Sunday, June 30, 2013

Scarf Print

This DIY maxi dress started out as a skirt, but I changed my mind and decided to make into a dress instead. Why might you ask? Well once I put the zipper into the skirt (on the side), it totally ruined how the skirt draped. While the fabric is very thin and silky, the zipper was very hard and stiff so the two contrasting fabric did not work well in unison. I was done with the skirt and even had the waist band sewn it, but ultimately I was not happy and decided to take it apart and make it into a maxi dress. I'm much more happy with it now and I think it drapes much nicer without a zipper in it! Yay! I also love this scarf print fabric because it's so unique and I haven't seen anything like it. Sometimes scarf prints can be quite loud and busy, but this one is more on the sophisticated and simple side. This dress also kept me very cool and was perfect for shopping in 90 degree weather yesterday!
Not only did I enjoy the beautiful weather yesterday, I also had the pleasure of meeting Jen from Life Unrefined! She was the winner of my Stella McCartney inspired dress giveaway. It turns out that she lives in the Bay Area too and offered to pick up the dress in person so I could save money on shipping. How kind and thoughtful of her! We met at the Stanford mall which was the perfect place for her to sneak into a fitting room to try on my dress. The dress fit her like a glove and I was so relieved because I hate doing alterations and taking things apart. LOL.

Shop the Scarf Print Trend

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Too Short

It's funny that I'm posting this because Jean and I just had a convo today about how we prefer things that are not too short or tight. A few years ago, I'd have welcomed most tight form fitting dresses but these days I feel a tad too old for them. Maybe I have outgrown them because my lifestyle doesn't involve going to the bars or clubbing anymore. Well, I still go to the bars but not the same type that requires that kind of attire. I love this  dress from Asos, but realized that I could only wear it for special occasions like date nights. What's also annoying about a too short dress is that you have to be extra careful when sitting and making sure you cross yours legs correctly and everything is covered. Just too much work! Originally the length was really long and hit below the knees (see my review here) and I got over zealous and trimmed off a little more than I'd like to. It would have been better and more appropriate for everyday if it was at least 3-4" longer. Another lesson learned! On a tangent, you know what else I learned this week? Umm...not to eat too much watermelon in one sitting because it made me so sick!
  Asos Tulip Dress With Waterfall Skirt c/o (Size 2 regular) - Looks like they have just restocked all their sizes! I highly recommend this dress, but just don't shorten it so much like I have!
H&M Blazer. (similar here)
Coach cross-body. (similar here)
F21 Necklace. (similar here)
  BP.  'Trolley' Ankle Boot. Size 5. Cognac leather. Sized down 1/2 size.

*Sale Alert - 50% off dresses today at Ann Taylor! CODE : JUNESTYLE
Read my reviews here.

Monday, June 24, 2013

DIY Dress & Preview for Luckyrice Festival x Bombay Sapphire East

If you follow me on instagram, you know that me and my bf are quite enthusiasts when it comes to food! We love trying new places and couldn't be more excited to find that the popular Luckyrice Asian Food + Cocktail Festival from NYC is making its San Francisco debut on September 6th !! We were invited by Bombay Sapphire East to attend a private party at Hakkasan to celebrate the launch of the festival in San Francisco for the first time this year. Tickets for the SF festival will go on sale for the public on July 3. Chef Morimoto will be there and tasting menu is from the top restaurants in SF! If you're planning to attend, please let me know because I'd love to meet fellow readers and food enthusiasts!
We enjoyed Hors d'oeuvres by Hakkassan and endless cocktails supplied by Bombay Sapphire East. I don't remember much about the food besides the juicy crab dumplings. The cocktails were intensely yummy and I eagerly sipped a few too many and ended up waking up with a headache the next morning! Heehee! ;)
Below: On the left is my favorite Bombay cocktail called the Corpse Reviver which was on the sweeter side with fruity and floral notes. On the right is my bf's favorite called Snake in the Glass, which had a higher alcohol content with notes of cinnamon and mandarin spiced tea.
 This is what I wore to the event and it's a DIY dress made with a $2 scrap fabric (found at my local fabric store!). I couldn't believe my eyes because fabric with this beautiful embroidered edge can run upwards of $25-50 per yard. I asked the associate why the fabric was so cheap and she said there's a little dirt stain on the wrong side of the fabric, which I honestly didn't even notice. I love finding good deals!!
DIY Dress. (similar here & here almost identical with different embroidery)
Aritzia Blazer. (similar here - super cute!)
Ann Taylor Pearl Necklace. (similar here)
Ann Taylor Perfect Pumps. (similar here)
 F21 Nude Patent Belt. (similar here)

Lastly, if anyone has attended the Luckyrice festival prior years (in other cities), please let me know how you enjoyed the food and cocktails!

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Piperlime -- Extra 20% Off Sale Items

***Update-- I just received my order and can't believe it came so quickly. Unfortunately, the cabochon necklace came defective. I called customer service and they were really understanding and said I can return it even though it's final sale. It's really a shame because the necklace is really pretty! I'm hesitant to order another one. :(

Hi Ladies! I just wanted to alert you that Piperlime is having an amazing sale. 
The deal: extra 20% off selected sale items, enter code extra at checkout. 
Just an FYI, some items are final sale!

Just picked up these 3 items below!

My favorite Nine West Reelymind sandals are also on sale -- read my review here.

My picks from $30-$39 (after discount)
Wrap Maxi | Ruby Stripes | Sequins |Yellow Tweed| French Terry

My picks from $40-$70 (after discount)

Olive Jumper | B+W Surplus Dress | Ikat Maxi | Tank Dress

Happy shopping and let me know if you are picking anything up from the sale!

Friday, June 21, 2013

It's All In The Name

 I prefer taking pictured indoors (particularly in my living room) because the lighting is normally pretty decent and there is no wind factor or random passerby staring. It was so windy today, most pictures were of me swatting my hair out of my face and trying to get it to stop sticking to my lip-gloss. I know, us bloggers have it hard! :P
Aritzia Betsey Blouse. Size XXS.  On sale.
Zara Blazer. Size XS. Orange color on sale.
Loft Skinny Jeans. *40% off*  Light Autumn Indigo. 00P /24. Also in darker autumn, soft blue, black, grey + rinse wash). Review here.
Also picked up this Loft Floral Print Skirt for $12 in store today (size 2P - plan on taking in the waist and shortening the length myself).
Adorable custom name necklace thanks to The Hatters!

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Ann Taylor Reviews on New + Sale Items

I have tried on numerous skirts and blazers from Ann Taylor and have concluded they are just not for me, as most are too big and boxy. On the other hand, I've had better luck with their dresses and feel that they are cut a bit smaller. 
 Petite Painted Stripes Halter Dress. 0P. Available in black & woodcut geo print too.
There wasn't a 00P available, but I tried on the 0P instead for size. I was surprised to see that the 0P was cut so small and the dress almost fits. It was just a tad big in the bust area for me, but it was fine everywhere else so I think the 00P would fit perfectly. This dress is not appropriate for work as it shows too much shoulder, but would definitely be cute for a summer weekend, vacation or wedding! It's partially lined and super lightweight and very easy to wear as it doesn't cling to the body much. I also like that the self tie belt helps cinch in the waist. The only negative I can think of is that you'd have to wear a strapless bra with this dress. Overall, I'd give it thumbs up. 
Petite Paisley Keyhole Dress. 00P. Currently on sale!
This dress gets very positive feedback and I agree with the reviewers as this dress is very flattering and fits very true to size. This dress is fully lined and is a polyester and spandex mix so it drapes very close to the body, but doesn't hug. I can see this piece dressed up for work with a blazer and pumps or worn casually with sandals and a denim jacket. This dress will also transition easily into your fall wardrobe and would be so cute with riding boots. The only con I can think of is that the dress might be too short (esp worn to work) for someone taller.
I really like this dress because of the fit, color and pretty floral print. It's very flattering on the body and the length is very appropriate for work. It's not too tight or loose and although the fabric is thin (like a stretchy cotton t-shirt), it doesn't cling onto your body and show the outline of your under garment. It's also very lightweight so it would be nice for those who have hot summers. Living in SF, our summers are in the 50s-70s. In the fall, it can get quite chilly so I'm not sure I would get too much use out of this dress besides during the warm summer days (which we rarely come by). This dress is also unlined and I feel that the current price is a little much for something so lightweight. I'd consider purchasing on a deep discount.
I have to say this top is adorable and I love a crisp white top for the summer. Most eyelet material can be quite generic, but I thought the zig zag pattern was quite unique. Unfortunately this top was not for me, but would be great on someone with a bigger chest, smaller arms/shoulders and shorter torso. It's not so evident in the picture, but the chest area was quite roomy (I have a 30" chest though). The armholes were surprisingly on the smaller size and normally I have the opposite problem with Ann Taylor tops. I also have a long torso and feel that this top was 2-3" too short for me. This top would be so cute on the right body though! Currently on sale and after discounts, it comes out to be about $36 which is not bad for a fully lined top.
Petite Cotton Eyelet Wrap Dress. 00P. Currently on sale!
I've always loved white dresses, but don't own any because they can be quite difficult to wear. Often times, white fabric tends to be see through and hard to wear because it shows every part of the body. The fabric of the dress is quite nice as it's on the stiffer/thicker side with lining. Due to the A-line shape and the fabric of the skirt, it does add fullness in the hip area. So if you are on the hip-y side, you might not like this dress. For me this dress fits very true to size, but my main complaint is the length. It goes past the knee and while it looks fine with super high heels, I feel that it will look quite frumpy if you were to wear kitten heels or flats with it. I'd recommend this dress for someone who is a couple inches taller than me.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Vegas Experience : Part 2

I wanted to share with you the last few more pictures from my recent stay and dining experience in Vegas.
Left: H&M Top (similar)/Shorts (super cute lace version) | F21 Necklace | Cathy Jeans Sandals 5.5
Right:: VS Push Up Halter XS| O'Neil Bottoms XS| VS Sandals
We go to Vegas every year just because it's close and we always have a really good time when we are there. I think of Vegas as an adult version of Disneyland. This is our first time staying at the MGM (pic above) and we got a really good deal for a Petite King Room from for a nightly average of $112 (Wed-Sat) not including tax or resort fees. The room is on the smaller size compared to other rooms I've stayed at in Vegas, but I do love the modern amenities and very comfy pillows and bed. The hotel is very big so you have to do quite a bit of walking to get to their pool, casino or restaurants. If you plan on staying at the MGM, I'd recommend requesting a room  close to the elevator. The highlight of the hotel is definitely the pool and lazy river area, but the downside was that the drinks were $8-17! 
Out of all the meals I had, my favorite was definitely dinner at Mon Ami Gabi in the Paris Hotel. The restaurant is usually pretty packed and busy so I'd definitely recommend making reservations if you don't want to wait. The meal started with a warm french baguette + butter and apple salad (on the house). We ordered the duck confit with fingerling potatoes & escargots for appetizers, the caramelized sea scallops entree and creme brulee for dessert. The duck was very well flavored and moist, but nothing extraordinary. I did really love the escargot and garlicky pesto herb butter it was cooked in. The escargot had a nice bite to it, but tender at the same time. I couldn't help but soak up the remaining sauce with my baguette -- so yummy, my mouth is drooling thinking about it. LOL! The entree with sea scallops were well cooked and so were the vegetables. Normally I hate peas and carrots, but these were extra buttery and tenders and soaking in a creamy pea puree sauce. I always order creme brulee when I see it on the menu. It was good from what I remembered, but wish that the creme brulee was packed into a deeper dish to accommodate for more creme. I feel like I got too much crunch from the burnt sugar and not enough creme from each spoonful. 
For nice ambiance and delicious food, this restaurant was VERY reasonably priced. I'd definitely recommend trying Mon Ami Gabi if you are in Vegas. I'd also go back to try their brunch!
We had buffet at the MGM the first night we were there (included with our stay). The food was nothing noteworthy, but I did enjoy the dessert (left pic). Yes, I ate all 5 myself. Hahaha!
The tiramisu creme dessert (on the right) is from Jean Phillipe Patisserie. I love the contrast of the creme-y texture and the crunch from the ground up Oreo cookies. They have a huge selection of different desserts, so if you have a sweet tooth like me, I'd definitely pay a visit! Originally, I wanted to order gelato and sampled a couple of flavors and thought they weren't very good. I decided on the tiramisu creme instead and it definitely did not disappoint.
It's gotten to be a tradition when we're heading back to SF to go to the Mad Greek Cafe. We don't have too many options when it comes to Greek food in SF, so we always have it when we're leaving Vegas. My bf says this was his favorite meal. I wouldn't go so far to say that, but I have to say their gyro meal is so tender and delicious. Wish had one of these cafes in SF.

That's all I have for Vegas! Please do share your favorite hotel, eats and things to do there. I'd love to hear your recommendations as we love to go to Vegas and try out new places.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Summer Must Have: Jumpsuits

I wore this F21 jumpsuit (old) during my drive to Vegas. I wanted to be comfortable for my road trip and also look chic upon arriving to Vegas. What I love about this jumpsuit is that it keeps my legs warm in the air-conditioned car, but the cotton material was light weight to enough to help me stay cool in the desert heat. The solid color suit is so lengthening for a petite like me and I love anything that makes me look tall and lean. I can't wait to wear this jumpsuit again dressed up with statement earrings and a clutch for a classy evening look. 

Below are a few picks that would make great additions to anyone's summer wardrobe.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Vegas Dining + Pool

I spent the last few days in Vegas and had so much fun that I'm feeling a little depressed to be back in SF! Although Vegas was smoking hot (100 degrees +), I relished every moment of the heat since I knew it was going to be foggy and cold in SF. I got to meet up with Michelle again and we had a blast eating, drinking and hanging out by the pool!
DIY Chevron Maxi (similar here & here)
 Our first food stop was Bachi Burger! I've been wanting to try this place ever since I saw it featured on Diners Drive-ins & Dives, and while it certainly didn't disappoint, it didn't exactly live up to the Triple D hype (which I can't really blame on Bachi Burger since Triple D seems to frequently oversell the establishments it features). After some deliberation and a few helpful suggestions from our waiter, we decided to go with the Ronin Burger, Miyagi-san's Grass Fed Wagyu Burger, Salt & Pepper Garlic Fries, and Truffle Parmesan Fries. The Ronin Burger (pictured above on the right) was the slightly more overcomplicated of the two burgers with caramelized onions, Japanese cole slaw, fried egg and a melange of Japanese inspired sauces that you can't really taste or notice (I wish they had just stuck with one great sauce to ramp up the flavor). On the positive side, the meat was juicy and the burger was cooked to a perfect medium temperature. The star of the meal was Miyagi-san's Burger (pictured above on the left) which came packed with tons of eclectic flavor including chili mayo, fried egg, furikake, caramelized bacon and fried onion rings. The BF wolfed it down so fast, I barely had a chance to taste it, but he assured me it was that good and would order this burger over and over again. Both fries had great flavors and came with large portions but were a bit too soggy for my liking. Overall I would definitely eat here again and try one of the many other options offered on their menu.
Michelle & I hanging out at the MGM pool complex. We had so much fun just catching up, laying out in the sun and people watching over a few cold beers.
DIY Cutout Dress (similar here) | Nine West Flax Leopard Pumps  Size 5.
Michelle + I in front of Mastro's Ocean Club in the City Center.
The first thing you notice when you walk into the Mastro's Ocean Club restaurant is the beautiful architecture and design of the restaurant. I was really excited to try this place, as there are so many positive and raving reviews on Yelp. For an appetizer, me and the bf shared a tuna tartar which we thought was absolutely delicious. The presentation was beautiful with a top layer of fresh tuna, then a creamy flavorful avocado middle and a bottom layer filled with crunchy potato chips (my guess) which I thought gave a nice contrast to the dish. For our main entree, my bf and I both ordered the filet mignon. I love steak (particularly the filet mignon) and will order it anytime I see it on a menu. Personally, I have to say this was a filet that I did not enjoy. The meat was tough and did not have the normal "melt in your mouth" consistency that I'm used to. My bf and Michelle's husband also ordered the filet mignon and also agreed that their steaks were just okay. For sides, we all shared a generous portion of the salt + vinegar french fries and mac+cheese. The french fries were cut too thin for my liking and were extremely hard, but the mac + cheese was definitely amazing (would recommend). The wait staff was very attentive and friendly. Overall, I thought the restaurant was just okay and the quality of their steak was sub-par. If you are thinking about trying this restaurant, I'd recommend not ordering steak, but try their seafood instead as Michelle quite enjoyed her fish entree.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Wine Country

Took a little trip up north to Napa for some wine tasting on Friday with bf & his family. Our first stop was V. Sattui where we shopped their large selection of wine, cheese and charcuterie. We dined on the winery's premises at one of their rustic picnic tables while we enjoyed the lovely scenic views and beautiful weather. We made a couple of more quick stops at some other nearby wineries for more tasting and made our last stop at the Hess Collection to view their current modern art exhibit.

DIY Dress. (similar here & here). 
This was a super easy dress to make because it's basically a very long tank top with a slit on each side. My last project gave me a headache so I wanted to do something quick and easy this time around. This dress only took a few hours to pattern, cut, sew and finish. Just to give you a comparison, a sheath dress with lining will usually take me about 2 days to make so a few hours is very quick in my book.
J. Crew Belt. (similar here)
F21 necklace. (similar here)
Nine West Sandals. (similar here & here)

Friday, June 7, 2013

Red, Leopard + Instagram!

Red + Leopard Outfit and I'm finally on instagram! It took a little convincing and arm twisting, but I am finally on-board. See ya there.
H&M red peplum top. (similar here)
H&M Blazer. (similar here)
Loft Petite Modern Skinny Jeans. Light Autumn Indigo. 00P /24. 
Nine West Flax Leopard Pumps . Size 5. Sized down 1/2 size. Also available: black, nude + a very pretty yellow!
BR Necklace. (similar here)

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Navy + Lilac : A Less Girly Version

The last couple of times (posted here & here) I've worn this dress, I paired it with pinks and purples. I wanted a less girly look and decided to contrast the lilac with a more masculine color. I think the navy blazer + necklace goes quite nice with lilac and gives the outfit a more sophisticated feel.
DIY Dress. (similar here & here)
H&M Blazer. (similar here & here)
Coach Pumps. (similar here -super cute & under $80)

I also received all my packages and updated my bikini post! Check out that post to see what I kept and returned.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Bikinis On A Budget (Starting at $19) -- Updated

 Believe it or not, I've been scouring the web and B&M stores for months looking for cute and affordable bikinis. I'm not sure if prices of bikinis have risen recently, but most popular retailers are carrying such high end pieces. I can't imagine paying $100 for a bikini top or bikini bottom, especially since it's not something I can wear on a daily basis. When I go to lower end stores like H&M, the design of their bikini are cute but the fit is less than desirable.
I'm very picky about fit since I'm very flat chested and can't wear tops that don't have much support or padding. When it comes to bikini bottoms, I feel that most full coverage bottoms tend to look like diapers on a petite frame like me. I like bottoms with less coverage and on the skimpier side because they are more proportionate friendly for someone my size.
The bikinis above are made by O'Neil. I purchased them via and Prices vary between both sites, so I'd recommend doing a little math before deciding which to purchase from with promotions and shipping fees in mind. Zappos offers free shipping + returns with any purchase while Pacsun charges $5 unless your order is $50 or more. The current promo with code MEM15 (ends 6/3): 15% off your order and free shipping with purchases $50+ from Pacsun.
  • 1. O'Neill In Love Bandeau Top (via Pacsun or Zappos) XS- This top was very cute in person and I love the side boning and padding for extra support. Unfortunately I'm not keeping this as it ran very wide. I think this (in XS) would fit someone with bust measurement 32" or bigger. Returned.
  • 2. O'Neill In Love Cinched Basic Bottom (via Pacsun or Zappos) XS - I am in love with this bottom! It's super adorable with cinching on the back and makes the butt appear very bubbly and uplifted. This sits low on the hips and coverage is on the cheekier side, but not in a skanky way. I am happily keeping!
  • 3. O'Neill In Love Tie Side Bottom XS. - I love the side ties as they add a touch of sexiness and also are practical for self adjusting. This also sits low on the hips and with skimpy coverage on the back. I am also keeping this one.
  • 4. O'Neill Solid V-Bandeau Top XS. I've been wanting a bright yellow bikini and this one fits the bill with support and padding. I haven't received this yet, but I think the fit will be similar to the bandeau so I'm most likely returning this.[*Update -- On the contrary to my original thought, this top actually fits quite nice due to the adjustable drawstring in the back. The top is also very lightly padded and the padding can also be removed. I am keeping this one!)
  • 5. O'Neill Solid Cinched Basic Bottom (via Pacsun or Zappos) XS. I haven't received this one, but I'm guessing the fit will be exactly like #2. I'm pretty sure I will be keeping!
Since I am keeping so many O'Neil bottoms, I decided to order some tops from Victoria's Secret since they have always fit me really well in the past (can't say the same for their bottoms). They are having a sale so most tops are pretty cheap and meet the criteria I'm looking for (padding, support and lots of pushup!).  I haven't received any of the items below, but I'm pretty confident most would fit. My plan is to keep the best fitting 2-3 and return the rest.
  • 6. Push Up Bandeau Top (color Sour Yellow) XS -- This material and the under wire made cups very stiff. The cup did not conform to the shape of my breasts, therefore causing gapping. This was a return for me.
  • 7. Fabulous Push Up Triangle Top (color Cantaloupe Craze) 32A -- IRL, the color is more bright and a little neon vs the one on the model. It's still really cute and I love the ruffle edges. The top has medium padding and under wire cups which provides great support! A keeper!
  • 8. Push Up Halter (color Cabana Green) XS - The color is just as pictured on the model. I didn't expect to like this halter top as much as I do. It's padded really well so this top will definitely give you a very nice boost. The padding is removable though if you prefer a more natural look.
  • 9. Beach Sexy Braided-strap Push-Up Bandeau (color Cabana Green) 32A -- The cups were small and shallow. Made me a bit self conscious about exposing too much, so this was a return for me.
  • 10. Forever Sexy BioFit Top (color Fire Coral) 32A - I was torn about keeping this one as the fit was quite nice! It also comes with 2 sets of straps so you can wear it as a halter or as spaghetti straps. My only issue is that the color only matched one of my bikini bottoms and I'd prefer it to be more versatile. I decided to return this one.
  • The  bandeau bikini top from Asos (32A) was a return for me! The cups were not sewn  together well which caused the stitching in the middle part of the cup to ripple. It also ran a little big. Victoria's Secret tops are definitely better in quality!
If there are any other brands that you think I should try out (meeting my criteria of fit and price), please do let me know!!

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Yellow Cutout (DIY) Dress

This is my newest DIY and looking at these pictures there are a couple of things that are screaming out and saying please fix me!! I'm pretty good at picking out flaws on clothing sold at retailers and I'm the same way (or maybe even worse) when it comes to stuff I make. If you look at the hemline, it looks a bit uneven and I feel like the invisible hem isn't quite "invisible". The fabric was pretty hard to work with as it was very fluid & pliable (not sure if those are the right words to describe fabric) and moved around a lot. When doing the invisible hem, I should done a basting stitch before hand. I haven't quite mastered the invisible hem foot and have played with different settings. I feel like it's not completely invisible (see last 2 pic below and bottom right corner) and could see little dimples in the fabric where the thread catches the fabric. If anyone has advice on how to fix it, I'd love to hear it! Or am I expecting too much from my little starter sewing machine?
What I do love is that the dress is fully lined! It hides all the ugliness and makes the dress very comfortable to wear. It is very time consuming because you are essentially making another of the same dress, but I think it's really worth the extra effort especially when the fabric is see through (like it was in this case)! If you are interested in lining your own garment, please check out SPG's tutorial!
DIY Dress. (similar here, here & here)
F21 Necklace. (similar in style & in color)
Ann Taylor Pumps. (similar here, here & here)