January 22, 2014

How to Take the Perfect Selfie

Hi everyone!!
Today's post is going to be ALL ABOUT SELFIE! :D

For those of you who don't have a single clue about selfie (I doubt there is, though), here's a short explanation of what it is and what it has become in this digital age:

Selfie (n.): "A photograph that one has taken of oneself, typically one taken with a smartphone or webcam and uploaded to a social media website."
-Oxford Dictionaries
Familiar with this pose?

How about this expression? 
Hehehe #duckface

I'm sure every one of you has taken at least 10 selfies in your life lah! Thanks to social media sites, it has become a phenomenon that even Oxford Dictionaries gave it a place in the dictionary (yes, Selfie is officially a word of the English language), and it's not even the best part!

The best part is...

It has been chosen as Word of the Year 2013 by Oxford Dictionaries!!! How awesome is that?!

Ok ok, enough of the theory, let's move on to the practice! :)


You MUST know the best angle of your face! Is it left? Right? Above? Below?
Well, I think it's safe to say that the most flattering angle for a selfie is 45° degree angle.
Either tilting the camera or your face to that angle will work! Why is it the best? Because it will make your face looks slimmer. xD

I cannot stress this enough: Good lighting is everything in taking the perfect selfie! I understand if you want to hide some flaws, but the thing is, bad lighting itself is already so unflattering. And no, no amount of filter can improve the quality. So, no matter how pretty or handsome you think you look in a bad-lighting-photo, it's still a bad photo. You want your selfies to be bright, clear and sharp. :)
Let's see the comparison:
Good lighting vs Bad lighting
Even if you try to brighten it up using some apps, it will only be grainy and hideous, like this:

Ok you're already so gorgeous and your hair is perfect, but an interesting background will give you another plus point! If you can't find any, just keep it simple, like walls or curtains. :)

Just because you are in a public place, doesn't mean you can't take selfies! Good lighting? Checked! Interesting background? Checked! Camera? Checked! So, what are you waiting for? Nobody is going to watch you anyway, well maybe just for a few seconds, no biggie! Be confident and have fun!! XD Take multiple shots so you can pick out the best one to post later!
Had so much fun taking these selfies haha xD
The sunglasses from my upper left photo is from GOWIGASA.
The camera you use to take selfies is a very important aspect in producing good photographs. My favorite selfie-camera has always been my own mobile phone's front camera, well of course because I can see my face first before I snap it. Besides, it's really troublesome to bring two gadgets everywhere! That's why it's really important for me to have a mobile phone with a good camera, and I was so very happy when I found out about this happening Lenovo VIBE X! It has a 13 MP rear camera, aaaand 5 MP front camera!!! NOW this is the kind of technology I like!! XD
Furthermore, the design of this phone is very aesthetic and stylish, you can see it for yourself:
 Before you start abusing the snap button, you have to set the "beautify" effect first (range 0-7). Yes, it has its own beautify effect, so you no longer need any of those apps to smoothen up your skin :D 
 Set it to 3 cos I don't like my skin looks too smooth. 
 Pose and snap! Ah yes, I always tap the shutter button using that part of my finger lol. 
↑ Love the sparkling effect at the focus box hahaha 
So stylish!
↑ The effects you can apply instantly to your photos when you are using the rear camera. 
↑ Look at how thin it is!!! No wonder it is sooo light! 

Another selfies of me taken with this amazing phone:
 Me and My Tea selfie! #meandmythings
↑ Grid Chiffon Shirt Mint (as outer) from GOWIGASA 
↑ Wearing GOWIGASA Kanye West Top Grey 
 ↑ Me and My Fresh Lemonade 
↑ Acid Washed Denim Jacket from GOWIGASA, Headband from Topshop 
↑ I look so mature here wtf 
↑ Last one, I promise! Wearing my favorite Peter Pan Collar Denim Top from GOWIGASA :) 


Now, that you've learned how to take the perfect selfie, why don't you post your own selfies and get a chance to WIN this freaking cool VIBE X

The simple rules to join:
1. Follow @LenovoMobileID on Instagram (click!) and Like Lenovo Facebook Page on https://www.facebook.com/LenovoMobileID
2. Upload your own selfies to your Instagram account (multiple entries is allowed) and don't forget to tag #MyVibeX and mention @LenovoMobileID

For more info about Lenovo VIBE X and the competition:
WEBSITE: http://MyVibeX.com <<< complete info!

*All selfies in this post were taken with Lenovo VIBE X.


X O X O,
Elle Yamada

January 21, 2014

January 2014 Playlist

10 awesome songs I've been listening to this month:
XE2 by Mssingno
Girls by Rainer
Baby I'm Yours by Breakbot
Star Line by AMIAYA
The Scientist by Coldplay
Breathe Your Name by Sixpence None The Richer
On the Brightside by NeverShoutNever
I Want You To Want Me by KSM
Teenage Dirtbag by Wheatus
Torn by Natalie Imbruglia
January 2014 Playlist
How do you listen to your playlist? I myself love to repeat all songs in specific order and then when I get rather bored of it (the sequence), I would mess it up by putting it in shuffle mode. :D
Clothing: GOWIGASA Grid Chiffon Shirt Mint, Brown High Waisted Suede Shorts (upcoming collection) | Black Suspender from Japan | Sennheiser Momentum On-Ear headphone

Made a rather short cover of the last song on the list. ;)

P.S. Don't forget to join my ongoing GIVEAWAY, girls. Pretty prize awaits ya! ;D


Jessica Yamada

January 20, 2014

Cat's House Nekobukuro (Ikebukuro, Tokyo)

As written on the title, we went to one of the most famous districts in Tokyo... Ikebukuro! Our main purpose was to visit Tokyu Hands- a large department store that sells almost everything you could ever need.

But actually, there are other districts in Tokyo where you can find Tokyu Hands, like Shibuya, Shinjuku and Ginza.

So, why did we choose the one in Ikebukuro?

You guessed it, it is the only store that also has a CAT's HOUSE inside it!!
Neko means 'Cat' and it's located in Ikebukuro, hence the name: NEKOBUKURO

If you are following our Instagram accounts (@elleyamada and @jessyamada), you might have seen our posts about cat cafes. We've visited 2 cat cafes so far, and basically, a cat cafe is a place where you can go spend some time with these lovely furry friends while enjoying some snacks.

Nekobukuro is called a cat's house because they don't serve any kind of snacks and you are not allowed to eat or drink there either. That's why the admission fee is also cheaper than the usual cat cafes (1,000 yen for couples with no time limit).

Anyway, once you've arrived at Tokyu Hands (Ikebukuro), you will see this big poster in front of the entrance:
It's on the 8th floor! So let's skip ALL the 7 floors and go straight to the cat's house, shall we?
On the 7th floor, there is a staircase that leads you to a pet shop and Nekobukuro! Yes, the cat's house is placed next to a pet shop, how convenient!
The cute gate!!
It says that:
"Today, the last admission of Nekobukuro is 19:30."
(Thanks Google Translate!)
 We hadn't even entered the cat's house yet, and there was already one sleeping cat at the cashier of the pet shop! The pet shop itself was also dominated by cats' stuff, but we still managed to buy some food and snacks for Hyde lah! :)
 Look who was ready to greet us inside the entryway! Jiji from Kiki's Delivery Service of Studio Ghibli! :D
When we stepped inside the cat's house, there was this 'CATRAIN' with a cat-driver(?) inside, and we thought, "What a cute display!" and turned out, it was not just a train display. See below!
↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ 
Each car of the train is a "bedroom" for cats!!
And of course, when you take a look inside, some cats are enjoying their naps there. :3
↑ There are also papers with the cats' names (and gender) on them, taped on the window of each car! 
↑ The complete list of the cats. They all have names! :) 
↑ One of the areas where the cats can play. Or sleep. It's like a playground with the colorful paint and all, but personally I don't really like the lighting here; it's a bit dark and dominated with white light which doesn't make the room feel "warm" and cozy. 
↑ Cats in every corner! 
Stopped for a moment to stare at us suspiciously...
...and quickly made a run for it.
↑ The one who didn't move a bit from the moment we arrived until we left. 
↑ Seriously looks like a white fur rug. 
Image credit: www.aliexpress.com
↑ A very kawaii Tree House for cats!! Love the green tea color so much♡ 
The second area of the cat's house which was brighter than the first one- Train area.
↑ S/he just sat there for like 15mins observing us humans. 
↑ The second minus point of this place (for me) is the chairs. They are like so rigid and not relaxing, kind of like hospital or airport waiting chairs. 
↑ You can borrow some toys from them to attract the cats (like the guy on the far left), but most of the cats don't give a shit lol. 
↑ My absolute favorite!!!!!! SCOTTISH FOLD 
↑ Looked even cuter with that cherry charm hanging on his neck! 
↑ Finally he was sitting quietly so I could pet-pet-pet all I wanted!! XD 
BUT, when I tried to pick him up and put him on my lap, a female employee came out and prohibited me to do that! Usually in other cat cafes you are allowed to pick up the cats as long as you're not standing up!! FML :(((

My overall impression of this cat's house was MEH.
Both cat cafes that I've visited were much cozier and made me don't want to leave, but this one, even without time limit, I only spent like 30mins there.

The "MEH" points:
1. The place was not that cozy or pretty (as I've mentioned above).
2. No food or drink allowed.
3. Cannot pick up the cats.

The WIN points:
1. Relatively cheap compared to other places.
2. Many cats were active, not just sleeping.
3. You got to visit Tokyu Hands too! Two birds, one stone! :D

Location: Tokyu Hands, Ikebukuro (8th Floor)
Hours: 10:00 - 20:00
Admission: 600 (1,000 for couples or pair ticket)


What I Wore: Grey "Triumph" Sweater and Sunglasses from Shibuya 109 | Black Turtleneck Top, Green Maxi Skirt (upcoming collection), Vintage Purse Bag, Necklace from GOWIGASA | Dark Lipstick from Topshop (Beguiled)

Actually underneath the turtleneck and skirt, I also wore long-johns and knee-high socks. Plus a coat on top of all that. Aaand leather gloves! The weather was freeeeezing, but I miss it so damn much.

X O X O,
Elle Yamada