September 2015: What I bought, watched and read
WHAT I READ
Yes. I read this month. I know in between the shopping, work stress and so on, I managed to unwind each night with a book.
This is an excellently written book by Dana Thomas. I love her writing, it’s sharp, it’s witty and it is always well structured and en pointe. You never feel like you’re wasting time and getting lost in the narrative when you read her work.
Anyway, it covers Alexander McQueen and John Galliano — their beginnings, rise, and fall. If you love both designers and like fashion in general, this is a great book to read. I learned things I was not surprised about, and others that I was.
Fashion is a very catty industry. I’m glad I’m not in it.
Kwan’s books are just stages for all the described fabulous outfits & gorgeous shopaholic ways of his characters. If you go into this book thinking that, no problem. I loved it.
Great chicklit with a nice dose of Asian culture (I learned a lot actually haha).
As I did with his last book, I devoured it and found myself really aligning my style with Astrid’s outfits. as inspiration.
Farnoosh is a great writer and this is an excellent book for women who make more. She doesn’t judge ANYONE in this book for choosing to go all in for combining finances, or 50/50 or any other kind of split.
She just points out the pros, cons and shows what can be done in each situation.
My partner and I are 50/50. We didn’t get together “late in life”. I was in my early 20s when I met him, but I had a very VERY bad experience with being the sole breadwinner of a completely lazy, loser ex-boyfriend who had great qualities but ultimately, didn’t want to have children so that sealed the deal.
Having been burned pretty badly by that relationship, when I got together with my now life partner, I completely agreed with the 50/50 split of everything.
We do act like “roommates” as Farnoosh points out, but it works for us. It’s equal, it’s fair and I LIKE that I am 50% of all the expenses and income.
We don’t consult each other when we spend money for the family or buy things for the household.
We only consult each other when the amounts hit $500+, like for a new BBQ, or something like that.
I also really love our 50/50 split of everything and separate accounts because I don’t have to talk or justify to anyone about why I am buying yet another … whatever (see below for what I bought).
I love Kinsella as an author with her Becky Bloomwood series but I hated this book.
I can’t even finish it and I normally devour Kinsella books like macarons.
I went into the book thinking it was chicklit and it’s about depression, bullying and being a teenage girl. This is all FINE. I would have still read it ANYWAY, but it was .. just.. sloppy.
She meandered all over the place, didn’t explain the situation to give a context of what was happening and it all just felt so slow and terribly done.
Not her best work. I highly DO NOT RECOMMEND READING THIS BOOK. Read a Kwan book instead about rich Asians spending a ton of money & shopping.
Nigel Barker from America’s Next Top Model wrote a surprisingly excellent coffee table book detailing short biographies of certain models and what they brought to the industry.
It’s really quite a well done book and I enjoyed learning / reading about the history of these famous (and some not so famous to me) models.
A nice, light read.
I really wanted to love this book but … the smoking turned me off in almost all the photos, and the portrayal of Parisian women as neurotic freaks who are always judging and thinking they’re being judged. I don’t know who they’re talking about, but they aren’t talking about people I know.
That said a lot of what they said about style and beauty did ring true. I do see that they focus a LOT on good skin rather than good makeup, they avoid foundation and heavy makeup, no logos, try and go simple and light (think Ines Fressange + Jane Birkin) and have a very good carefree, playful attitude that seems to be partly calculated, and partly .. who they are.
Loved this chicklit novel. I loved it so much I almost forgot to go pick up Baby Bun from daycare. I was SO ENGROSSED in finishing it. It’s a nice novel for women of a certain age trying to navigate the new tech world with Millennials (my generation).
I will say that the ending was terrible. I wanted a stronger ending. I won’t say anything more but the last 5 pages disappointed my inner vengeful witch greatly.
WHAT I BOUGHT
[RETURNED] MATT & NAT – VEGAN LEATHER BLACK CLARKE BAG FROM DWELL COLLECTION – $189
I found my minimalist black bag… then returned it.
And it is vegan leather with two great compartments to boot!
It’s also a good size (not too big, not too small) and while the handles don’t go over the shoulder, that is A-OK because the style is exactly what I wanted and it doesn’t permit long handles.
I’d say I did pretty good because I was almost about to shell out $3000 for a Givenchy Antigona and the lines are quite similar on this one (not exactly the same, obviously), but I like the same look and style with very little fuss, muss, hardware and logos.
It actually looks a lot like this Mulberry Bayswater bag.
I bought this in August actually, but didn’t get it until September so you won’t see it in my September budget..
UPDATE: The “leather” was terrible. It was squeaky, it looked and felt cheap. I was sorely disappointed.
[KEPT] MATT & NAT KINTLA VEGAN LEATHER BAG IN BEIGE
$76 (HALF WAS PAID FROM GIFT CARDS)
Bought this in August but didn’t get it until September.. so it’s in my August budget and half was paid with a gift card balance.
The shape is perfect. It looks like this:
The colour beige is much better than the midnight blue though. It’s more navy than midnight and frankly it looks better in black. I don’t know why but this bag’s shape (to me) lends well to neutral or black colours.
I almost wanted it in black as well, it looked so chic.
[THRIFTED] JOHN PAUL GAULTIER MATELOT STRIPED TOP
$0 (STORE CREDIT)
It was “FREE”. I already paid for this way back when, when I bought something and returned it. So I picked up this great striped top instead.
I am a sucker for stripes.
This striped shirt looks like a thick cotton (not cheap like the ones from H&M that already have holes in it and I wear to sleep) and the stripes across the shoulders are neat.
Simple but great.
[THRIFTED] REED KRAKOFF BLACK TOP
$0 (STORE CREDIT)
See above. Same store credit, have about $50 left to spend there.
I love the sheer sleeves, it’s all silk / wool / cashmere and it would look great as a casual piece with jeans or something dressier.
[THRIFTED] ALEXANDER WANG CASHMERE TANK – $0 (store credit)
It is really nice.
Just a hole or two (minor) in the front which I don’t mind, it might lend to a bit of that distressed look that I am slowly going towards.
[THRIFTED] HELMUT LANG WOOL SWEATER WITH A COWL NECK – $32 (partial store credit)
It was mostly paid by a store credit but I had to use it all up so I used it up on the two tops (Alexander Wang top) and this one.
With shipping and taxes, I am paying about $32.