Year In Review: Part II - The Outfits

by Jen on Thursday, December 29, 2011

Thank you so much for reading my outfit diaries these past 12 months. Looking back, I'm absolutely astonished at how many there have been - can you believe this is only a fraction of them?! Have a fun and safe NYE and see you in the new year!

Year In Review: Part I - Gratitude

by Jen

{having so much fun at photoshoots, and developing friendships, with Paul and Rod}
It's been quite a year: between working with some incredible companies, being featured in a magazine for the first time and being truly forced out of my introvert shell at local events, it's been a milestone year for this little blog to say the least. I'm working on a 2011 outfit round up for tomorrow, but today I just want to share a few photos of what I'm truly thankful for. In addition to what's in the photos, I'm so grateful for all of my friends who willingly took photos for me at a moment's notice, my parents for keeping me constantly aware of reality and God for this opportunity that I believe truly came from Him. This is beginning to sound like an awards acceptance speech, so I'll end with this: thank you for reading my blog. I've been so blessed with genuine readers & supporters and I'm truly humbled that there are people who actually care about my minuscule little space on the internet! Here's to an even better 2012!

{meeting all of these girls - and many more - and growing a "blogger family"}

{wearing entirely inappropriate shoes for the pumpkin patch because I was too busy thinking about what footwear would look good with the outfit for blog photos}

{taking the camera out because of the blog, snapping photos of many occasions that would not have otherwise been captured}

{and for the boy in the photo prior to this one, who forces me to not take myself too seriously by doing things like refusing to take blog photos unless I dance in front of the camera}

Statement Coat

by Jen on Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Since our coats tend to cover up the majority of our outfits in the cold months, I think a good looking topper is key to remaining stylish. Even if you can only have one coat, I think you can get just as much wear out of a bolder choice as you can from a "safe" one. I'm particularly excited about this new piece, because the shape and colour are both classic enough to stand the test of time, but the oversized collar and great details make it a true statement piece.

Wearing: Elie Tahari coat, J.Crew sweater (similar), ASOS dress (worn as skirt), BCBG necklace and ring, Zara shoes, Michael Kors sunnies


by Jen on Thursday, December 22, 2011

As much fun as it is to dress in bright colour and pattern, I never tire of going back to basic black and white. This dress from MontAffair is great for this classic vibe, with its feminine pleats and basic but timeless cut. I love that this Singpore-based online store ships worldwide for only $10. I'm currently eyeing this "Origami" dress - so much detail and it's only $30!

Wearing: YesStyle blazer, MontAffair dress (c/o), thrifted blouse, MICHAEL Michael Kors clutch, Stuart Weitzman booties (c/o)

Tuesday Treats

by Jen on Tuesday, December 20, 2011

{super shiny, pointy new flats to replace a well-loved pair that tore last month after 4 years}
To put it simply, the last few weeks have been hectic. Between multiple family get-together events, preparing for a Christmas meal with friends and squeezing in a couple of dates before David goes away for a bit, there sadly hasn't been much time to be calm. Here are a few little pieces of happy, and a couple of pretty things to remind myself to step back, take a breather and enjoy the things around me.

{spending an entire day decorating a gingerbread house (I baked the gingerbread using this recipe) with the bestie}

{discovering an amazing grilled cheese food truck - what could be better?!}

{36 roses from David for our 36 month/3 year anniversary!}

{an expanding collection of gold rings. clockwise: YSL, BCBG, Social Experiment (c/o), vnunes (c/o), BCBG}


by Jen on Monday, December 19, 2011

{photos by Mina Sadat}
Since wearing the same jackets in the winter can get boring pretty fast and buying a new one constantly is out of the question, I'm trying my best to re-invent my pieces. Last week, I quickly switched out the original sash from this cape with a leather one from another jacket - a subtle but much needed refresher to make the piece feel fresh in my closet again. For a few years I've also been toying with the idea of switching up the buttons on a pea coat for gold ones, and this might just be the year that I do it!

Wearing: Zara cape and shoes, 7 For All Mankind pants, YesStyle scarf, Coach bag (c/o), YSL ring, Lauren Elan (c/o) and Joe Fresh (gold) bracelets

Polished Style: Black & Gold

by Jen on Thursday, December 15, 2011

Up until several months ago, I never really cared to paint my nails. It took too much time, and I felt that the results didn't last long enough to warrant the effort. If I ever did do it, it was in classic shades like reds and pale pinks, and I would never consider designs. Fast forward a few months (and becoming closer with a friend who loves her nail polish!) and I'm happy to say that I'm becoming slightly more adventurous (black! dark green! navy!). I'm also now willing to do an accent nail in a more simple design.

{Sonia Rykiel top, YSL sunglasses, Forever 21 cuff, Kate Spade earrings, YSL shoes, Topshop dress}
I like the idea of being inspired by fashion for manicures. Clothes, shoes and jewelry are often expensive, so this a fun and cost effective way to integrate a little something extra into a look. It's also a great method to subtly test drive colour or a trend! That's why I'm so excited to introduce this new segment, Polished Style, on the blog; Carmen and I will create manicures that even the most averse nail polish wearers can try out!

This week we were inspired by black and gold, one of my favourite colour combinations of all time; these colours can be dressed up to look elegant or edgy depending on how you wear it. I've always enjoyed garments with subtle gold embellishments and this was the inspiration behind our first look!

{OPI Black Onyx, Martha Stewart Metallic Microbeads in Florentine Gold, Borghese Brilliante base/top coat, tweezers}
Hop on over to The Art of Nails to see how you can easily re-create this look yourself!
Stay tuned for more, and feel free to leave suggestions of what you'd like to see in the comments section!

Four Eyes

by Jen on Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Here's a little secret: I've been four-eyed since the fourth grade. I still distinctly remember that moment in math class when my teacher was testing us on our Times Tables and I misread the flash card, leading her to report to my parents that I should get my eyes checked. My world was shattered! I recall crying after being told by my parents that it was my fault for reading all my books in the dark. Nowadays I'm still not comfortable with my specs, especially because I'm blind as a bat (we're talking close to legally blind here) and the thick lenses make my eyes appear miniscule. At the end of the day, though, I am thankful for glasses that allow me to see at all. I also know that this is the fate for many so I wanted to share this part of myself with you. Do you secretly need glasses too?

Wearing: Joe Fresh sweater, thrifted blouse, Zara leather skirt and booties, unbranded coat from a local boutique, Coach bag (c/o), nails Deborah Lippmann Sarah Smile (use 'tulip' for 10% off!)

Camel / Caramel / Cognac

by Jen on Monday, December 12, 2011

{photos by Judith Wong}
I've been finding it a little difficult to create outfits that look well put together this winter: since keeping warm has been the most important factor for me, I've honestly become accustomed to just layering my coziest sweaters without much thought to the cohesiveness of a look. The result has been a toasty, but unfortunately often jumbled mess of fabric. Wearing different pieces in similar hues has been one of the easiest solutions to this, and is one that I will likely be using again and again in the coming months.

Wearing: Mackage coat (old), thrifted blouse, H&M jacket, YesStyle skirt, Coach bag, Zara pumps


by Jen on Friday, December 9, 2011

Under $10 Forever 21 Gold Oval Chain Bracelet, $6.80 Under $50 ASOS Chunky Link Bracelet, $28.13 Under $100 Lauren Elan Lucas Bracelet, $85 $100+ Kenneth Jay Lane Make a Statement Bracelet, $160.99
One of my favourite accessories is the chunky gold chain bracelet: it's versatile, a little bit edgy and makes a statement without being over the top. I scored a Joe Fresh one on super sale last year and have worn it a considerable amount, especially in light of its $2.50 price tag. I'm currently on the hunt for a replacement, and while I think this wear-with-anything piece is worth investing a bit more into, here are four options at differing (but still reasonable) price points. My personal favourite is the Lauren Elan piece for its unique clasp, and the fact that she can custom make them for any wrist size; I definitely wouldn't mind having it show up under the tree for Christmas!

Late Autumn

by Jen on Wednesday, December 7, 2011

{photos by Paul Milaire}
While it can sometimes be a frustration, one of the wonderful things about personal style blogging is that I've gotten the chance to really observe each season and the little intricate details of how the weather changes throughout the year. I love the way the vibrancy of the late autumn trees bring out the colours in an outfit; it's days like these that make me forget about the oncoming long Canadian winters and appreciate the beautiful fall foliage for what it is.
Wearing: Aritzia coat and sweater, H&M snood (last year) Club Monaco skirt (here in sand), Stuart Weitzman booties (c/o), MICHAEL Michael Kors bag, YSL ring, nails Deborah Lippmann Sarah Smile (use 'tulip' for 10% off!)

Tuesday Treats

by Jen on Tuesday, December 6, 2011

{cable knit - J.Crew sweater and YesStyle snood}
Cold weather calls for many indulgences: things like hot chocolate, fireplaces, and bubble baths come to mind. In other words, the chills in the air instill a deep need for all things cozy and warm. Here are some of the things that have recently fit the bill for me, and that I'm so thankful for.
What do you long for when the weather is cold?

{the satisfaction of making fresh pasta - I followed this recipe}

{a warm bed to snuggle up in}

{burning candles - this one from Violet Boutique is absolutely perfect}

{catching up with a friend while sipping a favourite cold weather drink / spanish latte from Caffe Artigiano}