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Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Adeline Wan Ling Choo


Miss Malaysia Year 2006

Monday, May 21, 2007

Style In Brief


>>The long and short of it: Take your pick of longer shorts from the philosophy-Men Short Circuit collection.

Look hot in shorts no matter what the occasion.

SHORTS are cutting a stride in style this season, with a panache not seen since bicycle shorts turned the wheels of fashion fast and furious.

And not a moment too soon.

With the mercury testing new heights daily and global climate change hogging the headlines, the look is a shortcut to relief from the heat and damp.

But then again some of you guys might say you wouldn't be caught dead in shorts, It's not very flattering with flabby, skinny, knock kneed or bow-legged limbs, you protest? Or it could be that you like to look debonair and stylish and shorts are just too casual-looking, perhaps?

Well, this bow-legged writer says comfort beats out making an impression. Besides, it's all about how you carry yourself, isn't it?

What's more, if you want style and sophistication, there's quite a few designs out there. Label lovers can take their pick from designers who have gotten into the shorts thing this season.

Among local brands, look no further than philosophy-Men with their collection called Short Circuit. There's a pair for every bloke, insists the brand's co-founder Allan Chan. The collection features streamlined shapes, cut lean and low, of all lengths.

"The key to beating the scorching heat in shorts, and in style, is in the cut, colour and cloth. They come in heavyweight natural fabrics as we believe men do not want yards of light, shiny fabric flapping around their legs."

He suggests navy for smart engagements, or khaki or beige for day-to-day. For the urban smart look, pair shorts with a striped button-down shirt or light knitted vest, leather belt and soft leather shoes.

There's nothing wrong with looking casual, as long as the shorts and tees are not dirty and unkempt.

"Always buy shorts an inch too big (for waist size) and wear them looser and lower on the hip for a contemporary fit" is Chan's final tip.

Seed has also gone with the trend, with the 1980s and preppy look.

Look like a smart campus jock in a blazer and striped cotton Oxford shirt matched with denim shorts. Or go fur gym shorts that are, erm, short.

Jackets are really the way to go with shorts, this season, for a look that's more formal but yet not so uptight. You can match a denim or biker jacket with sporty cotton shorts if you really want to look casual. Or opt for shorts with a matching suit jacket and gold sneakers.

You can also go High Street. Topman has shorts in stylish finely striped cotton. Or get hip and funky in lime-green bermudas paired with a white single (a Topman one that is, not a Pagoda top) and along-sleeved mesh design with plunging V-neck.

There's also tile option for tile part-skater, part-surf look with print board shorts matched with shocking pink tee.

But you can always go for the surfer/beach look (never mind if you're stuck on urban turf ) by checking out Reef's offerings. They have twill board shorts and walking shorts in ethnic prints, destination- inspired graphics and floral prints. With the right shades you don't even need a pair of skates or a surfing board, dude. Cowabunga!

If you have the moolah, there's always the designer option. If you're young (rich goes without saying) and love to while the day away at cool cafes, then Gucci has some chic choices.

There's the turn-up pair with built-in fabric belt matched with rocker vest, Or try on for size the tight-tight teeny-weeny suede pants that you can match with just about anything and still come out looking hot.

For slightly older guys, Valentino can't be beaten. Try the grey turn-up cotton shorts with tight tank and croco-leather jacket. Or opt for the white cotton shorts - stylish yet casual - worn with a tie-dye shirt.

And yeah, we know you sophisticated guys like to hang out at the beach. One could swear the striped rainbow print on Paul Smith's drawstring shorts debuted on a shirt design seasons back. But hey, it still looks good. But to be really nautically inspired, try on his ship blueprint drawstring shorts.

To cut a long story short, pictures speak best for themselves, as you see. For sure, shorts are not just for Boy Scouts this season.



>>Smart: Seed’s matching jacket and shorts.


>>Bare essentials: Turn-up shorts with built-in fabric belt worn with rocker vest from Gucci.


>>Cool cat: Turn-up cotton shorts matched with tight tank and croco-leather jacket from Valentino.


>>Colourful: Board shorts from Reef.

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Monday, May 14, 2007

Train-Spotting


Well-executed:
Brocade and songket from the Noor Arfa label made a splash.

At the the annual Malaysian Official Designers' Association show, S.S. YOGA discovered some gems - and some discards.

ARE you a fan of trains? And by that, I don't mean moving carriages. Trains, in this instance, refer to that long piece of cloth that trails a gown.

At the recent Malaysian Official Designers' Association (MODA) 2007 show, dubbed Fashion Gateway, trains ruled the night. And what's a Malaysian fashion show without lots of chiffon, sequins and embellishments? There was also plenty of metallic shine.

Designers Michael Ong, Orson Liyu, Carven Ong and Amanda Brown, among others, came up with their own variations of the train. Some chose to create unusual versions.

Dominique Chan, last year's debutant, showed off a voluminous gown but thankfully, departed from his usual bride in white. His creations were satin chocolate brown with white motifs that stood out.

Orson Liyu's train and his pure black creations were stunning. It clearly illustrated that good fashion sense lies in the cut and structure, and one doesn't need excessive detailing to win over the buyer. He also incorporated draping and wrap styles in his capes.

That was another technique used by quite a few of the designers in the show. Amanda Brown continued her flirtation with denim, while Bon Zainal took his inspiration from James Bond and came up with debonair suits for men and women.

For a moment, it seemed that the Looi sisters had made a pact and fused some of their signature looks into each other's designs. Beatrice's glamorous gowns, all in black, had touches of embroidered details that were more Melinda-like while Melinda's usual Gothic, earthy ethereal look was somewhat toned down and more commercial. Many of the designers favoured black or white, or dashes of both in their designs. Jonathan Cheng's creations were all white with a dash of black. They were playful and very 50s. Lester Wong opted for ochre coloured creations with metallic bits thrown in for that extra sparkle. Michael Ong, on the other hand, painted the town red with his dramatic chiffon numbers.

Since Datuk Tom Abang Saufi has gone British just like fellow Datuk, Bernard Chandran, she no longer banks on her trademark pua motifs. Her designs were more urban contemporary, and her mostly black and white outfits were very current and wearable.

Daniel Cho got the crowd roaring especially with his male model in a skimpy pair of trunks but that's Cho - always the showman. And talking about showmanship, the night belonged to Richard Tsen who adopted the avant-garde approach with his take on the flapper look with what appeared like huge curled wood shavings. Accompanied by a singer, it certainly won the crowd over with a sporting Tsen doing a jig at the end. If this were Designer Idol, he would definitely be safe for the next round.

We've had some hideous and yucky creations from a "cyber" designer before so perhaps Cherman Woon wanted to show him a thing or two with his version of futuristic wear.

Anita Sarawak probably inspired Bill Keith, so if you think you have a bit of "Anita" in you, you know what to wear. This is not some small-time local awards show so you would think that designers should know that they are not designing for some minor starlet.

Last year, a particular designer brought out clothes that seemed more at home in the pasar malam (night market). Although his creations looked a little better this year, they weren't anything to shout about.

Some of our local designers appear to be stuck in a rut. Rather than using the same formula all the time, they should think out of the box if they hope to take things to the next level.

An interesting capsule collection by Heidi Koh, last year's winner of the Malaysian Young Designers' Competition (MYDC), kicked off the night's events and this was followed by a single creation from this year's 12 finalists. Yee Kar Juen's edgy yet very wearable raw knit creation won the award. He also took home the total look prize.

Thirty designers were involved in the showcase. A showing by eight brands was held before the main event. This showcase put some of the individual designers' efforts to shame. It was good that each designer only exhibited three to four outfits. Otherwise, it would have been excruciating.

Jarumas did pretty well, demonstrating that there are stylish and elegant options for modern Muslim women. The traditional baju from Noor Arfa, which had songket and brocade put to good use, produced lovely results.

Sarawakian label, Von Jolly, saw imaginative use of colour and the Renaissance-inspired gown was a knockout with its many shades and elaborate embroidery. It was also good to see Jendela Batik showing off two non-batik outfits from their men's wear line, proving they're not just all about batik.

Zang Toi ended the night with a set of classy lilac numbers.



Gothic:
Design by Beatrice Looi.(left)
Inspired: Orson Liyu come up with one of the best night.


Go with the flow:
Dominique Chan makes another impressive statement.


Chic:
Daniel Chong's suede creation.


Minimalist approach:
You can always count on designer Daniel Choo to make the audience go 'whoa'.

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Sunday, May 13, 2007

Come Feed The Fish


Fish food:
While you tittle, the Garra Rufa will nibble. - KEE HUA CHEE

You've heard of Turkish massage, Turkish steam baths and Turkish Delight, but what about Turkish Doctor Fish?

Fish reflexology? This treatment being offered at the Underwater World Singapore must be a foot massages underwater, right?

After all, I am surrounded by huge aquariums. But no, when they say fish, they mean just that.

First, I am asked to wash my feet with cleanser - lest my stinky toes overwhelm the poor fish. Trousers rolled to knee, I am taken to the first pool which is filled with tiny 2cm-long Garra Rufa, the so-called Doctor Fish, found in Turkey and parts of the Middle East.

Also known as Nibble Fish, Kangal Fish (named after their native town in Turkey) and Log Suckers, they resemble ikan bills as they swim and swarm by the hundreds. Dull, brownish and insipid-looking, they would never qualify as aquarium fish. But, as the sages say, appearances can be deceptive!

"They are toothless, so don't worry," says my nursemaid (she looks the part, dressed in starched white uniform).

I sit and dip my feet into the 36~C water. It's a marvel that these fish can thrive in this water without going belly up.

Even before I put my legs in, the greedy fish come flocking, impatient to bite the legs that feed them!

Moving as one, the little fish surround my legs and begin nibbling away, even in between my toes.

The sensation? Ticklish and just a wee bit painful!

I stare transfixed as the little predators (they turn carnivorous if left to starve) feed on my legs, giving me a micro-massage, and hence, a sort of foot massage. Despite their minuscule size, the school of Garra Rufa certainly make their tingling presence felt!

Initially, I have to lift my legs out of the water now and then as the nibbling gets, well, on my nerves.

After 10 minutes, I decide to try the second pool, filled with the larger, 2-5cm Cyprinioo macrostomus species, which is supposed to be more aggressive and effective. Since they are not members of the piranha family, I give it a go.

These are the "strikers", while the ikan bills are the "lickers". I can't argue with that. If they were piranhas, my legs would be just bone right now. They pounce on me in a feeding frenzy that is slightly unnerving, The discomfort from the nibbling is more intense, although after 10 minutes, it subsides to a more tolerable sensation.

I lament to the lady across me that the fish prefer her to me. (1 like being the centre of attention, you see!)

"Be thankful your legs are not as popular as mine!," says Mariam Sarah.

"I suffer from psoriasis, a persistent skin condition resulting in red eruptions that are very itchy. They form plaques which are like layers of scales on the skin. I had a very bad case and went to Kangal, Turkey for a 21-day treatment. These fish remove the red dead skin by eating them away."

I stare at her reddish legs with the silvery scales and immediately lift my legs out of the water.

Mariam Sarah laughs, "Don't worry, psoriasis is not contagious - so I am NOT polluting the water! These fish have really helped eased my pain. Now I come here regularly for maintenance."

Mercifully, these Doctor Fish can differentiate between dead and normal skin, nibbling and quickly eating just dead cells to allow new skin to regenerate, it's almost like a feet facial!

However, unlike in Turkey where people can lie submerged in the water, Underwater World in Singapore only offers toe dipping.

Fish treatment is the most economical says Mar am Sarah, "The medicines cost me a fortune, so this is cheap by comparison,"

Singapore's Underwater World charges S$35 (RM78) for 20 minutes in the fish pool and 20 minutes of reflexology. For another S $10 (RM22), you get 10 minutes of head and shoulder massage. The au naturel spa therapy in Kangal, Turkey costs at least US$2,000 (RM6,800) per person (excluding flight) for the 21-day treatment, which includes soaking for eight hours a day in the selenium-rich waters.

As the two fish species are not endangered, I suggest to Mariam Sarah to build her own pool or fill her bath with them. But maintaining the right lying conditions for them would be difficult - and she would have to semi starve them!

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Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Turning 10 In Star Studded Fasion

Celebrity models show off MNG's latest collection during anniversary celebration

CAMERAS flashed and heads turned as the crowd marveiled at the models, including Amber Chia, sashaying down the catwalk all decked, out in clothes and accessories from MNG’s spring/Summer 2007 Collection.

MNG (also known as Mango), the well-known Spanish fashion label for young, urban women, recently held its 1Oth anniversary celebration at Sunway Resort Hotel & Spa, which featured a fashion show of its latest collection.

The hotel's grand ballroom was turned into a fashion catwalk for the night, complete with stylish backdrop and upbeat music, as emcee Serena C gave an introduction to what MNG's Spring/Summer 2007 Collection had to offer.

The collection includes eight key trends - Style Council, Sporty Deluxe, Jane Birkin, Basquiat, Bauhaus, Sweetness of Life, The Artist Muse and Minimal Ethnic - each with its own inspiration, colour palette and fabrics.

Style Council takes its inspiration from the 60s updated in a sophisticated urban look, with flared mini-dresses as the key element.

Clothes from The Artist Muse are likened to blank canvases decorated with strong brush strokes with a vaguely 50s silhouette, while Sporty Deluxe's fashionwear take references from 80s sportswear, mixed with the pure lines of the 60s.

The urban, minimalist look of Minimal Ethnic is inspired by trips to Africa, where linen and cotton clothes are enriched with abstract animal prints or subtle ethnic patterns.

Sweetness of Life provides a breath of flesh air in the heat of summer, with naive prints in shades of apple green combined with garments in white and cocoa.

Basquiat derives its style by fusing together influences like New Wave, hip hop and early 80s art scene, as well as the trend towards sportswear, as shown at the New York catwalk shows for spring/summer 2007.

Russian constructivism and the Bauhaus movement (an influential element in Modernist architecture) have been used as a source of inspiration for the Bauhaus trend, which has a mix of masculine and feminine looks.

Jane Birkin is a collection named after Jane Birkin, a style icon and muse of the 60s and 70s. The main colour option for this trend are flame red and white, while crochet adds a hippy edge to the more structured 60s look.

The celebration also featured several celebrities modelling clothes and accessories from MNG, including Marion Caunter, Celina Khor, Daphne lking, Elaine Daly, Jojo Struys, Carmen Soo, Jaclyn Victor, Miss Malaysia/World 2006 Adeline Choo and Miss Malaysia/World 2005 Emmeline Ng.

More information about Adeline Choo

"Hitting the 10th-year mark is an achievement for any retail brand in today's competitive scene, but to stay on top of our peers as well as to remain the trendsetter is an amazing feat," said MNG division denior vice president for Asia, Australia and Oceania Ivy Lee.

"We are also happy to announce that this is also a year of celebration for the Mango brand worldwide as we hit our 1,000th store mark two months ago.

"We see every step as a challenge to set higher goals and that's the reason we are still keeping with the aggressive rhythm of opening more than 120 stores every year."


Star-studded: MNG division senior vice-president for Asia, Australia and Oceania Ivy Lee (sixth from right) with the celebrity models and event's emcee, who are all decked out in MNG clothes and accessories. The celebrities are (from right) Marion Caunter, Celina Khor, Daphne Iking, Adeline Choo, Amber Chia, Emmeline Ng, Jaclyn Victor, Carmen Soo, Jojo Struys, Elaine Daly and Serena C.


Animal and patterns: Models striking a pose in garments from MNG's Minimal Ethnic collection.


1.Striking: Amber Chia sashaying down the catwalk in a dress and bag from MNG's Sporty Deluxe collection.
2.Shine out among the crowed: There is nothing monotonous about these grey, silver and white combinations from MNG's Spring/Summer 07 Collection.




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Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Affordable Treat

THANKS to Asian Spa Hydrotherapy Centre, having beautiful skin does not require you to pay a high price. Asian Spa is one of the specialists in Face, Body and Hair Spa. Customers will enjoy the pampering spas as well as the price they are paying for it. The spas are so affordable, you'll find yourself coming back for more.

There are three types of Body Spas available at the centre: Whole Body Slimming, Body Whitening and Full Body Swiss Massage Therapy.

The Whole Body Slimming allows customers to experience up to eight sessions in a day that helps in detoxification, burning of stubborn fats, body contouring, as well as skin firming.

Pamper yourself to a Whole Body Whitening Spa where you'll be indulging in a whitening scrub, energy bath, and a 3-in-1 essential / milk jacuzzi hydrotherapy.

To experience luxurious relaxation, you can opt for an hour of a Full Body Swiss Massage Therapy. Take time out from your hectic lifestyle and experience this massage that includes aromatherapy de-stress, reflexology, as well as slimming.

Achieve a radiant looking skin with Dr. Philberta 8-in-I Ice Chilling 3-tier Skin Ultrasound Therapy.

Tested in Switzerland, this facial spa helps get rid of skin discolouration, blemishes, and reduces the appearance of fine lines as well as aging skin.

Apart from body and face spa, the centre also provides Hair Spa with services such as rebonding, wave spa perming, and colouring, all available at a reasonable price.

Asian Spa is currently having a special package promotion!

You can enjoy Whole Body Slimming for as low as RM49.90, Whole Body Whitening Spa as low as RM39.90 and Full Body Swiss Massage Therapy as low as RM29.90.

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Rejuvenating Your Dry Skin

IMMERSE yourself in Surmer, a new dimension in cosmetic skin care targeting the dry, dull and moisture-deficient skin. Surmer from the house of Isabelle Lancray, Paris, combines natural plant based active ingredients and scientific based technology to make your skin feel good.

The unique secret is called Nanopearls, which uses breakthrough award-winning technology Cutanova Nanorepair Q10, Nanovital Q10 and Serum Nanorepair Q10. Nanopearls became the Most Innovative European Cosmetic Products in 2005/2006. Minute Nanopearls are novel active substance reservoirs and are currently the smallest patented carrier system for the natural, exotic, yet traditional South Pacific plant-derived raw materials that are used in Surmer products.

For the first time ever, it is possible to effectively transport precious fat-soluble active ingredients into the skin. Dry skin can now be re-moisturized and subsequently toned and be more elastic. With nature's secrets in tow, Surmer brings to you its complete range for your skin's daily well-being experience:

1. Surmer Soft Moisturizing Cream Nano - Protection (RM268) is an intensive day and night moisturizing cream for everyday use and is a protective shield for dry skin. An extract from the Polynesian noni plant, it is high in antioxidant and has immunestabilizing properties; it strengthens the skin's own defences, reducing susceptibility to irritation. This cream basically helps your skin to help itself.

2. Surmer Rich Restoring Cream Nano – Restructuring (RM288) is a concentrated day and night cream that targets at the restructure of dry skin. Another plant extract from Tahiti – Tamanol, is a traditional beauty product that stimulates collagen synthesis, promoting long-lasting wrinkle reduction.

3. Surmer Beauty Elixir Nano - Vitalising (RM248) is a serum that when combined with the appropriate cream, is an extra protective shield for dry skin during the day. At night, it continues to promote the skin regeneration process.

4. Surmer Rich Creamy Mask Nano - Moisturizing (RMI68) is a concentrated creamy mask containing Tamanol, making it the perfect supplementary skin care product for enhancing the restructuring of moisture-deficient skin. Recommended for use two to three times a week,a good tip would be to leave it on overnight to increase its effect.


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