New year resolution & what have I done this year?

How’s your 2019 going so far? 2018 is a transitional year for me that my whole life, social circle and environment have been changed and it’s like I’m starting the game over. Like it or not, I have to remind myself to keep adjusting to the changing environment and anything new.

I still remembered when I turned to 20 years old, I told myself, “Wow days after 20 are gonna be super exciting and fun.” Well, now I am nearly 24 and I admit that adulthood has indeed brought me more independence and excitement, however, it’s hard to have those simple thrilling feelings again like what I used to have at teen-age.  I started to think about the down side of every new opportunity and yeah, it’s just harder to be simply “happy” and not to worry about any other things behind it:)

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But still, when I look back my 2018, there are some significant changes or experiences I wanna mark down to conclude my 23rd year on this crazy planet:

1. I started my postgraduate study, and this time, I work really hard (LOL)

To be honest, I rarely considered about master degree when I was doing my bachelor, back then I was still enjoying my college life and did not have much plan after my future, plus, I can definitely tell you that my GPA in college is just so average as I did not pay much attention on my coursework  (so what was I doing back then? ummm). I still remember it all started from a call of my dad and he asked, “Hey, since you said you don’t like the life in Hong Kong, how about just leave Hong Kong and have a new start in Melbourne?”

So basically that’s how I jumped on the boat of masters. After I arrived in Melbourne, I just spent most of my time on food, shopping, swing dance classes until I got freaked-out by the workload on my first day of school. I was definitely not a hard-working person when I was doing my bachelor degree but now I realised that if you don’t get prepared weeks ago you may not be able to finish those crazy papers and placements in just 3 months!

 

2. I stayed in Singapore purposeless for a month

I LOVE Singapore and I’ve just spent my December there. I’d never think that I would get a chance to stay in this tropical paradise for a month and without any purpose or stress (since I’m on holiday). It’s always good to go back and meet some old friends and make new friends there 🙂 And it’s a little bit shocked for me to see everyone here is so hardworking  with ambition towards their career goal, that makes me feel ashamed sometimes. But overall Singapore still treated me so well again and I just LOVE the food LOVE the bars (and I have to mention Tanjong Pagar! always my favourite place in SG!) and most importantly LOVE the energetic people here!

The only down side of this trip is… doing nothing sometimes can be really boring. Then I decided to fly back to Melbourne and started to look for something that I can do! haha

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Always a big fan of hawker centre and little India! woo-hoo!

 

3. I did lots of self-reflections, and realised that no one can be responsible for my own life

I used to give things up when there are obstacles, then over these years I realised that the more I gave up at the beginning, the fewer options I can choose later on. I gave up most of my hobbies/work opportunities after six to twelve months. Back then I always told myself, “OK, you have experienced quite a lot in this field and obviously you are not that into it, then how about to try something else?” or “This is a good opportunity but obviously you are not well-equipped for it/ you are too exhausted to do it.”

The result is, I was still confused and anxious about what I should do at 23 while lots of people at my age have already started their journey with clear goal. I still put my expectation on other people and when things didn’t work, I was just unnecessarily frustrated and wasted my time. However, I think I am still lucky that I have met some people this year and they made me start to think about my future and to take action:) I started to adopt a totally different way to live and work and treat myself in the past month and so far even though not everything worked that well but I have reached to something that I wouldn’t expect to try before.

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So, what is your New Year resolution? Let me know! (@Fashionmimo)

 

 

 

OOTD: Springtime minimalism

The weather is getting much warmer these days in Melbourne, so I was planning to shoot an OOTD series about my springtime fashion.

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Top from Zara, bottom from an online shop in China and chain bag from Gucci (@Fashionmimo)

 

Forget about post cards: embrace the crazy yet “grounded” gallery souvenirs era

It is not surprising to see galleries and museums today start putting more effort in the promotion/marketing of their gift shops. Forget about those souvenir shops where you bought a boring post card or a notebook after visiting a museum during the school field trip, souvenirs today have already become an important source of income to most of the public-running galleries. Museums/galleries nowadays are also trying to build up their own brands with iconic products from their gift shops: even sometimes those designs would be bold or hilarious. The one impressed me the most recent years is  the “Emperor memes” stickers launched by the Forbidden City Museum at the gift shop and it became so popular on China’s Internet. You may argue that it’s a sign of our society’s fall into the trap of consumerism,  but those intriguing gift shops did bring old museums tremendous media exposure because of the more “grounded” products, and their design teams also offered young people opportunities to be creative on those historical art pieces.

Since I’m living in Melbourne, it’s quite common for me to visit the gift shop of NGV (National Gallery of Victoria)  frequently. As one of the most influencing galleries in Australia, NGV has a design team specialised in gift shop product design based on the exhibition and art pieces they are showcasing. For this winter, the biggest show is the MoMA X NGV exhibition which has brought the work of Vincent van Gough, Andy Warhol, Henri Matisse and other great artists to Melbourne. There is a pop-up gift shop at the end of the exhibition hall and I strongly recommend you to check out those crazy designs. I personally LOVE the emoji tote bags a lot and I will definitely shoot an OOTD with it! You can also check them out online: https://store.ngv.vic.gov.au/

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NGV launched a series of events along with the MoMA exhibition, from the exhibition to the creative gift shop, and after the visit you can still enjoy the Friday Night event with wine and Jazz. (@Fashionmimo)

Embedding the content of exhibition into the design of the products. (@Fashionmimo)

Vintage Shops Hunt- Melbourne Pt 1.

I am always impressed by how “old school” Melbourne can be: from the 70s disco corner to the swing dance class in a 1880s hotel.  In Tokyo I would say someone looks “sharp” when he/she is equipped with a vintage leather jacket matching with a vintage Chanel. But when I came to Melbourne, I noticed that wearing old stuff is just a norm here, vintage can be wore to school, to work or to any special occasions.

SO, I would like to introduce you some great vintage boutiques in the city, don’t miss them out when you are visiting Melb!

Vintage Sole

This can definitely be your first stop as it is just NEXT TO the famous Flinders Station, just a 3-min walk from Flinders to a small old arcade, you will see it on the ground floor. I bought a cotton sleeveless dress here with country-style floral pattern , very Aussie haha.

Address: 6/37 Swanston Street, Melbourne CBD ( They also have shops in Fitzroy and Windsor BTW)

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They mainly sell male/female clothing & shoes. (@Fashionmimo)

 

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Me in the coutry-style cotton dress from Vintage Sole 🙂 (@Fashionmimo)

Retro Star

It is located at the same building with Vintage Sole, so you can just climb up the stair to check it out after visiting Vintage Sole. It is really a big Vintage Market that you can find so many things here: clothing, accessories, home decorations and so many little stuff that I couldn’t tell what are they used for. It reminds me of those Flea market in Europe, the period of the goods here are quite various: there is a time I found out a formal dress that I believe it is either an old costume or it is from the early 90s.

Address: 1/F Nicholas building, 37 Swanston St, Melbourne VIC 3000

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Mio Tesoro

Authentic vintage& pre-loved luxury boutique located in South Yarra. The shop owner Elaine is a fashion and luxury Guru. There is a wide range of vintage luxury products: from the new season Gucci handbag to the vintage 70s Hermes watch. I always recommend my friend to pay a visit when they come to Melbourne 😉

Address: 568 Chapel Street, South Yarra 3141, VIC

 

AussVintage

OK… Here comes my online vintage shop hahahah. Basically I am collecting vintage accessories from the UK and vintage handbags from Japan. It is still on an early stage that I am making lots of mistakes everyday. But hopefully it will get better and better with your support! ;D

Follow Instagram to shop: www.instagram.com/aussvintage/

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I am going to introduce more vintage/second-hand shops in Melb in my next post! If you know there are other interesting vintage shops in Melbourne, PLZ leave a comment and LET ME KNOW!!!! xx

 

90s School Look

I’m wondering how many of you are still returning to school in September,  for me, my last summer vacation has just gone away 😦 Feeling a bit sad but it’s fine because I’m still very young inside haha. This time my friend Alison (alisonderland.com) and I are trying some 90s retro school looks with a piece of orange gradient color filter, it was my first time applying a real filter on lens and the outcome is surprisingly awesome: the orange filter can somehow soften the daylight and makes the whole digital photo look more film-like. (@Fashionmimo)

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Rainy Summer Style

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There’s no way to escape from the humidity and the endless rain. As far as I could remember, Hong Kong has been in rainy season for over 2 months: umbrella is my Must-Have for sure and the rain/typhoon/storm have also ruined a few pairs of my sandals, so slippers have become the only option left for my summer fashion.

Then I flied to Thailand, hoping to have a sunshine-beach-coconut juice therapy like before, but the fact is, July-August are also rainy months in Thailand. The whole beach looks gloomy and windy…fine, then let’s forget about the sunshine-bikini-beach fantasy and put my velvet bandeau on 🙂

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Velvet bandeau with cardigan in similar color, ideal for the rainy weather. (@Fashionmimo)

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Tips to survive the showers: 1. wear calf-length culottes 2. wear sandals 3. change them to rain boots when it rains heavier (@Fashionmimo)

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Dress with summer pattern (@Fashionmimo)

OOTD: Tropical Paradise

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Going back to Singapore has been always on my bucket list since I left there, like, 1 year ago. To most people, Hong Kong and Singapore don’t have much differences: same concrete jungles, same colonial backgrounds, both influenced by Chinese and western cultures… However, if we look it in a micro way, the differences between these two cities are still obvious: from office culture to people’s favourite pastime, from languages to people’s attitude towards work-life balance… things are getting different in many ways. But for me, those differences in a nutshell could be sensed in a very direct way: outfit.

I dress up differently in these two places. When I lived in Singapore, I would prefer to wear more skirts/dress and outfits with floral patterns, and I also pay more attentions on some specific textures such as chiffon and cotton. I think it’s because the weather is always hot and full of sunshine in Singapore, so I would focus more on the “breathable” texture and more bright/sharp colors to fit the blue sky and green trees. In contrast, when I am in Hong Kong, linen, silk and nylon materials are my favourites: unlike Singapore, the summer weather in Hong Kong is quite unstable and the indoor/outdoor temperature could be very different: the indoor area is freezing cold all the time while the outdoor area is sticky and hot as hell. So I would prefer some comfortable and neat materials that could help me to keep warm in the office/lecture hall while could also absorb my sweat when I’m out. So in a nutshell, what I wear in Singapore is casual and tropical, while in Hong Kong my preference would shift to minimalist and easy-to-wear commuter style.

So this time, when I travelled back to SG, I tried out more tropical-style outfits with multiple concepts: beach, all-black and 70’s retro style… check them out 🙂 (@Fashionmimo)

Oh, and last but not least, Happy 2nd Bloggaversary to Fashionmimo.com!!

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Spring Retro Lookbook

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Haven’t seen you all for a while and haven’t updated my lookbook for a long while as well. Even though the weather is still quite unsettled (raining all the time), but it finally gets warmer after the long period of raining. And I think spring is an ideal time for me to show you some retro outfit ideas because as the weather is not too hot or too cold, I can play more with different layers and don’t need to worry about sweating too much during the shooting. (@Fashionmimo)

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With the ruffle sleeve blouse from Topshop, the flare jeans from Forever 21 and the vintage Chanel bag I found in Japan. (@Fashionmimo)

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70’s picnic look: Check blazer from H&M, shirt from M&S, still with the Forever 21jeans and flats from Salvatore Ferragamo. The highlight of this look is the Japanese print scarf which I found it in a shop next to my yoga studio. (@Fashionmimo)

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90’s school look, all about denim denim denim (@Fashionmimo)

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Hidden gems in Osaka/Kyoto

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My last trip to Osaka and Kyoto was a perfect vacation after half year of work, and it was my third time there. Unlike previous trips, this time I didn’t rush at all and I gave up most of the famous sights so I just visited one or two places a day. I tried to explore these cities’ hidden gems, which you won’t find them on guidebooks. And normally I would prefer to walk instead of taking public transport if possible, because then I can have deeper understanding of how the city actually looks like by strolling around 🙂 And the following article is going to introduce some of the “hidden gems” in these two amazing cities. You could consider them if you also want to make your Japan trip different from other tourists!

Nanten-en 

Nanten-en is an authentic  Japanese onsen ryokan located at the suburb area of Osaka, well, a really suburb area of Osaka called Amami. I took 1-hour train to get there from the city, and literally the ryokan is just next to the station. Amami is a small village which doesn’t even have a vending machine or convenient store, the ryokan itself is already the landmark of the village. So for local people, here is definitely an ideal place for weekend getaway; and for foreign tourists, it is a good place to experience the authentic half-board culture in Japanese ryokan with hot spring.

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Since there’s no other restaurants/convenient stores nearby, you can only choose to have the dinner and breakfast at the hotel, but trust me, this authentic ryokan with over 100-year history knows how to make good Japanese food. I strongly recommend you to choose the Kaiseki Cuisine(懷石料理) for dinner. You can enjoy quality food here with much lower price than in Tokyo or Kyoto.

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The selection of material in Kaiseki Cuisine is based on season and different themes, like this one is called “flower”. (@Fashionmimo)

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Dinner is served in a private guest room and breakfast is in a big dinning room with pleasant garden view, but first, let me take a snapchat 😉 (@Fashionmimo)

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The village and the Amami Station, if you are looking for entertainment, this                         place might be a bit boring but for me, the tranquility here is priceless. (@Fashionmimo)

Chion-in 

Well, Chion-in(知恩院) is well-known. The temple is located at Gion, the heart of Kyoto while also the busiest part of the city. However, even though thousands of people visit the temple at day time, only few of them know that actually you can actually spend a night here.

Nothing is special if you choose to stay here, only if you choose to attend their morning buddhist ceremony, this would be one the the most memorable things you’ve done in Kyoto!

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Since photo shooting is not allowed during the whole ceremony, so I found the picture on Google. In a nutshell, only hotel guests would be invited to attend the ceremony and it starts at 6:30 every day, which means you need to wake up very early and the staff will lead you to the temple. The whole ritual includes monk chanting and worship. Overall it is a very interesting experience.

AWOMB

Now it’s time to talk about food! AWOMB is an experimental restaurant in Kyoto providing artistic DIY sushi set, which means you can make your own sushi with the material provided like this:

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Super cute isn’t it? I believe that every girl would scream out like I did when they first see this! Despite of the food, the interior decoration of the restaurant should not be ignored as well, it is influenced by Japanese minimalist aesthetic: the gate is too small to be noticed, everything inside is made by wood…

Normally the restaurant is very popular and requires reservation, if you want to walk in, hope you have the same luck as we have! (Yes we made it!)

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Yeah my excited face lol (@Fashionmimo)

AWOMB has two restaurants and a studio, both of the restaurants are in the central area of Kyoto but with different policies, for more detail you can refer to their website http://www.awomb.com/ (@Fashionmimo)