Sunday, December 25, 2011

My wedding - part 1

Dear readers, I'm so sorry for having been silent for so long. Things just got so crazy before the wedding and after. I'll write about all of then in detail soon. But here is what happened in my life after my last post:
- I went to Portugal for two weeks with my then-fiancé for our pre-wedding honeymoon
- Our friends joined us in Paris first and then we traveled to Barcelona together
- Me and my girls spent a 4-day trip in Ibiza for my bachelorette party (that was amazing!!!)
- We all drove together to the south of France from Barcelona for my wedding

And all of this was part of the pre-wedding activities. Crazy, eh?

Ok. For all of you who have requested to see my wedding photos, here is one teaser photo. But I promise that there will be more to come :)

In the meantime, Merry Christmas to all of you! 

Photo by JoZHOU Photography

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Vera Wang Diana brides - part VII

Another bride wearing the Vera Wang Diana dress has surfaced on StyleMePretty yesterday. Here are some highlight pictures of the bride in her gorgeous dress from Jessica Johnston Photography. If you crave for more, you can see the full picture gallery and a few words from the bride herself here.

Photography by Jessica Johnston Photography

Photography by Jessica Johnston Photography

Photography by Jessica Johnston Photography

My skincare regime

My mother always reminds me that there is nothing more important than skin when it comes to looking good for any occasion, especially for my wedding day. As I'm not exactly the youngest bride (approaching 30 real soon), I want my skin to look as youthful and as radiant as it possibly can. Here is my skincare regime from now until my wedding day (~ 2 months time):

1. Beauty sleep - I try and sleep at least 7 hours every night. Prolonged sleep deprivation is the worst enemy to achieving a youthful skin.
2. Daily cleansing - my skin is oily in the T-zone and dry in other parts so it needs extra care. After trying a myriad of products, I think I found my staple products. Step 1: I use the Shu Uemura cleansing oil line for both morning and evening cleansing.
Shu Uemura Cleansing Oil Line

So far I've tried the High Performance Balancing Cleansing Oil Fresh for combination to oily skin conditions (pink bottle), the Cleansing Beauty Oil Premium a/o Advanced Formula for aging concerns (green bottle), and the Cleansing Beauty Oil Premium a/i for dry and sensitive skin conditions (frosted yellow bottle). My conclusion is that the green bottle (Cleansing Beauty Oil Premium a/o Advanced Formula) is my favorite because of its hint of freshness and the super clean sensation that it gives me after use. My next favorite is the pink bottle (High Performance Balancing Cleansing Oil Fresh), and my least favorite is the frosted yellow bottle (Cleansing Beauty Oil Premium a/i), even though it's the most expensive by far. I find that even though it's designed for dry and sensitive skin, it actually drys up my skin too much. Step 2: following cleanser use, I proceed to apply some of this amazing non-abrasive, liquid exfoliant by Aveda (Botanical Kinetics Exfoliant) using a super soft cotton pad by Shiseido (Facial Cotton)
Aveda Botanical Kinetics Exfoliant
Shiseido Facial Cotton

3. Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize - My mixed skin type is very discriminatory when it comes to choosing the right moisturizer. I have tried a huge range of brands from different countries and price ranges. Here are the list of my favorite products. Eye cream: if money were no objection, I would definitely religiously use the Swiss CellCosmet line's Cellular Eye Contour Cream. However, at $225 per 29g of product, it's a splurge that's hard to justify, even for me. My cheaper alternative? Occitane Immortelle line's Very Precious Eye Serum priced at $52.  
CellCosmet Cellular Eye Contour Cream

Occitane Very Precious Eye Serum

Facial moisturizer: my current favorite (and probably will remain my facial cream of choice for a long long time) is SK-II's Signature Cream. Although I've heard about its power for a long time, I didn't try it until last year when I was traveling in Japan. I must admit that I was stunned by its results, and even my super critical mother asked me what I had been doing lately with my skin, because it improved dramatically since the last time she has seen me. So I shared my little secret with her and bought her a bottle to try for her birthday. The only downsize with the SK-II products is that they are not available everywhere. For example, I haven't found any store to carry their product line in France. I had to go to London to retrieve them at Harrods. Luckily, I soon found out that Harrods' online store ships to France (of course at an added cost), but I could get a hold of my miracle cream for £123.00 + shipping. I believe that the American SK-II website sells them for $205. My alternative choice is Occitane Immortelle line's Precious Cream which is much more widely available for a fraction of the cost. Although I use it when I ran out of my SK-II cream, it is by no means a substitute. I warn you, once you try the SK-II's Signature Cream there is no turning back. You'll be hooked! 

SK-II Signature Cream

Occitane Immortelle Precious Cream

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Vera Wang Diana brides - part VI

Dear readers, two recent brides featured on Style Me Pretty wore the Vera Wang Diana dress. Enjoy these pictures of the Diana dress on these stunning and real brides. I truly think that I'm falling in love with this dress all over again. Can't wait for my fitting in April!

Here are some pictures of bride one, who had a vintage inspired wedding with a couture touch!

Image from Style Me Pretty

Image from Style Me Pretty
Image from Style Me Pretty

And here is the second bride who orchestrated  a contemporary and super chic affair! Note how she changes her sash from a colored one for the ceremony to a sparkly one for the reception.
Image from Style Me Pretty
Image from Style Me Pretty
Image from Style Me Pretty
Image from Style Me Pretty

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Charming accommodation options for our guests

Lately I've been busy searching for suitable accommodation options for our guests. The French countryside is full of little charming Bed & Breakfasts called Chambres d’Hôtes (literal translation: guest rooms). These are usually self-contained rooms in a characteristic country house, where the owners will take care of you as if you're truly one of their house guests. Whenever I travel in France, I always look for a nice Chambres d’Hôtes, because they're always clean, full of charm and are almost always more affordable than a hotel. Plus, you get to experience the warmth of the local people and I usually feel right at home. Most of the time though, I'm so captured by the beauty of the surroundings that I wish I lived there and didn't have to leave. This is why I wanted my guests to have a similar experience during my wedding weekend in the French country. Here are pictures of three of the Chambres d’Hôtes that were hand-picked by me.

And now, I'm going to share with you a picture of the Château where my wedding will take place and a picture of our bridal suite. I love our venue and I can't wait for our wedding day to arrive! 

Friday, January 7, 2011

To boudoir or not to boudoir...

A new trend for to-be-brides is to have some classy and glamorous photos of them in sexy lingerie done by a professional photographer (most of the time female) at an intimately decorated studio, at a hotel, or chez elle. The final photo album is then given to the groom as a wedding gift. I had never considered doing a boudoir photo session, until I came across this promotional video by Hong Photography of Vancouver. Take a look and tell whether you've also become tempted by the idea of doing a boudoir photo session. Don't they make it look so fun and effortless?!!

So after weeks of reflection and indecision, I finally explored some established female boudoir photographers in Toronto and booked my session over the Christmas holidays with Marlen James. I have to say that the most challenging task of my boudoir photo session was to come up with a credible excuse to disappear for a few hours without my fiancé getting suspicious. But once I selected my photoshoot outfits and arrived at Marlen's studio (her apartment's bedroom), I was right the way put at ease by her choice of music soundtrack and by a warm cup of coffee (my appointment was at 11am!). After chatting for a few minutes while Marlen does my make-up, we get to work and under Marlen's guidance, I find my inner exhibitionist! Here is a sample picture from my photo session. Let me know if this post has helped you decide whether to go for a boudoir photo session yourself. 

Photo by Marlen James

Wedding dress sketches

I've always loved fashion and the creative process behind the generation of each iconic item of clothing and accessory. It always fascinated me how designer implement their ideas from an initial sketch to a real concrete product. Today I would like to share with you some wedding dress sketches recently submitted by various designers around the world for Kate Middleton's wedding to Prince William. 

The first three sketches are by Vera Wang, Monique Lhuiller and Badgley Mischka, respectively.

Sketches from WWD, image from MsFABulous

And now the designs by Alberta Ferretti, Valentino, Gucci and Missoni. 

Sketches from WWD, image from MsFABulous

We continue with creations by Doori Chung, Chris Benz, Prabal Gurung and Jason  
Sketches from WWD, image from MsFABulous

And we conclude with Christian Lacroix, Karl Lagerfeld and Nina Ricci.
Sketches from WWD, image from MsFABulous

I have to admit that my personal favourites are the Valentino, Monique Lhuiller and Alberta Ferretti's designs. I guess we'll just have to wait and see what the future princess decides. In the mean time, I found a sketch of Chelsea Clinton's Vera Wang wedding dress, which is very similar to the Diana dress, only with a slight modification of the neck line, flat all across instead of a dipped heart shape. I will treasure this sketch and secretly think of it mine, expressly drawn by Vera for me!  
Image by Steven Stipelman

Photo by Barbara Kinney Photography