Tag Archives: art

Stop judging a book by its cover

10 Sep

I was sitting at a community table at a coffee shop today, waiting for my friend to show up, when a woman came and asked if she could sit by me.

I thought the gesture kind and a sign of being brought up right, for of course she could, it was a community table after all!

As she sat down, we started conversing, and the flow of it was so good that we did so for a good thirty minutes at least-the time it took my friend to arrive (seriously, though I need to stop getting to meet-ups on time).

However, although the conversation was fun and it felt like two like-minded individuals were talking, she said something towards the end that left me feeling less than great, and yet I realized it wasn’t something new that I was hearing.

Her exact words were ” I am shocked to find out that you are completely different from what I thought you were when I saw you, I wasn’t expecting this kind of thinking from you nor this type of a conversation with you.”

Let me rewind a bit.

You see when she came to me, I saw only a woman. When we were talking, for me,  I was a medical student and she a practicing doctor.

But here is what she, and I think most of the world, saw when she approached me.

She, a burqa clad woman with a niqab covering her face, saw a girl in three-quarter jeans, a top and, (as she pointed out) a made up face and stylized hair. (For the curious ones-I was wearing eyeliner and lip balm and had walked out right after a shower-it was one of my most laid back looks.)

She saw a woman who was everything Islam represented, going and starting a conversation with a woman that in her head embodied everything Islam resented.

And yet, to her shock, when we started conversing she found out that I didn’t only have enough brain cells to hold up a conversation about politics, the rights of women and the importance of career goals, I also had morals as strong as her, a stronger knowledge of my religion and a better realization of the distance we had developed from our religion.

So let me decode her words for you-what she meant was, when she saw me she thought I was a shallow girl with no moral code and no idea of my religion, and thinking back to the conversation, I could see the points she had already tried to prove that to me.

A tiny example, when she tried to make me agree that the girls from my high school have the worst reputation in Lahore, there must be a reason to that, I wouldn’t agree no matter how much she pushed. I might have spent only two years in LGS Defense, but they were enough to prove that those girls were nothing like the reputation that preceded them-but do you know what they had in common?

They were strong, opinionated, ambitious girls who were-you guessed it-fashion forward. Just like I was. Just like Islam told us not to be (in her head, at least.)

However, while I failed to persuade her that most of what she had heard about the school’s girls wasn’t true, I will give her this much though, that she changed her view on me at least. By the end of our conversation, we exchanged numbers and she urged me to stay in contact because she liked me that much.

A small win? Yes, too small in fact and hence, the bad taste left in my mouth wasn’t done away. And although I can’t blame her, I am tired of this.

This perception that because I dress a certain way, my religion is bound to be worse than yours.

I respect every woman who covers her head, those more who follow the rules of dressing in Islam down to a ‘t’, but to the same women, I want to say this-don’t judge me because I am not practicing my religion the way you think it should be practiced. You don’t know how much I pray for the strength to gain that level too, you have no idea of my struggles on that and most importantly, I believe, you don’t know whose way of practicing religion God prefers.

But, just for the sake of perspective-if your Islam was honestly as good as you deem it to be, you wouldn’t be busy judging me.

Honestly, I have been at this end of the conversation times too many. People see me from far and think of me (and even go as far as to call me) an amoral girl or a slut (excuse the language). Till one of them somehow gets to know me and realizes (admitting said realization to my face) of how wrong they were.
But the ones who don’t get to know me, continue on their tangents-with me, with other girls like me.
They see the jeans and the tops and assume we are sluts, assume that we have no sense of our religion, assume us to be below them hence, and the chain of assumptions goes on. If the girl in jeans goes and talks to a guy, he must be her boyfriend. If she goes out with male friends, she must be sleeping with them.
If she doesn’t talk to you, another man, it must be because she is too proud.

If she does, then she is trying to get you in her bed too.

If she wears make up, she is a slut trying to seduce you.

If she dresses fancy, it is to attract you.

Stop. Stop. Stop.

Stop labeling us and putting us in a box just because you don’t get us. We don’t fit the box you are trying to put us in to.

You know how you lie? That is a sin too-oh, I can almost see you smirking as you think to yourself that showing my skin is a bigger skin. Well staring at it is an even bigger one, isn’t it? Gossiping about it is even worse. Spreading rumors, is probably the worst.

But of course, you get to judge me because we sin differently.

‘Sinners judging sinners for sinning differently.’

I learned a lot from this quote, but mostly this-I can’t judge someone for something I deem religiously or morally wrong because I can’t see the whole picture. And I definitely can’t see who God prefers amongst us.

It taught me the need to focus on my own religion, for how can I judge a thief if I am a liar? How can I judge a sinner if I am not a saint?

In short, I am not saying my religion is perfect-but is yours? And yet do you see me pointing fingers? How are you sure yours is better than mine, stronger?

Just because you cover your head makes you so sure you are better in front of God than me, then please continue to bask in that ignorance and judge me endlessly.

But if you can, consider this-what if my morals are better than yours?? What if I am closer to God? What if I do something on a daily basis that God likes more than you covering your head daily?
Do you have any guarantees? Because I don’t.

Consider this-what if not covering up as Islam instructs is my one sin (or amongst a few), and one that I ask for help on a daily basis, one that I regret the most. Look at your list of sins, how many do you have?
Look at that list and shorten it, and stop looking at mine, because that in my head is the most important thing Islam teaches us-no judgement on anyone’s religion, just attempt to perfect your own.

Learn the basics. Learn to be tolerant. Learn to stop judging a book by its cover.
And remember that Islam isn’t about sitting in groups and bashing others on what they wear and how they live their lives, and using that to make yourself feel good about your religion.

Islam is about practicing good deeds, and that too so well that you force the people around you to be impressed and inspired by you to work on their own personas.
Lead by example, that is the basic teaching of our religion!

Hence, I repeat, learn the basics. And remember, that Islam puts women on a pedestal in every way, in every walk of life, then who are you to try and pull them down based on outward appearances? 

More importantly, Islam taught us repeatedly to to look into the hearts of people, not their actions.

The whole concept of intentions is so clear in our religion-a good intention is almost as good to our Lord as a good deed. That in itself shows how important the goodness of our hearts is.

And if you think you can’t know how good someone’s heart is just by looking at them, then how can you judge their whole religion based solely on what they wear?

I end this post on a heartfelt request.
Stop judging us just because we dress differently from you.
It hurts. Me yes, but your religion even more so.

 

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Weekend city guide-Miami edition

22 Jun

Happy Thursday everyone!

I am calling this guide a ‘mini’ one because I have only ever stayed there for two-three days max! The reason is simple, that’s the max amount of time I can spend doing ‘nothing’.

Don’t get me wrong, the endless ice-creams, the cutesy restaurants and cafes and the party scene there is pretty cool, and I love the quintessentially South Florida scene there, but as a tan person genetically, that is the max amount of sun bathing you will ever catch me doing. Ever. And when in Miami, you can not avoid the sun nor the beach-not enough, not at all!

So here is a Miami guide for anyone looking to do a small romantic getaway or a fun girls weekend there. (P.S., it is absolutely on my list for my bachelorette weekend though, like, duh.)

Where to stay

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Delano-a view captured by their own photographer

 

Delano

 

It might be one of the priciest places to stay at in Miami, but the experience will be worth the splurge! Since it is Miami, the scene outside is the real deal-its infinity edge pool and bungalows with rainfall showers are what draw many a tourist here and the Agua Spa is like the sweet cherry on top of this deal. The suites themselves are nothing short of incredible featuring a tranquil white-on-white design scheme that will calm you to your core! My advice-stay here for one night at least! You will not regret the memories you will make!

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The Standard (source: their website)


The Standard

If you are not looking to go overboard with your hotel expenditure (read:if you want to avoid bankruptcy), or if you plan to stay for more than a couple of nights, this one is a great choice! The Standard Hotel and Spa thinks of itself more as a spa with a few guestrooms rather than the other way round and has the perfect environment to help you unwind while you vacation. In between the outdoor soaking tubs, the 90-degree hammam, the cedar sauna and the on-site juice cafe-you will be addicted!

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The Sanctuary (taken by their photographer)


Sanctuary South Beach

This is the ideal place to book if you are on a budget and yet still want to feel like you are staying at one of the best spots in the city. Their pool specifically makes you feel like you got more than what you paid for and not only are their rooms spacious and comfy but the beach and several shopping options are close by! The trick though is to book a month or more in advance for which they offer multiple too-good-to-be-true packages.

Where to Eat

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Versailles


Versailles 

This place is one of the most iconic spots of Miami, called by some even ‘the most famous Cuban restaurant in the world’, and you definitely cant leave Miami before going here

Yardbird

 

 

If you are into Southern food and that too in a farm-to-table kind of a set-up, this is a must go for you! However, it was their brunch that stole my heart. (Available for weekends only, but too good!)

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27 Resturaunt

 

27 Restaurant

The interior has a colorful, beachy vibe (complete with picnic tables, bright shelving and catchy wallpaper). The menu is a mix of Caribbean, South American and Middle Eastern cuisines, and the food is divine!

 

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Ms. Cheezious


Ms. Cheezious

 

This place on Biscayne Boulevard is one of a kind for one special reason-it is dedicated to cheese. From mac and cheese to grilled cheese, they serve it all but with quirky twists and at amazing prices. Two words-must go!

Fireman Derek’s Bake Shop

Started by an actual firefighter, they offer some of the best pies in the city-and the serving size of their slices is easily good enough for two! Economical and delicious-what more could one want?

The Local house

One of the best spots for brunch in the city! Their caramelized banana pancakes with creme fraiche are amazing! Also a must try is their crab cake benedict.

 

Where to get Caffeinated 

Las Olas Cafe 

For me, leaving Miami without trying some Cuban flavor was a huge no so my trip to Las Olas Cafe was a must! And was I glad that we went there. Getting served fantastic cups of coffee in a laid-back setting is in itself worth the extra walk in the May heat but the first sip of my café con leche y azúcar made all the extra effort more than worth it!

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Panther Coffee

Panther Coffee 

The reason Panther Coffee Miami Beach is a favorite with both locals and tourists is that it has kind of a Starbucks vibe but with much much better coffees. Plus, while their indoor space is great for work and meetings the outdoor seating in the breezeway is great for a fun, relaxed hangout!

Cafe Demetrio

It is a quaint European style coffeehouse that has some of the best artisanal brews in the city! Housed in a 1920s building with a garden-like terrace, it also offers live music-an over all combination that gives it an old world charm and makes it perfect for an afternoon retreat! Tip-try their Cafe Leo!

Bachour

Bachour Bakery + Bistro

Bachour Bakery + Bistro

Not exactly a cafe, but their coffee was amazing. However, what made this place an instant favorite for me were their macarons and their pastries! After all, who doesn’t love freshly baked goodies with their morning coffee?

Entertainment

Other than sunbathing on the beaches, that is. 

Rent a bike and explore

Two reasons why I suggest this-one, because this is a much better option than renting a car and trying to get around because parking in Miami, especially close to the beaches, is far from fun-we spent fifty minutes looking for a spot to park and then ended up having to pay extra to a valet to park for us. Secondly, Miami is like one flat biking town, and there is not a more fun and easy way to get from one place to another. Plus there are so many cute hidden spots that you can only stumble upon if you are biking!

Shop at 

The Mall at Lincoln road
It is a pedestrian only strip of boutiques and designer shops that is a must go for anyone looking for a good shopping experience!

Boho Hunter
This place will make you feel like you came to the beach unprepared, but will kindly offer all that you forgot you needed to bring! From wrap headbands for lounging by the pool to cute woven totes to ruffled skirts, they offer everything you will need to buy and then some! (They have an online store too which is ridiculously good!)

Books and books and Taschen (the later is on Lincoln rd.)
These shops are must visits for book lovers, especially if you forgot to bring a book for your day at the beach!

Must See

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Art Deco District


The Art Deco district-
The colorful buildings here are world famous, and there reason is pretty obvious for the colors and ‘art’ in them will leave you inspired! It’s an especially good spot for architecture buffs!
Tip:– Head to the Art Deco Welcome Center to get a guided/self-guided tour of the district!

Wynwood Arts District
Home to plenty of art galleries, shops, bars and some really amazing street art, this area is perfect for spending a relaxed afternoon in Miami.

Little Havana-
You can’t visit Miami without a trip to the city’s famous Cuban neighborhood. Packed with cigar shops, galleries, fantastic Cuban food and Cuban coffee spots, it is an experience in itself!

Little havana

A piece of Little Havana

 

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Vicayza

Vizcaya Museum and Garden- It is a national historic landmark and once you see it for yourself you will know what the hype is about! The property reminds you of an Italian villa and is a perfect spot for walking around, taking in some beautiful views and escaping the city’s hustle and bustle!

Must do

Kayak at Oleta River State Park
If you want to experience part of the natural beauty in the area, this park is a good way for that! For a non-sport-loving person like me (no shame, girl) it was an amazing spot for picnicking but locals suggested that the real way to see the park’s beauty was via kayaking! So do give it a try!

Jet-Ski-
How can you not when you are so close to such beautiful waters? There are multiple rental companies to use for this ‘must-do’, though
American WaterSports is usually the safest option. (Full disclosure-I might know how to swim, but huge water bodies scare me so I didn’t even go close to any of the jet skis!)

Enjoy the sunset from the South Point Park-
It is honestly the best spot to catch the sunset, both picturesque (think walkways, benches, green spaces) and relaxing!

Visit Key West
If you have an extra day on your hands, spend it in Key West. The beaches are less crowded and the views even prettier! Plus its famous coral reefs are ideal for activities like snorkeling and diving!

 

For your sweet tooth

bianco

Bianco Gelato


Bianco Gelato

For the absolute best gelato, you have to head here! Not only because of the taste but also because the owners are very quality conscious. Plus, they have so many options that it will leave you astounded-including even dairy-free ones!

 

Azucar-

Acuzar

 

Azucar ice cream

If you are amongst those who prefer their ice-creams to any gelato, this place should be on your list. Not only are their flavors incredible but they also make fresh ice-cream daily! It is located in Little Havana so try it out while you are touring the place!

Ella

This pop-up cafe is made for sugar lovers, or at least their buttermilk pancakes will make you feel so! A perfect spot for breakfast or for a grab-and-go sweet treat!

 

I hope next time you plan a visit to Miami, this guide will prove helpful to you! 

Lots of Love,
Gull.

Work-friendly cafes in Lahore 

12 Jun

I’ve never been the kind who can sit in a library for hours and study/work. Nor can I do that at home. Being a medicine student though, that equation didn’t work well for me and I had to find a place where I could sit and study for longer than five minutes in a go.

My answer came to me out of forced circumstances. My final exams were just around the corner, when some relatives came to Pakistan to visit us.

The energy levels at home were beyond anything. Everyone was as people should be when they haven’t met their loved ones in years-loud, worked up and ready for laughs on the smallest of triggers.

Fun times but not for someone with their medicine finals so close. One day, tired of the noise levels, I gathered my books and ended up going to a cafe close to my house.

I got more studying done that day than I’d in the past four at least.

And hence it began. My love for studying and working at cafes around town.

However, I soon realised that every cafe wasn’t work friendly. Some didn’t appreciate you sitting for hours after paying for only your coffee while others were too loud or their furniture too relaxed (yes, that’s a thing) to let you work. However, in the past four odd years, I’ve found some favourites for working at. And though I wish that we could have a Starbucks at every corner too where you could sit and work for hours, these cafes have been saviours for me and today I share them with you!

1. Gloria Jeans, Z block DHA:-

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It’s at the top of my list for a reason. The staff is infinitely courteous and accommodating. The noise levels through most of the day don’t get too annoying.

However, here is the best part-most weekdays, as you climb their stairs to the upper level you will find almost all the tables occupied by customers working away (or even studying) creating a perfect work friendly environment for anyone. Add to that, their community tables are at the perfect height for the given chairs for any kind of work (hi zero neck strain). And, they don’t guilt trip you for sitting with your single coffee cup-for hours.

Verdict-The staff is helpful, the baristas good at their work and the ambiance always both welcoming and work-friendly.

2. Mocca, Mall one, Gulberg 

Mocca


The only reason it’s at the second position on this list is that personally it’s a little too far out of my way. Otherwise, it’s as good as Gloria Jean’s Z block for working out of. The staff is diligent, the lighting amazing (minimal eye strain, omg). Add to that their amazing coffee and macaroons and the place becomes the perfect cafe to work out from. Again, a lot of other workaholics come here too and many a times you will find yourself surrounded by a group of other people working or studying there too, creating the perfect ambiance for you to do the same. That stands true especially for the new covered area they have made on their rooftop. (Plus glass walls, omg!)

Verdict-the food options are vast, the coffee is amazing and the staff is helpful but non intrusive, letting you work as undisturbed as can be.

3. Coffee Shop, Defense club, J block DHA

Coffee shop, Defense Club


One place I can sit from morning till evening with minimal distractions, great (usually) coffee and very, very helpful staff-it’s this. And I’ll be honest. I’ve spent many a day here with my laptop or my books. The only flaw is their lack of wi-fi and the at times not-so-good coffee. However, the staff here is made up of the best, most courteous group of people ever which almost make up for the draw backs. Almost.

Verdict-Perfect ambiance for working if you can do so without wi-fi. Or can arrange for your own.



4. Rina’s Kitchenette, DHA

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Rina’s Kitchenette 


It is almost as good as the other places on the list. The only issue is, this place can either work really well for you or not at all. How? Because the place is small and if you end up going there during rush hours (or when a particularly loud group of people is there too) it’s not going to work out for you at all. But between the rush hours, the community table on the ground floor is a favourite of mine to work at because honestly their dessert menu is the best in the city.

Verdict-They have the best dessert bar ever and amazing coffee too but the environment can swing from being work friendly to the opposite on different days and during different hours. Hence, it’s a calculated risk at times but a great one nonetheless.

10 books to take on your vacations

5 Jun

For some holiday trips are more than just a time to have fun and sight-see, for some it is the only time they get to unwind and the only time they can fit all the the things they have been missing out on, into.

For us book lovers, the knowledge that vacations are the only time for guilt-free book reading (because lets be honest, when has a dead line forced us to give up on reading completely) is both daunting and challenging-more so because finding books that are both scintillating and yet can be called ‘light reads’ is hard. However, not all of us can take up long autobiographies as companions for our beach days (no matter how intriguing they might be) and for those who prefer an easy-going book to take to their vacation spots with them, here is our list for you! Take your pick, kick back in your beach chair and let yourself get lost in the wonderful words of these writers!

For the cafes

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The Goldfinch


  1. The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt-You will hear people that will urge you to read it because of how well it has been written and those who will cast it away as a ‘children’s book for adults’, but while for the latter you need to remember they cast away Harry Potter in the same way, over all just know this-it is one of the most talked about books of this past decade, even in the literary word and at the same time it is an easy book to read through. And, though many dissent, it does have that Dickensian feel to its writing that keeps you enthralled throughout. If it is one book you can read this summer, read this, it is worth it!
    (Buy here.)
  2. The Twilight wife by A. J. Banner-The book takes us on a journey with Kyra as she unravels the memories she lost to a diving accident, uncovering truths about people she thought were her friends and discovering a past that comes back to her like a terrifying nightmare. An immersive thriller, the twists will keep you involved till the final, shocking discovery while every page leading to it will keep you on your toes!
    (Buy here.)
  3. 13 reasons why by Jay Asher-The book behind the popular Netflix series of the same name, read it if you prefer books to their on screen adaptations. While the season itself is by turns moving, horrifying and enthralling, the book pushes you to question your own actions even more, causing a much needed introspective in its readers! Plus books are always better than their on-screen adaptations, no?
    (Buy here.)

For your favorite cities

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  1. It started with Paris by Cathy Kelly-A once in a lifetime moment in Paris starts a chain of events that nobody could have predicted as a young man’s proposal to his girlfriend up in the Eiffel Tower sends ripples throughout their families. A fun read, easy to get through for even the most reluctant of readers!
    (Buy here.)

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    I heart New York

  2. I heart New York by Lindsey Kelk- This book is as light heart-ed as they get (without getting annoying, cheesy or boring) and will especially be an instant hit with any SATC lover! First in a series of books on Angela’s quirky adventures, this book introduces us to a cheated-on heroinne running away from a horrible marriage and into the arms of new possibilities and even new love. By turns both cute and funny, it will be hard for you to not to finish it!
    (Buy here.)

    porto

    The little Paris bookshop

  3. The little Paris bookshop by Nina George- A protagonist who calls himself the literary apothecary, astutely prescribing the exact books needed to mend broken hearts and souls, yet the only heart he has failed to mend via literature is his own. Haunted by a heartbreak from his great love’s disappearance, he finally gets the courage to open the one letter she left behind-the contents of which take him on a South of France and finally to his own healing. If you’re looking to be charmed right out of your own life for a few hours, this is the book for you! After all, who can resist floating on a barge through France surrounded by books, wine, love, and great conversation-even if comes to you only in written form!
    (Buy here.)

    eat pray

  4. Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert-This is one book that can teach you something new every time you read it, therefore don’t shy away from re-reading it. And if you haven’t read it yet, well-why not? An intensely articulate, sensible and by turns funny memoir of a woman’s journey to self discovery, it shows what can happen when you take charge of your life and your own happiness!
    (Buy here!)

For the beach

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  1. The forty rules of love-Elif Shafak-A book that needs no introduction, a book that so many have fallen in love with and so many have drawn inspiration from! At forty when Ella receives her first assignment at her new job, she is introduced to Rumi and his works and as she reads more on him she begins to realize his life is starting to mirror her own and, as such, she finds inspiration for her own life in the most unlikely of places!
    (Buy here.)
  2. The unfortunate importance of beauty by Amanda Filipacchi-Centered around two women at the opposite ends of the beauty spectrum dealing with one common problem-finding a love that can overcome their looks. Add a murderer to the mix and you have a perfectly ‘thrilling’ modern-day fairy-tale.  Part literary whodunit, part surrealist farce, it is a book made for lazy beach days!
    (Buy here.)
  3. After you by Jojo Moyes-So many times we read a book that changes our lives forever but also leaves us with the nagging question-‘what happened after’. Jojo gives us that in a book that is almost as impactful as ‘Me before you’ as she shows how life for Lou Clark is after Will, how she dares to fall in love again and how two families, as real as our own, can make us feel their joys and pains like our own. Fall in love with Lou all over again as she tries to get her life back together in a post-Will world.
    (Buy here.)

 

Trend report-June edition

1 Jun

1. One shoulder tops

Because cold shoulders are too main stream now!

If you want one for a steal, the option below from Storets is amazing.

(Get here! Or get a variant of it here. )

 

 

But the top that added new life to the trend is this one from Mr. Self Portrait! It is a splurge, but these wide-sleeved shirts are the latest fashion-favourite for they include another much-loved trend, wide stripes!

 

2. Mis-matched earrings

 

All the cool kids are mixing and matching their earrings. What about you?

You can get them here/here for a steal and here if you feel like splurging!

Charlize Theron brought the trend into limelight again, via her Chopard earrings at the Oscars. Note that one has a heart-shaped  pendant while the other has an oval one. 

 


 

3. Pin straight hair

Thank you KimK for bringing this trend back, because honestly we don’t think we could stomach another head of curled hair. Not on us, not on anyone else!

Bonus tip: Couple your sleek-straight hair with a lob and be the group’s cool girl!

 

Olivia Culpo

 

4. Tassel(ed) earrings 

They are fun, quirky and come in so many colours. Brb, as we run to get ourselves some.

 

You can buy them here or here (steal). And here ! And for Pakistanis (especially Lahoris), check out these ones from BTW*Esfir!

To get earrings similar to the style above, check here!

5. Ruffles. Ruffles. Ruffles. 

Enough said!


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Zimmerman top

Get similar looks from here, here and here! Or try this H&M top whose color you will fall in love with!

6. Cute little ‘hand bags’

Let’s be honest, when are they not in style?

Some of our favourites are the Small Marcie Saddle bag and the Small Grained Calfskin Faye Shoulder bag from Chloe, and this Valentino!

But our favorite most is this Celine photographed below!

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Celine-Aimee Song


7. Gucci-esque flats 

Let it be known that Gucci made these slightly manly and very office-wear inspired flats the “in thing” but the brands around caught up fast enough! For us though, the Alexander Wang flats photographed below win the race! Best flats ever? We think so too!

Get them here!! 

Or a similar style for a steal price here!

Wang-Blank Itinerary 

Catch you next month with another fun-filled trend report, until then,
Ciao! xoxo

Five women who inspire us

10 Apr

This week’s Five things’ theme is:-

 

Women who inspire us

We present to you five women who have bravely started off or are already running small businesses in Lahore while managing their studies, their social lives and their jobs on the side too, because apparently “too much on my plate” is a phrase they know nothing of.

1. Sugar craft by the dynamic sister duo, Shanzeh and Aleezeh Salman

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Shanzeh Salman

Do you know what is better than home-baked goods which are tastier than what you have eaten at even the best of the bakeries around town? When these goods are almost as good in their looks too, making you want to eat your cakes and have them too! So while you are left in a quandary over whether you should eat their items or save them for decor, our advice would be to take a bite-because the heaven in your mouth will be worth defiling their beauty.
Here is what the sisters had to say about their brand:

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Aleezeh Salman

“We love working together, baking magic together. My cozy business-minded, kung-fu Panda sister and I, a slightly clumsy art student, spend hours in the kitchen experimenting. It oddly feels like home, recreating old recipes, and playing around to customise new ones; knowing that you’ll create something you can call your own. Sugar Craft means a lot to us! It’s super cosy 🕊”

Find them here!!

2. Maven Clothing by designer extraordinaire, Aisha Malik

Aisha Malik

Who doesn’t love a nice desi wedding? Everyone does, yes? But the one problem we all always find ourselves facing is-clothes. We all want something pretty and traditional, yet something that makes us stand out and be different! Enter Maven, a brand that does formal clothing with such a subtle western fusion that you are left with clothes desi enough to please your grandmother and yet cool enough to help you stay in the spotlight.
We asked Aisha her plans for the brand and here is her answer:

“MAVEN by Aisha Malik eagerly aspires to dress up all those beautiful women out there with the latest, chic and minimal cuts incorporated with our very own developed embroidery. I felt the need of introducing MAVEN to provide our clients with the best fashion trends incorporated with the best fashion consultant in town.”

Visit their Instagram or Facebook page for more information!

3. Makeup by Hira Khan by the brilliant make up artist, Hira Shahraiz Khan

One line-she doesn’t believe in the art of caking! And we were sold. However, what gains her more respect is that she isn’t just amazing at her work, but she is also a brilliant teacher and the kindest person to work with. She can do make-up for any occasion-party, wedding, dinner date,you name it-and no hair-do seems too hard for her to pull off. Plus, she can teach it all to you too! All in a day’s work!
Hey, girl, superman just called to ask why you wont stop stealing his thunder!!
Here though is all that inspired the maestro into becoming who she is today:

 

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Hira Khan

“Makeup had always been a subject of interest to me. Everyone has their own way of expressing the creativity that exists within them. For me it was makeup, I always felt that there can be no better canvas than the face so that’s when i decided to pursue makeup as a career choice. What inspires me is the concept of “Less Is More”. I believe that makeup should be used to enhance the beauty that already exists and nothing should be over done.”

Check her work out here!

4. Bakeology by Saira Qayyum Malik
This little home based baking business might be new in town, but I can personally vouch for three things-the experience of the woman behind it, the taste and the proffesionalism! All of it is beyond any you will find in many of the ‘well established’ baking businesses in Lahore. Fair warning though, this one business is going to be one you need to be watching out for!
Here is what the owner told us when asked what inspired her to finally put years of practice and experience into use and begin this business:

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From Bakeology

“Translating my ideas into confectionary is something I really enjoy and cherish! So I finally decided to make use of all that I have learned in my life and bring to my customers something only years of experience in baking could-finished products with old world charm and perfect taste!”

Visit their page here to learn more about them!

5. Into the kitchen by Muzna Ali Khan
She doesn’t run a business per say, but we believe it is more of an “as yet” situation because with cooking skills like hers, she is bound to be running a well loved eatery soon enough. Till then, enjoy her food via her blog where she shares her personal recipes without qualms. The icing on the cake is that her recipes are so easy to follow that even we got them!
We asked her how she manages it all with her grueling medical school routine and here is the answer that left us all stunned:

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Muzna Ali Khan

“I came up with this idea before my third year finals (in medicine school). Since they were postponed, I decided to channel my energy towards something I loved doing and hence this blog came into being. Our routine (as medical students) is very hectic, but you make time for what you love. I have at times skipped college to post a recipe I really want to share and the love I get in return from my followers is what makes it all worth it. I am on my 90th recipe and I plan to do a giveaway when I reach the hundredth! My blog is something that helps me get away from the stress of my university and something I love too, so it isn’t a burden, rather an outlet!”

Find her blog here !

 

Night blindness

26 Mar

One of the

hardest

steps to take,

are the ones towards

the search of

light,

when pitch black night has taken

residence

in your soul,

and the thought of sunshine

is

blinding your eyes.

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