Saturday, June 28, 2014

The Commonplace Book

Hey everyone! Get a load of my peg for this post: Crafts! This is my first photo tutorial for my blog.
I got inspired by the ideas on Pinterest, especially the one about writing letters for loved ones
who live far away from you. Each letter has a theme and a specific instruction, like:"Open me when you miss being home." or even "Enclosed letter to be read when you need to be reminded of how strong you are."

I loved the concept! It's a way to make yourself felt to those separated from you by miles
of either land or sea. A way to let your words give comfort, even when your physical presence
cannot. Even the themes warmed my heart: themed letters from parents to their children away at college, themed letters from friend to friend; envelopes either exchanged whenever they get the chance to meet, or even sent through mail. 

I started such a collection of letters for my Bestie who works in Singapore. Ever since she left, I 
began writing her letters. I didn't label them with specific themes or instructions for certain 
circumstances. I wrote to her whenever I wanted to. It was the catharsis for the times when I pick up my mobile phone to text her a message, then I remember that she uses an international number now, and I didn't get to ask her what it was before she left. Writing letters, or even little notes to her helped lessen the pang of having her in a different part of Asia. We talked online every chance we got,but still I wrote and saved those letters and notes in a small folder I made.

When she came back home for a vacation, I surprised her with all the missives I accumulated and wrote while she was away. I was so happy to find out she loved it, and when she flew back to Singapore, I promised to write her a new batch of letters after I gave her the ones I had. 

On her next homecoming, I was ready with another set of letters, this time in a decorated envelope. Still no themes as to which one to open during a certain type of situation. Now, I've given those themes some thought and decided, why not make an entire compilation for her? I could still write her letters and little notes, but this time, I could put them all in one place. 

Mr. Lemony Snicket, famous author of the book series "A Series of Unfortunate Events" calls this type of compilation a commonplace book. You place in all your notes, sketches, and bits and bobs that you wish to keep for reference in a single notebook, making it the common keeping place for your work. I also found it more suited me, since I love writing, drawing, AND collecting pictures. (My attempts at scrapbooks always end up in the extremes: too much pictures and decals on one page.) The commonplace book allows me to do all the three elements I love. 

You can imagine the lightbulb shining bright above my head as I got to work on this idea one rainy Thursday. I thought I'd share with you how I made the commonplace book I crafted to use for the letters I write for my Bestie. 

Now you've seen how it's done, go make one for yourself to use! Be it for your very own,for a family member, or a friend; it's a great way to spill your thoughts and keep them all in one place. It's a journal of sorts, but the theme is UP TO YOU. 

Have fun compiling! :-D

Photos By: Me
Photo edits thanks to : PicsArt App for iPhone

Friday, June 27, 2014

Student's Pick: The Winner!

Hiatus galore from my blog for me. Once more, I am sorry for the long gaps in between 
entries. Still, I don't want to give up on this blog, so here's my latest peg:


Yes, I know, I've done a post on them before, but those were my high-heeled kicks 
which unfortunately fell into shoe ruin after getting me involved in a very 
embarrassing state of scotch-taped footwear throughout an entire workday. Believe me, 
it's awful just trying to keep the sole and the heel of your chosen shoes together.
So, it was either tape it up, or flop whenever I walk and expose my fluffy socks.

Anyway, I invested in another pair of boots (flat this time, so no heel-snap humiliations)
and made sure to take note of the proper care for them. Now that the rainy season just 
came in here in the Philippines, I brought these kicks out of their solitary confinement
and am now happily matching them up to planned outfits that I have been conceptualizing
ever since I brought this fancy pair of footwear home. 

For now, let's talk my first ensemble:

This is a dress that I thought was too ill-fitting on me at first. I looked at every angle
of it on me when I tried it on in the dressing room. Would the top mini-ruffles make me look
unecessarily buxom? Would the skirt be the right length even if I had to commute? Would the fit 
fall nicely on my body and not have any awkward bunches around my torso?

My Mom gave me the thumbs-up when she saw me in the dress. And she was right. I was thinking way 
too much. This was a dress-cut that I have yet to try and as far as she could see, there were no
problems with the fit. The boutique we bought it from even had good stock of the dress sizes they 
had available, so I was able to get a feel of each fit.

So, this dress was purchased, and I began to think on when and where I'd be able to wear it. I've
already worn it to work once before these photos were taken, so I thought it was time to play up
one part of the outfit. Check out the belt I threw over the waist. Figured I'd try the bling
effect. :-D

Oh, and this is the photo where I tried my hand at applying digital makeup. Actual makeup is not
my forte (so testament the abused eyeshadow pots, palettes, and eyeliner pencils in my hidden
satsh of cosmetics). Have a gander at my efforts. The app I downloaded as a touchup aid is not 

These next two photos have no digital makeup. I stuck to my usual baby powder. 

No regrets in buying this dress! The pseudo-denim skirt went great with my boots. 

Tell me your thoughts on this post. :-D

Photo credits to: My Mom
Photograph editing credits to: PicsArt, Photofy, and Pomelo Apps, plus Photoscape Software. 
Dress from: Cache Cache, Belt from: Y.R.Y.S., Boots: The Landmark, Boot socks: Marithe Frances Girbaud, Headband: Accessories area of local open-air markets, Watch: FURLA 

Monday, April 14, 2014

Outfit Post: Latest Attempt

Hello there! After yet another long hiatus from my online blogs, I've finally come up with a post. For my readers, whether you have me on your 'follow' list, or belong to those who just check out my posts, I do apologize for the irregularity between entries. It's turning out to be quite a summer for us over here where I'm from. The heat is far from humid and closer to what I would call frying. I've half a mind to try cooking an egg sunny-side up on the sidewalk. 

Anyway, my attempts to have an outfit post have resulted in these three pictures. I found that poses come naturally when one is having fun, so my mind went back to my dance lesson days, hence this first photo of me trying to strike a dancer's angle. 

This second try took me a while to think of, because I did want to share this ensemble I wore for a mother-daughter shopping day. It's my first time to take these floral-printed shorts out for a spin and I thought I'd pair them with alight white top plus my favorite brown sandals. 

So, what do you think of this second pose?   

My only accessory for the day: a silver ring inlaid with an arrow. It's a gift from my Bestie, Claudia when she came home from Singapore this April. This particular piece is part of a set; one of two she brought for me. As a bit of a twist I decided to use one as a pendant. Brings a smile to my face every time I remember she bought these because she knows the Artemis look is one of my favorites. 

How's this outfit post second attempt for you? I would welcome any suggestions. Still in the learning phase, so I'm pretty much taking things one at a time when it comes to poses, editing, and clothing  pieces.

Photo editing done on Photoscape
Photos taken by my MomWearing: top from Forever 21, shorts from Jewel, sandals from Chelsea, and ring from Forever 21 Singapore

Monday, February 24, 2014

A Lazy Sunday Morning (and My First Mini Photo Editorial!)

Surprisingly, my plans of a mini editorial came through, though not exactly the way I had it in mind. These were taken on a bright Sunday morning. I slept in pretty late, then thought the lighting  was  good for a photo opportunity. I already had a storyboard spread in mind of how the pictures were supposed to look like, but these pajama photos took the center stage. I quite like how they turned out.

For those who haven’t seen my previous posts on where I was wavering on what I want to blog about, let me introduce my teddy bear. His name is Harrod. Mom bought him for me last year as a gift. He was game for splitting breakfast with me.

Unfortunately, here’s the thing:

We decided to compromise.

Nothing like a good cup of tea and some biscuits on the first morning of a new week!

Now I’d like to do a comparison and contrast. I found that the saturated effect of these photos weren’t half bad as well. See the results in these edits I made. Without the watermarks and dialogue, the effect is classic.

Tell me if you prefer the colored or the black and white pictures. Would love to hear your feedback. Leave me some suggestions in the comments on what other mini-editorials I can do. Till my next post! :-D

Photo taken by: My Mom
Photo editing credits to: Photoscape
Wearing: All Boxed Up pajamas, old flip-flops

Food Credits: Lipton Lemon Tea and Hansel Premium Cheese Biscuit Sandwiches.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Turquoise Dream (Sneak Peak!)

Hello to all, and thank you to The Kyliebabii and Miss Sharina for the feedback on my last post. 

Now, what I have here is only a sneak peak, but I do want to share this particular dress because it's the one I wore to the Tacbas-Kho nuptials January of this year. The theme for the groom's side of the wedding party was pastels, so I ended up being the lightest color of the ombre palette I seemed to have formed with Kuya Mark's groomsmaids. I was a reader for the Mass, and I'd like to thank Kuya Mark and Ate J-Anne for choosing me to do so. 

Here's what my dress looks like: turquoise with a lace overlay on top of the sweetheart neckline. 

   My Tita Claire made this for me when I went to Iloilo over the holiday season of 2013. I got to go do a fitting at her atelier and practice moving with my shoes. The picture doesn't show it much, but the skirt of the dress is very flowy, and I felt very comfortable moving around in it. 

Hopefully, I can find a good place to take photos of both the front and back of this dress. I really love the way the back is sewn. Will definitely share it on my blog and Tumblr site. 

Dress credits to: Tita Claire of Claire's Atelier, 
Hair and Makeup credits to: Tippy Destacamento and crew.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Photo Bites

Well, hello there. I know I haven’t blogged for ages! I have no excuse to offer, but I’d like to give this update anyway. Been trying and exploring new endeavors with my cameras. Things have yet to become blog-worthy.

I have been trying to do outfit posts, but so far, nothing has come out right. Been giving it a lot of thought and I have come to the conclusion that I need to take more pictures than usual.  Surprisingly, my best photo moments are when I’m eating. Somehow, food brings out a certain expression in my eyes (as I have been informed) :-P  And here is proof.


Well, with Mom’s help, we managed to take one nice bust shot. I haven’t quite worked out how one’s ‘angles’ are supposed to be in front of a camera, but practicing in front of the mirror seems to give me mixed results. Fashion bloggers do their poses very effortlessly. I have yet to learn to do Outfit of the Day poses and I am sticking to random photography for now.


Beverage photographs are pretty hard to master for me, but I did manage to capture the foam on top of my Caramel Macchiato. Scintillating indeed! Just added my usual of two brown sugars and a sprinkle of cinnamon on top, and voila! A good cap to a lazy Sunday of shopping.

Took this photo of the beautiful afternoon outside the coffee shop I popped into for a pick-me-up. (It’s beginning to feel like summer!)

Any thoughts on how to improve my pictures? I’d appreciate suggestions on Outfit of the Day poses too.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Thank You, Miss Danika Rio Navarro!


A special surprise came to me by mail last Friday, November 29. 

Mom brought home a box received at the gate of our village. When I saw the label and read who it was from, I couldn't help but squeal with delight, for here was a gift from one of my favorite fashion bloggers: a framed piece of artwork she made herself. The quote is BEAUTIFUL, and I love the design  very much. 

It was carefully covered in bubblewrap and put inside a pretty shopping bag from NAVA (a boutique Miss Dani owns). What touched my heart as well was the simple label she placed on the bag, showing it was for me.

There was also a very sweet note that came with the package: 

Miss Dani, I am a very avid fan of yours, and if you do happen to read this, please know that you too inspire me with all that you share in your posts. From outfits, to quotes, and your meaningful artwork, I always find something to smile about as I read your blog. 

You're a true artist, Miss Dani, and it is always a pleasure to read through your site. I comment because I admire the way you present and express what you love to do. I respect your style choices very much, and even your upbeat and cheerful way of writing about your ensembles is a peg for me. This present you sent is a treasure, and my support for you is unwavering. I truly hope to meet you in person someday!

Credits: Miss Danika Rio Navarro, NAVA Boutique
Photos: by me