Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Dolce Far Niente

Excuse my tired, bloated, non-makeup face. I rolled out of bed early for once and wanted to shoot really quick for a November update. With horrible coordination and a lack of a wireless remote, I attempted to do some self-photos. Trust me when I tell you that it was a hot mess, both with me and my inability to focus the camera. Just wanted to update with my new obsession! I got this kimono wrap thing at H&M during their Black Friday sale for $5. I thought it was such a fun piece and can easily be worn up or down. I also did my Christmas shopping during Black Friday and ended up splurging a lot on myself as a reward for getting other people gifts. Trust me, half of the things I bought in-stores and online were for myself. This past weekend destroyed my credit card! I was going to do a haul post/review on the items I got because several of them were also skincare items as well as online purchases, but I'm honestly so busy that I might just save it for another post.

I have been extremely busy the moment I got back from Thanksgiving break. It was one thing after the next and I'm just seriously overwhelmed. There's projects, hurdles, plannings, exams coming my way like no end. Everyone's in finals mode and I can't believe I'm still preparing for my third set of exams. I'm never getting out of school, am I? Despite all of this, I feel...okay. Honestly, I'm slowly becoming a person who expresses my emotions a lot more. I used to be good at controlling them, but lately, I feel like outwardly expressing them helps me deal with them internally. I had it really bad last month where I was just completely down and hopeless, but this month, I learned to take it one day at a time. I have two exams Friday, my most intense ones, and I've been preparing since Monday. Day by day I tackle a project and tried my best to split them up. Although my face is taking a toll by breaking out again, my spirit is still strong this week and I'm surprised! At the moment, I am not extremely scared despite feeling unprepared and I have a lot of things on my mind and problems bothering me, but...I'm getting there. Tomorrow is going to be a long day and night of studying though. Optimism!

Although I will not annoy you with my haul yet, here's a glimpse of my favorite purchases. Marc Jacob's Lola (my first perfume EVER! Look at me, I'm a mature adult) and a splurge for an adorable necklace from Aldo.
I apologize for a lack of a November wrap-up. I swear, I had it prepared, but I just felt like the picture quality wasn't as great as I wanted to and a lot of it was just food pictures so I wanted to spare any college students procrastinating by trolling my blog at 4am the pain. I know how it feels, hehe.

Before I end this post, I just want to give a little attention to a very special project that one of my high school friends, Samantha is doing. Samantha is an engineering major at U of I and is one of the sweetest, funniest, and manliest Polish chick I've ever met. Four years of laughter were contributed by her. She's planning on biking across America this summer and talk to cancer patients and survivors, as part of the Illini 4000 for Cancer. I personally have been impacted by cancer in the family and it's such an empowering journey not only for the patients and survivors themselves, but also for those who are indirectly affected. I think what she's doing is not only going to help her personally, but also positively affect others. If you can, please check out her organization page: Illini4000 and help her make this trip possible!

Stay happy and warm!
Ai Nhu

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Marry You

Anh Tung and Chi Tuyet's wedding reception. Excitement! I love weddings!
I'm obsessed with Melissa's sparkly shoes...touched them the whole night!
(My dress is from ASOS, $45, Zipia shoes $24, and F21 cuff $5)
My Godsister, Chi Tuyet's favorite color is purple
Baby gsister, Bao Thy
Exhausted maid-of-honor
Cutest momma in the world
LP besties
My mother is so happy to take pictures with me -.-
Lincoln Park girls with the bride!
The best friend that miraculously put up with me this whole week.

This month had so many ups and downs so far, but one of the best things that happened recently was that my adorable godsister, Tuyet, got married to Anh Tung! Congratulations! Honestly, I was a bit of a hot mess this whole week with everything that's been happening with myself internally, but I had an amazing time last night and everything definitely turned around for me.
Although it was a super Vietnamese wedding and I barely knew anyone because they were all middle-aged or super old, I had such a great time entertaining myself with Melissa, Chong, and Thy. With all of the crazy things going on in my life, it's been so long since I've laughed so carefree. Although I was disappointed that there was no dancing, the lobster definitely made up for it :D

Stay warm and healthy!
Ai Nhu

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Sweet Dreams

Shirt - HM $13; Skirt - F21 $11; One Shoulder tank - Charlotte Russe $10; Belt - F21 $6; Dolce Vita for Target Heels $15; Necklace - F21; Bangles - HM $6; Floral cuff - handmade

I can't believe that it's almost been a month since I've posted! It sure has been such a hectic, but absolutely fun month for me! I just finished my second set of hell week, broke out like crazy, and experienced a lot of fun things like it was my first time.
I got the chance to go to Six Flags' Fright Fest for the very first time with Loyola Breakers. It was such an amazing experience. I've been to amusement parks and roller coasters before but it was nothing like Six Flags. Vertical Velocity really left me with tears in my eyes, and I love every moment of it. Our team went onto Raging Bull three times, and since it wasn't super crowded and the weather was so nice, I had a wonderful time bonding with the team.
Here's a club photo courtesy of Chong's fb!

Another highlight of this month was going to Wisconsin for a NS-HS-HT retreat with TNTT, the Eucharistic Youth Society. I felt so blessed and refreshed from this trip. Although I barely slept, I have to say it received so much positive energy from the people around me, as well as encouragement and reassurance that I'm loving what I'm doing.
From Anh Bao's fb, Sao Bien Chicago kids with Cha Thi

Another highlight for this month is watching the Blair Witch Project. In the spirit of Halloween, I originally wanted to see Paranormal Activity 3 since I love crazy, scary stuff. However, a certain friend of mine (who I shall not put on blast because I'm such a good friend) chickened out at the last minute and we ended up watching Footloose, which was the worst decision ever. In an attempt to make up for the disappointment, the said friend and I ended up watching the Blair Witch project. All in all, it was just an alright movie. Everyone was raving about how good it was, but I guess it was a bit dry for my taste. I wanted a bit more that a bit sadistic on my part? :P
Finally, one of the BEST things about Halloween is....SAO BIEN'S ANNIVERSARY! Every year, our anniversary falls on Halloween weekend, but it doesn't matter. I would sacrifice anything for the world to celebrate with my family. I can't believe it's our 28th birthday. Last time I started counting was the 22nd. I forgot how long I've been part of this amazing family. No pictures from Saturday since I'm too lazy to upload them from my point-and-shoot, but here's a picture from Tam's fb of the morning-after breakfast! My Milwaukee boys, Andy and Tam, decided to spend the night in Chicago and ended up getting food all morning with Ha and was sweet enough to give me a wonderful wake-up call for (brunch). It's been so long since I've had Korean BBQ and it was just the best experience to hang out with the silliest people ever.
Sorry this is an abnormally long post with random pictures, but I just really wanted to share some great memories that I've had this month. I'm planning to do more monthly wrap-ups like these because I think it's a great chance to reflect. If it's too personal for your liking, there will still be strictly-fashion posts throughout the month. It's just that I thought I owed it to you guys to explain why I haven't been updating :D

Stay warm!
-Ai Nhu

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Love Light

Chong's edits that I stole from Facebook LOL no HQ T.T
Happy fall! The seasons are definitely changing as rapid as the different events in my life. Within these past couple of weeks, the weather got freezing cold and rainy and suddenly sunny and became dress weather for the past couple of days. I finished getting sick, felt fine, and got re-sick again. I went through such stress with first exams as well as doing tons of lab reports, Mathematica lab write-ups, and everything else in between. I experienced different emotions with getting feedback from class and bonding with my classmates. My social, educational and family life really took off on a roller coaster ride within these weeks. Right now, everything is starting to simmer down and returning to normalcy, and I've never been happier!

Last week, I met up with my best friend Chong after school. Since we live in the same hood, we decided to take a stroll through the lakefront near our place. It was such a fun experience! I love shooting with other people because you can really try different things and have another perspective. It also helped that I was already comfortable with him since we've been close friends so I definitely had a good time. We ended the day with sands on our shoes (all over my toes), old people looking at us all funny, random candids, crazy sniffles, and some really cool shots thanks to the sunset!

Ai Nhu

PS Since he was kind enough to shoot with me, here's some flattery that comes from the heart:
Chong's also a pretty cool photographer, don't you think? :D Check out his work here! Thanks again bro!

Unknown brand blazer, JewelMint necklace, F21 Polka-dot crop top, F21 maxi-skirt, Kimchi Blue Sandals

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Sweet Delight

Just a quick update today! This week is a baby hell week compared to last week. Nonetheless, I've been super exhausted mentally and physically. My appetite has been destroyed since last week so I've been forever hungry but nauseous at everything I eat. I can't wait for fall break! I feel like this semester has been going so well! School is not extremely time consuming, with the right amount of work (with awesome co-workers and the best boss in the world, Jimmy!), VASA here and there and breaking at night, I feel like I'm constantly busy. I love it, though.

My mood has been extremely happy and super optimistic lately despite school work picking up and the weather being extremely disgusting. I'm just so thankful for those in my life right now. I'm having the time of my life and although I'm always tired, I have not regretted anything at all. I kind of used this outfit to demonstrate my mood this week, simple in black and white, but still a girly giddiness that's coming out. Content, light, happy...I love simplicity these days. What can I say? I'm simply happy :D

Ai Nhu

Monday, September 26, 2011

Final Period: Personal Finance


This outfit is really different compared to my usual style. A little darker and out of my comfort zone.
The key to my school style is to be fun and simple. I like bright colors and loose clothing. It makes it easy to put outfits together.
A must have fashion item for school is lip gloss and/or ChapStick. I do not wear make up often so something to go on your lips brings out your face and can add to an outfit.
A tip for the new school year is ask questions. I don't think it ever hurts to know more about the subject you are learning.
My personal goal for this year is to actively learn and be who you are.

I cannot talk anymore about this girl, seriously. All of my previous posts about her were full of raves about how much I love her, and nothing has changed. I'm so glad that I still have her by my side, supporting me in everything I do, especially being my wingwoman for Stylespirations. <3

Sorry for the OVERDUE post, school seriously destroyed me and I recently have been preparing for VASA's Mid-Autumn Moon Festival. Now that hell week is gone, I feel so relieved and touched. All of the stress was definitely worth it and I would hands down do it all again. It was an amazing feeling to see the Loyola community come together, and also those who support VASA come from all over just to hang out with us. I'm so thankful!

Also, I'm excited to finally wrap up my first Stylespirations project. I had a blast shooting everyone, from helping my friends assemble their outfits to telling them to do weird poses on strange fixtures. I'm definitely planning another one real soon before the weather gets colder so if anyone in Chicagoland is interested and has a Saturday free, come at me bro!

I'll update my outfits soon! I have lots of pictures for you guys, just haven't edited it yet :P

Ai Nhu

PS Follow me on Twitter @stylespirations!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Fifth Period: Orgo Blues


This outfit makes me feel stylish without being flashy and is comfortable for class.
The key to my school style is paying attention to detail. I like to wearneutrals a lot and try to keep it interesting by wearing different textures, patterns, or stand out jewelry.
A must have fashion item for school is a pair of comfy shoes like TOMS for when I have to hike up five flights of stairs.
A tip for the new school year is to introduce yourself to the people you sit by in class, especially if you're a commuter. It helps to have someone to ask when you've just missed what the professor said.
My personal goal for this year is
to get an A in Orgo!
The only person you have to dress to impress is yourself! As long as you love how you look, you'll look awesome!

Debbie was the first person I met in summer school before I started high school in the IB program. After a day, I fell in love with her. She is pretty reserved and quiet, but once you get to know her, she is out of this world. She literally went through dark, high school days with me and put up with so much of my nonsense. I am so thankful that Debbie continued her journey with me at Loyola because I seriously don't know where I would be without her. Debbie was always a fashionista, but I love her because she was never show-offish about what she had. Her style is very laid back and classy, yet she does add a lot of whimsicality to it through accessorizing or unique textures on her blouses. I would have to say she is one of my fashion inspiration because she's the one that influenced me to try the neutral and mature looks as well as introducing me to Jewelmint! I was so glad that we had this shoot together and I feel like the older we get, the more we understand each other through fashion. Weird, huh? That's how we roll :D

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Fourth Period: Modern Arts


This outfit makes me feel comfortable and sexy at the same time. It is not something that everyone would wear and that is one of the reasons why I like it. It represents the combination of modern and vintage clothing shows the contrast between two different decades put together (skirt from H&M, and shirt from a thrift store). In my opinion mixing these two brings a new sense of fashion.
The key to my school style is be unique and wear something that no one else has. Thrift stores bring in that old school fashion but when is combined with the modern fashion they make something different and cool. It’s all about being creative.
A must-have fashion item for school is vintage shirts/pants and skirts.
A tip for the new school year is be as creative as possible. Not too exaggerate but try to combine styles and make it your own.
My personal goal for this year is to take as many credit hours as possible so I can finish college faster.

I changed my style many times throughout the years, and I feel like it is way more interesting and it makes you more interesting as a person if you are the one who creates a new trend and people start wearing what you created. Be the one that makes the changes not the one that follows them.
Ana Maria was one of my good friends in high school. She suffered through IB with me and the one unique thing about her that I will never forget is that she always has a big smile on her face. Her fashion also matched her optimistic personality because she always wore very colorful and cute outfits. Ana Maria actually was one of the people that truly supported me when I started Stylespirations. I initially started this blog as a platform for people to express their personalities through fashion, so I tried to take pictures of others as well as take submissions. Ana Maria helped me spread the word and even encouraged her little sister to submit photos! (check out Diana's submission here) Even though the blog has changed from its initial purpose, she is still an enthusiastic as ever to help me with this project so I thank her so much for putting up with my noob skills and lame demands for poses and stuff. We had a blast running around Millennium park in heels.
PS Ana Maria took a picture of my outfit from that day. We literally were running around the city in heels *facepalm*

Friday, September 2, 2011

Third Period: Aesthetic Philosophy


This outfit is a really laid back way of transitioning into school. It kind of says, yes I accept it's over but I also can't end summer still looking albino. It's breezy enough to still be okay for summer weather, but the letterman jacket tones it down a bit.
The key to my school style is a hint of color. A bright shirt, a bright bracelet, something that doesn't overwhelm but also isn't too monotone. Also, everything in moderation. No one likes a skank.
A must have fashion item for school is... a pair of good, tough, comfortable boots. You can trek through snow and throw it together with anything.
A tip for the new school year is don't try to be friends with everybody, you'll get annoying.
My personal goal for the school year is to make a few good, loyal friends and to finally get the grades I should have gotten in high school.
You all have probably seen Bao Thy on the blog before. She is my godsister and she's such a fun source of energy to be around. Not only is she gorgeous, she has a wonderful sense of style. I went to high school with her and now she is joining me in the same college so I am fortunate enough to see her all the time. On a typical day, she wears cute, sophisticated pencil skirts with a flowy top and an adorable cardigan. Sometimes, she dons a laid-back look with simple shorts and unique tops and accessorizing very playfully. Her style reflects her flexible personality and she is someone that I adore to death.