After living in frosty, Vitamin D-deprived Montreal for 5 years, one would correctly assume that I’ve learned to cope with cold weather and a lack of sunlight. While London is nowhere near as frigid as Montreal is during the winter, both cities have sunsets before 5 o’clock for a substantial part of the year. So what’s my favourite way to beat the winter blues, you might ask? Getting a group of lovely ladies together and having a wonderful afternoon at Winter Wonderland definitely is at the top of my list, hence my excitement at being asked to participate in Farfetch’s Winter Wonderland blogger event!
As quickly and abruptly as my time in France’s capital began, it has ended – it’s hard to believe that this is my last post from Paris, at least for the foreseeable future. In both circumstances, I had no idea I would be leaving one country for another so suddenly, but as I’ve learned recently with life, it’s all about going with the flow and seeing what new adventures await. I guess it’s fitting then that my last post comes from one of my favourite areas of Paris – Le Haut Marais. Home to my favourite restaurants and favourite stores, if there’s one area of Paris I’m going to miss dearly, this is undeniably it. For a lazy, rainy Sunday, I decided to revisit pastels, a sartorial element I’ve experimented more with in recent years after categorically shunning them all together throughout my teens for fear of looking too girly. I found this Topshop sleeveless utility duster in London’s Westfield mall a few weekends before and felt drawn to the structured crepe in such a pretty lavender shade. Never one to give up my monochromatic staples, I decided the duster would be a great feminine, spring compliment to my favourite Balenciaga and Alexander Wang pieces. Here’s to observing what new sartorial evolution – or revolution – awaits me in London.
For years now, I’ve considered grey and black to be my go-to neutrals: regardless of the garment or material, I can always throw on some combination of the two and instantly feel put together and chic. Other so-called neutrals like tan, white and silver though? These colours still feel challenging and daunting to me – which is exactly why I’ve been experimenting with them more frequently as of late. I’m happy to report that I’ve been making slow but steady progress with said closet diversification: white jeans have transitioned from an occasional summer favourite into a wardrobe mainstay, while most recently, I’ve been craving dashes of silver accessories. These Zara metallic platform bluchers are a prime example of a new metallic favourite that I can’t wait to pair with black leather shorts later on this summer, but for now, I decided to give them an inaugural spin as part of an entirely neutral outfit. I guess when you’re in a city as colourful as Barcelona, it’s not surprising that one would gravitate towards neutrals to contrast its exquisite scenery. Or maybe perhaps this is more permanent progress to a more tonally diversified wardrobe. Either way, the combination of old and new neutrals felt perfect for a lazy day wandering around Barceloneta again during my trip to Barcelona over Easter.
(From Clockwise): Givenchy Laura Leather Ankle Boots // Jimmy Choo Marlin Leather Ankle Boots // Valentino Noir Rockstud Short Motorcycle Boots // Salvatore Ferragamo Nagoya Patent Leather Ankle Boots // Balenciaga Ceinture Leather Derby Boots // Senso Blake VII Cut Out Detail Leather Ankle Boots // Chloe Suzanna Studded Leather Bootie // Alexander Wang Black Leather Notched Heel Anouck Boots // Rag & Bone Harrow Leather Boot
Sometimes I think that living in Paris has made me forget that fashion can be fun. While fashion is absolutely a serious pursuit for me and many others who call the City of Lights home, sartorial expression doesn’t always have to remain so severe. It’s been ages (or rather, almost 3 years) since I wore this sequinned shirt from Editorial Boutique in Montreal – and quite frankly, I’m not sure why I haven’t worn it since. Can I not be serious about pursuing fashion while wearing fun details? Must I always dress in monochromatic shades to emphasize how serious I am about my future in fashion? I guess the simple answer to this question is that with (very slowly) rising temperatures, I’ve been getting into a more playful and cheerful spirit with my wardrobe, mixing up my usual leather pieces with some chiffon and brighter details. I’ve been a fan of the quintessential Zara skort since it first came out two years ago so much that I purchased it in both black and white. Sadly though, I missed out on snagging the cobalt blue version from Zara and it always remained rather elusive from my wardrobe. Fast forward a few years, and I found a nearly identical version of the skort from my favourite Aussie online retailer, Hello Parry. Maybe there is some credence to the whole “good things come to those who wait” adage…
One of my fondest memories of Paris will always remain visiting Jardin du Luxembourg for the first time: it was the end of summer, people were lounging around eating, sunbathing, and simply enjoying life. Despite living in Paris for over six months now, I only got to return to this stunning park a few weeks ago. While the ambiance in winter felt completely different from what I remembered, the historic stone statues and staircases still remained as beautiful as ever under cloudy January skies. Unlike my favourite park in London, walking through Jardin du Luxembourg feels akin to stepping into a time machine and taking a walk through French history from bygone centuries. While I wish I could hop into a time machine and be transported to warmer seasons, I took the more practical approach and got into the spring spirit with my favourite Rag & Bone Jean Dash Distressed Low Rise Skinny Jeans and my all-time favourite Forever 21 denim shirt. One of the most important lessons I’ve learned since moving to France is that it may be impossible to change the circumstances (including the weather!) around you, but it’s always possible to modify your perspective and attitude. Away with the heavy coats and dark clothes – I’ll make spring happen in my closet regardless if it happens in Paris.
To anyone who takes a quick look through my blog, it becomes evident rather quickly that I’m extremely fond of blue: navy, cobalt, denim – I love every hue. However, certain other colours – especially red – are a lot more challenging for me to integrate into my wardrobe. While I’m not sure you’ll ever see me wearing anything firetruck red on this blog in the near future, I have grown rather fond of burgundy recently. Come the end of fall, there’s something about the richness of this shade that feels oh so comforting and appropriate when the temperatures begin to hover around 0. When I first saw these Zara faux leather biker trousers with zips in early November, I was so fond of both the burgundy and black version that I knew I had to get both. While I love the edginess of the pants in black, I also like the more unique and softer nature that the burgundy version conveys. On this quiet, sleepy day in between Christmas and New Year’s when I was back in Canada, I was completely focused on comfort: comfy cashmere sweater, comfy leather pants, and comfy Stan Smiths. Maybe it’s not my most fashionable look, but it’s always possible to remain somewhat chic and comfortable at the same time.
When I first came to Paris five years ago, I quickly fell in love with Le Marais. To me, it represented the idealized vision I had of Paris: a plethora of outdoor cafés and brasseries, some of the best vintage stores in the city, and crumbling, yet charming pre-Haussmann architecture. While I’ve visited Paris many times since then and now live here, Le Marais has remained my favourite area in Paris. In addition to revisiting some of my favourite areas in Paris, I’ve also been revisiting an item of clothing that I haven’t worn much of recently: dresses. While I always love a good shirt dress, I’ve kept my distance from more overtly girly pieces like this Jessica Buurman Anato Color Block Dress out of fear of looking too much like a girl. But what’s to fear about looking like a girl, one might ask? I guess that’s something for me to further ponder, but I do know that a bold pop of cobalt interspersed with leather paneling is the perfect way to get me back into a feminine, flared dress.
The most striking difference I’ve noticed about fashion in London versus Paris is unquestionably people’s willingness to experiment with their personal style. While Paris will seemingly forever be dubbed the fashion capital of the world, I personally find the street style of London much more interesting and thought provoking. From punks and goths, to Eurotrash and WAGs, freedom of sartorial expression feels considerably stronger north of the English Channel. After many months of falling into that codified, quintessentially monochromatic Parisian look, I decided to embrace a much wider variety of colours with great gusto on one grey January day in London. While this COS Crossover Wool Coat has often been the only pop of colour in my wardrobe over the last few months, I decided to switch things up with a few bold pops of purple and yellow. I never thought I would be one to wear a lemon yellow cashmere sweater with a cobalt blue coat, but that’s the great thing about living in and exploring different cities: you never know how a city will end up influencing your attitudes, including the sartorially concerned ones.
I’ve never really been big on wearing prints – I often find that they can overpower and take away from the finer details of an outfit. Despite my adoption of an even more monochromatic, Parisian sartorial style over the last several months, plaid has managed to remain ubiquitous in my wardrobe. Blame it on my Anglo-Saxon heritage, or the seemingly endless variety of beautiful swatches, but I truly can’t get enough of these colourful pieces. After six months of contemplation about purchasing this gorgeous Sandro Rosy Plaid Shirt Dress (and trying it on no less than three times in three different cities!), I finally took the plunge and purchased it at 50% off last week. And what better place to make this dress’ long awaited debut than in the United Kingdom? Granted, I decided to pair the plaid shirt dress with a few of my favourite minimalist pieces from COS for a day wandering around London, but something still felt deeply appropriate about wearing plaid on the other side of the Channel.
Shortly after Berlin and several weeks before Amsterdam, I made a quick, one week trip back to Canada in November. While I had many reasons to return home at the time, having the chance to savour even a few days of Canada’s glorious fall – and my absolute favourite season – definitely provided the final push to book my ticket home. Even if I only caught the tail end of autumn, I still got to play around in the leaves in my favourite Other Stories Metallic Merino Wool Sweater. Knowing that the days of sweater weather were limited for me on both sides of the Atlantic, I decided to make the Other Stories metallic sweater the centrepiece of my outfit. Balancing out the metallic sweater with white jeans helped maintain my overall denial of colder temperatures and reminiscent of summer temperatures, while my electric blue Stan Smith’s provided a necessary contrast to all of those beautiful fall, Canadian colours.
If I could only wear one colour combination for the rest of my life, I would choose black and gold, time and time again. Sure, wearing everyone’s favourite slimming shade and this classic metallic tone would get tiring after a while, but there is something undeniably classic and luxurious looking about wearing this combination together. Purely out of convenience, I’ve been wearing a lot of black recently, as well as recently re-integrating gold into my closet after being scared into aversion for many years (I blame it on seeing an abundance of ostentatious southern Italian gold jewelry as a child). A few items have helped me fight said aversion, including this Club Monaco sweater I picked up last year before I went to New York last year, as well as these adorable Senso Quincy II ankle boots. By integrating zipper details in this once feared metallic of mine into my outfits, I’m slowly growing to love gold’s classic colour after much experimentation with rose gold and silver in the past. Oh, and the fact that both this sweater and these Senso boots are two of the most comfortable items in my closet helps a little bit, too.
Is there a fashion blogger out there that hasn’t been influenced by the rampant sportswear trend that has taken hold and slowly made inroads into our daily lives? Quite frankly, there couldn’t have been a better for the fashion industry to bestow sneakers as the footwear du jour, as I’ve literally spent my days running between classes and appointments as of late. For a long time, I was a dedicated Converse enthusiast, but recently I’ve expanded my scope of stylish sneakers to include wearing (several pairs of) Stan Smith’s and the Nike Lunar Flyknits that I wear to the gym! I always thought there was something rather gauche about wearing the same style of shoes to the gym as on the city streets, but with a bit of sophisticated polish thanks to my beloved Sandro blazer and these supple Muubaa leather pants, I feel like sartorial balance has been restored. Given that I’m often seen wearing some shade of blue interspersed by black separates, texture is a critical element to making an outfit featuring much of the same colour palette more interesting. Mesh isn’t exactly an abundant fabric in my wardrobe, but maybe it’s time to integrate a few more pieces in this athletic texture to juxtapose my perennial denim and leather favourites.
In a very abstract way, I feel a bit like a human Petri dish as of late - an experiment in progress, one could say. What happens when you transport this living organism into a new environment? Will it thrive, or will it die? Will it mutate, or will it remain exactly the same, despite the change of conditions? While this is of course a gross exaggeration of moving to a new country, my relocation to France has been by far the biggest environmental change I’ve experienced in my almost twenty-three years. And being the hyper-aware individual that I am, it’s interesting to watch how my personality, including how I dress, is changing along with embracing a new way of living. Blame it on taking with me only three suitcases of clothes, but I’m finding a great amount of both literal and sartorial comfort in the basics as of late: aviator sunglasses, leather jackets, white tees, good ol’ blue jeans, and crisp white Converse. After months of searching for the absolute bluest jeans possible, I found this amazing pair of Diesel Grupee Jeans mere days before I left Montreal. Sick of super dark and light washes alike, I was in constant search of a pair of bottoms that truly epitomized the meaning of “blue jeans” for what felt like eternity. While this is a more relaxed outfit than what I wear typically as of late (welcome to business school!), this look is one of my favourites for when I want to put in minimal effort while still remaining presentable. When life gets complicated, unpredictable, and full of new experiences, going back to wardrobe basics can provide some much needed stability and comfort in a new environment – blue jeans and white tees, included.
Remember how I said that I was sure that my style would be somewhat influenced by my recent move to France? Well, almost three weeks into living in Paris, I’ve already become cognizant of the sartorial ramifications of relocating across the pond. While I still adore wearing leather anything, I’ve found myself gravitating towards more feminine pieces as of late, including lots of silk tops. One of my favourites as of late is this beautiful piece from the Jessica Bell x Aritzia collaboration, which launched across Aritzia retailers in early August. Before leaving Canada, I rather obsessively stalked down this shirt in Montreal and made sure it would accompany me on my new adventures in Paris. While the colours may have been inspired by artist Jessica Bell’s travels across Canada, I find the colours are very reflective of life in Paris. From the beautiful pink sunrises and sunsets, to the grey cobblestones of the ancient streets and the deep blue of the Seine at night, this shirt feels like the perfect compliment to my new environment. Check out the other equally gorgeous four pieces in the Jessica Bell x Aritzia collection here.
Have you ever visited a place for the first time, only to return to that same place a few years later and realize how different everything seems and how much has changed? I definitely experienced that feeling two weeks ago, when fresh off of my flight from Montreal, I decided to visit my new school’s campus. I came here almost exactly two years before, just to visit the interesting architecture and get a bit of information on L’Institut Français de la Mode (IFM)’s programs. At the time, I had absolutely no intention of attending the school – it was in fact my ex-boyfriend who encouraged me to investigate their programs. Who would have known that I would actually end up here and pursuing fashion as my career, not just as a hobby? For such a busy day of running errands and combatting rather brutal jet-lag, I decided to layer up for the decidedly cooler weather here in Paris with a denim shirt from Forever 21 and my favourite Sandro white jacket. I don’t wear this Sandro white jacket enough, mainly because being the klutz that I am, I’m so fearful of staining any of the beautiful fabric or ecru leather (it ended up happening anyway, sigh). Sometimes you just need to take a risk, whether it’s with wearing a white jacket while being an extremely clumsy individual, or pursuing your true passion in a different country (after all, I Bleed Fashion).
(Clockwise) Skirt: Alice + Olivia Fizer Striped Satin Mini Skirt // Sandal: Balenciaga Neoprene Glove Sandal // Leggings: Les Chiffoniers Leather Leggings // Clutch: Miu Miu Clutch (similar here) // Bra: La Perla Silk Blend Tulle & Georgette Balcony Bra // Bag: 3.1 Phillip Lim Medium Pashli Satchel // Blazer: Maison Martin Margiela Wool Blend Tuxedo Jacket // Shoes: Sffanni Printed Shoes // Nail Polish: Butter London Nail Lacquer in Royal Navy
Whenever I’m in New York or Paris, All Saints always at the top of my list of places to visit. While it’s possible to shop online, there’s nothing quite like visiting one of their stores and taking the time to feel and stare fondly at their beautiful silk and leather offerings. Renowned for doing minimalism and quality wardrobe staples oh so well, All Saints always offers a couple of standout pieces that veer into more edgy territory each season. For spring/summer 2014, one of those items included this stunning All Saints leather skirt that I couldn’t help but gravitate towards during my last trip to New York. I had been rather smitten with its bold zippers and thick buckles well before I laid my hands on its buttery leather, but seeing it in the flesh and with a giant “50% off” sticker next to the price tag sent me running to the cash with it. Sure, it’s been called everything from “the lovechild of a tire and a purse” to “a bit too edgy for my liking” by various friends and family members – but at the end of the day, I’m still completely obsessed with its design and quality. And ain’t nobody gonna change that (said in obligatory Honey Boo-Boo voice).
Oh the dog days of summer: hair up, bigger smiles, drinks on ice, brighter makeup, and less clothing. While it’s always a challenge to look fashionable during those arduous Canadian winters, I find dressing in the summer almost equally difficult, albeit for very different reasons. As spring transitions into summer, layering literally grows burdensome as both temperature and humidity soar. While many girls opt for stacking piles of jewelry and accessories on to compensate, I’ve always found myself rather adverse to wearing a ton of jewelry (minus a few rings and maybe a Balenciaga cuff). One accessory though that I always seem to have on me are headphones. Whether I’m relaxing at home watching a movie or out traversing the streets of Montreal, headphones an integral part of my look – so why not invest in a pair that matches my sartorial tastes? I had been eyeing these Frends headphones for the longest of time, but felt guilty for investing in such an item without a steep discount. Thankfully, Nordstrom’s anniversary sale rolled around and offered the perfect incentive for adding another oil-slicked piece to my closet. Sure, it’s not a Cartier Love bracelet or a piece of fine jewelry, but for me it adds the perfect pop to what would otherwise be a cute, but rather bland summer outfit.
Twice a year, usually around February and July, I wait with baited breath for the release of Zara’s spring/summer and fall/winter collections, respectively. While this may sound rather exaggerated and silly to those not deeply concerned with fashion, there’s a reason Zara’s name is synonymous with cult status among the sartorially concerned. With the majority of high-end luxury designers’ collections out of the financial reach of the consumers, Zara can always be counted on to knock off, and sometimes even reinterpret for the better, the most notable pieces from each season. This season I found quite a few fantastic pieces from their spring/summer collection, including this printed t-shirt and these slip-on sneakers. I’ve slowly started adopting more prints into my wardrobe within the last few months, but this shirt from Zara is by far the boldest one I own. Despite my previous aversion to prints, there’s something about the bold contrast and implication of texture that drew me in (did I mention it’s also made out of one of my favourite fabrics, neoprene?). To contrast the bold pattern of the shirt and the delicate snakeskin texture of the slip-on sneakers, I decided to pair my new Zara pieces with my absolute favourite piece from last year’s spring/summer collection: the iconic Zara skort. I guess this is exactly what evolving personal style looks like: taking risks with new pieces while incorporating old favourites.
Every season, I find myself splitting the items on my wardrobe lust list into two categories: wardrobe staples and on-trend pieces. No sartorially savvy closet is complete without a balance between two, but unfortunately, basic economics dictates that we must be selective given limited funds and endless wants. This outfit represents a balance between both of these categories: the classic, Alexander Wang Anouck Boot paired with a replica of one of the hottest items of the spring collections – the Stella McCartney plaid-intarsia sweater.
Traveling induces an almost fugue-like state in me, meaning that even after being back in Montreal for a mere week, trips to Toronto, Italy or New York feel as if they were a part of another life. This time, the feeling is a lot less exaggerated, as it has been quite some time – two months, to be exact months – sine I left for Washington, D.C. After a week of sightseeing and visiting with family, a trip to Friendship Heights, one of D.C.’s upscale shopping districts was in order on my last day in America’s capital. While I did much more window shopping than actual purchasing, I had a wonderful day exploring another neighbourhood of D.C. and soaking up some warmer weather. With the weather in mind, I decided to pair two items that haven’t seen in the light of day in Montreal for many months due to our inclement winter weather: my Balenciaga cut-out boots and my favourite Sandro blazer. Two months later, I’m still waiting and growing increasingly impatient to wear both of these items on this side of the border. Here’s to hoping that this arduous winter also becomes a distant memory – sooner rather than later.
Photos by Kate Sheridan
There has been a lot of talk in the news recently about the problems that the fashion industry creates. From garment factory collapses in Bangladesh, to the growing awareness of the environmental effects of fast fashion, it can be rather difficult to feel positive about our fashion choices and how they effect the world around us these days. As a conscious shopper who tries to make ethical and sustainable sartorial choices as often as possible, I’m always looking to improve the world around me, even if it’s in a small way. That’s why I’m super excited to present a series of posts over the next few weeks in collaboration with MEDLIFE, an international organization dedicated to helping families achieve greater freedom from the constraints of poverty and empowering them to live healthier lives. MedLife implements this vision through improving access to medicine, education, and promoting community development in disadvantaged communities.
To say I have a slight obsession with anything Balenciaga – prét-a-porter, accessories, footwear – would be a gross understatement. From these covetable boots to the classic Balenciaga motorcycle bag, some Balenciaga accessories have gradually been incorporated into my wardrobe over the years, while others have remained mere longings on my Pinterest boards. Like many young girls, I was first introduced to the signature rivet, buckle and zipper combination of the brand’s bags and accessories on the arms of young celebrities in my favourite tabloid magazines. While it took several years for one of those timeless bags to be incorporated into my own wardrobe, it is unquestionably the most utilized bag I own, with a cost-per-wear soon approaching multiple decimal factors. While in Rome and wandering around Via Borgognona in December, I couldn’t resist falling fast for these purple and gold Balenciaga accessories. It might have made more sense to opt for a more traditional black and silver version of the Giant Arena studded wallet, but my gut instinct was unrelenting in its bias towards the bold gold and purple colour combination. Maybe it’s my subconscious trying to combat the winter blues, but this bold colour combination is sure to liven up any outfit this winter and for many years to come.
There’s something about coming back to Italy at Christmas that calms me down in a multitude of ways: my style and make-up becomes more relaxed, my continually racing thoughts slow down, and dinners and sleep both end up occupying significant portions of my days. It’s as if Italy induces some kind of serenity and feeling of certainty that I haven’t felt in a long time while living between Toronto and Montreal this year. Maybe it has something to do with visiting Castello di Lucera each year and seeing it standing exactly as it stood the year before, and as it has stood for over 900 years before my first visit. Maybe it has something to do with the sense of community in my tiny village that is so lacking throughout cities and towns in North America. Maybe it has to do with isolating myself away from everyone and taking care of myself in a selfish, but necessary manner. Whatever it’s attributable to, it’s a much needed departure and pause to reflect upon things bigger issues than the miniscule worries of my very blessed life.
There’s something about an all-white look that’s just so irresistible in the summertime. While I’m a fan of wearing the odd white piece after Labour Day, an entirely white outfit after the first weekend of September feels out of place to me. These photos were taken on my last day in Toronto, where I had been living since May as part of my internship. My love affair with this Zara skort has been rather ongoing this summer, and while I’m excited to wear it with tights and boots this fall, I chose to go for an all-white look on one of the last dog days of summer. Wearing all-white is rather unnatural for me: between my extreme clumsiness and my natural inclination towards gothic style elements, wearing all-white always feels like the ultimate sartorial (and lifestyle) challenge to me. I couldn’t help but break up the all-white look with a few of my favourite accessories, like this on-trend camo scarf from H&M and my beloved Balenciaga motorcycle bag. Dressing entirely in white will never feel right to me, but that’s the great thing about personal style – everyone can adapt a trend to how it best suits them.
Jacket: Zara (similar here & here) // Dress: Sandro // Watch: Michael Kors // Ring: Gift from Italy // Boots: Jeffrey Campbell // Bag: Balenciaga As summer comes to an end, I’m realizing that I never really got into wearing season-appropriate garb over the last few months. Sure, there were a few moments here and there during the occasional humid week where I was essentially forced to wear less (and even then I still wore my leather pants). But overall, I’ve stayed true to how I dress for the other 8-9 months of the year, favouring layers and season neutral dressing over denim cut-offs and sandals. There’s been a lot going on in my life over the past few months, so I guess I’ve tended to rely on what I feel most comfortable in: silk, light cotton, leather, and flat shoes. One of my most recent leather acquisitions was this Zara leather jacket, which surprisingly isn’t even real leather. Normally I wouldn’t purchase something over $100 that’s not even made out of a natural material, but I couldn’t help but fall in love with the weight, style and texture of this synthetic piece. Naturally, I chose to wear this Zara leather jacket on one of the most humid days of the year, which also happened to be my last day living in Toronto. I’ve been especially fond of this Sandro dress this summer, but I wanted to add a bit of edge to it for a day walking Yorkville, one of Toronto’s fanciest neighbourhoods. Task accomplished with a big black biker jacket? I think so.
Pictures by Yannick Khong of Pyktures
Tank: Olivaceous via Editorial Boutique // Bra: One Teaspoon // Gloves: H&M (similar here and here) // Watch: Michael Kors // Ring: Gift from Italy // Rhinestone Bracelet: Gift from Italy // Cuff: Juicy Couture // Skirt: ASOS (similar here and here) // Boots: Maison Martin Margiela x H&M // Bag: Balenciaga
Photos by Maryam Sabah
I know I already wrote about my convocation at McGill last week, but I couldn’t resist doing a second post featuring some proper images of my beautiful Cynthia Rowley dress. After sitting for a few hours in my heavy black gown and this beautiful neoprene creation in the brutal Montreal heat and humidity, I was more than eager to rip off my black gown and showcase my dress. While my dress was far from your typical convocation dress, I couldn’t be more happy that I chose such a versatile dress that allows me to get a lot of future wear out of. I’ve begun to accumulate quite a few dresses over the past few months (can you tell from my outfit posts?), but this one will always be a favourite and carry a very special meaning. After all, it’s the dress I received my first (but certainly, not last) university degree in.
One month ago, I remember watching a Sex and the City episode where Carrie Bradshaw declares that there is no day after your wedding or graduation that is solely dedicated to you. Everyone has birthdays, but not everyone graduates or gets married. It’s a pretty scary to think that I’ve already reached one of those significant milestones at only twenty-one years of age. I guess my anxiety is a bit unwarranted though – this definitely will not be the only degree I obtain in post-secondary education, so I have at least one more of these occasions to look forward to. But to finally hold in my hands that large of piece of paper that represented four years of blood, sweat, and tears on my part, and a lot of compassion and support from those around me was a strange feeling. It was both anti-climatic and extremely emotional. Feelings that I didn’t know I was experiencing related to the end of undergrad surfaced like lava from a volcano – unexpected, fiery, and gushing out.
Blazer: Sandro (similar here and here) // Shirt: Aritzia // Watch: Michael Kors // White Gold Ring: Gift from Italy // Rhinestone Bracelet: Gift from Italy // Chain Bracelet: Club Monaco (similar) // Gold Ring: Vintage // Rhinestone and Gold Rings: Aldo // Shorts: H&M (similar here and here) // Shoes: Alexander Wang // Bag: Balenciaga
Photos by Nazia Iqbal
Alright, I’ll admit it – I really have done a complete 180 degree turnaround in regards to my feelings about florals. Long before the purchase of the Stylestalker jacket in my previous post came this beautiful Aritzia Wilfred Palais Blouse that I fell in love with when I was in Toronto for World MasterCard Fashion Week. I think the only reason why I came to love this blouse rather instantaneously was because of its loud print: no delicate, pastel flowers here, just explosions of colourful peony prints that reminded me of the flowers that grew around my childhood home in Ottawa.
Hat: ASOS (similar here and here) // Jacket: Anastasia Lomonova // Shirt: Aritzia // Spiked Bracelet: Aldo (similar here and here) // Chain Bracelet: Editorial Boutique (similar here and here) // Watch: Michael Kors // Ring: Gift from Italy // Swirl Ring: Aldo // Jeans: Zara (similar here and here) // Shoes: Pedro Garcia (similar) // Bag: Balenciaga (similar)
Hat: ASOS (similar here and here) // Vest: Jimmy Choo x H&M (similar here and here) // Shirt: Paul & Joe // Glasses: Versace (similar here and here) // Earrings: Juicy Couture // Cuff: Juicy Couture // Silver Ring: Aldo // Watch: Michael Kors // Ring: Gift from Italy // Pants: Aritzia // Boots: Zara // Bag: Balenciaga
Hello, Toronto, it’s been a while since we last saw each other! While I have definitely become a Montreal girl at heart since moving there four years ago, Toronto injects a kind of invigoration into me that I rarely find in La Belle Province. Maybe it’s the skyscraping condominiums and office towers, the palpable buzz of being in Canada’s biggest city, or just being reacquainted with a city that I’ve spent years traveling back and forth from, yet never permanently living in. Regardless of the root cause, I’m extremely thankful for said buzz to have kept me moving yesterday after a hectic day of academic presentations, promptly followed by rushing for a plane in order to get me to the shows five hundred kilometres away and on time. It was all a rather deja-vu feeling from last year at this time…
Day two: without a doubt, this was the day I was most excited for out of the four days that comprise this edition of Semaine de la Mode de Montreal. Perhaps I should re-phrase that statement and say the main reason I attended all of the shows Tuesday was because Martin Lim, my absolute favourite designer from Montreal was the last designer presenting yesterday evening. Despite my eagerness for Martin Lim’s show, I was pleasantly surprised to see some other amazing collections yesterday that made the wait until 9:30 PM for the final show much more bearable. On the topic of all of the shows this week, I’ve decided to switch things up for how I’m reporting from Montreal Fashion Week: expect a long post by the end of the week featuring all of my favourite trends and runway shows.
Jacket: Mackage (similar here and here) // Sweater: Pucci (similar here and here) // Earrings: Juicy Couture // Rhinestone Bracelet: Gift from Italy // Spiked Bracelets: Forever 21 // Ring: Gift from Italy // Watch: Michael Kors // Pants: Hudson // Boots: Maison Martin Margiela x H&M // Bag: Balenciaga
Dress: Olivaceous // Watch: Michael Kors // Glasses: Versace (similar here and here) // Rings (right hand): Editorial Boutique (similar here and here) and Gift from Italy // Ring (left hand): Editorial Boutique (similar here and here) // Cuff: Juicy Couture // Tights: Wolford // Boots: Maison Martin Margiela x H&M // Bag: Balenciaga
Jacket: Zara // Scarf: Aritzia // Earrings: Juicy Couture // Ring: Gift from Italy // Cuff: Juicy Couture // Watch: Michael Kors // Sweater: Winners // Pants: J Brand // Boots: Zara // Bag: Balenciaga
The problem with living in Canada is that it is completely impractical to buy any kind of coat that doesn’t transform you into a shapeless blob. Some of us, however are willing to freeze our asses off in the name of fashion (occasionally, that is). The key to wearing a coat with no feathers or fur is layering: lots of layers of super-thin cashmere, like this sweater I picked up at Winners many years ago for a mere $50 really makes a world of a difference. I’ll probably succumb to the negative temperatures by January and start wearing my favourite white Mackage Peaches coat, but until then I’m determined to get as much wear as possible out of this fabulous coat that encapsulates so many of fall’s trends. I’ll definitely be bringing this coat, along with some much lighter clothing clothing when I go back home and then off to Italy. I probably won’t be posting a lot more outfit posts before December 12, given that I’m sustaining myself on Red Bull, sheer determination and a few precious hours of sleep every night. I was lucky to find myself looking half-decent on the day these pictures were taken, but finding myself looking like a human being are hard to come by these days. Hopefully, My posts from the Eternal City will make up for my (possible) absence over the next two weeks. Grazie e baci.
Jacket: Aritzia // Sweater (underneath): Zara // Scarf: Pringle of Scotland (similar here and here) // Hat: Miss Sixty (similar here and here) // Watch: Michael Kors // Earrings: Juicy Couture // Gloves: Club Monaco (similar here and here) // Skirt: T by Alexander Wang // Tights: Wolford // Boots: Maison Martin Margiela x H&M // Bag: Balenciaga
Have you ever stood outside in -5 Celsius weather, wearing only a skimpy dress and booties? For those of you who haven’t, I can promise you that you would most likely be making the same pained expressions as I was in these pictures. When I think about how much I hate the cold today, I have no idea how I managed to wear something as skimpy as this and very little else while partying in Montreal during my first year in Montreal.
Coat: Zara (similar here and here) // Sweater: Aritzia (similar here and here) // Scarf: Aldo (similar here and here) // Watch: Michael Kors // Earrings: Juicy Couture // Cuff: Juicy Couture // Ring: Gift from Italy // Glasses: Versace (similar here and here) // Pants: Rag & Bone // Boots: Zara // Bag: Balenciaga
I don’t think there’s ever been a month in my twenty-one years that has been as busy as this past one: days when I run from the library to a fashion event, and then back to the library are starting to become “de rigeur” over the last few weeks. Honestly, I couldn’t be happier with such a crazy lifestyle these days – ok, maybe I would be happier if I wasn’t nursing a bad cold, which is surely the result of my intense lifestyle. But at the end of the day, I can think of nothing better than focusing all of my energy on school and fashion, given how emotional and trying the last few weeks have been. Maybe that explains my rather spontaneous decision to get bangs and go for a new look? My stylist suggested I needed a more “fashion-y” hair-cut, given my involvement in the industry, and well, my impulsive tendencies got the best of me and I ended up with awesome new hair.
Coat: Queen’s Wardrobe (similar here and here) // Scarf: Aritzia (similar) // Sweater: Aritzia // Black Cuff: Juicy Couture // White Bracelet: Juicy Couture // Watch: MIchael Kors // Ring: Gift from Italy // Glasses: Versace (similar) // Leggings: Aritzia (similar here and here) // Boots: Zara (similar here and here) // Bag: Balenciaga
I never really considered myself a nature-loving kind of girl until I moved to Montreal. While it’s true that Montreal has the beautiful Mountain that dominates the downtown Montreal scenery, it’s merely a small hideaway amongst the bustle of a vibrant metropolis. Whenever I come back home to my parents’ home, especially in the summer and the fall, I’m reminded of how dearly I miss having a backyard, playing in the leaves and just enjoying the changing seasons. After going straight from writing an exam, to the airport, to a bus, I made it home late Thursday night, resulting in a very tired and exhausted Sarah, as you can clearly see in the above photos. Given that I have yet another exam on Tuesday, I spent most of Friday studying, so I kept my look pretty simple with my new Current/Elliot pants and a pure silk top. I’m almost counting down the weeks until I get this bloody degree of mine, I just have to maintain my sanity for six short more months, and then I’m free from the world of academia (for a while).
Sweater: Victoria’s Secret (similar) // Tank: Aritzia // Vest: Zara (similar here and here) // Watch: Michael Kors // Ring: Gift from Italy // Necklace: Topshop // Gloves: Aritzia (similar here and here) // Scarf: Aritzia (similar) // Skirt: T by Alexander Wang // Tights: Wolford // Boots: Zara (similar here and here) // Bag: Balenciaga
I can’t believe that I’m leaving London tomorrow! I’ve had a fantastic time here in England, but my time here has gone by all too quickly. My overall impression of London can be summed up in the following words: edgy, historic, friendly, and alive. While it’s true that London is very expensive (I used up all of my cash on taxis in just two days), I can already tell that this will be a city I will be coming back to in the near future…
As the only child of a rather international family, I’ve been fortunate to spend a fair amount of time on airplanes over the years. Ever since my very first flight at only 4 months old, I got rather accustomed to all of the components that accompany traveling: think line-ups, security, waiting around and the like. Naturally, you would think this same person has also a tried-and-true packing routine, but alas that couldn’t have been further from the truth until recently.
Hat: Aritzia (similar here) // Shirt: Aritzia (similar here and here) // Bra: Elle MacPherson // Earrings: Chanel (similar here) // Gold Ring: Aldo (similar here) // White Gold Ring: Gift from Italy // Cuff: Juicy Couture // Watch: Michael Kors // Sunglasses: Ray-Ban // Shorts: Aritzia (similar here) // Shoes: H&M // Bag: Balenciaga
I think most city-dwellers, like myself wish we could have a pool magically created somewhere close to us so that we could just swim and tan around like suburbanites. It was only last summer while living in Montreal that I realized why there is a mass exodus from New York in the summertime to the Hamptoms – the insufferable heat of the city! As much I dislike the suburbs for their lack of culture and overall banality, I do miss having space to just “be” in – something I am lucky enough to enjoy when visiting my parents back in Ontario. These photos were taken last week in the middle of a brutal heat wave, so naturally I was inclined to wear something cool and comfortable. I’m still in love with these shorts from Editorial Boutique, but I decided to change things up by wearing a beautiful panther print scarf from H&M as a belt for an extra splash of colour. I will be back to Toronto this weekend for a special networking event – be sure to check out my Instagram feed for lots of pictures while I’m there!
Every time I’m back home, this blouse is the first thing I gravitate towards in my mother’s closet (and trust me, my closet is only a fraction of her industrially supported racks of clothes). Maybe I’m drawn to this floral piece because I’m naturally attracted to everything Chloe (their perfume, “Chloe” I’ve worn for years and I lusted over their Paddington bag for most of my teenage years), but I suspect it’s something more elusive than that. My whole outfit was obviously a ridiculous sartorial choice on a day where temperatures pushed into the mid-thirties, but I couldn’t resist finding a summer-y way to wear this top (I wore it over the Christmas vacation here). The benefits of always being cold: I can layer clothing even in July and not melt away.
Jacket: Forever 21 (similar) // Tank: Urban Behaviour (similar) // Earrings: Forever 21 (similar) // Watch: Michael Kors // Ring: Gift from Italy // Chain Bracelet: Tiffany // Rhinestone Bracelet: Gift from Italy // Glasses: Versace (similar) // Skirt: Pavonine (similar) // Shoes: Dolce and Gabbana // Bag: Balenciaga
It’s hard to imagine that the last time I wore this blazer was more than a year ago – I far too often go through phases with my clothing and sometimes won’t wear pieces for months at a time, only to embrace them with great enthusiasm after a period of separation. Ever since this whole “mint” craze began in fashion (I blame Lady Gaga’s “Marry the Night” for the world’s obsession with this colour), I’ve been trying to find a piece to incorporate into my wardrobe, unsuccessfully. It was only in repairing my disaster of a closet that broke months ago that I discovered this pastel coloured shirt that I shunned years ago when I fell out of love with pastel colours. Many long-time readers know I’m in love with mixing shades of the same colour families together in outfits, so this blue/green combination is really no surprise. Upon putting my trusty J Brand jeans on and this mint top, I was instantly struck by how these two colours create the colour of the beautiful Adriatic Sea. I decided to forgo lots of jewelry today and opt instead for my usual watch and ring combination – some days, I can’t stand to have anything more than that on.
It’s been a few weeks since I bought this awesome Stylestalker “Heavy Metal” jacket, and I can safely say that my love for it hasn’t waned one bit. While I’m not one to typically wear super-feminine pieces, I find I’m more inclined to do so when I wear this tough statement piece. About six months ago, after months of searching, I finally found several beautiful, 100% silk slips from Aritzia that I really should have purchased years before. Every girl needs a good slip to wear under nice dresses…or to wear alone if you’re daring like I am. The curve-hugging nature of one thin layer of silk isn’t kind to body imperfections, and I’ll admit this was definitely one of the riskier outfits I’ve ever worn. However, confidence is always the key to wearing any outfit; whether you’re sporting a garbage bag or a $50 000 couture gown, it’s essential nonetheless.
Earlier in May, I wrote about attending LaSalle College’s “Signature 2012″ fashion show and talked about all of the fabulous creations that were presented. However, I never showed you what I wore to the event (dressing for events is obviously one of my favourite parts). As this was the first time I attended the annual event, I didn’t know how fancy the dress code would be. Taking this uncertainty into account, I chose to go with a denim-on-denim look with pops of neon in the form of neon nailpolish, neon piping, and a neon tank top. These photos were taken in the evening, after the fashion show – this is why I’m wearing comfy flats, instead of the black H&M wedges I had been wearing (and bleeding in!) earlier that day. I know the image quality is quite poor, but I think they add a bit of character to the overall look of the pictures.
It seems like that with all Stylestalker items I purchase that I deliberate about buying them for quite some time. When I first saw this Stylestalker Heavy Metallic Jacket on ASOS a month ago, I was tempted to impulsively purchase it but I refrained when I tried to imagine what I would wear the jacket with. However, I always kept the link open in my browser, occasionally oogling its images while studying. It was only last week when I stopped by “Editorial Boutique” on Rue Stanley here in Montreal that I saw the jacket, and decided it was time to take the plunge on such a bold, statement piece. It was love at first sight – I’ve been obsessed with this jacket since I got it and I’ve worn it out every day this past weekend. The only downside? It’s really hot to wear in the mid-20 Celsius temperatures that Montreal has been experiencing recently!
It’s been a while since I’ve done an outfit post, mainly because I’ve been overwhelmed with final exams and the migration of my website from Blogger to WordPress has prevented me from typing up drafts over the last few days. Anyway, the weather has continued to be less than favourable for a time of year that’s defined as “spring” in many parts of the world. It was about 5 degrees Celsius on my balcony when I took these pictures, but I couldn’t resist wearing something besides cashmere or jeans. This gorgeous Mackage studded army green blazer was one of the items I picked up at “La Braderie” two weekends ago (more on that in a much-awaited, later post). As a fan of just about anything riveted or studded, this blazer seemed like a logical addition to my closet.
Despite being trapped in my apartment in order to study for my final exams, the gorgeous weather has breathed some optimism into life these days. Hard to imagine that I purchased this neon yellow Club Monaco a-line skirt exactly one year ago, long before the whole neon trend became overblown and on every piece of clothing in the mall. Whenever I wear this skirt, I usually wear it exactly like this – black accessories and black shirt with my McQueen scarf. If it’s not obvious from my entire site, I’m quite obsessed with bold colours and sometimes need to control myself with how much I throw into one outfit. These gorgeous Dolce and Gabbana booties from 2010 feel so perfect with the girly nature of the skirt, and a McQueen scarf can do no wrong when paired with anything.
It’s hard to imagine that I was completely freezing while wearing this outfit over the weekend. For the first time in weeks, I had to wear a proper coat outside – so much for an early spring. The heat wave is gone, and I’m back to layering cozy cashmeres and jersey t-shirts. The only benefit of the dreaded return of the cold weather is the opportunity to wear these fantastic fur scarves my mom made for me. I think the material was $2, and it took only a few minutes on the sewing machine for my mom to whip this creation up for me.
Lucite and leather…they are the materials of strippers and fetish enthusiasts but can definitely be worn by anyone during the day time, so long as it’s arranged correctly. Surprisingly, those shorts aren’t even made out of leather – they’re made out of an excellent synthetic Japanese fabric that feels EXACTLY like leather and looks very realistic (compare the genuine leather of my Balenciaga bag to the texture of the shorts).
Vawk/Vawkkin Fall/Winter 2012/2013
|All above images courtesy of dresstokillmagazine.com|
|All above images courtesy of dresstokillmagazine.com|
|All above images courtesy of dresstokillmagazine.com|
|All above photos courtesy of itsallstyletome.com|
|All above images courtesty of ibleedfashion.com|
|All above images courtesy of dresstokillmagazine.com|
|Above pictures courtesy of oy&co|
|Above photos courtesy of dresstokillmagazine.com|
|Photos above courtesy of dresstokillmagazine.com|
|Above images courtesy of dresstokillmagazine.com|
|Above photos courtesy of Steve Alkok for “It’s All Style to Me” http://itsallstyletome.com|
|Above photos courtesy of Steve Alkok for “It’s All Style to Me” http://itsallstyletome.com|
|Photo courtesy of www.dconstructfashion.com|
|Photo coutesy of www.fashion-is-my-religion.blogspot.com|
Despite winter being the season I despise the most, for the first time in all of my Canadian winters I find myself continuing to experiment with the more “fashionable” pieces in my closet. Unlike past winters, I find myself shying away from the usual jeggings and cashmere sweater combination that often becomes my daily uniform when the barometer dips into the negative temperatures. These days I find myself experimenting with new colour combinations like navy and rust, new texture combinations, mixing different pieces from different seasons – the options these days seem limitless. While a parka is still “de rigueur”, I couldn’t resist showing off what I wore underneath. I’ve also re-discovered an old love – my first designer purse, the Balenciaga Motorcycle bag. While I adore my other purses, the classic style and colour of this bag has been pulling at my heartstrings recently, so expect to see a revival of this classic piece in the next few posts.
Dress: Aritzia // Scarf: Alexander McQueen // Gold Bracelet: Club Monaco // Silver Bracelet: Gift from Italy // Boots: Jeffrey Campbell // Bag: Jimmy Choo for H&M // Watch: Michael Kors
I realize this post is ridiculously late, considering Montreal Fashion Week was almost six weeks ago, but I couldn’t resist posting three of the four outfits I wore to the Spring/Summer 2012 shows. Looking at photos of these outfits makes me long for the warm weather of early September and the next highly anticipated edition of Montreal Fashion Week in February 2012. As I mentioned in many of my posts on miss SLY!, particpating in nearly all of the shows this past season was a dream come true, and a fantastic way to meet so many other people who have a love for fashion as great as my own.
These days, there is little stability and a lot of changes going on in my life. I’m all packed and ready to head back to Montreal tomorrow, after spending two months back home with my family in Ontario. The days are getting shorter, and dusk is coming earlier and earlier. In a fashion sense, there are also transitions happening. The cooler days and nights have already set in up here in Canada, and I feel like I’ve been deprived of summer and all of it’s wonderful fashions because of my conservative work environment and their near arctic temperatures. But fear not, I am savouring the last couple weeks of summer and indulging in plenty of silks and light knits, as seen in the photos above. I’m absolutely in love with these silk shorts (as seen here in blue), as they hit at just the right spot and are made out of 100% silk – perfect for hot days where the idea of anything covering your legs is repulsive. Even though fall is coming all too soon, I couldn’t resist indulging in two of fall’s hottest colours: eggplant and mustard. Being a fall baby, I find I’m naturally attracted to rusts, browns, eggplants, teals, sages, etc. What colours are you naturally drawn to? What colours will you be embracing this fall? To complete my outfit, I paired it with this Mackage sweater that I picked up at their June sample sale in Montreal (you can also see it here, in front of these beautiful shots of Montreal). The sweater is so delicate, yet the strong silk shoulders and elbow pads add a feminine edge to an otherwise boring cream sweater.
It feels like it’s been FOREVER since I’ve done an outfit post between being busy with work, updating this site and meeting friends. FINALLY, the weather has cooled down a bit and I can finally breathe again (no seriously, it was actually physically difficult to breathe outside due to the heat and humidity)! This is what I wore to work on Saturday (while it was 35 degrees without the humidex), and I’ll admit it’s not a look I would typically ever try. I was inspired after seeing a look similar to what I’m wearing, but I wanted to put a more feminine, yet harsher spin on it. I adore that Aritzia blouse I’m wearing but sometimes I feel TOO girly in it – however, I think the red hot pants and black leather helps keep the outfit modern and away from super girly territory.
I hope all my fellow North Americans are having a wonderful long, holiday weekend (with Canada Day yesterday and the 4th of July on Monday)! So far, my weekend has consisted of pool side lounging and a little bit of shopping. Also, for the first time since coming back to my parents’ house last weekend from Montreal I’m able to wear something other than my work uniform of blouses and dark pants!