Newsflash: Giorgio Armani To Use Batik

A interesting news on a cool Sunday morning when I opened the newspaper during my breakfast. News that will bring Malaysian fashion scene soaring high into the world market at large. The news that everyone here was hoping that it'll propel the traditional pattern and weaving techniques into the couture galaxy out there.

What's the news? Giorgio Armani has shown interest to use Malaysian batik and songket in his designs. Isn't it awesome? I know everyone in this country cannot separate themselves from batik and songket. In fact, at least one person must own a piece of the design in their wardrobe - either a batik shirt which is normally worn for formalwear, or a songket sampin that is worn during Eid. And for European designers to use the local patterns in their chic design - that would be truly fantabulous!

So, the question is: would Spring/Summer 2012 the designers now gonna have that South East Asian influence in their collection? Let's hope so...

[news clip The Star 31 Oct 10]

Some of the songket pattern in my sampin collection. I love the traditional weave of the tenun which I think is fantastic. Probably in my future blog posts I'll write something about songket weaving method and the tjanting of batik designs which is done by my relatives back in the East Coast of Malaysia. They're awesome. =)

(If you look closer, you should realise that the wall coverings of the hall where I'm hosting the event in the previous post - they're actually the songket motifs. :D)


The Event. The Big Day.

Alas, the day of the big event has finally arrived. I woke up quite early that day so that I won't be missing the event that I'm hosting. Otherwise it'll be a disaster if the emcee himself is not present!

The theme of the day? Again... solemn, sombre, chic. Black and white as similar to the full-dress rehearsal day, but the only difference is the shirt I'm wearing. Also from Zara, the white shirt has wider-gap, micro stripes and black edge collar. When I paired it with the black tie (from the previous day), it look somewhat the tie is being worn on the outer side of the shirt, which I think looks cooler and very much visible in front of the camera. Yes, different from a typical 'solemn' clothing which the event is associated with.

So, what kind of event that I'm hosting? It's the convocation ceremony. Everything that happens during the event is very ceremonious, full of protocol... from start to finish. From the procession entering the hall by the graduates, the academic members and the stage party (no, they're not the people who're having a party on the stage - rather, they're the VIPs); to the scroll giving ceremony and the closing - everything has their own protocol. Very tedious. Only people who has the patience can really stand doing this kind of event.

That morning I arrived slightly late to the venue. Well, not really late coz the event is supposed to start at 8.30 am. So, I'm in the Green Room exactly at 8.00, trying to get a breakfast. Once arrived there, I didn't see anyone's around except two ladies who are the accompanying persons for the Press. It was then i had a conversation:

Me: (looking around for a cup to fill the tea for my breakfast)
Lady 1: Are you looking for something?
Me: Yes. Do you have a clean cup for the tea?
Lady 1:
Are you a student?
(looking surprise but delighted at the same time when she said 'student') No. I'm a staff here.
Lady 1: Staff? Oh... are you a *****? Are you a Dr?
Me: Yes. But erm.. you don't have to call me a Dr.
Lady 1: (looking very embarrassed). Oh. Staff got their breakfast at Block D. (now, she's using a very more polite tone once knowing I somehow got a title).
Lady 2:
You look very young. How old are you?Me: Erm... I can't tell you that. (Smile). Btw, I just wash this cup then. Can I have this tea for the Press people instead.Lady 2: Yes, yes... sure.

Then both of them start chatting something, out of disbelief I guess, knowing of who I am. Is that the first time I got those comment? Nope. Is that the first time someone look very much in disbelieve when I told my age? Nope. And that's why somehow I think my younger looking outlook got me quite a trouble. Trouble of getting people to trust me since they think I'm not up to the experience. Sigh...Well, they've gotta look at my CV instead to see how much have I accomplished these years in my working life. Too much for a young guy.

Anyway, I suddenly got a call. "Doc, where are you? We're waiting for you. The event is about to start!" - without them knowing that I was actually just one floor below the rostrum where I'm having my brekkie.

"Isn't it at 8.30 am?" I replied. "No. it's 8.15!". Why... and it's already 8.10. Yikes! I rushed upstairs... but in full composure so that nobody could see that I'm actually in rush. From afar I could see someone has filled my place at the rostrum - a replacement in case of my abscence. When I'm already arrived, together with my Burberry tote in hand, I can see the faces turn in relief. Relieve that The Voice has finally arrived! Hey, who said I'm late?! Ha!

Before I made my first announcement to the audience, I took a snap of the hall. It's not lots of people coz the procession is starting in about 10 minutes time. I can say that this is the only pix from my side and from my camera.

Why is that? Coz I have to follow the rules of the event - Please refrain from taking photographs throughout the ceremony - by which I read out to the audience in the opening lines. It's in the script. Cannot take photographs, you ask? I also question the rule to the organizer, which I think is very silly. This is a special event. One of a lifetime for most of the audience. A convocation ceremony that marks the 'success' of the graduates. Come on..let their family took as many photographs as they want! But with one rule. No flash - just as what London Underground told the commuters too - for the sake of safety & health in case people with seizure present in the audience. We don't want flashing bulbs cause unwanted incidents to them, right?

Anyway. The photos below are the one that I took it from various people in my Facebook. It's the whole procession. Pretty cool to watch from their point of view. Especially when my pix exist in some frames that shows the location where me and my emcee partner standing by the main stage.

yours truly is standing in front, at the rostrum. the taller one in suit. :)

it's daunting to sit right in front of the audience. yet, I love when one of them did said
"your shoes looks awesome!"

What can I say about emceeing and talking in front of about 2500 people in the hall? Awesome. The adrenaline, the exposure, the vulnerability, the feel. It's everything. I think being an emcee is not about having a good voice, but the most important is the guts. Having the guts to stand and talk in front of thousands, which many feels quite a daunting experience. Some people will freeze to death. Some will shiver which can be heard even in their voice when they speak. Or see how the pen shakes when he/she holding it! Yet for me, I love public speaking. I love working in front of the camera. In front of people. That's what I've been doing all these while. So, there's no weird feeling anymore including this event. The more people, the better it is! Coz I can't see the faces of the audience individually - they're all look like a bunch of flowers that spread all over the hall! =)

Would I continue to be an emcee? Only time will tell. But I want a bigger challenge. Bigger audience. Someone suggested me to go for tv. Be a newsreader. Someone once even told me,"Zamri, if you're in KL right now, TV3 might have snap you!". For real? I dunno about that, but why not give it a try. You only live once, so you've gotta grab everything that comes by. In the meantime, I'm gonna enjoy whatever I'm doing. When and how am I gonna do tv... just watch this space! :)

Event Rehearsal: Day 4 & Day 5...

Event rehearsal - Day 4.

The theme of the day is 'urban steel'. What is so steel about it? The suit that I'm wearing is a bit shiny when hit by the light. And it's grey, that's why i cat it steel (steel greay, get it?). the suit is from River Island, with a slight glimmer if I may say. But not as shiny as the suit that David Beckham wears in the Yahoo! advert. I love the one button that give that mod feel and contour the waistline pretty well. 

To streamline with the grey theme, I paired the suit with a hi-sheen grey slimfit shirt from Zara and a slim tie in horizontal grey/black mini stripes from Burton. Again, it's all highstreet at their best. Just to inject a bit of designer, I went a bit classic with a pair of dip-dyed grey leather brogues from Paul Smith.

The grey theme really proven a hit that day since other people in the hall like it as well. And the best thing, I got to walk on the red carpet again. But, erm... nope; there's no flashing bulbs around - otherwise I may end up in someone else's blog! (Haha, I wish!)

The next day - Day 5. 

One of the big day, since it's the full-dress rehearsal for the event. I dunno why they called it full-dress rehearsal. What... are the previous days everyone has been 'partially dressed'? Or naked? Erm.. I don't think so. But anyway, the full-dress rehearsal is the time when the mock-up of the real event will be done with all the procession and people wearing the costume or special robe for the big day. And it's the day when the choir group, the orchestra and the live band will come together doing all their musical stuff.

Since it was the 'full-dress' day, I decided to wear something typically formal and sombre so that it'll mirrored on what I'm gonna wear on the real 'solemn' day too. The theme is 'edgy chic'. Why chic? To me anything that is black and white is considered chic. Very simple and classic, very Parisian colors... that's why it's chic. And edgy?

Well, the suit is all typical black, one-button slimfit suit (also from River Island). The shirt (from Zara) however has a bit of twist to it. The base is white, but it has a double collar - black under white. To add to that, at the back it has a black 'backbone' and black hems on the cuffs as well - creating an overall edgy feel to otherwise plain white shirt. At times when the event went for a break, I tried to take off my blazer, so that people really can see how interesting the shirt is. And yup, from the surprised faces of the onlookers, I think they do agree that the shirt is quite special!

Oh, the plain black tie is from Red Herring @ Debenhams; while the shoes that I wore that day really is the major talking point coz it's not the kind that people there usually or ever wear. It's the Kenneth Cole black patent boots which heels is slightly higher. I heards some buzzing around, but the comment that I got from a friend is only that "bro, your shoes is so damn shiny!!"... rather than it's a high heels. Ahaks!

Anyway, i love my 'black tie event' outfit that day. Very Dolce & Gabbana? Ha! ... I wish. But that doesn't stop those choir groups to ogle everytime they went on a break! Lol! =)


Etc... Etc...Boy to Man.

Who would've thought that the boy in the pix below...

... has grown to become such a 'handsome' man! A 'stylish' one.(Huargh, huargh, huargh!! That's a big LAUGH okay...)

It's 29th October.
Happy Birthday to me!
I just can't believe that I've lived a generation.
Yet for everyone else that meet me the first time, they would always guess the wrong age.
It's always at least 5 years younger!
(I normally got 8 years younger. 8? What? A teenager? Lol)
Truly, I have to thank L'oreal MenExpert products for that.
Why? Because it's frickin' worth it! =)
(L'oreal people... call me! ahaks!)


Prada Reinvents Men’s Footwear

It may not seem like it sometimes, but women aren’t the only ones who complain about foot pain from unforgiving shoes. The only option is keeping a pair of trainers on hand to quickly change into under your desk. And then back out of them when duty calls. That is, until now. Prada is leading a slew of shoemakers, including the likes of Mr Hare and Salvatore Ferragamo, in reinventing the classic men’s shoe for comfort as well as style.

The range is called Modernist. At first glance it appears that nothing’s changed. There are loafers, lace-ups and boots, as you’d expect, that come in a range of polished leather and textured saffiano.

But the difference is in the sole, which is lightweight and made from rubber to ensure comfort if you’re on your feet all day.

Prices range from £295 for a saffiano leather loafer to £350 for a five-lace holed shoe, with the Chelsea boot coming in at £330. They’re available now exclusively from Prada stores.

[words and pix from shortlist]

Event Rehearsal: Day 3...

Shock tactic. That's all I can think of when I decided for a theme-of-the-day for the 3rd day of the event rehearsal. If in the morning of the previous day my mood kinda slum a bit coz the whole thing got to me - that I decided to go blackout blue - yet as the day progresses good spirit has made a return. Especially when I got to meet lots of friends and colleague, including all the 'top guns' from the management people up there. It's awesome to see some familiar faces again.

So, shock tactic. Since lots of comments that I got is all 'you looks so skinny' - that day I decided to give them that: skinny. Uber-skinny, coz me too, I wanna try how skinny I can go with the look. The theme: skinny fleck. Well, not really skinny skinny, coz the suit I'm wearing is actually having very much an ultra-slim silhouette compared to other slimfit suits that I got.

The suit is from River Island which is slightly body-con. Fleck? No, not the real one though the fabric got these ramdom 'chalks' pattern on it that looks like fleck from afar. A bit Chanel feel, if I may say. It's ultra-slim coz I can feel the trousers really up to my bum. When I sit, I can feel slightly tight on the thighs too. Yet, the suit is really comfy despite all the hugging sensations!

I paired it with slimfit shirt from Zara in sand, and the tartan tie (Tie Rack) that has a bit of sand color to complete the whole theme. Shoes? It's the Asos black patent slip-ons that look a bit like YSL. Again, they're all highstreet brand at their best! Did I nail it? I hope so, especially after seeing lots of faces out there in disbelief...ha!

Btw, did I mention I got to walk on the red carpet that day? Yup, I got to feel walking down on it again after so long being away from the limelight. But syyy... nobody knows that I'm wearing highstreet clothings coz some people thought they look very designer. Ahaks! Brilliant me, huh?

Also that day I got to use the Green Room which is located on the basement. Superb. Love the deco that is very simple yet modern. What I really love is the changing room, that has a bathroom complete with a rainshower head. Awesome!


Canvas Backpack: Gucci Does Ally?

There's a new backpack at Gucci for the Cruise 2010/11 collection. It's of canvas with leather trims on the handle and the flaps. Quite roomy with lots of additional compartment on the front and the sides. Though this one's from Gucci, I'm not that ecstatic on its overall design coz it doesn't look that spectacular. Functional? Yes. But eye-catching? Not quite.

Besides, when I first looking at it, I just can't help thinking; doesn't it look very much like Ally Capellino bags? If you happen to visit their store at Shoreditch, London then this one by Gucci is quite 'inspired' by everything done by Ally. From the material which is very understated canvas to the squarish flap and the placement of the buckle - it does has that AC bags feel. 

Ally Capellino

[pix from gucci and ally capellino]

Stella McCartney x Adidas London 2012

Did you guys watch the previous Commonwealth Games that was held in New Delhi a couple of weeks back? I'm really glad that the event went well though I have to say I got all the butterflies in the stomach during the opening ceremony aired on the tele. What not, coz earlier I've read the news about the footbridge near Jawaharlal Nehru stadium had collapsed days before the games begun. That not include the state of the accommodation at the athletes' quarters which made a huge uproar in the Evening Standard. Yet, after about two weeks - from games itself to the opening and closing ceremony, with that giant hot air balloon spread in the middle of the stadium and all the beautiful, colorful event - I have to say India has done a great job! (I actually prayed that night so that nothing's gonna happen to the people in the stadium though!).

So, Commonwealth Games finished... next is Asian Games that'll be held in Guangzhou in a couple of days time. And to follow that, is the much anticipated sporting event - the Olympic 2012 - which will be held in London in less than two years time. If you happen to visit the capital, don't forget to take Jubilee Line towards Stratford and the Overground towards East London to view the construction of the Olympic Stadium as well as the 'Pringle' (that's the nickname for the Zaha Hadid's aquatic centre). It's awesome!

Anyway, talking about London Olympic 2012, it's a great news that one of the official partner's - Adidas - has collaborated with UK most well-known fashion designer, Stella McCartney for a special collection for the event. Though Stella already did previous collection with the sport's brand before, this time around the range spread into the menswear pieces as well. For you guys who disappointed unable to get your hands on any Stella's previous collection for H&M or Gap (coz both doesn't have menswear!), now it's your chance to wear Ms. McCartney's name up your sleeves (or on your back, to be exact).

One great feature about the collection is the silhouette of the lion's head - which has become an icon for Great Britain - are seen on the back of the hoodies. Pretty cool, especially the one with embossed stitching (in white and Adidas Original's blue). I like that the Adidas triple stripe stays on the inner of the hood to ensure that you're indeed wearing the brand. 

There's even a white tee with the image of 'partial' Union Jack which I think very tastefully done. Love the color - especially red - that I think very powerful and a mood uplifter!

All the pieces are available at Adidas online store and at selected JD Sports. Price? Quite affordable and doesn't break your bank balance, given that they're limited edition and very collectable pieces. And hey, it's Stella McCartney's - this is the only chance any bloke can wear her design!

Anyway, the ladies always got better ones. Just looks at these golden parka and jacket that Stella did for the women's collection. Damn. Life's just unfair...

[pix from adidas and talk pr]