Dear DiaryDress Up

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For a long time Paige and I took a big break from working on projects together. I went through a life changing break up that came with endless ups and downs, and she had to close down her magical little shop. It was a tough time for us both, and as we took space to deal with our own separate issues, we started to drift apart.

A few weeks ago, we decided that two is always better than one, and just like that we started planning and dreaming together once again. Already we’ve made some mega-cute content to share, and I can’t explain how inspiring it feels to be back in Studio B making magic happen again after all this time. We’re not quite ready to release anything yet, but all I can say is get excited!

All of this collaborative teamwork has really had me thinking back to last summer, and the summer before that. Random Acts of Pastel just turned two last weekend, and when I look back it’s really incredible to see how far things have come in such a short time. To quote Katy Perry “I’ve been on fast rocket ship holding on for dear life!”

To get back to my point, all of this reflection has really got me thinking of how I got here, and one of the biggest game changers for me was getting the chance to blog for Bicyclette. Paige asked me to come up with a fun guest blogging series, and together we decided on “Take Me Out”, a bi-weekly column that married fashion and all of my favourite places in the city. Essentially, I picked a place, styled an outfit inspired by it from Paige’s shop, and created a photo story with a little write up. The process helped me connect with small business owners all over the city, hone my photography and editing style, and introduced me to a totally new audience. In short, it was a dream come true, and today’s post is a collection of some of my favourite moments from the column.

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You can see the entire Take Me Out series on the Bicyclette blog here!

Dress Up

View More: http://ainsleyrose.pass.us/alyssa

Ainsley and I have known one another since high school in North Vancouver believe it or not, and I’ve loved watching her incredible career in photography blow up over the years. I’ve been eagerly waiting for a chance to collaborate on a shoot of some sort with her, so when she messaged me asking if I’d be up to work together during a short visit to Toronto a few months ago I jumped at the chance right away.

Ainsley specializes in bridal, but because I was fresh out of a really hard breakup and we didn’t have much time to put together a massive shoot, I suggested we go for something a little more stripped down. We agreed to get together in Paige from Bicyclette’s bedroom, dress up in favourites by For Love and Lemons from the shop, and shoot a bit of boudoir!

I’ve never done anything like this before, but at the time my confidence was at an all-time low, and I figured, why not prance around in my most beautiful underwear and feel good about myself? Seriously, though it was pretty nerve wracking at first, but I strongly believe every single person should try a shoot like this at least once in their lifetime. It was so inspiring and confidence-boosting to work with Ainsley (she’s both the nicest and babeliest girl you’ll ever meet), and the best part was I went into it knowing I was taking these photos just for me, not for a partner or admirer. It was liberating, exciting, and just so much fun!

View More: http://ainsleyrose.pass.us/alyssa

View More: http://ainsleyrose.pass.us/alyssa

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View More: http://ainsleyrose.pass.us/alyssa

View More: http://ainsleyrose.pass.us/alyssa

View More: http://ainsleyrose.pass.us/alyssa

View More: http://ainsleyrose.pass.us/alyssa

View More: http://ainsleyrose.pass.us/alyssa

View More: http://ainsleyrose.pass.us/alyssa

View More: http://ainsleyrose.pass.us/alyssa

View More: http://ainsleyrose.pass.us/alyssa

View More: http://ainsleyrose.pass.us/alyssa

View More: http://ainsleyrose.pass.us/alyssa

View More: http://ainsleyrose.pass.us/alyssa

View More: http://ainsleyrose.pass.us/alyssa

View More: http://ainsleyrose.pass.us/alyssa

View More: http://ainsleyrose.pass.us/alyssa

I already can’t wait to see what we come up with next time we find ourselves in the same city!

All photos by Ainsley Rose Photography. To book your own boudoir shoot you can reach Ainsley through this contact form

Sips, Sweets & Snacks

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A few weeks ago I went for lunch at a local spot called “This End Up” with a couple of friends, a restaurant well-known for their delicious sandwiches and extra fancy sodas. Totally obsessed with all things tropical, I couldn’t help ordering a pineapple soda to go with my coconut bacon BLT, and it totally blew me away. I left in a haze, my mind churning with ideas for how I might attain pineapple syrup and make tropical drinks from home.

But then I thought wait, why not just made some?!

Pineapple syrup isn’t something you see around often, but it’s surprisingly easy to make, and it tastes heavenly in soda, cocktails, poured over ice cream, or even in iced tea (stay tuned for some magical recipes this week from Bicyclette and I!)

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Ingredients:

1 Pineapple (cut, peeled, cored, and cubed)
4 cups cane sugar (plus a little extra)
2 cups water

Method:

Toss the cubed pineapple in cane sugar and leave it in a covered bowl overnight in the fridge. The next morning, pour the cubes and liquid from the fruit into a blender and pulse until smooth.

Strain the pineapple puree using a sifter or cheese cloth, applying pressure to extract as much juice as possible. Set aside the juice, and use the remaining pulp for popsicles or in baked goods!

Pour the sugar and water into a pot on the stove and bring it to a boil (stir frequently to keep from burning). Continue boiling the mixture until all of the sugar is dissolved and the liquid starts to thicken. Once thick and syrupy, remove the pot from the stove.

Once the syrup has cooled slightly, pour in the pineapple juice and stir until well-mixed, and you’re done! Store syrup in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a month, and use it on everything!