Cinema Style Ep. 6

Annnnnd we’re back, with the third instalment of Cinema Style ~Christmas Edition~!

I’m thinking I will actually end this mini-series off here (the best things always come in trilogies, right?) but there will, of course, be other non-festive episodes to come.

What better way to finish off here than with the classic Christmas movie – It’s A Wonderful Life.

Thing is, this is not my favourite movie. It’s not even my favourite Christmas movie, especially since I don’t particularly count it as such. To me, this film is a story about life, about all the human experiences tied into it. It just happens to have an abundance of scenes that take place at Christmastime.

Released in 1946 and directed by Frank Capra, It’s A Wonderful Life stars James Stewart as George Bailey who one day wishes he had never been born. Upon hearing this wish, an angel names Clarence (played by the wonderful Henry Travers) shows George what would happen if he had never been born, and how many lives he has impacted for the better. Ultimately, the film is a celebration of life and being thankful for what we have.

By now, the film has been spoofed so many times that the plot is awful familiar even if you’ve never seen it. (A specific Sabrina The Teenage Witch novel comes to mind.)

Costume design for the film was done by Edward Stevenson, known for his work on a complete different movie about life, Citizen Kane. Stevenson’s eye for well-tailored suits and All-American style is clearly shown in Wonderful Life.

Remember the scene where George shows up to Mary’s house, where the “lasso you the moon scene” occurs? Mary’s white bathrobe and George’s collegiate finery are pretty iconic.

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“You want the moon, Mary?” Image source.

In fact, Mary (played by Donna Reed) is one of the stars of the show with her wardrobe choices. Her outfit at the dance, her Christmas finery and always-impeccable hair leave a lasting on-screen impression.

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The Charleston scene. Bot Mary’s amazing ruffles and white shoe combo. Image Source.

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George and Mary. Now THIS is dressing for dinner. Image Source.

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Check that cap and coat combination! Image Source.

A special shoutout needs to be given to Violet, played by the beautiful Gloria Grahame and who has one of the best outfit moments in the entire film.

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Need I even say more? If I had this ensemble, I would wear it all summer long and strut like there is no tomorrow.

And we shall not forget the hat, either.

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Never forget the hat. Image Source.

Violet is dressed for her role as good-time gal and socialite perfectly. But as with many classic movies, a love of fashion and outlandish outfits is a characteristic of a person who cannot be taken seriously. Obviously, I disagree, but it’s a trope as old as cinema itself.

Other than Violet, and Clarence with his angel-eseque white shift, little of the characters is said through their wardrobe.

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Clarence and George. Image Source.

The clothes are situational, and instead build more towards the dream-like feel of George’s whole trip through his life. It’s less about a specific character expressing themselves as it is about the world built around George, both in his real life and in the what-if alternate reality. The clothes are timely,. Each outfit Mary wears is tied to a moment in her life with George. The robe when he comes to see her. The dress when they dance the Charleston, and so on. The clothes become markers of events in George’s life.

This resonates with me, because when I do look back on certain moments in my life, the memory may be triggered by what I was wearing. I’ll see a photograph of myself in a certain top and recall a day I wore it when I was a teenager, when I went out with friends or had my heart broken for the 100th time.

While clothes aren’t our whole lives, we do live our lives in them and therefore they become inexorably linked to the events that have shaped the people we’ve become. For George Bailey, it’s a wonderful life wearing Edward Stevenson’s suits.

 

Cinema Style Ep. 5

On this episode of Cinema Style, we’re looking at another classic Christmas flick, this time without the Technicolor.

It was one fateful Christmas a few years back when I discovered Christmas in Connecticut with my mom. That began a love affair with the 1945 film that has lasted to this day. It’s a holiday rom-com with great comedic chops and a dashing sailor as the leading man. What’s not to like?

Dennis Morgan plays the sailor, Jefferson Jones. Peter Godfrey directed the picture. Our leading lady is none other than the gorgeous Barbara Stanwyck. Stanwyck plays Elizabeth Lane, a single New Yorker who can’t cook, pretending to be a Connecticut housewife for the sake of her wildly popular column, “Diary of a Housewife.” She gets into trouble when her publisher, who knows none of her deception, plans to have a young war hero stay on Elizabeth’s Connecticut farm for Christmas. And as with any 1940s rom-com, hijinks and misunderstandings ensue.

The film itself is delightful. Sydney Greenstreet and S.Z. Sakall are note perfect in their supporting roles, not to mention a cameo from Dick Elliott as the jolliest judge you’ve ever encountered.

But instead of going into plot details, let’s get right to it with the costuming. Or more specifically, Elizabeth Lane’s to-die-for wardrobe.

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Reginald Gardiner as John Sloane and Stanwyck as Elizabeth Lane. Image via Pinterest.

Her “Connecticut farming” attire is honestly me if I had to wear farming attire.

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Stanwyck and Morgan as Elizabeth and Jefferson. Image Source.

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Stanwyck as Elizabeth. Image via Pinterest.

Billowing skirts, fitted jackets that show off an unfairly tiny waist and the infamous mink coat are just a few of the characteristics of Elizabeth’s style. (Of course now you can obtain a faux fur coat that is just as glam.)

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The infamous mink coat. Image Source.

Bear with me here while I give a few pictures of the mink coat scene to note the incredible high-waisted trouser and white blouse combination Elizabeth is sporting, as well as the most beautiful, best-dressed delivery woman ever seen in the history of cinema.

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This look is CRUCIAL and ideal and difficult to get a good image of. Image Source.

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One more for the pants. Image Source.

The costume design for the film came from two talented individuals. Elizabeth’s gowns were created by costume designer Milo Anderson and, once again, EDITH HEAD.

This series of Christmas-inspired blog posts is quickly turning into an ode to Edith, but can I help it if she styled every old Christmas movie I like? Let me sing to you of Edith, folks. If the costuming is worth taking note of, you know she was probably behind it.

Milo Anderson does also deserve to be sung about, for his designs in this film and for his work on other films such as The Adventures of Robin Hood and High Sierra. The gowns he created for Stanwyck in this film are stunning.

Once again, we see a wardrobe that reflects the character’s self. At the beginning of the film, we see Elizabeth as the hotshot New Yorker she is, with her stylish power suits and luxe details.

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Elizabeth and John. Image Source.

 

Throughout the movie, she holds onto her glam persona, clearly ill-suited to the role she is pretending to play. Occasionally a more causal look seeps into the mix, but ultimately that’s what Elizabeth is doing: playing a role.

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Stanwyck as Elizabeth. Note the necessary velvet bow. Image Source.

She is not the amazing mother and chef her column makes her out to be, but she also doesn’t need to be those things in order to be valid or successful, despite what some of the men in the film say. (She does find love at the end of the movie, sure, but who doesn’t like a cute sailor, anyway?) As we get to know Jefferson Jones, we learn that he is a decent cook, the one who’s good with babies, the one more competent in stereotypically “female” roles in the household. What the two characters find together is balance, once they’re able to be honest with each other.

And in my opinion, living as a writer in New York, wearing some great high-waisted pants? That’s the ideal life.

Back to Basics

In the summer, and for a portion of autumn, I went through a style rut; one of those periods when you suddenly hate everything in your closet and everything looks terrible on you and maybe you should move to a remote patch of forest in Germany and wear the same track pants and t-shirt for the rest of your life because who cares.

Maybe that last part was too specific. But you can catch my drift.

There is no immediate cure to a spot of low self-esteem. I encounter them frequently, and while I do have my go-to quick fixes (listening to 80s music, going for a run, watching a good action movie) there is no true solution for it. It takes a bit of time and a dash of inspiration.

For me, that was found in returning to the simple stuff – going back to basics. And I mean that both in a “go back to what you know” way and a “wearing plain basics is awesome” way.

Once you find that space to return to, the inspiration and creativity comes back bit by bit. I’ve become excited about getting dressed again, about planning outfits the night before and putting together looks from head to toe.

It’s the same with this blog. Since I’m working full-time and writing occasionally for Novella, there is little time to come back to the blog, despite how much I love it. But I wanted to, and to come back for the third or fourth time, I decided to go back to the beginning with a simple outfit post on a simple outfit.

Simple, but effective. (I think, at least.)

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I love creating a look based entirely in neutrals, either warm earthy-tones or stark black and white. I matched the outfit almost entirely except for my blue jeans, which add some colour and depth to the outfit. Not to mention, a turtleneck and pair of mom jeans is a classic fall/winter look. Do I look like a 70s ski mom? Maybe. Am I okay with that? Definitely.

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While I definitely love my more outlandish looks (and of course, “outlandish” is a sliding scale dependent on the person) I also love donning my more subtle creations.

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This is a look I would wear absolutely anywhere: shopping, a coffee date, lunch, dinner, work. You name it, this is the go-to I have for it.

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And with the cold weather coming, we have to keep coats in mind. This long coat from Monki goes with everything in my wardrobe and is perfect to chuck on before speeding out the door. I do always love a good outerwear moment, and am impatiently awaiting opportunities to bust out some other coats in my collection.

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Sure, this look isn’t going to go on a Top 10 list. It’s something I feel good in: comfortable and confident, something that puts me in the mindset to create other, more exciting outfits. It’s something that, frankly, works, when nothing else does.

OUTFIT DETAILS

Coat – Monki via ASOS (Similar)

Turtleneck – Anthropologie (Similar)

Jeans – American Apparel (Similar)

Belt – Free People

Boots – Urban Outiftters

Bag – Urban Outfitters

 

The Last Days of Summer

[Hello everyone, I’m back! Did you miss me? I wound up going on an unplanned hiatus but have now returned with a new look on the blog and new content! I’ve yet to determine if I will be posting weekly again, but my goal is to produce more high-quality content if I take more time in between posts. Stay tuned to this channel.]

When you’re a kid, the last days of summer are the worst. All you do is attempt to squeeze as much adventure and fun out of waning time while avoiding an onslaught of back-to-school advertisements that seem to keep coming earlier every year. You stay out later, see your friends more or laze around the house more. You relax with desperation. You are utterly inconsolable when your parents take you to Staples for new pencils.

As an adult, my calendar has changed from the September-June focus I’ve known for the majority of my life. It’s still hard to get used to. Every September I feel like I need to be doing something, that something’s missing. That feeling has manifested in hair or wardrobe changes, but it still doesn’t sit right.

What I’ve been trying to do this year is experience the last days of summer the way they’re meant to be experienced: languidly and luxuriously. As someone who generally loathes certain qualities of summer (heat, bugs, everyone wanting to go the beach) and relishes the transition to fall (it’s the best season don’t @ me) I’ve been genuinely enjoying this tail end of summertime. And for me, this enjoyment resulted in a wave of inspiration. One of the reasons I had taken such a long break from the blog was a complete lack of post ideas and loss of confidence in my style. I wasn’t sure how or when to continue. Maybe it’s the amount of folk music I’ve been listening to, or the amount of gin and tonics I’ve been drinking, but August somehow sparked my creativity again, into making a lookbook.

I wanted to create outfits that represented this time of year. To me, the haze of August heat and the buzz of cicadas create a fever dream in shades of gold and burt orange, and I wanted my colour palette to reflect that. It’s still intensely hot and humid here in Ontario, but fall is coming, and for me that combination results in an odd feeling of utter laziness with expectation. The silhouettes range from wide and billowing to short and structured, all worn while squinting into the burning sun.

And that’s all of the inspiration that came into this end of summer lookbook. Enjoy.

LOOK 1

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Jumpsuit — Oak + Fort

Bralette — Victoria’s Secret (Similar)

Sandals —  Heel Boy (Similar)

Short Necklace — Anthropologie

Long Necklace — Etsy

Bracelet — Oak + Fort

Watch — Vintage

LOOK 2

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Dress — Kiss the Sky (via Asos)

Sneaks — Converse

Choker — Urban Outfitters (Similar)

Sunnies — Anthropologie

All rings from Victoire and Urban Outfitters

LOOK 3

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Tee — Free People

Skirt — Vince Camuto (Similar)

Hat — Rag & Bone

Sandals — Heel Boy (Similar)

Necklace — Etsy

All rings from Victoire and Urban Outfitters

Two Fave Spring Trends

I always gravitate towards stripes in the spring and summer. It’s partially due to the amount of stripe-y stuff the stores get in, partially because the warmer weather always has me thinking wistfully of that alternate universe where I’m from southern France in the 1960s. It’s not a big deal.

Stripes is a spring trend that’s pretty much guaranteed to come around, right up there with whites, florals and silks.

A trend I did see come up this year that is not as common was bight, bold red. It was all over the runway and naturally trickled down to the high-street stores. I couldn’t go into any Urban Outfitters, Topshop or Aritzia without seeing pops of red sprinkled into the denim and neutrals like freckles.

I love this trend. Red is such an eye-catching colour that looks fantastic on everyone. It’s classic, it’s modern, it’s timeless. Aside from black, it’s the colour of femme fatales around the world.

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I’ve been looking for ways to work both of these trends into my wardrobe this season. Stripes was easy because of full pieces like a striped shirtdress or a pinstripe jacket. These pants I found at Topshop are another perfect way to style stripes, and are a great summer pant to wear when wool trousers are just too constricting and heavy to survive in.

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I actually found the red bag before the top. It was a lucky find at Forever 21, something I thought would be perfect as a pop of colour on monochrome outfits. Imagine that bad boy accessorizing all white? Killer.

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On another fateful day I saw this red linen top at Oak + Fort and then rest is history. A flattering neckline and the best colour for the season.

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Pairing these two together was a no-brainer. Since the pants have a stripe, I’ve been wearing them with solid colours, but wearing them with straight black or white doesn’t quite cut it. Likewise with the top, tucking it into a little skirt or trouser is the perfect way to wear it. Throw in a pair of converse and the aforementioned little red bag and I’ve got a good out-on-the-town weekender vibe.

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Sure, I’ve yet to time travel to 1960s and magically be born as a sophisticated French lady, but this outfit has me fully in my summertime mindset, you know the mindset where you magically forget all of your deadline and responsibilities and play “Island in the Sun” on repeat.

[And yes, I did dye my hair blonde!! We’re back to the light side.]

OUTFIT DETAILS

Top – Oak + Fort (Not available, but pictured here with co-ordinating pant.)

Trousers – Topshop

Shoes – Converse

Bag – Forever 21

Watch – Vintage

Sunnies – Aldo (Similar)

What the Heck is Occasionwear Anyway?

The budding trees and blooming flowers of spring coincide with another annual event that marks the foray into the warmer months. It’s not a natural phenomenon so much as it is a social one. It’s wedding season.

Working in retail, I get so many women who come in looking for something to wear to a wedding. For some, it’s a fruitless search, trying on dress after dress only to leave empty-handed and frazzled. For others, it’s a hunt and conquer operation. They find one item, try it in two sizes and leave with the correct one. Often, these customers remind of Say Yes to the Dress, except it’s guest edition. (Actually, writing that is making me think of the spinoff Say Yes to the Dress: Bridesmaids. I don’t even know if they air it anymore but if you can find an episode, watch it for the drama alone.)

No matter if you’re a world-weary wedding veteran or a nervous newbie, the task of picking something to wear to the big day can be daunting, judged usually by your relationship to the couple. Distant cousins’ wedding? Dressing appropriate only to avoid family gossip. Best friends’ wedding? The pressure is on.

Aside from weddings, spring and summer are the seasons of events. I’m not saying things just stop happening the rest of the year, but somehow there seem to be more graduations, birthdays, farewells and general gatherings of merriment than during the winter months. And most want to take advantage of the agreeable weather to look fly AF.

When choosing an outfit for these events, I’ve had my fair share of panic attacks. Like, what does business casual actually mean? How formal do I need to go here? How informal is this supposed to be? OH GOD THE PARTY IS OUTSIDE AND IT’S 35 DEGREES WHAT DO I DO.

I’m no wedding or big event veteran. I don’t have all the answers, but I do have some go-to outfits and tips for when you’re stuck on finding the right balance in occasionwear.

The Dress

Let’s start with a dress, because a lot of us start there. You want to find the right length, depending on where you’ll be. You won’t want to wear white if it’s a wedding (unless it’s specifically in the dress code.) You want something you can sit and move in. Something that won’t drive you nuts after an hour.

These requirements aren’t actually too tall an order. Most summer dresses are comfortable when the sizing is correct and there are so many gorgeous minis or maxis for whatever hemline you need.

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With this dress, I liked how it was a mini-maxi. The long outer layer is contrasted by a short slip, with eyefuls of leg balanced by cutouts in the dress.

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I found the minty green colour perfect for spring and summer events. It’s a popular shade at the moment and looks good on every skin tone.

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I paired this dress with some neutral heeled mules and simple gold jewellery. Since the dress itself is such a statement piece, I wouldn’t want to overload it with accessories. The mules are a perfect summer party shoe. It’s a heel, but it’s comfortable enough to wear all night.

Outfit Details

Dress – Anthropologie

Shoes – H&M (Similar)

The Jumpsuit

If you don’t want to mess around with colour, if neutrals are really more your style, then basic black is your friend. It’s a classic for a reason, even in the summertime.

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Instead of a black dress, though, I picked a jumpsuit. I’m a real jumpsuit gal. I love wearing wide-leg trousers this time of year and I think a jumpsuit is a really fun alternative to a dress. You’ll be comfortable, you won’t have to worry about sudden gusts of wind and you’ll definitely stand out.

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This jumpsuit is a classic colour and shape, but the back cutouts give it a little something extra and make it more event-worthy and memorable.

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I paired this piece with a simple white shoe and silver jewellery. Again, it’s a low block heel because that’s just my style and I want to be able to walk home after dancing.

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Even if you don’t go with the black, I’d recommend trying out a jumpsuit if you never have before. It’s the perfect gateway to that “effortless chic” gal you’ve always wanted to be.

Outfit Details

Jumpsuit – Topshop (Similar)

Shoes – Zara

Watch – Daniel Wellington

The Other Dress

So, we have our long formal dress, a good choice for a wedding maybe. But what about a garden party? What about a more laid-back outdoor event where the sun is hot and the drinks are free-flowing?

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I love this short linen-blend dress for moments like that. The neutral colour is perfect for summer and so easy to style. Some would argue this isn’t the most flattering silhouette. Maybe, but I’m also set if there’s a buffet.

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To style this dress, I went with some very low, casual mules and more gold jewellery. However I do think this is one where you could wear a pair of colourful earrings or a statement bracelet to dress it up a bit more.

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I tend to prefer a looser silhouette in dresses, but I also believe in the summer months it’s more comfortable to have something that doesn’t cling too much to the body. And having a cute, short flow dress in your wardrobe will be a godsend when you need something last minute for a family barbecue or a day out at the park with friends.

Outfit Details

Dress – Aritzia (Not quite similar, but other suggestions here and here.)

Shoes – H&M

Gold Bracelet – Oak + Fort

Another Brunch Date

I’ve said it before, ya girl loves a good brunch.

What I love even more is when that brunch coincides with Mother’s Day, and I’m able to spend the day gallivanting around town with my older sister and mom in tow.

Last weekend was a whirlwind of food, art and wine. Just the right side of luxurious. Aside from all of that, I love my mom dearly and my family is very close. Spending the weekend together was the best part.

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My mom, my sister and myself.

And, yes, our extravagant girls’ weekend did include a Mother’s Day buffet brunch at Epic in Toronto, and let me tell you I am still thinking about their Belgian waffles.

While deciding on an outfit for this occasion, I had two things in mind. Firstly, I wanted to look nice for my mom. Secondly, I wanted to be comfortable, as we had plans to traipse around the city that day.

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The median found with this look is decent, especially with the added bonus that these trousers have an elastic waist, so I was good to go to town on the buffet.

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It was a gorgeously sunny day on Sunday and to honour that I really wanted to stick with a light colour palette. As much as I love wearing black, there are some days that call for pastels and creams.

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I felt terribly spring-like and entirely prepared for mom day activities, which included walking to the AGO and making us stop so my sister could take these pictures of me.

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But, really, my true outfit validation came, naturally, from my mom, when she saw me and said,”You look so nice.” That was good enough for me.

OUTFIT DETAILS

Blouse – Aritzia

Trousers – Oak + Fort (Similar)

Shoes – Urban Outfitters (very, very old, definitely not available anymore)

Sunnies – Black Market Vintage

Denim Jacket – Topshop

Bag – Urban Outfitters (Similar)

Latest Faves: Spring Edition

Now that it’s the end of April and we’re finally getting some sunshine and days where a jacket isn’t a requirement, I thought it was a good time to do another round of what I’ve been discovering and rediscovering the last couple of months.

Fashion

For my clothing pieces this time around, I decided to style an overall look with the things mentioned in my favourites, since they’re all more general than specific things. Think of it as conceptual faves.

Denim Jackets, Mom Jeans and Vintage.

The perfect transition weather piece, right? And in Canada, transition weather essentially lasts until July and then it’s so hot you have trouble even thinking about putting on clothes, so it’s wise to invest in some ~light jackets~.

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Denim is really big right now, and I used to be so steadfastly against the denim-on-denim Canadian tuxedo trend that has risen from its early-2000s grave. Now that it’s back, I gotta say, I’m kinda into it. (And yeah I’m probably just a trend sheep. A treep.)

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I unearthed these American Apparel (RIP) mom jeans that are a perfect light wash for summer, and actually paired them with a vintage denim jacket. I’ve been wearing these jeans all the time lately. They are by far the most comfortable pair I own and there’s something a bit nostalgic about the wash and fit of them.

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My last fashion favourite is, again, a bit general. I’ve always liked wearing vintage, but lately I’ve been on a huge vintage kick. Browsing packed racks full of weird stuff and finding items that are magically able to fit me is my favourite hobby. I love the treasure-hunting aspect of it, especially if you dedicate the proper time sometimes required to find the good stuff. I’ve found pieces in my hunting like this button-up that are a bit strange. This top I found in the $5 bin at Mama Loves You, for example, has a car pattern on it and, inexplicably, blue heart buttons. I like the humour in a piece like this and I like the uniqueness it adds to my wardrobe.

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And anyway, who doesn’t like being able to say “it’s vintage” when someone asks you where you got something?

Converse

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In the spring and summertime, I live in my sneakers. I tend to walk everywhere in the warm weather, so I need something comfortable. More than that, I just feel like they go with everything. My only lament is how much I love the white converse and how easily I get them dirty.

Mules

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It’s a blessing that these types of shoes are everywhere right now, because ya girl cannot do a stiletto heel to save her life. I love the lower, block heels of these shoes. I love their simplicity and how easy they are to style. I am here for the mules.

These ones are from H&M, but I’ve seen similar ones in almost every store.

Mini Backpack

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And yet another 90s comeback trend I caved for. But, come on, this backpack from Urban Outfitters is so cute. Also I can fit a surprising amount of stuff in it.

Beauty

Milk Makeup

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I’ve only tried three products from Milk Makeup, but I love what I’ve tried. This is a brand I’ve heard a lot of hype about in the blogosphere and I was so excited to try it. Firstly, I’m a fan of the concept: makeup that you can apply with your fingers on the go. I also love the simple packaging and the products themselves, or at least the ones I’ve tried, have more than met my expectations. Catch me at Sephora raiding their selection the next time they get a restock.

The items pictured are (L to R): Eye Vinyl in “Bridge,” Liquid Strobe in “Ultraviolet,” Eye Pigment in “After Party.”

Chanel Illusion D’Ombre in “Moonlight Pink”

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I’m not going to lie to you, I bought this product years ago with straight Optimum points. If you’re not Canadian/don’t know about Shoppers Drug Mart, just know it’s a point system at a drug store chain than be redeemed on almost anything they have available. Naturally I went straight for the pricy makeup. I rather doubt I would have this product if I didn’t get it for free, because you can similar items from MAC and Maybelline, but I will say, since I do have it, I love it. The colour is beautiful and it works really well all over the eye or faintly as a highlighter. Since I’ve been favouring more simple makeup lately, my go-to is slathering this all over my eye and piling on mascara. It’s glam.

Too Faced “Papa Don’t Peach” Blush

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I raved about the Too Faced Sweet Peach Palette in my last favourites post, I believe, and here I am back with the blush. Honestly, I love everything from this collection. I like the smell of peaches and I’m easy prey for cute, gimmicky stuff. The thing about this blush is it’s ridiculously pretty on. I love it. Lately I’ve just been wearing this blush without a highlighter because it has a bit of shimmer in it. I already know this will be my ride or die through the summer.

Books

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Ross King – Mad Enchantment

I received this book as a Christmas present from my parents but had a huge delay in reading it, not because I didn’t want to, but because I got caught up in other reading material on my list. Now that I’ve properly dived into it, I can say I think it is just the most wonderful book. Monet is my fave historic painter, and this book shows him to be the sassy mofo he truly is.

V.E. Schwab – The Shades of Magic Trilogy

I had, in the tail end of winter, been looking for some transportive fiction I could really sink my teeth into. On a recommendation from a Chapters employee, I tried the first book in this trilogy and was immediately hooked. It’s got a lot of magic, action and some really interesting characters with a lot of depth. Highly recommended to anyone looking to be sucked into another world.

Music

Jay Som – Everybody Works

Okay, I learned that Jay Som (real name Melina Duterte) not only played all of the instruments on this album, but she recorded it in her bedroom. That blew my mind. It took an already cool album to ridiculous levels of coolness. Her sound is a bit like if the sun-bleached guitars of Real Estate had a baby with femme garage rock. You get me?

Fave tracks: Baybee, 1 Billion Dogs, Take It

Khalid – American Teen

This album kinda makes me wish I was a teenager again, but then I remember what being a teenager was like and I’m like ‘nah.’ Still love this whole album, though. Khalid’s sound is really laid-back with a touch of 80s inspiration. Summer soundtrack for sure.

Fave tracks: American Teen, Young Dumb & Broke, 8TEEN

Gorillaz – Humanz

GUESS WHO’S BACK. I just about lost it when I heard Gorillaz was putting a new album out on the 28th and I’ve been obsessively playing their early release tracks since. It’s always been difficult to pin down Gorillaz’ sound and this record is looking to be no different. Their songs can be so different from one another but somehow I’m into every one??? Magic.

Fave tracks: Andromeda, Saturnz Barz, Ascension

Miscellaneous

SKAM

Speaking of things that are back… I have most definitely talked about SKAM in a favourites post before and now it’s back for another season and I’m still obsessed with it, so here I am talking about it again. Each season focuses on a different main character in the same friend group and the one for this season is Sana, a Norwegian Muslim girl trying to make sense of her religion, herself, her friends and boyyyyys. All I can say about this show is its painfully relevant and relatable.

Chewing Gum

 

This show is just so goddam funny. If you haven’t seen it yet (it’s on Netflix) please consider giving it a go. Really, I laugh out loud at least twice an episode and some really interesting topics are covered in really hilarious ways.

Terrible, Thanks for Asking Podcast

I discovered this gem on a recommendation from my friend Clare. Hosted by author Nora McInery, this podcast that aims to talk honestly about pain, awkwardness and other uncomfortable human topics. The last episode I listened to, I cried. In the middle of Queen St. This is such an amazing podcast with the potential to help a lot of people.

 

Brunch Date

I have never, in my life, turned down a brunch invitation.

Going out for dinner is one thing: it’s dark, everyone is more well-dressed, the menu is more expensive and a much more extensive and pretentious drink list is involved. Dinner, I could take or leave, but going out for brunch is my jam. (There’s a breakfast pun in there somewhere. Laugh with me.)

Coffee. Hash browns. Eggs. Six dollar mimosas. Honestly, how could I refuse?

When I got an invite to go to lunch with three of my friends, I was excited for the whole week leading up to it. A little pathetic? Maybe, but I mean business when I say I love going out for brunch.

This post is quickly turning into a game of how often I can write the word “brunch” in 400 words.

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The four of us met up at Lola’s Kitchen on Church Street, and we had our six-dollar drinks and consumed copious amounts of breakfast foods. Bliss.

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In anyone is wondering, I had the curry tofu scramble.

Naturally, when I’m planning a brunch date, I’m automatically thinking about what I’m going to wear. My first thought was to go casual, to wear something low-key for a Saturday morning breakfast outing. My second thought was I still needed to look cool. It’s absolutely ridiculous, but since I became interested in fashion I feel like I’ve built this reputation for myself around my friends, where they always expect me to be dressed to the nines, or to have some painfully cool look put together.

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It should be noted, since I am currently writing this wearing grey sweat shorts and a sweater with a bear on it, that I am not always put together. I don’t always looking like I put any effort in.

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This train of thought nagged on me while I was getting dressed, but it got to the point where I was running late and I realized I was being ridiculous.

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I decide to go understated: high-waisted jeans, cream shirt and converse. It was gloriously warm and spring-like that day, a truly luxurious weekend, so I put on a long sweater. Since the look was so casual, I went heavy on the gold jewellery but the overall effect (I hope) was easy-breezy-weekend-brunch-esque.

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If I pulled that off, great. If I didn’t, well, I enjoyed a cheap mimosa and ate my weight in hash browns, so either way I count that day as a win.

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OUTFIT DETAILS

Sweater: Aritzia

Top: Black Market Vintage

Jeans: Urban Outfitters

Sneakers: Converse

Bag: Urban Outfitters (Similar)

All rings from Urban Outfitters & Forever 21

 

 

 

 

 

 

Black & Grey

I’ve spoken a few times on this blog about making an effort to wear more colour, about my history with wearing black so often I could be mistaken for Morticia Addams.

I do like to wear colour – right now, I’m gravitating towards yellow and find myself in the midst of a pink renaissance. Maybe I’m reclaiming the colour from its weird “little girl” connotations. I’m not even talking pastels – I’m talking the neon editions.

But from time to time, I get the urge to fall back into the monochrome. I don a full-black outfit or wear only black with white for three days straight. These instances are generally born out of a laziness in colour co-odinating and a desire to feel needlessly cool.

This is the thing about personal style – it’s always changing. You are drawn to the things you are drawn to for a reason. That’s why it’s personal style. When I’m getting dressed in the morning, I usually go with my instinct. I reach for what ever I’m into at that moment, and some days what I’m into is simple black and grey.

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This day was one of those days. I started with the culotte jumpsuit, a new piece I’m loving because 1) it hides away my body completely, for when you’re not feeling anything form-fitting and 2) the billowing black material is big drama. It turns a stroll to the coffee shop to a woeful, angst-ridden walk through Scottish moors.

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You know what I mean.

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This certainly isn’t the most flattering outfit I’ve ever worn and that’s done purposefully. Sometimes I’m self conscious about my figure. Sometimes I want to put comfort before anything else. And to be quite honest I’m never dressing for the sole purpose of being attractive to boys. I’m always dressing for me and me alone. (Although compliments from other women give me life.)

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OUTFIT DETAILS

Jumpsuit – Anthropologie

Turtleneck – Anthropologie (Similar)

Shoes – Michael Kors (Similar)

Bag – Urban Outfitters (Similar, just a different size)

*All photos taken by my beautiful friend Clare.*