So that was 2010

Snowman cupcake from Whole Foods

I’m not a huge fan of New Year’s Eve.  I feel too pressured to have a good time, and I’m not willing to spend a fortune to go out to a club.  So it’s usually a quiet night in, and often a struggle for me to just stay up to midnight!  Tonight, Will is cooking me a nice dinner, then we’re going out to see The King’s Speech, and then we’ll be downtown in Dundas Square for midnight.  Not the most exciting, but it works for us.  So while I’m waiting for dinner, I’ll take a look back and a look forward.

2010 has been both a fantastic year and a terrible year. On the terrible front: job, health issues, and ridiculous family drama. But on the fantastic side: great friends, great coworkers (makes the job bearable), great trips (Europe, Boston), and my engagement in Paris.

I've never worn anything this expensive in my life. But I love it. On the days I forget to put it on, I feel naked.

Shopping in 2010:
2010 was the year that I went hard-core Anthropologie. I embraced Anthro as my favourite store and almost all others have fallen by the wayside. It’s been a blessing and a curse; the former because I’ve found in Anthro what I’ve always been looking for in other stores (girly, feminine pieces and basics with a twist, always with details that make you stand out), the latter because my wallet has suffered. But I feel like I’ve bought a lot of pieces that are versatile and will last in my wardrobe for a long time, and not just Anthro.

Despite all the hard-core shopping I did in 2010, I think I have become a smarter, more conscious shopper. I’m learning to shop for what I need, and when it’s something I don’t need, it has to be something I really, really, really, really want. Everything has to fit my lifestyle and personality too. So while things have been far from perfect, I’m learning. Hope this continues on in 2011.

2010 personal style:
With the help of Anthropologie, I’ve come a long way in defining my personal style this year. I feel like I now know what I like, what works on my body, and what fits with my lifestyle. If I had to describe my style, I would probably say classic/feminine with a twist. I try to keep it simple, but I always want something that stands out (colour, print, texture). I’m never going to be someone who does a lot of pattern-mixing or layering or accessorizing (while I always admire the ladies who do), but that’s ok. In the past, I’ve tried to copy other people’s styles and I would always get frustrated when it didn’t work for me. Not that there isn’t any room for evolution. But why should I wear belts when I don’t like them, just because everyone else is?

2011 goals:
While fashion and shopping and style will always be very important to me, I'm hoping that I'll focus on other things in 2011. Top of my list is to take care of myself and get healthy. I also intend to become financially responsible, and shopping consciously definitely goes hand in hand with that. (First up, January will be a no-shop month, and this time, I will complete it!)

Looking forward to:
Definitely the new condo, assuming it all works out. And possibly getting married, but we haven't decided when that's going to happen yet.

I'm also looking forward to continuing blogging, reading as many blogs as possible and getting inspired by all the great outfits out there, and connecting with tons of great people in the blogosphere.

Thanks to everyone who has been reading my little blog.  Happy New Year!  I wish everyone all the best for 2011.


Anthropologie catalogue: December 2009

Every week I take a look back at past Anthropologie catalogues and what I loved from then.  (Thanks to Natalie for posting all the links.) I used to think that it’s impossible to find these pieces again, but thanks to Roxy’s trade market and eBay, anything is possible.

I think it’s only fitting that I’m closing out an Anthro-filled year with a look back at the Anthro catalogue that kinda started it all.

giving's gleam cuff, small packages cardi

all wrapped-up cardi, Sense & Sensibility – one of my favourite books, looking gorgeous

candied sweetbriar cardi, on-the-fold dress

from o'keefe necklace, torsade tee –
this top, in grey, is one of my favourite purchases of 2010.

any-other-rose cardi, skyfall dress, opaque tights, shapes emerge oxfords –
I don’t really like the styling here, but this dress is one of my all-time favourites.

night-blooming dress


from-the-green cardi, needlepoint corset top by anna sui, cuffed chambray trousers

in-the-clouds scarf, sparkling skies tee, cafe creme skirt, the-space-between wedges

feathered links necklace, granted wishes dress, shapes emerge oxfords

for flora skirt, pindot tights, carved celadon heels –
this skirt got away from me…

reed shirtdress

Best of 2010: Outfits

A top 10 this time! I went through my blog and picked out the outfits I like best. They start in the spring, because that's when I finally figured out the best place to take photos in my apartment (I'm too self-conscious to have photos taken outside, maybe in 2011 I'll try to do that more).

It's an interesting exercise to look back at your year in 10 outfits. When looking back on these, I'm realizing more than ever that everything I own has a story.

L: the look at me!! Aniseed skirt, a step out of my comfort zone.
R: one of my favourite dresses, bought at a store in my neighbourhood that no longer exists, perhaps not so work-appropriate but I wear it to work anyway.

L: a little Banana Republic summer dress that makes me happy whenever I wear it, with my favourite necklace that got me a compliment in the bathroom at work.
R: a Club Monaco summer dress, another of my favourites, that I wore to dinner with Will in Vancouver on our 10th anniversary in July 2009.

L: Maeve's Height of Summer Dress, which I had to buy because of the colour, despite being strapless (not my favourite), a not-so-fantastic fit, and somewhat suspect quality. Even so, it's one of my favourite purchases of 2010. I wore it all summer and became a landmark because of it.
R: a simple summer outfit, this little Banana Republic top is one of my favourites (I even saw the adorable Sofie Alsopp wearing it on an episode of The Unsellables), and I love these lightweight cotton twill pencil skirts from Jacob that I bought a few years ago because they make summer fare just a little bit more office professional.

L: almost everybody loves the Circle the Globe skirt from Anthropologie, I of course had to buy it because it's teal, and I love the combination of chocolate brown with teal The Oolite necklace is also one of my favourite pieces of jewellery. I wore this outfit at a difficult time this summer. It's a great example of my mantra, "just because I feel like crap, doesn't mean I have to look like crap."
R: the Oak Apple dress, one of my 2010 favourites (I went for it instead of the Babergh Dress that everyone loved), moved me into fall dressing. And I found out what an oak apple is in the process.

L: outfit #28 in my 30 for 30 challenge. It's crazy that out of all 30 outfits, this is the one I picked as my favourite. Feeling tall and skinny doesn't hurt. It was during the 30 for 30 challenge that I realized that I hadn't worn the Craft & Creation top enough; I fell in love with it early on and bought it as soon as I could get my grubby little hands on it.
R: I think this might be my favourite outfit of the year. I love the Skyfall Dress, it's an early Anthropologie purchase from me, I bought it after Christmas 2009 with my Christmas money. I can count the number of times I've worn it on one hand (a baby shower, church at Easter, and here--wow, is that it?), but I must find a way to wear it more because I adore it. This time I wore it out to dinner with Will before he left for Christmas with his family. The cardigan and boots were more for warmth than for styling purposes, but hey, it worked.


Best of 2010: Bought

The end of the year always brings an abundance of Top 10 lists. My turn to add to the best of the year in what I’ve squandered my hard-earned money on. Except it’s not 10, it’s just whatever I came up with. And I had to separate it into Anthropologie vs non-Anthropologie, since Anthro dominated my spending this year.


1. J.Crew Jenna’s Cardigan

I bought the black version in the spring and found it to be a perfect cardigan for layering, as Jenna promised. I decided to get the grey version as well. Definitely staples of my wardrobe.

2. Duo Hawthorn Boots

My calves are just slightly too big too big for most boots. So when a friend told me about this company that specializes in calf widths (narrow to wide), I was thrilled. I visited their Saville Row shop in London in October, had my calves measured, and picked out these tan beauties. A boot that zips up easily? Magical.

3. Marc Jacobs Classic Hillier Hobo

2010 was the year I gave in to the designer bag. This is a fantastic basic bag, and it wasn’t too prohibitively expensive, nor does it have the logo prints that I hate.

4. Wolford merino wool tights

Warm legs under skirts in the winter? Fantastic!

5. Bos & Co heels

I picked these up on sale. They are pretty damn awesome. I’ve never gotten so many compliments on shoes as I have with these. A male coworker has branded them “sick”.

6. Cole Haan Air Tali MJ Ballet

I bought these on Monday in Back Bay, Boston. The blizzard was pretty much over, but no one was out shopping except us and a few other people willing to brave the cold and wind gusts. These don’t look like much, but I love the pewter metallic and they are so freaking comfortable, thanks to the Nike Air cushioning.

7. MAC Dazzleglass in Date Night

It’s “lipcolour that dazzles with light and shine to bring an exciting dimensional pop to your lips.” Date Night is a plum with pearl, and although it’s fairly sparkly, it’s my go-to lipgloss of the moment. And it’s not sticky like MAC’s regular lipglass, which I hate.


1. Torsade Tee (C. Keer)

It’s a T-shirt with a twist, literally. I love grey (I wear a lot of grey), so it fits really well with my wardrobe and goes with so many things.

2. Oak Apple Dress (Moulinette Soeurs)

This is a very "Rachel" dress—the colours, the print, the deep-V-neck with faux-wrap styling. I loved it in the August catalogue, and I loved it in person. Full-price buy for me, but worth it because I can get three seasons of wear out of it.

3. Cream Confection Jacket (Idra)

Another piece I fell in love with on the website, and loved even more in person. Ruffles? Yes! On an otherwise utilitarian fall jacket? Yes again! I wore this jacket all fall and was sad to put it away when it got too cold.

4. Acting Out Skirt (Cartonnnier)

I love basics with a twist, and this is a basic pencil skirt kicked up a notch with the colour and detailing. The dark green works as a neutral so it goes with a lot , and the ruching accents my curves. I wear this skirt all the time.

5. Marine Mural Dress (Nathalie Lété)

How could I turn down a fun summery dress with an octopus on it, designed by a Parisian artist?

6. Height of Summer Dress (Maeve)

I had to buy this dress because of the colour—I’m a sucker for anything remotely teal. It ended up being my go-to dress of the summer.

7. Daily Gathering Dress (Bailey 44)

I bought this dress when I went to Troy, Michigan with my best friend so she could buy a stupidly expensive purse. Not only do I have a great memory attached to this dress, I have a fantastic jersey dress in my closet.

8. Network Dress (Velvet)

Unimaginative name, great dress. I love comfortable jersey dresses, and I don’t own enough navy in my closet. The touch of Kate Middleton in it didn’t hurt either. I had this mail-ordered to my sister’s in Boston, so I got it cheaper than the Canadian price.

This was just a small percentage of what I bought this year, I was a mad consumer and justified it by telling myself it was helping the economy. I’m definitely going to be scaling back next year.


Had myself a merry little Christmas

I never have much Christmas spirit (too many expectations to be happy that are never quite realized, plus a mother that always rants and raves about the commercialism of the holiday), and with everything that’s happened this year, I fully expected to be miserable this year at Christmas.  My mother and my brother are not speaking to each other.  My mother and my sister are not speaking to each other.  My fiancé (that’s still weird to say, he’s been my boyfriend for 11 years) is with his family in British Columbia, 3000 km away, but that’s nothing different, we’ve never spent Christmas together.  It’s the first year I haven’t been with my whole family at Christmas.

But enough with the self-pity.  I’m in Boston with my sister and her husband, surviving Snowpocalypse 2010, and I’m having a great time.  Plenty of good food*, Super Mario on Wii, mail-order packages from Anthropologie and J.Crew, and relaxing.  It’s been great.  Who says that Christmas has to be that perfect ideal?  It’s whatever it is.

I’ve spent the past three days lounging around in comfy clothes, so no recent outfit to post.  But here’s my holiday outfit from last weekend, worn out to dinner with Will (our Christmas dinner, before he left for BC) and then to Sarah Slean’s holiday concert.

Anthropologie Skyfall Dress (Burlapp) | J.Crew Jenna’s Cardigan | Ayala Bar necklace | Wolford merino wool tights | Miz Mooz Gayle High Heel Boots

We’re planning to brave the weather to go out for lunch, the Museum of Fine Arts, and maybe a bit of shopping.  I won’t be dressing up quite that much, but it may be time to get out of the sweats and into “real” clothes.

It’s been a great holiday.  Hope everyone has been as happy, safe, and well-fed as I’ve been!


*my sister and her husband are serious foodies.  They’re always trying new recipes from serious cookbooks, the Cooking Channel or the Food Network is always on TV, and they’re always talking about what they’re going to cook next or what restaurant they’re going to try next.  Our Christmas dinner was courtesy of Thomas Keller’s Ad Hoc At Home cookbook.  My sister made a roasted pear and cranberry crostata (delicious!).  Yesterday my brother-in-law made a fish dish from Eric Ripert’s restaurant.  I’ve been so well-fed, but it’s a little intimidating.


Anthro catalogue: December 2008

Every week I take a look back at past Anthropologie catalogues and what I loved from then.  I used to think that it’s impossible to find these pieces again, but thanks to Roxy’s trade market and eBay, anything is possible.

bird-in-hand cardigan, trade-up tank

cabbage hill dress, miles and miles cardigan (plenty by tracy reese)

sunday toy scarf, mt joy blouse, cornelia skirt

flowers & thyme dress –
so festive!

natural sunlight dress, amelia cardi
– I love everything about this outfit.  Why didn’t I buy it at the time?

buttonblossom dress –
so pretty

plaster & panes dress (plenty by tracy reese) –
this would make a really cute wedding dress


Fa la la la la

Without 30 for 30, I haven’t been photographing my daily outfits religiously.  Either I’m too rushed before work or too exhausted after work when all I want to do is get into comfy clothes and zone out in front of the TV.  But I managed this week’s outfits.  Not particularly festive or thoughtful, I’m just making sure I don’t end up at work naked.

J.Crew tank | Club Monaco cardigan | Club Monaco pencil skirt | Wolford merino wool tights | Miz Mooz Stella pump | labradorite and silver necklace made by me

No Anthropologie!  That doesn’t happen very often.

Anthropologie River Delta Shift (Anne Pinkerton) | Club Monaco cardigan | Wolford merino wool tights | Tory Burch Reva flat

The dress is Anthro loungewear and is probably meant to be a nightgown, but it works as a dress.  I did find it a little short, and I’m only 5’2”.  I haven’t worn it since Europe, so I figured it was time.

Club Monaco top | Anthropologie Acting Out Skirt (Cartonnier) | Wolford merino wool tights | Michael Kors pumps

Green is a Christmas colour right? 

This week has been looong, but I only have tomorrow to get through and then I’m on vacation.

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