Denim on Denim – How to Wear the Canadian Tuxedo

Denim on Denim

It’s a trend that comes and goes quite often and one I am often asked about – how to wear denim on denim.

AKA the “Canadian Tuxedo” or the “Texas Tuxedo”.

If this is a look you think you may like to try – here are some of my fave (and safest) ways to do it.

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denim on denim

 

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Now I want to know – do you mix denim with denim already? What is your fave way to do it?

Let me know in the comments below. I’d love to hear your ideas!

 

 

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How to Build an Outfit from Scratch – A Recipe for Style Success

recipe for style success

Okay, time to get personal here.

I don’t cook.

Well, I shouldn’t say “I don’t”, but very rarely. And when I do, it’s usually the same 3 things – eggs, cabbage rolls, and Scottish breakfast. If making toast and smoothies counts, then I can make 5 things. :-)

Seriously though, I just don’t have the patience for cooking. And if a recipe calls for more than 5 ingredients, I’m out.

My husband on the other hand, he can throw amazing dishes together without a recipe and it turns out great all the time! I really don’t know how he does it.

Thinking about how easily it comes to my husband and how much I struggle with it,  it got me to thinking about getting dressed – and how cooking and putting an outfit together are very similar.

Some people can just instinctively know what to do, and others need a recipe.

Well, if you fall into the latter group, I’ve got you covered!

Here’s my no fail 5 step recipe for building a stylish outfit from scratch.

1) Start with your statement piece.

Think about the “flavour” of your outfit and what spice you need to make it happen.

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So, if you’re feeling a little sporty, maybe it’s a pair of Converse sneakers. If you’re feeling edgy, maybe it’s a cropped leather jacket. Feeling girly? Grab a fitted lace top.

 

2) From there, pick out a piece that will juxtapose the style of your statement piece.

In other words, something that will contrast the style of your statement piece, (so you don’t look like you are wearing a “Sporty” uniform head to toe), but that still “goes” with it.

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For example, if you went with the Converse sneakers, maybe you will grab a nice fitted top in a feminine print or pattern.

 

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If you choose the cropped leather jacket, maybe it’s a nice knit dress.

10And if you went with the girly lace top, maybe it’s a pair of cargo pants.

 

3) Next, you need your completer piece.

In my world, a “completer” piece is a basic item that “completes” your outfit. You know, so you are fully clothed before leaving the house? :-)

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So, if you went with the converse sneakers and a feminine top, you need some pants – try them with a pair of skinny or boyfriend jeans.

 

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If you have the cropped leather jacket and knit dress, you need some footwear – so, grab a pair of cute ankle booties.

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And if you have a girly lace top and cargo pants – you could add on a pair or fun flats (maybe in a metallic or some sort of print).

 

4) Next is your topper.

The “icing” on the cake.

This is something that adds that extra bit of flavour.

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For the sporty converse look, a cute vest would work.

 

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If you went the edgy route with the leather jacket and dress, a printed scarf would be a nice added touch.

 

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And for the girly lace and camo look, a denim jacket to top it off.

 

5) Lastly, an accessory.

This can be anything from a statement necklace, to a funky cocktail ring, to a pair of sparkly studs. It doesn’t have to be big or flashy, but you need something.

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And there you have it – my easy to follow recipe for creating a stylish outfit in 5 steps.

So, get in the kitchen closet and start experimenting!

If you feel like sharing, I’d love to see what you come up with! Post it on my Facebook Page and help inspire others at the same time. Or if you’re shy, feel free to message me directly to show it off (or ask for feedback).

 

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P.S. If you’re like my clients and want to be fed styled well everyday, but are feeling overwhelmed at the thought of cooking up multiple outfits for all areas of your life, there are always other options.

1) You could always hire a Personal Stylist to help you out one-on-one – the equivalent to hiring a Personal Chef. You’ll have someone focusing just on you and your needs, doing the work for you, and they’ll make sure you get exactly what you need.

2) You could always take an e-course like Wardrobe Mixology for Busy Mama’s – the equivalent to a cooking course. You’ll get expert advice, lessons, and mentoring along the way so you can learn how to do it yourself.

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How to Create Balanced Proportions

How to Create  Balanced Proportions (2)

As a Personal Stylist, I always am being asked about my best tips for dressing your body shape.

Though it’s important to know a few tips to make the most of your shape, it is just as important to know how to work with your proportions – AKA your vertical body type.

By the way, this has nothing to do with being petite or tall, it is just about your proportions and the length of your upper body in comparison to your lower body.

 

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Some women are lucky enough to be ‘Balanced’ (like Kate Winslet on the right), but for the rest of us, we may need some help to balance our vertical proportions.

So, if you have a shorter torso and longer legs (like Scarlett Johansson on the left) or shorter legs and a longer torso (like Rachel Bilson in the middle), check out my tips to create more balance.

 

Longer Legs with a Shorter Torso (aka ‘High Waisted’)

No matter what your height, this just means that you have a longer lower body compared to your upper body.

Though most women tend to want to have longer legs than a longer torso anyway, if you want to create more balance (and make your torso look longer), here are some ways to do it…

how to balance your proportions with longer legs
– Choose tops with vertical details.

– Choose medium to longer tops and jackets.

– Invest in a good quality bra to ensure your bust line is lifted.

– Avoid tucking in your tops.

– Choose lower rise pants and skirts (only if it works for your horizontal body type though).

– Dress the top half of your body in darker colours than your lower body.

 

Shorter Legs with a Longer Torso (aka ‘Low Waisted’)

Again, no matter what your height, this just means that you have a longer upper body compared to your lower body (as a result, it’s not uncommon for this type of proportioned woman to have a bum that looks lower).

Since most women tend to want to have the appearance of longer legs, here are some ways to do just that and balance your proportions…

How to Balance your Proportions_ shorterlegs

– Bring the focus up toward your face (and away from the lower body) with printed tops or tops that have other details that create visual interest up top.

– Use accessories like necklaces, earrings, and scarves to also bring the eye up.

– Create a shorter looking torso by tucking in your tops. If untucked, make sure they end no lower than your hip bone.

– Visually shorten the length of your torso with wider belts.

– Visually lengthen legs by matching your footwear to your pants, and matching your skirts to your hosiery. If not wearing hosiery, match your footwear to your skintone.

– Stick to straight or bootcut style jeans/pants and wear heels when possible to lengthen the legs.

– Wear mid to higher rise pants (and skirts) to lengthen your lower body. Lower rise styles will make your legs look shorter.

– Dress the top half of your body in lighter/brighter colours than your lower body.

 

coldeditIf you want to dig deeper and learn how to really make the most of your shape and up your style game at the same time, check out my one-on-one services OR my new online program Wardrobe Mixology for Busy Mama’s.

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How to Wear Ankle Boots

HowTo Wear Ankle Boots (2)

I am a big fan of ankle boots and with Spring right around the corner (please Mother Nature, enough Winter already!), it’s the perfect time to start wearing them.

I’ve heard from a lot of clients and readers of the blog though that they just don’t know HOW to wear them.

So, I’m going to clear up the confusion for you here and now!

 

Tip#1

When wearing them with jeans (or skinny pants), the jeans either have to be ankle length so you still see a bit of skin, or you need to cuff them. Messy cuff, thick cuff, thin cuff, any one will do. Just make sure you never tuck your jeans into the ankle boot or worse, try to pull them over top!

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Tip#2

For work, swap out your pumps for an ankle boot when wearing your favourite pencil skirt. Not only will it be comfier, but you’ll look super stylish! If the skirt goes below your knee, you don’t want to loose too much of your leg line so the only rule is to make sure you wear a boot that dips down a bit in the front to show some of your ankle, or a boot with cut outs to show some more skin.

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Tip #3

For a playful and fun look, ankle boots looks super cute with fuller skirts! If you are wearing a style of boot that cuts straight across the ankle though, it will cut off your leg line a bit, so make sure the skirt is above the knee so more leg is exposed.

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So, are you ready to try some ankle boots for Spring? I hope so!

If you have any other questions about how to style them or would like to share a pic of you in yours, I’d love to see it! Come on over to my Facebook page and share.

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9 Necklaces, 9 Necklines – How to Choose the Best Necklace

9 Necklaces9 Necklines (2)

I was recently asked by a friend what type of necklace to choose for a specific style of dress she was wearing to an upcoming event.

Of course, everyone’s personal styles/tastes will vary, but the overall style/shape of the necklace should mimic the neckline of the garment you are wearing. In other words, when it comes to choosing a necklace, it all comes down to the neckline.

Check out my cheat sheet below and bookmark it to use as a handy “what type of necklace should I wear?” reference.

You’re welcome!

 

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How to Look Cute when it’s So Cold

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I don’t know about you, but where I am…this cold snap feels like it is NEVER. GOING. TO. END.

Really, I’m not sure how much more I can take of it! It’s starting to cramp my style. Do you know what I mean? There is only so much you can do to look cute and stylish when it’s so freakin’ cold out. Am I right?!

The good news is, I do have a few tricks up my sleeve.

Check them out below so you can keep looking cute in the cold too…

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 How do you stay looking stylish when it’s so cold out? Come on over to my Facebook page and share!

 

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Unique Ways to Show Yourself Some Love

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Red and pink decor everywhere, the stores fully stocked with heart shaped chocolates, the endless jewellery commercials – it’s that time of year again!

Yep, Valentines Day is right around the corner.

But rather than wishing for the ultimate romantic gesture from your partner, why not spoil yourself instead?

And I’m not talking about the predictable take a bath with candles, have a nap, or buy yourself some flowers. I mean REALLY spoil yourself.

Seriously, when was the last time you showed yourself some serious love?

Here are some of my fave ideas to give you some inspiration (some more extravagant than others…but something for every budget). ENJOY!

  1. Go get a proper bra fitting at a boutique and purchase a good quality bra.
  2. Sign up for an organic food delivery service.
  3. Subscribe to something you LOVE that will show up at your doorstep every month – a magazine, beauty products, shoes.
  4. Treat yourself to some luxe mascara. I am loving this lengthening and thickening one I bought from my friend Jennifer at Younique.
  5. Buy yourself that piece of clothing, handbag, or accessory you always thought was a little too much.
  6. Get a gel manicure.
  7. Book a day at the spa.
  8. Buy some new bedding.
  9. Invest in some high quality skin care products.
  10. Sign up for a Personal Development course…maybe one to help you with your style and wardrobe needs? Wink. Wink.
  11. Buy yourself that kitchen appliance you have always wanted – a Keurig, a bread maker, a Vitamix.
  12. Book a lesson in something that has always interested you – horseback riding, cooking, woodworking.
  13. Get a Reiki treatment.
  14. Splurge on a piece of jewellery (real or faux).
  15. Purchase a beautiful piece of art.
  16. Hire a Feng Shui consultant to come to your home to infuse it with positive energy.
  17. Book someone to clean your home.
  18. Go antiquing and buy yourself a new piece of furniture.
  19. Hire a Personal Stylist.
  20. Go on a road trip to explore someplace new and stay overnight in a B&B.
  21. Treat yourself to some fancy sweet treats – high quality chocolates, French Macarons, or decadent cupcakes.

Now I want to hear your ideas for spoiling yourself. Come on over to my Facebook page and share!

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The REAL reason you “have nothing to wear”.

 

“ACK! I have nothing to wear!!!”

Let’s get real here. How many times have you been guilty of uttering this phrase while standing in front of your closet?

I know I have been guilty of it! And I hear it from my clients all of the time.

Most of the time when I hear someone say they have nothing to wear, and then I show up to their home to have a peek at their wardrobe, it’s not because they LITERALLY have a lack of items in their closet (it’s usually the opposite actually – they have LOTS of stuff in there!).

Maybe you can relate?

If so, I hope the following can give you some insight and help you solve your “nothing to wear” dilemma.

So, here it is! The 3 main reasons why you really have nothing to wear and what to do about it…

1) Lack of understanding. This can sometimes boil down to not understanding who you are and what your Personal Style is, not knowing the best colours for you, or being confused about what works right for your shape. Or it could be all three! When you’re unclear on these things, you end up buying pieces that you never end up wearing because they’re not really “you”, or the colour doesn’t work for you (or go with anything else in your wardrobe), or you feel like it doesn’t fit you just right. The first key to having a wardrobe you love (and that loves you back!) is to get clear on all three of these things.

2) Lack of organization. Organization is a subjective thing. For example, for my Husband, it means randomly tossing his cell phone, keys, loose change, mail and shopping receipts in the pretty fabric wrapped (and compartmentalized) box I put on the sofa table. And that’s on a good day (sorry baby). xo To me, it means putting the cans away in the cupboard with the English side out. For my non-Canadian friends, everything here is printed in both English & French. :-)

Seriously though, for some people, organizing their wardrobe may mean sorting it by colour/shade. For others it may mean organizing everything by piece (shirts all together, pants all together, skirts all together, etc.). And for others, it may mean organizing by season and lifestyle. It doesn’t matter how you choose to organize your wardrobe. The key is finding a way that works FOR YOU so you can see exactly what you have (and what you need), and have an easier time putting your looks together.

3) Lack of planning. This is a BIGGIE, and probably the most underestimated. When it comes to your wardrobe, planning is key. And no, I am not taking about putting your clothes out the night before…who knows what kind of mood you will be in the next day?!

I’m talking about style on purpose and shopping with a plan! I’m talking Wardrobe Capsules.

The idea behind a Wardrobe Capsule is that you have a set number of pieces grouped together that can all be mixed and matched with one another to create a variety of outfits for a particular season and/or lifestyle (work, weekend, going out, etc.)

                      

Like I said, this takes some effort at first because you first have to decide what you want to use from your current wardrobe, figure out what you need to “fill in the blanks” to create more outfits and variety, and then create a shopping plan to make it happen. There is no such thing as “Effortless Style”, but this is the closest thing because when you put in the work to do this at the beginning of each season, it makes getting dressed everyday so much easier and stress free. About as “Effortless” as you’re gonna get!

So, there you have it – the 3 keys to ensure you always have something to wear.

If this sounds awesome-sauce to you but you have no idea how to get started, I have some good news for you! You didn’t think I would leave you hangin’ like that, did you?

I will be teaching how to do all of the above (and then some) in my new online e-course called ‘Wardrobe Mixology for Busy Mama’s’. Of course, you don’t have to be a “Busy Mama” to take part, but it is going to be heavily focused on casual chic wear (as opposed to “work wear”).

The course starts in March, but registration is open now and it’s only $147US to join! A small price to pay to get your wardrobe in order and feel your most stylish (and stress free) self yet, wouldn’t you agree?!

If you want to find out more about the program, head over here. And if you’re not interested in taking part but would like a good chuckle – go to the page anyway to check out my welcome video and watch my 16 month old steal the show as he mimics me talking to the camera. HA HA

 

 

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Be a Strong Woman

newsletter This blog post is a bit different from what I usually chat about but I think it’s SOOOO important to share.

I really love this quote and it reminded me of a recent post I saw on Facebook from ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ Author Elizabeth Gilbert and wanted to share it with you in this week.

It’s all about how women publicly criticize other women about each other’s private beauty decisions and I think it is super important to look at.

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Last Minute Gift Ideas

clockIt’s that time of year when all of my colleagues are posting holiday shopping guides. And of course, I am no different.

Or am I?

Well, kind of.

Since Christmas is less than 2 weeks away, I have put together two gift guides with suggested items for those “hard to shop for” people in your life. You know, the ones you haven’t gotten anything for yet because you have NO IDEA what to get them?!

People like the Babysitter/Nanny, your Boss, your Assistant, your best client, or that super stylish friend who has it all.

Well, no worries. I’ve got you covered. I’ve even made it SUPER easy by creating two cheat sheets (one for my fellow Canadians and one for my friends in the U.S).

And if that wasn’t enough, everything is under $100 (some items are less than $50!). I also made sure that all of the items on each cheat sheet are from the same store, just in case you have more than one hard to shop for person – you can get it all done in one stop (or one online order if you’re like me).

You’re welcome!

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For the Canadian Shoppers, all items above available at The Bay

Faux Fur Vest, Statement Necklace, Metallic Backpack, Monogrammed Business Card Holder, Tartan Scarf

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For the U.S. Shoppers, all items above available at Nordstrom

Faux Fur Vest, Statement Necklace, Metallic Backpack, Monogrammed Jewellery Box, Tartan Scarf

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