5 Piece Summer Wardrobe

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I recently finished a very entertaining novel called Elegance where the protagonist aims to pick up the pieces of her messy life and failing marriage by following the advice of a book (also called Elegance) that has been written to guide women on the ways that they can become more poised, stylish, and confident, improving their lives in the process.One of the chapters in the book focuses on the idea of having a small but carefully curated wardrobe of only a few well-chosen, high-quality pieces. I don’t know about you guys, but my wardrobe is completely cluttered with pieces I haven’t worn in years, whether it’s because they no longer fit, they are out of date, or they are falling apart (but I have the delusional idea that I will one day have them repaired). The idea of trimming down my wardrobe to a handful of beautiful, well-made items intrigues me. Rome wasn’t built in a day so I doubt that I will be tossing out half my closet anytime soon, but I will be going through my clothes and donating pieces that no longer serve me. My new mantra going forward is that I will only choose pieces that truly bring me joy. For me this means beautiful cuts, luxe fabrics, with just a touch of contemporary sex appeal. I want my clothes to make me look and feel good regardless of the occasion. With this in mind I have selected five key pieces for a summer wardrobe. I’ve picked three options for each item with the idea that (almost) all of the pieces could be mixed and matched. The five piece wardrobe equates to effortless elegance and light packing – two closet characteristics that are perfect for the hotter months of the year.

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SUNDRESSES

Breezy sundresses are so ideal when the temperatures rise. Simply step in, zip up, and throw on some sandals before heading out. They are easy to dress up with a statement necklace and a pair of heels or dress down with some espadrilles and a denim jacket. 

1 // OUGES – Halter Neck Floral Casual Summer Sundress 

2 // Gamiss – Flower Printed Sleeveless A-Line Sundress 

3 // J.Crew – Off The Shoulder Tie-Waist Dress 

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JERSEY TROUSERS

Unlike a pair of jeans or distressed cut-offs, trousers made of lightweight cotton or silk jersey are suitable for casual and formal occasions. They look polished and feel comfy – a must when it comes to summer dressing. Pair with a slinky cami and a pair of stiletto sandals for a night out with your favorite ladies. 

1 // 3.1 Phillip Lim – Silk Chiffon Pajama Trousers 

2 // Fleur Du Mal – Fox Silk-Lined Pants 

3 // 3.1 Phillip Lim – Silk Trousers 

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SILK T-SHIRT

Instead of throwing on yet another wrinkled, cotton tee, why not upgrade to a luxe silk or satin version? Pick one in a neutral colour (think pearl grey, taupe, navy or blush) and you’ll be have a piece that you can wear with literally everything. Plus, as far as clothing goes, nothing feels better on a hot, muggy day than a breathable silk shirt. 

1 // Reiss Ki – Silk Front T-Shirt

2 // Equipment – Prescott Striped Silk T-Shirt 

3 // CLU – Pleated Organza Trimmed Silk Jersey T-Shirt 

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LINEN SHORTS

Stay cool and chic in a crisp pair of linen shorts. This plant-based fabric is incredibly light and breathable, making it the perfect choice for summer. While I adore bright colours, a loose-fitting pair in an earthy hue will take you everywhere, from brunch to an office barbecue. 

1 // Zimmerman – Zephyr Striped Cotton & Linen Blend Shorts

2 // Vince – Linen and Silk Shorts 

3 // Venroy – Lounge Drawstring Shorts 

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BREEZY CARDIGAN

One of the best things about summer is not having to lug around a heavy coat or jacket. That being said, a lightweight cardigan or poncho (for cool summer nights) is an absolute essential. Choose two or three options – at least one in a luxurious fabric (think silk or thin cashmere) and one casual poncho for camping or hanging out on the beach. Right now I’m loving pieces with nautical stripes and oceanic colours – navy and pale periwinkle blue go with everything! 

1 // Mat Blue – Cream Striped Open Cardigan 

2 // French Connection – Milano Mozart Cardigan

3 // Outdoor & Country – Barbour Harewood Cardigan 

What do you think of these pieces? Would you ever adopt a five piece wardrobe? Let me know your thoughts!

xoxo,

Alicia

DIY Stress Relieving Whipped Body Butter


Photo via Poppy Talk 

In the interest of full disclosure, here’s a little tidbit of information about me – I’m as high strung as they come and have battled varying degrees of anxiety for years. I’ve been a chronic worrier since I was a kid, and while some days are more challenging than others, I do feel that over the years I have found a few things that make me feel better and keep me calm. Some of these things include yoga, going for a brisk walk, painting, or lighting scented candles and taking a bath. These are little comforts for me and I believe that self-pampering and aromatherapy really help to soothe my mind and body. I love essential oils and I find that certain scents have an especially positive effect on my mood. Lavender, rose, ylang-ylang, and vanilla are my favorites and when they are combined, they instantly send me to dreamland. Essential oils also have a lot of effective beautifying properties as well, so what better way is there to reap their stress-relieving benefits than by using them to make an all natural body butter? This particular recipe results in a rich, whipped texture that reminds me of white chocolate mousse, although trust me, you don’t want to eat it. With only two ingredients comprising the actual body butter, it is really easy to make, and you can totally customize this recipe with your own essential oil combinations if you’re not a fan of my soothing blend. It’s totally up to you! Read on for a stress-free mind and super soft skin!

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 Cup Coconut Oil
  • 1/2 Cup Shea Butter
  • 3 Drops Rose Absolute
  • 1 Tsp Rose Water
  • 1 Drop Frankincense Essential Oil
  • 1 Drop Lavender Essential Oil
  • 1 Drop Vanilla Absolute
  • 1 Drop Ylang-Ylang Essential Oil

DIRECTIONS

1 // Measure the coconut oil (it should be solid) and shea butter into a medium bowl. Add rose water and stir with a spoon until well blended.

2 // Blend the buttery mixture with egg beaters or a hand mixer until soft peaks start to form. Set aside. 

3 // Add essential oils to your partially whipped mixture. Blend further until stiff peaks form.

4 // Spoon mixture into an empty and clean mason jar. Store in a cool dry place. If you’re giving it away as a gift, feel free to dress the jar up with dried rose petals, lavender buds, ribbon, and/or twine. Get creative! 

5 // Enjoy your gorgeously floral scented, silky smooth skin!

If you give this a try, let me know what your verdict is! Also, I’m always on the lookout for beauty DIYs, so please let me in on a few of your favorites!

xoxo,

Alicia

Brand Spotlight | Callahan

If cozy sweaters and Cali-girl inspired slouchy fits are your jam, you are sure to fall in love with this L.A label. If you’re anything like me, the word ‘knitwear’ bring to mind cuddly pullovers and the thick, wooden sweaters your grandma would knit you. And while you can find these cuddly pieces in a Callahan collection, you’ll find them alongside more contemporary styles – think an edgy batwing dress knit out of super fine yarn, or a fringed crochet maxi. Designer Michelle Callahan created her eponymous label with the desire to offer women beautiful, versatile knitwear that they can wear all year long. Each piece is made to transition from season to season, and although the brand’s aesthetic favours the odd sexy detail here and there (cut-outs, dropped waists, scooped backs), each collection stays true to Callahan’s signature penchant for clean lines and classic silhouettes. Whether you’re on the hunt for a breezy and lightweight sweater dress or a cute pair of crochet shorts, look to this label for those kind of easy-to-wear wardrobe staples that California brands seem to do so well. Here are ten pieces from Callahan’s Spring 2017 collection that I am seriously in love with.

 

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CALLAHAN PICKS

1 // Crochet Maxi

2 // Fringe Column Dress

3 // Enzyme Batwing Mini

4 // Open Weave Off The Shoulder Top

5 // Stripe Off Shoulder Dress

6 // Fringe Crop Sweater

7 // Slinky Mini Tank

8 // Enzyme Shortie Short

9 // Crochet Fringe Top

10 // Stripe Crop Off Shoulder Top

xoxo,

Alicia

On The Boardwalk

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Long days that turn into late nights walking along the boardwalk are some of my most cherished summer memories. I live pretty close to the beach (not to brag), but even if you live smack dab in the middle of the city, you can still capture that carnival by the sea vibe with a few well chosen pieces. The magic formula includes bright colours, stripes, and a general disregard for subtlety or conventions. Accessorize with a head turning pair of shades and a cone full of cotton candy and you’re good to go! With this theme in mind, I’ve chosen 10 pieces that will help you channel your inner carnival girl instantly. Lana Del Rey would approve!

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BOARDWALK BUYS

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1 // Bond No. 9 – New York Coney Island Eau De Perfume

2 // RMS Beauty – Lip2Cheek Colour in Beloved

3 // New Directions – Ivory Floppy Sun N Sand Hat

4 // Red Off Shoulder Top & Black/White Striped Highwaisted Bottoms (Swimsuit)

5 // Deborah Lippmann – Walking on Sunshine & Lara’s Theme Set

6 // Lilly Pulitzer – Boho Beach Earrings

7 // Betsey Johnson – Boardwalk Sweets Candy Bracelet

8 // Tory Burch – Castaway Mismatched Espadrilles

9 // Solid & Striped – Cropped Striped Cotton Top

10 // Zimmermann – Roza Striped Cotton Shorts

xoxo,

Alicia

Made Of Straw

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Straw handbags, baskets, and clutches are everywhere this summer and they really do lend a farmer’s market chic vibe to any outfit. This season’s styles have been given a trendy update with geometric shapes (retro circle styles are my favorite), intricate beading and bohemian-inspired embroidery. And we couldn’t even talk about straw handbags without also mentioning pom-poms. This fuzzy fixture from your first grade art class is here to stay and is a favorite of streetstyle fashionistas and bloggers. Bonus points if they come in rainbow hues and are accentuated with dangling tassels. Whether you prefer the country casual look with a plain and simple straw tote, or you instead take cues from high fashion with flamboyant embellishments, one thing we can all agree on is that straw bags are the summer accessory. I have a couple, but I can’t help but want to add a few more to my own handbag arsenal. Because really, when it comes down to it, can you ever have too many purses? Clothes yes, bags no. Afterall, accessories are such an easy and fun way to change up the hum-drum outfits you’ve worn dozens of times. So if you’re still on the fence about adding some wicker to your wardrobe, check out these nine drool-worthy totes.

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STRAW PICKS

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1 // Sundry – Sea, Sun, Salt Straw Bag

2 // Sun ‘N’ Sand – Natural Straw Mini Crossbody Bag

3 // Filippo Catarzi – Striped Bow Straw Tote

4 // Lilly Pulitzer – Riviera Straw Tote Bag

5 // BaubleBar – Lemonade Straw Tote Bag

6 // T&J Designs – Straw Pom Pom Clutch

7 // Le Sera – Daybreak Multicolour Straw Tote Bag

8 // Alice + Olivia – ‘Stace Face’ Embellished Straw Tote

9 // Patricia Nash – Levanzo Straw Satchel

xoxo,

Alicia

Fragrance Friday | Baiser Volé


NAME OF FRAGRANCE | Baiser Volé by Cartier

NOTES | Citrus Fruits, Lily, Green Notes

VIBE | Romantic, Feminine, Innocent, Optimistic, Comforting, Bright

Think of how it would smell to shove your nose into a bouquet of sweet, fragrant lilies. That’s exactly what Baiser Volé, a soliflore fragrance by the prestigious jewelry line Cartier, smells like. I’ll tell you right now, if you love lilies, then this perfume will delight you. If you don’t like lilies, then don’t even bother with this one because it’s all lilies, all day long. I absolutely adore lilies so I love every aspect of this perfume, from the top to the very base.

Cartier Baiser Volé is a soliflore perfume and is very pretty, but is not in any way complex. It smells like lilies, plain and simple, but in a realistic way. What’s unique about this scent is the way that it uses notes that mimic the different parts of the lily, from the powdery pistil, to the creamy petals and crisp, green leaves. It opens with bright citruses and the pistil of the lily. When I first spray the fragrance, it smells very powdery and clean. The zestiness of the citrus fruits fade almost instantly. The heart is lily and nothing but, and without the fruits in the top, the lily smells a lot softer at this point, with just a hint of creaminess. This part of the fragrance is supposed to mimic the smell of the flower’s petals and it does the job perfectly. At this point, Baiser Volé is stunning in simplicity, just like a bouquet of white lilies.

The base of the fragrance is as minimalistic as the top and the heart, with only one complementing note of greenery alongside the lily. The slightly sharp green note is the base is reminiscent of the flower’s leaves. All that’s left on my skin is a powdery, floral trail with just a hint of green freshness that is barely detectable. Baiser Volé lasts for about 4-5 hours in total, but I don’t mind reapplying it throughout the day because it is that gorgeous. Soft and pretty, it’s absolutely perfect for spring but would work for summer too. In terms of when to wear it, Baiser Volé is a nice everyday perfume but is particularly suitable for special occasions. It’s not overly strong but projects far enough that you shouldn’t be surprised when you get a ton of people asking you what you’re wearing. This is definitely a scent that gets compliments and every time I wear it, I feel as pretty as a picture. If you love soliflores, and more importantly, if you love lilies, then you need to give this scent a try.

Have you tried Cartier’s Baiser Volé before? What did you think? Let me know in the comments!

xoxo,

Alicia

Splurge & Save | High End & Drugstore Beauty Favorites


I don’t think that it’s any secret that I’m a huge beauty junkie. While I do have a ton of different make up, skincare, and hair products littering my vanity, they aren’t all from high-end, trendy brands. There are certain products that are worth splurging on, just as there are a few holy grail drugstore items that rival even their most pricey counterparts. From my splurge-worthy swear-bys to the diamonds in the rough, these are the best beauty products out there, regardless of your budget. 

SPLURGE 


1 // Fresh – Lotus Youth Preserve Eye Cream

I am a bit of a night owl and so a good eye cream is a must for me. This anti-aging formula brightens my eyes and makes me look like I’ve gotten a good eight hours of sleep when really I’ve only gotten five. It also packs an anti-aging punch with star fruit extract and tons of antioxidants.

2 // Urban Decay – Naked Eye Shadow Palette

This is the holy grail of eye shadow palettes. It has it all – neutrals, blues and purples, metallics, and mattes. Whatever my mood, there is a delightfully high-pigmented shadow ready to go. It also never creases and lasts for ages. This palette may be a little pricey but it’s worth every penny and when mine bites the dust, you can bet that I will buy another ASAP. 

3 // Benefit – The Porefessional Face Primer

Seriously, this stuff is better than any foundation I have ever used. I don’t even need foundation after using this primer. It goes on like silk and blurs pores and imperfections until all you’re left with is baby smooth, porcelain doll-like skin. Add a touch of mascara and some tinted lip balm and you’re good to go!

4 // Marc Jacobs – Highliner Gel Eye Crayon

This is my favorite eyeliner. Why? It goes on smoothly, doesn’t tug at the delicate skin around my eyes, is highly pigmented, and it lasts all day long. It is also self sharpening. Why is there even such thing as eyeliners that you have to sharpen yourself in this day and age? But for real, this eyeliner looks as fresh at 8 pm as it does 8 am. Give it a try and see why it’s perfection itself.

5 // Fekkai – Salon Professional PrX Reparative Mask

The key to silky smooth strands is hydration. Fortified with hair-nourishing vitamins and Argan extract, this vanilla scented hair mask penetrates deeply into each hair shaft to smooth and condition, leaving it lustrous and soft. It also never hurts when your hair smells like sugar cookies. 

SAVE


1 // L’Oreal Paris – Voluminous Mascara in Carbon Black

I have tried many mascaras, from high-end designer to cheap dollar store versions. This inexpensive formula is one of the best out there. It leaves my lashes thick and fluttery. There’s practically a breeze when I bat my eyes. Bambi eyes are just a few clicks away. 

2 // Revlon – Ultra HD Matte Lip Colour in Addiction

This is the perfect matte lipstick. It glides on like a gloss and then dries to a plush, velvety magenta hue that brightens my face and makes me look polished and pretty. It also doesn’t dry my lips out which seems to be a common problem with matte and long-lasting lipsticks.

3 // Neutrogena – Hydro Boost Water Gel

Lightweight and cooling, this is my absolute favorite moisturizer in the summertime. It is formulated with purified hyaluronic acid and this gel formula sinks into the skin right away and deeply hydrates without leaving a greasy residue. It keeps my skin looking fresh and supple, but never shiny.

4 // Olay – 4-in-1 Combination/Oily Daily Facial Cloths

While I love indulging in a multi-step skincare routine on most days, sometimes I’m just too exhausted to cleanse, tone, and moisturize. Enter these delightfully multitasking cloths which whisk away makeup (even waterproof mascara), oil, dirt, and debris while toning my complexion, all in one go. They are absolutely perfect for low-maintenance ladies. Now there is no excuse for going to bed with a face full of makeup!

5 // Garnier – SKINACTIVE Micellar Cleansing Water (All-in-1 Waterproof Makeup Remover & Cleanser)

I’m sure you’ve heard of micellar water before – you know, that skincare product that all the models claim to use religiously and that every magazine raves about. It’s like this magical potion from heaven that takes off all of your makeup, cleanses and conditions skin. The best part? You don’t have to rinse it off! This formula is super gentle and removes literally everything, even my waterproof mascara. It’s like unicorn tears in a bottle. Lazy ladies, rejoice!

I hope you enjoyed this post! Do you have any favorite luxe/cheap beauty products that you think I should try? Let’s talk beauty! 

xoxo,

Alicia

Healthy (And Vegan!) Pancakes


There are few things I love more than breakfast and I especially love pancakes. The lazy Saturday mornings I spend making chocolate chip pancakes with my boyfriend are something I really look forward to and cherish.  That being said, lately I’ve decided to put more effort into my health and eating right. I’ve also started eating a vegetarian diet. Although I am not vegan and do eat dairy and eggs, I try to keep portions of those foods small and so I really love the idea of making dishes vegan whenever I can. This pancake recipe came from a friend and colleague and is as delicious as it is nutritious. It leaves out all of the things that could conceivably make pancakes unhealthy (refined sugar, dairy, white flour, eggs) but keeps the flavor and fluffy texture of the pancakes you’ve grown up eating. It’s also filled with energizing vitamins so you won’t feel sluggish after eating these like you would with a stack of flour-made pancakes! They are incredibly quick and easy to make – all you need is a blender and a mere handful of ingredients. Here’s how it’s done!

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 Cup Apple Sauce
  • 1 Mashed Banana
  • 2 Cups Oatmeal
  • 1 Tsp Vanilla Extract
  • * Extras ( I like raspberries, blueberries, and matcha tea powder)

DIRECTIONS

1 // Preheat a pan or skillet on medium heat. Grease the pan with a bit of coconut oil.

2 // Measure out the ingredients and dump them into your blender or food processor.

3 // Blend on a low speed until the ingredients are blended and have a consistency that resembles batter. If the consistency is too thick, add a little bit of coconut or almond milk.

4 // Use a soup ladle or 1/2 cup to scoop up the batter and pour it onto the hot pan.

5 // Cook the one side until small bubbles start to form. Flip the pancake and cook the other side (approximately 2 minutes). 

6 // Repeat until all of the batter is used up. Garnish with fresh fruit, whipped coconut cream, and a touch of syrup!

If you give these a try let me know how they turned out for you! Also, I’m on the look out for other good vegetarian or vegan recipes so if you have a great one, please share! 

xoxo,

Alicia

Brand Spotlight | Matt & Nat

I, like many other ladies, am always on the hunt for the perfect handbag. The word ‘perfect’ in regards to purses means different things for different people, but for me it means spacious (to carry my toiletries and all of the things a nomad like myself needs), well made, durable, stylish, and made out of eco-friendly materials. Montreal-based brand Matt & Nat knocks it out of the park on all counts when it comes to their line of vegan totes, backpacks, and purses. Even their clutches fit more than some of my shoulder bags! Their aesthetic is exactly my style – timeless, streamlined, with just a touch of quirk. And just when you think that it can’t get any better, not only does this brand dish out a mean selection of arm candy, but they also design some of the cutest shoes I’ve ever seen. And that’s saying something because shoes are kind of my thing. Since 1995, founders Indi Bedi and Manny Kohli have stuck to their vision of designing gorgeous accessories that are ethically made out of vegan (and often recycled) materials like nylon, cork, and rubber. Their pieces are beautiful inside and out, both figuratively and literally. Sure, the linings are almost as pretty as the bags themselves, but they are also designed with the belief that the well being of the environment and animals should never be sacrificed for fantastic style. And as someone who has decided to forgo animal products from her diet, I hold those values close to my heart as well. It makes sense for me to support brands and to buy products as frequently as possible that do not harm our furry friends. There are a lot of great vegan brands out there and Matt & Nat is one of the best. If you haven’t yet heard of this Canadian label, get ready to drool over your screen. I know that I do every time I peruse their selection.

MATT & NAT PICKS

1 // Jasmine Bag in Glass

2 // Obe Bag in Quartz

3 // Blake Weekend Bag in Olive

4 // Abiko Clutch in Coral

5 // Chanda Backpack in Azur

6 // Drapeau Slide Sandals in Black

7 // Suave Slide Sandals in Quartz

8 // Villeray Sandals in Tan

9 // Orford Tote in Koala

10 // Griffintown Mule in Tan

xoxo,

Alicia

Photos via Matt & Nat

Lavender Dreams

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Soft and soothing shades of lavender and lilac are an easy way to lend a touch of feminine sweetness into an otherwise pared down wardrobe of black, white, camel and grey. From accessories and beauty to your wardrobe and living space, a pop of purple is just what the design doctor ordered. So scroll on to feel the mood and check out 11 of my prettiest purple picks.

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LAVENDER BUYS

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1 // Elizabeth Arden – Touch of Lavender Eyes Wide Open Eye Shadow Trio

2 // Chicwish – Lavender Tulle Mini Skirt

3 // Origins – Calm To Your Senses Lavender and Vanilla Bath/Body Oil

4 // MAC – Colour Rocker Lipstick in Flatter Me Fierce

5 // Brixton – Lavender Corbet Fedora

6 // Love Stories – Hazel Stretch Lace & Jersey Soft Cup Triangle Bra

7 // Elizabeth and James – Leonie Cutout Stretch-piqué Mini Dress

8 // Humble Chic – Druzy Threader Dangle Earrings

9 // OPI – Infinite Shine Nail Polish in ‘In Pursuit of Purple’

10 // Tory Burch – Jolie Fleur Lavande Eau de Parfum

11 / Birkenstock – Lavender Suede Arizona Soft Footbeds

xoxo,

Alicia

Scent Saturday | Daisy Eau So Fresh


NAME OF FRAGRANCE | Daisy Eau So Fresh by Marc Jacobs

NOTES | Grapefruit, Green Notes, Raspberry, Pear, Jasmine, Rose, Violet, Litchi, Apple Blossom, Musk, Virginia Cedar, Plum

VIBE | Exuberant, Sparkling, Bright, Youthful, Playful, Energetic, Girly

In my opinion, it is rare that a sequel is ever as good as the original. Whether it’s a book, movie, or perfume, eight times out of ten the second (and third, and fourth) effort tends to fall a little flat. There are always exceptions to every rule and in this case, Marc Jacob’s Daisy Eau So Fresh is that exception.

Before I smelled this perfume for the first time, I expected to be underwhelmed. Because I loved Daisy so much, I thought that I would be making comparisons in my head favouring the original. After spraying it on my skin however, I was shocked to realize that (dun, dun, dun) I love it even more than Daisy. While Daisy is a beautifully composed scent, it’s very subdued and demure. It’s reigned in and perfectly pleasant but it doesn’t make a statement. Daisy Eau So Fresh is like the original’s bubbly, social butterfly of a younger sister. It’s youthful and sparkly like a sequined dress. If you enjoy fresh and fruity fragrances, then this energetic juice will be right up your alley.

Daisy Eau So Fresh opens with a glittering blend of grapefruit, fresh green notes, and juicy raspberry. The top is my favorite part of the scent. It’s so vibrant and uplifting – the kind of opening that instantly puts you in a good mood. After a little while the fruits begin to mellow and the soft bouquet of jasmine, rose, violet, and apple blossom start to take centre stage. It’s still sweet and fruity with a bit of litchi intermingling with the flowers in the heart. It’s at this point of the fragrance that it starts to become more mature and sophisticated. It’s still youthful and flirty, but it’s a little more complex at this point. The heart lasts for about two or three hours before it starts to dry down into the base of the scent. Woodsy cedar and clean musk are sweetened by a touch of juicy plum. The end of the perfume is very clean and subtle. It doesn’t quite glitter with bright fruity notes like it does when you first spray it on, but it shimmers with just a bit of fruit and musk. It’s a very pleasant drydown and I feel like it really ties the different layers of the scent together.

Daisy Eau So Fresh is a great perfume for any occasion whether it’s formal or casual. It’s a very fresh, fruity scent that is especially suited for spring or summer. While it has a youthful vibe, Daisy Eau So Fresh is lovely on people of all ages – I wear it and so does my 76 year old great aunt. I’m a firm believer in the idea that perfume is ageless and that people should wear whatever scent they enjoy. It’s just a beautifully composed, perfectly blended, happy scent that puts me in a great mood whenever I wear it. If you were a fan of the original Daisy, or are just looking for a fun, fruity scent, I highly recommend that you give this gem a try.

Any Daisy/Daisy Eau So Fresh fans out there? Let me know what you think of this scent or if there are any perfumes you think that I should review next! 

xoxo,

Alicia

Let It Slide


It’s official: slides are THE shoe of the season. Whether they are sleek and streamlined or fully decked out in faux fur and bling – slides of all kinds are having a major moment. And with drool-worthy options from brands like Maryam Nasser Zadeh and Dolce Vita, it’s pretty much guaranteed that you’ll find a few pairs that you can’t live without. So here’s to effortless dressing, from head to peep toe. Check out 9 of my absolute favorite summer slides below. Keep on scrolling!

SLIDE PICKS


1 // Loeffler Randall – Vera Ruffle Block Heel Slide Sandals

2 // Barneys New York – Satin Double-Band Slide Sandal

3 // Maryam Nassir Zadeh – Lauren Slides

4 // Dolce Vita – Rilee Slides

5 // H&M – Faux Fur Slides

6 // Make Me Chic – Heart Eyes Emoji Slide Sandals

7 // Brother Vellies – Burkina Striped Bow Leather Slides

8 // Alexander Wang – Suede Lou Slides

9 // Donald J Pliner – Bold Suede Slide

xoxo,

Alicia

Non-Boring Low Calorie Cocktails


I’ll say it – I love a refreshing cocktail, especially as a way of relaxing after a long work day. And while I may enjoy a glass (or three) of crisp white wine or a frosty margarita, I do not enjoy the extra pounds that I gain after indulging in a few too many of those tasty bad boys. That being said, cocktails can be a part of a healthy diet. The key? Moderation and recipes that call for little to no added sugar. So without further ado, here are seven bevvies that you and your waistline will love! 


Photo and Recipe via My Crazy Good Life

1 // 100 Calorie Coconut Margarita 

Put the lime in the coconut but leave out the sugar. Using stevia instead of sugar cuts a ton of calories from this cocktail, while the coconut water is filled with antioxidants and electrolytes. Translation? The hangover and puffy face that many get after drinking won’t be a thing. Now that’s something to raise a glass to!

INGREDIENTS

  • Ice (crushed or cubes)
  • 1.5 oz Tequila
  • 1/2 Lime Juice 
  • 3 oz Coconut Water
  • *1 tbsp Stevia
  • Soda Water

Photo and Recipe via The Taylor House

2 // Fruity Moscato Wine Spritzer

Fresh fruit, fragrant Moscato, and soda water are the three main ingredients in this low cal recipe. This pretty poopsie is super flavourful but light. In other words, it’s the perfect summer sipper!

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 Bottle Moscato Wine
  • 1 Bottle of Soda Water
  • 1 Cup Diced Strawberries
  • Lemon Slices

Photo and Recipe via Pretty Providence

3 // Skinny Piña Colada Slushies

A piña colada that is not chock full of empty calories? This is not a drill. With coconut water and milk, sugar-free flavour drops and a bit of dark rum, this cocktail is every bit as delicious as the classic recipe, but is waaay healthier. Go ahead. Have another.

INGREDIENTS 

  • 2 Cups Sugar-Free Coconut Milk
  • 2 Cups Coconut Water
  • 2 Squirts Dasani Pineapple Coconut Drops
  • 2 oz Dark Rum


Photo and Recipe via bird + cleaver

4 // Wasabi Bloody Mary

With zero added sugar and vitamin rich tomato juice, this lighter take on the bloody mary is a savoury treat with a fiery kick. Some people say that spicy foods and drinks rev up your metabolism, but even if that’s not the case, this tasty drink is a much healthier option when you’re craving a ceaser or Bloody Mary. Drink your veggies!

INGREDIENTS

  • 4 oz Vodka
  • 12 oz Tomato Juice
  • 1/4 to 1/2 Teaspoon Wasabi 
  • 4- 6 Dashes Sriracha (to taste)
  • 1 oz Lime Juice
  • 4 Dashes Worcestershire Sauce
  • 2 Pinches Celery Salt


Photo and Recipe via Peanut Butter & Peppers

5 // Skinny Watermelon Mojito

The only thing that can improve a refreshing, minty mojito? Sweet chunks of watermelon! Not only is this pink fruit super tasty, it’s also hydrating and filled with potassium. Sip this frosty treat with way less calories and zero guilt. 

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 Cup Watermelon (seeded and chopped)
  • ½ Lime (juiced)
  • 4 Mint Leaves
  • Ice
  • 1 oz. White Rum 
  • Club Soda


Photo and Recipe via Camille Styles

6 // Fresh Grapefruit Greyhound 

If you’re not a fan of super sweet drinks, then this tart combination of grapefruit juice and vodka is sure to please your palate. Also, this refreshing drink is pretty easy on the waistline! A good rule of thumb when it comes to healthy eating (and drinking) – the fewer ingredients involved, the better. This recipe calls for only three and zero refined sugar. Bottoms up!

INGREDIENTS

  • 3 oz Vodka
  • 6 oz Freshly Squeezed Grapefruit Juice
  • 6 oz Club Soda


Photo and Recipe I Breathe I’m Hungry 

7 // Low Carb Sparkling White Wine Sangria

Stevia is kind of a magic ingredient when it comes to sugar replacements. It’s zero calories but it’s also all natural – no nasty aspartame here! I use it when baking and in my coffee. Why didn’t I think of using it to sweeten cocktails? It does the job perfectly and without a side of guilt. Add a little bit of this non-sugar-sugar to some bourbon, peaches (I prefer frozen), vodka, and mandarin soda water and you have a tangy toast that rivals your favorite belini. Enjoy!

INGREDIENTS

  • 1/2 Cup Peaches (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 tbsp Lime Juice
  • 1/4 Cup Sugar-Free Mango Flavoured Syrup
  • 2 tbsp Granulated Stevia
  • 1/4 Cup Bourbon
  • 1/2 Cup Vodka
  • 24 oz Mandarin Flavoured Seltzer Water

I don’t know about you but it feels like cocktail hour! If you try any of these, let me know what you think! 

xoxo,

Alicia

pamela-love-brand-spotlight

Designer Spotlight | Pamela Love

If you haven’t heard of Pamela Love, well then prepare to fall in love with this Brooklyn designer’s jaw-dropping line of jewelry, made entirely in Manhattan’s artsy garment district. What began in her apartment in 2006 has blossomed into a coveted cool-girl line of jewelry and booming brand. Since her eponymous label’s conception, Pamela has partnered with big names in the fashion industry like Zac Posen, Monique Lhullier, and TopShop. When looking at her collection of edgy everyday pieces and fine jewelry, it’s not hard to see why Pamela Love has become the success that she has. Her pieces are like miniature sculptures crafted out of silver and gold, embedded with stones that often seem to be from another planet. Honestly, her rings, necklaces, bracelets, and earrings are wearable works of art. Every collection she creates is innovative and unexpected, but they are united in their uniqueness and unmatched quality. Seriously, there’s not one piece that doesn’t make me drool over my credit card.

As if her beautiful designs weren’t enough to thrust her into the fashion stratosphere, Pamela Love also prides herself on treading as lightly on the environment as possible. The fashion and jewelry industry are often thought of as being wasteful when it comes to manufacturing, but Pamela Love ensures that sustainability and environmentally friendly practices are woven into the fabric of her business. She uses recycled materials and ethically sourced stones when creating her pieces. The fact that everything is made domestically is also a major reason to love this designer. Beautiful design with a conscience? Here’s to that. If you’re the type of girl that likes to make a statement with her jewelry and abhors cookie-cutter design, then scroll on. I challenge you to not become obsessed with all things Pamela Love.

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MY PICKS

1 // Lasso Choker

2 // Large Stratum Pendant

3 // Hydra Collar

4 // Large Lee Pendant

5 // Large Stratum Ring

6 // Agnes Ring

7 // Large Satellite Ear Jacket

8 // Lee Earring

9 // Kendrick Cuff

10 // Mojave Hoops

xoxo,

Alicia

Daisies For Days


One of my favorite things about summer is the way that daisies start popping up everywhere. Even the most unkempt of fields are made beautiful by a smattering of these white and yellow flowers. I’ve always loved daisies but have become more obsessed with them as of late, and have taken to wearing jewelry and accessories that are covered in them. There is something about them that just makes me feel happy. Not to sound insane, but they look like they are smiling. They are like happy, cartoon flowers. If I was a flower, I would be a daisy. In my opinion, every day should be filled with daisies, whether they’re decorating your garden or your body.

DAISY PICKS

1 // Doll’s Kill – Blue Denim Daisy Satchel Backpack

2 // Tillys – Full Tilt Daisy Daze Sunglasses

3 // Marc Jacobs – Limited Edition White Daisy Eau de Toilette

4 // Zaful – Daisy Print High Waisted Bikini Set

5 // Pilot – Daisy Print Bardot Crop Top

6 // Dorothy Perkins – Orange Daisy Print A-line Skirt

7 // Charlotte Russe – Daisy Crochet & Denim Choker Necklaces

8 // Eternal Collection – Daisy Enamel Silver Tone Drop Earrings

9 // Pretty Little Thing – Light Wash Daisy Trim Denim Shorts

10 // Olivia Burton – Flower Show Moulded Daisy Watch

xoxo,

Alicia

Appliqué 


Fashions been getting all kind of crafty lately and patched on details are making waves on the runways as far as the eye can see, with heavyweight houses like Dolce & Gabbana and Rodarte showcasing intricately appliquéd collections for day and night. 3D flowers, butterflies, and birds – you name it – are adding dimension to otherwise simple pieces, both figuratively and literally. I’m kind of in love with this trend and have gathered nine pieces that I think will make you want to drink the koolaid too.


APPLIQUÉ PICKS

1 // Pretty Little Thing – Contrast Nude Appliqué Body Swimsuit

2 // For Love and Lemons – Heliotrope Appliqué Bralette

3 // Kurt Geiger – Mistres Appliqué Detail Denim Heeled Sandal

4 // Mango – Fringed Appliqué Necklace

5 // Shoespie – Sunshine Flower Appliqued Shoulder Bag

6 // Pretty Little Thing – Debi Nude 90s Neck Appliqué Swimsuit

7 // Zaful – Floral Appliqué Drawstring Romper

8 // Pretty Little Thing – Corrissa Blue Stripe Rose Appliqué Shorts

9 // Helenstip – Beige Cherry Appliqué Straw Chain Bag

xoxo,

Alicia

Fragrance Friday | White Potion by Ayala Moriel 


NAME OF FRAGRANCE | White Potion by Ayala Moriel

NOTES | Ylang-Ylang, Rosewood, Grapefruit, Tuberose, Jasmine, Gardenia, Sandalwood, Tonka Bean, Coconut

VIBE | Feminine, Ethereal, Exotic, Sweet, Sensual

I love white floral fragrances, but this enchanting perfume is one of my all time favorites (and Ayala Moriel is one of my favorite perfumers). With creamy notes of coconut, tonka bean, and sandalwood enveloping the three main flowers – jasmine, gardenia, and tuberose – White Potion has a sensual, dessert-like undertone that is totally intoxicating. I feel like people either love or hate white floral perfumes because they can often be very strong and overwhelmingly floral. White Potion is not like that. It’s soft and ethereal, evoking images of moonlit beaches, wildflowers, and elfin girls in white, flowing dresses. It’s what I love to wear when I want to feel extra pretty.

When this fragrance first touches my skin, the notes that stand out the most are tuberose, coconut, and ylang-ylang. The tuberose is rich, almost carnal, but is tamed by the creaminess of the coconut and ylang-ylang. At this point the fragrance is a beachy white floral with just a hint of spiciness, likely from the rosewood and sandalwood.

As White Potion starts to unfold further, the other florals start to become more prominent, with jasmine and gardenia coming out of the shadows and into the forefront. The scent is a lot heavier at this point, but it never becomes overwhelming. Jasmine, gardenia, and tuberose are powerful flowers – they are like the divas of the garden – and it’s kind of amazing to me that White Potion never smells overpowering or strongly floral. Like all of Ayala’s scents, it’s perfectly balanced and the other notes (grapefruit, tonka bean, sandalwood, coconut, rosewood, and ylang-ylang) compliment the three main flowers flawlessly.

The dry down is very subtle, in part because it is a natural perfume made with plant essences. After the opulent white blooms have dissipated, what’s left on my skin is a slightly sweet, milky trace of coconut and sandalwood. It’s light and soothing, like drinking a glass of steamed milk before bed. It’s the kind of intimate scent that you can only smell when you lean in close for a hug. It doesn’t project far or fill the room, but this kind of adds to its appeal. Because it’s made of all natural ingredients, White Potion (and all of Ayala’s scents) is great for people who are sensitive to synthetic, mass-produced perfumes. In terms of when to wear this, I think it’s nice for everyday but it’s especially fitting for romantic situations. It’s a creamy and sensual scent that is sure to earn you plenty of compliments. It also puts me in a mellow mood when I wear it which is a big deal because I am a giant spaz by nature. If you love white floral and creamy, sweet scents, then it’s going to be love at first sniff. It was for me!

Have you tried White Potion or any of Ayala’s other scents (if you haven’t, then you should!)? What did you think? Let’s chat in the comments!

xoxo,

Alicia

June Playlist | R&R


No matter what mood I’m in, music has the power to alter my state of mind, change my perspective, and make me feel in ways that other art forms can’t. When I’m stressed out (which has been quite a bit lately), I light some candles, put on some music and unwind in a bubble bath, letting the events of the day float on and away with the melody. What I listen to depends on what I need. If I need to be pumped up, I’ll put on some late nineties/early aughts tunes or Britney Spears. If I am irritable, I’ll put on Christina Aguilera’s 2002 album ‘Stripped’ (this was the first album that made me fall in love with music as a kid). When I need to relax and let go of tension, there are a handful of songs that I always turn to. From Enya’s ethereal melodies to Jack Johnson’s gentle strumming, this is my go-to playlist for when I need a little R&R. Enjoy!

1 // Enya – Solace

2 // Jack Johnson – Banana Pancakes

3 // The Beatles – Fool On The Hill

4 // Niall Horan – This Town

5 // Tegan and Sara – Call It Off

6 // Jason Mraz – Who Needs Shelter

7 // Chet Faker – Gold

8 // Patrick Park – Life Is A Song

9 // Josh Garrels – Slip Away

10 // Adele – Chasing Pavement

11 // Jack Johnson – Upside Down

xoxo,

Alicia

High Tea at Home


I am someone who truly believes that almost all problems can be made a little better with tea. Happy? Sad? Peeved? Tea is the answer to everything. My love of tea has definitely been passed down by my mom. Ever since I was a little girl she would collect tea cups and teas. Some of my earliest memories as a child are of hosting tea parties with my dolls as the guests and my mom pretending to sip on invisible tea. Flash forward 18 years and I still love tea parties. My mom and I especially love sitting down for high tea, although it has always been a special and infrequent treat because of how expensive it is. I started thinking about ways that I could recreate that luxe high tea experience at home and I came up with these 5 tips and tricks. Here’s how to host an intimate and elevated high tea experience at home and without breaking the bank.

1. Break out the pretty china.

Save your university mugs for another time. High tea is the time to channel your inner Marie Antoinette and bring out dishes, cups and cutlery that look like little works of art. It will just add to the whole experience and impress your guests to boot.

2. Set the mood with scents.

Our sense of smell is deeply entwined with our memories and emotions. Though it may seem simple, lighting a scented candle, burning some incense, or putting out a dish of potpourri can really create a beautiful atmosphere. You can also choose specific scents depending on the season or occasion – for example, I love soft floral scents in the spring and summer, and woody candles in the fall and winter.

3. Prep some salty and sweet appetizers.

You can’t have a high tea without serving some nibbles! It’s always best to serve a variety of different flavours, with savoury and sugary options to please all of your guests’ tastes.


4. Keep a variety of teas.

This may seem obvious, but it’s important to have a few different options on hand to suit your guests’ preferences. Some people only drink green tea, while others prefer classic black. It’s also a good idea to offer a herbal tea as well, just in case someone is sensitive to caffeine. Keep things interesting with a variety of flavours – think floral jasmine, sweet vanilla, and classic earl grey.


5. Leave a lasting impression.

It’s always a sweet touch to have a little takeaway token prepared to give your guests when they leave. They don’t need to be big or expensive, just a small gift to thank your guests for coming and to remind them of your high tea! Handmade gifts have a personal touch that you just can’t get from a store, and I love the idea of centering your gift around, what else? Tea. And how cute are these tea cup planters?!

xoxo,

Alicia

Vegetarian Enchiladas


Photo via WeHeartIt

For a long time I have wanted to adopt a vegetarian diet and I have finally decided to take a leap and just do it. I know that there are going to be challenges ahead of me – mainly battling temptation while eating with my family and boyfriend, all of whom love meat and think I’m a bit of lunatic for trying to give it up again. Maybe now that I have put this out into the webosphere I will feel like I’m held even more accountable for my eating habits. I’m super stoked to try more vegetarian dishes and I decided to try and replicate one of my favorite meals – enchiladas – without using any meat. I made this for my boyfriend the other day and he said that he couldn’t even tell that it was meatless. It was flavourful and filling, and a lot lighter in calories than the enchiladas I used to make. It was also super easy! Whether or not you are a vegetarian, I am pretty confident that you will enjoy this dish!

INGREDIENTS

  • 6 Whole Wheat Tortillas
  • 2 Cups of Veggie Ground
  • 1 Onion
  • 1 Bell Pepper
  • 1 tbsp Garlic Powder
  • 1/2 tbsp Chili Powder (or to taste)
  • Dash of Salt
  • Dash of Pepper
  • 1/2 Cup of Enchilada Sauce
  • 2 Cups of Shredded Cheese
  • 1 Can of Lima Beans


Photo via WeHeartIt

DIRECTIONS

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees (Celsius).

2. Chop the onion into small cubes and sautée with olive oil and the veggie ground. Add the garlic powder, salt, pepper, and chili powder. Sautée for 10 minutes or until the onions are translucent.

3. Grease a baking dish with a bit of olive oil (or coconut oil) and lay out tortillas.

4. Pour enchilada sauce into a bowl (I used pre-made sauce) and scoop a spoonful onto a tortilla and spread the sauce from edge to edge, covering the tortilla. Scoop a couple of spoonfuls of the veggie mixture into the tortilla and sprinkle cheese on top. Roll the wrap and place into the baking dish. Repeat this and line up the enchiladas until all of the mixture is used up.

5. Pour the remaining enchilada sauce on top of the enchiladas and spread it as evenly as possible across. Finally, sprinkle the rest of the cheese on top of the enchiladas.

6. Bake for 15 minutes. Serve with salsa, sour cream, cilantro and guacamole. Enjoy!

If you try this recipe, let me know what you think! Also, if anyone has any vegetarian recipes you think I should try, let me know in the comments!

 

xoxo,

Alicia

Brand Spotlight | BaYou with Love

If you’ve read anything about actress Nikki Reed, you’ll know that she is a busy, busy lady with an awe-inspiring collection of job titles. Not only is she a successful actress and musician, but she is also a passionate conservationist and champion of animal rights. Now she can also add ‘designer’ to her list of occupations, as she has partnered with Morgan Bogle (the founder of Freedom of Animals) to launch the eco-chic lifestyle brand BaYou With Love.

So what kind of products can you find within the label? Pretty much everything from clothing and loungewear to beauty. Everything within the line is made out of environmentally friendly materials – think organic cotton, tencel, cupro, and recycled canvas. The clothes are also gorgeous, with loose, flowy silhouettes, muted colours, and subtle details. This chambray dress is my favorite and is just the kind of effortless piece I would want as my summer uniform. Natural clothes have a reputation for looking frumpy but that is SO not the case with this line. Every piece is beautiful with a laid back California feel. 

Just like the clothes, the beauty products are also lovingly crafted out of natural materials, such as olive oil, calendula, and plant-based essential oils. I am particularly intrigued by the BYL Multi-Purpose Skin Balm which can be used anywhere on your body that needs a little extra moisture and TLC. It’s vegan, biodegradable, and scented with soothing lavender. So basically it’s just the thing you want to slather on your body after a post-yoga shower!

Aside from the fact that all of the products are beautiful and high quality, one of my favorite things about BaYou With Love is its commitment to sustainability and USA production. Every single piece is made in the United States which helps to support local artisans and ethically run factories. From the health of the planet to the health of the people who wear these items, BaYou With Love is designed for people who are mindful about what they put on their bodies and how those decisions affect the planet. It is a beautiful line with beautiful values at its core. I’m inspired by its message and believe that brands that support independent artists, local production, and sustainable practices are so important and I hope that one day those kinds of brand values aren’t selling points, but that they are the norm. If you haven’t checked this new brand out yet, you are in for a treat! 

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1 // Chambray Dress

2 // Canvas Button Top

3 // Button Down Jumpsuit

4 // Wide Leg Pants

5 // Plant Oil Perfume

6 // Sustainable Tea Blanket

7 // BYL Multi-Purpose Skin Balm

8 // Pajama Petal Shorts

9 // Pajama Box Top

10 // Over Sized Backpack

All Photos via Bayou With Love

xoxo,

Alicia

Lemon Chiffon 


Why, hello sunshine! Whether or not the weather outside is sunny or grey, cheerful shades of lemon, daffodil, and vanilla are instant mood boosters. Yellow is also surprisingly easy to wear! It warms the complexion and gives the face a sunny glow even if you haven’t spent much time outside. If you’re unsure about wearing yellow (like so many people are), start slow with accessories. I have no doubt that over time you will see the light. And if you need a little extra convincing, scroll on and peruse these sunny images and lovely pieces.

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lemon-chiffon-picks

LEMON PICKS

1 // New Look – Pale Yellow Floral Print Jumpsuit

2 // Castañer – Raffia Braided Sandals

3 // Clinique – Yellow Genius Nail Polish

4 // MAC – Nice Energy Veluxe Pearl Eye Shadow

5 // Alex and Ani – Colour Classics Soleil Beaded Bracelet

6 // Sophia Webster – Evie Butterfly Leather Shoulder Bag

7 // Fiestaware – Yellow Cream & Sugar Set

8 // WearAll – Bobbie Gypsy Off-Shoulder Top

9 // Theory – Cropped Trousers

xoxo,

Alicia

Jump On It

Jumpsuit-Streetstyle-Collage
One and done. That’s my go-to formula for summer dressing. When the temperature rises the last thing any of us want to do is put on any layers or think too hard about our outfits. Getting dressed should be a simple affair and sometimes putting on a shirt and shorts feels like way too much effort. Enter the jumpsuit. You step in, you step out. Wam bam thank you ma’am. So in preparation for the upcoming season, I’ve rounded up 8 jumpsuits that I, quite frankly, need in my closet. Enjoy.

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JUMPSUIT PICKS

jumpsuit-Collage

1 // Mara Hoffman – Striped Organic Cotton Jumpsuit (Splurge Alert)

2 // Alice McCall – Wildhood Cutout Printed Jumpsuit (Splurge Alert)

3 // H&M – Black Satin Jumpsuit

4 // Zaful – Off Shoulder Wide Leg Striped Jumpsuit

5 // Boohoo – Mona Bardot Floral Culotte Jumpsuit

6 // Dorothy Perkins – Tenki Striped Jumpsuit in Maroon

7 // River Island – Nude Tie Waist Sleeveless Culotte Jumpsuit

8 // Sans Souci – Metallic Foil Slinky Jumpsuit

xoxo,

Alicia

Fragrance Friday | J by Jennifer Aniston

j-by-Jennifer-Aniston-Fragrance
NAME OF FRAGRANCE | J by Jennifer Aniston

NOTES | Bergamot, Water Lily, Salty Sea Accord, Magnolia, Freesia, Sambac Jasmine, Sandalwood, Tahitian Bourbon, Vanilla, Musk

VIBE | Breezy, Calming, Soft, Casual, Beachy, Clean

First, let me start off by saying I love Jennifer Aniston. I think that she is so beautiful, strong and intelligent. She just radiates class and integrity. So naturally, it came as no surprise to me that I loved this perfume as soon as I smelled it. It’s feminine, soothing, refreshing and beachy, with just a touch of elegance. In other words, all the adjectives I would use to describe Jennifer Aniston. So what does it actually smell like note by note? Let me break it down for you.

J by Jennifer Aniston is a beachy floral scent that opens with notes of bergamot, water lily and salty sea accord. When you first spritz it on it smells very fresh but not citrusy fresh. More like beachy, ‘ocean air blowing into your face’ fresh. I love that the salty sea accord doesn’t smell overdone or synthetic. All too often sea accords smell harsh and astringent (like cleaning products) but it was very well done here. The bergamot and water lily just accentuate the freshness of the top but they don’t stand out. I love this part of the scent the most. It’s uplifting and instantly makes me think of lazy summer days spent on the beach.

As the scent progresses, the heart unfolds with a bouquet of powdery white flowers. Magnolia, freesia, and jasmine are the notes that give J its very clean, powdery vibe. At this point it kind of smells like Coppertone sunscreen. It’s sweet but not gourmand , and it’s floral but the flowers are very soft and subdued. What I love so much about the heart is that it smells beachy, but it’s not because of any synthetic tropical fruits or citruses. The sea accord and subtle flowers give it a salty, sunblock smell that is so nostalgic and refreshing.

As the scent concludes, all that is left on your skin is a warm trail of sandalwood with a delicate kiss of vanilla infused bourbon. It reminds me of a bonfire that you would sit in front of after you’ve spent all day at the beach. At this point I can totally picture the scenario – I have sand in between my toes and all I can smell is the ocean, and the hot whiskey I’m drinking by the fire. It’s not a gourmand dry down, but the vanilla bourbon adds just a touch of sweetness and sexiness. It’s whisper soft at this point. It’s the kind of skin scent that you need to lean in close to smell (which only adds to its subtle sexiness).

Long story short, J by Jennifer Aniston is a lovely everyday kind of perfume. It’s long lasting yet subtle. It never overpowers and it tends to earn compliments from both ladies and gentlemen alike. It’s a breezy, beachy scent that is perfect for day or night (thanks to the sultry basenote of vanilla bourbon). Like your favorite pair of blue jeans, J is a scent that is sure to bring a smile to your face every time that you put it on. 

Have you smelled J by Jennifer Aniston? What did you think of it? Let me know in the comments!

xoxo,

Alicia

A Lipstick For Every Occasion


I’m a total lipstick addict and have over 30 shades in my makeup kit, so I have definitely done the leg work when it comes to going out and testing lip colours. While we all have our favorites, certain lipsticks work better for some situations than others. With this notion in mind, I have categorized five lipsticks depending on the occasion they are best suited for. Going out with the girls? Have an important meeting or job interview? There’s a lipstick for that.

EVERYDAY

Your everyday lipstick should be your absolute favorite of your collection. It should be your holy grail of lip colours. The kind where you put it on and you feel pretty, even if your hair is greasy and your skin is spotty. The most flattering lipstick I own is this rosey, coppery, red hue (N9) from Makeup Forever. I first tried it three years ago when I received it as a gift and I’ve never looked back. It’s not too dark or bold but gives my face a flattering boost of colour. It’s a timeless, seasonless shade that I wear all year round and I am pretty confident you would love it too. I’ve yet to see a complexion this baby didn’t look amazing on.

My Pick: Makeup Forever – Rouge Artist Natural Lipstick in N9


AT THE OFFICE

To me, an ideal office lipstick would be one that is neutral enough to go with whatever I am wearing, whether I’m at a meeting or a casual office barbecue. It should be flattering yet subtle. This mauve-nude shade fits the bill perfectly. It’s also super moisturizing and lasts for ages, so you won’t have to touch up as much during the day!

My Pick – Mellow Creamy Matte Lipstick in Nude


DATE NIGHT

First things first, whatever you wear to a date should make you feel beautiful. If pink isn’t your jam, then wear whatever colour of the rainbow tickles your pickle. Personally, I love this retro shade of pale pink. It’s subtle, sweet and instantly brightens up my face, making me look a little bit more polished but not overdone.

My Pick – Revlon – Matte Lipstick in Pink Pout


COCKTAIL HOUR

A night out with the ladies calls for a look-at-me shade that lasts all night. Case in point, this cheerful coral stain from fashion designer Cynthia Rowley’s beauty line! It’s the perfect coral hue – not too pink, not too orange. Plus the formula is super moisturizing!

My Pick: Cynthia Rowley – Creamy Lip Stain in Valentine


FORMAL AFFAIR

This deep magenta hue really makes an impact when walking into a room. Which is exactly what you want when you’re dressing up fancy! What I love most about this product is the formula. It goes on like a gloss and then dries into a plush, matte finish. It’s also a gorgeous, juicy shade for summer, reminiscent of raspberry sorbet!

My Pick: Revlon – UltraHD Matte Lip Color in Addiction

xoxo,

Alicia

Summer Beauty Trends I Love 


Summer is just around the corner and you know what that means. It’s time to switch up your beauty routine! The warmer months are all about playful, low maintenance makeup and hair. It’s effortless and colourful. It’s the season to take risks, whether it’s with a new hair colour, or a swipe of violet mascara. I’ve scoured fashion magazines and blogs so you don’t have to, and out of everything that I have seen, these are my five favorite beauty trends for summer.


 

1 // LILAC LIPS

Pale purple lips might seem hard to pull off but they are shockingly flattering and totally pop against a tan. Make sure that your pout is silky smooth before applying this bold shade – a yummy coffee flavored scrub will do the trick nicely. Simple eye makeup and an even, matte complexion will let your lilac lipstick take centre stage.

NYX – Golden BB Cream

Ilia – Lip Gloss in Back To Life

NARS – Eyeliner Stylo

Java Skincare – Organic Green Coffee Lip Scrub


glassy-eyed-makeup

2 // GLASSY EYED

Lip gloss is cool, but do you know what’s even cooler? Eye gloss. That’s right – you heard me. Simply apply a layer of this shiny lacquer over your favorite eye shadow and watch your peepers pop. A bronzed complexion and groomed brows will make you look even more like the glowing goddess you are.

Saint Laurent – Eye Gloss Smudger

Beauty is Life – Shiny Eye Shadow

Fresh – Sugar Rose Tinted Lip Treatment SPF 15

Maybelline – Great Lash Clear Mascara



3 // BLUE JEAN BABY

Blue eye shadow is often synonymous with tackiness. It shouldn’t be! Much like your favorite pair of jeans, blue eye shadow is a time-tested classic, whether you prefer deep cobalt or periwinkle. Pro tip: baby blue lids look especially beautiful with petal pink lips and thick, fluttery lashes.

Bobbi Brown – Extreme Party Mascara in Black

BWC – Mineral Duo Eyeshadow in Ultramarine

L’Oreal Paris – Brow Artist Genius Kit

Benefit Cosmetics – Posiebalm Hydrating Tinted Lip Balm



4 // PINK LADY

This trend takes the phrase ‘pretty in pink’ to the next level. Rosy shades will instantly warm up your complexion and make you look glowy and fresh. But don’t just limit this shade to your lips and cheeks! From the runway to street style shots, hot pink lids are making a bold and trendy statement.

MBA Cosmetics (Etsy) – Loose Mineral Eyeshadow in Pinkalicious

Tarte – Cheek Stain in Tipsy

Clarins – Eyebrow Pencil in Light Brown

Winky Lux – Pink Flower Lip Balm



5 // LASHING OUT

You can never go wrong with thick, voluminous lashes. The only way to improve this look is by swiping on a layer of brightly coloured mascara! Emerald, violet, navy, and even ruby red are all some of the season’s trendiest hues for lashes. Also, if you’re hesitant to go all out with a coloured eye shadow or liner, mascara is a subtle way to wear colour. So go ahead and dress up your lids!

NYX – Color Mascara in Purple

Colour Pop – Highlighter Trio in Waffle

MAC – Eye Shadow in Bronze

Maybelline – Color Sensational The Buffs Nude Lipstick

xoxo,

Alicia

Chocolate Face Mask DIY


Photo via Hello Glow

Let’s face it – most of us are addicted to chocolate. And while my favorite way to indulge with this sweet treat is to eat it, cocoa (what chocolate is made from) is actually packed full of antioxidants and other nutrients that are great for your complexion. This mask DIY is inspired by the ever-so-popular Cupcake mask from LUSH, but with my own tweaks to make it more moisturizing and suitable for my dry and sensitive skin. It’s comprised of only five ingredients and most of them can be found in your fridge. So kick back and relax with this super indulgent mask, a glass of wine, and your favorite Netflix series. Just try not to eat it! 

WHAT YOU’LL NEED

  • 1 Tsp Cocoa Powder
  • 1/2 Cup Kaolin Powder
  • 1/2 Plain Yogurt
  • 1/2 Tsp Vanilla Absolute
  • 1 Tsp Honey 

Cocoa Powder – Rich in antioxidants, cocoa powder helps to detoxify your skin of the harmful free radicals in the environment. It gives the skin a healthy glow while keeping it supple and youthful.

Kaolin – This absorbent clay sops up excess oil and purges skin of impurities. 

Plain Yogurt – Unsweetened yogurt soothes irritated skin and acts as a natural moisturizer. The lactic acid also acts as a gentle exfoliant, dissolving dead skin cells.

Vanilla Absolute – This yummy smelling essential oil calms redness and gives the skins a more even appearance.

Honey – Honey has been used for centuries as a natural moisturizer and antiseptic. Not only does it zap zits and kill bacteria, it also acts as a humectant, drawing moisture from the environment and into your skin. 

DIRECTIONS

1) Measure out the dry ingredients (cocoa powder and kaolin) and set aside in a small bowl. Mix until the kaolin and cocoa powder are well blended. 

2) Next add the yogurt, vanilla absolute, and honey. The mask should have a paste-like consistency that is similar to icing (it will smell like icing too!). If you don’t like the consistency of your mask, customize it by adding more yogurt or more kaolin. 

3) Spread the mask over your entire face, avoiding the delicate area around your eyes. Leave on for ten minutes, then wash off and apply moisturizer. 

4) Enjoy your silky soft, matte skin!

If you give this mask a try, let me know what you think in the comments! I hope you enjoy it!

xoxo,

Alicia


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Designer Spotlight | Gentle Fawn 

When it comes to comfy, casual wardrobe staples, it’s pretty hard to compete with Gentle Fawn. This Vancouver-based label was launched thirteen years ago by Daniel and Carla Fogg. Their inspiration? An antique collection of ceramic fawns – hence, the brand’s adorable name and logo. Since then Gentle Fawn has grown into a celebrated line of high-quality basics and is now sold in more than 600 shops across North America.

What defines this Canadian brand’s aesthetic is a commitment to creating pieces that are flattering and effortless. Gentle Fawn is always easy to wear, whether you need a flowy sundress for a summer barbecue (one that is roomy enough to let you indulge without displaying your food baby) or a crisp blazer for your dream job interview. Nothing is overtly trendy and if you are looking for fads, you won’t find them in a Gentle Fawn collection. Instead, look to this lovely label for beautiful fabrics, forgiving silhouettes, and simple staples that are made interesting with subtle details, like a sheer lace back or asymmetrical hemline.

Gentle Fawn has been one of my favorite Canadian brands for years and every season I say the same thing – “I can’t wait to see what they come up with next.”

Scroll on for a few of my favorite pieces from their latest collection!
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GENTLE FAWN PICKS

1 // Brooke Top

2 // Berkley Dress

3 // Annelise Dress

4 // Huxley Pants

5 // Seneca Romper

6 // Kirin Komono

7 // Dixon Coat

8 // Tavi Cardigan

xoxo,

Alicia

Block Party

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Hey you. Yeah, you. t’s time to get out of neutral. Because you know what goes best with bright colours? Other bright colours. Embrace your inner Lisa Frank and go colour crazy. Fuchsia and lemon? Yes! Tangerine and turquoise? Why the heck not? Colour blocking is a styling technique that can instantly hit refresh on your entire wardrobe. You know that pink top that you always wear with those safe (aka snooze-worthy) black trousers? Well it looks like new when you pair it with a lime green mini! I don’t know about you Dorothy, but I’m read to leave Kansas and pop into technicolor.
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COLOUR BLOCK PICKS

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1 // Etro – Colour Block Skirt

2 // JURREKO – Newschool Aquatic & Anise Green Satchel

3 // Paul Smith – Colour Block Constantina Heeled Sandals

4 // John Lewis – Toolally Fan Colour Block Drop Earrings

5 // Diesel – Ribbed Colour Block Dress

6 // Nars – Limited Edition Duo Eye Shadow in Chiang Mai

7 // Mara Hoffman – Colour Block Bikini Top

8 // MAX & Co. – Geometric Colour Block Sunglasses

xoxo,

Alicia

Embroidery x Denim


Embroidered denim is having a major moment right now. But before you go ahead and scoff, this isn’t the kind of embroidery your granny stitches onto handkerchiefs. Instead, the coolest motifs of the season are anything but prim and proper. Sure, the usual florals are there (classics are classics for a reason), but so are edgy evil eyes, emojis, snakes, tigers, and cheeky slogans. Whether you prefer skinnies or flares, one thing we can all agree on is that embroidery and denim are a match made in fashion heaven. This trend isn’t limited to jeans, however, and intricately stitched designs are popping up on denim dresses, skirts, bags, and shoes. So it’s official: embroidery and denim are this seasons It pairing. Let’s hope they stay together forever.
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EMBROIDERY X DENIM PICKS

1 // House of Holland – Embroidered Denim Crop Top

2 // Go Jane – Folk Tale Embroidered Denim Clutch

3 // Miss Selfridge – Floral Embroidered Denim Skirt

4 // WearAll – Diana Floral Embroidered Belted Denim Shirt Dress

5 // Maje – Embroidered Denim Jacket

6 // Rose Gal – Floral Embroidered High Rise Denim Shorts

7 // Soludos – Embroidered Denim Avocado Sneakers

xoxo,

Alicia

Fragrance Friday | Nirvana Bourbon by Elizabeth & James


NAME OF FRAGRANCE | Nirvana Bourbon by Elizabeth and James

NOTES | Vanilla Bourbon, Tuberose, Oakwood

VIBE | Smoky, Sultry, Mysterious, Edgy, Simplistic

Released in August of 2016, Nirvana Bourbon and Nirvana Rose are the two newest fragrances to come from the Olsen twin’s fashion empire Elizabeth and James. Much like their predecessors, Nirvana White and Black, these two scents have already become extremely popular and have garnered rave reviews on various websites, including my perfume bible, Fragrantica. I have to say, they are both worth the hype. For the sake of keeping things simple though, I will only be reviewing Bourbon today.

What I have always loved about Elizabeth and James scents is that they are always incredibly simple with only a few notes making up their composition. Most fragrances have upwards of twelve and it’s not unusual to see fragrances with close to thirty. Bourbon lets its three notes speak for themselves. So what are the three main elements of this sultry scent? Vanilla bourbon, tuberose, and oakwood. I don’t think more perfect notes could have been chosen. Let me tell you why.

Right off the bat, Bourbon smells like, well, bourbon. It has that smoky almost leathery aroma of fine scotch that I love (although I hate the taste). If you detest whiskey though, do not immediately cast this perfume aside as the boozey note is combined with a sweet hint of vanilla and is resting on a very feminine tuberose heart. The tuberose is sweet yet animalic. You can smell everything at once and it is this very intoxicating slightly woody, slightly floral, whisky-laden oriental. It almost smells unisex but the tuberose gives it this explicitly feminine floral quality. It’s sexy AF. 

In terms of when to wear it, Bourbon is best suited for fall. Still, I don’t follow rules like that and am wearing it now, smack dab in the middle of May. I highly recommend this perfume to anyone who loves woody and oriental scents. Also, (obviously) anyone who loves whiskey. It’s perfect for night or an intimate occasion. This scent may be distinct but it stays pretty close to the skin so you could probably get away with wearing it to a more formal occasion. The whiskey note is prominent but you won’t smell like you’ve been swigging Jameson on the floor of a bar, so don’t worry about that! It’s stylish, sophisticated and unusual. Three traits that are pretty much synonymous with Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen. 

Final verdict: I absolutely love this scent. If you get a chance, give Bourbon a try – you’ll be hooked!

Have you tried this scent? What did you think? Let me know in the comments!

xoxo,

Alicia

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May Beauty Picks

This month I have been all about stepping out of my comfort zone. Nude lipsticks and bold metallics have been all over my radar lately and I am happy to say that I have found a few favorites that are now on regular rotation in my beauty routine. After all, playing it safe everyday gets pretty dull, even when it comes to something as simple as makeup! So with that in mind, here are my top five beauty finds this May, from the holy grail for curly hair to your eyebrows’ new best friend.

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1 // Renpure – Coconut Mint Curly Cleansing Conditioner

I’m sure I’ve reiterated it a million times, but curly hair needs plenty of hydration in order to be healthy and manageable. This cleansing conditioner totally fits the bill and quenches my parch strands with oodles of extra virgin coconut oil. It’s also completely free of sulfates and other nasties that are often found in shampoo, so it doesn’t strip my hair of its much needed natural oils.

2 // Pixi by Petra – Endless Silky Eye Pen in Opal Overcoat

This shimmery pale gold liner gives me a well rested look instantly. It also glides on easily and lasts all day (fading eyeliners is my biggest pet peeve). It looks great on its own or layered over a darker colour.  Weird but true, this also makes my lips look really full when I use it as a lip liner. Simply use it around your natural lip line and then blend before putting on your lipstick. Angelina lips in an instant!

3 // Mellow – Creamy Matte Lipstick in Nude

Nudes are tricky for me. It’s not easy to find the right shade as most either wash out my fair complexion or make my lips look like they are coated in a too dark foundation. This has subtle mauve undertones which gives it just the right amount of colour. It’s natural looking and very flattering, giving me that no-makeup-makeup look that is so hard to achieve. The formula is also very rich and creamy which is rare for a matte lipstick. It honestly feels like a balm!

4 // Benefit – Gimme Brow Volumizing Fiber Gel

This is kind of a magic wand. Seriously. Beautiful defined brows have a way of framing your entire face and making you look polished even if you don’t have any other makeup on. This gel formula has microfibers which adhere to your skin and brow hairs, making your brows look fuller in a subtle and natural way. If you shy away from eyebrow pencils and powders, give this gem a try!

5 // Naked Cosmetics – Metallic Eye Shadow in Heavy Metal

I love rose gold. All rose gold things are alright with me. I recently received this shadow in an Ipsy Glam Bag and it is one of my favorite products I have ever gotten. It’s highly pigmented, vivid, and it shimmers like crazy. It’s not a shadow that I would wear everyday, but it’s perfect for a night out when I want to shine bright like a diamond.

What is your holy grail of beauty products? You know, that one product that you can’t live without? Let’s talk beauty.

xoxo,

Alicia

6 Home Decor Must Haves

When it comes to decorating, often it’s the little details that truly elevate a space. My own style is eclectic and I look for pieces that compliment each other but aren’t too matchy-matchy. So with that in mind, here are a few items that have recently come onto my decorating radar. From a candle that captures the feel of a lazy spring morning to the most stunning pair of bookends I have ever clapped eyes on, these are the six pieces that I straight up need in my home, like yesterday. 

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1 // Maison Margiela – MMM Lazy Sunday Morning Candle

Is there anything better than waking up at noon on Sunday with the sunshine streaming through your window and the smell of spring flowers and freshly cut grass wafting through the air? No. But this candle is almost as good, with gorgeous notes of aldehydes, lily of the valley, rose, orange flower, pear, and ambrette seed.

2 // Wilko – Ceramic 3D Flower Vase

This pretty periwinkle case looks like something Marie Antoinette would have had adorning her dresser! It’s just the thing to display your fresh from the farmer’s market blooms. It also reminds me of an antique cameo.

3 // Copper Magnetic Desk Set

Sleek + chic + practical + pretty = this glorious rose gold desk set. Keep one on your coffee table to store bits and bobs, in the bathroom to stash away your makeup, and in the office to keep your pens neat and tidy. Basically, keep one in every room of your place.

4 // Bluebellgray – Camilla Pom Pom Cushion 

I am all about pom-poms these days and this funky pillow is covered in flowers which takes it from a like to a love for me (P.S. I also flowers). It’s just the thing to add some colour and cheer to a room full of pared-down neutrals.

5 // AllModern – Abhishek 29″ Table Lamp

From its space-age geometric shape to its bright lemon hue, there’s nothing about this lamp that I don’t love. It’s fun and functional with just a touch of playful quirkiness. Win-win-win.

6 // Jayson Home – Gold Rock Bookend

I have never owned bookends in my life but I think it’s time that I did. I love marble and I love gold. Smack the two together and suddenly I need whatever said object is. These are gorgeous and are like little pieces of art in their own right. Use them to dress up your bookshelf, coffee table, or dresser. Or wherever you darn well please! They would honestly look lovely anywhere.

How would you describe your personal decorating style? What’s your favorite of these pieces? Let’s chat more in the comments!

xoxo,

Alicia

caron-callahan

Designer Spotlight | Caron Callahan

If you’re looking for a line of clothing that combines cool-girl minimalism with classic lines and just a touch of avant-garde flare, look no further that this New York designer who has been a favorite of mine for ages. The story behind her line is as intriguing as the clothes themselves. Caron Callahan launched her eponymous label after graduating from the Gallatin School of NYU. As a new graduate, this Brooklyn-based creative began to truly hone her skills while working at Barneys New York for their private label division. After cutting her teeth there, she began working with Tracy Feith as his design assistant. It was while she was working with Tracy that Caron began to fall in love with the constant creativity and multifaceted nature of running a small, independent fashion line. Before she launched her label, she took some time to travel the world, throughout Europe, Africa, and Asia. The designer’s passion for travel is evident in her designs which celebrate comfort, function, and culture. Caron Callahan is a great line to look to for wardrobe staples – those pieces you wear over and over again and never get tired of because the fit and quality is always perfection. Her pieces are always easy to wear and luxurious in their simplicity. Why? The focus is always on quality fit, beautiful fabrics, and impeccable construction. Whether you are looking for a perfectly flowy gauze dress or a pair of menswear inspired trousers, her collections are always timeless and refined. Caron Callahan is truly a designer that will stand the test of time and from season to season, this Brooklyn darling just keeps getting better. Scroll on for my favourite pieces from this amazing designer.

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CARON CALLAHAN PICKS

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1 // Mali Jumpsuit | Peach Japanese Gauze

2 // Christine Jumpsuit | Yellow Stripe

3 // Dover Pants | Camel Canvas

4 // Uma Dress | Indian Jacquard Gauze

5 // Chelsea Dress | Blue Gingham

6 // Flora Dress | Faded Indigo Denim

7 // Gwyn Pant | Faded Indigo Denim

8 // Krasner Jacket | Peach Twill

xoxo,

Alicia

All photos via Caron Callahan.

Lime Light

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Let’s just take a minute to appreciate the boldest and brightest shade of green. Lime is loud and boisterous. It may seem difficult to pull off but even if you’re hesitant to wear such a bright colour, juicy pops of this citrus hue instantly breathe life and excitement into an outfit. Go all out or take it one step at a time with accessories and home decor pieces. Subtle is so last season and it is time to step out of the boring neutral shadows and into the lime light.

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LIME BUYS

1 // Tarte – Clay Pot Waterproof Shadow Liner in Lime Green 

2 // Celestina – Pre-owned Lime Green Shagreen Clutch

3 // Trouva – Neon Green Rhino Statue

4 // Philosophy – Señorita Margarita 3 in 1 Shampoo Shower Gel

5 // Fine & Candy – Lime Set of 12 Pencils

6 // L’Agent by Agent Provocateur – Bea Embroidered Tulle Underwired Bra

7 // Aaron Basha – Yellow Gold, Diamond & Lime Green Enamel Airplane Charm

8 // A by Amara – Palm Leaf Pillow 

xoxo,

Alicia

5 Style Trends I’m Loving This Spring

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I’m not a super trendy girl when it comes to my own personal sense of style. I’m often inspired by the glamorous editorials I see in magazines and the cool girl looks I see in streetstyle shots. Still, overall I lean more towards classic pieces and figure flattering silhouettes that I know will make me look and feel polished and put together. Despite all of this, I find myself being drawn towards bolder, in-your-face pieces this spring. And there are a ton of trends to choose from this season. Crochet and embroidery, 70s-inspired bell bottoms and penchant for suede, norm-core Birkenstocks and mom jeans. There’s a lot going on. So after sifting through all of the most instagrammed looks of the season, these are my five favorite trends that spring has to offer.


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1 // Button Back Shirts

I love the idea of challenging fashion rules with something as simple as button placement. Button back shirts are still the staple we all know in love but with a dishevelled, IDGAF update that feels effortlessly cool. Take it one step further and don’t button the back of your shirt completely to show a sexy slice of skin.

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2 // Off The Shoulder Tops

It seems that everyone’s into giving the cold shoulder lately. Literally. I’ve always loved off the shoulder and one shoulder tops and so I was thrilled to see them making a comeback. They are flirty but demure and I love the idea of showing skin in unexpected ways. My favourite thing to wear them with are flowy a-line skirts and vintage-inspired bell bottoms.

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3 // Button Down Mini

The 70s are back again in the form of bell bottoms, maxi dresses, crochet, and embroidery. Another reference to the grooviest decade of the 20th century? Button down skirts in earthy shades of olive, cognac, and russet. Bonus points if the skirt happens to be suede, corduroy, or woven out of hemp. I love this look and I think it’s the perfect combination of sweet and sexy. It’s also versatile and is a piece that could transition from spring and summer, straight into fall.

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4 // Pom-Pom Accessories

It seems that fashion as of late is all about getting crafty with embroidery, crochet, and macrame being some of the hottest fabrics of the season. Another embellishment that you will surely remember from kindergarten craft time is the playful pom-pom. It’s given a chic update when it adorns hemlines, handbags, straw baskets and shoes. It’s a little tacky but in a playful way that feels very nostalgic and optimistic.

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5 // Mixed Prints

I have to admit, I’ve always been a little hesitant to mix prints. Even though I love how it looks when other people do it, it just seemed so easy for mixed prints to look more bag lady than bold. The secret to keeping this look cool instead of crazy? Mix two or three prints, but no more than that. For example, pair a striped top with a floral skirt, but keep your accessories relatively simple. If you’re new to fashion mixology, it is also helpful to keep your prints the same size i.e. polka dots with paisley or gingham with stripes. Still, rules are meant to be broken and we should never be afraid to take a risk and express ourselves through what we wear. So don’t be shy and go ahead and mix it up!

Which of these trends is your favorite? Let’s chat in the comments!

xoxo,

Alicia

Fragrance Friday | Couture Couture by Juicy Couture


NAME OF FRAGRANCE | Couture Couture by Juicy Couture

NOTES | Mandarin Orange, African Orange Flower, Grapefruit, Jasmine, Honeysuckle, Plum, Amber, Vanilla, Sandalwood

VIBE | Playful, Exuberant, Flirty, Youthful, Stylish, Uninhibited 

I am pretty late to hop on the Juicy Couture perfume train, but after smelling Couture Couture and Peace, Love, and Juicy Couture, I completely understand why the line is as popular as it is. The bottles are fabulous (they’re always decked out to the maximum and completely over the top) and the juice is divine and unique. After trying a few, Couture, Couture is my favourite of the bunch by far. If you’re looking for a fun, sultry, day-to-night perfume, this is one you are going to want to try. 

Couture, Couture is a glittering white floral with juicy citrus and plum notes, which add a lively, fruity feel to the scent. The amber, vanilla and woods in the base don’t stand out too much but they do add a lovely creaminess to the white bouquet. Although this scent is fairly multifaceted, the notes that really take centre stage are the orange blossom, jasmine, and plum. It is very much a white floral perfume but the plum has a very grape-like smell that pairs beautifully with the orange blossom, a flower that has always smelled a bit fruity to me.  There’s something about this scent that reminds me of something I have smelled before as a child but I can’t put my finger on. The dark plum accord also reminds me of the juicy Concord grapes my grandpa used to grow which makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside when I wear it.

Although it’s a very girly perfume, don’t mistake it for being prim and proper. It’s got a sexy edge because of the amber, vanilla and plum. The grapefruit and orange in the top give it a bit of a kick from the get go as well. This is a sparkling, head turning scent that lasts all day, from the moment you put it on in the morning to well into the evening. Like a true couture gown, Couture, Couture is a perfume you wear when you want to grab people’s attention and make a stunning entrance.

xoxo,

Alicia

Love For Lemons

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There are a ton of reasons to love lemons. They make drinks taste better, they smell lovely, and they can even be arranged into beautiful centerpieces. One thing you might not know is how fantastic these vitamin-C packed fruits are for your skin and hair. Their naturally astringent properties make them an excellent natural solution for battling blemishes and oily skin. They are chock full of vitamin C and antioxidants which help to keep skin bright, youthful, and glowy. Lemon juice has also been used for centuries to give hair natural highlights. This citrus fruit is a serious overachiever. One might even say it’s the Beyonce of the fruit world.  If you’re not yet convinced, then you need to give one of these 7 beauty gems a try.

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1 // Bliss – Lemon + Sage Body Butter

Not only does this ultra-rich body cream smell delicious, it’s also incredibly hydrating and nourishing with antioxidants like vitamin A and E. Unlike a lot of moisturizers out there, this baby will keep your skin silky soft all day. Although you will probably want to reapply because of the uplifting, sunshine-in-a-bottle scent.

2 // Mod Bath and Body – Lemon Cupcake Whipped Sugar Scrub

I’m all about baths and this sugar scrub makes tub time even more indulgent. The sugar base naturally sloughs away dead skin cells, leaving your skin smooth and smelling like lemon cake. Say yes to dessert.

3 // Jack Black – Lemon & Shea Butter Intense Therapy SPF 25 Lip Balm

Chapped lips don’t stand a chance against this heavy duty lip balm. It goes on light but absorbs quickly, replenishing your parched lips with a surge of moisture and SPF protection. I love the non-greasy formula and the fact that it smells like lemonade.

4 // Mullein & Sparrow – Lemon Rose Face Wash

From the minimalistic bottle to the luxe formula, there’s nothing about this cleanser that I don’t love. Astringent lemon cuts through oil and grime while rose soothes your skin and calms redness. Tough yet gentle, consider this the good cop, bad cop duo for your skin.

5 // EOS – Active Protection SPF Lemon Lip Balm

People, myself included, often forget about their lips when they are applying sunscreen. There are few things that hurt more than a burned, blistering pout. This sweet smelling lip balm hydrates with shea butter and jojoba oil and protects with SPF 15. Multitasking beauty products are where it’s at.

6 // Tom Ford – Fleur De Portofino Eau De Parfum

Spritz on this floral fragrance and escape on a olfactory vacation to the Mediterranean. Sparkling Sicilian lemon and bergamot open the spectacle, before softening into a opulent white floral bouquet with a touch of sticky honey and vanilla to make the flowers in the heart all the more soft and sweet. A gorgeous, feminine fragrance that is perfect for spring.

7 // Tony Moly – I’m Real Brightening Lemon Sheet Mask

Sure, you’ll look like Jason from Friday the 13th,  but this sheet mask will make your skin look and feel radiant in a matter of minutes. Forget a coffee, this lemon-infused mask will make your complexion look instantly fresh and wide awake. You know what they say – when life gives you lemons, rub them on your face.

Have you tried any of these products? Are there any that I should add to the list? Let me know in the comments! 

xoxo,

Alicia

Gingham Style

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Gingham is one of my favourite patterns this spring. It feels very country casual and lends a flirtatious vibe to any outfit. It’s girl next door meets farmer chic in the best possible way. It may be a bold print but it is also surprisingly versatile. You can go all out and mix different coloured checks from top to bottom or dip your baby toe in this trend with shoes and accessories. From a picnic by the lake to a board meeting at the office, you can work this trend anytime and anywhere. Scroll on for a few of the million ways that you can go gingham.


1 // The Picnic – Vintage Inspired Blue Check Gingham Sunglasses

2 // Alexandre Birman – Clarita Gingham Canvas Sunglasses

3 // Edie Parker – Jane Gingham Straw Basket Crossbody Bag

4 // J. Crew – Gingham Bow Ponytail Holder

5 // Solid and Striped – The Anne-Marie Gingham One-Piece Swimsuit

6 // PrettyLittleThing – Lorinda Gingham Frill Hem Shorts

7 // Kayu – Gingham Envelope Clutch

8 // Zaful – Gingham Check Cold Shoulder Blouse

9 // Betsey Johnson – Ann Flats

xoxo,

Alicia

Neon Lights


No matter how much we all love our neutrals, sometimes a splash of bright, in-your-face colour is totally necessary. From vibrant tangerine and hot pink to highlighter yellow, flashy neon hues are a fool-proof way to breathe some renewed excitement into even the most humdrum of wardrobes. Too shy to go crazy with colour? Start slow with a bright pair of earrings, some lime green shoes or a swipe of lavender lipstick. As for me, I’m ready to embrace every shade in the rainbow. Afterall, in a world that often feels a bit beige and blah, sometimes you just need a hit of neon! 


NEON BUYS

1 // Humble Chic – NY Hula Fringe Tassels

2 // Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics – Neon Yellow Cosmetic Glitter

3 // Sophia Webster – Darla Mules 

4 // Linda Farrow X Matthew Williamson Neon Orange Cat Eye Sunglasses

5 // Christopher Kane – Lace Trimmed Neon Tulle Skirt

6 // BK – Fluorescent Neon Pure Candy Colour Luminous Nail Polish

7 // Venessa Arizaga – Neon Rainbow Road Earrings 

8 // Marni – Colour Block Leather Clutch

9 // SunnyLife – Large Pineapple Neon Light

Xoxo,

Alicia

Five Fragrant Twists on the French 75

Aside from the Dirty Martini, the French 75 is one of my favourite cocktails of all time. It’s classic, fitting for all occasions, and always makes me feel a bit glamorous (apparently it is supermodel Kate Moss’s favourite cocktail as well, and we all know her taste is impeccable). While the classic recipe of gin, champagne, lemon juice and sugar is hard to beat, these 5 versions sound absolutely delectable. From herbaceous lavender to sugary cotton candy, these creative recipes have me counting the minutes until cocktail hour.

1 // Elderflower French 75

Fragrant floral notes of elderflower enhance the crisp flavour of the gin and add a pretty elegance to this classic drink.

WHAT YOU’LL NEED

  • 2 oz Gin
  • 1 oz Elderflower Liqueur
  • 1 oz Lemon Juice
  • 2 oz Champagne
  • 1 tsp Granulated Sugar

2 // Blackberry French 75

Freshly picked blackberries add a little extra sweetness and a gorgeous violet hue to this party perfect bevvy.

WHAT YOU’LL NEED

  • ½ Cup Water
  • ½ Cup Sugar
  • ¼ Cup Fresh Blackberries
  • 1 oz Gin
  • 1 tbsp Lemon Juice
  • 2 oz Champagne
  • Blackberries and Lemon Peel (Garnish)

3 // Cotton Candy French 75

Because if you can add cotton candy to something why wouldn’t you? A puff of spun sugar dissolves instantly in the champagne and gives the drink an insta-worthy blush hue.

WHAT YOU’LL NEED

  • 1 tsp Granulated Sugar
  • 1/2 oz Lemon Juice
  • 1 oz Gin
  • Champagne
  • Cotton Candy

4 // Lavender French 75

The only thing that can make a French 75 more elegant is a few sprigs of fragrant lavender. A pinch of lavender sugar adds a touch of perfumed sweetness.

WHAT YOU’LL NEED

  • 1 oz Gin
  • 1/2 oz Lemon Juice
  • 1/2 oz Lavender Simple Syrup
  • Champagne
  • Lemon Twist
LAVENDER SIMPLE SYRUP 
  • 1/4 cup Water
  • 1/4 cup Lavender Sugar (or Plain Granulated Sugar)
  • 1/8 tsp Lavender Extract

5 // Meyer Lemon and Cognac French 75

If you’re someone who likes their drinks to have a bit of a kick, than replacing gin with cognac will likely be your jam (I only like whiskey in a French 75). A squeeze of tangy Meyer lemon makes this sparkling cocktail all the more refreshing.

WHAT YOU’LL NEED

  • 1 oz Meyer Lemon Juice
  • 1 oz Grand Marnier
  • 2 oz Cognac or Brandy
  • 1 tbsp Agave or Sugar Syrup, or Honey
  • Ice
  • 6 oz Champagne

Which one of these recipes would you like to try? Do you have any special French 75 recipes of your own? Let me know in the comments!

xoxo,

Alicia

fantasy-in-bloom

Fragrance Friday | Fantasy In Bloom

NAME OF FRAGRANCE | Fantasy in Bloom by Britney Spears

NOTES | Berries, Green Mandarin, Japanese Cherry Blossom, Tuberose, Jasmine, Osmanthus, Sandalwood, Vanilla, Amber

VIBE | Airy, Romantic, Feminine, Whimsical, Dreamy, Joyful

Okay, so first things first, here’s a little tid bit about me. If there are two things in this world that excite me like nothing else, they are Britney Spears and perfume. Put the two together and suddenly I am in a state of mental pandemonium. I remember the day I found out that Britney was releasing Fantasy In Bloom. It was early January and I honestly felt like Christmas had come again. I have every Britney Spears perfume (it’s my not-so-guilty-guilty pleasure) and so I obviously knew that I was going to get my hands on this bad boy. I haven’t been able to find it anywhere in Vancouver but I ordered mine online. There ain’t no mountain high or valley low enough to keep me from purchasing a Britney Spears scent. 

Anyway, after I finally snagged a bottle (which is adorable, by the way) came the moment of truth. And the truth is that as soon as I sprayed Fantasy In Bloom, I fell in love with it. It’s not at all what I expected. Because of its name, I was expecting a very opulent white floral fragrance with the tuberose and jasmine in the heart taking centre stage and squashing out any whisper of cherry blossom. That being said, this perfume really does centre almost entirely around the cherry blossom with just a kiss of vanilla and red berries. The inspiration for the fragrance was a lush garden in spring, and I think Fantasy In Bloom really does capture that. It has that airy, lightly floral scent that you smell outside when spring first arrives. It’s a gorgeous fragrance for women of all ages and it’s perfect for casual daytime wear.

My only complaint about this scent is that it doesn’t last very long (only a couple of hours) and it does not project very far at all. For some people this may be a plus, and it does lend itself to being a good office scent because it’s not overpowering. I like my perfume to not take over a room, but to at least make its presence known. I don’t mind reapplying this but I do wish it was a teensy bit stronger. This is not a deal-breaking flaw however, and overall Fantasy In Bloom is a very feminine and romantic scent with sweet notes of cherry blossom, berries, osmanthus, tuberose, amber, and vanilla.  It’s just the thing to perk me up and instantly transports me to a garden full of sweet scented blooms.

xoxo,

Alicia

Mother’s Day Gift Guide

mothers-day-gift-guide

It can be tricky to find the perfect Mother’s Day gift. After all, how do you find a gift that is truly worthy of the woman who literally gave you everything? When it comes to this special day, my rule of thumb is to look for indulgent items gifts that she wouldn’t normally get herself – case in point, a luxury bubble bath or a special piece of jewelry. Practicality isn’t a part of the equation here, it’s all about pampering and treating your mom to something special, whether it’s a carefully chosen item or a luxurious experience. Here are a few options that I came up.

1 // Tiffany & Co. – Heart Tag Bracelet

Show a little bit of sparkly love with this sweet charm bracelet. After all, any occasion is made special with a touch of Tiffany blue!

2 // Diptyque – Violette Candle

Sure, this candle is a bit of a splurge but your mama is worth every penny and more. And so is this sweet, powdery aroma of violet, iris, and cedar.

3 // Uma Oils – Absolute Anti-Aging Body Oil

The only thing that can make a hot bath more indulgent? This luxurious body oil. Scented with neroli, rose, and sandalwood, it smells absolutely divine.

4 // Rosanna – ‘Dear Mom I Love You’ Porcelain Coffee Mug

Sweeten up her morning coffee with this cute coffee cup! The white and gold colour combo is almost as lovely as the sentiment.

5 // Tory Burch – Garden Party Silk Square Scarf

Silk scarves instantly add class and polish to an outfit. Whether she prefers to wear it around her neck (classic), in her hair, or tied around the handle of her handbag, she is sure to adore this springy floral print.

6 // Skoah – Hydradew Face Mask

Though it feels lighter than air, this deeply hydrating mask is packed with moisturizing super ingredients like hyaluronic acid, sea kelp, and algae. It’s like a spa appointment in a jar.

7 // Coco – Earl Grey Tea & Bergamot Dark Chocolate

Much like flowers, chocolate is a classic choice when it comes to a Mother’s Day gift. That being said, this gourmet bar is anything but a cliche, and is so chic that it’s almost sad to eat it! The elegant earl grey tea and bergamot flavor is just far too good to resist.

xoxo,

Alicia

in-the-jungle-collage

In The Jungle

The single perk of the non-stop rain we have been enduring in Vancouver for the past six months is that now everything is gorgeously green. From dark olive to emerald, my surroundings are like a mosaic of different shades of green. Even though summer is still a couple of months away, the sun is finally shining and it has me daydreaming of hot days and vacations in exotic places. The other day I found myself watching episodes of Gilligan’s Island and it completely inspired me. I had never really watched the show beforehand (although my parents love it) and everything from the clothes to the beauty of the landscape made me fantasize about what it would be like if I lived on an undiscovered tropical island. In reality I would obviously hate it (I enjoy the many amenities of living in the city) but the untouched beauty of the jungles and lush greenery is giving me a serious case of wanderlust. While my boyfriend and I have been talking about traveling somewhere exotic and adventurous (Thailand, Indonesia, and Vietnam are a few of the places we have discussed), in the mean time I will be using fashion to satisfy my travel bug. Opulent leafy prints and batik patterns are absolutely gorgeous for spring and summer and evoke images of wild jungles and tropical paradises. Until I can hop on a plane, these beautiful pieces will have to do.

jungle-printed-buys

JUNGLE BUYS

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1 // Marc Jacobs – Tropical Strass Palm Tree Studs

2 // Vans – Black Tropical Leaves Authentic Sneaker

3 // Mango – Leaves Lapel Clutch

4 // Vila Vista Cushion

5 // Komodo – Lulue Tropical Tencel Shirt

6 // Miguelina – Pamela Printed Cotton Voile Wide Leg Pants

7 // Adriana Degreas – Bonsai Green Ginkgo Swimsuit

8 // Les Nereides – Chimera Plant Fuchsia & Blue Flower with Leaves Clip Earrings

9 // Casetify – Tropical Plant Leaves and Bananas iPhone 7 Case

10 // Tropical Monstera Leaves Pattern Serving Tray

xoxo,

Alicia