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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Entries in Outfit Inspiration (3)

Thursday
Mar232017

LIKE A BOSS | 12 Spring Upgrades Your Work Wardrobe Will Love

via whatweworeblog on Instagram

Girl bosses used to dress like men to get the respect they deserved, often with mixed results. Pants. Obviously yes. Shoulder pads? Mmmmnot so much.  As a proud girl boss, let me say that I have managed to build my own business, work on my own terms and continue to set goals that my 7 year-old self would have been proud of, and I've done it all in pink. This spring, a killer work wardrobe is all about harnessing your fashion power to make your 9-to-5 grind more fun. It's about taking charge of the season's top trends and making them work for you. And of course, it's about shoe shopping because let's face it: when is it not about shoe shopping? 

Read on for 12 spring upgrades your work wardrobe is going to love. Now all you've gotta do is werk it...


STYLIST TIPS | Bored with your basic button-down? Give your blouse edit an instant update by adding bell sleeves to the mix. The oversized sleeves will make every board meeting more dramatic, each Powerpoint point more pointed, every after-work sip of wine so much more chic. Wear them with tailored trousers (any colour you like, from neutrals to pastels to brights to florals) and a long pendant necklace, then try it with frayed hem cropped jeans and white kicks on the weekend. 

OUR PICK | Bell-Sleeve Blouse, $44.90, Reitmans

 

STYLIST TIPS | If thinking in practical terms (which you should never do in fashion, btw), printed pants might seem tough to justify. After all, how many times can you wear floral pants to work? Okay, picture these stylish scenarios: 1. With a white button-down, black pointy-toe pumps and black fringe pendant earrings. 2. With a plain white tee, a black leather bomber and clean white sneakers for dress-down days or casual offices. 3) With a black blazer, black silky tank and heels in place of a boring suit. I've only named three. I could go on but I won't, because I need to get this post done so I can go buy these pants. #sorrynotsorry (Oh, would also be super cute with a pink trench or an army green utility jacket or the black bell-sleeved blouse I featured above - see? I can't stop...)

OUR PICK | Floral Print Crêpe Slim Leg Pant, $49.95, Le Château

STYLIST TIPS | This lovely pink trench, with it's subtle moto-zip detail, has girl power written all over it and is ideal for running the world, no matter what the spring weather throws your way.  

OUR PICK | Soft Pink A-Line Trench, $139.90, Cleo

STYLIST TIPS | If you tend to stress, let your shoes guide your vibe. These laid-back slides will help you slide into work without having to worry about the pain of uncomfortable heels or the annoyances of no-sandal dress codes, plus they'll help you look extra on top of it. If you wish you could wear slippers to work, these are really the next best thing. I love wearing these with wide leg cropped pants (see below) or printed pants (see above). 

OUR PICK | Backless Loafer, $90, ALDO

STYLIST TIPS | I'm not suggesting you wear sunglasses in your office (tempting as that might be), but on your way to work, out for lunch or on your commute home, you need a pair of expensive-looking glasses in your workwear arsenal. I'm loving the collection of premium glasses at ALDO right now that feels decidedly luxe without the commitment of designer eyewear prices. If pink just isn't your thing, you're probably going to hate this post so far but luckily, most of my suggested pink finds come in black, too. 

OUR PICK | Premium Sunglasses, $55, ALDO

STYLIST TIPS | When it comes to looking profesh, never, ever let your work bag be an afterthought. If I had a dime for every time I've seen a perfectly well-dressed woman ruin an entire outfit with a plastic lunch bag, I'd have so many amazing pairs of shoes. Remember that a truly killer work wardrobe is all about attention to detail - think polished digits and shoes, on-point hair and heels, and of course, a sleek-looking laptop bag to carry all of your Very Important Stuff. 

OUR PICK | Uptown Box Tote, $328, Roots

STYLIST TIPS | Wide legs have all but replaced skinnies for fashion influencers and chic working girls are following suit. This spring, it's all about the wide leg crop and the high-waisted wide leg, both of which will make you look totally current on the job. Wear them with a white shirt and block heels or push it with suspenders à la Monica from Friends Season 1, Episode 1. Don't you just love Netflix fashion inspo? 

OUR PICK | Stripe Woven Wide Leg Pant, $99.95, Le ChâteauWide Leg Cropped Pants, $34.90, Reitmans

STYLIST TIPS | Dressing for work can feel like a daily battle. Time to take control - think of your office as your town and you as the slick sheriff. Except, instead of a bandana 'round your neck, you've got this floral scarf instead. Now reel in those boring outfits and rope 'em in with this scarf. Basic black suit? Whachow. Simple crew neck sweater? Kazow. Those neutrals'll never know what hit 'em. 

OUR PICK | Floral Scarf, $12, ALDO

STYLIST TIPS | A pair of shoulder-skimming earrings are the answer to every woman's early morning probz. Hit the snooze button one too many times? Add these earrings to a white long-sleeve tee and black cropped pants. Missed the kids' schoolbus? Throw these earrings on and nobody will notice those mismatched socks. I'd also highly recommend these stunners to take any outfit from serious to seriously fun for impromptu dinner dates with your work besties. 

OUR PICK | Fringe Earrings, $12.90, Reitmans

STYLIST TIPS | Adding a third piece is key to taking any work outfit from meh to major. While a blazer can sometimes feel too constricting and a long cardigan can feel sloppy, a sleeveless blazer is the perfect, stylish compromise. Wear it with everything from fitted long-sleeve bodysuits and tailored trousers to a tee and dark denim on casual Fridays. 

OUR PICK | Sleeveless Open Blazer, $74.90, Reitmans

STYLIST TIPS | If you love your striped tees as much as I do, then it's likely you love wearing them to work, too. Problem is, a striped tee doesn't exactly scream 'adult', does it? Luckily, this striped chiffon top has all the classic vibes of your go-to striped tees but with a lovely pleated chiffon detail that instantly upgrades it to corporate level. Love!

OUR PICK | Pleated Chiffon Striped Top, $49.90, Cleo

STYLIST TIPS | Spring means it's time to start wearing your dresses again and this eyelet beauty is ripe for the picking. Navy is a nice subtle update if you're guilty of wearing all black all the time but luckily, it still pairs beautifully with black for the office. Wear it now with black tights and ankle boots and later with bare legs (if your office allows) and block heels or pointy-toe flats. Bright accessories (think yellow or pink) are ideal for creative offices while silver, gold or black extras will keep the look toned down. 

OUR PICK | 3/4 Sleeve Eyelet Dress, $79.90, Reitmans

STYLIST TIPS | You've updated your work wardrobe and those 'nothing to wear' mornings are no more. But here's the thing - success at work, like success in fashion, is all about setting goals and taking risks. Make it your mission this year to step outside your comfort zone and do something different. My recommendation? Try silver shoes. From perforated brogues to fun Mary Janes, shiny silver shoes will help you step up your 9 to 5 game. Avoid Studio 54 vibes by pairing your loud shoes with a quiet, classic outfit - think black or khaki ankle pants and a fine-knit crewneck to start. Bust out those bomb dance moves at your own discretion. 

OUR PICK | Silver Perforated Brogues, $90, ALDO; Block Heel Mary Janes, $80, ALDO

Friday
Feb122016

FASHION TO-DO | Get a Jump On Spring With These 15 Pieces

via Atlantic-Pacific @blaireadiebee on Instagram

If you're getting tired of your winter wardrobe, we feel you. With so many stunning spring pieces flooding into stores, we say, why wait? Get a jump on the new season with these 15 pretty finds...

 

HOW TO WEAR IT NOW | Now that we're well into February (yay!), it's time to put aside your plaid scarf and switch it up for something more springy. We love how a breezy scarf instantly breathes new life into your winter coat since you're probably super sick of it by now. Just us? 

OUR PICK | Kismet Frayed Striped Scarf, $26.90, Bootlegger

HOW TO WEAR IT NOW | Forget distressed and cool for now - the new denim shirt is clean and tailored, making it super easy to dress up or down. For now we'll be wearing this shirt under our chunky knits, with our long cardis and, since we are Canadian, with our jeans of course.

OUR PICK | Lyocell Button-Front Tunic Shirt, $69.95, Le Château

HOW TO WEAR THEM NOW | While we appreciate that our winter boots keep our feet warm and dry, some days call for something just a little less clunky. These blue suede ankle boots are practical enough to wear with your jeans yet perfectly pretty enough for the spring and summer dresses you'll be busting out once the snow melts. 

OUR PICK | Suede Tassel Ankle Boots, $150, ALDO

HOW TO WEAR IT NOW | Okay, come on - how fun is this bag? Just don't show this pic to that black bag you've been toting around for the past 4 months - it might turn green w envy. 

OUR PICK | Printed Satchel, $60, ALDO

 

HOW TO WEAR IT NOW | You might live in Sudbury and you might think I'm crazy but trust - a little white dress might be your favourite new winter piece. Follow the lead of your fave A-listers and simply pair this up with a black (ideally velvet) blazer, black opaque tights and little ankle boots, and you'll slay your next party, guaranteed. 

OUR PICK | Lace Inset Dress, $84, American Eagle

HOW TO WEAR THEM NOW | The runways were rife with big, beautiful earrings for Spring '16 but there's no need to hold out until March. Big bold earrings are perfect for peeking out under your toque since, let's face it, your lobes are pretty much the only things you're showing off right now. Wear these metallic stunners together or rock one solo if you really want to look on point. 

OUR PICK | Metallic Statement Earrings, $12, ALDO

HOW TO WEAR IT NOW | An off-the-shoulder top might feel all 'festival' but we love it for everyday, too. For right now, we'd wear this super pretty grey top with distressed jeans and ankle boots. Just be sure to wear an oversized scarf to add an extra layer of warmth for those sprints from your house to the car. 

OUR PICK | Off-the-Shoulder Tassel Shirt, $63, American Eagle

HOW TO WEAR IT NOW | If you work in an office, are heading to a weekend brunch, or just want to impress on date night, we love the look of a great white coat. Wear this stunner to brighten up your winter blacks and greys right now, then rock it this spring as an update to your classic trench. 

OUR PICK | Double Weave Notch Collar Wrap Coat, $225, Le Château

HOW TO WEAR THEM NOW | One look at these red Ghillie tie pumps and we're feeling all hot and bothered. Can't think of a better way to warm up on a freezing cold day, can you? Since we don't want anyone to hurt themselves, wear your flats outside, then change into these at the office to look like a total girl #boss.

OUR PICK | Leather-Like Ghillie Tie Pump, $69.95, Le Château

HOW TO WEAR THEM NOW | Not sure how to wear spring's hottest denim trend right now? Surprisingly, flared cropped jeans look especially cool in the winter months if you wear them the right way. Follow the lead of style girls like Alexa Chung and Emmanuelle Alt and pair up your crops with a turtleneck and black mid-calf boots. So easy, so chic.  

OUR PICK | Kick Crop Jean, $56, American Eagle

HOW TO WEAR THEM NOW | If you've been living in your black or brown sunglasses all winter, now's the perfect time to change them up for something more fun. Since pink is the big colour for 2016, we're opting for cheap and cheerful pink mirrored shades to make all of our winter looks just a little more rosy. 

OUR PICK | Pink Mirrored Sunglasses, $23, American Eagle

HOW TO WEAR IT NOW | If you're feeling bored of your 9-to-5 wardrobe, don't despair. Sometimes, all it takes is one key piece to take your look to another level. A long black vest looks amazing with everything from a basic black sweater to a classic white button-down now, then with your summer dresses and tanks when the mercury rises. 

OUR PICK | Woven Inverted-Collar Long Vest, $129.95, Le Château

HOW TO WEAR IT NOW | Since you might be waiting awhile for your yacht to come in, you might as well get nautical right now. Stripes are an easy way to incorporate pattern into your look and will add loads of interest to your cardis and blazers. 

OUR PICK | Guess Striped Tunic, $49, Bootlegger

HOW TO WEAR IT NOW | Though we can't all be Kendall & Gigi, we can still dress like them, right? Chokers are an easy (& inexpensive) way to add some '90s fun to your winter outfits. Gold will let you play with the trend in a subtle way, while black faux leather will help you find your edge. 

OUR PICKS | Faux Leather Choker, $12, ALDO; Gold Bar Choker, $12, ALDO

HOW TO WEAR IT NOW | Certain floral prints can only really be worn in the summer, which is why we're so in love with this floral dress. Since these bold and bright flowers are grounded by black, you can easily rock it now with black tights, ankle boots and a little black leather bomber jacket. Simply add bare legs and strappy sandals this summer.  

OUR PICK | Guess Fit & Flare Floral Dress, $118, Bootlegger

 

Wednesday
Dec312014

PRET-A-PARTY | 3 Jaw-Dropping New Year's Eve Outfits

A pretty way to kick off 2015. Photo via Viva Luxury.

New Year's Eve always turns out to be a toss-up. Do you brave the crowds to party in public, risking over-priced everything for the possibility of an epic night, or just keep it cozy at home with your favourites? Do you ring in the New Year with reams of ambitious resolutions or just chalk it up to another day like all the rest? I'm the last-minute type when it comes to NYE decisions. Right now, it could be an 11th hour trip to the LCBO for bubbly or it could be me begging my mom to watch our kids so we can hit up our favourite restaurant (if we can get in...), but no matter what we end up doing tonight, there will be sequins. Oh yes, there will be sequins. Because whether you make it maje or opt to keep it low-key, a brand new year deserves a seriously memorable outfit.

The 3 jaw-dropping looks below require only 5 pieces - doable if you feel like hitting up the mall today to spend your not-so-hard-earned Christmas money, or to serve as inspo to shop your own closet this afternoon. 

Happy, happy New Year's, beauties! Wishing you all a fantastic night and a healthy, happy and most stylish 2015. My resolution? Drink more champagne.

1. Nixon Corporal Gold Watch, $225, Boathouse | 2. NY V-Neck Tee, $14.90, Garage  | 3. Shimmer Trim Cardi, $42, American Eagle | 4. Converse Chuck Taylors, $54.99, Soft Moc | 5. Sequin Mini Skirt, $59.95, Le Château.

1. Matte Black Earrings, $12, ALDO | 2. Tuxedo Blazer, $34.99, Smart Set | 3. Lace Detailed Jumpsuit, $45, Dynamite | 4. Navy Sparkly Clutch, $22.50, ALDO | 5. Estée Lauder Pure Colour Stay-On Shadow Paint, $28, Sears.

1. Estée Lauder Long Lasting Nail Lacquer, $25, Sears | 2. Satin Ankle-Strap Sandal, $89.95, Le Château | 3. Shelby Italian Lamb Leather Biker, $249, Danier | 4. AFTER THE BALL Collection Lace Mesh Fit & Flare Dress, $225, Le Château | 5. Countdown Clutch, $35, ALDO