There’s just something about being in a coffee shop on a rainy day…

Well, the semester is almost officially over. Wow.

I cannot believe that my third year of university is coming to a close.

It seems almost poetic that it has decided to pour rain today. It’s comforting, if anything.

Looking back on these past 2 semesters, it’s unreal how much has happened. The opportunities I’ve had, the friends I’ve made, the places I’ve visited; it’s utterly surreal.

I would be lying if I said I wasn’t scared for what is to come. Who knows how this summer will go and what the fall will bring. Some of my friends are leaving, some are staying, and some are moving on. That’s life.

I am, however, more than excited for making future plans and setting goals for myself. That’s what I do best: goals and extensive lists. It’s my little type A way of measuring my success.

All in all, I’ve learnt a lot these past 8 months and I sincerely feel like I have grown exponentially. I still have a long way to go, but I am in no rush. Learning to embrace the moment and take in all the little parts of life is what I am all about right now.

I am officially welcoming fourth year with open arms.

Until next time,

Jasmine.

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The art of coming to terms

These days, I’ve been learning a lesson or two about what being “okay” really entails. Because lately, “okay” has become a defining feature in my path to self-discovery. As poetic or existential as that sounds, the word “okay” carries a lot of weight on its 4 letter frame.

I’ve been constantly reminding myself that:

It is okay to let things go.

It is okay to be vulnerable.

It is okay to open yourself up to criticism.

It is okay to admit defeat and start from scratch.

It is okay to fall down and pick myself back up again.

It is okay to ask for advice. And hell, even guidance, if need be.

It is okay to tell my story to people even if they won’t listen.

It is okay to take a leap of faith and silently hope for the best.

It is okay to break down my walls and reveal what’s been hiding behind them.

It is okay to find flaws in myself and openly admit that I have them.

It is okay to not be perfect.

It is okay to not be amazing at my craft.

It is okay to realize that I have something to learn from those around me.

It is okay to be broken.

It is okay to feel lost.

It is okay to yearn for something that once was or could be.

It is okay to make mistakes.

It is okay to be me. Utterly and honestly me.

Because at the end of the day, being who I am and being true to myself is what matters. Period. End of story. Fin.

I think I’m learning that it’s okay to feel like myself, whatever that actually means.

Because I am me.

I am a work-in-progress

But soon

I will be a masterpiece.

Until next time,

Jasmine.

Nobody told me…

Here’s the thing that nobody tells you about time: it doesn’t heal all wounds.

Not that my wounds are severe or painful. My wounds are from detachment. From longing. From missing something or someone or whatever it is that I have lost.

And the thing about missing something is that nobody understands. People, try as they might, may claim that they know how you feel but in reality they don’t. They cannot. That is, unless they have felt or feel the same kind of longing that you do.

My “missing”, as I will call it, is not going to concerts in Seoul or eating at amazing restaurants. It’s my friend waking me up at 5 in the morning so we can catch the train to the airport. It’s lazy days, deciding to bundle up and go get pizza instead of going out. It’s getting utterly confused at which exit to take at Euljiro 3-ga in order to get to Myeongdong. It’s pausing for a moment on the overpass by my friend’s apartment to admire the view of Namsan Tower. It’s trying to hail a taxi at 3 in the morning and walking all over Sincheon to do so. It’s linking arms while my friend and I walk through Hongdae on a Friday night. It’s random decisions to go to norebang till 4 am. It’s rushing across Seoul to get to Lotte World Mall with the hope of maybe, just maybe,getting a ticket into the Winner fanmeet. It’s staking out at 5 in the morning at Olympic Park in the utterly freezing cold with one of you closest friends, shaking heat packs to stay warm, so you can get in to the Melon Awards. It’s spending all day exploring the city, and coming back to your warm dorm room. It’s waking up on a Saturday morning and making plans right then and there. It’s getting lost in Hongdae trying to find a sheep cafe.

I miss the little things. I can go to cafes and eat food and see movies here in Canada, but I miss my friends. I miss what I did there. I miss people who can understand me and understand my passions. I miss friends who want to do the same things as me, who have the same interests as me.

Because the thing about longing is that it’s hard and it eats away at you.

People will constantly tell you do “get over it” already or “the past is in the past”. But when you change, grow, and become who you are somewhere or sometime in your life, you can never get over that. You are altered, through and through.

Korea changed my life. It made me see who I wanted to be, made me grow, and made me understand myself in a way I never had before. It opened my eyes. And nobody understands that.

One of my friends from Seoul said something that I connected with on a profound level, and it was “I have never felt more alive, more real, and more myself than I do living here”. That is how I felt about Seoul.

But you know what?

I’m living. I’m breathing.

Those memories will always be with me and they push me through. They inspire me.

And the changed me is still here.

Taking one day at a time and trying to smile every chance I get.

And for now.

That is enough.

Until next time,

Jasmine.

Long time no see…

It’s been awhile, hey?

Can you guess where I am?

If you said Korea, then you, my friend, are absolutely right.

I am, as of August 21st, living in the heart of Seoul, South Korea, studying as an exchange student at Ewha Womans University. Exciting, hey? It has been amazing thus far, travelling not only around the city, but also to other places within Korea. I have tried so many delicious dishes, bought way too many articles of clothing, attended the concert of my dreams, and spend nights wandering amongst the city lights. And you know what the best part is? It’s not even half way over yet. I cannot wait to see where the next three months will take me.

Tomorrow, I am going to the last day of the Taeyang concert tour here in Seoul, and I know I am going to cry harder than I did yesterday. Then, next week Friday, I am going to meet WINNER at their fanmeeting. Cross your fingers that I won’t faint when Taehyun shakes my hand. Ah. Fangirl mode = on.

But anyway, if you are at all curious what I am doing with my life in more detail, you should check out my exchange blog, and keep up with me! Also, if you are attending Ewha currently or are planning on going on an exchange in the future, send me a message! I would love to answer any questions you have about Korea or Ewha or just about life as an exchange student in general! Don’t be shy!

Until next time,

Jasmine

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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Summer Essentials

Summer has always been one of my favourite things about living on the west coast. The long days, the ocean breeze, and the coolness of the forests. I love it all.

When it comes to summer fashion, though, I have some key items that will help me last until the school bells ring once again.

1) A printed romper.

Image

Credit: AX Paris

The great thing about a romper is that it’s light weight and easy to wear. Adding some print to it will help to create dimension, as well as keeping it on-trend for with this season’s explosion of prints. I love this one from AX Paris because of the colour scheme, which looks effortlessly summer ready.

2) A Breezy Maxi Dress.

Image

Credit: ASOS

What I love about this one from ASOS is that it is airy, but still edgy at the same time. When ti comes to maxi dresses, flow is definitely key. They can be great pieces for the beach during the day, and taken up a notch for a dramatic evening out on the town.

3) A Skater Skirt

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Credit: Nasty Gal

I love skater skirts because they are girly and easy to wear. Pair them with a crop top, or a tucked in button down, and you can look effortlessly chic. This one from Nasty Gal adds the perfect punch of summer coral to any outfit, while still keeping everything simple and fresh. It can also act as a create piece to colour block with!

4) A Pair of Cat-Eye Shades.

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Credit: Topshop

Nothing says sassy like a pair of cheeky cat-eye sunnies. They’re cute, flirty, and fashion-forward. These ones from Topshop take a different approach to the traditional shape of the cat-eye shades by altering the initial frame. I like the way they look both vintage and modern at the same time.

5) A Flower Crown.

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Credit: whimonline.blogspot.com

You’ve seen them everywhere: Coachella, Lana Del Rey, Nasty Gal. Flower crowns have taken the fashion world by storm, and all for good reason. Giving an outfit a more laid-back, boho vibe, this accessory is one that will have you chilled out in a meadow, singing along to Summertime Sadness all season long.

And there you have it! My 2013 Summer Essentials. Remember to keep hydrated, slather on that SPF 60, and stay in the shade as much as you can! Summer is meant to be enjoyed, so keep yourself safe from the harmful UV rays and enjoy away!

Until next time,

Jasmine.

Instagram: @harubelief
Twitter: harubelief
Tumblr: harubelief
YouTube: pureaffectionfashion

The Start Of Something New

(No, this is not about the High School Musical song. That was simply a coincidence)

Why is it that every Canada day seems to mark the beginning of something… well, new?

There’s something about the flashing lights, the mystery that is the fireworks, building up that final peak, the huge finale. There’s something about all the wonder that they pose, like they’re marking something significant (well, other than the birth of our home and native land–that I already know) and everything after will never be the same. Every year, I mark the start of my summer, the start of all these collections of adventures, by the light of the sparkles in the sky on the first of July.

But this year, it seems like something is different.

Nina and I sat on the hood of her car, blocks away from the actual event site, watching as they set off one after the other. But as I sat there, dazzled by the display in front of me (which was semi-blocked by a few fir trees), I felt different. I felt like this was it: nothing will be the same again. And, frankly, it won’t be.

With school coming yet again in the fall, and my best friend finally coming to Vancouver for school… I feel like I can finally escape from this town. I won’t be alone; I have Nina, Maria, and Kyujin to be there with me now. I finally feel like my life is… starting. Like this is a new chapter. No, like a whole new book about my life. And oddly, I don’t feel scared. I feel excited, almost anxious for it to happen.

Who knew a national holiday could turn into something so sentimental? I would have never guessed.

I hope all my fellow Canadians on here had an amazing Canada Day today, and for all you non-Canadians… well, I hope you still got something out of today nonetheless.

Until next time,

Jasmine.

Instagram: @harubelief
Twitter: harubelief
Tumblr: harubelief
YouTube: pureaffectionfashion

p.s

I will be doing a Summer Essentials post next Monday! As well, next Wednesday I will be a how-to dress for the heat! Stay tuned!

Being a Full Time Student

Mixing fashion, school, and work is overwhelming. Writing for the newspaper, taking on a full course load, plus working at Le Chateau has got me exhausted. Sigh.

I apologize in advance for being so slow on my posts, but as you can see from my first sentence, I have a ton on my plate at this moment. I will try and do a post every Thursday and either Saturday or Sunday. Thursday will more than likely be OOTD, due to the fact that I have my photographer that day (yay Sonia!). The weekend posts might be more trend or written posts. We’ll see. I write the fashion columns for my university’s newspaper, so doing one of those every week and plus a news column occasionally kind of makes me not want to write a full-fledged fashion article on here (and, alas, I cannot re-post what I send in to my editor because that, ladies and gents, is copyright infringement. I think.). But again, we shall see. Maybe I will feel up to it.

Also, I run a Tumblr, though that does not take much effort. But it is a vital part of my life that I am completely and utterly unwilling to give up. Sorry I’m not sorry. 

If you all didn’t know, I have started this blog as a way to get going on my fashion journalism career that I am currently pursuing. Yes, it’s a bit far-fetched, thinking I could run a successful fashion blog, but I am one to dream big. I am still learning so much about fashion, and I find this is the best place to express my growing knowledge and, again, learn more. So, bare with me. 

Until next time,

Jasmine.