Retro Snaps

An Instax outfit post as a virtual reminder to de-clutter, but not really. (It’ll make sense if you read the post.)

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Continuing my Instax Style Series with a quick post on this retro inspired look. Although its being retro was mostly a result versus a conscious influence. Threw on my favorite new Forever 21 leatherette midi skirt and paired it with a top revived from I don’t know when. I may have issues with letting go of items and while it’s seen as a negative most of time, unexpected twists in outfits prove my hoarding addiction can be benefited from. By me, mostly.

Speaking of hoarding, I’m basically surrounded by boxes and cartons and even more stuff to put stuff in. I seriously need some time to clean and cleanse but that time maybe equates to a week and I don’t really have the luxury of taking a week off my life just to de-clutter. Or is that a valid get-out-of-work card? “I’m cleaning”?

Anyway, if you have any tips on where and how to start, what to do, and other things you think can help my seeming constant attraction of clutter,  leave me a message. I’d be forever grateful.

I did start by buying masks and gloves (#allergictodust). The intent is there, guys. The willpower to push through, just not as much.

And when push comes to shove, I will stand by my decision to keep certain pieces of clothing that I should, under the tenets of logic, let go of and will go back to this post as virtual proof that saving and rekindling pieces may lead to cool outfits. Evidentiary support by way of blog posts? Totally on board this digital age.

Skirt, FOREVER 21 | Glasses, FOUR EYES PH 

photos by Paul Mendoza 

#SmartMasskara and Living All Out

Went to Masskara with Smart and #LivedAllOut. Here’s what went down and what you can do in Bacolod.

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The first and last time I was in Bacolod was 3 years ago for the famous Masskara festival. Masskara, named after the parade with people wearing all kinds of intricate and heavily designed masks, is a tourist event and destination that people look forward to year after year. As a Bacolod first-timer then, I made sure to make awesome use of my time. Naturally, with great company and many great first experiences, it was a hard Masskara trip to top. So when my blogger friends and I headed to Bacolod 2 weekends ago with Smart Communication to celebrate the famous City of Smiles festival, I was just a tiny bit skeptical.

But, as I’ve learned attending festivals and events with Smart, nothing beats the Smart way with the famous Live All Out philosophy and the even more famous hashtag: #SmartLiveAllOut. And as an expert LiveAllOut-er, I made sure to stay true to my most abused hashtag and #LAO-ed my way through #SmartMasskara.

From amazing food which we all happily ingested every chance we got even ordering full meals in the wee hours of the morning because, #YOLO, to the sites we visited and to partying literally every day and still dancing up until baggage claim, we had an absolute blast.

But if you don’t believe my words (although seriously, why not?), here’s a rundown of my Bacolod weekend. Feel free to #twin with our activities. Great experiences are meant to be shared.

#EatingAllOut. We pigged out in more ways than I would care to admit. So if you’re headed to Bacolod anytime soon or for the next Masskara. Here’s what you should put in your meal itinerary.

1. Calea Cakes. The Imported Chocolate Cake is supposedly their number one bestseller but the White Chocolate Cheesecake is something I’m still craving for more than a week after I had it. It was light with grated cheese on top and strawberry sauce on the side. So good. If anyone goes to Bacolod anytime soon I would seriously like to commission you to buy me a box. Thanks in advance.

2. Manokan Country. Though the city boasts of authentic inasal places corner after corner, Manokan Country is by far the biggest and with the most options. If you’re adventurous you can try the different chicken parts (blood, intestines, ass, etc). I’m not, so the thigh was more than enough and more than filling.

3. Imay’s for some Filipino dishes. Don’t forget to try the Cansi, a Bacolod soup specialty.

4. Pala-Pala for fresh seafood.

5. Pendy’s for some take home Napoleones. Two people (read: my mom and I) finished a box of 15 in two days so keep that in mind when you’re ordering.

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Bloggers happy at the prospect of food. From left to right: myself, Angela Nepomuceno, Miko Carreon, David Guison, Christine Liwag, Paul Chuapoco Processed with VSCOcam with hb1 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with hb1 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with hb1 preset

Cansi, a Bacolod soup specialty

#PartyingAllOut. As I’ve said, we went to parties day after day. Not that I’m complaining, on the contrary, it was a welcome change to my boring routine and we all had such an amazing time dancing the night away. Here’s a list of the parties we went to for reminiscing’s sake. I doubt that the parties will have the same names next year (except for Invasion, that’s annual), but if you do party in Bacolod make sure it’s with Smart because that’s where the fun is.

1. Lovedance. An aftermath of disgusting, mud-ladden feet and legs (snapped in photos but kind of gross to remember) kind of shows just how much fun we had considering we girls hate mud. (It was on a field- for context.) When it comes to Smart Parties, fun always outweighs dirt. Even thick, wet dirt. Take it from the fashion blogger.

2. Masskara Invasion. The coolest DJs took care of the music in this 2-day event. Drinks were unlimited care of El Hombre. Let’s leave it at that.

3. Masskaraland was a party that lasted ’til 6AM along the streets of Lacson. On a Sunday night. Again, leave it at that.

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Bloggers taking a selfie at the Smart booth right before heading to the parties. L-R: myself, Patricia Prieto, Paul Chuapoco, Miko Carreon, David Guison, Kryz Uy, Camille Co, Angela Nepomuceno

#TouringAllOut. We were serial party-goers at night, but definitely tourists by day.

1. The Ruins. Gorgeous by day, even better by night, The Ruins are what’s left of the house of the Lacson family. There were hoards of tourists when we were there and I’m pretty certain it doesn’t really run out of tourists so if you find a decent, unoccupied spot for photos, take full advantage. Or you can glare at people ’til they get the message but someone is bound to replace them so just find a spot. And get snap-happy. I’m not the biggest fan of people in mascots and there were a bunch around the area. But take pictures with them if you want, they’re pretty adept at posing.

2. Balay Negrense. A museum that we didn’t get to enter because it was closed. But we heard it’s good. If it proves to be underwhelming, blame hearsay, not me.

3. Old Church. I think all churches are worth visiting for the fabled 3 wishes. (Am I the only one who still does that?)

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#CelebratingAllOut. If you can join the parade, you must, but if you can’t, watching it from the sidelines is still a wonderful experience. With dancers in the most festive masks, you’ll realize why Bacolod is known as the City of Smiles.

We had so much fun being on the Smart float/truck and being part of the parade and had even more fun taking photos with gorgeous masks that the dancers willingly (and some not-so-willingly) lent for the sole benefit of Instagram.

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Some side activities included games, karaoke, make up tutorials (care of my favorite beauty blogger roommate Angela (@lush_angel)) and so much more.

I know I’ve gone on and on before about how much I love the philoshopy that Smart teaches and honestly I’ve been embodying the #LiveAllOut mentality for so long I can’t even imagine going on these events and festivals thinking otherwise.

Masskara three years ago was great, but this year was even better. I’m forever grateful to be able to experience festivals with Smart. It’s like trying on a different lens and realizing it’s the perfect fit and that other (non-LiveAllOut) lenses, just don’t make sense anymore.

So even though you don’t end up going to festivals with Smart quite literally, I urge you to face each festival, each trip, and, I dare say, each day, the #SmartLiveAllOut way.

Really, there’s no better way. Live all out, everyone.

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L-R (top row): Patricia Prieto, David Guison, Camille Co, (middle) Paul Chuapoco, myself, Angela Nepomuceno, Kryz Uy, Miko Carreon, (bottom) Yeg Umagat, Kim Monasterial and Christine Liwag 

Special thanks to the Smart ladies Yeg, Kim and Chrissie for taking such good care of us. You guys are amazing, we love you. And thank you so much to Smart for another beautiful trip. I can’t wait to go on more trips with you, they really are best spent with Smart. Thank you, thank you, thank you. 

The New Shu Uemura

Taking you on a visual tour of the new Shu Uemura in Powerplant, its sleek new design and my Shu make up favorites.

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I had the privilege of touring the new Shu Uemura boutique in Powerplant, Rockwell a couple days ago at their walk-through and again attend their grand launch yesterday. I never really say no to make-up brands that I love so a 2-day event with Japanese brand Shu was a shoe in. (Forgive the pun.)

The new look, not that the old one was in bad shape – far from it, is great. Inspired by Tokyo, the new boutique boasts of subtle yet distinct Japanese references with its neon lights a la Ginza, Qee Bears wearing their famous eyelashes, and color coded displays for maximum impact. The store is also divided into sections from a skincare wall, to a best-sellers table, an eyelash station, opposite walls showcasing all the make-up products, a gift station and a mid-section dedicated to consultations and makeovers by the Shu Masters themselves.

Speaking of Shu Masters, I got a quick retouch by Riza de Guzman who gave me tips on which products best suit my skin tone – which by the way is dry and apparently the most expensive to take care of. Not so happy to find out about my high maintenance face but very happy that I discovered best sellers and products I could easily incorporate in my daily routine.

During the grand launch Shu Masters Angie Cruz, Patrick Alcober, Riza de Guzman, Cats del Rosario, Omar Ermita, EJ Mallorca, Hanna Pechon, John Pagaduan and Joyce Platon made up their muses with enviable looks and, even from afar, enviable lashes. Here’s a quick rundown of the store and some Shu products that I personally am using that you should probably also insert in your make up kits, stat.

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The Shu best-sellers list
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The Shu muses with Managing Director Rowell Vijandre
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Qee Bears and their lashes
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Made up by ShuMaster Riza de Guzman
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Muse Jasmine Maierhofer made up by ShuMaster Patrick Alcober

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And here are the products I’m falling in love with. That Ultime8 Cleansing Oil is their number 1 best seller and it’s at the top of the list for a reason. If there’s any Shu product you should buy right off the bat it’s this.

Just a friendly reminder from your fashion blogger (who really likes make up.)

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Blues Clues

A throwback title to our favorite canine detective because “Feeling Blue” has been overdone. But I promise, fortunately or unfortunately, there’s nothing in it about clues nor rhymes.

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Here’s another post on one of my favorite #PreviewShopsSuiteblanco event purchases. This Suiteblanco skirt has so many favorite qualities of mine – the deceptive promise of sequins in its lace’s intricate pattern, the subtle side slits and how beautiful it translates on photographs. Nevermind that I have a constant fear of flashing and can’t possibly pick up an item once it touches the floor. I wore it to a flight recently and though I couldn’t put my legs up like I usually do, it felt good to finally fly in a stylish piece as opposed to all my harem pants and sweatshirts. (Hey, even Anna dello Russo wears Abercrombie to fly.)

Partnered my new skirt with my favorite chambray button down from the 1019 clothing, a brand that also has the sickest lookbooks. The quirky seashell transcended sexy and added an element of fun to the whole ensemble which, by the way, is a mishmash of over-abused pieces.

Adding this skirt to my abusable roster stat.

Polo, 1019 CLOTHING | Skirt, SUITEBLANCO | Sandals, BIRKENSTOCK | Bag, LOUIS VUITTON | Lipstick, MAC RUBY WOO 

Photos by Happy Fingers (3rd and 4th photos) and Sam Chan 

 

Ann Marie

Shot for AnnMarie.co recently. Up for #twinning?

Did a fun shoot with one of my favorite local brands recently, Ann Marie, for their second collection launch. The crew was a bunch of familiar faces from way back when (college, I mean) who ended up being amazing friends so it was a lot of fun with non-stop goofing around and laughing. It’s always nice to get the opportunity to work with friends especially since this group in particular is full of hardworking and talented folks.

Let me keep this short and let the photos do the talking. If there’s anything you like, be sure to order at annmarie.co. Quantities are limited and prices are extremely low. Up for #twinning?

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Photographed by: Ber Garcia

Styled By: Nicole Aquino and Fatima Yambao of Girls of Nima

Creative Direction by: Tippi Sy

Special thanks to wonder-duo: Maina Hechanova and AJ Pangilinan

My Boyfriend Jeans

Not another Taylor Swift song.

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Boyfriend jeans are cool. They make whoever wears ’em look effortless and if there’s anything we fashion girls adore and aspire to exude, it’s nonchalance. Why do you think we venerate Parisian chic so much? It’s ‘coz they look like they don’t try. Nor care.

The thing about boyfriend jeans though, while they are such a welcome replacement for skinnies as they actually let your legs breathe and your blood circulate, is that they tend to look sloppy. Think: a celebrity papped on an off-day to the gym or to do groceries far from the vicinity of a glam squad.

So what to pair with them is always crucial. I chose Birks for comfort (and added slop, it seems) so to strike a much-needed balance I threw on a frilly halter top. I’m so attracted to flounce and this neckline is so seductive if not phenomenally on the brink of flashing side boob. (Or is that a good thing?) It’s in such a bold shade too that it easily counters how lazy the lower part looks.

The full look is by Suiteblanco as I thoroughly shopped during their SM Makati opening. They have the best boyfriend jeans, in my opinion. So soft and wearable without going over budget. A pair ranges from Php1,199 to 1,799 (or $29 to $43.) So do check them out if you’re into the whole comfortable thing. And if you aren’t, WHY?

Top and Jeans both from SUITEBLANCO | Bag, LOUIS VUITTON | Sandals, BIRKENSTOCK

Photographed by Happy Fingers and Sam Chan (first 3 photos)

Preview Shops Suiteblanco: A Shopping Party

Suiteblanco shopping is the brain equivalent of the Olympics. Guess who bagged gold.

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Ever since Spanish label Suiteblanco has set up shop in the PI I’ve been waiting for more branches to open because 1) I’m selfish and want access to amazing clothes at every possible turn and 2) because I realized Suiteblanco shopping, in particular, is the brain equivalent of the Olympics or, if you will, the tri-wizard tournament circa Harry Potter and The Goblet of Fire (not to mention actual physical Olympics in the form of sprinting, weight lifting, and a full-body workout regimen in trying on clothes – and a workout that doesn’t feel like one is always a good thing.)

Before I share how, first, let’s lay down what happened. The #PreviewShopsSuiteblanco event in the newly opened branch in SM Makati started with a fashion show and ended with a shopping party which kind of takes gold in terms of party-throwing. I now refuse to go to parties without the possibility of taking merchandise home. Sorry @RavenMNL and reminiscent college friends.

Hosted by Suiteblanco’s Ambassador, Kim Jones, the Fall looks styled by the Preview team sashayed down the runway giving us ample time to take mental note of which styles we found particularly cute. Not that it helped as most, if not all, were. There were coats, sweaters and jackets for the cold, gorgeous dresses, intricate skirts and a surprisingly wide denim line. Accessories were also present including racks upon racks of covetable shoes.

And as the shopping party commenced, the goal was simple: to shop what we loved. But what was supposed to be all confetti in my mind turned into a cross between a struggle and a slayer’s arena. I did mention brain Olympics. Challenges a la Harry Potter (‘coz the reference is more fun and I just saw Potted Potter) below.

1. Endorphins VS. Cortisol

See, Suiteblanco shopping is an effective form of stress-reliever. Each item tried on that fits both you and your budget balances out extreme spurts of cortisol (the stress hormone.) So much better than app-mandated self-hypnosis.

Also, shopping gives you endorphins and endorphins make you happy.  Suiteblanco reaps even more endorphins because the merchandise is awesome and better merchandise equals more endorphins so Elle Woods’ philosophy rings even truer. While these are obviously benefits, it shows how kick-ass my neurons are in its internal combats. Challenge number 1: slayed.

2. Throwbacks to Math Class

During the opening, Suiteblanco threw a whopping 20% discount on all items. Consequently, more and more I’m reaffirmed that my predilection towards math started by way of sales and any opportunity to #throwback to math class and make use of equations will always make the geek in me very happy.

If you aren’t a geek and hate math but love sales, here’s a sale equation made simple. This is given that there is 1) a discount, 2) a pre-determined shopping budget and 3) that your personality leans more towards the “how much more can I get with the discount?” versus “how much am I saving?”

New Shopping Budget = Old Shopping Budget / (1 – decimal discount)

Or if you’re more of the latter and just want to know how much you’re saving it’s:

Savings = Old price X decimal discount

New amount = Old price X (1 – decimal discount)

You’re welcome. Second challenge, literally solved.

3. Logical Reasoning and Discernment 

Shopping is fun. You witness how effective you are at lying to yourself (e.g., you need more clothes; you have nothing in this color.)

Most of the time, I give in. Sometimes, I harness whatever logic I have left (e.g. but you have no money) and call it a day. Throw friends into the mix and your judgment is clouded even more. Mine are such enablers everything I touch or am about to is “cute” and “so me.” Devils incarnate on each shoulder, your discernment is not only honed but constantly put to use. Not to mention your decisiveness. #Gemini

Challenge three: slayed but mostly in the dressing room. Alone. And with the help of a full length-mirror.

So if the event was a competition, I probably wouldn’t bag a medal because I am a slow shopper. Kidding! I’m competitive. I have to. In the end though, with bags of new outfits, everybody was a winner. Even without the pretext of any contest, it was a great event with happy guests and now even happier closets.

Photos and corresponding posts of what I snagged to follow. Meanwhile, you should go check out the new Suiteblanco store in SM Makati. You won’t be disappointed. Preview shops there, I shop there, even my mom shops there. You should be next.

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If You Like Piña Coladas

Pineapple tops in the middle of October. Why not?

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Lazy weekends are the best. Lounging around in my pajamas, doing nothing, completely forgetting to work – sometimes on purpose, sometimes not – are some of my favorite moments to look forward to. Most of the time I look the part too – PJs, huge shirt, slippers, a really messy bun and huge ass glasses for me to see past my bedside table.

Sometimes though, even on the laziest days and the calling of my comfiest pajamas, I don’t want to look the part. So this weekend I paraded around in my Neon Island pineapple button down and my new Shop Carisse skirt – items from 2 of my favorite local Filipino brands. Check them out, they’re awesome.

I know Christmas songs are already playing almost everywhere and I can’t help but goofily grin whenever I hear them. But, as much as I love Christmas, I’m still in a summer frame of mind. So although I don’t eat pineapples (they make my tongue and throat itch), I enjoy sporting them way past summer. I guess your mindset reflects what you wear (although most of the time it’s the other way around, no?) and my mind is stuck on summer break in a bikini, sun-bathing by the beach with a frozen margarita (or a strawberry daiquiri) in tow.

Wishing the background for this outfit actually was a beach. Doesn’t matter. If sartorially I’m beach-ready, that’s good enough for me.

Top, NEON ISLAND | Skirt, SHOP CARISSE | Sandals, BIRKENSTOCK | Eyeglasses, FOUR EYES 

…and some Instax snaps. #InstaxStyleSeries continuing, yo.

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First & Forever

Your first will always be special.

10556339_714549518599273_5260874842158624485_nfirstxforever-forever21-relaunch2firstxforever-forever21-relaunch4I never quite understood the fascination with staying 21. You’re barely legal in some places and are only really teetering on the brink of adulthood, probably still not garnering respect with a college-party frame of mind (see: #YOLO – or is that for an even younger demographic?) I just didn’t get why anyone would want to be forever 21 that is, until my friends started having babies and sending out wedding invites. True story.

So I guess being 21 has its perks like an excuse to try out trends with wanton abandon – most of which happen to be revealing some sort of body part (yes,crop tops I’m talking to you.) It also allows for experimenting with certain personas – schoolgirl, rocker chick, Coachella-regular without the judging eyes of both those below 21 and way past it. Not that I’m saying those over 21 can’t do these things, don’t get me wrong. I myself am regressing. But the older you get the more you’re seemingly expected to look regal. Blame it on society, not me.

I guess it is precisely why the store that allows anyone of any age to wear absolutely anything (and kind of embodies the whole staying 21 notion) has been welcomed with open arms. I’m kidding. It’s not because of that. Everyone shops at Forever 21 and loves Forever 21 because they have amazing finds at even more amazing prices. That they have a huge selection is really just a bonus. Now, while sartorially, 21 is an age I’m not sure everyone would want to be in, the store most definitely is.

Forever 21 first grazed Philippine shores four years ago and admittedly, I was feeling selfish and didn’t want to share a favorite with most of Manila. But after the pros defeated the cons (read: accessible favorites versus my weird only child logic), I found myself a store regular. The first store in Megamall was renovated recently and a #FirstxForever re-opening ensued.

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Backstage, I was lucky enough to have been made up by my favorite, MAC Cosmetics. Sat in Byron Velasquez’ chair and before I knew it I was transformed. We (well, he, mostly) patterned the look after the models’ who were showcasing the Pre-Fall collection. I absolutely loved my make-up – especially my vampiric lip. Now, if I was any good at taking selfies, you would’ve seen about 5. In succession. Lucky for you, I’m not.

Still, I paraded my newly done face at the show grounds where a styling contest ensued and after, the Pre-Fall collection showcase. Sweaters, plaids, breton stripes – the looks were styled with prep school undertones. After was pure chaos – each newly-renovated square foot occupied by a shopper hell-bent on snagging amazing deals.

Myself included. I was a little too preoccupied with the prospect of new clothes that my snaps were limited. But hey, that’s my cue to tell you to visit the store yourself, check out the new look, new items and be tempted by each displayed piece.

Good luck. You’ll need it. Happy shopping!

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 Win 3,000 worth of Forever 21 GCs here. 

Skirting The Issue

Wearing my new Eunice Sason skirt just about everywhere – including a favorite taco joint.

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Have you ever worn outfits that don’t let you eat? Maybe belly-baring pieces or those cinched at the waist. Or maybe you’ve thrown your jacket over your shoulders instead of actually wearing them allowing for very limited arm movement that does not include pushing one’s fork to one’s mouth. I bet we all have. But there’s nothing I like more than clothes that allow unrestricted pig-out sessions.

What I wore to eat some tacos and a sizzling platter of sisig definitely gave ample tummy room but that’s not why I wore it and not how I’ll continue to describe the look. Although honestly any piece that I can comfortably take anywhere (especially my favorite taco joint) is a keeper in my closet. I’m continuing my #InstaxStyleSeries – a new series I’m doing to change the humdrum of normal and trite OOTD posts – featuring this skirt by designer Eunice Sason. It deceptively looks like denim but is actually really soft and roomy. It’s circular but with higher side hems that not only show off a little leg but also equate for an interesting detail.

Eunice also has these leather collared chiffon crop tops that I probably should’ve gotten and worn with this skirt but regrettably didn’t. You still can though here. There are also some cool short suits up for grabs in her Pre-Holiday ’14 collection so you best be clicking.

Probably going to wear this skirt in 20 more different permutations so don’t call me out on it. Some pieces are made for just that – repeating.

Cropped Sweater, PROUDRACE | Skirt, EUNICE SASON (Facebook:Facebook.com/EuniceSasonCollections Instagram: @eunicesasonclothingph) | Sandals, BIRKENSTOCK | Bag, Louis Vuitton | Sunglasses, FLY SHADES