DIY: Hair Lightening!

Sometime back I had my make up trial with J**, she suggested that I get my hair coloured to 1) look younger (jet black hair looks auntie?!) and 2) show off her intricate hair braiding skillz. I have never coloured my hair in my entire life and was resistant to the idea of slapping more chemicals onto my hair, so the sister offered an alternate solution: do-it-yourself hair lightening!

It sounded intriguing and more importantly cost effective, so I set out to do some research on my own as the sister’s instructions were less than scientific, “you mix honey together with conditioner, put it in the fridge to set and then apply on your hair.” I found an improved instruction manual online, along with a simple explanation of how honey contains hydrogen peroxide, the ingredient to bleach hair.

The instruction calls for raw honey, cinnamon, olive oil and conditioner. I bought the first two items from the local supermarket. I had conditioner in the house of course, and for olive oil I used my existing supply of Ginvera olive oil. Total cost: less than $10.

After four tries of this method, I am pleased to inform that my hair has lightened considerably, to the extent that A has started calling me “ah lian”! I cannot show any photos for obvious reasons, but this is definitely something that works, and the good news is that the effect is very much permanent!

I’m going to do this for two more times, and hopefully J** will be satisfied with the results when she next sees me on the actual day.

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The Necklace

I ruminated long and hard about getting this necklace to disguise my ugly neck when I eventually have to put on the strapless gown. At 155 SGD, it isn’t that expensive considering it is handmade with Swarovski crystals and pearls. However I struggled to decide if it would be rude to decline wearing either of the two necklaces that I’m due to receive from both mothers, and I weighed the possible backlash that the Etsy necklace, unique as it is, is just not as expensive (and hence perceived as not worthy) as the other necklace options that I already have.

In the end I took the plunge anyway because I am excessively concerned about my overtly ugly neck. I played the order with Sarah Walsh Jewellery on 18 May; on 20 May I was informed that the item was shipped, and I received it on 2 June. Total duration was 15 days, way beyond expectations considering 1) the item came from Canada and 2) the Etsy disclaimer stated a production time of 1 to 10 business days.

Anyway, the necklace came in a nice wedding-esque box; the box was lined with soft cotton (the envelope was padded with bubble wrap too); and the necklace was sealed in a ziplock bag (the only way to store jewellery!) before it was slipped into a pink organza bag. The box also came with care instructions, so needless to say I was very impressed and pleased with my purchase.

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The pearls look yellowish in the photo, but they really look much better in real life. I think I am liking the necklace a little too much, and once again I am wondering how else can I wear this after the reception. Maybe I will turn it into a family heirloom, and it shall be worn by my daughter, my daughter’s daughter, and my daughter’s daughter’s daughter on their w day.

I’m kidding. They should all just elope and screw the whole w bullshit.

The Cheongsam

I collected the cheongsam from Wilson of Max Couture about a week ago. The approximate timeline is as follows:

Week 0: Went to Max Couture, chose fabric and lace. Took measurements. Paid up deposit.
Week 8: First fitting. Bodice was a little loose. Wilson positioned the remaining lace bits to be used on the sheer chest area.
Week 9: Second and final fitting. Paid the balance, carried the dress home.

In total I paid $600 for this knee length cheongsam. I reckon it is a reasonable price, given the excellent workmanship of the dress (although don’t quote me on this, I did not do any price comparison at all). I suppose I can rewear the cheongsam if I maintain my figure, so perhaps I’ll wear it to my sister’s wedding if the time ever comes.

A close up of the details on the dress:

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I finally have a minty coloured dress! I am very pleased with the colour combination. In all honesty though, I am still slightly uncomfortable wearing it because of my ugly neck and wide shoulders. It just feels slightly tpp exposed, and yet I can’t wear a necklace to draw attention away from the ugly frontal area. Why can’t we all be born perfect? 😦

The Gown

My loyal readers have been wailing over the lack of updates, so I feel obliged to pen down the latest developments with regards to the w preparation.

I collected the gown about 2 weeks ago. The approximate timeline for the entire construction of the gown is as follows:

Sometime last year: I thought we were going to have a reception, so I went down to Vivian’s (alone!) twice to check out her collection. Dropped the ball since then, but I already knew which gown I wanted should the occasion arise again.
Week 0: Went to Vivian’s again, this time with A and FX in tow. Confirmed on the design, took my measurements, paid up the deposit. Was informed that the gown would be ready in Week 10.
Week 10: First gown fitting. Bodice was a little loose, length was way too long. Removed the can-can. Decided to chop off part of the train too.
Week 11: Second gown fitting. Appliques on the bodice required some adjustment.
Week 12: Third and final gown fitting. Picked out a simple matching veil to go along with the gown. Paid the balance. Carried the gown home.

In total I paid slightly less than $1,100 for a brand new take home piece. I still feel the pinch, but for reasons mentioned in previous posts, this was the sensible thing to do (well if we are being honest, the sensible thing to do is to not have a w at all).

I am obviously too shy to put up a picture of myself in the gown, so here’s one from Vivian’s collection album:


Source

All in all I am very pleased with the quality of the gown, and more importantly how fuss free this entire process was. Special thanks to the perennial chauffeur that is A, and FX and the sister for taking time off to accompany me to my fittings.

Is it Friday yet?

Hey it’s Friday again! I’m aware I’ve missed 3 days worth of posts, but I am not the least bit apologetic! Nothing much happened w wise, so there was not much to update.

On Wednesday, FX and I went for my first dress fitting at V*****’s place. The whole thing happened pretty fast, with V sticking pins everywhere and anywhere. I was terrified of moving about as I didn’t want to become a human pin cushion! In summary there were a couple of alterations she had to do:

  1. Remove the can-can because I felt the skirt was too poufy
  2. Take in some of the chest (I lost weight!)
  3. Take in some of the waist and hips because of the can-can
  4. Shorten the dress length (V had too much faith in my height)
  5. Shorten the train (V thought our reception would be grand. She thought wrong!)
  6. Replace the back zip (V brought this up, I don’t really know what it means but I think she should be making it nicer)

My second fitting is in 10 days’ time! In all honesty I wasn’t that excited about trying on the gown. The whole “magic” of it is lost on me, and I felt more uncomfortable than anything else. Also I was distracted by my ugly and pastey neck area! I need a tan.

We also framed up Monkey and Fishes, lovingly done by the uncle at Jalan Bukit Merah. A and I are expected to engage in a civil war regarding where they should be placed, so stay tuned!

Most of A’s invitation cards are out, but it seems like my mom has not sent out any from the bride’s side! I suspect a mad rush will ensue, and A and I will indubitably be dragged into it.We are meeting the reception venue people next week! I think that’s about all. We haven’t started on the programme. And on the decorations. Holy crap.

Say Yes to the Dress!

If I had tried on a hundred dresses, I think A would have turned 40 by the time I was done! Sometimes I wonder if these brides were paid to act a certain way, after all a boring and agreeable bride doesn’t make good TV.

So there are some things I would never wear, gown or no gown. Satin is one, mermaid is another. No feathers, no high-low dresses, no ruffles. No toga, nothing asymmetrical.

I wonder how my gown will turn out, maybe I’ll look like a cupcake, maybe I’ll look like an exploding tissue box. But well, there’s no turning back now!

Jewellery Part 2

This is a sequel to a previous post. The ever wonderful, sweet, generous and kind A bought a simple pair of diamond ear studs for me. The pair was to complete the 四点金 set that his mom is supposed to give me, but nonetheless it is an incredibly sweet gesture considering nothing else that I’ve received so far is actually something I like!

I also covet this pearl necklace from Etsy, but I’m not sure if I can pull off pearls, and it seems like a one-off piece of jewellery that I will only wear during the w. The good news is production and shipping takes 3 weeks max, so I have time to consider.

This whole jewellery business also means we are going to end up with a rather expensive collection for our keeps, so it is high time we start looking for a safe box to store these things. An average safe box is about $500, but there are more to consider besides price point. How big should it be? Should it be able to contain A4 papers (and files)? Does it need to be water and/or fire proof? Is fingerprint identification required? Is overriding mechanism required?

I’m writing all these here so that A can mull over which brand and model we get. (He is never going to make a decision, but there’s no harm in hoping!)