gray on gray on a gray day

Maybe it’s because 50 Shades of Grey came out recently, but I remembered I had these photos from a very gray outfit I wore not so recently. A gray chunky knit sweater worn with a gray midi skirt on a gray foggy day in the mountains of Tagaytay. And yes, call me delinquent, but that outfit was from 2 months ago when we rang in the new year. Eep!

I have neglected this blog for 5 long months, but it was quite the monumental task having to pack up 7 years of my life in New York to move back to my hometown, Manila. I still haven’t completely unpacked yet. 4 more boxes are still waiting to be emptied (as soon as I clear enough space in my sister’s overflowing closet to actually place my clothes in.)

In two weeks, I will have been back in the Philippines for 4 months. Boy, did that time fly by. I haven’t had any time to really sit down and think about how I really feel being back. Tonight is one of those rare nights to myself, and I thought I’d write something here, even if it’s just to post an outfit… As if somehow that would help me find pieces of me I feel like I’d maybe left behind. And really it’s just to write, just write in general, because I haven’t had to at all. And I miss it. Just rambling on and on about nothing in particular. Even that feels good.

But before I get all emotional, let’s just get on with this outfit, because I really enjoyed wearing it in the cool mountain air. CJ, my sister’s fiance, said I reminded him of Maria from The Sound of Music that day haha! Not exactly what I was going for, but hey, we were in the mountains after all, just not exactly the Alps!

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H&M gray sweater, Zara gray perforated midi skirt, Zara black and silver heels, Givenchy black mini Pandora

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Panerai Luminor 1950 3 Days Power Reserve Automatic Acciaio

I received my Panerai that night and the dotted pattern on the dial went so well with my skirt’s perforations so I had to wear them together. I was so excited to put it on! And that numeral 6 is adorable with its quirky curves!



sharing the love (part 1)

I’ve had this blog for quite some time now, and in its earliest incarnation on Blogger, it was just a place for me to talk about what happened in my day. It was basically a repository of all the ramblings of my teenage self. Years after I’d left it dormant, I resurrected it into what it is today. I wish I blogged more often, but it’s still gratifying to know that somewhere out there, people are actually chancing upon my blog and enjoying reading it. And even though I started this mostly for myself, it’s great to feel like part of a community.

And today, I’ve received some love from a few cool girls who nominated me for a Liebster Award! The award is designed to help bloggers gain recognition and support from other bloggers, whether they be newbies or veterans. I want to thank Emily of No Repeats or Hesitations and Anna of All Chanel Girls for nominating me!

Liebster Award

The Rules

♥︎  You have to link back to the person that nominated you.
♥︎  You must answer all 11 questions given to you by the person who nominated you.
♥︎  After completing these questions you must nominate 11 bloggers with under 200 followers and give them 11 questions of your choice.
♥︎  You must not nominate the person who nominated you.
♥︎  You must let your nominees know that they have been nominated and provide a link for them to your post so that they can learn about it.

Since I received the nomination from two people, I have 2 sets of 11 questions to answer! So, I’ve decided to combine them all on this one post. This is actually quite fun and reminds me of my younger years when we used to pass notebooks around with questions in them that we had to answer. It could be anything as silly as “What’s your favorite color Skittle?” or something as serious as “What would you like to be when you grow up?” Sometimes asking yourself those random questions makes you more aware of yourself. Anyway, let’s get right on to the answers!

My Answers

Who are your role models/icons?
I know this sounds really cheesy, but I would have to say my parents. To me, they are the perfect models of kindness, humility, hard work, and love. They now have 31 years of marriage under their belt but are still prone to making googly eyes with each other. They put a lot of younger, newer couples to shame! *laughs* Each successful at what they do, they always remind me to do my very best, keep curious and to never stop learning.

What is your star sign/do you fit under the typical description of your star sign?
I’m a Sagittarius and we are supposed to be the passionate free spirits of the zodiac signs. Always thirsty for knowledge and adventure, we tend to love traveling and new experiences. And while we are generally gregarious and extroverted, we may also have the tendency to be impatient. I would have to say I pretty much fit the bill. Although I would never have thought myself an extrovert in my younger years, I’ve found more and more that I really do enjoy going out and being in good company (but I still enjoy and love my alone time  too!)

Where would you love to travel to in the next 10 years?
The next 10 years? That is a lot of time, I would probably list too many places down, but here are the ones that are definitely on the radar! Bali, Indonesia (which will be stricken off the list when my good friend Yessa gets married there in September 2015!) Machu Picchu. I mean, who doesn’t want to go there? And… Seoul, South Korea, because I’ve been watching too many Korean dramas and have to visit what seems to be the land of infinite cute coffee shops!

Who are your favorite designers?
This could be a trick question because when I hear the word “designers”, I think not only of fashion designers but of designers in different creative fields. If I had a favorite graphic design studio, it might have to be Anagrama from Mexico. A favorite fashion designer would probably be Alexander Wang.

Stripes or plaid?
I would have to go with plaids! There are so many more variations of plaid patterns so it never gets old.

What do you never leave the house without?
My keys, wallet and my iPhone.

What is your favorite part about blogging?
Being able to express myself and reading other people’s blogs and getting to know them little by little through each entry.

If you could swap lives with someone, who would it be and why?
I think I would like to swap lives with President Obama, but only for a day! I just want to feel how it is to have the responsibility for the whole country and partially the world on your shoulders! I say only for a day because I don’t want to screw anything up, I am far from being qualified, of course! *laughs*

What are your favorite magazines/newspapers?
I really like the layout of Harper’s Bazaar and InStyle UK. I love buying Monocle magazines too, but it takes me forever to get through all that material! Well worth the money though, it’s a great way to become more of a global citizen.

Which Instagram accounts are you obsessed with?
Most recently I’ve been loving the posts from @aguynamedpatrick.  He’s always going off someplace cool, all over America too.

What is your favorite type of accessory?
Necklaces. They’re the easiest to change and can spice up even a plain white tee easily. But… if shoes are considered accessories then shoes take first place!

Favourite models?
Recently I’ve been liking Liu Wen! She can go from being very sexy and elegant to tomboyish and casual.

If you could only wear one type of footwear for the rest of your life, what would it be?

If you could pick one designer to design your wedding dress, who would it be?
Maybe Jason Wu! His silhouettes and details are always interesting.

Instagram or Facebook?
Instagram by far. It’s the first thing I check in the morning before I even roll out of bed.

Favourite fashion photographer?
Is it embarrassing to say I don’t have one because I don’t know enough about them? I do love the photography on Hermes’ advertising though. And a little research says Nathaniel Goldberg and Eric Valli are responsible for a few of the campaigns that I liked. Nathaniel Goldberg has done perhaps the last 4 campaigns for Hermes and regularly does work for magazines. On the other hand, Eric Valli apparently has a couple of Oscars under his belt, and is a photographer for National Geographic! Very cool!

Your perfect weekend outfit?
A relaxed striped tee, skinny jeans and Superga sneakers. Just chill and no frills.

If you weren’t blogging, what would you be doing?
Watching shows on Hulu and Netflix, designing, or reading books/magazines, dreaming up a DIY project

Lipstick or lipgloss?

Favourite fashion week?
Since I’m currently in New York, I’ll be biased and say New York!

Describe your style in one word.

My Nominees

And here are the people I’d like to nominate! These were some blogs I enjoyed when I was browsing for nominees. It’s always fun to find new people to follow. I know some of these people might already have more than 200 followers, but it won’t hurt to add more! Time to share the love!

  1. Love, Kathleen
  2. Red Velvet London
  3. Little Bennet
  4. The Pace Blog
  5. Look at the World Around You
  6. Twenty-something Simple
  7. The Intrepid Blondist
  8. Neutral Insider
  9. My Online Wardrobe
  10. Molly Lodge
  11. Vogavoe

My Questions

  1. What are the 3 places you’d like to visit next?
  2.  Which Instagram accounts are you obsessed with?
  3. If you could wear one type of footwear for the rest of your life, what would it be?
  4. What wouldn’t you want to be caught dead wearing?
  5. What is your favorite city in the world and why?
  6. What’s the last book you read and what did you like about it?
  7. What’s your perfect weekend outfit?
  8. If you could buy any watch in the world, what would it be?
  9. What did you want to be when you were younger and what do you do now? Do they match?
  10. What’s your favorite kind of flower?
  11. What’s your most favorite item of clothing in your closet? It could be an accessory too!

I’m looking forward to reading your answers as well!

updating my portfolio’s look

Something was going wrong with the last theme I was using for my portfolio website, so I decided to change it out with a new one. Found this WordPress theme called Stretch at Creative Market for only $2 (what a deal!! I believe that was a Black Friday sale though, but it’s still going for only $5 now!) And it’s working great so far 🙂 Must say the coding is pretty rad; I love how responsive it is and how easy it is to use. Now if only I can get around to updating the work that’s on there too! Whoopsie!

Lady Tanmantiong: Portfolio

monday beiges

It’s the start of another work week. After a weekend spent at the NextDayBetter Design Challenge + Hackathon, Monday came too soon! My Saturday and Sunday were spent at Projective Space down on Allen Street teaming up with other designers, strategists and coders/developers to to create apps and digital tools to help build a more resilient Philippines. In the aftermath of super typhoon Haiyan/Yolanda, it seemed like a small thing I could contribute while I’m all the way over here, far from home.

It was inspiring to see all the ideas that cropped up and see how these came to life in the apps. (I will have a link to some of the apps that were developed sometime this week.) I am very envious of people who can code! Being able to transform an idea to an actual working thing is amazing. As a designer, I can help visualize and demonstrate how it works, but I can’t make it fully real. But coding is daunting, and I’m not sure I have enough brain cells left to tackle that again! Even what little VBA skills I had from 8 years ago are gone now. Oh well, baby steps, CSS first maybe. Someday, someday. Anyway, I was able to meet and work with some pretty cool people. But the most valuable thing I learned was that there are so many awesome individuals out there who are working towards doing more good in the world. I feel better knowing there are people like that in my circle of friends. I can only hope that I can someday make as much of an impact as they are making now.

Anyway, here’s what I wore to work today. Feeling a little tired, so a monochromatic look took me from having monday blues to monday beiges. *I know it’s corny, but please chuckle along with me!* The weather warmed back up to 17 C (63 F) so bare legs and these cutout booties were appropriate again (at least for today!)



Forever 21 shirt, Uniqlo wool cardigan, H&M parka, Madewell necklace, Zara booties, Fendi 2Jours bag


the arm: letterpress printing

Yesterday, Liz and I headed to The Arm Letterpress in Williamsburg to take a 6-hour introductory class to letterpress printing. I had unfortunately woken up with a migraine so that made me not as perky as I should have been for our 11am start. Under the weather as I was, I had paid $150 to attend this class so I was getting my butt over there no matter what!


Coming into the studio, we were greeted with the most handsome, most well-behaved Dalmatian I have ever had the pleasure of meeting. His name was Henry and he was 9 years old, about the same age that The Arm is now. (I wish I had taken a picture of Henry!) Walking further into the space, we were next greeted by a guy in a plaid shirt, khaki-colored shorts, brown chukkas and a pageboy hat. He later turned out to be our teacher for the afternoon… he also happens to be the guy who started The Arm in the first place back in 2004, Dan Morris. Considering how laid-back he is, I never would have guessed that he was the owner of the place. As soon as he started talking about printing however, you could tell by how much he enjoyed all this stuff that yes, this was someone who had the guts to start his own letterpress studio just because he loved it and wanted everyone else to get to love the stuff too.


As soon as all 12 students had settled in and hung up our jackets and bags, we were all asked to introduce ourselves and share why we decided to sign up for the class. I found it really funny hearing  person after person start with an “I’m (insert name here) and I’m a graphic designer.” I think only 4 people there weren’t designers, including Liz who has a probably-cooler job of being an editor-in-chief of the leading food magazine in the Philippines (whuuut!) And yes, I like bragging about my amazing friend.

Anyway, all the designers pretty much said they wanted to get away from their computer screens and do something with their hands for a change. That was also a big draw for me. I miss my silkscreen class at Parsons and everything that came along with it, including scrubbing the screens clean with the big brushes, water sprays and that all-too-familiar scent of Fantastik. Learning something new (but also somewhat familiar) like letterpress printing has definitely been on the to-do list for a while.

We got split up into 5 teams so each team could work on one of the five Vandercook presses at the studio. Liz and I paired up with a sweet girl named Megan. So after Dan had given us all the instructions and demonstrations we huddled together first to figure out what we would print with The Arm’s wood type collection. We decided on printing the word “supercalifragilisticespialidocious” but of course we had to Google how to spell that first! We fit the type onto the press and proceeded to fill in the spaces with the necessary wooden blocks. (I forget what the proper term for them is, if there is one.) You can never really escape the claws of mathematics, even when you’re doing something creative like this. We had to measure the pica lengths and widths and find the pieces that could add up to those numbers. It was a little bit like completing a jigsaw puzzle.


Liz and Megan showing off our first setup.


The cabinet filled with Van Son rubber-based inks

As soon as we picked a bright violet from the ink cabinet, we got started on our printing! I really liked the feeling of turning the lever and hearing the rollers go over the bed of metal while the piece of paper made contact with the type. I like the physicality of having to walk along with it and coming back to get the sheet out. 6 hours of standing made for some sore heels but I didn’t really notice because I was having quite some fun!

The afternoon was peppered with mini lessons on how to use the Kelsey Press, how to compose metal type and also how to use the foil stamp machine. And in between those was time for us to print whatever we wanted. We ended up with two posters, but I really have heart just for the first one because we ran into some trouble while printing the second one (and I’m just not going to show it.)


Overall, I could say the $150 was worth it. Studio time at The Arm is already $20/hour anyway. So in a way, we only paid $30 for the instruction and everything else was just time to be with the machines. Not a bad deal at all! Now I’m excited to get a project that requires some letterpress printing now so I can start putting my new knowledge to work!

schoolboy girl

It’s been a while since I posted anything. Last December was crazy because we moved to a new place, and I guess the past few months have been spent just adding little things on to our new apartment. There’s still a ton of stuff to take care of, but they will just have to come one at a time. My head is not in the right place to really tackle anything with as much gusto as I would normally want. Let’s just say I feel a bit like I’m in a rut, and I’m hoping blogging again will help put me in a more productive state of mind.

Anyway, enough blabbering, here’s what I wore to work today. Anne said she liked the 1950s vibe it brought. Haha, it definitely has a vintage schoolboy feel to it because of the grey blazer and the tasseled loafers. I looove these Tods loafers that I got at the day-after-Christmas sale at Saks Fifth Avenue. I was really lucky to have gotten the only pair left (and in my size)! (Well, they’re a half-size bigger but that’s nothing an insole can’t fix.)


Grey Zara blazer, Forever 21 checkered shirt, Uniqlo cropped jeans, 3.1 Phillip Lim camera bag, Tods tasseled loafers


I guess this post is also a sneak peek of our new apartment. The rest of the place is not photo-ready at all… heck, even this corner of it isn’t perfect, but it’s enough for now. Maybe one day when I’ve had the pendant lights over the dining table installed, and bought a rug, and replaced the throw pillows on the couch, then I can do a post on that. I do have an IKEA hack project that I’m excited about and I will hopefully have it done and ready to be documented by this weekend. Yey!