Janet has long had one of my favorite blogs to read and I love her style – I think she’s a little like an Asian Kate Moss! And she is one of those unfair winners of the genetic lottery and one of the youngest looking, most stylish mommies I have ever seen. Enjoy meeting her…and as always, I’ve sprinkled some of my favorite looks of hers throughout.
Who are you? What do you do, and where do you live?
I’m a very proud mother of a baby boy who just turned 1 last week! Otherwise, I guess I should say that I’m a finance broker and consultant, stylist, buyer, co-owner of an online consignment store, blogger, foodie and enthusiast traveler…let’s just say I like to keep myself busy! Many people think that I’m Korean, but I’m Chinese born in China (Shanghai to be more specific) and now living in Canada.
You are gorgeous! Can you share some secrets?
Hahaha…I didn’t know mommies can be heroes too! Well, honestly, I must say that going through pregnancy and post-pregnancy is very challenging psychologically and physically. And I think it’s very important not to forget to take time for yourself! Personally, I went shopping as much as every week! It lifted my spirit and allowed me to get new clothes that fit my “new shape” while doing exercise (walking while pushing a stroller is considered exercise) for 2 hrs.
I also started working on a new project with my best friend (also a mommy), which started as an online consignment store, and is now an image consulting and stylist studio due to open soon in Shanghai! We are also working on creating our own label which is also very exciting. All projects to keep me busy and sane! And I really think that’s key to stay happy and youthful.
What are the final finishing touches you think make a great outfit? Accessories, etc?
I love contrast in style, texture, colours, shape and anything unexpected to make an outfit more interesting. And just like most women, I love accessories and try really hard to invest in statement pieces that I can wear forever! I think costume jewelry is a great way to add impact to an outfit if you don’t want to break the bank. And I tend to wear them with everything from a t-shirt to a cocktail dress. However, I don’t live in Paris or Tokyo, so I do tend to keep everything else simple…especially now that I moved to the suburbs!
Who are some of your favorite designers?
There are so many great legacy designers and emerging designers…so hard to pick only a few. My current favorite brands are Celine, Missoni, Hermes, Alexander Wang, Alexander McQueen, Rick Owens, Kenneth Jay Lane, YSL, Pamela Love, Acne, Helmut Lang and Givenchy.
Can you share some of your favorite items that you own?
I treasure all my purchases and try to wear them all as much as I can (cost per wear theory) but obviously have favorites. The items I wear the most are my Hermes CDC cuff, my Dominic Jones ring, my Converse sneakers, my D&G shearling parka and my Le Pepe flat over-the-knee boots. My holy grail is obviously my Hermes Havane Constance bag…I love everything about it!
What designers do you think are overrated?
I think Gucci is overated…don’t get me wrong, I do own Gucci but haven’t bought anything since the Tom Ford era. Others that fall into this category for me are Juicy Couture, Coach and True Religion or any pair of designer jeans over $250.
What are some things that you thought you were going to wear forever, and now regret buying?
This is a good one…hum…my Chloe Paddington bag in chocolate brown. I was so obsessed with the style, the leather and the oversize lock that weights a ton. Well, when I finally got my hands on it, I think I wore it a dozen times before I realized that the lock literally weights a ton!!!
What is a typical day to day outfit?
It may sound boring but a lot of t-shirt. I love buying t-shirt that are deconstructed or that can be worn different ways. And all t-shirts including long, cropped, asymmetrical, oversized, backless and t-shirt dress. This might also be influence by the fact that during and post-pregnancy, this is the one most comfortable and easy piece to wear.
Then I’ll add ton of jewelry, heels (as often as I can), scarf & hat and gorgeous leather bag.
What are some of your places to find affordable but stylish clothing finds?
I love ZARA for fashion pieces and Club Monaco for basics. And while traveling, street vendors are the best place to pick up fun jewelry that you won’t find at home, most of the time for under $10 CAD.
Can you share some style/fashion advice that you’ve had to learn over the years?
Don’t buy just because it’s on sale! I learnt this the hard way and ended up with huge credit card bills and high end designer items that I didn’t really like in the first place. Also, just walk away from whatever it is (jeans, leather jacket, etc) if it’s too small. Not only that it makes you’ll look like you just gained 10 lbs and can no longer fit into your old clothes, it may also “cheapen” the whole outfit. However, you might be able to alter if it’s a little too big. As for shoes, if your size is not available, it should be an automatic deal breaker.
How do you do your budgeting? How do you decide how much to spend on fashion?
Although I’m in finance, I don’t really have a budget when it comes to shopping (I sound a bit like “Confessions of a Shopaholic!”). However, I only splurge on well thought-through luxuries, meaning if it’s a quality piece that I’ve been dreaming about for more than 6 months and cost/wear is less than $100/wear, then I will proceed with purchase. Otherwise, everything else I buy is mostly on sale or at sample sales. I love sample sales and fortunately, most sample sizes fit me! Nowadays, we are also spoiled with so many online discount/sale sites that it’s becoming very hard for me to buy at regular price. I would say that maybe only 25% of my closet comprise of regular price items.
Finally…tell us something surprising about yourself!