The Tweed Tango

Hello fashionistas, I hope that you had a wonderful week. I have been having slight internet woes, and I am slowly catching up with e-mails and posts pretty much all weekend. Did you go shopping and grab any holiday deals yet? I managed to get the bulk of my shopping done online earlier this past week, but still have a portion left to do. 

Over the past month, I have attempted to go through some old clothing and shoes for donating. Finally, the task has been completed, however some pieces needed to be kept of course, because there are many items that are just classic.
During the exercise of my vogue perusing moments I came across one of my favourite tweed hats—it’s a menswear Kangol hat that I haven’t worn in some time. I’ve always adored tweed and textures in general, so it was the perfect reason for me to also bring out my matching skirt that I designed years ago. It’s such a simple skirt that has been through countless moves, fashion shoots, shows, and meetings. It’s significant to me because it’s one of my first skirts that I made in design school, so how could I get rid of it?

As for the outfit, I wore this to an after-work dinner. I imagine, the best way to brave the cold climate in style (if possible) for me is to bring out the leather gloves, tweed, and vintage fur. Yes, these elements speak to me, but it's even better with bits of luster from a patent piece or two thrown into the fashion concoction. 

So tell me, how do you kick it up a notch when it’s a bitter chill outside?


The goods:  Fur-Vintage, Tweed hat-Kangol, Blazer-Oscar de la Renta, Pencil skirt-Ladyofashion design, Cardigan-Gudrun Sjoden, Leather gloves-Sigerson Morrison, Patent belt-Zara, Tights-Capezio New York, Boots-Diba.

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DIY: Giftables With a Personal Touch

During this time of the season there are always a few people that are very easy to buy for, and then there are those special loved ones that you know will appreciate homemade luxe creations.

This year, after getting the easy gifts I have decided to make several custom kits that I know will be cherished. From baked goods in a jar (of secret family recipes) to detox beauty treats, I have found an excellent way to add a personal touch to holiday stocking fillers and themed presents to give. 

Inspiration:

In the past, for my friend Zöe’s birthday, I made a collection of four themed kits and treatments of what I called, My Little Jar of Treasures. You can add the person's name in place of "My." I tailored it to her personality, and this year I'm bringing it back for a few people. However, I am also adding the following: a custom no-sew DIY (which includes a finished DIY + instructional and complete notions), a detox go-green spa treatment, a beauty "travelling saviour" kit,  a special cider recipe, and even a Made With Love wild card kit. It’s my very own version of a little holiday cheer in a jar!

The Jars:

*Beauty Kit: I made my own labels then printed them with icons. I made small packets of the face mask with instructions, handmade natural body oil, then I bought eye creams, and rose soaps. You may buy the empty bottles, and small clear packets online. I acquired mine from eBay in sets. 

Start Building Your Jars:
This past weekend I have also created versions "for him" in my, Jars of Love: For Him! It’s not difficult to do at all. What you need are variations of mason jars or plain jars with lids. I bought both, jars with handles and without, in addition to food grade quality. It’s imperative that you know the difference. For the jars that I made for drinking, baking, and all food ingredients, I used food grade jars. It’s a perfect little concept, then after the jar is emptied, the personal can use it afterwards.

Next, buy a few beauty items and special treats that you know your receiver will love, and start building your jar. A few samples for my beauty kits includes eye cream, nail varnish, travelling cleanser, a Moroccan red clay mix packet that I made, essential oils, etc.

I've even made go-green versions of that one as well for others, which will include eco-friendly wrapping, and all organic and environmentally friendly goods. You can really do loads of diverse variations.

Here are a few snapshots some of the ones that I am in the process of finishing. I hope you are inspired, stay tuned for more holiday gift inspiration coming soon.  
*Homemade Bath Salts: Lavender/Rosemary and Eucalyptus and Rosemary


*DIY Special: Accessories tutorial and all notions included. I made a tag out of card stock, and then crumbled it to give it the effect of handmade and the look of masking tape. 

*Wrap them up and they're ready to go!

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Copper and Cobalt: It's Electric

The Blues:
Cobalt is one of my favourite colours. To be honest, most all (colours and) shades of blue are some of my favourites. I usually go for muted tones when it comes to a trench jacket, but I thought why not go for the bold! Especially, since I have not found a perfect tangerine mac yet that doesn't cost a fortune.

I am always up for a bit of wearable art, so I decided to try this Tutankhamun 3D printed sweatshirt, which I thought was beyond amazing. It also sort of reminded me of family tapestries that my parents had hanging on their walls when I was little, much like a miniature gallery of art. In passing the walls there were framed old photos and artwork of various mediums, it was often the right amount of inspiration that I needed as a push to produce my own artwork.

I decided to layer this look with a satin draped skirt that I had made years ago, and then I cut up pieces from it again to create a wrap skirt. The other remnants are being used for another project, because you know I never waste any fabric.

Holiday Thoughts:
I’ve not even begun to acquire Christmas gifts yet, but I have attempted to make a lovable list of holiday ideas, and stores to visit. When it comes to holiday shopping I refuse to get all stressed out about buying gifts, which is why I used to pretty much shop throughout the year for Christmas gifts.

However, nowadays, things have severely changed—these are much busier times and filling an online cart at the click of a button is far better to me than battling retail chaos and crowded streets. Not to mention, free shipping, gift wrapping, etc. How can I decline such sweet music to a fashionista’s ears?

Certainly, everyone is different though, I have friends that absolutely love the holiday crowds. I do remember when I was younger not being affected at all by the mayhem during the Christmas season. 

How about you? Are you more of an online shopping person at this time of season or do you enjoy the crowds?

The goods: 3D printed sweatshirt and Cobalt trench-c/o Oasap, Shoes-Debenhams, Denim-Southpole, Satin wrap skirt-Ladyofashion design. Copper leaves-Arts and craft market, Necklace-c/o Oasap.

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A Few Things: Link Love

This past week has been wonderfully productive for me, and you may have noticed my slight absence here and there in blogland, but no worries, all is well. It might take me a bit more time to get back to you, but I will be periodically checking out your social outlets. I have been taking time off: finishing freelance projects, enjoying life more, and helping a dear friend pack to move. Thanks for your comments and many of your sweet messages, and e-mails, it is always appreciated.

During the work week, typically on my breaks I am always seeking new inspiration, tasty recipes to try-out, and sometimes inhaling a dose of shopping à la browsing sessions. Today, I will share with you few favourite links that have gotten me inspired this past week.

Site Obsessed:
It was a gloomy Tuesday, one of those days with raindrops rapidly coming down like a broken string of pearls. It was at that moment when I stumbled across the website, Food52. It's a site that I have been constantly browsing on and loving recipes from (see below). It's merely (virtual) succulence without the calories, so indulge in a click and be inspired. You can thank me later.
http://food52.com/recipes/10177-french-onion-tart
(Source) French Onion Tart
http://food52.com/recipes/24357-fig-and-blue-cheese-tart-with-honey-balsamic-and-rosemary
(Source) Fig and Blue Cheese Tart
Cauliflower curry soup
(Source) Curried Cauliflower Soup

Tunes:
 (Source)

I am currently loving several songs from The Hunger Games: Catching Fire soundtrack, which comes out officially November 19th and features some great artists, including a few favourites: Ellie GouldingSantigold, The Lumineers, Lorde covering Tears For Fears (preview), and Sia (featuring, The Weeknd & Diplo), amongst others. The best tracks in my opinion were by Sia's "Elastic Heart," The Weeknd's "Devil May Cry," and Christina Aquilera's "We Remain," Have a listen. You may also pre-order it here.


Holiday Haus // Inspiration:
Ahh, yes, the moment of holiday cheer has come upon us, and if you've been a busy bee then you've probably not yet thought about decorating your home interiors! Well, here's some inspiration for you--a bit of DIY influence and an abundance of marvellous ways to create a festive ambiance without breaking the bank. Let the spray painting begin, shall we?
 (Source) Wooden Hanging Crochet Snowflakes Ornament
Christmas DIY holiday crafts 
 (Source) Easy setting change using twine.
 (Source) Festive stocking pockets for your dinnerware.


Give A Little Bit ... 

(Source)
 

I know that on my gifting list it includes a few people who are utterly difficult to buy for. What do you give a person who seems to have just about everything? Not clothing, nor hi-tech gadgets or another giftcard, because they have all of that! Solution: Try something else from the heart and stylishly handmade. Homemade chapstick!

This simple labour of love will surely keep lips hydrated and free from bone-chilling winter chapped lips. It also makes a great stocking-filler, and most importantly ... absolutely packable for holiday travelling.


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Watch This Time


A flexible wardrobe is always a practical choice for me, and versatile accessories are definitely included. In the end, all of it expresses a story about your style. It’s no secret that I am a watch wearing lady, and even though technology has somewhat morphed many of us into only using our smartphones for time telling moments, I still love wearing watches.

It’s also fun to have more bold and playful accessories to choose from, especially if you’re not the type of person to go full on glam or daring in your garments. iKen, (pronounced \’eee-ken\, which is Japanese for ‘opinion’) produces unisex timepieces and makes it easy to build your own custom watch ... literally!

When I came across iKen timepieces, the concept behind their design immediately caught my eye, initially because of the wide range in colour options. I mean, having over 248,000 feasible combinations for a watch is (in no doubt) a generous amount to offer. That's a multitude of options, to say the least.


But, there was also another area of their brand that I cared about and fully supported—their giving back efforts and partnership with PACER toward anti-bullying. iKen donates $1 for every orange watch face sold, encouraging children to be themselves freely. It's simple: no trends needed, just create your own style. Go for the bold or for a more subtle colour story, the choice is up to you. 
First, select a hue or theme. For example, choose all-in-one, colour blocked, or your favourite sport team and flag colours. Then, start building layers to add to your timepiece. It’s that easy! I decided on a fun colour scheme, one that I did not have yet—grey, pink, and purple and red, white, and blue, which may all be mixed and matched together.
Here's a small guide on developing your personal iKen timepiece.

What do you think of iKen's watches? 
“We made our products with the mission to inspire creativity in everyday life.”                                                                                                                                                          -iKen Watches
The goods: Custom timepieces-Provided by iken,*All opinions expressed are my own. // Jacket-BB Dakota, Turtleneck tunic-Arden B., Denim-Cheap Monday, Handbag- Oasap c/o seen here, Boots-Dirty Laundry, Tank-H&M. 

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George Styler: A Network of Inspiration

It’s such a delight to see a designer progress in their artistry, especially when you’ve admired their work in the very beginning stages. You may remember Belgrade-based designer, George Styler from my exclusive interview here, about his previous collection, Captivity. Since then, his work has taken a global tour all on its own, including the infamous bird dress being praised in numerous style shots and high-fashion glossies. 

The designer recently presented a new collection at Belgrade Fashion Week. This time he showcased his autumn/winter 2014-15 line entitled, NetWork. After catching up with the designer, I thought that I would do a follow-up on the progression of his work and share it with you.

A sort of avant-garde fairytale, examining similarities in human connection is how you could describe NetWork. Inspiration behind the line fused the concept of the general relationship with people, society, and cultures. “In this collection, I turned to the modern society individual that lives in a virtual [world] not the real world. I wanted to present how much we are connected, and to hint at the negative sides of the modern way of living where we face a total communication breakdown,” Styler said. 

“ the individual resembles a fish trapped in the net or the fish swimming in the everyday routines, unconscious of the beauty in which it should live and create.”


At first glance, you can see a vast amount of cultural references, including influence from Africa, amongst others. But, it’s the intertwining of elements that’s such a vital part of the collection, as well as the interpretation of diverse networks and association between people. 

Other essentials such as, coins and handmade decorations are also used for symbolism. Styler took beads and coins from national costumes (resembling scales) to create imagery that exhibited natural wealth. Leading resources in the collection consists of knitting with 3D materials and modern techniques of printing—thus, “creating a parallel between the past and the future, posh and alternative, orient and west, land and water,” Styler said.


What do you think of Styler’s new collection?

For more information visit www.georgestyler.com

 
(Above) Photo Vesna Jovanovic, Hair: Ucha Hair 
Other photos: Courtesy of George Styler, edited by ladyofashion


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Patterned: Plaid and Stripes

Plaid is one of those classic patterns that can be worn in a variety of unconventional ways, and it does not necessarily need to be in the actual garment to make a statement–this time I went toward accessories: a plaid textured hat and stockings. Unfortunately, I really cannot wear shorts to work, so I decided to don them in this outfit for a weekend meeting with a client friend.

In my opinion, when it comes to hosiery, a lady can never have too many options, especially because of how delicate they are. Let’s face it, one snag or pull out of alignment and it’s nearly over!

Veneziana, a luxury hosiery brand carries Italian-made specialty legwear, including unique tights, knee highs and my favourite … garter stockings! I decided to try their tights and stockings because of how artful their designs were. They pretty much have an array of leg art denier choices, and plaid sophistication was one of the main attractions that I was drawn to.

I will be the first to tell you that I spend a fair share on quality pantyhose, and probably go through quite a bit, although habitually for work wear. But, first I had to try these out and compare them to my favourite styles that I normally buy. The verdict was successful for a full day of running around. The stockings were easy to put on and very comfortable to wear. I imagine, they will hold up just as well as my other luxe hosiery styles, however the additional test will be rapidly walking in the airport, so stay tuned! 

Here’s also a preview of two other pieces that I selected, tried on, and will be wearing again soon—a shimmery silver lace design and a sheer floral patterned style.  

To view the entire Veneziana collection click here

Do you experiment with different styles and colours in legwear?

The goods: Garter Stockings-Style AR Sweden in Grafitto c/o Veneziana, Hat-Goorin Bros., Blazer-Zara, Silk striped tie as scarf-DIY Ladyofashion, Shirt-Selfridges, Shorts-Ladyfashion design, Oxfords-F21. *All opinions expressed are my own.

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Cool Breezes: The Home Edition

A couple of weeks ago, I was in the baking mood, and made gluten-free cinnamon rolls along with a big breakfast. I actually had time! My sister and one of her best friends came to visit and the refrigerator was full, so I decided to finally use a few of our new kitchen machines ... you know, other than Keurig and Nespresso. 

There are so many recipes that I want to try, including homemade spinach pastries, an olive loaf, and a red snapper family dish, amongst loads of others. I have been pinning like a mad woman, but all in the name of inspiration!

It doesn’t hurt that we have an incredible amount of entertaining and hosting to catch up with as well. The menus are in the making, and fine ingredients are waiting to be used to accompany supreme meals. This is not even holiday chatter; this was simply more of a celebration of loving life.

At the present moment, my “downtime” is comprised of browsing food blogs, reading recipe books, and (actively) mastering the concept of how beneficial a good power nap can really be. Afterward, add an energy shake and I am ready to go.
Gudrun Sjoden Home interiors fabrics
I used this wonderful fabric in the kitchen to accent the baked goods. Usually, I tend to buy more solid colours than printed for kitchen towels, which is funny since I love the bold and printed in everything else. I chose this simple hued print because it was still vibrant, the dotted patterns reminded me of cold weather and snow.

It was another great reason to pull out one of my practical Martha Stewart cookbooks as well, which was helpful for additional menu suggestions. It also seemed to match the tone and setting for part two of my food inspiration. Part one is essentially a compilation of influence from fellow gastronomes like Nigella to Chuck.

What do you think of these new kitchen threads? What type of style and colour do you like in your kitchen fabrics? 

To shop the winter homeware collection of Gudrun Sjödén click here.
The goods: “Krokus,” Organic cotton Pillow case in Lavender, and “Tuss” Organic kitchen towel in Sky blue -Courtesy of Gudrun Sjödén.


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