April 06, 2014

How you can shop with L'adorn

Nowadays there are a lot of ways to do business. Let me state the obvious. The net. In other word the Online way. In the UK, doing business online is already an established business. It's safe and convenient. Not to mention you are able to browse thousands and thousands of products just at the tip of your fingers. Here, there are rights to protect the customer. Like for example, if you do online you must have a return and refund policy. This will able the customer to returned the goods back to the retailer if they are unsatisfied with them. And we have not to worry about our confidential infos being keyed in at the checkout page. Because they have a very safe payment gateway system.

The technology has helped someone like us and me tremendously in running a full business. Even long distance. Many Malaysian are not yet have the confident to buy things online. Especially from those sellers who sell in the social media. I really don't blame them. Take instagram for example. It's super easy you can snap an instant picture and upload them and write "pre-order them today. To buy please whatsapp". Haha how simple.

Although I have nothing against people who does business this way, I also think that it is very important that you buy something from a retailer that have a return and refund policy. Or an established retailer. I totally understand that it is also expensive to have an official online store. Take L'adorn for instant. We pay roughly about RM1000 permonth just for the hosting space. And that does not include any other bits and pieces like the payment gateway fees, extension for the website, cpanel etc. You may pay on average about RM1500 permonth depending on your traffic and spaces. It's basically like opening a physical boutique if it in Malaysia.

But having tell all this I am still an advocate when it comes to online shopping. Why? Because it is super convenient for a working mom like me. Plus, we got to reached a wider audience. From all over the country or even more from all over the world.

Anyway, we at L'adorn have tried our best to encourage people to shop online. For those who are new and never bought something online, here's your chance to do it. Here is the link on where we teach our new customers on how to shop with L'adorn. I swear you're gonna love it more everyday!

April 05, 2014

How L'adorn got born

Most of my family and friends know I am running a small business of online retailing named L'adorn. I haven't actually told the real story of L'adorn yet but it is actually a fulltime proper running business with staffs, an office and an online web store. The other day Hijabi Stailista from TV9 Malaysia came to London to interview designers and bloggers in Europe including the UK. And one of them was me. Although I am not a designer but I had the honoured of being interviewed by them. 

 When they asked what is the history of L'adorn, I actually paused for a while. 

L'adorn has long been a plan of mine since 2009 when I started selling Tie rack scarves to my friends and readers in Malaysia. With a love and passion for beautiful fabrics and scarves I wanted to bring together scarves from different types and different corner of the world and sell them. So I have been saving some extra money from my scholarship that I received for my capital. Naturally my audience was Malaysian. But then to actually sell something from London and to have orders and to post them to Malaysia was actually ridiculous because of the expensive shipping cost. My margin was peanuts. So I hold on to the idea until I could find the right time and resources. 

 3 years later on 2012 luck has it that this girl name Ayu, who was then my blog reader chatted with me about her business has stopped because her UK supplier increased the prices of the scarves sold to her. she lost her only supplier at that time. Ayu was such a nice girl. The first time I met her was when she went for a holiday in London with her family and she was kind enough to offered to bring my skincare routine from Malaysia to me. Although I didn't know her that well I was interested to know about her business in Malaysia. She sold scarves right after she went back to Malaysia from the holiday. I told her I could probably be her supplier if she wanted to but she wanted something more. She wanted me to be her partner. Obviously I didn't think it was feasible at that time as I was in UK and she was in Msia. And to be honest I'm not the type who simply do something so serious like this with a stranger or someone I don't know well enough but she was such a sweetheart about it I decided why not. 

 I suggested to her the name L'adorn and to use her old platform (which already had fans) and to rebrand everything. Surprisingly She was OK with it and went along the plan. So there you go, L'adorn was realised. Until today L'adorn is co-owned and run with a small number staffs of 6. Today, L'adorn has a whole new business model.  

Of course there were lots ups and downs when you are doing a business. Naturally with 2 different personality and taste, Ayu and I had many many different opinions and miscommunications. Especially when both of us do not live in the same continent. I learn a lot during the past 2 years I did business with her. In fact I learn a lot more the past 2 years compare to what I learn throughout my studies (well PhD is exceptional. That is a whole new story on what I learn. Haha!). 

One most important lesson I learn was to really really really think about who you choose to be your partner in doing business. You either worked it out or you loose someone. It's like marriage really Except in business it is much more easier to get out from when there are troubles. Like the saying goes, you will not know a person until you either live with them or do business with them. I was so so lucky that mine is Ayu. I could not thank God enough for destined me to work with her. And I pray to Allah s.w.t that L'adorn and the relationship that has been build stays forever.

This proved that it is not impossible to do anything even when you live in another country and wanted to start a business in another country. Lots of people do so. It's harder but it is not impossible. I shall tell the stories of L'adorn bits by bits in this blog so that maybe one day my kids can benefit from it. Or probably someone out there can too.


Ayu and I circa 2011 in Harrods London

April 03, 2014

Pearl Daisy Asia Tour 2014

Most of hijabis + Fashionist know Amenakin - The famous inspiring muslim youtuber. Who doesn't? With a very supportive husband, we all love her dearly. I've watched her since she initially started uploading her hijab tutorial on Youtube. Those days her fans are still small and her PearlDaisy online Store is very simple. But now... She has graced mainstream TV in the UK talking about her journey and give lots of motivational talks to the public. Apart from that she's a mom of 2 and an entrepreneur who designed her own hijab with a hood called the Hoojab. Phew.. She's very inspiring guys.

Naturally, with a high number of fans followers of 200,000 on her Facebook page, she would love to meet them (or you guys!). Organized by Islamic Lifestyle Magazine Aquila, Amena will be having her first Asia Tour this year named after her online store Pearl Daisy.

So for those of you who (like me) love watching her doing tutorials online and give motivational speeches, you are now able to meet her face to face during this tour. The event will be more than just talks. It's a showcase of current fashions hosted by Pearl Daisy brand as well as art and music. Supporting acts in the tour are El Seed, a Tunisian artist, plus size designer Jane Watson, designer Lulu Alhadad and Singaporean rapper Daly Filsuf. The details are as below and for more info visit their official event web.

Kuala Lumpur
April 18, 3pm at the Duchess Place
MYR120 (early bird, closes April 17)
MYR150 (at door)
MYR180 (Aquila VIP, closes April 17)
MYR52.50 (Tertiary students and NS Men)

April 20, 12pm at the Orchid Country Club
SGD100 (early bird, closes April 19)
SGD120 (at door)
SGD150 (Aquila VIP, closes April 19)
MYR64.49 (Tertiary students)

Tickets are now on sale at www.pearldaisyasiatour.com

Official Facebook, Instagram and Twitter Hashtag: #AquilaPearlDaisyTour

March 28, 2014

What a mom to do

I once wrote that doing a PhD is one of the most challenging thing to do. That was a long time ago. Well...not that I'm gonna change my statement but now...being a mom...especially of two..take challenging to a whole new level. Oh my god.

There's not a day goes by without getting surprises. Kids are unpredictable. Su.Per.Unpredictable. You think they don't know a thing but they know almost everything. And it's true what they say, you learn a lot  new things everyday when you are with a kid. Not just things but you learn about them too. And most of the time it's just a failed attempt to handle them. Haha. I laugh now but usually I'm not laughing though (not in a bad way I promise).

At the age of 2, you realised that your kid has started to copy whatever you do or say. Parents have a major influence over their own kids. Let me tell you one very important lesson I learn. Everything starts at HOME. The way you teach your kids to discipline, the way you talk, the words you use in your everyday life, the way you treat people, the way you handle your work or your life. Kids downloaded all these and embedded them forever. That's why some parents take pride in their children.

As a parent we want to show the best example to our kids. So that one day they will grow up to be a fine person. Not only they deserve the best education or the best life but they also deserve to be the best person that they could be by following the examples that you have set to show them. If you are kiasu, they will grow up thinking kiasu is fine. If you are selfish, they might become selfish too without even realising it. You help to build their character. Especially for mom, where in Islam itself said that our job is to nourish and teach our kids (but that doesn't mean dad can cheat). So you gotta be kind to people, bring your boy to the masjid, read lots of book, love knowledges, show that you don't take things for granted and you work hard to get to where you are. Don't just give them, teach them. They deserve it. Because when they are 30, they will say and think "my mom and dad made me who I am today".

One time I forgot to do something. Wil was playing with Fairuz. I couldn't remember what I forgot but Fairuz reminded me and I immediately utter the word S*** loudly in front of Wil. Now you think kids they don't know but they do. As Fairuz was saying "Yanggggg!!" Wil was laughing at me while trying to utter the same word. He was laughing as if he knows what was going on. It was hilarious. I know I know. I did say a few times to him "Wil! Don't use that word okay. Mommy made a mistake. Don't use that word". But it was too late as he was still busy trying to imitate me.

*sigh my boy. He's a sulk champion nowadays.

March 20, 2014

My little guy

My little guy can't wait to be a grown up these days. He copied almost everything we do. It's a critical stage for him and it a beware-what-you-say-or-do stage for us. We gotta make sure what we say or do is appropriate for him to copy. I think this is the stage where they are the most adorable ever.

Wilwil is a very soft and gentle person. One time he played with my pencil. Now this wasn't any ordinary pencil. It was a gift from a friend who visited Ireland. It is green and on its tail attached a leprechaun figure. Wilwil took the pencil and tried to imitate an old person with a walking stick. As if the pencil was the stick, he bended his body so that pencil could touch the floor. I was so stunned as to where he got that idea. And it was so hilarious I couldn't helped myself to laugh very out loud. He realised i was laughing at him and started to cry. Poor baby. In actual fact, I wasn't laughing at him. I was laughing at the gesture and how cute it was. I wonder who he copied that from.

he has started to sleep on his own toddler bed. We bought it off on ebay by bidding for £10. He loves his bed and would want to sleep there instead of sleeping on our bed or the baby cot where he previously sleeps. But for now he is still sleeping in our room because obviously mommy is very clingy and he is such a precious thing. I couldn't bear letting him sleeping alone although he could because he never woke up in the middle of the night anymore.

Many people asked me, how is he now that Alana's in the picture. I would say he is the most loving brother ever. The minute Alana starts to cry, he would call me and make a sad face and point to Alana. He would pat her and stroke her head gently. He would want to hold her and kiss her despite the fact that he doesn't even know how to kiss he just press his head to Alana's head. That's kiss to him. Haha.

He is such an amazing little boy he makes me proud everyday. I love being his mom but I think I am not good enough for him. Sometimes I lose my patience with him and he doesn't deserve that at all. He grows up so fast I couldn't keep up. 

One thing I learn from being a mom is that you seriously seriously gotta control your emotions. Everything you do is a green light that it is okay for your kid to act that way in the future. If you loose your patience he will too. If you are a clam person, Insha'allah he will too. So it is best to keep calm and think. Or at least have your partner to calm you down or take over a situation when your little one is having one of his acts. And kids, they only reacted that way when there is something wrong. Very rarely they just acting up just because they feel like it. They spoiled because we spoil them. 

These beautiful moments of bringing up your baby and watching him grown and learn isn't forever. It's so short it could feels like it's just a blink of an eye. I shall make the best of it and cherish every moment and keep it close to my heart. I shall learn to reflect all the time so that one day I can look back and there shall not be a even a slightest hint of regret in bringing up my baby.

I love you Wil.

March 17, 2014

Post Pregnancy Write Up

Dear Journal,

The other day on the 10th of march 2014 specifically, Alana turned 6 weeks 5 days. She has started to smile after recovering from a very bad eczema (I swear you will never be tire of a baby smile). We had to stay in the hospital for 2 nights and the Dr had to inject her with antibiotic. The drug was somewhat a miracle. The eczema went off almost a few hours and it has started to clear off after about a day. I keep on asking why. Why did she had eczema and what's the point? She's so little she doesn't deserve the pain and suffering. But Allah knows best and I just have to let qada' and qadar run their course and for me to learn to increase my patience. Which I realised I am lack of these past few months. I'm not sure why I am easily annoyed. I mean I would understand if I were Sheldon Cooper. But I am no way a genius. Hehhee... Whatever. (See I told you...)

By the way. Life is getting hectic-er by the day with a baby and a toddler. Thank god mom and sis are here to help. I am still not confident enough with taking care both alone for a whole day. Especially with handling the famous terrible 2. Yes! Wilwil has reached that stage. He demanded attention and he's not getting any from mommy like the good old days.

I bought a huge mirror the other day and I have a target! I aim to shed (not all) this baby weight in 3 months time. Bahahah! I'm kidding myself right? what with mommy here. It's food heaven over here. And no you can't have them. Bahaha but still definitely no harm in targeting. Kan?

So let see how it would go. My inspiration - Kate middleton. So okay... here I go.. Day 1: The target set... (eh wait..don't have a weighing machine how la? okay la gotta buy one now)


September 11, 2013

A tiny huge news

So I'm back in Malaysia for a few good weeks for some holiday and business purposes. Fairuz is still in the UK working but I got on the plane earlier than him so I can spend some time relaxing and working while having someone there to take care and play with baby Wil.

When you are living overseas with only you, your baby and your husband life sure is demanding to a whole new level. Having some quiet time alone without juggling between washing poops, cooks, cleans and do works are such distance memories which I can't remember when was the last time I had. So Fairuz and I decided that I should just go back and let baby Wil plays with a lot of people. And I can blog too!

I have huge news! I am actually expecting another one. Uhuh!! heard that right. I'm 4 months along and the first 3 months was the toughest. Even tougher than when I had baby Wil. I got a toddler to take care and my body was constantly tired all I wanted to do was sleep. Big respect to other mommies who had done it a million times more harder than I did.

And oh! by the time this little one is out, baby Wil..or should I just say big Wil will be 2!! OMG I hope I can cope.

"Look at me! I'm a big boy now I'll be a big brother! but err errmm I think need a diaper change"