end of May roundup

So it’s now five months into the year, it’s definitely spring now (though it has been spring off and on since March), practically summer, and January and New Year’s Resolutions seems so long ago. Haven’t most of us forgotten about by now?

Certainly my pledge to buy only one item a month has gone out the window. But I was in the U.S. this month, in the land of great consumerism (at least to most Canadians, there’s so much more of everything and it’s so much cheaper than here), that’s my excuse.

Still, it wasn’t so bad, if you don’t count my splurge at Aveda. And some stuff on sale too!

From Anthropologie:

Boreal Blear Tee by Weston Wear (snagged online on sale), Twist & Flounce Tank by Deletta (on sale), Ruched Stripes Tank by Ella Moss (on sale, also to take me out of my blue/turquoise “rut”, although I almost bought the navy version), Sedge & Rush Necklace, Solange Nut Bowl.

From J.Crew:

Featherweight Cotton Cardigan in Ivory (not on sale and maybe a little boring, but a necessary summer staple for me)

I also ordered a few things to my sister’s place (aka my American address) that didn’t work out, Anthro’s Candidasa Dress (still on my quest for a perfect LBD, this one was terrible), and J.Crew’s No. 2 Pencil Skirt in Warm Jade (liked the fit, but I found it a little too heavy and the colour wasn’t exactly what I was looking for). I love easy return policies.

Some things I noticed while shopping in the States:

  • Anthropologie now has mobile checkout using iPhones, for when lineups are too long. Or when the lineup is just me, there’s only one cash open, and the woman in front of me takes 15 minutes to buy a dress, after complaining under her breath and rolling her eyes when the woman in front of her of took 5 minutes to buy a top.
  • All Anthropologies smell the same, and I do not enjoy the scent (I am very sensitive to scents though).
  • I don’t enjoy shopping at J.Crew stores. Well, at least the ones I’ve been in lately, and the latest at the Burlington Mall in Burlington, MA. I find them messy and unappealing, and I’m not inspired to buy anything.
  • Mall cops on segways look so stupid. But in fun useless facts, Paul Blart: Mall Cop was filmed at Burlington Mall, where I saw my first real-life mall cop.

I would like to say that I’m going to take a break in June, but it’s my birthday month and I got my Anthro birthday discount in the mail last week. So probably not, but we’ll see.


Being bold, plus weird feet

I love jewellery, but I’ve always shied away from really big, bold pieces. The necklaces I own are generally more delicate, and generally sterling silver and semi-precious gemstones rather than costume. But I saw Anthro’s Sedge & Rush Necklace when I was in Boston over the long weekend and decided to go for it.

Anthro Daily Gathering Dress | Anthro Sedge & Rush Necklace | Puma Rudolf Dassler ballet flats

I like this necklace because it’s in my colour palette, it’s fun, it’s summery, and most importantly it’s not too heavy. I’ve tried statement necklaces that have hurt my neck after half an hour. And it makes a simple dress, along with different shoes, into a new outfit.

But I have no idea what was up with my feet when I was taking these pics.

Better feet, stupid pose.


Turquoise and white

Anthropologie Graceful Drape Top (Bailey 44) | Matsu necklace | American Apparel knit pencil skirt | Rockport wedges

I love turquoise and white for summer. There’s just something about this colour combination that makes me think of hot weather and sunshine and tans. But not my tan. My legs are three different colours and I’m going to have to work hard to even them out.


This is the face of consumerism

Anthro Rare Blooms Tee (Deletta) | American Apparel skirt | Michael Kors shoes

Over the long Victoria Day weekend (we raised a glass to Queen Vicky for providing us a day off) in Boston, I relaxed in my sister’s house, read a book about sweets in Paris, walked around Harvard Square, ate too much salted caramel, drank non-alcoholic mojitos, got some weird tan lines (glasses, cap-sleeve, capri pant, and ballet flats, as you can kinda tell from the photo above), got Hugh Laurie’s “Song for America” stuck in my head, and shopped. A lot. 

Well, maybe not a lot, but it felt like a lot. It was a lot at once, anyway. Everything is cheaper in the U.S. – cheaper prices, cheaper taxes, or no tax on clothes/shoes under $180 in Massachusetts. Will bought shoes, while I stocked up on hair products from Aveda, my staple MAC products (Face & Body foundation), and long-sleeve t-shirts from J.Crew.  And a few things from Anthropologie, but those will feature in future blog posts, I hope.

The plus side to taking a 5-day weekend is the short work week. The downside is the short work week, because I’ve been so busy catching up, going full-tilt, then collapsing on the couch and not having time to catch up at home. My condo is a mess and I already wish it were the weekend. My next vacation (Vancouver Island for a week in August) can’t come soon enough.

flowers in Boston Common


The bane of my existence

My bangs.

Anthro Wind-Rippled Tee (2009) | Anthro Alluring Sway Skirt (2010) | Tory Burch Reva Flats (2009)

Seriously, they look terrible. I’ve been fussing with them for the past few weeks and seriously, I’m at my wits’ end.

(I know, I know, it’s such a first-world problem.)

I tried the full bang again recently:

(I’m Asian Jess, minus the ugly crying.)

But I gave up almost immediately and brushed them to the side again. They grow too fast and need constant trims, and they just ended up looking limp most of the time.

I’ve also tried growing them out completely, but I didn’t like that either, and obviously from the pictures above sideswept bangs aren’t doing it either. What to do?

Oh well, if this is the bane of my existence, I guess I’m not doing too badly.


Work-appropriate dysmorphia

I work in a corporate office, but the dress code is business casual. (I've heard a story about our late founder who got cranky when he saw a meeting of lawyers all in business suits on his floor, he asked his secretary why there were so many suits there). I like a more relaxed dress code because I'd hate to be tied to restrictive rules (suits, closed-toe shoes, pantyhose, for instance), but then it leaves it open to some, uh, interesting interpretations of business casual. I've seen miniskirts, strapless dresses/tops (no cardigan), fishnet tights (not the small ones, the big ones), crop tops, flip flops, and a lot of cleavage, all things I don't think are very appropriate in a corporate environment, even if it is business casual.

Anthro Pezza Dress (Deletta) | Club Monaco cardigan | Hilary Druxman necklace | Wolford Satin Opaque tights in Admiral | Tory Burch Reva Flats

I'm firmly in the no jeans from Monday to Thursday camp, but casual Friday rolls around and I’m usually wearing leggings, even though I know I probably shouldn’t. I've worn a few outfits that are probably not as professional as they could be, but I'm certainly not the worst.

But I think my coworker suffers from work-appropriate dysmorphia. On the way to lunch last week she was telling me she wants to buy a maxi skirt/dress, but she doesn’t think they’re very work appropriate. Maybe so, but she wears shiny leggings when it’s not casual Friday and doesn’t think there’s anything wrong with that (because she never meets with clients or has important meetings), so what difference does a maxi dress make?

(These are probably the last of the tights until the fall. It’s getting warmer but for some reason I’m hanging on, even though I’ve complained about them. More bare legs coming soon.)


Ahoy, Captain

This is my somewhat lame attempt at nautical. I don't own anything that screams nautical (no navy/white or red/white stripes—not a whole lot of stripes in general), so this is as close as I get. I also have a somewhat irrational aversion to nautical because I forever associate nautical with mid-winter resort collection. I should try to get over this.

Anthro Tartlet Burst Top | American Apparel knit pencil skirt | Tory Burch Reva flats

I love being near water (beach, lake, river, etc), but I’m not a huge fan of being on or in water. I don’t love boats. A vacation cruise is my idea of a nightmare. If I ever win the lottery, I will not be buying a yacht. I think you get the idea.

Natilcal: EBEW


Thursday snark

This NY Times article from last month, about outgrowing your favourite brands, is seriously annoying. What a first-world problem to whine about having to move on from your favourite stores, hard for me not to snark at. I’m sorry if I don’t feel any sympathy for Anne Slowey’s inability to wear designer clothes now that she’s had a baby. Hold on a sec while I pull out the world’s tiniest violin.

Also, I’m a little offended by the implication that women who shop at Anthropologie dress like girls and not women, that we’re all “slightly awkward ingénue[s] trying really hard to be cool.” I don’t think that’s me at all, and I don’t think that’s most women who shop at Anthro either.

I don’t expect to shop at the same stores forever, I’m getting older (inevitably) and things change. One day I’ll probably decide I’m too old to wear my elephant dress or my octopus dress. Or, more likely, I’ll decide the love affair is over or it just doesn’t fit in with closet/style/lifestyle anymore. Like what’s happening with this skirt.

Antropologie Drape & Twist Tee | ayala bar necklace | Anthro Aniseed Skirt | Wolford Satin Opaque Tights | Tory Burch Reva flats

I still like it, but I never wear it, and bubble butt isn’t the most flattering look for anyone. I don’t think of it to wear outside of work, but it’s not that work-appropriate either; the last time I wore it to work, I had a few people gush over it, but most of the time I felt ridiculous and self-conscious. And I find it incredibly short. Not sure how that’s possible when I’m only five-foot-two. Anyway, I may hang onto this skirt for a while out of sheer stubbornness (I’m looking at these pics and thinking huh, it’s not that bad after all), but it might be making an appearance on Roxy’s Trade Market sometime in the future.

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