Mariska Hargitay is a gorgeous, gorgeous woman.  This Photoshop hack job is an abomination.

(Courtesy of Jezebel.)


giving Banana a chance

Before I drank the Anthropologie Kool-Aid, I did a lot of my shopping at Banana Republic.  I liked their good-quality basics and their work-friendly pieces, but I did get bored after I got all the basics I needed.  Even so, I do have some great Banana items I love, including this summer dress and this jersey top.

Last week I was surfing the Banana Republic website and came across a lookbook of “real women” wearing their clothes.  (Unfortunately no longer on their website, but I captured the looks that I liked.)

Unfortunately for BR, none of these looks made me run out to their store, because none of them are so different and unique from a style point of view.  I feel like I have these pieces…from other places.

But I did feel like I should really give them a chance so I stopped by their Yorkville store yesterday after work.  I liked the ruffle cardigan (in the first photo above) in black, and this dress, but that’s about all that stood out for me.

I tried to have an open mind, but the 10-minute wait for the changing room killed it for me.  Not worth the wait!  Sorry, Banana.  I hightailed it out of there and went to Anthropologie instead. 


Cream Confection.

The past few days have shown me just how f&*!ing fickle I am.  When it comes to shopping, that is. 

But I blame Anthropologie.  Every time I say I’m done with fall shopping, something else catches my eye.  Damn you, Anthro! 

Yesterday it was the Boucle de Souffle Jacket, today it’s Idra’s Cream Confection Jacket.

So frigging cute.  The ruffles, the buttons (purely decorative), the shape…what don’t I love?  I still have to try it on, because I’m concerned about the slightly puffed sleeves (I already have broad shoulders, I don’t need to look like a linebacker) and fitting the boobs into it.

But if it works, the only question is the colour.  Cream is lovely, but it’s like a magnet for stains for me.  I don’t want to be forever dry-cleaning it.

Tan (or neutral, as Anthro calls it)? It can be iffy on my skintone.  If it’s anything like the colour of the Well-Wisher Jacket, it’s a no for me.

So, black then?  The details are harder to see in black, at least in the photo, but it may be the one that works best on me.  And the details are enough to take it from just another boring black jacket to something special.

I’m thinking this jacket over the Boucle de Souffle now, but at the same time, I have a trip to Europe (Dublin, London, and Paris) in October to save for, so I shouldn’t be spending any more money on clothes.  Fingers crossed.  Really.


Wear-now wool.

Well, not right now.  It’s still summer, despite my being depressed about the fall-like weather the other day, and despite being a bit on the chilly side today.

But I’m loving the fall outfit set (called wear-now wool) that Anthropologie has put on their website.  These are my favourites:

plaited pearl: Sweet Biscuit Tee by Velvet, Elementary My Dear Belt, Steamer Trunk Skirt by Moth, Tuxedo Accoutrement Necklace by Benedicte.  I love how this is styled, but I think I may be too short and dumpy curvy to pull it off.

spun gold: Lady’s Choice Cardigan by Tokyo Map, Oak Apple Dress by Moulinette Soeurs, Organic Blooms Necklace.  I looove the Oak Apple Dress, but I’m not sure about the cardigan for me.

purled onyx: Boucle de Souffle Jacket by Elevenses, Maryam Tank by Little Blue Bird, AG Twill Stevie, Chameli & Mallika Necklace

This one is my favourite look.  Just when I’m thinking I’m done my fall/winter shopping and I don’t need anything else, I see this. 

I have to try it on though, and I haven’t seen it in store yet.  I would buy it full price, if it worked on me.  I’m concerned about the puffed shoulders and the fact that jackets just don’t fit me very well.  I’ll start stalking the stores for this one.

And then I’m done shopping.  For reals this time.

I also love the necklace…

…but it’s US$188!!  Maybe on sale.


Another trip to Anthro…

…and nothing was bought. 

I love the polka-dot mushrooms and the print of the Bountiful Bubbles Apron.  At first, I thought it was a dress and was a little disappointed when I saw it wasn’t.  Cute apron though!

Night Petals Tank by Deletta, US$58. Close, but no cigar.  It fit well and I was tempted for a few seconds, but I don’t love the print or the length of the sleeves.

Buoyant Bunches Cardi by Three Dots, US$78. I normally love soft cardigans like this, but this one is shapeless and not worth the pricetag.  Nope.

Wardrobe Staple Cardigan by Moth, US$98. Am I about to have a spa treatment?  Pass.

Rational Ruffles Tee by Deletta, US$58.  Cute in theory, but just a bit meh to me. 

To A Tee Blazer by Cartonnier, US$98. When I put this jacket on, I really liked it.  I thought it was a good possibility for a jacket, and I hate jackets.  But now that I look at the photo, I’m thinking it’s just ok.  So I’ll continue to look for my holy grail jacket, but this one isn’t it.

So I walked out empty-handed.  I’ve bought a few pieces for fall, so maybe I’m done.  (Fingers crossed.)



Courtesy of Jezebel, two gorgeous images from various runway shows.

From a show in Sydney.

From an underwater fashion show in Seoul, South Korea.



Summer moved on…

As much as I hated the heat and humidity of this summer, today’s sudden foray into fall (and the allergies that go along with it) made me realize that I don’t really want to say goodbye to summer.  I just don’t want it to be so fricking hot.  Is it too much to ask to have 25 degrees (Celsius) and sunshine every day?

So I’m thinking I need to seize the next week and a half before August is over (when did that happen, by the way?) and wear my favourite summer outfits, but today I wore the summer version of an outfit I wear in the winter.

  • Spotlights tank by RicRac, Anthropologie
  • Club Monaco cardigan
  • Jacob pencil skirt
  • Tory Burch flats

It’s supposed to be back to heat and humidity later this week.  Knowing me, I’ll be complaining when it happens.  I’m Canadian, that’s what I do.


In the dressing room

I feel a little silly taking photos of myself in dressing rooms, but I decided to think of it as good shopping practice.  I can look at the photos later and decide before I buy.  Or not buy, as the case may be.

But I really have to remember to smile when I’m taking pictures. I look so sour!

I was at Anthropologie at the Shops at Don Mills yesterday, and Floreat’s Babergh Dress was finally there.  However, I did not love it.  But I’ll get to that in a minute.

Here’s everything I tried on:

Remaining Lilies Cardigan, US$128.  Cute, but not me.  Hence the sour expression.

Soft Scallops Cardigan by Guinevere, US$118.  Nice, but the colour is too drab.

Well-Wisher Jacket by Mise en Scene by Ruffian, US$148.  I liked it in theory, but it’s not really me, and I really detest the drab khaki colour.

Flower Vendor Top by Deletta, US$78.  I’m thinking I should buy this top, because it’s really flattering.  But it’s pain to put on, it’s a little pricey for what it is, and I don’t need another grey top.  I’ll think about it.

24K Myosotis Dress by Anna Sui, US$298.  I was prepared to mock this dress because it looked very Little House on the Prairie on the rack.  However, it was strangely flattering on.  It’s way too long so I wouldn’t consider it, but if it were knee-length, I might have been tempted.  Goes to show you should always try things on.

And finally, the Babergh Dress.

The pros: it’s a very flattering shape, the scalloped print of the skirt is beautiful.

The cons: that stupid floral appliqué.  I don’t think it even goes with the dress.  But as many have pointed out, it could be taken off

Why I won’t buy it: the pale grey/lavender colour does not work on my skintone at all.  It’s really a shame, because it is a gorgeous dress.


In her shoes

I’m watching In Her Shoes on W Network (it seems like it’s on at least once a month).  Every time I watch it, I covet the shoes and Cameron Diaz’s legs. I also feel for Toni Collette’s “plain-Jane” character, Rose, who says, “When I feel bad, I like to treat myself.  Clothes never look any good, food just makes me fatter.  Shoes always fit.”

In my case, shoes don’t always fit.  I love shoes, but I have flat feet (no arches to speak of) and a hammer toe I inherited from my mom.  I’m a weird size too.  A size 6 is sometimes too big, a 5-1/2 is too small, and not to mention hard to find.  (Unfortunately those Michael Kors pumps fell into this category.  The 6 is too big, so back they go.)  High heels hurt, but I love them anyway. 

Like these Bos & Co t-strap sandals that I bought on sale.  I like the way my legs look in them.  And they fit.

Half price!


Playing dress up.

Certain things I wear feel slightly off, like I’m wearing a costume. 

I wear them anyway, because I like them.  But maybe I’m fooling myself?

  • Zigzags and Zinnias Tee by little yellow button, from Anthropologie
  • Jacob pencil skirt
  • Franco Sarto heels

I really like this top (obviously, I bought it), but it’s somehow not quite me.  The zigzag stripes and floral appliqués are different.  That’s also why I bought it, I wanted something outside my comfort zone.

I also went to play real dress up at Anthropologie on my lunch break. It’s not entirely my intention to do fitting room reviews, I’m really just being vain and taking photos of myself in pretty clothes.  But if anyone is interested, I’m 5’2”, 34D, 29-inch waist, 40-inch hips (*sob*).  I generally wear S tops and size 6 dresses and skirts, but of course it depends, and I can wear anything from a 4 to an 8.

I’m Ernie! (Above Board Tee by Porridge.  Is it really wrong that I kinda like this?)

I’m Daisy Buchanan from The Great Gatsby! Or Jordan Baker, I guess.  (Grasby Gardens Dress by James Coviello, CAD$428.  Good thing I don’t love it.  The colours are doing nothing for my skintone.)

I’m a Stepford wife! (Mullany Dress by Eva Franco.)

I have one giant droopy uniboob! (If it weren’t for the neckline, I might like this.)

I’m drowning in this sweater! (Dimpled Cardigan by Sparrow.)  I was taken in by the display:

So cute there!  But so wrong on me!

And finally, I’m me again, in Cartonnier’s Acting Out skirt, in the sapphire colour (more of a rich deep emerald colour). I could not photograph it with my iPhone for the life of me, but it was perfect. 


my Paul dress

Two weeks ago, I wrote a guest post over at Effortless Anthropologie about the Anthro shopping experience in Canada.  My multiple gripes were about the  delay in items showing up in Canadian stores, higher prices, items selling out, insane shipping prices if ordering online, and sales.  I used Natalie Lété's Marine Mural Dress as the example of something I felt I had to buy at full price because I didn’t think I’d find it on sale. 

I was wrong, because this dress went on sale last week (nearly $200 cheaper too), and I found it in my size. Participating in an Anthro sale is fun!

I call this my Paul dress after the psychic octopus.  It’s a great summer dress, I’m really happy about it.

I need another dress like I need a third arm (no wait, that’d be awesome, I could hold an umbrella, my iPhone, and tea at the same time), but there you have it.  I never lied about being a shopaholic.


But will it make me happy?

At times I think my life really sucks.  I haven’t felt well in so long, I can’t even remember; at times I hate my job so much I want to just say fuck it all and run away to join the circus; the family drama just won’t go away…

So when I don’t want deal with it, I shop.  And I regret.  I’m caught on the “work-spend treadmill,” according to this article in the New York Times.  It was a bit of a lightbulb moment for me, because that’s how I feel sometimes.  I have so much, but I’m not happy with what I have, I always feel like I need more to be truly happy.  I’m very much a product of the consumer culture.

But it’s not likely that I’m going to give everything away and whittle down my personal belongings to 100 items.  Let’s be realistic here. 

I have to remember to focus on the positive and just be happy.  So I don’t feel well, but I can still go about my daily life, and I’ll probably feel better once summer is over and the heat and humidity go away.  Yeah, the job is not stimulating, but it’s a job, it pays the bills.  My family is in good health, and I live with someone who loves me and takes care of me. 

This is what really matters:

My two-year-old nephew Milo.  His smile makes everything okay.


I’m a landmark!

Today was another hot, steamy day in Toronto, another busy and often frustrating day at work, and another day I went to Anthropologie at lunch as an escape.

Going there, I was wearing my Height of Summer dress, the one that makes me stand out in a crowd, and a girl outside my office used me as a landmark.  She was on her phone saying “I’m standing right outside Rogers, do you see the girl in the green dress?”  It’s really more of a teal, but I’m willing to overlook that.

At Anthro, there was no sign of the much-anticipated Babergh dress yet, but I tried on Floreat’s Manor Gates Dress.  Normally I wouldn’t have tried it on because it’s not my thing, but it seems to be a favourite, so I wanted to see what the fuss is about.

Manor Gates Dress, by Floreat, US$188

Okay, I kinda get it now.  It really is quite lovely, but it’s still not my thing.

But my goal at Anthro was really to try on the Oak Apple Dress, because it’s the one thing that I may actually buy from the August catalogue.  That damn catalogue shot really sucked me in, probably because I’ll be in England and Ireland in October, and I want to look like that.  Too bad I’m Asian.

I really really loved the dress though.

Oak Apple Dress by Moulinette Soeurs, US$178

I couldn’t get a decent photo, so I don’t think this does it justice.  It’s really flattering and the print is a lovely watercolour swirl that reminds me of a Monet painting.  It’s lovely on its own, but would also be great with a long cardigan and tights for the fall, and I think I could get a lot of wear for it.  So it’s pricey, but it might be worth full price for me.

While I was at Anthro, I saw the Chocolate Box Cardigan.  I thought it was ugly in the catalogue, but it’s even worse in person. 

Chocolate Box Cardigan by Mongram, US$128

I would never pay US $128 for this.  But I suppose there’s no accounting for taste.

It’s my boyfriend’s birthday today, so I wore my Height of Summer dress out for beer and wings.  It’s been 11 years since our first kiss.  We’ve done tons of great things since then.

Including riding a moped around Martha’s Vineyard this time last year.

Happy Birthday hunny!

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