Tag: art

1 year blogiversary + Maison Kitsuné Spring Summer 15 at NYFW

Gratuit

*blows off the dust*

Well, hello, there! I know that it’s been an age. I’ll spare you the uninteresting details of how my day job has sucked up my life, but I just couldn’t let my 1 year blogiversary pass without a post.*

And a post about my first New York Fashion Week event ever! Yes, I said ever. Despite being a lifelong New Yorker. Hey, better late than never, right? And what a way to start it off, with the Maison Kitsuné Spring/Summer 15 collection, in all its adorable Frenchness. How fitting, n’est-ce pas?!

Maison Kitsune Spring Summer 15

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OOTD: Are You Going My Way?

Affilier Acheté

OOTD When you work in a very industrial area and come upon a building decked out like a yellow taxi cab, what else are you supposed to do but take photos?!

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Purple heart

Well, guys. I was finally able to take some photos and test out the object of my affections, Serge Lutens lipstick in Pourpre Maure.

My dedication to the cause went to extreme lengths that day. I woke up earlier than usual (and my new commute is a killer anyway) and brought my camera out back, making sure the door wasn’t locked. I wasn’t wearing a coat, and it was about 27ºF. I finished taking the photos…and, yup, the door was indeed locked.

Ten minutes later and shivering my ass off, I got someone to let me in. So you’d better really like these photos!

I just need to say, I think I’m in trouble. Like, serious trouble. I truly and deeply heart it.

To start with, here is my own photo of the sampler:

DSC_1502 The top three…swoon.

The three dark colors are all “me” colors. The bottom 3, not so much. (I am pale and I look dead in light, nude-y colors.) Although I think that Or Frele ( the one on the bottom left) is probably meant to be layered over another color, since it’s essentially clear with gold sparkles.

To be completely honest, when I went into Barneys to try on my color, the guy at the counter told me it was #2 (which is actually the top middle color). Even though I had requested the color by name to try on. (He also made me try on #10 Garde Rose, which is gorgeous as well. Of course.)

So part of me was wondering if perhaps I was now dreaming about the wrong color. Nope. He got it wrong. (I know for sure because I wore Roman Rouge yesterday…and halfway through the day switched back over to Pourpre Maure. :p Even though it’s a beautiful color on its own…it’s not MY color.)

I’ve already hit the bottom of the cardboard in one area of the sample, so I’m reluctant to use it for extraneous things, like swatching, so I’ll link you to someone who already did. I am curious to compare it to MAC Rebel, though (which I do own as well), especially since Lisa Eldridge mentioned it as an alternative. And, you know, it’s $75.

DSC_1504 Apparently I’m unable to apply lipstick straight with a lip brush from a cardboard sampler. Or I put it on in the dark? I also realized later I completely forgot to put on blush. Fail.

DSC_1506 My friends call this “Shani face.” It’s just cause I feel dumb in pictures.

DSC_1511

DSC_1514 It’s crooked, but it’s so pretty!

Now, you’re wondering, sure, it’s got a gorgeous face, but does it have anything going on upstairs?

Well, it’s not a member of Mensa, but it probably graduated with distinction. 😉

It goes on feeling very creamy, and then dries down to a satiny, velvet finish. You really don’t feel it on, but it’s not drying. It’s not hydrating, either, though. You should make sure your lips are exfoliated and hydrated before applying.

One of the things these lipsticks are known for are their intense pigmentation. And it did last through a meal, and didn’t transfer onto my spoon at all. I did have to reapply it in the afternoon.

The only negative thing (besides for the price!) is that when it fades, it tends to stain your lips the way wine does, catching on the most prominent areas. But while you’re wearing it, it’s glorious.

What do you think of the color? Have you ever had any mishaps in the course of performing your blogging duties? Do you want to see what the other colors look like? How do you get over something once it’s taken hold of your soul? 😉

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Wishlist Wednesday #13

Not your 90's flannel

 

Not your 90’s flannel by shedreamsinperfectfrench featuring snap shirts
I’m sure it’s the weather, but when I woke up yesterday morning and saw that it was snowing, all I wanted in the world to wear was a nice, warm, brightly colored flannel shirt.

 

I had plenty of them back when I was a teenager in the 90s (yes, I just dated myself :p). They were oversized, unflattering, and super, super cozy. Luckily, none of them have made the leap to my adult wardrobe.

 

But I really wished they had. Which got me wishing desperately for one of the more contemporary, fitted versions. I’m adoring the top middle one for the colors, but also the bottom right two, especially because they’re on sale for $20 at Hollister.

 

And yet, I hesitate. Only because I’m attempting to save money. My guiding principle these days is, “But do I really NEED it?” Obviously there are the impulse buys, but for some reason, purchasing clothing seems more unnecessary. (And not the millionth lipstick. Go figure.) But I realllllllly want one. So it’s wishlisted.

 

I also REALLY wish I had bought this scarf while I had the chance.
It was only $30 on Zara, but again, it wasn’t something I NEEDED. I had bookmarked it and kept going back to look at it, and now it’s sold out and selling for ridiculous amounts on eBay. I know that I knit and don’t need to buy scarves, but every time I see someone wearing it, I just kick myself all over again.

 

Maybe all this means is that I miss Scotland? 😉

 

Do you like flannel shirts in every day wear? Which would you pick? Do you think I should buy the scarf on eBay? What are you lusting after this week?

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Samples Soliloquy #1

Soliloquy noun \sə-ˈli-lə-kwē\

: a long, usually serious speech that a character in a play makes to an audience and that reveals the character’s thoughts

I decided to start a series in which I (finally) review the (copious amounts of) samples I’ve procured from Sephora (among other places), so it seemed a fitting title. 🙂

DSC_1491 Finding a good use for my empty Birchbox boxes. 😉

(In order to keep track of all my samples, I’ve started to write the names on the top in Sharpie and then using Scotch tape on top to keep it from smearing. I figure if I ever buy the full size, I can refill the sample size and use it for traveling.)

I’m going to use my first entry to discuss the collection of skincare items that, along with the Clarins Lotus Face Treatment Oil, I credit for helping to clear up my face after the Liz Earle Incident. Which means, yes, I like them, and, yes, I would purchase the full-size items. (And intend to!)

I’ve read about Ren Skincare everywhere, so when I saw that Sephora had the whole line, I grabbed a few items to try. And, boy, am I glad I did.

DSC_1492 The heroes of the day.

My first pick was the Ren Hydra Calm Cleansing Milk. I specifically chose this because it’s for sensitive skin and I thought my skin was upset enough as it was. I chose this over the gel since, as I’ve said, everything I’m reading these days is saying that any kind of gel or foaming cleanser is bad for you. So I started using this after taking off my makeup with Bioderma Crealine H2O. It smells nice, it feels gentle on the skin—almost like you’re not even putting anything on your skin, which is good for upset skin—and then using the muslin cloth from the Liz Earle kit and hot water to remove it. I put the hot cloth over my face for a few seconds, and then I gently scrub wipe off.

Once things started to clear up after using the Clarins Lotus Face Treatment Oil, I introduced the Ren ClearCalm 3 Clarifying Clay Cleanser. I didn’t want to overstrip or overdry my skin with the clay, so I only used that at night, and continued with the Hydra Calm in the morning. But I have to say that this feels plenty milky as well. It does smell clay-like, and I also remove it with the muslin cloth and hot water.

After that, I used the Ren Resurfacing AHA Concentrate. This is to help brighten and clear your complexion, with acidic exfoliators. This is especially good for helping to get rid of the marks that zits leave on your face. Which I know firsthand.

Then I use the Clarins Lotus Face Treatment Oil. On top of that, I’ve been using the Ren ClearCalm 3 Replenishing Night Serum. This helps treat the pimples and also helps with the redness and marks. (You only use the Resurfacing AHA Concentrate for 7 days at a time, so this works in the interim.) It’s amazing to wake up in the morning and literally see that your skin looks better.

(I’ve had a deluxe-sized sample of the Ren Glycol Lactic Radiance Renewal Mask for a while, so I’ve thrown that in once a week as well to help fade the red marks and discoloration. [I did not receive this one from Sephora. I don’t even remember where it came from!] Especially since Lisa Eldridge mentioned her love of lactic acid treatments for exfoliation.)

Then, rounding out the sample saviors, is Origins Make A Difference Plus + Rejuvenating Treatment (the oil-free one). I mentioned I was liking the Ole Henriksen Vitamin Plus moisturizer sample I got, but the Origins pulled ahead in the end. I’m almost embarrassed to say that I’ve gotten samples of this about 7 times now, since I can’t be without it. It feels so nice on the skin, it feels perfectly hydrated, and it smells amazing. I don’t get over oily from using it, and my skin has really turned around over the last few weeks. (Although I do find that if I use the acid exfoliators during the day, it does overstimulate the oil production in my skin, and I get oilier, so I don’t use it during the day.)

These are just in place of those things I was previously using. I’m still using the same toners. You’re probably wondering why I didn’t just go back to my old cleansing routine after the Liz Earle didn’t work out. I am, too, but I am trying to take to heart the urging not to use foaming/gel cleansers, and both of the ones I was using fell under that category. Also, this stuff has really been working and I haven’t paid for it (yet). :p So…

And now my skin is looking so much better and I’m grateful.

Next time, I’ll discuss some of the makeup samples I’ve gotten.

Have you tried any of these products? Are you sampling anything from Sephora lately?

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Music Monday #12

I had a musical discovery (to me) this past week, actually from reading the Clarins blog. (Believe it or not.)

Could you have a better band name than Le Prince Miiaou?! (Yes, that’s french for “meow.” 🙂 ) Our songbird’s real name is Maud-Elisa Mandeau, and she started playing music at 16. No, she’s not another teenager, she’s been at it now since 2002. But I really adore this song, from her third album.

I have to listen to some more of her music, definitely. Although, sadly, it seems her first album is no longer available. But her second and third albums, Safety First and Fill the Blank With Your Own Loneliness, are available. Plus, she has a new album called Where Is the Queen? coming out at the end of January.

What do you think? Have you ever heard of her before? Do you have any more recommendations for me? What are you listening to today?

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Review: Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish – Unluckiest of the lucky ones

I know that it’s been a while since I received the Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish™ Hot Cloth Cleanser Starter Kit that I won through Birchbloggers. You may or may not have been wondering about my review. Well, it’s finally ready.

Excited? 😉

Before I go any further, I do need to say that I feel truly thankful (heh, get it?) for having won this to try. It’s very hard writing a blog when you can’t afford new products to review. That’s probably why I took it as far as I did to really be able to give you a fair assessment.

The Liz Earle cleansing system works in two parts. The first step is the cream cleanser. Free from mineral oil, it contains naturally active ingredients, including eucalyptus and cocoa butter. It’s supposed to be a gentle cleanser, suited to all skin types, that still removes even the most stubborn of makeup. The second step is polishing with the muslin cloth. A gentle way to exfoliate your skin, it makes for a really lovely regimen.

Everything I’ve been reading about skin care lately has said to use cream-based cleansers, even if you have oily skin. Any cleanser that foams is supposed to be the devil. So this system definitely fits the bill.

Reviewing a cult product like this, one that has won over 90 beauty awards, one that so many people consider a holy grail product, you feel a certain burden of responsibility.

DSC_1289It’s just such a lovely system. Look at it.

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Knitting is cool

No, really, it is. All cool people knit. Also, I’ll have more proof below.

On Thursday, I met up with my dear circle of knitters, Julie, Hannah, and Dagmar, and I talked Ashley into coming as well. Our usual haunt is Joe’s Coffee, and I think the baristas are just bemused by us. (Also, we buy one drink each and hog the big table for hours. Also, they’ve heard all the details of my non-dating life. :p )

DSC_1305We do kind of take over. But at least we’re entertaining!

DSC_1306Tablets were basically invented to make knitting easier. Also, how lovely is Dagmar and I want Ashley’s hair!

DSC_1307Truth in advertising!

DSC_1308The progress on my scarf. (It really should have been done by now. 🙁 )

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Julie’s daughter is the luckiest little girl in the world!

DSC_1311Knitting can combine interests.

DSC_1312Ashley is trying to have her One Ring cowl ready for the Hobbit premiere!

20131114_172400_1Proof that knitting is cool: Even Chanel knits. 😀

Do you meet up with friends who share common interests? Do you have a favorite coffee shop? Do you knit? What are you working on right now?

Wishlist Wednesday #5

Hello, again, and welcome to another edition of Things Shani Wants But Can’t Afford (Right Now) Because She’s Unemployed. Today changes things up a bit, in that I’m not just going to write about a single item that I’m lusting after, but an entire new makeup line.

I recently read this article about celebrity makeup artist Troy Surratt‘s new makeup line, Surratt, which just debuted at Barneys New York (sadly, not all the items are available online right now).

I think we all love perusing Japanese stores such as Muji for their interesting and ingenious products . Surratt took all that innovation and injected it into his line, and some of the items inspire unnatural amounts of lust in me.

For example:

Surratt describes his Autographique liner (liquid liner) pen as being inspired by calligraphy pens, and contains a similar capillary system. The point is fine and made of nylon, not felt. And—get this!—the tip is refillable! So instead of throwing out another whole pen, you can just replace the tip. I think this is a brilliant idea, and I really want to try it. (I have liquid eyeliner dysfunction, so anything that may help me with my eyeliner applying skills…)

502978764_product_1 Autographique liner

Another Japanese influence Surratt drew on for his line was the difference in brow pencils, making his harder and more powdery. This gives the pencil more of a graphite pencil feel, and allows it to fill in between the hairs of the eyebrows more naturally. I’ve been trying to find a good one, and this sounds pretty excellent. (And it’s also refillable!)

502978770_product_1 Expressioniste Brow Pencil (This is just a link to the refill—the pencil seems to be sold out online.)

The article says that his line has a look-good-on-everyone red, and of course, I, in my search for the perfect red, NEED to try it. It’s the Automatique Lip Crayon in Alluring. The product description says that it has a non-drying, suede-like, matte finish, which sounds just right for a red. And it looks pretty stunning to me!

502978588_product_1 Automatique Lip Crayon in Alluring

Another great feature of the line is customizable palettes, which, if you’ve ever had a pre-made palette with colors you just don’t use, you know is a godsend.

In general, the line looks amazing (see here, here, and here).  And it doesn’t hurt that the man himself replied to my tweet! 🙂 As soon as I have some money, I am hightailing it to Barneys to try all of these out for myself!

Do any of these tempt you? What are you wishing for this week?

Wishlist Wednesday #4

Number 4 already?! Time really does fly!

As I mentioned, on Friday, during our day of fun in the West Village, I was struck dumb and unable to move on, captivated by a hat in the window of Goorin Bros. I knew that if I went in and tried it on, I would fall in love. But I could not make myself walk away.

So, in I walked. Meet my new spirit animal hat, Jessica Rogers:

105-5587-RED-L01 I took a photo in it, but it came out hideous, so this is courtesy of the Goorin Bros. site.

Have you ever seen anything so divine?! I’m obviously a fan of most things retro, but this hat is just perfection. Look at that gorgeous cherry red. LOOK AT THE POLKA DOTS. And it’s only $65, which is actually really affordable for a hat like this, if you’re not unemployed.  (I’m a huge fan of milliners, but they are usually waaaaaay pricey.)

I tried it on and I felt like this:

105-5587-RED-MF01Again, photo courtesy of the Goorin Bros. site.

The shop is actually stacked from top to bottom with amazing hats, so if a cloche isn’t your thing, you have plenty to choose from. (Rose tried this one on. And for the record, I also totally want this one. That teal is to die for! ) They have locations in several states and a couple in Canada, but obviously there is always their handy dandy (really beautifully designed) web site (where I am creating my wishlist as soon as I finish typing this!)

But if I see you walking down the street in my Jessica Rogers, this is WAR.

What are your favorite hats? What are you wishing for this week?