Sunday, December 30, 2012

I.B.O.T.M. Bianca Venerayan

Inspirational Blogger of the Moment

Why her?
Bianca, along with her friend Dani Roche, have worked together to maintain a fashion blog and online store. Their passion for fashion and friendship since grade ten have led them to create what is now their blog and brand Kastor and Pollux. Ever since I stumbled upon their accounts, online art portfolios, and previous online business (Plastic Skyline) during my sophomore year in high school, I have been inspired to dress outside of my comfort zone and experiment with different pieces of clothing. Bianca was also probably one of the first fashion bloggers to introduce me to the world of "thrifting". The way she explained how thrift shopping was not a dirty, boring job but an exciting, thrilling treasure hunt for amazing bargains made me excited to go out and try thrifting myself. As I continue to follow Bianca through her fashion endeveours, her eccentric outfits and witty blog posts never cease to amaze, influence, and inspire me.

Name: Bianca Venerayan
Nickname: I don't have any!
My online
Age: 20
College: Ryerson University School of Fashion
Job: Blogger/Freelance writer/Jewelry designer
Country: Canada

1. What made you decide to showcase your love of fashion with the rest of the world by creating a fashion blog?
 Kastor & Pollux was the motivation for starting my blog alongside Danielle Roche. The business and the blogs go hand-inhand because we believe it to be really important for people to connect with us, and sort of know our personalities.

2. How did you start and what made you decide to create a co-partner fashion blog/store?
Danielle and I met on music website and after realizing we had way too much in common (including attending the same high school), we met up and immediately came up with the idea of starting a business together. It only made sense because our talents compared and contrasted - she's a whiz in graphic design, I'm HTML-savvy, and we're both interested in fashion. We ran a very kitschy and youthful website called Plastic Skyline for two years until we moved on to Kastor & Pollux. It was a necessary change as we grew older and our target market shifted.

3. Any tips or advice on becoming a fashionista without breaking the bank?
I have so many! I can be so stingy sometimes! My first and foremost tip is THRIFT STORE (almost) EVERYTHING. If you want something cool, unique, and - most importantly - cheap, sift through the stinky racks. It's worth it. I would say a good 25% of my wardrobe is thrifted.

My second tip is buy local! Not only are you supporting your city's economy and general social health, it's bound to be something designed by a super awesome yet overlooked designer/god resulting in a (hopefully) lower price point. You might also want to try your luck with local vintage or consignment shops - vintage (especially designer vintage) is almost always cheaper than contemporary styles.

My last tip is to buy on sale. I'm lucky because I like silly-looking things like sequin bodysuits and iridescent spandex booty shorts, so I always find these types of clothes rejected by the masses in the sale section. I'm always like, "WHOA THIS IS SO FUN. AND IT'S 50% OFF?! THIS IS THE BEST DAY EVER."

Of course, being frugal has a time and a place. I'll splurge on shoes and great basics because I know I'll wear them a ton of times. Being conservative with your shopping money only makes sense when you're buying a totally weird season trend as opposed to a closet staple.

4. What are your opinions on the growing trend of “thrifting” ?
All for it! It makes each look more diverse. I also love hearing people say "I GOT IT AT A THRIFT STORE FOR $2.99!!!"
It's so refreshing to see people gloating about cheap finds rather than their shiny, boring Michael Kors watch.

5. Any advice on those starting out their blogging careers?
My first tip is obviously to wear and write whatever you want. Find your own voice to set yourself apart from everybody else. My next few tips are strictly technical: 1) Update regularly. You might need a boyfriend or your mom every few days to take your pictures (assuming you're starting a style blog). 2) Network. Meet other bloggers, hand out business cards, etc. 3) Have a good, clean layout that's easy to navigate and read through.

6. What are your favorite go-to beauty products?
Moisturizer is my best friend!!! I use Lancome's Multi-Vital SPF 30. I also recently bought NARS blush in Orgasm and I'm in love. Finally, it's weird, but Vasaline petroleum jelly. I'm allergic to pretty much all types of lip balm so it's the only thing that keeps my lips soft.

7. What can you say to those who are bullied and made fun of for having their own amazing, eccentric, and unique sense of style which is not understood by their peers?
I still often get teased and laughed at by strangers for how I dress. I'll be sad for like ten minutes and move on with my life. That's what everyone should do! Look back on what people have said or done to you, consider why they've decided to say or do that to you, ask yourself if it's worth it to change your ways and/or fight said people, and then just be like, "SCREW IT, I DO WHAT I WANT!!!" and walk away really sassy.

8. What are your future goals, dreams, and aspirations, whether fashion-related or not?
I just really want to have a nice condo with wood floors with my boyfriend. I want to decorate it with sporadic dangling lightbulbs and faux fur rugs. To achieve this goal, I will co-own a brick-and-mortar boutique in Toronto with Danielle, with Kastor & Pollux on the storefront and maybe a water bowl for dogs in the summer. I want two sons so that I can dress them like Alexander Wang dresses his niece. And I want shoes. And ample closet space to store said shoes.

9. Thoughts on the importance of being educated as well as being fashionable? Can only be one or the other? Important to be both?
Of course it'd be nice to be both, but the two are irrelevant to one another. You don't need an education to be fashionable the same way you don't need to be fashionable if you're educated. Even in situations where you're trying to make a living off fashion, education is only second to passion. 

Friday, December 28, 2012


    Items I received from Christmas gifts and after-Christmas shopping!             



Pink chambray shirt: Gap
Sparkly purple sweater: H&M
Black blazer: New Look
Red & beige striped long sleeve top: Forever21
White knit scarf: Old Navy
Fuchsia polka dotted sheer dress: Forever21
Triple triangle necklace: Macy's
Multiple rings: Macy's
Claw ring: Macy's

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Christmas Day

Sweater: Gap
Blue and white striped button down: Old Navy
Jeans: Old Navy
Purse: (gifted) Forever 21
Knee high brown faux leather boots (borrowed from sister): Cathy Jean

Went out to church with the family to Christmas Day mass. We then headed over to the movie theaters to watch Les Miserables. If you haven't seen it yet or want to know what the hype is about, go watch it. So heart wrenching and beautiful, and will give you chills!

We were also invited to a Christmas dinner. For our Christmas Eve party, all of the families pitched in to pay for the lechon (roasted whole pig). However, there was still a lot left over so those pieces were used for paksiw (chopped up lechon, sauteed in Filipino gravy, black pepper corns, onion, and vinegar). The family that hosted the Christmas Eve party decided to invite those families that lived close by to have a Christmas Day dinner to finish up the left overs. 

We also ended up watching "The Bourne Legacy", with the parents mostly excited and giving extra commentary during the scenes shot in the Philippines. It was a nice way to celebrate Christmas two days in a row with two movies and some traditional Filipino home-cooking. 

Christmas Eve

Maroon dress: Cotton On
White knit cardigan: vintage
Black tights: vintage
Black knee high socks: Daiso
Necklace: Forever 21
Watch: Target
Red lips: Revlon Colorburst Lip Butter "Candy Apple"

Celebrated the birth of Jesus Christ with good company during our annual Christmas Eve party. The night was a great time to share laughter, food, gifts, and love. Many of the kids shared their talents with us all, including my friends and me. However, I think the ones who stole the night were the little girl group that danced to Gangnam Style.

I hope all of you were able to celebrate the holidays with the people you loved and had a great Christmas!

Enjoy some photos from our annual Filipino Christmas Eve gathering!

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Off to Church

Sweater: Forever 21
White vest: (gifted)
Dress: Cotton On
Leggings: Flea Market
Knee high socks: Cotton On
Watch: Target

Decided to wear a dress to church, even though it was raining outside. However, kept myself warm by layering a sweater over it and wearing knee high socks. Decided to switch out the vest for my khaki trench coat from H&M and put on my black knit circle scarf, handmade by one of my titas. This night was also when I practiced our singing performances with friends for our annual family-friends Christmas Eve party. Will be posting Christmas Eve outfit shots soon!

Friday, December 21, 2012

Night Out with Old Friends

Black trench coat (borrowed from the sister): Forever 21
White knit sweater: Abercrombie & Fitch
Navy blue knit sweater: Old Navy
Jeans: Kohls
Fur boots (borrowed from the sister): Bearpaw
Gray beanie: H&M
Gray knit circle scarf: gifted

Planned a night out with the high school friends. We planned on going out to see the Christmas decorations down town, so I knew I had to dress warmly. 

Layered knits on knits and kept my head warm with my usual beanie, feet toasty with my sister's fuzzy boots, neck cozy with my scarf, and brought along my new knit mittens (but ended up not using them because I was the "photographer" for the night).

Wanted to share holiday spirit with some pictures from our night. Enjoy pictures of the Christmas lights,  trees, decorations, and my dinner!

Tonight was a great night spent with good company, tasty comfort food, boy band music, and nostalgic familiar sights. Arrived at my best friend's house early, and waited for a few more people before heading out to dinner. Soon one of our guy friends and my best friend's boyfriend came over. Then we decided to wait for one of our girl friends to arrive at a bus stop so we could pick her up from there and drive down town. 

Tonight was great seeing old friends and just having fun downtown, eating out together, and strolling around the Christmas decorations. Well, I guess it's time to catch up on some One Direction I've been missing from the past year, after listening to them during the whole car ride to and from our destination.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Holiday Shopping

Sweater: Old Navy
Knit chunky cardigan: Ross
Zipper jeans: Forever 21
Pink sneakers (not shown): Forever 21

Planned a hang out day with one of my "unofficial Big Sibs" today! I'm pretty sure we are the only MK Choir members close enough (location-wise) to each other to meet up at a local mall. It was really nice to just spend a day being a girl and chat about the typical girl stuff: boys, friends, clothes, music... I haven't been able to do that, probably since middle school. Being able to just chat about the trivial was fun, and was able to even get back into hearing some "juicy rom-com gossip".  

Since I was shopping without the family this morning, I was able to shop for my parents and sister without worrying if they would catch me buying their gifts. Didn't want to post up pics of their gifts to keep them top secret until Christmas day!

Since my sister's school is still in session, she wanted me to shop for a few more of her friends. Since I had an online gift card to H&M from my room mate (thanks E!) I decided to check it out. I found some cute rings with great looking stones for great prices. Plus, all jewelry were on a buy-one-get-one-free sale. I also got one of her friends a beanie out of the stark selection they had at the moment (it seemed like they wanted to get rid of all they had before they pulled out anymore from inventory). I thought I would be buying the beanie for three dollars, but when I was rung up, I only needed to pay $1.08 (already including tax)! Makes me remember why I love holiday shopping.

For myself, I grabbed some warm mittens for those nights I would be biking in college. I found out the hard way that your fingers become icicles when exposed on your handlebars in the cold air, and on top of that, the cold wind rushing over your fingers as you bike quickly. 

Less than a week before our annual family-friends Christmas party! Still not sure what to wear. Go fancy and elegant, or formal and clean-cut? What will you guys be donning this Christmas Eve?

Monday, December 17, 2012

Lazy Sunday

Like a typical Filipino party, there was a lot of leftover food from my best friend's cotillion. The parents decided to just have another small family gathering the next day to finish up the food and watch some Sunday Football. It was also a great day to hang out with one of our family friends that moved to L.A., but came to visit to attend the cotillion. Before we left that night, we decided to watch a slideshow of all the pictures taken the night before at the cotillion, and of course the dads couldn't restrain their witty comments that made everyone explode with laughter.

Cotillion Chaos

This past Saturday I was part my best friend's cotillion court! We spent about three months preparing our performances and finally showed our family and friends what we've been practicing. It was a lot of work, but it definitely paid off. Despite obstacles, such as time constraints, technological problems, and space, I think I can speak on behalf of all the court that we definitely just didn't care anymore and the point of the night was just to celebrate and have fun with one another. 

I have never been to the venue and had no idea what to expect, so once we got there, it was definitely amazing to see everything come together. 

As you can tell, the color theme was magenta, so EVERYTHING was brightly bathed in a magenta hue. From the tablecloths, to the guys' ties, to the girls' waistbands, we popped in pink!

After the formalities of the dinner, performances, eighteen roses, eighteen candles, and the cupcakes, it was time for the dance partaaay. Even though many of the adults didn't come to the dance floor and it wasn't so hyped up and as filled with as much energy as I expected, the court didn't care and we all just ran in and danced with the little kids. 

Since not as many people danced and people started leaving early, the party actually ended an hour earlier than planned. However, we know we had fun and made a lot of memories during this night of frantic preparation, but a lot of laughs. 

Sorry for the grainy outfit post, this was taken when I got back home from the party! The girls ordered a black, sparkly, high-low dress online from Forever 21 and the debutante's mother hand sewed the ribbons for all the girls to wear around their waists. My black velvet wedges were from Cotton On and my black flats were from Loehmans. 

Make up was done by one of my titas, who was also the mother of one of the girls on the court. Some things I remember her putting on me were my BB Cream from The Faceshop, Lancome eye shadows (the purple and light pink), MAC eye shadows (base, crease, and contoured my nose), black pencil eyeliner, high light to the inner corners of my eyes, highlighter/illuminator on my cheek bones, Covergirl mascara, Lancome blush, finishing powder, and I set my face with my Urban Decay All Nighter Setting Spray.

My younger sister was the official hair stylist for the night, and did an amazing job getting all the girls to look glamorous. All the girls had curls, and had some variation of a braid incorporated in their hair. For me, my hair was curled with a curling iron, then she fishtailed my hair to the side, tying it with a clear elastic band and pinned it down with bobby pins. To set, my hair was sprayed with hair spray. 

It was an amazing night, and I wish my best friend an amazing eighteenth year! There were several things I wish we could have done over again, but the fun and laughs we shared could never be replaced.