sun

Schermafbeelding 2014-04-25 om 18.27.25

(img via decade diary)

Previously this year my skin became uncomfortably dry and red itchy patches started to appear around my eyes and forehead. I booked an appointment with a dermatologist who immediately recognised symptoms of mild atopy (atopic syndrome or hyperallergy), which was confirmed by my history of allegies and bronchitis. I was prescribed a cream which relieved my skin within a few days of use. The only downside of this treatment was that I was not supposed to go out in direct sunlight because my skin was at this time more vulnerable than usual – which was inconvenient since we’re having such a nice spring here in the netherlands but it was nothing unsurmountable, and I was relieved that the cure worked and my skin was back to being normal so soon.

This experience however made me reconsider a couple of things. For example my make-up routine changed. My dermatologist approved my daily moisturizer Toleriane Ultra by La Roche-Posay and I bought a new SPF cream for sensitive or acne-prone skin at the pharmacy, because it was the most mild one they had. I personally never had problems with SPF creams and breakouts before, but I wanted to play it safe.

Because the symptoms were concentrated around my eyes mostly, I didn’t use make-up in that area for some time. Whereas concealer used to be one of my favourite products, along with mascara and coloured lipbalm, I was now getting used to a bit of dark circles around my eyes. I even started to like the look (and foregoing mascara does look more modern). Even now that my skin is healthy again, I find myself preferring to keep it bare. Maybe it’s because I’m no longer conditioned to seeing myself without a bit of depth around my eyes, or maybe I’m just really happy to have my skin back in normal condition.

Another thing I’ve been focused on is shielding my face with headwear. My favourite burgundy hat is perfect for colder days, but I’ve also been looking around for a nice baseball cap. Which I never thought I’d say but I really love the look, especially when paired with a classic grey coat. I am currently in love with this version by A.P.C. although I really like the classic one in black nubuck without the logo as well but I don’t like the fact that it’s synthetic.

 

march

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I have been neglecting this space over the past months. Life got in the way, and instead of forcing it / treating this like some sort of homework, I decided to just leave it be until I felt like using my blog again. This does not mean however that I don’t appreciate people reading this, and I thank you for that.

Over the past months I’ve been working a lot, rewatching all seasons of 30 rock and enjoying plenty of Indian food (currently trying to master the perfect veggie Biryani). Sartorially speaking (since that’s why we’re here), I’ve been navigating more towards simple wool dresses over opaque thighs for something more comfy cozy for the winter. To compleet the cocoon feeling, I’m currently looking for a nice pair of comfortable (and preferably burgundy-colored) sneakers.

During the fall I travelled a bit and at this time my skin went trough some changes that I’m still trying to figure out. I’ve been experiencing dry patches on my face and my forehead especially, more so than usually during the winter. Nothing seems to be helping – products, enough water and healthy food and vitamins have all failed so far. I have made an appointment with a dermatologist, so I hope they can help me alleviate this dryness sometime soon.

In the meantime, I hope everyone reading this is doing well and (if you’re in the Netherlands) enjoying the beautiful weather we are currently having. Until next time.

(img: Samuji, S/S 2014)

travels

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Hello there. :-) It’s been a while! How are you?

In the past few weeks I’ve been traveling through the southern Europe on a work-related assignment during which my wardrobe consisted out of mostly black pieces, with a few white garments in between. Since I planned on travelling to a couple of different locations over the course of several weeks, I tried to minimize on the actual quantity of items.

Now, for me this is somewhat a challenge because I usually tend to overpack and also considering the fact that right now the weather is extremely unpredictable, so you have to think of every possibility and still try and look presentable. This experiment in downsizing however proved to be a success, because I ended up wearing most of these items and felt comfortable throughout.

On most days I had meetings and that’s where I usually wore jeans or trousers with dressy tops and oxfords (or when the meeting was entirely informal, I’d switch oxfords for sneakers). For breakfast and coffee runs in the morning I’d just put on a tshirt and shorts and sunglasses. The evening wardrobe depended on wether I was going out for dinner somewhere formal or just a small local place.

To sum it up, my monochromatic travel wardrobe included:

TOPS – casual
black t-shirt
white t-shirt
black top with white stripes
white top with black stripes

black crew-neck jumper
dark grey sweatshirt

TOPS – dressy
structured short sleeved top*
draped long sleeved top with contrasting fabric*
dark grey semi-sheer button shirt
crisp white cotton shirt with short sleeves

BOTTOMS
cotton shorts*
skinny cotton trousers*
dark grey cropped jeans
chinos*

DRESSES
white t-shirt dress

SHOES
adidas sneakers*
black patent leather oxfords*
sandals*

JACKETS
COS cotton coat*

BAGS
small suede cross-body bag*
canvas tote

(*black)

This list obviously doesn’t include intimates, sleepwear, etc

The white t-shirt dress above is the white Raquel Allegra from the last post. Upon closer examination, the white didn’t feel nearly as precious as I imagined it to be, while the cut draped beautifully. I even wore it to dinner one night! It has just the right touch of luxe in an otherwise classic summer dress.

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As far as skincare is concerned, these days I’m pretty much set with a bottle of La Roche-Posay Toleriane Ultra moisturiser (which I use daily under my make-up and at night after cleaning my face) and their wonderful sunscreen. At home I very through moisturizers, but I decided on this one for traveling because it’s the most versatile. That’s two bottles. Then there were travel-sized bottles of Kiehl’s Ultra cleanser and toner and a small bottle for my Argan Oil, which is all I’m using on my hair these days (plus it also makes for a perfect body moisturiser). Because I’m pretty attached to my shampoo and hair conditioner, I bought a couple of travel sized bottles for them as well and it turns out I use far less product than I initially thought I use per wash. As far as make-up goes, some BB cream and a couple of Chubby Sticks go a long way in a warm climate, and at night I’d just add some mascara and concealer.

This travel experience has once again made me reconsider the amount of stuff that I own versus the amount that I actually use, and although I thought I was doing fairly well for the last couple of years, upon returning home I decided to remove a couple of things that were getting the least amount of wear and (more importantly) actual joy out of wearing them. It felt good to downsize even more and I got to make my mom and some friends happy. :-)

classics and crushes

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There is a great new article up over at Empty Emptor right now about “Wardrobe Classics” that is worth a couple of minutes of your time. 

“I have a couple of blog posts planned that discuss possible reasons why our sense of identity seems so bound up in the way we dress, and how capitalism has hooked into that in a way that aims to draw us into being constant, voracious consumers. There’s no doubt that the way we dress is a part of our personality and allows us to communicate what we consider to be important messages about our identity or our values. Furthermore, there’s no doubt that to varying extents, the way we dress impacts other people’s perceptions of us. On top of all that, clothes can change the way we feel about ourselves – they can make us feel stronger or more empowered or more professional or more confident or whatever. They can help us restore our sense of self and reassert ourselves after we’ve had an experience that shakes us (more on that in a later post).”

***

This place might slowly become a gateway to other great posts on the internet until I feel like producing original content again. The good news though is that the spring is here which means I have a few new items on my list that I’ll be sharing soon.

Until then, I’ll leave you with this lovely image of my new girlcrush Ana Kraš.

(img via inatenuousmanner tumblr)

Rome

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We recently returned from a lovely trip to Rome, where the weather was beautiful most of the time and the pope announced his resignation. We strolled the Trastevere, where we also enjoyed the best pizza of our lives and came across Libreria Del Cinema (and the nerd in me got greedy). We ate gelato from I Caruso, passed Trevi on a daily basis and had the best, creamiest, caffè macchiato at Nero Caffe (while standing, of course).

Next up on the city-trip to-do list: Copenhagen. If you have any tips, they are more than welcome.

trevi
(all images my own, via instagram)

collection

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Current small Diptyque collection of personal favourites.

Chêne still remains the all-round favourite, although I do enjoy the comfort of Feu de Bois during cold season and Maquis in spring. Opopanax and Cyprès are both cosy in the evening, especially when it’s raining outside and I’m cuddled up with a good book, and Ambre is very sensual.

Still on the wishlist: Santal, Myrrhe, Cèdre, Vetyver and Cuir.

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(all images are my own.)

comfort

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Recently acquired chunky grey knit with multicolored speckles, dark grey sweater with metallic speckles and black leather sneakers. 

Currently re-reading Orwell’s 1984. January 2013 somehow seemed like the perfect time to do that.

I also received a sample of L’Ombre dans l’Eau during my recent trip to Skins. I didn’t like it at first, but it kind of grew on me and now I’m even considering purchasing the solid perfume. It’s very mossy and green and even though it contains traces of rose, it’s not the usual bright sunny rose. More like rose for people who don’t usually like roses, if that makes any sense.