Saturday, 28 December 2019

2019: My Year in Books

There are only 3 days left before we have to transition to 2020. Can you believe 2019 is ending soon?! Personally, I find it really quite surreal—especially since this year has thrown me a complete curve ball. It is truly my most extroverted year yet—so much so that I barely had time to read at all. Thankfully, earlier this year I also made a commitment to myself to read more quality and less quantity—and I've been able to keep to it. In comparison to my goal of 50 books last year—which I smashed with 60 books read—I decided to cut down and only strive for 30 books this year. Even so, that goal was an uphill battle for me—but I did it. So here are some of those books, divided into top 5 and bottom 5—just so I won't keep you for too long. These are, of course, in the order of best ones and worst ones first.

Sunday, 22 December 2019

Exhibit B: Seek • A • Seek

Saturday, 14 December 2019

Exhibit A: Perihal

Saturday, 7 December 2019

Garage Sale at the Park

If you've been following this blog for a while, you might know about my not-so-secret love for secondhand clothes. Be they thrifted, hand-me-downs or swapped, I absolutely adore them! For this reason, it is a no-brainer that I would be greatly intrigued to drop by the Pasar Raia vol. 02 event held by Sadari Sedari—with a garage sale as the biggest highlight. You best believe I got there so quick. Showcasing a selection of preloved items from influencers, celebrities and public figures, all the proceeds from the sale would be donated for educational purposes—to schools and less-fortunate students. Not to mention, the price was super cheap too—I got three amazing pieces for only IDR 45K, can you believe that?! It turns out, however, that I wasn't the only one interested in the event—obviously—so the crew limited the number of people who can enter the garage sale area at one time and gave them around half an hour to roam about. That should explain why I walked away with only three items (lol). The best part is the event took place in a city park, allowing me to bask in nature—and have some photos taken, ahem—as well as thrift till I practically dropped.

H&M dress (as top, old) // Sejauh Mata Memandang headscarf // swapped pants // thrifted loafers // hand-me-down purse + jacket // necklace from Etsy // photos by Agung

Not until I saw these pictures again, upon writing this post, did I realise that my love for used clothing runs deep. As you can see, this outfit alone is comprised of 60% secondhand items—coming not only from thrifting, but also hand-me-downs and swaps, completely describing the state of my entire wardrobe. Back in 2011, when I was first introduced to the concept of thrifting, I don't think I realised just how big of an influence it would have over my life. Being so newly interested in the world of fashion, shopping for clothes became an instant obsession—used or new made no difference to me. Slowly, though, I became more deliberate about choosing secondhand to newly manufactured pieces—if not for the environment, at least for my own wallet's sake. Now, somehow, I found myself with a wardrobe comprised of 90% preloved items. Not only does it make me feel so proud of myself, it also allows me to shape my style in a unique way. People would often comment on how different my daily look is to everyone else and it pleases me so. I wouldn't have it any other way.

P.S: Be on the lookout for the three items I mentioned earlier. 

They will definitely make an appearance soon enough!

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Saturday, 23 November 2019

5 Zero-Waste Essentials for the Office

As you might have read, my office recently moved to a new venue—which means it was time to start afresh. While I was sad to let go of our old space, I've come to love our current location so much. In this one, I finally received a designated desk and was encouraged to decorate the area. To put it simply, I should make myself feel more at home at the office. One of the biggest things for me—in doing so—is to have as many zero waste tools as possible here. It makes me feel really comfortable to know that, even away from home, I am able to keep up with my commitment. Before, I felt a bit too suffocated by the limited space to want to bring anything permanent to the office. Now, I feel much more like I belong. A little disclaimer, though: these aren't necessarily tools that will make your jobs easier, but they will hopefully bring much comfort to you on your daily grind.


Sometimes when we work, we need a little more boost than just a glass of water. For me, it's often a specific type of drinks that I have to purchase at a nearby café or so. Unfortunately, the takeaway container those places provide are often made out of plastic. Having tumblers ready at the office really gives me the freedom to buy whatever beverage I want, without having to resort to using plastic. I've got myself two types of tumblers at the office: a water bottle and a large cup with straw—both made out of stainless steel. The bottle was bought from Ekko Store, although Cleanomic also sells them. The cup was bought from Janji Jiwa—who will give you Rp 2.000,- off your order every time you use it.

Cloth Napkins

For a while, I've been meaning to cut back on tissue paper big time. Handkerchief seems like the best option I've got. However, I'm not entirely sure where to get one—do stores still sell them? Plus, if they do, chances are they will not be sold in sets. A while back, when I found this beautiful set by Sudi Organic, I was completely hooked. It wasn't until I set out on a company outing to Yogyakarta did I finally get my hands on this beauty. I love their concept of it being a reusable tissue—because I swear that's what it practically is! It was really helpful when I had a persistent cold and for wiping off my whiteboard.

Beeswax Wraps

There are a lot of reasons why beeswax wraps have been on my wishlist for such a long time; one of them is the fact that they're great for buying fried snacks. You know the kind—they're sold in stalls by the side of the streets, with no sophisticated packaging whatsoever. While bringing your lunchbox can be a great option, you know they can be a bit of a hassle to carry around sometimes. At times like that, a beeswax wrap can come in really handy. Not only that, they can also be used to substitute for cling wrap and aluminium foil—both of which are super helpful for everyday needs. This one I also got from Lasati in Yogyakarta, but the ones from Boenkus and Demi Bumi are also great.

Metal Tea Strainer

Okay, if you're a coffee person, I might never know how to relate—because I'm an avid tea person. One of the biggest hurdle for me as a tea drinker is having to resort to teabags, unless I have myself on of these beautiful strainers. We all know those teabags tend to also contain plastic, which is a huge bummer. Having my own tea strainer can give me the freedom to choose loose leaf to brew instead. Also, did you know? Tea leaves that make it to the teabag are of less quality than ones that are loose. Isn't that just a better option to choose? This one my sister bought from IKEA, but you can pretty much get one anywhere, really.

Tote Bags

I don't know about you, but I often like to roam about when I'm at the office. Going to the nearest mini market or stealing time to buy coffee are among some of my favourites activities at work. Whenever that happens, however, I will find my hands a bit full if I don't carry one of these babies about. Trust me, I've been there more times than I care to count. That's why, although tote bags are pretty much useful anywhere, I'm counting it as one of my office essentials. As it's become a trend to have one, you can find this pretty much anywhere—clothing stores, supermarkets, even universities.

When we work, often we would be so focused on the task at hand that we just want things to be so goddamn convenient. Don't get me wrong—convenience is great—but to have it at the cost of our planet is just a tad selfish, don't you think? For me, at least, I don't want to have to choose between the two—if I can have both, why should I? With a few extra steps and/or a few extra tools, we can have our cake and eat it too. Of course, these are just a few items that are specific to the office. You should also check out the items to have when you're out and about—you know, for those after-hours fun.

Let me know how you've been reducing plastic waste at the office!

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Saturday, 16 November 2019

Undivided Attention

One of the things I miss most about not having a day job is being able to roam freely about town on weekdays—such a time I usually utilised to visit as many museums as I can. Being able to bask at old buildings and explore various exhibitions light the fire in my heart. These days, while I'm technically still able to pay such places a visit, it has to be mostly done on the weekend. Unfortunately, the weekend is the worst times to do so. For starters, it is the time when most people would choose to go to landmarks like those. For another, I would usually be so pooped from the daily grind that weekends are reserved for recharging and energy preservation. That being said, I did manage to visit a familiar space last weekend. My dear friend Agung and I recently visited the Instrumenta exhibition titled Machine Magic at Galeri Nasional. We went there at first to see this beautiful installation created by Dwiky KA, one of Agung's favourite illustrators. The exhibition itself took the theme of obscure Sci-Fi scenarios—a bit too strange and out-of-this-world for our taste. It was incredibly cool, though!

Sis's shirt // hand-me-down dress + purse // old socks + tie // MKS shoes (old) // photos by Agung

While we were actually allowed to take photos inside the exhibition, I didn't feel like doing so at the time. It's so rare for people these days to just enjoy the moment, that I want to fully immerse myself in the experience. Although I had a hard time understanding most of what was being displayed and showcased, it was a much richer—albeit strange—experience due to my undivided attention. There were so many cool installations and projects, including some satirical audiovisual pieces, some biological artwork and some almost-satanic mix of sound and scattered sand. Most of them show the world in the future or alternate universe, yet somehow seems unanimous in their bleak telling of the upcoming fate of humanity or the earth. It's quite unsettling, but very satisfying to witness. See? I can tell you all this because I gave my full attention to the artwork on display. Don't you just love it when you can fully focus on something right in front of your eyes?

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Saturday, 9 November 2019

Old Stones & New Experiences

Last week I went on my very first company outing—we went to Yogyakarta! It's been over 9 years since the last time I'd been there, so I'm excited to find out what the town looks like today. Unfortunately, as some of you who have experienced this will know, company outings have a set itinerary. At least for us the other day, the itinerary wasn't shared with everyone. To be honest, I hated that. I hate any situation in which I don't have a good sense of control. Not knowing exactly what we will be doing or where we will be going really sucks for me. Nevertheless, it was all quite fun and I enjoyed most parts of it—although there are honestly so many more things I'd like to have done or places I'd like to have explored instead. But, hey, I can always do that myself some other time, right? One of our highlights on this trip is visiting Candi Ratu Boko on the outskirts of town. It is a huge garden filled with ruinous stones dating back to the 8th century. It is technically not a temple, but the ruins of a palace, so it is often called Keraton Ratu Boko as well.

Taman Safari t-shirt // hand-me-down skirt + purse + jumper // thrifted loafers // photos by Agung

As my first company outing, it wasn't too bad. I had tons of fun, for the most part, but I suppose travelling with people who don't necessarily share your interests can be a little taxing. While talking about the trip with my sister afterwards, she told me of all these interesting, beautiful places we could have visited instead. But, alas, the itinerary wasn't up to me—and I'm pretty sure most people at the office wouldn't have wanted to go there anyway. Before we departed, I thought of this outing as a company-paid vacation of sorts—which it was, I suppose—but I was completely delusional if I thought it was going to be nearly as enjoyable as going away with a select few close friends. That being said, I'm very grateful for this trip. It put me in situations I haven't had to face in years and, well, it's paid by the office. If it had been up to my own wallet, who knows if I would travel at all?

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Thursday, 31 October 2019

Give Me Your Heart or I'll Rip It Right Out

'Tis the spookiest night of the year! Are you ready? I know Halloween these days just happen on the nearest weekend, but I always try to stick it out until the very last day of October to still deliver some spooks. If I were a tiny bit more dedicated or passionate about it, I'd probably go all out and readily stain some clothes here and there. Alas, I'm not, so a simple costume/outfit would have to do. Not going to lie, these days I feel pressured—by no one but myself, really—to come up with the most original, low-budget and significantly different costume each year on Halloween. Though I feel like a lot of my clothes are quite costume-like, I also feel like I've worn them all prior to the spooky holiday—which just feels like a waste of my resources, to be honest. Fortunately, some pieces turn out to have never been worn on this holy night of pumpkins. Prior to this outfit photo session, I racked my brain for whatever costume ideas that might suit my wardrobe. Beforehand, I almost threw in the towel with something as generic as a black cat or something barely qualifying like a librarian—which is basically just my everyday look, really. In the end, I somehow settled comfortably with this pseudo-'80s cheerleader zombie girlfriend idea. She's cute, but deadly, ya know?

Threadless t-shirt (old) // Sis's skirt // old varsity jacket + socks // MKS shoes // American Apparel hair bow (old) //

photos by Agung

Have you celebrated Halloween yet? Or are you doing anything special tonight? The other day I went on the hunt for Halloween-esque films I could watch that aren't necessarily scary. Sticking with the zombie theme, I'd like to recommend some of my favourite titles, including Shaun of the Dead, Warm Bodies dan Zombieland. Aside from those titles, there are some that I've never watched before—but am dying to—such as What We Do in the Shadows and The Addams Family (2019). If you're more into the scary stuff, of course, I'd recommend checking out the hottest horror movie of the year—or so I believe, at least—Midsommar. Be sure to watch the uncut version, as the censors take away so much from the intended storyline. If you're into reading some spooky stuff, maybe try going for something less conventional with The Vegetarian by Han Kang or Number 11 by Jonathan Coe. Well, I'm not exactly an expert on this holiday, so if you have any titles to recommend, be sure to drop them here! I'd love to explore more films and books from you guys.

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