Friday, December 30, 2011

nine things: jab

My friend Jab. One of my best friends. I have known him since I was 5. Five! He's sort of like the my boy version. We like the same music, we both love the outdoors (him the mountains, me the ocean), we both would choose hanging out rather than clubbing, etc.

Right now, he's actually living our barkada's childhood dream. Travel. Experience the world. Soon, we will all join you!! 

his nine current obsessions? here.

  1. An espresso machine
  2. Machu Picchu - a dream come true for the 7 year old boy in me
  3. Corinne Bailey Rae - who gave my five days in Paris a soundtrack
  4. Cozumel - 'cause I'd like to dive again
  5. Mt. Pulag - Somehow this mountain has been calling my name for a while now
  6. Game of Thrones - between the books and the TV series from HBO. OMG.
  7. Express shark skin twill modern fit suit - A man's gotta keep his swag on
  8. Sushi - need I explain?
  9. Tag Heuer Aquaracer Chronograph - for my dirtieth birthday

check out Jab's blog at

Friday, December 23, 2011

fashion illustration

(disclaimer: long photo post)

when i was a kid, i loved to draw girls in pretty outfits and dresses and beautiful shoes and then take my crayola and put some color into them.

i sort of regret that i never continued to do it and develop my own style of illustration. maybe partly because college was full of drawing line and more lines as i learned to design houses... maybe. I dunno. Is it too late to start sketching and drawing again and create my own style?

this is why i enjoy following bloggers who do fashion illustrations.

1. Garance Dore. Her style is my favorite by far. Her drawings look rough yet sleek at the same time. And the way she just highlights one or two colors is genius. (trivia, she is the girlfriend of Scott Schuman of theSartorialist and they both photograph street style)


2. Lula (The Subject I Know Best). The catoonish elegant faces of her illsutrations are closer to the sketches I (try to) do. I love how she mixes real looking photos of materials and fabrics to her drawings. And what's interesting is when she lula-fies famous people whether they may be famous in the fashion, music or film industry or just plain famous!

Lula as herself

...still herself.

i love lula!

3. Sophie Griotto. Again, the style of it being rough yet totally sleek won me over.

4. Inslee. I used to have just three fashion illustrators that I follow but thanks to my good friend Kim and her nine current obsessions, I discovered Inslee. Her style is so classic yet fresh!

here's a sample of a fashion illustration by me when i was 5 years old. hahaha

ya, i think i'm gonna start drawing again. :P


Thursday, December 22, 2011

nine things: kim

I haven't known Kim for a long time but I really enjoy her company! She's easy to be with and so fun and just  such a cool girl. Not to mention gorgeous! She has a show on ETC called Etcetera which features stuff about style, beauty, tv, web & youth. Really cool so check it out!

x   Here are her current obsessions   x

  1. Madeleine Peyroux - she makes me feel like I'm somewhere in France next to a fireplace.
  2. Christmas fairy lights. Goes well when paired with my first obsession.
  3. Morocco- I have wanted to visit there for the longest time! 2012 perhaps :)
  4. Maxi skirts/dresses - my go to outfit when I'm feeling yucky/lazy (thanks for my latest addition to my wardrobe nix)
  5. Learning Tagalog!! Yes I'm obsessed. I want to know already!
  6. Chamomile tea - nothing caps off a long day like a warm mug of tea!
  7. Fresh flowers - underrated! I love walking into my condo with the smell/sight of fresh flowers greeting me!
  8. Moroccan Oil..mostly because it's Moroccan but it does actually work wonders for my hair!
  9. Inslee. Love her work, she inspires my own watercolor paintings.

check out Kim's blog at


Tuesday, December 20, 2011

i *heart* nail art: Holiday nails

as i said in this post, i think nails are part of your look, your outfit. And as the holidays are approaching, all things sequined and sparkly take center stage. And inspired by the nail art of Emily Schuman of Cupcakes and Cashmere and my current obsession with nail art, these are some of my holiday nails!

black polish and gold glitter (although it would have been nicer if I had finer glitter)

red polish with red glitter 

nude polish, pink polish (for polka dots, stripes, etc) and silver shatter polish

I will definitely wear these sparkly nails throughout the holidays!!! :)

Friday, December 16, 2011

nine things: cathy

I have known Cathy since I was 4. Wow, 23 years of friendship! We've gone through LOTS of ups and downs (downs like her poking my eye with a pencil in kinder, downs like boy troubles! haha...or ups like scream therapies while driving thru the city). We don't always like the same things, and move around the same circles nowadays but as my fellow kulot, she's one of the few people who truly know me inside out and will never judge me no matter what.

here are her current obsessions :)

  1. All I want for Christmas is Jennifer Meyer's "C" Pendant Necklace.
  2. Korea! I cannot wait to go back: food + fashino + culture + advencha = win. The beauty products are awesome as well. BB Cream changed my life, hahaha, lately, a good part of my saturdays are spent in a Korean language certificate course. Annyeong haseyo!
  3. Silhouette cameo -- my newest baby. I'm a paper craft geek and this die cutting machine works wonders.
  4.  Extremely Close & Incredibly Loud (Jonathan Safran Foer). I Had to read it again after catching the trailer of the movie version to remind me of what I loved about it.
  5. Alain de Botton's tweets. ( Daily words of wisdom in 160 characters or less from on of my favorite thinkers.
  6. This look. Working my way towards that hair color and gravitating to mostly browns and neutrals for clothes. (photo from
  7. Trader Joe's chocolate crisps. I. Just. Can't. Stop.
  8. Nature Republic's Extreme Liquid Eyeline. Nothing compares, this is my weapon of choice.
  9. - love the stuff you can find there! when (ha!) I find the time, I want to make and sell stuff there too! :)

cathy & i, then and now :)

Check out Cathy's tumblr at

Thursday, December 15, 2011

experiencing irony

(an essay i wrote back in Nov 2004)
Not everyone understands surfers. Actually, almost all the time, only fellow surfers understand each other. Sometimes, we spend half our lives explaining ourselves—waking up so early because waves are best at dawn, spending hours and hours under the hot sun and salty waters, practically dehydrating ourselves, and starving ourselves, and paddling ‘till our arms feel like noodles, sunburn, the laid-back lifestyle, yadda, yadda…

I love to surf. I mean, it just makes me so happy. I can’t describe it…excitement and fear at the same time. There’s that rush while feeling peace and calmness. My way of telling it is experiencing irony. It’s a mix of totally different emotions that sort of roll into one, kind of like mixing colors you know. And that feeling is pure joy. Well at least for me.

The thirst, hunger, and soreness I feel in my body are worth one good ride. Facing the horizon, spotting a wave, I turn around, paddle, feel the board get a little pushed, I pop up and glide. It doesn’t last a lifetime, I tell you that but whether that ride lasted 5 seconds or 5 minutes, that awesome feeling inside will make me scream, turn around and paddle back to the line up. So what if I’m thirsty, tired AND hungry? That single wave is worth the roast my skin is getting.

Seeing the sun set along the horizon and holding my boyfriend’s hand while waiting for a wave is one thing I wouldn’t trade for anything in this world. I love to surf, it’s what makes me the happiest.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011


Layering can be one of the easiest ways to jazz up your outfit. As well as layering with hair, it adds depth to whatever you're wearing.

If you live somewhere cold, well colder than the philippines, layering is done mostly to provide warmth.

Karla Deras
photo from 

photo from 

But even in the tropics or warmer places, layering can be done by choosing lighter fabrics and maybe one layer at a time. Don't pile on the scarves, jackets, cardigans, leggings at the same time!

Karla Deras on a warmer day
photo from

Natalie Suarez in a Hallelu poncho
photo from

my friends and I love to layer too!

Kim Jones making her black outfit
more interesting by adding neon orange
and a leopard print top

Joncy babycakes rocks a scarf
photo from Joncy -

nina enjoys dinner with her lacy layer

Sui rocks her layers, hair & outfit

Noelle adds a kimono style bed jacket
to add color to her nautral top & pants

Kage Gozun throws her bed jacket
over her basic tank & jeans outfit

Mia wraps a light scarf around her flowy top.
Looks good!

try your own layers! it's fun! :)

Monday, December 12, 2011

go on hitch a ride on the back of a butterfly

When Buji told me that we were going to see Train in concert, I was not that excited. I mean, yeah sure, I listen to them a lot but it wasn't like I was dying to see them live. On the way to Araneta, I was even counting in my head how many Train songs I knew. I counted about five.

We get to Araneta, had some Taco Bell and shoved a few buttered bread buns in our mouths since we weren't allowed to bring food in. I was still blah about it... found our seats, settled down... then Train came out and started to perform.

early presents from our friend Jing!

Wow. At that moment, I suddenly remembered what a huge HUGE fan of Train I was. I am! Back in highschool, Drops of Jupiter was THE song. It was our song! My best friends and I would sing our hearts out  and sing along especially the part where Pat Monahan would belt out "and did you finally get the chance to dance along the light of daaaaaaayyyy..." And man, i forgot what awesome voice he had.

I found myself singing along to their first song. And then their second song. And the third one. I didn't realize I knew almost all of their songs. The lyrics I used to sing along to back in highschool were still in my memory. The words just came out of my mouth as he sang. Memories of fun and crazy times with my best friends came flooding back. And I missed them! Back when we were in our teens, we would fantasize about going to concerts together. "Someday when we have work and we have money we can buy tickets to watch all the concerts we want." 

I really wished they were beside me that time too, besides these crazy cats.

And listening to the songs, I mean really listening to the words in their songs, I realized how truly beautiful their music is -- really telling a story.

Dear Train, I'm sorry I forgot that I was a fan. I promise never to do that again. Love, Nikki.

- from  one of my favorite Train songs: Get To Me -
" Go in hitch a ride on the back of a butterly, there's no better way to fly, to get to me. I look around what I got, without you it ain't a lot. I got everything, with you everything."