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.
I’m already back to the daily grind here in Paris, but at least I have the fond memories from my trip to Amsterdam over the Christmas break to reminisce upon as the onslaught of projects and exams resumes. Amsterdam was definitely one of my favourite trips I took within the last year – and that’s saying quite a lot, given I traveled to Italy, Washington D.C., New York, London, and Berlin all in 2014. Maybe it was the laissez-faire attitude of the city, the beautiful ringed canals, or the unique architecture of the townhouses, but Amsterdam definitely left a profoundly positive impression on me. For my second day exploring Holland, I stuck to possibly my all-time most comfortable and most prized pair of boots: my beloved Alexander Wang Anouck boots. I’ve been obsessed with wearing these boots (as well as the Kori version) so much that I’ve had to get them resoled three times within the six months that I’ve owned them. As for the rest of my outfit, I decided to add a pop of colour to my typical monochromatic uniform by adding this bold reptile print & Other Stories bag. I always become hesitant when I incorporate anything overtly flashy and animal printed into an outfit, but the purse felt like the perfect pop to an otherwise clichéd Parisian look.
Chunky knits, leather pants, and black booties – there is truly no outfit formula more perfect to me than this for any fall day. But when a fall day also happens to include a rare, clear blue sky over one of the most recognizable landmarks in the world? Moments like these from Berlin leave me utterly speechless. After a few stereotypically grey, cold days in Berlin, the sun came out and the skies turned bright blue, transforming all of the breathtaking architecture in Berlin, including the Brandenberg Gates, into something even more incredible and beautiful. For a casual day of sightseeing around Berlin, I decided to stick to my tried-and-true sartorial formula and include this gorgeous and super comfortable All Saints Quinta jumper. While I’ve definitely been going through an All Saints obsession of sorts over the last few months, I had this item on my fall wish list primarily because of its intricate, chunky knit and substantial weight, making it the perfect compliment to my seemingly endless number of pairs of leather pants. And with the Quinta jumper being released in two new colours recently…I can’t say for certain that this will remain the only one in my closet.
I never understood why so many of my friends raved about Berlin until I visited it myself three weeks ago. While I’ve been known to experience a few coup de coeur moments with fashion and accessories, no city has ever captivated me the way Berlin did. Maybe it’s because I’ve been feeling rather homesick for Montreal, but I couldn’t help but see so many similarities between the two cities: from the hodgepodge of different styles of architecture, to the strong youth culture and attitude, I think I found Montreal’s European sister city. After several gruelling weeks in Paris completing my Master’s degree and falling into one serious fashion rut, I decided to bring along some of my more girly fall favourites to Berlin, including my Sandro Janet skirt from the Fall 2014 collection. I’ve been trying to expand my wardrobe’s colour palette lately, and the deep evergreen and velour nature of this Sandro skirt kept bringing me back to the store to try it on multiple times. I’ve also been trying to wear more gold as of late, so the skirt proved to be a perfect compliment with its gold zippers to the hardware on both my timeless Miu Miu purse and my oh-so-comfortable Senso booties.
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.
Photos by Mikey Laviolette
It’s funny how vividly I can remember all of the circumstances around each series of photos I publish on my blog: my thoughts and emotions at the moment the shutter snapped, what I planned to do after the photo shoot, and so on. These photos however are especially vivid and emotional for me, as they were the very last ones I shot before moving to Paris a little over a month ago. After wandering into IIIMNKYS for the first time in early August, I couldn’t believe that such a gem of a boutique had been under my nose during my 5 years in Montreal, completely unbeknownst to me. After a few quick emails and Instagram comments back and forth mere days before I was set to leave Montreal, the store and I decided it would be a great idea to collaborate on a series of photos and an Instagram contest. Given my unrequited love for Australian womenswear labels, I jumped at the opportunity to show off the latest offerings at IIIMNKYS from Cameo The Label. For this shoot, I decided not to fight my monochromatic inclinations. Instead, I embraced them, specifically in the forms of interesting textured additions to various dresses and sweatshirts in the form of leopard print, quilted appliqués, and embroidery. I like to think this series of photos is further proof that black and white outfits can prove to be anything but boring – and Aussie designers sure know how to validate that point.
Photos by Dominique Lawrence of D-Construct
In reality, Montreal is only about 5500 km away from Paris – but truth be told, it feels more like it’s several dozen light years away from me these days. While I only left for Paris 10 days ago, there have been so many changes in each of those days that I feel as if the 5 years I lived in Montreal were a dream. Everything feels different in Paris, including my daily sartorial choices. Montreal summers are basically the complete opposite of those here in Paris: steaming hot, tons of sun, and the desire to wear nothing more than a bikini while lounging by the pool. Given how much I rely on layering as a method of creating interesting outfits, this Zara white vest was about all I could manage on one hot August summer evening. It’s unfortunate that the Canadian climate fails to be conducive to vests – either because your arms are freezing or you’re sweltering underneath – because I quite enjoy pairing them over a simple sundress, or under a nice cashmere sweater. That’s one benefit about being away from Canada for the next year and a half – a little more flexibility with dressing as I no longer have to deal with extreme heat waves and cold snaps. While I will always love Canada and will most likely return in the future, I can’t wait to experience a new lifestyle (potentially including a new style, too?) over the coming months.
(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
One of the most frustrating aspects about being involved in the Canadian fashion industry is fully realizing how much unrecognized and undervalued talent lies within our own country. For a variety of reasons, including economies of scale, the rise of fast fashion, and issues with marketing, it’s often quite difficult for Canadian designers to build profitable, global businesses and receive recognition on par with designers from the rest of the world. However, in the always brutal arena of ready-to-wear, some Canadian brands and designers are in fact thriving. One of my favourite Canadian success stories is Aritzia, the Vancouver-based womenswear retailer that has comprised a substantial portion of my closet for several years now. While my support for Canadian brands like Aritzia lies primarily in their design creativity, use of quality fabrics, and so on, I also love supporting homegrown talent. Given my passion for Canada’s creative industries, I was especially excited to hear about Aritzia’s collaboration with Canadian artist Jessica Bell on a capsule collection for Fall 2014.
Boyfriend jeans have always been a difficult style for me to pull off – they rank right up there with drop-crotch shorts on my “most difficult styles to pull off” list, as their cuts don’t always coalesce with my body shape. Given my affinity for everything One Teaspoon this summer and my ongoing desire to incorporate more denim into my wardrobe, I decided to give the One Teaspoon Awesome Baggies a go. Three months after purchasing them, I’m still figuring out how to wear this Aussie brand’s infamous style of jean without appearing too disheveled. After many (failed) trials and more time spent in front of my bedroom mirror than I would care to admit, I’ve figured out a few tried-and-true formulas with fashion’s of-the-moment denim cut. So what’s my favourite way to wear them as of late? Pairing these most definitely awesome jeans with a flash of leather and a pair of simple pumps, in order to add some texture and femininity to what my parents would consider a bedraggled pair of pants.
(Clockwise): Sunglasses: Whitechapel White Leopard with Blue Mirrored Lenses // Sandals: Senso Ida White Leopard Print Footbed Flat Sandal // Sweater: Joseph Women’s Crew Neck Leopard and Jacquard Sweater // iPhone Case: Marc by Marc Jacobs Sasha Leopard Phone Case // Scarf: Dolce & Gabbana Leopard Print Scarf // Bag: Sophie Hulme Mini Green Leopard Envelope Bag // Jeans: Current/Elliot Charcoal Leopard Corduroy Jeans // Heels: Valentino Rockstud Leopard Pony-hair Caged Pumps // Purse: Celine Leopard Print Ponyhair and Leather Luggage Tote Bag
One of the most exciting developments in fashion within the last few years has been the growing dominance and reliance on Instagram as a source of sartorial inspiration, a platform for free or sponsored marketing, and even a new networking medium for connecting with other likeminded individuals.
Pictures by Yannick Khong
If there’s one item of clothing I really miss wearing these days, it’s my beloved pair of Sandro leather pants. Don’t get my wrong – I’m thrilled that we Montrealers are in the middle of our collective four month reprieve from coats and bulky sweaters right now. But that doesn’t change the fact that I still inevitably and occasionally miss throwing them on with a sheer tee. On any given lazy fall or winter day, this outfit (minus the heels) often constitutes one of my favourite go-to looks. Unquestionably my biggest sartorial investment of last year, these leather pants are already approaching an acceptable cost-per-wear ratio that definitely justifies giving in to their buttery, supple nature last November while in New York. I’ve tried to diversify my wardrobe with more silk and denim options over the last six months, but at the end of the day, there’s nothing as comfortable or more appealing to me than slipping into these Sandro leather pants in the morning and feeling like a badass all day long.
Pictures by Yannick Khong
As I mentioned in my previous outfit post, I’ve been going through a rather profound obsession with drop-crotch shorts ever since I found the most perfect pair by One Teaspoon in denim earlier this year. I’ve also had an idling infatuation with white leather for quite a few months now, so you can imagine my delight at finding these two trends perfectly encapsulated in this new take on the Super Freak short. And what better way than to show them off than paired with a simple “azzurri” blue tee while cheering on Italy as they played their fourth (and final) match against Uruguay. It seemed rather fitting that as soon as Yannick and I exited the bar after Italy’s loss, the heavens opened up and it began to pour. Never one to forgo a moment to shoot a few outfit photos, we took advantage of the rain highlighting all of the amazing summer colours that remain dormant for so much of our lives here in Montreal. Oh, and of course, getting to show off my leather Super Freak shorts in stark contrast to the beautiful foliage and monuments was an added benefit, too.
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.
At the beginning of 2014, I made a new year’s resolution to starting exercising on a regular basis. While I’m well aware that this is one of the most tired resolutions in existence, I was determined to actually follow through with this goal. Halfway through the year now, I’m proud to say that the longest I’ve been away from the gym since 2014 began has been 10 days – and that absence was only due to illness. Even when I visited Toronto and Washington, D.C. in the spring, I made a concerted effort to bring my sneakers with me for whenever I could squeeze in a quick workout.
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.
To say I’m a devout Aritzia customer would be a gross understatement. Upon close inspection of my closet, a good 1/4 of it comes from the Vancouver-based, go-to brand for girls with a keen eye for fine fabrics, minimalist designs, and seasonless basics. I distinctly remember the first time I set foot in Aritzia: it was 10 years ago, at their location right beside Holt Renfrew on Toronto’s high-end Bloor Street West. It was love at first sight, really: I found myself falling hard for their endless array of silk blouses, designer jeans, and light sweaters that still compose a large chunk of my day-to-day wardrobe today.
If there is a quintessential item of my style and wardrobe, I think the general consensus would be that that item is a leather jacket. Come winter, spring, summer or fall, I find a way to wear them through every season and varying degrees of comfort. One of my favourite go-to brands when it comes to leather jackets in particular – but also leather purses and ready-to-wear – is Mackage. Based in Montreal, Mackage is one of my favourite Canadian brands that I eagerly await to see each season at World MasterCard Fashion Week. One of my beloved finds from their sample sale many years ago was this supple leather jacket with subtle shoulder pads that creates a stronger, more feminine look. I’ve been embracing boxier, bulkier styles over the last few months and only late last week decided to revisit this piece when the weather made a U-turn for cooler temperatures. For a lazy day wandering around the Old Port with family, I chose something old and something new from Mackage: this leather jacket and my new favourite bag that I can’t stop wearing on a daily basis. Whoever said there can be too much of a good thing clearly never knew of Mackage or had a penchant for leather jackets.
One year ago at convocation for my bachelor’s degree, I had absolutely no idea that I would be back at McGill only four short months later to start a new program. Granted, this program was for a certificate rather than a degree, but it still proves how unpredictable life can be after those four formative university years. So one year later, I found myself at my second convocation for another program I completed this past academic year. On a much more superficial, sartorial level, I also had no idea that Topshop would be resurrecting this iconic dress for the second Kate Moss for Topshop collection. I remember seeing this dress in the first Kate Moss for Topshop collection way back in 2007 and wishing I could get my hands on it. Sadly, as a 16-year-old girl in the suburbs, I had neither the occasion to wear such a dress, nor the ability to get my hands on it. After going avant-garde with cut-outs and neoprene for last year’s convocation dress, I decided to embrace my girly, feminine side with this yellow chiffon creation. While I’ve been recently viewing unpredictability as a negative quality, I’m realizing that’s a rather myopic view: sometimes it can also mean getting your hands on a dream dress that you thought was gone forever years ago.
A few months ago, when warm weather seemed like some distant fairytale that would never come to fruition, I decided to play around with some spring and summer favourites indoors. Leather jackets, cropped tops, neoprene anything and black ankle boots are all quintessential pieces in my closet, but sometimes an update on these classics is in order. Concerning outerwear, I’ve shunned my collection of black leather jackets as of late and opted for this baby blue Zara number in an attempt to brighten up my wardrobe and break out of my monochromatic rut. Cropped tops have been a little more difficult to expand upon (given their troublesome nature on most female figures), but after months of searching for an update I finally found this gorgeous knit version at Aritzia. The (slight) absurdity of a crop top with long sleeves is what intrigued me at first, followed by how comfortable the fabric it is (déjà vu, anyone). I won’t be shunning my sartorial classics any time soon, but becoming more comfortable with changes is something I’ve started to embrace more willingly in all areas of my life these days. Here’s to new changes in all areas of life.
Pictures by Yannick Khong of Pyktures
Boulevard Saint-Laurent is undoubtedly my favourite street in Montreal. With much of the best food, shopping, galleries, bars, and nightlife scattered along this quintessential part of the city, it’s quite common to find a bon vivant like myself spending the majority of their summer days here. One of the most striking features of this infamous boulevard is the street art and graffiti that can be found at almost every cross street. I’ve passed this mural at Théâtre ESPACE GO many times before, but never had a chance to be photographed alongside it. After succumbing to a phase of colour euphoria last week, it seems I’ve reverted to my monochromatic, sartorial tendencies. You would think after wearing this notorious Zara skort to death last summer and fall that it would be the last thing I would reach for come warm weather this year – but you would be wrong. There’s something I adore about the geometric nature of that Zara skort and my Mackage Roni Silver Clutch that seemed to coincidentally work seamlessly with the bold nature of the mural. While I do go through phases with certain pieces in my closet, I’m certain my relationship with both of these pieces will be enduring.
(Clockwise): Marc by Marc Jacobs White Leather Cute High Top Sneakers // Nixon The Kensington Leather Watch in White // Asya Malbershtein White Mock Croc Town Backpack // Les Chiffoniers Classic Zipper Leggings (similar here) // Chanel White Lambskin Leather Boy Flap Bag (similar here & here) // River Island White Embossed Leather Jacket
After a breathtaking first two days at World MasterCard Fashion Week, people’s expectations for the rest of the week at Canada’s most prominent, biannual fashion event were lofty, to say the least. With a third day comprising of many Canadian brands that have reached the upper echelons of the international fashion industry, including Pink Tartan, Joe Fresh, and Mackage, attendees waited with baited breath for beautiful Fall/Winter 2014 collections that would make us excited for winter’s return in only a few short months. The verdict? Three collections that proved Canadian designers are more than worthy of presenting their designs and talent on the international fashion circuit.
Last month, I had the opportunity to shoot a fashion board with Spoiler Magazine, Montreal’s latest up-and-coming biannual fashion magazine. Despite the frigid, double-digit negative temperatures I braved once again in winter-inappropriate clothing, I’m beyond ecstatic with the photos that the amazing Sarah Emily St-Gelais was able to produce from our afternoon jaunt around Montreal’s trendy Le Plateau/Mont-Royal region. I chose these looks for my shoot because I wanted to wear outfits that represented the essence of my personal style: modern shapes and designs featured in mostly monochromatic shades, interspersed with bold pops of colours and in a variety of fabrics and materials.
Has it really been a month since I left for Washington, D.C. already? Apparently so, even if it feels like I was only there yesterday. Expecting milder weather south of the border, my favourite Zara burgundy jacket was the heaviest piece of outerwear I packed for my week-long sojourn in America’s capital. Dressing warmly with my limited clothing options while away was definitely challenging, and rather repetitive by my final day, but it also forced me to break some of my own fashion rules like leather-on-leather-on-leather-on-leather (that’s right, four leather-like pieces worn at once). While some bloggers seem to be able to pull off this combination effortlessly, I’ve always had trouble doing it myself. My personal tip to wearing a plethora of leather, real or fake, all at once? Different textures and colours of leather interspersed with knits, silks and woollens.
With the cancelation of Montreal Fashion Week this past February, many bloggers and members of the Canadian fashion industry have been feeling a sartorial void of sorts during the presentations of Fall/Winter 2014 collections around the world. While events like D Moment Montreal have helped soothe the lack of a formal event in one of Canada’s most creative cities, there is truly no substitute for witnessing first-hand an entire week of inspiring runway shows and presentations that showcase the best creative talent in our country. Given the scant amount of stylistic inspiration in Montreal these days, it’s safe to say I’ve been waiting with bated breath for many weeks now for a fresh, potent dose of Canadian fashion. And boy oh boy did World MasterCard Fashion Week deliver on that front last week.
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.
Ever since I was a toddler, my hair has taken on some kind of uncontrollable form. During my childhood, my parents tried taming my wavy and frizzy hair with all sorts of barrettes and headbands. As a teenager, I attempted – and failed – to transform my unruly, thick hair with chemical relaxers and countless hairstyling products.
Last week before I left for Washington, D.C., I attended the inaugural D Moment Montreal, Montreal’s latest fashion event for showcasing emerging local designers. Organized by Montreal stylists Nancy Richard and Geneviève Allaire, D Moment Montreal debuts at a convenient time when Montreal Fashion Week, typically organized by Sensation Mode, has taken a season off to regroup in preparation for a combined Festival Mode & Design and September edition of Montreal Fashion Week in August. While this decision has been viewed as widely controversial within the Montreal fashion industry, fashionistas craving their fix made the trek out to Locoshop Angus in the Montreal borough of Rosemont-La-Petite-Patrie for this event’s first edition.
Missing like crazy Piazza Venezia, the beautiful Pugliese countryside, and the winding streets of Lucera right now as I huddle under a pile of blankets in the dead of winter here in Canada. I tried my best to make up for last year’s unfortunate mishap of forgetting my DSLR camera charger on the other side of the Atlantic by building a much more detailed photo diary this time around in Italy. Soon I’ll be off to another destination, albeit much closer to home, but nonetheless it’s another city that I can’t wait to photograph.
One of the highlights of being a fashion blogger is undoubtedly attending fashion weeks across the globe. While attending Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week New York last September was one of the most memorable experiences not only during my time in fashion, but in my life, it was an experience that I sadly couldn’t repeat this season due to academic commitments. Fortunately, Rightster and IMG Fashion reached out to me and asked if I wanted to provide a live stream of MBFW Fall 2014 season, making me (and you!) feel a little bit closer to all of the sartorial action. Given the weather and the scattered location of many shows this season, being at home wearing my most comfortable clothes while watching the shows doesn’t sound like too awful of an idea to me.
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.
(Clockwise) Sandro “Propos” Stretch Skinny Jeans // Diesel Blue and Silver Denim High-Top Exposure Sneakers // Mango Washed Effect Denim Shirt (similar here & here) // Rebecca Minkoff Mini MAC Crossbody Denim Bag // Victoria Beckham Denim Leather-Trimmed Wool-Blend Biker Jacket
The pink coat trend: it has been discussed ad nauseum in fashion magazines and on fashion news sites and blogs ever since the likes of Celine, Carven and Mulberry debuted their rose-hued creations as part of the Fall 2013 collections last February and March. But despite all of this buzz dubbing the pink coat trend “the next big thing”, how many people have you actually seen wearing a pink coat on the street?
If there was ever a time for me to flee Canada to avoid some rather atrocious winter weather and impending, anxiety-inducing life decisions, it was over the last two weeks – which is exactly what I did. Even though 2013 was a great year for me, it was quite an emotional roller coster, primarily fuelled by uncertainty in a variety of areas of my life: uncertainty about what follows graduation, what industry I want to build a career in, and uncertainty about people and their roles in my life. That’s why I’m so grateful I was able to escape life in Montreal and go back to living a bit simpler with limited internet access, eating fresh food, spending time with my family, and oh yeah, wearing normal clothes that don’t include either of these. Truth be told, I was more excited to wear normal footwear than to shed my parka while overseas, wholly due to these boots that I picked up at a pre-Christmas sale by a new favourite shoe line of mine, To Be Announced (as already seen in a different colour here). I had been eyeing this colour for months, but couldn’t justify buying a duplicate of a shoe I already owned without a severe discount. There’s something about this iridescent leather in a classic boot cut that just seems to elevate any boring, monochromatic look like this one to a new level or sartorial achievement. No accessories needed in this look – no purse, no jewelry, no scarf, just the basics, the way I was intent on living life for those glorious two weeks away from the mayhem of Montreal life.
My trip to New York City feels as if it happened a lifetime ago thanks to the last few weeks brimming with changes, some of which have been happening in my own life and others that have been occurring within the Montreal fashion industry. I originally neglected blogging due to the demands of my program, but I ended up taking a bit of a hiatus in order to evaluate the changing role of fashion bloggers and the Montreal fashion industry. I have no intentions of quitting the fashion industry completely, but I am re-thinking how I want to continue to be involved in the fashion world – something I thought I had all figured out a long time ago. That’s what I loved so much about this trip to New York - I was able to get some (literal) distance from everything that bogs me down in everyday life and gain greater insight as to how I want my future to look. Here’s to a few weeks left in 2013 and a brand new year to tackle life with more wisdom, passion and optimism.
One of the things I both love and hate about being in my twenties is the lack of uncertainty in life. Everything and anything can seem to change in an instant when an opportunity or person comes along and violently shifts your perspective on what you want out of life. Not only have I been preoccupied with several major personal changes over the last few weeks that have left little time for blogging, but the near subarctic temperatures and four o’clock sunsets that are omnipresent in Montreal have made making outfit posts difficult at best. After all of the excitement that was New York last month, I seem to have forgotten about one of the last posts I did over Thanksgiving at the beginning of October. I’ve been rather neglectful in wearing dresses since fall arrived, but I couldn’t hold back from pairing this ultra feminine neoprene dress from Club Monaco with one of my favourite oversized leather jackets from Zara. My favourite way to wear this leather jacket is definitely with a girly dress underneath. Maybe it was the cooler temperatures and less hours of light in a day, but I felt the need to keep an all-black look this time around. I guess one thing that won’t be changing anytime soon is my love of leather, black, and neoprene all wrapped up in one oufit. And in times of so much uncertainty and change, that kind of monotony in my own style is without a doubt welcome in my life.
As a young girl growing up in the far-flung suburbs of Ontario, my teenage years were often punctuated by frequent trips to the same big malls with the same generic stores as a means of after-school entertainment. Finding an independent boutique that featured trendy labels was about as rare as being able to comfortably wear short sleeves outside in the winter. Given these fashion experiences of mine in the suburbs, one can begin to understand why I’m so grateful for Montreal’s endless array of stylish boutiques that dot infamous streets like Boulevard Saint-Laurent and Avenue Laurier. Last Thursday, I had the pleasure of attending the opening of La Petite Garçonne, the latest edition to Montreal’s envious line-up of unique boutiques.
Pictures by Yannick Khong of Pyktures
It’s been over four years since I moved to Montreal, and over the years I like to think I’m on my way in becoming une montréalaise: someone that represents the qualities of Montreal and knows the city like the back of their hand. On my path to becoming a true Montrealer, I’ve had to cross off some visits to notable landmarks and sites that I’ve failed to see since I first moved here in 2009. One of those places was the Montreal Botanical Gardens, where Yannick shot these amazing photos at the end of September. Still blamy enough to walk around in a sleeveless motorcycle vest at night, I had a blast seeing some truly amazing gardens and horticultural exhibits (see my Instagram account for examples), and of course playing peek-a-boo in the bushes too. Unlike my some of my previous shoots with Yannick, I wanted to go for a look that was more reflective of how I dress on a daily basis: naturally, this included my beloved leather leggings from Sandro and my favourite pair of boots from Zara this season. It may not be the edgiest look I’ve ever worn, but being edgy is something a lot broader than simply what you put on your body: it’s your attitude, your make-up, your facial expressions – that’s a lesson I’ve learned from les vrais montréalais.
Summer is my favourite time of year to experiment with colour – and lots of it. But come September, I tend to revert to monochromatic staples that reflect my preoccupation with other things in life – essentially, I revert to autopilot mode when it comes to my fashion choices. In a world with so much stimulation, whether electronic, social, chemical, or academic, some things are bound to be done with little intention or thought being put into them. Preventing myself from going into that autopilot mode in various area of life is something I try very hard to watch out for, but it’s hardly an easy task these days. Thankfully, getting out of that monochromatic rut this fall hasn’t been too difficult due to the amazingness that is the Sandro Fall 2013 collection. Filled with leather, studs and bright colours, including this sweatshirt and this sweater, I’ve never seen a collection so perfectly suited to my tastes and so adaptable to my current wardrobe. I’ll never give up wearing black all together, but sometimes a little bit of mindfulness and colour in an outfit makes a world of a difference.
The best thing about the cooler temperatures of autumn is the ability to comfortably wear many of my favourite materials like leather, neoprene, and most recently, quilted anything. After seeing quilting re-emerge from the cribs of babies and the recliners of the elderly at Melissa Nepton’s Spring 2014 collection at Montreal Fashion Week in the form of stylish skirts and sweatshirts, I knew I wouldn’t be able to hold off for six months to try out the quilted fashion trend for myself. And what better way is there to way this new texture than in the form of a cozy sweatshirt with a dash of genuine leather? Combining my favourite Sandro leather leggings with this quilted sweatshirt from Club Monaco felt like the perfect combination last weekend when I was back at my parents’ house for Thanksgiving. Looking to simply enjoy nature and relax a bit before heading back to New York soon, I found myself neglecting jewelry and just sticking to my tried and true wardrobe staples in these hectic times. Given the ease and wearability of quilted separates – they can make a dressy piece looks less formal for daily wear and add another texture to a basic outfit – expect to see a lot more of this texture invading my closet in the coming months.
In the past, you could have called me a compulsive big bag girl: from my oversized Miu Miu to my Alexander Wang Rocco, I’m typically attracted to large bags that I can stuff everything from my overflowing life into. The problem with carrying big bags all the time however is that they tend to invite the desire to carry even more stuff than necessary: the extra space just seems to invite a DSLR camera, water bottle, your boyfriend’s extra stuff on those days when you’re racing out the door. The end result of all this extra space? It all winds up in these larger bags and weighing down our purses and shoulders and damaging the bag itself. In an attempt to break my ways (and the ways of others around me), I decided it was time to start investing in some smaller bags. I’m not sure if I was actually following that logic when I first saw the Mackage Rubie purse – it was truly a coup de coeur when I first saw the bag at Toronto Fashion Week – but it felt like a useful investment given my problems of the past. After one month with Rubie, it’s still a little jarring to see an extra scarf or accessory floating around my apartment and knowing that I can’t spontaneously stuff it into my bag when I’m running late to an event or night out. But hey it’s a process, hopefully one that this beautiful bag will be conducive towards.
You would think that as a Canadian who spends well over half of the year wearing layers, coats and boots that I would be most excited for spring collections. Given that summer is such a fleeting concept here in Canada, it seems almost verboten that every summer, I stalk Style.com looking at what beautiful jackets, cashmere pieces, and other wooly goodies will be invading stores as early as late July.
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.
After covering the majority of shows last year at Montreal’s Festival Mode & Design, I decided to take a different approach this year. Instead of covering all of the runway shows from the catwalk, I decided to focus more on what goes on behind the scenes of the shows – what does it actually takes to create the looks that come down the runway?
Unless you’re completely oblivious to my fashion choices (which is rather hard to do when one reads a fashion blog), you know Aritzia makes up a huge proportion of my closet. If you’re unfamiliar with the brand, you may be asking, why would someone buy so much from one brand,? Simply put, Aritzia pinpoints exactly what I want each season, sometimes before I even know what I want: edgy yet feminine and moderately priced, Aritzia pieces mix quite well with the other separates in my closet.
While this annual event is always a fantastic blend of the best fashion, music, and art offerings from Canada and abroad, this year’s festival will be an especially memorable one: famed art legend Jean-Charles de Castelbajac will be the honourary chairman of the festival’s 13th edition. Known for his numerous accomplishments and collaborations in the film (Coming to America, Mrs. Doubtfire) and music (Lady GaGa, Beyoncé, Kanye West, M.I.A., Katy Perry…) industries, this multidisciplinary creator will offer Montrealers a complete program of activities, including a public artistic performance featuring costumes designed by him and an urban art installation on city buildings.
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
One thing I’ve missed since moving from southwestern Ontario to Montreal four years ago is the seemingly endless number of beaches back home. With five Great Lakes and many smaller ones at your disposal, it’s entirely possible to visit a different beach every weekend in the summertime.
One of the things I miss about the suburbs in the summertime is a backyard full of colour: blossoming flowers, lush leaves covering once barren trees, and grass so thick it feels as if you’re floating when you walk. Even though it’s July, it couldn’t feel farther from summer unless it snowed. With cold, rainy weather being the mainstay in recent months in Montreal and Toronto, I’ve retreated to my preferred method of dressing: lots of thin layers of various fabrics. I guess you could say it’s a silver lining of sorts to a lackluster summer after a long Canadian winter. Recently, my wardrobe has been feeling as “blah” as the weather and I’ve been trying to liven up my wardrobe with metallics and bright colours. Silver has always been my preferred metallic – whether it’s as jewelry or clothes, I prefer silver significantly over gold or even rose gold. I decided to go for a look that incorporated many metallic trends: coated metallic jeans by Rag & Bone, studded metallic sneakers from Sandro and possibly THE hottest trend in recent months: an ear cuff. I had been on the search for the perfect metallic ear cuff for months, and I finally found this beautiful one at Zara for only $20! I don’t tend to pick favourites when it comes to my looks (oh who am I kidding, this one and this one are among my Top 5), but this is a new favourite for me. What do you think?
In the age of iPods, cell phones, tablets and other electronic devices, there’s very little need to wear a watch anymore. With so many devices at our disposal that not only can tell us the time, but also what time it is in 10 other time zones and their respective temperatures, many might wonder, will watches become obsolete?
Romper: Aritzia // Scarf: Alexander McQueen (similar here & here) // Watch: Michael Kors // White Gold Ring: Gift from Italy // Rose Gold Bracelet: Brandy Melville // Rose Gold Cross Ring: Aldo (similar here & here) // Rose Gold Band: Simons // Skull Bracelet: Melody Ehsani // Boots: Jeffrey Campbell // Backpack: TRIANGL
Some people view stability as boring: the same environment day-in, day-out, the same friends, taking the same route to work, and so on. I for one belong to that camp – while I kick and scream against change (metaphorically, not literally…at least most of the time), I can’t stay in the same situation or location for too long. As a little kid, I was always drawing people in motion – never standing still, always jumping, dancing, spinning, or running. I don’t have ADHD or a limited attention span, but what constantly worries me is stagnation: a failure to grow and to challenge myself. This fear of stagnation is without a doubt one of the reasons that I decided to move to Montreal for university, and to Toronto this summer for an internship. As much I loathe monotony, I’ve been living out of a suitcase for the last seven weeks and needed a shot of stability in my life – I needed to go back home. Despite the number of changes that have occurred since I moved away from my parents’ place four years ago, it still feels exactly the same, which for the first time was oddly comforting.
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.
It’s hard to imagine that in the two years that I’ve been actively involved in the Canadian fashion industry, I’ve attended Montreal Fashion Week for four seasons. Martin Lim’s Spring/Summer 2012 fashion show was the first fashion show that I attended as part of my first internship with miss SLY!, and this husband and wife duo has remained one brand that never fails to impress me with each successive season. With so many up-and-coming Canadian designers trying to make their mark and succeed, Martin Lim stands out from the throngs of designers for a variety of reasons: immaculate attention to detail, high quality fabrics and trims, and a clear theme and cohesiveness in every collection. Not only have they charmed bloggers like myself with their directional and high-quality garments – Martin Lim was the first winner in 2011 of the Mercedes-Benz Start-Up program, a Canadian initiative meant to foster up-and-coming designers.
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.
When I tell people I would like to pursue a career in fashion, a lot of people note that working in fashion usually doesn’t lead to the same career fulfillment as being a doctor or teacher would. Sure, there are lots of glamourous events and it’s an immensely stimulating industry from a creative aspect, but at the end of the day those of us involved in the fashion industry aren’t exactly saving lives through what we do. While many people who are not involved in the fashion industry may crudely make this observation, it’s a bit of an outdated stereotype these days given the numerous collaborations between charities, designers and retailers all around the world making a noticable difference in our societies.
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
Despite already being a few weeks into spring, many parts of Canada still seem to be stuck in the depths of winter these days. Parkas are still being woefully worn, and our lighter clothes look increasingly appealing as we progress through the month of April and wonder when the warmer weather will come around. Canadian weather is known to be unpredictable, and this year it sadly seems winter is sticking around a bit longer. So what’s a better plan that escaping it all by traveling somewhere AND getting a shopping spree to to prepare for spring to go with it?
By Day 5 of World MasterCard Fashion Week, the fatigue amongst the fashion crowds was clearly evident: many fashionistas had traded in their sky-high stilettos for wedges and boots, concealer was being liberally re-applied to black undereye circles in between the shows, and more attendees were choosing their beds over the multiple after parties offered every night. However, despite the exhaustion that naturally accompanies such a week-long event, everyone at Toronto Fashion Week was ready for another day of impressive fashion. Day 5 of World MasterCard Fashion Week was definitely my favourite day on the docket for me, with impressive collections from Travis Taddeo, Caitlin Power, Lucian Matis and Pavoni that all had the crowd on their feet by the final walk-through.
After an amazing first day of mine, and third official day at World MasterCard Fashion Week, the metaphorical bar was set rather high for the presentations and runway shows on Day 4 of Toronto’s most important biannual fashion event. After a noticeably empty Montreal Fashion Week schedule this past February that had much of the Montreal fashion community buzzing about where Montreal favourites like UNTTLD and RUDSAK were, Day 4 was an eagerly anticipated day for those faithful to these Montreal fashion visionaries.
Jacket: Zara // Shirt: Forever 21 (similar here and here) // Tank: Aritzia // Glasses: Versace // Watch: Michael Kors // Left Gold Ring: Editorial Boutique // Left Silver Ring: Aldo // Right Ring: Gift from Italy // Cuff: Juicy Couture // Earrings: Juicy Couture // Pants: Rag & Bone // Sneakers: Converse (similar here and here) // Bag: Miu Miu
Zara: without a doubt, it’s the high-street brand that I wear most frequently (as you can see here). Why do I always find myself wandering into the downtown Place Montreal Trust location and perusing their racks in between lectures, you may ask? Because Zara represents everything a high-street brand should: runway-inspired trends marketed at an affordable price and built to withstand a few seasons worth of wearing. Typically fond of creating sleek and sophisticated collections, adding a statement piece such as one of their signature blazers of statement shoes will undoubtedly streamline and modernize your wardrobe.
I’ve always been passionate about supporting homegrown design talent since I began my foray into Canada’s fashion industry. In an industry populated by mass retailers and tough economic times, local designers often face an uphill battle against such successful corporate entities that supply most of the general public with their wardrobe needs. However, I don’t put as much energy into promoting brands from Italy due to Italy’s significant success with fashion: fashion in Italy is embraced by the public significantly more than it is in Canada, and there is significantly more national pride for creating and producing fashion in Italy than in Canada.
Over the last few years, I’ve been paying a lot of attention to how dark and edgy my personal style has become. I don’t think I could pinpoint all of the specific influences behind why I dress the way I do today, but without a doubt, living in Montreal has had a significant influence over what I tend to wear on a daily basis. Spikes, studs, leather, metalics, colours, and lots of black often combine into some unique combination on a daily basis wihtout me putting much thought into it. However, the ability to fall so easily into this formula everyday made me wonder if I was stuck in a “style rut” per se. So as a challenge to myself, I wanted to see if I could nearly eliminate all of my typical influences – specifically, I wanted to try to create a more lady-like look with a lot more white (or bianco, as we say in Italian). Eliminating all colour from my outfits is not an option, so I decided to compromise with these white and multicoloured Rag & Bone pants that I find so difficult to wear. Not only are they extremely tight, but the multitude of colours sometimes make me more self-conscious than usual. Oh yeah, and a Mickey Mouse watch always adds an air of lightheartedness to any outfit versus my usual Michael Kors tank watch. Mickey Mouse was my favourite cartoon character as a little kid and still adds a necessary playfulness to my life these days.
After centuries of gender in-equality, I think it’s great that women are no longer shackled to certain roles. The clothing industry kept up and has accordingly made everything from pants and suits to penny loafers and fedoras into a stylized womanized fashion that woman can wear and which look good! However, there has been a cost: women have forgotten how to wear skirts!
Montreal Fashion Week: it’s the first fashion week that sets off almost six weeks of international shows around the world. It’s the first reunion of the fashion minds of Canada, sometimes just for those four champagne-fueled days here in Montreal, or for others, the beginning of an intense closeness with other famous editors for much of the following month.
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.
Are we really into the second month of 2013 already? Apparently we are, according to dates for Montreal Fashion Week, midterm exams, and meetings that stare back at me from my February page of iCal. Time seems to be passing at a record speed over the last few months, so I guess I shouldn’t exactly be surprised that it feels as if I left Italy three months ago, when in reality I left three weeks ago. All of those smells, sights, and sounds seem so far away – it was if my two week stay was just a dream in another lifetime. It almost feels like I’m coming to the end of a lifetime, quite frankly, as I start to think about the future outside of being an undergraduate student, which is a fairly difficult reality to put into words. Italy, or at least Europe, will hopefully be a part of that new life after this degree, but not quite yet. Montreal will always entice me into staying in this beautiful, crazy, disorganized, yet lovable, creative and charming city.
A lot of people often ask me how I first got into the Montreal fashion industry. Given that I knew absolutely no one who was involved in fashion, I inevitably had an uphill battle ahead of me in order to break into one of the toughest industries. I was lucky enough to find my first internship with Miss SLY! after just two days on Twitter, but I consider finding that opportunity to have been one of the few miracles I’ve experienced in my life.
I don’t tend to make official resolutions when a new year rolls around. Sure, I often commit to doing some things differently or re-evaluating certain aspects of my life. But I don’t believe in drastic changes, mainly because I know myself well enough to know I won’t follow through on them. As I mentioned in my last post, the last few weeks have been rather chaotic and difficult as I plan, quite frankly, what I’m doing with the rest of my life. One thing I want to change this year is cutting down on the amount of stuff I have. Obviously, clothing plays an integral role and comprises much of the “stuff” that is slowly swallowing my apartment whole. To achieve this, I’m trying to cut both my purchases on clothing and reduce the amount I already have by using these four tips:
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
I’ve been back in Canada for a week and a half now, but it truly feels like my trip to Italy was months ago. The last few weeks have been ridiculously busy, sorting out my schedule and life for the first part of 2013, which is proving to be rather challenging. While the weather here in Canada is much more mild than it normally is around this time of year, I still miss those wonderful Roman afternoons when the sun would beam down on me and make everything better. One of the few things I picked up from Europe on this trip were these gorgeous 1a Classe by Alviero Martini high-top sneakers – the moment I saw them in the store window of a little shop near our hotel room, I knew I had to have them. For my last day in Italy, I decided to pair them with my long burgundy Zara zip jacket for a more relaxed look. It’s a bit of a different style for me, but one that I think I will pursue into the spring.
When someone asks me to describe my personal style, I’m often a little lost for words… to say the least. I find inspiration in so many different places, cultures, stores and collections of designers that I find it quite difficult for me to typify my wardrobe into a few adjectives. While I shop at a variety of places such as designer boutiques like Miu Miu, high-street shops like H&M and Zara, smaller local boutiques like Ile en Amerique, I am increasingly choosing to satiate my appetite for fashion by staying at home. Like many fashionistas, over the year I’ve increasingly embraced the growing number of online fashion retailers and now complete a fair amount of my shopping on the web. Take a quick look at the number of Firefox tabs I keep open (to my MacBook’s great disdain) and you will see that I keep my eye, or cursor, I should say on many different online retailers.
Dress: Vintage via Mesh Boutique // Watch: Michael Kors // Ring: Gift from Italy
Don’t you just love it when your computer gives out on you? Between starting a new semester this week, landing in Montreal late Tuesday night and experiencing this latest technological glitch, life hasn’t afforded me much time to keep up with happenings on the interwebs. Here’s hoping that changes with a slightly more relaxed final semester.
I Bleed Fashion: Have you always wanted to know what a guy wants to see on a girl? Sometimes we fashionistas can get so caught up in our fashion that we lose sight of what actually looks attractive to the opposite sex! As part of an ongoing collaboration, Joseph from INeffable Fashion is here to tell us ladies what key pieces we should have in our wardrobes.
Hallelujah! After TWO YEARS of eagerly waiting, Aritzia online shopping finally launched last Friday just in time for the holiday season. As someone who has been known to take an empty suitcase back to Ontario just to stock up on purchases from my favourite store (in case you couldn’t guess from all the posts that feature their clothing), I’m relieved to now know getting a new item is only a click away. As many of you may (or may not) know, Aritzia has not had a location in Montreal due to Quebec’s stringent Bill 101 law, which requires stringent rules about font sizes and such for English and French signs, products and services. Rumour has it though that Aritzia is setting up a location in downtown within the next six months, so maybe Montreal fashionistas will soon be able to shop the Aritzia experience in person…
Remember a long time ago – ok, more like over two weeks ago, when I wrote a post about Michael Eardley’s “REBIRTH ONE” collection at the W Hotel here in Montreal? Despite the delay in writing this post due to post-exam fatigue, here’s the review on the collection itself! Better late than never, right?
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.
Last Wednesday, I had the opportunity to tour the Diesel Canada headquarters here in Montreal and preview their upcoming holiday and Spring/Summer 2013 collections. Sure, most of us are still unpacking our boots and cashmere sweaters for the fall and haven’t even given a second thought about next spring, but it will be here sooner than we think! In any case, Christmas is only two months away, and I’m sure we could all use something new and sparkly for a holiday party or two.
Whenever I tell people that I live in Montreal, I often hear “oh my gosh, there’s so much great shopping in Montreal!”. While there is much truth to this statement, most people, especially tourists or newcomers to Montreal, don’t know where to find these great stores. It’s easy to get discouraged, especially when one takes a quick look along the streets of downtown Montreal and finds a selection of stores that one can find in almost any other big city, like Toronto, Vancouver or New York City. The reason many people fail to find these great stores because the real shopping gems of Montreal are often hidden in far-off areas of the city, such as Le Plateau, Rosement-La-Petite-Patrie or Westmount, where rents are much cheaper and allow creativity, not profits, to flourish. However, that’s not to say that there is absolutely no unique fashion in downtown Montreal, especially with the latest relocation of one of my favourite Montreal stores…
Montreal, Ville Marie, Quebec’s biggest city – no matter what you call it, one would be hard-pressed to not call this island in the St. Lawrence one synonymous with style, culture, and a certain “joie de vivre” embodied by all of its residents. Of course, as a fashion blogger who considers herself based in Montreal and has lived here for the past three years, I may partially biased in making such a statement. But really, with so much vintage treasures waiting to be found in les friperies, lots of independent designers, high-end department stores like Holt Renfrew and Ogilvy, and fast-fashion names like H&M and Zara, how can one NOT embrace style and a fashionable outlook on life? While it’s true that Montreal is a lot better off with shopping choices than other Canadian cities, along with Aritzia, Topshop was a name absent on the roster of favourite shopping places of fashionistas (sidenote: Aritzia will be opening a retail location in Montreal within six months – YES!) – until last week, that is.
Growing up as a little girl in Ottawa with two very conservative parents, I was told from an early age by my father that the only people who got tattoos were slaves and biker gangs. Most lectures on equally horrific things (think drugs, casual sex, etc.) had a similar message – you don’t want to be like those people, they’re not classy and won’t get far in life, etc. For many years, I obediently followed (most of the time) what I was told – I didn’t start dating until a relatively late age, I didn’t get my belly-button pierced despite how badly I wanted it all throughout high school, and I did well enough in school to get into McGill University.
It’s that time of year again, lovelies! A new edition of Montreal Fashion Week is coming our way this week, from September 4-7th! While I’ll be blogging for miss SLY! again, be sure to check back here for what I’ll be wearing, as well as any personal comments and thoughts on this year’s big changes, like the new location, the return of Denis Gagnon, and all of new faces presenting!
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.
Last week, an announcement was made that World MasterCard Fashion Week, more commonly known as Toronto Fashion Week, had been sold by the Fashion Design Council of Canada (FDCC) to IMG World, the largest fashion management company in the world that produces fashion weeks in cities like New York, Miami and Moscow. While this acquisition isn’t a surprising move to anyone who has attended Toronto Fashion Week (now known as World MasterCard Fashion Week in the past), it has certainly generated a lot of buzz in the media about the various pros and cons that accompany the sale of Canada’s largest and North America’s second largest fashion week.
Blazer: Sandro // Tank: Urban Behaviour // Earrings/Necklace: V-Franz // Bracelet: V-Franz // Watch: Michael Kors // Ring: Gift from Italy // Skirt: Travis Taddeo // Boots: Zara // Bag: Longchamp
And it has begun! I had so much fun at the first night of Festival Mode & Design Montreal (#FMDM12) on Wednesday night, with shows presented by LaSalle College, La Boutique, 5 Bloggers 5 Looks, and MyWalk.In! After skipping out on Day 2 on Thursday, I’m excited to head back downtown to McGill College and see what CEGEP Marie-Victorin, LaSalle College, and Die Young, Die Happy (D.Y.D.H.) Productions puts on tonight. I decided to go for a rather bold look on the first day of the festival, choosing a feather and silk skirt by Travis Taddeo that I’ve had my eye on ever since I saw the Spring 2012 collection last September. After months of hesitating, I finally bought the skirt at his sample sale last weekend, after much deliberation over whether I would get more than a one-time wear out of this epic statement piece. I originally made this an all-black look (black heels, bag, blazer, top), but I found that look to be too sombre for summertime. While my coverage for Day 1 of FMDM12 will be posted on Miss SLY!, keep an eye out here for Friday and Saturday’s coverage as well as more outfit posts!
If you follow me on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram, you would have seen some tweets and photos from a recent expose on the design process here in Montreal. I was extremely fortunate to be given such first-hand exposure to a process that very few ever get to see first-hand – I guess this is just one of the many benefits of being a fashion intern! And because I believe fashion should be democratic and open to all, I took along my camera to document how clothes go from the sketchpad to the racks!
Last week, I was delighted to receive an invitation to attend “The Backroom” Fashion Blogger Event, especially since I wasn’t able to attend their grand opening at the end of April due to final exams. Hosted by the wonderful owners Rachel, Marie and Karen (the latter of whom sells her designs in the shop as well), I had the wonderful opportunity to check out this concept boutique for the very first time. Despite the store only being open for two months, “The Backroom” has been gaining quite a bit of popularity among Montreal’s young fashion crowd for its unique take on featuring sustainable and upcoming fashion.
Last summer, I was quite bummed to miss Festival Mode & Design Montreal due to working in Ontario - I had heard so many things about it and vowed to make it out in person to the next edition. Well, fortunately I’m in Montreal this summer and couldn’t be more proud to cover this amazing event! Having just received the press release this past week, my excitement for this event is building and I couldn’t keep myself from sharing it with you all! If you’re in Montreal between August 1st and 4th, I highly recommend that you check out the festival – the event overlaps with Osheaga, so if you want to give your ears a break and dazzle your eyes instead, check out FMDM!
If you follow me on Facebook, you may have heard me talking about my upcoming collaboration with the International Fashion Academy, better known as IFA Paris. In case you aren’t familiar with IFA Paris, this prominent school offers a diverse range of undergraduate and postgraduate programs in Fashion Design, Fashion Management, and Luxury Brand Management, just to name a few, at their Paris and Shanghai campuses. Over the next 10 weeks, IFA Paris has partnered with 10 bloggers in Tokyo, Rio de Janeiro, New York, Paris, New Delhi, Shanghai, Moscow, London, Hong Kong, and Montreal to show the best of the fashion world in their respective cities. It was such an immense honour to receive the invitation to represent Montreal (and the only Canadian city!) in this project, and I promise my article will not disappoint readers. Check out IFA Paris’ blog here to see my article in the coming weeks!
Happy Saint-Jean-Baptiste day to all of my Quebecers! While many stores are closed today for Quebec’s national holiday, I couldn’t resist passing on this invite I received a few weeks back from “The Volts” (who I mentioned in a previous post here). This weekend, Montreal’s newest online retailer is holding an exclusive sale at their offices – even though the sale started yesterday, it will continue on until 6pm tonight! Why not enjoy the day off and pick up some seriously discounted designer items at the same time? If you’re not in the Montreal region or can’t make it out to the sale today, don’t forget to check out their website for current and upcoming sales. I know I will be logging onto their website tomorrow to check out the DUY sale, created by Montreal Fashion Week designer and Mercedes Benz Start-Up Semi-Finalist from Quebec City, Duy Nguyen (you can read my review of their Fall/Winter 2012 runway show at Montreal Fashion Week here). Enjoy the weekend everyone, even if you’re not in La Belle Province to celebrate the holiday!