Watching the Clock

Here’s the funny thing about anticipation: it never leaves. It keeps building and building as the days go by, driving you utterly insane. It’s like time cannot go by any slower, the hours will not speed up, and days feel like forever.

I have done everything in my power to distract myself from the gnawing sensation of my impatience, from writing to studying Korean, but nothing helps. I mean, why can’t it be the middle of August already? Why do I have 4 more work days? Why can’t I be done now?

In the meantime, though, I have been working on my exchange blog that I will be updating while I am over in Korea for the fall semester. I feel like having that space to share my life and my adventures through text, photos, and videos will really be rewarding at the end of my adventure. Something for not only my friends and family to enjoy, but also a way for me to preserve that experience for myself, so that in, say, 10 years I have something to look back on to refresh the memories. I want my life to be memorable, so I will do whatever it takes to make that come true.

Until next time,

Jasmine

p.s.

Here’s the link to my exchange blog: somethingseoulful

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Two more weeks, just two more weeks.

The difference between my life right now and my life before is the Cold War versus a day at Disneyland. Before, things were happening. Life was bright, exciting, and memories flourished. Now, here I am, sitting here, waiting for something, hell, anything to happen. I only have a number of days left in this suburban wasteland where mediocrity and racism prevail, but I feel like these hours, these weeks are dragging. Time is holding back from me, refusing to give me what I so incredibly yearn for: freedom.

The anticipation of arriving home and sleeping in on my own bed has driven me to the point of excessive packing. I am literally living out of my suitcase, unable to tame the mad thoughts of “two more weeks, just two more weeks” from creeping into my every waking hour. It’s hard. I don’t really know how to combat this type of longing. But maybe, somewhere hidden in these next few days of working and planning, I will finally find peace.

(but most likely I’ll just have to wait until I am safely on that air plane, with the destination of Vancouver, BC, flashing on the screen in front of me.)

Until next time,

Jasmine

Prairie Summers

Who would have thought I would be here? Here, as in stuck hopelessly for 3 months in the flattest region this country possesses. Trapped here until the faithful day of August 6th, when I can finally board the plane, back to my homeland. Or hometown. Same thing, really.

If you have been wondering why this blog has been sadly lacking in recent posts, the answer is in the paragraph above. I am here, in Manitoba, for the rest of the summer, working to pay for school and my exchange to Korea this upcoming fall. And, to make matters worse, I completely forgot my camera back home in Vancouver. So, as a result, no OOTDs to upload.

But I figure, why not write still? No matter where I am in this world, that ability will never be taken from me due to travel or distance from home. So until I begin my journey to Korea, and start blogging on my exchange blog (which I will link at the end of this post), I will begin to post here. I don’t know what the topics will be, whether they will fall under fashion, or life, or anything in between. All I know is I need to continue my writing and I need to rekindle that flame I once had for using words as my escape. I need an escape more than anything right now.

So hop on, subscribe, and stay along for the ride as I document what may or may not be the most stressful but rewarding summer of my life. Only time will tell.

Until next time,

Jasmine.

p.s.

My Korea exchange blog can be found here: http://somethingseoulful.blogspot.ca/

 

OOTD: SFU Fashion Week Wrap-Up

So, SFU had a fashion week, hey?

Well, technically it was only three days, but still, it was something. Only able to attend two of the days due to family coming on the Thursday, I was lucky enough to get the honour of covering the events for my school’s student newspaper. Fashion? At SFU? Of course I was all over that. I already started planning my outfit the moment I saw the event posted on Facebook.

Tonight was the fashion show and, in true Jasmine style, I picked my outfit out with care. Wanting to be on trend but still true to myself, I picked up two new pieces and worked them into one of my favourite wardrobe staples for spring: my mint green blazer. Infamous as it is, this beauty was one of the best purchases I have ever made, all thanks to my previous job at Le Chateau. And it worked phenomenally with this look. I needed a pop of colour (don’t get me wrong–I love me some black and white) because hey, it’s the second day of spring and it was gorgeous out. Mixing the mint jacket and the black and white ensemble with gold accessories and black heels completely tied and unified the outfit together. The result was as follows.

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It was so much fun being a part of this process, documenting the work of these local designers and listening to their experiences. As well, I had a blast putting together this outfit and I could not wait to show it off.

Until next time,

Jasmine.

Items worn:
Blazer: Le Chateau
Shirt: H&M
Slacks: H&M
Necklace: F21
Rings: F21 & H&M
Bracelets: Aldo & H&M
Heels: Guess
Clutch: H&M

NEDAwareness Week: My Story

A little off the topic of fashion (but not really), I have been inspired by many bloggers in the online community who have come together and shared their stories, in order to help those with eating disorders. If you are out of the loop, this week (February 23-March 1) is National Eating Disorders Awareness week, which is trying to raise awareness about eating disorders, educate those who have previous had misconceptions about eating disorders, and provide help for those currently suffering. As such, I have decided to share my story, and get it out there.

Where do I begin? It was the middle of grade 11. Spring break, to be exact, and my best friends had both left for China on a two week exchange. To top it off, my dad had just moved away from my home town, quite suspiciously, to God knows where for God knows how long. Needless to say, I was feeling a little (if not really) down. So I conjured up this amazing idea that I, all 115 lbs of me, was going to lose weight. Not a lot of weight, but I wanted to be fit. To be smaller. That was my goal.

So that’s how it started out. I started following fitness blogs on Tumblr, started eating healthier, started running on our treadmill. It was all good in the beginning. My mum, who is a huge fitness guru herself, was ecstatic. She would come home from work to find me making myself a salad with chicken breast, or just finishing up a run. In the beginning, I lacked the capability to run more than 15 minutes. But I continued to go a little further everyday, run a little faster every time. After 5 days, I found myself running 3 km in 20 minutes, and intaking 1200-1000 calories a day. All seemed fine, in the beginning.

But that’s when it got worse. You see, those fitness blogs that I followed quickly started to turn into “thinspiration” blogs. The calories began to decrease. The exercise increased. Soon, it turned into a fixation. All I could see on myself was mounds of weight that made me horrendously atrocious. I literally could not stand the look of myself.

So I started to work harder.

By this point, it had been at least a week and a half, maybe less, and I had already dropped down to 107 lbs. I was cold all the time, and I had given up all the foods that I had once loved. Nothing tasted as good as skinny felt, right? Each time I would rub my now protuding hipbones, I would remind myself of that. I had a goal, and that goal was to be as skinny as I could possibly be.

Food, of all things, was now my enemy. I kept a folder (which, until recently, was still on my computer) that I titled “cravings”, where I would save photos of all the food I found on Tumblr that I a) would never allow myself to eat, and b) looked beyond delicious. That folder tormented me and comforted me at the same time. It read: I may exist, but you are so much better than me. You want this. The picture, I convinced myself, satisfied all my cravings.

By this point, I was running 4 km in 20 minutes, going to the gym every weekend, and my clothes were drastically shrinking. I did not realize afterwards what a toll the weightloss had taken on my appearance. My mum didn’t either. No one noticed until I was at my best friend Nina’s house, the day she got back from China, and her mother offered me a glass of my favourite beverage: cranberry juice. The first notion to enter my mind was 60 calories. I cannot afford to waste 60 calories on one drink. That’s when my best friend knew that there was something significantly wrong with me, both mentally and physically.

So school started up, and everything seemed to be normal. That is, except for the fact that I was only eating grapes for lunch, and I never wanted to hang out with my friends, or even my boyfriend. I was literally a walking zombie. I was crying all the time, never had any energy to contribute to conversation, I was hitting the gym every Saturday for 3 hours, and worst of all, I was shrinking as the days went my.

One of the most vivid memories I have of between the start and when I decided to get help was when my mum and I were in the car, on our way back from shopping, I believe. I remember telling her how much I wanted Subway, how much I wished I could just eat Subway. We were almost near home and she offered to take me there for dinner, because that way she knew I would eat. I told her no. Then yes. Then no. Then yes. Then I started to cry. She pulled the car over and started to tear up, too. I was crying because inside of me, I wanted that food so badly. I wanted to just be normal, to be able to eat something that I absolutely loved and not regret it during the process. But I was crying because I also knew that I could not. I physically and mentally could not allow myself to fall into the trap and consume the calories. Everything in my life was measured in calories. My mum was crying because she had no way to help me, could not calm the internal struggle I was facing, and, worst of all, she could not cure me. It was in that moment that I knew my eating disorder had consumed me. I believe it was also that day that I decided to not only get counselling, but to also see a dietitian. By this point, I was surviving on 5 apples and 4 diet Cokes a day. By this point, I was weighing myself 3 times a day, my collarbones were jutting out, and my cheeks were sunken in. By this point, I was 96 lbs and I began to have suicidal thoughts. By this point, I was fainting after exercising for more than 1 hour. By this point, the eating disorder had practically destroyed my relationship with my best friend, M, to the point where to this day, we don’t really talk about what happened to me. It pushed me away from the ones that I loved the most. My mum, my dad, my boyfriend, my best friends. My thoughts were so consumed with self-hating that no one, not even those closest to me, could penetrate through. I was left to loath myself for not only my appearance, but also my mental state.

Though counselling and seeing a dietitian inevitably did not help me to recover (if anything, I think they made the entire situation worse), when the end grade 12 came along, I started to see a shift in my behaviour. Yes, I was still counting calories and exercising excessively, but my mental state began to improve. It was not until a year later, a year after it all began, that I actually had to stop and look at what I was doing. I was eating. I was eating and not regretting it right away. I was gaining weight, and I was not hating myself for it. I was exercising, but only every other day. I was happy. I was warm. I was getting better. By the beginning of my first year of university, through the love and the support of those around me, I had almost come full circle. Yes, the occasional negative thought would pop into my head, but overall I was looking healthier than I had in months, and I was feeling better than before. Though I can’t say what the exact turning point was for me, or what it was that made me overcome my illness, I can honestly say that I would have never gotten better if it weren’t for Nina, sitting me down one day and telling me “Hey, I’m worried about you and I know you might think that you’re fooling everyone, but you’re not fooling me. I know you’re sick. And I want you to know that I’m here for you.” Those words meant the world to me.

Eating disorders are one of those things that I for the life of me will never be able to explain to someone who has never had one. I cannot convey the feelings one has while suffering, the internal monologue one has with themselves over their next meal. This testimony cannot relay the complexity that encompassed my eating disorder, nor can it describe to you the sheer fear that engulfs one who is resisting the food on the plate in front of them. But I hope it gave you a glimpse into something that has made me not only stronger as a person, but also understanding of all mental disorders that plague society today. Before, I could never comprehend my father’s depression, could never understand girls who did not want to eat. But coming out of it, after finding myself submersed under a sea of self-doubt and self-loathing, unable to break the surface for over a year, my eyes were opened. This is virtually one of the hardest things to talk about, as I believe you can understand, but I feel it is necessary to share my story because it, along with all the bright, positive things that have happened to me, is a part of my life, and a part of what makes me who I am today. As well, I want to show to those suffering that they are not alone in it. As cliche as it sounds, it will get better. It does get better.

Shoes, shoes, shoes! + OOTD

I can honestly say that I am blessed with where I live. My residence building (there are 8 on our campus) always throws the coolest events, from the Bachelor nights, to this: a photo shoot for the entire building. That’s right, for everyone. At first, I was a tad reluctant to participate. I had just got up, had practically no make-up on, and I had a paper to write. But after helping my friend, Dru (you guys remember the girl who took those amazing photos last post? Yeah, same Dru) do her “artistic expression” shots consisting of a bed, books, and a sign proclaiming “It’s only a Theatre major”, I thought hey–why the hell not?

The posters in our hallway advertising for the shoot said “Bring something awesome!” so I brought the one thing I believed was not only awesome, but a representation of me: my shoe collection. My bounty of shoes here in residence is not as grand as the one back in my parents home in Chilliwack, but the ones I have in my possession right now are my true gems. So I stole away to my room and took up (I live on the 2nd floor and the shoot was on the 4th. And yes, I took the elevator) all the shoes I had stowed away in the various corners of my room. It took me two trips, of course, and an extra set of hands (thanks, Dru!).

The result was the following:

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And here’s some group shots with a few of the girls (and honourary members) of my floor!

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While I was at the shoot, I also got them to take a quick OOTD shot for me, so here it is:

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I’ll leave a list of items worn at the end of this post. In all, it was a fantastic experience, and I can’t help but say I felt like a celebrity with two cameras snapping shots of me at the same time. As much fun as it was, I think I’ll leave the spotlight to Beyonce and Gaga.

Thank you again to Tim and Desi for these amazing photos, and for putting the entire event on. It was such a fun experience. Keep up the good work, guys!

Until next time,

Jasmine.

Items worn:
Cardigan: Brandy Melville
Shirt: Korea
Boyfriend Jeans: The Gap
Ankle Boots: Aldo

OOTD: Winter Wonderland

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Winter is here, my friends. I cannot even begin to tell you how long I have waited for this moment, for the first snowfall of the season to occur. And it arrived, the day before my week of hell begins (it’s finals season, people. I hope you understand.) The weather was amazing, I mean there is just something about fresh snow that makes you want to drink hot chocolate and go for a walk to take in the beauty of it all.

My fantastic friend Druscilla offered to shoot a little OOTD for my blog and I was more than thankful for her doing so (it was freezing out and she was only in a leather jacket, God bless her soul).

Again, credit for photos go to Druscilla Henault because she is flawless. Thank you for sacrificing your warmth to take these for me. I owe you a Starbucks or two.

Until next time,

Jasmine

Items worn:

HeadbandL H&M
Button-up: Le Chateau
Sweater: Joe Fresh
Jacket: Joe Fresh
Pants: Topshop
Ankle Boots: Aldo
Necklace: Le Chateau

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The Future

Hello, beautiful world

It’s been ages since I’ve updated and you know what? That makes me a little sad. 

I’ve missed writing fashion, scanning blogs for inspiration, and forming an opinion on the latest trends. But I’ve been so attached to my school work and my grads that blogging, for the most part, has taken the back burner. I know, it’s sad. But my future is what’s most important.

With that in mind, I’ve been reflecting a lot on what I want to do with my life. The goal is still to be the editor-in-chief of Vogue–I’m never letting that go–but how I’m getting there has changed. I want to start writing for SFU’s newspaper in a fashion section, but I just don’t know if I’m a fit for it. Maybe I’m just over-thinking this. The point of the matter is that I want to write fashion: it’s in my blood. I just don’t know how to get there. Do I continue running my blog? Should I start doing YouTube? Do I write for the newspaper? Do I do all of the above? It’s so difficult to know. The future is so uncertain, and I wish it wasn’t so. I don’t want to be left in the dark; knowing is what keeps my sane. I just wish I had a magic book that would show me what to do and where to go in order to make my dream a reality. That, or a chance encounter with the editor of some fashion magazine who falls in love with my style and insists I work for her (Carrie Diaries, anyone?). But somehow, I don’t see that happening any time in the near future.

It’s now 12:00 am and I’m still sitting here, in my residence common room, having a quarter life crisis. Well, crisis might be too theatrical a word for it, but you get the picture. Fashion is in my blood and I want to spend the rest of my life studying it, analyzing it, and reveling in it. I cannot see myself continuing on any other way. Journalism in fashion is my calling, I believe, and I just want to push it to its full potential.

 I apologize for making this post a semi-rant/frustrated ramble. I’m glad I could get that off my chest, finally. 

Until next time,

Jasmine.

 

The Power of Denim

Everyone, I find, underestimates denim. 

An essential in my wardrobe, I find that denim is that one basic piece from which you can build any type of outfit, not matter the occasion. I mean, think about it. With all the varying colours, styles, and textures, it’s hard not to find the right type for you. Call me radical, but can’t denim work for everyone? I ask you, can you remember never owning a single piece of denim? More than likely, your answer is no, and there’s a reason for that.

You see, denim is the North American (and hell, probably dozens of other countries) wardrobe staple. And, as such, we take it completely for granted. We, for the most part, strictly fasten denim into this tight bubble, only allowing ourselves to wear it in either a) a pair of blue-wash jeans or b) an ever-popular denim jacket. But there are so many other options out there.

For instance, ever heard of acid wash? If not, you are clearly missing out. Somewhat reminiscent of the 90’s, acid was combines a fashion-forward look with an edgy twist. This style is not for the faint of heart. As an acid was obsessee myself, I not only own a pair of skinnies in this pattern, but also several button-downs, and even an anorak. There are endless possibilities.

Coloured denim is also an amazing piece to have in your closet. For fall, oxblood (my signature colour, yes yes), forest green, indigo, and even black are some amazing colours that can compliment any outfit. They make a statement and if paired with basically anything, can make it look like you put a lot more thought into your outfit than you actually did. I live in black skinny jeans because they are so chic and, if paired with a white or black top, make it look like I’m following the monochrome trend (which… I totally am… wink wink).

Chambray shirts are also an amazing way to wear denim with a twist. Thought some of them aren’t actual denim, they still follow along the same lines and colour schemes as denim would. They give a classic look to your outfits, and I love them for colder days, under sweaters.

Finally, there’s always denim on denim. Yes, it sounds tacky and somewhat tedious to make work, but trust me, it looks amazing. My tip would be to not over do it: make the outfit simple. Try a chambray shirt with a jean skater skirt. Just make sure that the two denims have slightly different tones and colours. By this I mean don’t do a light wash with a light wash. It will inevitably clash, I’m sad to say.

So there you have it! The many varieties and styles of denim. Playing with textures and colours, as well as styles, can dramatically change your look and make you look at denim in a new perspective. Who knows, maybe you’ll fall in love all over again.

Until next time,

Jasmine.

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Update: Packing for School

Well hey there!

I just wanted to fill everyone in on what is currently going on in my life, as boring as it may be. Well… it’s not necessarily boring, per say, just… I don’t know.

Basically, right now, I’m packing all my stuff away to head back to school. Dorm life. Yay. I am genuinely excited, though, to be in the city. It’s just the preparation that’s wearing me down.

Saturday is also my last day at Chateau, and I’m a little upset about it. I’ve grown very fond of the girls I work with, and I will miss them all. I am, however, happy to be done working in general. Time to focus on my studies! I will, though, be doing work-study this year, but that is only around 8-10 hours per week. Easy-peasy.

The big thing right now is making sure I have everything I need for my dorm, my classes, and my life. It’s stressful, to say the least. I barely have time to think about things like Outfit of the Days, trends, and fall fashion. But I promise that once moved in, I will come back with full force. Every Tuesday and Thursday. That is a promise I am making not only to this blog and you readers, but also to myself. I need to stay committed to this because a) I love it, and b) It is a place where I can have full free creative expression. I like that. Unedited (for the most part), candid, and personal work only touched by me. You can’t get that writing for a newspaper, as much as I love it. There’s something about blogging that’s just so… candid. Now don’t get me wrong, I love seeing a piece polished and perfected by my sectional editor at the newspaper. But it’s a different kind of feeling.

Anyway, this has been a short and sweet update (kind of) on what is going on. I move in fairly soon, so the next time I post will be (hopefully if the wifi works) after I move in. Wish me luck and see you soon!!

Until next time,

Jasmine.

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