Friday, 18 April 2014

Looking Lucky - Fringe

I am aware that the fringe "Spring" trend is showing itself in some cool pieces, but when I woke up to yet more snow, I decided to go with gray fringe for my gray mood about the not-so-Spring day.
Mark bag $10 VV Boutique
Me standing in a snowbank.

I actually bought this bag ages ago at the first VV Boutique Styled Fashion's Night Out so I'm not sure if I was ahead of the trend or if it came and went and came again.  Meanwhile it has enjoyed temporary custody with Auntie for the better part of two years and recently came home to spend some time with Mommy.
I'm looking with disgust at the snow, and it doesn't even seem to care.

I have everything in that bag - a laptop, day timer, coffee, make up, wallet, candy.  That's pretty much everything, and there was plenty of room for more.  It really is a great bag and I bet it will look super cute with a light dress or shorts and a tee...
Bet this bag would look good with a green background, though I'm starting to doubt it will ever come.

One benefit from the weather is that I had a reason to wear my thrifted fleece-lined leggings and basically will never take them off until I see green grass.  These leggings were in new condition and were $1.50 which makes them that much more awesome.
Leggings, I know we just met, but I'm ready to move to a monogamous (seasonal) relationship.

And the dress - thrifted for $8 from VV Boutique - is a miracle worker.  After Good Friday church, my family went on our way to Grandpa's farm and ate from-scratch hot cross buns, turkey dinner and all things nana-y.  Yet, I came home, turned to the side and looked surprisingly svelte.
I don't understand it, I don't question it; I just quickly went and had some of my kids' Easter chocolate.

I did style the dress a little differently, wearing it more like a jumper with a black long sleeve C'est Moi Naturals bamboo cotton top. 
You couldn't tell under my winter coat, but this combo looked like a one-piece dress and was comfy cozy!
The weather forced me into a bathroom selfie.

I'm going to keep my eye out for cool fringe pieces and meanwhile take heart knowing that a good bag somehow helps a gray day!

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Looking Lucky - Geometrics

The Looking Lucky Fashion Challenge is all about wearing Spring trends.  Luckily for me, I apparently have a (thrifted) wardrobe stocked with everything ever.  So I had a beautiful geometric piece just waiting for another opportunity to be blogged....
Michael Kors blouse $9.10, Gap navy ankle crops $3.50 VV Boutique
Accessories from my closet
As for the shoes, what can I say.  The 3yo felt this was close enough to head-to-toe.

This blouse... swoon!  It has been a fave since I scored it last summer.  Perfect condition, quality designer brand, sheer but structured.  It looks good no matter what I wear it with...
Love pairing a "fancy" piece with a casual piece.
Oh and look how geometric pattern mixes with geometric pattern!

I have been snatching up the navy in recent thrifting expeditions and scored these textured Gap ankle crop skinnies in perfect condition. 
There are my shoes!  Hispanitas $3.50 VV Boutique

And now get ready for a set of modeling poses that will surely have Tyra pounding down my door as soon as her jet can get her here.
Arm to this side.
Arms down.
Arm to the other side.
Don't hate me because I'm a beautiful poser.

You could argue against my posing but there is no argument that this Michael Kors stunner fulfills the geometric Spring trend at an amazing price point!

Monday, 14 April 2014

Looking Lucky - Florals and Stripes

Once a week the weather is nice enough for bare legs.  Today was my lucky day so I used it to have another go at the Looking Lucky Fashion Challenge floral trend look.  I liked my former floral - liked the muted colours and the unique sweatshirt but I have been itching to do something *totally* unique and wear stripes and florals and midi length all at the same time:
Striped top $2.45, vintage floral skirt $3.50
Belt $3.50, shoes $5.60
All from VV Boutique

I was pleased with the results!  Shop Ruche calls florals + stripes "effortlessly chic" and that works for me!  In this age of pattern mixing, stripes are a safe bet to mix with almost anything.
 People worry about wearing horizontal stripes.
I say, it confuses your visual perception* and can actually camouflage problem bodies areas.**

*Linking occupational therapy to fashion since 2012.
**If this is not true, don't tell me.  Let me live in happy ignorance.

As for the skirt, the mix of colours was irresistible!  This skirt is actually a vintage petite, likely meaning some short old lady wore it as a mid-calf "long" skirt in the late 80s, but it works just fine on me as a midi-length just below the knee.  AND it has pockets to hold my old lady tissues and hipster mom smart phone.
I'm not going to lie.  
Despite the forgiving length, there's a 45% chance I accidentally flashed the preschool roster mom today during Duck Duck Goose.  
Hazards of the job.
My arm party action consists of a custom Liz Lamoreux piece, She Does Create piece and VV Boutique piece.

Somehow this floral look felt a little more like my style - maybe it was the brighter colours or the stripey awesomeness.  In any case, it made my Monday a little less Monday-ish and that works for me!
See you again soon floral skirt with pockets!

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Looking Lucky - Florals

So, I've been working my way through Spring trends for the Looking Lucky Fashion Challenge with Sarah's Real Life and her local collaborator Brandi of Lucky B Boutique.  So far I've embraced local love, tried tribal print (twice!) and used Monday to get cropped over with.  Despite the snow still left at my place, it has been quite nice (relatively speaking) so I couldn't resist florals any longer!

There has been some debate (okay, I saw one tweet) about whether florals are a true trend.  I don't even know what that means and I don't much care.  What I do know is that there was a time that I balked at floral print in any format and now I have three hundred and seventy five floral pieces.  I think that means it's trending for me.
 Sweatshirt $5 and skirt $3.50 from VV Boutique
Skechers shoes from my closet

I got all wild and crazy and mixed my floral prints there...
Which leads me to an important point: florals look floral-y when they're too matchy-matchy.  So resist the urge to match exactly and instead try mixing prints in some way or pairing your florals with a contrasting colour.  I will certainly be doing that with my other 373 floral pieces. 
This skirt has one pocket which is just enough to hold a tissue and my phone.
Such pretty details on this unique sweater.  
When my sis says "it looks Anthro" I snatch it up.
So happy to be in a skirt with bare legs taking pics outdoors!

Monday, 7 April 2014

Looking Lucky - Crop Top

If you read the title of this post as an oxymoron, we are thinking alike.  It's no secret my love for the crop top Spring trend is, er, limited.  I outright asked Sarah, the beauty and brains behind the Looking Lucky Fashion Challenge - for a trend swap.  She didn't waiver, so when she turns 40 and has a few kids under her belt, I'm sending her a crop top and a 3-year-old photographer.  Meanwhile, I did my best to embrace the challenge.  I found the croppest-top in my closet and gave it a go in a new way.  This may not be my best outfit ever, but I TRIED.
Tights and Ice Breaker skirt from my closet
Lego model of the Petronas Twin Towers by my awesome 8yo.

I followed styling advice from Sarah and In Style to pair a crop top with a higher-waisted bottom and layer a shirt under it.  Zero-chance-of-skin was exactly what I was going for.  The top has a boxy cut which is forgiving and translates better IRL... at least I hope so. 
I'm not a rectangle in real life.
 My She Does Create vintage-jar pendant makes everything better.

I admit, I kind of liked the layering and felt just a smidgen hip and youthful.  Of course, using the word "smidgen" automatically cancels out any youthfulness.  Sigh.
The blurry selfie surprisingly captured the vibe of this outfit.

Cropped tops won't make the top of my thrift hunting list, but at least I now know I don't need to recoil in horror at the thought of them.
I braved the crop top and survived.  FTW!!!

Saturday, 5 April 2014

Looking Lucky - Tribal Print

For most people in the local fashion scene, this past week has been all about Western Canada Fashion Week.  There are actually two 8-day WCFW annually - once in the early fall and again in early spring.  I am impressed at how community-friendly the events and designers are, and the commitment to promote local talent.  It would have been interesting to take in some WCFW events to see how they translate for an average everyday working mother, but for me, this past week has been all about Spring Break - a week off with my kids hanging out in denim and chambray and trying to rejuvenate before the last few months of work and school.  For me, rejuvenation isn't just about sleeping in and relaxing; I find new goals and challenges energizing and so started the April "Looking Lucky" fashion challenge, tackling "local love" first.  Today, I embraced my inner Xena Warrior Princess... sort of... and tackled the "tribal print" trend.
Tribal print is most awesome in pink and red and mustard.

I wasn't exactly sure what we're calling "tribal" so turned to Pinterest to confirm my suspicions that anything remotely "ikat"-looking could be worthy of a #tribal. 
FYI I keep holding my cardi over because my waistline gets lost in the tribe.

I like tribal print.  I scored this top months ago and have been waiting for warmer weather to wear it.  Then I gave up.  I come across tribal print regularly while thrifting and have at least one other tribal print piece in my closet.  This tells me that this is not only a spring trend, but is a contemporary print that can be incorporated into different seasons.  This light sheer top is perfect for pretending it's warm out Spring.
I wonder if this got donated because of the boob-eye placement of the tribal diamonds...
Good thing I like boob-eye-prints.

I can't wait to ditch the cardi and let this pretty tribal top shine all on its own!
Hangin' in my crib with my crib.
Shoe battle.  
After the pics, I decided on my yellow quilted flats.  Just fessing up.

Between the shoe battle, the tribal print, the distressed denim, you can practically hear the Xena Warrior Princess battle call!  Thank you to the Looking Lucky challenge for encouraging me to reach for a tribal piece, spring or not!!

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Looking Lucky Fashion Challenge - Local Love

I was all set to use April as my excuse to emulate Anthropologie looks with my thrifted finds, for the primary reason that they both start with A.  I'm very out-of-the-box that way.  Then, I came across another great style challenge by Sarah's Real Life and her local collaborator Brandi of Lucky B Boutique.  They have come up with 10 spring trends and are challenging bloggers and Instagrammers to create 10 looks with those trends throughout the month of April - the "Looking Lucky" fashion challenge.  Sounds awesome, right?!  I thought so too till I read "cropped" as one of the trends.  Nu-uh.  I already made it clear that will not be happening, then Sarah gently assured me that the whole dang point is to interpret the trends... Fine.  But if I end up scaring the Internet away from having children with my cropped post, don't say I didn't warn you.

So.  Looking Lucky isn't just about "looking" trendy or the "Lucky" B Boutique; by participating, you have a chance to win gift certificates!  For full details, check out Sarah's invitation to participate, and be sure to tag and hashtag accordingly!  I'm sure you can hardly wait to hear the trends they've selected, so without further ado:
  1. Lace
  2. Pastel
  3. Floral
  4. Fringe
  5. Cropped
  6. Tribal print
  7. Local love
  8. Metallic
  9. Neon
  10. Geometrics
These don't line up exactly with the Spring trends I decided to explore but my creativity is already inspired and if I *have* to shop, so be it.  Sarah is pretty flexible (except when it comes to making 40yo women wear cropped tops but whatev) so you can tackle these trends in any order that suits you.  First up for VV Boutique Style is Local Love!  I will share my ensemble first then get gushy about my local peeps.
If you haven't already picked up on it, this blog is all about second-hand shopping.  I was hard-core in my first year and didn't shop regular retail all year with the exception of my favourite way to show local love - supporting my sister, Edmonton jewelry designer Shannon Ebbesen of She Does Create.  Thank goodness her stuff is gorgeous or I would be in big trouble.  ("Yes, I'd love to wear that on my blog... under my shirt....")  As it is, I routinely offer to "help" her and basically need a tee that says, "Will Work for Accessories."  Her stuff is artistic, unique, vintage-inspired yet contemporary.  I love it all.  There is always something new I want, and I am always thrilled to wear pieces that few if any will haveShe Does Create will be a regular vendor at the St. Albert Farmers' Market this year and at other fab sales and events, once she gets over the whole uterus thing.   
Today I wore a coral pendant necklace, arm party and earrings - 
what I like to call the She Does Create accessory trifecta of wonderful.

Of course, I don't show local love only to my sis.  I love that shopping second-hand at local thrift stores - whether the Hope Missions Bargain Shoppe, with all proceeds going directly to the Hope Missions, or Goodwill or Value Village or Salvation Army with their affiliated non-profit partners - benefits the local community.  I also love that I can find everything my little ol' heart desires second-hand.  That being said, this year, I am slightly more relaxed about my rules.  For example, last year, I just started my project one August day, hence was stuck with one pair of gray winter tights for 8 long months.  This year, I'm allowing myself to buy tights and a couple things (like TOMS) that I have never found second hand.  I also enjoyed using a birthday gift card to another local favourite, a small boutique in Beaumont called Virtu Boutique.  Virtu is amazing.  They have something for every age and style, designer denim, unique pieces and outstanding customer service.  They are a gem and I hope all women within a 100-mile radius shop there to ensure its continued success!  I tried on everything in the store, and finally decided on a sensible selection of C'est Moi Naturals bamboo cotton layering pieces - a black long sleeve tee, and the navy leggings and olive tank you see in this outfit.
I know, the olive tank is barely visible but without it, this dress would become a little risque for indoor playground.

The bamboo cotton pieces are light and comfortable and come in a range of colours.  Best of all, when you pull them down to get some decent smoothing coverage under another top, they stay put.  I might have to go back to Virtu Boutique for more!
I could go on and on about local love!  I love my Flatter:Me belts by Edmontonian Claire Theaker-Brown (psst, there is a new Espresso belt, swoon, and free shipping code!).  I love my local veggie supplier (without whom, I basically don't eat vegetables) Riverbend Gardens.  Overall, the local scene in Edmonton is strong and supportive.  There's even the Yeggies!!  Yeggies are awards all about local love, yours truly being one of the nomineesIf local love is a trend, then Edmonton is a trendsetter! 
 C'est Moi navy leggings and olive tank, gifted, via Virtu Boutique
Accessories by She Does Create
H&M dress $5.20, peach cardi $2, Hispanitas shoes $3.50 all from VV Boutique

I am excited thinking about the next trend I'll tackle for the Looking Lucky Fashion Challenge!  Thank you Sarah and Brandi for the great idea!