Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Million dollar rooms

My friend, photographer Kai Huang, regularly posts episodes of Million Dollar Rooms on his Facebook wall. I love my home (I just want a fresh coat of paint actually) so I've been ignoring his posts but finally I watched one episode and I was hooked.

Made me wonder what I'd do if I had gazillions of cash. Here's what I would do:

  • A huge bathroom with heated floors
  • Persian rugs 
  • A little house for Vince and me, with a cozy library and separate offices so we can write in peace
  • A large garden that reaches as far as the horizon!
  • Art. Everywhere. If I could get a hold of just one Vermeer painting, I'd be thrilled!
  • A playground for the kids.
  • Big kitchen with large windows
  • A gorgeous view from every window

Actually, I just want a tiny space that looks like this:
That's just a 40 sqm apartment. That's the average size of a unit in the new condos rising everywhere in Manila these days. There's more from Stylish Eve. Hop on over there for more design inspiration!

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Taste Central!!!

When we got back from our Tagaytay trip a couple of weeks ago, we were surprised to find a big box from Taste Central sitting in our hallway.

I was thrilled because I had signed up at their shopping website just last month. Taste Central is a partner of Deal Grocer and you all know I love Deal Grocer! In the first quarter of 2013, I've already bought a steak lunch for 4 at LuLu, a magnificent lunch at Bistro Filipino, and ginger-and-pumpkin cakes from Epicurus. Currently in my DG folder are yet unredeemed coupons for a wine and cheese date at L'Incontro, a comprehensive dental check up (I think I need braces again), and a stay at Taal Vista Hotel. Yes, I love Deal Grocer!

So when Taste Central—which offers a more exclusive shopping experience—was launched, I just had to sign up. Here's what I wanted:

Butterfly Dreams fitted sheet set (at 50% off, only P2,750!) because I love love love our Butterfly Dreams sheets and I must have more!

Bungalow 300 set of 2 throw pillows (only P952) comes in many luscious bright colors like yellow, orange, red, aqua. But the pink called my name!

Mav Clare nightstand (only P9,980). This is already sold out. Besides, even if I wanted two, there's just no space in our bedroom. Still, it's gorgeous!

PhoeNix Home Argentinian cowhide rug (only P28,000). I've started wanting a cowhide rug just recently. I love the shape of it and the feel of it under bare feet.

Rachael Ray 10-piece cookware set (only P11,175). My old set needs replacing and this black-and-orange set fits the bill!

Pyrex bakeware set (only P3,500) because I want to bake and bake and bake now!

Loveramics stackable bowl set (only P1,880). I actually have a lot of bowls but they're all shallow. I need deep bowls.

So anyway, when I saw the big box from Taste Central, I couldn't help but hope one of the items on my wish list was inside! Their gift isn't a welcome gift, by the way. Just in case you're thinking of signing up now haha and thinking you'll automatically get a big box of goodies, too. They sent me a box because of my blog! Hooray! I love blogging! Here's what was inside:

Good taste indeed. I love the selections for the home! Their food picks are amazing, too. Funnily enough, I wasn't so interested in the fashion and beauty departments. But maybe that's because I already have too many beauty products and my interest in fashion has waned to monochromatic clothes and flats!

Go check out Taste Central now and be part of the world where anything less than extraordinary is never an option. Chos!

*product photos grabbed from Taste Central

Friday, March 22, 2013

Topaz Fashion: Shopped again at Zalora

The former format of Topaz Fashion isn't going to work anymore. Since I gave away two-thirds of my wardrobe, I have nothing but a few blacks and grays hanging in my closet! My friend, Nicole, told me yesterday, "Frances, it's time to shop." Haha. Anyway, I figured that I'll still post a few outfits now and then but I'll make Topaz Fashion all about, well, fashion! Like clothes and accessories I found or want, stylish stars, fashion press releases of my friends, online shops, and the like.

For this Friday, I'll tell you all about my shopping experience at Zalora. As you all know, I love shopping online. It's convenient. Most of the time, it's cheaper. Plus, you discover a ton of goodies that are hard to find in a mall. Anyway, I've already bought stuff from Zalora before but I bought cases for my Blackberry and iPad. A few weeks ago, I tried shopping for clothes.

Now, I've been lusting after the floral print recently. So naturally I bought floral print pants from Zalora. Easy to shop, easy to pay, quick delivery!

Items arrived in a special package.
My pretty pants fromCollective.com and Spring Fling.
So cute! Both for just P2,207.50. So cheap!

My big problem with my pants is this: They're tiny!

Hmm. I'm pretty sure I didn't make a mistake because I followed Zalora's size guide. I went to Zalora's size guide, measured away, and was surprised when I saw that I was a small. 

My mommy body is medium now. Sometimes even a large (so I eat too much sometimes!). I knooooow. I'm skinny, yes, but I have a belly and birthing hips now. But look at the chart—the waist of the small is 28-29 inches, which is my current waist (sigh, I used to have a 22-inch waist). So... even though I had misgivings, I ordered the small sizes.

So when the pants arrived and—sadness galore!—they won't even go past my knees!!!

I returned the items last week of February. So easy! All I did was send an email to customer service to say I wanted to return the pants. Then Zalora sent a messenger to my house to pick up the stuff. Ya! So convenient! About 15 days later, customer service said there's no large sizes anymore but I have store credit. So I guess I'm shopping again soon! I think I'll buy dresses next.

P.S. This Glamour story just made me want floral pants even more!!!

*size charts from Zalora