Tuesday, 10 May 2016

STYLE: JORD Maplewood Fieldcrest Watch + Giveaway

In today's day and age of phones, the wrist watch has become less and less common. Even more uncommon is the handcrafted JORD Canadian Maple Wood Fieldcrest Watch (S129 USD with free shipping worldwide) - Giveaway Details at the Bottom.



OVERVIEW:

Pros: Natural wood stands out from the sea of leather and metal watches, time chips glow in the dark, lightweight, handcrafted, unique

Cons: Difficult band adjustment, very light, can feel cheap, susceptible to water damage

FEATURES:

The JORD Fieldcrest Maplewood Watch is a unique piece that combines fashion and function. A butterfly clasp opens easily and gives plenty of space to slip this watch on when you're in a rush and glow in the dark time chips ensures you'll know the time even at night. 




MAINTENANCE: 

Having a watch that fits you perfectly can be the determining factor between whether you wear the watch or leave it behind. 

JORD will size it to your wrist for an additional $10 but those not willing to pay might come into trouble. The watch store I brought it to in London, ON. would not work on the watch because previous wood watches had been taken there and broke using their traditional tools. Their solution was to ship it off and have it done for $30+ and would've take weeks to have adjusted.

Mine was too tight so luckily my Dad (who works at a Mold factory) brought back a tiny carbide chip that was used to knock out the lugs but resulted in a small dent in the wood (circled in the photo below).



STYLING:

Although I would stick to a leather or metal watch for formal events, the JORD Fieldcrest Maple Watch is very unique and easy to style for these reasons:

- Metal detailing adds a more premium look and feel
- Round face keeps it easy to pair without feeling too bold
- Lightweight allowing for ease of use without feeling weighted 
handcrafted Maplewood gives a warm and unique aesthetic to the watch.

Below I styled it with 3 different outfits.

OUTFIT DETAILS:

- JORD Watch
- Green Army Jacket
- White T-Shirt
- Black Denim 
- Black Sneakers

DESCRIPTION:

Here, the JORD watch pairs with the bronze coloured detailing on the jacket and stands out as the lightest detail of the outfit.

A black and white pairing of jeans and T-shirt gives a simple contrast that allows for the attention to go towards the jacket and watch.

Optionally, because the Maple watch is of a neutral colour, you can pair it with warm coloured accessories such as a brown leather backpack and a maroon coloured snapback for a casual look.


A warm colour palette paired with the JORD Maplewood Fieldcrest Watch

OUTFIT DETAILS:

- JORD Watch
- Blue Denim Shirt
- Grey Stripped V-Neck
- Black Denim
- Black Sneakers
- Feathered Key holder

DESCRIPTION:

Here I pair the JORD Maplewood Fieldcrest watch with a cooler colour palette and another neutral colour.

The JORD wood watch is the only warm coloured piece and stands out because of it, especially when paired against the cooler colour of the denim shirt.



OUTFIT DETAILS:

- JORD Watch
- Grey Knit Sweater
- White T-shirt (Layer)
- Black Denim
- Black Sneakers
- Brown Leather Bag
- Feathered Key Holder

DESCRIPTION:

Despite the obvious pairing of two neutrals (Maplewood Beige + Knit Sweater Grey), this outfit is in the details.

The feathered keychain holder brings another level of black to the bottom half (which without any breaks in the figure, creates a longer silhouette so you look taller) and the cuff detail pairs nicely with the chunky detailing on the watch band.






What are your thoughts on the look of a wood watch?

Giveaway Details

I'm giving away one of these watches (the JORD Maplewood Fieldcrest Watch) through a giveaway in collaboration with JORD. 

The prize for this contest is a $129 E gift certificate that the winner can put towards any watch rather than making it a specific product (although I chose this model) and will be live for 1 week. The 7 ways to enter are:

1. Follow on Instagram

2. Fill out the JORD form

3. Like the YouTube Lookbook Video

4. Subscribe On YouTube

5. Comment on the YouTube video which watch you'd like to win (check out JORD's website here)

6. Comment on this blog post what what your thoughts are on the watch

7. Follow JORD on Pinterest

Wooden Watches by JORD a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, 31 January 2016

Winterwear: Steve Madden Boot Review (Highly Praised)





Overview

The Good: faux fleece lining for warmth, good tread for winter, flat laces for snug fit, low price

The Bad: The back of the ankle area is a tad on the short side

Conclusions: A great ankle boot that I would recommend to anyone. It gives you: warmth with the faux fleece lining, a snug fit with flat laces to keep heat in and snow out, stability with the reasonably thick tread in the sole for walking on snow and ice, and style with distinctive details. However, while the lowered back section of the boot makes slipping your foot into the boots easy, it also makes it easier for snow to get in if not tied tightly.


Aesthetic Criteria
Score /5
Performance Criteria
Score /5
Overall Style
4
*Warmth & Comfort
4.5
*Versatility
4
*Traction
4.5
*Design Workmanship
4.5
Ankle Support
4.5
 An (*) indicates the field is discussed in more detail below on the received criteria and score.

Overall Rating: 4.5 / 5

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*Criticisms*

(Versatility, Workmanship, Warmth & Comfort and Traction)



Versatility - While the brown leather looking boot might look great on the streets, the detailing keeps it from being worn in a formal setting. Why?

  • The ankle area: the extra padding by the ankles makes it look like that it's meant to be worn with the pant leg tucked in. Unless you want to look like the Michelin man with a puffed out ring by your ankles, I'd avoid trying to wear the pant leg over the padding. (See photo above)
  • The rugged textures: mixing fleece like fabrics and trims into the design of the boot takes away from the chic leather look commonly worn to fancier events in the winter time - a more appropriate choice would be a sleek leather Chelsea boot. (See photo below)

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Design Workmanship - I've got to say the detailing on this boot excites me in a very meticulous way. If you do a side by side comparison of this budget Steve Madden boot to a more expensive pair bought at Callitspring, you can see the difference in how wear is shown on the boot. 


(Scuff mark comparison)
What you're looking at is how scuff marks show up on the boot. With this pair on the left, the scuff marks aren't shown as easily against the surface on the boot because the slight thickness of the stitched fabric trim around the boot hides marks better. (See detailed photo below)


(Trim Detail)
Additionally, looking back to the first photo in this section, you can see that the 7 shoelace holes extends further along to the the front of the shoe for the pair from Steve Madden. What this does is provide a tighter fit all along the feet with flat shoelaces to keep your feet held flush and warm.


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(Faux Fleece Lining)
Warmth & Comfort - In the same comparison against the boot from Call It Spring, you can see that the extra padded faux fleece lining is thicker and better made to keep in warmth. This boot is the ideal candidate even at a cheaper price point. (Steve Madden $40 : $60 Call It Spring)



(Direct comparison of Steve Madden on left and Call It Spring on the right)


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Traction: this pair of boot has a detailed and thicker thread than the conventional boot from common retailers now at a similar, if not slightly higher, price point. Traction is very important, especially in the winter when you're running to catch a bus and walking/running over slippery patches of ice and snow. You can see a detailed comparison against the higher priced black pair from Call It Spring below where again, Steve Madden's boot provides better practicality, function and fashion.




(Direct Comparison with Steve Madden on the Left and Call It Spring on the right)

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Final Thoughts: A great pair of boots at a great price with all the function, fashion and practicality for casual wear for consumers of all ages.

Disclosure Information: I have no material relationship to any brand mentioned in this post. I was not asked to write anything about these products and was not provided compensation of any kind. All opinions I express regarding Steve Madden's and Call it Spring's products are my own.


Thursday, 15 October 2015

Vlog #1. London Sunfest



What is London Sunfest?

Sunfest: a festival in the heart of downtown London every summer held by a non-profit community who focuses on cross-cultural awareness and understanding of the arts including music, dance and visual arts. (You can check out their page here)

I.e.Dancing. Food trucks. Live music performances. Carnival Rides. Sunfest is a melting pot of talented and unique individuals gathering to celebrate art and culture. 

Picture a citywide farmer's market in the heart of downtown high on music and the sugar from fresh fruits where people from all over the city gather to enjoy the weather and celebrate diverse cultural performances. Vendors will come with their food trucks, artists display their works, kids too high on sugar will be running around with their parents struggling to keep up, and I will be on my camera trying to capture some essence of all the excitement for you!

And if you wanted to see more, here's some photos (PC: Kitty Chan) and vlog of me getting ready and travelling through the hustle and bustle.


(Booth 1 of 80)



(The Performers' Audience)




Henna Tattoo
(My assisting photographer Kitty Chan modelling her henna tattoo)

Sunday, 3 May 2015

Pantene Pro-V Dry Defy

Pantene Pro-V Dry Defy Haircare Line
Dry Defy Shampoo (300 mL)
Dry Defy Conditioner (250 mL)
Dry Defy Velvet Creme Infusion Serum (100 mL) + Blow-dry
Close Up Comparison
Left to right: Shampoo, Conditioner, Creme and Blow-dried
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The Good: hair looks hydrated and shiny, feels light and clean, no breakage 

The Bad: expensive (approx. $9 per item), requires a lot of product for a "rich" lather

Conclusion: provides an effective clean that seals in moistures and leaves hair feeling light yet hydrated. Expect a good shine after a couple of uses (testing period lasted 1.5 months) but a higher price tag to match the premium appearance of the product - approx. $30 for the entire line.

 Claims to Prevent
Rating /5
 Claim to Leave Hair
Rating /5
Dryness
3.5
Beautiful
4
Frizz
4
Rehydrated
5
Breakage
4
Smooth
4
Dullness
4
Soft
4

Overall Rating: 4 / 5

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Criticisms: 

Dryness got a 3.5 / 5 because my hair felt really dry after the shampoo washed out. While it's natural for hair to be stripped of oils afterwards, I felt like my hair would've suffered some breakage if not for the replenishment from the conditioner and the velvet creme infusion serum. Think of it as bleaching your hair and killing it but putting all the nutrients and shine back - but less extreme. 

Which is why I rated the rehydration of this product a perfect 5. The before (left) and after (right) photos showed very little differences but a minimally more noticeable shine in the after shot. The Dry Defy line definitely took the dirt and greasy feeling out of my hair while keeping the hair look healthy and shiny without the weight of too much product.


The before shot (above left) and after shot (above right) were processed afterward in Adobe Lightroom and have matching values for the: temperature, exposure, contrast, shadows, whites, and highlights. Both photos were taken on the same sunny day, in the same room, and the lighting was minimally affected by the sunset - sunset at 8:15 that night while the above left was taken at @4:45 p.m. and above right at @6:28 p.m.
---
My recommendation: skip the shampoo and conditioner for this line if it's too expensive but keep the velvet creme infusion serum to add boosted shine. The first 18 ingredients in the shampoo are a mix of water, agents that help to lather, clean, and disperse the product and coconut oil extracts to nourish the hair so I don't know why I didn't enjoy using it but I wouldn't pay $10 for a 300 mL tube.


Do you notice any changes in the hair quality or disagree with anything mentioned?
Comment in the section below letting me know what you see!

Disclosure Information: I have no material relationship to any brand mentioned in this post. I was not asked to write anything about these products and was not provided compensation of any kind. All opinions I express regarding Pantene's Dry Defy product line are my own. I received these products free of charge from the beautiful Stephanie Lau.

Monday, 9 March 2015

Mix N' Match Mondays: Bronze and Silver




On Mixing Bronze and Silver: 
  • The silver charms have been distressed showing the darker metal underneath 
  • This creates less contrast with the bronze chain
  • A long-sleeve henley gives a white backdrop for the necklace to stand out
  • A distressed coat with studs match the necklace and create an urban feel
  • And a beanie adds warmth 
Get the look:


There's a lot of stigma around mixing silver and gold/bronze jewelry but I say leave that stigma behind and do it. I mixed two charms (a silver ring + some sort of tooth) and with a bronze chain. The look works because I got the charms from a Guess necklace ($35) and the chain from my old roommate but I'd make one for less than $20 with charms and a chain from Michael's Craft Store. 

To get the distressed look, keep the charms in your pocket or bag with your keys and let them get knocked around. The distressing process should wear away polishes, bits of metal and could take a while. 

Comment below with what unlikely pairings you wear! :)