I'm gonna need more hangers.

step 2 and step 3 are actually intertwined. i have one terrible habit and that is splurging on the right things at the wrong times. in other words, a lack of prioritizing needlessly nice things over needed things.

yes, play me the smallest violin ever.

while i do crave a perfect working wardrobe of separates and polite shoes, i always ALWAYS cave into high fashion potential.

the struggle fest continues.

Winter Boots 2014

L: Acne Lomi Boots, Alexander Wang Gabi Boots || R: & Other Stories Leather Ankle Boots

WANT#1:  Shoes

i will spoil myself with shoes, whether i will wear them or stare at them. i will. splurge.

NEED: only one multitasker  for winter/work. i’m thinking a simple, chelsea boot style with a chunky heel to be dressy or punky. maybe black, though ideally an eye catching hue or metallic for that beastly fashion craving. maybe the Lomis.



price aint right dough. also the Gabi boots are sold out in my size EVERYWHERE. the faux-croc ones have a 10 cm/4 in heel that might be too much for everyday wear and i’m not sure about the fit as its h&m’s mid-tier division.

bah, maybe just cheap ones will do until the right ones turn up. i’m okay with that since Korea makes awesome fur-lined ones anyway.

sources: la garconne, &otherstories

step 1 in my wardrobe reform is a clear budget.

here, i employed the 60/40 principle: 60%  living expenses, 40% leisure/savings. big thanks to wikipedia for informing me; i prefer overarching guidelines that i can tailor over pre-detailed plans, which tend to be overwhelming and impersonal. i’ve tried to scale each item’s size based on its percentage within the categories (ie. fiscal significance).


L: Utilities, Transportation, Rent, Food, Dry Cleaning, Household, Phone || R: Shopping, Creative Projects, Savings

while i love numbers and lists, visuals are the most effective means of motivation for me.  mapping this out, i realize how easy it is for me to lose sight of what’s important (ex. eating great food). this collage will remind me of what really has prominence and where sacrifices can be made if funds need to be shuffled around, given no extra income.

…which i do get actually; i’ve been working a lot of weekends (not by choice, boo). any extra income will go towards the savings, or irregular expenses, piggy bank first, though i can see creative projects absorbing most of it, which is fine.

creating this visual budget is one thing, maintaining it requires an additional system of checks and balances, puns notwithstanding.

1) weekly receipts are the best way for me to keep track of expenses. every sunday, my boyfriend and i try to divvy out what we owe over groceries, so i can use that time to jointly check-in on my own spending. sometimes this gets delayed, but there’s a noticeable void in productivity if we don’t. this allows for me to piggy-back on an already establishing habit, instead of trying to carve out a new one.

2) setting aside leisure savings on every pay day will be a challenge, but it can be done. in this case, its a matter of setting up a reminder on my phone, which also syncs to my laptop. yay apple!

3) have cushion room in the necessities category. i gave myself some generous leeway so if i do scrimp on something, i’ll feel like i saved extra, but if i don’t, its already accounted for.

positive reinforcement is as necessary as a crackdown i say. budget rewards, which can come out of irregular expenses or extra from the end-week, for myself are often activity or food related–a $5 yoga class, a cheap spa day, a succulent slice of cake–as i try to curb my retail therapy ways.

Source: pinterest, instagram(@perzpective, who beautifully photographed our little loft. yes i live there hehe)

categories: Arrange, Closet Curating

i need to set myself up for success this time. i’ve done a lot of horse talkin before, where i simple ramble on about ideas, albeit concrete at the time, but not follow through because it wasn’t even self-related advice. it was just crap and more air-y psuedo-eloquence. #realtalk

here’s the plan.

1) budget. and seriously follow through with it. i have a ton of other things i wanna do with money, namely investing in creative projects, eating awesome food, and spoiling my friends and family with gifts. maybe even go on vacation with my boyfriend. you know, live.

2) identify old habits not to break them cold, but to curb them. work with them. habits are what you are. so i need to see what iterations  i need to change.

3) prioritize my necessities over my wants. what do i direly need for this season? what have i always denied myself for the sake of something lesser but more immediately gratifying? where can i strike a balance with work clothes vs. leisure wear? what can i not live without vs. what am i just experimenting with? above all, how financially justifiable is this?

in my old philosophy, personal style identification comes first, ie. knowing things you like and styles you’re going for and having a label for everything. honestly, i’ve found that method to be surprisingly restricting. when we label things, we’re looking for a reason to keep or discard; we end up narrowing our focus and become closed minded to the possibility of evolution.

my style is based on amusement. there are certain solid elements–textures, structure, a bit of fantasy or glamour–i don’t really know what to call it though, except what it is at the moment it comes together, because i love being open to experimentation.

at least i’m lucky enough to trust my own instincts. the 3 pillars though, they will serve handsomely as guard rails against falling off.

categories: Arrange, Closet Curating

i’ve been blog-averse for so long, but lately i’ve been wanting my little space on the web back. but how to bring this back into my life without it being vapid and dimensionless has been uncertain for me, so i’ve avoided it.

i think i’ve got it now. its so simple; when the noise becomes unbearable, focus on the base line. the blog is for my closet “fiending” –style things, wardrobe worries– all in the name of crafting a better one. documenting has helped me in the past, but then that became my focus, which wasn’t right and likely a product of my peers. its not easy trying to discern yourself from others when you visually consume as much as i do these days.

to bring myself back to basics, my basics, i remember a favorite, now-defunct blog of mine entitled Dead Fleurette. her almost draconian approach to simple, inconspicuous clothing was inspiring; it made her words matter all the more to fill in that visceral gap that distanced us, for though i was a reader, her style-kin i was not. however, her perspective still draws me back and her semi-annual wardrobe planning lists were stripped and genuine.

my approach to shopping had never been like that, making a list and following through. funny how saturated my mind is with fashion visuals, yet i never quite have a clear picture of what i’ll buy. the culprit is likely my deluded sense of…sense. i go by a gut feeling, which has been exacting yet capricious and worse, easily swayed by the fashion phantom that floats in and says:

you want this.

while it is right (i do want that), its cutting the queue of elegant ideas, namely those in my pinterest, that i mulled for so long to even pin, that i arranged so neatly into categories fit. then i look at what i actually have and its a mess of things i “wanted.” not that they were lies; its just that there were all shouting my name and i chose to go with the loudest.

and the only way i am going to be able to move forward from this pitfall of mine is going to be through self-discipline and goal-setting.

category: Uncategorized

i’m sick and in one of those moods where i MUST SAY SOMETHING. but i’m tired of the facebook status. it’s been reduced to terms of “like/dislike/dismiss” but rarely do i see ones that are thought provoking alone. maybe they don’t need to be. but i want them to. so. here we are.

i work 3 jobs right now and they all, in even the smallest ways, make me whole. i shopping and fashion write for a big expat magazine; i teach charming children at an academy close to home and hangouts; i edit, brace yourself, nuclear physics manuscripts. that last one makes me sound academically glamorous; it is not and neither am i.

i don’t know if that’s an excuse, but folks, there’s life beyond blogging. BELIEVE IT. i am clearly not what i blog because in it’s negligence, i have become so much more. but if anything, i’m lucky. incredibly so and oh i know it.

category: Uncategorized

materials :: wool and the gang

1 week for materials to arrive in korea (zoot suit blue, so yellow, stonewash blue, ivory white, tartan pattern). even though i got free shipping (my order was over $100), i still had to pay customs. booooo.

1 week to make. tried to savor every little stitch like a last breath.

you can buy them pre-made on the website (sale!), but why let them have all fun huh?

one of my resolutions for 2014 is to knit a sweater. ambitious? who cares.

here’s to a year of doin it. happy 2014 everyone.

category: Beauty

nothing n nothing barber shop :: hongdae

my handsome man getting his hair did by another handsome man, in a very handsome shop. boys, you know you gotta get yourselves did here.

all thanks to Haemin for the neverending help.

also, i’ve been doing some freelance work for seoul magazine. my article on hair salons comes out in january, have a peeksie!

appointment only: 35k, ask for Daniel (110-6619-7399)

Directions: *Best/easiest way is to locate “Style Nanda” and it’s the white little building/house next door, second floor.

Bus route: take the 7011, 08, 09 buses heading to 홍대 (hongdae), get off at 산울림소극장 (sanolim theater). walk to the tom & toms and make a right. two blocks down, turn right and you’ll see the white building/house. signs on the door.

Subway: Hongdae exit 8, hang right past coco bruni, cross the big street and head towards the uni gate. Turn left, keep going till you see that tom&toms, make a right. same same. 

Hmmm…maybe i need to start making maps.

category: Random

omh-my god, i am the WORST blogger in the history of inconsistency.

i’ve had a year of growing, searching, getting lost, moral mishaps and many other blah blah distractions, excuses rather, for my lack of committing to anything to completion. i’ve learned that for me, my actions and daily dealings are a pulse in the very beat of me. i have to do it all little by little, or it becomes fatal and i just…quit. i get lazy and my impulse for flight takes off. i’m crawling back, slowly, saying,

i’ll be better this time. please still believe it me.

usually if i go on a break, i try not to preface my returns with apologies, but i really do need to own up to what i’ve neglected. forgive me. if it happens again, you’ll know its the doe in me. wide eyes. stupid.


here’s the top 5 from 2013:

1) i fell in love. and am lucky to still be in it.

2) i almost lost a friend because of said love. also lucky to be in good grace, with her and myself.

3) i’ve moved 3 times this year, twice being within seoul.

4) i’ve fallen deeply in love with yoga; it’s a relationship that has made me stronger and happier. my breath and body have come a long way in just a year.

5) i’ve dropped out of korean lang school in favor of saving for fashion school. yes, that dream still floats, in my bed, at work, on root beer.

6) can’t help it, its been too long: i miss my family. i’m thinking this will be my last year abroad. gonna need some serious help on the employment front though…no matter! that’s what friends are for right? ;)

hat [ssfw] :: bracelets [aland, handmade]

mmmm it is officially fall and i have new accessories. the woven bracelet was made by university students and i was so charmed. i love buying lovingly handmade things. slowly reconducting a more grown-up arm parade, though i fear becoming another editor-inspired cog. whatever… can’t help it if you like something that everyone else likes. at least my hat has ears.

via ilovewildfox

i was thinking about the next season and i realized that i dont really want to reinvent myself or do anything revolutionary; i just want to continue wearing more or less what i was wearing last season and seasons past, with a few injected adjustments.

winter is coming and this girl is wearing the leopard coat of my dreams and boots from heaven-knows-where. someone please. please.

if you haven’t noticed-and i haven’t been explicit- but i’ve been trying to exclusively post only pictures i take/are taken of me on this blog (for the record, irony of this post’s photo was noted). i know it’s kind of a pain for you as a reader, but it seems to make more sense for me to show my process through my tumblr/pinterest (peruse them as you like) and focus this blog on results and documentation for now. maybe when i’m a bit more organized, i can go back to being more integrated; i always found that more interesting anyway.

aaaaand now that i’ve said that, i can go back on my word.