Friday, January 27, 2012

This is what I wore in KK

I am back, after 19 days of wonderful vacation in KK Malaysia. I ate too much, slept too much, watched too much TV and just laze around. Actually I am tired of being this lazy. I am not hundred percent happy being back to my routine, but I was missing home a bit, while away. Call me crazy!

Anyway, for my 19 days vacations in Sabah, I took 15 clothes, 3 pairs of shoes, 5 scarves and some accessories.
I tried to take an outfit post almost everyday without success. But I managed to snatch a few outfit posts.
Here they are:


I wore my black skirt a lot. Two days before we left K.K., I wore it with a plain white tee. It is the comfiest thing I own and I cannot stress enough how much I want another skirt like this.


I adore this dress. When I think that it stayed in my closet for more than a year after I purchased it before wearing it. And to think that I was this close to give it away last Summer because I thought it did not look good on my extra pounds. Anyway, this shall remain in my closet for a very long time. It is just a great dress, that can even be worn as a skirt (I did it once when I was slimmer).


Another great summer staple. This shirt is easy breezy and makes me happy. I just wished it did not wrinkle easily.


These jeans were worn more than half of the vacations. They were very practical for long walks at the beach or the mall. I have to wash them now. By the way, after how many wears do you wash your jeans. I had an uncle told me once that jeans are not to be washed. Hum?!?!

There are other clothes that did not make it to this blog just because I did not take pics of myself everyday. It is hard to travel and take pics of oneself.

Overall, I learned some things on this trip about packing:
- I should stick to clothes that do not wrinkle even after I wash them. Not every hotel have irons. I was lucky enough to get one at our first hotel but not in the others. Therefore some of my clothes (like the flower shirt) was wrinkled on the second part of the trip.
I saw this Korean lady in our hotel and she was always well dressed. She did not wear anything expensive but her clothes just look neat. And I knew that it was because they did not have wrinkles. After watching her for a couple of days (It is not as stalker as it sounds), I decided that next time I travel, I would pack clothes that do not wrinkle. My two dresses were perfect for this time tough.

- I should pack a cardigan next time. I already had one in grey but it is a bit old. I need something long , a bit see through and wrinkle free. Again observing that Korean lady, I realised that cardigans added a touch of class to any outfit. One day she wore a skirt and a plain striped tee (nothing fancy) but her long black lame cardigan made the outfit pop. I should have taken a pic of the lady so you could judge by yourself.

- I should pack clothes that can be worn in different ways. For example, my dresses can be worn as tunics, or skirts depending on how I style them. And this automatically save some room in my luggage because it means that I do not need to pack an extra skirt. Pants that can turn into shorts or capri shorts are also great.

These are the few things I learn travelling that long. I have to admit that it was the first time I stay anywhere on vacation that long except from home. And since I get bored easily, I needed to bring with me things I really like and can mix and match easily. I know that buying some extra clothes once on vacation is an other option but I did not find anything that made me drool during my trip (except shoes) so I was stuck with what I got.

I hope y'all had a wonderful holiday and are ready to kick in 2012. It already started to shake (earthquake wise, economy wise, politically wise) allover the world. So I wish you to be safe and happy this year.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Malaysian Holidays Outfit Planner

Note: I wrote this post before leaving but just got around to publish it now. The post about Malaysia in pictures should come first.Sorry!

When almost all of you will be busy shopping for gifts, attending office parties and planning for Xmas and New Year's, yours truly is faced with the dilemma of packing for a 19 days vacations in Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia.
Malaysia? Again? Yep! It will be my 5th time there. But this time I am going to a different place. And I would be very excited except for the fact that I have to pack and I have no idea of things to take with me. Well, that is a lie, I have an idea but I just can't edit them. The hubby wants me to be light and take like 5 clothes. Who does he think I am? A man like him? Any self respected girl (I am not even saying blogger) will take more than 5 outfits (not clothes) to a 19 days vacations. So as usual, my bag will be fully ( and by fully I mean almost exploding) packed.
Malaysia will be hot, so I am planning on taking light things. And since I will probably enjoy the beach I want colorful clothes. So far here are the things that made the cut (and that are inside my suitcase as I type.

- Tops:
Chambray shirt
Colorful dress shirt
Grey sweater
Grey tee
Pink tunic
White blouse
 White tee

- Bottoms:
Black cargos
Black skirt
Jeans
Leggings
White pants

- Others:
 Maxi dress
Short dress
Abbaya 
Sandals
Striped shoes
Plastic tongs
Scarves
Beige bag with sequins
Oversized boston bag

Here are pics of the few outfits I plan to wear


For sightseeing


For the trip


For New year's eve


For the beach

Last Fall, I had a challenge where I was supposed to wear about 30 clothes in 30 days or more. I did fail some days but I learned how to mix and style clothes in different ways. The most important thing I learned was that it was hard to style bold and colorful clothes. Therefore even though I have colorful tops, I am keeping my bottoms in basic colors so that I can mix and match easily. I hope I get to wear everything that I will take and in a way that will please me.

I want to end this post by wishing you a Merry Xmas and Happy New Year. It may not be the last post of this year but I am taking my precautions.

Cheers!!!

Malaysia in Pictures

 Happy New Year! Best wishes!

Well since this is out of the way, let us get back to business. I want to share my holidays in Kota Kinabalu in pictures (but also comments) This post may be long so bear with me.

Scenery:



Views of Likas

View of Tunku Abdourahman Islands from the Esplanade

Flower "art" at Berringis hotel

Last sunset of 2011, Tanjung Aru beach
Malaysian fashionable girls

Students from Tawau on holiday in KK


Random girl who knew her style was a killer

Malaysian girls are stylish. They like pretty, girly things. Actually I rarely seen edgy girls in the streets. Malay Muslim girls wear head wraps of all colors with added blings, skinny jeans or leggings, flats or wedges and oversized tee. Some also wear Summer dresses with cardigans to cover themselves. But what I liked the most is when they would wear the Malaysian traditional dress made of a knee length dress with a skirt underneath in the same pattern. I just wanted one just like that.
Chinese Malay Girls would wear short shorts, tees with logo and flats. Actually I was surprised at the amount of short clothes around here. I felt like I was in LA.
Boys were funny as well. They would have edgy hair style with some color, skinny jeans and piercing. They were very trendy, in a Chris Brown kind of style.
I just wished I could have taken more pics but it is kind of hard to snap at people without being noticed and with a pitiful excuse of a camera that is mine.

Food (very important)
If you like seafood, then you are in heaven in Kota Kinabalu. Forget about eating in seafood restaurants. I am sure they offer great food for a great prices. But the real experience is to take a walk down to the Filipino market or the KK night market next to the Esplanade to enjoy some seafood, local style. You choose your fish or seafood, choose the way you want it cook, and minutes later it is delivered to your table with added Sambal sauce. Pure delight.

Spicy seaweed salad bought at Filipino Market

Grilled Squid and grilled tuna steak
Beefun ( I could have this everyday)

Nasi Pataya (back) and veggie stir fried (sweetest and smallest cabbage I ate in my life)


My favorite of all: Teh ( I could live on this stuff, forget Starbucks)

Butter Prawn with rice (the batter was mixed with sugar giving the shrimp a sweet taste, pure heaven!)

Grilled Chicken wings
Fish curry (so different from the Indian curry I know but very fingerlicking)

Grilled fish or Ikan bakar with sambaal sauce on top (so tasty)


the basic: Nasi Campung with omelette


While in KK, I also indulged in one of my fave food: Roti canai...a very light and fluffy bread with curry sauce. To top it all, almost everyday I would enjoy drinking Teh, tea with milk, not to be confused with normal tea. I just wish I could have this everyday. Forget Starbucks! This Teh is the best in the world.
Malaysia having a huge Muslim population, I was happy not to care about the food I was eating here. I could find Halal food everywhere. For this reason, I ate too much fast foods like McDonald, KFC and Pizza hut. It was so cheap too, compared to Japan.

Half Half pizza: pepporoni, chicken masala at Pizza hut in Centre Point

And my breakfast plate at our hotel with lots of Roti


Shopping: 
Kota Kinabalu has a lot to offer shopping wise. They have several shopping malls that offer either high end stuff or very affordable stuff. I spent most of my time in Center Point and Wawasan shopping malls. They have many small shops that provide clothing and accessories. Since I wanted shoes, I concentrated on shoe stores such as Vincci, Doss. They have these selections of wedges that were so cute. But what I loved the most was that the sole of these shoes was so soft and light. I have never seen wedges like that.
For buying souvenirs, the handicraft market in Wawasan mall was great but some of the shops were often closed when I visited them. The Sunday Market on Gaya street was also excellent. They sell pretty much everything there (even pets).


An interesting T-shirt in Gaya market and no I did not buy it
I ended up getting a few things like two pair of shoes and some souvenirs for family and friends.
Malaysia was great. I cannot get over at how lucky Malaysians are. They live in a beautiful place, eat great food that cost nothing. Sometimes I wished I could live here. However, I am realistic. There may be things I would not enjoy if I was living here full time, the poor quality of service for one thing. (Japan spoiled me)
Overall,  I ate too much, slept too much and laze around too much. I think that 10 days or less will be just fine for the next vacation.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

(I need) shoes for Winter

Winter is really here. The high temperatures of November and my three weeks vacations in a hot country fooled me into thinking that it was not that cold. However, the freezing weather of these past days brought me back to reality: it is super dupa cold.

As I go out often now, I realized that I do not have any adequate shoes for this weather. Being a Summer girl, I have all kinds of sandals, tongs, ballet flats and even peep toe pumps. But when it comes to shoes suitable for cold, I am at lost. I do have some closed shoes bought some years back but they are all failing me as they are getting too old and worn out. I need some good, sturdy, warm, good to look at shoes. And my heart is setting on these:

I - Boots

I am still looking for boots. It is kind of hard to find boots both in my size (8 and a half) and for a reasonable price here in Japan. So I am still struggling. I am also having problems with settling for a design. Every day I change my mind. However I think that these would be winners in my book

-Suede boots:
 I think that the best boots are Suede boots. I maybe bias because I owned a pair for 6 years.  They are the most comfortable and cutest boots I know. I want a pair that is knee high and wide enough. I am not really settled on the color but tan, grey, or purple would do.


 Soft suede long boots at Galstar.jp for 2990Y

- Riders style boots:
I do not do horseback riding but I would die to own the entire look: so polish and elegant. Riders boots would look good on anything: pants, jeans, skirts, dresses you name it. They are very mannish but very ladylike at the same time. They would instantly update my wardrobe.


 Patent leather boots at Zara for 5990Y
- Booties:
I have never been a fan of booties. For some reasons they are not appealing to me. However, I am starting to realize that booties are very classy and grown up. I am 31 , and I think it is about time that I mature and look the part. I think a pair of booties can help me accomplish just that. I could go for a wedge if I am afraid of the heeled version
H&M  Suede booties for 6990Y


 Nuovo Short boots for 1575Y at Abc Mart

II - Flats

I love ballet flats. I cannot get enough of them but they rarely keep me warm in Winter. I think I need to switch to some other kind of flats that will cover my entire foot hence be worn with thick socks:

- Leopard loafers
I already own two pairs of loafers in grey and in tan But both of them are kind of blah. I want a loafer that is edgy and I found the perfect one in Leopard on the coupon flyer of Shimamura store. However they do not have them in my local Shimamura yet. I will be patient, all the while praying that these babies come in my size.

These are Steve Madden but Shimamura has a similar pair for 1490Y

- Oxford shoes:
When I was a teen, my Dad bought me this fabulous pair of two toned oxford shoes. I loved them so much and would wear them everyday. I have been waiting to renew this experience for a while now. I think this year, I have to get myself one pair. If just I could decide which:

Suede Oxfords for 2580Y @ Forever21.co.jp

Two toned oxford shoes for 1699Y @ Forever21.co.jp

 III Sneakers or Sports shoes

I am not a sneaker person. I did own a single Ecko pair for years and barely wore it. I do not own sneakers for a simple reason: I do not work out. And when I do, it is usually inside my house. However last Summer I was forced to buy a pair because I had to participate in my son's school sports day. I bought this very stylish lime green grey woven sneakers. They are super light and comfy but not suitable for Winter. Hence I think it is time I get myself a real pair of sports shoes

- Sport shoes:
As every woman in her right mind who would love to loose weight without a single effort, I am tempted to buy the very popular Reebok Easy tone. But why spend that much amount of money on a pair of shoes that does not even make me feel fabulous (plus I doubt it will turn me into Jlo). I just something that is sturdy enough to last, warm enough and comfy enough to wear for long period of time.


 Nike shoes for 2990Y at Abc Mart

- Fun Sneakers:
I do not wear sneakers for fun. I see people wearing all kinds of sneakers in all kinds of colors in town. But I always thought they were not for me. Until I saw some in Malaysia. I am not even sure they are sneakers. I can only call them Toms shoes because I think that this brand made them popular. The ones I saw in Sabah were in red and cost nothing but I let them go because I was on the hunt for wedges.
Now, I am not sure these shoes will keep me warm in Winter but maybe they can serve as transition shoes from Winter to Spring.
Espadrilles sleep ons for 1980Y @ Forever21.co.jp


That is all I want folks. Now I am itching to go shop..............but where shall I start?

Monday, January 2, 2012

Wishlist 2012- Time to Bargain

Do you know how hard it is not to be able to shop during Xmas time? Well, for me it is pure torture. Every department stores or shopping malls you go are decorated with shiny lights and original Xmas trees. Plus the stores displays are so creative that I am forced to check them out. And once inside I am even more attracted to the numerous things on sale and the special bag they give you once you shop. I used to collect them back in the days.

However, I am telling myself that it is a good thing I do not get to shop around the holidays because January 1st is the beginning of the crazy sale season in Japan. Everything you see in stores now, will be half price once we start 2012. So really what is the point of shopping now? Last year, I hit big at H&M and bought some great finds for myself and my business (even though I still have not worn all of those things, crazy right!!!). And it was pure coincidence that I discovered their sales. This year, I am trying to organize myself into buying what I really need (and not want) so that I get to wear everything. And here is what I need:

 - A camel cape coat/ poncho

Ok, the first item is really a want thing. I have been craving a cape coat since last year but could not find anything for the right price. Therefore, this year I decided that I would pay the price if I find something that is worth it. And my choice of color is camel. You cannot go wrong with a camel coat. It screams "class" and "lux". I am getting older so I need classy things even if they may clash with my boring housewife lifestyle.


Camel poncho for 7203Y at Anapnet.com but this will be only for Spring, I am really looking for this below


I am guessing it is from DKNY and maybe out of my reach, but I still can dream....



I would go there only after I get my camel coat, poncho for 3450Y at Anapnet.com

- Boots

My favorite pair of boots (6 years old) just gave up on me this week. I knew their time was counted and I should have invested in another pair of boots. But I kept on delaying because I thought that I could find better and cheaper someday. Anyway, I am not waiting anymore. I need me a pair (or two) of boots. The only problem is that once I decide I want one style, I see someone wearing another one in the streets and my heart falls for that one. So far, I am thinking of getting a rider's style boots and some suede boots with a wedge heels. I found the later in a tan color and for absolutely nothing last week; but since I am saving it for January (if it is still there), I did not get it. My other big issue with the boots is that I never find my size in Japan. However my last resort will be to thrift them at Don Don Down. Last time I was there they had great boots my size.


Patent leather boots for 7990Y at Zara 


Insole boots available at Galstar.jp for 2990Y

- Sweaters and Cardigans

My collection of sweaters are getting old. And for a good reason, I had bought most of them back in 2004. I really need some new ones in the following colors: navy, red, olive green, brown and tan. Moreover, I am interested with big granny sweaters but also the ones with Native American design on them.



Forever 21 Native Long cardigan for 4590Y 

-  A puffer jacket

I am not really into down jackets because I always thought that they make you look like the Michelin man. And that is a big no no for my frame. However I tolerate them because they do keep me warm in Winter. This year, I started to notice that the down jackets were getting more and more feminine. They are longer and sometimes they even have belts. I saw a 20 something girl wearing one with a lace design. It was so girlish and pretty. Therefore I am looking for a puffer jacket that is girly enough for me but will keep me warm.


Something like this but with a hood, available at Nissen.co.jp for 8990Y


You see, it is not an exhaustive list. But as I am updating it, I am finding more and more things I would love to add to it, like brogue shoes, like new berets, like another coat, like some colorful pants, like some new leggings...and what about renewing my underwear collection....Oh! this shall never end!

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