Two Cats

I’ve been trying to cut down on my shopping, since my closet is absolutely bursting and there are things I bought from last year that I haven’t gotten around to wearing yet. But the one thing I cannot resist is a cute brooch, especially if it’s an animal or something vintage-inspired. Take this one, for example: it features cats, a big one and a small one (just like my cats, a mom and a daughter!), and it’s also a chain, meaning I could wear it with my blazers like a watch-chain (a menswear look I’ve always wanted to try), so of course I had to get it. I know, excuses, excuses, but at least it’s just a brooch, it’s not taking up a lot of space (yes, another excuse.)

Anyway, here are some photos of my cats, who don’t look like the brooch much but have the distinct advantage of being real live cats, and therefore, cuter:


Between Flowers And Insects

Ever since I discovered a local Facebook sellers that specializes in secondhand costume jewelry, I’ve accumulated a lot of brooches… and I mean a lot. So, in an attempt to wear more of them, I’m doing just that – wearing more than just one brooch in an outfit, I mean. I’m still quite new to the art of brooch clustering (is that a thing? I’d say it’s a thing), and so far I’ve only clustered them according to theme – like all fruits together, or here, all insects (and one reptile) together. I’m going to play around and see if I can come up with more combinations – perhaps with similar/complementary colors and textures, or all sparkly? – because it is really fun.

The rest of the outfit I kept simple, but I couldn’t resist adding to the natural theme from my green jacket and the insect brooches with these floral socks (a gift from a co-worker, who knows I love fun socks.)


Edwardian Dapper

(The blur on my blazer is actually a dragonfly mid-flight. I thought it looked cool)

While I enjoy incorporating vintage/historical elements in my outfits, I tend to combine them with more modern pieces, for practical reasons – it’s just difficult finding vintage pieces around here. However, since rediscovering secondhand shopping, I’ve been navigating toward more purely vintage/historical looks. Take this outfit, for example. Before, I would probably wear this shirt with jeans or a leather jacket to “modernize” it a bit, but now I just thought, What the heck. Let’s dress like a Teddy Boy/Girl, because I want to. (That said, the Teddy Boys and Girls actually took their inspiration from the Edwardian era, so their style is already a modernized version.)


Crouching Tiger, Hidden Cheetah

I’ve always loved big cats, because my Zodiac is all associated with big cats – in the Chinese Zodiac, I was born in the year of the tiger and the hour of the tiger, and my Western Zodiac sign is Leo. I don’t know much about astrology, but according to Chinese astrology, I’m a “tiger in the forest” or something like that, meaning my “tiger” part tends to be hidden. It makes sense, since people always seem surprised when they learn I’m a Leo/Tiger, because I’m so quiet and reserved (though if they’ve worked with me on film sets or are my students, they would soon learn that I have a temper.)

All this is a roundabout way to talk about my cheetah print. If I want to be pretentious, I could say that it represents the “hidden tiger” part in me (because it’s hidden under the blazer), but the truth is that it just doesn’t fit on the lapel of my blazer, so I wore it on the turtleneck underneath instead.


Dark Academia

Dark academia” is certainly the buzzword of this year, isn’t it? I was a bit annoyed about it, because I’ve been dressing like this (cozy knits, wool and tweed, blazers, etc.) in fall/winter since forever, and now Gen Z is suddenly acting like they invented it? I’m just kidding. I don’t really care where the aesthetic comes from, I’m just happy that it’s on trend right now. It’s also a happy coincidence that the year dark academia becomes a trend is also the year I rediscover thrift/secondhand/vintage shopping, where it’s much easier to find clothes that fit this aesthetic, so I can put together a head-to-toe look like this for a fraction of the price.