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Book Review: Pretty Honest by Sali Hughes

This is not a new release, but I began to take beauty seriously back in 2014. That is when I discovered Sali Hughes and her In the Bathroom series. With the release of Pretty Honest, I was very excited and eager to have my hands on a copy. I've had this book over a few years now, so here's my review on it.


Prior to this, I had never come across 'coffee table books'. Frankly, whatever is on the coffee table is what I'm reading in bed, and it happens to be Tolstoy's War and Peace. Sitting right next to it would be my phone, playing A Year of War and Peace, the podcast. The chapters are short enough and within a year, I'll have read the book, a chapter a day. In any case, I'm not much of a reader of beauty and fashion, or anything with impressive pictures to look at.


Pretty Honest is what you'd dub a coffee table book and it'll look equally as fitting on a dressing table. Just don't put it near your makeup because if you smear anything on it, i…
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Inspiration: My Style Icons

It's been a while since I've written something for someone else's eyes. When I started this blog, I was fascinated with alternative fashions but over time, my tastes have changed. There are periods where I'm simply uninspired by clothes and trends. Sometimes, I want to wear the same things over and over again because I love what I have.

Here's the story of the state of my wardrobe: Marie Kondo's popular method prompted me to spend half a day going through all of my clothing and sorting out what I wanted to keep from the items I could farewell (clothes that only fit my 13-year-old self; cheap Shein garments I never wore but purchased on a whim). I also re-evaluated my consumer habits. Quality garments such as coats and jeans are worth splurging on. I'd appreciate it if it were sustainable and ethically made but I'm not that committed to buying from brands that market themselves as such. Instead, I'm more inclined to consider preowned items (such as c…

Inspiration: Favourite Prints of Spring/Fall 2017

I haven't derived much inspiration from clothing for a few years but I finally feel like I have my buzz back with these trends in store.

Muted Florals

I mentioned florals last year but florals are never truly out of fashion. This year, the florals are printed on sheer silk, chiffon or georgette. There's an airy quality that keeps it light for spring, but the muted colours are autumn appropriate. I fell in love with the Zimmermann florals but that's way out of my price range.


Constellations/Cosmic Prints

Moons and stars have always been popular but it's this year that I've noticed it more in clothing than in jewellery. Marks & Spencer released a constellation dress with funnel sleeves (in line with the 70s trend) and that sold out quickly. I opted for their other dress with the sheer outer and I will be saving that for the holiday season. I saw one in Zara too, but I wasn't keen on the fabric.

Project: Wool and the Gang's Wonderwool Sweater

I've had my eye on Wool and the Gang's range for a while, and plunged in when they offered 30% off in their Spring Sale.

For the experienced knitter, Wool and the Gang is probably not going to appeal to you. I'm an amateur and I don't necessarily have all the tools I need for a particular project. It's a great starting point for beginners or occasional knitters such as I, who wish to have a one-stop-shop. It's also for the fashion savvy as they have collaborations with designers such as Vivienne Westwood, and brands like & Other Stories and I love Mr Mittens.

Overall, my shopping experience was pleasant. The personalised label was adorable and I was surprised to see that it was packaged in a box because I typically get yarn mailed either in envelopes or mailing bags. Shipping to Australia took the usual time to arrive: about 2-3 weeks.


As for the price, Wool and the Gang does not offer it cheap. Nevertheless, the quality is good and you get what you pay for…

Project: Knitted Bag

I've had my eye on Quince & Co for a while. I like their simple aesthetic and their ethos -- slow fashion, not fast fashion. They offer patterns that are timeless. I selected the Dejeuner bag by Pam Allen and followed the pattern to a T -- even using their Swallow yarn in Sans (undyed).


I wanted something practical that I can gift. The pattern is not complicated to follow and the trickiest part is stitching up the bag. It was my first time using interchangeable needles -- the pattern did not call for it but I chose to use interchangeable ones. I wasn't keen on the needles unscrewing themselves but I liked the advantages -- that you can lock them in on the cable and have multiple projects going on at the same time.


Over a couple of months, I've been knitting on-and-off and finally the end result:



If there's one thing I'd go back and fix up, it'd be the handles. It is quite thin, and I messed up a bit. Nevertheless, I'm pretty proud of it as it is the fir…

Travels: Taiwan

Happy Chinese New Year! After the new Gregorian year, I spent a little over two weeks in Taiwan to visit family and celebrate my grandmother's birthday. Too bad I wasn't able to stay for the new Chinese year. I thought I'd share a little slice of what I saw there:


Taiwan is a beautiful island to visit, and generally speaking, the night markets are where it's at. Street food at a low cost. Lots of tasty morsels. Whilst you can do your shopping there, I reckon there are other places in Asia that'd fare better when it comes to the full experience. Nevertheless, it's not bad at all and I enjoyed looking around for skincare and cosmetics.

When in Taiwan, look for Taiwanese sheet masks. My Beauty Diary is renowned internationally but I wanted to have a go at other local brands: Dr Morita, Dr Jou, L'herboflore and My Scheming were the ones I ended up with. You get better promotions with local brands too -- a lot of 2 for 1 deals.


As for other skincare, this is wha…

Inspiration: Twin Peaks

Throughout the year, I've been watching Twin Peaks in my spare time. I've recently completed the series, hoping that I can catch the revival. I was introduced to this show when I was playing Life is Strange, where there were many references to Twin Peaks. I got so into it that I made cherry pie and had it with black coffee one morning -- actually a couple of mornings because I baked an entire pie for myself.

Nevertheless, the women of Twin Peaks has style and I thought I'd do a compilation here.

Audrey Horne

She's my favourite, she's everyone's favourite as far as I know. There's something about that 40s/50s influence in her style that I adore, mixed with the 90s. She's got that classic look, but the Old Hollywood kind of classic. It borders between demure and sexy. Her palette is generally white, black and red -- sounds like my teenaged wardrobe and I still love that combination.

I loved this costume on her too -- the one from One-eyed Jacks. 

Donna Hayw…