spunktitud3

Musings on Travel, Fashion & Fun


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PMQ – Proudly Made in Hong Kong

PMQ Hong Kong
After laying dormant for almost 14 years, the former Police Married Quarters (PMQ) on Hollywood Road has found new life as Hong Kong’s latest creative hub for local designers of diverse disciplines. The 18,000sqm former heritage site houses 130 units rented out to selected locally based creative talents from the fields of design, fashion and art at a discounted rate for a maximum lease of two years, to allow them to create their own viable businesses. More established brands such as Bread and Butter and Vivienne Tam are also present on the ground and first floor to lend some clout.

PMQ is also home to five restaurants including Aberdeen Street Social by Jason Atherton & Yenn Wong,  and Spanish fine dining restaurant Vasco featuring Paolo Casagrande from two- Michelin star Barcelonan restaurant Lasarte. There are 15 pop-up spaces, 6 units for international ‘designers in residence’ to work from and a huge 6,000sqm exhibition space called the Cube which will host fashion and art events. Be sure to visit the night market run by the organisers of Island East Markets every Friday and weekend nights featuring street food from the city’s most cutting edge eateries, creations by local craftspeople and music from top musicians and DJs. I popped by Hong Kong’s newest creative spot for a look during its soft opening in May. It officially opens in late June 2014. As far as I could see from the 30% of the shops open during the soft opening – it’s a shopping haven for people who appreciate one-of-a-kind product offerings (like me), and I have no doubt it will be a hip place to hangout during the weekend evenings. Pen it down in your itinerary on your next trip to Hong Kong.


PMQ Hong KongThe site on Aberdeen Road where PMQ sits also deserves mentioning for its rich cultural heritage – it was built way back in 1889 as the Central School. The school was severely damaged during World War II and was demolished in 1948 to make way for building the Former Police Married Quarters (and where its current name PMQ was derived). After the Former Police Married Quarters were vacated in 2000, it remained empty for years amid a mire of indecision on its next usage. It was definitely a costly (in)decision as the market price of the building was estimated at $2,500m to $3,000m. The government eventually launched the ‘Conserving Central’ plan in 2009 to preserve eight key heritage sites in Central including PMQ. A $100m bid by the Musketeers Foundation (a group of 3 anonymous local businessmen who support culture and education) to turn the site into a creative hub for designers was accepted, and voila – PMQ is born.

PMQ Hong Kong

It’s heartening to see efforts have been made to maintain and enhance the original features of the site, such as these granite steps and rubble retaining wall which have existed since the opening of the Central School in 1889.

PMQ Hong Kong

PMQ consists of an adjacent pair of 7-floor buildings constructed in 1951. Architecturally, the design of the two quarters blocks reflects the architecture of the modern movement. For me, I couldn’t wait to start shopping.

PMQ Hong Kong

I was quite intrigued by these old-school postboxes on the ground floor.

PMQ Hong Kong

Some of the shops include the super famous HK lifestyle store Goods of Desire, industrial-based accessories POMCH, Crafted in Hong Kong by Kapok, Coney & Co, multi-label fashion boutique The Refinery by curated by well-known British blogger Elizabeth Lau, Smoth and Norbu which crafts spectacles out of yak and buffalo horn and even 513 Paint Shop, a designer paint shop.

PMQ Hong Kong

It’s not a place only for the arty-farty, the tourists, but local families too! The children looked so happy playing, I felt tempted to join in.

PMQ Hong Kong

These dim sum candles are just SO CUTE, they look so real!

PMQ Hong Kong

Exquisite ceramics which look good enough to eat

PMQ Hong Kong

Eco-friendly offerings

PMQ Hong Kong

I want bespoke creative agency Delication‘s “Jungles in a Bottle”.

PMQ Hong Kong

Very interesting home decor

PMQ Hong Kong

I was so tempted to get these photo frames modeled after traditional Hong Kong signboards

PMQ Hong Kong

A very good souvenir to get from Hong Kong

PMQ Hong Kong

On top of local talents, established names like Bread and Butter also set up shop on the ground floor.

PMQ Hong Kong

Even Giordano here looks better

PMQ Hong Kong

There’s a landscaped garden on the 4th level rooftop!

PMQ Hong Kong

Looks like a nice place to chill out :)

PMQ Hong Kong

A few units have been set aside to showcase the rich heritage of the site. The Central Government School was the first government school to teach a Western curriculum. Dr Sun Yat-sen and Macau casino king Stanley Ho were some of the students who studied there.

PMQ Hong Kong

3D model of the school

PMQ Hong Kong

In order to boost police recruitment, following an influx of Chinese immigrants after the Chinese Civil War, the Police Married Quarters was built in 1951 to provide accommodation for married rank and file officers to enhance the morale of junior police officers. Current and ex-Chief Executives CY Leung and Donald Tsang both lived there at one point.

PMQ Hong Kong

One of the units was refurbished to the original living space, and the video of past PMQ residents reminiscing about living there was intriguing. It was full of warmth, and you could tell they really enjoyed living there as a big community.

PMQ Hong Kong

You can view the foundations of the old Victoria College via an underground tunnel in the central courtyard.

PMQ Hong Kong

Taking a break from retail therapy to admire the architecture of the building

PMQ Hong Kong

Ok, now back to shopping!

PMQ Hong Kong

OMG I love these!

PMQ Hong Kong

Some fine-looking leathercraft

PMQ Hong Kong

Open Quote.

PMQ Hong Kong

Be sure to check out Chocolate Rain, a popular local brand featuring cute, whimsical characters on the ground floor

PMQ Hong Kong

Cuteness overload

PMQ Hong Kong

In love with these porcelain-inspired necklaces

PMQ Hong Kong

Whether for fashion, food or art, do drop by Hong Kong’s latest address for creativity during your next visit.

PMQ
35 Aberdeen Street, Central, Hong Kong Island
Website: www.pmq.org.hk
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PMQHK
Opening Hours: 1:00PM to 8:00PM

Getting there:
1) MTR Sheung Wan Station Exit E2. Walk through the Grand Millennium Plaza to reach Bonham Strand. Cross the road and turn left onto Wellington Street and walk for around two minutes. Turn onto Aberdeen Street and walk for around three minutes to reach PMQ.

2) MTR Central Station Exit C. Walk along Dex Voeux Road to the Hang Seng Bank Headquarters, which is linked to the Central–Mid-Levels Escalator. Take the escalator to Staunton Street and turn right. Walk for about three minutes to reach PMQ. The whole walk takes about 15 minutes.

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Look of the day – Hasselblad Lunar

Look of the day - Hasselblad Lunar

Flight of Fancy
When my friend Aram called to say he had a new S$10,000 fashion-worthy camera to let me play with, my interest was piqued.
I guess the look I had for the day would be – excitement.

Very canary yellow ruffle top – Chloe
Purple ribbon necklace – Marc Jacobs

Look of the day - Hasselblad Lunar

Hasselbald Lunar – The ultimate luxury mirrorless interchangeable lens camera
Swedish manufacturer Hasselbald is best known for its medium-format cameras and photographic equipment it has produced since World War II. Its most famous user has to be Neil Armstrong when he photographed the surface of the moon with a specially designed 500EL. Almost all of the still photographs taken during Apollo program missions use modified Hasselblad cameras. And that explains its Lunar name as well as its astronomical (pun intended) price of US$6,995.
For me, it was almost love at first sight. It looked good, and felt good. Just that the price didn’t sound too good :p

Look of the day - Hasselblad Lunar

Me: Wow, they even have pink crystals to decorate the buttons!
Aram: Ermm…I believe they are rubies.
Me: Oh, WOW. (And tried to find somewhere to dig a big hole and bury my face in)

This 24 megapixel camera is the first product from the partnership between Hasselblad and Sony. As such it is no surprise the camera shares a lot of similar specs as the Sony NEX-7. Both have the same ISO range of 100-16,000, 25-point contrast detection autofocus system, 2.3 million dot OLED electronic viewfinder and 3-inch tiltable LCD screen.

The Lunar definitely has an edge in the look department, being one of the trendiest cameras I have ever seen – it felt solid and had a well-designed grip. There are currently five models in the collection, which include the use of black leather, brown Tuscan leather, carbon fiber, mahogany and olive wood on the grip. Not to mention titanium dials and bejeweled buttons to match.

Look of the day - Hasselblad Lunar

Shooting the Lunar before taking it for a test shoot

Look of the day - Hasselblad Lunar

Flight of Fancy at the Flower Dome, Gardens by the Bay
White embroidery skirt – Dolce & Gabanna

Look of the day - Hasselblad Lunar

Admiring my nail art which looks, out of this world ;)

Look of the day - Hasselblad Lunar

Star motif velvet flats – Topshop
Beaded ankle bracelet – Accessorize

Look of the day - Hasselblad Lunar

With an aperture of as small as F2.8, the Lunar was really awesome for macro photography. Moreover, the shutter response time was close to instantaneous, thus reducing the probability of blur shots.

Look of the day - Hasselblad Lunar

Look of the day - Hasselblad Lunar

Giant Hibiscus. Love the texture.

Look of the day - Hasselblad Lunar

Look of the day - Hasselblad Lunar

Look of the day - Hasselblad Lunar

Verdict: I’m liking my photos taken so far, and the camera’s pretty easy to use. It looks darn good as well. Just not the hefty price tag. It’s no surprise that most of its customers are rich Arab sheiks and wealthy Chinese businessmen. That said, the quality of material somehow justifies the price.

If I had S$10,000 to spend, I would get a proper DSLR system though as it’s time for me to upgrade to a better system (that’s the next thing on my wish list). With enough left to get a few more lenses. If I had a few million in my bank account, I would definitely get the Lunar for casual shooting. I will start dreaming about it tonight.

Look of the day - Hasselblad Lunar

I can’t fly to the moon, but I can hitch a ride in a hot air balloon!


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MMMmmm…I think my wallet is in trouble again

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M

After months of anticipation, the Maison Martin Margiela x H&M lookbook is finally unveiled! Here’s a peek from the 140-piece collection which launches 15 November at H&M stores world-wide. Inspiration for the collection came from MMM’s iconic pieces, featuring androgynous tailoring, asymmetry, oversize silhouettes and the maison’s trademark humour.

There’s only one problem with the collection – I can’t find anything I don’t like! I think I’m gonna melt my credit card with this one…oh dear. 15 November – quick come. I’m drooling all over the lookbook already. Follow the collaboration hashtag #MargielawithHM to get the latest updates.

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook

MMM x H&M

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M Lookbook
Photos from @itsjenniferward and @vistelacalle (bottom right)

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M

Maison Martin Margiela x H&M

See you soon MMM x H&M!

All images from H&M unless otherwise indicated.


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Look of the Day – Infinitely Dots: Yayoi Kusama x Louis Vuitton

As I wait with abated breath for the launch of Louis Vuitton’s latest artist collaboration with Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama “Infinitely Kusama” this week, I got inspired to wear lots of dots, which is the signature motif of the artist.

Look of the Day - Infinitely Dots

Look of the Day – Infinitely Dots
Top: Pleats Please by Issey Miyake
Pants: Marni for H&M
Bag: Balenciaga

Look of the Day - Infinitely Dots

LEFT: Bangles – Hermes, H&M
RIGHT: Purple Necklace: Marc Jacobs; Chain encased in black mesh: The Link boutique

Look of the Day - Infinitely Dots

LEFT: Blue polka dot satin bow: From Tokyo, Japan
RIGHT: Finger rings: From Hong Kong

Fashion x Contemporary Art
The Infinitely Kusama line follows the past highly-success collaborations which Louis Vuitton has done with Stephen Sprouse (graffiti), Takashi Murakami (smiling cherries and sakura blossoms) and Richard Prince (a joke – I’m serious, the LV bags were spray-painted with jokes printed on them). The line also coincides with the artist’s retrospective exhibition, Kusama at the Whitney Museum.

Such cross intersection of art, fashion and even music is getting increasingly common, as associating with art lends credibility and a more high-brow, exclusive image to the brand, as well as allows innovation with a new product line. For the consumer, they are buying accessibility to the art world which is high-end luxury, where a piece of artwork by the artist would normally be out of reach – and understanding – for them. As for the artist, this is seen as a way to reach out to the masses to gain more awareness to their artworks.

Louis Vuitton X Yayoi Kusama Lookbook

Louis Vuitton X Yayoi Kusama Lookbook
Photos: Franck Mura via Women’s Wear Daily

Yayoi Kusama
Yayoi Kusama, who celebrated her 83th birthday earlier this year, is a sculptor, painter, writer, installation artist and performance artist. The “High Priestess of Polka Dots” is known as the most expensive living Asian artist, and her diverse art is expressed mainly through the use of mere dots. Why dots? As a child, Kusama coped with the hallucinations she suffered from by painting polka dots. This motif has remained a central feature of her work, and expresses her feeling of revolving ‘in the infinity of endless time and the absoluteness of space,’ and her view of herself as ‘a dot lost among a million other dots.’ She has also lived for forty years in the open ward of a mental hospital with her own art studio down the street.

Yayoi Kusama X Louis Vuitton

“My artwork is an expression of my life, particularly of my mental disease… My art originates from hallucinations only I can see. I translate the hallucinations and obsessional images that plague me into sculptures and paintings.” Kusama has also expresses the polka dot as a symbol of love and peace (How about saying “I dot you” to your loved one next time? haha)
Photo: Arrested Motion

Marc Jacobs’ first met Kusama in 2006, and the enchanting encounter set the path to collaborate on the current Louis Vuitton Kusama collaboration.


Infinitely Kusama

The Infinitely Kusama collection will consist of ready-to-wear (trenchcoats, silk payjamas), handbags, shoes and accessories (wristwatch, sunglasses, pendant necklace) adorned with the artist’s famous polka dots fashioned in a tentacle-like “nerves” motif. Think pop art meets luxury. The first wave of pieces (ready-to-wear and small accessories) will debut in stores on July 10 with a major handbag and accessories push coming in October. The collection’s bags are mainly classic Vuitton designs redone in Monogram Vernis leather printed with dots in contrasting colors. The collection is also reported to include wave prints.

Louis Vuitton X Yayoi Kusama

LEFT: Louis Vuitton X Yayoi Kusama Polka Dot Heels
RIGHT: The embellished Louis Vuitton Ellipse that Kusama is holding is a bag that the artist hand-customized for Vuitton’s creative director Marc Jacobs. Lucky dude. I also want.
Photo: Purse Blog

Louis Vuitton X Yayoi Kusama Lookbook

Louis Vuitton X Yayoi Kusama Lookbook
Photo: Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton X Yayoi Kusama Lookbook

Louis Vuitton X Yayoi Kusama Lookbook
Photo: Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton X Yayoi Kusama Lookbook

Louis Vuitton X Yayoi Kusama Lookbook
Photo: Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton X Yayoi Kusama Lookbook

Louis Vuitton X Yayoi Kusama Lookbook
Photo: Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton X Yayoi Kusama Collection

Louis Vuitton x Yayoi Kusama Collection – Accessories
My faves? The metal studded collar (USD1700) and sunglasses sporting a cute flower (USD610)!
Photo: Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton x Yayoi Kusama Collection

Louis Vuitton x Yayoi Kusama Collection – Handbags
Photo: Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton x Yayoi Kusama Collection

Louis Vuitton x Yayoi Kusama Collection – Scarves
Photo: Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton x Yayoi Kusama Collection

Louis Vuitton x Yayoi Kusama Collection – Footwear
Photo: Louis Vuitton

Infinitely Pop-up Shops

Louis Vuitton X Yayoi Kusama Pop-up Store

Louis Vuitton x Yayoi Kusama Pop-up Store Concept
Photo: Louis Vuitton

The collection will be available in Vuitton’s 461 stores around the world, including a series of pop-up shops.  The first pop-up shop will debut inside the Louis Vuitton Soho flagship in New York City on 10 July (today!). Other pop-ups inside or adjacent to LV boutiques will also include Ngee Ann City (13 July – yeah!) Singapore, LV Isetan Shinjuku in Tokyo, Dover Street Market in Ginza, Pacific Place in Hong Kong, LV Printemps flagship (23 Aug) in Paris and one of the biggest measuring over 1000 square feet in Selfridge’s (24 Aug) in London.

I’ll definitely pop by (pun intended) the Singapore store wearing surprise, surprise….polka dots :)

Louis Vuitton X Yayoi Kusama iphone app

Louis Vuitton will also launch an iPhone App that will allow users to take pictures and customize them with Kusama motifs. The app will be available in both English and Japanese.
Images: Louis Vuitton

Brazil first country to get Infinitely Kusama
Brazil is not only the first country to launch the much-hyped collection; its Vogue Brazil is also the first medium to reveal the collection, with a pregnant Gisele Bundchen fronting the cover for its July issue.

Louis Vuitton X Yayoi Kusama - Vogue Brazil

31-year-old supermodel Gisele Bundchen wears a red scarf as a top with a yellow scarf around her waist and polka dot pants from Louis Vuitton’s Infinitely Kusama line.
Photo: Patrick Demarchelier for Vogue Brazil

Other interesting Kusama collaborations
Kusama has also previously done some interesting collaboration with other products, and these are two that caught my eye:

iida x Yayoi Kusama

iida X Yayoi Kusama: Based on the idea of a mobile phone as art, KDII brand iida collaborated with Kusama to produce three limited edition mobile phone models called ‘Dots Obsession, Full Happiness with Dots‘, ‘My Doggie Ring-Ring‘ and ‘Hand Bag for Space Travel‘.
Source: Design Boom

Coca Cola x Yayoi Kusama

These Kusama-designed Coca-Cola vending machines were displayed for one month in Daikanyama, Tokyo as part of Coke’s No Reason Art Project conceptualised by Dentsu as a way to better engage its sophisticated young urban target audience. The trademark dots represent the sparkling freshness of the brand.
Photo: Ananas à Miami

10 Things about Yayoi Kusama
1. Yayoi Kusama’s childhood in rural Japan was “like a nightmare”. Born in 1929 to an abusive mother, she experienced continual hallucinations throughout her childhood, and was prone to morbid obsessions. The first subjects to appear in Kusama’s earliest paintings from childhood were her mother, the sun, the moon, and clouds.

2. Kusama left Japan for New York City in 1958 and spent several years entrenched in the art scene; she exhibited with everyone from Donald Judd to Andy Warhol, and was friendly with Georgia O’Keeffe.

3. In the sixties, Kusama opened a boutique where she sold her own mod clothing designs, many of which were made from see-through materials. Nudity was common in much of her work at the time, and the shop included private studios where models would have their bodies painted and photographed.

4. In 1968, Kusama designed a bridal gown for two men to wear at their wedding, which took place at Kusama’s Church of Self-Obliteration and was directed by the artist herself, who had been dubbed the “High Priestess of Polka Dots.” Polka dots—which represent disease for Kusama—started appearing as motifs in her paintings around age 10; they are present in many of her works, including street performances that involved painting polka dots on nude men and women.

5. Kusama calls her work “psychosomatic,” and continually explores the themes of eternity, emptiness, hallucination, obsession, compulsion, accumulation, and repetition, among others. In her thirties, she focused in particular on entropy, sensuality, and femininity through a surrealist lens.

6. In addition to her autobiography, Infinity Net, Kusama has written eight novels and countless poems.

7. Throughout the late 1960s, Kusama staged over 200 “Happenings” in public spaces around New York City and throughout Europe. The performances included body painting festivals, fashion shows, orgies, and anti-war demonstrations. When she moved back to Japan, Kusama began staging performances on temple grounds in Tokyo—for one, she toilet-papered a graveyard.

8. In 1968, the artist launched Kusama Fashion Company Ltd., and sold her avant-garde clothing and accessory line in “Kusama Corner” at Bloomingdale’s in New York. She staged fashion shows in Rome, Paris, Belgium, and Germany.

9. Kusama moved back to Japan in 1973 to focus on her health and to pursue a more peaceful artistic lifestyle than New York City would allow. Since the mid-1970s, she has lived voluntarily in a psychiatric hospital, and continues to create artwork in a studio nearby.

10. In order to create a body of work that she feels will leave an impact on future generations, Kusama would like to live to be at least 200 or 300 years old. As long as she has the energy to continue creating, she will carry on.

Source: Worn Fashion Journal


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Look of the Day – Golden Girl

I checked out artisan gourmet store Dean & Deluca over the weekend and went for the golden girl look – matches the chi chi place I was visiting!

Look of the Day Golden Girl

Look of the Day – Golden Girl
Top: From Hong Kong (Granville Road)
Pants: Pleats Please, Issey Miyake
Glasses: Vintage Laura Biagiotti

Look of the Day Golden Girl - Accessories

Golden beaded wraparound bracelet: Forever 21
Monkey bracelet: Topshop
White ceramic ring: Bvlgari
Crucifix Diamante Ring: Forever 21

Look of the Day Golden Girl - Shoes

Ring: Bvlgari
Black leather flats: Louis Vuitton

Look of the Day Golden Girl - Hair

My hair matches the golden girl theme too!