Has it been that long?

January 15, 2009 - 2 Responses

Hello friend or  maybe a random stranger, I just remembered I still have a wordpress account today, so just checking in.:)

it’s two-0h-0h-NINE! Gosh,my last post was about freshly chopped hair ( which has since been chopped,dyed, retouched,trimmed a couple of time already).. where did all that time go?

To recap, 2008 was another year that went by in a blink.I only really remember working, working,working and I didn’t travel anywhere except to Bangkok, Thailand and maybe a few short trips to Indonesia. Life in a agency tends to do that to u huh, you end up in your own little bubble , filled with other people who like to stay in a office all the time?

My wanderlust is really,really biting at me…I’ll have to make up for it in the new year, I pray for any opportunity to travel.

2009 is likely to be a time to me to make a few bold (and not so bold but necessary)  choices in my life. My boss gave us an “inspirational” peptalk yesterday about bracing for a potentially difficult 2009 both in our working and personal lives, in which we all snickered endlessly, but secretly had to admit it really does make sense. He said in 2009 we will have to start it off with a sprint, by preparing early with everything we want to achieve,not drag our feet by simply  assuming the worst of everything when no effort has even been made to try to make things better. 2009 will be a year for the sprinters who wont give up running to catch up with the rat race no matter how far behind they are. All obstacles, or “boulders”  (deadweights who do not put in the work and hinder the race as a result) will have to be pushed aside to make way.

I have mostly been tiring myself out in recent weeks by sleeping at ridiculous hours and eating too much junk food on the way , so will really be using the upcoming CNY break to muster up my mental “sprint” for the year. Physically, mentally…I just need to be repaired.

Just random fact:  I’ve just devoured the entire twilight series- all 4 books, Twilight, New moon, Eclipse, Breaking Dawn and one chapter of midnight Sun…in 5 days. hee hee hee. I like the books much better than the movie.

New Hair

October 4, 2008 - Leave a Response

Chopped off much of my old hair last weekend. I love it…so hassle free and easy.Nowadays, I can jump out out bed and get ready in 15 mins flat! 

Must Read: “Deluxe” – How Luxury lost its Lustre by Dana Thomas

September 15, 2008 - 3 Responses

I had finished this book a while ago and meant to recommend it to anyone who actively/obsessively consumes luxury goods and fashion, it was one of those books that had really piqued my interest from the start-go. Dana Thomas is the fashion writer for Newsweek in Paris for 12 years, and her job lends her access to the inside working corporate world of luxury brands in this time & age, and she has carefully researched and documented her discoveries and some dismal findings in this no holds barred read. Here’s a sypnois of the book.

From inside the luxury industry comes the truth on what designer brands are really worth

 

Once upon a time, luxury was only available to the rarefied and aristocratic world of old money and royalty; luxury wasn’t simply a product, it was a lifestyle. Today, luxury is different. Gone are the family-owned businesses; the industry is run by corporations that focus on brand-awareness, advertising and — above all — profits. In Deluxe, Dana Thomas has found out all the secrets that Prada, Gucci and Burberry don’t want you to know.

From the last bastion of old-world luxury — Hermès, where highly skilled artisans still make their coveted Kelly and Birkin bags by hand, she takes us into the scent factories that manufacture Christian Dior and Prada perfumes, into the crowded factories in China, where workers glue together ‘Made in Italy’ bags. She takes us behind the scenes in the weeks leading up to the Oscars to witness the wheeling and dealing of luxury brands to dress stars for the red carpet. Thomas has interviewed corporate heads and factory workers, the old-luxury clients and the new luxury-obsessed middle-class consumer and paints a surprising picture of ‘New Luxury’ today.

An uncompromising and rollicking read about the real world behind the dream, this book asks: what does luxury mean when it’s targeted at a mass audience? What are we paying for when quality is no longer quality? How did luxury lose its lustre?

I had polished off this relatively fast read in a week, usually on my train rides to and from work, and from one chapter to the next it was a blow after blow of “What??!” “Are you freaking kidding me?!” discriminating facts about popular labels like Gucci, LV, Prada to sombre details of long hours, or child labor in China. The book is also littered generously with delicious tidbits and stories of the design houses that have grown to become the money grabbing, corporatized, giant luxury brands we know and lust endlessly for today.

Some stuff from the book that made me gasp:

– Most luxury brands like COACH and LV have moved most if not ALL  production of products to China, where workers work harsh,long hours shifts with almost no off days, and sometimes child labour are used as well ( and there they are complaining about counterfeits being cruel) Its “made in china” label is often hidden within a non visible part of the bag, sometimes even on the reverse side of its ” made in Italy/France” label when the product is produced entirely in China. 

– With the exception of Hermes, and perhaps Chanel, most of the other brands of luxury bags and products are put together on factory assembly lines and sometimes GLUED TOGETHER instead of sewn, in order to speed up the production process. The quality of products is significantly inferior compared to the older stuff. Millions are spent on advertising to emphasize on its history of handmade bags and create the illusion of quality, exclusivity and value.

– Brands like Louis Vuitton seek to increase their burgeoning profit margins and reach the middle class consumer by using cheap materials like Denim and Canvas to do a new collections. This significantly cut production costs, at the same time the collections,which are priced exhorbitantly despite the use of cheap, non-durable materials, are still selling like hotcakes to  eager middle class consumers who just want a piece of the ‘magic’.

And many other revelations I’ll let u find out yourself when u read the book. A really interesting read that really make me think about the habits of consumerism, as well as the value of true luxury in this time and age. Oh, I don’t know if i’ll ever splurge hard earned money on a Louis Vuitton bag after this read! 

“Deluxe” is available at Borders at SGD$26.70.

Short Weekend Getaway

September 14, 2008 - 2 Responses

I know, I know, I have neglected this little blog of mine…

Not going to write much tonight, because its late and i gotta get some sleep real soon, but I thought I’ll just upload some pictures from a recent weekend trip to Batam, Indonesia (my semi-homeland) to share. It was a short getaway, just 3 days over the weekend…and while my intention was to go cable ski-ing, I ended up just holing up in the resort all day (it was rainy) then venturing out in the evenings via some DANGEROUS, madcap RAVING Cab rides for some great,cheap seafood! Also nostalgic was the A & W, which I really miss because we don’t have it in Singapore anymore,such a shame.

This month is really all about extreme overindulgence of seafood for me…I’ve just been eating so much it’s the first time i feel a little sick of seafood now, as a matter of fact I got sick because of seafood! Not for too long though.

                                                               Island kitty

                       Go-karting…i went really slow because i was so worried about the bends!

Can u believe this was polished up by just me and Derrick? 
                         “Crayfish” …I think they were actually Mantis prawns.The seafood were all LIVE and we get to pick them from tanks, and decided how to prepare them. This was buttered and fried… really good.

I’m getting bitten by the travel bug again, just keep wanting to get out of Singapore for some reason. Singapore is a great place to live in ,yes but sometimes you just feel like there’s really nothing much interesting to do!

OK Goodnight!