Duchess Inspired

When I saw these photos of Kate Middleton back in May, I knew I had to put together something inspired by it. The culottes are cute, but what really drew me to the outfit is the shirt. I’m a sucker for broderie anglaise (I have, at last count, four tops with some on them – it’s part of my Anglophilia, I guess) but I never thought to pair them with my culottes, so here we are.

At first, I thought about wearing my sneakers to mimic the Duchess’ outfit completely, but then I found sneakers make it slightly too casual – Kate Middleton may have pulled them off, but I couldn’t – so in the end, I decided to wear my red heels because there is a bit of red on my shirt.

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Where’s My Vacation?

Last weekend, I took my niece and nephew to see Toy Story 4 and pizzas afterward. It was kind of a reward for the kids and for myself too, because I’ve been too busy to take them on our annual trip, and with less than a month left before the new semester, it looks like I’m not going to have the time after all. I know, I know, it’s totally a #firstworldproblem, not having a vacation. At least it was nice to have one day when I didn’t have to worry about scripts or books or deadlines. And even if I’m not on vacation, I could still dress like I was!

As for the movie – I enjoyed it but found it rather sad. Not even sad in a moving way like Toy Story 3; just sad. Like, the entire Toy Story franchise has always been about how a toy should always be there for their kid, but this… (mild spoiler) it didn’t go against that theme exactly, it just took it in a different direction that I’m not sure I like. Toy Story 3 is the perfect ending already, they should’ve stopped at that. But I guess the calling of the $$$ is too strong to resist, even for Pixar.


Graduation Ceremony

Happy belated Fourth of July to my US readers! Hope you guys had a great celebration.

Last week, I’ve shared what I wore to be on the thesis committee, and this week, here’s what I wore to my students’ graduation ceremony. It’s a semi-formal occassion, so of course, I brought out my traditional Vietnamese áo dài.  I was quite happy to realize that my shoes match the buttons and the stitching on the tunic almost exactly, and they added a nice pop of color. For a sentimental touch, I also added a brooch that my students gave me for Teacher’s Day last year.

The students, however, all decided to wear dresses instead, and I don’t blame them – áo dài can be uncomfortable/difficult to move around in (mine isn’t because it’s made of linen and has a looser fit.) My only problem with wearing áo dài, in fact, is that it’s a set, which means you can’t really mix and match it (I do wear the pants separately though). But it’s for special occassions only, so it’s fine.


Thesis Committee

I wore this last week when I was a member of the thesis committee at our school. It being a film school, a student’s thesis is either a feature-length screenplay or a short film, which they still have to present and defend it like any other thesis. It was pretty exciting – I’ve never been a full member of the thesis committee before, and this is the first graduating class that I’ve taught the full four years, and it was heartening to see that they all managed to graduate together (usually, in every class, there are a few students that have to graduate later because they don’t complete their thesis project in time.)

Obviously, I wanted to dress up, but I didn’t want to appear too stuffy or boring either (film school, remember), plus it was too hot, so this printed dress seems like a good compromise. I’m not so happy about the shoes – the dress has a vaguely 1940s vibe and I wanted a strappy shoe to go with it, but I have none at the moment, so these black heels would have to do. I tried to tell myself that they make the dress more modern and less like a costume, because honestly, I do not need an excuse to buy more shoes…


Try Again

This is my second attempt at the “blue outfit with paper bag pants and red accents” after my first try didn’t turn out so well. I like it better because the vertical stripes make this shirt look less billowy that the other one, but it’s still a little looser than I’d like, and by the end of the work day, it had pretty much come untucked.

I have never seen the appeal of the bodysuit before, but now I’m seriously considering buying one because it drove me crazy trying to fix the tuck all day long. Unfortunately (or, fortunately, if you look at it from a financial standpoint, because I do not need more clothes), all the bodysuits I see in store look like swimsuits and not like normal tops, so I don’t think I’ll be buying one yet.


Feeling Crabby

The post title is both a reference to the crab brooch on my shirt (very creative, I know) and the fact that I’m not entirely happy with the outfit. The shirt is a bit too loose-fitting, so when I tried tucking it into the paper-bag waist of these pants, it just created all this bulk around the waist. A more fitted shirt may work better. And the brooch feels like an afterthought too. I wanted a pop of color that was not shoes, and I just got this brooch, so I decided to wear it, but now I think I should’ve saved it for a more “nautical” look. Or would that be too costumy? I don’t know… I guess I’m just not feeling this outfit.


Different But Same

I think one of the reasons I’m so excited about these new paperbag pants is because they are a basic color, so they go with almost everything in my closet, but their silhouette is different enough that they can make the outfits look new and fresh. Take this outfit, for example. This is certainly not the first time I paired this shirt with wide-leg pants,  but because of the exaggerated silhouette, it doesn’t look repetitive.

In other news, I feel I’m going to have to retire this shirt soon. It’s rayon, so despite my best effort (wash in cold water and hang dry), it’s been shrinking over the past 4 yearsto the point it doesn’t fit me right anymore. It’s sad because I love novelty print shirts like this and they’re hard to find here, but at least it’s had a good run.