cebu
vintage floral dress – thrifted
beige suede wedges – gold dot
braided tan belt – pratunam, bangkok
tan oversized bag – parisian, sm dept store
brass bangles – carbon finds

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head over heels

as kids, we grew up watching cinderella getting help from mice, birds and her fairy godmother. we watched how ariel and eric were serenaded “kiss the girl” by frogs and how a candelabra and a teapot were singing to belle and the beast. these fairytales amazed me and instilled in me an optimism that had carried on till’ now.

having grown up, we now believe in different kinds of fairytales. aside from the usual soulmate-fate-take the risk movies, there is one kind of fairytale that i constantly long for. the fairytale of a place where all ladies can wear heels without strain. i watch how Carrie Bradshaw, Serena Van Der Woodsen and Andrea Sachs walk, romp and run in heels that i can’t help but wonder how it is possible. my shoes and theirs may differ in price by the thousands so theirs might have the extra comfort but it certainly can’t be denied that the constant tiptoe form of the feet would still eventually hurt.

so i may own all those heels above but the longest time i can tolerate the pain is 5 hours (12 hours if i’m in a carpeted room). running around in heels on hard pavement will always be a fantasy.

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making over my boyfriend

harry asked me yesterday what for me is fashion’s significance in society. it felt like a miss universe question and i wanted to immediately answer, “world peace” without batting an eyelash. haha! kidding aside though, i had to think hard before answering because weirdly, i’ve also been wondering the same thing for the past few days. 
here’s my answer: “even if we want to deny that physical appearance doesn’t have anything to do with our well being, it does. by looking physically good, we feel mentally and emotionally good as well. take for example, “how do i look” (the reality tv show in lifetime tv). the ones who undergo the makeover initially don’t agree that they need one not necessarily because they don’t like to dress up but because they’re not confident enough to do so. by dressing up (and at the same time being modest about doing so), i’d like to believe that i inspire other people to do the same and in the end, they feel good about themselves. 
harry said: “exactly. just what i thought. and for that, i’m not only getting inspired but i will be joining your world.”
i said, looking at his ratty outfit: “in that???”
we had to burst out laughing because that’s just how we are. we take turns annoying each other. seriously though, i have indeed seen a transformation in harry ever since i met him more than 2 years ago. back then, he used to own only one pair of sneaks, a handful of shirts and one pair of jeans. he admits to having his eye opened to personal style by me. by being passionate about my personal style, i guess i’m transforming one person at a time.

white top with lace shoulder detail – pratunam, bangkok
brown pleated pants – chatuchak, bangkok (originally armand’s)
lace-up wedges – gold dot
camel braided belt – pratunam, bangkok
zebra-print fedora hat – sm dept store
cross necklace – borrowed from aimee
rings: skull and blue stone – carbon finds
bangles – carbon finds

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teenage excitement

although this has caused a little argument with harry (which has been resolved so don’t worry), i miss my teen years — the ‘kilig’ and excitement that came with it. i am not specifically talking about my love life as there are other important aspects of life other than that. i am talking about the general feeling of being a teen. being filled with hopes and aspirations. being all set to conquer the world. having this determination to be the best that we can be. reality takes a huge bite out of these things and certain dreams have to be set aside. i was never in denial that growing up is easy but i also never thought that there are times that it would be really hard, like having to accept that people i love would eventually have to live separate lives from me. it’s inevitable and i should have had this wisdom now that i’m 26 but it’s still hard. 
in my usual way of dealing with things, i am looking at the bright side after wallowing in the confusion. immediate plans for the last 2 months of 2010 are: canvass and window shop for a bigger bed for my room and a new shelf for all of my books (and the books that i have yet to buy), search for interior design inspirations for the room that will now be all for myself, plan a family getaway and finally, learn how to control the waterworks when we do have to be at the airport come december.
ps. thanks to everyone for all your thoughts, wisdom and opinions on my last post. fashion is indeed a tricky business and if we’re not careful, it can draw us into a world of materialism and vanity instead of art and self-expression.
cotton printed dress – chatuchak, bangkok
green tunic used as cover-up – mom’s closet
brown peep-toe platforms – CMG
necklaces: charms – carbon find | fairy – props
bangles: wooden green and blue – props | brass ones – carbon finds
rings: brass skull, burnt orange stone – carbon finds | oval blue stone and green stone – props
zebra-striped fedora hat – sm dept store

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fashion: art? or plain vanity?

an old friend whom i haven’t spoken to in maybe 8 years recently caught up with me in facebook. we used to write all the time when we were kids until life got the hold of us and we were soon too busy to talk. in the past 8 years, that friend has travelled the world and is currently taking up a masters degree at a prestigious university. we’re the same age and knowing of my friend’s current activities, it got me wondering if my interests are shallow compared to my friend’s. while my friend is busy studying and advancing his knowledge, here i am obsessed with shoes and waking up thinking about what to wear. 
everyone have different interests and passions. some are passionate about music. some are passionate about computers. others are even bizarrely passionate about maps. i am passionate about fashion; about personal style and i have constantly said that fashion is my form of art and how i express myself. but where does art end and vanity begins with fashion? or does it always have to go together?

blue polka maxi dress – props
white knit cardigan – thrifted
white wedges – borrowed from mom
necklaces: watch necklace – hongkong | square with bird – gifted from gelie
bangles – carbon finds
rings: butterfly – platinum mall, bangkok | white stone – props

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such a tease

..life that is. small challenges or hindrances tend to show up just when the one thing i’m excited about is nearing as if i have to learn to be more patient than ever or that it’s some kind of test, determining whether i deserve it or not. i don’t know with you but i’m the kind of person who easily gets excited about something — like buying shoes, an upcoming family trip, starting a new job, waiting for harry’s home cooking or getting my new mac. i sometimes lose sleep over something i’m excited or anxious about and my mind can run like crazy. like when i’m about to sleep, already comfortable under my sheets and i suddenly think about potentially setting aside money for a pair of shoes or for plans of buying a new camera, i’d turn on the lights, pull out my calculator, notepad and pen and get going at the computation. i know, i know, i’m crazy. *wink*
what i’m saying is, a lot of things lay before me now that i am all too excited about. and if it weren’t for my past life-teasing experiences, i would have flailed my arms with desperation now with all that’s happening to me. something big is up and despite my little mess ups, i hope that in the end, life grants me this. after all, i’ve taken deep breaths, pulled myself back up to roll with the punches, firmly having faith that it is for me. 

skirt used as tube top – thrifted
mustard cardigan – thrifted
skinny jeans – chillypapa
gold flats – sensini, bangkok
rings: blue stone and gold leaf – carbon find | orange howlite – dane’s giveaway
bangles – all gifted
cutout pattern necklace – gifted from ivy
work watch – swatch
brown sunnies – carbon find

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where i am + what i can afford

ever since i was a kid, i have been reading fashion magazines (even late copies of U.S. seventeen magazines) and just absorb all the fashion in it. i’d take in all the details in editorials and try to emulate them in real life. i was not born rich and did not grow up rich so we always had to make do with what we have. i am not saying that we couldn’t afford good shoes or clothes too as special occasions do call for special clothes but growing up, we always had the ‘i can do that’ attitude. we’d admire a piece of accessory and if it’s too expensive, we’d tend to say, ‘well, i can make my own anyway.’ it may not be apparent now that i know how to make my own accessories but i’ve had far too many DIY projects while in school to save me. my mom and aunts have introduced us to ukay-ukay (thrifting) and scouring our lola’s old closets at a very young age that we learned to admire quality clothing and materials over synthetic ones found at the malls or retail shops. my dad has also instilled in us the value of saving up for what we want so we have grown to pay in cash and not by plastic.

i am writing this after reading my favorite Philippine fashion magazine, Preview. although they occasionally do features on outfits that cost less than a thousand or have recently done a feature on department store buys, most of the items and products they print all cost above P1000. they have bags or shoes that cost P10,000 – P500,000 and i always am at awe at how people in a third-world country can afford this. i say i am lucky for having had sufficient values on money growing up, but i fear for the other girls like me (yes, the ones in the middle class) who desperately want to attain such luxurious items. i believe credit cards were created for the middle class only so we can ‘seemingly’ afford what we really can’t by having the ‘virtual’ purchasing power even when we don’t have the actual money for it. 
oh no, i am not against those Filipinos who can afford Louis Vuitton, Hermes or Chanel. if they can afford it and can easily shell hundreds of thousands without fearing for their lives and worrying about not being able to eat or afford fare to work, then i am happy for them. i will not deny that i dream of being in that state one day. i will also not stop subscribing to Preview just because they print uber-expensive items because i have learned to use my envy and channel it the best way i know how, to use these items as inspiration. all i am saying is if we can’t afford it, let’s make do with what we have. i am perfectly happy conquering ukay-ukay (thrift) shops for all my clothes all for less than P300, buying my ballet flats and flat sandals in SM department store for only P500 and accessories at the shops downtown and i will continue to save up for the P2000 high-heeled platforms that i spotted at CMG (until i can afford it!). 

mixed-print dress – thrifted
purple blazer – linea italia (borrowed from charm)
tan cut-out heels – le donne (gifted from harry)
white braided double belt – pratunam, bangkok

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melancholic excitement

ever since our family went on a hongkong trip last year, we’ve decided to take family trips outside the country at least once a year. since both my mom and dad are almost retiring from their jobs and all of us siblings have graduated college and are all working, we thought we deserve a break every year. this year’s trip is to Bangkok, Thailand. our local airlines Cebu Pacific, despite some people’s bad experience with it, has regular seat sales and luckily, we were all able to avail of the sale having our round trip tickets at half the price! so we booked our flights months ahead and have been counting down to the day of our trip — which is tomorrow. 
ironically though, i am both utterly excited and sad to leave because for one, our grandma passed away last week in Texas and will be brought to Cebu this week when we’re not here and secondly, Harry is still in the hospital and will still be by the time i leave for Bangkok tomorrow. i am very much worried for him as his fever has been going up and down for the past 4 days. he’s had a diagnosis of two bacterial infections and  might have another diagnosis of dengue fever. i badly wish that i can cut my body in half and enjoy in Bangkok with family and take care of Harry too.
on a brighter note, that ring on my ring finger was given to me by marianne for my birthday. it is an owl’s head and it has wings on the side. i know didn’t do the ring justice with the photos i took. my sisters even thought it’s a frog. nevertheless, i love it! it has so much character and that’s exactly what i want to exude. thanks yannie for the gift!
also, a surprise awaits you my readers this coming august 20-23. make sure to check out my blog on those times!
blue plaid dress – thrifted (mink)
grey gladiator flats – parisian, sm dept store
owl ring – gifted from marianne
rectangle stone ring – props
layers of gun-metal bangles – props
gun-metal reindeer necklace – bubble bee tea house
dogtag necklace – custom-made
work watch – swatch

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a failed attempt to un-plan

for someone who intends to just unwind and not make any plans for my long-awaited permanent vacation from the corporate world, i am failing badly at it. my mind is just built to plan and look at least 5 steps ahead. i plan when i’m driving, i plan before i go to sleep and i just plan even when i’m doing something else. ironically, i like being spontaneous when it comes to having fun like road trips in the middle of the night or just deciding to go to Bantayan island without any plans where to stay or where to eat but when it comes to making a living and making sure that i am able to support my family and survive, i simply cannot just be spontaneous about it. so when i told my manager that i do not intend to plan for the next month, oh no boss, i think i was partly lying.
here is my failed attempt to un-plan:
start planning a clothing line with Armand Alforque next week | do part-time online article writing to earn extra bucks (and learn new stuff too) | celebrate my birthday in Daanbantayan with my family | Bangkok trip with family on the 3rd week of  August | invest a little in my sister’s clothing shop, Props by being her shopper and wholesaler | start working as marketing executive for Drawing Board Creative Studios by September — it’s a growing advertising agency  my sister and her fiance manage so at least i’ll be working closely with people and meet new ones as well AND it’s a day job — yey! | 
my friend and i also planned to list down ten things we haven’t done in Cebu and pursue them over our vacation in August. apparently, quarter-life crisis is common among close friends so we both took leaves together. she’s on a one-month leave while mine will be permanent. will update you on our list..soon!
floral dress – thrifted
mustard cardigan – thrifted
white peep-toe heels – janeo, sm dept store
vintage-y long necklaces: watch – hongkong gift shop | safety pin + trinkets – DIY
rings: orange howlite ring – dane’s giveaway | burnt stone – thrifted at carbon
bangles – props and a gift from april

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what would you do?

on monday, my resignation became official. yes, i know i already wrote about submitting my resignation and talking to my manager but for the last 2 or so weeks, they have been holding on to this hope that i will change my mind so they kept me talking to higher management and have tried postponing my decision by saying, “let’s talk again on monday…just spend the weekend thinking about your decision.” they told me that on 3 fridays. so i just nodded only to come back every monday with the same plan in mind. i didn’t mean to give them a hard time and i am definitely not trying to give too much importance to myself. i am sorry guys, but you can’t hold this girl down. 
so i have 6 more working days (counting tonight) until my last day in the corporate world. i am counting the days and have been counting the hours, literally! i have already transitioned all my tasks to the other supervisors that i have ended up not doing anything on my shift. i get home but cannot sleep because i have all these things running in my mind, like what i am going to do with my freedom. two things top my list but that’s it. so out of curiosity, i am going to ask you:
what would you do if you were 25 years old and you just quit your day job, taking enough savings you’ve made over the past 4 years?
grey oversized knitted top – thrifted
black long cardigan – thrifted
jeans – bebe jeans
grey metal-embellished flats – a gift from charm (so fab!)
my over-used grey bag – mongkok ladies’ market, hongkong
pearl and bead necklace – DIY-ed in college
stone ring – thrifted in carbon
cuffs – both from props
work watch – swatch

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how do you know?

at 17 years old, how do you know what you want to do for the rest of your life? and if you do, how do you know how to get there? unlike some lucky people who know that they want to be accountants upon graduating high school and decide to take up accountancy or who know they want to be architects and decide to take up architecture, i only knew that i wanted to be involved in the arts — sketching, drawing, painting but that i wanted to have a ‘stable’ job. you know how they make you take up an aptitude and interest test before graduation? well, my interest was on the creative side but my aptitude lead to engineering. apparently, i was good at math and at being logical. it took me by surprise.
my mom wanted me to take up nursing but i knew in my mind that i could be greater so i asked if i can pursue medicine. it was impossible at that time because we couldn’t afford it. my dad wanted me to take up accountancy because it was practical and that it would have what he took up when he was young, rather than taking up dentistry. taking up fine arts at that time was out of the question because my mom and dad feared that i couldn’t get a ‘stable’ and high-paying job after graduation. with a confused state of mind, i took up computer engineering, trusting my aptitude results.
the first two years in college was actually enjoyable for me but on the the 3rd year, i immediately found out that it was never something i wanted to do after i graduate. we were already on the year where we had to pick majors and we were making projects dealing with electronics. i picked ‘networking’ to major on because well, i was on the internet most of the time and was very interested in web designing. i had two more years to go before i graduate college and it was too late to take up another course and waste my parent’s money. so i pursued the course half-heartedly. i remember asking my mom one afternoon at church, “mom, what if i don’t want to be a computer engineer? all i can picture myself is owning a boutique.” my mom said, “well, that’s what you can do after you earn enough money to start your own business.”
on 2006 i graduated with a right to put up an ‘Engr.’ before my name. but here i am, fast forward to 2010, not a practicing engineer but i can finally tell my mom, “i am finally there mom. i am going to put up shop!”
knitted shirt dress – thrifted (have had this for 5 years!)
white tank top – metro kids’ section (sequined by me)
brown leggings – random
brown platform heels – matthews at CMG
owl necklace – thrifted at carbon
rings: dark auburn stone – thrifted at carbon | black square – props
piles of bangles: faux gold plastic ones – gifted from india | wooden – props

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