As a 5’3 (and a half, on a good day), pear-shaped petite, I’ve always tended to go by certain rules and guidelines when getting dressed. My goal has often been to wear something that looks flattering and makes me taller and slimmer than I am: always nip in the waist, balance a flowy top with fitted bottoms, and vice versa. In the last year or so, though, I’ve found myself craving more risks with silhouettes and wanting to try different combinations… especially as my closet itself has leaned out. Maybe it’s something that’s come with age, but I’ve also been wanting to wear outfits that primarily make me feel good as opposed to wanting to appear a certain way. I’ve been wearing a lot of looks like this one lately: oversized silhouettes with easy and comfortable pieces, using funky accessories like a circle bag andblock heel pumps to modernize an otherwise classic look.
P.S. I don’t usually post a lot of shopping/
deal-related things, but a lot of the pieces
I’m wearing here are currently up to 25% off
during Shopbop’s sale over the next three days.
It’s a great opportunity to save a bit of money
if you’re looking to purchase a considered, special
piece or two for spring (my much loved A.P.C Half Moon Bag is included in the sale!)
Living in the city, and with just one car between Brian and I, I spend a lot of time commuting to and from work either by foot or by public transit. Over the years I’ve learned that it’s while it’s important to be practical, especially during winter, I also want to try to look somewhat presentable when I get to work. In light of that, here are a few tips on what I like to wear to help make sure my commute is as effortless and comfortable as it can be, while still maintaining a level of personal style.
A sleek, warm, packable layer | In previous years, I’ve always found myself getting super cold during the winter but this year I realized I simply wasn’t layering wisely enough. I invested in a thin, packable down jacket this winter, and I now don’t know what I would do without one in my wardrobe. I wear mine on its own during milder days or as a layer underneath my favourite wool coat for warmth that isn’t bulky. I like that this one looks great on its own and is stylish in its own right, but is also super useful.
Non-slip footwear | I slipped and fell three times in the ice last winter, and needless to say that wasn’t fun. At the beginning of fall this past year I smartened up and got grippy rubber soles added to these Everlane boots, and they’re now my go-to commuting shoes. It wasn’t cheap – it cost around $80 – but I love that these stylish booties are now practical too because of the updated sole. I’m a big believer in repairing, mending, and upgrading your garments and shoes especially when they’re high quality and will last for years.
Cozy accessories | Warm, cozy accessories for your extremities are definitely musts when the wind picks up – I’m convinced they’ve been key in staying healthy and not catching a cold while commuting. Acne Studios makes my favourite winter accessories, since they’re really high quality, classic, and inject a subtle element of style into a look. The price point is definitely on the higher end, but I’ve worn my two Canada scarves almost every single day for the past two winters and they’ve held up so beautifully – no pilling or wearing, and the look just as good as they did on day one. I’m also considering adding a pair of texting gloves to the mix for full mobility on the coldest winter days.
Streamlined storage | As much as I love my half moon bag, it’s obviously less than ideal for commuting when I’m lugging around a laptop, my lunch, and maybe an extra change of clothes for a post 9 to 5 event or workout. I’ll still occasionally use a black leather tote when I need to dress up a bit and carry a lot, but for the most part I’ve been the most drawn to my simple black backpack. Having even weight distribution on your shoulders is pretty darn underrated, and this one from Everlane makes me feel put together instead of like a kid going to school because of its minimal, sleek design.
If you’re a commuter, do you have any tips on how to do it effortlessly and stylishly?
“Your outfits all look the same”, observes my husband as he sees me editing the photos for this post. I’ll be the first to admit that just a few years ago, hearing a comment like that would’ve irked me. I probably would’ve thought something like, “what does he mean they look the same? Doesn’t he see how interesting and unique my style is?!”. Fast forward half a decade, and I’ve almost come to see it as a compliment.
What exactly do I mean by that? I guess what I’m saying is that as I’ve gotten older, my idea of what it means to feel good in my clothes has shifted quite substantially. It definitely wasn’t always the case, but I’ve come to be happy to have a closet of fewer things that mostly go together seamlessly – clothes that I can move in, that I can feel put together but not uncomfortable in. Clothes that will last, both in style and in quality. Clothes that will keep me warm when needed and clothes that will keep me cool when needed.
As we start the new year, I can’t help but think about how much things have changed since I started this blog in the beginning of 2010. The intentions behind writing then and now couldn’t be more different, but I’m so grateful this little corner of the internet is still here and that you’re still reading. Lately, I’ve been feeling a renewed excitement to share, and I’m looking forward to being here more in 2018.
As someone who grew up with a mother whose beauty regimen consisted solely of moisturizer, cold cream, and a little bit of blush, I wouldn’t exactly say that I was exposed to skincare and make up at an early age. When I got into my teenage years and early twenties, I began experimenting – mostly with make up – but not really caring about the consequences of what I was putting on and in my body.
Nowadays, I prefer to focus on skincare as opposed to make up, and I’ve come to see it as a small but important part of self care — my skincare routine in the evenings has become one of my favourite ways to unwind. I’ve also been increasingly more conscious of using products with more ingredients that I can pronounce, especially as I get older and think more about long-term health. That being said, here are some favourite, (mostly) natural products that I’ve been using and loving lately…
Pink House Organics Pit Potion| Aside from the fact that the run-of-the-mill deodorant found in drugstores is terrible for you in so many ways, I’ve always hated the way it makes my underarms feel clogged and unbreathable. I’ve tried a few other natural deodorant alternatives in the past, but the performance on them sadly didn’t live up to what I was used to.This Pink House Organics Pit Potion is the best of both worlds, and I’m so happy to have found it: it’s natural, but it applies like a normal deodorant and it works. I also really love the way the Organic Mandarin scent smells — it’s not sugary sweet (it’s a little bit tangy, actually) and just feels really fresh both in the bottle and on the skin. As an added bonus, the brand is local to Vancouver and has a pretty great story – read up on it here.
The Laundress Wool and Cashmere Spray | I’m a sucker for warm, natural, and luxurious fabrics like wool and cashmere, and have had a few of you ask how I maintain these delicate garments in my wardrobe. One thing I’ve tried to do is to not wash these kinds of pieces unless I absolutely have to, and this spray has helped considerably with this. I’ve been wearing my Acne Canada scarvesand the same 4-5 sweaters on rotation all winter and have kept things fresh with this musky cedar spray. The eco-friendly brand also has aFabric Fresh spray and a Delicates wash, neither of which which I’ve personally tried yet but will probably pick up – it has great reviews and is versatile for all kinds of materials. Note: it does have fragrance in it, so those who are sensitive to that might want to approach with caution.
Peet Rivko | As a lover of good, simple branding, I have to admit that sometimes I let that be a motivating factor in choosing one brand over another. I always feel like I’ve hit the jackpot when I find something that’s both beautiful and effective, and that’s exactly the case with plant-based skincare brand Peet Rivko. I’ve been using thegentle cleanser every single day and it refreshes, cleanses, and softens my skin without irritating or stripping it. As the final step in my PM skincare routine, I add a few drops of the balancing face oil into the moisturizer, and my typically dry winter skin has been much better than usual this year. You can buy each piece individually, get the Essentials Kit, or try all three without as large of an investment with The Travel Kit.
Herbivore Rose Spray | I gifted this spray to all of my bridesmaids when I got married in the summer of 2016, and have been keeping a bottle by my bedside ever since. There’s something about the smell of rose that feels so luxurious, and I like spritzing it on to refresh my skin both before moisturizer and after make up. I also love bringing it on the plane – it feels wonderful on parched airplane skin. This Seattle-based company is another aesthetically beautiful brand that uses non-toxic ingredients and recyclable, reusable packaging.
Fresh Sugar Lip Treatment | I can’t speak to how natural the ingredients that Fresh uses actually are, as I admittedly haven’t done a ton of research on the brand. Regardless, these little tinted lip treatments have been a lifesaver this winter: they make my lips super soft, provide SPF, and give my lips a sheer wash of colour. There are quite a few shades available, and they work both as a subtle, everyday lip colour and as a richer hue for a night out since the colour builds up so well. This box set has six minis in various shades for gifting and finding the right shade that works for you. My current favourite is Poppy.
Luna Nectar Moon Boost Eyelash Serum | The start of my work day changed from 9AM to 8AM recently, and that one less hour of sleep has made me a lot more tired than I’d like to admit. Naturally, I’ve been sleeping in until the last possible moment in the mornings, which means my make up routine has gone on the back burner. One of my favourite tricks for looking more awake has been the combination of a nightly eyelash serum and a lash lift from Bare Wax every 2-3 months: the serum makes my lashes long and thick, and the lift gives me the look of freshly curled lashes all day. I’ve used a few different lash serums in the past, but this all-natural option by Luna Nectar is my favourite, not only because it’s locally based and completely natural, but also because it actually works the best!
I’m always on the lookout for more great natural beauty products, so if you have a favourite please share below!
Well, hello there – It’s definitely been much longer than I intended since my last update. I miss shooting, writing, and content creating a lot, but between working full time, exercising, a bit of socializing and general adult responsibilities, I’ve honestly found it all too easy to put this little corner of the internet on the back burner. I definitely miss being more active here and interacting with you… so if you have good time management tips please share them with me; I’d love to hear them.
Sartorially, I’ve been keeping things simpler than ever lately – partially to save time, but also because that’s what I’ve found makes me feel my best. I’ve been reaching for lots of denim (these, these, and these looser classic jeans are on rotation), booties, and wool and cashmere sweaters. More often than not I’ve also been throwing this lovely robe coat from Shopbop on top of whatever I’m wearing. I’m a big fan of how minimal it is, and it’s one of those pieces that makes even the plainest sweater and jean combo feel special. Definitely a wardrobe MVP and highlight this year.
Speaking of highlights, I recently had the opportunity to go to the Cirque Du Soleil Kurios show, and it was amazing! I’ve gotten to go to a few Cirque shows over the years, and they never fail to make my heart race and palms sweat as I watch the artists perform their ridiculous acrobatic acts.
This one is quite unlike from the others, and just might be my favourite. The set they created for Cabinet of Curiosities allows you to step into another world that’s remarkably different than the colourful, otherworldly shows I’ve become used to. After the show we got to go backstage, and seeing the stage and costumes up close was incredible. It’s quite a remarkable production that’s filled with special touches––: they built the props by asking the staff and crew to look for long-forgotten mechanical objects in their garages and attics!
The show is here in Vancouver until December 31, so it’s definitely worth checking out (pro-tip: it’s a great, non-‘thing’, gift for the holidays!).
We’re heading to LA for a few days next week, so feel free to follow along on Instagram here. I’ll be posting in my stories!
When I began narrowing down my wardrobe a few years ago, I started to be on the lookout for clothing companies that were worth following. In a world filled with messages about always getting what’s shiny and new, Vetta immediately caught my eye as a refreshing brand to watch. I’ve had my eye on the company for about a year now, enamoured with how much they really walk the walk and fully embrace the idea of capsule dressing: they release just five pieces each season, wrapped up in a collection that can be styled into 30 outfits. Each item is extremely well thought out and executed, and often convertible — meaning you can wear it in different ways. They also manufacture ethically with environmentally friendly fabrics, all at a very fair price point!
Obviously, when they offered to send a piece from their minimal capsule this fall, I was quick to say yes! I received The Oversized Sweater, which is made from 100% organic cotton and is surprisingly warm and heavy considering its material. A really good sweater is hard to find, and with this one you’re basically getting three in one. I’m looking forward to not only wearing this in my every day life but also bringing it on trips in the future. Here’s how I styled it!
Look One | As a Crewneck
I really like the neckline on the sweater when it’s worn this way: it’s not too high of a crewneck, but it’s not as wide as a boatneck, making it very flattering and versatile. The cut and length of it are really effortless as well: it’s the kind of piece you can throw on with black skinnies and flats and instantly look put together. The dolman sleeves make it a bit tricky to layer on top of, but I’ve been enlisting my oversized coats and jackets for the job and also adding in my trusty Acne Studios Canada scarf for added warmth.
Look Two | As a Cardigan
Turn the sweater around and unbutton the buttons, and you’ve got yourself a cardigan! In all honesty, this is my least favourite way to wear it, only because I’m quite picky with the fit of my cardigans. I typically prefer slimmer-fitting arms with a looser body, and this one is quite relaxed all over. Regardless, it’s certainly nice to have this as an option, especially since it creates an entirely different look. I flipped the edges inward so the buttons on the front are hidden, but you can of course also wear it with the buttons showing.
Look Three | As a Turtleneck
I’ve always found myself staying away from turtlenecks, because I find that most have a tendency to make my already round face appear rounder. That’s why I was pleasantly surprised to find that this one didn’t do that! I think it has something to do with the fact that the turtleneck is wider, especially at the bottom, and the sweater is perfectly slouchy. Whatever it is, I like it. The collar attaches to the sweater at the neck with five buttons, and provides an extra element of coziness. I’ll certainly be wearing it like this a lot.
Sweater | Vetta Capsule (c/o)
It’s been an ultra popular piece and is currently sold out,
but they’re expecting a restock at the end of the month!
Earlier this year, I compiled a “Top 5” of the pieces I’d found myself putting on over and over again during the course of the winter. The list was short and comprised of some super classic, wear-with-everything pieces that were my wardrobe workhorses: things like my a leather jacket, camel coat, and black booties.
Fast forward seven months, and I’m revisiting the post today with a bit of an update. While what I’m wearing the most these days largely remains the same, I’ve been thinking more about exactly why these particular garments earned that place in my wardrobe. What characteristics do my most worn pieces have that make me reach for them so often? I came to this consideration because I know that although something might work well for me, it won’t necessarily work well for others – and I’m increasingly disliking the idea of lists of must-haves, since it doesn’t do much to account for personal style.
That being said, I’ve updated my Top 5 for fall — by expanding the selection with more general guidelines of why I wear something often — in hopes that you might be inspired to find the equivalent of what could work for you. I’ve also added some personal favourites (many of which happen to be on sale over the next few days on Shopbop) at the bottom of each category!
One | The Jacket That Pulls Everything Together
I remember reading an article on a style site a long time ago about the “rule” of a 3rd piece, and how topping off your outfit with a third or fourth garment does wonders to instantly make an outfit more stylish. It made a lot of sense to me: I’ve seen how much adding even a simple cardigan to a silk cami and jeans can contribute to a look, and when I admire someone’s style it most often involves the ability to layer well.
Because of this, I tend to like investing in jackets that are classic, versatile, and high quality, because it can do so much to pull together even the most basic combination of pieces. I tend to prefer jackets that are fitted in the arms because they streamline my silhouette no matter how much I layer on.
My picks: Oak LA | A classic leather moto at a fair price (20% off w/code EOTS17) Club Monaco | A drapey, effortless trench
Two | The Top That Goes With Everything
For whatever reason, my collection of tops is by far the smallest out of any type of garment in my closet. Maybe it’s because I don’t want to spend money on something so basic, but I’m also quite satisfied with what’s already in my closet. A few simple top in versatile cuts that pair well with a variety of bottoms and jackets is really all you need.
I veer away from super trendy tops and go extremely basic in this realm: neutrals, very few details, and good materials that will hold up well over time.
My picks Babaton | A simple cropped top that adds neckline interest for all sorts of jackets Everlane | A well-priced, well-made silk button-up that can be tied for different look Madewell | My favourite simple cotton tees (20% off w/code EOTS17) Cuyana | A three-ply silk to elevate the simple tee
Three | The Shoes That I Can Actually Walk In
Five years ago, my shoe closet was filled to the brim with 4-inch heels that, in the end, I could only comfortably wear for photos or during very short walks. Things have definitely changed the most here thanks to age and my “problem feet” catching up to me. The shoes I’m reaching for these days are the ones I can actually walk in. I now choose my footwear based on how much I’ll be on my feet on a particular day, and plan my outfit around that.
In my current rotation are my Acne Studios Jensen booties, my white Frye sneakers, my Everlane slides, and Everlane oxfords. Although I’ll always like black, I do feel like wearing lighter coloured footwear like beige or tan do wonders to elongate my legs.
My picks: Acne Studios | the most beautiful and classic pointed chelsea boots Frye | white leather sneakers that are comfortable, minimal, and sleek (20% off w/code EOTS17) Everlane | menswear inspired oxfords in a feminine blush Everlane | wear-with-everything slides that add polish to everything
*note: all of my Everlane shoes have taken a bit of time to break in, but have gotten so comfortable with wear.
Four | The Pants That Fit My Body Perfectly
The pants I wear are the ones that fit me well. I have athletic thighs, large calves, and a comparatively small waist, so it’s always been a challenge to find bottoms that I feel great in and can actually freely move in! I’ve tried on so many pairs of pants in my lifetime and so few have worked, so I’m not averse to buying multiple colours of something that’s perfect.
I like my bottoms high-waisted these days because it highlights the smallest part of my frame and also helps hold everything in! I also hem my denim to be above the ankle bone because I think it looks the best on a petite frame.
My picks: L’AGENCE | my favourite high-waisted black skinnies of all time (20% off w/code EOTS17) L’AGENCE | I like them so much I have them in blue, too! (20% off w/code EOTS17) Wilfred | everyday, dress-up-or-down trousers Wilfred | a wide-leg crop for a bit of a different silhouette
Five | The Bag That Adds Polish to Any Outfit
For as long as I can remember, my favourite kind of bag has been minimal, simple, and structured. I appreciate how it can make everything look more polished, even if I’m just wearing blue jeans and a white tee. I’ve have a few non-black bags, but always find myself reaching for the same ones over and over again.
If you’ve been reading my blog over the last year, you’re probably either super sick of this A.P.C bag, or maybe you’re convinced that you should get one too (I just realized it’s basically in every photo featured here!). It goes with everything and – I’ll be honest – makes me feel a little bit cooler than I actually am.
My picks: A.P.C | my everyday go-to (20% off w/code EOTS17) AESTHER EKME | a crossbody for the ultra-minimalist (20% off w/code EOTS17) The Stowe | another half-moon bag that’s simple and stunning (20% off w/code EOTS17)
What are your favourite pieces in your closet, and why do you like to wear them?
I have a feeling I’m not alone when I say that fall has always been the most tempting shopping season for me. Maybe it’s the promise of shiny things to layer after a season of wearing as little as possible, or the tendency to justify purchase for the sake of practicality and keeping warm. Whatever it is, I’d say this all started with the tradition of back to school shopping and has carried over for many years since.
I’ve been trying to change this (with various degrees of success), especially after seeing how wasteful it is to have drawers full of sweaters that have lost shape or haven’t held up with wear. I mentioned in my previous post that i’m looking for just a handful of considered additions to my wardrobe this fall, and I’m happy to share that I found the cardigan coat I was looking for at CF Richmond Centre the other day. I’m a big fan of its ivory shade, minimal collar, and cozy longer length. It’s also 100% merino wool!
While I was there, I also swung by the mall’s inspiration station to pick up this very fitting, complimentary tote bag. Cadillac Fairview is working to inspire positive change in the community this fall, so if you’re close to one of their locations I’d definitely recommend stopping by to check out the set up and for a personalized tote (free lunch bag, anyone?!) – they’re be available Fridays through Sundays until September 17th!
For the past several years now, I’ve gotten into the habit of doing bi-annual wardrobe cleans: the kind where every single item is taken out, sorted through, and either donated, sold, or put back into the closet. It often takes a good part of a day, and takes more effort than I’d like to put in, but it’s also always cathartic going through my closet and finding new homes for things that are no longer being used as they should be.
I did my fall closet clean a little early this year, and was pleasantly surprised that the purge pile was much smaller than previous years: this fall, I’m getting rid of fewer than 15 pieces. In addition to just having a more limited closet these days, I’m taking it as a good indication that I’m really starting to hone in on my style and the pieces I’m purchasing are going much further than ones of the past. This entire outfit, in particular, is a good example of that — I’ve been wearing everything you see here at least once a week, and mostly more, this summer.
I’m working to keep my purchase list for fall small and calculated: I’ll be looking to add a slightly looser pair of straight leg jeans (just ordered these ones, fingers crossed they’ll work!), a thick, cozy camel cardigan (a coatigan?), and I just invested in a pair of Acne’s coveted Jensen boots as well. I also have several weddings to attend this fall/winter, so I’m considering a cold-weather ready frock or jumpsuit if the right one comes along. I’ll keep you posted on how that all works out!
I’d love to know – what pieces are you looking to add to your closet this fall?
In the subject of full disclosure, I have to tell you: I’m getting pretty bored of my summer wardrobe. I’m fully aware that, just one post ago, I told you I’d found my wardrobe “sweet spot”, but I have to admit that everything basically went out the window when it became 30+ degrees and I started walking a brisk 20 minutes to get to work each morning. I feel like I’ve resorted to wearing whatever it takes to stay somewhat un-sweaty during the day, so I’m definitely ready for it to cool down and have been slowly starting to think about fall. I’ve been actively trying to build a wardrobe that is season-less, so many of the pieces in this look will extend well into the next season (the shoes and backpack especially!), but I’m really looking forward to layering and playing with textures and shapes again! What are you excited to wear this fall?