“NOTHING COMES CLOSE TO THE GOLDEN COAST” – the smarmy line from that Katy Perry song Aaron texted me when I arrived in Gold Coast. I don’t know how Gold Coast would compare with California but that said, the first thing I noticed about the city was how freakishly similar it was to the other coastal areas I’ve been to. It reminded me of Malacca, Marine Parade, and Sentosa all at once and perhaps we’re looking at a trait inherent to most coastal cities: they gravitate towards nearly identical architectural styles and have a relaxing vibe that comes naturally with beachfront living.
My spring break didn’t start out so great. I had to sit next to the most insufferable people on the plane: two other girls, one of whom started complaining when asked to put her bag below the seat in front of her – “I can’t put my LONGCHAMP on the floorrrrr.” Girl, it’s hard to believe you don’t know it’s standard protocol to have all bags on the floor before take-off so stop playing the victim and let the stewardess do her damn job. A long string of expletives played out in my head every time she looked in my direction and finally, an hour into the flight, bitch went to sleep. I tried to look at the positive side of things; I may not be able to push this chick off the plane but at least I’d have one terrific flight story to tell Nad when I’d arrived.
Many things have changed since my last trip there (I was 8!) but to all intents and purposes, Gold Coast remains much the same as it was then. The beaches are as spectacular as I remember, just cleaner and more modernized. The coastline is still cramped with apartment hotels either fathered by the nondescript global hotel chain or the ones that are too indie to be clustered with the mainstreamers. I devised a little game to see if we could spot the most ridiculously named hotel but it was forgotten shortly after a seafood dinner of the grandest scale. Freshly shucked oysters, delightful baby octopus dressed in a light oil and vinegar dressing, lobsters, battered fish and shrimp on a terrifying bed of fries – it was carb hell but we were in heaven.
Unlike Melbourne, Gold Coast isn’t really the place for great coffee. Let’s be frank: nobody goes to Gold Coast for coffee. They’re there for the beaches, hot surfer boys, girls in bikinis overdoing the tanning oil, overpriced buffets, and amusement parks. But I am a coffee fiend who likes the occasional challenge. After some google-sleuthing, I scoped out two chic cafes with decent beans: Bumbles and Elk Espresso.
Bumbles is conveniently tucked away at the back of our hotel and after a 7-hour flight, Nad, understandably needed some caffeine and nosh in her system. I wasn’t in the mood for coffee after that plane episode so we split some prawn sandwiches, truffle fries, and a mocha between us. The prawn sandwiches weren’t just dressed in grandma’s old mayo but had some paprika and lemon juice mixed in as far as I could tell. It was blistering hot and those sandwiches were a cool food refuge from the sun, yum. The truffle fries were great too and came topped with parmesan shavings but honestly, they were expensive for the little amount we got. Still, money needs to be spent during a holiday and spend it all we did LOL.
My favourite between the two has to be Elk Espresso, this – dare I say it – Melbournesque cafe located in Broadbeach. Admittedly, it’s very hipster-y with a mural of an elk on its specked green walls and wood trimmings but god, it’s so pretty I didn’t mind being identified as a hipster for an hour. Nad ordered a beautiful lemon tart with a side of cream and a coffee. As for me, I had read reviews prior to my visit and everyone was saying the same thing: do not leave Elk’s without trying their crème brûlee milkshake. And it gets better. While they did have regular milkshakes on the menu, the crème brûlee flavour exists only as a colossal food monument you often see on Man V. Food: THE THICKSHAKE. It’s scoops of smooth vanilla-caramel ice cream, milk and white chocolate shavings blended into the thickest, most decadent milkshake in the entire gold/east/west coast. I don’t know how many calories went into one thickshake but nothing succeeds like excess. Kelis, it’s time to update your song girl – this thickshake is going to bring more than boys to the yard.
Stay tuned for part II!
19 River Drive
Surfers Paradise, QLD 4217
16 Chelsea Ave
Broadbeach QLD 4218
I had my first birthday party when I turned 20. It was and will forever be the last party I throw for myself. It wasn’t a disaster per se – ok, yes it was. Normally, one would expect the birthday girl to have her day to herself, leaving all the cooking and decorating to the caterers and selected minions, oops I mean, close friends who have volunteered themselves to offer free labour in the name of her birthday. Except lifestyles of the rich and famous don’t happen outside the Hamptons and certainly, not in my house. *ADVERTORIAL* My party’s decorating services was sponsored by Ilyana’s Party Favours and the food was cooked on site by Ilyana & La Familia. Or in other words, I did just about everything.
I cooked, I cleaned, I wanted to do too many things. And on the morning of the party I became aware, when two of my friends who were supposed to help me out were running late, that the only way I could get things done was to do it myself. I was a dumb, wildly ambitious perfectionist. I was still cooking the takoyaki half an hour before the party started and I was so tired I wanted everyone to go home when they’ve only just arrived LOL. I think I was a horrid host because I couldn’t mingle with my friends as much as I wanted to since I was exhausted and all I could think about was replenishing the fast disappearing takoyaki platter. So if you were unfortunate enough to turn up to that mess of a party, I apologise for being the worst host in history…but at least you can’t complain about the food right? Because it definitely was fantastic, feast your eyes on these vintage pictures from my ~archives~: Pic 1, Pic 2 and Pic 3. Also LULZ at my old photography omg, I’VE COME A LONG WAY!
4 years later and I guess I still have parties on my birthday but they’ve evolved into private brunch dates with people I love. I know I say this every year but it’s sad not being able to celebrate it with my family. But living overseas also rewards you with a new family: a group of friends in the same sticky situation you’re in. And if you’re very very lucky, family from your home base might just take a flight out to visit too. Here’s some photos from my birthday brunch at MART and in order of appearance, meet my shiny, happy people: Brian, Amy, Kyun and Ili. Kyun and my cousin, Ili, were holidaying in Melbourne and it was lovely having family around – thank you for the tea set bbs!
And to Brian & Amy: I love you both so much, thank you, thank you, thank you.
FINALLY managed to crack open my Burberry lipstick too, expensive lipsticks are best reserved for special days yes? A review on that is coming soon!
p.s: sorry I haven’t blogged in a while, I had another cousin fly in and stay with me for 10 days after Ili left lol so this blog didn’t stand a chance against all the shopping and feasting we did. Fatin, if you’re reading this – congratulations on your convocation and I hate to admit it but I’ve started to miss your company!
I arrive in Kuala Lumpur, the capital of Malaysia, a little after 1pm. Barely 30 minutes in the country and I find myself telling white lies in the most Malaysian accent I can muster. My prepaid number I purchase comes with a regular-sized SIM card which won’t fit into my iPhone and the special SIM card cutter the call centre is supposed to have mysteriously disappears (IKR, A SIM CARD CUTTER?? – Malaysia memang boleh srsly) so I comb the entire mall to find a phone shop with one. I eventually do but the guy at the counter gives me the stink “YOU MUST BE SINGAPOREAN” eye and asks for 5 bucks to get my card cut. U MAD BRO? 5 bucks for a service that’s supposed to be free? Sorry pal, you’re not touching my shopping fund. So I tell him a half lie. For 10 minutes, I become a tired, hungry girl who’d arrived after a 5 hour drive from Penang. When the man softens and does it for free, I feel the beginnings of guilt pricking my tummy but I remind myself, my maternal grandfather was originally from Penang so I COULD’VE been born there right? Right.
I’m having a hard time writing this entry because I don’t know where to start; so many memories were made and I’ve been to KL countless of times but this trip was just beautiful. It’s bad enough I’m in Australia most of the year but it is utterly dreadful when one of your best friends doesn’t even live in Singapore. Aaron and I start the day at our fave Japanese place, then we head to his design school to grab his grad tickets (AWW MY BABY’S GRADUATING ;__;) and mindlessly walk in the Kuala Lumpur rain to the bus stop. He stops at the most random spot next to the main road, I look around, and there is no bus stop sign (or seats lol).
“Hey where’s the bus stop?”
“This IS the bus stop.”
I think I love KL a little bit more now LOL. I whip out my iPod on the bus and we sing to all our BFF songs, including Gaga’s U&I and mp3 rips of Adele’s Royal Albert Hall concert which is tons more dramatic than her regular album version – guaranteed to heighten any BFF lip synching experience. We get to the KLCC mall and start filtering through the remnants of the Zara sale while peppering our speech with lines from our video du jour, Shit Fashion Girls Say II:
“Omg I’m convinced Daphne Guinness and Karl Lagerfeld are secretly the same person.”
“She kept calling it Net-a-PORTERRRRRR.”
“I’m really into statement necklaces.”
“I’m such a WHALEEEEEEE!”
“Fashion turbans! But I’m not trying to be political.” – what a reference to me tharrr lol.
We grab dinner at Ben’s, this spectacular restaurant in KLCC bedecked in monochromatic greys and black with visually welcoming pops of yellow. I AM IN LOVE WITH THIS PLACE OMFG. The food is incredible and a main dish only sets you back SGD$12 (!). SINGAPORE Y U NO HAVE?! Aaron and I can’t stop thinking about their wild mushroom spaghettini with mascarpone and truffle oil (!!), I should probably mention the other dishes I tried but I shan’t because everyone needs to trust the crazed foodie in me and order this damn pasta. It is SO totes amaze I shall say this with not the slightest bit of shame: I ordered it again the next day when I met up with Brian, my Malaysian friend from my university (see happy, satisfied smiles in last photo). You guys know I cook a lot of pasta and I tend to avoid ordering something I know I can cook well but this pasta dish makes me want to shake, cry and beg the head chef for the recipe lmao, it is THAT good.
Thanks to Brian and Aaron’s other BFF, Cheawen, I was pretty much driven around the whole of KL – thank you so much for your hospitality, guys! Don’t worry, I won’t be coming back so soon so your petrol tanks are safe 8D And to my bff who worries that he doesn’t spend enough time with me, we’ve only met 3 times in 4 years but that’s why we’re special. Magic can’t be measured.
All photos in this entry were taken with my iPhone via Instagram (follow me at @ilyana) and IncrediBooth.
Lot 140 First Floor
50088 Kuala Lumpur
Phone: +6 03 2163 1655
Opening Hours: 10:00am – 11:00pm daily
My Diana Mini I’ve ignored for far too long and one of my favourite buys of the year: a vintage brass ring Aaron thinks must have come straight out of the Lord of The Rings. Everyone else keeps mistaking it for a YSL. Either way, I’m not complaining.
Left: One of the small boutiques along the street sells French soaps and bubble baths. Honestly, I could care less about the fancy soap; I just want the beautiful bottles they come in. Right: The unnamed Deli (or is it just ‘Deli’? hmm..) whose lattes I have a fondness for.
Technically, this bakery isn’t on Brunswick St but on Gertrude St which is pretty close. It’s called Fatto a Mano and they sell some of the best (and cheap) organic bread. They’re famous for their sourdough and potato & olive pizza slices which always run out by mid-day :/ I LOVE their jam doughnuts as well. Unlike conventional doughnuts, their version is a simple ball of light yeasty bread. It’s sliced in half with raspberry jam slathered on one side and a heaping of cream in the other. Mmm. Creammmm.
Fatta a Mano’s pizzas I was talking about. Left: Sundried tomatoes and basil. Right: Potato and Olive. Yep I bought a slice ;p
Perseverance Hotel: love the old architecture and the turrets but would I ever consider staying there for a night? Never.
The many tiny roads leading out to Gertrude St/Brunswick St have some great graffiti. On that subject, I do consider graffiti a form of art but only when it’s on the streets and not on a property I own. Fork yeah, double standards!
And as always, I’m suckered in by any species of pretty plant/flower.
Some photos I took while meeting a friend for coffee at Brunswick St, the ‘hipster spot’ of Melbourne. It’s essentially a ten minute walk from my place and it’s one of the few things I’m going to miss about living in this crap hole apartment. It’s also where you can find my fave fish & chips shop, Hooked (which I wrote about here).
I’m trying to write shorter entries for this blog so nobody has to wait a month for another one of my super long entries. I’m not good with multitasking: when I have school work, I have finish it first which is why I can no longer read my favourite blogs as often as I’d like (forgive me, friends! ) and any thought of updating my own blog has always been ignored and pushed to the back of my to-do list. And frankly, I also can’t afford to get an Asian F on my transcript or my parents might threaten to cut me off LOL. So here’s to a more regular posting schedule on tea noir! ;D
Fatto a Mano Organic Bakery
228 Gertrude Street
Fitzroy VIC 3065
Uni started this week and my mind still hasn’t adjusted itself to the escalation of thinking required when attending classes. The first week after spring break is customarily filled with “how was your holiday?”-type questions and I’m always happy to oblige. Against a background of my friends recollecting their adventures in Sydney/Queensland/Monaco (k the Monaco tale did make me a lil green), I was one of the few who would say unashamedly, “I did absolutely nothing and it was beautiful.”
Okay, that was a semi-lie. I spent the last two weeks getting my body back on track: I threw away all the junk food I had in my house, even my roommate’s emergency bags of crisps when she wasn’t looking. Just kidding. It took all of my powers of persuasion (“It’s not food wastage if it isn’t real food to begin with!”) and she finally relented in the end. I also ate more complex carbs and at some point, the only form of protein I was consuming was tofu so in some ways, I became a pseudo-vegetarian LOL.
This was unintentional to be honest, I couldn’t be arsed to go to the market to get fish and meat ;p But the two week meat purge did me some good: I’ve lost 3 kilos so far WHOO /o/ Anyway, my fridge is now fully-stocked again so I guess that’s the end of my stint as a vegetarian haha! It feels great to be eating healthy again though and I can’t remember why I went down the dark path of evil processed food – Oh right – school, the elitist institution responsible for nurturing, not bright minds, but weight gain.
The irony in this entry is that I’m about to share a seafood chowder recipe which isn’t exactly on top of the healthy food list since it’s loaded with one of God’s greatest gifts to female thighs: cream. But one can always make healthy adjustments to the recipe by using lite cream and skim milk, yes? I take no credit for the recipe, it’s actually my roommate’s which is why I’ve named it after her ;D Thanks Nini! <3
Nini’s Seafood Chowder
1 teaspoon butter
2 gloves garlic
1 potato, boiled and grated
1 cup fresh milk
1/2 cup cream (YEAAAAHHHHH)
1.5 cups of seafood marinara mix
1 tablespoon parsley, chopped finely
A pinch of salt and black pepper
1. Melt the butter in a heated pot and throw in the garlic and onion until fragrant.
2. Add in the grated potato and stir.
3. Pour the fresh milk into the pot and let it heat up for a bit.
4. Add the marinara and cream into the mixture and make sure you stir well!
5. Season according to taste with the salt, black pepper and parsley.
6. Serve with bread or with pasta!
I actually like it enough on its own ;D Bon appétit!
And because I’ve been a proud Apple advocate since 2005:
The man whose computers and applications I have to thank for allowing me to create beautiful things like tea noir and the many other design projects I was involved in during my days as a design student and subsequently, as a working designer. Thank you Steve, and goodbye.
Image credit: Time.com
P.S about the Apple logo: It wasn’t designed by Steve Jobs or anyone under Apple for that matter. It was designed by a man named Rob Janoff who says the story of Adam and Eve had nothing to do with the bite in the famous apple. Here’s my favourite quote from an interview he did:
I’m probably the least religious person, so Adam and Eve didn’t have anything to do with it. The bite of knowledge sounds fabulous, but that’s not it. And, there is a whole lot of other lure about it.
Turing, the famous supposed father of computer science who committed suicide in the early 50’s, was British and was accused of being homosexual, which he was. He was facing a jail sentence so he committed suicide to avoid all that. So, I heard one of the legends being that the colored logo was an homage to him. People think I did the colored stripes because of the gay flag. And, that was something really thought for a long time. The other really cool part was that apparently he killed himself with a cyanide laced apple. And, then I found out Alan Turing’s favorite childhood story was Snow White where she falls asleep forever for eating a poisoned apple to be woken up by the handsome prince.
Anyway, when I explain the real reason why I did the bite it’s kind of a let down. But I’ll tell you. I designed it with a bite for scale, so people get that it was an apple not a cherry. Also it was kind of iconic about taking a bite out of an apple. Something that everyone can experience. It goes across cultures. If anybody ever had an apple he probably bitten into it and that’s what you get.
It was after I designed it, that my creative director told me: “Well you know, there is a computer term called byte”. And I was like: “You’re kidding!”
Ahh I would have gotten this entry up earlier if it hadn’t been raining so much in Melbourne! The weather’s been perfect for personal slumber parties in my room; I’ve been curling up in bed while watching fashion documentaries like Valentino: The Last Emperor. That, by the way, is an incredible film! It was pretty amazing spotting all the dresses I took photos of in my Valentino: A Retrospective entries (part 1 and part 2) and if you loved The September Issue, you’re going to love the Valentino film too ;D
I met Ana for brunch the other day at a new patisserie and boulangarie called Chez Dre in South Melbourne. Her photo’s up there, just so you know I don’t go to all these places by myself k. She’s one of my more recent readers and get this: she discovered my blog by googling for the reasons behind ridiculous, expensive Malay weddings and found herself agreeing to everything I’ve said in this particular entry (which I remember writing while under the influence of sugar) Just how cool is that lol? Anyway, since the Malay community in Melbourne is extremely small, it turns out we’ve actually met before at a mutual friend’s house for last year’s Eid! We’ve been proper friends for about a month now and it’s been beautiful.
I think Chez Dre (which I’m assuming is French) is fairly new to the Melbourne brunch scene and the place they’re located at used to be a warehouse before it was turned into this fine eating establishment. I love that breakfast is served all day in Chez Dre and you don’t have to go anywhere else for dessert because damn it, you can see they’ve got that covered. Different varieties of eclairs and strips of mousse cakes decorated with house-made macarons and gold leaf, I had trouble settling for one. I don’t know how we did it but Ana and I actually shared dessert wtf. We tried the salted caramel eclair which was filled walnuts and a buttery cream slightly reminiscent of smooth cake batter, it was SO GOOD (this coming from a person who’s indifferent to walnuts). I’m so impressed, I’m heading there again tomorrow and sry2say I am not going to share my dessert with anyone 8D
One of the best things about blogging at tea noir is meeting and getting to know, not just other bloggers, but the people who regularly put up with my sparse updates/nonsense: you. It’s wonderful hearing what people think about my blog in person, over a cup of coffee. That way, I can be sure I hear only the good stuff – anything bad and that cup of coffee is going home as a stain on someone’s top just sayin’ girllll. HAHAHAHA nah, I am completely open to -ahem- constructive criticism but so far, people seem to have the same complaint: that I should update more. I hear ya, I hear ya!
Just two days ago, I also met up with my sole stewardess friend, Hid, who was in Melbourne for a day! We regularly stalk each other’s blogs, except she hasn’t blogged in ages *cough* Honestly, I was expecting it to be a little awkward because it’s been two years since we last saw each other and like a man, I tend to get slightly nervous around exceptionally beautiful girls rofl (shut up Hid, you’re beautiful okay!) But again, I had a smashing time – we ended up talking for hours over the most random things: how horrid Ibiza really is, the Singapore education system, photography and how much she disliked Angelina Jolie and Natalie Portman (I know right, I told her she was crazy). Thank you so much for the great company, Hid! Hid also has a blogshop, Nyla, and hopefully if our schedules don’t clash, I’ll have a stint as a guest photographer for Nyla! ;D
Anyway, I am completely digressing from my main point here. I would really love to meet my readers in person because I firmly believe any girl (or guy) who enjoys reading this space would probably be great to hang out with so I’m proposing a massive tea noir meet-up in Singapore when I head back! That way I can meet you guys and you guys can meet each other! I have no idea how I’m going to organize it yet but I just wanted to get this idea out and see what you would think of it. So, who’s interested? ;p
285-287 Coventry Street
It’s been two weeks (well, almost) since my return home and I still find myself thinking about this fish & chips joint I discovered whilst exploring the area around my apartment. Touted as Melbourne’s healthiest fish & chips eaterie by The Age, a broadsheet newspaper similar to Singapore’s The Straits Times, Hooked is definitely one of its kind. “Healthy” fish and chips? That may sound absurd but Hooked has really proven itself to be the restaurant du jour for the health-conscious in Melbourne (i.e. Me!)
A giant mural of a naked mermaid greets you when you enter the restaurant, smiling boldly despite her state of undress. Fashion magazines and the morning’s newspapers are stacked on the main table, available for perusing as you wait for your food to be served. I have a bit of a crush on the counter girl (she’s in the first pic) – she has beautiful porcelain skin and the way she does her hair and make-up reminds me of a retro pin-up girl, like a family friendly Dita von Teese!
And the food? SO FORKING GOOD. Pick your choice of seafood (their housefish is the Blue Grenedier, which happens to be one of my faves!) and have it grilled or tempura-battered. You can then choose for your mains to be served with either a side of hand-cut chips, their special Hooked salad or an Asian-inspired baby bok choy salad with rice. Plus, you get your choice of one of their homemade sauces too!
I had some grilled calamari with brown rice and baby bok choy. I think they’re really generous with the calamari – the other fish & chips joint I used to frequent only served 4 small pieces of squid ~_~ The vegetables are steamed and lightly dressed with a medley of soy sauce and kecap manis, a thick black sweetened sauce from Indonesia. Brown rice has gotten a bad rep for being the less tasty cousin of white rice but there was nothing nasty about the rice in my meal. It was fluffy and moist, just how rice should be. I picked the pesto-based Salsa Verde, a mean green sauce I am completely addicted to. I’m convinced there’s weed in the Salsa Verde – I just kept dunking everything I had on my plate into the tiny bowl of leafy basil heaven and it was gone in minutes.
The weird orange-brown pieces on top are actually shavings of fried sweet potatoes and I must confess that I really, really hate sweet potatoes but these were really yummm! So it’s true: everything tastes better fried lol! I thought they were a really nice touch too, it’s not everyday you see fried sweet potatoes (not in Singapore anyway).
My roomie ordered the standard fish & chips with sweet chilli sauce. Another outstanding meal, the batter was crisp and enhanced the fresh flavour of the fish instead of turning it into one oily mess. The hand-cut chips were also stellar, I like that they all varied in shape but at the same time, I feel sorry for the dude who has to cut the sacks of potatoes every morning. He’s my hero.
Hooked – Healthy seafood to go.
384 Brunswick St, Fitzroy
Phone: 9417 7740
I turned 22 on Sunday, another year older and perhaps none the wiser. It still hasn’t hit me that I’m an adult now, maybe that’s for the better lol. Turning 22 is scarier than turning 21 because all my fears are suddenly amplified by the passing of another year. I realised today most people reading this blog don’t actually know who I am save for my name (Ilyana is actually my middle name), my age, my incessant need for shoes/make-up and that I now live in Melbourne. So since this is my birthday entry and birthdays signify something personal to most people, I shall now reveal a couple of things about me that most of you prolly won’t know. It’s a list of “OMG EPIC FAIL” moments and hopefully you’d find this quite comical as I did when I wrote this for my creative writing module’s non-fiction piece.
Shit that has happened to me:
1. Going to the bathroom when I was 10 and forgetting the lock.
2. I’m at the doctor’s, he tells me to strip and I realise I have my bunny undies on.
3. After dropping several hints on what I want for my birthday (this beautiful bag I saw in some store), my boyfriend gives me a bag. A laptop bag. We are no longer together.
4. My mother phoning my aunts, grandma and her best friend to announce I just got my first period and therefore I am “normal”.
5. My grandmother passed away and my grandfather dies 5 days later – let’s not go there.
6. A friend gives me chocolates from Japan and hide it at the back of the fridge only to find it gone the next day. Ammar, if you’re reading this – I know it was you.
7. I spent the last couple of years thinking my bff’s blog (Aaron‘s old blog lol) was named silks on nets. It was strange and a little poetic but still strange tho I never asked him about it. I found out recently (at my own expense) it was actually silk sonnets.
Excellent milestones aren’t they? Also, if you’ve got a question to ask – ask me on my formspring! I promise I’ll be kind XD
22 and my skin has never looked worse sigh. I’m sorry you had to see this but well, everyone has pores. You just have to accept that. I hate all the break-outs I’ve been having thanks to school. Skin, can you please act your age?! Stop being a hormonal teenager, god – GET IT TOGETHER ALREADY. Eyeliner: Maybelline’s gel liner, Lipstick: NYX lipstick in B52, Blush: MAC highlight powder in Mellow Rave.
I went out with Nad for a pre-birthday brunch at The Quarter (I could actually get used to this starve-in-the-morning-eat-at-noon thing) and that vanilla milkshake you see me having is probably one of the best I’ve had. I was looking at last year’s birthday entry and I was wearing yellow in it as well lol – I love mustard yellow, it’s such a beautiful color. This mustard yellow trench is from MANGO and it is my ABSOLUTE favourite. Best investment EVER. The color of the trench looks more accurate in the first photo than this one – this one’s been tainted by the fervent use of yellow lighting in cafes.
My mexican omelette! It’s got roasted potatoes, caramelized onions, spinach and goat’s cheese with toasted rye bread. YUM.
This is Nad! We were schoolmates back in primary school and we never saw each other again for close to a decade until I moved to Melbourne. She goes to the same uni as I do…except she’s graduating in a couple of weeks, lucky duck. NAD WHO’S GOING TO BUY ME PRESENTS NOW THAT YOU’RE MOVING BACK TO SINGAPORE?!
Nad had french toast soaked in maple syrup and cinnamon sugar with bananas on top :3
And as promised, beauty stuff! I’ve been obsessing over Lancome’s L’absolu Rouge lipstick in Voile De Rose when it first appeared on Temptalia and let me tell you, finding this lipstick was not easy. It’s a US-exclusive which is ridiculous – how the governments of this earth expect to work towards world peace when we, as women, don’t get equal access to make-up collections is beyond me.
Anyway childish rants aside, last month I decided I had enough of this country-exclusive bullshit and checked out the local Lancome counter to see if there were any dupes of Voile De Rose. I was swatching every pink lipstick that had similar tones on my hand and comparing each swatch with an image of Temptalia’s Voile De Rose swatch that I saved on my iphone (See I’m so obsessed it’s almost obscene). 10 minutes in and I found my baby! This is Lancome’s L’absolu Rouge Gold Lipstick SPF 15 in 354 Rose Rhapsodie. It’s a very very close match – I won’t be surprised if it really is Voile De Rose packaged under a different name. Rose Rhapsodie is a soft shade of pink, so pretty *_*
Finally got my Rouge Coco in Mademoiselle from my mom when my family visited me last month! My first CHANEL lipstick whoo! Mademoiselle is the shade Vanessa Paradis is wearing in the ads and it’s a deep rose with beige undertones. I’m going to wear this today so I hope the formula doesn’t disappoint me.
Swatches for you! L to R: Rose Rhapsodie, Mademoiselle. Sorry Rose Rhapsodie looks like a blur of pink city lights, I thought I had a good shot of both swatches (it was my only shot) but when I got home and checked the images on my computer, it turned out to be er, otherwise. Ah well. Also, please take note Rose Rhapsodie looks darker in this shot than it actually is.
The love of my life, Nadz, called me in the wee hours of the morning – I won’t lie lol, I was up at midnight waiting for her call and I waited for over an hour before she finally did.
Me: “Bitch, you’re late.”
Nadz: “Huh, what time is it over there?”
Me: “1 am”
Nadz: “OH SHIT.”
HAHAHAHAHA FAIL NADZ FAIL. I miss you <333333
The parents called me the next morning.
Parents + brothers in the background: "HAPPY BIRTHDAYYYYY!!!"
Me: "Aww thanks guys!"
Dad: "We're going to Carousel later in your honour."
Me: "SIAPA PUNYE BIRTHDAY NI?!?!" (That's malay for "I'm sorry but whose birthday is this?!?!")
Shucks, I miss my family so much. After getting me my dream miu miu bag, you guys would think that my parents would stop with the STUDY HARD! GET GOOD GRADES! blackmail.
I don’t know how to say this but.
Clearly, they’ve taken it up a notch.
MY ALMOST CHANEL IS NO MORE! Chanel Classic Jumbo Flap in Black Caviar with gold hardware, I HAVE BEEN WAITING FOR YOU ALL MY LIFE. The catch is I have to share the bag with my mother – not that it bothers me, I’d take my chances even if I’m forced to share the bag with an orangutan LOL. Ahh this is crazy, I’m over the moon!
Thank you for all your birthday wishes on fb/twitter! I loved reading each one <33333333333
chanel photos credit: my dad’s cellphone, chanel.com
I’ve never been big on brunch – Why eat once when you can eat twice lol? I love my food too much to mash two meals together but there are times when blood sacrifices have to be made for the greater good so when a friend you’ve not seen for a long time asks you out for brunch at a place she thinks you’d love, banish the thought of grilling some sausages for breakfast from your head and mentally prepare yourself for the hunger pangs you’re most likely to get at 8am in the morning. Most people have it good – they sleep in and wake up in the late mornings/afternoon. I can’t do that, sadly. I’ve always been an early riser and while it does have its advantages (I am almost always on time for school), having no breakfast renders me a fruitcake with a little extra time on her hands….and that’s not a good idea, people. The last time I had some extra ‘me’ time, I racked up a $200 online shopping spree bill which didn’t go down well with the parents ~_~
Anywho, Shikin invited me out for brunch at MART, a quaint little breakfast place in an old refurbished tram station. They’re famous for their poached/scrambled eggs on toast and triple stack pancakes with vanilla mascarpone, berry compote and almond flakes! The food was so good, I actually went there again for brunch today with Yumi!
I have no idea what sort of soup this woman was eating but it looked yum! Shot taken by Yumi.
Okay, okay no more stalker-ish photos of people eating, I swear. Nice sneakers tho.
My hand blown glass ring dad bought for me from an art stall in St Kilda’s. It’s obnoxiously huge, has this crazy hippy psychedelic vibe to it and I frickin’ love it. I had a purple-blue-green manicure going on thar…remember what I said about having a little too much time on my hands lol? Shot taken by Yumi.
Yumi went all bright with her nails as opposed to my someone-threw-up-sparkly-vomit-on-my-nails nonsense.
What she ordered: Scrambled free range eggs on toasted rye bread with chives, wilted spinach salad, mushrooms on the side and parmesan flakes. Yumi shared some with me and I think I’ll be ordering this the next time I pop by!
What I had: Poached free range eggs on toasted rye bread with spinach, crème fraîche, slices of smoked salmon and topped with a cucumber, onion + capers salad. SO. FORKING. GOOD.
Obligatory close-up shot! To be honest, I kinda hate this shot. Nothing’s wrong with it but it’s just not so hot. (Yes I’m being anal here) I was starving so I shoved whatever I knew about photo composition into the temporary recycle bin and thought of nothing but poached eggs.
YAY きらきら☆ぴかぴか (kira kira pika pika) SPARKLY NAILS! Fine, I’ll admit looking at them gives me little bubbles of happiness. The real story behind them: Well apart from being bored this morning, I thought it would be fun to try out some of the nail polishes Cat sent me for my birthday! I’m not going to reveal what the shades are until I blog about what Cat sent me so stay tuned lol. Oh you don’t see my thumb here because I accidentally hacked some skin off with a knife when I opened the parcel so it looks naaasty. My birthday’s in 10 days and it’s feels so strange celebrating it away from home. Ah well, it’s no biggie. The cakes here are better anyway lulz.
K do me a favour guys: my bff Aaron’s flying over to Singapore for some shopping and since the only shopping area worth mentioning i.e. Orchard Road got hit by a flood yesterday, please pray to the gods of FASHIN that his shopping trip goes smoothly. Think about the amount of whining and ranting I’d have to listen to if he doesn’t get what he wants omg, I don’t think my ears would be able to take it! HAHAHA JK BB, have a wonderful trip! I wish I could be there to show you my hood (HAHA) but it’s alright, I’ll see you in December <3333~
Sorry I’ve been MIA! How’s school you might ask? Well I haven’t cried yet so I guess that’s a sign things are alright? School has made me a hermit because my god it’s intense! The amount of reading I have to do builds up each week and the articles I’ve been given to read aren’t exactly easy breezy beautiful chick lit material because dude, the language used in the articles are so complex I feel like I’m deciphering Latin half the time.
Anyway, I thought I’d just share a couple of photos I took from my first week in Melbourne. Lol I’ve been here for a month and these are the only photos I’ve taken so far, god I lead such a sad life now. I don’t even have time to bring the camera out anywhere now sigh. Ok enough sob stories, on to the photos beech!
Barely half a day in the city and I have officially raped the Lush store in Melbourne. (Pardon the language, I’m high on fizzy lemonade and cherry cupcakes so due to my sugar induced drunken stupor, I’m not responsible for all the crazy disjointed sentences I’m about to type out) I spent an entire hour in the store, touching/groping/spritzing everything I could possibly touch/grope/spritz 8D
I bought a tub of Sweetie Pie shower jelly (purely because it’s got glitter in it LOL and I was itching to spend some money ~_~) It’s supposed to be used with a bath sponge and I didn’t have one at the time so you can imagine how much fun I had attempting to use the shower jelly as a soap in the shower. It’s slippery as hell and needless to say after 10 mins of fumbling around with the jelly, the tiles in my shower were much cleaner than I was ._. Lesson of the day: If the SA tells you to get a bath sponge, get the damn sponge girl.
One of the highlights of my first week in Melbourne was dinner at the Pancake Parlour! They serve arguably the best pancakes and vanilla ice cream in the city all day long *_* We shared a banana split which came with the most decadent hot fudge everrr.
Our pancakes! I had a double stack of pancakes with organic strawberry jam, strawberries and cream – I think I must be the only person in the world who avoids maple syrup when it comes to pancakes. I think maple syrup is cloyingly sweet and overpowers that slight hint of buttermilk you can typically find in good pancakes……I can’t believe I’m actually bitching about maple syrup here, WHAT KIND OF A BLOG DO I RUN LOL?
We were walking on some random street when I saw a store front with nothing but a lift. I peered closer and DIED. ZOMG DIOR! LANVIN! OTHER LABELS I DON’T REALLY CARE FOR BUT HEYYY! I can’t remember how I managed to convince my aunts to get in the lift with me…not that anyone cares but yeah. The store’s called ASSIN which I’m hoping stands for “assassin” and not er “ass in” >_>
I took photos mainly at the men’s section because the 1) photography wasn’t allowed 2) I wanted to make Aaron jealous because they had an amazing collection of Dior and Lanvin sneakers meheh. I love the whole industrial steel minimal look they were going for.
More hot clothes Aaron can’t afford.
AND SOME ACTUAL LANVIN OMG! Lanvin makes some really good suits and I swooned looking at this one, the feel of the fabric *_* I don’t care, my future husband betta start saving because I’m not going to marry him if he wears anything less than a Lanvin on our wedding day HAHAHAH I WISH.
Thank you so much for your comments on my diet entry! I’m happy all of you feel enlightened by it, let me know if you have any questions or w/e. Anyway I am SO sorry I haven’t been reading all your entries – in fact, I haven’t been reading ANYTHING the past 2 weeks. I’ll get down to it eventually when I have the time, school’s a bit chaotic right now with all the reading, cooking and laundry I have to do. I’ll have a beauty entry up next hopefully – meanwhile, take care guys!