What I Wore: Operanation in a Pinch

Operanation - Light Up The Night. Toronto, ON, Canada. October 17, 2014. (Image: Ryan Emberley)

I know I’ve already waxed poetic about how much I loved Operanation, but I wanted to dedicate a second post to my outfit…this is a personal style blog after all. As mentioned in the previous post, I had a bit of anxiety while trying to figure out what to wear and still stay true to the theme of the night – Light Up the Night. With my newly grey hair, certain colours just don’t work for me anymore, and recently I have been sticking to a muted palette of black, grey, and white – none of which would be ideal for the night’s theme.

So in a bit of a panic, I stopped by H&M a couple of hours before the party and saw this sparkly maxi dress. It didn’t look like much on a hanger, but I could feel its potential, whispering to me…”puuutt meee onnnnnnn”, and so I did. And not to sound full of myself, but in a sea of very expensive gowns, I didn’t feel even a little out of place. It really isn’t about how expensive (or inexpensive) something is, but how that something makes you feel. And obviously, this dress made me feel like a bombshell. A definite keeper.

Also, in a bit of a gross disclosure, my hair in this photo has not been washed in 6 days. It looks nice and wavy, but only because I wore it in a looped ponytail all day, which gave my hair a lovely kink. To spruce up my do, I sprayed some glitter hair spray onto my silvery locks, and while you can’t really see the full effect, I really loved how sparkly my hair was. I think I’ll do it again. And yes, I am a 30-year old that loves to spray glitter in her hair…what’s wrong with that? Absolutely nothing.

So tell me, have you ever worn something really fun but inexpensive to a major event? Share your stories in the comments!

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I Wore: Dress, Belt, Earrings – H&M; Shoes – Zara; Clutch – DVF

Photo Credits: 1 – Ryan Emberley; 2 – Becca Lemire

What I Wore: It’s a Cape, It’s a Coat!

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I am conflicted about fall. There’s a number of things I dislike about it (waking up in the dark, cold weather, rainy days), but sometimes the stars align and you get such a perfect autumn day that it makes you forget all about the negatives (and the inevitable winter).

On one of those perfect fall days (cool, but sunny) I finally got to wear my beloved H&M Studio Fall 2014 cape jacket, and it was lovely. The coat kept me warm, while those cape sleeves let my body breathe without feeling like I’m being roasted alive. It’s a keeper, I tells you! I also got to wear my knee-high boots for the first time this season…I didn’t wear them nearly enough last year. And there you have it…just a couple of weeks ago, I was all about summery dresses, and now I am fully into fuzzy, furry, warm outerwear. Isn’t Canadian weather fun? And by fun, I mean unpredictable and completely nuts.

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What I Wore: Summertime Sadness

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This is my last outfit post from my birthday trip to France…I know I’ve milked it for months now, but I guess I just didn’t want to let it go. And now that it’s October, it feels pretty appropriate to say good-bye to summer, and hello to fall. Those of you that follow me on Instagram, already know that I dyed my hair, so the next outfit post will definitely show off that new side of me…but in the meantime, here’s the last bit of summer in October. 

I’ve always thought of Monaco as a very glamorous place. Before visiting, the word brought on visions of Grace Kelly, fancy hats, fast cars, and gleaming sailboats. But reality wasn’t quite as fabulous. Perhaps rainy weather had something to do with it, or maybe the fact that we visited on a Sunday, when all the shops and restaurants were closed, but I just didn’t love it.

Sure, there are a few pretty buildings to look at, and the views of the sea are pretty breathtaking, but underneath it all, it felt more than a little gauche – the casino that charges an entrance fee, show-offs in their tricked-out cars, horrible food at the only restaurant open for business, over-the-top yachts…none of it felt glamorous. Perhaps I would have a different view of the place, had we stayed overnight…apparently the parties and the clubs are a must-do in Monaco, but something tells me I probably wouldn’t have enjoyed those either. Do I sound like a crusty old lady yet?

Either way, we made the best of our little day-trip, enjoying the views and the public art, but to be quite honest, we couldn’t wait to run back to the train station to catch the next train back to Nice and our cozy, yet decidedly not-so-glam apartment.

Have you ever been to Monaco? Did you have a different experience? Share in the comments.

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What I Wore: Saint-Paul de Vence

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I am so hopelessly behind on posts, that even though I don’t even look like the photo above, I still have a few of these to go. And while it’s currently 13 degrees in Toronto, this post is all about summer heat and vacation glow. Seeing these pics makes me want to pack up my bags and hightail it out of Canada for a destination much warmer than Toronto. Alas, I just got back from New York, and as a 9-5er, vacation days are a precious, precious commodity not to be trifled with…so, I suppose fall is inevitable.

These photos were taken while on a day trip to Saint-Paul de Vence, one of the oldest medieval towns in the French Riviera. There were beautiful art shops on every corner, delicious honeys and jams sold at charming little shops…The sun was scalding that day, so we made a pit stop at a small gelato shop, watching a local wedding at the nearby church. Happy faces, delicious ice-cream, honking limo, and lots of bougainvillea bushes is what I remember the most from that day. We walked up and down the winding cobblestone streets, completely charmed by this tiny town, and all of a sudden, the lengthy bus ride from Nice seemed really worth the hassle. If you’re ever in the area, try to stop by Saint-Paul de Vence. It won’t take very long to see, but you’ll be glad you did.

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What I Wore: Share a Coke

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You may have heard of Share a Coke, or have seen the many “named” Coca Cola bottles in stores, but what you may not know is that you can actually get your very own Coca Cola can personalized with your not-so-popular name on it. Sure, you can probably find the most common names at your local grocery store, but what about the Nelias and the Hawleys of the world? Well, if your name is not on the list, you can stop by one of these locations and get your name or the name of your loved ones printed on a Coke can. Pretty cool, non?

This is not an advertorial, in case you were wondering. Growing up, I never could find a single thing with my name on it…not keychains, not t-shirts, and definitely not one of those mint boxes, so having my own personalized Coke bottle felt pretty special. So if, like me, you want to see your unusual name promptly displayed on something, now’s your chance!

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What I Wore: Let Them Eat Cake

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The Palace of Versailles has always been a place I wanted to visit eventually…what with all the drama, intrigue, excess, and history surrounding this royal château, I knew it would be worth the trek. The only reason that I have avoided visiting Versailles for so long is the fear of endless line-ups and tourists. Usually, with the exception of the Eiffel Tower, we try to stay away from crowded and touristy places, but this time around, we decided to just go for it.

As expected, the place was teeming with people…SO.MANY.PEOPLE! But not to worry, after about 30 minutes of waiting for our tickets, and then lining up to get in, we were finally inside Marie Antoinette’s stomping grounds! The palace was definitely very impressive, with rooms full of beautiful art, ornate doors (and ceilings, and floors), and of course, plenty of historic tidbits to glimpse and learn – totally worth it the wait.

But as cool as it was to see the Hall of Mirrors and the grand apartment de la reine in person, the gardens were a highlight for me. After hours of frolicking around, lying in the grass, sipping iced chocolate on Angelina’s terrace, and taking way too many photographs, I don’t think we covered even half of the massive grounds. I guess another trip to Versailles is in order…maybe next year!

Have you ever visited Versailles? What was your favourite spot? Share in the comments.

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What I Wore: Eye See Paris, Eye See France

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As you can see I am stretching my vacay posts out…mostly because I want to relive those fun moments over and over again, and that’s what these blog posts help me do. So, I hope you don’t mind too terribly.

This dress is one of my absolute faves. It was love at first sight, and after a quick alteration (it used to have a mock turtleneck), it was perfect – eye-catching and fun. I wore it in Paris to celebrate my friend Al’s birthday (Gemini sistahs), and after yet another visit to the Eye-ffel Tower, we spent the rest of the day in a leisurely state of bliss – enjoying a delicious lunch with a perfect view at Frame, grabbing a dessert at Laduree, hiding from the rain at CHANEL on Rue Montaigne, enjoying the scenery at Les Invalides, after hours of wandering around the city. It’s so easy to just do nothing in Paris. Every street oozes with charm, and every streetside cafe beckons you to seat down and take in everything and everyone around you. The city makes you both speed up and slow down, and I couldn’t love it more.

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What I Wore: Disneyland Paris

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Last year was the first time I’ve ever gone to a Disney park, and it was everything I dreamed it would be and more. Both le bf and I had such an amazing time that we were itching to go back. So when the opportunity to visit Disneyland Paris presented itself, we couldn’t be more excited.

To kick off my birthday celebrations, we stayed at Disneyland Paris’ Sequoia Lodge for 3 nights while visiting Paris, and it was lovely. Surrounded by lush greenery, the lodge was tucked away in a quiet spot a brisk walk away from Disney Village and both parks. Staying this close really allowed us to take advantage of our time at Disneyland, and visit as many attractions as we could, while still being able to visit Paris every day (city center is only a 40 minute train ride away).

On our first day, armed with VIP Fast Passes (free if you stay at a Disney hotel), we made a dash for the Tower of Terror, before jumping on the Rock’n’Roller Coaster starring Aerosmith, Space Mountain: Mission 2, Big Thunder Mountain, and Indiana Jones™ and the Temple of Peril. After getting our thrills, we ran around the Alice in Wonderland labyrinth (so fun!), explored Agrabah, and just wandered around Main Street, USA, devouring ice-cream and feeling like kids again.

At night, we watched Disney Dreams! show, complete with fireworks, water fountains, fire, lasers, lights, and some of my fave Disney characters and songs, alongside hundreds of other visitors from all over the world. It was magical.

I couldn’t have asked for a better place to spend a few days in Paris – we had a wonderful stay at Disneyland Paris, and I am now determined to visit every single Disney property in the world. I still haven’t been to the ones in Orlando, Tokyo, Hawaii, Hong Kong…2 down, 4 more to go!

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What I Wore: This is 30

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First of all, I apologize for the million photos in this post. Most of them feature my love affair with the Eiffel Tower from various angles and I just couldn’t narrow them down. Sorry (not sorry). With that said, this is what I wore on my first day of being thirty.

While in my early twenties, thirty-somethings seemed practically ancient to my silly young self, but I am happy to report that I don’t feel different, even though I am no longer the youngest person in the room. I also didn’t suffer too much anxiety over the big 3-0…after all, I consider myself extremely lucky to have a wonderful husband, supportive family, great friends, and of course, this little blog. Growing up, I used to make those “before 30″ lists, which included “swim with the dolphins” (done!), “skydive” (nope), “graduate” (yup), “get MBA” (not yet), “open an RRSP account” (check!), “visit the Amalfi Coast” (3 times), among many other cool/cliche/silly/important/unimportant tasks. And while I definitely haven’t checked off every item off those lists, I don’t feel like I let myself down because I didn’t complete them by the time I left my twenties. That just means I’ll have fun accomplishing them in my thirties.

Having said all that, entering a new decade wasn’t a daunting prospect for me. Back home, each new decade is welcomed with lots of fanfare and celebration, and so in that tradition, I also made quite a big deal about my birthday this year (according to le bf) and decided to jet off to Paris and the South of France to celebrate. And while I’ll have more travel posts coming, this is what I wore on my actual birthday.

That day, le bf and I wandered aimlessly around Paris (mostly around the Eiffel Tower, as you can see), enjoying the views, stopping in at random cafes for a drink, savouring a delightful lunch at Laduree, and a delicious dinner at Shangri-La Paris, wrapping up our night with an impressive Disney Dreams! show at Disneyland Paris. It was a sticky hot day, we walked so much, our feet were buzzing, my hair and makeup were a huge mess by the time dinner time rolled around, but we didn’t care – nothing could spoil this imperfectly perfect day. That night, I went to bed with a huge grin on my face…yes, I may be getting older, but the adventures along the way make it totally worth a wrinkle or ten. Bring it on, thirties!

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What I Wore: Easy Does It

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One of my favourite things about summer (other than endless sunshine, BBQs, beach days, and ice-cream) is dresses. I wouldn’t call myself a girlie-girl, but once summer rolls around, dresses is all I want to wear. I’m sure I’ve blogged about that before, but here I go again. This one in particular is from Zara, and it was love at first sight. I bought it when it was still wintery and snowy outside, daydreaming of those warm afternoons when I would be able to throw it on, tie those faux sleeves around my waist and go – so easy and comfy.

I wore this on a neighbourhood discovery walk I took with le bf recently. Since we bought our house a year ago, we haven’t really had the chance to explore our new hood, and now that it’s summer again, we are making an effort to discover the cool things about the place we call home…like this amazing park we stumbled upon – with a stunning ravine, fun splash pad, and this beautifully-painted wall. Definitely a gem that we’ll keep in our regular rotation.

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