Friday, March 28, 2008

30 Minute Thrifts Are Impossible.

I managed to take a break from my sewing rampage on Wednesday. Actually, it wasn't by choice. I had a teeth cleaning at 11. I went dim sum-ing with my dad afterwards so I figured I might as well take the whole day off from sewing. I asked him to take me to the thrift store because I haven't been there in soooooo long. I almost forgot the feeling of thrifting.

I told my dad, "The most I will spend in here is 30 to 45 minutes. Don't worry. Go park under the tree and take a nap."

He did. But it wasn't because I told him to. It was because he always takes naps in the afternoon no matter where we are.

I went in and was greeting by the giant "3 for 1" sign dangling from the grey ceiling. To my right were the shoes. Colorful, old, tacky and wonderful, and to the rest of the perimeter around me was a field of treasures waiting to be found. I asked a lady what the 3 for 1 sign met. She told me anything with a white tag is buy one get two free. Sweet.

I went up and down each aisle like a huntress ready to prowl on a prey at any moment. Sweatdrops were skiing down the slopes of my forehead and my arms were getting sore from my plastic basket of smelly old clothing. I had only planned on going down the dress and skirt section but I decided to do the rest of them as well. Plus my dad hadn't called yet so I figured I was still in good time. I wanted to pick up everything that caught my eye but I had to restrain my inner urges. I had to remember it's still money and things add up.

The hardest part of my thrift and why it took so long was because of the sale. I had to find three items, with white tags. I tried to match things according to price but when it came down to it I had four items. Should I go out into the wild again and find two more pieces or take one out?

It took me 30 minutes to decide what to do.

I went with the latter choice and quickly paid. I looked at my clock it was almost 5. I went in at 2:30. Something was made clear that day: 30 minute thrifts are impossible.

I ended up with three bags of stuff. Or more like 2.5 bags of stuff because the lady placed the shoes in a separate bag.

The GREATEST pants I have ever met: $2. I love them. LOVE them. This was the first thing I saw and I immediately knew it would be a good thrift day. I don't know if I should keep the integrity of the pants or shorten them to a shorts/skirt looking thing which would make it easier to wear. Hmmm...Suggestions?

Vintage Summer Dress: $3. It's such such a cute dress. I love it. Too bad it has some obvious stains on the color. I thought it wouldn't fit when I bought it but it does and I am very joyful about it.

LBD, LBCD (little black cocktail dress): Doesn't fit, hence my somber face. Shoot man. I think I might try my hand at ebay this summer.

Silk Shoulder-Padded-Goodness Blazer: Part of the 3 for 1. My price paid was $5 for the leather skirt so it was 3 for $5. Lets see if we divide that...we get...$1.67. I bought it because it reminds me of the Moschino Blazer in the exact same color that I fell in love with but could not afford. This will have to do.

Hat with little feather: $3 The hat is kinda small for my head. But I think I'll wear it like that. Like those little clown hats or those little hats that tightrope walkers wear at the circus? Oh! Circus hats! I want one..
Minnetonka booties: $4

Leather Skirt: $5

Dress: The last piece of the 3 for 1. It's actually quite big and ugly but I will make it cute. I just really liked the details on the front.

But other than my brief thrifting/teeth cleaning/dim sum excusion, I still have been sewing non stop. Last night I went to sleep at nearly 4 in the morning and woke up today around 8:40. I don't know how I even managed to wake up. It seems like I'm not even tired. Weird. Maybe I've been zombie-fied.

More pictures of my collection making in the progress. Oh I'm so excited!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Greetings from Spring Break Land and a short Style of the Day

Greetings fair people of this land, I Lala and blogging from the world of spring-break land. It's quite magical you see. It's full of sunshine, freedom, and no school. Unfortunately, spring-break land is exactly like home-land. I've been sewing non-stop these past few days so sorry for the lack of updates. I feel like I'm a one woman sweatshop these days but it's all good. So while other people are out partying it up on the beach of down in Mexico doing god knows what, I'm at home running around with pins and a seam ripper. My sewing machine is my best friend these days. Sadly, I see my sewing machine more than my real friends.


The days have been super hot like crazy. It makes me lazy when picking out what to wear.

  • Button down top: my mom gave it to me. She gave it to me because her boobs were too big for the shirt so it was perfect for me and my lack of....ahem.
  • Free People Shorts with suspenders: $5 tjmax
  • Kenneth Cole wedges: $20 loehmanns.

I was super happy after I finished my final on Friday. I basically ran out the room jumping for joy and then ran to the bathroom after my one second leap of happiness. I was the last one to leave, all my roomies were gone so it was a sad sad thing. Barbie picked me up and took me to downtown to pick up more fabric. It took frickin forever to drive there. I don't think I could handle driving in LA all by myself. I would seriously get frustrated and engage in some friendly road rage. We drove down Wilshire and it was interesting to see how the street changed from super rich and fancy to not that rich and fancy. There was such a clear difference.

When I came home a pile of magazines awaited me and a newly shaved tyke. He looks like a wolf/coyote now. Take a look and judge for yourself:

I have a planned schedule for sewing my collection. So far I'm way way behind. At this rate I think it's about 1/2 an outfit a day. I took a detour from my plan on Saturday when I met up with the gang. It's so funny because whenever we meet we never know what to do that all we do is ending talking about what we can do. It's such a sad thing but so us nonetheless. It's awesome. We went to the park after meeting bboi's new puppies. Soooo cute. People were having bbq's for easter while we just sat on some concrete and ran down a grassy hill like the sound of music.

I made people pose against a brick wall.

Left: KC and her angry face. Right: Busababe/African Princess looks so angsty and cool. Attitude Attitude! (as she would say in her french accent)

Center: Bboi is a car model. Oh yeah.

Left: Funk Master T is "shocked". I desperately want to get him a new hat. Or patch up this one. Right: Group pose. KC's head didn't make it. So sad.

And now I must go back to my sewing. Take a look at the progress I have made:

Thursday, March 20, 2008

It's Not What You Know, It's Who You Know

Being a non-fashion college student desperate for a fashion internship has made me realize how true it is when people say "It's not what you know, it's who you know."

Success in part is all about connections, Too bad I'm rather lacking in the connections department at the moment. My recent desperation for finding an internship over the summer has showed me that it is a lot harder to get through to the next level without having someone "help" you out. I realize that I am like a majority of people who must struggle hard and find our own way into whatever dream I hope to accomplish. I haven't given up yet, so don't worry. I don't think I can ever give up on my dreams. It's my inherent nature to be a dreamer. After all, it's about the journey we take in accomplishing our goals that's more fruitful than the ending goal itself after all.

So today, actually just 30 minutes ago, I was once again smacked hard in the face with my lack of connections as I eaves-dropped onto a phone interview. It was as if the world, in it's cruel and twisted way, was taunting me. I walked into our floor lounge in hopes of getting a few more minutes of studying done for my final tomorrow. There was a guy from my floor there and when I immediately entered he told me that he had a 20 minute phone interview. It took me a while to register what he just said, my brain cogs aren't working perfectly at the moment, so I was like "okay, that's fine". I wasn't quite sure if he wanted me to leave or was saying that I can stay but he would be talking. I decided to just sit there despite what he said.

His interview began. I decided not to tune out because well a) he was talking sort of loud for me to be able to tune him out b) I like to eavesdrop and c) it was fun to listen in.

I quickly found out what it was for: a summer internship in Shanghai for Louis Vuitton. After I heard him say, "I would really like to have this internship with Louis Vuitton...", I knew it was going to be no studying and all listening. If my inner id took control, I would have grabbed the phone and started interviewing for myself. He started talking about himself and his accomplishments of how he was going to study abroad in Shanghai over the summer and that he's really into understanding international markets. He talked about how he was very active in Model UN, traveling to Paris for conferences and whatnot. He talked about being a part of an Honors society that "you're either in, or you're not". Then he started talking about his past summer internships where he analyzed the precious metals markets and helped clients with their investments.

In my head, I started thinking, "Wow. This guy is going to go far." His intensiveness and all his "stuff" on his resume made me feel inadequate when it came to my own puny resume. It was weird because my first impression of this guy told quite the opposite. It didn't even seem like he was all that interested in fashion so I found it a little weird that he would be given such an opportunity.

Later into the interview I found out that this guy, aside from his impressive experience, is also a wonderful liar. He was asked about his frat and basically highlighted it as a brotherhood of philanthropy. Suuuure..... And then he started talking about the Chinese students on campus as if he knew much about the Chinese people here. I got a little pissed when he said that most of the American born Chinese people here like the pre-med stuff. Hello, I'm Chinese, I'm sitting right here, and I sure as heck am not a pre-med although I do have to say, the sciences are dominated by Asians.

Twenty minutes later and a whole lot of interviewing, this guy got an internship with Louis Vuitton in China. I turned into a green-eyed monster. I really wanted to say congratulations to him and ask him about it because for one I would really, I mean really, like to have such an internship experience.

When he finished another guy came in. The interview guy told the other guy, "Dude, I just got the phone with China and I'm going to be interning at Louis Vuitton." The other guy was like "Cool man" and other guy talk mumbo-jumbo. Interview guy was then all "Yeah...I was sweating balls, I made so much up and the interviewee bought it all." Okay, I thought, there goes my admiration of his experience. Then the other guy was like "How did you get it?" and then interview guy was like, "My mom hooked me up and sent them my resume."

Hm. Hmph. That explains a lot now.

He left and I was left to my printed out notes of macro-economics feeling connection-less and in another word lame.

So will continue my efforts in studying for this final that I am totally unprepared for now because even if I don't have the "It's who you know" at least I will "know" something and ultimately create more connections with myself in the end.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Finals Over Fashion?

I've been living in the same top and sweats/boxers for the past few days.

Pimples have invaded my face.

So not cute.

I want a mongoose.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Lala's Style of the Day

After me brief discussion on risks, I feel my fashion mojo is back and running! I was totally inspired today and felt this outfit was one of my favorites I had in a long time. It just makes me so happy.

INSPIRATION: Picasso lady.

  • Psychedelic pink-red-purple draped tunic/minidress: $1.50 st. vinnies. Originally it was a super-sized muu-muu. I actually think it was a costume because I really don't know if people actually wore this back then. I basically did a little flip up and constructed a flower on the side. You can't really see this because my scarf is covering it.
  • Picasso Scarf: I love Picasso. I love scarf. I love wearing my scarf like this. Basically tied it around my neck and then pinned one corner to the back of my dress. From my mom's wardrobe.
  • Pink shorts of fury underneath for just in case instances when my mini dress decides to change into a tunic: 0.50 local thrift, reconstructed.
  • Bejeweled headband: made by me from my marc jacobs inspiration
  • Purple moccasin wedges: $5 loehmanns. these are like my staple shoes right now.
  • Bracelets

The evolution of this outfit was quite interesting. Today I woke up wanting to wear happiness and this tunic/dress just screamed happiness to me when I saw it so of course I had to have it. Then as I was rummaging through my closet I thought maybe a scarf? I saw my Picasso scarf. Now this scarf is huge. Like blanket size for a hobbit. I decided to tie it around my neck and waist like a scarf-halter type of thing around my dress. When I came back from class I fiddled around some more because the way I did my scarf just didn't seem right. I wanted to show off the full Picasso woman and so I tied it around my neck and let it loose so it was dangling in the front. It would look like such a amazing dress. Then I just pinned one corner to the back and let the other side hang. I love the effect. I think this is definitely a different way/riskier way to wear a scarf. Especially a beautiful scarf with such a great design. Accessories can take center stage baby!

My day was rather wonderful. I realize naps in between classes are super helpful because I didn't take a nap and I fell asleep. And another illustration on front page fresh off the press! oh YEAH:

I need to start studying for finals. I have one Saturday at 8 AM! Spring break smells so close.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Fashion Risk

Today an interesting topic emerged among my roommates and I. Risk.

I really don’t know how the debate all started but somehow we ended up pseudo-arguing about whether Bacne was risky or not. It was as if we were competing on who was the riskiest out of us all, because no matter what risky always sounds way more exciting than boring and safe. Along the way, a comment was thrown to me, something along the lines of, “Oh, but I’m definitely riskier than you.” I weaved in and out of listening for the next few minutes, but suddenly my mind stopped. I reversed back. Stopped. And took a closer look at that comment again. A thought slowly started to form. (My mind usually works faster than that. Like way faster. Imagine the speed of light. But faster. I know your physics teachers all told you it’s the fastest speed, but apparently they forgot to include Lala’s mind power into the mix)

Am I really that non-risky? Will I be forever known as that safe, boring Asian girl?

For a while now, I’ve realized self-perception and other’s people’s perception of you are often quite different. For instance, in high school, my perception of myself was normal, average, and quiet. However, I was surprised when all my friends thought I was weird in high school. Really now? Dang, I must have been born with the weird gene because if I was weird back then, then I must be really weird now. Self-perception is often formed from what you want to see yourself as. But ironically, I didn’t want to see myself as the average nerd girl in high school. I wanted to be different in an artsy-cool way but was too afraid and my self-consciousness always pulled me back into my “safe” shell. And now I’m facing another contradictory perception about risk.

What does risk mean anyways? Does it mean flashing a truck driver? Cheating on a final exam? Running around naked in public? Jumping off a cliff?

If risk means any of these things, than I am definitely not risky. And I would be happy being non-risky. But there is one thing that I will not let my non-riskiness influence me on. And that is fashion.

Perhaps why I was so curiously bothered by that comment was because I think I am rather risky when it comes to fashion and style relative to the people I am surrounded by. Or I self-perceive myself to be anyways. For me, the ultimate insult is to call my fashion sense safe and boring because somehow I translate that to my personality. If I wear to express myself then you are implying that I am safe and boring. Boring is death to me. Like death on a stick.

I may be the wackiest dresser in my suburban neighborhood but when compared to those trendy Euro kids or Japanese cosplayers, they win hands down. It’s all about relativity. Ever since starting college, I encouraged myself to take more risks every morning when choosing what to wear. I took little steps to break out of my comfort zone. I wasn’t forcing myself but I was positively reinforcing my desire to self express through fashion. And that is what I think is so important about taking fashion risks. It’s not about taking risks for the sake of taking risks because that to me just seems like you’re a big mess of attention-seeker. Rather, it’s about taking risks that peel off the layers of your self-consciousness and allow you to open up as an individual.

However, tonight I’ve come to the conclusion, that in the end, it doesn’t really matter what other people think because risky will always be a personal subjective matter. Dressing in total avant-garde may be totally normal for one girl but may be risky for another. Really, taking risks is a personal exploration in defining yourself.

A little list in making fashion risks:
  • Wear something that you are automatically gravitated towards. This is often a very easy thing to do because if you like you it’s probably because it resonates with your personality or what you’re trying to express. For example, if you see a cocktail hat that you absolute love but are too afraid to wear it because people don’t wear cocktail hats to school, you should take a fashion risk because it’s for your own personal benefit.
  • Don’t hesitate. Just do. Second guessing yourself is a killer. Looking in the mirror over and over again seeing if what you’re wearing will be too different is just going to make you run back into your normal t-shirt and jeans.
  • Look for inspiration. It’s everywhere. Just open your eyes and you will find it. Incorporate that into the way you dress.
  • Start slow. Taking one risk at a time makes you less self conscious than taking it in all together.
  • Be happy with your risks. Don’t wear those funky shoes if you hate them. Wear them because you are happy when walking in them or you smile when you look down on your toes and see your funkadelic shoes.
  • Think with your ♥ instead of your mind.
  • And if you want to wear a swan dress, I say go for it!! I personally loved Bjork's swan dress. I'm still waiting to find one like it or just waiting for the time to make one. I feel a summer project coming on.

So there goes my sad attempt at giving fashion advice.

Lately, I’ve been feeling stuck and in a runt so I need to be taking some of my own advice. If I were a graph I would be declining right now. Help guys! I need new fashion risks!

Actually. I need to sleep.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Lala's Style of the Day

  • Panda top of cuteness: once a large tshirt sadly existing away in a local thrift shop but was suddenly swooped up by the happy hands of lala to turn it into a cute tunic. I love pandas like no other.
  • Shorts: 0.85 local thrift
  • Belt #1 and Belt #2 - funk master t's mom and tjmaxx $2
  • Scarf around my neck: gift from grandma
  • Old man's sunglasses: $1 local thrift
  • Hair clip - mexico
  • heels: $4 thrift.

Short and simple this time.

I like staring at random people and trying to figure out their lives. It brings me great enjoyment.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Lala's Style of the Day

  • BB t-shirt: part of my membership for BB.
  • Marc by Marc Jacobs magenta skirt: $22 tjmaxx
  • Seatbelt Belt: 0.50 local thrift
  • purple mocassin wedges: $5 loehmanns
  • Dali skull necklace:

Today was wonderful. I had no class and no newspaper graphics shift. I slept in until 11. It was pure bliss. Today I decided to wear my BB shirt. Rarely do I wear school organization t-shirts as an actual outfit because usually they are big and ugly so I save them for pajama wear of gym wear. The BB tshirt is so nice and soft. It just might change my opinion about American Apparel.

I spent the day working on an illustration and trying to start some studying. I've only accomplished half of those two things. You can probably tell which one I still need to do.

Other exciting news, my voice is less man-ish than yesterday, but all my friends still laugh everytime I open my mouth.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Friday, March 7, 2008

Strutting the Milan and Paris Catwalks

My dearest readers, I have finally been able to take a break with all my strutting and sashaying to bring you highlights of the last two of the big five fashion shows - Milan and Paris. And wow what a trip it was. My feet are super tired and super swelled. I didn't think they could get any bigger, but apparently, they can.

So once again, octopus-faced-monkey-haired me was off for a tour-de force modeling rampage. Here were some of my favorite shows by far.


Oh lordy, this man is a fan-frickin-genius. I totally loved the inspiration behind his pieces. Part russian peasant, part elizabethan snob and part indian princess. It was wonderful. Like licking ice cream on a 100 degree day wonderful.

My favorite pieces were the blacks and the poofy swan-esque dresses. And I got to wear the best dress of them all! This gorgeous peacock dress. The stunning beauty of this piece completely overshadowed my mollusk of a face.

So when I got to the studio Alex took one look at me and all the sudden he said "Peacock" and that was it. He never spoke another word to me again, but I will cherish the word "Peacock" in my dreams forever and ever.

I could tell all the other skinny girlies were jealous because I got the coolest dress ever. Or maybe they weren't jealous, maybe that's just how their faces naturally looked like. I'll never know.

It was super fun to get to wear such big hair. I felt like Bozo the clown but way chic. And the dark brows were a definite bonus. I'm sick of seeing girls over pluck their eyebrows. I mean it's okay if you like them pencil thin and all, but in my humble opinion, it just does not look good. We should all riot and get dark over dramatic eyebrows! Anyone with me??


Call them gimmicky and whatnot, but what can I say? I love me some gimmicks. Before the show, I headed over to their studio. I brought with me a pair of nerd glasses and a skinny tie and together we all took pictures in "cue" fashion. It was great.

Viktor & Rolf were one of my favorite shows and designers in general. I love their concepts and their exaggerations of everything. Staples as seams? Wonderful. Now I know what to do with my boxes of staples.

Apparently this season they were inspired by "No". Saying 'no' to the fast pace of consumerism within fashion.

I say that "no" has never looked better. Taking such a negative word and making it so awesome-sauce is no easy feat. Who would have thought of having 3-D words protrude out from an otherwise Parisian chic grey coat? I got to wear the "Dream On" coat and felt so special because no "NO" message was plastered on me. I would totally wear this coat out but I'm afraid I'll get stuck in the door or hit someone while I'm waiting in line at the salad bar. They might look at me all funny, but then I'll just show my innocent face and tell them "dream on, man, just dream on".


I met up with Ms. Westwood again for her second show in Paris. Prior to the show we partied it up like punk stars. Surprisingly, I was not tired at all the next day and neither was she. She's that amazing.

Her collection reminded me of the cartoon Recess. They had these kindergartens who were like in tribal gear all the time. If you know what I'm talking about, mad pros to you. So they were these kindergartners who wore face paint and had their little headbands and this show totally reminded me of that.

Everything was so fun. Fun is a major element I look for when viewing fashion.

I loved the printed paint pieces. When fashion and art intermix it makes my heart fill with glee!

I got to wear this super chic top and shorts combination. It's sort of a common look but the cut-out details were so nice that I was super ecstatic. I think we should wear face paint every day with our dark eyebrows. That will be totally awesome.


My one and only collection from Milan. I got so behind in documenting the other weeks that Milan just slipped right by. I was too excited for Paris.

So Iceberg. I loved the superhero inspiration. When I was a young lass I had this guilty pleasure of watching Power Rangers. I used to dream of being the secret love child of the Pink Ranger and the White Ranger. I didn't know how that would exactly work out seeing as I'm Asian and they were both not asian. I should have dreamed about Trini, the Yellow Ranger, as my mom instead but somehow Pink Ranger appealed to me more. I told you I was a weird child.

I got to wear this cat ears hood/beanie which totally made my day. Without it, I would have just been a giant ball of blue. But with them, I was transformed into a blue giant puffed cat. I think Halle Berry should have contacted IceBerg for this costume instead of her disastrous wardrobe for Catwoman.


It's always the theatrical element with Galliano that makes me look forward to his shows each year. His collection wasn't my favorite, but each piece by itself, I bet would look wonderful.

So Galliano and I go way back. Like way back. We're like BFF's. We're totally tight.

Okay. I'm just BSing. Every story needs a little BSing though, I think.

I strutted down in this MC Hammer pants. Thank god because I hadn't worked out my thighs the night before. In fact, I had binged on deep dish pizza. Shhh..don't tell anyone.

There was a variety of inspirational influences. I felt a bit of the Jamaican reggae with my dark braided dreads.


I have a very special place in my heart for Japanese designers. Japanese people are crazy. Enough said. They come up with the newest technologies and their street style is just way too advanced for us simple minded folks. They are very into experimenting and experimenting they do well in.

I was happy to be walking in the Comme Des Garcons show because I can now finally pronounce the word without sounded like an idiot.

The collection was so refreshing and took "layering" to a whole new level. The mix of proportions and textures just fit together perfected. I loved the super long sleeves no matter how impractical they are because they remind me of when I was young and the sleeves were too short for my stubs I called arms.

The look seems messy from the outside, but once you look closer you can see how everything is so beautifully planned. Move over Prada, this is the way to totally do lace! (I'm probably one of the few who just didn't feel it with Miuccia's latest collection)


Okay, this was probably one of my FAVORITEST collections so far this season. I know I say that about everything, but aesthetic wise, this is just totally me. When I saw her clothing I was like wow, if I were a designer these are the types of clothing I would design - fun, colorful, and whimsical.

I fell in love with the prints she used. They looked like watercolors by Matisse or the expressionistic strokes of Van Gogh.

Just seeing the clothing made me happier and that's why I love fashion - the ability to make you happy.

I wore this blue dress with a cape like thing on top of it. I don't what it is with designers and putting me with capes. I wore a cape in the Anne Sui runway if I remember correctly. I tend to hallucinate a lot these days.

Tsumori told me it's because I have a face made for a cape. Huh. Okay. Alright.

Well, it was a nice fall winter season this year. I'm so surprised that so many designers actually casted me, but what can I say, I'm just that great. I should go now before my ego inflates even bigger. Until next season, ciao lovelies.

P.S If anyone actually read through all of this let me know and I will give you an online hug!

Photos Courtesy of, coutorture, and thefashionspot.