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A Graphic Tee Is All You Need

Tuesday, 14 February 2017

A Graphic Tee Is All You Need


I'm trying not to start off this post by saying TWO MONTHS INTO 2017! Because I'm sure you already know that. I would love to gloat that I'm still sticking to my new year resolutions. Yeah, I said it! I've sticking to my wishes like glue. BAM Universe! - you thought I'd let you down again, right?

Think again. Because I'm coming to you with better knowledge, better thoughts, a better body and a better style.

"Better style, did you say Kara? How can your style get even better?" said the Universe.

I've been using Pinterest as my style Bible recently. It's giving me so much inspiration from art, to interior designs, to food. I've turned to Pinterest for inspiration. Where it's quality over quantity and a large array of fashion styles. You'll see me posting everything and anything Scandi, to neon pink lights, to massive fur coats. I can't even put a name to my own style. 
I think the content of Instagram is becoming quite samey, too many fishnet tights and ripped jeans. Too many girls wearing Metallica and they can't name one song by them. 

But there's one trend that stops me from scrolling past: Graphic tees! A trend I'm in love with. I love the grungey effect they bring to an outfit. I would style them with straight classic jeans (with a bit of a rough hem), red patent ankle boots, and a fur coat. I might even do an OOTD with this kind of look.

Below are the styles that I've been lusting over.

My favourite look is the image of the woman wearing a white ruffle shirt underneath her Renegade top. Classical and grunge combo! I'm drooling.

And spot the cute look from Kill Bill !












Style & Fashion

Tuesday, 31 January 2017

Style & Fashion




First OOTD of the year! And I spent a wonderful afternoon roaming around the Barbican centre. 

As I jumped off the tube and found myself within the Barbican maze, it brought flashbacks of school trips here watching productions and visiting galleries. 

What made me pay a visit to the East London jungle was for the exhibition 'Vulgar'. Closing this Sunday!

A couture collection dedication to the weird and wonderful magic of fashion. 

It explored the out-the-there elements that designers craft, and investigates 'what is good taste?' or 'how can we define bad taste?'

The designers' outlandish creations have shocked and bewildered the public. From Hussein Chalayan to Christian Lacroix discuss why is vulgarity seen as negative?

It brought back more flashbacks of my A-Level textiles studies, I based most of my work on Givenchy Couture Fall 2010 collection.

It was a surreal moment to see the dress I used to examine through the computer screen. Finally, it was in front of me. At last, I was able to closely view the intricate details of the lace and the symmetrical patterns. I was so thrilled I was able to see THE dress I study on for so long. My mum asked me if I said "Hey, how are you?" to the dress because I was acting as if it was a celebrity. I wasn't allowed to take a photograph but here is the link to the dress I adore.

But to the OOTD, I decided to wear this outfit, a mermaid two-tone slip dress from Urban Outfitters, sheer t-shirt from Missguided and a skinny scarf from Topshop. This dress is a new favourite of mine. The style is quite grungey and the 'is it purple, is it blue?' factor makes it playful.

And this is what brings me to the meaning behind this post.

Fashion does not have to be taken so seriously. It doesn't have to accentuate your figure. It doesn't have to make you look rich or beautiful. It's purely an art form that we wear, and can be examined in so many different ways.

To some people, my dress looks gothic. To me, it's fun because there's more than one colour involved.

Different opinions are taken into consideration. But we shouldn't say what looks good and what looks bad.

I prefer to say I'm interested in styles. It's creative and varied. Not judgemental. I'm focused on the artistic preferences we incorporate into our clothing. Whereas, the term 'fashion' is influenced by trends that are in or out, or, hot or not.

How can I love something that is so temperamental?

The difference between style and fashion is a concept I'd would like to expand on throughout this blog in the future.


Does anyone else believe we take fashion too seriously sometimes?






DATE NIGHT / Café Rouge Afternoon

Wednesday, 18 January 2017

DATE NIGHT / Café Rouge Afternoon

Fancy dining like the French?

But you're too broke to afford a Eurostar ticket, or think Paris is way too overrated?

(This is sounding very pitchy, I need to stop watching Dragon's Den)

I can count how many times I've been to Café Rouge, and it doesn't surpass 5. Why? I honestly don't know why.

Every time I dine here. I ask, 'why don't I come here more often?'

The attention to detail is superb, I can tell the chefs give every dish their best effort. As if they want you to Instagram every plate.

The quality of food is way over average. I feel as if I've spent my day viewing art at the Louvre, walked down the cobbled streets of Paris, finally nestling down to my evening meal, enjoying a hearty authentic French dinner. Honestly, there aren't many chains restaurants that teleport me to another destination.

Ok ok, I may not be French and I haven't tasted all of the traditional French dishes. But I have to admit, Café Rouge does an impressive job of fooling me that I am not in Coventry anymore.

I sipped on a refreshing sparkling and raspberry mocktail. For starters we had the 'warm breaded Camembert with cranberry and redcurrant sauce'. The cheese paired beautifully with the sweet berries. As well as the Salmon Rillettes, 'smoked and poached salmon, lightly flavoured with shallot and chives'. The shallots were my favourite part of the dish! I also loved the rustic presentation of this starter. 

For mains, the photo above that probably got your stomaches rumbling, were from the lunch menu. My boyfriend order the Steak Baguette and I ordered the Croque Saumon, obviously alongside the best French fries you could wish for. 

I asked my boyfriend, 'how's your steak?' He was too busy stuffing his mouth and replied with a moan and eyes rolling to the back of his head. I think he liked it. 

My main was... beautiful. Is it ok to call salmon, cheese and fries beautiful? It looks simple, and easy enough to cook. And that was the beauty of it. For an afternoon lunch I just want a good, hearty meal. Everything was cooked to perfection. You know when it's a good chip when the outside has a crunch, and inside is fluffy. Call me the Chip Connoisseur. The salmon in the sandwich was drizzled with lemon and dunked into horseradish crème fraîche. The cheese... oh the glory cheese... just look at that golden sunshine. 

After this meal, I will definitely be back again, I promise! But I would love to go to more French inspired restaurants that are less fancy and more cosy like Café Rouge. And find French restaurants that don't break the bank!





Did I Accomplish 2016 New Year Resolutions?

Tuesday, 10 January 2017

Did I Accomplish 2016 New Year Resolutions?

I wrote a list last year. Wanna see if I've accomplished anything?

Have a scroll.

1. Take blogging more seriously 

It wasn't hard find last year's New Year's resolution blog post, because I haven't created many blog posts this year. Just a couple of scrolls, and there is it. Sitting comfortably at the top of my archive as if I typed it yesterday.

It's funny to say blogging is my hobby, as a rarely write blog posts nowadays. Lately I've been reading so so manyexciting blogs, filling myself up with inspiration, only to doubt myself 'I can create something beautiful and imaginative?'

When I started blogging at 15 years old, everyone was at the same level. Basic blog template, a few comments here and there, but powered with explosive content. When blogging became more popular, I found so many sponsored lacklustre posts. It was obvious to sort through who blogged just to get rich and popular.

I felt as if the blogging community was expanding but turning into something colourless.

I did not want to be a part of that.

Thankfully Instagram became more of a platform for those types of creators. A place where less words are more. Your beauty gains popularity. Your samey content is a 'theme'.

Now I believe blogging is slowly reverting to what it was before. Rich with exciting content and a world for avid writers.

So I'm back on the scene.

Every time I post, I know I say, after this blog post I'm going to write more!

But this time, I truly truly - hand on my pulsing heart - mean it.

2. Find a sports/active workout that I truly enjoy


I honestly forgot I wrote this, because I only started exercising in September. But I've started! So that's one brownie point so far. 

I never thought I'd say this, but I love the gym. Especially my gym. What got me obsessed were the fun but challenging classes that introduced me to weight training.

Eventually I changed my workout. For cardio, I made it more intense but shorter. Incorporated weights to make me stronger and more toned. I used to walk out of the gym feeling weak and tired, now I feel energetic and sore. It's a great combo, trust me. It feels like you've worked your damn peachy arse off.

I definitely want to continue my gym sessions, try to find a suitable and affordable gym when I come back home after university. I didn't realise how good it makes me feel physically and mentally. 

3. Read more

I believe that I have read more this year than the previous years before. Picking up a book to read for enjoyment and not for my studies felt so refreshing. I could control when I'd like to finish the book, and not worrying about deadlines!

However I could have read more, much more. 

I think I will start using Audible or some kind of audiobook, as I could listen to it when I'm working out or on the way to lectures. 

4. MEDITATE 

I can admit that I have started, but definitely not as much as the Dalai Lama suggests. Luckily for Christmas my wonderful aunt has bought me a membership for Calm app, which unlocks clarity and peace into my day-to-day lifestyle. It has been so helpful already. The problem I find with meditating is sitting down and doing it. As it's an app it perches happily next to my other apps and reminds me 'hey, wind down with me instead of Snapchat and Instagram!' 

I have begun this life-changing activity however I could delve into it more. 

5. Learn a new musical instrument

Well this one is a no-no. Definitely haven't picked up a musical instrument more than five times this year. 
I believe I wrote this down in order to find a new hobby. Watching new thrilling tv series, working out, scrolling on Tumblr, journalling, eating at restaurants, and socialising a whole lot more has become more of a hobby. 

However I have purchased an easy how-to ukulele book so it may motivate me to get playing again.


****

So that's it folks. I don't feel upset that some ideas haven't been delved into, because I feel as if 2016 has become a successful year - 'the year of realising stuff!' Wise words King Kylie. Those ideas were to get me exploring myself a lil more. Become familiar with what am I interested in and what makes me happy. 

I have concluded that blogging really makes me happy, therefore I will focus on it a whole lot more. Focus on writing and creating beautiful content, rather than worrying and fretting if anyone will read this post. 

I have been to a great number of wonderful restaurants and I'm thinking whether to introduce more restaurant reviews... sound alright to you? 

Thanks for reading.

Have a fulfilling 2017! 

DATE NIGHT / Jekyll & Hyde Birmingham Review

Thursday, 10 November 2016

DATE NIGHT / Jekyll & Hyde Birmingham Review


Let me start by saying this is my second time at Jekyll & Hyde, Birmingham. 

Yeah. It's that good. I needed more. I knew from my first encounter, it wouldn't be my last visit. 




From the candlelit rooms to the helpful gin enthusiast staff, fall down the rabbit hole to experience a magical and vintage evening, plentiful of boozy delights

The cosy bar downstairs is a guarantee Brummy hotspot. An inexhaustible collection of gins from around the globe and locally distilled, the cocktail list is endless. I'm a fan of floral flavours to pair with gin, for example, elderflower and lavender. As well as berry infusions. 

My boyfriend ordered Corpse Reviver - Tanqueray gin, Cointreau, dry vermouth with fresh lemon, fresh mist. I would have gone for the Bramble - Plymouth gin with fresh lemon juice, accompanied with Chambord black raspberry liqueur. This time round, now that I am a certified gin connoisseur (lol as if, I'd still happily drink Gordon's) I went for the Aviation - "Aviation gin shaken with Maraschino liqueur and fresh lemon juice with subtle hints of Crème de Violette for a floral and earthy gin sour."

Here it is below... 




I sent this picture to my family Whatsapp group, my aunt cheekily replied, "it looks like dish-water". I guess that's the 'earthy' part to the cocktail? 

Nevertheless, I'm not there for its looks... 

"Let's not judge a cocktail by its colour, but by its taste!... and how drunk it gets you!" 
- K. Chelsie, 2016

Now on to the food.

I'd gladly go to Jekyll & Hyde just for the cocktail chemistry. As they serve food, it's a verified #winninglife moment. 

We ordered "cured mackerel, cauliflower textures, mint" for a starter. Didn't get a snap because we were already hungry from our shopping afternoon at Bull Ring. About to jump to my fashion blogger side right now -  I nearly bought this jumpsuit, so so nearly. I thought the side profile made me look frumpy, plus there wasn't a price tag so I wasn't fussed to queue to find out the cost.




For a main, we both ordered the "confit duck leg, Dauphinoise potatoes, puy lentils, carrot puree". I don't think we've ever chosen the same main course. Normally if we do fancy the same dish, we'd order something else and share what we wanted. This time, duck was all I wanted. And to side the duck, we had duck fat chips. Surprised I didn't start quacking after the meal. Again I was so tempted to eat the chips than picture it for you curious lot, but halfway I remembered.  






The sweetest part of the night was the "chocolate ganache, banana, toffee, vanilla ice cream". A smooth and rich ganache, with not overly sweet toffee. 




In between mouthfuls, we were sipping on three different impeccable locally distilled gins. And even the tonic water was fancy, not your standard Schweppes. 




I honestly felt like I was in a different time period. Antiques surrounding us, and Gentlemen Prefer Blondes silently played.





The benefit of visiting cities in the West Midlands, is that the prices for three course meals aren't too expensive. Very affordable for extravagant date nights! For instance, two years ago we stayed a Nite Nite Birmingham for the weekend. A quirky hotel that didn't break the bank - at all. It's a one of a kind hotel, and very practical as it is bang in the centre of Birmingham.

My ideal day in Brum would be, shop until you drop in Bull Ring, dine at Jekyll & Hyde, snooze at Nite Nite. 

Jekyll & Hyde was our escapism from the gloom. I swear that I would venture out and find more hotspots in the Midlands. I need to stop comparing it to the South and believe that I can find great places here too. 





OOTD: I'm not always comfortable in front of a camera

Friday, 7 October 2016

OOTD: I'm not always comfortable in front of a camera












Ah autumn. Back to university.

I'm currently positioned at my desk. The cheap dark wooden table by the window, that I have now disguised its blandness with a self-adhesive marble sheet. Gotta add a bit of luxe to student digs, youknowwhatimsaying?

I think this picture was taken at the very end of August. And it's taken me this long to do a write up for it. 

Outfit posts are fun, take a few pics, throw in something funny about the outfit or the day I had - that's it.

And I do have a fun fact: the top was brought in Cuba, funnily enough. I was sick of its box shape, so I recently carved a neck cut-out. 

I used to love doing outfit posts but maybe I felt like this one was too forced? I was so in the mood to show my personal style, but when it came to the day that my friend was ready to photograph, I wasn't ready. 

Lately I have had the strangest feeling... (I can't stop listening to Stevie Wonder) that this blog is becoming less of fashion and more about lifestyle. Because most of the time I feel uncomfortable being in front of the camera. And I know I'm not the only one to admit it. 

This blog is all about honesty so I'm just gonna say why it's taken me so long to post this.

Do I look ok in the pictures? Is my personal style worth the attention?

I'm not losing sleep over this post, but it has me wondering too much, thinking too much. And not allowing me to publish this post.

This recurring feeling has prevented me from doing more outfit posts, also preventing this blog to be the fashion blog.

I would love to do more OOTDs, however, I can't help but feel a pathetic case of nervousness when a camera is pointed at me.

What's a blogger to do?