30 September 2011

Style Peek: boho dress + cropped cardi

Happy Friday! What a week friends...work continues to be incredibly busy and I'm definitely feeling the stress. I've been looking for lots of ways to stay balanced - I started a new sewing project, I'm reading before bed, cooking comfort food and trying to get lots of sleep. How do you handle excessive stress?

Speaking of stressful, I was really nervous about posting The Coveter, but I really want to thank you for your overwhelmingly positive response. Your comments were so insightful and I really enjoyed reading them. We're all a work in progress, aren't we? Also to clarify, the post was really about me and my own insecurities and jealousies, not the email I received. It was about me giving a lot of thought to the fact that I often wish for things that other's have, when in fact, I have it pretty darn good. I hope you feel that too for yourself.

So true story about this dress - I often go the mall for work and everytime I enter through the Bay. For months, I've been eyeballing this adorable bohemian dress by Jessica Simpson and being sad everytime I check and they don't have my size. I'm a HUGE print gal and I was really drawn to the cream background, since so many dresses I own are anchored in black. Well....last week I walk in and took one more fruitless glance at the sizes and what do you know?? Jessica Simpson actually carries a lot of her collection in plus size and I had no idea. (I don't love the Above Average section at the Bay but check once in a while - you never know when you'll spot a gem.) So one of my dream dresses had wandered over and put itself in my path...at 50% off! Yes, I know what I said - but I couldn't resist. Forgive me. (I've already worn it 4 times...that's gotta count for something right??)

cropped coffee cardigan: The Gap (old)
gold cutout flats: Steve Madden (old)

What are you plans for the weekend friends?

28 September 2011

The Coveter

I've always been a coveter. Since I was a little girl, I longed for things I didn't have. Not a deep down sadness, but definitely a little wistful wanting. Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed the things I did have - but other people's lives presented a mysterious something that made me wonder if they had it better than me. I always brushed it off as ambition, me wanting to aspire to be the best I could be.  Once I learned that if I worked hard that I could accomplish dreams, buys things I wanted and make my life fulfilling - I began busting my behind and never looked back.  

Then blogging introduced me to a whole new world of people, primarily women. It's like one giant high school where you can peek into everyone's lives - there are people you click with right away, those you never really 'get', the ones who have the job or the wardrobe or the love life that you want... I'm not immune to comparing myself. 

Truth is, there is something about every other blogger that I covet. I want to look as good at Kendi does in her blog posts. I wish I had Cara's to-die-for body. I've always wanted to write for Glamour magazine like Rosemary does. Why can't I have a dream job of working for myself like Leigh-Ann does? I wish my photographs looked like Mandy's. Why can't I think of as many pretty DIYs as Elsie does? It goes on and on and on...

A recent email really got me thinking about the idea of 'comparing lives' and how unhealthy it is.

Let's be real here - this blog is a place that I share my joys. Not too often do I get into my sorrows, my daily annoyances, my disagreements with my family or my husband. I don't share my embarrassing moments or things I'm shameful that I've done.  This space is my 'charmed life', as it probably is for so many other bloggers. I work very hard to take pretty pictures, to show you nice things, to talk about fun ideas and inspirational creative-type stuff. 

But I have crap and flaws and down days. Never mind the fact that we are all in different places in our lives, whether it's financially, career-wise, in our personal lives or with our own growth, development and self-acceptance.  I spent my 20's trying to figure out my career path, going on bad date after bad date, struggling to pay my bills. It took a long time to get where I am today. But I wouldn't change anything about it. Cause it's all me.

I know I can never change your mind. But please please pretty please try your hardest to love you, to accept you, to be you. You are pretty great. And goodness knows there is someone out there coveting exactly what you have...so enjoy it.

Sending you all big hugs,

27 September 2011

Wedding Pics Sneak Peek!

They're here! A sneak peek at least...of our wedding photos. How amazing to have these memories to look at time and time again throughout the years of our marriage. It was such a special day, I wish I could have made it longer to relish every moment and spend quality time with every guest! I can't wait to see the rest - especially the photo booth pics of everyone!! For now, here's a little look at our day.

A huge hug and thank you to our photographer Leah Bima for doing such a great job of capturing the soft, rustic, vintage feel of the wedding (plus our happiness!).



all images via Leah Bima Photography

Thanks for stopping by and have a great day friends!

26 September 2011

Style Peek: marigold handmade skirt + layered neutrals

Hello! Happy Monday and I hope you all had a lovely weekend! I finally finished (okay, I haven't done the pockets yet) my skirt and I was so eager to wear it that I went 'as is'. I'm pretty proud of finally getting comfortable with my sewing machine and making something I actually like. Plus it feels pretty rewarding to put something on and know that you made it yourself...know what I mean? It's a very simple silhouette, a gathered waist with a flat band but it features an invisible side zipper - woo hee!! Thanks to my awesome sister for coming over on the weekend to give me a zipper tutorial. You're the best!

I was inspired by this gorgeous marigold heritage cotton fabric, I knew instantly it would be a perfect fall skirt. Then I layered the vivid colour with more neutral pieces, except for the aqua necklace - I couldn't resist a pop of contrast. Plus we're having a balmy fall so I got away with bare legs - yay!

marigold skirt - handmade by me!
cream blouse - Eddie Bauer (similar)
grey cardigan - Gap
woven belt - Pure Alfred Sung via Zellers
aqua beaded necklace - thrifted
brown leather flats - Aldo

Do you sew at all friends? Did you learn as a kid or take it up later in life? 

Have an amazing day!

23 September 2011

Sweet Style Steal: Delicate Dots

Happy Friday everyone! I hope you've had a great week and have many fun things planned for the weekend. Thanks for tuning in to Joe Fresh Beauty Week! A huge thanks to Joe Fresh for such fabulous, fun make-up at such great prices. It will be hard to resist a regular trip to the beauty section during my grocery shops at Superstore! If you missed any of the four Joe Fresh looks, you can see them all here.

I've always loved polka dots. There's actually a photo out there of me in Grade 9, wearing an oversized polka dot Le Chateau blouse buttoned up to the neck. I know it's dated, but I kind of still love that pic because polka dots have never really gone out of style for me. So it's great to see their resurgence in so many shops this fall.

But as usual, I'm on the hunt for a bargain, so even though I adore the box pleat neckline and gathered cap sleeves of this little gem by Zara, I'm not ready to part with $50. It's not a bad price for a good quality piece (plus I love how delicate the dots are) - but with my wishlist so long, I'm trying to extend it as far as I can!

via Zara

I can always count on Old Navy for pieces that are on trend for much less. For half the cost at $25, this polka dot top has a cute silhouette, pretty sleeves and a similar delicate pattern.

How about you friends? would you rather pay a little more for something that might last longer? Or are you looking for the best price?

Have a lovely, amazing weekend everyone! We'll be back to regularly scheduled programming now with Style Peeks back in the mix...

22 September 2011

Joe Fresh Beauty Week: Freshly Pretty

Hey all! Today's the last day of Joe Fresh Beauty Week and here's the fourth and final look. I saved the most wearable everyday look...I love the soft pinks. They look good on everyone and look so light and fresh.

So project sew skirt #1 was a success in the sense that I finished it and learned a ton. It's not super wearable but I'm already working on my 2nd one with many, many lessons learned! It's funny how quickly I became well-acquainted with the sewing machine...it was so daunting only a short time ago. Practice makes perfect!

The look: Freshly Pretty - pink cheeks+glossy lips

The base: After washing my face, I did my regular morning face routine of dabbing concealer around my eyes, nose and red areas, topping it off with translucent powder. I also used my own mascara.

Key Steps: This look is all minimalism. A little pink shadow, a swipe of mascara, a few dabs of cream blush and a  coating of gloss. So, so simple...

How and where I'd wear this look: The question really is - where CAN'T you wear this look? This really is the closest to my go-to everyday look and I love how soft and pretty it is. Hair up, hair down, jeans and a tee, dress and heels - it goes with everything!

*all Joe Fresh beauty products c/o Joe Fresh

I think we all have our make-up routines we really love...this is my kind of everyday look! What's your everyday look?

Hope you have an amazing day friends!

21 September 2011

Joe Fresh Beauty Week: Minimally Mod

Happy Wednesday! Hang in there, we're halfway to the weekend! That's my mantra anyway....so the weather finally turned cold and rainy here. I can't tell a fib - it's one of my favourite times of the year. The Pumpkin Spice Lattes are here, I don't feel guilty curling up in bed super early in the evenings and I finally get to wear all my fall clothes in lots of cozy layers. Awesome! Are you enjoying fall?

It's time for the third look in Joe Fresh Beauty Week! This one is a total throw-back to the super stylish 60's and I had so much fun putting it together.

The look: Minimally Mod - dramatic liner+pale lips

The base: After washing my face, I did my regular morning face routine of dabbing concealer around my eyes, nose and red areas, topping it off with translucent powder. I also used my own mascara.

Key Steps: To create the perfect mod look, take lots of time to focus on the eyeliner. I started with a super thin line and just built it up slowly from there. You can go as simple or dramatic as you want, while still keeping that 'Twiggy' influence. A touch of cream blush adds warmth and the lips are finished off with a dramatic coating of super light, super opaque lip gloss. 

How and where I'd wear this look: I think this is a great work look, with a little less wing on the eyeliner. For hair, you could do this look with it up or down but I really liked it paired with the topknot...plus if you wear your hear down, you risk getting your hair stuck in that thick gloss! This would be super pretty to pair with a dress and tights or cardigan - girly and sweet but still modern. I also think it's fun for a holiday party with some black or silver and sparkly!

*all Joe Fresh beauty products c/o Joe Fresh

Are you a 60's fan? Would you rock the Twiggy look?

If you haven't seen them yet, Monday was all about Vividly Modern here and on Tuesday I went Dramatically Smoky here! One more look to come tomorrow...

Hope your day is filled with wonderful things my friends!

20 September 2011

Joe Fresh Beauty Week: Dramatically Smoky

Hey friends! If you follow me on Twitter, you know that I've broken out the sewing machine and started a new project. It's a simple skirt with an elastic waist, something to get my sewing juices flowing and give me some good practice. It's all part of my greater effort to get into a no new shopping mode. I'm hoping the skirt turns out wearable so I can add it to my fall remix items! Do you like to sew friends? Have you ever tried making your own clothes?

And welcome to day two of Joe Fresh Beauty Week! I had so much fun playing with all the stylish and affordable colours from Joe Fresh - they really are spot on trend without breaking the bank. Unfortunately, every time I go grocery shopping...I walk in with a $50 budget and walk out with another $50 worth of clothes and make-up!! Darn they're smart putting them so close to our 'must have' shopping items!

The look: Dramatically Smoky - dark eyes+bare face

The base: After washing my face, I did my regular morning face routine of dabbing concealer around my eyes, nose and red areas, topping it off with translucent powder. I also used my own mascara.

Key Steps: This look is all about the eyes. After defining my brows, I brushed the silver shadow all over my lid, then brushed the smoke shadow above the eye only - blending well. I brushed the smoke below the eye as well then lined the top and bottom with the liquid liner. Beginners beware, this liner is very smudgy and bleeds a little if you're not precise. Leave yourself time to do this step. Several coats of mascara and you are smoky! A light dab of blush and gloss completes the look.Don't be fooled by this gloss - despite the bright colour it's super sheer.

How and where I'd wear this look: I love a dark eye at night, but I think you could do a slightly lighter version of this for day as well. Just make sure you're pairing it with something a little more done up, nothing too casual or conservative. I love it with boots and a denim or leather jacket. It looks good with 2nd day hair as well! Don't forget the dry shampoo to muss it up!

*all Joe Fresh beauty products c/o Joe Fresh

What's your thoughts on the smoky eye? Fan? Too much?

Did you miss yesterday's look? Check out Vividly Modern here and stay tuned for two more looks coming Wednesday and Thursday!

Have a lovely day friends!

19 September 2011

Joe Fresh Beauty Week: Vividly Modern

Welcome to Joe Fresh Beauty Week! 

As a big fan of the modern clothing and beauty items that Joe Fresh has make accessible to everyone, this is a challenge that I was happy to take on. I'm so excited to share four looks I put together playing around with a bag full of fun, stylish, affordable colours from the lovely folks at Joe Fresh. 

I thought we'd start the Monday look off with a bang - what do you say?

Talk about trying something new...when I saw the bright fuchsia lipstick in the bag, I definitely grimaced a little. Soooo not my thing. But once I started playing around with a more naked face, my confidence grew and I started to really have fun with it!

The look: Vividly Modern - bright lips+bare face

The base: After washing my face, I did my regular morning face routine of dabbing concealer around my eyes, nose and red areas, topping it off with translucent powder.

Key Steps: The cream blush and cream eyeshadows were all applied liberally with my fingers, dabbed on then blended well. I spread the Marigold shadow all over the lid and the Mocha in the crease. For the intense lip colour, I carefully applied it making sure to focus on the lining of my lips, dabbed it with a tissue then reapplied.

How and where I'd wear this look: I think this would be a very cool edgy look to pair with a stark white or black outfit (to let the lips stand out) and tousled/messy-ish hair to late drinks with the girls (they'd get it more than my guy :) I would definitely need to be having a super confident day, but who knows - make rocking the look is what makes you confident??

*all Joe Fresh beauty products c/o Joe Fresh

Tell me friends, are you a fan of bright lip colour or do you stick to neutrals?

Hope you all have an amazing Monday and don't forget to take a little fashion risk here and there!