I finally finished watching Asia's Next Top Model Season 5 (yes, only yesterday), and the final shoot is simply amazing! Behind every pretty picture there is a team of professional and talented crew taking care of the set, and most importantly, the hair and makeup.
Makeup can easily change up a person’s look – from a lip gloss to dark red lips, from mascara-only to dramatic cat eyes, one can transform from a professional office lady to a glam queen in no time. But hey, let’s face it. As much as I’d love to have the skills of Michelle Phan, I tend to err on the “safe side” and repeat the same look, cause I know I won’t screw it up.
So it was graduation last December and I had to take obligatory family photos. The previous set had haunted me over the past ten years. They are simply too embarrassing to look at, yet they are hung in the most obvious corner of my living room (yea, not the best times and really not looking forward to taking another). Just as I was planning to go for another “daily” makeup with some damaged bleached hair, I got in touch with Sponge, an on-demand beauty services team. The timing couldn’t be more perfect so I went over to check out their services online – I always loved wavy hair so I immediately scheduled a slot right before the family photo shoot. The founder, Diane, who is very hands-on with her business, confirmed the appointment with me right away. The stylist was on time, friendly, and took care of my preference perfectly. With the comfort of getting my hair done at home, we actually chatted the time away and had a fun time - and before I knew it, my hair was done.
Building a work wardrobe can be both thrilling and daunting. For those like myself who doesn't have the luxury of a huge dressing room, the top priority is bound to be multi-functionality, versatility, the ease to mix-and-match; and of course, to achieve this without compromising your style.
The broad principle to remember is:
Load up on basics, focus on cut, go easy on the patterns, and indulge in a few showstoppers.
Top - Reformation/ Pants - Club Monaco / Shoes - Stuart Weitzman / Jewellery - Dior
Always consider your budget, work environment, taste and lifestyle. Don’t feel like you have to rush out and buy them all at once! Invest in quality, classic pieces that you are going to wear or use regularly (for me, that's shoes, jewelries and bags), and mix them up with high-street and more inexpensive style pieces to stay in trend (which you might not wear it after a year).
This checklist, with tips on fabric and style choice, will hopefully help you in building a collection of outfits that fits all sorts of professional and social engagements x
1. Pick your base neutral and consider the overall colour palette.
Colour speaks a lot about you. So your task here is to pick a base neutral; probably black, navy, gray, or beige. This ensures your clothes will go together and can be a huge time saver every morning! Take into account what colours are your favorite items, and the accessories you currently have.
Then, pick two or three colours for accents. For me, vivid colours like cobalt or red work well. But you can always choose softer ones like light blue or mint.
As promised, here is part 2 of my experience at Sofitel Bali Nusa Dua Beach Resort
(check out part 1 here).
Turning to the spa experience at SoSPA tucked away in a secluded corner of the resort ground -
it has dark, mysterious entrance which was next to SoFIT
(an innovative gym space boasting state-of-the art equipment, and exercise programs that I am yet to try out).
Like every other spa place, you sit by impatiently to fill in a form indicating your preferences before the actual treatment. But the difference here is that you’re sitting by an ornamental pool in the lounge area
with high ceilings, intricately carved wood panels, mood lighting, and a fireplace in the middle.
Upon entering Sofitel Bali Nusa Dua Beach Resort,
I was escorted by a helpful front desk and greeted by their management in French
- it was only then I realized Sofitel originated from France.
They were not surprised, and explained that it can difficult to tell
owing to how its resorts and hotels around the world often blend in local elements into their designs.
The guided private tour began, predictably, in the main lobby.
We were instantly surrounded by distinctive décor which incorporated French influence with local Balinese artwork
- the wooden installation that occupied the central spot representing the circle of life is a meaningful and stunning piece that sets the tone for the resort; whereas the staircases are ones that you’d expect in a Parisian museum.
Staying consistent with the wooden tones and making good use of natural light,
the interiors of the resort give off a modern and contemporary impression overall yet
staying true to the local culture.
From there, we walked through the corridors and paths
(some were in a circular arrangement echoing the lobby’s structure),
leading to the gray and cream toned exteriors of the villas and suites that complement well with the main pool.
As a design fanatic myself, these details are very much appreciated.
The Art Space exhibition "Très'Ors" is about everything gold, it being a carefully curated space featuring pieces of glamour and wealth, showcases limited editions of luxury cutleries, jewelries and watches. One thing that stood out to me was how people of older times (perhaps with limited technology and long travel times) used to pack meticulously all daily necessities into a small briefcase - ranging from utensils to tea cups, nail clippers to combs and scents. French curator Anne Camilli did an amazing job in also tribute to MGM's golden days by including elements of the hotel's symbols.