Saturday Musings + Coffee – Bullet Journal Life

Oh no guys, I’m posting another Saturday Musings blog on a Sunday. What a terrible blogger am I.

This weekend sees me beginning my first bullet journal, which is arguably a terrible decision for the actual organization of my life. See, I’m terrible at devoting time to projects like this. I want them to turn out beautiful, as if I’d put hours and hours of my time in to it, but I’m unwilling to put the hours and hours into it, so I wind up with something where a few pages are done to perfection and the rest are half finished and neglected.

But I just couldn’t resist! I started watching AmandaRachLee’s bullet journal tutorials on YouTube, and I couldn’t stop myself after I saw her pretty pastel colors and simplistic designs. Plus, I figured I already spent a lot of time putting doodles into my planner and making that look cute, so why not put just a little more time into making a bullet journal look cute?

We’ll see how it turns out, I guess. I’ve finished my June spread, and I’m really happy with how it turned out! I used my Prismacolor alcohol-based markers, resulting in having to skip pages due to bleed through (“ghosting” as I’ve heard it called), but I didn’t really have anything better to use. My Prismacolors aren’t really being used for anything right now anyway, so this seemed like the perfect opportunity.

I’ll keep you updated on my bullet journal adventures! I’m not sure I’d put much faith into me actually maintaining it, especially once school begins, but I wouldn’t count it out either. I like it so far, so hopefully my motivation remains!

Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in the next one! Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, BloglovinTwitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com!

May 27, 2018 – Rustic Chic (OOTD #293)

I feel like these shots are the personification of one of those trendy Pinterest crafts that shows you how to put a succulent into a mason jar and make it look cute.

Rustic chic is very trendy aesthetic right now, though I’m pretty sure it’s been trendy ever since I was in middle school, about ten years ago. Middle class white Americans everywhere seem to be in love with the repurposed but still charmingly rustic farm materials look, and just about every picture here reflects that.

It helps of course that most of them were taken at an actual farm — a horse farm, to be specific. My grandmother was visiting town, so we took her to an upscale vintage and antique market that was going on at the Kentucky Horse Park. There were mason jars and string lights and succulents everywhere; it was a Facebook mom’s dream.

Though I didn’t really buy much (just a plant — surprise, surprise), I did get some really pretty pictures. There was a sign outside that warned against taking pictures (I guess because they didn’t want you copying the vendors’ ideas?), but no one seemed to mind me wandering in and out of booths taking pictures whenever I saw a pretty arrangement of flowers.

And there were so many! It wasn’t just a Facebook mom’s dream; it was a fashion blogger’s. I wish I had brought several outfits along so I could do a real shoot and get more varied content for my Instagram feed; as it was though, I only had the one I wore. Unfortunate.

Fun fact, though — both my jacket and my dress here are vintage, just like the things for sale at this market! The jacket was originally part of a two-piece outfit with a long cream skirt, and the dress was originally much longer until it was shortened. I hadn’t thought of pairing them together before, and I felt pretty clever for making up an entire outfit of vintage pieces for this event.

If you’ll remember, I actually went to this event last year as well! Back then, I had long blonde hair and dressed in red, white, and blue for Memorial Day. Amazing what a year of difference makes, isn’t it? I am reconsidering going blonde again, though. We’ll see.

That’s about it for today. Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in the next one with more updates on my life at Notre Dame! Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, BloglovinTwitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com!

Jacket: Vintage (thrifted)

Dress: Vintage (thrifted)

May 26, 2018 – Complimentary Colors (OOTD #292)

Double complimentary colors! Look at that!

I love complimentary colors. I don’t know who doesn’t — they work so well together, and the fact that they work well together is a part of their name.

Here, I have both red and green going in my outfit, and then orange and blue in the background. That wasn’t really intentional, but now that I see how it turned out, I’m a fan.

I’m always on the lookout for new and colorful backdrops for my OOTD photography, and I thought this Mexican restaurant’s walls worked perfectly for that. Some of the most unconventional locations can make for good backgrounds, and you never know when they’re going to pop up — I once used a bathroom wall, which probably takes the cake for unusual backgrounds.

Fun fact — this is actually my second Mexican restaurant featured on this blog as a background.  The first was just as colorful, though pink rather than orange and blue. I find restaurants to make for good backgrounds because they’re often painted vibrant, eye-catching colors. They may not be glamorous, but a nice colorful wall always works well on my Instagram feed.

Running a fashion blog isn’t always as fabulous as it may seem, then. As much as I’d love to take my OOTD photos at an exotic Paris café every day, more often, they wind up being taken outside of Kentucky Mexican restaurants as random families pass by and wonder why some Asian chick is having a fashion shoot in public.

I’d say it’s a living, but I don’t get paid very much or very often, so it’s really not. It’s a…hobby?

That’s about it for today. Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in the next one with more updates on my life at Notre Dame! Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, BloglovinTwitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com!

Sweater: Forever21

Top & Shorts: PacSun

May 24, 2018 – How To Wear a Maxi Skirt as a Mini Person (OOTD #290)

Call me mini, fun-sized, hobbit-like, or petite, the fact of the matter is, I am very short.

Bar a brief period in second grade when my fellow peers’ growth patterns just happened to result in me being average-sized, I have always been very small for my age. Mostly, though, that doesn’t bother me. Being small gives me an extra cute-ness factor, which, at least for now, I appreciate.

What I don’t appreciate, though, is clothes that are made for tall people. There’s nothing wrong with being tall — some days I envy those with height — but the reality of the situation is that I simply cannot wear some kinds of clothing because of my height. I like being short, but I don’t like looking disproportional, and not everything is going to be flattering on me.

Thankfully, just because I can’t wear every shape and style of clothing doesn’t mean I can’t find a way to make most things work. If there’s a trend that you like, but that you don’t think will work for you, chances are you can still incorporate that style into your wardrobe — the key is simply to find the one piece of the particular style that works for your body. Even if not everything works, something still must, right?

For my trip to Nepal later this summer, I’m required to wear loose-fitting pants and skirts that cover at least my calves, so I’ve been experimenting with more modest styles that will be compatible with the fashion there. Unfortunately, as a petite woman, long, loose skirts and pants don’t always look flattering on me, instead making my legs look even shorter than they already are.

The solution I have found to wearing a maxi skirt as a mini person is a high-waisted skirt paired with a form-fitting top, creating the illusion of longer legs and a skinner waist. It’s also important for me to ensure that the skirt doesn’t have too much volume, or else I just look like a cupcake (a look which, while cute for my high school prom, I don’t know if I’d want to do on the daily).

In the end, though, my best piece of advice is just to try stuff on. I know it can be discouraging to keep trying on clothes that don’t look flattering, but if you don’t try, you won’t know what will work for you. If you’re willing to put the effort in, chances are, something is bound to work.

What kinds of styles do you guys find to be tricky for your unique body shape? What tips do you have for making that style work for you? Let me know in the comments below!

That’s about it for today. Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in the next one with more updates on my life at Notre Dame! Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, BloglovinTwitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com!

Sweater: Forever21

Skirt: The LOFT

May 23, 2018 – Sweet Southern Heat (OOTD #289)

iPhone X photos are weird.

Sometimes, the image quality and lighting is gorgeous — all those ads that show amateur photographers taking beautiful portrait-mode works of art are perfectly accurate to how it actually works. And sometimes, the images are grainy and barely any better than what I got on my old iPhone 4.

I’m exaggerating a little, of course — the worst iPhone X photos are still much better than my iPhone 4 photos. It is interesting though, how much variation there is in the photos I get. Sometimes they’re great, sometimes they’re so-so.

Anyway, I feel like these are a little more so-so, which is too bad, given how much I like the outfit. It’s bright and colorful and cheery, just like a good summer (spring, technically, I guess — though it doesn’t much feel like it with how hot it is) outfit should be.

Speaking of which, this weather is not making me cheery. I complain about this every summer I spend in Kentucky, but it’s horrifically humid here, and I am not a fan. It makes me miss the Notre Dame snow, which I probably also complained about.

I’ll be interested to see how I handle the heat of Nepal later this summer when I go with my school. Apparently it’s monsoon season, which sounds to me like even more hot and even more humid.  It’s amazing that I’m from southern China and grew up in the southern United States, because I cannot handle the humidity at all.

I’m a wimp, what can I say.

That’s about it for today. Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in the next one with more updates on my life at Notre Dame! Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, BloglovinTwitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com!

Jacket: Zara

Dress: Lilly Pulitzer

May 21, 2018 – Fast Food Fashion (OOTD #288)

I have been wearing this Notre Dame hat a lot recently, and it makes me feel very trendy.

It’s not necessarily that a baseball hat elevates my fashion — in fact, it makes it even more casual. It’s casual in a cool way, though. Like, how often do you see a baseball hat paired with a dress?

If you use Pinterest or read other fashion blogs, probably plenty. But I can still pretend to be unique and special.

This pictures were done outside of my local Chick-Fil-A — how fun is that? Being totally honest, I hadn’t even intended to do pictures for this outfit, I didn’t think it was cool enough, but my dad and these pretty potted flowers outside of the restaurant convinced me otherwise.

Sometimes, a pretty background comes your way, and you’re not always dressed exactly as you’d like. It happens. The choice then, is whether you do photography even if there’s no outfit worth photographing — and today, I decided to do it. The background was just too cute. Plus, I liked my hat. It’s as simple as that.

That’s about it for today. Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in the next one with more updates on my life at Notre Dame! Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, BloglovinTwitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com!

Dress: Brandy Melville

Hat: Notre Dame bookstore

May 19, 2018 – Railroad Track Adventures (OOTD #287)

For part one of my May 19 adventures, click here.

I ended up wearing two different outfits on May 19 and going to several different locations, resulting in many photos, so I decided to split these blogs up.

Quick refresher: in part 1, Amanda and I went to the rooftop of a parking garage and took some photos with the University of Kentucky’s library in the background. It wasn’t quite the elusive downtown building we were searching for, but we figured it would do.

Well, similarly, these hiking shots along the train tracks and underneath the bridge weren’t quite what we were searching for either. Rather, we had hoped to do some hiking at Raven Run, which has some nice trails but is about a half an hour drive out from Lexington. We actually made it all the way there and drove up to the parking lot, just to realize that the park closed at like, six o’ clock, even though the sun wasn’t going to go down for hours.

So much for “trails close at sundown.”

Dejected but not defeated, we turned around and drove all the way back to Lexington for another half and hour, determined to find another place to live out our hiking dreams. We decided to walk around a different park, one that was a little less like hiking and more like strolling that we’d been to the previous summer.

We got some shots near some train tracks, and with some colorful graffiti that was in the tunnel under the train tracks, so it wasn’t a total loss. I just thought it was funny though that neither of our plans that day — hunting down the mythical downtown rooftop with views of the city and hiking at Raven Run — turned out the way they were supposed to.

It was all okay, though. We had fun, and afterwards, we ordered some Chinese and watched Deadpool to congratulate ourselves for achieving basically nothing we had set out to do.

That’s about it for today. Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in the next one with more updates on my life at Notre Dame! Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, BloglovinTwitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com!

Jacket: Adidas (thrifted)

Top: H&M

Hat: Notre Dame bookstore

May 19, 2018 – Rooftop Adventures (OOTD #286)

And I’m back at it again with the parking garage photos.

If you’ll remember, a few months back over my spring break, a friend and I attempted to find a particular building in downtown Lexington that had a pretty view of the city. We’d seen it several times in other people’s Instagram photos, so we knew the relative location, but try as we might, we never found it. Now that summer break’s begun, we thought we would have another shot at finding a nice rooftop for fashion photography.

And we were successful! Sort of.

This still isn’t the elusive parking garage rooftop that we saw in so many Instagram posts, but this is a different one that I believe still makes for some good photography. The big building behind us is the University of Kentucky’s library (much nicer than Notre Dame’s in my opinion, even though it doesn’t have a gigantic mural of Jesus on the side of it). It’s not quite the downtown scene we were looking for, but I still thought it was fun.

Once we were up there, I whipped out my handy dandy remote camera feature on my Apple Watch, and we were in business to take some photos of ourselves, even though there was no one there to take them for us. Amanda drove her Prius up to about two feet away from the ledge we stood on, I balanced my phone against my purse atop the roof, and we got these fun shots!

Don’t play on rooftops though, kids. It’s dangerous. Do as I say, not as I do.

In actuality, though, this was a much safer set up than the previous parking garage we tried. It was less a ledge and more of an entire platform, so as long as we were careful, we were perfectly fine. I wouldn’t do cartwheels, still, but I felt pretty comfortable.

Plus, there was grass below us instead of concrete, so if we tripped and fell, at least our blood would splatter across the soft grass instead of the hard concrete.

As cool as these shots are, I’m still not quite satisfied. I mean, it’s just a library behind us — not the downtown city scene that I saw in so many people’s photos. I guess we shall have to keep searching.

It’s alright though. We do have the whole rest of the summer.

That’s about it for today. Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in the next one with more updates on my life at Notre Dame! Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, BloglovinTwitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com!

Jacket: Tobi

Bralette: Aerie

Pants: American Eagle

May 17, 2018 – Zero for Two (OOTD #285)

This post is a day late and I’m posting May 17’s outfit after May 18’s — that’s two strikes against me.

Look, keeping up with a 90% daily fashion blog is hard. I do my best, but sometimes, it doesn’t work out. I hope you can forgive me 🙂

I really like how this outfit turned out. Once again, I’m rocking the sunglasses + sunhat look owing to summer laziness and a general lack of motivation to put on makeup. Still, I feel like they fit really well with the vintage vibe I get from this swingy skirt (which is actually vintage! It’s from a local flea market) — it makes me feel classy, like I’m too mysterious to reveal too much of my face.

In reality, of course, I just had a day that I didn’t feel fixing my hair and makeup since I was just hanging out at home by myself. I like to get dressed up for myself, but I’m not quite at the point where I’ll do a full face of makeup for no reason.

No Instagram makeup blogs for me, I guess.

In other news, look how great our Japanese Maple is doing! I like plants now, so I’m very proud of it. Even though I’ve been at school all year and have done literally nothing to contribute to its wellbeing. I still like to think it’s my presence that’s causing it to thrive.

That’s about it for today. Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in the next one with more updates on my life at Notre Dame! Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, BloglovinTwitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com!

Top: Thrifted

Skirt: Vintage (thrifted)

REVIEW: The Body Shop Body Yogurt in Mango

Disclaimer: I received these products complimentary from Influenster for testing purposes. All opinions are my own.

At this point, it looks like I’m getting Influenster products to review fairly consistently now every month. I don’t want to jinx it in case I don’t end up maintaining that streak, but I’ve been getting a new VoxBox basically once a month since my first one back in February.

And I love that, as Arie from The Bachelor might say. It feels good to break up my OOTD posts a little with the occasional beauty review — it keeps things from going stale.

Today, I’ll be reviewing for you The Body Shop Body Yogurt in the mango scent, which I received a few weeks back for free from Influenster for review purposes. I’ve been trying it out a little over the last few days, and I’m ready to share my thoughts.

Packaging-wise, it’s nothing to write home about. Perfectly serviceable, is probably all I have to say about it. It holds the product, the lid is easy to unscrew, and the vibrant orange color makes it stand out from a lot of the beige and cream colored lotions I already own.

What is definitely something to note, though, is the scent. Seriously, this stuff smells so good. It helps, of course, that I like sweet, fruity scents like mango — if you don’t like mango, you’re not going to like this because it literally smells just like a freshly cut mango. It’s so potent that I got a whiff of it when I first opened up the parcel it had been mailed in (not even the pretty box blue box it was packaged in — the regular cardboard parcel containing that box). My first thought was that maybe it had spilled, and the reason I could smell it without even opening the container was that some of it had leaked onto the cardboard.

Rest assured, though, there were no spills — the scent is just that strong. I’ve owned a lot of Bath and Body Works lotions in my time, thanks to plenty of birthday parties in the early 2010s where Bath and Body Works products and those little hand sanitizers were all the rage, and I don’t think any of them compare to the strength of the smell of this stuff.

As for the actual moisturizing properties, it’s a lot more average. As you can see from my photos, it’s a pretty goopy consistency, though still more solid than liquid. It’s pretty close to yogurt, which I guess is why it’s called Body Yogurt. It’s best used when the skin is still wet, such as right after a shower — but I’m pretty sure that’s true of most moisturizers. I found that it absorbed fairly quickly, though not super speedy, and left a slight residue that went away after a minute.

What was most disappointing to me, though, was that the scent didn’t also stick around. For as pretty and as potent as it smelled right out of the package, on the skin, it didn’t really hold up. I guess you could see that as a good or a bad thing — if you liked the scent, like me, you might be a bit disappointed, but if you weren’t interested in smelling like a mango smoothie all day, you might not have been bothered.

Summary:

Pros:

  • Strong, sweet scent
  • Nice, goopy texture
  • Absorbs into skin quickly

Cons:

  • Scent doesn’t last long
  • Moisturizing properties are nothing special

In the end, it was an alright product. I liked it just fine — probably even more than the Bath and Body Works scented body lotions, which I have to think would be their main competitors. It wasn’t perfect though, especially with the fact that the scent didn’t last super long and the moisturizing properties were only so-so. Give it a try if you want something that smells yummy right out of the package but doesn’t get in the way of wearing perfume on top and doesn’t smell too strong on the skin, but if you’re looking for something with a little more in terms of skin benefits, you may want to look elsewhere.

Have you tried The Body Shop’s Body Yogurts Or do you have any suggestions for your favorite moisturizers? Let me know your thoughts below!

Thanks for reading, and I’ll see you in the next one! Don’t forget to check me out on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr! For business inquiries, shoot me an email at lensembledujour@gmail.com!