About Sarah

 

Sarah Francis is a fashion addict with a serious shoe fetish and a penchant for shiny things.  She's the Director of Real Life Runway and Official Stylist of Vaughan Mills. Her work has appeared in some of the country's top magazines, newspapers and TV shows.  Oh, and she loooves to shop. Obviously.

 

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Thursday
Oct202016

PRETTY LITTLE LAYERS | Our Top Picks for a Perfectly Cozy Fall

via Watchabuy

Think the colder weather means the end of looking cute until next spring? Hold up. With the right layering pieces, you can greet the next several months in style without sacrificing a single second of warmth.  

Read on for the cozy picks you'll love to live in this season. As for that cold weather? Brrring it on. 


WHY YOU'LL LOVE IT | Never underestimate the power of a perfect crewneck sweatshirt - it's classic, it's cozy, and it lends instant chill to any outfit. Want to wear your sequined skirt all day? Go for it. Just add a grey sweatshirt and cute white kicks. Sexy black waxed skinnies and pumps need some taming? Add a grey sweatshirt. Go a size up from what you normally buy to look stylish, not stuffed. 

OUR PICK | Raglan Crew Sweatshirt, $46, American Eagle

WHY YOU'LL LOVE THEM | There are so many ways to justify living in your black leggings on the daily, from the obvious comfort factor to the ease with which they work into your wardrobe. Still. I mean, do leggings really have to be so basic? If you haven't already, look for leather (faux or real) details to add some interest to your leggings this season. Simply add a chambray shirt, a cozy knit, some black ankle boots and a fun scarf (see below) for any cool fall day or family photoshoot that comes your way. 

OUR PICK | Black Pleather Insert Leggings, $59.90, Cleo

WHY YOU'LL LOVE IT | Since every woman owns that same plaid scarf by now (you know the one), this fall feels like the perfect time for a switch-up. Whether you choose a fun star motif, an animal print, or a graphic that helps you express your M.O., pick a playful scarf to throw on when it gets freezing or to toss oh-so-awesomely over your couch like a Pinterest pro. Good vibes all around.  

OUR PICK | Good Vibes Scarf, $29.95, Garage

WHY YOU'LL LOVE IT | A turtleneck is a super sleek and easy way to update your wardrobe staples for the colder weather ahead. Wear it with a pleated skirt and over-the-knee boots, layered under a shift dress, instead of a scarf (on those days you don't feel like wearing a scarf) or with those overalls you rocked all summer. Keep it fitted, keep it simple, and be sure to pick one up in grey, black and white - you're going to need them all. 

OUR PICK | Kismet Clare Turtleneck, $39.90, Bootlegger

WHY YOU'LL LOVE THEM | This fall, don't let your extras be an afterthought; they might be little but gloves and scarves can totally make or break your outerwear game. You can never go wrong with black or grey but next time you shop, pick up a colour-blocked hat and a pair of mixed media gloves - practical enough to go with any of your coats but with just the right amount of detail to keep things interesting. 

OUR PICKS | Knit and Faux Leather Gloves, $40, ALDO; Roxana Pom Pom Toque, $30, Roots

WHY YOU'LL LOVE IT | Don't suffer through another Saturday morning hockey practice alone. A S'well bottle will keep you company on the bench and keep your hot drinks (tea, coffee, Baileys - we won't judge) piping hot for up to 12 hours. Here's hoping hockey practice won't last quite that long...

OUR PICK | S'well Bikini Pink Water Bottle, $46.99, Jean Machine

WHY YOU'LL LOVE IT | Think cozy has to mean shapeless? Meet the sweater dress - one of the sexiest ways to warm up this winter. The knit will hug your curves and show off your shape, whether you're heading to work (um, maybe add some black tights in that case) or going out for a cozy dinner date. 

WE LOVE | Midi Sweater Dress, $64.90, Dynamite

WHY YOU'LL LOVE IT | Hit the snooze button one too many times? Here's a fast wardrobe fix, guaranteed to make your mornings a breeze: choose a monochromatic base (black, grey or off-white), then simply add a long vest and black ankle boots. Faux fur is always a cute option or go with one of fall's hottest outerwear trends: the sherpa vest. Kind of makes you want to climb to the top of a very large hill. Or hunker down for an epic Netflix sesh by the fire. Totally up to you. ;)

OUR PICK | Textured Faux Sherpa Vest, $79.95, Le Château

WHY YOU'LL LOVE IT | Hoodies made fashion headlines this season as the stylish sweat of choice. Whether you wear it with a skirt (seriously) or your workout gear, opt for a zip hoody with thoughtful details; we love this one for its colour-blocking, its figure-flattering seaming and of course, those super cool thumbholes. 

OUR PICK | Hyba Hooded Quilted Jacket, $69.90, Reitmans

WHY YOU'LL LOVE THEM | When it comes to the weather, fall is a funny time - from pouring rain to freezing mornings to those unexpected f-words (I'll just say it: flurries) - which makes footwear decisions tougher than usual. Since tall winter boots often feel way too clunky between seasons, you'll need a pair of transitional boots in your life to get you from A to B and back again. BTW, Timberlands = instant street cred. 

OUR PICKS | Timberland Flannery Sneaker Boot, $119.99, Journeys; Birdy Lace-Up Boots, $110, ALDO

WHY YOU'LL LOVE THEM | If you want to look chic from your toque to your toes, sport socks just aren't gonna cut it. We love cabin socks for all the practical and the pretty they provide to our rainboots and snow boots and every other boot we'll live in this season. 

OUR PICK | Ashli Cabin Sock 2-Pack, $18.50, Roots

WHY YOU'LL LOVE THEM | With the athleisure trend going nowhere, it's perfectly acceptable to wear your joggers in public right now. The key to keeping it stylish? Make sure your joggers are a not-too-tight slim fit, with figure flattering seams and knees that won't stretch out. If you like the baggier look, look for joggers with volume through the thigh and tapered cuffs at the ankles. Go for a grey or black pair and you can take them from your house to the grocery store without missing a beat.  

OUR PICK | Training Pant, $74, Roots

WHY YOU'LL LOVE IT | A pretty colour block poncho is the perfect way to add a subtle pop of print to your solid turtlenecks, classic white button-downs or denim shirts this fall. Once the real cold arrives, don't be afraid to layer it over your black coat to make winter way more stylish. Aaand, that's a wrap. ;)

OUR PICK | Grey Colour Block Poncho Wrap, $49.90, Cleo

Friday
Oct072016

SWEATER WEATHER | 30 Luxe-Looking Sweaters That Won't Ruin Your Fall Budget

via Rocky Barnes Blog

While I'm already mourning the loss of this fall-that-feels-like-summer, the cooler weather ahead does have a silver lining: sweater weather. There's nothing like tossing on a cozy knit on a brisk day to feel all those fall feels. In my swingy long cardigan, I won't have to wear a coat while picking pumpkins with my kids. In my XL sweater, leggings and Timberlands, I can conquer a fall hike in style.  And in one of this season's off-the-shoulder knits, I can still feel the sun on my skin, just for a little while longer. 

While you'll never go wrong investing in a quality knit, it doesn't mean you can never save on sweaters. With the right construction, good yarns and thoughtful details, some of this season's sweaters are surprisingly affordable. Before you buy, check the knit in the light. Is it already pilling? That's a good sign that your sweater won't last. Next, look for any holes and stretching at the hem and shoulders. A poor construction means the sweater is likely going to stretch out of shape after a few wears.  Finally, check the label and look for either a cotton, merino wool or wool blend. Acrylic is okay but ideally try to find an acrylic that's been blended with better fibers. Sure, you might not find a luxe cashmere for under $100, but the good news? A blend is usually machine-washable. You might not want to part with $200 for a bright red sweater but at $40, it's definitely worth the risk. And if you fall in love with a certain sweater and love how it fits, a lower pricetag lets you buy it in grey AND in black. Yup. Silver linings all around. 

Happy Thanksgiving and happy sweater weather!

xx

 

 
Friday
Sep232016

ICE ICE BABY | 3 Winning World Cup of Hockey Outfits

We got this bruh.

Alright stop, collaborate and listen: it's time to talk hockey. With Team Canada in the finals, much of our country has made plans to have absolutely no plans, unless they involve hockey. And while I feel it's my duty as a fashion blogger to talk about fashion, I wouldn't be a true Canadian if I didn't work this post around our national sport - the sport that we grew up watching on TV with our dads, the one we perfected on bumpy backyard rinks long after the street lights had flickered on, the game that so often makes fully grown Canadian men break down and cry. Sure, our collective hope in Canadian hockey might have dimmed over these last few years but the spark is still there. Our hope still burns deep that Canada will rise to the top once again. Our love for the sport is pure and true. Our dreams of victory will never die. 

So while Crosby and co. get ready for a major game ahead, you can do your part, too. Be red, white and proud. Shake out those jerseys, jump into those Roots joggers, slap a maple leaf on your cheek and cheer like you've never cheered before. This is our game. This is our time. Clear eyes, full hearts, can't lose. Oh wait, that's football isn't it...

We'll leave the pep talk to Babcock while I focus on what you're going to wear. Whether you're on the edge of your couch, with your squad at a sports bar or were lucky enough to score tickets to the main event, these winning outfits will get you through World Cup of Hockey finals and beyond. We've so got this. 

Does it get more Canadian? The new World Cup of Hockey cups at Tim Hortons. 

1. Double Pocket Chambray Shirt, $56, American Eagle | 2. Mineral & Ginger Clay Mask, $20, The Body Shop | 3. World Cup of Hockey Women's Tee, $29.99, Sport Chek | 4. Richview Baseball Cap, $19.99, Roots | 5. Victory Pant, $78, Roots | 6. Tim Hortons World Cup of Hockey Cup | 7. Black Beaded Moccasins, $74.99, Soft Moc | 8. Women's Pop Cabin Socks, Set of 2 for $18.50, Roots

via carterslanding on Instagram

1. Long Sleeve Plaid Tunic, $49.90, Reitmans | 2. Open Cardi with Faux Leather Pockets, $69.90, Reitmans | 3. Studded Star Crossbody, $45, ALDO | 4. Willow & Thread Faux Leather Leggings, $69.90, Reitmans | 5. National Anthem T-Shirt, $34, Roots | 6. Converse Chuck Taylor Sneakers, $59.99, Soft Moc.

via Kristian Bogner Photography

1. World Cup of Hockey Team Canada Crosby Jersey, $199.99, Sport Chek | 2. Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure in Right Said Red, Shoppers Drug Mart | 3. Canada Hockey Pom Beanie, $35, LIDS | 4. Soft & Sexy Swing Tank, $26, American Eagle | 5. Real Soft Harem Pant, $53, American Eagle | 6. Puma Fierce Sneakers, $99.99, Champs Sports.