Jump on the Creative Train and Embrace your Impulses

 

Visualize the last time that you ran for a departing train. Do you remember the adrenalin rush? Maybe you tripped as you galloped up the stairs. Your hair flew in every direction. You dropped your newspaper and spilled your coffee.

And it didn’t matter.

You made the train.

Don’t you love taking the chances? When is the last time you took gamble?

As we grow older, we have more responsibilities and take more calculated risks.

I think it’s important to remember that there is a balance.

Entrepreneurs are risk-takers by nature. Filled with enthusiasm, they are passionate. They make multiple mistakes in order to create something significant and valuable.

That said, while taking chances is wonderful, we also have to be careful of perpetually rushing to make the train. It’s the curse of being impatient. Learn to be a bit more patient and focus on the nature of your actions.

So, the next time when you plan to rush toward the departing train, make sure it’s the right one.

If by chance you jumped on the wrong one, the correction is simple: get off at the next station and change your direction.

Love,

Lena

 

Italy: Subway

 

Australian Fashion Illustrator and Stylist Rachell Khoo Reveals Fashion Secrets and More

Rachell Khoo was kind enough to stop by Styling on the Edge to talk about creativity, travel and fashion.

1. Tell us about yourself.

I’m a menswear stylist and a fashion illustrator. Being in the fashion industry was God’s will in my life. Each career path somehow lead me to it. I earned a degree in advertising, yet the first art direction competition I won was during Melbourne Spring Fashion Week. For three years, I worked for a couple of fashion and art magazines. Last year, I was privileged to learn from Akira Isogawa, one of Australia’s top designers. This year, I founded my own menswear retailer, Chivalry Menswear, which I’m launching in a couple weeks.

2. How would you describe your work?

In terms of my styling, I believe that glimpses of identity can be expressed through the details of what you wear. As far as my fashion illustrations, I aspire to create wearable art.

3. Where do you get ideas and inspirations?

My illustrations are inspired by God’s finest workmanship — nature. We can never mimic it’s beauty, yet the inspiration it provides is endless. The changes of seasons, the birth-to-death cycle, growth, detailed leaf veins, curves and textures, each rock’s colors and tones, wood grain, dew, flower and vine. I could go on forever.

 

4. Tell us about your country/city/culture. What inspires you?

I was born and raised on the island Penang in Malaysia. Yet, I spent most of my youth in Australia. So, Sydney is my home. Living in a country that mostly consists of different ethnicities is wonderful. There’s so much richness in terms of cultures providing learning experiences.

5. If you’d currently have opportunity to travel to any place in the world, what that place would be?

Paris. It’s the fashion capital, after all.

6. In your opinion, what is the biggest challenge related to creative work, and how do you overcome it?

A challenge to me is the best way to break out of the norm; it provides a great opportunity to learn.

 

7. What does fashion mean to you?

An expression of identity with a twist of creativity.

 

8. Do you have any tips for fashion illustrators?

Be fearless in expressing your creativity with your personal distinct style of illustrating.

You can follow Rachel at the following sites:

Instagram @rachellkhoo

Twitter @rachellkhoo

Tumblr http://www.chivalrouslyrachell.tumblr.com

Website http://www.chivalrymenswear.com (Public launch on May 1, 2014)

 

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Business and the Art of Motorcycle Riding

You have probably read the book, “Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance.” Well, I am hear to tell you that motorcycle riding also provides life epiphanies and business lessons. When you master riding and entrepreneurship, the thrill is unprecedented.

Some things to keep in mind:

1. When practicing, always look as far as possible down the road.

I will never forget the instructor’s face as he watched me looking at my throttle or bumps on the road.
“Lena, you are going to die, if you keep this up,” he yelled.
Similarly, in business, it’s important to analyze trends and anticipate the future. Not just for the sake of leadership. We need to take advantage of trends to turn ideas into profit and foresee the threats of competitive marketplace. Instead of looking for a bump down the road, we keep the big picture in mind and not lose enthusiasm over small, insignificant obstacles.
Otherwise, we will crash and burn as entrepreneurs.

2. If you fall off the bike, don’t quit!

I remember my first motorcycle fall. It was actually more ego bruising than physically painful.
“Do this again, and you leave!” my instructor screamed as he ran to check the bike.
Another person in my shoes (well, motorcycle boots) would have quit immediately after this accident. Out of stubbornness (which is a quality I am not always proud of), I stayed. Not only did I stay, I learned. After persistent practice, I embraced the joy of riding.
Attitude is everything. You fail, but you never quit! Especially when you are doing something that you love. Don’t let anybody discourage you. Try again and again until you embrace failure as a learning experience. You have to reach a mental state when failure is part of adventure and inevitable on the road of success.
Rev it up!

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Traveling? Five Reasons to Hire a Personal Shopping Assistant

chanel-store-soho

  1. Shopping is time consuming. If you are on a business trip, the professional meetings and projects remain a top priority. You have to use the time wisely. Instead of spending time researching the city’s best local shops, you may take advantage of the local personal shopper assistant-concierge. He or she can help you find gifts for your six wives or find a chic pair of shoes for your upcoming happy hour.
  2. You travel alone and have plenty of time. Find a companion who has a great eye for style and is knowledgeable about city’s best local shops. Such an assistant will take you on a voyage of unique, fun shopping excitement and ensure that you have an overall enjoyable experience in the city. Such shopping assistants are typically very knowledgeable about designers/brands. They will help you in finding the right product; in addition, they will prove to be a great educational resource regarding  designers and the history of fashion and style.
  3. You are going through a major change in your life. Occasionally, we all do. This is life. Whether it’s a career or personal life transition, you may want to update your wardrobe as well. New life. New you. Choose an assistant you can trust. A person with whom you can relax and share your struggles. A new image can make a magical change in the way you perceive yourself. Forget about the trips to psychologist. Go on a shopping tour.
  4. You’re an entrepreneur and looking for wholesale opportunities. Time constraints continue to press you. You don’t know the city. In this case, connecting with the right personal aide could save you time and money.
  5. Some personal shopper assistants serve as incredible problem-solvers. They could be interpreters to assist you on your travel. In case an airline looses a piece of luggage, a personal shopping assistant can be a lifesaver. Some of them extend their services beyond just shopping. Whether it’s sending your dress to local tailor to fix a button or finding the right business meeting site, they are a treasure trove of information. They ensure that your trip remains efficient and effective.


How Creative Are You?

One measure of how creative you are is how you respond to changes in your circumstances and environment. How flexible are you? Consider how water adapts to its environment: evaporation, condensation, snowflake, melting, flowing, goes around the rocks, fills containers, etc.

– Unknown Source

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Culture Melds

Every country, as every individual, has its unique personality. Every culture has flaws and fascinating attributes we can learn and adopt.

I was always sort of a sponge. I absorbed these values quickly. Of course, they were positive values, the type that make you search deep within yourself, question, grow and develop as a person. It became a habit that comes with the experience of traveling and living abroad. You are becoming like water— flexible and adaptable.

When I lived in Italy, the most important thing I learned was to stay in the moment. In the United States, one is forced to think about tomorrow. Sometimes, you simply forget to live. Working hard to accomplish your dreams is important.

Still, 30 years from now, you want to say: “My life was so interesting. Yes, I went through ups and downs, but all those events made me that beautiful and strong person I am today. ”

We must learn to enjoy the present. When did you last spend time with your friends? When was the last time you tried doing something new?

When I studied in Italy, I met many interesting people. Suddenly, my world burst forth with color. I started to appreciate the quality of food, the quality of communication, the quality of family relationships. I wore bold, rich colors like Italian girls.

Interestingly, the Italian’s love for these colors are rooted in the images of the Harlequin, a comic servant character from the Italian Commedia dell’arte and its descendant, the Harlequinade.

Harlequin

Bristol Renaissance Fair

The Harlequin represents the lively, younger generation of the Commedia. In the minor intrigues he is associated with, he has a satirical voice. Clever, but somewhat buffoonish, he is known for the bright diamond lozenges he wears.

And because of a 16th century clown, I was inspired to incorporate bright, bold colors to my wardrobe.

I’m on my way to Festa Italiana to celebrate Italy and her culture, and especially, her fashion. By the way, what are your thoughts on wearing bright colors?

admirationphoto by flickr user The Purple Pants

skittlesphoto by flickr user The Purple Pants

11 Via Montenapoleone, Milanophoto by flickr user Dimitry B.

le vicine di casaphoto by flickr user Fabiana