True Casual

Sorry for the spotty posting this past week. My Singapore trip may have been over but the exchange program is not – for the past two weeks, our school has been playing host to the Singaporean students as they travel to Hanoi and experience Vietnamese culture. As the coordinator, it is my job to take them around town (and also out of town) for sightseeing and various events, so I haven’t had much time to take outfit photos or even to put together a blog-worthy outfit. The program ends this week though, so hopefully next week things will be back to normal. In the meantime, here’s a good example of what I’ve been wearing – very unfussy, utilitarian stuff.

Sweater: local shop, Jeans: Charlotte Russe, Sneakers: hand-me-down


Leather Jacket, Again

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! I know, I’m not dressing according to the theme. I actually wore this earlier this week, so no green. It is, however, the third time I wore my leather jacket this week. It was lying around so I just threw it on. But it’s perfect for the cold, rainy weather, and like a blazer, a leather jacket instantly pulls an outfit together and makes it look more interesting, so it requires very little thought. I’m juggling a million things right now, so anything that makes life a little easier is welcome.

Also, technically it’s spring now, so I wanted to add a spring-time touch with a floral shirt. Revolutionary, I know.

Shirt: hand-me-down, Jacket: Zara, Jeans: Mango, Boots: Din Sko


Easy And Familiar

My outfits always suffer a bit after I got back from a trip. After three weeks living out of a suitcase, I had to familiarize myself with the rest of my closet again, which means I’m going to reach for my staple pieces, the easiest things to wear, the things I know will always work without me having to put much thought into it. And that means stripes, jeans, oxford shoes, a leather jacket, and a scarf and a brooch (one of the two I got in Singapore, “L” is for my family name) to add some interest. Sure, it looks familiar – when I was uploading the photos I had to look through my archives to make sure I haven’t worn the same thing before – but it looks good, and that’s what matters.

Sweatshirt: Earth Music & Ecology, Jacket: Zara, Jeans: Charlotte Russe, Scarf:, Brooch: vintage


Portrait Of The Artist As A Young Woman

(Sorry for the pretentious title. I couldn’t help it!)

This week’s SIA inspiration, a portrait by South African artist Juanita Mulder, is a challenge for me, because it contains mostly bright, primary colors – red, blue, yellow, with quite a bit of black and white – which I haven’t worn in a while (except for the black and white, of course.) But I’ve never let that stop me before. Either I would find something else in the painting to inspire me, or I would find a way to sell my outfit even if it is only marginally connected to the inspiration at best.

In the end, I went with the bold, graphic quality of the painting (which means lots of stripes) and recreated the colors in darker, more subdued shades – maroon instead of red, navy instead of blue, and brown instead of yellow. At the last minute, I also threw on my leather jacket. The painting doesn’t feature a lot of black, but a leather jacket seems right somehow, because the woman looks so defiant, and to me, that means a leather jacket. I believe the spirit of the painting is there in my outfit, even though it’s not an exact replica (told you I would sell it :P)

Don’t forget to swing by Jen’s blog for the full round-up of other looks inspired by this portrait.

Sweatshirt: Forever21, Jeans: Pull&Bear, Jacket: Zara, Scarf: gift, Boots: hand-me-down


Pond In The Woods

green coat green scarf navy jeans brown booties by 14 shades of grey

Like I said, this SIA is pretty easy for me – green, blue, brown, black. When I saw the inspiration painting (“Pond in the Woods” by Georgia O’Keeffe, just in case you forgot), I immediately thought of this coat and this scarf. The rest of the outfit came together very quickly. Then I added my ceramic brooch, because the circle shape and the pattern are reminiscent of the painting, and the swirls of colors in the painting look like glazes to me as well. Done, and done.

Don’t forget to check Erin’s blog to see how others interpret this!

green coat green scarf navy jeans by 14 shades of greygreen coat green scarf navy jeans brown booties by 14 shades of grey

green coat green scarf navy jeans brown booties by 14 shades of grey

green coat green scarf ceramic brooch by 14 shades of greygreen coat green scarf by 14 shades of grey

Top: Uniqlo, Scarf & Boots: local shops, Jeans: Mango, Coat: thrifted, Brooch: vintage


Glint, Gleam, Glitter

black embellished sweater green scarf blue jeans black pumps by 14 shades of grey

So the traditional outfit from Wednesday’s post is what I wore to the Lunar New Year celebration at work, and here’s what I wore at home – it was mostly a day of preparing, cooking, and eating food, so I wanted something simple that I could move around in, but I also wanted to show a sense of festivity too, so this embellished sweatshirt was the perfect choice. (The scarf and the shoes were literally an afterthought – I spent most of the day indoors so there was no need for them; they were lying around so I just threw them on for the pictures.)

black embellished sweater green scarf blue jeans by 14 shades of greyblue jeans black pumps by 14 shades of grey

Sweatshirt: Zalora, Jeans: Sneak Peek, Scarf & Shoes: local shops

A bit of unrelated note on the title: I was running out of titles when I suddenly remembered this bit in Terry Pratchett’s A Slip of the Keyboard, in which he talks about how some words sound exactly like their meaning. Here, I’ll bring up the quote: “I like the fortuitous onomatopoeia of words for soundless things. Gleam, glint, glitter, glisten … they all sound exactly as the light would sound if it made a noise. Glint is sharp and quick, it glints, and if an oily surface made a noise it would go glisten.” Thinking about words like that, feeling them like that, that’s the mark of a good writer.


Saved For A Rainy Day

gray sweater boyfriend jeans black pumps by 14 shades of grey

This was almost another “forgotten” outfit – it was taken two weeks before the break, but it was a fairly simple outfit, so I kept saving it for a rainy day, when I don’t have any other content (ironically, it was taken on a very rainy day). Well, I guess that rainy day is now. The Lunar New Year is officially over since Monday, but I’m not going back to work for another 10 days, so I’m using this time to catch up on my freelance work.

Speaking of which, I’m translating The Atlantis Gene and gods, it is like pulling teeth. I set a limit for myself to translate at least 5 pages a day to make the deadline, but it’s so bad that even that is hard. I thought The Host was bad, but it was a breeze compared to this. What I don’t understand is this – this drivel is what my employer decided to buy and translate, while I have been at them for years to translate American Gods, Neverwhere, and Stardust, and they still refuse. Well, I’m hoping that with the American Gods TV series coming out soon, they’re going to change their mind.

gray sweater boyfriend jeans by 14 shades of greyboyfriend jeans black pumps by 14 shades of grey

Sweater: gift, Heels & Necklaces: local shops, Jeans: Charlotte Russe