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Getting into the Spirit

I really should be going to bed right now.. well, feeding the herd of cats and then going to bed but I'm all excited for Halloween now (and not just for the 50% off candy after Halloween) and I just wanted to share some pictures from last year's party. A bunch of us threw a Halloween party at our house last year and everything worked out really well. Just one of those nights...

last year halloween

'E' and I dressed up as housewives (hmmm... does that make us sister wives?). Yes, I'm hitting her with a spoon, which is a little unklassy but it was the best picture of the two of us. It was very fitting that I dressed up as a housewife, because I really am not the cleaning and baking kind of girl (surprising, really...) but for this party I busted my butt to have everything sparkling and fantastic. And it was...

last year halloween2

What are your Halloween plans?
I have a friend who fully intends to dress up and go trick or treating... That's courage. Admit it, you wish you were brave enough... (yes, this friend is over 21...).


Je Suis...





Striped sweater? BCBG, Winners
Beret? gifted
Jeans? Seven 4 All Mankind, Winners
Boots? Modern Vintage, Winners
Leather jacket? thrifted
Chain necklace? thrifted
Wristlet? Coach, gifted

Red stained lip? check
Beret? check
Striped top? check
Un-utilized artillery? check*

How French chic am I? It started with the sequin beret Linda gave me for my birthday and it just seemed way too obvious to pair it with some bold lip colour and a striped sweater... But I did. Because things are classic for a reason. I tried to keep it from being too prim and proper with my torn jeans and bad a$$ boots. I know it's probably time to lay the Seven 4 All Mankind jeans to rest. They started out whole, then I fell and put a hole in the knee and so I added more holes to make it look natural. The holes have grown and one is pretty much torn from seam to seam and is now starting to rip down the leg too. It's just that the fit (Roxy) of these jeans are perfect ... Next time, when I marry for money, I'm going to buy these jeans in every wash and then get a set of spares because I do things like fall down hills...
When I was a foolish student in University I would occasionally pay full price for premium denim and then survive off rice crackers because the funds were gone. I would actually say I spend more on clothes now but I diversify... dresses, heels, brown boots, snuggly sweaters... I love it all. I just can't get myself to pay full price for denim these days and as this jean style is one of the staples, it rarely goes on super-sale and super-sale is kinda my thing. I did luck out when I found these at Winners and I hope such a happy day comes again. Soon, before these fall apart completely...

* I joke, I joke... This is a fashion blog and has no hidden political agenda. But it's kinda funny...


Neutral like Switzerland



socks close-up

Jacket? Zara
Knit skirt? h&m
Tee? fcuk
Socks? Matt's (one of the best parts of being married is the increase in sock availability)
Shoes? V. Camuto , Winners
Clutch? thrifted
Bone bracelet? Goodwill auction
Earrings? farmer's market

I think I threw on everything neutral I own and called it an outfit... white tee, black skirt, grey socks, olive jacket, tan shoes (olive and tan are neutrals, right?)... and I like how it turned out. Actually, I love how it turned out. These are my new shoes, the ones I bought to ease the pain of missing Jess' show. When I look at their perfect colour and pretty studs, the traffic nightmare of this weekend seems so far away.

I ventured into sock and open-toe territory and I don't think I'm coming back. This look is not for everyone but I'm embracing it. It means I can wear my open-toe shoes into the cooler seasons and I can hold off just a bit longer before giving into tights. I do like tights, I just always tear them and in Canada it'll be a long winter full of tights wearing. Besides, my knees and the sunshine are friends and they want to spend some quality time together before it's too cold.

In other news, I'm on a shopping freeze until December 1st. Don't laugh, I know it's just over a month but that's a long time for this girl. There are brave souls like, Already Pretty and The Small Fabric of my Life, who put themselves on much longer shopping bans (pause for applause), but I don't know if I could do that... My biggest challenge will be to simply stay out of Talize and Winners because if I go in, I always find amazing deals and it feels more sinful to leave such good stuff behind than to actually buy it. I just need to take a break because...

a) money...blah, blah, blah... I don't really need to explain. We have a mortgage, another tree had to be cut down in our backyard before it fell into our neighbour's shed, my car window is stuck but sometimes it gets unstuck and falls off the tracks into the door and I should probably get that fixed before it happens in a snowstorm... all kinds of fun stuff.
b) I need to organize my closet before I add more crap to it and it explodes. In a few weeks I'll have time to go through the wilderness that is my closet and figure out what to keep, donate or consign. Besides I have a huge bag full of stuff from Talize that I haven't had time to handwash or drop off at the dry cleaners yet. I'm a clothes glutton.
c) I actually think shopping gives me a high and that's creepy...

There will be only two exceptions...
1. If Talize has a 50% off sale... too good to miss...
2. Going thrifting with my dad. It's our little tradition but if we go, I'll stay away from clothes and make it more about quality time than stuffed shopping bags:)

Don't worry, the blog won't be affected, there's a lot more where this came from. I just need you to hold me accountable.



We Can't All be Winners...

...or yes, we can!!! Because of all of your lovely comments (some very funny and informative ones too...The Tron...haha), $67 will be donated to the Hamilton/Burlington SPCA!!! They are a no-kill shelter and I'm happy to be suppporting them. Much love.
The person who won the beautiful bangle is GINA!!!!! Email me @ so your prize can be sent shortly! Enjoy!
Everyone else... thanks again!


The 401

jb youtfit1

jb youtfit3


Jacket? thrifted
Jeans? Loomstate, Winners
Booties? Modern Vintage, Winners
Tee? Mossimo, Target

jb loutfit1

jb loutfit2
Jacket? Ben Sherman
Dress/shirt? Aritzia, inherited from her boss
Jeans? ?
Booties? Coach
Fold-over clutch? Club Monaco

I know a few of you faithful readers have already seen this work of fabulousness some call a jacket. I bought it a couple months ago and immediately put it on and did an outfit post. But as explained, I never actually wore it out (which for the record, is the only time I have ever done that... I was just so excited I had to show you...). So, I thought Toronto Fashion Week would be the perfect debut for the jacket. Lin and I were invited to go to Jessica Biffi's show and we were pumped to attend the debut collection of the truly lovely runner-up of Project Runway Canada. But some things are not meant to be... I seem to have bad luck with traffic in my quest to support Jessica (see here).
This time I got off work very early, raced home, put my face on and left my house with enough time to get to my destination twice over. Yup, too bad my windshield wiper broke and I had to get off the highway and drive side-roads, leaning over peering out the passenger side windshield. Thankfully, Matt works on the way to Toronto and I went to his work and switched vehicles. But there was a rainstorm and everyone seemed to be driving like their windshield wipers were broken too and it took me over 2 hours to do a 45 minute drive. Worst drive ever. I said bad words. Linda and I finally arrived at the location and watched people exiting the show. Suckage. Apparently, the show went something like this....
jb collection
We still went in for a bit, talked to some old classmates and then went to Winners to heal the pain. New jeans and some quirky shoes later I felt a bit better...

We made it to the after party so we could congratulate Jessica. A few pics...

jb afterparty
Ry-High reunion.

jb afterparty2
Linda and another stylish Ryerson kid, Blair. Blair is wearing a hat from her own collection feathered. If one of you lovelies is getting married or just getting fancy, check her out. What can I say? I got talented classmates... whatever, I have a blog...ahaha

jb cake!
Let them eat cake... and we did.

jb cake cutting
Jessica cutting the cake. I asked for and received a big piece of cake. I can pack it away like a Dutch teenage boy but I was no match for all the fondant. I was defeated.

So, cake and Winners were good but I'm still bummed we missed the show. We'll be there next time Jessica! Blame the 401...stupid highway...


In Knit to Win It



knit close-up2

knit shoe

Sweater? piece from my 4th year collection
Tee? Zara
Jeans? Diesel, Winners
Boots? Zara
Purse? thrifted
Bambi necklace? h&m

My 4th year collection in university was a winter bridal collection. It featured silk wedding dresses and cosy alpaca knits. I still like the idea but there is so much I would do differently. But that's just part of the learning process.... Maybe if I had a do-over I would learn to knit before deciding to do a knit based collection. I had people's moms and grandmothers knitting for me, a little dutch/Italian sweatshop so to speak. I couldn't even read a knitting pattern so it was hard to converse with the knitters. I would say I wanted a certain shape and they would ask how many across and I'd be lost. But it all got done (I'm still grateful to everyone...) and I got pretty alpaca knit pieces out of it (p.s. I got sponsored by Fable knits and I don't know a lot about knitterly stuff but I know their yarn is sooo soft and luxurious). I didn't wear any of the knit pieces for years after school was done, I think it was my hangover period. By the time the final collection is done, paraded down the runway and marked, you don't want to see it again for a long time. I'm over it now and it's been fun to play around with some self-designed stuff. This sweater I'm actually wearing backwards. The buttons are supposed to be down the back and the front rises above the bust (it makes sense, really). I got questioned for it during my collection presentation, but I love that the arms are extra long and slouchy. Perhaps it didn't look 100% bridal but I always pictured my brides to be a bit quirky...

And how fun are my elf boots? I bought these babies over 6 years ago in Montreal. 6 years ago I was not as fashion adventurous as I am now but I love that I had the balls back then to buy elf booties (and remember, 6 years ago booties were not the wardrobe staple they are now...). They used to have metal heels but somewhere along the way those broke off and my Mr. Shoe Fixer Who I Talk About A Lot put new heels on. How good is he? He crafted entire heels to match my existing shoes... for a good price too. If you're local and you need a shoe savior, I can hook you up... I know people...who know people...


Anyways... if you haven't entered my giveaway yet, scroll down and do so... after that head outside and play in the leaves. Enjoy them now because soon it'll be...winter. Gross.


I've Never Done This-A Giveaway

So... wow! I jumped across the 100 followers hurdle and now have 106. That is exciting! I decided not to quit my job, so I will be doing a giveaway for one of my cats.

giveaway all
(left to right)

BEC-The Black Entertainment Cat. She's a diva but a real sweety too, with a freaking loud purr. Even though she's little thing, she bosses the boys around because that's how us girls roll.
Kyle-If I didn't know that it was scientifically impossible, I'd swear that Kyle has raccoon in his ancestry. His tail is huge and he's the softest cat ever (yes, that's in writing). He's terrified of little kids but he loves Matt (too much). He can jump 5 feet in the air.
Stella-Is a boy (my bad). He was rescued from the streets with mats the size of my hand all down his body and the tips of his ears falling off from frostbite. He loves being outside but when he disappeared for a weekend, I grounded him for life. He's way too clever. He plays fetch with shoulder pads for hours on end.

If you think one of these cats fits into your home, leave a comment and I'll be doing a random draw...

giveaway kyle
Or NOT!!!!

I love the kitties, even though they may not always love me as much as I love them and despite the fact that they were really bad when we had company over yesterday. I just wanted to make you waste your time and read all about my precious cats!!! Ok, here's the real giveaway...

I'm really grateful to all my faithful readers (followers or not) because wearing too many sequins would not be so fun if I didn't have you guys to show them off to. To thank you I am giving away a wood bangle from Amrita Singh.


This is not a sponsored giveaway, I just thought the bangle was pretty (seriously, it's hard to convey in pictures but it's reeealll nice).
I'm sure you all know the deal...

...1. Leave a comment on this post and tell me something about anything (how's that for specific?). One entry per person.
2. The winner will be chosen at random Saturday evening, October 24th.
3. This contest is open to anyone, as long as you're a nice person most of the time.

Oh ya!!!! The best part! For every comment on this post, I will donate $1 (cdn.)* to the local SPCA so that more dogs and cats can go to good homes.

Thank-you!!!! Start commenting! Tell your friends, your mom, your brother (if he's broke and he needs a gift for the girlfriend)...

*up to $100. Not like I think I'll get 100 comments, I just want to cover my bases so I don't have to explain to Matt why we can't make the mortgage payment this month.


Tried and True



tiers reclose-up

Skirt? thrifted
Blouse? Ralph Lauren, thrifted
Boots? Cole Haan, thrifted
Socks? Primark
Necklace? h&m, old!
Rings? found and thrifted
Earrings? won from Briannelee

This is the autumn version of one of my favourite outfits (worn here). When I thrifted this skirt I found it in black and white and I bought both. I always pass over this skirt (well, both) in my closet, they have 'meh' hanger appeal but then when I take a moment to try one on, I realize again how freaking fabulous they are.

I prefer this skirt and skirt combo with a brown belt but I didn't want to be all 'Brown Leather Overkill 2009'. I had to choose between the belt and the crazy necklace and because it's autumn and the necklace is so pretty, the necklace won. Whatever, it all came together and paired with the perfect fall day, it worked out very nicely.


P.S. 97 followers!!! When I hit 100 I'm going to have to do something drastic... maybe quit my job and blog fulltime (hey! 100 followers means I'm a big deal right?) or have the best giveaway ever... one of my cats???


It's My Party and I'll Cry if I Want to...

birthday suit 1



Wool dress? Diane von Furstenberg, Holt's Last Call
Boots? Nine West
Tights? CK, Winners
Clutch? Gino Aldrovandi, thrifted
Brooches? thrifted, found and borrowed

I woke up yesterday one year older, one year wiser and one year closer to Botox. You know when you're young and you just imagine that at 26 you'll have it all figured out? How foolish. I'm officially 26 and I still have no clue what I want to be when I grow up. Well, besides becoming a romance novelist... yes, stop laughing, I might be serious.
Tuesday isn't the most exciting day for a birthday (especially when you have to be at work for 7 the next morning) so we just celebrated with my family (the ones who haven't fled to Europe...xo) at a German restaurant. I know there is no need to dress up for schnitzel but my motto is to take every opportunity to be fabulous. I love the colour and slightly unusual cut of this DvF wool dress, I've had it for a few years and it still feels new. The boots are old too. Last year I was ready to say goodbye to them because the suede was so beat-up but I took a chance on my shoe fixer guy and he came through. They look near new again. The tights have a really cool flowery pattern on them and are actually full of holes, but the few inches showing between my boots and dress were unblemished so I wore them. You would understand if you were a Dutch immigrant

birthdaysuit broaches

The best part of the outfit were the brooches I pinned on my one shoulder to keep it fancy. The two starburst pins (the nicest ones...) are my Dad's finds. I borrowed them a long time ago to wear in my hair. I haven't worn them since because I am terrified to lose a crystal but I refuse to return them as they sparkle so prettily in my jewelry drawer. I finally wore them again yesterday because I was out with my parents anyway and so I felt I could take the risk with them as chaperons.

Oh and in case you're wondering, my best present came yesterday from one of my customer's dogs. Bailey found a fat, soaking wet, dead mouse and dropped it off IN my car. If that isn't love...


Sharing is Caring




It's not sparkles and sequins every day of my life... especially since we spent the weekend up north for Thanksgiving and the biggest priority was staying warm. This sweater fits the bill perfectly. I've always been attracted to these Nordic style sweaters, they are so wooly and Canadiana chic. I already have a few but when I saw this big guy while thrifting, I could not resist. Yup, it's too big for me but bigger is warmer and warmer is better. AND then I got to thinking... this sweater is the perfect size for Matt. He always asks me when I return from a shopping adventure, if I found anything for him. My answers are...

a) I didn't have any time. I was only there for a little bit.
b) The men's section was really bad. I looked but I didn't see anything you would like.
c) I'm pretty much self-absorbed. By the time I was done trying on the arm-loads full of clothing I discovered, all I wanted to do was pay and drag my sack of treasures home, where you would be waiting for me, hopefully, with a warm dinner.

I usually say either a) or b) but sadly enough, the truth is c). But with this sweater, things could turn around.

1. I could finally tell him that yes, I found something for him.
2. He could occasionally wear the sweater and I would think he looks so handsome because I love a guy in a cosy sweater.
3. Because I'm always freezing and Matt is always warm (and he's the dictator of the thermostat), he would only wear this sweater when it's really cold, leaving the sweater open to become my new 'I'm slumming around the house' sweater.

So, I wore the sweater all weekend and I'm wearing it again right now. Don't hate. You do it too. Bum around it one gloriously comfy sweater...

Oh ya, one more thing, this was Matt's original pose when I asked him to work the sweater. Yes, I'm proud.



Giving Thanks




Jacket? Gap, thrifted
Sequin vest? thrifted
Jeans? Paige, Boutique Olivia
Boots? ?, Winners
Socks? Gap
Turtleneck? Joe Fresh
Necklace? h&m
So far, I have refused to properly acknowledge fall. At work I lumber around in 17 sweaters (kinda like the Michelin man but with a cuter face... I hope) in the midst of a fall clean-ups but I'm still thinking summer thoughts. This weekend, however, is the Canadian Thanksgiving and it's about time I come to terms with autumn. I don't hate fall, it is so pretty and crisp, it's just that after fall and then after Santa, comes the long, grey Canadian winter. It will be cold, it will snow and I will hibernate in my house wearing sweats, Matt's sweaters AND a fuzzy blanket wrapped around me like a tube dress. So not stylish.

But since it really is autumn, I should embrace and style it up while it lasts. Nothing says fall quite like some plaid, a turtleneck, brown boots and sequins. Ok fine... sequins have nothing to do with autumn dressing, they are my 4 season staple... I hope you guys enjoy my first foray into fall fashion (say that 10X fast) as the only person around here to see it (besides family and Matt...) will be the teenager working the evening shift at Tim Hortons and giving Matt his double-double on the drive up to the cottage.

Happy Thanksgiving all my Canadian lovelies! Though everyone should be thankful as it's finally the weekend! xo


A Love Letter

rust front

rust pickup

rust close-up

rust back

Jacket? Roanik, Holt's LC
Sweatshirt? Zara
Cropped pants? Jones New York, thrifted
Shoes? Steve Madden, DSW
Wristlet? Coach, gifted
Necklace? garage sale

Dear outfit,
Thanks for working so well. I was running really late and I took a chance on you, but I freaking love you!
xoxo Yen

Yes, I am a happy little camper about this outfit. The casual cropped sweatshirt perfectly balances the shine of the jacket. I did good. I got this jacket a few weeks ago at Holt's Last Call. I know I've told you before of these amazing racks with 80-90% off the LAST ticketed price! Yes, there is a lot of stuff that is beyond hope or repair but there are treasures as well. Poor Matt. The boy's (men's, I guess) section is weak, the best deal is 10% off the last price. Better sales is another good reason to love being a girl, besides make-up and flat-irons (excluding Zac Efron). Anyways, 10% off $200 is still $180 for a shirt. So, Matt left me in my shopping stupor and explored the mall for an hour. I narrowed my arm load down to three items, including this amazing jacket for $30! Originally $750! There were a few loose threads but some scissor work took care of those and no one is the wiser. Oh jacket! You rock, your cut, your back detailing and best of all, your rusty, sparkly goodness.
The pants are a good find too. They are serious turkey-eating pants because they are so stretchy but yet, they are constructed and cut like a nice pair of cigarette pants. Maybe they are the perfect hybrid between leggings and pants...
Yes, the fakeness is still a top of my head in these pictures. I paid enough for it, so I figured I might as well work it for all it's worth. But as I sit behind the computer now, I'm all natural again with my little, sassy ponytail...


Always a Bridesmaid

outfit limo

outfit front

outfit close-up

Dress? Bedo
Shoes? Taryn Rose, Winners
Wristlet? Coach, gifted by Linda
Earrings and bracelet? gifted and made by Linda
Broach? thrifted
Hair? Not sure whose it is but it's not mine...

For Linda's wedding the bridesmaids all wore black dresses of their choosing. I've been a bridesmaid six times and I have always lucked out with bridesmaid dresses. Lucky for me, there are no pastel taffeta monstrosities hiding in my closet... The cut of the dress is very classic but it was the bows on the shoulders that sold me. The neckline is a little lower than how I usually roll, however, since the straps covered my shoulders, I was allowed down the aisle without a shawl . Which is good, because shawls cramp my style.

The week before the wedding I went to the parents' place to raid their jewelry collection. Little did I know that Linda had handmade jewelry and bought us all a buttery soft Coach wristlet (it's too late to join her wedding party... no Coach for you!) so, aside from a broach that I pinned to a bow on one shoulder, I was all accessorized from Linda's generosity.

And yes, that mass of hair on my head is not mine. I have always loved the huge bun (like Heidi Klum) and when the hairstylist pulled out a big piece of human hair that pretty near matched my colour, I decided to go for it. You know, I'm only youngish once... When she first styled my hair, I nearly cried. I had committed to the big hair and I knew I had to stick with it but it looked really fake. It was all shiny and perfect and unnatural and SO not me. I pretty much locked myself in the bathroom and the mirror and I spent some time together. I pulled some of my natural hair through, frizzed it up and softened the look and after the hairdresser touched up my touch-up of her original work, I was OK. I'm sooo glad it worked out. If it hadn't I would have had to have a brave face all day and pretend that it didn't look like I had a golden retriever pup on top of my head.

Sooo, looking back on my posts, I see that 3 of the last 4 have been wedding related. It's out of my system now( I think, they are pretty fun...), in the future I promise I'm going to severely cut back on the usage of the word 'wedding' and return my focus to fashion. I'll drink to that. Cheers!
outfit cheers