Monday, June 30, 2008

Top 10 Selling Phones as of June 2008...

Based on Krusell mobile phone cases sold!

The Swedish manufacturer's "Top 10"list for June 2008 is based upon the number of pieces of model specific mobile and smart phone cases that have been ordered from Krusell during June 2008. Krusell's list is unique due to the fact that it reflects the sales of phones on six continents and in more than 50 countries around the globe.

1. (8) Apple Iphone

2. (5) HTC Diamond

3. (3) Nokia E51

4. (2) Nokia 6300

5. (1) Nokia 3109

6. (9) LG KU990

7. (6) Nokia N95 8 GB

8. (4) Sony Ericsson K810i

9. (-) Sony Ericsson K530i

10. (10) Sony Ericsson W890i

() = Last month’s position.

According to the Krusell press release:

At the moment, many companies in the accessories industry are loading their warehouses with iPhone accessories just waiting for the European launch of the 3G version on July 11th.

But that hasn't stopped sales of the Orion, Krusell's iPhone case for the current iPhone, which is their best seller for June!

Orion is a model specific case suitable for both Apple Iphone and iPod Touch. Product developer Robert Mazetti at Krusell has designed the case as a wallet type with a plastic mould for secure fastening of the device. The plastic mould is equipped with a stand for movie watching and is unique in the market. As all Krusell model specific alternatives, you can keep the device in the case and still have access to all necessary functions.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Monday, June 23, 2008

Travel SOS: New Yorker Goes to Manila

Tin, I am in need of more advice. I am currently looking into booking my flight to the Philippines and wondered if you could suggest any travel agents? Also what airline do you prefer to fly to the Philippines. In the past I have booked Korean Air through RTA and have also flown Singapore Air as well through another booking agent in Chinatown. Feedback is greatly appreciated!


Hi RZ! I try to fly Cathay Pacific as much as possible because I have Marco Polo Club membership (air miles you know, hehehe) and I have always been happy flying with CX. My In-laws fly with Japan Airlines and I hear it is quite good too! My parents take Singapore Airlines, and I've tried it once flying from Manila to JFK. Yet, while their planes are new and the service was excellent, the trip was too long because it was transatlantic. So I highly recommend that you fly Cathay Pacific. Their flights always arrive on time and well, I love their in-flight movies hehehe!

For this trip, Dear Hubby and I booked our flights through Cathay Pacific online booking because it is so much cheaper! If you have relatives picking you up in the airport anyway, or you can arrange a car service with your hotel, there's really no need to go through a travel agent! Just make sure that you don't have to change your flight schedule after booking it, because they have a $100 fee for moving flights! Other than that, booking directly with the airline is so quick and hassle free! Plus the savings in eliminating the travel agent is quite a draw too! =)

Oh, and my husband has also booked flights through Orbitz before and it worked out pretty well! I've heard of Expedia too, but don't know anyone who has tried it! But if you ask me, I really would go for Cathay Pacific online booking! =)

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Dychiao-Abu Pre-nup Pictures

Not many of you know the reason why Dear Hubby and I are currently back in Manila. So in the spirit of our cyber friendship (heehee), I'll let you in on why....

We went back home for our church wedding!!! Woohoo!!! So indulge me and Dear Hubby as we share photos of us, and us alone! Let's start with our pre-nup pictures!

Rather than having our photographer meet us in New York (too expensive with us shouldering all the costs hehehe), and instead of going to some beach or mountain resort that doesn't really hold any meaning for us except for the views, I volunteered my mom's hometown of Pila, Laguna. It's a relatively short ride away from the city, and it is a very charming town that many people should visit one day, if only to see a Spanish pueblo setting in modern times!

Growing up, I dreaded trips to Pila. It meant fidgeting in the car for a whole 2 hours and listening to my siblings' casette tape of nursery songs, which eventually graduated to cds of West End soundtracks - think Oliver and The Lion King...(I can still hear Dianne, Andrew and Nicole's voices creating a medley as "awimbuwe" sauntered out of the speakers), tortuous to my teenage ears! As we stepped out of our station wagon, I pretty much expected an afternoon filled with relatives dropping by unannounced, the town's kesong puti vendor passing by to sell her cheese, and my lola's maids constantly sweeping our front and back yards because the santol and manggo trees constantly shedded leaves. Boring stuff. So Trina (who is closest to my age) and I would bring a bagload of Sweet Valley Twins, Sweet Valley High, Archie Comics, Babysitters Club, Sweet Dreams and Beverly Cleary books to make sure we were armed to pass time. The only thing I looked forward to when coming home to Pila, as early as then, was not the espasol, the suman, or my lola's cooking. It was our trip to the palengke (the town market) to buy rubber slippers or whatever trinkets that caught my eye. Yeah, shopping was and has always been the highlight of my existence, hehehe.

But as I grew older and learned to appreciate my family and our history, I realized that we were fortunate to have a province to come home to! Not everyone has pretty ancestral homes, and a national heritage site for a hometown! So now I present to you, Tin & Harvs with our town of Pila as our backdrop!

Sitting on the right wing of the front steps of our ancestral home::

Dress: Diane von Furstenberg, Enamel bangles: Old Navy, Gladiator sandals: Nine West

Check out my lolo's shoes behind mine...Funny that those white and two-tone oxfords are currently being sold at ac +632 in Greenbelt 5! My lolo really was one stylish guy!

Now these were taken at my Tita Cora's rest house in Pila called Kampo. First off, outside her patio...

Gingham shirt: Hubby's shirt, Pants: H&M

By the tennis court...

Shirt: Old Navy, Pants: H&M, Sandals: Sigerson Morrison

Sitting on her table by the window overlooking the rice fields...

This was taken by the pond. Babo, the black lab, curiously sauntered towards us as Nelwin Uy, our super artistic photographer was preparing to take our photo. We couldn't get him to leave us, despite the pleadings of the caretaker. So Nelwin said we could use him as a prop. The boxer, seeing the action, quickly joined in, and began licking our faces! The dogs enjoyed the photo shoot as much as we did, when it was time for our next shot, they wouldn't leave! So funny!

Inside the rest house...

Now jumping high, again beside the pond! I didn't know Dear Hubby could jump like Rudolf Nureyev!

Now the romantic shots...

Beside the rice fields...

And yes, in the rice fields!!! Dear Hubby, the city boy, almost slipped into the rice paddies! But he was so game and didn't mind even if his feet were caked in mud! So sweet!

Next up! Wedding day photos!!! =)

Style SOS: Searching for Repettos

hi mfo! shoe sos here. :) been wanting to get a pair of repetto shoes. classic black ones. i checked their website and the closest boutique they have is in hk. but when i checked, it's a dance supply shop.

will be going to hk next week and would love to get tips from you on where else in hk to get a pair and what pair to get. :) price range too? sorry, so many questions. thanks though!


Hi Ivy! I hope this post is not too late! I suggest you go straight away to Lane Crawford!!! They have a fantastic selection of shoes, including Repettos! Check out On Pedder in Central too!!! The Repetto dance supply shop could be a likely spot! Because Repetto ballet flats actually started out as real ballet shoes! To this day, Repettos are worn by dancers, and it's just a happy twist of fate that Repetto made ballet flats for everyday wear to the delight of frustrated ballerinas like us, hehehe!

Lane Crawford
Address: Podium 3, IFC Mall, 8 Finance St., Central, Hong Kong
Phone: 2118-3388; 2118-7777 Lane Crawford concierge
Web site: Click here
Other locations: Pacific Place, 88 Queensway, Admiralty, Hong Kong, Metro: Admiralty, Exit F. Gateway Mall, 3 Canton Rd., Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon, Hong Kong, Metro: Tsim Sha Tsui, exit E. Times Square, 1 Matheson St., Causeway Bay, Hong Kong, Metro: Causeway Bay, exit A

On Pedder
Address: G/F, Wheelock House, 20 Pedder St., Central, Hong Kong
Phone: 2118-3388; 2118-0130 for branch information
Metro: Central

As for price points, be prepared to shell out the equivalent of about US $175 to US $200 for a pair! That's about HK $1,400 to HK $1,600. Yeah, it's a bit pricey, but it is so worth it! ;-)

If you are looking for a classic black pair, then get the basic black pair made of lambskin leather, it is so much softer than the patent ones! There are black Repetto Bardos too (these resemble pointe shoes, as these have a square toe). Not as comfortable as the basic pair in my honest opinion! So yeah, go for the basic black pair! You will enjoy your Repettos for sure! =)

TIP: Repettos have French sizing! So you have to go one size up with Repettos! If you are a US 6.5 you need to get a 37.5

(Addresses and directions courtesy of

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Style SOS: Time is of the Essence

Hi tin!

i'm having a major dilemma, my dad is buying me cartier watch and i don't know which to choose. i kinda like pasha, roadster and santos but i don't know which one. i'm more of a gold person but i like how the steel looks. gold watch would be too formal looking so i don't know if i should get all steel or two-tone? i also like the large sizes because the small sizes would look to cute for me hehe. please help i want something that's classic and i can wear all the time.

thank you.


Vicky, Vicky, Vicky! What can I and the rest of the world say, you have one helluva fun and wonderful major dilemma! To be honest, it took me a while to get back to you because if I had the same problem as you, I wouldn't know what to get either! I guess I would be happy with any one of the three - I like the masculine sexiness of the Pasha, the classic elegance of the Santos and the understated glamour of the Roadster. The fact that I owed you a post really kept me on the lookout for Cartier watches, and it's so funny that once I got Cartier watches in my head, they just kept on popping up - a steel Pasha on my fashionista Ninang's delicate wrist as she sat across me at our restaurant table in Shang Palace, a two-tone Roadster on my elegant Auntie's wrist as we sat beside each other at their dinner table, the memory of a Santos that my friend received from her groom on the occasion of their wedding (my guess as to why the husband picked a Santos, is because his last name is Santos! Hahaha! The sight of that watch 7 years ago got me saving for a timepiece, until I decided to settle with a Technomarine, which I now regret) and so on. It didn't help that they all look so nice...Sigh! But because a decision has to be made, hmmm, so now which of the three (well ok, we have 6 to choose from because it's still a toss up between steel and two tone versions) do we get?

Cartier Pasha

Cartier Roadster

Cartier Santos

I was racking my brain thinking of how to go about this stupefying task, so when my friend Baci wisely pointed out in the comments section a rational way to come up with a decision, it was simply heaven sent! Sigh! So with her inputs plus some of my thoughts thrown in, here are a couple of questions to ask yourself before you decide on which one to get:

1. Are you starting a watch collection or expanding your watch collection?

If you are starting, then best to start with a watch that can go from daywear to dressy so that you can make the most use out of it! Then again, that's just me. I'm the type to go for the least cost per wear so I would say get a two-tone watch because it will also go with your gold jewelry or accessories (if this is what you mean by being a gold person) and can be dressed up or down! Ergo you can use it as much as you want!

If you are expanding your watch collection, then do as Baci suggested and assess your current crop of timepieces and figure out what is missing from your collection. But if you are not after variety, and more after staying true to what best suits your style, then go for the gut and pick the one that knocks you out first! If it is the steel Pasha, then a steel Pasha it is! One thing I learned from my shopping experiences is that when you get one item you truly love, you'll find your wardrobe and choice in other accessories adjusting to it! So don't look to the past or base your decision on what you think you currently like, because that something new could serve as the tipping point that will cause your personal style to evolve!

2. Are you looking for an everyday watch (then get a Pasha) or a versatile watch that will look proper for both school/work and special occasions (a toss up between a Roadster with interchangeable straps and a Santos)?

3. Are you constrained by a budget?

I really haven't done an exhaustive research on price points, but I would think steel watches are cheaper than two-tone watches. That being the case, then it wouldn't hurt to get a watch made of steel. It's still a Cartier gosh darn it!

4. Do you do "temporary accessory trades" with your mom or siblings?

If that's the case, it's practical to just get a watch that none of them has yet. But personally, I am not one to advocate this because your decision should be based on the timepiece that makes you happy! While it is noble to think of the greater good, we're talking about YOUR watch here, so YOUR choice should precede practical decisions. Hehehe!

5. Most importantly, which style called out your name?

All three watches are classics, whether they come in steel or two-tone. You will never go wrong with any of your choices. When you go to the watch store get all 6 watches side by side and pick out your top three. Set them aside and from these choices, decide on which one you like best!

Hope this helps you clear your mind! Good luck and let us all know which one you end up with! =)

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Happy Independence Day!

In the spirit of Independence Day, I would like to assert the Filipino-ness of this blog by flinging open the doors of our ancestral home and sharing with you dear readers a glimpse into our town, which is actually one of four National Heritage sites (the others are Vigan, Taal and Silay)! I realized not everyone is familiar with the typical Filipino provincial lifestyle so I've decided to take you on a "tour" of my mom's hometown of Pila, Laguna.

This is our 400 year old church and the town plaza...

Our patron saint is St. Anthony, and my lola would often tell me that if I wanted to find items I have lost, I should pray to St. Anthony! True enough, my prayers seeking help in finding stuff I've misplaced always get answered!

The fountain within the church courtyard...

This is the church altar...

This is our "munisipyo", better known these days as the town hall...

The spring water fountain where Pilenos used to draw drinking water from...

Our ancestral home which was designed by my great great-grandfather and built in the early 1900s...

As with typical urban legends (or shall I say "rural legends") it has been said that the land where our house and where our relatives' homes now stand used to be a graveyard! This claim is highly probable as the the town was relocated to its present site because the original town site was susceptible to extreme flooding.

Our living room...

The silong which in the olden days housed sacks and sacks of palay (unmilled rice) from the farm! I remember during harvest season, the palay would be laid out on the highways and streets to dry, and then stored in the silong prior to milling. Now it houses our excess stuff, exercise equipment and lots of lounging areas. When the weather gets too hot, we retreat to the silong because it is much cooler here!

Our neighbors' homes. The funny thing is, all our neigbors are our relatives as well! Think of the town plaza as the family compound, hehehe! I think one of the main reasons why our town plaza is well preserved is because this has always been a family effort!

Because I took these photos last month, and that month is Flores de Mayo time, a procession was the order of the day! Now a procession wouldn't be complete without...

The altar boys leading the way...

The majorettes in their short skirts and white boots...

The marching band...

The sagalas...

The hermanos and hermanas...

and of course, The Blessed Virgin Mary, to whom the flowers of May are offered to every day for the whole month!

If you'd like to see a National Heritage site, there's no need to travel all the way to Ilocos, Batangas (well, ok that is still quite near too) or Negros! Just hop on your car and drive all the way to Pila, Laguna! It's a mere 1.5 hours away from Makati!

Monday, June 09, 2008

Style SOS: Filipiniana Attire

Hi Tin,

I'm going to attend a seminar in Rome for a month. I later on found out that there will be an "International Day" of sorts and the participants must wear native costumes. I don't have a clue about what to wear and where to get it. The Imelda dress (I don't know what it's called) was what I had in mind at first but my friend thinks it's over the top. The guys will wear barong. Any ideas?



Hi Che! Thanks for your question! =)

My sister seems to agree with your friend's opinion, because as one of the "hermanas", she had to wear this during our town's Flores de Mayo celebration last month:

But personally, I think our traditional Filipiniana terno with butterfly sleeves is such a beautiful article of clothing that will certainly draw raves from your international colleagues! It is such a shame if you decide not to wear one!

If you could get your hands on a Joe Salazar, Pitoy Moreno or a Patis Tesoro terno (borrow one if you have to!), that would be the best!

I am not entirely sure if ternos are available off-the-rack, as they are usually tailor made, and should fit you snugly. You can always have a terno made, and it will range from as low as Php1,500 to as high as Php100,000 depending on the fabric used (ternos made of pina fiber will of course cost more, starting at at least Php20,000). My mom is from Laguna and I know for a fact that you can have ternos made for as low as Php2,000, including beadwork and handpainted flowers! Of course, the more fabric used, the more expensive it gets!

Should you decide not to wear a terno, you can wear a "modern" baro't saya instead! As Raisa mentioned, you can just wear a plain gown, or say a black skirt, and pair it with a baro made of jusi or pina! These you can buy in the Filipiniana section of Rustans or SM. Check out Balikbayan Handicrafts and Quiapo too!

You can then accessorize with a tambourine necklace and matching "payneta" and earrings if you'd like!

Of course, you may also consider wearing a "tribal" inspired costume...

Or a modern version of the terno as interpreted by London-based Filipino designer Lesley Mobo!

Really, there are plenty of options for us Filipinas. So thank you Che for making the effort to dress up and for thinking hard about what you should be wearing in Rome! Thanks for representing the Philippines! Whatever Filipiniana dress you decide to wear, I am sure you will make our countrymen proud!

(Photo credits:,
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