Friday, November 26, 2010

day 18: the ol' reliable

Long-sleeve grey tee: thrifted, the Gap // Navy cardi: Joe Fresh // Black draped skirt: Joe Fresh // blue tights: Sock It To You (local store, cannot recall brand) // Red beaded necklace: The Black Market (local store) // Black boots: gifted, Alfred Sung
One of the joys of being a Canadian married to an American is that I get to celebrate one of my favorite holidays twice, once in October and again in November. Thanksgiving is great, because you get time off work to cook and eat a delicious meal, without all the stress of gift-giving and receiving.

Thus, today, I am bolstered by the knowledge that I am going home to an SCD-legal feast that will feed my husband and I for days. I also discovered what might be a new favorite lunch: lettuce wraps. Such great texture - I love the crunch! I'm so lucky to have such a wonderful and supportive husband who makes sure I'm well (and nutritiously!)-fed every day.

I'm also really excited for my dance recital tomorrow night. I am ridiculously excited for the chance to wear red lipstick - something I'm not bold enough to do, even though I own two tubes of the stuff. I also get to go crazy with eye makeup, something I'd like to do, but don't usually have time for on an average day. I'm so grateful that I'm able to take the class and for the friendships I've made because of it.

I'm most grateful, though, for all the great people in my life. It's hard to keep in touch with everyone, even my immediate family, but I love and value each and every one of my relationships and think often of the people I love. Yeah, so this is clumsily written. So it goes.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

day 17: the weirdo

Leopard sweater: Joe Fresh // Turquoise blouse: thrifted, Reitmans // small shell necklace: H&M // Purple pencil skirt: Joe Fresh // Black leggings: thifted // Charlies: MEC // black boots: gifted, Alfred Sung

Second day of wearing the black boots. My foot is injured and the only shoes that feel comfortable out of the 5 pairs in my 30 for 30 lineup are these guys. I do love my boots and I don't mind wearing them, but having options is nice, you know? Plus I don't want to seem boring…

It's been a kind of stressful week. I'm doing my first dance recital on Friday night and we've been practising a lot - I'd say about 8 times in the past two weeks. It is really, really tiring, but exciting! I haven't done any kind of performance since high school, except for an improv group I attended sporadically in university. I get to put on a crazy amount of stage makeup and prance around and hopefully impress my husband. :)

Also, this new diet is really frustrating, and I keep reading things online that conflict with things I read elsewhere. I'm missing bread very, very much. I keep thinking about the carbs that are missing from a given meal, even though my husband has been cooking absolutely delicious lunches, dinners, and breakfasts for me. Hopefully I'll be able to get a handle on things instead of resenting people who get to eat sandwiches...

Sunday, November 21, 2010

day 14: gratitude and attitude

Black coat: thrifted

Blue scarf: gifted
Navy cardi: Joe Fresh
Long-sleeved grey tee: thrifted
Patterned white tank: American Eagle Outfitters
Booty shorts: gifted

This is what I look like after 40 minutes of walking and an hourlong pole dance class. Usually I put my pants back on before venturing out into the cold 20-minute walk home, but I was feeling sassy. It was a bit chilly on my legs, but being bundled up on top kept me from freezing my tush off.

On my walk home, I was thinking about my body and how sore it was and how much it ached all over, but yet, how wonderful that I can do all these things in the first place. So many people are disabled and don't have the blessing that I do - being able to move and do what you want your body to do. I am especially aware of this because of my Crohn's - there are plenty of people with my disease who can only dream of regular exercise. I remember when my arthritis was so bad that I had to drop out of my ballet class. All I could do was sit and watch my classmates dance, aching to be dancing myself. Thankfully, I'm now able to exercise regularly and once a week, I get to twirl around on a pole and dance as much as I want to.

So in spite of all my bruises and illnesses and inadequacies, I love my body and all it can do.

(I'd be remiss if I didn't mention that this was inspired, or just plain copied, from academichic's body appreciation week annual blog event).

Friday, November 19, 2010

day 12. the western shirt.

I decided to boot a certain yellow dress from my 30 for 30 lineup. It's pretty thin for the cold November weather, and the only skirt that layers with it properly isn't in the lineup. So it's been traded out for a much more versailte piece: this vintage mens' button-down. I picked it up back in May at a thrift store in a sleepy little village on the French shore of Nova Scotia. My cousin Steph actually picked it up for her boyfriend, but it was too small. It was in near-perfect condition and definitely vintage, plus it was cute and fit perfectly, so I took it home with me. Definitely a better choice than the dress.

The reason this photo was taken outside was because I met my husband for lunch. We don't usually do that, but it was a special occasion. We were eating our last french fries for a long time. Starting on Monday, we'll be following the Specific Carbohydrate Diet.

I have Crohn's disease, and the reason I've been blogging more regularly is to reduce stress and have a creative outlet, but also to keep myself accountable. I want to go into remission, preferably permanently, and this blog is documenting my efforts. It might make more sense to not be doing this on what is currently mostly a fashion blog, but I want this blog to be my online journal and cover every part of my day-to-day life, not just what I'm wearing or what picture I think is cool today. Clear as mud?

Anyway, the Specific Carbohydrate Diet is supposed to be really effective at inducing permanent remissions in Crohn's sufferers. It's worked wonders for lots of people, and it's fairly healthy and balanced (which is a problem with some other diets recommended for those with Crohn's). However, it's not going to be easy: the SCD means eliminating sugars and starches from one's diet, along with most dairy. As a result, this weekend I'll be eating my last pizza, homemade bread, sushi, homemade jelly, and chocolate chip cookies, because it will be many months before I get to eat them again.

I might just gain five pounds.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

the ninja turtle - day 11.

I loved the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles when I was a kid. I watched the TV show, played with the action figures, and owned one of the comics (which was read and re-read over and over). Oddly enough, though, the only sartorial cue I picked up on from the show was that wearing bright green and purple together would make people think of Donatello. I guess the other color combos have their own associations: Raphael's red and green bring Christmas to mind, Leonardo's blue and green just seems a natural pairing, and the Michaelangelo colour scheme of orange and green is straight 70s.
Oh wait, no, there's one more thing I learned about clothes from the Ninja Turtles TV show. Bright yellow jumpsuits are heinous, no matter how cute you are. I'm looking at you, April O'Neal.
Oh and by the ways guys, I'm a total nerd. Perhaps not the only one…?

Tuesday, November 16, 2010


Day 9:
Red and white shift dress - gifted

Red and white full skirt - Joe Fresh
Black tights - thrifted
Black boots - Alfred Sung
Beaded red necklace - The Black Market (local shop)

Today, I want to talk about creativity. I've always considered myself a creative person. Through grade school, I adored drawing - I even considered a career as an animator. I've dabbled in art, painting, claymation, filmmaking, nature photography, jewelry-making, sewing, and knitting. I took ballet classes for 12 years, and I've also studied jazz, modern dance, hip hop, contemporary, tango, bellydance, and pole dancing. I met my husband through a songwriting website and while I don't play any instruments (except maracas), I enjoy mixing instrumental pieces on GarageBand and occasionally recording demos.

However, most of my creative hobbies have fallen by the wayside. It's hard to find the time to paint a landscape or sew a dress when you're taking 4 or 5 classes a semester, working part-time, and trying to fit in a social life. Though my university career is over (for the moment, at least), life hasn't seemed to slow down.

Since high school, though, I've been making up for some of this loss with the way I dress. I've come to take great pride is dressing in a way I find appealing. I love saving money and nabbing dresses for a song at the thrift store. There is a certain thrill that comes with filling a niche in your wardrobe, especially at a bargain price. As result, I've accumulated my fair share of clothes over the years and have garnered somewhat of a reputation for being "stylish".

I've gotta say, though - the 30 for 30 challenge has really changed that in a way I didn't expect. I used to be excited whenever I got to wear something new, or I'd come up with a particularly good outfit combination. Though I usually felt pretty, I didn't always feel spectacular. Lately, though, I've been so excited about the possibilities in my closet. I've spent my lunch breaks at work sketching out outfit possibilities for my 30, and it is SO. MUCH. FUN. By being limited to 30 items, I have to combine things in ways I wouldn't have tried before. I'm coming up with great ideas for accessory DIYs. I've dropped one item from my 30, and lately I've been sketching outfits so I can choose between my "candidates". One of the candidates is a homemade dress that would require to get me off my lazy butt to use the adorable jersey fabric that's been sitting in my closet for at least a year.

I expected 30 for 30 to be interesting, but fulfilling? Didn't see that one coming. You rock, Kendi.


P.S.: Since I sketch at work, I've been going from memory to figure out what to combine. I was worried that this dress and skirt combo was going to make me look insane, but thank goodness the stripes in my skirt are more subtle than I'd remembered. None of the cardigans from my 30 really matched, though, so I had to sub in my scarf. Luckily, I think the scarf might be more fetching anyway. The shoes might be a bit on the heavy side, but it's getting cold around these parts...


Hello and welcome to my game of catch-up. Some of these photos were taken on the same night, because I didn't get a chance to photograph all my outfits on the days they were worn, nor did I realise until today that 30 for 30 doesn't include weekends. Such is life?

Day 5:
Green patterned dress: H&M
Lavender cardi: thrifted, Anne Taylor Loft
Brown tights: Curvations
Black flats: Joe Fresh
Braided belt: thrifted
"M" necklace: estate state
Amber necklace: kiosk in a mall somewhere?

This might be my favorite outfit of them all so far. I adore this dress - it's comfortable, feminine, and office-appropriate (but still fun). I pulled it off the sale rack at H&M and only realised after I'd tried it on that it's actually a maternity dress! Oh well. I still feel like a genius every time I wear it.

I also love this simple "outfit hack": lengthening a necklace by using another necklace. I have a short neck, so too-short necklaces make it disappear. I like the way the little "M" from the gold necklace (ten cents at an estate sale!) sticks out - makes things look a bit more deliberate.

Also, my "Curvations" tights? While I found them surprisingly comfy, I cannot recommend them. They're meant for curvier ladies, but only if they have very, very short legs. It was like wearing harem pants in hosiery form.

Day 6:
Green sweater - thrifted
Jeans - thrifted, Gap
Beige socks - thrifted
Plaid flats - Joe Fresh
Comic book paper necklace - gifted
Pendant - found object

I'm not going to lie - on most weekends, I'm usually lying around the house all day in my PJs. When I do get dressed, it's in something easy and comfy. My husband and I had some errands to run, so I threw this on. I always feel sort of sexy in jeans - probably why I don't wear them to the office very often.
I really like this necklace that was given to me one Christmas by my best friend. I don't wear it very often, though, because it doesn't have a focal point and often gets lost in the outfit I'm wearing. The day before, though, my husband found a stray earring on the side of the road, and I thought it would make a pretty pendant. It's cute, eh?
Day 7:
Green sweater - thrifted
Draped black skirt - Joe Fresh

Yeah… another PJs kinda day. I only left the house for my Sunday night dance class, wearing workout clothes. During the day, I was lounging around playing video games with my husband and making my first rubber band ball (surprisingly fun). We also had thaimpurafry (Thai tempura stirfry, made with sweet Thai chilli sauce and tempura shrimp) with tempura onions, which might be the most amazing meal ever. We started watching "The Ten Commandments", too, which I was afraid would be boring, but was actually very entertaining.

Day 8:
Long-sleeved striped top: thrifted, Banana Republic
Grey floral skirt: thrifted, H&M
Black tights: gifted and thrifted, Ralph Lauren
Blue scarf: gifted, Craft Resource Center (fair trade)
Black flats: Joe Fresh
I, too, am a victim of the stripes and florals trend. It's actually one of the main reasons I included this skirt - the other being that even though I love yellow and grey together, I seldom wear said skirt. I was so excited to be wearing this outfit, one of the first I'd planned, that I forgot to put on any jewelry. Oh well. I did, however, wrangle my hair into a cute high bun like I wore when I studied ballet.

And there we are, all caught up! I feel so much better. Until tomorrow!

P.S.: Song of the day: "Young Bride" by Midlake. Go listen to this.

Monday, November 15, 2010


I haven't died, I promise! I've been faithfully doing 30 for 30 every day, though today and Friday involved no actual photo-taking of my outfits.

My problem is figuring out my work-life balance. My job is tiring, and most days I want to come home, flop onto the couch, and veg the night away. I've been kinda-sorta figuring out having a social life and working out more, but adding blogging to the mix has been a real struggle for me. I'm not quite sure why...

Anyway, here are the photos from days 3 and 4. I'll figure out what to do about 5 through 7 tomorrow.
Day 3 outfit:
Leopard cardi - Joe Fresh
Grey long-sleeved tee - thrifted, Gap
Purple pencil skirt - Joe Fresh
Black tights - no idea
Black boots - gifted, Alfred Sung
Watch necklace - The Black Market
This outfit is an adaptation of an old favorite, which will probably be seen before the end of the month...

Day 4:
It was Remembrance Day in Canada on November 11th. For those of you who don't know, Remembrance Day is a holiday that honours veterans, most notably those from the two World Wars. In my province, everyone gets the day off work and there are ceremonies all over the country, all at 11am. My husband and I visited one at a park overlooking the ocean, so we bundled up.

Black coat - gifted and thrifted, Larry Levine Designs
Black purse - thrifted, no idea
Black boots - gifted, Alfred Sung
Red gloves - not pictured
Poppy - worn in honour of veterans

Underneath (underwear???):
Black scarf - thrifted
Grey long-sleeved tee- thrifted, Gap
Grey ruffle dress - thrifted
Black leggings - Joe Fresh
Silk longjohns under leggings - Mountain Equipment Co-Op (highly recommended and very comfy)

I know, I know. The old "start with an apology/excuse and end with longjohn recommendations" trick. It's an oldie, but a goodie.


P.S.: Don't worry if that last bit made no sense. I have a bizarre sense of humour. Here, have some pretty pictures:

(I took this one!)

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

wind out of my sails

Today has not gotten off to the best start. I got to bed late last night, so getting out of my nice warm bed this morning wasca chore. I found myself suffering from wardrobe frustration due to my sudden fear of mixing black and brown. I did the black and brown boogaloo all last winter, since all my boots were brown. This year, I've got black boots and now I feel like I need to match my outfit to my boots. No more mixing. Then my bangs got wet on the walk to work and they look funky now.

What really got me, though, was an angry phone call. When I got off the phone, I could feel my face was hot and red, and I felt like an incompetent tool. I felt even worse when a tidal wave of work pulled up right after said phone call and a coworker had to come and save my sorry butt.

The work pile is gone now, but the bad feelings remain. Here are some positive, happy things I like to help me back up onto my feet.

1. A warm, sweet cup of fresh chai tea, with just the right ratios of milk and honey.
2. Wearing a pretty and amazingly soft scarf/shawl I'd forgotten about.
3. Managing not to spill the former onto the latter. I'm not usually so lucky.
4. My coworkers. They are all sweethearts.
5. French. It's a very elegant language.
6. Lunch. Made with love by my husband.
7. He claimed he was putting a raw potato in my lunch because I need to eat my vegetables. He didn't. :)
8. My cats. They are the cutest fluffballs in the known universe.
9. My family. I love them all.
10. Shirtdresses. So crisp but still pretty and feminine - perfect for the office.
11. Breaking the rules. Mixing brown and black and feeling good about it, no matter what the fashion mags say.

Scarf: gifted, Craft Resource Center (fair trade)
Sweater: thrifted, Worthington
Dress: H&M
Leggings: Joe Fresh
Boots: F.S.P.
Pewter acorn necklace: thrifted (isn't it adorable?)
So here it goes, guys. My blog post. I'm not even sure what to call it. I'm terrified.

At least I looked cute today?

Yellow tee: Talbots (stolen from my mum)
Navy sweater: Joe Fresh
Brown pencil skirt: thrifted, The Limited
Brown tights: no idea
Brown boots: no idea
Accessories: nonexistent.

Right, guys? ... Guys? Well, I think I looked pretty cute. Considering it was rainy and horribly humid all day, my hair behaved marvelously. It never curls like that, except when I want it to. The weirdest thing is, it was all frizzy and gross this morning. But for some reason, it morphed into this sleek, wavy gorgeousness. Even more strange, my hairspray kept my bangs straight today, though it usually doesn't on humid days (possibly because I put on about five times more than I usually do?).

Ah well. If all else fails and the internet thinks I look like a troll, at least I had awesome eclairs today. One of the perks of a studly baker husband (the other perks being kissing, housekeeping, and having a free photographer). <3 size="2">P. S. Please excuse my skirt looking wonky - my raincoat didn't cover the whole thing, and it hadn't dried by the time we took pictures.
P.P.S There are more perks: he does the dishes and cooks me dinner to boot. And did I mention the kissing...?

Sunday, November 7, 2010

day 14.

Time to share my 30 for 30 items! We will start with the shoes. My apologies for these ones - my camera was on the fritz, so these were taken with the camera built into my laptop.

1. Tall black riding boots - gifted from my mom, Alfred Sung
2. Tall brown wedge boots - also from my mom, brand unknown
3. Black suede booties - from my mom yet again, brand unknown
4. Classic black flats - Joe Fresh
5. Plaid flats - Joe Fresh

Now, on to the clothes. My camera was working for these, thank goodness.
6. Short-sleeved cream cardigan with black and brown details - thrifted, brand unknown
7. Grey leopard print cardigan - Joe Fresh
8. Red cardigan - thrifted, Delia*s
9. Green sweater - thrifted, brand unknown
10. Long navy ribbed sweater - Joe Fresh
11. Lavender cardigan - thrifted, Anne Taylor Loft
12. Turquoise peasant-style blouse - thrifted, Reitmans
13. Pale yellow t-shirt - Talbots, stolen from my mum
14. Draped black t-shirt - Joe Fresh
15. Black and white striped shirt - thrifted, Banana Republic
16. Draped, pintucked gray tee - thrifted, Gap
17. Green and white striped shirt - Joe Fresh
18. Long and lean jeans - thrifted, Gap
19. Brown wide-leg trousers - Gap
20. Grey and yellow floral print skirt - thrifted, H&M
21. Purple jersey pencil skirt - Joe Fresh
22. Red and white striped skirt - Joe Fresh
23. Brown pencil skirt - thrifted, The Limited
24. Draped black skirt - Joe Fresh
25. Red and white printed shift - gift from my mum
26. Black t-shirt dress - H&M
27. Tribal print green and purple dress - H&M
28. Grey dress with ruffle detail dress - thrifted, brand unknown
29. Blue floral shirtdress - H&M
30. Yellow pintucked sundress - thirfted, handmade

Here's hoping I can make it through in one piece!

day 13.

Update: Crohn's is still a little iffy - I'm waiting for my meds to kick in.

However, we had some friends over for fresh-baked bread and roast chicken tonight, which was lovely. It feels good to spend time with people who don't mind that you haven't finished your laundry when you arrive or your sudden urge to reorganise your DVD collection, and get their own drinks.

Maybe this makes us terrible hosts...? Or at least me. My husband was the one slaving away in the kitchen.



P.S.: 30 for 30 challenge? It is so, so very ON. It might be a stressful way to start fashion blogging, but it might be just what I needed.

When I told my husband about it (and informed him that he had just been voluntold into doing my photography), he asked incredulously, "That's a challenge?". Then he counted the number of different clothing items he'd worn in the last month that fit into the challenge parameters (so excluding jackets, undergarments, and workout gear), and his total was ten items. TEN. They say opposites attract...

My list of items will be posted tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

day 10.

So, this project is not getting off to a good start, blogging-wise. I haven't written here since day 1, though I've written two and a half posts. I may just go back and post them anyway*.

This past week has been crazy: busy all day at work, and at home, my husband is sick, and my Crohn's is flaring. Thank goodness I get my meds tomorrow.

However, it's been wonderful to have my husband home, and we've been making strides in the right direction. We've started working out and are doing a good job of keeping the house clean. We've been spending quality time together and with our cats.

Next on my agenda: blog more regularly, do my darn laundry, and perhaps, if I'm feeling brave, I'll try out Kendi Everyday's 30 for 30 challenge. This blog might as well be a creative outlet too, right?


*Yeah, so I did. I am a cheater-pants.