virtual window shopping (vws) - bella dawn


beautiful things i found on the bella dawn website.

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bella dawn

i received an email last week from dawn, the founder of bella dawn boutique. this is what drew me to check out the website during the start of my search for a new bag. dawn del russo opened her boutique bella dawn in new jersey back in 2004 and now her fantastic style advice is available to us all at

bella dawn's aim is to "offer chic affordable celebrity style fashion and accessories." by flicking though some of the pages on the website you can see great versions of all the current trends at really good prices.

dawn also offers her style advice on a more personal level through the style services area of her website. here you can choose various options to suit your budget from an phone/email consultations on your style and wardrobe right up to a personalised shopping expedition where your very own stylist works at creating a fabulous new you.

this is a great website, ideal for when the depression hits you as you flick through the pages of vogue mentally marking things you want but could never afford. take a trip over to bella dawn and find a great alternative.

keep posted for a virtual window shop of great must buys from the bella dawn site.

i really hope they ship to canada!

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broken bag... broken heart

i am absolutely devastated, my gorgeous hot pink bag has broken. i was only saying to the hubby over the weekend that i could do with a new bag. well to be honest, there was nothing wrong with the bag i lug around all day, everyday but i fancied a change.

then on the way to work on monday, snap... my beautiful bag breaks.

naturally this left me devastated - wishing for something new had killed my perfect pink bag.

i found my bag in a really cheap designer sale and it has lasted me through 6 months of heavy use. it's been with me to las vegas, on our honeymoon, and even came with me when we emigrated so i can't bear to part with it just yet. but i on the lookout for a new bag now.

i quite like this one from bella dawn. i need something versatile so i can throw it across my neck, sling it on my shoulder and pretty much carry it anyway i choose. oh, and i carry a lot of stuff around with me, probably why my bag broke in the first place...

the quest continues...

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nscad wearable art show 2009


now, i need to apologise for my lack of a review so far on the nscad wearable art show. i’m having a complete dilemma with the images on my camera. i had some problems with my camera last year, the shutter cap wouldn’t open at all. so off it went to get repaired (two weeks before we were due to go off on honeymoon, arrggh! but anyway, it can back all cleaned, shiny and working – and now it has died again!) so i have all these beautiful pictures of the fashion show and no way of showing them until i get the dreaded camera fixed.

so i will send you over to the incredibly cool blog of woof and owl, who post some brilliant content about the best events in and around halifax. their slideshow of the event really captures the mood of the show, and they had a much better view than i did, so head on over here... and enjoy the show!

these are my two favourite pieces...

i love the colour combination on this dress

a cute cape is a great alternative to a jacket

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inspiring colours - bottega veneta fall 2009


looking through the fall 2009 catwalk collections i fell in love with the colours from the bottega veneta fall 2009 ready to wear collection. the colours swept from deep black teamed with a dark plum lipstick through to rich browns progressing to champagnes and finally ending with a lilac tone. i loved the contrast of this lilac hue against anna jogodzinska's pale skin and blonde hair, simply beautiful.

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fashion comes to halifax - the nscad wearable art show

tonight marks the night of the 19th annual wearable art show. this is a night to celebrate the artistic creations of the students from the nova scotia college of art and design. the event is not limited to fashion students, instead it encourages people from all disciplines to use their creativity to create art, the only limitation is that the piece that they create must be wearable.

press based around this years event promises some incredible items like a leather bra made from a pair of leather brogues, outfits inspired by exotic birds and a beautiful dress made from beer bottle tops.

the event starts at 8 p.m and will be held at the granville mall where tickets can be bought for $20 on the door. raising money for both the aids coalition of nova scotia and the wearable art scholarship for nscad students, this is an excellent opportunity to see the creative talents we have to offer in halifax and to support a good cause.

i hope to see you all there!

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style shake


oh no, i am now addicted to another website! i remember looking at this site a while ago but i had forgotten all about it until i was drawn to again after reading this blog post on some girls wander. the post discussed the difficulties in finding the perfect fitting blouse. i too have this problem. the only shirt that i can get that nips in perfectly at the waist and that doesn't gape at the bust is from bravissimo, but their styles are sometimes a little old fashioned and dated.

style shake is the answer to all my problems! basically what you do it create either a top, dress or skirt to your own design - select your fabric and style and voila your own personal design is created within 10 working days. you can choose from various styles, if you want sleeves, what you want the sleeves to look like, etc. hey you could even take inspiration from your favourite celebrity's latest new look!

i think this would be best for simple styles, like my well-fitting shirt example above, but i would be intrigued to how far you could push style shake.

here are my eva longoria parker and victoria beckham collection trials...

mmm.. think my design skills need more work, but honestly imagine these created to your exact measurements - they would fit like a dream.

i'm definitely going to try this site out, shipping to canada is only $27 and takes two weeks, certainly a bargain!

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$1 ring


i had a lovely surprise when i arrived home today. a beautiful ring! no, not an engagement ring or anything like that (i'm testing the water for a tiffany's eternity ring though, but he's not budging!) this was a sign that work is slow for the hubby as he'd made me a ring out of a dollar.

maybe it's the black and tan outfit i'm wearing today that it matches so perfectly, but i think this ring is great. it's totally smooth on the outside like a wedding bank but on the inside rim you can still see the canadian dollar imprint. the metal has turned a patchy grey/tan colour too.

i know, i know - i'm easily pleased!

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vivienne westwood - jelly shoes?

i have just been looking on asos during my lunch break and noticed the most fabulous vivienne westwood jelly shoes. these are priced at £59-£79 and make owning a piece of vivienne's collection the most affordable it has ever been.

so, is westwood that worried about the credit crunch she has started creating designs made out of cheaper materials?

no, this is a collaboration with the australian designer melissa. westwood has now extended her first collection with the addition of three new styles for spring summer 2009. created as part of vivienne's anglomania collection all shoes feature the trademark vivienne westwood orb.

"the most amazing thing about this partnership was to be able to create modern products, with very high quality, for affordable prices" - vivienne westwood (

i think these designs are just fabulous, a great affordable (and fun) way of making high calibre designers accessible to all.

check out the other stunning designs on melissa plastic dreams.

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virtual window shopping (vws) - april 15

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eek - summer!

i always find the first venture into spring/summer wear a little daunting after the long winter months. i was just indulging in some virtual window shopping (vws) and felt a surge of panic when i saw the summer collections.

fair enough, i now live in nova scotia and the weather is a bit more brutal than in the uk so that may be the reason for my fear! i think i am also entering that ‘weird’ age where i walk past stores like garage (which i can only liken to miss selfridge/ tammy girl in the uk – if that even still exists) and i feel not only a sense of nostalgia for the girls grabbing vest tops and teenie tiny shorts from the racks but also a deep sense of panic when i realise that i am now getting ‘too old’* to dress like that anymore. (*apparently you’re only as old as you feel!) etsy!

Iwant to still be able to trot around town wearing a tank top and bikini bottoms whilst on a pair of roller skates (hang on, i don’t think i have ever done that – but it’s great to imagine that i once did!)

so i think the plan of action is to primp, preen and polish myself to get myself feeling more in the mood for summer. also, a spot of vws may help...

...more to follow.

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a very stylish me


my bestest friend, who is the most amazingly talented illustrator has just created a beautiful illustration of me. the colours look great with my blog too, how well you know me sarah!

take a look at her work, she does some amazing stuff.

i just wish I did look this stylish on my way to work!

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lisa galibardy's stunning jewellery

the sudden onset of the plaque (well ok, it’s only a cold, but the first day is always the worst!) encouraged me to look for something beautiful to share with you.

lisa galibardy’s amazing talent for jewellery design has almost made me forget about the screwed up tissue i have up each nostril. no all i can think about is which piece to buy first!

glaibardy is a london based fashion designer with no formal jewellery making training. her designs have been featured in many fashion glossies and around the necks of celebrities such as mary j blige, sophie ellis bexter, kelis and cate blanchett.

working in acrylic, brass and silver, lisa creates such wonderful, unique pieces that will definitely be a talking point amongst your friends. just don’t leave your galibardy piece lying around – it won’t be there for long.

here are a few of my favourite pieces from her collection. with prices ranging from £10-£28 – i think i may be purchasing most of these!

...and my ultimate favourite piece (how beautiful is this)

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so chic - garace dore


i have just read the most inspiring article by refinery 29 about french fashion illustrator, photographer and blogger garance doré. her blog has been a daily read for me for some time now and i find her style incredibly energizing.

"my blog is a huge part of my artistic life. i'm always trying to improve it, keep it going, and keep street style on the cutting-edge." - garance doré

french born garance is someone who loves her work and her surroundings. In her own words "paris, je t'aime." just from viewing the pictures of her in everyday life you can see she embodies these words. garance has a very simple french style, clean and structured and she is never seen without her trademark heels. this effortless style comes across in her amazing fashion illustrations.

definitely try to spare a few moments of your time and give the interview a read.

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anyone after a 26-year old intern?


every time i see a post on sites like fashionista commenting on fashion houses and magazines that are on the search for interns i rush to read the requirements...

..."you’ll assist on photo shoots, run errands and steam clothes with enthusiasm and a smile on your face. they need hard working, dedicated, passionate people to start now. it’s not paid and if you can’t do full time they’d like you to be on-call." (sounds tough but to work on such great magazines as vogue and dazed and confused, i think i could handle it!)

... you must “currently live in new york, know their way around the city, know the subway system, be very interested in fashion styling, know magazines, designers, and photographers, feel comfortable driving in the city, will be doing pick ups and returns, running errands, may get to go on photoshoots, non-paid, start asap, full-time or able to be on call, stylish!” (liz mcclean on her hunt for an "amazing intern.")

... "research info on models, fashion, beauty and charities; basic admin (copying, faxing, filing, sending messengers); assist photo editor and researcher with photo research; contact pr/fashion/beauty companies on behalf of modelinia; etc."

i find this so enthralling, how great would it be to start out again, to be an intern for some fabulous magazine/designer, running around, doing errands and meeting lots of legendary people.

if i could travel back in time i would choose to be a fashionable young thing, living in new york being a general dogsbody for some fabulous diva - i'm certain it would be a dream job! either that or i could win the lottery and be so rich that i could spend all my spare time doing these free jobs (oh no, not i'm sat here daydreaming about winning the lottery!)

so... are there any fashionable bods in nova scotia that need an intern?

(all quotes taken from

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places to visit - pretty things boutique


view beautiful places to visit in a larger map

on later reflection arriving to a colder climate in the middle of winter was probably not the best idea. the cold weather and constant snow storms mean that i haven't had the chance to really go out and get to know the area and find all it's little gems.

i keep coming across lots of exciting places that i want to visit and i thought i would add these to a map as i find them, hopefully building up a database of nice places to visit in halifax and the rest of nova scotia.

pretty things boutique has to be my number one visit. i found it whilst doing a web search and it looks so interesting. i have never seen a boutique like this and i can only imagine that you would lost track of time looking at and trying on these wonderful clothes. i love people who have a definite sense of style and this looks like the ideal place. defined as 'retro and rockabilly' fashions this is certainly a place to visit if yo are looking for something unique.

the next time i'm downtown, i'm definitely heading over to cunard street to check this little boutique out.

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shoe love

i saw these gorgeous shoes on the next spring press release. i really really need these. it even resulted in a phone call home to the uk to get my mum to order them for me and bring them over when they come to visit.

can you believe they are only £30! they will look great through the summer and even take me through to fall as they would look great with black tights.

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i need your style!

so, i need to tell you a little about my style. i love classic tailored clothes and have always longed for a job that would force me to 'power' dress. alas, being in the design world i could honestly turn up for work in my pajamas and no-one would bat an eyelid!

so i am setting myself an, albeit late, new years resolution. lets call it a spring resolution!

these are two people with a sense of style i adore and if i...

1. had lots of money
2. didn't value that extra half hour in bed in the morning

... i would dress like this all of the time.

please meet miroslava duma and a uber stylish girl from the satorialist website...

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the perfect gym wear search - 1.) stella mccartney for adidas


until recently i had not really paid much attention to stella mccartney's adidas collection. however, i was drawn to look at the range in more detail after realizing that every pair of trousers i have for the gym make me look horrendous. whether it's all that standing looking at oneself in the mirror that has given me a complex or that fact that i have never paid more than $20 for a pair of gym trousers in my life, it suddenly dawned on me that something needed to change. here begins the search...

1.) stella mccartney for adidas

i remembered seeing the stella mccartney/adidas collaboration advertising campaigns and immediately thought, 'that's what i need' - fashionable and functional gym wear! also, if i spend more than my usual $20 they may not shrink as badly in the wash. i am a huge fan of sports but really hate sports wear. i just look strange in it. you know how some people can walk around in combats and a baseball cap and look really cool? well i'm not one of those people!

i find the collection to be really similar to sweaty betty - a sports company based in the uk (which may be by number 2 search!). this is also a company that prides itself on being a leader of the 'fashionable' sector of sportswear.

i was also pleased to see that stella has maintained her ethics whilst collaborating with adidas and stands by her promise of not using any animal products in the making of her garments.

so, here are a few of my favourite pieces from the stella mccartney for adidas collection...

i love this outfit - this is how i want to look at the gym!

i love the ruched fabric on this jacket... it's almost too nice to wear to the gym

i adore golf wear, it's tailoring is beautiful and looks so sophisticated.

this 1930's inspired two-piece is stunning - and doesn't reveal too much flesh! perfect for doing lengths at your local swimming pool.

i love the 80s styling of this jacket

p.s. i just wish her models looked a little sportier. i love the photography and i think the action shots of the different sport show off all the detail in the fabric beautifully, but i don't actually believe any of these girls have enough energy to be able to exercise. we need to see healthier, strong women working these pieces in the future.

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spring rain


the walk into work this morning in the spring rain made me think two things…

1. i no longer need to wear my thick winter coat (at least until we have another freak snow storm).
2. this is the perfect time to buy a new spring jacket and umbrella! (any excuse, right!)

last spring i searched and searched for the perfect trench coat and could not find one anywhere. i eventually settled for a plain black trench that i thought ‘would go with anything.’ this was true but it had no style. i think i have now found my dream trench coat, all from a quick search on

i love the 60’s styling of this jacket, and the colour is something i never would have gone for before, but with dark hair and blue eyes i think i could carry it off. this jacket is handmade by the fabulous designer amanda archer (who deserves a blog post all of her own).

anyway, after finding the most beautiful coat i needed an umbrella to match it. i have to admit i find parasols so much more beautiful than umbrellas (especially the ones made of lace)…

…but these are not practical for the spring rain. i then thought, maybe i want a vintage looking umbrella, but nothing i found inspired me. this led me to look at marc jacobs’ latest collection and here we have it… a beautiful baby blue and white patterned umbrella…

…and a matching bag!

now i just have to wait for pay day!

p.s. i also adore charm bracelets, so this must go on the list too!

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topshop – oh how i miss you!


topshop has always been a favourite store of mine in the uk, not for its capsule trends which you have to be uber stylish and stick thin to carry off, but more for the great bargain finds you can pick up on the sale racks. you are guaranteed to find things that you never noticed before in the store but on a quick rummage through the sale rack, there it is, a perfect classic dress/top/sweater… and yes, it’s in my size!

the sale racks are also a great place to find pieces from kate moss’ topshop collection, which i always found a little overpriced – especially for the beautiful embellished tops and dresses.

anyway, how does this relate to my life in nova scotia? well, today topshop opens a store in new york, on broadway and broome. not that i’ve ever been to new york but i would sooooo love to go, but i see this as a sign that topshop is making it’s way into american (and hopefully soon, canadian) hearts.

pay a visit to it has been a favourite of my friends and colleagues for many years and the design work and logos they come up with are stunning – they definitely understand their target audience.

here are a few things from kate moss’ very art deco inspired collection that i’m hoping to come across in the sales racks next time i head back to the uk…

i love the detailing on this jacket

how cute would this look over a pair of deep blue skinny jeans?
this art deco style top is as beautiful from the back as the front

i love this gorgeous shift dress with all it's diamante detail

(…oh and they have the best jewellery too, wonder if they ship to canada?)

thanks for reading

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