Monday, October 09, 2017

Paris ’17, Day 2 – Shopping for Dresses

Saturday was honestly my absolute favourite day, from start to finish. If you think the title of this blogpost cannot possibly sum up this entire day, I can tell you upfront you’re wrong! XD
We woke up on time and needed a bit of time to start doing things. I wasn’t feeling 100% okay yet, so I enjoyed the view for a bit before we got dressed and headed downstairs for breakfast.

Pink Glass View
I took this artsy picture of our view. It’s stupid, but I like it!

I didn’t eat too much, since I was still feeling a bit nauseous, but sitting outside in the garden was quite refreshing. It wasn’t very hot yet, so I enjoyed the nice temperature and my breakfast.

Breakfast in Paris.

We headed back to our room, gathered our things and went on our way to the Angelic Pretty shop! We were supposed to arrive at 9:30 am, but we were slightly late. I was a bit stressed there would be a line already, but when I ran around the corner into the shop's street there was no one! The shop didn't open until 11 am, but shop girl Pudding opened the door for me and gave me a number. I had number 3! Or actually, I was the second to receive a number, but they had lost no. 1, haha! XD I’ve always wanted to experience standing in line for an Angelic Pretty shop and receive a number, so I could check this off my bucket list now!

No. 3
No. 3, my lucky number!

I suggested to my mom to have some coffee, but since we just had had breakfast neither of us was really up for it. Instead, we decided to stroll a bit along the Rue de Rivoli and check out the shops there. It was fairly cool in the shade of the buildings, which was nice. One of the first shops that opened had a lovely necklace on display in the shop window, which my mom ended up buying.
By now I was really feeling almost like myself again. We walked along the souvenir shops and naturally somehow ended up with some cute key chains. We always end up with key chains, even if we tell ourselves not to. x)


We walked by an amazing book store and decided to have a loot. It was hot inside, but they had so many wonderful books! So many beautiful, enticing covers.
A little further down the street, we also found a Ladurée shop that was completely dedicated to tea! All the tea cans and tea sets looked so beautiful. ♥

Ladurée Tea
The colourful and super cute Ladurée tea shop.

Around 10:30 am we returned to the store and sat down on the sidewalk to wait for 11 am. We must have looked a bit strange, just sitting there while waiting. XD We were soon joined by some Lolitas though.

Waiting for Opening
My mom looks so cute, waiting for the store to open. x)

A bit before 11 am I went to stand second in line and finally, a bit after 11 am the door opened. That is when my mission started! Because yes, I was on a mission. I wanted to try and get the Harlequinade special set in pink x sax and I was playing shopping service for a girl from my local community who really wanted the brown Chocolate Rosette special set.
The girl in front of me in line, I and some girls behind me were let in and I jumped towards the dress display. There were two or three brown Chocolate Rosette sets, but I could see only one Harlequinade set in my preferred colourway (no idea whether they also had some in the back). The first girl took a look at it, but seemed to move on, so I said: 'Can I have it?' Once I had the dress in my hands, I did not let go anymore, haha! I also grabbed a brown Chocolate Rosette set. Mission accomplished!
I had almost forgotten the lucky bags though! Luckily, one of the shopping girls said: 'Do you want a lucky bag too?' I was like: 'Yes please!' I took my two dresses and bag to the counter to pay. I didn't really need to check any of the other items in the shop. Once at the counter, I also got myself a British Crown clear file (I love clear files dammit) and to my great happiness I also received a special novelty! Since I was spending over 300 euros thanks to the shopping service dress, I received a wonderful pink Angelic Pretty jewelry box! I was ridiculously excited about it, haha!
In about 20 minutes I was already outside again! I've never shopped so fast at Angelic Pretty in my life. My mom was very happy about it. XD I took some pictures of me with the bags in front of the store and I sent a message to the girl I shopped for I had managed to get her dress.

Pink Bags
Missions accomplished! ♥

After that, we went to the sweets store next to the Angelic Pretty shop, where my mom bought a lovely cookie jar.
By now we had gotten a bit hungry, so we decided to go to Japanese bakery Aki. I really wanted to show my mom this wonderful place! We walked in the direction of the bakery, but I couldn't remember which street it was at again. Luckily, we passed Junku, the Japanese book shop. I thought there they would likely know the bakery’s address, so I went inside to ask for directions, when suddenly I wondered... Would they have any Takarazuka Revue magazines? I expected a 'no', and when I asked the shop girl about it she initially didn't understand what I meant. When I repeated, she walked ahead of me and pulled out a Takarazuka Graph magazine! I literally gasped! I had never expected to find this magazine anywhere in Europe! Apparently the shop doesn't always carry it, so I was extremely lucky! Aaah, I still can't believe it!

Junku Graph
I’m still so psyched about finding this magazine!

The kind Junku shop staff pointed us in the right direction and soon we found the bakery. They had so many amazing options, my mom and I had a hard time deciding on what to get! Eventually I went for a salmon mayo onigiri, a matcha melon pan and a diet coke while my mom also went for a salmon mayo onigiri and diet coke, but combined with a lemon éclair. We took our food downstairs, sat down and chatted while eating.

Aki Boulangerie
Not the best pictures of our food (we were hungry so we wanted to eat fast),
but you get the idea.

The food was so good! ♥ I had been to Aki before, with Marina, but it was new for my mom and she loved it too! I was so happy!
After we had finished our food, we returned to our hotel to get rid of the shopping bags. Seeing my purchases on the bed made me so happy!

Happy with my shopping! ♥

We rested for a short while and then went on our next mission: finding me a final singing exam dress!
In case you didn't know: I'm studying classical singing and in November I will be, hopefully, graduating. For my final exam I will be creating a performance with various repertoire and naturally, I am required to look the part. My mom and I had joked about 'Buying a dress in Paris, doesn't that sound fancy?', but now we actually wanted to try and do so! So we went on our way to Montmartre.
Why Montmartre you might ask? Two reasons. First of all, the Boulevard de Magenta is well-known for being filled with shop after shop of bridal- and party dresses. Secondly: when my mom and I took a bus tour through Montmartre during our previous Paris trip, we drove by a bridal store that had a beautiful dress on display in the window. Even though I only saw it in the flash of a second, I knew I wanted to have a dress like that: royal blue with a sparkly bodice.
Naturally, focusing so much on finding such a specific dress isn't a very good idea. Instead, I decided I wanted a blue dress with sparkles, preferably with a wide skirt. That way, it can be any kind of blue, any kind of sparkles and any kind of shape. I thought that was a good goal.
I had done my utmost best to try and find the store we had seen back then and I thought I had actually found it after tracking down our bus route in Google Maps, so we decided to visit some of the stores I had noted that were located close to it along the Boulevard de Rochechouart and then move on to the Boulevard de Magenta.
We spent some time going and in and out of shops. It quickly became clear that these shops were a bit on the cheaper side. The dresses weren’t necessarily cheap in price, but slightly cheap-looking. You know what I mean? We did find the shop I had seen and they had a lot of dresses, but nothing that really appealed to me. In another shop I encountered a dress I liked very much, however it looked quite worn out already, so we continued our search.
At a certain point we considered heading for the Boulevard de Magenta, but we noticed one more shop I had noted in the distance, so we decided to go there. It was a shop mainly aimed at Muslim women, with beautiful and colourful garments and sparkly jewelry. I bought two gorgeous rings there, however it was not what I was looking for. However, it turned out they had another shop right across the street, for party dresses. I was reluctant to go though. The garments were stunning, however not what I was looking for myself at all. My mom however wanted to go, so we went.

Parisian Balconies
A picture of some beautiful Parisian balconies, to break the big blog text off a bit. ;)

When we entered the store, it was clear they were having a big sale. The shop was filled with women shopping for party garments (and God some of the dresses were just stunning). However, all of them had sleeves and were very different from what I was looking for. I managed to get up the stairs and to the back of the store, where they had more dresses. After looking around for a bit I found the dress I had seen at a different store, the worn out one! Although here it was new and beautiful and actually cheaper! The dress had a beautiful night blue colour and the bodice was covered in sparkly crystals. It reminded me of the Queen of the Night. I decided to try it on. I waited for a while, since the fitting rooms were very full, but a kind girl came up to me and guided me to a room, where she helped me in and out of the dress. Everything went really fast and hectic because of the many customers, but when I walked out of the dressing room and looked at myself in the mirror I felt like time stopped for a moment. The dress was so beautiful… Even on me it looked so beautiful. Normally I am terrible at making decisions, but here my choice was right in front of me. I wanted this dress!
Even better: this dress came with a matching cape! I’m not kidding. It’s a stunning cape in the same material as the skirt and covered in sparkly applications. No idea whether I’ll ever wear it but I love it! I tried the dress in a size smaller, but eventually went for the bigger one because it would be easier to alter. All in all I had made my decision in like ten minutes, an incredible record for me! Even more so, we had found a dress within two hours! I am still amazed at myself. XD
I went to pay and we left the shop. We went to sit on a bench in the small park across from the store to get some rest after the overly crowded store. After that, we strolled around Montmartre for a bit and took some pictures of the Sacré Coeur, but I had gotten so tired that we decided to go back to the hotel.

Sacré Coeur, Blue Sky
Beautiful Sacré Coeur.

On our way to the hotel, we picked up two big raspberry macarons at the bakery close to the hotel. We ate them while sitting in the hotel garden, which was really relaxing and nice.
We rested in our room for a bit and then went out again to have some dinner at the Italian restaurant across the street. We had a very cute waiter there, haha!
My mom and I both ordered tagliatelle carbonara and we shared the most divine raspberry tiramisu (it was so good, oh my God).

Divine Dinner
Our divine dinner. Can I go back to eat this again please?

Back at our hotel room I took a bath (which I rarely do, I prefer showers) and spent the rest of the evening watching Fort Boyard with a French actor I happened to know. Honestly, after such a good day and such a good meal just watching a fun tv show laying on the bed while my mom was reading a book… I truly felt so content at that moment. I remember distinctly thinking: ‘Yes, right now I’m really happy.’
Finally, we went to sleep. It had been an eventful day.
By the way, I’m very sorry, but I won’t be showing you what my final exam dress looks like. Except for very few people, nobody knows what my dress looks like and I want to keep it that way until my actual exam, as to not to jinx it. I’m sorry. x(

Purchases of the Day
Purchases and gifts of the day

Thank you for reading! ~☆~

Wednesday, October 04, 2017

Paris ’17, Day 1 – Sick on a Bus

From Barcelona we go straight on to Paris! I hope my travel posts don’t drive you crazy yet, because there’s still lots to come! I had quite an eventful time in Paris, so let’s just start! I try to remember everything as well as I can, but my ability to remember details has declined quite a bit. I’ll do my best though!

My mom and I would visit Paris from Friday July 7th until Tuesday July 11th and we had quite some plans: visiting the Angelic Pretty store and check out the amazing special sets and lucky bags they would sell each day prior to the Tea Party, I would attend the Tea Party, we would shop for a final singing exam dress for me and of course: sight-seeing! We would take a bus to and from Paris, so we would have to wake up very early on Friday. However, on Friday morning something terrible happened: I woke up feeling absolutely, terribly sick. I had been stressing a lot about my packing and the upcoming heat in Paris during the days preceding my trip and on Thursday evening I went to bed rather dizzy. ‘It will be fine,’ I told myself, but it wasn’t. I woke up and thought I was going to die. I could barely stand up straight, the world was spinning around me with every step. I spent the time before leaving sitting next to the toilet, afraid of vomiting and then sitting in the shower, afraid of falling over. I somehow got myself dressed and dragged myself onto the couch. Naturally, my parents were very worried. What now? We only had two choices: to go or not to go. We had to decide quickly and decided to go for it. We hoped it was just a temporary state caused by nervousness.
My dad drove us to Amsterdam where we waited for our bus. I tried to look as healthy as I could, since I was afraid the driver wouldn’t allow me on the bus, but the world turned upside down with every movement I made. Luckily, the bus came not long after and my mom and I found some seats. Stupidly, we ended up with seats next to the toilet (haha), but I was just grateful I could sit. Finally, we left for Paris!

On our way to Paris!

It’s unbelievable how much and little happens on a long bus ride. It was fascinating to observe our fellow passengers. Many visited the toilet at least three times before we even reached Antwerp. There was a big family with a young child that had so much food with them! Their child spent half the journey eating, half the journey sleeping. x)
We arrived at Antwerp, which looked absolutely ghastly despite the beautiful weather. At least, the streets where we drove. We picked up some people across from the station and that was quite a nice place.

The ferris wheel in front of Antwerp Station.

Then, we continued our journey to Paris. I was feeling slightly better by now, as in, I could turn my head slowly without feeling like I was on a carousel. I spent the bus ride listening to the Elisabeth musical I had put onto my mp3 player and eating sandwiches.

Food and Music
Nutella sandwich and listening to Elisabeth. If I hadn’t been feeling so bad, this would have been the best bus ride ever.

After many hours we got closer to Paris. Initially, my mom and I felt reenergised by this news. However, we ended up in heavy traffic. Our driver had a really annoying style of driving (which didn’t do my dizzy state much good) and he talked really slowly, so his announcements annoyed us as well. The last part of our journey was quite a challenge
so to say. -_-
Finally, we arrived at our destination: Quai de Bercy, from where we had to walk to the metro through the heat (summer in Paris, yay) and take two metros to our hotel. I won’t bother you with the details, but it took quite a lot.
When we arrived at our hotel, we had some room issues. Not that our room wasn’t ready, but it was on the top floor, aka the hottest floor. We could switch to the first floor, but once we got there the room was so small and stuffed I almost immediately fell into a panic attack, after which we returned to our initial room. The hotel had no air conditioning(!), so we kept our French balcony doors open as much as we could.
It was at that moment I cracked. I was still feeling miserable, it was as hot as I had been fearing during the days in advance and it was getting late. I just really wanted to go to the Angelic Pretty store to see whether some interesting things were left for that day, but it was getting late and we were tired. My mom however said: ‘Let’s go anyway!’, so I put on a hat and sunglasses to hide my terrible face and we went on our way.
Luckily we arrived on time at the store. I was happy to be able to look around, say hi to the shop girls and hug Mila. During the days before the Tea Party, Angelic Pretty had special in-store events where they sold special sets and lucky packs each day. I was half and half hoping one of the dresses released the previous day would still be there, but I also knew it was quite impossible and it was indeed long sold out. However, I had told myself: if it’s not there, it is not destiny. Plus, the next day there would be new sets and there was one particular dress I had my eye on: Harlequinade. I discussed a bit with the shop girls what would be the best approach and my sweet mom actually agreed to come to the store early to stand in line! How awesome is that?
We were just about to leave when suddenly, Maki appeared with a cute Japanese shop girl. I was so embarrassed to stand there looking like a mess. I hope she didn’t recognize me, it was humiliating!
We left the store and I quickly snapped a picture of the front, which looked lovely as ever. ♥

AP Paris
Angelic Pretty Paris. ♥

My mom and I briefly visited the candy store next to the Angelic Pretty store, where my mom had spotted an adorable cookie jar and then we discussed what to do for dinner. We eventually decided to go to the restaurant Marina had introduced again. We love that place and the food is guaranteed good, plus there would likely be air-conditioning.
The air-conditioning was not as strong as we’d hoped, but the food was indeed great! No regrets. ^^ Although I did spend a bit of my time just lying on the couch.

Food, glorious food~!

We paid for the food and took the metro back to our hotel. Once we got there, I thought Paris looked so beautiful in the setting sun; I had to take a picture!

Paris in the Setting Sun
Ah Paris, you are so beautiful…

Back at our hotel we spend some time resting and eventually went to bed. I was hoping I would feel better the next day.

Thank you for reading! ~☆~

Friday, September 29, 2017

Barcelona ’17, Day 5 – The Journey Home

I literally took only three pictures on this day and two of them will be used here. It’s a bit sad, sorry! XD I actually won’t write too much about this day, since it was basically just travelling a bit.
On Monday Josine and I woke up really early and got our things together. The night had been a short one, but I still wanted to take a moment to appreciate our apartment view before we left.

One Last View
Goodbye, amazing view!

We still had a return ticket left for the bus to the airport, so we needed to get to the square from where it would depart. Isa ordered us a taxi and before we knew it we were on our way home. It’s strange: I felt a sort of relief coming over me while sitting in the taxi. As if all the event worries suddenly washed off.
We arrived at the square and waited for our bus. It arrived soon and we sat down quietly. The drive was quite nice and not too long.
At the airport we tried to check in, but we somehow couldn’t. A staff member told us it wasn’t possible yet because they first needed to be sure the plane would be on time(?). Alrighty then.
Eventually we could check in, went through customs and had breakfast at McDonald’s. Then we headed for our gate and soon entered the airplane.
However, our plane left half an hour late. Usually not big of a deal, but we had booked a transfer flight through Paris. Not something I usually do, but we didn’t really have a choice. Naturally, we got a bit stressed since we literally had only an hour to transfer. We informed the flight attendants and they offered to put us in the front of the plane if we could keep our suitcases at our feet, but that was just not possible, so we stayed in our seats. Finally, we departed.

Flying Blue
The view was quite nice during the flight!

We arrived in Paris and Josine and I hurried to our next gate. Unfortunately, in the process Josine lost her cardigan. :( She went back for it, but couldn’t find it anymore.
Luckily we did arrive on time for our plane, but here too we had to hand in our suitcases. This trip man, this trip.
Also, while the flight was okay, the landing wasn’t. Josine wasn’t feeling very well and the taxying took forever, poor thing. Finally, we could leave the plane, pick up our suitcases and head home. It had been one interesting trip!

Thank you for reading! ~☆~

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Barcelona ’17, Day 4 – Omnia Vanitas Tea Party

On Sunday March 19 the Tea Party took place. Where I didn’t have to do much for my Saturday look, my Sunday outfit was a bit more elaborate, so I got up early. Together with Josine and Isa I stationed myself in front of the broad mirror (very handy) and together we did our make up, which was actually quite fun! ^^ The girls also helped me with my hair, because I tried to do a repeat of my Angelic Pretty queen hairstyle which needs… some assistance, since otherwise I would get a crown irrevocably stuck in my hair. x)
I had decided to wear my Atelier Pierrot dress that I had bought at (or rather, after) Under the Sea. I had worn it once before for a singing performance and it’s quite comfortable, not to mention very pretty. Also, the designer would be at the Tea Party so hey, that’s nice too!
After we got dressed, we left the apartment and walked to the Tea Party venue, which wasn’t very far away. It was quite a refreshing walk; it was a beautiful day out and not too hot yet.
We walked past the Saturday venue and arrived at the Tea Party venue, which was located right beside it. Some people were already waiting (early!) and we chatted a bit with them. Josine (who looked absolutely stunning as usual, no words) and I took some outfit pictures and I also took a picture with dear Andrea, whom I was so happy to meet! ♥

My outfit, posing with Andrea, and Josine’s outfit.

We were initially sent away by the slightly rude hotel staff, because we weren’t allowed to take pictures of the door(?). That was interesting. Josine, Isa and I went in anyway, because we were paying to organize a Tea Party there and stuff. (Sorry, I’m feeling slightly… sassy writing today). Once we entered the Tea Party room I have to admit my breath was taken away for a moment. The room was simply stunning. The room was filled with round tables with long, white cloths on them, matching chairs surrounding them. The soft carpet had the most beautiful design. The ceiling was painted blue with white clouds, gorgeous chandeliers hanging down from it. The walls all had that Ladurée mint colour and were covered in gold finery. On opposite sides were giant mirrors, one of them mostly covered by a huge painting of a flower vase. It was just amazing!

The beautiful room the Tea Party took place in.
Pictures on the right by C0re2 Photography.

Soon the rest of the staff arrived as well and we prepared the tables for the guests. I helped putting down postcards and fake tattoo sheets. The work was done pretty fast actually.

Gifts for the Tea Party guests.
Picture by C0re2 Photography.

Since we were done pretty fast, our photographers were kind enough to take pictures of us before we would all look like sweaty messes. Thank you so much to these great people~! So here is my outfit, I hope you like it. ♥

Picture by C0re2 Photography.
♛ Reine de la Tea Party ♛
Crystal halo: handmade
Crown: Voodooodolly
Dress: Atelier Pierrot’s Reine dress
Tights: Primark
Shoes: Primark
Earrings: offbrand
Necklaces: Rosemarie Seoir and Chocomint
Bracelets: Primark and offbrand
Ring: I Am

Pictures by C0re2 Photography.

Pictures by C0re2 Photography.

Before we knew it our special guests arrived and it was time for the Tea Party to open! All the organisers picked their seats by putting their bags there. I was one of three who ended up at the registering desk, which was actually quite nice, because I got to greet a lot of people! ^^
Sooner than expected everyone was already in the food and drinks were being served. The Tea Party had started!

People enjoying the food and conversations.
Picture by C0re2 Photography.

Josine, Isa and I had chosen a table a little to the side. For some reason people didn’t really dare to take that table, so we ended up having some spare seats. Later this came in handy, because one or two girls arrived late. Also, more food per person! Which was absolutely great because the food was so great! There were amazing sandwiches and macarons and pastries, I loved them all! Except there was one vegetarian or vegan sandwich that was going around the table because everyone hated it. I tried it too, it was so gross! XD We had quite a laugh about it. But the rest was amazing! ♥

Can we take a moment to appreciate this incredibly artsy picture I took of the food?
I’m quite proud of it. ♥

Everyone had done their utmost best to look their most beautiful. I’ve seen so many amazing outfits! And the details, oh my God. While browsing through the photographer’s pictures to pick some for this blogpost I kept seeing details that made me think ‘Did I even see that!?’ It’s amazing!

Some of our beautiful guests and staff members. ♥
Pictures by C0re2 Photography.

Also some people wore headdresses that were absolutely deadly. How did they even keep them balanced on their head? So amazing!

This headdress is just magical! ♥
Picture by C0re2 Photography.

Tea Parties are always much more relaxed for staff as well. I got to take some pictures with the special guests even! Aya Nimura was so kind and she looked so lovely! And when I showed Ayumi I was wearing a RoseMarie Seoir necklace, she was very happy and told me it was sold out in Japan (lucky me, I love that necklace). Yuko was happy to see me wear a dress she designed. I felt quite proud. ^^ Also, Imai Kira was taking pictures with people! She hid her face behind a plush bunny, so people hid their face too. It was amazing!

With Aya Nimura, Ayumi, Yuko and Imai Kira. ♥

Since so many people looked so gorgeous, have another collage. I swear I wish I could include everyone!

Some more of our beautiful guests. ♥
Pictures by C0re2 Photography.

Eventually, it was time for the raffle! Unfortunately, something went a bit wrong here, since we had forgotten or lost the raffle numbers! So we ended up using a random number generator, but sadly these generators go back to the same numbers eventually. It ended up being a long raffle. x) Sorry everyone!

The room seen from the other side.
Picture by C0re2 Photography.

Then it was time for the special guests to pick their favourite outfits! This is always so much fun! And what great winners they chose. Imai Kira ended up choosing my friend Charlie as her favourite, Ayumi picked dear Camélia, Yuko chose Jo, Leur Getter chose Fanu and Aya Nimura picked someone from the head table with the best and biggest hat I’ve ever seen! Amazing winners~! ♥
The Tea Party was starting to come to an end, so I was happy I quickly managed to snap some pictures with people, like Arthael and her amazing group and the Leur Getter designers.

So happy with these pictures!

After everyone had gone, we took a taxi back to the apartment (we were tired ok). There, we got redressed into our after party clothing! I have never gone to an event after party, so I was sort of excited for this. However, Josine and I needed to get up really early the next morning, so we couldn’t stay for too long. However, the night turned out… interesting. Brace yourselves.
We got into another taxi and headed for a restaurant. Ah no, I thought we were going to a restaurant, but instead we headed for the Fairytale Café with some American girls.
Can I just say... Best. café. ever. Hashtag aesthetics much! This café is just… I can’t even describe it, it’s amazing! It has several areas, among which a big room that looks like a freaking forest and another room (the one we got seated) had a flippin’ giant swing. Yes, you read that right. Sorry, I didn’t take any pictures. Look it up though. Do it, now.
We had some food and chatted for a bit. I breathed down a new panic attack (heyo!) and suddenly, I heard Isa shouting at a guy standing close to us. Apparently the guy had stalked us into the café and just kept staring at us like a zombie. It was the freaking weirdest thing! Eventually he left, but it was… something. Ok, so that was part one of the evening, now onto the next.
We went on to the after party location, which was some café-ish place in a backstreet of Barcelona. It was small and incredibly crowded. It was supposed to be private to us, but somehow it wasn’t and some locals were hanging out as well. Josine and I found our Dutch friends, who were incredibly kind and got us drinks. I don’t use the verb ‘to bless’ a lot, but bless them. We had fun talking, but the dance floor was nearly impossible to be on. Eventually we dared to jump around a little and I kind of lost them, but I ended up hanging out with French friends instead. I got a bit hot, so I went outside and got reunited with my Dutch friends who were just hanging out against the opposite wall. We were just talking when suddenly a big splash of water was dropped down on me! Yes! REALLY! I was soaking wet, ladies and gentlemen! Apparently, one of the upstairs neighbours had complained several times about the noise and thought it would help to drop a bucket of water on the noisy people downstairs. Which naturally did nothing for the peace and quiet as we all screamed in surprise. I thought it was rather funny, until I heard someone say: ‘He actually threatened to use acid, I’m glad it’s just water’. At that point I was done.
It was getting late and Josine and I managed to gather Isa and Josh, but first the guests needed a taxi to take them back to their hotel. It took a while, but eventually we were on our way back to our apartment, where Josine and I packed our things and eventually went to sleep somewhere after 2 am. It had been quite an eventful day.

Thank you for reading! ~☆~

Sunday, September 03, 2017

Barcelona ’17, Day 3 – Omnia Vanitas Main Event

Saturday March 18 was the big day: the main event of Omnia Vanitas! All our collective work now came together in one day and I was quite excited!
Now before I start, I just want to say that I don’t remember exactly all the things I did when and where on this day. This is 1) because it’s been a while ago and 2) contrary to Under the Sea I didn’t really have a clear set of jobs, except for maybe running the music for the fashion show. I had a lot of time to just walk around and help where needed. I will try and describe this day to the best of my abilities though.

Josine, Isa and I woke up early to get dressed while Josh joined in at the last moment since he didn’t really have to get all dressed up. Josine and Isa both looked gorgeous with their big and opulent headdresses. If the organisers already looked this pretty, how amazing would the guests look!? I’ll get to my own outfit a little further below. ^^
Around 7:45 am we all jumped in a taxi and drove to the venue, the Hotel Imperial, where we had to be around 8 am. A lot of people had already gathered there for the early model rehearsal. Mila and Marie were already crossing models off the list and soon after we were allowed inside.
Naturally I had never been there before, so I was glad I could take a good look around and get well-acquainted with the building. As staff I needed to learn where everything was located of course. Plus, I love exploring new places (I once went exploring the amazing Carré theatre in between choir rehearsals all by myself and it was the best thing ever).
The venue contained three rooms: one near the entrance where part of the indie brand stalls would be set up, one downstairs for the same purpose and the art gallery and the grand hall where the main brand stalls were and the catwalk for the fashion shows. The venue was absolutely stunning, especially the main room with its beautiful little balconies overlooking the hall.

Main Hall
The main hall. Naturally, we didn’t have all the tables and chairs.
Picture from the official website.

Some of the main guests arrived with us. We pointed them to their tables and they started setting up their stalls. While the models slowly came in and the rehearsal started, I ended up helping Imai Kira with her stall. Even though she barely spoke English and my Japanese isn’t exactly great, we still managed to communicate quite well through gestures and sounds. Imai Kira is honestly so kind and sweet! And can you believe she was actually wearing Cat’s Tea Party? I thought that was just so amazing!
Next to Imai Kira’s stall Ayumi of RoseMarie Seoir was setting up. I was quite happy about this, because I had set some ‘buying goals’ for myself: I wanted to try and get some Imai Kira buttons and a Lolita necklace from RoseMarie Seoir. Setting this kind of goals is honestly a really good thing to do, I really recommend it! And since I was helping at the Imai Kira stall and RoseMarie Seoir was next to it, I could take a good look at all their items.

Imai Kira & RoseMarie Seoir
Close ups of Imai Kira’s and RoseMarie Seoir’s stalls.
Pictures by Jessica Meijas and C0re2 Photography.

I also guided one of the models to the toilet since she wasn’t feeling very well. Thanks to this I knew where the toilets were located, so I could point them out to a lot of people during the day. Also, the toilets were very beautiful, haha! I also noticed there was a big puddle of water in the downstairs room right at the bottom of the stairs, so I made sure it got cleaned up so people wouldn’t slip in it.
Before I knew it, the stalls were pretty much set up and the model rehearsal was finished. I had picked up my Voodooodolly crown, which I had already paid for before the event.
Mila and Marie were taking pictures in a corner, so Josine and I decided to join them. That gives me a good opportunity to briefly talk about my outfit of the day!
My outfit for Omnia Vanitas went completely in the opposite direction of the style you know me of. I had been thinking long and hard about what to wear to the main event day. I wanted something I felt good in, but it also needed to be comfortable. The solution came from the most unexpected place I ever could have imagined: a couple of weeks earlier I was just walking through our local shopping street with my mom and spotted an amazing boy style-like coat. Unfortunately, it didn’t fit or suit me at all, so I left it. A bit disappointed, we walked into a store I have disliked ever since I was a small girl, but this time something amazing happened: I spotted the most perfect boy style/prince style coat, that was ten times better than the previous I had seen. I tried it on and it made me so incredibly happy, I didn’t doubt for a second about buying it. I love boy style and I had always wanted to try it, so what better place to do so then at Omnia Vanitas!? So there we go: I channelled my inner prince instead of my inner princess! I didn’t go for a full look but decided to wear my own hair in a ponytail. Other than that, I think my first try wasn’t all that bad! I certainly felt very different that day, in a good way! ♥
What do you think?

Outfit One

Outfit Two
Pictures by C0re2 Photography.

Outfit Three
With my princess. ♥
Picture by Marie Tuonetar.

I went to pick up my staff badge, which coincidentally matched my outfit perfectly. Then I walked into Josine and Josh and we went outside for some fresh air. The event was about to start, so a long line of people was already waiting.

Waiting Line
People waiting to enter.
Pictures by C0re2 Photography.

We took some more pictures and I went to pick up the goodie bag that came with the ticket I had bought (yes, organisers buy their own tickets). Then it was opening time~!

Coming In
Guests entering the Omnia Vanitas event and marie working hard!
Pictures by C0re2 Photography.

I went on my mission to fulfil my buying goals. I went straight to RoseMarie Seoir, where I bought the Lolita necklace I wanted. Well, the necklace I almost wanted. This particular necklace came in three versions: with pink ribbons, with black ribbons and with white ribbons. The one with the white ribbons was my least favourite version, but Ayumi had only brought this kind. I went for it anyway and I’m very glad I did, because white is of course very versatile anyway. ♥ Ayumi put the necklace in an adorable bag for me and handed me my first purchase of the day. Mila, who was standing next to me, bought an absolutely stunning ring!

Main Hall Shopping
One of the photographers snapped me at the RoseMarie Seoir stall!
Picture by C0re2 Photography.

I then went on to Imai Kira, where already people were gathering. I picked up the five buttons I wanted from the many choices provided, when I noticed Imai Kira seemed to be in a bit of distress. Apparently, her volunteer helper hadn’t shown up (yet) and she was facing the crowd of enthusiastic buyers all alone! As staff I decided to jump in and help her of course. She was so grateful, poor thing. x) ♥
Initially I didn’t feel very helpful because I had to keep asking which items were what on the list and I didn’t want to make any mistakes, but once I got the hang of it it went well. Luckily, not very long after the volunteer girl showed up (I believe she got stuck somewhere, poor thing), so I went to pay for my items.
In the meantime the location staff had filled the tables in the middle of the room with food! The VIP guests all got food and drinks and the food was simply amazing! There were croissants, pastries, little muffins and fruit!

Let’s be honest here: getting food at events is just the best!
Pictures by Jessica Meijas and C0re2 Photography.

I realised I was quite hungry, so I got some food myself and gathered some for Josine who undoubtedly would forget to eat as she usually forgets at events, so I forced some sweets into her hands. XD
I did a small round along the brands to ask everything was ok and then I went to the downstairs area to see if everything was going well there. There was no new puddle of water luckily! I briefly chatted with some people, including with Jo from the brand Fluffy Tori. She is honestly so kind and she had brought some very lovely items with her!
There were so many amazing brands at this event with even more amazing items for sale. I’m glad the photographers did an amazing job at capturing some lovely details, so I want to feature some here.

Stall Details
Some of the amazing items for sale at Omnia Vanitas.
Pictures by Jessica Meijas.

I went back to the main hall right in time to walk into Charlie who was just in a terrible predicament of which RoseMarie Seoir dress to buy. XD I gave my opinion which, she said, helped a lot (I’m not quite sure it really did, but I was glad I could be of service).
The SFE staff gathered at some point to welcome everyone at 12 pm. The group of organisers represented several countries, so we all welcomed the guests in our own languages.

Nina taking the lead in welcoming the guests, Starbucks in hand.
Picture by C0re2 Photography.

Everyone scattered to start or continue their shopping and take pictures. I cannot even begin to tell you how beautiful everyone looked. The theme was of course opulence and decadence and people certainly went out of their way to look stunning. The photographers certainly did their best to capture all this beauty.

Portraits One
Just a small selection of beautiful people to give you an indication. ♥
Pictures by Monsters Inside.

Soon after it was time for the Q&A, which I was going to lead together with Spanish organiser Jessica and our two translators. People had sent in questions for Aya Nimura from Victorian Maiden, Yuko Ando from Leur Getter, Ayumi from RoseMarie Seoir, Yuko Ashizawa from Atelier Pierrot and Kira Imai. Questions and answers were translated in both English and Spanish. The questions and answers were quite interesting!

This is one of my favourite pictures of the event. ♥
Picture by C0re2 Photography.

From 1 pm to 1:45 pm we had a lunch break and I think it was then we realised there was a bit of an issue with the fashion show music. It might also have been discovered in the morning (actually, now that I think about it that’s more likely), but I will talk briefly about it now. Since we had two fashion shows, we had made two music remixes. However, somehow there was only one mix downloaded to the laptop that was hooked onto the mix panel. Luckily, I was the one notified and knew which files were needed. After a lot of frantically searching and clicking I found the right file and downloaded it to the pc. Day saved!
At 2 pm it was time for the Indie Brand fashion show, however we didn’t start until at least 2:15 pm since not everyone was ready. My job was leading the fashion show (not the models though), so I made sure I was immediately notified when we were ready. Although the location was absolutely awesome, it wasn’t perfect for models: they all had to get changed in a long hallway, behind the little balconies. However, everyone made it work. ^^
Finally it was time and the show started! Sadly I forgot his name, but I had a wonderful assistant who took care of the music with me. Thank God, because I also had to announce the brands that were being shown and my microphone was being an absolute ^$%&. The first three brands I tried to announce were met with a loud shriek from the speakers, yay. Luckily, my assistant and I managed to fix it by me standing about 10 meters away and raising my hand when it was time to announce, after which he would flip a switch and lower the music a bit. Yay for teamwork! And a very positive side effect of this was that I could see the wonderful models and the even more wonderful clothing they showed! Some brands truly outdid themselves this year! Get ready for picture spam.

Cloudberry Lady
Cloudberry Lady. My friend Isa bought that middle dress and wore it
to the Tea Party the next day!
Pictures by C0re2 Photography.

El Costurero Real
El Costurero Real. Butterfly wings, need I say more? ♥
Pictures by C0re2 Photography.

Fidel David
Fidel David. That first outfit is simply to die for! ;___;
Pictures by C0re2 Photography.

Fluffy Tori
Fluffy Tori. I have the dress in the middle and I love it! ♥
Pictures by C0re2 Photography.

Li-Paro. Such a great a versatile brand.
Pictures by C0re2 Photography.

Violet Fane
Madame Chocolat/Violet Fane. This series is just too beautiful! ♥
Pictures by C0re2 Photography.

Miss Danger
Miss Danger. The awesomeness of this brand is just unearthly…
Pictures by C0re2 Photography.

Narcissique Couture
Narcissique Couture. Those. Hats!
Pictures by C0re2 Photography.

Peacockalorum. These dresses were as great as the name of this brand!
Pictures by C0re2 Photography.

ShinkuRose. That left ensemble is my dream! ♥
Pictures by C0re2 Photography.

Summer Tales Boutique
Summer Tales Boutique. Katie truly outdid herself once again!
Pictures by C0re2 Photography.

Sweet Mildred
Sweet Mildred. That dress in the middle! I am wheezing! ♥
Pictures by C0re2 Photography.

After the fashion show ended, I walked around for a bit and chatted with people where I could. I also returned to Imai Kira’s stall, where I asked her to sign one of the postcards I had bought for a friend that day. I also asked Imai Kira to sign my favourite Angelic Pretty Wonder Cookie post card with her artwork on it. That particular artwork has always been my absolute favourite, so I was very happy! ♥ And lastly I think I bought a clear file from her at that moment as well, but that might also have been during the morning. I honestly have no memory of this clear file. I hope I didn’t accidentally steal it (no worries, of course I didn’t. XD)!
At 3:30 pm it was time for the brand fashion show. My assistant and I worked together again and this time everything went rather smooth. A lot of my friends modelled in the brand fashion show! ♥ Prepare for more picture spam.

Victorian Maiden
Victorian Maiden. I seriously cannot pick my favourite outfit out of these.
Pictures by C0re2 Photography.

Leur Getter
Leur Getter. Aren’t these outfits all just too adorable?
Pictures by C0re2 Photography.

RoseMarie Seoir
RoseMarie Seoir. This brand never ceases to amaze me!
Pictures by C0re2 Photography.

Angelic Pretty
Angelic Pretty. Loving everything of course. ♥
Pictures by C0re2 Photography.

Atelier Pierrot
Atelier Pierrot. If only I could have bought that middle dress…
Pictures by C0re2 Photography.

After the show ended, three of the Atelier Pierrot models stayed on stage, since it was time for the dress auction! Yuko Ashizawa had brought three absolutely stunning dresses and people could bid on them. Especially the black and white dress caught my eye, but I was in no way planning to bid. I believe the white dress went to a girl who was planning to wear it as her wedding dress and the black and white one also went for quite a high price!

Dress Auction
The auction of the Atelier Pierrot dresses, under the watchful eye of Yuko herself.
Picture by Monsters Inside.

Forgive me, but I have to add another collage of beautiful people. Marie took such lovely pictures as well, I cannot upload this post without at least adding some!

Portraits Two
Many stunning people I know, including designer Aya Nimura.
Pictures by Marie Tuonetar.

At 5 pm the raffle started. Isa was leading it, Magda handed out prizes, Alex drew numbers and I… held the paper numbers. XD I was so useful. There were tons of prizes and therefor a lot of lucky winners!

The raffle always attracts a lot of people (of course)!
Picture by Monsters Inside.

It was especially entertaining when someone won something that was totally not their style, haha! Josine won a beautiful headdress, but it was pink and lacy and had gold dragon flies on it! But later she gave it to me, which was honestly way too kind of her. ;___; ♥

Raffle Winners
Some of the lucky winners!
Pictures by Monsters Inside.

The event was slowly coming to and end and it was time for the group picture! I don’t think everyone made it on it, but a lot of people did!

OV Group
So many people came to Omnia Vanitas, it makes me so happy!
Picture by Jessica Meijas and C0re2 Photography.

Finally the event had come to an end. The day seemed to have flown by! Naturally at that moment I realised I forgot I wanted to buy a present for my mom… Great timing! I ran downstairs to the Fantastic Grim stall and called my mom to check her Whatsapp, since she needed to choose between the necklaces I was going to send pictures of to her. I apologized to the owner, Raven, at least a dozen times, because she was already cleaning up and I was taking up space. Luckily my mom quickly chose and I managed to get her a present! ♥ Thank you and sorry again Raven!
Then it was time for… cleaning up. Whoa we had to work so hard! We didn’t have a lot of time and needed to clear the venue as quickly as possible. I had no idea what to do and where I could be useful, so I just ran up and down between the brand tables and helped looking for tape and taped boxes shut. At a certain point Yuko Ashizawa asked if someone could help her get her stuff back to the hotel. I totally freaked out because I had no idea where the guests’ hotel was located, but luckily she knew herself and I only had to walk with her. I heaved two heavy bags onto my shoulders and followed her, leaving everyone to their own stress.
The hotel wasn’t very far away, but walking alongside Yuko was actually so much fun. The fresh air was nice and we talked for a bit (Yuko speaks a bit of English). She kept asking me whether the bags weren’t too heavy (they honestly were not and I’m stronger than I look) and she said she liked my prince-style outfit (at that moment the bags seemed to weigh even less, I was floating haha). We arrived at the hotel, where I left Yuko and her stuff and returned to the venue. When I got there it was clear something was wrong: two of the Voodooodolly necklaces Josine had purchased were missing! Our initial thoughts were that they were stolen, but the next day (or the day after) it became clear they had sadly accidentally been sold twice. But at that moment we didn’t know anything. Josine was quite upset about it, but from the outside she looked so calm! I was honestly impressed; I’d be crying so hard.
Faster than I expected everyone was gone and everything was cleaned up! Isa called the taxi and she, Josh, Josine and I returned to our apartment where I could finally get out of my clothes~! Honestly taking everything off is such a highlight of an event day. And I wasn’t even that much dressed up!
Later that evening we took a taxi to a restaurant where all the staff and special guests met for dinner. We had a big room to ourselves with a long table. No one but the waiters to bother us, so nice! I sat down with Marie and Mila to my left and translator Manami and Josine to my right. On the opposite of the table sat the special guests. The waiters brought us some plates with different dishes. I vaguely remember some kind of amazing fries dish? After that we all got a menu we had chosen in advance. The conversations that evening were fascinating, especially when one of the guests shocked everyone around her by talking about her love for guns and violent video games. 8D It was interesting to say the least.
I don’t know at what time we left, but it sure was late! I was so glad when I could go to sleep! It had been an eventful day.

Omnia Vanitas Purchases
Purchases of the day

I ended up not making a video of this day, but I did talk about my purchases in this haul video. Please check it out if you are interested!

Before I finish this blogpost, I would like to thank all the people who came up to me and told me they read my blog or watch my videos or follow me on Instagram! These encounters meant so much to me. I was so happy I got to meet you all! Thank you all so much! ♥

Thank you for reading! ~☆~