Style Tips

5 Ways To Shop Like A Pro

So you love shopping right! But are you really shopping wisely or are you just passing some time in the mall?  Here’s the thing, think of shopping like a sport – yes, I’m so serious! Like any athelete, your goal is to win, and when shopping you want to also win, by scoring that piece. Your goal can either be a new dress for a party, basic pieces to build your wardrobe or it can be that time of the year when you’re ready to splurge on an investment item. Whatever your case is, we all have a goal in mind, or we should at least.

So let’s get right to it, see my list on how you can shop smarter like a pro. Also leave some of your shopping tips in the comments below, I want to hear them!



1. Have A Plan

I will admit, many times in the past I will find myself just wondering in the mall, just to see what’s in stores. During lunch breaks are killers because shopping becomes something to do to past time. You then just end up spending money on items just because it’s on sale. So not a good use of your time or money, so cut this habit out. Always have a plan on what your goal is on your shopping trips. Write down which items you want, which stores you will visit and what your budget will be. Write it down in your notes on your phone, so that you have it written down and you have to stick to it.

2. Pay With Cash

This one should be obvious, but we’re all guilty of it, including myself. You are more likely to go over your budget when you shop with your debit or credit card. So instead, once you have decided on your budget withdraw that amount from your account and walk with that cash instead. If at anytime during your shopping trip you want to withdraw more money, that is your red flag that you will go over budget. If you want to be really strict, leave the debit and credit cards at home.

 

3. Never Shop Tired Or Hungry

Shopping on an empty stomach or when you’re tired will leave you irritable, impatient and you’re not in a state of mind to make the best decisions. The last thing you want to do is to get convinced by a sales rep into buying something you didn’t really need because you just dont have the energy to make that decision yourself. Plus when you shop on an empty stomach, stopping to buy food to eat will only cut into your shopping time. Only shop when you’re fully energized and you have a full stomach. Happy belly, happy shopper!

 

4. Try Things On

I will never understand those who never want to try things on. They would always say ‘oh that looks like it will fit’. Pardon me? I mean there are certain items like t-shirts or tank tops where you can get away with not trying them on. Otherwise, I cannot stress enough how important it is to try things on because a jeans in Zara will not fit the same way jeans would in Levis. Changerooms are there and even though they can be a bit overwhelming at times, trust me stick it out and wait in line. The last thing you want is to go back to exchange for a different size and who knows your actual size may not even be there anymore. Get in, try it on and get it right the first time.

 

5. Shop Alone

The best thing you can do for your shopping experience is to shop alone. Yes shopping with your girlfriend can be a great bonding time, but when you have a goal in mind, a shopping partner can be a distraction. This also cuts out the decision making process when you don’t have to look to someone else for their opinion. Trust your own decisions because you’re the one who is going to live with your purchase. If you both have the same taste, you may have to debate over who gets that last sweater on the rack. Vice versa, if you have completely different tastes expect your shopping trip to last longer. You will have to compromise by visiting the stores ahe likes to shop at. So make your shopping trips a personal experience where you can get to know what you like and don’t like.

 

Photo Credits: show & tell me, StyleCaster, Pinterest, Vogue, and imore

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7 Style Ideas To Steal From Oak + Fort

Oak + Fort is a retailer that has been on my radar for just under a year now. When you walk past by their store window you cannot help but notice the effortless and simplicity of their store design. Minimalism at it’s finest. Founded in 2010, they have curated uncomplicated luxury fashion that will go easy on your pocket. Not distracted by trends, they have continued to stick to their design philosophies. Did I mention that they are Canadian too? They sure are! Based out of Vancouver, Canada with multiple stores across Canada and their first US store in New York.

I love that their main focus is to show the clothes, not worrying so much about showing off the body. Playing alot with proportions and putting unconventional pieces together is something they do very well. They make basic look expensive with their exceptional tailoring. You will note that majority of their looks are completed with white sneakers. Putting comfort hand in hand with style.

From a new way to wear your turtleneck, to layering ideas, these are the style ideas I especially took note of that you can steal from Oak + Fort. These are quick tricks and tweaks you can try using what you already have in your closet. Get style inspired today!



Untucked turtleneck + cropped trousers

If you want to go for the less sexy route, this is a refreshing way to do so. We’re so used to tucking all of our shirts in that we forget that it’s feminine to leave it out too. To pull this look off, it’s best to go for a turtleneck a size bigger so it’s not snug on your hips.


Top + jumpsuit

I really love this idea of wearing a t-shirt or long sleeved under a jumpsuit. It kind of gives you a prep school uniform vibe. Oak+Fort’s website is filled with looks similar to this.

 

 

White shirt dress + white sneakers

You can never go wrong with a crisp white shirt. Pair it with some white sneakers and it’s a totally different ball game. It’s as if you just threw on your boyfriend’s shirt and some sneakers. It’s a great go to look for summer when you have nothing to wear.



 

Light coat + slip dress

I love a good slip dress, it’s sexy, seductive and flirty. Throw on a robe style coat over it and  get ready to serve some serious bedroom style. Finish this look with some booties or strappy heels for night. Sneakers go well with this look for day.


 

Cropped bomber + cropped trousers

Try pairing your cropped bomber with some cropped trousers for a change. This look is unexpected, yet works so well together. It’s a great minimalist sporty look.


 

Cropped flared sweater set

Now this is a look I was excited to see. I love the spin they’ve put on the sweater set. Instead of the typical drawstring style, try a set that is both flared on the arms and legs.



 

Midi skirt + white sneakers

I’m so here for this look and it’s a look you tend to see alot of Fashion Editors wear during fashion month. Sneakers with your midi skirt is a great transitional look when commuting about. It’s comfy, clean and streetstyle worthy.

Photo Credits: Oak + Fort

Outfit Ideas: What To Wear For Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day is not just about finding the perfect gift for that special someone. It’s also another excuse for us to get all dressed up! Whether you’re heading out for date night, kicking it with your girls or keeping it solo, the right outfit can make a difference. 

Get style inspired with three simple looks you can steal for your night out. Plus shop each look!



Date Night
  

Pale pinks, dusty pinks and blush tones have always been a favourite of mines. For me I consider them to be neutrals. This blush tone dress is perfect for the gals who are not so into a bright pink or red for Valentine’s Day and likes to keep it simple and low key. Show that special someone that you made an effort but you didn’t go over-the-top. This cute dress rests just above your knee and has very thin shoulder straps. From a far it would look invisible, bringing a focus to your shoulders and elongating your neck as well. This is a great way to show off some cleavage in the most unexpected places. Not just for the small chested ladies, but for any woman, just to wear something different from the obvious. Spray your favourite scent behind your ears, in your hair, on your neck and shoulders, then go!
  
Nelly Cami Strap Bodycon
  
 Monki Danni Coat

  
Guess Sophia Quilted Clutch
  
Tamara Mellon Horizon Suede Sandal

  
Mac Lady Danger Lipstick

Ladies Night

  
Some single ladies prefer to celebrate Valentine’s Day with their girls. It’s a great time to get some girl time in and just to celebrate being you. Forget about all the pressure of having a Valentine and enjoy the company of your girls over drinks and good food. With good music too of course! When you’re with your girls comfort is key because you just never know what the night will bring. I didn’t want this look to be too dressed down so I added some dusty pink clear heel ankle boots to kick it up a notch. Lastly, I added a brown lip which is super popular right now for some nineties vibe. When I think of a brown lip nineties girl group immediately comes to mind. It’s a perfect choice for a ladies night out or in. 

  
Beautiful Halo High Neck Plain Turn Up Cuff Thick Longling Sweater

  
Abercrombie & Fitch Boyfriend Jeans

  
Acne Studios Leather Biker Jacket

  

Very Metal Trim Trilby

  
Ego Chloe Ankle Boots

  
Mac Lipstick in Photo

Solo Night

  
I’m actually obsessed with this look. Gotta give a high five to all my ladies out there celebrating Valentine’s Day solo. Just know that there’s absolutely nothing wrong with kicking it solo tonight. Catch a movie, take yourself shopping or go to your favourite restaurant for brunch. When you look good you feel good, so do your hair, do your makeup and put some fur on!

  
Mango Long Knit Jumper

  
Mango Skinny Elektra Jeans
  
Pam & Gela Mongolian Faux Fur Coat

    
  
Puma Creepers by Rihanna 

  
  
Chloé Drew Leather Crossbody
  
L’Oreal Riche Lipstick Naomi

15 Solid Ways To Rock Your Bomber Jacket

The bomber jacket is the bomb! It has become one of the top jackets seen everywhere on the street style scene. We can definitely thank Kanye for popularizing this hot item. But this piece is not just for the fellas ladies, it has made it’s way into women’s fashion too. You can find it in pretty much all the top retailers in every style, print and colour, at every pric. The best part about the bomber jacket is how surprisingly versatile it is. You can rock an oversized style with some ripped jeans, a t-shirt, and sneakers for a kickass off duty look. Take it up a notch and rock the classic style with a jersey knit dress and pumps. Did I mention how super comfortable and lightweight they are? Believe you won’t regret this buy and you can keep it in your closet for years to come.

Still not convinced? Get style inspired and see my picks below for 15 cool ways to rock your bomber all year round.

 

 

Play with textures

 

 

Dress it down

 

 

Dress it up

 

 

Go for a sporty vibe

 

 

LBD + Pumps + Cap

 

 

Belt it!

 

 

Try a crop style

 

 

Supersize it!

 

 

Classic denim + tee combo

 

 

Mix your prints

 

 

Add some colour

 

 

 

Pair it with leather

 

 

Go all white

 

 

 

Layer it up!

 

 

Wear it with shorts

 

 

Shop the trend below!

Forever 21 Scuba Knit Bomber Jacket 


ASOS Bomber Jacket


Topshop MA1 Bomber Jacket


Urban Outfitters Satin Bomber Jacket


H&M Bomber Jacket

 

Photo Credits: Pinterest, Tumblr, Kenh14, Stilletos and Tequila, The Color Stalker, So Sasha, Song of Style, Micah Gianneli, The Fashion Spot, and Nordstrom.

Rock Your Turtleneck Bodysuit 5x

Let’s face it, most of us cannot afford to wear something different everyday. Even if you can, it’s totally okay to rock and repeat items in your closet. Afterall, the most stylish people are great at repeating the same items in unique and fun ways. I find it’s especially common in the more colder months to repeat items a couple days in a row. You are layering basic pieces under your coat so repeating the same turtleneck a couple times per week is no biggie. Turtlenecks are one of my favourite items of the moment, so it’s only right I created some looks for you to steal. Get style inspired and see five looks you can try to wear your black turtleneck bodysuit fives days in a row.

 

 

SHE MEANS BUSINESS

 

 

 

 

 

OFF DUTY

 

 

 

 

 

 

KICKIN’ IT

 

 

 

 

THE COOL CHICK

 

 

 

 

 

THAT 70S GIRL

 

Looks to Inspire Your Weekend Happenings

Happy hump day everyone!

With the first week of the year coming to an end, it’s time to gear up for the weekend. Whether you have social plans or work scheduled for this weekend, I’ve put together five looks for you to steal.

 

LACED UP

Shop the look!

 

 

CAMEL, BLACK AND WHITE

 

 

Shop the look!

 

 

 

COZY CASUALS

Shop the look!

 

 

BLACK AND BLUSH

Shop the look!

 

 

 

 

BLACK ON BLACK

 

Shop the look!

Outfit Ideas: What To Wear For NYE

Happy NYE everyone!

Can you believe that 2015 is coming to end already! I mean come on, it feels like we just rang in 2015, no? I know we say this every year, but this year just felt like it went by extra fast. As you reflect on the past year, gear up for the new one and set your goals and resolutions, you always have that one question lingering in your mind: What should I wear? With just a day away from the biggest celebration world wide I thought I’d give you a hand. So don’t fret, here are three fab looks for you to steal to ring in the New Year in style.

 

Luxe in Tuxe

I love a good blazer dress and paired with some thigh high boots, yum! This is a great alternative to the typical super tight LBD. It’s “tight enough to show that you’re a woman and loose enough to show that you’re lady.” Baby it’s cold outside, so not only are you keeping your pedi in tact, but those legs will be nicely warmed. Keeping it business on top and a little sassy on the bottom, you’re guaranteed to have heads turning all night. Leave your out and sleek the front back with some gel with a red lip to finish the look.

Shop the look!

 

 

Blush Crush

Blush is a subtle way to add colour without the pop. I personally consider blush a neutral and it’s a great way to incorporate colour into an already neutral wardrobe. It’s also a great alternative to wearing something red because it’s unexpected. Super popular right now, a high neck top is chic, sexy and classy. I paired it with a feathered skirt and leopard print pumps, and topped it off with a blush coat and silver accessories. Because this is a neutral look, you can see that I played with patterns and textures to vamp up this look. A sleek pony with pink lips finishes the look.

Shop the look!

 

 

 

Suit It Up

Not feeling the dress this year? No problem, a little black suit does the trick. Take that nine to five suit and give it a spin by replacing your white button up with a sequin bandeau top. What makes this masculine look so sexy is showing the right amount of skin in the right places. Your neck, shoulders and midriff are the stars tonight. Finish this look with a centre part sleek back bun and deep red lips.

Shop the look!

 

Outfit Ideas: What To Wear To A Holiday Dinner

Happy Holidays everyone!

It’s that time of the year again! This is the best time of the year to have an excuse to get all dolled up, with our hair did, nails did and everything did. We’re all so caught up in our own lives during the year so why not put on your very best when you visit the family. Yes I know what you’re thinking, we’re just going to eat and sit around anyways so why dress up. Dressing up just makes you feel good and when you feel good it shows and people notice. Not to mention how contagious it is. So go on and spread the good vibes and energy.

With Christmas just a day away I’ve pulled together three outfit ideas to get you through your dinner rounds this weekend. Whether you want to keep it comfy, glam or trendy, get style inspired and shop your favourite look below.

 

Ready to Rock

This is a great semi-casual look for the gals who want to be comfy, with some edge to it. Sweater dresses are super popular this season and they’re a quick go-to piece to make your dinner rounds this weekend.

 

Shop the look!

 

Glam Gal

This look is great for a dinner soirée where a dresscode is implied. Cocktails and o’dourves are served, music is playing and conversations are flowing. Even though you are covered up, this is a very sexy and sophisticated look. Leather is a sexy material, while red is a sexy colour. Put the two together and you have a match made in holiday fashion heaven.

 

Shop the look!

 

Cozy Chic

This is my version of the sweat pants and hoodie plus Uggs. It’s a cozy and comfortable look without looking like you just rolled out of bed. I chose I slightly oversized knit sweater in mustard, an a-line skirt and over-the-knee boots for a casual feel. StyleTip: Pairing a slightly oversized sweater with a dressy bottom will give the same effect.

 

Shop the look!

Balmain x H&M

So I can finally say that I attended one of the H&M collaboration launch. Last Wednesday, November 5, 2015 as the clock striked five I dashed my little butt out the office to catch the subway as quickly as possible. Toronto was only given three locations to choose from that carried the Balmain x H&M collection. I first called the location closest to work and I was told that people started lining up around 6:00am. I knew I could not chance it so I decided to visit the location closest to home, which is located inside Yorkdale mall just north of downtown Toronto. I didn’t have much time to waste when I got home so I just quickly changed into something comfortable and that showed off my personal style because in my mind you just never know, Olivier Rousteing may very well show up. I mean, a girl can dream right!

 

I arrived in line at 6:45pm and the line was reasonable for the time it was. Right away I put my bags down, set-up my chair and started chatting up the people ahead of me. Not too long after the line started to grow and the person behind me happened to be a friend of a friend so it was good to have a familiar face too. After surviving just over seven hours – getting up ever so often to stretch my legs, warm up in the mall lobby entrance, Snapchatting, snacking on lunchables, chatting with new friends, at 2:00am the H&M security came outside and started to hand out numbers. You would think this was a very simple process, but everyone in line got a bit anxious and started to walk towards the front of the line hoping to snag a number closer to the front. The security guards not knowing who was standing where in line just started to hand out numbers to those closest to them. This obviously started to infuriate a lot of people in line (including myself) as those at the back of the line somehow made their way to the front to obtain a number closer to the front. Finally both the H&M security and the mall security got the crowd under control and the numbers were dished out accordingly – with the exception of those who snuck up to the front to obtain a closer number. I’m pretty sure I would have been at a much closer number to the front, but I ended up with a reasonable number at 191 in line. Quite frankly the security guards could have cared less about this entire ordeal as this was not their highest of priorities to hand out tickets to people standing in line to buy clothes.

 

After another four hours passed, both the H&M security guards and the H&M staff came outside to hand out the bracelets to those who held a number in line. As one of the first 420 shoppers in line we were given a coloured bracelet; there were 14 colours with one for each group of 30 people. This process took another hour and then we were finally let inside the mall where we formed another line in front of the store. My group was given an orange bracelet which had the Balmain x HM stamp in black ink on it. Underneath that was written in black permanent marker our time slot of 9:30am-9:40am. This was definitely the most exciting time in line as we all felt a sigh of relief that it was finally confirmed that we will be shopping the collection. We anxiously watch at 8:00am as the doors opened and the first group of shoppers were let in. Our time slot made us the 9th group in line to shop between 9:30am and 9:40am. H&M did not let everyone in the store at once, for obvious reasons. Not only were there a line in front of the store, but there was also another line formed inside the store just before the section where the collection were displayed. This was where the next group were waiting their turn while the group in front shopped the collection. We had only ten minutes to shop the collection so you can imagine the anxiety and excitement building up. In that ten minutes period we were only allowed to purchase two of each style per customer. Our group was pretty calm for the most part though and we actually talked it out in line to get a sense of what everyone wanted to buy.

 

When it was our turn at about 9:20am, as we were walking in the store to line up, it was announced that the mens collection was sold out. One male shopper in our group immediately started to curse outloud and stormed out of the store, girlfriend left behind. At about 9:30am we finally passed the ropes to shop the collection; there was almost nothing left, a lot of the items on the floor were ones being returned from the changeroom. Blazers, dresses, shoes and the t-shirts were all sold out, with the exception of a few blazers being returned to the floor from the changeroom. Surprisingly there were about eight of the red draped silk skirts remaining on the rack. A lot of the ribbed bandeau tops remained and a few other tops as well. For me, as time past by in line I knew I had to make a plan B for the items I will buy because the t-shirts and blazers being hot items sold out almost immediately. I was actually surprised that the polo-neck jumper was still available so I immediately grabbed that off the rack in sizes 2 and 8. There was one of the suit trousers in silk satin remaining in a size 6, but it was not my size but I grabbed it anyways because I knew the sizes fit a bit smaller. Luckily while I was waiting in line for a changeroom a staff was walking by with the suit trousers and it happened to be my size so I switched it with the one I had in my hand. I also brought with me the drapped skirt in sizes 2 and 4 and the shirt jacket in size 8, so six items in total. The changeroom area was really a panic zone, shoppers yelling at each other for sizes, staff yelling at shoppers to stop switching items as they must be returned on the floor for the next group. At that point there was just no time for me to panic. I just wanted to get in, try on what I had and get out! I quickly tried my items on and the polo-neck jumper fit perfectly in a size 2, while the suit trousers fit nicely in a size 4. Even if my items did not fit I knew I had the option to receive a full refund by November 8th or a store credit after that date.

 

After leaving the changeroom I headed to the checkout upstairs and witnessed one of the girls in my group breaking down because she did not get the blazer she wanted. Oddly enough while this was happening her girlfriend was cashing out with two blazers. I felt her pain. Even though I did not get any of the t-shirts I’m pretty satisfied with my purchases. I never had any intentions of spending a ridiculous amount of money so spending just over $200 is a score for me. I also wanted to purchase pieces I know I can wear more than once and mix and match with what I already have in my closet. I felt like I accomplished a goal and another item crossed off my bucket list.

 

This entire experience also had me thinking, when you don’t have access to things before the masses or given free stuff, you have to go out and get it yourself. We live in a social media world where it’s cool to announce and (humble) brag about receiving free stuff and getting access to things before the masses. Don’t get me wrong, a lot of people who do this are getting paid and it is their income, so it is a job for them. The problem is we forget what it is like to work for what we want, it’s become much easier for us to befriend those in power to gain access to the things we want. It’s no longer cool to get excited to line up for a big event launch or to meet your favourite music artist etc. anymore. People will spend all the time in the world trying to figure out who they need to know to attend a certain event or gain access to product private viewings. Rather than actually going out there and wait in line to pay for the product.

 

I also want to touch on the social uproar from people talking crap about shoppers (myself included) who stood in line for hours. As crazy as it may sound to stand in line for over 14 hours to buy clothes, it really just comes down to being ‘different strokes for different folks’. Everyone has their thing and if standing in line to buy clothes is someone else’s thing, let that be their thing. My question is why does it bother people so much that someone else is willing to do something that they will never do? I mean, people wait in line for Jordans, iphones and video games so it’s totally okay right! – laughing out loud. But, it’s safe to say that this has been H&M’s most controversial, most talked about and possibly the most successful collaboration to date (waiting for the numbers to come in). Go Olivier!

 

Sending virtual high fives to those who still tough it out in lines for shopping events and music artists. If you also stood in line for hours just to even purchase a toque, I want to hear from you. Leave a comment below and tell me about your experience at the Balmain x H&M launch event and what you purchased.

 

Now get style inspired and see two looks I styled with the pieces I purchased from the Balmain x H&M collection.

  

  

  Photography by Shantel Rousseau

 

Balmain x H&M Polo-Neck Jumper, $69.99 CAD

 

Balmain x H&M Suit Trousers in Silk Satin, $119.00 CAD

7 Ways Living In Toronto Transforms Your Style

 Photography by Shantel Rousseau

Living Toronto is one of the best life moves you could ever make. This city will toughen you up, take you outside of your comfort zone (or bubble) and introduce you to things you never knew existed. I mean, if you can drive in Toronto, you can drive anywhere in the world. Let’s not forget about the fashion, it’s insane! Each neighbourhood (or subway stop) has it’s own unique style of dressing, something you can’t help but notice. With the changing seasons, it’s a wonder how we get  through life here. Come to think of, commuting is our favourite sport. This fast-paced, trendy and oh so busy way of living is not for the faint of heart. So if you’re planning on moving to Toronto anytime soon, I’ve rounded up a few ways living in this city changes your style. For the better of course! Plus some of Toronto’s very own street stylers to prove it.


In this city, you’ve got to learn how to layer like a pro because spring, summer, fall and winter can happen in one day.


Booties are your go to transportation shoes because let’s face it, heels are not practical in these streets.


Carrying a tote bag everywhere because you just never know when an outfit change is needed. You start your day out at the office, then an after work catch up at dinner happens. Then who knows, you end up at an event. Things just come up!



Wearing sunglasses on the subway because it’s your main source of protection from awkward human conversations.


You’re not chic until you’ve mastered homeless chic. You dress this way because quite frankly, you’re tired of wondering eyes when you wear a shorter hem.



Wearing way more black, because that same person you see on the subway every morning will never know you wore those pants already this week.

 

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I mean, who says you have to stop wearing shorts and skirts during the cooler months. These lifesavers should be on your top five things you cannot live without.