Colour Blocking: Casual and Refined

It's been a very long time since I've worn shortsalas the season has come! A little bit ago, I had a chance to don these shorts that I wore to a friends barbecue gathering, which was more of a catered gathering than anything else. Live music, good company, and great food always brings my spirits up. But, holiday time will soon arrive and hopefully long awaited beach time as well.

Have you ever thought about wearing something weeks before you actually wore it? This top is one of those items, although the reason behind why I kept thinking about it was entirely non-fashion based. It reminded me of a specific pattern that I saw on a collection of beautiful dinner plates that loved!

Years ago, as I went off shopping for stemware and an attempt at dinnerware. I kept pondering about those plates as I walked every inch of the store, but later concluded that I could not justify the pretty price tag that the store wanted for the entire collection. Instead, for the same price of two quality handbags, yes, I passed! However, the memory is still forever embedded in my mind. And, no worries, I did manage to purchase other dinnerware of equal style and quality, and far less expensive days after my shopping trip.

The look: I decided to colour block in richer hues with the embroidered kimono inspired silk top by adding earthy brown tones. It worked for the occasion!
Style blogger summer trends how to colour blocked outfits
Colour blocking style blogger summer fashion

Have you been able to make it to the beach yet? I have new swimsuits longing to be worn and appreciated. Well, enough about that, here's to wishing you a wonderful summer week!

The goods: Sandals and Embroidered blouse-Anthropologie, Bracelets/bangles-Nordstrom,charity shop, Necklace-Art show, Shorts-New York and Co., Embellished bag-DIY


Colourful Summer: Handbag Must-haves

Summer is here officially and I am excited to share a vibrant new handbag line! Many of you may already know of handbag designer, Mary Jo Matsumoto, but just in case you don't, I thought that I would give you a peek at my three top favourites from her new Bougainvillea collection. 

From Laguna to Newport Beach, much of the influence in her line is drawn from seaside and oceanic elements that would make anyone jealous of such a serene location or want to dream of paradise.
Mary Jo Matsumoto
(1) Fold-Over clutch (2) Beach Wallet (3) Convertible Tote

The Bougainvillea collection oozes luxury, but practicality as well and comes in a hot pink colour that is inspired from blossoms flowing near the ocean.  There’s also a touch of yellow with lambskin piping on styles like the Fold-Over clutch (a personal favourite), amongst others!

The Convertible Tote is perfect for an on-the-go chic fashionista and comes with an adjustable/detachable shoulder strap. For me, the floral printed Beach Wallet would be the ideal pairing with the tote, especially if you just needed to quickly go out, as it looks like a mini clutch as well as fits right into any of the handbags with ease!

To celebrate summer finally making its way to us, I thought a giveaway was in order! Mary Jo is kindly offering one of my readers to win one bottle of 4FREE nail varnish in Naked State of Mind! 4FREE nail varnish means that there is no toulene, camphor, and no formaldehyde or DBP/dibutyl phthalate.  

This is the perfect colour and name to rejoice for the season of showing some skin and embracing wardrobe changes—of sheer elements and bikinis! 

What do you think of the Bougainvillea collection?

Come celebrate summer and enter below!  

*This giveaway is only open to readers with a USA shipping address via the retailer.
To view the entire handbag collection click here!


Lavish Crowns For Everyday Fashionistas

Fascinators 20s inspiration hats
It's no secret that I adore hats in every capacity, and I appreciate an artful and cleverly made headpiece at any given time. Of course hats are not for everyone, but to me they are truly special! I remember family friends coming over my parent's house for yet another night of entertainment and dinner, some would be donning such interesting hats.

As other patrons entered our home even as a little girl I would be the one eyeing the dapper gents and well-dressed ladies; mentally taking note and separating those who were fashionably daring from others playing it safe, so to speak. You know what? Sometimes a small piece of fabric covered in feathers or other extraordinarily elaborate trimming does an outfit justice! However, it's all in the styling and personality of the wearer.

My friends and family know that I certainly do not need an occasion to wear a special hat! To be honest, I wish people would wear them more often.

If you follow me on Pinterest then you've likely seen my dedicated board to the art of headwearquite a diverse mountain of loveliness I might add.

Without further ado, here are a few of my favourite headpieces, including three that I have made myself (more glam creations to come), from simple fascinators to avant-garde wonders. I do hope that you enjoy these art infused glimpses for the stylish crown. 

Are you a hat wearer or just an appreciator? Perhaps both?
Period fashion - Fascinators feathers headpieces hats
 Vintage trimmings - spiral and lace headpiece 
Hats women's plumes feathers - hats streetstyle London style
 (Source)  LA Times Magazine - Christina Hendricks
  (Source) Behida Dolic, Etsy Made-to-order hats!
Fashionable Headdresses DIY Hats

DIY Hats headpieces fashion
Plumier Headdress- DIY 
 (Source) Scarlet Rose Fascinator - EveAndersFashion, Etsy

 For a view of my other DIY head accessories visit here.

04/08/13 *UPDATE: I have also linked this hat dedicated post with The Style Crone's Hat Attack. View it here!

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Handmade With Passion

It's always wonderful to come across local artisans and independent designers who have such a passion in their body of work. I thought that I would share a few under the radar designers that I am loving at the moment. These accessories designers all tell a unique story in their pieces, which are influenced by everything from their cultures to mere shape and colour.
(Above) 1-Medusa Pompon Necklace-MeDusa, 2-Lolli Wrap Bracelet-Ananasa, 3-Blue "Photinus" Necklace-Shanny Alon, 4-Badawyan Earrings-Ananasa, 5-Albion Necklace-Apres Ski.

*Spotlight*  MeDusa
Tel Aviv based designing pair Gili Rozin and Adi Gal produce artful jewellery and accessory pieces with a youthful and modern sensibility. I love the irregular shapes created in the pieces, just as in their oversize, yet lightweight black chandelier earrings with chain, and in the shell-like earrings that could also be interpreted as the outline of floral petals.

You'll find textile impressions as well as colourful and daring combinations in their works ... all wearable! MeDusa uses an industrial technique in their handmade pieces with processed plastic that's quite different than traditional jewellery making methods. See their necklace above and also below my favourite earrings from the collection.

You may see more of MeDusa's accessories here on Boticca! To shop pieces from Ananasa visit here!
You can also save with up to 70% off on selected pieces right now via Boticca on summer jewellery and accessories. Check out other items here!

Do you shop handmade or have you recently supported independent designers in your area?

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Art Inspired: Fashion Potpourri

We took loads of photos from the countryside, but instead of boring you with those perhaps I will save some for a rainy day. Here's one of the outfits that I wore for a breakfast feast. I figured that adding layers would be a fun way to release an extended hi-five to spring and welcoming of summer sunshine, although slightly breezy.
 How to mix prints fashion blogger 
This outfit was actually partly inspired by this painting that I saw some time ago, but didn't think about it again until recently. I really wanted to remix my cardigan again since I adore the emerald colour, additionally I wanted to have fun with prints and patterns.

It's a mere nature medley of patterns, but in an abstract sense ... also a great way to explore and understand part of my art perspective relating to my wardrobe. Art is all around us, and I am truly inspired everyday in some way. What about you?

How does art influence your life? When is the last time that you visited an art exhibit or museum?

Print mixing trends blogger fashion
 (Source) Birch Forest oil painting 
Animal prints colour blocking styles summer
The goods: Cardigan-BCBG, Heels-Charles David, Dress worn as skirt-Ladyofashion design, Tank-Marshalls, Leather belt-gifted, Leather embossed handbag-African trade shop-Seattle.


Retro Comfort

I have been waiting to bring this romper out again for some time, but wanted to wear it a different way than I normally have in the past, hence my new cat-eye frames. Then, there was this cardigan that I picked up years ago and have only worn once—a knit that surprisingly has amazing embroidery on the front and center back in a floral pattern.

The romper is a retro wide-legged style that really demands some confidence when wearing, given the fact that it’s pretty much held together by elastic smocking as it embraces its very roomy silhouette. vintage retro rompers
So, yes, I decided to renounce the heed of what others would think and went all in, wearing this enormous and more than generously forgiving style confidently! There are certainly days when style structure is fine and needed, or even when you fancy donning shoe elevation at its finest. But, then there are other days like this, when you just want to feel comfortable and free—a day of flexible style! Do you know this type of day?

Sounds like: your work mobile ringing incessantly as you check your inbox flooded with mails only to be topped off by two RSVP invites that you entirely forgot to send in. Oh, let’s not forget the fact that you still have not unpacked your suitcase from the recent business trip! But, it’s all good, the sun is shining and you get interrupted by your (other mobile) alert telling you that your BFF is waiting for you to be picked up at the airport.

This all happens simultaneously as you remember that you also forgot to eat lunch. Thankfully, that Lärabar in my large handbag (you know, the fabulous one equipped with a false bottom and everything) saved the day.  I didn’t think that I could do back-flips and cartwheels in a romper … mentally! Perhaps, I have spoken too soon …

Wishing you a sunshine day of happiness!
Street style fashion bloggers jumpsuits white playsuits

Style blogger rompers 
The goods: Retro romper-gifted, Clutch bag-Kenneth Cole, Sandals-Seychelles, Beaded necklace-Flea market-SF, Ring-DIY, Cardigan-F21

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The Beauty Files: Cyrine Aromathérapie

Having a skin care regimen is definitely important, and even more so with seasonal changes and an on-the-go lifestyle. And, that’s why I love to try-out new beauty products!

I received a small sample of this new skin cream from Cyrine Aromathérapie, a London based beauty company that also provides health and wellness treatments. This is a balancing vitamin-rich face cream. At first glance, the beautiful packaging caught my eye as well as the personalised label, “Madison’s face cream.” Yes, excellent attention to detail is always appreciated!

Founder, Cyrine Ayoub created the Cyrine Aromathérapie beauty line with the objective of helping people and beautifying their bodies. She uses the natural influence of plants to produce a diverse range of products that can be customised, i.e., by combining essential oils or the option of gift labelling each product.

So far, I have been using the cream and it has a few instant benefits: my skin does feel smoother and the aroma alone is feminine and lovely, which smells of beautiful floral––rose geranium petals. It also glides on pretty easily when used, like a rich lotion and blends clear.
At the moment the only thing that I can say that I would want is more, more, more!
With a childhood of French-Tunisian surroundings it was only natural for Cyrine to go back to the natural therapy of plants and expand upon it, as she studied aromatherapy and massage. “I wanted to help people heal their bodies, calm their minds and revive their spirits,” said Cyrine.

I would recommend the vitamin–rich balancing cream, and I cannot wait to try more of her products giving the attention to including natural plant healing elements and essential oils. “My aim is to continue to develop and learn so that I can share my knowledge with others and help them on the journey towards a naturally healthy self,” said Cyrine.

If you’re in the area you can even make an appointment with Cyrine from natural facials to full body massages … which is absolutely right up my path! I am interested in trying the “thrive-in-winter” massage in the future; it includes bergamot, rosemary, and cedarwood to improve the immune system and purify toxins in the body!

The verdict: I would give this 8/10 stars because I would love to try more of it! You may purchase this cream and other products here or if you want to order personalised products click here.

*Disclosure: The product sample reviewed was provided by Cyrine Aromathérapie. A collaboration with British Brands Online. All opinions expressed are my own.

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Day to Evening: Floral

This past week has been quite an intense one work-wise, but it all resulted in such a great way! There were times throughout the week when it even felt a bit difficult to keep up with news, online activities, and blog reading. When this occurs I find that's when a little relaxing session is in order. So, I did exactly that ... not in the conventional sense. This particular time, it was more of a sewing studio session followed by gourmet cooking in the kitchen with new and longtime friends. 

I wore this outfit weeks ago to visit a friend in the countryside. I decided to add a colour blocked top with minimal accessories this time, which worked out perfectly since we were off to attend an art showing in someone's beautiful backyard garden that day.
I haven't brought out this skirt as much as I would have liked to this season at all; although I do believe I gave it a fair amount of wear most of last year. Sometimes it's not only a print that strikes me, it's the rhythmical combination of colours!

This skirt is one of those sweet melodies of romantic floral that can easily set the tone for a lovely day. I suppose it's because of the simplicity in the silhouette. A marvellous above-the-knee flare skirt certainly doesn't hurt a fashion welcome to summer, even for only a short-lived sun break in the day.

The goods: Skirt-Urban Outfitters, Cotton trench jacket-Anthropologie, Zipper tank-F21, Sandals-Mia Shoes, Floral handbag-gifted, Handmade bead earrings-Ladyofashion.

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80s Inspiration: Gone and Back Again

There's nothing about the eighties that anyone have not (at least once) shied away from in some way, fashionably laughed at, or eventually donned for Halloween at some point. Whether it be the almost blinding hues in clothing, the teased hair, or taking it too far with the "smoky eye."

But one thing is certain, thankfully we've got to give it to technology, and fashion's ever evolving objective to turn some of the garish attributes of the eighties into modern styles of refinement. Today, and even within the past few seasons polished neon colours join the same closets of owners with fingerless lace and leather gloves, and super-sized layers of tulle skirts of candied pastel colours.

Here are a few elements of the eighties that have actually made a comeback, and some that are more of a stylish makeover for the better! From crop-tops to high-contrasts, there really seems to be something for the bold and daring, but also the more conservative fashionista.

Have you worn any modern-eighties elements recently?

1980s // THEN

 Duran Duran, and The Rolling Stones–Dirty Work–1986 (source),(source)

2013 // NOW
 (Above) All items available via
(Above) All items found on Erdem lace gloves, Forzieri in black, Burberry Bomber jacket, Lauren by Ralph Lauren blazer 

*FTC Disclosure: compensation was received for this post. All opinions expressed are my own.

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Österreich: Alternative Snapshots

Austria Sight seeing Osterreich Linz
I am pretty much the type of person who enjoys every minute of being on a getaway, even for a small amount of time. Thus, there's quite a lack of photography booklets in my home archives. But, that's what having a holiday is all aboutrelaxing without stress of carrying what is now often referred to as typical "blogger essentials."

Although, I do prefer physical photos captured to remember good times, there are those impromptu moments that are forever embedded in my mind. These are the moments that we all wish could be captured on camera, but instead are best left mentally treasured by those who were present. And, that's okay!

Those memories are the ones you speak about in a room filled with friends as they listen to you with excitement as you tell your stories of travel and spontaneous ventures proclaiming, "well, you just had to be there!"
Austrian cafe
These images are a few that I took when I went to visit my sister again in Austria a while back. I loved the black and white photo, which was taken walking about in the city streets in route to a cafe.

These few images were so random. In fact, many were the ones that I sifted through initially and almost tossed aside because of being overwhelmed with 400+ other unrelated images to speedily browse through. But, I was happy that it was a rare time for me, (then) actually having my camera by my side. Of course, these days I always have a camera in my handbag, if not, at the very least there's always the handy iPhone, right?

Are you planning on a summer getaway soon?
  Street walking: Linz at an angle
The view of the Danube outside my apartment window.

 View of local shops

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