Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Look of the Day: Another Wednesday

Now, I'd love to have a full time model to dress up (and take pictures of afterwards! I think I take a decent picture), but for now I'll just have to annoy my colleagues and/or husband to take pictures of me when I have a clothing item I want to show you. Right now, the skirt.

Top: Mr Price
Skirt: No label but bought via Lost & Found (Amy does the thrifting for you, and you end up with a unique piece! Find Amy Lost-Found on facebook)
Stockings: Woolworths
Shoes: China Town (won't last long though, and won't stay comfortable throughout the day)
Bag: Accessorize
Scarf: Mom

It's a chilly day in Jo'burg and I hate dressing for cold days. But paired with stockings (and a scarf), this cream and black skirt is a hit. I got it for a steal, at R86! That's the beauty of thrift items. Extra nice that it's so pretty.

p.s. It's the first time I wear my hair like this since I cut it ----
and I've also tried a nude colour on my nails this week. 

Thanks for checking in - let me know if you'd like seeing more 'looks'; I'll try not to let this kinda post hog the blog!
Until next time,

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

At the Heart of the clothing brand, Pure Psalm 18-26

I'm blessed with a job that allows me to tell people's stories.

Right now, I'm juggling a few good ones and among these - the story of Pure Psalm 18-26, a clothing brand that has started flourishing throughout South Africa.

The clothes are gorgeous. As one client put it: "It just moves with your body." But beyond the pieces of material - is the story of the brand's birth.

Kathleen Mc Donald, the creator, says it was always her dream to have a clothing factory and employ women, and as she got older she gave up on the dream.

"I think many women can identify with this – after we’ve reared our children and they’re bigger and you sit at home and you feel useless and God came along and He just picked me up and said look I have this for you and we’ve got to do this. It amazed me! So I can encourage everybody that it’s never too late for God to work His plan in your life – because He’s got a plan."

So God pulled a few strings, and voila - it was done. See for yourself:

Keep an eye out on Turning Point for the full story - the sit-on-the-edge-of-your-seat bits are reserved for the programme!

Thanks for reading!


RE: Closet Edit

So yesterday (in my previous post) I announced it, the big Edit!

I'm determined to dramatically reduce the content of my closet, and yesterday was the beginning. I chucked out over 30 items and I'm still eager, would you believe?!

This is what's out:

Already, I feel loads lighter (excuse the pun)! It felt good, to sort of say to those 'can't-let-you-go' items, "you're of no use to me, good bye". I must admit though, it's not easy: trying to keep your eye on the bigger picture - but I'll get there and if I don't, I'll tell you.


Monday, June 27, 2011

Eek, I'm getting rid of my clothes!

I have recently bought my first fashion, erm... I mean style, book. Of course, I've a collection of magazines but I bought the first book: The Little Black Book of Style by Nina Garcia.

I think I've already acquired a taste for style as apposed to trends, but I want to expand on my Fashion Knowledge because if you're to believe what I write, I'm sure you'd like to know that I know what I'm talking about.

To most of the sayings and lessons learnt from the book, like "It's not money that makes you well-dressed, it's understanding" (a quote by Christian Dior), I'm going "yes, exactly!" as I read -------- but to Andree Putman's quote

"...I cannot believe one can dress well when you have so much" I pause and read attentively.

That's my weakness see. Many mornings I frown at my closet, because I don't have a thing to wear, but it frowns back - because it's packed to the brim with things to wear! The one thing I've realised, and need to master - is the art of editing! (See decor posts, where I've discovered this art first.) 

I've long ago realised, though hesitantly, how to shop (do not buy every trend!) but am now venturing on the big EDIT of what I currently own: what to chuck out, what to keep and HOW to move forward because Andree Putman is right. And I have too much. Seasonally, I make a point of chucking out items and giving it away but I need to do more, to make my clothes work for me.

Mind you, I hate having a lot - in the closet. It's draining! The closet is packed - I cannot see all my clothes - it feels like a mess, and I feel exhausted. It would be great to get to a point where I have just the right amount, where I can see ALL my clothes> I'd make wiser decisions ;-)

Here're the guidelines I've set, with help from the book:
I'm keeping what looks good on me.
I'm keeping what I feel good in (above rule still applies)
I'm keeping what I actually wear.
I'm chucking it out if it's too big, or too small.
Ten black skirts that do the same job will be reduced to one, or two :-)
The item that used to be in, or won't stay in for long - will go.
I will be ruthless, I'll even make a deal with myself. For every 20 items I chuck, I will buy only one great piece.

Wish me luck as I endeavour to edit successfully! Look out for feedback, and I challenge you to do the same! (And get the book while you're at it)

Thanks for reading, your support - especially as I bite on my teeth and go on in - is needed!


Monday, June 20, 2011

Circle of Friends

A hot post of a fellow blogger (find post here: had me thinking about the 'circle of friends', a main source of advice and a good tool.

Proverbs 11:14 Where there is no guidance, a people falls, but in an abundance of counselors there is safety.
I'll dive right in: the phrase was punned with the word 'circle' because who you let in as friends is not an open matter.

Of course, I'm eager to meet new friends and form relationships BUT do not hastily seek the advice of people outside of the circle. And by circle - I'm referring to like-minded people, wise people (just like your mother taught you). Seems strategic, it is. Otherwise, you will be confused, and you could expose yourself to disastrous 'help'!

Just as the academic, C.S.Lewis, said

“The next best thing to being wise oneself is to live in a circle of those who are.”.

Other specific people who may not be in your circle of friends per se, are the exception: parents (by instinct, you've considered them as advisors if you've grown up in a typical family), your pastor (really concentrate when your pastor speaks - this person has been given the authority to give you wisdom), and other mentors whom you have choosen - be selective. Oh, that's my point: selection!

How do we choose who to take advice from? When married, let God and your spouse be the only two involved in personal matters. You don't want the Scott family's rules applied in the Jacobs' home - chaos! And you also don't want your personal business laying on Main Street. When husband and wife disagree, or if you two are both unsure, then consider bringing in a common mentor or counselor, eg. your Pastor.

Don't run to a fourth party for every quarrel either. Pray for a discerning spirit, so you know when to seek the advice of others.

In any case, there aren't many things I hate more than women bad-mouthing their husbands/boyfriends/family/friends and calling it 'sharing'.

Above all, God is your first point of authority. Should you need advice, seek it first from God (James1:5). In many cases, he will send you to someone, or someone to you, whom you can count on (don't you love how well orchestrated God's plan is!?).

If you continue to seek His advice first, and His word - you will start discerning junk from worth too. We hear advice all the time, even when we switch on the TV or flip through a magazine: chuck out the worthless. Teach your sprit to absorb the truth.

Whoever speaks into your life should back it up.
Someone who has been divorced 12 times may not be the most reliable when you're trying to figure out how to reap a life long marriage! In other words, check their stats! Make sure even your Pastor's advice is backed up with the word and experience. The bible (in 1 John) speaks of false Prophets that we should test to see that they are from God!

Wrong advice can cause your downfall. Really. Don't take my word for it, here it stands:
Proverbs 13:20 Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise, but the companion of fools will suffer harm.

Whose Face on what Book?

We are migrating to a world of new technologies. Among technology's greatest offspring, Facebook!
I imagined what even the most anti-technology, anti-social network, anti-risk kind of person could gain from facebook. Here's that kinda gal's story, in her own words...
"Upon doing my regular round of email checks (hesitantly! I haven’t quite befriended the internet yet), I was bombarded by names from my past! So and so has invited you to join Facebook, it reads.  

Usually, I’d hit the delete key: anything with a website link attached to it typically heads that way. But in desperation to make sense of the relation between those names and this site, I enter the stream of network services.

Facebook was initially intended for university students, but the net’s growing capacity allowed the website to become a platform for everyone to join the social scene. With account holders from all over the world, the service is taken advantage of by countless faces. And I mean faces.

Members register for free, in exchange for your email address and basic information you provide. While jotting down personal information like age (gulp) is horrid to me, the site is said to be a safe networking tool. With precautions in the form of numerous security checks, this seems to be the case.

My profile was appropriately ambiguous.
“Mary” (just Mary) accompanied by a hideous photo of me wearing Nicole Ritchie shades and floral scarf, was what would greet viewers of my profile.

Nonetheless, I felt exposed! I'd change my name altogether, but that would be a lie and I’d rather avoid adding ‘criminal’ to shopper/housewife.

To my naïveté, I have the option of blocking random viewers to view my profile: only those whom I have already added as ‘friends’ may view my profile if I choose to use this option. If I ever get to the point of uploading pictures, I could select the people who are allowed to see it.

I'm going to study the security options some more! It's important who I let into my [facebook] life, especially if I start posting pictures. Random people cannot know me, not that well! Horror!

You choose your friends wisely in life, why treat this facebook any different?

Right now, my page is bland. Despite the many spaces you may fill with enticing bits such as favourite quotes, books and movies, etc. etc. I post only the basics. With the exception of my mood, that is. I [made it] read: Mary is now slightly entertained.

Seeing what I’ve written is gratifyingly amusing.

  Now that I’ve got all these long lost friends staring at me, I’m allowed to send them messages; write on their “wall”; view their friends… the options are endless. Each time I receive a message or anything new happens, Facebook alerts me via my email. Nowadays, I find myself scanning my emails hoping that I’ll see one of those. With all this technology literally at my fingertips, I feel empowered. 

I’m impressed by the site’s simplicity. The inability of users to edit their profiles beyond recognition maintains Facebook’s trademark look. This may strip me of my individualism, perhaps, but I prefer my first attempt at networking that way.

Besides, if you want to fiddle with the look of things and really maintain your individualism, get a blog!

What really got me smiling, though, is the absence of little flashing advertisements. This is your page. You are your own editor. No interruptions.

This may be the start of my very own revolution. Fearing technology, especially internet-related, only creates more anxiety. The cliché,
"you never know until you try" is relevant in this instance.

The internet offers an array of uses which extend far beyond boring text-book style pages. In light of my experience with Facebook, it’s safe to say that the emotional and physical strain our lives reap is relieved by this phenomenon. Try it. In fact, add me – I promise not to hit that delete key! ■"

"Mary" is right, to have identified the positives. I love facebook. It's connected me with so many lost friends, and has kept me in touch with many far-away relatives. Of course, it’s a great networking tool! It does, however, have it's downside (but you're the human --- the computer is not smarter than you, really --- ) and you can control it.

Some of us need to know: what you load onto facebook will be on the internet forever; what you say on facebook will also be out there - in the minds and hearts of people. An entire post can be dedicated to inappropriateness on facebook - of all the things one can address, know this: what you put out there, in [internet] ink is permanent; DO worry about your image.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Love This Office!

A while back, I posted a quick one: "Work That Decor" - on decorating your work space/desk/little corner.

Continuing that, I've come across this post -

This is the owner's home office which has been kept simplistic so if you want to convert it into another space, say, a guest room, you could easily do so! I'm inspired by the pops of colour and can definitely envision working in this room! Hopefully, the other end of this picture has a darling view?!

I love the 'washing-line' style artwork; and the dog's got an eating space too - can you spot it?

Moral of the story: make your work space a pretty space; you spend lots of time there afterall!