Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Light packing tips for a functional and stylish travel wardrobe


Whether you're looking to pack light for the sheer ease of it or packing light to shop your way through a trip, you don't want to start your vacation with a heavy luggage full of clothes and shoes. Packing for a multi-country vacation with varying temperatures can be tough, but all you need are a few key layering pieces to make it through.

Travelling through Paris, Rome, and Barcelona in two weeks, I was bracing for rain, chilliness, heat, and general touring around. Here are key items that I packed in my medium-sized suitcase (with room to spare):

1. Outerwear: Leather jacket, blazer
A leather jacket is always great because it keeps you dry, warm, and trendy. but for those days where it was warmer or I wanted to be dressier, a boyfriend blazer goes with anything and acts as a great layering piece under or over other items.

2. Shoes: Ankle boots, canvas sneakers
Ankle boots are really the best because they can be worn in rain, dressed down, and dressed up. Touring around with soggy feet isn't fun for anyone. And there's really no question that you'll be doing a lot of walking, so be prepared for it. I packed a pair of lightweight canvas sneakers that easily fit into my luggage and don't bog me down while I walk.

3. Bottoms: Jeans, tights/leggings, skirt
I opted for boyfriend jeans because I wanted to eat my way through Europe with maximum comfort. I also packed a pair of dark jeans for a more polished casual look. Leggings also allow for comfort while touring around and go great with a tunic and those ankle boots mentioned above. Also, have a skirt on hand in case you want to go extra dressy or if you run into an unseasonably warm day.

4. Tops: Lightweight sweater, heavy sweater, t-shirt, blouse
Bearing in mind that I was travelling during the autumn when weather can be rather unpredictable, I wanted good layering pieces for a cozy chic look. As I mentioned with the other pieces, a dressier item is always great to pack, especially because it can always be dressed down if you're not going anywhere fancy.

5. Accessories: Scarves, hat
Leave your wide-brimmed floppy hat at home if you don't want it to lose shape in your suitcase. I'm talking about a cozy beanie here that you can smush into a corner of your suitcase if it isn't necessary. Scarves are always super trendy, so I brought a silk one for style and a knit one for warmth. Both pair effortlessly with the other items that I brought.

Pack light without looking like a tourist. And buy everything else along the way. Happy travels!

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Friday, November 11, 2016

What to pack on a winter getaway



It's winter. We can't keep saying that we're in fall or autumn anymore because it's just too darn cold! The red cups have gone into Starbucks store, and the heavy winter coat is well and truly out. As great as wintertime can be, there's something truly special about a sunshine getaway when you're cold. Just the thought of lying on a sun-soaked beach, listening to the waves crashing makes me feel a bit warmer. They do say you have to think warm to feel warmer! If the thought of it just isn't enough for you, it could be time for you to escape to warmer climates. A winter holiday can really help remove the darkness that winter sometimes encourages. Having a break to look forward to can just lift you up and give you life! With the shops full to the brim with warm winter coats and sweaters, it's important you start shopping smart for your winter sun break...

Choose shoes wisely

Shoes are one of the heaviest things that you can pack into a suitcase. If you are only going on vacation for a week you don't need to take every pair of shoes you own with you. Think about it logically. You're going to need some nice sandals to wear with dresses in the evening. You'll need flip flops for lounging by the poor and a pair of sneakers to travel in. You honestly don't need more than that. You certainly won't need your favorite black boots!


Look for versatility

When you go on holiday bikinis are an essential part of your daily wardrobe. It's essentially ALL you're going to be wearing throughout the daytime! Pick a bikini that can be worn with other styles. Long gone are the days of only wearing matchy-matchy styles. These days you can mix and match your bikinis as much as you like! Just have fun with the look.

Day-to-night dresses

These are a lifesaver on holiday! A long and floaty maxi dress can easily be thrown over a cute bikini to act as a beach cover-up. Alternatively, it can also be worn at night. A floaty maxi dress is such a luxurious item to wear on holiday and it can be accessories with fun bags and pretty sandals. Gold jewelry will also compliment skin-kissed skin.


Protect yourself

It's a really good idea to keep yourself completely out of the sun's direct rays when you're on holiday. Of course, you're probably going to want to lay out and get that glow, though. Make sure you build up a tan slowly by wearing a high sun factor. No one wants to burn their skin! As well wearing sunscreen you should protect your eyes with safety approved sunglasses and wear a hat or sun visor when possible. You won't regret it when you're showing no sign of wrinkles and sun damage!

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Thursday, October 27, 2016

Tell it to my visions and my mind

Faux leather jacket c/o Dresslily / Double sided plaid scarf c/o Dresslily / Black combat boots

It went from an unseasonably pleasant 20 degrees to just above freezing in just under a week. Which means that despite being bundled up, I still managed to get sick. So unfortunately, this means no nice outdoor photos while I recover. Because it ain't fun sitting through a meeting trying to be professional with a red nose and phlegmy voice.

The upside of my week was that someone said that my jacket looked "fly". Now I don't know how much of the hip general population is still using that term, but that's a win in my books. So I know that retailers like Dresslily have gotten a bit of a bad rep lately for being poorly sized. I'll admit that this jacket is definitely not my normal size - I ordered a Large. I'm normally a Small or Medium. But my normal measurements showed up in the sizing chart under Large, so I took a chance. And the size is exactly what I expected.

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Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Consider covering these costs for your bridesmaids


Becoming a bridesmaid is kind of an emotional roller coaster. It starts off with being super excited for your bestie, gushing over all the gorgeous details you'll help her plan, then a bit of a crushing sinking feeling when you realize that the cost of being a bridesmaid is more than you spend on rent. So to make your special day a little easier on your bridal party, here are a few costs that you should cover:

Dresses

The bridesmaid’s dresses are probably one of the main things that a bride will usually purchase. Since it’s unlikely that many bridesmaids will be wearing their dress again after the big day – unless, of course, you opt for a style of dress that they’ll be able to re-wear for a range of other occasions- it can often seem a little unfair to ask bridesmaids to buy their own dresses when you’ve asked them to be a part of your bridal party. If you’re hoping to save money on bridesmaid’s dresses, there are plenty of ways to do this, from dress rental to second-hand dresses or even choosing different styles for each girl.




Travel Expenses

If your wedding ceremony is being held some distance away from home or perhaps you are even getting married abroad, it’s often nice to pay all or at least some of the travel expenses for your bridesmaids. If you’re unable to afford to pay for plane tickets or other transportation for all of your bridesmaids, you may want to come to a compromise by giving all of them a set amount of cash to put towards their tickets, for example if you pay half for them. However, this isn’t an expense that you always have to cover – have a talk with your bridesmaids first, as you may find that they’re perfectly ok with getting themselves to your wedding.

Hair and Makeup

If you want your girls to look their best for the big day and want them to have their hair and makeup professionally done, it’s a good idea to pay for this yourself as some bridesmaids might think that it’s a little bit much to ask them to pay for it, especially if they wouldn’t have booked themselves in at a salon if you hadn’t requested it. If you don’t have enough in your budget to pay for your bridesmaids to visit a salon on the big day, you should make sure that they know that it’s optional. If you want UK wedding savings, online shopping and directories are a must to scoop the best deal.

Working out what and what not to pay for your bridesmaids can be tricky, but by talking with them, it can be easier than you think to figure it out.

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Saturday, October 8, 2016

Lazy long weekends


Welcome to my new view. After a busy month of moving into the heart of downtown Toronto, I'm finally at a place where I can relax and just take in my surroundings. There's just something about waking up on a Saturday morning, grabbing a cup of green tea, and curling up in front of some terrible weekend TV. It's strangely calming knowing that I could be bustling around town, but I've got my little sanctuary with the best seats in the city.

I'm all about taking it easy on weekends. I'd like to think I'm productive enough during the weekdays, so the less effort on my days off, the better. This means things like soup, because who wants to waste energy on chewing. It means throwing on a t-shirt and a pair of shorts with an inconspicuous hole in it, because forget looking put together all the time. It means cozying up in koala slippers, because adulting all the time is exhausting.

That being said, I wouldn't mind some better sleepwear. I thought I was okay with inconspicuous holes, then I browsed around Adore Me, and their collection convinced me that maybe I could step it up just a bit.


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Thursday, September 22, 2016

Fashion trends that have withstood the tests of time


Everyone has their own impression of what glamour means. We all know, more or less, what it refers to. But it's very much a matter of personal taste and style. For example, for one person, glamor might refer to a dress that couldn't be bought for less than a four-figure sum. To another person, that may be decadent and wasteful. They in turn might see glamor as being something simple, inexpensive and refined. Neither person is wrong - glamor is what you make it.

Everyone, therefore, has people that they see as style icons. Modern day icons are very much a subjective thing. In the 40s and 50s, it was straightforward. Marilyn Monroe, Betty Grable, Judy Garland... you know the drill. These days, some people won't wear anything that hasn't been given the nod by a Kardashian. Others wouldn't be seen dead in anything that has.

And so, with so many competing views of what style and glamor actually are, it is sometimes wise to step back from trying to fit any mold. Wearing something that a lot of people might not consider stylish is a style statement in itself.

As long as you can look in the mirror and say "Yes, I'm rocking this and you know I am", then that's all you need. Carrying it off with confidence is the key. Look at Lady Gaga. You may not like what she wears, but she has zero doubt about it.

So, with that in mind, there are some items you may have put on the banned list as not being stylish. But it's down to how you wear them, and believe it or not, you can make pretty much anything look great.




1. Anything In Tweed

For a long time, tweed was viewed as being for old men and no-one else. Unless you were going grouse shooting or teaching geography in a boys' boarding school, you didn't go near it. And it is a look that can still take some pulling off. However, things have changed in recent years, and tweed's hard-wearing, moneyed look is now worn more freely.

While a few years ago it may have still been just hipster boys wearing it, now the girls can get in on the fun. A belted tweed jacket can look great paired with the right pants (but those pants should be light in colour). With a refined hat to finish the look off, this can be a very strong fashion statement. Just don't accessorize it with a shotgun. That's taking the country gentleman thing too far.

2. Bandanas

We all have our own associations with bandanas and, to be fair, some of them are a little sensitive. It can be difficult to wear them without tipping over into cultural appropriation. No matter how much you like a certain look, appropriation is something to be avoided.

However, bandanas have been around for some time in a range of ways. I'll be honest, even I didn't know about some of the crazy uses they used to have. Saying that, you can make a bandana work in so many ways. Because of the size and the versatility of the item, they can be worn as a cravat, an armband, or you can go for the Rosie the Riveter look. This last has become hugely popular recently.


3. The 80s Power Look

Yes, you've seen the photos and maybe you lived through the decade. And there's no doubt that some of the worst excesses of the 80s should stay back there in the 80s. Ideally in a cave, on the moon and, with a little luck, on fire. Look, some of the colors and the cuts were amazing. But shoulder pads? Let's just look back on those as a lesson from history. Women can do anything and be anything, but we don’t have to look like that to do it.

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Saturday, September 17, 2016

Easy Tips To Help You Spend Less On Clothing


Shopping can be one of our biggest vices. We do it when we're stressed, we do it when we're happy, we do it when we need a pick me up. In fact, for many people, it becomes something of a habit. It can be near impossible to walk past the mall on your way home from work, and not pop in. You're not planning on getting anything of course - it's just for a browse. Or at least, that's what we tell ourselves! It comes as no surprise that we revamp our wardrobes way more than is needed. The average American woman is said to spend around $125,000 on clothes in her lifetime. So if your spending on shopping is getting out of control, see if any of these tips would help you cut back.

Set an aim

Finding yourself out of pocket with all your money going on clothes? If there's a holiday you're desperate to go on but you still find yourself buying more in the mall, it's time to get focused. Stick a picture of your dream destination everywhere: on your fridge, next to your bed, as your phone background - everything! Then, when you are tempted to pay Topshop a little visit, you might think twice.


Get brutal with your closet

It's pretty likely that you have some items in your closet that you've actually never even worn. Set aside an afternoon to go through all your clothes and decide what you really need. You'll have to be pretty cut throat for this, and it's true that some clothes do hold emotional ties. But if all they're doing is taking up space in your wardrobe, then unfortunately they will have to go. Give it a shot - you may feel refreshed afterwards, like a weight has been lifted.

Look out for discounts

If you're a designer lover, chances are you'll be spending a small fortune on clothes every month. Try and tear yourself away from your love of labels by shopping more at high street stores. Many of these stores also offer discounts, so keep your eyes peeled for things such as Bealls Coupon Codes. You could find yourself saving a lot of money and still coming out with a fab new outfit.


Hold a swap shop with your friends

If you and your girlfriends constantly talk about how swamped down you are with all your clothes - do something about it! Suggest holding a swap shop where you can try on each others clothes and take stuff the other person no longer wants. If you've had your eye on a certain dress for a while, this could be your perfect opportunity to snatch it, and give something back in return.

Try thrift shops

Initially, you might be put off by the idea of a thrift store. Granted, not everything in there is going to be a vintage gem. But, if you have a certain degree of patience, digging through the rails for an hour or so could end up paying off. You will certainly end up with something unique, and thrift stores often have designer brands hiding amongst the rails too.

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Wednesday, September 14, 2016

How to fix "I have nothing to wear" syndrome


I know what it’s like to get frustrated and decide I’m no longer leaving the house because I have nothing to wear. But somehow, it's also equally frustrating going shopping with that annoying "do I really need this" voice going through my head. So I've found that the best solution to both spectrums of problems is to really be in touch with your style and what's hanging in your closet.

Go Through Your Wardrobe

Start going through your wardrobe, and make piles. If you haven’t worn something in months, put that in one pile. If you wear something quite a lot, put that in another pile. If you wear something occasionally, put this in another pile. These piles will help you to work out what it is you need to do to your wardrobe. In the pile of clothes you don’t wear, take a look at what there is and figure out why you don’t wear these things. Do they not match other things in your wardrobe? Are they uncomfortable to wear? Write a list. These are things you should avoid when you go shopping in future. When looking at the pile of clothes you do wear, write out why you wear them the most, and then take this list with you when you go shopping. This is what you’re looking for. In the pile of clothes you sometimes wear, work out what you could do to wear them more. Maybe you could purchase an item that would bring everything together. Learn as much as you can about your habits and you’ll be better prepared in future.

Define Your Style

Use some words to define your style. You can use anything you like, from luxe, to sporty, to sports luxe. What defines you the most? Include words that describe your personality too. When shopping, ask yourself if the clothes you are looking at fit the bill. If so, you’re onto a winner.


Note Down Which Outfits Did/Didn’t Work And Why

Do you have any outfits in your head that you absolutely loved? Figure out why they worked so well for you. Any you decided you didn’t like afterwards? Work this out too. You’ll be able to put better outfits together in future, but don’t be afraid of making mistakes. Sometimes, stepping out of your comfort zone is the way to go.

Consider Putting Together A Capsule Wardrobe

Putting together a capsule wardrobe can save you time and money. It can mean you always have something to wear. You won’t waste money on clothing, and you’ll never say ‘I have nothing to wear!’, as you have an endless amount of outfits to choose from. You can find lists online of what you need and what you should do to get started. Starting again can be scary, but when you look for Asos discount codes and other codes to save money, it can be made easier.



Have Rules For Buying

Have rules for buying clothes. For instance, anything you buy needs to match your personal style definitions. Anything you buy must match at least 3 items in your wardrobe, and be worn multiple ways. Everyone will have their own rules, but you’ll be a smarter buyer once you define them.

Never Buy On Impulse

Buying on impulse can give us a rush, but this is one reason why so many of us have clothes we don’t wear, or only wear once. Rather than buying on impulse, ask yourself if you’ll really get your wear out of this. Will the novelty wear off? Maybe wait a few weeks, and if you’re still thinking about it, buy it.

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Cold weather accessories that actually look good


If you’re a fashion lover, you’re probably eager to look stylish whatever the weather. When temperatures start to drop, you have to rethink your wardrobe. But this doesn’t mean that you can’t look great just because it’s cold outside. Accessories are the key to looking and feeling fabulous all year-round. Here are some fantastic additions to your cold weather wardrobe to consider this fall/winter.

Sunglasses

I know what you’re thinking. Sunglasses are for summer. This is true, but you never know when a stray sunny day may come along. In the fall, we’re often treated to clear, bright skies even when it’s chilly. A good pair of sunglasses will protect your eyes and make you look incredibly chic. In the cooler months, go for larger styles and darker colour frames. Leave neon shades and novelty glasses for summer festivals and exotic holidays.

Hats

Hats are a great way of keeping warm and adding interest to your outfit. In the fall, felt fedora hats are an excellent addition to smart casual outfits. Team with a pair of skinny jeans, a printed blouse and a faux fur gilet for a chic but cozy option. Alternatively, embrace woolly beanies or caps for a more casual look. Both these styles will look fantastic with relaxed jeans, trainers, and slogan sweaters.


Bags

A girl can never have too many bags. As the cooler weather approaches, you may wish to swap fabric, straw and canvas bags for heavy-duty options. Leather is a fall staple, and it adds a touch of class to any outfit. Go for a bowling bag or an oversized shopper for a lunch date or a trip to the mall. For an evening out, brighten up an LBD with a leopard print clutch. If you’re looking for some inspiration for new additions to your collection, take a look at online sites like BNB.

Jewelry

Many people like to wear jewelry in the summer, but it’s not so popular in the cooler climes. The colder seasons are actually a great time of year to wear sparkly pieces. Jewel tones, such as midnight blue, purple, green and burgundy, work really well in fall and winter. You can make your wardrobe more versatile with accessories. You can also dress up plainer items, such as dark dresses and jumpsuits, with jewelry. Necklaces are a great addition to blouses, jumpers and dresses. Jewelry inspiration is always pretty easy to find too, so it makes for a simple way to spice up a winter outfit.

If you’re looking for an easy way to stay chic all year round, make accessories your best friend. By changing the extras you add to your outfits, you can create stylish looks for any season. Add hats jewelry and bags to bring your fall outfits to life, and make every look unique. Search online for tips or have a look through some glossy fashion magazines.

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Thursday, August 25, 2016

Kissing coffee cups

Red bucket bag c/o Zaful / Striped blouse from Ricki's / Grey patterned skirt from Suzy Shier

As I was going through these photos, I was thinking "Hm, I really should've added a bold red lip to complete the look." But you know what? I haven't worn lipstick in a year. Why? Because the first thing I do on a weekday is grab a cup of coffee that smears the majority of my lipstick off. Then, I'm left with disgusting lipstick residue on my cup that I feel like I'm eating with every sip after. 

"But Sabrina, why don't you just prime or bite a tissue first?" Hello, it's the first thing in the morning. My priorities are injecting myself with caffeine. I don't know about you, but extra steps in my beauty regime are not on my mind. Sometimes, if I'm lucky, I wait until someone talks to me so I know that my lipstick has been seen before it comes off onto my cup. Sometimes you gotta count the small victories... 

I'd also like to highlight my experience with Zaful. Like many other sites, this site has an instant online chat function. Usually, I roll my eyes and assume it's some smart bot or unhelpful contract worker. So I half-heartedly asked what the brand print on the bottom of the bag said (because of image on their site said "Fashion Bag" and no one wants that). To my pleasant surprise, a rep came back with a photo of the bag in question with the print in close up! I double checked, and the photo file name was actually the date, which means that this wasn't some randomly stored picture. This person LITERALLY got up to find the bag in stock, took a photo, and sent it to me. I was so blown away by this experience. I don't always talk about companies in such detail, but after that, I was really happy to do this Zaful review.

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