2012, the year that was.

Before I begin this post, let me wish you a “Happy New Year”. May this year be filled with awesome and so much more. *hugs*

It had been at the back of my mind to finish up on my backlogs of posts from 2012 and also, to blog about the highlights of 2012 for me. I have been meaning to, but somehow I never got to it until today, the 1st of January 2013. I did try to start on it a few weeks back but then, my mind drew a blank as I thought through the months, beginning with January. To put it simply, if I cannot remember what I ate last Sunday, how could I remember what happened in January. Either nothing much significant happened, or I have an fish’s memory.

So, I decided to take a different approach. I am just going to chunk in whatever I remember from 2012 into the post, beginning with the freshest memory.

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Hair Cut

Went to Miko Hair to get a new hairstyle before the new year kicks in, now my hair shoulder length when it’s wet. But when it’s dry and the curls bounces, my hair poufs up. I love this new hair nevertheless. Also, I love how the stylist was friendly and didn’t try to hard sell their other products to me.

When I finally decided to keep my curls mid of this year, it was one decision I never regret but it was a tough choice to make nevertheless. I have had straight silky hair as a little girl, all through kindergaten, I think. But then my parents thought having a long hair for me was troublesome and that changed the texture of my hair. It got curly and frizzy that my hair poufs up. As a kid, I had no choice then but to keep a very short hair. Then, as I grew up, I started growing my hair out hoping the texture of my hair would change. But it didn’t, it was still huge and frizzy. Then, I made the decision to rebond my hair and I done that every year without fail, spending 5 hours at the salon to have flat, straight hair. For 4 years, I did that. 2012, I finally decided I wasn’t going to do that anymore. So, hello super duper huge curly hair. :) I’ve been blessed with curls, so why try to change that?

Christmas PotluckHad a Christmas Potluck party with the college mates, so nice to see everyone again after so long. Exchanged gifts too, and had a mini epic BBQ after that.

CLEO ShootWent for a shoot for the CLEO magazine because they were going to feature my story on how to happy socially as part of their “How to Be Happy” feature for the January 2013 issue. :)

IMG_5328And here’s the story I wrote and the picture they chose from the shoot. :) Thank you Ruz for hooking me up on this and to some of my close friends who helped me proof read the story.

IMG_5329Published in Seventeen in 2011 and one year later, in CLEO. Life have been great, haha, Did I change after one year?

Shoot w Joe & Pearl

Had a photoshoot with the extremely talented portraiture photographer, Joe and Pearl, an awesome make up artist. This was my first time doing a creative shoot and it was definitely an eye-opening experience. I have always been curious to know what and how shoots are like and now, I know. Btw, this was a collaboration and the nails for the shoot was done by me.


Went to shoot with Alex, wanted to shoot at some city ruins but ended up getting our best shots at the coffee table in restaurant for breakfast. Just like how his best shots of me are often at restaurants over food.


Had my first hand experience of shooting portraits with the sister being my subject. I have yet to post more pictures of her, I keep delaying that post. Anyway, I seem to find joy in doing portraiture and am leaning towards getting a four thirds camera to shoot. This year, I’ll get my new baby. :D

i am not for sale

Volunteered to model as a live mannequin for Change Your World’s Human Trafficking campaign, “I Am Not For Sale”. It was held at the Offline Blogshop in Sunway Pyramid, where they had various volunteers to portray different ‘victims’ of human trafficking. I was portraying a prostitute, hence the super thick make up and skimpy outfit. Read more about the campaign here.

makeupMy tired face after the event. By the way this was how thick the make up was. But, it was so flawlessly done that when the make up artist was done, one of the guys just went and said, you look so beautiful.

BLGSaw my all time favourite boy band, Boys Like Girls play live in Rockaway Festival Showcase. I was so close to them, it was an awesome concert, dream came true. To top things up, I got to attend a pre-listening party for their then up-coming but is now released album, Crazy World. Got a chance to interview them at the party, and even chatted with them online before the party. :DD Read my post here. Too bad I don’t have a picture with them. I also saw Avril Lavigne, when she was in Malaysia and I’m telling you she sings awesome live.


Celebrated my 20th birthday with a surprise from the college friends, who came all the way to my place. Super sweet of them. :) My 20th birthday was really memorable, it’s one that I would always remember. Blogged about it here. :P Go read it, the details there.

SelfportraitsStarted dabbling with taking self portraits of myself, it all started out with an idea, an inspiration. Looking back, I had taken quite a number of self portraits. It almost saddens me to look back now and think how I have since lost inspirations to create more shots like that, :s But I ought to be happy because most of the good portraits were driven from disappointment, which reflects in the pictures right? So, yes I am happier now and I guess this actually helped me expressed myself in ways I couldn’t. May I be able to find inspiration through happiness instead. :)

IMG_1970-4Bought a Groupon deal for 100 prints, and decided to use them to decorate my wall with a photo collage. Seeing my pictures in print, really is one of the best feeling ever. To have and to hold them, admiring them up close instead of only from the computer is just feels so good. Click here to see the animated gif of the process of doing up the random photo collage, it’s really nice. :)


Helped ICAEW organized a Movie Night for universities students, which was a first time experience for me. I know I have been organizing events but I was never one to head it, like really overlooked and took charge. But for this, I did and I have never been more thankful to have worked together with a such a strong team. Like any events planning, ideally it would be great if everything went as planned but the chances of that happening was definitely close to negative zero. We had a few hiccups here and there, and GSC was being an absolute bitch. We booked the whole lounge and they had the cheek to tell us later that we’ll have to share with another event when we had already booked and agreed on the whole lounge. That aside, things actually went pretty smooth on that day. :)

cfab exchange

Was roped in to help ICAEW and Sunway TES organize another event called the CFAB Exchange. This time, I was the Project Coordinator (for Movie Night, I was called the Project Director, heh.) I love all this fancy names, but with the fancy names, of course there is responsibility and real stuff to do. This event was a much larger scale and again, I had my team to help me. I called them my core team, and seriously, these guys are the best persons I have ever worked with. Reuben, the man is forever fantastic (like seriously, he is the man), Danny, can be an ass sometimes, but still great, Eugene, always able to make things work. You guys are awesome, I would have been able to do what I did if it wasn’t for them.

Besides handling the details (back-end of the event), I was also the emcee for 500+ students event. Oh dear, it was massive. I have spoken in public, emcee-d before but never to such magnitude of people. We were so busy I didn’t have any time at all to really rehearse my lines, I did manage to write my script which I ended up not using. Started out a little nervous but just after lunch, when it was my session, I actually did the session spontaneously with no scripts! It’s really amazing to see how the crowd reacts to what I’m saying, when you know that they are really interested and definitely isn’t bored out. Best memory from this would be getting the crowd to cheer and chant, following what I say. I didn’t know that would be such an overwhelming experience. Organizing the CFAB Exchange was an invaluable experience, and really, from the way people worked with each other under pressure, you get to see how each person reacts differently. An eye-opening experience nevertheless. ;)


Started dabbling with make up, specifically just the lips. I actually done these designs for a contest, and they were so many other fantastic designs, like one shaped like a crab. I thought my designs were pretty simple, just play with colours (love the ombre one!) and some stickers used. Turns out, I actually won a prize for my designs. :) Am definitely going to continue doing lip make up more often, when I get inspired especially. Haha.


Okay, you can totally call me self obsessed for taking so many pictures of myself but I wanted to see how much I have changed over the year. And I probably didn’t, judging from the pictures I could grown chubbier even. :?/ Gahh. I did change my hairstyle, I have finally embraced my curls, chopped off my rebonded hair and happily sporting a huge pouffy hair. And whenever I look into the mirror, all I think of was coiffure, hair coif·fure.


At times like this, being able to look back at 2012’s nail designs, I really can’t help my beam at the collection of designs that I have done and attempted. All in all, I did about 23 nail designs, in one year. It’s great, but I wished I did more designs. Well, that is what this year is for. It’d be easy to exceed such an *ahem* low target this year. It also helps that I’m on Instagram (@itscarmenhong) so, I’ll never run out of inspirations. Up till now, I probably have save hundreds of nails pictures already. Haha.


The highlight, best thing to have happen to me in 2012 would definitely be winning the La Senza’s contest. :)

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2012 has been the year of many ups and downs, somehow it feels like there had been more downs. Of course, I remember the happy times; someone who could make me smile and laugh when I didn't know how to anymore and really, over the littlest possible thing.  That was such a blissful time, one that I will cherish and appreciate.

And then, there's someone who could put up with all the crap I throw at him, after it all is still my close friend and so much more that. Here's to many more years to our friendship.

Of course, then there is this other person who would do so much just because I asked, because it meant a lot to me. You've been an awesome friend and a bro to me, I'm glad to have known you and I know things have been rough for you this year, (I do hope I've been there for you) but next year, it'll be better.

And this other person who could make me smile silly at my phone, reading those messages. Thank you for keeping me company with your humour, love you to bits. May our friendship always be frank, open and hilarious. Also, who cared for me so much more than what I deserved. Who still accepted me after the mistakes I made.

And here's to another, the one who had to put up with my constant annoyance for the past few years. Who have nothing but patience for my nonsense, who have listening to all my stories, who watched me make the same mistakes again and again but still stood by me after it all.

Just as she did, here is to another who been there for me at my lowest, who feels so much for me and who unwittingly makes me laugh over the crappy issues in my life. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. It hasn't been a great year for you, but as much as you have been here for me, I want to do same as well. If you to talk or a shoulder to lean on, I'm always here.

And to all my friends, thank you for everything, thank you for making my 2012 amazing. To my readers, thank you for reading my blog, even if all I write is nails, life, make up and occasionally food. To my family, thank you but I can’t thank them enough. There is never enough, for family.

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I have learnt that happiness is only temporary but then so is disappointment. And life is what you make out of it. Oh, also, nothing is ever what it seemed to be.


  1. Interesting write up about your 2012 recap, would love to see more nail and photography posts from you, have always love your work (: Happy New Year, Carmen!

    1. Thanks Hilda! That means a lot to me, :) Happy New Year to you too!

  2. Love your photos! Happy New Year!