Sunday, July 1, 2012

A Higher Fashion

Greetings on the first day of July, everyone! Today I have some -super- exciting news: in about a week from now...I am going to JAPAN!!! Ahhhhh!! =DDD It will be my first time out of the country and I will be in Japan for a whole month. I am -extremely- excited, and believe me when I say that is an understatement. ^.~

I will actually be posting a link to my new blog that will be focusing on happenings during my stay in Japan. Be sure to look out for it! I am even hoping to do some super exciting posts on this blog as well- ones that focus primarily on Japanese fashion, of course. ^.^ So be on the lookout for 1) new blog link, and 2) posts on here straight from Japan! <3

Well even though it's been a while since my last post, I am going to dive right in with one of my latest Asian inspired outfits!

~Outfit #9!~

This outfit is a bit of "high fashion" inspired mostly by the Korean group 2NE1 because it is both shiny and powerful-- the photo really doesn't do this outfit justice.

I was very pleased to have found so many parts of this outfit for much cheaper than they would have normally been. I had the chance to travel a bit and went to a Guess outlet. Now normally I am not a person that really cares about brand names...but I very admittedly love Guess. Anything of theirs that has metal is soooo shiny and it looks nicer than metals found at Forever 21 and similar stores. The types of metal that I am referring to are on shoes, belts, or jewelry. It's just so beautiful! *.* 

Now in this first photo, I am rocking a classy, daytime look. I dressed up the jeans with a nice blazer and flip-flops that, while appropriate for the summer weather, make a classier statement than Old Navy flip-flops because of the black color and the (shiny) Guess letters across the straps. In addition, I painted my toenails a professional black, which again, adds a bit more class to the outfit. Remember: details are noted. They can be worth your time to make your outfit say precisely what you want it to. =) 


 So how do you take this outfit up a notch? Add some sunglasses! 

These sunglasses are prescription and are Ralph Lauren brand. I got them on sale for $60.00 right before summer stared and I am SO thankful that I did. I have wanted prescription sunglasses my whole glasses-wearing life, hahaha. I really enjoy wearing these in the car-- not only are they useful, but they also give me a nice self-confidence boost. They make me feel cool, stylish, and a little B.A. ;D 

But wait! There's more! To add even MORE flair, I sported my awesomely cute and sparkly Hello Kitty purse! =^.^= Eeeheeheehee. <3

~So shinnnnnyyyy...~

Closeup of Guess Necklace

I love this outfit because not only do I feel professional, I feel comfortably my age and wonderfully different from the standard crowd. It's classy with personality, which I absolutely adore. 

The Breakdown:

Sunglasses: Lenscrafters, prescription, $60.00 on sale
Regular glasses: Lenscrafers, prescription
Necklace: Guess outlet, $15.00
Blazer: Guess outlet, $50.00
Shirt: Unknown
Jeans: Lucky Brand
Flip-flops: Guess outlet, $15.00

If you would like to see additional photos, please visit my Flickr page! -^.^- 

My friends, I hope you have enjoyed this addition of Asian Style, American Life. =) I wish you all the best and hope that when life gets you down, you try your best to smile and give a smile to someone else~

<3 Alyssa

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Sewing, Herons, Cats, and Bloodletting

Hello Asian inspired friends! ^.^ I hope you all are doing well. It has been a bit stressful for me with so many finals, but I am keeping in good spirits and hope that you are all doing your best to do the same. =) *hugs*!

So a lot has happened this week. Firstly, I want to start out with a really silly and amusing story about some of my sewing adventures this week. I am currently working on a Serah Farron cosplay from Final Fantasy XIII-2.

Serah Farron-- Final Fantasy XIII-2
Serah Farron in Final Fantasy XIII-2

And I've been noticing that while I'm sewing I tend to listen to the most hilariously epic music. If you click the youtube link here to the FFXIII-2 song "Heart of Chaos," and then look at the picture of my work space, you will hopefully be able to see why I found this so utterly hilarious.The most intense, choral music for bloodletting is playing while I am trying to sew black strips onto my gloves, with a little CAT staring at me with the cutest wide open nya~ mouth EVER. The best part is? I secretly felt so hardcore. And so Asian. xD

My Sewing Space 
 My Sewing Space with "Heart of Chaos" Playing in the Background

I suppose that I should also mention that I beat Final Fantasy XIII-2 this week-- twice actually. ^_^;; I am going to be gathering all 160 fragments, so I've still got a long while before I am done with the game as a whole, though! Plus...I really love the FFXIII series so...meow. <3  

My other event of this week is that I had an opportunity to capture two really great pictures of a heron. =) He was standing on a small dam at a park and I managed to snag some shots of him in all his glory.

The water was rippling so magnificently that day. It was still enough for you to see reflections in, but moving in a way that alluded to the life hidden beneath the surface. It was a lovely day for a walk and this made it even more worth it. I am so thankful to have had a camera with me! I find this heron to be quite handsome, especially with the surroundings. <3 

To complement the decent weather we've been having lately, I wore a very nice outfit inspired by Korean fashion specifically.

~Outfit #8!~
Warm Weather Outfit! =)

I rarely wear shorts, but I found these really nice ones at Body Central. They are fingertip length, which I am very appreciative of. I don't like to rock booty shorts. >.< These actually remind me of some shorts I have seen female K-pop stars wear in videos, and some I've seen in online shops, only these are less 70s inspired. I like them because they hug the top of me snugly, but not too tightly, either.  
In addition to the outfit being worn due to the nice weather, this whole outfit was really based on the fact that I really wanted to wear those earrings. *-* I love them so much, but I only wear them occasionally since they are so bold.

Royal Blue Earrings 

The Breakdown:
Shorts: Body Central, about $20.00
Shirt: Forever 21
Shoes: Payless
Earrings: I don't remember =(
Pearl bracelets: Forever 21
Glasses: Vogue brand, bought at Lenscrafters

Well I hope the rest of your April and the rest of your semesters go as well as possible! Always remember that inspiration is everywhere-- you just need to go out and find it. =) 

If you would like to see additional photos, please visit my Flickr page.

<3 Alyssa

Monday, April 9, 2012

April Showers Bring May Flowers

Happy month of April, everyone! ^-^ I hope the beginning of this month has treated you well. It's been a bit stressful for me, getting to the end of the semester and trying to manage school work, fun, and my HappyGifts4U shop on Etsy. This month has been really good considering all the stress, though. I've been trying to keep myself happy by chilling with friends as well as finding comfort in some alone time. =)

Well, the weather was nice and warm again today, so I sported another spring look! I'm really excited about this outfit. I must have thrown a hundred different combinations together before I was completely satisfied with the overall feel and look of the outfit today. (Okay, so maybe just four or five combos ;P) Here is the result of my efforts!

~Outfit #7!~
Showing off my yukata-esque sleeves <3

I am soooo happy I finally found an outfit to wear the sheer, yukata/kimono-esque shawl with. It is such a beautiful and elegant garment, in it there is also a fun, girlish charm, which makes it great for multiple moods and looks. The orange dress is sleeveless, and the yukata shawl also functions as a way for me to be just a little more modest and show a different side of my personality, as well. The belt came with the dress, and its color fit in nicely with everything else. The pearls helped to add just the right amount of jewelry, fun, and classiness to the outfit.

I was a little iffy about the tights at first, but I wasn't really comfortable wearing such a short dress without them-- but I'm SO glad I tried them on because they work GREAT with this outfit. They definitely add some Asian flair to the outfit that would otherwise be missing. The little bows on them are just sooo Asian to me. I'm very happy that I bought them on a whim, because I've really come to love them.

The Breakdown:

Dress: Body Central, $21.00
Belt: Came with the dress
Yukata/Kimono Shawl: Forever 21, Japanese inspired
Tights: Random accessory store, $8.00
Shoes: Payless, on sale for $15.00
Pearls: Forever 21
Glasses: Vogue brand, bought at Lenscrafters
Overall Inspiration: East Asia in the springtime <3

This outfit made me feel really cute, beautiful, fun, and confident in who I am. I definitely tailored each piece to fit me, and I would always encourage you to do the same. Don't be afraid of throwing mismatched things together, because that could be your new best outfit in the making! That's totally what happened with this outfit, and I love it so much.

If you would like to see additional photos, please visit my Flickr page.


Before I sign off, I would like to bring attention to some wonderful opportunities for American K-pop fans! On April 20th, tickets go on sale for Jay Park's American tour!! =DD He will be performing in Washington D.C., New York, San Francisco, and Los Angeles. Check out the link below, and be sure to stalk the tickets at midnight, because they usually go really fast-- sometimes within minutes!

Also! On May 20th there is a concert featuring Super Junior, TVXQ (DBSK), BoA, Girl's Generation, Kangta, and Exo 4. *-* I've heard that f(x) and SHINee might be involved, as well.  The concert is in California and tickets are between $50-$300. I want to go sooo badly!!!!! T___T I hope I can find someway to find the funds to do so. I've never been to a K-pop concert, but I would absolutely LOVE it. I hope some of you are able to go, as well! Let me know if you are able to go or not in the comments box! ^_^ 

Well everyone, I can't give you any bigger news than that, so for now I am off. Have a great rest of your night/day. Also wishing you a good rest of the semester!

<3 Alyssa

Thursday, March 29, 2012

*Spring has Sprung*

Greetings, fellow Asian enthusiasts! It is wonderful weather outside today. =) I'm sitting on my couch with the windows open in my room, staring out into a sea of wind-blown grass, greener than I've seen in what feels like years. It's very soothing. I like seeing the budding process of all of the plants and trees. They're all just so cute to me, and in my head I'm cheering them on, encouraging them to grow. ^-^ Heeheehee. <3

In honor of the start of actual spring-like weather, two days ago I wore an outfit entirely inspired by this pair of shoes:

Shoes 2

I got them at Payless and I was shocked at how comfortable they were. I have a bad ankle, so I have to be really careful about the heels I wear. I'm going to be honest, there was normal foot pain from wearing heels, but I consider that relatively okay as long as I don't wear them all the time. (You don't want to damage your feet permanently in your (eventual) old age!) Other than that, the heels are great. I wasn't even rushing to take them off when I got back home, so I like them a lot!

So a few days before I found these shoes, I was browsing wholesale websites that specifically sell Korean, Japanese, and Chinese clothing. Check out the links below this paragraph! =D I really wasn't feeling inspired to update my spring wardrobe because honestly, I love winter clothes way too much. So to remedy this, I, of course, looked to Asia for inspiration. After looking through the wholesale websites for a while, I finally decided that I wanted a new pair of shoes in order to put me in the mood for spring clothing.

NOTE: When browsing these websites, you MUST pay attention to the sizes. They will often only offer something in one size and it will be in centimeters (cm), so I recommend using/buying a tape measure to be sure you are not ordering something that is either to small or too big for you.

~Outfit #6!~

So this was my super happy springtime filled outfit of fun! xP Hehe. I must have thrown on five different shirt combos trying to get something to match with the skirt I was wearing. The skirt is super cute, but for some reason it can be hard to match with.
The shirt that I am wearing underneath the zipper military vest is a spaghetti strap shirt; it was slightly chilly outside that day, so I wanted just a little extra layer to keep me warm, especially when sitting in an air conditioned classroom for over an hour. Thus, what I did for practicality actually ended up created a completely unique look. I bought the vest a few years ago, inspired by G-Dragon's look and wardrobe when his Heartbreaker album came out-- everything was very WHITE. I like the vest a lot for its masculine, military flair accompanied by a more feminine cut that hugs the waist nicely. =) To be honest, I don't think the vest was inspired by a specific piece of clothing, but the closest I can find to what may have been it is this white coat: 

G-Dragon Heartbreaker White Coat 1

The Breakdown:
Shoes: Payless, Asian/Spring inspired look, $25.00
Netted Leggings with Bow Designs: A very random accessory store in a mall...don't remember the name (sorry!), about $8.00
Pink Skirt: Forever 21
Flowy, Lacy shirt: Forever 21
White Military Vest: Body Central, G-Dragon inspired
Pearl Bracelets: Forever 21
Sakura (Cherry Blossom)/Pearl Earrings: Forever 21
Glasses: Vogue Brand, bought at Lenscrafters

I had a lot of fun putting together an Asian, spring inspired look. I always tend to gravitate toward winter clothing, so I feel pretty successful when I'm able to find a spring look that still expresses my personality. ^-^

Shoes 3
And to think, all of the inspiration came from this little pair of shoes.

If you would like to see additional photos, please visit my Flickr page. -^.^- And as always, if you have any comments, please feel free to leave them in the box below!

Love deeply, smile sincerely, and appreciate the you that is you-- you are a wonderful creation.

<3 Alyssa

Monday, March 19, 2012

Big News! -GD&TOP Related-

Hello again everyone! I am so sorry that I have not blogged in so long. To be honest, I was super stressed with school and was feeling really down at the start of spring semester. Thankfully, I feel much better and wanted to let you all know that I am doing okay. =)

So I just wanna jump right in and say that this past Friday, March 16th, was the talent show at my university. Annnnnddd you wanna know what I did? >) Me and my friend Rachel both danced, in full costume, to High High by GD&TOP!! Ohhh my goodness it was so amazingggg!! I had SO much fun. There was a lot of hard work put into both the dance and the costumes, and it was -so- worth it.

~Outfits #4 & 5!~

GD&TOP High High Red Carpet
Here we are on the red carpet!!  *o*

My outfit was inspired by GD and my friend Rachel's outfit was inspired by T.O.P.

Click here to see our DANCE PERFORMANCE!!    Be sure to watch in 1080p! =D

(Click here to see the original Korean music video.)

And below is more of a closeup:

GD&TOP High High Red Carpet 2

Here's how it was all done:

For G-Dragon:

Skinny Jeans: Forever 21. Already had these, originally bought for $12.00
Shiny converse/high top looking shoes: Aldo, $60.00
Grey Sparkly, Tiger Tanktop: Wet Seal
Black, Shiny Jacket: Forever 21
Rings: 3 of them from Plato's Closet (PC), 2 of them from Claire's.

G-Dragon Rings
In order from left to right, Claire's, PC, PC, PC, Claire's.

Bracelets, 2: Both came from Plato's Closet
Fleur-de-lis Necklace: Plato's Closet
Earrings: Macy's, $35.00 (yea I know they were expensive...>.< But they looked like GD's earrings in Fantastic Baby! So...totally worth it in my opinion.)
Safety Pins: Joann Fabrics
Beads for Safety Pins: I bought a necklace for 6.00 at Plato's Closet and took it apart with jewelry pliers and put the beads on my safety pins to add a bit of extra bling to my pants. I also bought a 1.00 bracelet just for a cross bead that was on it.
Bling Necklace: Made it myself. I bought the chain at Michael's and cut it to the length that I wanted. I also bought the big, round charm at Michael's-- it originally looked reminiscent of a blue shell type charm. I took a bunch of tiny sparklies (I don't remember what they are called!) and put a G on the front in white sparklies with a black sparkle background, and a D on the back in black sparklies with a white sparkle background. I hand-sewed one side of the necklace to my shirt to prevent it from hitting me in the face while on stage dancing. I only sewed one side of it down so that it would still look like it was handing naturally, and it totally did. No one knew I did that. =P
Hair: I used Got 2B Glued hairspray to get my hair like that. I first teased (back-combed) the middle section first, sprayed it and twisted it as I went along. The twisting seems to hold it in place better. I then did the same to the next side, and then tried to blend it it with the first section. There were three sections of hair total, blended together to make one giant awesome hair point, hahaha.

For T.O.P.
Boots in Photo: Skechers Brand, on sale for $17.00 at Skechers Outlet
Boots that she danced in: TJ Maxx
Pants and Jacket: Had in her closet
Epaulettes: Materials bought at Joann Fabrics. I taught Rachel how to make them by putting interfacing between two pieces of fabric and sewing the edges down. She then sewed and hot-glued chains of varying length to make the fringe, and sewed some silver trim onto the top of the epaulettes.
Cross Medallion: A bead bought from Michael's
Silver Buttons on Collar: Hand-sewn onto the collar
Gold Stars on Collar: These are actually earrings! Just stick them through the fabric, put the back on them and ba-yum! Instant glory.
Rhinetsones on Coat: Attached with fashion tape-- bottom of jacket also positioned folded up with fashion tape
Belt Buckle: Bought somewhere online

For GD, I just played with my hair until something looked right. Everything else had looked either too female or just not "GD" enough, until finally I went a little crazy and found out my hair could do THAT. xD Then today as I was going through some pictures on my computer, I realized that GD actually did his hair very similarly!!

G-Dragon and Taeyung
 GD and Taeyung

Believe it or not, the inspiration for my hair totally did not come from this picture. I was so amazed when I saw this!! xD Although for my outfit, I was inspired by GD's look on the High High album:

GD&TOP High High

Rachel, as T.O.P., was inspired by his outfit in the actual High High music video, which unfortunately I cannot find a picture of. =( I will probably take a screen shot later! But she even did the chain epaulettes like he has in the video. So awesome. *-*

If you have any questions about anything, please let us know by leaving a comment!

GD&TOP Red Carpet 2

This one of the funnest events of my life. I absolutely LOVE performing and the energy of the crowd was fantastic. And I'm not gonna lie: I'm totally dreaming of GD & TOP seeing our video, noticing us, liking us, inviting us to come to Korea, becoming best friends with GD, and ending up as an English-speaking background dancer in all of their shows. O_O But you know, I dream small. ;D

If you would like to see additional photos, please visit my Flickr page! -^.^-

Until next time everyone!! Live, love, and give joy to others whenever you are able.

<3 Alyssa

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Happy New Year!

Happy 2012 everybody!! The year is off to a great start. I just got back from my History of Modern Asia course that deals with the history of China, Japan, and Korea from 1800 to the present. I am SO excited! My teacher is a -wonderful- woman and it feels so good to have a Chinese professor again. It feels like going home, so to speak. I miss my laoshi (teacher) from high school, and my new professor has all the little Chinese-isms that I love. I'm so excited!! <3333 Some strings had to get pulled for me to get in the class, and I am SO blessed to have gotten in. Truly! Gahhhh I was literally jumping up and down from excitement after class. It is going to be such a great experience and I will have someone to practice speaking Chinese with again! <3 I'm so ready, heeheehee.

So for the new year I celebrated by going over to my friend's house where we watched TRON: Legacy. We made drinks that GLOWED in BLACKLIGHT. We mixed crystal light, tonic water, and water together- the tonic water has a property that makes it react to blacklight. My drink glowed blue and my friends glowed yellow. It was AWESOME to watch Tron with glowing drinks because Tron is already -such- a glowy movie. What I love about the film is that it is literally visual art. I appreciate the story because I saw the first Tron first, but that's not what I love about the second film. I adore how I get sucked into the world and I love how well the soundtrack by Daft Punk complements it. (You should buy it on iTunes! <3)

In addition to having fantastic fun, I of course included a fun wardrobe! Here is my outfit from New Year's Eve ^^

 ~Outfit #3!~

This was my attempt at a GD/male K-pop star pose. xD I must say, the outfit was -much- sparklier in person. (Sparklier is a word in my dictionary. ;D) The jacket was inspired by male Korean pop fashion, mainly from G-Dragon from the group Big Bang. It just looks like something he would rock in his album with T.O.P.

For those of you who are new to these two, G-Dragon is on the left and T.O.P. is on the right. They are from the group Big Bang but did an album with just the two of them. The two balance each other out very nicely because GD's voice is relatively high for a guy while TOP's is deeper, and GD is kinda fun and bouncy while TOP just looks awesome. I think GD is the fun and TOP is the sexy, hahaha. Personally though, I think I would like to be friends with GD more. =) He just seems so fun! (Don't get me wrong, TOP definitely brought the sexy back.) Oh, and also for anyone not familiar with the GD&TOP album, that isn't a Playboy bunny symbol- it's actually a hand making a peace sign. This obviously throws a reference back to Playboy, but it isn't the actual symbol. Personally, I think this is a shame since so many girls like them. =( Girls should be raised up higher than Playboy! >.< And guys should be looking for more than that. Mewww...*grumpy kitty ears*

But yes! New Year's was fun. I even wore fun socks! xD

 See them?? They glow in the dark!! ^.^

 Here is a standing version so you can see the outfit better. =)

The jacket was bought at Forever 21 and was G-Dragon inspired. The shirt I got a long time ago and I don't remember where I got it anymore. =( The beret I got at New York and Company on sale for $10.00. I am wearing my staple Fragile brand jeans from The glasse are Vogue brand- I wear them everyday so I can see. ^-^;; I was wearing my black wedge shoes from Payless before I took them off. If you go to the previous blog entry you can see them.

The Breakdown:
Jacket: Forever 21, G-Dragon inspired
Shirt: Unknown
Beret: New York & Company, on sale for $10.00
Skinny Jeans: Fragile brand jeans bought online at (I wear a medium in them)
Glasses: Vogue brand, bought at Lenscrafters
Shoes: Payless, around $30.00 (scroll down to previous entry to see them)

Well I hope your new year is off to a good start. This is YOUR year to shine, so go out and enjoy every day to the fullest!

<3 Alyssa