love at first sight

Girls, you know exactly what I’m talking about. The sweaty palms. The fluttery butterflies in your stomach. The flush that rises up your face. That squeezing feeling in your chest. I’m talking about love at first sight. Shoe love at first sight, that is.

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It’s pretty rare for me to plunk down and instantly buy anything as I  1) was raised frugal, so I wait for deals and sales or shop vintage and 2) am a classic overthinker and tend to spend too much time mulling things over- what will this match, where will I wear it, is the cost-per-wear number adequate, can I still wear it next year, can I fit this into this month’s budget, etc, etc. It’s rare for me to buy fullprice (unless I’m swimming blind through the terrible ritual that is a post-breakup slump in which case all bets are off) but when the exceedingly rare lightning bolt that is TRUE shoe love at first sight hits, sometimes there’s nothing you can do.

That’s what happened with these Jeffrey Campbell Biz ankle boots.

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The moment I saw them I had to have them. Irrationally. Immediately. I clawed desperately around the internet for my size (sold out practically everywhere) and before I knew it I was plunking down my credit card number. This happens so infrequently (sure, I’ll lust after shoes, but windowshopping is practically my champion sport) that I sat there feeling shellshocked as the order went through.

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When they came in the mail though, it was clear they were everything I’ve wanted and more. I’ve been holding out awhile for a pair of everyday flat boots with a bit of flair; I’m a little bit crazy about the straps and buckles (surprisingly easy as well, as they disguise snap on buttons so you don’t have to actually buckle a thing), and the shape is wearable and simple enough to go with anything. Once the cooler weather hits, you better bet these puppies are gonna be on my feet everyday.

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love, wen

Posted in Favourites, Shoes | Tagged , , , | 7 Responses

complex geometries

Montreal newbie company (started in 2005) Complex geometries is impressing me so far; novel, flattering shapes, surprisingly sexy unisex designs, simple colour scheme with occasional pops of bright colour.

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Wouldn’t mind adding a few of these pieces to my collection; bodysuit and hood in particular. I could eat, like, 5 cheeseburgers in that hood and no one would know! Check out the rest of their admirable collections here.

love, wen

Posted in Up and Coming | Tagged , | 4 Responses

who doesn’t want to be kate moss

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Blazer: Yohji Yamamoto Y3
Shirt: Taipei street find
Necklace: Stars concert goodie
Jeans: Kate Moss for Topshop eyelet jeans
Boots: Sisley

昔から英国の夢なTopshopに憧れていた・・・今年ニューヨーク支店を開設いた!やっぱりKate Mossのコレクション欲しいっすけど、買った物はこのジーンズばっかり(笑)

I happened to be in New York City the day Kate Moss’s latest collection for Topshop dropped and went a little crazy shopping in Topshop for the first time. The only thing I picked up from her collection were these slightly rockerish grey eyelet jeans, but for whatever reason, never wore them until today; maybe there was a bit of that intimidation factor. Who doesn’t want to be  Kate Moss? Who was I, this short little Asian chick, to dare to wear her jeans? In any case I finally sucked it up and threw them on. These things are skintight and clearly designed for someone much taller than myself, but surprisingly comfortable. Maybe it’s not so hard being Kate Moss after all.

love, wen

Posted in Outfits | Tagged , , | 3 Responses

paul & joe fall 2009

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August can’t come fast enough, as I’ve gone completely mad for this beautiful little leather dress from Paul & Joe’s Fall 2009 RTW collection. I’ve been debating for a long time getting a tattoo on my back similar to this design (minus the studs, head, and tail) and was pretty delighted to see something similar to the aesthetic I want on the back of a lovely little dress- I’d get the design without the permanence and needles! Well, honestly, I’m still considering the tattoo, but the dress is really right up my alley.

I’ve never really paid that much attention to Paul & Joe’s collections before, and was surprised to have this dress completely bowl me over from the pages of French Vogue. Having lived in multiple Asian countries, I really know Paul & Joe more as a popular luxury cosmetics label famous for their frankly exquisite packaging:

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I own Paul & Joe makeup but no Paul & Joe clothing. Fall 2009 might make me change that, though…

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There’s some superb draping going on in this collection. Check out the rest of Paul & Joe’s Fall 2009 RTW here, and let me know what you think!

love, wen

Posted in Fall RTW | Tagged , , | 4 Responses

spangle call lilli line

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大好きな下北沢から素晴らしいバンドSpangle call Lilli line を見つけ出すv (ちょっちょっと変なバンド名だけど(汗))
シンガーはイラストレーター。ギタリストはフォトグラファー。他のギタリストはグラフィックデザイナー。面白いね!!!日本に住んでる時、このバンド知らなかった。残念ですね。このような美しい音楽を聞いているのはとても面白いし、リラックスする。ライブに行ければ幸せ者だな・・・

I’ve fallen pretty hard for this amazing little band, Spangle call Lilli line. Hailing from Shimokitazawa, one of my very favourite corners of Tokyo, this indie rock band is a blend of lush ambient downtempo rock, electronica, hauntingly surreal lyrics, and beautifully delicate, layered vocals. The band is made up of an illustrator, a graphic designer, and a photographer- what a magical mix. Japan Live has a fantastic interview with them here. Meanwhile, I’m digging singer Kana Otsubo’s laidback Shimokitazawa-esque style; Shimokitazawa has a bit of the bite of Tokyo style but without so much of the trendiness; there’s something more thrown together, relaxed, and unique about this part of town. Some of my favourite pieces from my closet are products of many a Shimokitazawa shopping jag (followed of course by waffles at the best waffle cafe in the world- but I digress.)

As for the shimmery lush glow that is Spangle call Lilli line music- take a listen for yourselves.


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love, wen

Posted in music | Tagged , | 4 Responses

phi

This label first peaked my attention because I have a friend named Phi and it’s a somewhat unusual name.  Founded in 2003 by Susan Dell (wife of, yes, that dude that started Dell Computers!) and with Norwegian designer Andreas Melbostad heading up designs, Phi is all about revamped 80s silhouettes and somewhat masculine tayloring. I’ve been seeing seeing their pieces pop up in Vogue and Lucky and various fashion blogs, but it’s their fall 2009 and resort 2010 collections that have really finally made me a fan.

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I’m loving the asymmetrical zippers, interesting silhouettes and shoulders, and occasional dramatic flair. In particular would love the cropped sleeve puffy leather jacket Chanel Iman is rocking on the runway in the Fall 2009 Ready to Wear show. Check out the full collections here: Fall 2009 RTW, Resort 2010

love, wen

Posted in Up and Coming | Tagged , | 3 Responses

good shoes will take you to good places

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いい靴はいい場所へ連れて行ってくれる」って・・・やっぱりハナダンから、この気持ちって感動した・・・(笑) いいでしょう?あたしもそういう感じだいすきだからね。

If you wear good shoes, they’ll take you to good places.” There’s a famous girl’s comic book called Boys before Flowers known all over Asia- originating in Japan, it’s also been turned into television dramas in Taiwan and Korea- but the story hasn’t stuck that much in my head- just this quote. When the main character, spunky but poor Tsukushi meets one of the few kind members of the upperclass associated with her rich private school, the woman, a fashion model longing to be more, tells her (after having her very lovely shoes admired) that when you wear good shoes, they’ll take you good places. Later she gifts her a beautiful pair of her own, to take her good places as well. Some time ago, I read in a Harper’s Bazaar article that you have to be pretty flat out ballsy to buy really nice shoes; there isn’t that huge of an aesthetic difference for anyone looking at your feet between horrifically expensive designer footwear and that knock-off you can pick up at the mall. But I do subscribe to the fact that good shoes will take you good places, and it’s about frame of mind. Mind you, I own anywhere from Christian Louboutin to random $10 footwear bought on the streets of Taipei, and I consider all of them good shoes. Sure, fashion is about how you look. But more importantly, it’s about how it makes you feel.

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I couldn’t think of a better way to kickstart this blog than to introduce one of my favourite pairs of shoes. With these snake-skin style black leather Pradas on my feet, I feel like I’m headed for the best life has to offer.

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I work as a graphic artist and I don’t come from money, which means you better believe that I don’t just go running around buying Prada shoes from the Prada boutique while drinking ridiculous fancy coffee from my solid gold travel mug or whatever. Part of what makes these shoes so special to me are that they were a surprisingly lovely find in Culver City’s Last Chance Boutique.

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Like most artsy folk who enjoy fashion without infinite means, vintage treasure hunting has become a way of life. It’s definitely about the thrill of the chase- will I find something fantastic today? Will it be in good shape? Will it be in my size? Every so often the stars align, and a beautiful pair of Prada wedges like these just fall in your lap.

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There they were, staring at me from the upper shelf between a pair of brown Chloes (too large) and a nondiscreet pair I can’t even remember right now (though, also too large). Getting vintage finds for shoes can be a challenge for me as I have tiny feet. I looked at the shoes. They looked at me. Even at a secondhand store, they were still a bit pricy for me, but also looked practically new. I told them, hey you. I’ve been shopping all weekend. You better not be in my size.

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They were. Not only that, they were staggeringly comfortable. Well, at this point, having tried the shoes on, I was basically screwed. They knew what the deal was. I knew what the deal was. We were definitely going home together. (Spoiler and/or spoiled girl alert: as this was around my birthday, my wonderful sister covered my Last Chance purchases as my gift- another reason I love these shoes; I think of them as a gift. Thanks again sis!!) As I staggered up to the cash register, arms also loaded down with other finds, the saleswoman picked up the pair, inspected them, and informed me, “The Prada shoes…! You’re so lucky! Tons of girls come in here wanting to buy them but these are just too small.” Well, bless my tiny feet for once. She also told me that the shoes were in such good shape because they’d come from a movie set. I was too flustered to ask which movie, and now I wish I had.

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I slipped the shoes on immediately as we headed for an art gallery opening that evening. With these shoes on I felt like a different person. Taller, well, duh. But also more grown up, a little more refined, and definitely like a person headed for good places.  A truly wonderful pair of shoes- be they a surprising Prada find, or those random on-sale heels you got last week that just make you feel great, really can help you feel like you’re on your way somewhere truly wonderful. And that, my friends, is what the best kind of fashion can do for you.

「いい靴はいい場所へ連れて行ってくれる」ってば本当でしょうね。

love, wen

Posted in Favourites, Shoes | Tagged , , | 3 Responses