Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Sandra Dee?

This outfit has a sweetly retro vibe that reminds me of a pre-makeover Sandra Dee in Grease. The flipped hair was fortuitous, the resulted of my helmeted bike ride to work. My work pants are a study in boring navy, grey and black (and one buttercup pair) so I'm very excited to have added these cropped jade trousers to the mix, courtesy of a Gap Friends and Family coupon (thanks M!)


{This is the closest thing I have to Sandra Dee, post-makeover.}

Pants - Gap
Tank - Hand-me-down
Cardigan - Consigned (Coupe)
Shoes - Guess via Winners
Clutch - Coach
Necklace - Gift
Pendant - Hand-me-down
Bracelets - Hand-me-down and Le Chateau

Monday, August 27, 2012

Tailored summer neutrals

I wore this to dinner with a dear friend who was visiting from Australia, and again a few days later when we had extended family in town. My 16-year-old cousin O took the photos and of course we had fun with it. She suggested I stand on the diving board and pretend to jump in, and I decided to try a handstand on the lawn. In the midst of it all, I realized I completely forgot the bring the belt I'd worn the first time around. Oh well. I tried to convince O to get in a photo with me but she was too shy. She's a beautiful dancer and artist, and has a poise and sense of self I wish I'd had at her age!

I picked a slightly matte orangey lip colour, which looks more red here, to play off the neutrals in the rest of the outfit and wore my glasses as another black accent. I turned my scarf into an infinity version with a couple of strategic safety pins.


{I meant to wear this belt with my outfit. Use your imagination.}

Tank - Dynamite (also here and here)
Camisole (underneath) - Joe Boxer
Shorts - Gap
Shoes - Guess via Winners
Scarf - Consigned
Watch - Kenneth Cole
Earrings - Witchery

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Sailor stripes and florals

I'm making an effort to wear pieces that tend to languish in my wardrobe, like my thrifted midi skirt, and to better mix-and-match. I think this outfit was successful on both counts. The belt used to belong to Tinfoil Tiaras and looked great...once I moved the buttons. (That girl has the tiniest waist!) 

Later, I remembered the photo below of Clemency Poesy, which I'd seen in My Instyle magazine over a year ago and had really loved. I think it was subconscious style inspiration for my outfit. Wouldn't both of these be ideal for a day of shopping in a beachside town in the south of France? (someday....) 

Today's my birthday - yay! I kicked off the weekend with a beautiful and rejuvenating hour and a half hour long bike ride along the Ottawa River with a friend. Today it's supposed to be deliciously hot and sunny. I will be spending the afternoon and evening lounging around my parents' pool with extended family and waiting to indulge in some chocolate cheesecake after dinner. 


Skirt - Thrifted (Joseph A.)(also here)
Top - H&M
Belt - Swapped
Hat - Winners
Sandals - Thrifted (George)
Earrings - Laura
Ring - Winners

Friday, August 24, 2012

Good-for-you chocolate-berry smoothie

This healthy smoothie is one of my post-workout go-tos.

In a blender, combine 1 handful fresh strawberries, 1 handful frozen mixed berries, 1 3/4 cups almond milk, 2 heaping tablespoons low-fat plain Greek yogurt, 1 serving chocolate-flavoured protein powder, 1T flaxseed.

If you don't have chocolate-flavoured protein, try substituting 4 squares of melted good-quality dark chocolate with a high cocoa content. I also like Ovaltine for a hint of malt flavour.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Pencil skirts and high-necked lace blouses

I was happy to discover the curve-creating powers of this outfit - strategic seaming on the skirt, delicate ruffles at the neck and sleeves and a waist-cinching wide belt. I twisted my hair into a French roll to play up the retro vibe. 

What are your curve-enhancing (or downplaying) tips?


Skirt - Mexx
Blouse - Max Studio via Winners (also here
Tank - RW & Co.
Belt - Swapped (Salena's Collection)
Wedges - Clarks
Bracelets - Le Chateau and Joe Fresh
Earrings - Walmart

Thursday, August 16, 2012

EBEW: Monochromatic neutrals

After missing both the June (neon) and July (colourblocking) challenges over at Everybody Everywear, I wanted to make sure August's monochromatic roundup didn't pass me by.

I'm often drawn to the simplicity of head-to-toe light-coloured neutrals, yet I never seem to wear them myself. Since there's been a dearth of shorts in my summer postings, I built a (somewhat) monochromatic outfit around a pair of white shorts. Lace, pearls and bows added unabashedly feminine touches. I'm slightly aghast nothing in this outfit is thrifted, but everything was bought on sale (redemption?)


{My bridesmaid shoes from a recent wedding - LOVE}

Shorts - Le Chateau
Tank - RW & Co. (also here)
Shoes - Nine West
Necklaces - Gifted
Clutch - Hotel gift shop

Monochromatic | Everybody, Everywear

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Sheer tropical blouse remix

Skirt - Thrifted (Caroll) (also here and here)
Blouse - Thrifted (Chico's) (also here and here)
Tank - RW & Co.
Belt - Thrifted 
Necklace and pendant - Gifted
Watch - Michael Kors
Earrings - Gifted

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Crispy kale 'chips'

Lately, I've been hearing a lot about kale chips, so one evening I decided to see for myself what all the fuss was about. Boy was I glad I did. Hello - delicious AND a way to get in your dark leafy greens!

 I followed this recipe, starting off by washing and thoroughly drying a head of kale. However, unlike the recipe, I only removed the part of the rib that extended beyond the leaves. I tossed the kale with 1 1/2T olive oil and sprinkled with about 1/2 tsp sea salt. I followed the reviewers' suggestions to make sure the olive oil really coated the leaves by 'massaging' with my hands and avoided over-salting. I baked at 275F for 20 minutes, turning once. The outside of the leaves were just crispy enough to crumble in your mouth while the rib portion retained a bit of moisture.

These made a great snack that would satisfy my afternoon cravings at work. I wish I'd used two heads of kale instead of one. I could have polished off the whole thing if I hadn't promised to leave B enough to taste it.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

A navy dress and statement accessories

Apparently in another life I was a mountain goat. I can’t think of any other reason why I’d clamber up a rocky wall in a dress and 5” heels. I wear this incredibly soft and comfortable, richly-hued dress a lot. Yet it’s only shown up on the blog once before, when I wore it with a pearl necklace and polka dot short-sleeve blazer (here).

This time I choose equally vivid accessories, including an eye-popping statement necklace I can’t wait to wear into fall/winter. One recent Sunday morning, I was having coffee with an old friend in a little cobblestone courtyard in Ottawa’s historic district where I live when I spotted my parents going by on their usual weekend bike ride. My mom had a bag in hand. It turns out she had stopped at a sample sale at a boutique next door and bought me two necklaces for $5 each, including this one, and a sweet floral tank with a braided neckline. How sweet! She encouraged me to swing by myself after our coffee. I found a pair of sky-high red suede peep-toe pumps for $20 and a cool tee for B…all before the rest of the stores even opened for business!


Dress - Joseph Ribkoff via Laura (also here)
Necklace - Roadtrip via sample sale
Shoes - Guess via Winners
Bracelet - Le Chateau
Earrings - Gift