no reason.

I've avoided the midi length for almost 24 years of my life. As someone who is short, it's never agreed with me (nor I with it) and I long envied others who could pull off a sleek midi pencil skirt, midi dress or culottes. Things changed when I found this grey midi dress at LIFEwithBIRD. I figured that now I'm finally at a workplace with some sort of dress code, I might have to look beyond my usual mini skirts and shorts. That's not to say I was sold on this dress the first time I tried it on (I went back a week later to be 100% sure) - I had my doubts it would work with what I had but it has since become one of my favourites and most versatile. I wear it with everything now - leather jacket, denim jacket, blazer, sneakers, ankle boots and have learned to become less conscious of the fact that it is a length that chops me off, though I look classier doing it? 

Since then I've been on the hunt for more midi length pieces to acquire but have turned up with nothing. This dress sits knee length on the model which makes the perfect midi length for me but anything that's actually midi length ends up looking like a maxi or that I threw on a sack. I've also found that the tighter the skirt around your legs (or a sleek bodycon cut) the more chance you have of it looking right on you. A slit up the side or the back breaks up the choppiness of it and makes it look shorter when you show a little more skin. I tried so hard to make this one Scanlan ribbed knit midi skirt work for me but let's face it, I probably got lucky with my L.W.B midi. Can someone please produce a petites range where the lengths are accurate on a short person? 

L.W.B by LIFEwithBIRD dress, IRO leather jacket, Bergdorf Goodman x New Balance Sneakers.

Photos by Christine Ai

begin again.

You know how people say "all dressed up with no where to go". Well that was has never been my mantra. There's that side of me that wants to wear tee shirts, jeans and sneakers (although most of the time activewear wins) and then there's the part that wished I could dress like the girls in a J Crew catalogue (part Parisian chic, part young working professional) and not look out of place in my casual wear work environment. Well the time has finally come. 

A couple of weeks ago I started a new job (and I am beyond happy that I have found the career equivalent to 'the one') that actually had a smart casual dress code. So I spent the weeks leading up to the move revamping my wardrobe from street to smart, picking up pieces like tailored pants, blazers, pencil skirts and button up shirts (most of which came from Scanlan Theodore, Zara and Uniqlo). And I've stopped myself from buying tee shirts or singlets for a while. So here I am now dressing for the job that I have and it's starting to influence my choices on the weekends too. Last weekend I wore a blazer. On a weekend. Expect to see more young professional Mel on Flourished - but of course I'd never give up my love for sneakers. 

On footwear (which I have also been panicking about), I came across the sustainable, eco-friendly  and ethically made Alohas Sandals handcrafted in Spain with leather materials on the top and recycled car tyres on the sole (so you know it's durable). They make these great slides in a number of colours (white, beige and silver being my favourites) and despite being inspired by the Hawaiian lifestyle, I think I've figured out how to make them work for winter and for the office too. Check Alohas out and if they tickle your fancy, you can take 20% off on me. Just enter the code 'flourished' upon checkout. 

Photography by Christine Ai

pretty vacant.

At the start of the year, I took on the styling reigns again and worked with Christine on a shoot that was lucky enough to be picked up by Fashion Journal. It's my favourite piece of work to date and I was completely blown away by how amazing it turned out. You have an idea in your head of how it's supposed to look but it completely took me by surprise (in the best way possible). A big part of it was this stunner Rosie in front of the lens who really embodied the vibe of the shoot perfectly. 

In terms of styling, I played on the contrast between masculine and feminine dressing - pairing a floaty jumpsuit with a tough leather jacket, or an oversized two piece pinstripe suit with a crop top. And of course my girl is always wearing sneakers to dress down her look (and for practicality purposes).  

Look 2: Mink Pink jacket and pants, Evil Twin crop.
Look 5: Staple the Label trench and dress. 

See the full shoot on Fashion Journal

Photography: Christine Ai
Hair & Makeup: Hilary Ho

walk this way.

There's nothing better than a good comeback story. Fizzle out and fly under the radar only to one day appear back on the scene, bigger and better than before. This is what I can only assume happened to Australian label LIFEwithBIRD, who I've been familiar with for quite a few years but have never really taken notice of them until now. It takes a lot for me to love a particular collection - it takes even more for me (and pains my bank account) to have bought three pieces from LIFEwithBIRD and LWB in the past month.

One of my favourite pieces this season is their reinvention of the classic tee shirt in a thicker scuba material. Comes in grey and black for those who are monochromatically inclined - and yes I have considered getting both. It dresses down something like a floral skirt but works equally as well with jeans and my latest pair of Nikes. 

L.W.B top Zimmermann skirt, Karen Walker sunglasses.

Photos by Uppy Chatterjee

stone cold.

Once you start working full time, you really begin to appreciate (and start living for) the weekends. Especially when you're adhering to a 9 - 5 dress code, it's even more freeing when you can wear whatever you want on the two best days of the week. Naturally I've been gravitating towards loose, slouchy, comfortable and relaxed - basically anything that has loungewear (borderline pyjamas) written all over it.

PS. I'm back.

Immoni Knit (from Solt Boutique), Staple the Label shorts, Mansur Gavriel bag. 

Photos by Uppy Chaterjee