Monday, 30 May 2016

Outfit - Nightfall

      As I've mentioned before, just because it's summer, doesn't mean I stop wearing the darker colours I prefer all the time. And on a rainy, overcast day here in Hong Kong, these colours feel more appropriate somehow (because summer is the rainy season here). I was never a fan of wearing ballet flats with jeans, especially skinny ones, for a long time, since I thought they made the tops of my legs look bigger, but when the weather is warm, it's much more comfortable to wear light shoes like this. This is also the sort of outfit I wear to work on Saturdays, when there's no kids and we don't have to wear dresses. It's very simple to throw on jeans and a t-shirt, but with a fitted top like this one, and some small jewellery, it looks much smarter and more stylish.

Nightfall - outfit of fitted deep purple t-shirt, dark grey skinny jeans and black ballet flats

Saturday, 28 May 2016

Review - Catfish and the Bottlemen: The Ride

      Catfish and the Bottlemen launched into our lives two years ago with their debut album, The Balcony, which seemed to breathe life back into the British indie-rock scene, with everyman lyrics and prevalent use of guitars, especially in a time of music saturated with electronic effects. Now, they're back with their second effort, The Ride.

Catfish and the Bottlemen - The Ride album cover art

Wednesday, 25 May 2016

Hong Kong at Night

     When I first moved to Hong Kong, I was overwhelmed. By the culture shock, by the crammed streets, by the language foreign to my ears, and by the vast, towering skyscrapers dominating the skyline. Honestly, I thought most of them were pretty ugly. I grew up in the country, and although I was never the outdoorsy type, and have adapted pretty well to city life, I still much prefer to see open landscapes and natural scenery out my windows. However, after about 9 months now, I've gotten used to Hong Kong's city scenery (there's plenty of nature here too though!), and have begun to find some beauty in it. When you start to look at the skyscrapers, the Central ones in particular, you can see all their unique architecture, with an array of different designs on display. And they are never more spectacular at night, when they light up the harbour-front, creating an almost magical effect, of colour and light and design. Usually, when I'm in Central at night, I don't have my good camera with me, so I made a point of going with it last week, to spend a couple of hours slowly walking from Wan Chai to Central, going up and down various streets, to capture the city at night.

Central skyscrapers at night, Hong Kong

Monday, 23 May 2016

Outfit - Mix It Up

     When in doubt, find a short skirt and a pair of boots. That was my thought process for this outfit anyway, which was thrown together very quickly. I'm always mixing and matching my wardrobe these days too, as I've got a limited amount of clothes with me here. I have a tendency to try on several combinations of things, before settling on an old standby, or a combination of my sort of "staple" items, like here. T-shirts and skirts are my norm these days, with the Hong Kong humidity rising all the time. Boots may seem like an unusual choice, but this is also the rainy season, and these keep my feet a lot drier than sandals do! They're still pretty lightweight too, and the colour is quite summery. The rest of the colours in this outfit are less summery, but my typical palette is always in the darker range, with the exception of a handful of brighter pieces. This is really too dark for sunny days though, but is a good option for a rainy, humid evening here.

Mix It Up | outift of dark blue lace pattern t-shirt, short black skater skirt, and short, chunky brown boots

Saturday, 21 May 2016

Review - Against The Current: In Our Bones

     It's a little bit of everything, yet somehow it all works together. Against The Current's debut record has been highly anticipated by their fans, most of whom will know them from their YouTube channel (containing many covers, as well as their original songs), and 2 previous EP releases. Was it worth the wait though? I think most of us will agree, yes, yes it was.

Against The Current - In Our Bones album cover artwork
(source)
I completely love this album artwork by the way!

Wednesday, 18 May 2016

Junk Boat Party | Hong Kong

     Oh, the sweet, sweet freedom of having a Saturday off... I know my job isn't the hardest in the world, and there are plenty of other people who work far more hours than I do. But working 46 hours a week with very young children, with 1 day off a week, gets pretty exhausting. Monday to Friday is fine, but it's the Saturdays I'm most sick of, having to get up early to spend the morning in work doing very little. And while many of my friends have one off each month, I have none. So a public holiday on a Saturday, giving me my first 2 day weekend in months (holidays excluded)? Well, of course we were going to party. And with the rising temperatures and humidity, what better way to do it than on a boat?

Jumping into the ocean from a junk boat | Lamma Island, Hong Kong

Monday, 16 May 2016

Outfit - Dressing In Denim

     Summer is most definitely coming, and it's getting warmer and warmer (and more and more humid here all the time). Despite being denim, this dress is surprisingly light, so most of the time I don't get too hot in it - though it's not my first choice on the very hottest of days. I like the interesting design of it, almost appearing to be a skirt and waistcoat, rather than a dress. And while I've been known to wear cut-outs before, this one is very well placed, keeping my squidgy bits trapped under the tight fabric, and letting a flat area breathe a little, giving this a flirty twist without being too revealing. My style gets simpler with warmer weather too, as the last thing I want is layers! I've gone with this feather/tribal style pendant, as that style always reminds me of summer and festivals and such. And to finish it off, I've thrown on my flip flops, which are quickly becoming my go-to shoe these days - I still love my boots the most, but it's just too hot now!

Dressing in Denim | light blue denim dress with cut out middle, with blue flip flops and silver pendant necklace

Saturday, 14 May 2016

Travel Inspiration - South West France

     While living in France, I began to think that every town I visited there looked the same, especially as the months wore on. But now, as I look back at my photos, I can see some of the differences coming to light, especially so in the south west region of the country. I travelled here during my Easter holidays, two years ago now, and visited half a dozen towns along the south coast (the remainder can be seen in my Provence travel inspiration post). Toulouse was my first stop, followed by Carcassonne and Montpellier, and the differences between the three are quite interesting, especially when they are fairly close together.

Town square, Toulouse, France

Wednesday, 11 May 2016

Top Five Classic Novels

      What makes a novel a classic? Ask this question to any literary-type person, and you'll probably get a range of answers. However, the most common seems to be that a classic is a novel that has stood the test of time, having been read by generations of people, and remains popular today - so books from the 90s and 00s definitely cannot be included! As a literature student back at university, I've read many classics, some perhaps more well-known and popular than other. Many, I read by myself, for pleasure, not for a course or essay assignment. I often struggle with older classics a bit - for example, I've yet to complete a Dickens novel - as I find the writing style to be heavy and tedious sometimes, even if the plot is intriguing. There's also many classics I've yet to read, and will hopefully get around to one day. But, out of what I've read so far, here are some of my favourites.

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte book cover
(source)

Monday, 9 May 2016

Outfit - Fields of Heather

     How pretty is the pattern on this dress? The flowers are so delicate, but the black and purple colour scheme is a bit more mysterious, and falls in my palette range (you'll never catch me in pale or pastel florals). I love how easy dresses are, just being able to throw them on, without having to plan and coordinate everything - shoes and accessories aside, obviously. This one is short and lightweight, perfect for the summer humidity I'm currently dealing with, and dressy enough for perhaps a nice meal or a few drinks on a warm evening - I don't see it so much as daywear. Simple black flats keep it relaxed in this version, though heels could make it dressier too. I've kept the jewellery simple too, with just these long earrings, as I thought a necklace was too much on top of the pattern on the dress. Oh, and the dress has pockets, which just makes it even better!

Fields of Heather | outfit of short, summer dress with black and purple floral print, with flat black ballet shoes

Saturday, 7 May 2016

Cheung Sha Beach | Lantau Island

     Hong Kong in the spring is not always the prettiest of places, with the sky painted a dreary grey and the tops of the highest buildings constantly lost in the clouds of foggy pollution. The humidity is high and thunderstorms have been frequent lately. However, that doesn't mean there aren't still opportunities to go out and see new places still. Last Saturday, after work, I took a jaunt over to Lantau Island (which can be reached by the MTR to Tung Chung, or the ferry from Central to Mui Wo - I took the latter to get there, and the former to get home). I've seen the big sights on the island, like the Big Buddha and Tai O, so this time I made for the beach - Cheung Sha to be specific. The weather wasn't exactly suited to swimming and sunbathing, but a stroll along the sand for an hour or so, and some photographic experimenting, was a pleasant way to pass an afternoon. 

      I ended up taking the bus (no. 1) to the Upper beach, and walking down its length, then along a short path to reach the Lower beach. The Lower beach is near the village, and therefore much busier, as well as smaller, whereas the Upper part was more or less empty, save a few other walkers, so I definitely enjoyed that side more for my quiet, peaceful, contemplative wanderings. I was thinking about some important stuff at the time, so some space to clear my head and get perspective on it was certainly a good idea - this post landed on the blog just a few hours later. It was also great to try out photographing the place in drizzly, overcast weather, as I normally prefer sunshine for the best lighting - this is still true for the most part, but I'm pretty pleased with how these turned out in the end!

Cheung Sha beach, Lantau Island, Hong Kong

Wednesday, 4 May 2016

Review - Captain America: Civil War

     Another Marvel film, another review! I think I review these the most, because I usually see them as soon as they come out (in part from excitement, in part to avoid spoilers!), whereas it seems less relevant to review a film weeks late. Anyway, being a fan of most of the MCU films thus far, and with Captain America being my favourite of the superheroes featured so far, I admittedly went into this one with a fairly strong bias, both for liking the film, and for Team Cap. As to the former, I was not disappointed, and as to the latter... well, things get complicated!

Captain America Civil War film poster
(source)

Monday, 2 May 2016

Outfit - True Blue

     Did you ever go through that phase when you were younger, when you didn't want to wear anything your mum bought for you? I did, there was a time when I hated shopping, but always had to go with her, because I didn't trust her to buy anything for me. I mean, she knows what suits me and such, but I just didn't like some of the stuff she would choose. Since then, I've developed my own sense of style, and my mum is far better at knowing what I like. I buy most of my own clothes, but she'll pick something up for me now and then, and quite often - as in the case of this top - it's not something I would have picked out myself, but I'm willing to give it a try. She's quite good at getting things that will suit me, but are a little different from my usual choices. This is also one of those tops that looks far better when you try it on that it does on the hanger, so I'm pleased I gave it a try. It's simple and casual, but with those little lace patterns for some interest, and it's very easy to throw on with my skinny jeans and a pair of my boots.

True Blue | outfit of dark blue lace patterned t-shirt, blue skinny jeans, and short chunky brown boots

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