Wednesday, June 29, 2011

[[ LADY GAGA SUED FOR CHARITY WORK? ]]

I can't believe what I read in yahoo news tonight, yes ladies and gents, Gaga is sued over fundraising efforts in Japan. Here's what the article said:

"A lawsuit filed in Detroit claims music star Lady Gaga is misleading her fans with an online pitch for donations for victims of the Japan earthquake.

Lady Gaga's website is selling $5 wristbands that say, "We Pray For Japan." The website also allows people to make additional donations and says "all proceeds go directly to Japan relief efforts."

But the lawsuit notes that sales tax and a $3.99 shipping charge are added. Detroit-area attorney Alyson Oliver believes not all money is going to help the Japanese. She wants an accounting.

An email seeking comment was left Monday with a spokesman for Lady Gaga. The lawsuit was filed Friday in federal court in Detroit. It seeks class-action status and possible refunds for people who bought wristbands."

I have a few thoughts in mind?

1. Is it Gaga's fault or whoever she hired to do the job?

2. Knowing that the Fame Monster is too busy with all her tours, shoots and appearances, does she have time to plan this swindling?

3. If Lady Gaga is behind this dark trick, she must born this way: Money+Fame Monster.

4. However, is the $5 plus $3.99 wrist band lucrative enough for Lady Gaga who sold millions of albums for her to do something as cheap as this?

5. Gaga shouldn't be sued this soon. It is just so unlikely that she meant to deceive fans to earn a meager amount which she can easily earn by granting a magazine an interview.

I'm not exactly a Lady Gaga fan. In fact I hate most of her songs, especially the recent ones, like Judas. How blasphemous. Maybe she just wants to embody everything dark and evil in her new album. I can't say for certain. I'm just worried on the extent of her influence to the kids who listen to her songs and watch her on the tv. If only music can have limitations as to who can listen and who cannot just like movies.

I have this love-hate relationship with Gaga. She is a pioneer and an adventurer, she goes where no one goes, she puts so much art in her songs and her persona yet she scares me sometimes with her overly dare-devilish antics and the negative message of her songs. One is entitled to his/her beliefs but to offend others by deliberately saying bad things about others' beliefs is just so wrong. But you know what I think? Gaga is just another woman beneath her intricate costumes. That woman is the one I want to know and understand.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

[[ WRITTEN WHILE IN RANDOM PLACES ]]

"On the way to school riding a jeep, wind blowing my slightly damp air, music playing on the stereo, and I am feeling beautiful. These are the moments when I wish I were in love."

"Words drip as I walk home. There is so much freedom in my little world within a tiny soap bubble. Universes are born here whenever I dream as I look far at the vague silhouette of the mountains far away. Walking alone on paths less taken, at the back of buildings where only the sunflowers see me, again, I look into myself, and I don't like what I see, but I love who I see. I hear strange sounds under the earth, little creatures whose worlds I little know about. For I am the zoologist by title, not by heart. My shell is freezing in the wind. The longer I am here in the open, the harder my shell gets, the more brittle it gets, the more breakable I get. For loneliness are like shrapnel in the cool wind, attacking me in the face. My blue sweater and gold shirt underneath, are futile now. So I must walk and accept each shrapnel of bitter loneliness that pierces my skin. As I bleed words dripping into the keypad of my old phone, I am hoping that I find warmth
somewhere in the recesses of my own universe."

I found these on my old notebook and cellhone tonight.

Monday, June 27, 2011

[[ WHAT A BOOK CAN DO FOR THE GIRL WHO READS ]]

Yesterday, around five in the afternoon, an old friend surprised me with a book How to Instantly Connect with Anyone by Leil Lowndes--the bestselling author of How to Talk to Anyone. I'm not really a fan of self-help books, I'm more of a fiction and poetry kind of girl. But just browsing the pages tells me it is a no-nonsense book. My friend, his name is Alicman, who is truly like a brother to me, told me to read it by chapter and before I proceed to the next, I practice whatever trick the chapter holds. Yes 'Tol, I will do what you instructed.

So what really a book can do to the girl who reads?

1. The book will entice her senses. She will caress the book cover lovingly, flip the pages and smell that fragrance of ink and paper that is so familiar to her.

2. The book will make her want to stay in bed, with a cup of hot chocolate and the book on her lap.

3. It will infatuate her that she will carry it with her everywhere, in her bag or pressed on her chest, until the infatuation fades and the book will be placed on her shelf of old tattered books that once were her world.

4. It will make her feel this content feeling because she has a new book to read and new knowledge will rush through her veins to the portals of her mind.

5. It will make her forget the trivial things of this world because for a moment, the book brings her to another realm.

6. And yes, it will make her want to read more. More and more books.

Friday, June 24, 2011

[[ FRAGILE 2 ]]

Has it been five months? February, March, April, May, June... five months indeed.

Lying on my bed, I am feeling blank for a while. The radio plays softly in the background. Lying cozily under my fluffy blanket, euphoria starts to seep down my stomach. If I were a cat, I would be purring.

"...and in this moment I am happy. Happy. I.... wish you were here..." the radio played that song.

I remembered a few incident. We did see each other a few times, exchanged a few words, small talk they say. I was okay with that. I mean, I should have moved on, right? I should be cool about it like an adult and not some high school crushing on someone for years. I remember that I was able to talk to you like a normal person would to old friends. I was able to look at your eyes, although I can't stand looking at them for long, I had to look away.

I closed my eyes and felt this empty space somewhere in my chest cavity, like a hunger, painful and needing. This moment, I can't lie anymore, not to myself at least. I made the world believe that I can handle a heartbreak like a Hollywood star, crying now, partying later. But what happens when the party is over, when the strobe lights were turned off, when the psychedelic music stopped, when intoxication wears off? This is what happens: your deepest feelings confronts you. Right then and there, I cried silently. Ashamed of my weakness and my fragile heart, I covered my face with the blanket as if the world can see me weep.

Silently, tears just fell. Silently, my hunger burns inside. Silently, I whispered to the wind what I wanted to tell you--love me, love me again. Silently, I told myself, let it be, you know you lost your dear one.

I told myself, learn how to live with it. Learn how to live with that need that will never be satisfied. Learn how to live with that fragile heart that breaks with every step that he makes away from you.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

This is a sequel to the short story I wrote: Fragile. I thought, why not make a sequel? Writing a novel has always been on my to-do list before I die. Maybe I can practice now. By the way, next week, I will have a blogger friend--Denase--who will do a guest post here. I will be doing the same thing on his blog. Watch out!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

[[ I (ALMOST) CAN'T WRITE A THING TONIGHT ]]

.
.
.
I am thrown off balance again.
Days ago, I was right in the origin of the Cartesian Plane.
Perfectly centered.
After a few words (or maybe a little too many)
and a few (or maybe a little too many) stolen glances,
I was off center again, I moved towards left and then down
to the extremest part of the third quadrant of that xy plane.


In the middle of the night, I can't write anything sensible.
Compress this writeup and you'll end up with a sound of something breaking.
The stitches are being undone. Bleeding all over again.
If I distill my thoughts to its purest,
they will still be stained by memories too heavy to shake off.
Should I try to swim back to the safety of a desert island
or should I surrender to the waves of the ocean,
let it crush me until I am totally lost in the deep?

Monday, June 20, 2011

[[ WHAT IS ART... WHAT IS ART? ]]

Above is a picture of my "art wall" in my bedroom.

So what is art? I can remember that scene in Mona Lisa smile where the lead actress Julia Roberts lectures her student about what art is. She shows the class pictures of things that were at that time absurd to label as art--like a photograph of her mother, a can of soup, and a grotesque painting. Kirsten Dunst's character laughed at her professor's notions of art because art, she said, can only be art if the "experts" say so. Remember that painting that is so dear to the professor, isn't it a Picasso? At that time, it wasn't given much recognition unlike today. What happened?

Again, what is art? Anything someone wants to call art? Or are there some objective criteria, that not every instance of paint smeared on canvas and not every murder mystery meets? What are the main philosophies of art? Are any of them plausible?

This is what I have to say.

An old conception(or misconception) of art is that it was supposed to be beautiful or represent something of importance. But are there necessary and sufficient conditions and qualities for being art? Notice that different art pieces resemble each other, but there is no underlying thread that connects them all. What makes an artistic process artistic? History tells us that the first time that the question of what art is came up was in the 19th century in a pamphlet by Leo Tolstoy we know today as that great Russian writer. I doubt that one can define art. Art is whatever is made in an artistic process and consumed as art. History tell us again that most pieces of art in museums were not intended to be art. Perhaps, to be an art object, that object must differ interestingly from others of its kind.

The desire to make something special is characteristic of the artistic process. Is there a legitimate difference between high art and low art? A lot of people think art is only the stuff hanging in the museums. I even read this magazine(was it Mademoiselle?) back in 2001(I have an almost photographic memory of things that held my interest) that jokingly said that anything framed and hung on the wall is art. Historically, much art was made for popular entertainment. Does this mean we should expect popular culture like Lady Gaga to be the only thing to survive the passage of time? Now that is something.

What is the connection between beauty and art? Art is beauty although it may not all be pretty. Beauty involves whether you like it. Much modern art is engaging although it isn't pretty. What does art do for us is that it is for us to enjoy. Can just anything be art? Going back to the Mona Lisa movie, it is hard to convince people that something is art. There is also status involved in art, like Bach's commissioned pieces. It poses a problem sometimes because a lot of art is inaccessible because it requires background knowledge, but many people think that it should be immediately engaging. Some art is aimed at a small group of viewers. Sometimes we find it difficult to appreciate any art like a Dadaist lamp with a leg on roller skates as a lamp post, or even great art like Monet's works when the Impressionists first held an exhibition in Paris. As for me, I believe in art, in the appreciation of art, may it be a painting, a contemporary art installation
at the park, a movie, a photograph, a piece of clothing, or a heavy rock song.

Among art forms, I have a special attachment to movies. I agree with Inno Sotto when he produced the short film Muse starring Heart Evangelista, that film is the most complete form of art. You get everything from it. The artistry in the visual aspect like that of a painting or a sculpture; in its audio, like a musical score for instance(hey, have you watched August Rush? You should.) and the artistry of its literary aspect, the story and how it is told, the dialogues, and the message and how it is conveyed.

Lastly, when we fail to appreciate art, it is like not seeing beauty in its many forms, not seeing life through the eyes of great thinkers-slash-artists, refusing something that holds a piece of someone's heart or something that tells of ideas and emotions and experiences that are not familiar.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

[[ FASHION PHOTOGRAPHY: SIMPLE TIPS ]]

I don't assume to be a photographer nor a real fashionista. However, there are those times when we want to play dress up and. It is so cool if you know someone close to you who is damn good in photography. But what if you onlly have you and your usual point-and-shoot digital camera (which is always the case for me)?


Don't fret, the timer feature of many cameras always saves the day. Here are some tips from a non-pro:


1. If you don't have good lighting, shooting outdoors is a good idea. Especially when it is in the morning when the sunshine has this white softness in it. Haven't you noticed that most photographers shoot street fashion in broad daylight? Because cameras depend on light for quality. Point-an-shoot cameras will give you this grainy look if you shoot at night, or the colors of your clothes won't be as vivid.


2. If you do not own a tripod(I don't have one either) get a chair or anything stable to mount your camera on. Make a test shot to see the lighting and the right distance for you to pose. When it is too bright, adjust the exposure. When it is gloomy, some cameras have photo filters. Make sure too that where you'll stand to pose will show you head to toe. Remember, the shoe is like 40% of the outfit. lol


3. When you're ready, set the timer for ten seconds. That will give you enough time to pose, To be "in the moment" when shooting, see the signals that the camera gives that it is like seconds away before it shoots. My camera beeps once every 9 seconds, and then beep like 5 times before its aperture opens. It has the light too that is in sync withe the beeping which is helpful when you have difficulty hearing the beeps especially when you are somewhere noisy.


4. Lastly, a little help from Photoshop doesn't hurt either. What I usually do is adjust brightness and contrast, highlights and shadows, and the exposure. That is enough to give a vivid fashion photograph all by yourself. But sometimes, I just desaturate(make into grayscale) for a little drama. 




This just make me wish for a decent SLR. Happy pictorial peeps!

Friday, June 17, 2011

[[ THE EXPERIENCE OF MAKING A "MINI MOVIE" FOR A SHORT FILM COMPETITION ]]

I did blog about me joining this prestigious film fest--the Sineng Pambansa Lanao del Sur Film Development Council of the Philippines Short Film Competition. So now, what I want to talk about is the experience of making a short film. It took me up to cloud nine down to the fuel of hell. (yeah, yeah, I', a bit exaggerating :D )

It all started when my best friend Rashid came up with the idea of us working on a project and this time, it's joining a film fest. We actually believe, and I still do, that when we plan and execute "crimes", expect not just a murder but a massacre. It was May 8 when we submitted on the last minute our forms declaring our intent to join. The deadline is like three weeks after the submission of the forms and that time, we were busy doing the ad campaign for the school where my bestie works as a college secretary--the RC-Alkhwarizmi International College.So the production did not start early on. Days before the deadline, I met up with bestie and we decided not to join because we super to the nth degree lacked the time it takes to make a decent film.

However, Ate Princess Pacasum who works for the FDCP called me and I told her we are backing out. What did she do? She talked her way into making me turn 180 degrees. Her kind words work magic, really. I did join. That's an "I", which is supposed to be a WE but because of some unfortunate events, I had to do it all by myself without my bestie. Which is the part that made me plunge without a parachute into the grounds of hell.

You see, I didn't know where to start. I didn't have a cast. I didn't have a crew. I don't own a decent camera. I didn't know what to do! All I had was a vision and a script that I wrote. So for what seemed like an eternity, I subjected myself to that level of stress that exhausted me mentally, physically, and emotionally.

You know what I did, I threw tantrums at home for them to support me in a seemingly impossible feat. So I had actors. Next, they do not know how to act. So whenever we shoot, I had to direct them by acting for them, exactly what to do, even the action scenes! And have I mentioned that I was also the one behind the video camera? And have I mentioned that I was the one who did the set? Like in the hospital scene, I improvised the dextrose using old tubes. I improvised a LOT. I won't enumerate because it's the secret of my craft(weh!)

I'm really excited because in two weeks, that's on the 29th, the film fest will officially take off. I have just learned that there will three social events: the Opening Night, the Pagana Maranao (it's a feast--Maranao style), and the Awarding and Recognition. There will also be a workshop, which I really can't wait to go to, with Mr. Sherad Anthony Sanchez. The icing on the cake is that big filmmaker are coming too. Does Brillante Mendoza ring a bell? I can't stand still. The anxiety within wrestles with anticipation.

Whenever I watch my movie, I just laugh. (I always have this thought that if I did the movie with Rashid, we'll do wonders. I told you he is the smartest person I've met, haven't I?) It may not reach the level of expectation that I set for myself but I am happy because I took a risk, I did something I don't have any clue about, and I started from scratch but made something that hopefully will carry my heart with it because I did it with a passion that I didn't have for a long time. Beating a deadline with only Google as a "crew member" is no joke. But I had a story to tell. Wish me luck that my message, my point of view come across the short film. An yes, wish me luck that I win. :)

Saturday, June 11, 2011

[[ FASHION ICON ]]

So there's this someone who flattered me with this on Facebook:

"Loving Ms. Sittie Ayeesha Macapundag Dicali's blog! http://www.ayeeshamd.info/ She's such a STYLE ICON! A Mranao Style Icon! =)"

Thank you. My heart melted as a cheese on a pizza fresh from the brick oven. But you know what, there is something about it that makes me uneasy. To label me that puts pressure on me to be always stylish. And it scares me. Just as much as some people always think that I am too brainiac, or that boy who said I am too good for him.

Yes, I take pride in my sense of style and fashion know-how. But the truth is, I am not all THAT. I am just your average girl who does not care whatever people might say or think if they see me wearing something they find different. They may laugh at me, or ridicule for it, but really I don't care. Fashion is something I find fun and a way to express who I am. No pressure. Whatever clothes and accessories I wear, I want that they reflect who I am and not just going with the trends, or worse, copying someone else. But please, do not put me on that level of an icon. I feel like I can't live up to it. I can't

This is not false humility. I tell you. But thank you you with all my heart for the appreciation. It means a lot because these days, generosity in giving compliments is like a dying trend.

Here's a toast to everyone who is immersed with fashion, but does not get carried away by the currents, but swims freely as a fierce and stylish mermaid!

[[ WHEN SOMEONE YOU LOVE IS SICK ]]

I know I just did a fashion extravaganza like an editor of some fashion mag(a dream job actually) but I had this urge to share this touchy topic.

When we have friends/relatives/loved ones who are sick, especially when they are REALLY ill, sometimes when we visit them, we find it tricky to compose in our minds what to say. We want to make them feel better, but does what we say make them feel better? From my own experience and other loved ones I know, this is what I found out.

NEVER SAY...

1. WHAT CAN I DO TO HELP? Most patients I know grow to hate this ubiquitous, if heartfelt question because it puts the burden back on them. The patient is never going to tell you. They don't want to feel vulnerable. Instead, just do something for the patient. And the more mundane the better, because those are the tasks that add up. Want to be really helpful? Clean out the fridge, replace the light bulbs, unpot the dead plants, change the oil.

2. MY THOUGHTS AND PRAYERS ARE WITH YOU. In my experience, some people think about you, which is nice. Others pray for you, which is equally comforting. But the majority of people who say they're sending "thoughts and prayers" are just falling back on a mindless cliché. It's time to retire this hackneyed expression to the final resting place of platitudes, alongside "I'm stepping down to spend more time with my family," or "It's not you, it's me." lol

3. DID YOU TRY THAT MANGO COLONIC I RECOMMENDED?

I am stunned by the number of friends and strangers alike who are full of tips for miracle tonics, Chinese herbs or Swedish visualization exercises. At times, the patient's inbox is like a Grand Ole Opry lineup of 1940s Appalachian black-magic potions. "If you put tumeric under your fingernails, and pepper on your neck, and take a grapefruit shower, you'll feel better. It cured my Uncle."

Even worse, the recommenders follow up! "Why are you not wearing the kabbalah bracelet I gave you, it's from Israel.

4. EVERYTHING WILL BE O.K.

Unsure what to say, many well-wishers fall back on chirpy feel-goodisms. But these banalities are more often designed to allay the fears of the caregiver than those of the patient. As one friend complained: "I got a lot of 'chin ups,' 'you're going to get better.' I kept thinking: You haven't seen the scans. That's not what the doctor is saying." The simple truth is, unless you're a medical professional, resist playing Nostradamus.

5. HOW ARE WE TODAY?

Every adult patient I know complains about being infantilized. When the adult patient has living parents, as I do, many mothers in particular fall back on old patterns, from overstepping their boundaries to making bologna sandwiches when the patient hasn't eaten them since childhood. Just because someone is dealing with a physical illness doesn't diminish their mental capacity.

6. YOU LOOK GREAT.

Nice try, but patients can see right through this chestnut. We know we're gaunt, our hair is falling out in clumps, our colostomy bag needs emptying. The only thing this hollow expression conveys is that you're focusing on how we appear. When people comment on my appearance it reminds me that I don't look good.

Next time you want to compliment a patient's appearance, keep this in mind: Vanity is the only part of the human anatomy that is immune to cancer.

So what do I want to hear if I wear (God forbids) really sick?

1. YOU DON'T HAVE TO TEXT ME OR CALL ME BACK

All patients get overwhelmed with the burden of keeping everyone informed, coddled and feeling appreciated. Social networking, while offering some relief, often increases the expectation of round-the-clock updates.

To get around this problem, the patient may have to appoint a "minister of information," whose job is to disseminate news, deflect queries and generally be polite when the patient don't have the energy or inclination to be. But you can do your part, too: If you do drop off a fruitcake or take the dog for a walk, insist the patient not write you a thank-you note. Chicken soup is not a wedding gift; it shouldn't come with added stress. Come on!

2. I SHOULD BE GOING NOW.

You'll never go wrong by uttering these five words while visiting someone who's sick.Just don't overstay. 20 minutes, even less if the patient is tired or in pain.

3. WOULD YOU LIKE SOME GOSSIP?

One surefire tip: a slight change of topic goes a long way. Patients are often sick of talking about their illness. We have to do that with our doctors nurses. By all means, follow the lead of the individual, but sometimes ignoring the elephant in the room is just the right medicine. Even someone recovering from surgery has an opinion about the starlet's affair, the underdog in the playoffs or the big election around the corner.

4. I LOVE YOU.

When all else fails, simple, direct emotion is the most powerful gift you can give a loved one going through pain. It doesn't need to be ornamented. It just needs to be real. "I'm sorry you have to go through this." "I hate to see you suffer." "You mean a lot to me." The fact that so few of us do this makes it even more meaningful.

Friday, June 10, 2011

[[ DENIM LEGGINGS AKA JEGGINGS: THE HUNT ]]

I had secretly and somewhat shamefully been on the search for what felt like an ever elusive pair of perfect denim leggings.

If you’ve learned one thing from reading my blog, it is that I’m quite the lazy dresser. I dislike thinking too much about what I have to wear or feeling uncomfortable. Denim leggings? Right up my alley.
My goal was to find jeggings that could be a viable substitute for jeans. Impossible? Maybe. But was I going to try and find them? Absolutely.

I finally happened upon a pair of Bench( or was that from another local brand?) jeggings from a recent trip to CDO and I love them! They’re definitely not as good as regular premium denim and I would never wear them without a shirt covering my ‘hind parts (well actually, I shouldn’t say “never” ‘cause I probably will). But I can’t resist how easy they are to wear and how comfortable they feel.

They are definitely worth the small investment for a pair that will last more than few washes. Fashion-forward J Brand also makes a pair that feels a little more like leggings than jeans and are a little pricier, but super comfortable they say. Gap also has a few styles.

All I know is that these should be a permanent staple in my wardrobe and I should not be ashamed! I almost wonder if the people that so vocally dislike jeggings have ever put them on. Okay, so maybe they’re a little “tacky” but someone else’s tacky is another person’s chic.

But at the end of the jeggings hunt, i didn't find the perfect one so I settled on the smallEST Penshoppe skinny jeans I could find. The one below.


[[ SHEER DRESSING: APPROPRIATE? ]]

We’re seeing sheer clothing everywhere now, from the runway to daily life. Whether it’s a top, a skirt, or even a pair of pants, the look is no longer just sexy, but can be seen as classy and chic. But is it always appropriate? Can you wear a sheer top to work? To school? Or is it really just a style best reserved for the bedroom?


What’s Appropriate

Get it right in modestly and classically styled sheers—the key is to pair a sheer garment with something more covered-up for a look that can be worn on multiple occasions.Wear sheer top buttoned all the way up with longer shorts. Yes, you can see a hint of a brightly-colored bra, but it keeps the look playful and punchy. Demure, yet surprising. Another option is to wear your sheer top with white or nude undergarments, if you already have on a statement piece. This option is great if you don’t want the world to know what color underwear you’re wearing!

What’s Inappropriate (Unless, of course, you are a celebrity)

Sometimes celebs make pretty interesting fashion choices—they create looks the average person probably wouldn’t wear. And when it comes to sheer clothing, their looks can be downright inappropriate, at least for day-to-day life. Gwen Stefani is a repeat offender, wearing a super sheer black top with low-cut bra one day, and a panty-baring sheer maxi skirt the next. Leighton Meester and Kristen Stewart have also made some mistakes on the red carpet, wearing inappropriately underwear (or lack of)-baring dresses. Mischa Barton and January Jones have been snapped by the paps, baring it all in sheer black t-shirts.

When & Where

So we’ve discussed what is and isn’t appropriate in a general sense, but now it’s time to talk about the when and where (or wear, as the case may be).

If you’re still in school: You shouldn’t be afraid to rock new trends when you want to, but make sure you abide by the school dress code, if you have one. A tank under a sheer button down is a good way to wear this look while staying covered up.

If you go to work: It really depends on your place of employment. Wearing a sheer skirt to your new job at the grocery store? Probably not the best idea. If you work in a corporate setting, sheer garments can be iffy, but it’s better to err on the side of modesty—keep your undergarments under wraps.

On the weekend: For shopping, hanging out with friends, going clubbing, or doing whatever you like to do with your free time, your style should be your own and you should feel free to wear what you like. If you’re comfortable wearing a sheer top over a blue bra, go for it. lol

I will say that fashion trends and how they are seen can be somewhat circumstantial—for example, a sheer outfit may stand out less in a place like California rather than Ohio, but as long as you’re confident with what you’re wearing, that shouldn’t matter. Rock the sheer look and tell us all about here!

P.S. Conservatives may find this trend very difficult to pull off. Like me.

[[ HOW TO WEAR PASTELS ]]



Rainy season is rampaging the tropics now, but that doesn't mean giving up the spring/summery pastels. They give a fresh aura on a gloomy day.

______________________________________________________________________________

COOL VS. WARM COMPLEXIONS

Ever encountered a situation where you see this gorgeous lavender top but once you try it on, you end up, well, hating it? One of the reasons for this is probably due to your undertone complexion. Most complexions fall into either the warm or cool category. Let’s find out which one you are!

Discovering Your Undertone

1. Looking at your forearms under natural light or outdoors. Looking at the vein colour, what colour do you see?

- If blue, then you’re cool.
- If green, then you’re warm.

2. Coloured jewelry can also play a part in what your undertone may be.

- If you tend to gravitate towards silver jewelry, you are cool.
- If you look better in gold jewelry, then you’re warm.

3. Lastly, depending if you burn or not under the sun is a good indicator, too!

- You don’t get tanned – then you’re cool
- You can get tanned – then you’re warm.

Choosing the Colours

Now that you’ve established what undertone complexion you have, then we can see what kinds of pastels will look good on you.

Cool Colours:
- Pink
- Lavender
- Baby Blue
- Mint Green

Warm Colours:

- Coral
- Light Yellow
- Peach
- Avocado Green
______________________________________________________________________________

POLYCHROMATIC

Once you’ve established what undertone you have, you can also wear pastels in multiple colours. “Colourblocking” is a great way to wear out pastels as you’re able to achieve an extravagant look while mixing different hues.

Examples:
Creat the ultimate cupcake look with her light blue and pink like Kirsten Dunst as the modern Marie Antoinette that warms hearts in her light yellow and coral dress.
______________________________________________________________________________

MONOCHROMATIC

For those who like the subtle appeal, you can still mix and match colours – as long as they remain on the same colour spectrum (i.e., mint green with baby blue).

Examples:

Execute the same colour spectrum perfectly. The combination of light yellow and light orange indicate that these two look ravishing in warm hues.
______________________________________________________________________________

ACCESSORIZING

Accessories are appropriate for gals who like to express a little pastel while wearing darker coloured clothes. Just make sure that the light and dark colours stay in the same warm/cool complexion. Clashing of the two categories may result in a pastel don’t!

Examples:

Blogger, Cheyser Pedregosa of The Walking Recessionista wears her cool green-blues on her nails and necklace in her look, while blogger, Dominque Nghiem of Devilishly Stylish keeps it edgy in her pink litas and black ensemble.

Let's shoo the rain away!

[[ HOW TO DRESS FOR YOUR HEIGHT (FOR TALL GIRLS LIKE ME) ]]

We already learned how to dress if you’re a short gal, but now it is time for us tall girls to get a chance. I know it’s a challenge to find clothes if you’re tall, but let’s embrace our height and show the world how great tall gals can look!



Notable Leggy Celebs….
Taylor Swift (5’11”)
Maria Sharapova (6’2”)
Nicole Kidman (5’11”)
Florence Welch (5’9”)
Blake Lively (5’10”)
Michelle Obama (5’11”)
Julia Roberts (5’9”)

_______________________________________________________________________

1. GET CLOTHES THAT FIT
For tall women, inseams and shirt lengths often run short. Many stores offer ‘extended sizes’ in bottoms, but few do these for tops as well. So what’s the solution? Shop at a store designed for your height.

If you have a little bit more cash to burn, a tailor is also a great option. Although expensive, they can make the perfect clothing piece for you. You might consider going to one for an investment piece, like a black suit, if you can’t find one that fits anywhere. Make sure to go to a tailor that has been recommended by friends or research them.

2. THE PERFECT PAIR
 
The battle for the elusive pair of perfect jeans is one that I am fighting right now, and it becomes harder when you realize that certain jeans aren’t offered in extended sizes. If you are desperate for some denim in extended sizes, American Eagle, has some great options for tall gals. They add balance to vertical frames, and tall women can pull of wide leg jeans better than shorter women. Some other options for wide legged jeans are from Gap that looks great as well, but if they are worn paired with a tight top, you run the risk of looking very ‘pencil’ like. Since you are tall, you need to break up your lengthy frame.


3. KEEP IT ‘PG’
 
Skirts and shorts often look scandalous on leggy ladies, but you don’t need to shun them out of fear of showing off ‘the goods’. Many stores do offer shorts in extended sizes. Online Old Navy, Gap, and Banana Republic . And some other tips for wearing shorts: make sure they aren’t too tight (this goes for everyone!). Make sure the waist flatters and is high enough, and keep the inseam appropriate for the occasion. If you want to emphasize your legs, find a great pair of high waisted shorts, your legs will look like they go on for miles!

Example:

You may want to skip the miniskirts at Forever 21; they will look extra short paired with your extra long legs. But there is no reason not to rock skirts. Look for skirts that would normally hit at or above the knee on an average sized woman. This should be long enough to look ‘mini’ on you but not show off too much.

4. GO BOLD OR GO HOME
 
Bright and bold prints and chunky jewelry look great on tall girls. Often bold prints can overwhelm women with shorter frames, but if you are tall you can rock them. A shirt with a great print will look chic with some dark wide legged jeans and some heels (yes heels! Look below). Bold prints are great for when you’re running low on time and want to look good. An orange polka dotted tube top will look great on a hot summer night with some gold accents. And a floral kimono top will help you embrace your feminine side. Bold prints on maxi dresses work well for leggy girls, take a cue from Gisele Bundschen in her H&M ads and find a flowy, printed maxi.

Example:

Tall girls can rock the trend color blocking in candy colors and a pretty maxi skirt!
And statement jewelry. Luckily you don’t have to scour through the extended size section for these! Bright, bold, and chunky pieces won’t overwhelm your frame. So you can play around with interesting jewelry. Bright pieces would look great on a tall frame. And don’t forget the large bangles and cocktail rings as well too!

5. EMBRACE YOUR HEIGHT
 
Heels—now that’s a tricky subject for us tall gals. Some may argue that you should skip the heels, you already got the height, but I like to argue the contrary. Wear the heels that you want to wear, don’t be afraid of ‘towering’ over your peers. Heels complete and outfit, and there is no reason you shouldn’t be able to rock them! Do want YOU want to do before you listen to what others want you to do.

If you still can’t be swayed into rocking the high heels, or if your significant other doesn’t want you towering over him, there are other options. Michelle Obama is frequently seen wearing a kitten heel. These heels are only an inch or two high, but they make your legs look better than they would be in flats, and of course, they are comfier! And flats, if you are going to a formal occasion in flats, stick to patent leather ones. They are much more pulled together and will look great in place of a pair of pumps.

Hope this helped. I have a few friend complaining about their height. If only I was the one blessed with that model-y height!

[[ HOW TO DRESS FOR YOUR HEIGHT (FOR PETITE GIRLS LIKE ME) ]]

Confidence always comes from within and towering stilettos can give you a false sense of that.” – Rachel Bilson (5’2" actress)



‘Short,’ ‘petite,’ and ‘small-framed’ are just a few terms to describe us short gals. While we may envy those who have legs that can go for miles and can fit into any pair of jeans, we should embrace our height with praise!
______________________________________________________________________________

THETINKERBELLSYNDROME

We’ve all heard about Napoleon Syndrome, where short guys tend to feel inferior due to their height. Just like these guys, girls who are 5’3" and under usually feel similar, especially in a society where tallness is often revered. However, to embrace the idea of being short, let me introduce to you the Tinkerbell Syndrome.
Whereas the Napoleon Syndrome discusses how height can degrade a man, the Tinkerbell Syndrome describes a woman, despite her petite height, who is able to overcome this disadvantage and still succeed in life.

This term was made popular by Lady Gaga (who is actually 5’1" without those towering 6" heels!) who once screamed out to her fans, “You know how Tinkerbell will die if you don’t clap for her? Do you want me to die? Scream for me! I can’t live without you, I need you to scream louder.” If Lady Gaga and Tinkerbell from Peter Pan can prevail from their ‘shortness,’ why shouldn’t the rest of us?

(Mar-Kate Olsen)
Famous Tinkerbells
- Natalie Portman – 5’3"
- Mila Kunis – 5’3"
- Dakota Fanning – 5’3"
- Vanessa Hudgens – 5’2"
- Rachel Bilson – 5’2"
- Lea Michele – 5’2"
- Nicole Richie – 5’1"
- Kylie Minogue – 5’1"
- Lady Gaga – 5’1"
- Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen – 5’1"
______________________________________________________________________________

HOW TO DO IT – RIGHT!

1. Higher the waist, better the outcome.
How do you create the illusion that your torso is actually smaller than it is? Sometimes wearing a high waisted bottom or belt can really help make your legs look longer than they really are.

- Use a belt that is no wider than 1" to belt at or above the waist. Using anything larger than that will make your legs look shorter.

- Don’t like belts? You can opt for high waisted bottoms (i.e., pants, shorts, skirts, etc.). These bottoms will sit right on your waist line.


2. Crop it all off.

Just like suggestion #1, you’d want to make your torso appear smaller than it really is. When pairing a high waisted bottom with a crop top, this is an idealistic choice for us petite gals.

3. Be monochromatic!

We all love to live our lives in technicolor, however, for us gals who are on the short side, this may cause a problem! Wearing too much color can really make us look frumpier than we really are. So, an ideal choice would be to wear your outfit all in one color.

Don’t like to wear an all color theme? You can just simply wear the same color shoes as your pants/leggings/stockings. It’s a great alternative, too.

4. Max up your height with maxi dresses.

I usually shop at the kids’ department when it comes to maxi dresses, but if you can’t find any there, make sure to stick with maxi dresses that are more body fitting. This will show off your silhouette, distracting others from focusing on your height.
Though you may be tempted to lean towards the flowy kinds, don’t! The super flowy kinds, like the one Gisele is gorgeously wearing in the H&M ads, provide a bulky look and you may end up looking stumpy and frumpy.
______________________________________________________________________________

DON’TS – AND FIXES!

1. Say no to many layers.

Too many layers or colors on petite gals are usually a no-no. Why? They give your silhouette a horizontal feel which makes your body look wider than it really it is.

Instant Fix:

If you want colour, why not try a colourblock blouse or dress? Not only will you be wearing multiple of colours, you’ll also be wearing fabric and able to show off your figure.

2. Wanna look short? Wear capris.

This should be a no-no to all gals, but there are people out there who can pull off the capri look well. For us shorties, don’t even think about it. The length is unflattering since it cuts your legs into half – and why would you want to do that to your pretty legs?

Instant Fix:

If you do end up wanting to purchase a pair of capris, try to buy a form fitting ones. The baggier, looser fit types will shorten your height whereas the clinging ones act as if they’re part of your legs. Also, try to purchase a pair that matches your skintone, since it can blend in well with your legs.

3. You can still wear platforms, if and only if…

Platforms…or flatforms? Do not wear flat platforms, they do not do justice to anyone. They do provide height and comfort, but they do not complement with your clothes. It’s as if you’re walking on top of books the whole time.

Instant Fix:

There are great alternatives that give you height and style. You can wear wedges or platform heels where these kinds of shoes give the illusion that you’re taller.

Examples:

keep the 70s alive with their wide leg pants and some high platform heels.


4. Do not wear loose, baggy clothes..

Loose, baggy articles tend to make the torso appear longer. So, if your torso appears longer, then your height will appear shorter.

Instant Fix:

If you like loosewear, you can belt it up with a thin belt at the waistline, making your torso look smaller. In addition, for baggy dresses, you can skip the belt if the length of the dress is as long as your fingertips. Anything longer than that and without a belt may make you look like Cousin It!

Examples:

Loose and mini were two words never paired up – until now that stylish mama, Nicole Richie, keep their looks comfy and fresh in warm hues.





BY  THE WAY, I AM ONLY 5'1.  AND I BROKE SO MANY OF THE "RULES" BECAUSE FASHION IS SUPPOSED TO BE FUN, RIGHT?

[[ FASHION EXTRAVAGANZA ]]

(a very short post)

(when I had long hair... that was like almost a year ago. lol)


So a dear Facebook friend commented that I do a fashion post because I haven't posted anything fashion-related. I had promised then that I'll do a fashion extravaganza.

So this is a warning to my readers, this is fashion suicide. I'll "kill" this blog with fashi---oooon!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

[[ VLOG: SINENG PAMBANSA LANAO DEL SUR SHORT FILM COMPETITION ]]

I’ve always been active in my advocacy of bringing peace to Mindanao. As a graduate of Inter-Ethnic Dialogue and Conflict Resolution Institute In Northern Illinois University, I and the other members of the ACCESS-Philippines, a youth-oriented organization that aims to help in the deep-rooted conflict of our motherland, have sought different media to pursue our goals, dreaming big, taking small steps. We have done youth camps, workshops, and seminars. I myself have found my niche which is writing about Mindanao. But when this rare chance has come—SINENG PAMBANSA LANAO DEL SUR Film Development Council of the Philippines SHORT FILM COMPETITION 2011—I thought perhaps using film as a medium can be powerful in transmitting my voice of what peace is for me, not only as a youth advocate of peace but as a native of Lanao del Sur who have experienced the savage effects of the Mindanao struggle for peace. I have no experience in filmmaking but enthusiasm and passion for the cause might make up for it. There is always a first time for everything.

Here's the poster of my movie:



I want to tell the story of Mindanao and the rest of the Philippines that have been in a conflict for decades. They are to me like brothers whose divide started out as petty fights that piled over the years and ripened into a complex ordeal. This is a story of pursuit of the elusive peace.

This is my vlog anyway, behind the scenes as the director-slash-producer-slash-editor. In short: I am a one-woman-show. Wish me luck!

Saturday, June 4, 2011

[[ MORNING THOUGHTS ]]

This is one of those rare days that I wake up early in the morning knowing that I want to blog but have no specific idea to write about. Would you mind if I just write what I'm thinking about this morning?

1. Check my Facebook. These days, we'll have to accept the fact that this social networking site is really an extension of our social life. If you are not visible on Facebook, it's like missing half of the social interactions in the world. So that's it. First thing in the morning, I check my notifications, see my friends' pages just to have an idea what they're up to these days. We don't see each other anymore nor text as much as we used to. Mark Zuckerberg, thanks.

2. Worry about my short film. I have mentioned in this blog that I have joined the Sineng Pambansa Lanao del Sur Short Film Competition 2011. I'm such a worry wart that I am so stressed about it. What could possibly be more stressful when you are supposed to have a partner-in-crime but because of some unfortunate circumstances, you find yourself alone, doing things all by yourself like a bird with injured wings. I'm glad there is DotA. I can always channel my frustrations and negative feelings at the end of the day by skirmishing with the heroes of Warcraft III. There's nothing that makes me feel better than hearing: double kill! triple kill! killing spree! m-m-mega kill! monster kill! and if things are going perfectly... BEYOND GODLIKE!

3. I'm sluggish this morning. I'm tired from our trip to Cagayan de Oro yesterday. I feel like listening to Bruno Mars' song, I don't know the title, I guess it's the lazy song and then nod with agreement as Bruno sings "today I'm not doing anything." But I have a ton of things to do and I am torn between cocooning under my fluffy blanket and springing out of bed to do what I got to do. I saw this line this morning:

"It's one of those half and half days -- some good, some bad -- but the overall quality is totally up to you and what attitude you choose to adopt."

That helped me in deciding which I am choosing.