Wednesday, 30 December 2015

Stock Take - December - 05

The year is over. Goodness. A lot has happened in 2015. But we have a lot to be thankful for.

Reading : I made a mistake of bringing only one novel upcountry - which I was reading here.  I have been reading newspapers and counting days when I'll lay my hands on the stack of unread books I left behind.

Watching : Nothing. Literally nothing.

Googling : Rather being on social media most of the free time.

Drinking : Lots of soda. Every body just buys them in excess on Christmas and when you visit you get a bottle and they can't take no for an answer. Sigh. I've had enough to take me through months.

Eating : Meat. And I mean loads and loads. This is something I've also had enough of.

Listening : To Fourfiveseconds by Rihanna n Kanye. I'm loving it.

Obsessing : Over my family. I love them. Glad to be with them. We've had a good laugh for the days we've been together.

Wearing : T-shirt and jeans. Upcountry ain't no joke with farm work. Loads of chores to do. Loads. By evening you are so worn out sleeping ain't a second thought.

Thankful : For all God has done for us in 2015. Thankful for my wonderful man. We've come from far to this day and we don't take it for granted. He has blessed us. And we can only believe for a better 2016.

I wish all of you my wonderful readers a prosperous 2016.

Much love,

Thursday, 24 December 2015

Packing for Travel

I did a post on dressing for travel here and thought it would be a good idea to help people pack. Yes. Pack. I see you. Three suitcases for a three day four night stay. Let them fit a suitcase and a handbag. Yes. One. A sizeable one. How so?
1. Destination.
Where are you going? What's the main pass time activity? Game drives? Sitting by the beach and sight seeing the town?
If it's game drives, the weather might be fair so we rule out heavy sweaters. Bring light ones for the evening chill. Bring a pair of neutral boots (can be paired with most outfits) for the game drives and two pairs of shorts. A maximum of four tops is okay just to allow you some variety while at it.
For the beach settings, get you three bikinis at most and a sizeable towel. Not one that occupies half the suitcase. And two pairs of shorts. You could wear your bikini under your shorts. And these shorts double up as your sight seeing outfits. You need to bring light shoes here. Maybe a pair of sandals and some sneakers/rubbers.
One night gown is enough.

2. Occasion
Will you be attending any special event while at the trip? Consider a light outfit. Not layers and layers of material that make up your event dress. If it's more than one occasion, be smart and bring a neutral pair of heels that will take you through all events.
Keep the accessories neutral as well. And make up  you only need. Not the whole of your dressing table.

3. Personal Stuff
Mostly oils. Body oil, sunscreen, make up you need, lip balm in your handbag, etc.

Bring only things you need without going through what ifs. What if I need this top and I don't have it with me? No. (Anybody read the Shopaholic series by Sophie Kinsella? Becky? Don't be her.) Be decisive and you'll have less stress over your trip.

The purpose of a holiday is to relax and have fun. Have that in mind and you'll be happy.

Enjoy yourselves this Christmas.

As always,

Stock Take - December - 04

Christmas is tomorrow!! Unbelievable. But I'm part of the less enthusiastic crew. Wanting to get it done with and go back to normalcy. Sigh.
Live from upcountry (Mwingi), here goes the stock take for the week that was:

Reading : I've managed to read Twenties Girl by Sophie Kinsella and currently reading Stolen by Lesley Pearse. Twenties Girl is super hilarious. Enough said. I wish I could have finished Stolen but preparing for Christmas is no joke. Especially running errands with a deadline. Sigh.

Watching : Soaps. Especially between 5-7pm weekdays. I don't know when I went against my word on not getting addicted to the Soaps again. Lol. No willpower.

Googling : About authors. Every day I discover a new author and I just want to know more about them.

Drinking :Green tea.

Eating : Chapati. Christmas ain't Christmas without these. I finally cooked them after more than two years. I'm happy that I still got it!!!

Listening : To good for you by Selena Gomez. First time listening to her song and I like it.

Obsessing : Over my handbags. Just that.

Wondering : What's all the obsession with star wars? It used to be game of thrones (which I have unapologetically not watched and will not) now it's this. Sigh. What is this??

Wearing : Brown skirt, jungle green vest. And topped up with a headscarf. Upcountry chores need cover up.

Knowing : That I have all the power in my hands and God's guidance to tune my 2016 to my favour.

Merry Christmas to y'all!!!!

It's not too late to send presents.. I'm taking books and all their accessories.

As always,

Monday, 21 December 2015

MS07 - Gents and Shoes - Part I

"Shoes are always the most important thing for me because they are who you are. They change the way you walk, the way you move. " - Tom Ford

A man's shoes are a big part of his outfit. They contribute a huge percentage to how the outfit combination will turn out. You can't afford to get these wrong. Your style is on the line here.

This is a huge category so we focus on dress shoes for today.

1. The Oxfords

These are the oldest in the business. Still timeless. Still fashionable. Still making a statement. They can be dressed up (formal wear) or down (casually). All in all they make a statement. For the formal wear, it's best to stick to the dark brown and black leather.

How do you differentiate the oxford shoe from the derby shoe?
The difference is in the lacing.The oxford shoe has a closed lacing (the facing is stitched on under the vamp).

2. The Derby Shoe

Dressing for Travel

It's the Christmas season. The time when most people go on holiday. But getting your dressing all wrong from the time you leave the house could be a headache for you.
How do you dress up for the journey itself? 

1. Be fresh in the morning. 
A good night's rest means a lot on a traveling day and it has to be part of the preparation for the travel. Get your caffeine if that's what you do every morning as a change of routine will be bad for you. 

2. Light/Simple make up
 Go easy on the make up. You don't want to be feeling all uncomfortable as this could be a long and sweaty affair and minimal to zero visits to the bathroom to powder your nose, touch up the lipstick et cetera. Keep it easy and comfortable.

3. Light dressing
Forget the trench coats(in rain or in cold). Otherwise layer up on light sweaters and scarves that you take off easily ones it's hot. Light outfits occupy less space as well so if you are taking them off, they could easily fit into your handbag or carry on bag. Now envision trying to force a trench coat into a handbag.. Get the picture? Good.
Also let the clothing be loose. Tight ones get  a little uncomfortable after a while and our goal is to travel in as much comfort as we can.
Stick to dark colors when traveling. Black is especially good as it will hide spillages of any kind or marks or any crumbled spot. 

4. Low and light shoes
Go for ballet flats. Or better, go for sneakers. These will give your feet comfort as you wear them with socks to ensure minimum strain to your feet. They are also good in case you have to stand for a long time or have to wait at the terminus for hours (you never know. It's better to be prepared).

5. Accessories
Go easy on the earrings. If possible go for studs as opposed to dangling ones. These could get caught in your hair, clothes and will be a distraction and maybe a bother while you are trying to carry your bags. 

6. Hair
It would be best to keep your hair off your face. And tie it up if possible. Just to minimize interference. 

7. Essentials
Keep your essential stuff (phone, passport-if international, ticket, diary and other miscellaneous stuff) in your handbag. This is for easy and fast access in case those things are needed .You can keep your lip balm in here as well and leave space for the scarf and sweater mentioned up there.

Hope this is of help. Now done your sunglasses and walk with your head high. Wish you are relaxing Holiday.

As always,

Sunday, 20 December 2015

#MDAReview - 'E' is for Evidence - Sue Grafton

200 pages.
24 Chapters.
The main character is Kinsey Millhone. Private investigator in California. Aged 32. Divorced twice.
It's almost Christmas. Kinsey works part time for California Fidelity. An insurance firm. And she is investigating a fire that happened at Wood/Warren - a company whose warehouse burned down.

Friday, 18 December 2015

Stock Take - December - 03

Diving right in :
Reading : Since last post, I've read Seven up and Notorious Nineteen by Janet Evanovich, Then 'E' is for Evidence by Sue Grafton and today I've finished Remember me by Sophie Kinsella. I feel that Janet and Sue Grafton have a common writing style and their characters are really alike. A bounty hunter vs a private investigator. Both live in sorry apartments. Don't have much. They eat sandwiches for dinner. Don't shop groceries. Etc. Got to do a book review soon.

Monday, 14 December 2015

MS06 - Of Men And Watches

"I have a weakness for watches. I have to stop myself from buying more." 
- Tom Jones

Time is gone when a watch was made for the sole purpose of telling time. Nowadays a watch is seen as part of a person's personal style. It will be judged the same way your socks, ties, shirts and shoes are judged. Accessorizing perfectly.
You have to be good enough to choose a watch that goes from work to play or choose a watch for every occasion.

We focus on choosing a watch for the occasion:
1. Practicality : Where will you wear it. You will not wear a diamond engraved Cartier watch outdoors while hiking or running. You will most likely go for a rubber one with a compass feature, etc.

2. Special Occasion : The diamond engraved Cartier watch will be perfect for special occasions where you need to dress up once in a while.

3. Matching Jewellery : Referring to our first post on this series, we mentioned matching of jewellery. So this is also a factor to consider when choosing which watch to wear.

Down to business now:

Thursday, 10 December 2015

Stock Take - December - 02

Reading - This week I read Sizzling Sixteen (by Janet Evanovich), then started on Fresh Disasters by Stuart Woods which didn't get my focus away from Janet making it impossible to read it. I fortunately came across two Janet books on Tuesday and I'm now reading Seven Up by her. The good part is I snagged a Harry Potter book for a cool hundred bob. A clear win on that one. Can't wait to land more. Life is good in the bookworm world.

Watching  - Basketball wives sn 3 and 4. Repeating it since I watched back in 2012 (or is it 2013) but needed a refresher. Lol.

Googling - About Watches for my next men episode on the blog. Catch the previous ones MS05, MS04, MS03, MS02 and MS01.

Wednesday, 9 December 2015

MS05 - Men's Socks

"A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and gets to bed at night, and in between, he wears a comfortable pair of socks" _ Bob Dylan

The basic rule of thumb about socks used to be (or rather, still is) The color of your socks should match the color of your trousers. Black socks, black pants, grey on grey, etc. Which is an okay look for the corporate business setting but too dull for adventurous dressers. 

In this era, socks have evolved from being basic feet covering garments to being king of the whole outfit. They are no longer the insignificant accessory that you used to put on without a second thought. Now we have big brands coming up like the happy socks. 
This is not to say that people are still not getting them wrong. Especially now that they are colorful and

Tuesday, 8 December 2015

MerilynReverie 01 - Discovering Me

"You will either step forward into growth , or you will step backward into safety." - Abraham Maslow

In the journey of self discovery, things change, and interests as well. We embrace diversity, the want for global appeal, etc.
In my case, I thought I could have a blog (mylynmoulds) that showed my personal style but I was not satisfied with that. 
I took that blog down. I then started another one (D'Africanmama) which was going well but I felt like

Friday, 4 December 2015

Stock Take - December - 01

Reading : This week I have read, Pretend you don't see her by Mary Higgins Clark, High Five by Janet Evanovich and I am currently reading Ten Big Ones also by Janet Evanovich. Janet does it for me. I can visualize Stephanie Plum and I have decided never to watch the movie made from the first book in the series to avoid disappointment. I want to keep my mental images. 

Watching : Nothing out of the normal programming. I have got a few series from the movie shop and I'm all set for the weekend.

Googling : All about men for my #MenSeries posts. I am discovering interesting things.

MS04 - Matching Ties and Shirts

 “Looking good isn’t self-importance; it’s self-respect.”– Charles Hix

The tricky act of matching ties and suits depends on several factors, the major one being color , pattern and tonal variation.
Rule of thumb that applies to most of these situations, the tie's color(whether plain or patterned should be a contrast to the shirt color); make sure one item pops more than the other.

1. Pattern
You can pair a patterned tie with a patterned shirt as long as the patterns are not the same.  e.g. if the shirt has a small check, let the tie be a large stripe or large check, and vice versa.

A horizontal patterned shirt should be paired with a vertical patterned tie and vice versa.