Styling My Crib

Home styling interior design
A modern contemporary living style arrangement.

Your home should be the reflection of your personality, style, and taste. Splash across many high gloss magazines, there is endless style group on home interiors. In trend styles, people keep up with the time almost like Keeping up with the Kardashians. Their houses are fabulous.

I got my house keys a few years ago, but not much is being done. I was battling cancer. Getting your own home is a huge undertaking. I was fortunate enough to have paid my mortgage in full. Not everyone is so lucky. Though it’s not a big flat, it is home. I got really lucky with my unit number and the address I lived in to be of the same digit – 222. Nestled on a high floor like a regal eagle’s nest. You don’t have to over-decorate, it just needs tidiness. However, remember that Phillipe Starck furniture that I was eyeing? I finally got it! I bought myself a Kartell La Bourgie lamp in addition and 2 Kartell Louis Ghost chairs. Financing a home needs planning and commitment. There is renovation cost, flooring, water piping and lots more to it if you desire a perfect home. There is also furniture selection and home styling if you can afford to hire an interior designer. My 42 sq meter of personal space is quite minimalistic by design. My kitchen is simple. I don’t need bells and whistles with a lot of features.

Here are some fundamental things to cross against your checklist:
• Lighting
• Bathroom
• Kitchen or Pantry
• Bedroom
• Walk-in closet
• Living room
• Air-conditioning

Furniture Arrangement
Meet the twins! If you can find it.

Getting the basics done is easy. Go to IKEA! There have a plethora of items to get your basics covered. Spend big on the major purchase as they will last a long time and get smaller purchases. Get some designer accent pieces. Spending a bit more will go a long way on great pieces. I’ve had my 2 Kartell La Marie transparent chairs for 12 years now, and they are still in immaculate condition. By spending on a few designer pieces not only break away your home style like an IKEA catalog, but it also gives character which may reflect your persona.

Your electronic and other appliances are essential when you want to make your house a smart home. It is your daily ritual, like waking up and turning the radio by your voice, making your morning coffee, and getting ready to seize the day. Believe it or not, my favorite part of the day is starting it right. Enjoying my morning coffee while listening to what’s in store for me on my Google home and commanding the lights off before that, yes I sleep with a night light! When you are in a good mood at the start, nothing will go wrong later in the day. While selecting my clothes for the day before taking my shower makes the experience enjoyable.

If you always dine outside most of the time, you don’t need a full kitchen. Just a pantry will suffice. Having the cooking basics covered through steam and grill makes you eat more healthy. I don’t use a microwave oven, and I don’t have a refrigerator mainly because I do not drink ice cold drinks, but I do have a drink fridge for my guests tucked hidden from sight in my pantry cabinet. I love the hidden design, no distractions to the eye when it travels. If you are living alone, you end up cooking a lot more food than usual. Not to waste food has been my mantra.

I self-assembled this kitchen counter.

When you are in a good mood at the start, nothing will go wrong later in the day…”

My bed is the most comfortable place next to my sofa, you spend one-third of your life sleeping, and my bed is a lux hotel quality. A 42 inch Samsung smart TV for Netflix and chill around the sofa is a must. A dining café style for two as a dining area next to my pantry is adequate. Spending a little more on security such as a digital lock gives you peace of mind, convenience to your friends or family members.

Bedroom
Having a hotel-style bed makes you sleep better.
Kartell
Face of happiness for polycarbonate.

Kartell La Marie La Bourgie lamp by Ferruccio Laviani.

It is originally introduced by Kartell in 2004, the polycarbonate La Bourgie lamp by Ferruccio Laviani has been completely re-imagined with a series of alternate designs, each boasting its unique flair. From being ironically interpreted by decorative costume jewelry and typical french symbols like the Eiffel tower. A fresh thinking of exaggerated ideas in modern contemporary design.

Kartell Louis Ghost Chair by Phillipe Starck

The story of the Louis Ghost Chair, as it’s named, begins with a man named Louis XVI — the King of France. During the reign of the 19-year-old monarch and his better half, Marie Antoinette, a refreshed interested in classical Greek and Roman design developed, which manifested itself in all sorts of trendy architectural and interior design elements throughout the king’s reign. Louis XVI Chair inspired from a Gustavian period. This formal chair remains one of the most popular chair designs today and is a timeless classic. It is re-imagined in polycarbonate by Phillipe Starck, a genius product designer.

Walk-in Closet
Walk-in closet.
Café style dining table. Just us two.

Lastly, say it with flowers. There’s nothing worse than having plastic flowers in your home. My late mother loves having fresh flowers in the house. I got the inspiration from her that she passed on to me. A flower arrangement lasted for a week. I have some tips for you to stretch it to 9 days in my new post. Not only it brings good energy to the house, but it also brings homey vibes. Potted orchids, on the other hand, lasts over a month. You may alternate the choice. I also place a bowl of fresh fruits in my kitchen. It encourages you to eat fruits for supper before bedtime.

Flower arrangement
White roses and hydrangea simply looks stunning and classy at all times.

#designer #furniture #homestyling #interiordesign #home #kartell #flowers

Ultimate La Mer Regime

La Mer Luxury Brand

I don’t usually review or put my name on something credible after trying out something immediately. Skincare regime needs time and patience for it to work. Three months is a noticeable timeframe to deliver a review. La Mer – the ultimate skincare regime has resuscitated my badly damaged skin from three years of undergone chemotherapy. The effects of oral medication, intravenous, and radiotherapy have indeed damaged the lipids in the dermis. As we age, your lipids and skin cells are no longer round in shape. Aging also means the products that you are so used to using will not work as your skin conditions have changed. Eventually, you need other types of slightly invasive aesthetic treatments to correct the issue.

Big brands out there developed all types of products for a specific area of your face to entice you to buy a lot more. The truth is, you don’t need all of that. Let’s start by saying, you don’t need to buy expensive cleansers simply because they don’t stay on your skin. You don’t need eye serum, because the serum for your face works well enough for your eye area. Finally, you don’t need neck night creams because your usual night cream will do just that. I can say the same with essences and toner, if you use one, you don’t have to use another. They are essentially humectants. Did you know you have to use a sheet mask until it’s dry? Because serums are humectants and need water around the environment to work well. The absorption rate is faster because molecules are way tiny that they disappear into the skin.

Source from my Instastory.

I purchased this La Mer products and streamlined it into just 3 products.

  • Treatment Essence Lotion
  • Eye Contour Revitalising Cream
  • Moisturising Créme de la Mer

I alternate my nighttime routine with this and with a Vitamin C serum, Glycolic acid toner, and Retinol correcting lotion by Ordinary. After the whole 3 months of using this regiment, I must say I begin to see my fine lines softened. Your skin cell turnover generally regenerates every 28 days, depending on your age and lifestyle. The more you take care of yourself, the results will rapidly improve. The beauty myth is, I heard some influencers are comparing this product to Nivea cream. Though Nivea does work to a certain extent, it is not comparable with what you are paying for. I believe products need to be absorbed by the skin and not stay on the superficial layer. If you want a quick fix with results, go for Botox. With the harsh environment that we lived in today, please use a sunscreen with 50 SPF. If you don’t protect it, the products you use will be in vain.

Verdict:
Yes! I will re-purchase this, but I will alternate with other products so this can last me for a quarter.”

Tips:
When purchasing a luxury brand, do not shy away. Ask questions and challenge the beauty advisor. Get recommendations, though you don’t need to adhere to it. Don’t be afraid to ask for multiple free samples to try.

#lamer #lux #skincare #regime #nighttimeroutine #ritual #aging

La Mer Skincare
Priced at just under one thousand dollars.

Algorithm for Love

Dating Apps

I couldn’t help but wonder what life is like without love. Some people say you might have three great loves in your entire life. I was lucky enough to have two great love of mine. Meeting people, dating and getting into relationships have certainly advanced, nowadays. We communicate differently in today’s fast-moving society and how we anticipate love to happen. But most of the time, the act of anticipating is a thrill itself. The chase and hunt get your adrenaline pumping, endorphins are released to stimulate you to heighten senses through dopamine.

Tinder, Grindr

“Searching for love and orgasms

one swipe at a time.”

It is a normalisation of nuances towards the new millennium. Old-fashion introduction just doesn’t cut anymore as society moved forward with the time. Studies have shown how men swipe indicate a simple and predictable pattern versus women who swipe capriciously.”

Let’s face it from Grindr to Tinder from across the board, there are all kinds of apps to be downloaded and profiles to be judged. People who collect photos or syncing photos from other individuals from a cloud-based app make what it is today in modern-day dating. The use of hashtags and geotagging has become a new norm for secret admirers or stalkers to accidentally bump into you. The algorithm for love and lust predicts a probable match between the data it gathers and intercepts. It’s a normalisation of nuances towards the new millennium.

Back in the day when personal ads run on papers or magazines, things are a little slow. Life was simple. The earliest form of personal classified ads or lonely hearts ads dates back to the 1800s. Ultimately, people want to search for a companion at the end of the day. We create our presence online because we want our profile portrayed in a certain way. Creating a perfect profile affects the way people see themselves. Often describing some realness through images, obtaining validation from others. People love the ideology of compatibility and amicability. A vision of acceptance but sometimes narcissist.

Companies designed dating apps are out to make money and believe me, they made a whole ton of cash through subscriptions. Multiply that by the number of the population who are single, separated, divorced or even married and still looking something on the side. It is capitalism at its best. This is how economics is forged through the masses bringing lucrative yields with recurring returns. The more premium you pay for your subscription, the higher the chances of meeting a quality candidate. Advanced smartphone app changes the way we meet people, we travel, we dine, the way you date and the way you have sex. The visibility from a profile monetized the industry simply because all the information is key and sex sells. All searching for love and orgasms one swipe at a time.

Social Network

“It’s a Dating Revolution or just a Dating Apocalypse?”

What seems to be the dating revolution, it would also mean the death of courtship as the majority of people do not know how to communicate face-to-face. They found themselves awkward in situations and does not hold brilliant conversations. While they are geniuses with technologies and gadgets but they have zero social skills. These have made them become introvert by nature. It is okay of getting rejected if you swipe left or get accepted by swiping right. Once the connection is made, its a swipe for success! The courtship between couples plays an important role. It deciphered the major characteristics of a person’s likes and dislikes. It eventually pivoted the decisive notion to be a couple. Millennials using slangs, and abbreviations that no older generation understood. It is an extreme disconnect. They break every dating rule on the handbook to be more susceptible to the new society. Have we finally discovered the algorithm for love? Swipe right now!

#datingrevolution #algorithmforlove #swipe #love #sex #app #technology

Finding back my Faith

Cancer Survivor

It’s been three and a half years since my last entry and, I couldn’t help but wonder how life has turned out. Three years before I was diagnosed, I was working out five times a week and was in great shape. Suddenly one day, my friends noticed that I had lost a lot of weight, but I just thought it was due to my active lifestyle. During this time, I was constantly having stomach problems and passing motion has been from pain to really excruciating. During my workout, I was stretching out on a yoga mat I knew something was not right. I had also been very tired, having a hard time eating, and in general, not feeling good.

I went to my usual general practitioner and he recommended over-the-counter drugs. For well over three months, I also had constant diarrhea. The doctor suspected unhealthy eating habits and misdiagnosed me with hemorrhoid. By the third month, I knew something was really off and I had a second opinion. I underwent a series of MRI, CT scans, stools samples, and bloodwork. Dr Young finally diagnosed me with an unfortunate, colorectal cancer. I was diagnosed with cancer and at that time, my world came tumbling down.

It was on my birthday I got admitted to the hospital and got started on my treatment options. That day, I met with my nurse, who explained how things would go for my evaluation and consultation. I first met with my intake physician, then I started all the testing and all sorts of scans to confirm the diagnosis and determine whether the cancer had spread anywhere else. Next, I met with all the people who would provide me with supportive care services. Then I met my social worker and pharmacist, along with a few medical staff. They were indeed wonderful.

We discussed my treatment options. Everything was coming together with the way I needed it to. Together, we chose a treatment plan, and I was ready for the battle.

I started an aggressive chemotherapy regimen, which included intravenous chemotherapy for 2 to 3 sessions followed by radiotherapy which is radiation therapy often abbreviated RT, RTx, or XRT, is therapy using ionizing radiation, generally as part of cancer treatment to control or kill malignant cells and normally delivered by a linear accelerator. Each time I attended my session, it cost around a thousand dollars including medications. I was so fortunate to have made a wise decision a few years prior to making my health insurance premiums upfront. I was unemployed for almost 2 years. My partner had left me and I lost interest in everything that once holds joy to me. This was the lowest point of my life. I stayed in a private hospital for over a month. The total cost of my treatments, medications, consultations and hospital stay is equivalent to a Hérmes 35cm Birkin Ostrich in exotic leather.

The intra-arterial chemotherapy, in particular, was very intense. After each treatment, I slept the whole day because my immune system was so low and weak. But it knocked my tumor markers down dramatically. I experienced a few side effects, including nausea, low blood cell, and platelet counts, luckily my hair loss was not huge. Progressively, I started getting better and feeling stronger. It’s been exactly one year since I have survived cancer. This experience has made me stronger, more resilience and more in tune with my faith which I have may lose in it several years ago.

I am back in the workforce doing the things that I really love. I am very dedicated with my work and very passionate about it. I thank God for giving me this second chance to live and for that I think it’s a great blessing to found Him again.

#cancersurvivor #survivingcancer #resilience #faith #love #blessed

Sofa So Good

Nobody understands furniture like I do. Being educated in both disciplines of Graphic and Interior Design, you tend to have rather an expensive taste for all designer’s furniture, nothing else will do. My job puts me in a predicament of having high tastes in design, lifestyle or even dining. I have been eyeing on this Barcelona lounge chair for at least a decade, it is finally mine. A cheap China replica could fetch you a little under five hundred dollars but I am not compromising. The price tag is quite fetching however not that cheap, and you’ll only need 1 set in the bedroom lounge or somewhere to place in my walk-in wardrobe. So Yes! She is here!

barcelona

I stumble upon my old press release that I did for Minotti years ago. After 10 years, I must say that the article that I wrote still stand strong, the page layout is not out-of-date and branding presence is on par with the rest of the key luxury players in the market. How fabulous? In my opinion, nothing beats Italian Furniture and cars hahaha The French can gladly die for their patisseries et haute couture ateliers. It’s all about branding building, brand strategy, brand loyalty and of course brand longevity.

I grew up idolizing this man, Phillipe Starck graduated from école des Beaux Arts Paris, the most prestigious French Art university that select only a handful a year out of the thousands! He designed a few marvelous pieces for Kartell, his designs indeed stand the test of time. I have at least a dozen of his products!

starck.jpg
I have already had 2 set of the chair of La Marie, I just need a lighting or two, perhaps a side table and I’ve done cause my Barcelona chair is digging the damage quite deep in my Hermés Kelly wallet hahaha. I haven’t even started on my renovation cost yet! This is just furniture! I hate to imagine what’s the final damage gonna be like together with my kitchen and electronic appliances? The burden of having a property. But I guess it’s quite alright since I do not pay the mortgage for this flat. That’s right! You heard me right! I paid in full $XX8,000 Hey I could opt out for a decent condo, but I would be still be paying my finances until I am 60 years old? No thank you mate! 45 years and above, I want to be enjoying my money and have some financial freedom man! So back to my lamp, La Bourgie is just divine in the bedroom or the living lounge, don’t you think?

la bourgie.jpg

#homestyling #homeinteriors #interiordesign #designers #kartell

Jakarta is calling

img-20160411-wa0034.jpg

I suddenly love this bustling city of Indonesia. Beginning to fall in love with Jakarta once again even the numerous times I visited here purely for the nightlife in notorious Kota. I couldn’t help but wonder what would become of me if I were living the sordid lifestyle I had shortly after my stay in Europe. After all, I was a retired circuit party boy.
The first time I visited this city is when I was a little boy, I was 12. My dad is Javanese while my mom is an Arabic descendant. It was vague. I hardly knew any of my relatives in Jakarta or somewhat they have migrated to Malaysia, Brunei and Singapore just after the second World War. The city has indeed prospered over the years but it has character.

The second time I was here was for a business trip and the third time I was here was a surprise gift from a good friend as a birthday present. That year, I did not go on a holiday for well over 14 months and he decided that would be a great gesture for me to take a break. Being the workaholic that I am, I only took a short 4 days break to this city of life.

A friend, Jessica took me to this hip and happening café smack in the middle of nowhere. The coffee I must say it’s better than Starbucks. The ambience, people, and the circulation of Indonesians are close-knit culture. Everybody knows everybody. The Indonesians are all about aesthetics. Everything revolves around it. The clothes you wear, the bag you carry, the shoe you wear, the car you are being chauffeur in and the address you lived. The first impression is the only thing you get, made a so-so first impression, forget it. Why are you fat? You are the lazy bottom line. You lazy to do something to yourself, therefore, you’re fat and chances are you are lazy to work or procrastinate a lot of tasks you’re meant to do. So there’s go your future job from a job interview or how rather they would judge you. That’s how it is here. If you’re a good looking girl from a good family background and with a good university, you are most likely to have been pair up with a good husband with family’s wealth. In my opinion… This is how I view it as an outsider into the world of Indonesian’s elite socialites.

And now, I am here again in Jakarta for the wedding of the year at Mulia Hotel at Senayan City. It was grand and it was a night to remember as the Instagram came flooding in at #togijessica hashtag. Here is pretty much like in New York when a girl coming of age is being debut into society with a debutante party. Same goes with announcing of wedding bells across page 6 of the Jakarta Posts. The marriage or rather a business partnerships of the two families are arranged and merged. Forging a fabulous new breed with each generation and so on and so forth.

img-20160411-wa0066.jpg

Designers Prêt-à-Porter are the quintessential essence of this series of happy events. Pretty much like a red carpet event or a fabulously put together black tie event. The world is of great vast contrasts of the poor and the filthy rich. 

Dessert cafés and hip restaurants are really the deal here. Although back home in Singapore there’s lots of places to eat, in Jakarta it’s a lifestyle. The palate of restaurants that blooms in the city one after another had become a place to be seen and spotted and perhaps being discovered by someone. I enjoyed my brief stay immensely and it was a good getaway from my slightly monotone routine.

20160408_150143.jpg

#restaurants #travel #dining #wedding #lifestyle #ootd #designer

Chasing a Michelin Star

I must admit I have a delectable palate and a soft spot for French cuisine. The food movement in Paris is rather relaxed and more spontaneous now rather than conservative. The chance of having the Michelin Star add on to your credentials each year put real pressure on the Chef in question. Food should be served comme il faut, as it should be and the service is done exactly as it should for the time it is being served, it’s kitchen chemistry. The first time ever I dined at the L’Atélier de Joël Robuchon, it was a victory dinner treated by my big boss. It was splendid. Michelin Star dining at its finest.

12135152_1073458296021326_1595288988_n
Appetizer: Steak Tartar of salmon and trout with caviar with white truffle oil dressing.

Remember Monsieur Bernard Loiseau? The chef who’s afraid of losing his 3 Michelin Star status that he committed suicide by firearm. It happens during a lunch service at his restaurant. He was the most celebrated chef in France. Bernard Loiseau established Bernard Loiseau SA in 1998 and was the first-star restaurateur to establish the concept of having one’s restaurant incorporated and traded. At the time of his death, he was the only French chef traded on the stock exchange. I remember in one of his cooking demonstrations that he prepared frog legs with parsley and garlic purée. That is so French and his oeufs en cocotte is such a classic. Michelin has gone to extraordinary lengths to maintain the anonymity of its inspectors. Many of the company’s top executives have never met an inspector. Unlike the food critic for magazines nowadays, most would recognize them as they might have read their editorial intro page complete with a mugshot of their profile photo.

Bernard Loiseau is the only French chef traded on the stock exchange…”

But food should not be so comme il faut as they have seasons and certain ingredients are not always available all year round. The idea of losing his Michelin Star was unbearable for him and it gets into the minds of these chefs and their relentless pursuit to be perfect. Perfect doesn’t exist.

image
A mandatory shot before I enter the premises.

“Food should be served comme il faut, as it should be and the service is done exactly as it should for the time it is being served, it’s kitchen chemistry.”

wp-1454416493922.jpg
Me in my Tai Tai get-up hahaha being touristy on set.

I managed to wake up at 4 am in the morning catching an early flight to Hong Kong seeking my Michelin Star. Well, they are serving truffles this season and I have made my reservations 3 months prior well in advance. With my Tai Tai get-up, I am ready to paint Hong Kong town red! Having arrived at the airport at 12 pm in the afternoon, all I wanted to do was sleep in my hotel suite, I was so exhausted. Note to self, no more morning flights please. I have planned my whole holiday around this.

A telephone call rang at my suite sometime next confirming my presence. I delightfully say yes and began to plan my day and my #ootd. When I arrive, I was slightly early and Micheal was to take care of me for the whole haul. He was a fair and handsome Hong Konger that has some French accent when he spoke English. There was something eloquently debonair about him. As soon as I knew that he speaks French I jump at the first opportunity. We converse in French throughout the meal. He was very attentive and he was verbally expressive. I had to cleanse my palate with a glass of champagne before I had my appetizer of steak tartar with caviar and white truffle oil. A main course of canard with foie gras and a bowl of his signature mashed potato with rich French butter and crème fraîche  oh la la… finishing my sweet endings with au chocolat truffles medallion with chocolate sauce so delicately woven like lace on linen over the fudge. To my surprise, I had some candied aniseed coated with gold and silver leaves after dinner with coffee, a sight that I have not seen since I was living in Paris. Mr. Robochon really takes this to the next level. That my friend is a truly classic French dining.

image
The open concept kitchen is always non-stop busy.

Having globetrotting around Asia and dine at the various Joël Robuchon brand, I cannot deny that their food is comme il faut (as it should be) and according to a Michelin Star standards. You find perfection in our own ideology that is maintained throughout the brand. It has that certain je ne sais quoi in their foods. For now, Joël Robuchon restaurants is here to stay until someone new is taking over offering a unique plate.

#finedining #travel #hongkong #frenchcuisine #designer #galavanting #française