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Category Archives: Fashion report

And We Are 7. Founder’s Speech.

Queenbels Is Seven

This womenswear business of mine celebrated her 7th birthday on 30 August 2016. I am feeling so surreal that we have come this far. Sometimes I don’t know how I did all these on my own, every single damn thing from start to completion. The buckets of blood puked when things just don’t go the way it should be. There are days I wanted to call it quits and just throw everything away but I bounced back stronger each time I hit a wall.

The past year hasn’t been easy as I push new business models. There were alot of frustration, days when I get angry with myself and completely blank minds. I encountered bad people who somehow found their way into my path. I am lucky that such people were weed out very quickly because I stay very alert and focused. Sometimes when things are too good to be true, it is too good to be true. My heart is filled with gratitude towards all the helping hands that came along the way and people who have showed kindness.

Cheers to many more good years ahead and may the business blossom beautifully. Thank you to all who have supported this far.

Signed off with lots of love,
Shirley

What’s In and Behind

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Good things really come in small packages.

This time you see pleats on the sleeves. What do the sleeves remind you of?

Yes, trumpet sleeves.

I wanted to introduce trumpet sleeves for quite awhile but I know the sleeves may not be very welcome when handling certain tasks like washing your hands, getting dishes. So when Luxy Pleats & Nautical Blouse came up, I know this is the one.

Luxy Pleats & Nautical Blouse is such an interesting number with little pleasing surprises. Made of good quality cotton, comfy to the skin, it’s your throw on and go type of blouse. The nautical detail at inner hem, front and back gives you a little peek-a-nautical surprise when you move. Definitely appropriate for work and a presentable piece for leisure.

You may ask: “What bottom piece should I wear this blouse with?”

With our Mini Patch Pocket Skirt.

Like I said, we will have you covered, from body to bottom.

 

First timer in store, a bare driff blouse. This is by far the boldest design we have in store.

 

 

It’s a fun number if you ask me what my first impression was. Very appropriate for the current tolerant level testing weather. The big fold on the back organza piece on each side create this cloak effect that stays away from your back and allows plenty of air to flow through. Trust me, this is very necessary in this current heat. Did I keep it? Major YES.

The next one that came up was an understatement piece that I have brought in for ladies who want that clean, structured look.

 

Neat. Precision.

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The highlight is the nautical piping that roll round the armholes, neckline and hem. Very neat and well made. Look at it for yourself.

 

 

We are not finished yet. More happy details behind. A nice neat bow in stripes. Not for decorating purpose. It is actually a button, a functional one that opens up the neckline more to ease pulling a blouse over your head, especially when you have your makeup on.

 

It's a bow, it's a button.

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Enticing detail.

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You cannot miss this if you have always wanted a nice, neat, crease-free blouse to go with a blazer for work and also a very good choice for the weekends.

I hope you like what I have presented in store.

I meet different people in the shop and I learn new things everyday. It is always on my mind to keep improving and do my best, including taking care of the smallest detail in order to provide the best service I can. Over time, I observe that when customers check prices on each merchandise, they tend to fumble and do a peep down from the neckline to look for that price tag. I have ease that for you by placing the price tags at very visible level. And yes there is a price tag to each and every apparel and product we put up for selling in store (we do the same in the early days even when we don’t have a permanent space yet). We don’t pluck random numbers from the sky each time you check prices.

We have a little surprise for you on every price tag so don’t toss it away.

 

 

Thank you so much for supporting Queenbels and staying with us. I will be back soon to share more shoppe updates.

Cheers,
Shirley

There Is A Time For Everything

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I know I will not put on this whole long blouse + light coloured leggings look 8-10 years later so I said to myself better wear now before it gets too teeny poppy for me.

I Wear Queenbels - Whimsical in the Forest Long Blouse

And I always share this with my customers; if there are apparel designs that suit you and you like it and it’s within your spending power, don’t spend too much time thinking whether to buy or not. Just buy and wear. Because before you know it, times passes and some apparel designs may not suit you anymore. This is something that I wish I had realised much earlier.

Many years ago when we visited Japan, there was a popular sister line of Burberry, Burberry Blue Label. I learnt that because the ladies in Japan love this brand so much, the brand decided to open a more affordable line so that more ladies can have it and it is only available in Japan. Even though it was supposed to be more affordable, their signature checks skirts were retailing at about SGD350 at that time’s exchange rate.

Inside me I was thinking: “Crazy to buy a skirt at this price.” So I put the skirt back, without even giving it a try and moved away from the space. My husband walked over and asked: “Aren’t you getting this?” I said: “About SGD350 after conversion.” He: “Have you gave it a try?” Me: “No.” He: “Show me.”

So I went to put it on and showed him. He was all praises (for the skirt) and said I should buy it. I re-emphasized on the price and he said this to me:

“喜欢的话,穿起来适合自己又美,为什么不买?你现在年轻不穿,难道等你七老八十吗?有些衣服是要在你这个年纪穿,才是最美的。你有工作有收入,买一些美的衣服穿是ok的。”

I still couldn’t quite agree to spend SGD350 on a skirt when I came out of the changing room but we were on holiday and I was in a relaxed mode so ok I bought the skirt.

Shortly after we came back, I mix and match the skirt with different tops and each time I put on the skirt, I checked the mirror many more times than usual and I received awesome compliments from the people around me. I would be in a delighted mood whenever I wore this skirt and it made me happy for a long time. Each time he caught me smiling to myself, he will repeat: “No regrets right?”

I no longer wear this skirt today because I have outgrown it (yes I am still growing, horizontally) and I cannot really carry skater skirts that well anymore. Sometimes when I see that skirt in the wardrobe, I still feel the pinch a little but I know I will feel the regret even more if I hadn’t got it and experienced the joy of wearing a pretty skirt.

I shared this story not to tell the whole world that I can afford a SGD350 skirt. What I want to say is; ladies, you are young, only once. While you still can and within your means, don’t skimp on getting pretty and well made apparel for yourself. This is something you are going to put on yourself so technically this money is not wasted.

To me, it doesn’t make sense to splurge on a luxury bag that cannot cover any part of my body and skimp on clothing which with the right design and cutting, flatters me almost from top to bottom. And, do get a pair of good shoes because these carry your whole body weight the minute you step out of your house until you come home.

Cheers,
Shirley

Hey Watch It

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Do you know? Watch makes a very good accessory.

I am not a daily watch wearer, which is distinctively obvious if you notice. I wear my watch as an accessory, to complete the look I want to put together with my outfit for the day.

I am attracted to watch faces in vintage designs. Sometimes I go for the bigger faces, sometimes I go for the smaller ones. It depends on the entire design which includes the strap (leather/bracelet and the texture), the buckle, the colour, the shape of the watch face and so on.

So what watch design should you pick? Here are a few simple tips I abide by. Remember, the watch is to complement your outfit, not to overtake it.

  • If my outfit is in pastel shades, I will go for a watch with bracelet strap.
  • If my outfit is in warm shades, I will go a watch in leather strap.
  • For ladies watch, I personally think black leather strap is classier than brown leather strap.
  • Watch with silver rim is versatile and goes with almost any apparel colour.
  • Watch with rose gold colour bracelet is a better choice than yellow gold colour bracelet if you want something less glaring.

This is the watch that I wear with most of my outfits. It’s simple and classic.

If you are into wearing bangles or bracelets, why not explore accessory watches? The designs are fancy and flamboyant. You can have both an accessory bracelet plus a functional watch all throw in. I have recently acquired this to go with my more casual outfits:

You don’t need to burn a hole in your pockets to get good watches. Some old watch shops in Singapore still carry classic models of long-time reliable brands that we are very familiar with, like Casio, Citizen, Seiko. The tip is to find something that you are comfortable with, likes to wear and of course complements your outfits. Oh, very important. Make sure the strap/bracelet is original because that guarantees a reasonable level of quality.

Do note that I am not paid to recommend any of the mentioned brands above nor affiliated to them in any way. I am purely sharing my personal preference.

Cheers,
Shirley

Good Things Must Share

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I get questions on this bracelet quite often. I personally like this brand of leather goods very much.

My Pascher Bracelet

Pascher Bracelet in Red

Pascher Bracelet in Red

I chance upon this leather goods brand when I was in Taiwan. That was about two years ago. The shopfront design has this antique feel and I really like it.

I set my eyes on their array of leather bracelets and this particular design attracted me. I never had any leather accessories. I think they are for the people who can rock it and I don’t think I can carry it.

I put it on and it took me less than a minute to say “Please wrap it up.” The sales person knew we were from Singapore and told me that they have a branch in Singapore. When I returned, I couldn’t locate them at the said address. I finally found them at a pushcart. Apparently the insane rental cost has drove them to move to a pushcart.

Last Christmas, I bought this special Lovers key ring for a friend which I think she can share with her husband.

Pascher Bracelet in Blue

Pascher Bracelet in Blue

Whenever I am in the area, I will pop by their pushcart to check their new designs. Now they have the bracelet in a new colour, blue. The husband agreed this is a unique colour, so yes I bought it. I got it engraved too. Engraving is free.

If you like leather goods in classic design and made with good workmanship, check them out. I don’t care if this is by any luxury brand. I care about design and quality that I can accept. The pushcart name is Oki Ma, located at Bugis Junction, inside the glass-covered air-conditioned shopping streets. It is in between SingTel shop and SASA. Further down you will see Ajisen Ramen.

I am not paid to recommend them nor affiliated to Pascher in any way. I just want to share the good things.

Maybe you can pop over this weekend.

Enjoy your weekend!

Cheers,
Shirley

All Lined Up

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Last Sunday night marked the end of a long weekend in Singapore. Thank you to all who came to the showroom last Saturday for a private viewing. Thank you for loving my selections and I hope you had an enjoyable time shopping at Queenbels.

While I was doing some updates on Facebook last night, I started to think what to wear for the coming week. I do not like the idea of just pulling anything from the wardrobe. If I were to just pull out any apparel, I will most probably end up with something I don’t feel good in for the rest of the day.

So, for a start, I did a quick shortlist of whatever that popped up in my head. After some shifting and shuffling, these are what I will wear for this week.

Outfit Plan for the Week

Outfit Plan for the Week

This outfit plan has helped me identify if I need any bottom pieces and the undergarments I will need. I am sure you know the importance of wearing the right undergarment for the outfits you are putting together. With the crazy weather, my laundry schedule is all messed up. If the bottom piece that I need is still in the laundry basket or in the process of drying, then I will have to see if I have another suitable matching bottom piece.

As for the shoes, I only buy shoes in designs and colours that are really versatile to go with most outfits so I don’t have a problem with finding the right pair of shoes.

Now, you do not have to do a collage to come up with an outfit plan. You can come up with something that works for you. Maybe you can line up the week’s outfits in the same place or place them on the same colour hangers. The whole purpose is to cut down on any morning rush frustration.

Have a great week ahead!

Cheers,
Shirley

Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head

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Initially, I named this skirt ‘Teardrop’.

Then, there is this song with the title ‘Raindrops’ kept popping up in my head.

I googled and yes there is this song, ‘Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head’. I even have this song in an album by Joanna Wang. Time to clean off the dust on the song albums I collected.

I don’t present prints often. Unique and pretty prints are really rare.

To put prints in an apparel design is quite tricky. It can make or break that design.

Put prints + warm colour together is even trickier.

I have received questions on why or how the bold colours came about in this selection.

Or rather what made me decide to bring in the current range of brighter colours.

I think it’s good and healthy for the wardrobe to have new colours. If you don’t experiment with new colours, you will never know how far you can go with some colours. Especially the colours you have not wear before.

The safe thing to do is not to wear more than one print in one outfit. If you are wearing a more attention grabbing top or bottom piece, downplay the other piece so that you don’t look too over-whelmed with details.

My suggestion is, match the Raindrop Tulip Skirt with a simple white cotton blouse, with short or cape sleeves. If you want to wear puff sleeves, make sure the puffs are small.

This is one skirt that flatters most body shapes. Two layers of tulle are added to create a puff in the tulip.

Raindrop Tulip Skirt Lemon Blue

Raindrop Tulip Skirt in Lemon/Blue

Raindrop Tulip Skirt Red Pink

Raindrop Tulip Skirt Red Pink

These skirts are very well-received. It’s the LAST ONE Piece for the Raindrop Tulip Skirt in Red/Pink.

I See You in the showroom.

Cheers,
Shirley

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