Dress Up

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So many wonderful things in this world come in shades of yellow – cartoon smiley faces, the sunshine, daisies, and of course, lemonade. Way back around Christmas time I decided this summer was going to be my lemonade summer, painted in sun-dripped happy hues with sparkle emojis dancing around my everyday.

Of course life isn’t always how we plan it, and so far this Summer has been testing, unstable, busy, filled with massive success and a seemingly endless to-do list of tasks. I’ve spent a lot of time outside, exploring the city and beyond, and though there have been a lot of pretty pastel moments, there have also been dark days clouded with grey. I’m starting to recognize that life, even during my favourite season, is filled with the entire spectrum of colour, with a rainbow of ups and downs, and though it can feel disappointing when things aren’t as light as desired, I’m trying to teach myself to be present in each moment, whether it’s pink or yellow or dark, daunting indigo.

I’ve always believed in dressing for the way you want to feel, so I’ve been donning bright shades more than ever in the hopes of manifesting my washed-out Summer. This yellow lace dress is a bit out of my comfort zone, but a few weeks back when we passed the beautiful yellow inn I’d stopped at on my first trip to PEC in the Fall, it simply felt right. Though the day was cloudy and our crew a bit tired from the day of travel before, I decided to be the sun I wanted to see, paired with pretty blush accessories of course.

How do you dress to chase the blues away?

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Dress Up

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The time has finally come – day or night, it’s safe to sport bare skin once again. I have a personal vendetta against tights, and all year round I wait for the magical time when I can slip into a dress and leave the house without packing four different layers in my purse.

Canadians are built to be ready for any weather, anytime, which means we’re experts in the field of layering, but there are some things that just can’t be layered, those that can only truly be enjoyed when the weather gets warm enough. I love the SS17 statement sleeve trend, but anyone who has tried to wear a big bell sleeve under a jacket or sweater will agree that all that statement sleeves need to be a stand alone in an outfit.

I’ve been waiting for the chance to take this dusty rose no-shoulder dress from Ever New for a spin (pssst, it’s on SALE right now!) and now that I don’t have to worry about stuffing all that fabric into a trench or jean jacket I’ve been pulling it out of my closet more than anything else. Paired with heavily embellished blush mules and matching tassel earrings, this ensemble has me set to show up at Summer parties with bells on.

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Dress Up

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Everyone knows a good handbag can make or break an outfit, and I’m constantly swapping out what I carry for different occasions. Designer classics, pops of fun colours, or novelty bags in unexpected shapes – we don’t discriminate at RAOP! And now that Amazon.ca offers the largest selection of handbags in Canada, we don’t have to.

You’ve definitely seen me consistently sport this Kate Spade Cameron Street Byrdie Bag, and guess what? It’s now available (with famously fast shipping) on Amazon, as are some of our other favourite brands like Skinnydip, Ban.do, Rebecca Minkoff, Ted Baker and more. Whether you’re in the mood for something flashy and covered in glitter, or a simple clutch for a fancy affair, Amazon is stocked with hundreds of choices, all in one easy peasy place. Sadly my cute Cuore and Pelle bag featured in these photos is sold out, but you can find a similar style here and here and here!

For those of you who don’t favour bell sleeves and basics, we’ve rounded up some of the most FUN bags we can find on Amazon (though there are many, many more, because the collection is seriously expansive!) Here are a few of our Summer 2017 favourites:

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Ban.do Super Chill Rainbow Cooler Bag by Bando
Skinny Dip Unicorn Tears Novelty Shoulder Bag
Ted Baker Dusky Pink Beckaa Bag
Kate Spade Leather Cross-Body Tote
Ice Cream Crossbody Bag
Remeehi Hologram Transparent Messenger Bag

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Bell sleeve blouse and Denim skirt, both from Dynamite, Aldo sparkle mules, Cuore & Pelle bag

Dress Up

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Though the weather has suggested otherwise this past week, I’m calling it – Winter is dead! I’m always the first to jump the gun on sunny weather, stripping down to show as much skin as possible even when it’s far too early to reasonably do so. What can I say, I LOVE the feeling of warmth on my skin! I need to be free! Winter jackets and long johns have been stifling me for far too long (says the girl who spent most of the winter in California…)

This season I’m trying to be extra selective when adding to my wardrobe. Now that i find myself living in a pocket-size apartment, so I’m only accepting really special pieces and elegant staples, and I try to shed something worn out every time I bring in something new. This rose satin wrap dress from LULU by Rana falls somewhere in-between – the cut is both modern and classic, and the longer sleeve length makes it an ideal transitional Spring item. Paired with a trench (because Spring layering is crucial), ballet-inspired pumps from ALDO, the perfect ’70s inspired mani from Chillhouse and hints of tortoise shell & gold, this look is simple but still fun.

Because really, what’s the point in getting dressed if it’s not fun, right?

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Dress Up

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Every year I rush to High Park alongside all of the other flower-lovers in Toronto to get a glimpse at the Cherry Blossom Trees in bloom. It’s a spectacle to be sure, but sadly it usually only lasts for a brief moment with this city’s unpredictable weather, and one has to fight through the crowds to get close to a tree branch.

The funny thing is, it seems like almost every single other city I’ve been too has far more cherry blossom trees than Toronto. Vancouver’s sidewalks are literally covered in pink petals come Spring, Buffalo boasts an amazing Sakura population, and let’s not leave Japan and their gorgeous yearly festival off the list. One city I definitely underestimated though was New York.

Entirely based on chance, Johanna and I booked our trip to NYC just as the Cherry Blossom trees started to bloom, and oh, were they EVER blooming! Every corner we turned we found more of these delicate, special flowers, and despite their constant appearance we were equally enchanted by each encounter. The best place to see them? The Brooklyn Museum and Botanical Gardens!

Our NYCgo City Pass pointed us in the direction of this amazing spanning property, and we’re so grateful we made time to go. On top of feminist art and beautiful architecture, we were able to frolic amongst seemingly endless blossoms. If you’re travelling to New York during Spring or Summer, this entire area is absolutely a must-see! Of course we couldn’t help but snap some outfit photos while we were there… in true form I just happened to be wearing pink! Also, how great are these peachy-pink hair extensions by Locks and Mane? It was such a fun experience to play with hair this long!

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