Quick Changes: Work to Night

I had to rapidly muster an outfit that would be versatile for after hours, so I decided on this look. Surprisingly I selected this fitted dress. Typically I would lean in the direction of something more structured or roomy, however for some reason I felt in the mood for easy colour and minimal accessories. A multi-occasion outfit does not exactly need to be complicated or loaded with jewellery.
I actually had hosiery on for the workplace, but when in route to dinner the afterthought of a quick snap shot resulted in ditching them to show a little leg. A slight chill, a comfortable dress and voila  a workable ensemble! 

How is your week going so far?

The Rest Stop

This weekend I'm off to enjoy the company of friends being in town, random excursions, meeting up with family and probably not doing any work at all for the first time in I don't know how long. It is special and necessary to take a breather once in a while. And when the climate is sunny with a burst of chill it's quite easy to get lost in the relaxation of a weekend.
I am doing my best to make more time for loved ones on the weekend, but don't worry I will still be catching up on your lovely blogs in due time. Do you have any special plans for the weekend or even for the coming week?

Slow down and everything you are chasing will come around and catch you.  ~John De Paola

The goods: Tee-Express, Denim-TopShop, Scarf-Ladyofashion, boot-straps-DIY, Earrings-gifted, Jacket-thrifted, Leather bag-African trade shop-Seattle

Links + Weekend Tasks

    (Photo Source

I hope that you have something planned for the weekend, whether it's shopping, reading your favourite book, not using your mobile, or just relaxing in a different way. If you don't have plans yet, take a look at these links below, perhaps they will inspire you for the transitional season that will arrive soon. I am happy to be included in this week's Links a la Mode.

Wishing you a beautiful weekend!


Springing Forward

Edited By Taylor Davies

I don't know about all of you, but I've been ready for spring since about, mmm, December. I love cold weather, I love snow, I love bundling up - but I saw so many amazing trends and looks during September's fashion week that I could hardly wait to wear. At least in New York, it seems like winter barely even arrived this year. Today for example, it's about 60 degrees in Manhattan! Everywhere people are in their shirtsleeves and sunglasses, it feels and awful lot like spring is already here.

From the looks of this week's Links a La Mode submissions, I'm not the only one with spring fashion fever. There were so many posts about trends and looks we'll all be embracing - or are already! From printed pants to neon bags, ladylike dresses and the upcoming Marni for H&M collection - and of course some inspiring DIY projects - everything's coming up floral! Check out this week's inspiring and fashionable posts, and as always, thank you for the wonderful submissions!



Dresses at Shopbop: Milly, Kalmanovich, Joie dresses, James Perse, ISSA, Thakoon Addition, Minkoff, Tibi, Black Halo, Nation LTD, Ohne Titel, Chalayan & Velvet Dresses


If you would like to submit your link for next week’s Links à la Mode, please register first, then post your links HERE. The HTML code for this week will be found in the Links a la Mode group will be published later today. ~Jennine


Hints of Spring: Sharing Floral

               "Where flowers bloom so does hope."
                                         - Lady Bird Johnson

Spring is in the air ... can you feel it? I can, but not completely, due to the fact of the on again, off again weather relationship  from cold to freezing and cool to [very] tolerable. However, it has been a great way to bring out the purposeful goods from a fashion perspective.

Now I am anxious for the beautiful palette of floral prints, some that will be interrupted with a stripe or two and others held up by intense saturated colour.
This skirt brings a smile to my face, it's more of the watercolour-like print rather than the silhouette that makes it so charming to me. And I don't actually believe that I've worn this skirt the way it was intended (to be tied as a bow in the front) even when I first acquired it.
Here, I used the front tie-belt as suspenders. It has a halter style about it since it's attached to the front of the skirt. A suspenders type of mood came upon me, yet I did not want the bother of fastening actual ones on the skirt. When this idea entered my mind I felt it was appropriate because I was off to an artsy dinner party with friends. Although most attendees seemed to be wearing muted or dark colours ... I did not.

This look would be my version of a business art-casual ensemble or what my friend Zoë called it, my "Thanks for brightening the room outfit!" I guess a punch of colour, a romantic print, and a smile is all we needed that night with hope of beautiful weather to grace us with her presence.

The goods: Skirt-seen here, Shoes-Charles David, Striped shirt- H&M, Necklaces-red bean-thrifted & wooden-H&M.

"The Amen! of Nature is always a flower."
- Oliver Wendell Holmes

DIY: Boot Strapping

Haven't you ever wanted to change a plain boot at some point? No? Well, I have! Perhaps you acquire some boots strictly for the reason of being able to integrate them into diverse ensembles. As you know I enjoy changing up my accessories and this time I wanted a shoe embellishment ... make way for the boot strap!

Here, I've created a no-sew versatile boot strap. Initially, I designed a strap that included a small amount of sewing, but I had a few of you in mind for this no-sew project and decided to create a simpler one. 

Don't fret, I have many other projects in the works that do require a good sewing machine for my fellow advanced fashionistas. Enjoy!
Leather or Textured PU
Metal rings (circular) - 2/ea. strap
Paper for pattern
Studs - 8
Other trim (optional)
Chain - Cut 2 approx. 6"
Fabric glue-heavy duty
Measuring tape or ruler
Needle-nose pliers

After I created my pattern [essentially from the width and length, the circumference of my boot ankle area] I cut my fabric; the widest part of my strap was approx. 5cm/2 -2.125+/-. Seam allowance was added only at the ends of each piece for folding over the ring. approx. 4cm/around 1.5" for larger straps and 5/8" for smaller ones.  This may be adjusted depending on how you want your straps to drape. I decided on a tiered look. 
DIY Turtorials Fashion Tales
       Click to enlarge images

There are two identical pieces per strap, depending on the thickness of your leather, (for my second style I used one-layer pieces). On each strap fabric glue is applied in-between each layer. Let dry, then start folding each side of your (widest) strap on the metal ring. To secure attach a stud to each strap-end, using the stud's prongs as a guide for piercing ... an awl may be used to pierce through the fabric as well. (Secure and flatten the studs with needle-nose pliers by squeezing the prongs closed). Repeat these steps for each strap.
Ladyofashion DIY Tutorials

Next, attach chain to the metal ring between one of the tiered straps (I altered this for my second pair). You may need wire cutters to adjust the chain links to your liking. Lastly, trim your straps by adding studs and/or other embellishments and that's it! Repeat steps to complete second boot strap.
Fashion Tales DIY


Colour-Blends: A Pail of Inspiration

     Lanvin- Spring 2012 Ad campaign (Source)

If you follow me on Twitter then you're probably aware that I've been heavily into orange, and yellow colours quite a bit recently. Honestly, I actually adore a multitude of colours and their variance in shades, however I wanted to provide you with a dash of inspiration for several other colours that I'm looking forward to wear. 

Each year and season we [the stylishly flavoured] get anxious for another environment transformation as well as changes within our wardrobe, thanks to the effects of our surrounding climate. And that's what makes it fun! The constant evolution of art celebrated on our bodies. What hues will I be expressing? For starters these ... and here's a special taste in fashion, home and everything in-between ...

I have been delving into the archives of my closets feeling the need to bring back a few items worn previously, because you know clothes are meant to be worn more than once!  From colours resembling candy to blinding brights with an almost intensifying heat index there's something for everyone to enjoy and wear in their own way. 

Green: Mint/Neon:
             Inspiration: Wear them all!   (Source)
                   Breckelle Oxford flat (Urbanog)
                                       Celine  (Style.com)
        I also like to interpret trends in the home.  (elementsofstyleblog)

Orange: Peach/Coral:
Excellent, I can bring back my coral top!

  Old to new: A favourite coral top.                         Mila Shon (source)
Brood Spring 2012 Ready-to-Wear 
                  Brood  (Source)

Blue: Sapphire/Teal:
Acne Spring 2012 Ready-to-Wear
Acne (Source
CARVEN Spring 2012 Fashion Week Photos 562718
Carven  (Imaxtree

Yellow: Butter/Marigold

      Burberry iPad case- (Luis Viaroma)                   AX Armani Exchange men's watch (Nordstrom)

 Jil Sander Tonal Check TieLanvin Double Bow Tie

Pretty, delicate, feminine, and airy. What's there not to love? A candy-coated embrace with soft fabrics brushing against your skin, and the setting: a perfect climate.
Elie Saab Spring 2012 Haute Couture Photos 577229
Elis Saab (Source)

Preen (Imaxtree)
Oh yes, I almost forgot, haven't you heard ... lace isn't going anywhere! It's a good thing, since I have loads of it. You know I'd wear it regardless.      
  Cameo via Pixiemarket
And I may bring this skirt back to life!

Enjoy your week fashionistas!


Vanity + Vintage #14 - Knit and Woven: Tactility

Ladyofashion Vintage
It's been so cold lately that I've been wearing plentiful chunky knits without a care of how they may look ... my neck has been completely wrapped up.  All I want is to be warm and comfortable. This scarf is one of my favourites and was hand knitted by my friend and fellow blogger KZ years ago. One of the best elements of this knit is its incredible length, which provides extreme versatility as an accessory.

From a tank to a shawl styled coat adornment I've been able to wear this scarf in numerous ways. This installment of Vanity + Vintage is inspired by men's (formal) frock coats of the Edwardian and Victorian period. I absolutely adore the the cut of this jacket (the very fitted bodice area and waist) along with the skirt fullness. It surely makes for an elaborate entrance and exit all on its own, and a statement for a daytime look especially if a windy climate is involved.
Vintage Fashion Duster
Well, I hope you're staying warm! I'm off for a quick adventure. Enjoy your sweet Valentine's day, whether you're staying in, spending time with friends, your spouse, or loved one here's wishing you a wonderful time.
Hand Knitted Scarf

The goods: Knit scarf-gifted/KZ, Long jacket-vintage, gloves-gifted, Clutch-DIY/Ladyofashion, Riding boots-gifted/Italy

City-Art: Reflections

City Art Fashion Tales
You're likely familiar with museums or certain art periods that you may draw inspiration from, but what about street artists? I'm not talking about curated galleries that you browse in passing on the city streets. 

I am referring to some of the people who you might see everyday in route to grabbing your favourite coffee; some of whom are multi-talented artists who not only share their passion on the walls of the city, but may also have full-time jobs as anything other than artistic titles.

My appreciation of art and street-style artists comes with a great deal of respect. Depending on where you are, there are stations or lots where you might find such talents. I often pass artists on my way to the next destination with a mere thought of whether the art had the ability to move me in seconds or not. Then, I go back to my focus. Yet, typically I can tell if I like an artist's works within the first few moments. 
London Street art
However, as most things with time there's also an understanding granted along with each prolonged stare. Occasionally an emotional connection might also be obtained when conversing with an artist about their pieces. Evoking passion from their experiences or memories of your own.

I wanted to share some images that I recently took from a London-based artist who drew my caricature; also a couple of people whose talent I love in general, including a Bay area friend, and one of my favourite artists.
City artists London UK
I don't usually like getting my caricature/portraits done, but I love watching them in action! This particular artist was charging a ridiculous price for most all of his quick sketches. After browsing ten or so renderings, sketches, and paintings I commended him on his talents, becasue I liked his work and used to do caricatures myself. 

Admittedly, I was also in somewhat of a rush, but he convinced me that it would "only take a few minutes," and out of the goodness of this artist's heart I could in turn keep the art as a gift. Well, I couldn't argue with that!

I glanced around viewing 4 other folks (all having anxious or serious expressions), getting their live portraits done. With 5 minutes to spare it seemed very reasonable. This was an interesting day anyway, so I sat down. The end result was fine to me and the artist kept his end of the bargain allowing me to keep my rather cool-comical artwork. In exchange, I left a token of my appreciation and most importantly was still able to make my previous engagement. 
Have you ever had your caricature done? 
Mona Caron Muralist
   (Above) Mural unveiling party! 
(Source) Noe Valley (West)  Click for larger image!

A San Francisco Bay area friend of mine, Mona Caron is an amazing Illustrator and muralist that I was fortunate to initially meet through mutual friends.  If you've never heard of her check out her infamous works. She's a beautiful soul. Back in 2008, this mural (above) was done in my old neighbourhood, it was a fun event with live music, bringing together diverse people and pure sense of community.
                                                                 (Source) "1981"

(Source) "Harlem Rose"

I believe that I first heard of urban artist, Justin Bua from my brother when I was a little girl. His love for Bua's works (above) rubbed off on me, and I've been quite a fan ever since. Bua's zeal for art is definitely evident; you can often instantly feel the rhythm of what he's trying to convey in each piece.

For the love of art, check them out! Do you have any favourite street artists or muralists? 


DIY: Plumier Headdress

I've always been quite obsessed with costuming and headwear when it comes to fashion. Taking period influence and adding modern touches of simplicity by tailoring it to my style. I wish that more hats would be worn today in women's wear, perhaps that's because my devotion to complete dress includes a good hat on any occasion, not just for special events. Here's a simple hat that I created, which is dedicated to my feather lovers out there.

Amanda Christine dress Trvistic fashion
I decided to pair my new hat with this versatile dress, compliments of Trvistic, and designed by Amanda Christine. It's quite an interesting piece, and I love the fact that it can be worn several different ways. After experimenting and playing around with pinning certain parts of the silhouette, I finally came to a look that I admired ...  an off-shoulder one! Perfect for the event that I was heading off to attend.

Sometimes all it takes is a solid dress to be embellished by a custom plumier headdress.
DIY headdress ladyofashion
The goods: Shoes- Hervé Léger, Dress-(Amanda Christine) c/o Trvistic, Hat-DIY/Ladyofashion, Earrings-Target, Perfume bottle-Vintage

You may view the tutorial of my headdress below!
Materials Needed:
Silk flower or dyeable fabric flower
Pin back with clip
Loose feathers
Glue gun
Netting (optional)
Felt/fabric  cut at 3"x2"

To make your easy feather hat cut a circular piece of felt approx. "2 x 2." This measurement should be smaller than your silk flower piece. If you use a smaller flower adjust circular piece measurement. (If you don't have felt, you may use a piece of leather as I have done cut at 3" x 3." Next, I folded each end of the leather piece in half towards the center.) Glue in place. Set aside.
DIY Feather fascinator
Depending on the type of feathers that you select you may need to cut the ends, as some are wrapped with wire. Cut the ends to ensure the feathers are smooth. Layout your feathers on top of the felt piece (with the felt piece folded side up) in a design to your preference. Carefully glue each feather to the felt piece, leaving room at the bottom edge for the flower placement. 

Glue the flower on top of the feathers where the space has been left. When  the glue is dry turn the entire headdress over and glue the pin back clip to the felt piece.
DIY Hat Headdress Feathers
For Netting:
Cut 1 netting piece in a circle 4" to 5""  in diameter, then cut in half. Attach 1 piece netting slowly gluing it to the back edge of pin back clip, creating gathers. The netting should be extended from the feather headdress. To add the second netting piece repeat the previous step. Additionally, you may use scissors to cut various pieces of the netting to tailor your hat.  In this version I added a pedal-shaped netting piece to add a personal touch!

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