Eat: Garden Lifestyle Store & Cafe

I was at e@Curve the other day, and together with my friends, we couldn’t decide where to eat. Actually, they couldn’t. If I was anywhere near IKEA, I will always always always choose to eat meatballs at IKEA. Yes, meatballs would almost the only reason why I’d ever go IKEA or anyway.

2012-10-21 21.38.14Shot with Samsung Galaxy Note. Edited.

They didn’t actually want to eat at IKEA because we wanted to have a nice quiet place where we can sit down comfortably and talk. IKEA is so often crowded and noisy, so we opted for some nicer and quiet place like Garden. I have only been to Garden once in Sunway Pyramid and I thought it was a rather pretty restaurant, designed to look as what their name is. And it seems cosy and comfortable for a nice lunch, and so why not?

But as it turns out, on that day, there was a futsal match / event right outside e@Curve and it got pretty noisy, defeating our purpose of having a nice meal with conversations. Nevertheless, we went ahead and ordered anyway and right now, there are having a Buy 1 Free 1 promotion for all their pastas.

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Shot with Samsung Galaxy Note. Edited.

Grand’ Pa Carbonara (Beef)

2012-10-14 14.44.53Shot with Samsung Galaxy Note. Edited.

Own Style “Olio-Aglio”

I had a taste of this and I quite like it, but the chilli flakes did make it a tad spicier than what I could handle. I never expected a seeming simple pasta like Olio Aglio would taste this good. They were generous with the olives, but skimped on the prawns and tiny clams.

IMG_3951Squid Ink Pasta | Looks really plain to me but my friend said it was good.

IMG_3946Seafood Arabitta | And, this is what I ordered.

If I’m not mistaken, I think I had a similar one in Porta Romano, (in Romano, it was named after the restaurant itself) which was why I ordered it that time anyway. I rarely eat pasta outside, but I really loved the one from Porta Romano. (Read about it here.) Seeing that Seafood Arabitta looks almost similar to it, I thought I’d try this one from Garden.

Turns out pretty decent for a pasta, but to be completely honest if I compared it with Romano, it’d fall short because the Garden’s one was almost bland. From what I know the Arabitta is actually supposed to be spicy, but it slipped my mind to let the waiter know how spicy I wanted it to be. And he didn’t bother asking me, so my pasta tasted nothing spicy. Also, the cheese sprinkles were awfully dry and powdery which somewhat ruined the pasta for me.

All-in-all, the Seafood Arabitta was still a decent pasta but I would say it isn’t the best one from Garden. The serving size is decent but it wasn’t loaded with clams, like in Romano.

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So, the next time you head out to Garden Lifestyle Store & Cafe, you know which pasta to order. :)

Note: Pictures, if otherwise not mentioned, are shot with a Canon S90. :)

The Best Thing.

to be honest, i haven’t been doing so well. i am going through another difficult phase in my life, it’s not easy.. but as each day passes, i am getting much better. i have faith, things will get better. i am also very thankful for this thing to happen to me, i wish to say that i am not posting this to boast. i blog about things that matter to me, and hope in future, i can remember these things better, by reading my posts.

I have been meaning to blog about this, but somehow every time, I’ll decide to publish / work on another post instead. So this thing that I’m supposed to blog about is actually the best thing to happen to me, which by now, is already been a month since then.

Do you remember this post where I blogged about my love for platform boots? You can read it here if you missed that post. I posted some pictures which I mentioned were actually behind the scenes photos for a contest I joined. I don’t usually go all the way to shoot and edit my pictures but for this one, it was something I was very much interested in and so, hours of editing, shooting and some minor bit of brain storming.. has resulted with this.


I am too shy to post the full blown picture of my work, so you’ll have to bear with this from La Senza. The contest mechanics was rather simple; create a fashion inspired photograph. I could have easily done a Polyvore set for this, I did think about it but then I didn’t quite like the idea of using pictures that are not mine. And so, I used my own pictures. Well, they (my pictures) were the ones who gave me an inspiration to create a photo layout, much like a scrapbook.

And what did I win? :)


A (much needed) new phone! It is the first version of Samsung’s Galaxy Note. I was actually saving up to get either a Note (cause I can scribble/draw on it) or an iPhone, so you can imagine how ecstatic I was to win this contest. So far, I am totally loving this phone, since it is quite a huge upgrade from my Nokia 5530. The camera, is pretty good and with a front camera… you get the idea. Haha. Also, I’m finally active on Instagram, so if you want to follow me, my username is @itscarmenhong.



I am also totally in love with my pink metallic cover, so much that I went back to buy a spare one. Bought pink earphones too, to match my phone. Suddenly I love pink so much, when black has been my default favourite colour. I have to admit that this phone seems for like a mini tablet but hey, I am not complaining. Only thing is that because it’s so huge, when I shoot with my own camera, it feels like I am holding a toy. Everything else that used to be or feel normal to me, is now toy sized. Like damn.

Nail Art: Heart Shaped Matte Pink

heart mani

With the Internet these days, it has been so easy to find and share pictures of pretty nail art designs. There are so many nail arts that I have seen from the net that I wanted to try. In fact, I was so inspired by some of the gorgeous ones that I actually sketched them out (with guides and notes) in my sketching notebook. Anyway, before I get side tracked any further, I stumbled upon a picture on Pinterest (Yes, I’m on there. :] Follow my boards HERE.) of a super simple nail art; matte heart. It was such an easy nail art to do since you only need stickers + matte top coat, not forgetting the base colour too. So here is my version. :D


How do you like my version? :) I used the Neon Pink polish from Elianto, which I swatched and reviewed before. Click here to read it.



So, how do to do this nail art? What you’ll need is a sticker. Draw a heart shape, cut that out and then paste it over your nail. The nails should be painted with a base colour before that. After pasting the sticker, top it off with a matte top coat. Whenever I use stickers for my nail art designs, I prefer to let my base polish to cool or dry for at least 24 hours because sometimes the sticker may be too strong and ruins the base colour, Just like that, and you’re done.


You may notice that there is a white outline over the heart shape. That is actually because of the matte top coat. I used Essence’s Matt(e) Top Coat for this nail design and somehow, after I peeled off the sticker, it left a white outline. But fret not, it’ll be go off after sometime. Of course, if you’re irked by it like myself, you can slowly scrapped it off with your nails, like I did. Haha.


It was a really simple nail art to do, something that I finished in less than 15 mins. To be honest, these days I find myself preferring to swatch instead of doing nail arts. Maybe I got lazier, :(. Which is why I am so going to make it point to do more nail arts. I know I’ll never be short of inspiration with the Internet these days, anyway.

Review: Temporary Tattoo Eyeliners | Stickers

Did you read my post on the amazing Lip Sticker? The one that gave my lips such edgy look? If you haven’t, you can read it here. What did you think about this trend? For me, I love how edgy it was; wear the Lip Sticker out, and you’re bound to get attention (read: heads will turn 360 degrees). Haha. So, it is not exactly a very, everyday-I-can-wear-this-out look.

Lip Sticker

Now that you have seen/read about the Lip Sticker, would you believe me when I say that there is already a sticker for eyeliners as well? But then again, with all the trends around these days, nothing would really come off surprising anyway. :x Anyway, the eyeliner stickers sounded quite interesting and I managed to get my hands on a few of them.


This is how it looks like; there are five pairs of different designs in a pack. I had initially thought that they would be like a sticker; being able to peel it off from the film and then stick them on to my eyelids.


Turns out that the application for this eyeliner was similar to the Lip Sticker, whereby the sticker/tattoo is transferred using water. I actually did a step-by-step photo instructions for this temporary tattoo eyeliner. Here it is;

Tutorial Eyeliner Sticker

  1. Cut out the design you want.
  2. Ta-da, I cut it like that.
  3. For this step, I had to be extra careful when I was cutting the bottom of the sticker.
  4. Remove the transparent film.
  5. Place it on your eye lids.
  6. Then, gently wet the sticker paper with water. Wet cotton balls can be used as well.

eyelinerAnd this is how it looks! :D So awww-sum right?

It was super easy and fun to do. The picture on the left is without any foundation and was taken immediately after I managed to stick it on. On the right, is after I put on some BB cream and touched up the eyeliner. Sometimes I find that when transferring, not all it will get transferred properly. It’ll like extremely tiny gaps, so this eyeliner sticker is best to use with an eyeliner. But mostly all I needed to do was to fill in the gaps only.

The product claimed to be able to last a few days and hence, it is known as tattoo eye liner. I was sceptical about it at first, so after the first time using it I didn’t remove it just to test how long it was able to last. On the second day, the eyeliner still looks almost as good as when it was first applied. It was only after the third day when the sticker was slowly wearing out, with more gaps. Again, these gaps can be filled up using eyeliner. So yes, I must say that it really does what it said to do.

But for it to last longer, you’ll have to try to avoid washing your eyelids like the rest of your face. Besides that, the removal of this sticker was very easy as well; I used olive oil and cleaned it using a cotton bud.


And here you can see a collage of the different designs of eyeliners I used, according to the alphabets; a,b,d and e. I haven’t tried c yet To be honest, I didn’t like design e, because there was a gap, it ended up looking weird. So, I filled in that space using eyeliners instead.

After trying out most of the designs, I find that these eyeliners are simple enough to be worn out without looking over the top. But, it is uniquely designed so it doesn’t look too plain and normal. This set of eyeliners are actually the basic ones; there are two other fancy sets.


If you have read my post on thirtyfour’s blackplatinum event, you may have saw that I was wearing one of the fancier eyeliner sticker. Here is a picture of myself with it. :)


As you can see  I had minimal make-up on my face, except the lips because I wanted to focus to be on my eyes. I really liked how easy it was to do this, instead of having to spend like 20 mins on eye make-up, I was done in about 5 mins max.


This was quite a picture heavy post, thank you for reading it till here. So I’ll just give a final conclusion on what I feel about this product; super easy and convenient for those who look for something different from the usual drawn eyeliners. But since it have to be transferred, instead of sticking it on, that part can get a bit troublesome. Sometimes even, there are tiny gaps or the sticker wasn’t transferred nicely. That is when the old school eye liner would be useful.

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PS - I had actually realised that these were probably inspired from Dior’s Velvet Eye. After more Googling, I found out that Sephora and a number of other brands did come up with their own versions as well. But I’m guessing those didn’t take off as well as how Violent Lips succeeded with the Lip Sticker. And compared to this product which was transferred by water, Dior’s and Sephora’s one are made from velvet and can be stick onto the eye lids.

About: Project etc.

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I really haven’t been able to work out a schedule or a way to balance my work with blogging (and about every other things I love to do), yet. Hence, updates can be really rare at the moment until I manage to balance between that both. Actually work hasn’t started for me yet, because I am still in training. But I’m caught up with something else, I call it my project and it’s known as etc

So what is this project about anyway? If that picture looks familiar to you, chances are you already know what etc. is about. etc. was started purely based on my passion for fashion, also dressing up, and my love for shopping. I was an avid online shopper, always browsing for clothes from the many many blogshops they are available on the Internet. And then, I realized that it’s kind of difficult to find unique pieces online anymore because everyone is selling the same sh*t. Seriously, it can get so boring and I even know of a blog set up purposely just to compare the prices. Link here.

This was when I started sourcing for items, really unique piece of clothing where you basically don’t see them anywhere. And I’ve been able to find some interesting pieces, fall madly in love with them and made them mine. Then, I somehow came to a realization that I’ve actually harboured a secret desire to become a shopper/buyer for fashion companies all this while. It hit me, one day but I was contemplating on whether I should open up a blogshop; especially when the market is too saturated with so much competition.

However, if I didn’t start it now, I’ll never be able to do so… I’ll be so pre-occupied with work and I just won’t have time. I did end up setting up etc. (only in September, where midways I start on my full-time job) and since then, we have done about four batches of pre-orders. :) 

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If anything, I do hope that etc. does take off successfully (in time) and gain more popularity amongst the online shopping community. Of course, that would be my dream for this humble little project of mine. But at the moment, I quite like how it is turning out. etc. is slowly building up its base, (I hardly publicise or promote it, although I ought to. I’m just relying on the review sites now.), and at the moment I can still juggle it between everything else.

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If you like what you see here, do hop over to etc. at There are a lot more lovely pieces there, (didn’t want to spam my blog with more pictures + driving traffic there, heh). I update it almost every week, so do pop by there and email me at to order.

And best part of this whole project etc. is, (since I’m the boss, hee) I can give you, my readers and my friends a discount of 5% on your orders (excluding postage). All you need to do is just include the keyword; itsmylifewhen you place your order. :) So, shop away?! :D

write, just.

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i would love to be known as a writer, but i don’t write often so that’s the ironic bit of it. but i love to write, i have all this thoughts, ideas, going through my head but then i grab a pencil and just like that, they are gone.

i realise, however, inspiration comes easier with a broken heart. it’s like i am so disappointed, so down, so broken to the core and all this emotions just come rushing through all together at one time. it is intense, i want to cry, i have one million thoughts running through my mind. they just keep coming, replaying in my head. again and again, and they are inspiration.

i just have to put them down in words.