The Vancouver sun is shining, and I cannot wait to make some sangria, grab my In Style and head to the beach. There’s nothing better than taking a siesta and hearing the ocean water near you, honestly the most relaxing feeling! Here are my picks for the sweetest suits for summer, the Nanette Lepore and Zinke (in the middle) are from anthro, the latter has a removable ruffle, and the pineapple print bikini is from Top Shop. If you’re planning on hitting the beach a lot, then your budget should be about $100-$200, and if not then keep it under $75. I know you’re probably thinking, “yikes, that’s a lot of dough for a swimsuit,” but honey, spending some $ on a piece that will make you feel good it your own skin on the beach is worth it! My sister in law just bought the Nanette Lepore for her family trip to Hawaii and it’s adorable, she definitely gives it a stamp of approval. Happy hunting for a good swimsuit, let me know if you need suggestions for cover ups. Call me crazy but I do accessorize my swimwear too, nothing looks cuter that a wide brim hat and some chunky bangles on your wrist.
I have been coveting dresses designed by Three Floor. Three Floor is a new brand, launched in November of 2011. I love that this is something different for a change! The perfect mix between edgy and feminine…this is not a look for the everyday country bumpkin, which I appreciate! I am getting a little tired of the typical Anthropologie fit and flares…Anthro I love you, but sometimes you are quite matronly. There is nothing geriatric about these dresses, show off those stems ladies!
I still love wedge sandals, and do you know why they will never go out of style? Because you can’t wear heels to a garden wedding, you’ll sink in the grass! Ladies, keep in mind where the wedding venue is going to be before you plan your outfit! Another thing, if you’re not used to wearing heels then take it easy. It does not look good when you try to walk in something you’re not used to! Yesterday I saw a gal walking into a restaurant, and she had to brace herself against the wall because she was having such a hard time walking in her shoes! Life is too short for you to feel that uncomfortable. With that said, you’re going to wanna dance at the wedding so a wedge heel is good for that, or just wear a cute pair of flats…please DO NOT wear flip flops okay? Yuck. Flip flops are for the beach, or when I take out the garbage at night in my pj’s. They are about as cool as uggs, and true religion bootcut jeans with rhinestones on the butt. Ok? Don’t do it. Is it a beach wedding? That’s the only time you can wear your Havaianas. Ok, enough ranting about footwear, take a look at this outfit below. I love all the pieces, what a cute look for attending a wedding. Especially if you’re single. Weddings are a great place to meet someone! The statement necklace is fun, and not over priced. If you wear a statement necklace then be sure to wear posts for earrings rather than anything dangly. Or if you wear big earrings, opt for a dainty simple pendant necklace. Hair accessories are cute too, with soft big messy curls. Don’t you dare do the tight ringlet, grade 9 prom look. Natural, is better. Have fun, and don’t drink too much. No one wants to see your undergarments at this point.Make it Zig Dress, Modcloth $125 | Esme Deco Posts, Anthropologie $28 | Jessica Simpson Wedge Sandal, Nordstrom $84 | Mixed Alloy Necklace, Anthropologie $48 | Petal Swirl Clip, Anthropologie $18 | Before Your Thyme Bag, Modcloth $72
Put away your wool sweaters ladies, spring is here! Well, in Vancouver anyway. Here’s an easy put-together look, great for sipping caesars on a patio, meeting your gal friends for lunch, or a casual shopping stroll. Swap the boyfriend jeans for some slim cigarette pants and you’ve got yourself a work appropriate look too. Make sure you balance your colours and texures, and the dainty with the edgy. A good neutral bag like this one will be great with all of your light denims this season, and take it easy on the studs, this army jacket is slightly decorated, but not overly – which I think is a good thing. The tunic from Zara will be a great staple, cute with a pair of shorts and sandals, and will carry over into fall too. Shop smart, happy hunting!Studded Army Jacket, Forever 21 $58 | Sunglasses, Anthropologie $30 | Charm Necklace, American Eagle $16 | Shoulder Bag, Modcloth $63 | AG Piper Crop Jean, Piperlime $215 | Pin Tuck Blouse, Zara $60 | Baka Cut Slingbacks, Anthropologie $168
A couple of weeks ago, I visited Bao Bei Chinese Brasserie in Vancouver’s Chinatown. I loved the atmosphere in there, these photos were brightened up a little, but it was dimly lit, and very inviting. The food was so good, the best fried rice I’ve tried, and the squid stir-fry was delicious, as agreed by everyone at the table. The price was a little high for the quantity, but the service was very good. I recommend this place! The only thing I have to complain about was the ultra boring couple who sat next to us, barely saying two words to each other the entire time, yikes, if it’s awkward for the table sitting next to you, then time to make some life choices folks! Or at least order some cocktails…hmm maybe a fight was brewing, or had been brewing? Who knows, but good food it was! So unlike me, maybe just ignore the neighbours, and enjoy what’s in front of you. Hopefully my next blog post for you all won’t be so far away, thanks for reading!
Bumble&Bumble Styling Lotion- A (sassy) review
By Mariel Rotherham
If someone was to ask me what the one part of my beauty routine I could never go without, I would tell them it was my hair. Or my toe polish. I only wear Essie’s Aruba Blue. I call bare toes ‘penis toes’. They creep me out. (Bare toes. Not penises.). Oops, where was I? Oh yes, my hair.
My life motto is “No one likes a flat head”. By no one, I mean me. I have a horribly shaped head. Almost cone-like. I used to backcomb my hair to within an inch of it’s life. I now settle for a more subdued look, but am always looking for new ways to get that extra lift.
I went into this assignment hoping to try a new beauty or skin product but since I’m a total boy when it comes to that kind of thing, I didn’t know where to start or what to even ask for. This, of course, led me to fall back to my hair.
I wanted to stick to Bumble and Bumble, mainly because it was much more in my price range, but also because- if I’m being completely honest- the bottles were way cuter than all the rest. ANYWAY. I asked Raegan- the lovely blonde workin’ the hair product wall at the CurliQue salon- for a product that would give me a little extra oomph when I blow dried, without making my hair feel gritty- as many thickening or volume products do. She recommended the Styling Lotion by Bumble and Bumble. She said it was very light and she preferred it for blow drying and volume over similar products from the higher end brands. It was also a heat protector for styling dried hair as well. I’m all about multi use. Time is money, my friends! Or Money is time. Or whatever it is they say.
I bit the bullet and bought the product in hopes of a miracle. I also weased my way into getting some extra samplers for being extra cheeky. It’s all about working your magic. Everyone loves free shit. If anyone told you they didn’t like free shit, they’d be lying. To your face.
The following morning, I sprayed the product generously throughout my towel dried hair- as directed by the bottle- and blow dried my hair in sections with a round brush. On a scale of one to JLo, I’d give my hair about a Mariah. There was definitely some lift involved, and it was silky smooth, but I wouldn’t go as far as to say it was at maximum luciosity status. I then sprayed the product again in my dry hair to curl it. This, unfortunately, was not so successful. My hair did not curl very well (does it ever?) and the curls were flat by the time I got to work about an hour later. Nightmare. Perhaps had I been straightening my hair, it would have worked miraculously. Trial for another day.
Following this whole fiasco, I will definitely continue to use this product for blowdrying my hair. However, to avoid any further flathead catastrophes, I will stick to my drugstore Tresemme hairspray for the styling. Unless for some strange reason I decide to try an Alexander Wang pinhead look (NOT). All in all, I will give the Bumble and Bumble Styling Lotion three Bump Its out of five and I will forever be on my quest for the ultimate vomlumizational product.
How do you feel about Valentine’s day? Personally, on a romance scale from one to ten, I think Feb 14th is a zero, BUT not everyone feels that way and I do think it’s sweet to celebrate Valentine’s day with friends and family with cute treats and thoughtful little gifts, such as the ones below. And if I got a gift from that special guy, I wouldn’t want roses but maybe a cute red pair of pumps mug from westelm | card from etsy | essie polish | smashbox lipstick | pumps from modcloth
Look at this cutie, she totally capitalized on one of the first sunny days this year. I love the simplicity of this look, as well as the stitching detail of the bustier she’s wearing. This is also a great example of balance. The pants are a looser, casual fit, but matched with heeled wedge booties, a sheer top, and a chunky rose gold watch – her look is well pulled off. Love it!
Are you planning a sunny getaway? If so, I’m sad I can’t go with you but I can definitely tell you what to pack. First let me say that this peplum tankini is almost enough to keep me away from sugar (typing this as I’m eating a very rich brownie). It’s so cute, I’d actually wear the tankini part of it as a top. Throw this green midi skirt on, and grab this bright knit cardigan, the only thing you need now is a fresh flower in your hair. I can picture you soaking up those rays right now. The priciest item on this list is the bathing suit, but the uniqueness of it is worth the $$, especially if you’re planning many beach days this year (which I think is a great goal for 2013). As for me, I quietly sigh until I can hit the beach here in Vancouver, on that note no more brownies.
The other day, while shopping at one of my favourite stores, I witnessed a grown woman having a temper tantrum. Unfortunately between her loud fits of rage, and obnoxious yelling, I couldn’t tell what the issue was. Her victim? A young lady. Probably worked there part time, probably got minimal holiday training, probably wasn’t the first time she was yelled at that day. I wonder how that lady felt after she left the store, knowing that she unloaded on another human being. Maybe she has a daughter at home her age, who knows. Granted, I have been on the other end of awful customer service, but if you are getting to the point where you are yelling at the Starbucks barista because she forgot your extra pump of sugar free vanilla, then girl you have other things to worry about. And yes, I did see that happen the other day too. Hey, shit happens. You might not get the drink you ordered, you may buy a shirt that goes on sale the next day and you can’t get the discount (I don’t agree with that, but I would never ruin someone else’s day over it.) Just learn to be a cautious shopper, and understand that maybe customer service isn’t the best at this time of year, people are exhausted it’s sale season, so calm down. I have had some shockingly bad customer service, at stores that are known for their great customer service, so if that happens there are other ways to deal with it, like for example quietly speaking to a manager instead of exhausting your anger and energy on the cashier. If you don’t agree with anything I’ve said, then wait until February to start shopping again. If you are the lady who lost her shit at Starbucks, then I just want to tell you that you spent $3 on your coffee, 4 minutes yelling at someone, and carried and spread a useless amount of anger all day. Was it worth it? Nope, not at all.
What is the coziest, most satisfying way to enjoy a hot cup of coffee on a winter’s day? Biscotti! Yum. It reminds me of my best friend and her mama, I think they make it every year. It is so yummy, and the perfect treat to dip in your hot drink, I also won’t judge if that hot coffee contained a lil bailey’s, just go all out.
I got this recipe from my Martha Stewart Baking Handbook, a gift from my sis from a past Christmas. It does make a good gift, so if you’re still racking your brain trying to think up a good gift idea, I suggest this book and maybe some lovely baked biscotti to go along with it (since I’ll be giving you the recipe anyway). I modified Martha’s recipe a bit, I used what I had in my cupboards, so walnuts instead of pistachio, I also dipped my biscotti in white chocolate. The recipe did not call for that, but I wanted an excuse to use my white chocolate melting wafers.
What you’ll need:
1/2 cup dried cranberries | 1/2 cup boiling water | 3 cups flour and some for dusting | 2 teaspoons baking powder | 1/2 teaspoon salt | 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature | 1 cup sugar, more for sprinkling | 3 large eggs, plus 1 large egg lightly beaten | 2 teaspoons vanilla extract | 1/2 cup walnuts | 1/2 cup white chocolate melting wafers (optional) | red sprinkles (optional) | fresh cranberries, rosemary and cinnamon (optional, for decorating)
Preheat the oven to 375°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, set aside.
Place cranberries in a small bowl, and add boiling water. Let stand until plump, 15 minutes. Drain and set aside. Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt into a medium bowl; set aside.
In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add 3 eggs, one at a time, beating to incorporate after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed . Beat in the vanilla. Add the flour mixture, and mix on low speed until combined. Mix in the drained cranberries and walnuts.
Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface; divide in half. Shape each piece into a 16-by-2 inch log, and transfer to prepared baking sheet, about 3 inches apart. With the palm of your hand, flatten logs slightly. Brush beaten egg over the surface of the dough logs and sprinkle generously with sugar.
Bake, rotating sheet halfway through, until logs are slightly firm to the touch, about 25 minutes. Transfer logs on parchment paper, to wire rack to cool, 20 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 300°F.
Place logs onto a cutting board. Using a serrated knife, cut the logs crosswise on the diagonal into 1/2 inch thick slices, place them (cut sides down) on baking sheet and put back in oven to bake for 30 minutes.
If you want to add white chocolate, melt the chocolate in a double boiler, and dip the biscotti, let cool then sprinkle with red sugar for colour.
Enjoy! Give away as little holiday gifts to friends, coworkers, neighbours, etc. Decorate with a little rosemary, cranberry, and cinnamon bouquets (see photo).
I love the holidays mainly for the get-togethers and the food! I hosted a potluck last night, and it was so much fun to get everyone together for a good meal. I wanted to share this delicious appetizer with you all, because it’s so easy and SO tasty.
- fresh bakery bread, I used fig & anise bread as well as a loaf of cranberry & pistachio bread from Terra Bakery.
- a jar of fig jam
- fresh thyme
- goat cheese
The rest is just assembly. Cut the bread into bite-sized pieces, and assemble the cheese then the jam, sprinkle with thyme and place a few pomegranate seeds on top, and you’re done!
Ok, this is the easiest craft ever.
1. Go to your local craft store, buy yarn (I bought one that already has a colour gradient), and a styrofoam wreath.
2. Go home, sip on some wine (or beer), put on a good show, regretfully I was watching White Collar.
3. Wrap the yarn around the styrofoam base, tie it off at the end.
4. Loop a ribbon around the wreath, and hang on your door.
PS Sorry about the chipped nail polish in the photo, girl’s got a 9-5.Pin It
During the holiday season we are bombarded with glitter, cheesy holiday prints, more glitter, and junky decorative accessories. Though I like eclectic things, they must have aesthetic value, some sort of meaning to you that make it special, and for me I love when something feels nostalgic, warm, and cozy. Delete the clutter, you can be eclectic without it being junky and messy! Here are some things I love. I actually made a pennant banner yesterday. My favourites in this collage would easily be the Jon Contino whale print, and the pomegranate scented candle from Pottery Barn, oh and mercury glass…anything mercury glass!
Tonight I watched the documentary, Bill Cunnimham, New York. You need to watch this film, it definitely gets my recommendation. I wanted to post about this, because it’s about a fashion photographer who doesn’t care about fame, celebrity, or money. He only actually cares about the clothes people choose to wear to express themselves. He is such a nice man, and is literally smiling almost the entire documentary. He is unlike any other fashion photographer I know of, and he’s over 80 years old. Watch it! You’ll really like it.
“Those who are looking for beauty, will find it.”
Is it just me, or do you have the travel bug too? I absolutely love visiting a new city and experiencing the food, nightlife, restaurants, and shops! If you have a recommendation for me, especially if it’s within Canada or on the west coast, please write to me and let me know, and if you are planning a visit to Vancouver, be sure to check out the post I wrote for Cheap Hotels Travelogues – it will give you a great guide for what to see and do in beautiful Vancouver.
Recently I have been obsessed with watching Downton Abby. I just cannot get over how gorgeous the styling of the 20′s is. If I could wear beaded gowns, red velvet shrugs, and head pieces on the daily…without getting weird looks, I would do it! Instead here are some Downton Abby inspired pieces that will work in 2013.
Needlelace T-straps $158, by Lucky Penny for Anthropologie
Vintage gloves – find similar on etsy
Lace-Framed Cardigan $128, by Knitted and Knotted for Anthropologie
Soigne Pin Cloche $48, Anthropologie
Wild Rose Comb $325, from Paris by Debra Moreland, for BHLDN
Pin Dots and Proper Bag $55, Modcloth
Flapper Girl Dress Trio, click here for links.
Vintage Cameo Brooch $45, Etsy.
Vintage Tea Set $45, Kaboodle (The Tea Pot Shoppe)Pin It
Look at these two. Diane Kruger and Josh Jackson have great style together. The thing is, this look is EASILY achievable. If your guy is still wearing running shoes and jeans…well…you need to do something about it. If only to save your sex life. We all know he isn’t going to buy these things for himself…so Christmas is around the corner and you can help in that department. Oh and ladies if your man is into Ed Hardy and highlights in his hair, then all I can say is best of luck to you, truly…
Take a look at the options I’ve given below, as inspired by the Kruger/Jackson duo.
Bootie, Piperlime $228
It’s nice to treat the ones close to you. I know this time of year brings a lot of mixed feelings, but the holiday season isn’t only about needless gift giving. It is a good time to buy thoughtful gifts for those you appreciate. Not that appreciation is only shown through gift giving, but I honestly LOVE finding gifts for my friends and family. Hunting for something for someone special is enjoyable for the gift giver too Here are some suggestions. I love the Polaroid camera, it’s great for the gal who isn’t easily thrilled with accessories and girlish gifts.Pin It
Look at this colour palette! It’s gorgeous, and I love the mix of patterns here too, it’s just right and not overdone. Doesn’t she look great? Scarf is Anthropologie, gorgeous knit poncho is from Plenty, crochet cuff henley is Free People, patterned skinnies are Free People as well, boots are Frye and the bag is Betsey Johnson! The inspiration piece for this outfit was definitely the great Free People pants, every colour is well represented somewhere else in this outfit. Don’t be afraid to mix patterns, as long as you work out a good palette.
love this look. Zena is wearing a long cardi and bright yellow scarf from Plenty, fringe bag from H&M, slacks from Aritzia, and little booties from Plenty. I believe the top is Free People. This is exactly how to look casual and put together. Zena is work appropriate, stylish, and can wear this outfit if she meets the gals for drinks later! Once again, throw away those god awful crocs, comfy casual does not mean lazy sloppy.
Blazer: 2 years ago, Cartonnier for Anthropologie
Tunics (both) Free People – get them from the website today!
Tights by Ribbon for Plenty
Boots are Aldo
Bag (purchased a year and a half ago) from Anthropologie
*prices aren’t included because many pieces were purchased at least two seasons ago!Pin It
Ok, I think it’s time we had a chat. I tried to ignore it, but…well now the problem has become pretty clear. It’s not you…ahem…er…it’s your handbag. That god awful, not-so-juicy number you’ve been carrying around has got to go. Ain’t nothin’ “juicy” about it girl, please ditch that thing. Do not take it to a job interview, and for the love of fashion and put together women all over the world, find a classic bag that doesn’t make you look like you’re a confused teenager who spent $200 on a bag that looks like it was made and embroidered by my grade eight Home Ec teacher. (Deep breath). It’s not your fault, you’ve been misled and you’re slightly confused…it’s ok, I’m here to help. Take a look at these options.
Gypset Chevron Satchel | Anthropologie | $278
Rita Colorblocked Purse | Anthropologie | $128
Rebecca Minkoff Mini Mac Bag | Piperlime | $195
Ask for the Maroon Bag | Modcloth | $70
I get asked all the time: “how do I still look put together for school/work in this weather?” The rain has started here in Van, and is not going to let up for a while now but don’t be stuck in sporty wear all winter….please wear your lululemons to yoga, they don’t belong in the office, yes I’ve seen this believe it or not. Instead of a track suit looking rain jacket, substitute this water resistant anorak…the lining is plaid which is very cute. I’m tired of the classic Hunters, so instead of the tall Hunter boots I really like this bootie version, they are discrete and look cute with skinnies tucked in.
Knee high socks | Anthropologie $36
Scout’s satchel | Anthropologie $278
PGD Alice Anorak | Plenty $149
Betsey Johnson bow umbrella | Modcloth $38
Knit hat | Piperlime $48 (by Echo)
Hunter booties | Plenty or Shopbop $120
Nat showed me this great little place on Main and 29th yesterday. The pho was so tasty, I tried the rare beef while Nat had the beef brisket. The spring rolls you ask? Seriously yummy! Check it out for yourself. Customer service was quick, appropriate, and not over board (in other words, don’t expect to be wowed) but everyone was nice enough, which is fine for me!
Wishing you all a very Happy Thanksgiving! What was on my menu? Not a turkey, that’s something I’m not willing to tackle just yet. Slow roasted sirloin, with green beans, carrots, onion, mushrooms, celery, and potatoes. Yorkshire puddings (recipe from Jamie Oliver), homemade gravy, orzo with broccoli, mushroom, and parmesan cheese (modified recipe from my friend Kelly), homemade gravy of course, and greek salad. There was also a lovely cheese plate with fruit, and some yummy Russian Mule cocktails. Pie to top it off, though it wasn’t my own, courtesy of Krauss Farms.
MinkPink Tunic and tights from Plenty, Snakeskin booties (Aldo), statement necklace (Anthropologie).
What is the best part about fall/winter? The feeling of a cozy, infinity scarf wrapped around you! I just bought this amazing hand-knit ombré scarf by ELLEBelles. The colours she uses are amazing, and I bet she could do some custom colours if you ask nicely. This is her facebook page. Contact ELLEBelles to get your scarf!
A friend and I popped into Brandy Melville the other day, and the sweetest little gal was helping us out with our finds. Meet Hannah, a natural beauty, and genuinely nice she basically changed my opinion about the store, since (let’s just be frank) the service there isn’t always great, sorry but it just had to be said. Anyway, Hannah’s personality wasn’t the only thing I liked, her outfit was too cute. I love the way it isn’t overstated or overdone, it’s trendy but comfortable and not over thought. Check out Brandy Melville for an array of hi-lo skirts, grungy pieces, and some trendy looks. That day I took home a gorgeous floral extreme hi-lo skirt, more like a mullet than a hi-lo, and I can’t wait to wear it with tights and some rugged boots! Happy hunting y’all!Pin It
Scarf, handbag and pullover: Anthropologie
Floral skinnies: Free People
Side slit booties: from a boutique in Paris
How much do you love Kelly’s fresh look? This stylish gal is a pro at layering. The tunic is a gorgeous number I own too, by Free People and I love that you can see a peak of the peach tank underneath, both items were purchased from Plenty. The scarf adds some neutral and a little bright to add some depth and interest, the wrap around belt was a sale purchase from Club Monaco! Matched with the sweet little Miz Mooz clogs, and the boho Free People woven handbag, this look is perfectly balanced. The bracelets are a mixture of American Eagle finds, Free People, and most of them are actually handmade by Kelly and myself, using precious stones. These will be up for purchase on my site soon since we literally get stopped on the street by gals who want a set! The rose gold watch is from Endless, and the rad jeans were under $50 by Joe Fresh! Love this look! See detailed item list and website links below.
Tunic: Free People
Jeans: Joe Fresh
Bag: Free People
Belt: Club Monaco
Watch: EndlessPin It
I love the look of military mixed with a feminine touch, like an embroidered dress, or really anything that is equal feminine and masculine. It’s important to have balance, like I always say so my embroidered dress and my floral crown are good with my army green anorak and my rugged grey boots. The animal print on the bag gives a little texture, too.
Floral Crown: Free People
Anorak: Maison Scotch
Dress: Free People
Spring and summer were all about soft colours, pastels, taupes, ivory, and white. Now I am all about getting my jet black pieces out. Black offers edge, is always classic, and can be infused with bits of colour here and there. The red zipper detail in the moto jacket adds interest, the teal stripes in the maxi skirt give some depth, and the orange velvet infinity scarf with the mustard cross body bag are perfect fall colours. Here’s the thing, all your main pieces can be used over and over again, the accessories offer colourful layers to an otherwise basic look. Balance the cost with how much wear and use you’ll get out of the item. The Cynthia Vincent’s are the most expensive but they will go with everything and can be worn with cute little floral skirts when spring finally rolls around again!
Fitted Chambray Shirt, $88 Anthropologie
Banded Column Skirt, $98 Anthropologie
Anise Attitude Moto Jacket, $55 Modcloth
Cynthia Vincent Platform Booties, $350 Piperlime
Modest Indulgence Velvet Scarf, $20 Modcloth
Stone Stud Earrings, $48 Coach
Kenneth Cole Cuff, $98 Piperlime
Milly Emerson Mini Bag, $198 PiperlimePin It