Create Jewelry Happy Hour

Friday, October 23, 2015

The Bourbon Experience

Are you a whiskey connoisseur?  I am not but I am at the same time.  I like the taste of Scotch & Malt whiskey such as the Macallan, Glenfiddich, Black & White and the like.  I do have an occasional Jack Daniels, which I paired with my chocolate.  I have grown to like bourbon which is apparently different from whiskey. According to Men’s Journal’s article, all bourbon is whiskey, but not all whiskey is bourbon.
My recent mini-vacation in Chicago, was great.  Good friends, good food, and adventurous pairing of aperitif with appetizers.  I had a wonderful tumbler of Knob bourbon and a charcuterie platter while admiring the splendour of the beautiful skyline of Chicago atop the Roof at the Wit hotel. Bourbon does go well with  tasty cheese and all.  I wonder if I have actually missed out on trying the bourbons in America.   So I decided to also pair bourbon with cuisine such as mussel stew, grilled squid, sushi, sesame jellyfish and the list is ever expanding.
Grilled Octopus with lime juice
Jellyfish with sesame 
Fresh mussels in spicy broth
King prawns with special sauce

Monday, June 15, 2015

The Skyline of Dallas

Just moved to Dallas from Chicago this year and feeling the warmth of the Texans.  The people are friendly and very helpful.  Dallas is a diversified place just like Chicago.  I met people from California, San Francisco, Korea, Taiwan, and that's what makes this town fun to be.  Last weekend, I got a bunch of us for Happy Hour at the Soda Bar of NYLO hotel. My picture is not doing any justice here but the evening was lovely and the Dallas skyline is gorgeous.  Many people likes to hang out at the roof top and enjoy the cool breeze of the evening.  I even took some pictures for couples and girl groups just to be helpful!  Later that evening we saw fireworks happening and I had no idea for what.  Someone told me that we were watching the fireworks from the games nearby.
We are definitely going to chill out around the neighborhood before the weather gets too hot to handle!  I still recommend wearing lace paired with cotton or linen pants.  Also throw on a light weight dress with unique accessories and woven handbags.  Light is the key.

Check out the anthropologie stores in your area for some cool indie style and the awesome hat!

Just in time for the hot summer!

J'adore "Shoes"

Recently came across an exhibition of French shoes and the showcase of 500 years of passion for shoes in French history.  The sight of beautiful shoes placed on glass cabinets one after another caught my eyes and I could not help but asked if I can take some pictures for momento and to share them on my blog.

If only I can buy them all!   The extraordinary showcase of vintage French shoes were meticulously put together by Ms. Anne Camilli - Commisaire general, in partnership with the Fédération Française de la Chaussure, and Le French May and company.  The showcase presents the beginning of shoemaking,  how shoes became a fashion statement to the creativity of artful expressions such as signature heels, embellishments, feather adornments, embroidery on boots, mix and matching concepts from nature and elegant beauty.  I can see how feminine and soft these shoes will feel on my feet as I smoothly enter the grand hall of a gala!  
As I was gawking over the lovely shoes, I started to appreciate the hands that made these shoes, the predecessor of the art form of winged heels, fairy tale fantasy-like creations by talented designers/shoemaker like Roger Vivier, Charles Jordan, Christian Louboutin to only name a few.

It is indeed every girly girl's dream to be adorned by exquisite shoes everyday.
Wish I could try them all on ...  alors ...
Thank you to the Master shoemakers and designers!
Credits: ; Fédération Française de la Chaussure ; Ms. Anne Camilli

Chinoiserie est ici

Chinoiserie, a lovely sounding French word that represent motifs, style, art, in the Chinese form.  Chinoiserie has come a long way from the 18th century European creatives depicting their concept of Chinese art into beautiful motifs on wall covering, cushion and fabric prints, tea sets, furniture, adornments, and of course fashion.

Fall Met Ball China showcased a colourful and desirable collection of Chinoiserie styles!

The bold motifs and intricate detail of the embroideries are fascinating.  It feels like you are in another era or space when you wear them out and about.   It is both fun and luxurious.  For some, wearing a traditional qipao or cheung sam with the tight collar and high slit showing the long legs of a woman is of the past.  Nowadays, designers have tapped into the fine attributes of details of a traditional dress like the hand-knotted fabric buttons, incorporate them with jade and select motifs replacing the embroideries are some of the features you will find in modern day Chinoiserie fashion.

The Power of the White Shirt

Are you wondering about the same thing as I?  Why are men not wearing white shirt anymore these days?  They are either full of stripes, or mismatched colours.  The fact that men have gotten really casual at work is becoming a norm.  Not to mention, the tie. Alright, we can skip the tie for now, but the shirt, please give me a moment while I take a deep breath.  Do you know that most women are drawn to men who wear a crisp white shirt.  The white shirt is a symbol of confidence, reflecting a man's ability to be in control, a good manager, tidy and neat, and obviously able to keep a clean and calm demeanor.   Now, that is attractive!

A well groomed man wears a spectacular white shirt.  He can wear it for a business meeting, go fishing with it, dinner with his mate, trot around the globe with one or two white shirts in his baggage.  The white shirt gives a sense of adventure, since it is white, spilling pasta sauce in the middle of the day could be a factor of risk taking!  James Bond, all suited up with that undeniable white white shirt running through obstacles and jumping on top of moving trains, well you get the picture.   Add on a bow tie and make a presence at an event, take off the tie and let your collar loose to show a sense of relaxed after work mode without being sloppy.  The casual elegance of a white shirt is powerful.  It is the uniform of the White Shirt Club , an executive choice.  As for women, a white shirt is an abundance of style and class.

You really do not need much apart from a white shirt.  A well tailored shirt to be precise.  What makes a good shirt is the collar and the cuffs then the shoulders followed by the fit to your body type.  If you choose to have your shirts tailor made, you can bring along previous shirts that fits you well for the tailor to reference upon.  An experienced tailor will be able to suit you according to your built and personality.  Fabric suggestions based on your lifestyle and care tips for your shirt to best maintain the shape of the collar and the cuffs.  I do not recommend online or long distance orders for tailor made shirts.  A well made shirt will last you a good season or two.  Experience the power of the white shirt.  You will get the attention.


Alright, I have to admit that time management is huge in getting things done on a timely manner, but with all the fun stuff going on in our lives, who has time to time manage?  I am a planner naturally and tends to plan things ahead of time so that is possibly my way of time management.  Looking at all the tools in the industry to help with time management, we have the to-do list, Franklin Planner system, Palm Pilot, google calendar, what else, I am sure you are all quite familiar with it all.  So why is it still not easy for some people to manage their time well?
Do we adjust our ways of time management according to our mood, personality, habits, way of life, variables and circumstances?  I read this book, Eat that Frog, or something like that, which talks about doing the first three most difficult tasks first thing in the day, then tackle the smaller tasks and make sure we complete each task before moving onto the next one.  I can comprehend this for most people, but for the individuals who often gets interrupted by other people, how do you handle this?
Delegate others to do some of the tasks for you while you can spend your productive energy towards more pressing issues. Yes, this is good, but how do we make sure the tasks have been taken care of efficiently and accurately without us having to redo them?
Reward yourselves towards the end of the week to lesser tasks and have at least one day of the week to be a couch potato!   I like this, just wake up whenever, have a relaxing no emails, phone, etc. day and let yourself go.  Recharge your energy and be twice as productive the next day.
This is how I do it:-
Wake up early in the day and manage myself first.  Have a great morning, no electronics, just my lovely oatmeal, blueberries, and coffee.  Listen to the birds, the wind, the sound of cars passing by.  Let your own mind wake up and create your agenda of the day.  (I usually came up with great ideas at this time of the day, even before I wake up and at times got woken up by my mind working first.  That explains why I like to be left alone in the morning!)
Complete two main tasks before 11:00a.m. then have an early lunch and review my list of things to do.
Afternoon, take care of other businesses as it comes along and so forth.  Before bedtime, draft only three things to do for the next day.
This is it, just keep it simple but knowing when your most productive energy level is during the day will have you focus your best self to tackle any challenges.
How about you?  Comments welcome!

Friday, August 29, 2014

Divine Handmade

Define handmade.
  1. made by hand, not by machine, and typically therefore of superior quality.
    "his expensive handmade leather shoes"

When we think about handmade goods, we often have the impression that it is of lesser quantity, more hours are being put into a piece of item and therefore, it is a one-of-a kind art piece.  

My love affair with handmade items started when I was a youngster, growing up in Hong Kong with not a lot of spending money.  I like browsing at the China Products Department Store in Hong Kong and admiring the arts and crafts from artisan of China.  It has been a fascinating experience and on top of that, the attractive price tag makes it possible for me to own them.  Handmade embroidery silk ballet flats, silk blouses with hand trimmed edges, delicate weaves of bamboo baskets, rosewood jewellery boxes with inlaid sea shells, hand painted fans, all so unique and special.

When I moved to Sydney, Australia, I got blown away by the aboriginal art. You have to see them with your own eyes to grasp the details and feel of it. 
I received much inspiration from the universe when I moved to Bangkok, Thailand.    This country is so resourceful and creative.  Since I love gemology, I can't help but noticed the vast opportunity of being able to get my hands on these fabulous gems at really reasonable price.
It was then that I started making my own jewellery for a past time hobby. Most people will be using plastic beads as a beginner but not me, I have to get all these lovely sapphires, rubies, silver beads, and create beautiful necklaces, pendants, belts, earrings for fun!  

Handmade might seem like a crafter's trade, but you will notice that a lot of the designer houses, like Hermes, Louis Vuitton, Van Cleef & Arpels, Salvatore Ferragamo, and the the list goes on have their own unique craftsmanship and skilled artisan who actually hand made their collection.  Each has a particular culture to their way of establishing their expectations and style.  If you own some of these labels, you will be able to tell the difference, in terms of quality, feel, and the durability of it.   It takes at least 40 hours for a master artisan to complete a Hermes bag.  It takes years of experience before a skilled worker can put together a pair of Ferragamo shoes.  It requires a particular expertise to create a beautiful Van Cleef & Arpel pendant.  I can talk about this topic forever, but all I can say is, we are in a world where everything is instant gratification, speedy output of data, quick supply of merchandise, and one thing, it is worth waiting for these Divine Handmade treasures!

Happy Day,
Anne - Bling Girl