My Wardrobe

A happy girl is a pretty girl

Ms May Anne Pek goes for colourful and sweet-looking clothes and accessories.
Ms May Anne Pek goes for colourful and sweet-looking clothes and accessories.ST PHOTOS: DAVE LIM

Ms May Anne Pek believes that confidence is the best accessory

Ms May Anne Pek, 19, is waiting to get into Monash University in Melbourne, Australia. Her dad is an accountant and her mum a housewife. She has a 17-year-old brother

How would you describe your style?

It's like a macaron - colourful, sweet and varied.

When did your interest in fashion start?

Since baby rompers and diapers stopped being my only outfit options. My dad used to buy beautiful Disney princess costumes for me - that was what turned me into a dressy little tot.

My mum has been my "stylist" for the longest time. She has the most amazing taste in fashion. Even after I developed my own style, her predilection for timeless, feminine pieces rubbed off on me.

She taught me how to tie an outfit together using subtle pops of colour - my favourite trick is to match my red Kate Spade bag (photo 1), which I got for $235, with a statement red lipstick.

Who are your favourite designers and what are your go-to brands?

I don't usually stick to any particular brand, but I get many of my basic pieces from H&M and Uniqlo.

I adore Christian Dior and his work in the 1950s - he redefined effortless chic. His designs ranged from pantsuits to gowns that were edgy or whimsical, but despite the variations, his trademark elegance shone through in every piece.

Who is your style icon?

The late British actress Audrey Hepburn. She had a way of turning simple, understated pieces into timeless, classy looks.

What are your favourite pieces in your wardrobe?

I hand-stitched a replica of the yellow dress Emma Stone wore in last year's jazz musical film La La Land (photo 2).

It's made with $30 worth of cotton jersey. The sunny yellow colour puts a smile on my face and whenever I wear it, I feel like dancing.

This red silk robe (photo 3) is another favourite. It's actually a bathrobe I picked up for $7.90 in Chinatown. The billowy material makes me feel like a Han dynasty princess. I love the traditional Chinese print - it's a fun, stylish way to show off my heritage.

When I need a delicate touch of bling, I wear this silver lamp-post necklace (photo 4). I bought it in Belfast at the Narnia-themed Lamppost Cafe for £80 (S$144).

I grew up reading C.S. Lewis' The Chronicles Of Narnia and this necklace perfectly captures the charm and magic of those tales.

What are your weaknesses when it comes to shopping?

My weakness is a good lipstick. I'm so particular about the lipstick I wear that I have five in nearly identical shades, but I insist that they are different.

What is your favourite splurge piece?

I don't usually splurge on clothes, but I think a quality bag can go a long way. I've had this black Agnes B bag (photo 5) for nearly 10 years. I can't remember its price, but it was my first branded bag.

Make-up is another thing I splurge on. One of my favourite red lipsticks is Chanel's Rouge Allure Ink in the Experimente shade. It's the perfect classic red.

Is there a purchase you have regretted?

A pair of pretty nude heels that I bought without realising they cost $169 instead of $69.

What is your most recent fashion purchase?

A lovely pink dress that I bought from vintage shop Dulcetfig for $59 (photo 6). I immediately fell in love with its unique 1910s structure and style. The chiffon material gives it a modern look.

What is the best shopping or style advice you live by?

Hepburn said: "I believe that happy girls are the prettiest girls."

Love your style and look and, most importantly, love yourself. Confidence is the only accessory that never goes out of style.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 18, 2017, with the headline 'A happy girl is a pretty girl'. Print Edition | Subscribe