Spring Outfit Inspiration

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Spring has finally sprung in Toronto, and one of my favourite things about the warmer weather is the outfits! It’s finally time to break out the colour, pretty blouses, and to ditch the winter coat. Cherry blossom madness recently hit the city, with hoards of people flocking to High Park, Trinity Bellwoods and other popular spots to get a glimpse of the pretty petals. I did venture one weekend to High Park, but was disappointed to find that the blossoms hadn’t fully opened yet. I had heard that Robarts Library near the U of T had some stunning trees of their own, so decided to stop by – it definitely lived up to the hype!

The outfit I styled below is an easy spring look, incorporating two trends I’m currently loving: off the shoulder tops and frayed denim. My favourite thing about this blouse (besides the pretty colour) is the sleeves – they add a feminine boho vibe to the look, perfect for the spring!

Top – Forever 21 / Frayed Denim – Zara / Blush Slip-Ons – Target

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Laundry Day

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Since starting my blog and Instagram, I’ve only worked with a professional photographer once, instead enlisting my friends or family members to help snap my photos. This means the creative direction, styling and and vision are completely up to me!

Okay I’ll admit, I’ve never actually had to use a laundromat. But I’ve always loved their charm and the retro aesthetic they embody. I recently was inspired to shoot at one and landed on Queen Street Laundry – a standard wash and dry establishment, that also happens to double as an awesome photoshoot location!

I kept my look simple with a basic white off the shoulder top, plus a pair of jeans and a flannel that I actually thrifted from my local Value Village. I love thrifted denim but find the waists on old school, true blue, 100% cotton jeans to run small. I could barely sit in this pair when I bought them, but found an easy way to stretch them out. After washing them in cold water and letting them air dry for a bit, I put them on while they were still damp (icky, but worth it) and did a few squats to loosen them up. I took them off to finish air drying, and when I tried them on again they were the perfect fit.

We had so much fun with this shoot and I love how the photos turned out, despite my inability to look at the camera! I really do need to perfect a new pose. A huge thanks goes out to my girl Rebecca who helped me capture these ♥

Check out my favourite shots below:

Off The Shoulder Top – Forever 21 / Flannel – Thrifted / Jeans – Thrifted / Shoes – Converse

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If you’re interested in hosting your own shoot at Queen Street Laundry, you can contact the owner Ash at queenstreetlaundry@gmail.com.

Where’s your dream shoot location? Tell me in the comments below!

Easy Closet Organization Tips

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It’s no secret, I love clothes – my shopping addiction is something out of a Sophie Kinsella novel. But recently, my wardrobe had grown to such a size that it began to overwhelm my room and my life. I had put off organizing my closet for so long that I ran out of places to store new purchases (which I kept in a laundry basket on my floor), and I would forget that I evened owned some of the items because they’d get swallowed up by the mess! Recently I spent a weekend trying to take control of my closet, and it felt so great when I was finished.

Here are some of the simple closet organization tips that I picked up while tackling my clothing situation:

Purge! Throw out your old clothes

The first step when cleaning out your closet is to get rid of your old clothes. Go through each section and clear out anything you haven’t worn in years, the things you’ve worn to death, and those purchases you thought were awesome at the time, but never ended up wearing.

Tips on what to do with your old clothes:

  • Take them to a consignment store: There’s an awesome chain of stores called Plato’s Closet that purchases younger, on-trend clothing from places like Forever 21, Zara, and Aritzia (perfect for someone like me). You bring them your old clothing, wait while they sort through it, and they’ll pay you cash on the spot for what they’re interested in. I brought four trash bags of clothing to their Scarborough location and received about $140 for the 20% of my clothes that they decided to purchase. This is a great way to make some money back on items you would otherwise be giving away!
  • Give them to friends: This is a perfect example of one man’s trash is another man’s treasure – chances are your friends will want some of your old clothing to add to their own wardrobe.
  • Donate! You can often find clothing donation drop offs in the parking lot of your local grocery store or community centre. Do a quick Google search in your area and donate your clothing to someone in need – you can even pick a charity that means something special to you.

Group by category

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Grouping your clothing by category can really help you keep track of things and locate the items you’re looking for quicker. This is super important for me when I’m rushing to get ready in the morning to get out the door to go to work. You won’t have to think twice about where your favourite pair of skinnies are if you have a designated area for all of your denim!

Store off season clothing out of sight

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If you live in city like I do where the seasons change and vary greatly, chances are you won’t be using part of your wardobe during a large chunk of the year. I keep these cute storage bins from IKEA above my wardrobe to store summer items (swimsuits, shorts, etc.) in the winter, and winter items (thick knits, scarves, etc.) in the summer. This keeps your most relevant pieces easy to access and gets rid of some of the extra bulk.

I use a variation of the PAX system from IKEA, which has served my wardrobe well over the past few years. I personally like to be able to see all my clothes so I can take stock of what I have, but adding doors would be another easy way to keep things looking neater.

Sort by colour

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Another easy way to categorize your clothing is to sort your pieces by colour. This is an extra step to help you find what you’re looking for – a Dewey Decimal System for your clothing. For example if I’m looking for a specific pink skirt, I’ll know to go to my skirt section, and then can easily spot where it is based on colour.

Use skinny hangers

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My number one space saving tip? Use skinny hangers! I had been using the cheap wooden hangers from IKEA for the longest time, but realized I could fit three skinny hangers (you can usually find these at any home ware store – Winners, Homesense, Solutions) for each wooden hanger I had. This tripled the capacity of my closet! The velvet kind are my absolute favourite, as they keep spaghetti straps and silky fabrics from slipping off the hanger.

These tips work best for someone trying to tackle a closet that’s gotten out of hand, or has hoarding tendencies like I do. I’ve always lusted after that perfect, minimalist blogger closet (with a few neutral staple pieces hanging gracefully on the rack) – but I know my reality is that I’ll always have drawers and shelves stuffed to the brim. At least I’m learning how to manage it a bit better!

 

Try the trend: Teddy bear jacket

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Teddy bear jackets are having a bit of a moment right now, and I have to say I am totally into this trend! I’m a sucker for anything soft and snuggly, and I love that this style can look so chic while still being super cozy. After lusting for a coat of my own after seeing bloggers and Instagrammers rocking the trend, I had to get my hands on one. The piece I styled below is the Penelope Coat by Gentle Fawn, which I got from an awesome Canadian online boutique called Mad Monkey Clothing.

I love the versatility of this jacket – it looks amazing dressed down with jeans and a tee, or can easily be glammed up for night. It has hidden clasp closures for a seamless look and my favourite feature on any item of clothing – pockets!

Look One: Coat – Gentle Fawn from Mad Monkey Clothing / Bodysuit – Urban Planet / Jeans – Zara / Boots – Jeffrey Campbell

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Look Two: Coat – Gentle Fawn from Mad Monkey Clothing / Dress – Mendocino

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How I wear flared jeans

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When I was six, flared jeans were my favourite thing in the world. I had an embroidered pair, super flares, light, medium and dark wash – you name it! So you can imagine my excitement when flared jeans recently came back into style along with other 70’s inspired trends.

With the right pieces, flared jeans can look incredibly chic, not to mention help your legs look miles long when paired with heels. I received this pair of flares by Guess (the Charlotte Flare Jean in Lace Blue Wash) and have been loving them! The true blue wash, classic guess pocket detail and gradual flare make these a versatile and easy to wear jean.

I styled them here with a basic knit tank and suede moto jacket for a simple yet put together look. The slightly cropped length of both these pieces help for maximum leg lengthening!

Jeans – Guess / Jacket – Zara / Knit Top – Wet Seal / Heeled Booties – BCBGeneration

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