Thursday, August 29, 2013

M1 For Every One Contest!

[Sponsored Advertorial]

As you guess from the title of this post, i'm going to share with you guys an awesome contest which you all can take part in and stand to win really attractive prizes! But before that, have you ever wonder why is the contest named - "M1 For Every One"? For M1, no matter who you are, young or old, of any occupation, M1 as a telco, has definitely something meant for you!
Sometimes i get really frustrated when it takes hours just to download a movie, and i specially hate it when i get cut off while watching a video and the word - "Buffering" appears. Felt like I wasted a few seconds of my life waiting, LOL M1 is always listening to your needs, and this contest that i'm going to share will be just the right platform for you, users to tell M1 what you enjoy on Fibre Broadband. Don't worry if you are not an M1 user, it's okay! :D

A little preparation needs to be done for this M1 For Every One Contest:

What you need is a big piece of white paper and some drawing materials.

Write on the paper stating what you enjoyed on Fibre Broadband.

Take a video of yourself with that piece of paper saying what you enjoy on Fibre Broadband!

Last but not least, "Like" M1 on their official Facebook page HERE and you can submit your video through the M1 facebook app! If you are a instagram user, you can also join with your enjoy through a instavid. Just hashtag #M1ForEveryone in your caption while sharing out!

After your submitted video is approved, you stand to win really attractive prizes! Winners are chosen every fortnightly. 5 winners from week 1&2 will win a HTC one each, and 5 winners from week 3&4 will win a Samsung GS4 each! If you are not one of the winners, fret not because for participants that submitted your videos will be in a lucky draw where there will be 5 Sony Xperia Tablet Z and 5 Galaxy Note 10.1 to be won every fortnightly! That's a lot of prizes to be won!

How do you know if you are one of the 5 winners? Well, the 5 selected winners will have their videos stitched together into 1 video and it will be uploaded to the Facebook contest page! You can also view the video submissions by others on the contest page! If your video is one of the 5 videos in it, congrats!

Here's an example:

Contest is from 29th August to 11 September 2013.

Being a social media addict, i would totally love to have super fast connection wherever i go so that i can always check my Twitter/Facebook updates, load photos/videos on my instagram on the go! Hate it when it takes a long time to load!

With Fibre Broadband, i can load my movies and videos on my iPad so much faster without any lag time!

What are you waiting for? Start taking out a big piece of white paper, write what you enjoy on Fibre Broadband, take a video of yourself and submit your video to the M1 for every one contest! Good luck :D

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

High Tea at Dean & Deluca.

 181 Orchard Road, 
#04-23/24 Orchard Central

I've always wanted to visit Dean & Deluca ever since it opened in Singapore but haven't got the time to visit them till recently! I've heard and read so much about the ambiance, the food especially the cakes such as their red velvet!
I really like the feel when i enter the cafe. I think they expanded their space and now it's so much bigger. My first thought when i entered Dean & Deluca was, how much it's similar to Jones the Grocer because they took have a groceries section where you can get sauces, jams etc. The outlet has the whole New York feel which is interesting. First thing first was to order our drinks, Don and i ordered the Marble Chocolate Shake ($6.50) which includes 2 choices of toppings in your shake so i had Marshmallow and Caramel sauce, and Don has Vanilla biscuits and Chocolate chips in his drink. Joyce has a medium Iced Marble Latte ($7) I couldn't really taste the difference between the 2 shakes though. There were so many varieties of food to choose from and we were so spoilt for choice, and wanted abit of everything so the above we what we ordered. I was quite surprised to see a Rainbow cake ($7.50) among all the cakes and i knew i had to order it regardless the flavour! Couldn't really figure out the flavour but i somehow think it's related to banana but still, i'm happy to see a rainbow cake! Then again, i counted only 6 colours ley... Rainbow should have 7 colours right?

Ordered the Cream cheese hazelnut brownie ($5) which was a disappointment. The serving was huge but it was too dry, left half of it untouched. The Red Velvet ($9) on the other hand was not bad. Moist and tasty. Ordered a Lemon pound cake ($4) too and every bite was full of the lemon zest but it was quite overpowering after a few mouthful.

Wanted something hot as well so we ordered a Triple mushroom soup ($10) which has a combi of 3 different types of mushroom with white truffle oil. It's abit expensive but every mouth was very rich and you could taste the mushroom in it. Last but not least, the Egg Iberico ($25), one of the main dish which is like Egg Benedict. 2 perfectly poached egg (one of the nicest i have seen!) on top of a bed of sauteed mushroom on 3 bread. Not bad but a bit pricey though.
Happy me with all sorts of cakes and dishes to try! Not to mention we were going to have steamboat after this meal! If you did the math, this high tea cost $80.50. The good thing about Dean & Deluca is that the 7% GST is already included in the price of the food, and there is no service charge! Probably because you collect your own food at the collection counter. They will give you this device which lights up and beep when your food is ready for collection.

Because of the ambiance and location of Dean & Deluca, i would definitely be back if i'm looking for a nice place to chill with my friend to have a drink or tea break. For those conscience of the pricing range, just take note that a slice of cake and a drink would probably set you back at about $20, main hot dishes are priced at an average of $25 each (:
Ending this post with a huge photo of my#ootd for that day! :D

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Weekend staycation at The Village Hotel, Changi!

Recently there was this 4 day long weekend due to Hari Raya as well as National day and i wanted to do something out of the norm rather than the usual shopping, eating and the things i always do during the weekends so i decided to have a staycation! Basically a staycation is like a mini holiday but instead of going overseas, you have it local by booking a room in one of the local hotels, enjoy its facilities, relax, rejuvenate, giving yourself a break from everything else :D
Got Don and Joyce to share the room and to spend the weekend together. First thing first was to book the room. As you would have guessed, hotel room rates aren't exactly gonna be cheap over the long holiday weekend but we narrowed down to a few hotel choices according to our budget and finally decided on The Village Hotel located at Changi!

But before that, we met at Whitesands to make a trip to NTUC to get some snacks and such so that we won't go hungry during the staycation. Initially we wanted to buy ingredients to make tiramisu or cheesecake (lol, seriously think too much!) in our room for dessert but it seem like like too much effort plus we don't have the proper equipment. So we got stuff like chips, few cans of soft drinks, ready made Sara Lee Strawberry cheese cake and chocolate eclairs :D

Took a bus to Changi and finally reached The Village Hotel. I was joking around saying that if i ever forgot to bring or need anything, i can just make a trip back home to take it because i stay just 10 mins away from the hotel, LOL

The Village Hotel, Changi.

 First thing first was to check into our room! Honestly, we were quite skeptical about our room because the photos that we saw online were quite normal, not really photo worthy for a staycation unlike hotels such as Studio M, or Quincy Hotel whereby you can take photo from any corner of the room and the room still looks gorgeous. Allocated Room 560.

Upon opening the door, our first remark was, "Actually not bad leh!" Phew.

The twin bed deluxe room (25sqm) is actually quite spacious with lots of room to walk around. Not very fanciful but the basics are there, there is even this "resting area" as shown at the bottom left hand corner which we converted to our dining area (you will see the photos later). The bathroom can be seen through the glass panel (which can be covered of course), equipped with a bath tub as well as a rain shower. Honestly speaking, it's quite worth it for the price we paid (:

First 15 mins upon entering the room was purely spamming photos of the room, taking from different angles, very kua zhang one and thereafter i started unpacking the food and drinks that we bought earlier from NTUC and created a food corner for our staycation! Some of the food was part of the mini bar which i took out to take photos only, LOL :|

Let our 2D1N Staycation begin!

Staycation is all about relaxing, without having to think much so we practically spent the first half an hour to one hour nua-ing in the room, connecting to the WIFI, posting photos of the room on our instagram, watching cable TV, trying to "claim"our beds because there were only 2 twin beds, and finally decided to head up to the infinity pool for a swim!

One of the reason why we chose this hotel was because of the infinity pool on the rooftop!

Ohmygawd, look at the view! What a place to relax and one of the best thing is, you get to see planes after planes making their approach into changi airport! I was just practically lying at the edge of the pool, trying to identify the different airlines based on their design. It was one of the best moments of this staycation! I miss the pool! :(
Not forgetting to take photos to capture the moment!

I did one of the dumbest thing ever. I was so excited to go into the pool that i walked into it with my top still on -_- Until Joyce was like, "You are not gonna take off your top ah!" By the time i realised, it was already all soaked.

Decided to risk my iPhone to capture all these shots taken in the pool. I was holding it really really tight, HAHA

Finalist of Philippines next top model. TROLLOLOLOL

*Piak right in your face* How can i not post a selfie of myself on my own blog!

 Last one! Spammed a lot of photos of us in the pool but i shall not flood this photo with them.
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There are 2 pools in this hotel! One infinity pool at the roof, and one outdoor tank pool on the ground level beside saltwater cafe. I like the fact that you can take underwater shots from the side of the pool but then abit pai seh because everyone in the cafe/restaurant can see you. Wanted to swim the next morning but it was raining :(

Spent close to 2 hours in the pool till our skin wrinkled like prunes (lolololol!) Went back to the room for a quick rinse while deciding what to have for dinner. Initially we wanted to call for both KFC and Domino's delivery so we can enjoy the food in our room but eventually we decided to have a local hawker fare spree by going down to Changi V to dapao!

Changi village hawker center is literally a stone throw away. LOL

The famous changi village food centre. 

The amount of food that we bought to share! There's chicken and pork satay, BBQ chicken wings, oyster omelette, fried carrot cake, fried chicken from this really famous mee store, chicken rice and beef noodles! I think we spent less than $50 on all these food items. Perks of buying from a hawker centre. Pizza and KFC would have definitely cost a lot more.
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Remember the "resting area" that i mentioned earlier? We converted it to our dining area and sat in a row! Had a really sumptuous dinner and everyone was super full that night. Not forgetting we still have the cheesecake and eclair! :O

Spent the rest of the night watching movies on cable, playing monopoly deal, chit chatting...

Took out the cheesecake and eclair for midnight snack and slept at about 2am. LOL
Woke up at 9am the next morning for the hotel's breakfast at Saltwater cafe!

Buffet style so i created my own version of breakfast, the above is just round 1. If you read my travelogues, you would have realised that breakfast is like one of my most look forward "moment" of the day because i really enjoyed morning buffet breakfast! Normally i would just stuff myself with all kinds of food that is available, less the salad bar. LOL

#Happyboy89. I think i go breakfast wear until like i'm on holiday overseas but i'm actually still in Singapore. HAHAHA

The thing about buffet breakfast is that you get to try all kinds of food in different style  

Headed back to the room after breakfast and started packing to check out at 12 noon. 

All in all it was a good and relaxing weekend spent together with 2 good friends. Really enjoyed the less than 24 hours staycation, not forgetting the gorgeous infinity pool (kinda regret not going for the tank pool!) and i really look forward to the next one! I read online about Quincy hotel which i'm really interested to try it out one day. Ultimate staycation without having to bother about things like meals (because it's all provided!), infinity pool too and on weekends, there are even free classes like baking etc. Quincy hotel, by any chance if you are reading this, please invite me over! HAHAHA

Till the next Staycation!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Outfit of the day.

Just thought of doing a random blog post where i consolidate the past #ootd a.k.a Outfit Of The Day that i posted on my instagram account (ig:andystorm) Nowadays when i head out on weekends, and if i put in a little bit more effort in coordinating my outfit, i will tend to take an overall photo of the outfit and post it on my instagram! Obviously i'm not the only doing this #ootd thing on instagram, in fact a lot of people are doing it already. Just search the hashtag "#ootd" and you will see about 10 million photos (and counting) Well, there are 2 ways that i would do my Ootds:
 This is the "outfit-with-nice-background shot".

Every shot is taken with a camera phone. The above is just a shot of the outfit but with a background to so called "compliment" the outfit so that the overall photo looks more interesting. I seldom do this kind of ootd shots though because it's not everyday you get interesting background anywhere without you deliberately looking around for it. LOL
This is the "take-one-shot-and-mirror-image" shot.

As you can see from the amount of photos above, this is my "more preferred" way of taking my ootds. Just take an overall photo of the outfit against any background. It can be a plain colour, or any building, trees, whatever. You can don't really care about the background because after you mirror-imaged it, it actually becomes quite interesting, LOL You can use apps on your phone such as "Diptic" to flip your photos so it becomes an mirror imaged photo or the easiest and most idiot proof way would be to take the photo with photo booth on your iPad. Crop it into instagram and that's it!

If you look closer at a few of the shots in the college, you might realised some of the shots are not mirror imaged, they are 2 different poses, same outfit but they both share the same background. Well, it can be done with apps such as "clone camera" on iOS! It takes awhile to get the hang of such apps but it's really fun and the end result is pretty cool!

Lai lai lai, everyone of you take ootds and post it up on instagram! HAHAHA :D

Sunday, August 11, 2013

The story behind Graphikos.

If you are on my Facebook or have been following me on instagram, you would have know that on 9 Aug at 12 midnight, i finally launched my very own blog shop - Graphikos! I have always wanted to experience how is it like to own an online store, sharing my style of dressing with others (and it's also a good excuse to do a photoshoot, LOL!) In fact, i almost opened one during my poly days! I had the concept and website up, purchased the stocks but that blogshop never did opened as i was procrastinate further and further. Day by day, i ended up wearing everything that i bought!

The idea of Graphikos this time came about when a few of my friends was telling me, since i'm forever buying new clothes (esp when i go overseas) and readers of my blog sometimes asked where i get my clothes from, why not buy a few pieces more of the same design and try sell it online? I gave a few thoughts, and finally decided to give it a try.

Opening a blogshop was not easy as i thought. There is always this "fear" in my mind that wonders what if it's gonna be a failure, whether anyone would buy your stuff, what are you going do with the leftover stocks etc. But then again, if you don't try, how will you know? So i made up my mind, sat down with a piece of blank paper and started planning.

First up was, what's gonna be the name of my store? It has got to be catchy like when people mention it, they will immediately thought of your store. A good example would be Ohsofickle and LoveBonito. I thought a VERY long time, randomly googled some words trying to get some inspiration, trying to go along the line related to what i'm selling which is graphic tees and while brainstorming, i came across the word - Graphikos. Here's the meaning to the word:

I was like, Graphikos sounds not bad hor? and then i decided to go along with it. Ok lah, it's not exactly catchy and first thing people ask would be, "Oi, how to spell? Graphic then what?" But nevertheless, i still decided to go ahead with it. Of course before that you need to do some research by googling and see if anyone else in the world is using it for their store etc, whether the instagram/twitter username (just in case!) is taken blah blah blah before going ahead with it!

By the way, if you haven't realised. Graphikos is Greek for Graphics which explains the weird wordings.

Now that i got my store name, next up would be the website. I was thinking if there was an "easy way out" because designing a website from a scratch is really taxing and i'm not sure if it's really worth the effort (what if it fails! lol) then i thought, why not integrate it into my own blog? This way i don't have to create a brand new website for it, plus it's easier for it manage since i'm so comfortable with blogger already. So did a really really simple design if you have seen the page and i'm quite satisfied with it. Maybe in the future when i'm sure there's a market for my graphic tees, it might be a full fledged online store website with those shopping cart, mailing list features and what not? We shall see! :D

Last but not least would be the photos of the apparels.

I wanted to do a "professional" shoot with the nice lighting, backdrop etc (like i say, this is part of a good excuse to do more photo shoots, lolololol) so i BHB-ly asked for studio sponsors on my twitter and managed to get one eventually BUT it's probably gonna be for the next collection onwards because i only got the sponsorship after i already took the photos for Collection 1 at Republic Poly. Seriously FML for being so impatient and not waiting for their reply, LOLOLOL

Last minute couldn't get a studio so brainstorm-ed for somewhere which is quiet with no one to disturb, must be accessible to the washroom because i had to change to the different outfits (18 of them!), somewhere with nice plain background and i randomly thought of my poly - Republic Poly. So the next morning i packed all my apparels, accessories etc into one super big bag and dragged it all the way to Woodlands from Pasir Ris and back. What a feat, HAHA
Whole shoot took about 4 hours and i was quite pleased with the end results!
Special thanks and mention to Joyce and Don for helping me out for the shoot! But they also had their fair share of fun lor, everytime i go to toilet to change to another outfit, they happily camwhore and did their own version of photoshoot!

The most taxing part is definitely the photo editing.

I had to go through the same steps for every apparel and it's definitely not easy. I wanted a "one photo overall" concept as shown above. On the left would be the *er-hem* model shoot. HAHAHHAHAHAH!!!!! then on the top right is the overall of the tee which i almost died editing because i never bother to iron the clothes! All the crease, OH MY GODDD. I had to photoshop them away, some damn jialat, no amount of photoshop can help. Sorry for not being professional enough, i promise i will do better next time. Lastly, bottom right would be the main design of the apparel.

Now that i got everything up, i had to choose the magical date - which was supposed to be on 1st Aug. Start of the month heng heng ma, but i last minute realised i had to hand in an advertorial that night. If late, they will cut my payout so i postpone the launch lor :( In the end, i chose 9 Aug which is also Singapore's National Day! Launched exactly at 12mn and stared at my inbox for the next 2 hours and I GOT AN ORDER! *throw confetti all over the place* LOL

At 2am in the morning, weird.

Without further ado, let me officially announced the launch of Graphikos right here on my blog:
Click on the above image to be linked to the page to view the collection.

Do support me by RT-ing my tweets or sharing the link on your facebook. Appreciate much!