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

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Weekly Capsule 52.1: Come To The Dark Side

gray sweatshirt red scarf black jeans black boots by 14 shades of grey

I wore this last week to see Star Wars: The Force Awakens. I must’ve been subconsciously influenced by the movies, because as I was taking photos, I realized these were the colors of the “dark side” – black and red.

gray sweatshirt red scarf black jeans by 14 shades of greyCome to the dark side… We have cookies.

This is a bit embarrassing to confess, but up until last week, I had never seen the original Star Wars trilogy all the way through. I’ve seen bits and pieces on TV, and of course I knew all about the pop culture significance, but I never watched the entire thing. So before the new movie, I did a marathon of Episode IV, V, and VI (I like to pretend that the prequels didn’t happen). Now, usually when I watch these classic movies so late in the game, I would appreciate them but never become a fan. With Star Wars, though, I was completely won over. It’s epic and exciting and funny and everything that the nerd in me loves. So much so that by the time I saw The Force Awakens, I was tearing up at the opening scroll.

Needless to say, I freaking love the movie (already saw it twice.) Rey is badass (please please please don’t give her a romance in the next films), Finn and Poe are adorable, and all the callbacks to originals are great. I’ve heard complaints that it is too similar to Episode IV, but I think it’s a smart choice – it caters to fans of the originals while ushering in a new generation at the same time.

My only quibble is Adam Driver as the bad guy. He’s too cute to be the new Darth Vader. But, depending on his arc over the trilogy, he may turn out OK. We’ll see. Still, what’s with the casting of these young hipster actors as sci-fi villains anyway? Like Jesse Einsenberg as Lex Luthor, WTF?

gray sweatshirt red scarf black jeans black boots by 14 shades of grey gray sweatshirt black jeans black boots by 14 shades of grey

Sweatshirt & Jeans: local shops, Scarf: Icing, Boots: Hush Puppies


Weekly Capsule 30.1 & SIA: The Singing Butler

grey tee black pants red scarf snakeskin slip-ons by 14 shades of grey

For this week’s SIA, inspired by Jack Vettriano’s “The Singing Butler“, I put together something really simple. If it wasn’t the summer break, I would probably do something more office-appropriate, as something about the crisp color schemes of black, gray, and red just reminds me of office wear. But since I’m strictly working from home these days, tee, pants and sneakers it is. At least my sneakers are a perfect match to the ground in the painting. And thank God the weather is cooling down (monsoon season is finally here, hooray!) so I was able to add the red scarf as a pop of color.

Come to think of it, I should’ve added an umbrella too, but it wasn’t raining when I took these photos so I thought it would be pretentious.

Remember to check Jess’ blog for other interpretations of this painting.

grey tee black pants red scarf by 14 shades of greygrey tee black pants red scarf snakeskin slip-ons by 14 shades of grey

T-shirt: Uniqlo, Pants: thrifted, Scarf: Icing, Sneakers: local shop


Capsule Outfit #32

white sweater polka dot pants red scarf brown booties by 14 shades of grey

Apparently I’m losing my mind, because I thought that my capsule would end in January, not December, and that the turtleneck tunic I wore on Monday was part of this capsule (it wasn’t, although I don’t know if it matters or not, I’m constantly pulling stuff out and putting new stuff in anyway). At the same time, I also forgot that certain pieces, like these pants, are in the capsule from the beginning.

It just goes to show that this whole capsule wardrobe thing isn’t working out as well as I’d expected. I will stick it out until the end of December, but I’m not sure if I’ll keep doing it in the upcoming year. I like the idea of a wardrobe where everything goes together; it’s just that I need a better method to build it.

If my goal is to make the best of my closet and not shop so much, then I think I need to get rid of the idea of a “capsule” altogether. It’s useful for when you’re traveling, but in normal, everyday life, it doesn’t make sense to limit yourself to an arbitrary number of items. That will only bore you and make you want to shop even more. I need to stick to what I have and learn to work with those first.

So, I don’t know. A shopping ban? I tried it once and it didn’t work out so well for me either. Outfit planning? Like a weekly capsule, instead of one for the entire season? Maybe. Any suggestion?

white sweater polka dot pants red scarf by 14 shades of greywhite sweater polka dot pants red scarf brown booties by 14 shades of grey

Sweater: Atmosphere, Pants: Old Navy, Scarf: Icing, Boots: Topshop


Capsule Outfit #28

blue striped sweatshirt red scarf blue jeans brown booties by 14 shades of grey

Yes, yes, another replacement, I know. But after taking out my navy cable knit sweater last week, I’ve noticed how worn it is, all pilling and gross, so I replaced it with this sweatshirt. And when I say “replaced”, I didn’t just mean in my capsule wardrobe, I mean in my closet as well. I demoted the cable knit sweater to the rank of “around the house” clothes, which includes stuff I wear when I’m at home and maybe to run a quick errand. Sweats, if you will.

I’m slowly refining my closet now, separating it into things that I would wear now, and things that still fit and are wearable but not I don’t like enough to be worn to work or to go out. Because that’s my goal behind the capsule wardrobes – hopefully, after doing a few of them for all seasons, I can figure out a solid, cohesive “work clothes” closet that doesn’t make me go “I don’t know what to wear!” every morning.

blue striped sweatshirt red scarf blue jeans brown booties by 14 shades of greyblue striped sweatshirt red scarf blue jeans by 14 shades of grey

blue striped sweatshirt red scarf by 14 shades of greyblue striped sweatshirt blue jeans brown booties by 14 shades of grey

Sweatshirt: Forever21, Jeans: Mango, Scarf: Icing, Boots: Topshop


Book Review: Rivers of London/Capsule Outfit #21

trench coat grey red scarf blue jeans chelsea boots by 14 shades of grey

Since the quality of my posts has been going down in the last week, here’s something a bit more interesting: a book review.

So, “Rivers of London”, by Ben Aaronovitch. It is marketed in the US as “Midnight Riot”, probably because many readers, like myself, totally thought was a non-fiction book about, well, the rivers of London. It’s not (I would still read it if it was though.) It is actually a novel, the first of a series, that is best described as Sherlock Holmes meets Harry Potter meets Neverwhere, which of course is all the things I like. The book, sadly, doesn’t quite live up to that. Before we get to it, though, a quick summary: Peter Grant, a London police constable, is responding to a gruesome murder when he gains some valuable information from a witness that happens to be a ghost. This causes him to be assigned to Chief Inspector Thomas Nightingale, who specializes in supernatural crimes, and thus begins Peter’s journey into the world of magic and the uncanny.

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That sounds so promising, doesn’t it? For me, however, the biggest problem with the book is the world-building. I was never quite sure how this supernatural world works, how Nightingale’s special unit works, how the murderer works, how anything works. To be fair, it is not as bad as “I have no idea what’s going on”, but rather, I feel like the world could be much bigger and richer than what is presented in the book. Think of the first Harry Potter book: it doesn’t tell us every thing about this world but we definitely get the scope of it, whereas here all the supernatural elements just seem to be contained within this particular murder case, so it is a bit… limited.

Still, it does have good parts. Like I said, the concept sounds awesome; Peter is biracial (POC are always welcome); his personal subplots are standard (unrequited crush on a co-worker, a junkie dad) but relatable and never overpower the main plot; and there are some really cool incarnations of the gods and goddesses of London. So, overall, despite my problem with it, I might still check out the rest of the series (there are three more.)

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As for the outfit, I don’t recall any particular outfit described in the book, but I figured – trench coat and Chelsea boots, what can be more London than that, right? I also added a red scarf to mimic the book cover.

DSC_6857trench coat grey cable knit sweater red scarf by 14 shades of grey

Sweater: H&M, Jeans & Coat: Mango, Boots: Din Sko, Scarf: Icing


Capsule Outfit #17

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Remember how I always say we don’t have much of a fall around here? It is usually still warm by late October, then comes November and bam, a cold snap. This year, though, we seem to have more of an actual fall season, with crisp, cool mornings and nights, and warm days. Apparently (according to my parents anyway), this is because it’s an intercalary year in the lunar calendar, which means the lunar year has 13 months instead of 12, so the 10 days or so of fall weather we usually have every year is stretched out into a whole month. I don’t know, my mom gave me this long-winded explanation about how intercalation works, but I was pretty sure my eyes glazed over half-way through it. I just know that I would’ve really enjoyed this kind of weather, had I picked out enough clothes for it in my capsule. Now I’m wearing the same shit over and over again and I actually want it to get colder just so I could change up my look a bit… I’m just never happy, am I?

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 navy ikat shirt red scarf by 14 shades of greynavy ikat shirt blue jeans red scarf black heels by 14 shades of grey

Shirt: C-Wonder, Jeans: Mango, Scarf: Icing, Belt & Heels: hand-me-down