Batik Chic

I have always loved the casual chic looks with blazers, jackets or cardigans. I think it looks great on most women – not too casual, not too overdone.

But the thing about me is that, I have thick layers of stubborn fat so most blazers and jackets felt too warm for me and I’d be sweating buckets (even in an aircond room!) like I just ran a marathon. Sighhh…

Or maybe I just have a high metabolism or something. That’s why you seldom see me in jackets or blazers, unless if I’m in a cold country. Usually I would just opt for lightweight jackets/blazers/cardigans instead, especially the chiffon or satin ones. They’re my ultimate fave!

My recent favorite is this batik cardigan from Matase Sutera. Yes, batik!

I know most people would shy away from batik for everyday wear and only wear them for formal occasions. But there are ready-to-wear batik clothing that are chic and contemporary. Matase Sutera is a brand that specializes in hand-drawn batik prints and they carry various designs of ready-to-wear batik clothing such as kurungs, kaftans, jubahs, blouses and cardigans at reasonable prices.

The one I’m wearing here is Laylaa spiral cardigan in blue. It comes in 2 other colors as well – black and fuchsia.

 

This batik cardigan is made of satin material with a simple abstract pattern and clean lines. It has an open front and kimono sleeves which make it an easy breezy cardigan, perfect for warm sunny weathers. I love how airy and comfy this cardigan is – I feel like I could fly!

 

My daughter and I having a little bit of “Elsa” moment.
Let it go, let it go… I am one with the wind and skyyyy…. #obsessedwithfrozen

 

I think the spiral batik print at the front part kind of gives an illusion of a smaller waist. Haha. Me likey!

If you’re bored of wearing the same ol’ batik kurung to work on Batik Day, you could wear this batik cardigan instead and pair it with a plain skirt for a more formal look.

 

Oh, they also have batik shawls!

Beautiful, delicate batik shawls in yummy colors and prints. I rarely see people donning a batik shawl so I decided to try one.

 

I love how all Matase Sutera shawls have batik prints only on both ends and the patterns on each shawl are not too crowded.

I wanted to keep it simple so I just wore it with a plain shirt (Mango)

The great thing about batik is that each design is unique and one-of-a-kind. Same goes to Matase Sutera, where most of their batik prints are exclusively designed by them. And because they design their own batik, you can even request them to reproduce any clothing items that are out of stock in your size, and you may even request in the colors you want at the Pre-Orders section.

Matase Sutera ships internationally and they have customers from all over the world, including Brunei, Singapore, Australia, Pakistan, India, UK, Poland, South Africa, Hawaii and Brazil. They are now opening pre-orders for Raya and they even offer a 3-month installment.

Check out their website at www.matasesutera.com.
Happy browsing and shopping! :)



DIY Rosette Collar Top

I’ve been buying some craft supplies from Etsy.com since last year and had been having fun making little crafty projects of my own. Most of the stuff I bought were appliques – beaded, embellished, rosettes, flowers, butterflies and bows (these are some of them), which I turned into brooches, hair clips and head bands for my girls (well, the brooches were for me obviously).

I also came up with this idea to fancy up this cute little top that I bought for Ayra from GapKids. It’s a black peplum top with a round neckline and I thought it was a little plain, so I asked Ayra whether I could add some flowers along the front neckline. She agreed immediately. I knew she would – anything flowery or sparkly, just bring it on!

I took out my sewing kit and wasted no time to sew. It was super easy to make, and I’m a beginner. Just cut and stitch!

 

The things you need – a plain top, rosettes, needle, thread of the same color as the rosette, some pins and a pair of scissors

 

This chiffon rosettes came by the yard in a few different sizes so I had to cut them individually.

I laid the rosettes along the neckline and pin them in place. I decided to put the biggest rosette in the middle, followed by the medium and smallest sizes up until the shoulders.

Then I sewed the rosettes, starting from one shoulder and ending at the other shoulder. I also made sure that the stitches were hidden underneath all that ruffly rosettes.

And here’s the end result…

A sweet peplum top with chiffon rosette collar neckline that took less than 15 minutes to make!

 



Ariani Exclusive Preview

Earlier this month, I was invited to the exclusive preview of the new Ariani collection for 2014, held at DoubleTree by Hilton.

I’ve had a pretty challenging week (let’s not go into that) so it was nice to get away from all the chaos and mess for a few hours, and just sit back and enjoy fashion show and food and catch up with blogger friends.

The dress code was “kemas dan berstail” so I decided to wear this Rico Rinaldi kipas-front skirt from FashionValet, and teamed it up with a plain Mango top, Marshmallowscarf dual tone satin shawl and Zara nude heels. I’m simple like that.

The event started off with a speech by the Marketing Director of Ariani, Pn Norhana Sharkhan – or also known as Pn. Nona.

Here’s a little bit about Ariani – the brand was first established in April 2008 and is owned by the huge textile company, Jakel Sdn Bhd. Ariani is well known for their exclusive hijabs and headgear, and they currently have 20 outlets nationwide. They were also the ones who revolutionized the “tudung awning” or “tudung express” trend (or whatever you call it), and since then they have been producing various hijab designs to meet market demands.

This Exclusive Preview featured their latest hijab collections that were specially designed for this event. There were 2 segments – Chic Casual and Glam Exclusive. You can see a lot of fresh colors in both of these segments, using only the highest quality of materials such as Italian Chiffon, Italian Lycra and Thai Silk. What’s even more special about them is the detailing on each and every piece that exudes sophistication and elegance.

Models in the Casual Chic collection

The Chic Casual collection includes tudung Zafira Printed, Selendang Embroidery, Selendang Printed, Selendang Printed Stone, Selendang Crumple and Aleesya Beaded Block Heavy.

I love these printed shawls!

For the Glam Exclusive segment, the collections include Zafira Lace, Selendang Art Work, Selendang Stone,  Selendang Embroidery, Selendang Lace, Tiara Chiffon 2 Layer and Selendang Aleesya Lace. This segment featured lots of beadings and laces, perfect for weddings and other special occasions.

There was also a prize giving session for the lucky draw that was held last year in conjunction with the year end sale, as a token of appreciation to their customers. How nice of them! The prizes were iPhone 5s, exclusive Persian carpets and shopping vouchers worth RM1,000!

All 66 winners of the lucky draw

Later, they announced Ariani’s new ambassador for 2014 – Nurul Shuhada, the TV3 personality who had won Malaysian Top Host in 2005. She’s replacing Wardina as she’s migrating to Australia soon.

My sister and I managed to snap a photo with the gorgeous Wardina!

Then, there was an auction session, which to me, was the most interesting part of the event. There were 3 Ariani shawls up for bids, made exclusively just for this auction and they are not sold anywhere in this world. The shawls were beautifully made of high quality chiffon fabric with French lace and Swarovski crystal embellishments. The bidding for each shawl started at RM1,000!

This was my first time watching a live auction so I got excited as people started bidding on these shawls. “RM3,000! Do I hear RM3,500?”. “RM5,000 over here!”.

OMG it was like watching Confessions of A Shopaholic movie – you know, the scene where Becky’s signature green scarf was being auctioned, except this was for Ariani shawls and the bidders were not fighting with each other of course. Hehe.

First auction – this shawl reached RM5,000, bid by this lady!

Second auction – this lady won the bid at RM7,000!!

And last one, which was my fave of all 3, reached RM10,000!!! *jaw drops*

This auction was for a good cause so that made it even more meaningful. All proceeds from this auction go to charity. Alhamdulillah, may Allah bless them with more rezeki!

After the auction session, we were told that there would be a “surprise” at the end of the event. I thought they were going to give everyone free shawls from all of the Ariani Exclusive Preview collections that were being showcased earlier! Bahahaa.

 

Surprise! It was Dato’ Siti!

The ballroom was suddenly darkened and moments later, Dato’ Siti appeared out of nowhere (ok, obviously from the entrance door la but we couldn’t see), singing a song (forgot what song already, but I remembered it was an Indonesian song). Everyone was excited and started clapping and snapping pictures as she walked to the stage.

That wasn’t the only surprise. After the song, she appeared again on stage (this time in a different attire) and announced her shawl collaboration with Ariani – Siti Nurhaliza Collection by Ariani, which is already out today (21st March 2014)!

Models strutting down the red carpet in Siti Nurhaliza Collection by Ariani shawls. Love the vibrant colors, especially the green one!

Dato’ Siti wearing a beautiful lacey shawl from her own collection with Ariani.
I. Want. This.

Made some new blogger friends – Syahira and Sabrina

Back at home, I was surprised to find a beaded chiffon shawl in this gorgeous royal blue color inside the goodie bag that we received at the event, together with its matching inner neck (Ariani makes the best inner necks, in my honest opinion. It’s comfortable and stays nicely on your forehead and doesn’t make your face look that round, if you know what I mean), and a special detergent for shawls. Thank you so much Ariani!

I’ve own a couple of Ariani beaded shawls and inners, and even wore one at my sister’s wedding reception last year (view here and here). I’ve always loved the intricate beading and details on their shawls. Looks exclusive. Well, they are exclusive!

To view the rest of Ariani collections, you may log on to their website at www.ariani.my or visit their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/GaleriAriani.



Sky Park

Last weekend we went to check out Sky Park at the newly opened One City mall in our neighbourhood. Nothing much to shop there, but they have quite a number of restaurants and cafes. At least we have more food options when we don’t know where to eat (always happens on weekends).

Ooh, there’s a cinema too. Definitely going there for a movie date with my husband when my sis-in-law is back in town.

But what I like most about this mall is the rooftop with lovely landscape. There are mini ponds, walkways, green plants, restaurants with outdoor seating overlooking the city. I thought it’d be a cool spot for some OOTD pictures of me wearing this new piece that I just got from FashionValet.

 

Spot the cameraman a.k.a my husband

This 2-in-1 top is from FashionValet’s latest designer collaboration, PU3 <3 FV and it’s my favorite of all simply because you can wear it in two ways – as a top or a cardigan. Another reason is because I don’t have a lot of cardigans in my closet so I just had to get this.

The top/cardy features a button on each shoulder, long sleeves, inside out stitching and pockets on both sides. Button both buttons and you’ll get a top with inverted V overlapping at the front. Unbutton the buttons and you’ll get, well you know… the normal open-front cardigan look.

But my favorite way to wear this cardigan is buttoning on one side.

I love the one-sided waterfall look. Something different, me thinks.

Not easy doing OOTD shots while keeping an eye on your kids at the same time.
Exhibit A: Raina trying to lick the glass.

Exhibit B: Raina crumpling dry leaves into tiny pieces…

She said so that the birds can eat the dry leaves easily. How very thoughtful. Hehe

Here, I’m wearing the PU3 <3 FV cardy with Warehouse chevron top, Tudung People satin shawl, Accessorize necklace, Zara pants and my favorite Betsey Johnson wedges.

My girls are always up for OOTD shots! (ok I lied. They really don’t give a hoot)
Raina is wearing Old Navy lace peplum top, H&M Kids checkered pants, Cotton On Kids flower clip, Diva Kids necklace and Zara Girl studded ankle flats.
Ayra is wearing Zara Girl dobby dot blouse, Mango Kids floral jeggings, Monsoon flower headband and Zara Girl studded ankle flats.

Check out the rest of the PU3 <3 FV collection here.

Happy Monday!



Model Tembam

My cousin and her friend just started their online shawl business earlier this year – Marshmallowscarf. They have been so generous giving me some of their glitter shawls for me to wear and keep (thanks guys).

Then one day, my cousin asked me if I would like to be their model for their current and upcoming shawl collection.

Whoaa. Me, a model? She couldn’t be serious! I mean, of all the ladies, si tembam ni jugak yang dia nak jadikan model. =_=’

I wasn’t sure whether to accept it or not (so conscious about my tembamness), but after giving it some thoughts, I finally agreed. Bila lagi nak merasa jadi model! Wahahah.

 

The day of the photo shoot came… and I had fun! Makeup, being styled (I learned a couple of new tudung styles), gelak-gelak, photo-shooting. Not a typical Sunday for me.

Here’s a few behind-the-scene photos…

 

 

We tried a few poses – hands on the side, hands on the waist, hands holding the ends of the shawl, badan senget, kepala senget. None worked. I just don’t know how to pose! So keras I tell you.

So in the end, we just settled with this pose. I call this the Negaraku pose.

Have you ever seen a “model” so short? Yea, me neither.

 

 

Anyways, the photos are ready, and Marshmallowscarf will be releasing their Ammara collection tonight at 9pm on their Facebook page. The collection features opal finished chiffon shawls in various colors and prints. Here’s a little sneak preview!

 Ammara shawls

 

 

They’re also going to release their glitter and ombre satin shawls some time next week so be sure to stay tuned if you want to get your hands on them ok!

Glitter shawls

Ombre satin shawls

Marshmallowscarf is in the midst of coming up with their new collection next month. I’m pretty excited about it because it’s my current fave shawl. Can you guess? :P