Thursday, 31 March 2011

Play pictures!

Here is our French play on presentation day.  So happy!  Also today I attended my last class of my undergrad degree (except the summer school in France) so feelings are bittersweet.

Oh dear, Tante Rosalie fainted AGAIN!

I took this photo with my friend John as it was the last day.  Also someone referred to him as my boyfriend today and I corrected her.  I guess I shouldn't be surprised people think that as we go almost everywhere together around campus, but it's not the case!)

University of Toronto, I will miss you!

Tuesday, 29 March 2011

It's Monday, Monday, kicking it on Monday

No, I won't be going to "party, party, party" like Rebecca Black due to my essay due Thursday, but there's only so much a student blogger can whine about how much schoolwork she has in the last week of her undergraduate degree. (Well, except for that summer school credit I'll be doing in France.  But I'll be doing that bird course in France surrounded by sexy accents and haute couture, so I promise I won't complain.)

So instead, I'll tell you that the French play I was in finally presented yesterday evening!  It went very well despite us missing a whole chunk of lines...Excitement!  The play basically follows a family who have convened at the lawyer's (The play is called "Chez le notaire") to hear the last will and testament of their aunt, who's been missing for four years. What a shock! The aunt has left her huge fortune to her boyfriend.  Only, omg, she's alive!  Turned out she had been imprisoned during the Vietnam War while she was yachting around Asia.  Anyway, she wants to change her will.  No, the nieces and nephews are still out of luck - she has a NEW boyfriend to leave her money to.  But she feels sick, and falls in love at first sight with the Docteur Hugo, and then has her head turned by the law clerk himself.  Just when the nieces and nephews can't take it anymore ("omg that sly old fox of a lawyer is taking all our money!") she suddenly notices the play's narrator and they waltz off into the sunset.  It was hilarious.  Everyone played their parts so well, especially the aunt and the lawyer.  I'll post photos today or tomorrow.  So happy!  And now on to essay writing!

Wednesday, 23 March 2011

In this country, you don't waste a nice day.

I'm was a tiny bit under the weather yesterday but I couldn't wear pants when I knew the weather will be freezing again today!  Plus I was dying to debut this navy skirt I got at a thrift store.  I thought it was a great match with the grey floral print, and I'd prefer it without tights but it wasn't quite that warm!  My dad said I look very springy, so I must have done something right.

This was the only half-decent shot I managed to take with my camera, so I resorted to photo booth.

It's now warm enough some days to sleep on wet hair, which lets my natural wavy hair be free.  It sometimes works really well, and sometimes not.  In this case I'm inclined to say not, but a fair amount of mousse and hairspray, and a couple of bobby pins to hold back the most troublesome sections makes it respectable.
I'm drinking a lot of tea for my cold.  Also because I'm addicted to tea anyway, obviously.

Tuesday, 22 March 2011

Sunshine and Lollipops! Spring is here! (Shoe Challenge #10)

It is now officially spring and the weather was just gorgeous yesterday so I made sure to wear something nice because it's going back to freezing this week and I'll no doubt find myself in jeans.  I'm sorry to say there's no exciting or amusing anecdote to accompany these outfit photos.  You can just point and laugh at my photo-taking failure.  This one was supposed to be a dramatic upward-tilting shot but, well, see for yourself.

Shoeper Shoe Challenge #10 is this pair of cartoonishly adorable red flats.  (Actually they do have a tiny heel.)  I thought they went perfectly with the cloudy-sky-blue knit dress.
My beloved elbow-length gloves!  (Tommy Hilfiger for $1.50!) Only I am one day behind in my outfit posting so today's news is I lost those gloves...Good thing at that price I bought a spare pair.

The most beautiful hat of the season, so far

I love hats.  Perhaps it hasn't been made clear, but I currently own five of them (two for winter, three for summer) and I would love to expand the collection.  They are both practical for warmth and/or sun protection AND my favourite way to finish an outfit.  I think when I visit my brother in China this May, I will buy a whole bunch of inexpensive ones.  Yay!

Anyway, the one that caught my eye today is here at Ruche:

I can simply imagine myself wearing it to the beach, for a walk, to a daytime party, and on and on.  And I'd probably also wear it when I'm just at home, because I do that with things I love.
Sadly, I'm a poor blogger so those dreams will wait since cheap and cute hats abound in Beijing.

Monday, 21 March 2011

Shoeper Shoe Challenge #9: Mary Jane Wedges

I'm just on a roll with exciting blog titles, eh?

Shoeper Shoe Challenge # 9 are these summery canvas Mary Janes which I got for $5 in February, and I just love them.  They are a half-size too big (strangely because they're an 8 and I'm usually 8.5-9) but since when is the wrong size a reason to not wear shoes?  I spent about three days wearing these around the house just for fun because there was still snow on the ground. 
For the record, my 19-month-old niece also liked them.
"I am Godzilla! Fear me!!" (She clearly felt really big with the extra 2 inches of heel height!)

Now thank goodness the weather was dry enough for two days to wear them for real!  My life is so exciting that I wore them to the library downtown to work on my existentialist French literature essay.  It's, um, fascinating.  

The next pair of Mary Janes I'm thinking of getting are these.  I like the floral print but could also go for plain black or navy if they become available, or olive.  

My good friend Lina owned them in black and I can honestly say she wore them to the point of having holes in the toe.  Not the best quality, but at such low prices I think I'll give them a pass.

Friday, 18 March 2011

Jeffrey Campbell

I hope this post does not turn out to be an advertisement for Jeffrey Campbell footwear because honestly, I don't like it and I'm getting tired of it very quickly.  I've been seeing it in what seems like every fashion blog and all over - the exaggerated platform that looks like it weighs five pounds, the chunky six-inch heel, the architectural shapes, yes sir, Jeffrey Campbell!

These ones are the designer's typical shapes but you can find more interesting ones at that link.

Honestly I like my shoes to look a bit delicate.  I'm not opposed to wedge heels, chunky heels, or platforms, but I don't want my foot to resemble a chunk of lead, which is the impression I'm getting here.

Your thoughts?

Thursday, 17 March 2011

Modesty Part 3, Date Outfit, St. Patty's Week and Shoe Challenge #8

Well THAT was a cumbersome post title, wasn't it?
I've officially learned something from blogging.  This dress here?  Too short.

The sad thing is, I've had that dress over a year and I've worn it a good few times.  It was just not until I had to take a photo of myself in it that I realized how short it was - basically unwearable as a dress.

So anyway, Tuesday morning (good thing I didn't have class till 3!) I was struggling to find something that seemed decent and was also green for my self-proclained St. Patrick's Week. So here is what I ended up in.  I was not entirely satisfied but at least it was decent!

Here's my date outfit for Wednesday night, which I recreated today.  I love the print on the top part of the dress. The date was just perfect on the surface (dinner, wine, dessert, talking, etc.) but I don't think that my date and I had much chemistry.  It was really too bad because he was very sweet and interesting.  I felt like we could be great friends.  I may go on a second date if he asks me, just to confirm it.  Has anyone else felt this way before?

And today, St. Patty's day!  I am also feeling like this dress is too short and I might retire it.  I am starting to think everyone should photograph themselves before leaving the house.  Photos just show you something you don't see in the mirror!  I guess it's the same way hearing your recorded voice is so surprising.

I wear these shoes a lot but this is the first time I photographed the whole outfit as it was actually worn.  They are super comfy and versatile, which is great for walking all over downtown Toronto.  I find that flats are not the best with tights because my tights always end up bunching around the ankles, (does anyone else have this problem?) and a bit of a heel helps avoid that.

Wednesday, 16 March 2011

The big date, and loafers or no loafers?

So today I'm again not posting outfit shots due to being away from home.  I did take this, and I'll recreate the whole outfit tomorrow, along with yesterday's outfit and tomorrow's outfit.  I have a date tonight!  I'm really excited, so wish me luck. :D

I'm secondly in a style confusion.  I want to expand my collection of flat shoe options, but I find flat oxfords too boyish for me (although I love heeled oxfords).  Now on I just spied these loafers.  Are loafers cute and stylish, or are your granny's shoes?  Sometimes I like the "granny" style but right now I'm torn.

Please tell me!

Monday, 14 March 2011

Happy St. Patrick's Week!

I am, as my name might hint, a proud Irish girl (at least on my father's side).  I like St. Patrick's Day even more than I like Christmas, and I love wearing green.  I vainly think it brings out my eye colour.  So last year I decided that for me, a single day wasn't enough.  I was personally declaring St. Patrick's Week.
For Day 1 of St. Patrick's Week, I celebrated by sleeping till 9:43 when class starts at 10:10 and I live 15 minutes away IF I can get a ride.  Otherwise it's an hour's bus ride.  Fortunately my dad was able to drive me, so I tossed on my pre-planned outfit and did makeup in the car and only arrived 5 minutes late.  Brilliant!  This is why I plan outfits in advance, even if it is just jeans and a top: my appearance means a lot to me and I wouldn't like to sacrifice it due to my occasional carelessness!

I love this purple floral scarf with the bright green.  And I've already said but I love the tan shoes with the light blue jeans!
Usually I try to avoid the careless hairstyles so often found on univeristy campuses, but today I actually thought it looked kind of cute!  I hope so, anyway.

My neighbour's dog is scary!  

Again this week I'll be going downtown tomorrow and spending two nights.  This week the theme is clearly green, and there's an added complication - on Wednesday night I have a first date with a law student I met in the library last week.  His name is Patrick too, by coincidence.  We are going to dinner.  I am very excited and would like to look my best at the same time as wearing something that's "me".  So we shall what I come up with!

Sunday, 13 March 2011

On modesty, part II

You may have read my thoughts on modesty a few weeks ago here.  Well today I thought about it a lot more.

To start: I'm not posting outfit photos today because I went to a funeral and not only was my outfit not interesting but it seemed disrespectful to take pictures and post them online.  (And I wouldn't like to be the kind of blogger who artificially constructs outfits just to take pictures without actually wearing them.)  I will tell you that I wore a black skirt and black sweater over a white collared shirt that I buttoned up quite high.

I'm not the most modest dresser you will ever meet/see on the internet.  I have been known to wear low-cut top, short skirts, form-fitting dresses, tight pants, etcetera, and I have even fought quite bitterly with my mother over the right to wear them.  But still I always say: dress for the occasion.  Which brings me to my astonishment of the day.

One middle-aged lady at the funeral was wearing a dress that was:

1)  low-cut, revealing a fair amount of middle-aged cleavage.
2)  bright fuschia!
3)  sleeveless/tank-style.
4)  revealed a huge tattoo on her shoulder.
5)  made of a casual, cotton-like material.

I was, quite simply, astonished.  I have heard there is a trend in funerals to "celebrate the life" rather than "mourn the death" of the deceased, and so all-black is not necessary anymore, but still, a funeral is not a party!  This dress seemed to me like one of my everyday summer dresses!  And it just makes me question: shouldn't it be OBVIOUS that that's inappropriate?  Or am I the one confused by outdated rules?

Saturday, 12 March 2011

Best workout ever?

My friends, here is how to work out.
1) Put on a swingy skirt and some socks, for added fun!
2) Play this video:
3) Dance madly around the kitchen.  You should be alone unless you're VERY comfortable with the other person.  The more wild and silly your dance, the better!  Don't forget to twist your hips, fist-punch, wave your arms, shake your head (no ponytails allowed!), get low, and all the rest.  You should take up the whole kitchen.
4)  Replay the video or find another you love to dance to.  This is my current favourite.  I just spent ten minutes replaying it and my heart is pounding!

Outfit photos on the way :)

Friday, 11 March 2011

The play

One more photo from yesterday - this is the cast of a French play I'm doing for the university's French department.  It's a comedy of about half an hour and since I have an overload of courses this year I'm only doing the smallest part.  I'm the secretary, Mademoiselle Peton.  A real coquette, that one!

Thursday, 10 March 2011

As promised, outfit photos!

I was pretty tired when I got home after school today.  I'm not going to hide the truth, I took these photos and changed straight into sweatpants and a sweater.
Our staircase is lined top to bottom with family photos and other sentimental items.

This is the same blazer from Tuesday and I didn't post Wednesday's outfit because it was jeans and a sweater, and also I never had a private moment to take some photographs anyway.  And even though I've been wearing my go-to black kitten heels for three days straight, I can't "save" them in the Shoe Challenge yet because I was too lazy to go downstairs and get them for the photo!  Fortunately I wear those all the time so it shouldn't be a problem.  These black mid-heels that I subbed in for the pictures hurt my feet so much in the 5 minutes of photo-taking that I imagine they will be the next to be shipped off to the Goodwill.  It's only that they were my mother's and are very good quality that's really stopping me so I'll get her opinion first.

Only one more day till the weekend!  Although when you're a student trying to get into law school, and I imagine in many careers, the weekend is not very different from the week.  Still!  March marches on toward its finish, day by day.

Ghosts of the past, part 3

Well, just like last week's library day, I saw my ex again tonight so apparently this is going to be a weekly thing.  But this time?  I was not upset.  Even when he and his new girlfriend came to study in the same reading room as I was in, despite there being loads of available space (no explanation known, sorry).  That's right everyone, your own Molly is moving forward, becoming more mature, and progressing!  :D

Anyway I promise outfit photos tomorrow!  It looks like my essay (Papal Diplomacy During the Cold War, if you're interested) will not be finished tonight because I had to do more research than I thought, but I aim to finish it tomorrow at the very latest.  Off I go to make some tea!

Wednesday, 9 March 2011

My favourite things, my "ehhh" things, and my "no way" things

No outfit photo for today since I'm hard at work in the library.  But to entertain you anyway, I love making lists.  So without further ado, my style absolute to-die-for favourites!
  • Jewel tones: Ruby, emerald, sapphire, amethyst
  • Bows, hearts, and flowers
  • Round, closed-toe pumps.  Preferably with bows, hearts, and/or flowers.  Preferably in jewel tones.
  • A-line skirts and circle skirts.  See above.
  • Tights.  See above.
  • Dark wash jeans - JBrand makes some very flattering ones.
  • Comfortable and ladylike medium heels.
  • Mary Janes.
I will probably think of some more as time goes by and I'll update the list.  Also on my plans: my "ehhh" things and my "no way" things.  So exciting right?  Wish me luck with my essay!

    Tuesday, 8 March 2011

    Planning Outfits in Advance - Day 1

    I live in the suburbs of Toronto, but my great friend Lina lives in the heart of downtown, walking distance from the university.  Usually once a week and sometimes more we pull a very late-night library session and then walk back to her place together and I just stay there.  This is beneficial to both of us as working in the library helps us be productive, and she doesn't do this without me because she wouldn't like to walk home all alone in the wee hours in the morning.  And the next morning we have class together.
    Not exactly school-appropriate, so...
    Covered with a versatile blazer, changing the look entirely!

    The thing is, this requires me to plan my outfit in advance, and not only that but I have to pack light since I have to carry my change of clothing around all day along with any books and my computer and the basic toiletries/essential makeup.  That means I have to plan two visibly different outfits I can match with the same pair of shoes and coat and generally same accessories, as well as preferably at least one or two overlapping items such as a cardigan and a pair of pants or skirt.   Did I mention the temperature is going down again this week?  It can be excruciatingly cold walking back from the library at 2am...
    I do the best I can to balance fashion, outfit diversity, warmth, and light packing.  And this week I will be spending two nights in a row so I have to plan three days ahead.  This week the colour scheme will be red, white, and black.  Some say that that's a very predictable combination, but I say there's nothing wrong with it and it makes things easy!
    I love this dress!
    Also: Pancake Tuesday anyone?  Did I mention I'm an extraordinary chef?  :P  Or that I can eat far more pancakes than a normal person should eat on an average Tuesday?

    **You may have noticed me switching shoes in the pictures.  I am wearing neither of these pairs of shoes today so I'll save the shoe challenging for another day!

    Monday, 7 March 2011

    "All dressed up" and Shoe Challenge # 7

    I never understood why it's seen as such a strange and negative thing to be "all dressed up".  My good friends tease me good-naturedly when I show up to lecture in a skirt or dress, and perhaps others think it's strange but don't say it.  My sister should be accustomed to it since we live in the same house, but she never fails to say something somewhat disparaging, and usually even seems sort of angry to see me in a dress and mid-high heels.  My brother does the same whenever he's in town, annoyed that I'm apparently trying to call attention to myself - this seems to indicate a lack of decorum as far as he's concerned.  I recently heard a story about a professor that made fun of a group of his students who dressed up, dress pants and button-down shirt style, to do a presentation.  (Since when do professors criticize rather than applaud effort?)

    Here is the type of outfit I'm referring to: this is something I would enjoy wearing, and by golly (sorry, I had to) I will!

    Obviously I like clothes and shoes more than the average person if I'm writing a style blog - but why do other people dislike style so much?  Why do we criticize people who make an effort to look nice, or who try to express themselves through clothing?  How did it happen that sweatpants, leggings-as-pants, even pajama pants, and UGG boots, are the go-to outfit for students and many others?

    And does anyone else feel just a little bit offended that their classmates or whoever are basically stating, through sloppy and overcasual dressing, "I don't care at all what you think of me"?

    I don't have the answer.  Anyone care to venture a guess?  All I can say: dressers-up, represent!  Be proud to wear that pretty skirt, those adorable heels, that strand of pearls, that crisp white shirt.  Or it may be that you prefer the boyfriend blazer with a band t-shirt and black skinnies.  I'm not opposed to jeans and a t-shirt when the time is right - just please, please, leave the sweatpants and pajama pants at home.  Or at the VERY LEAST, don't criticize the girl who actually made an effort.  Dressers-up, whatever your style happens to be,  don't let the slobs get you down...and don't get sucked in to their lifestyle!

    Shoe Challenge # 7: brown kitten heels in my favourite round-toe shape

    Sunday, 6 March 2011

    The world hates me (also known as "15cm of snow") and Shoes #6

    Why?  Why?

    Just as I was revelling in the disappearance of the snow, THIS happened.  Kinda like last Sunday, hmm?

    I'm actually a terrible Canadian - I hate winter.  I don't like wearing boots and coats, because they're too expensive to own a variety, they hide your cute outfit underneath, and they weigh you down.  I don't like being cold.  I don't like waking up when it's still dark outside and making my way home from school in 5pm darkness (at least one thing we CAN count on is that the sun lasts a few minutes longer every day.)  We've actually had an unusual amount of snow this winter, even for Toronto.  But please world, please let this one be the last time for the season?

    The silver lining - I get to save these boots in the Shoeper Shoe Challenge (found at  The rules state that you must wear all your shoes within the year or get rid of the unworn ones.  And these Spring boots, at $100 plus that beautiful thing known as 13% sales tax in the province of Ontario, are not only the most expensive shoes in my current collection but the most expensive pair I have ever owned.  At least they've stood up well to the horrible weather, although that's at least in part thanks to the neurotic mink oil treatments I've been giving them!

    I fell in love with this hat at a street market in Florence, Italy, on a high school trip.  This coat, the only I own that I actually like, was $15 at a thrift store (yay!!) and the elbow-length gloves are Tommy Hilfiger but were $4 at an end-of-season sale.  Ha!  Guess they didn't realize that winter was far from over!

    Here's something pink and flowered to cheer us up then.  You can find them at Ruche for far more money than I think I'll ever consider spending on a pair of flats.  They're nice to look at though!

    Saturday, 5 March 2011

    Boldly and fearlessly mixing colours, and Shoe Challenge #5

    One of my New Year's Resolutions was, in these exact words: "boldly and fearlessly mix unexpected colours".  It was not quite accurate.  I don't think colours should be mixed fearlessly at all, I think they should be mixed boldly but cautiously.  I like the idea of combining colour-wheel opposites, but in those cases I think one should be either a dark-approaching-neutral (say, orange with navy blue) or a pale-approaching-pastel (say bright green with a blush pink).  Another possibility is to combine two bright colours, but in unequal amounts: say, a bright yellow dress with a purple headband and belt.  Then I leave the rest of the outfit in the plainest of neutrals like black, white, and tan.  The final test, of course, is the full-length mirror test.  If it looks so bright as to be clownish or unbalanced, something must be changed.

    I thought I'd repeat the same pose from the last rainy day I carried this umbrella!

    Today I went for this rich royal purple and yellow combination, but the yellow is a lovely buttery shade; it also only shows in a small-ish triangle.  I actually was given the yellow top by my sister-in-law and I altered it.  It used to have little pearl beads sewn all over and a ribbon that ran awkwardly across the bust.  I carefully cut off the ribbon and all the beads and turned the ribbon into a bow that I attached with a combination of safety pins and fashion tape.  Voila! I can move the bow wherever I like.  Did I mention I adore bows?

     And for Shoeper Shoe Challenge #5, these Spring shoe-boots with covered buttons, worn last week as well here.  I ordered them not quite realizing the heels were that high but kept them anyway.  They do start to hurt after a whole day of walking around, but who am I to let that stop me?

    I wore this outfit to "work" which is actually tutoring a high school student.  I absolutely love that family: they make me the most delicious tea every time!  And my student is so sweet and polite.  It's a perfect job for during the school year: for 2-3 hours a week it basically funds me buying tea and the occasional lunch on campus (although normally I'm a "packed lunch" kinda person) and my occasional nights out.  And also my cheap clothes and shoes habit!

    I just realized here my approach to style: "do it your way, but don't get crazy." (i.e. Don't overdo it.)
    If you haven't already seen this video, watch it now.  If you have, enjoy it again.  You're welcome!