The search for leather cleaning products

The last time I was faced with the task of reviewing for an exam, I had shaved my head off and sported a buzz cut. Well, I would have done the same thing but I wanted to have workable hair come April for my graduation and starting from a buzz cut just won’t cut it. On the other hand, I’ve been struggling recently with my hair and the moment I started feeling a bit uncomfortable with it, it only means one thing: a haircut!

About to get a haircut

For the past three months, I had been getting my haircut from Fix in Sta. Lucia Mall because I had them done on a weekend. On my way to work today, however, I almost did not go to Ménage Salon in Gateway but Mon persuaded me not to postpone my haircut again. I arrived in the salon and good thing that the person from whom I always get my haircut was present. He remarked that I haven’t got my hair cut from him for quite some time. LOL I normally ask him to shave the side and do little with the hair on top because I grow it out. But this time, I asked him to cut them way shorter because I unconsciously pull my hair a lot whenever I review.

Shorter hair again

After getting a haircut, I rushed to Handyman in Farmers Plaza to buy a leather cleaner and conditioner for my bags and shoes. The last container I had was already used up a month ago and I have been cleaning my things with only a soft rag. My Red Wing boots suffered the most because they looked extremely scuffed and I can no longer put off buying another container of leather-care product. I already tried Turtle’s Leather Cleaner and Conditioner and I was already at the point of buying one, but I took my time to look at other products on the shelf.

I already picked up the bottle of Turtle, but decided on another product instead

A bunch of leather cleaning products from Handyman

And then, my experimental self saw a pair of leather cleaner and conditioner, sold on separate bottles, and hoped that they will work better than the previous one I’ve used. Tanner’s Preserve Leather Condtioning Cream and Leather Cleaner cost almost twice as the other one (Php 399.75 each *gulp*, whilst the the other was Php 499.75), and I’m very eager to try them out. I’ve also read reviews online and saw that they are generally well-received. The catch: they are used more on car seats and there’s a chance that they may not react well with my items. My reasoning was that “leather is leather” but I know that this logic is highly-flawed, given that not all leathers are created equal.

Tanner's Preserve Leather Cleaner and Conditioning Cream

I know that utmost care must be exercised when dealing with “open” leathers, such as suede or bucksin and I won’t be too crazy to ruin them. Nevertheless, I’m hoping this initiative to treat my bags and shoes will not backfire! Let’s see later on how things will turn out as a ruined item is definitely worth posting about. Just kidding.

Monette in the office!

Monday means back to work but I was more excited to wear the pair of khaki pants I have picked up yesterday! And because of the Chinese New Year, I decided to wear my Chinese collar polo — stupid excuse, I know. LOL

Blue stripes Chinese collar polo, skinny khaki pants, black Prada tessuto and saffiano messenger and black 8-hole Doc Martens with buckle and straps

Everything was normal, a usual day in the office when I suddenly got a text message from a friend of ours. Monette was in the area and told us she’d drop by the office and we were extremely happy to see her. She was in overdrive, though, and we can tell that she was extremely happy to see us. Ho ho ho. Monette, I know you are reading this and we were so delighted to see you! ^_^

Faye, Monette and I

A pair of this, a pair of that

I finally got the two pair of pants from the tailor, to whom I have approached exactly a week ago. I was really excited because they were the first non-black pants I have asked him to do. When I got in their shop, the tailor was not there but his assistant took care of things and I paid the remaining Php 400 balance.

Getting the pants from the tailor

 

 

Reaching my room, I immediately took them out of my bag to try their fit. I first tried the khaki pants and it was what I exactly expected. A bit snug but I can still move and I was fine with that. As for the navy blue one, it was a different story. It was so ill-fitting that I cannot even lift my foot off the ground without getting some unwanted ‘squeeze’. LOL I had to return to the tailor hours after, hoping that he can do something about it. I also threw in another pair of pants I have been intending to get altered and hopefully get both of them tomorrow.

My new pair of tailor-made skinny khaki pants

 

Trying on my skinny khaki pants for the first time

 

From a pair of pants, I also got another pair of black leather shoes from Ebay. I don’t have a conservative plain black leather shoes, as the other pair of oxford shoes I currently have is on the dark charcoal gray side — a shade sort of black. If I were to go on interviews in the coming months (ehem, ehem), I can’t show up in my Doc Martens because there is always a time for everything and I know when to stop pushing my stubbornness. Then along came this pair of black leather shoes and I instantly fell in love.

A pair of black Paul Smith Dip Dyed Cervantes Oxford ShoesAt first, I did not know what brand this pair was because it was very handsome in itself, with the veins on the leather giving it more character. Not to mention, it was the same style as the other Prada pair (i.e. oxfords). And then I saw that it was actually a pair of Paul Smith shoes!

Black Paul Smith Dip Dyed Cervantes Oxford Shoes and details - Original Dip Dyed Footwear

After several searches on Google, I found out that the style was called ‘Cervantes’. Selectism.com did two articles about the shoe back in 2009: one when the style was first released in March 2009; while the other was in August 2009 when the style was updated with a floral touch. Its listed price in the website of Gravitypope was US$ 319.99. O_O Mon was astounded on how easy it was for me to find a pair of shoes in my size. Well, I wear a US 8.5, so compared to his bigger feet, it was really way easier for me.

 

See you again in July!

Today is Mon and I’s 4th year and 5th month together and a few minutes after the clock had struck 12, he gave me a piece of paper with a note and a drawing of the Eiffel Tower and some French macarons from Max’s. =D First of all, I did not even know that these are called as such, and I initially thought that there was a mistake with the spelling (i.e. macaroons). The irony of a French major not knowing French food.

French Macarons from Max's

We had a plan to meet up with Ikle today because he is going back to China tomorrow until the semester ends in July. As it is still winter there, I decided to just give him one of the trench coats I bought last November online. I was in such a hoarding phase that I bough two black coats, with this one in the smaller side. It fits me snugly, but coats are not supposed to be like. It should have a little room for the clothing to move nicely and coat’s purpose is just for cover. I had thought that he would love it.

Black Zara Man double breasted trench coat

Ikle wearing the Zara Man trench coat I gave him

So Ikle arrived in Makati at half past 4PM, tugging his suitcase back for China. As he already planned to stay in the house of one of his friends he met in China until his flight tomorrow, he already brought all of his things with him. Over coffee and some pastry, we talked about what lies ahead of us in the coming months, and possible plans when he finally returns in July.

Coffee with Ikle before he returns to China

Ikle, Mon and Gina

Ikle, Gina and I

Ikle and I - Purple polo shirt, H&M black v-neck sweater, brick pants, Red Wing boots

I actually felt sad to see him go again, but his return in July is definitely a shorter wait than the year and a half when he first left. LOL It was so weird to see time fly so fast, as we all felt that he arrived just a week ago rather than three weeks. See you again, Ikle, and don’t forget to eat properly but avoid greasy Chinese food as much as you can!

A few hours later, Mon and I had our late dinner at Tempura Japanese Grill right across Ayala Avenue, from our office building. I was still admittedly full but it was already late and we can’t put off dinner for another hour.

Tempura Japanese Grill

Waiting for our food to arrive

We did not order much but we still had a little difficulty finishing everything off: chiken roulade, mixed tempura, agedashi tofu and kaisen raisu.

Chicken roulade, mixed tempura. agedashi tofu and kaisen raisu - dishes from Tempura Japanese Grill

We barely finished eating the rice and tempura, and I was already gasping for air. I was really full. I honestly felt bad leaving something on the plate, as my siblings and I grew up being told not to leave even a single morsel. It eventually showed in my face and Mon had to ask me what was the matter. LOL All in all, it was a good day, even if it meant saying goodbye again to my friend for a few months. Happy 4Y5M again Mon! <3