It’s great to be home.

After two years of living abroad, I’ve been nesting, which mostly involves cooking, cleaning, and of course, downsizing my belongings.

After two years of wearing clothes out of a suitcase and having to be in various situations (day-to-day research at libraries, visiting museum storage rooms, formal dinners and conferences, traipsing around town, trekking through the woods for field work), I have definitely honed my style and re-assessed my priorities.

I have also been on a shopping ban since February 2017 (one exception I made was a pair of pajama pants that I desperately needed in April), and plan to continue this until Summer 2018.

I have yet to tailor the pair of vintage Levi’s I got, and I have some blog posts on backlog, which I hope to share soon.

For the meantime, it’s just lovely to enjoy the summer and being back home.

A good fit.

Image via The Line

A pair of skinny jeans in black or navy has been a wardrobe basic for me as far back as I can remember. It began with a high-rise pair of black Jordaches from my mother’s 1980s wardrobe. A mid-rise navy pair from the French jeans company Cimarron followed.

Once those two pairs somehow disappeared from my closet, I’ve been on a perpetual hunt to track down that pair of perfect pants, and I can safely say that I’ve cycled through a considerable number of contenders. For a while I dragged the low-rise trend from the early 2000s with me, until I re-discovered my preference for high-rise in perfect sync with  the general trend of embracing this silhouette circa 2010.

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Farewell to…BUILDING BLOCK Business bag (A Review)

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I can’t quite remember the first time I came across  BUILDING BLOCK, but the brand immediately caught my eye. I recall reading an interview about the collaborative process of the Wu sisters, their design philosophy, and how the bags would soon be available for purchase. Their chic styling, in addition to the visual and intellectual appeal of a no-frills minimalist bag, made their designs irresistibly appealing.

For the longest time I imagined myself owning just the black Business bag. Described by the brand as “the modern briefcase bag,” its sleek form accented with the minimal brass hardware and padded shoulder-strap with ornamental tassels exuded both an air of functionality and elegance.

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A minimalist wardrobe…


I have been trying to streamline my wardrobe for the past one and a half years.

It all started with the fact that I was getting ready to leave the U.S. to embark on fieldwork in East Asia. After moving out of my apartment of two years and sorting through items to take with me or leave behind, I was overwhelmed by the volume of clothing I had.

Thankfully the expert advice of experienced bloggers on creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe has helped me, but it’s still very much a work in progress.

Recently I noticed two main problems with what I’ve been doing, and identified the pitfalls of planning.

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