25 July 2012

Lace-y Love

Hey girls!

As given in evidence by this blog, I totally LOVE girlie things... as if you didn't already know that! As a result, I totally adore lace. I don't think that lace is just for summer, or just for winter. The two outfits I am about to present to you can be worn now, when it's hotter than hot, and later, with some extra layers and whatnot so you don't freeze to death! (For goodness sake, please do not become my reader-cicles!!)

The first look is as follows:

This look is VERY vintage-inspired. It may have something to do with my current obsession with historical fiction novels... but that is a post for later. This is now. The dress is entirely a beautiful cream/blush toned lace, so I tried to centre the accessories around it. I used a cute 1920's inspired cloche hat with a pretty flower detail, and the vintage cameo ring and oxford booties to keep that vintage vibe going. I threw it off just a bit by using the modern flower ring, bib necklace, and studded bag. The ring and necklace keep you from being overly "Downton Abbey," and the studded bag adds some necessary edge - you won't look like you're playing dress-up in your Granny's closet when you add these accessories.

It is super easy to warm this outfit up for the cooler months that are coming (can you believe how quick this summer has gone by?) by adding some dark, opaque tights, and a cardigan, blazer, or even a leather jacket.

The second outfit I've come up with for you girls is a lot more casual than the first. I love the lace tank, which you can (sort of) see has a cute keyhole detail in the back. Because lace can look a bit fussy, I tried to find some less-fussy accessories to tone the whole thing down.

I kept it a bit girlie with the earrings and pearl bracelet, but the slightly distressed jeans, studded shoes, and stacked friendship-type bracelets keep the outfit cute and casual. I also love the scalloped hem on the top - the bit of jeans and skin peeking through is a bit sexy, too.

To winterize this outfit, simply add a jacket on top. You could even swap the loafers for some boots if it's really cold.

I hope this post encourages you to try out some lace next time you get dressed! I love lace, and as you can see, it doesn't have to be stuffy and really frou-frou girlie - you can toughen it up significantly if you add just the right accessories.

Let me know what you think!

Hope you're all having a great day.


- A.

22 July 2012

Polish A-Haul-ic

Hey girls! 

Today's post is going to discuss something that may disturb you greatly. The subject? Addiction.

I have an addiction... to nail polish. It's kind of bad.

This, I give you in evidence. It is my most recent nail polish haul.

I went in to Sephora with one of my best friends the other day, and I came away with the following Nails Inc. products... all but one of which were on sale for $5 - $7. I have wanted to try out Nails Inc. products for some time, and I figured that there is no better way to test them out than while they are on sale. So far, I have only tried out the palest pink one, but I am smitten already! At $11.50, they are $1.50 more than OPI products are (before the evil HST is applied), but their application is smooth, and the colours are touted to be totally opaque and true-to-bottle colour in 2 coats. So far, the promise is kept! We'll see with the more colours I try, though.

Here's what I picked up:

Maddox Street, Warwick Avenue, Foubert's Place, Hampstead Gardens,
Brouton Street, Old Park Lane

Hackney (Crackle), Islington (Crackle), Farringdon (Crackle),
Clapham (Crackle), Gatwick (Matte)

Sweets Way (from the new "Sprinkles" line!)

Originally, I had more from the "Sprinkles" line picked up, but I decided against them, as at the time, I wasn't even sure I'd care for the brand. So far, though, I am obsessed. They wear better than my OPI or Essie polishes do, most of the time, and the packaging is totally adorable. I love the little silvertone lid!

As value for money goes, the quality is amazing, but the size of the bottle is smaller - meaning it does not hold as much. Here's how one bottle of Nails Inc. stacks up against the competition in my collection:

I sat one bottle of each brand of polish up side by side, and I took note of how many millilitres were in each bottle. The lineup is as follows:

I'll start on the left and work across.

China Glaze: 14 mL for $6 - $8
Sephora by OPI: 15 mL for about $12
Essie: 13.5 mL for $8 - $10
NARS: 15 mL for $24
Nails Inc.: 10 mL for $11.50
Orly: 18 mL for about $10
Zoya: 15 mL for $10
OPI: 15 mL for $10

Obviously you pay a wee bit more for the Nails Inc. Colours than more common brands like OPI or Essie, but what you lack in volume, I think, is made up in quality. When I get paid next, I will definitely be going back to my local Sephora and pick up more of these adorable (and amazing!) little polishes!

If you know of any great discount sites I can get them from, please leave me a comment - I am always up for saving money on things like this!!

Hope you're all having an amazing day!


- A.

2 July 2012

Inspired By... Ballet!

Hi Lovelies!

Recently, OPI released a collection of Nail polishes inspired by the New York City Ballet. I thought to myself, "self, if OPI can release a collection inspired by ballet, why can't I inspire my wardrobe to go with it?" And really, there was no logical reason I could think of to explain why not - so we're going to go with it!

I have readied for you, two possible outfits that are inspired by ballet. That said, bear in mind the following: I hear you. Ballet dancers are, generally, tall, lanky human beings who tend to wear clothes like a hanger might. However, that does not mean that you can't be inspired by their style - ballet-inspired does not mean "ballerinas only!" I really think that the silhouettes created by these outfits would be universally flattering. I would wear them, as a curvier girl, so you can too! :-)

The first outfit is the more relaxed of the two: 

Leggings and a long, slouchy, one-shouldered top will provide balance between your top and bottom half. It is important, however, to remember the following: Leggings are NOT pants. They will never be pants. Please do not wear leggings as pants! You really, honestly, need a long top to make sure that you are not showing too much.

I stuck to flats for this outfit (and the next) because they are equal parts cute and comfortable. If you are not a flats girl, I would stick to a low heel. I also kept the accessories to a more feminine theme - Pinky tones and flowers, but without being over-the-top. I used a pretty big bag here, because the whole concept of the outfit was inspired by what I have seen girls wearing as they go to and from rehearsals. The giant bag will hold everything, from books for class, to (were you a dancer) your toe shoes! It has a useful cross-body strap, too, just in case you carry a lot of very heavy items with you.

The second outfit is a bit less casual than the first:

I love the bodysuit tucked into trouser-style jeans. It brings out a great 70's inspired look, and keeps the line of the overall outfit very sleek. I, again, went with flats for this outfit, but I amped them up a bit by choosing a pair that are beaded at the toes, rather than being plain. Flats with a pair of jeans like these demand that they be appropriately tailored. You can easily ruin a really cute outfit by having ratty hems on your jeans. Your local tailor is your friend, in this case. 

I added some interest to the outfit by putting in one of my favourite classic feminine patterns - the polka dot! I used an exaggerated polka dot bag, and contrasted that with a band of miniature polka dots around the fedora. I kept the rest of the accessories quite light to not interfere with the patterns. 

Both of these outfits work because of the balance - tighter tops with flared out bottoms, and vice-versa. If you are in doubt, remember that - if both top and bottom are too much one way or the other, you could wind up creating a look that you don't want. (If you think your pants and top are too baggy together, remember the Olsen twins!! Say no to bag lady!!)

Would you wear ballet-inspired pieces like these?

Enjoy the rest of your day or night!

- A.