March 26, 2015

Purple Ombre Hair Color!

I dyed my hair purple!! 2 weeks before I turn the big 28 too. :D I should have done this a long time ago, but better late than never right?
I'm the type of girl that gets my hair done about twice a year. My hair doesn't grow very much or fast. I tried to get in with a recommended hair stylist but she was booked a month out. We just had engagement photos taken this past Saturday so I knew I had to do something about my hair before picture day.
My good friend suggest I check out this Vietnamese hair salon in Kent, Washington, which I did. I had no idea this little Vietnamese/Chinese area existed in Kent! There's bubble tea, Asian grocery store, pho restaurant, and the hair salon. I didn't get a change to check out the market, but I will definitely be back!

The haircut and hair color cost $120. I think that is a very fair price compared to the $275+ you pay at other salons for a cut and highlight/balayage color.
I went in with day old hair, I knew that if I was going to be coloring that I should come in with one day old hair because I read that it's more effective at holding color when you do so.
The whole experience was pretty fun. The hair stylist had her 4 year old daughter and a 4 month old Pomeranian puppy with her at the salon. She cut my hair real quick, and started bleaching my hair. I think she left the bleach on for about an hour. Then she washed it out. Then she started to mix my purple dye and applied it.
Minnie is as cute as my Charlotte Olympia flats! >^_^<

Funny enough, she ran out of purple dye! She had to make a trip to go get more dye. Because she ran out, it left a few strands of hair blonde! Eventually, I'll have it fixed with some DIY dye. lol She left me in charge of the salon for the 5-10 minutes she went to go pick up some more purple hair dye. I will never forget that hair salon experience.
She told me that a lot of hair colorist usually dilute their hair dye with a lot of conditioner. She says when they do that your color doesn't stay on very long and you have to come back for color touch ups. She says the key is to have strong dye and leave it on your hair for as long as possible. She says the hair dye itself is a conditioner. After we were done color, she wrapped my head in saran wrap and told me to wash it out with COLD water and then soak my hair in a tub of cold water with 4-5 tablespoons of vinegar.
She says it's best to wash hair with cold water to maintain the color. She also says avoid ever using Head n' Shoulder shampoo because it tends to strip out hair dye, same as hot water would do.
Luckily for me, my good friend has a salon and washed my hair out for me in the "hair wash sink" with cold water to help me avoid a very cold shower! lol 
My purple hair dye is one week old today! I've been pretty bad and have washed it with warm water. So far, not bad though! The color does bleed out when I shampoo with my favorite Kevin Murphy Plumping line shampoo, but it doesn't bother me. I feel the color is still vibrant as ever! I didn't expect my hair to be SO purple. But I've also never been stopped by so many strangers who had nothing but compliments on my hair color. *hair flip* ^^

Overall, I went and had my hair dyed purple for our engagement photo shoot. :D 

Purple as the Swarovski Crystal in my DSK Jewelry Necklace. :D

March 17, 2015

OPI: My Silk Tie (Fifty Shades of Grey Collection)

OPI "My Silk Tie"
Fifty Shades of Grey Collection




March 11, 2015

OPI: Dark Side of the Mood (Fifty Shades of Grey Collection)






OPI x Fifty Shades of Grey
Dark Side of the Mood
This brooding, stormy charcoal is dangerously gorgeous.

I saw the movie two weeks ago and thought it was okay. The book was better, but I did love seeing all the shots of Seattle because it was so true to reality! The audience we were in was also great, everyone was so funny and immature about the movie. The music in the movie is praise worthy. I absolutely love Ellie Goulding's song "Love Me Like You Do." 

The OPI x Fifty Shades of Grey Collection is one of the best ones yet this year. The quality of OPI is outstanding and I couldn't be happier with all their polishes!




February 26, 2015

Random Life Update: Parisian Style

I'm currently sitting in my office procrastinating to start working on numbers to prepare my taxes. Instead, I'm reading blogs and thinking about Parisian style & fashion. The street style (from what I see on blogs) looks so effortless yet very accessorized at the same time.

I think I need to get myself a black and white horizontal striped shirt, and a red handbag or something! I think once I secure those two items I will be a happy camper this coming Spring! I've never thought about owning a red handbag until recently, and the thought it is very exciting!

I haven't been blogging very much because a lot of my time has been consumed by real estate. If I'm not out physically driving to properties, I'm constantly thinking about my current property listings and transactions. I am very grateful to have a great new and flexible career, but it can be very mentally draining and stressful. I feel like I grew up a lot professionally in 2014. It really changed my life and I'm constantly thinking if real estate is going to the career path I choose to follow for the rest of my life. Can't we all win the lottery and go travel? Now that would be ideal. ;)

I still am running DSK Jewelry, and I just have enough time to fill my jewelry orders. I haven't had much time to create new pieces and photograph them to post. I have a lot of ideas always running in my mind, but I haven't had the chance to make them come to life. I feel like my skills in free style photography is dwindling away. Everything I used to do for my small business seems so foreign and hard now. I sit there and I wonder how I did in the past! It really is hard to care for a business.

In other news, our wedding is happening in about 6 months and everything still needs to be planned. Yikes! We do have our venue secured and it will be at the Hilton in Vancouver, WA (15 minutes from Portland, OR). They just started offering what they call an "Ethnic Wedding Package," which allows outside catering. Our Vietnamese families would like a Chinese course style banquet dinner. It's been such a challenge to find a Chinese Restaurant that will cater to the Hilton (especially since they don't allow the restaurant to use their kitchen at all...only a staging room to plate the food).

Things that still need to be figured out...pretty much everything but to name a few:

Wedding Dress Alteration (I did get a contact of a seamstress!)

Custom Made Vietnamese Wedding Ao Dai

Viet/English Wedding Invitations *priority*

Catering

Chivari Chair Rentals 

Florist

Wedding Photographer *priority*

Videographer  

If anyone has any recommendations for any of the above in the Portland area, please help me. :)
I think right now my priority is to lock down our future photographer. I think I'll be more at ease once we start putting down deposits. This February we had spent 3 weekends in Vancouver & Portland trying to see if we can get the catering locked down. It's been a little bit exhausting taking the 3 hour road trip there and back with 2 dogs.

In yesterday's news, we hire movers to move a whole lot of our friend's furniture over to our house since they're getting all new furniture. I'm so serious lol. Ever since I've moved to Seattle, we haven't had actual bedroom sets so it was a treat to inherit those from our friends! Our house feels a lot more like home when all this "grown up" furniture doesn't feel so IKEA and temporary. We still have a lot of arranging to do this weekend. I'm super looking forward it.

Oo! I've also been super obsessed with light fixtures, Lamps Plus is my new Nordstrom Rack. I love browsing even if I don't buy anything. We recently purchased a really nice chandelier on clearance and put it up in our hallway upstairs. ^^ But more on that later!

What's a blog post without a photo right?
Here is a snap of our entry way/dining area with Timmy modeling next to some new furniture.
I'm still deciding where to move those two lamps. I might take them upstairs. I just put them there after I cleaned them.
We also got a giant new dining table too from our friends which was such a treat!
Our house is such a work in progress, we have plans to repaint the downstairs, frame the windows, and change the carpet into hardwood floors. Those plans are put on hold until after the wedding for now. I would love to share bits and pieces of my house on blog. I feel like you know you're getting old when you get super interested in home goods. lol

I'll leave it at that, I hope you are having a wonderful day and I'll catch up with you all very soon!

Lots of love,

Steph

February 10, 2015

3B Beauty Beyond Borders (Asian Makeup Subscription Box!!!)

3B is Beauty Beyond Borders, a genius Asian makeup subscription box that gives us access to beauty products that are pretty hard to hunt down outside of Asia!
Ke, the founder of 3B is from Seattle too! ^_^ 
 What is 3B? 
"Our passion is bringing beauty beyond borders. We help you discover the most popular Asian beauty products through our curated pouch of deluxe samples each month."
Why 3B?
"Asia is one of the leading markets when it comes to skincare and cosmetic innovation. Yet there is no easy way to trial, buy, and review products overseas. With 3B you can try what you like and buy what you love – from premium products to everyday favorites. At 3B we believe finding your perfect product shouldn’t be limited to what country you live in or what language you speak."
What's in the box?
"Each box contains a collection of deluxe samples that are new or popular in Asia but hard to get your hands on. The products will change each month, and you’ll get to try new skincare, haircare, nailcare, and cosmetic products. Sample products range from go-to brands such as Lioele, Etude House and Skinfood to high-end premium brands like SK-II, K, and Sulwhasoo. Don’t worry about not being able to read Japanese or Korean – we’ve got you covered with English translations of descriptions in each box."
$12/Month Gets You:
  • A pouch containing four to five deluxe Asian beauty samples that we love
  • Tips on how to use products
  • Unlimited access to our team to answer any questions you might have
 
I grabbed the information above off the 3B website because I really couldn't explain it any better myself! 
 
For $12/month you get a box of quality Asian beauty products which include popular well known Korean and Japanese makeup brands such as The Face Shop, and Etude House. Sign me up because you can't ask for a better subscription box! They've gotten so popular since they've launched that there is now a waiting list to subscribe. (You know it's that good.) I love the concept and I am so thankful that we are now able to get access to beautiful Asian brands.
I was really happy to find a generous size bottle of Peripera Nail Story Korean nail polish in my box!!!  It's my very first time trying Peripera polish and I am beyond impressed with the quality of the polish and the paint brush. (Yes, I would like to collect them all now!) The brush applies the jelly red polish easily and perfectly on my nails. The name of this shade is RD001, and it's a true bright candy red. I have always been curious about this brand and it's such a treat to be able to get to try it here in Seattle and better yet, in the comfort of my own home. ^^ I truly LOVE every single product in my first box and have been using them everything.
I was lucky enough to find The Face Shop makeup face wipes in my first box. Who doesn't love a good makeup wipe? It smells incredible and don't you love smells that make you reminisce? These wipes are awesome, and I hope to be able to get more of them soon! I used to always look forwards to trips to the big city with my girl friends to get my hands on The Face Shop products at H-Mart, a favorite Korean supermarket.
3B, Beauty Beyond Borders was created in Seattle with the intentions of helping US Asian Makeup fans get their hands on the latest and greatest products from Asia. ^^

I've always had a special place in my heart for Asian makeup which many of you already know. :) It's always such a nice treat to get to spoil myself with some high end Korean and Japanese beauty products. 3B offers go to brands as well as high end Asian beauty brands in their boxes.

Thank you again Ke for sharing your awesome subscription box with me and the Asian Beauty fans all across the US!

I think very soon, you will also be able to order the full size version of your favorite Asian beauty products you got to sample in your subscription box from a trust worthy online beauty shop! I'm 100% smitten with my 3B subscription box. Fingers crossed for SK-II products in my next 3B box when I'm able to subscribe myself! ^^

Hop on over to the 3B's Our Story page to get learn more about this new Seattle startup! I wish nothing but successful for your beautiful business, Ke!

October 22, 2014

JORD Wood Watch

It's a wood watch! :) Have you seen anything like it?

October 20, 2014

Candy Talk! Chimes Ginger Chews

 Let's talk gourmet candy! This is one of those where have you been all my life type of find! lol How did I live 27 years of my life without knowing about ginger chews. My friend Trang discovered Chimes Ginger Chews at a high end restaurant on their trip to Texas. She loved them so much, she ordered them off of Amazon. She shared one with me on our car ride to dinner one day. I was addicted at first chew!

October 8, 2014

My Dream Discontinued West Elm Marble Coffee Table *Edit* It's Back!

 West Elm Box Frame Coffee Table - Marble
I first learned of this beauty from eat.sleep.wear in her Instagram photo of her new coffee table back in June. I feel in love with it because I've been wanting a marble top kitchen counter top so I can take awesome Instagram photos. Hahaha I just think a vase of flowers looks beautiful on a white marble top! It's just dreamy. You can find more photos of this beauty on Carly's blog. She was inspired by eat.sleep.wear too but actually got to buy it! *envies*

After months I finally decided I needed it! West Elm sent me a 15% off coupon and I excitedly went on their website to search for my coffee table (that I probably look at once a week online). lol It was no where to be found! It's 'No Longer Available.' I talked with their customer service on their Live Chat and they told me I would have to call the stores individually to ask. I was just so sad yesterday, and I called my local and two other West Elm locations to see if there was a chance they would have one in store. They told me it's been discontinued. Even if the store did have it, they aren't able to ship it. :(

I just wanted to write about the coffee table of my dreams that I probably will never get to own. lol It's just so sad, but I hope I will soon find the coffee table that's meant to be in my house. We're removing the carpet and putting in new flooring and painting our downstairs living soon. After the renovations are complete we get to buy all new furniture! Yay! I've been looking forward to having my "forever" furniture since the day I move to Seattle. :D No more of this mix match college furniture off Craiglist stuff! Haha :)

I hope West Elm will bring it back!! *Edit* It is available now online and I was able to order it! I won't get it until 2015, but I'm so happy it's back!!*

For now, I'm on the hunt for a marble cutting board or marble slab so I can feed my marble obsession.  

I also have been wanting to get gold silverware for well over a year now...so maybe I'll satifisy my West Elm craving with these pretty gold things.

October 2, 2014

Before & After (Makeup and Hair by VanityPham)

I got my makeup & hair done today by the talented Van of Vanity Pham Makeup & Hairstyling for my real estate headshot.  I couldn't stop smiling the whole time I was in her chair! Haha, I've waited SO long for her to bless me with her beautiful makeup & hair skills!
Thank you for making me feel pretty Van Pham Choe! Your artistry is one in a million! I look forward to my wedding next year so I can get my makeup & hair done again by you and feel as special as I do today.  
I've always been a fan of looking at before & after photos so here's mine. I'm never ever washing my hair!! ::hair flip:: 
Book your appointment with Van at Vanity Pham Bridal Salon in Sola Salon (Bellevue, Washington) for makeup, hair, and volume lash extension today! Hehe, I absolutely love her work!! You can find her on Yelp! http://www.yelp.com/biz/vanity-pham-bellevue


October 1, 2014

Now that it's October..

Hello Blog Family! Now that it's October, I am currently obsessed with snuggling up with my new Costco Frozen throw and watching TV after work because of all the amazing new Fall shows! I'm hooked on I Heart Nick Carter, The Mysteries of Laura, and Million Dollar Listing LA to name a few. 

Tomorrow, I'm going to get a makeover by my friend Vanity for my real estate photo for my business card. I'll be sure to take before and after photos for you. ;)
 Bambu now offers Royal Artichoke Tea! I absolutely love it. :)
My nail polish is OPI Pasion of Love from the Mariah Carey Collection, which I also own! I knew it looked familiar when I picked it out at the nail spa.
I treated myself to a manicure and pedicure at Perfect Ten Nail Spa by myself this past Saturday. Sometime it's a treat to pamper yourself. :) I feel my best when my nails and toes are pretty! I'm also not willing to put my Birkenstocks away just yet! I love them. I found mine at Nordstrom Rack for $70. :D Got my fiancé a matching pair too! Haha, they make amazing Summer evening walking sandals!
I finally found the popular Whispering Angel Rose at Total Wine in Tukwila, WA!! I've been looking at all our local Whole Foods with no luck. I can't wait to try it. I've read great things about this Rose. 
In other news, we're moving offices at work! We will have three new office locations in Everett, Seattle, and Bellevue. :) It's just crazy how many things are changing this month and next. We also narrowed down our wedding date to be in August or September. It really depends on what venues are available. :D I think we'll have Dahlia's flowers at our wedding since it seems to be a seasonal favorite. :) Can you believe things beautiful bundle was only $5 at Pike Place Market? 

I recently started selling a lot of my designer goodies on eBay and I absolutely enjoy it! I had no idea how easy it was to list items there. I recently sold a pair of Burberry rainboots, Rebecca Minkoff bag, a pair of Tory Burch flats, and a pair of Jeffrey Campbell boots! I really am happy that I'm able to get some money back for them. It's such a reward to see an item sold on eBay! I think the hardest part is taking the time to take good photos of the items to list. We recently had our annual garage sale and I sold two of my old Coach bags for $100! :) I guess you could say I'm saving up for the wedding shoes!
My 5 year anniversary of living in Seattle just passed in September. I think moving here has changed my life in so many positive ways! I'm really thankful. The dogs are doing great, they're probably enjoying my new Disney Frozen blanket more than me!
I've also been completely obsessed with shopping at Nordstrom Rack! Tomorrow (Oct 2nd) starts their 25% off clearance (Clear the Rack!) sale. :D Last week, I found two beautiful Valentino Lace Scarves at the Lynnwood, WA location.  I found this pair of Alice & Olivia Dina Pumps for $99! :)
I'm going to start cooking and preparing our meals at home again. We've been eating out way too often. I was inspired by HeyClaire's shrimp lettuce wraps and made my own version. It turned out really really good! I could eat it at least once a week. :)

Happy October 1st & a very Happy Birthday to my good friend Jennifer. :)