Although I mentioned last week that I wasn’t planning on expanding my wardrobe between now and when I move down under, I couldn’t resist the magnetism of the newly opened J. Crew (or J. Crack, as my American friends so fondly call it) in downtown Vancouver. After first being introduced to the brand by the likes of Kendi Everyday and the girls at A Piece Of Toast, I couldn’t stay away when the gods of retail plopped a store front right in my backyard.
As luck would have it, I’ve been particularly tight with the purse strings lately which made my inaugural visit to the Crew a whole lot happier. I had been perusing the online catalogues prior to Monday, and was completely in love with all of the totally-wearable-at-the-office fashion options that the store carries. But what I wasn’t ready for was J. Crew‘s No. 2 Pencil Skirt, which is a completely functional, totally well-made version of the office attire I was once utterly terrified of. You heard me right, I had a skirt-a-phobia. That’s what’s up.
My reason for being so afraid of giving in to the pencil skirt was that it seemed boring, restrictive (literally), and so… adult, god forbid. Despite overcoming these fears in recent years, J. Crew’s bold prints and colours have practically reinvented the pencil skirt for me, allowing me to maintain my love of colour and brights while still fitting in and dressing professionally at the office. As much as I can appreciate a great black blazer and skirt, it’s summertime and I’ll be damned if I can’t wear me some colour. And naturally, because I like to think I have a knack for bargain hunting, J. Crew has a number of their No. 2′s on sale at the moment–I picked up two, in purple and coral, for just $73 each (regular $134).
Because I’m late for everything in the fashion world including colour-blocking, I’m really looking forward to putting these skirts together in a multitude of ways, both for office wear and non-corporate occasions. At work, one colourful piece of clothing is great at a time (I don’t want to blind anybody over here), but for the weekends, I’m excited to pair the skirts with coloured cardigans (like this one I just bought from Zara in yellow) or tights. What do you think, are bright pencil skirts your thing? What would you pair them with?
All images via J. Crew
Aside from the fact that it’s my birthday, the 21st of May sticks out in my mind because I’ve spoken that particular date aloud far more times than any other throughout my life. For that reason, when May 21st actually rolls around it feels totally over-hyped. Maybe it’s because as a kid I (as any other kid) put so much excitement and anticipation toward that day. Who wouldn’t though? Cake, balloons, party dresses, pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey… there’s nothing to dislike about those things. But these days, I find far more enjoyment in spending my birthday with a few friends in a low-key environment, just enjoying the different stages I’m at in my life every time the 21st of May rolls around. You might say this is because I’ve outgrown pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey, but I’d attribute it more to the fact that I’ve got more birthdays now that I can remember than when I was 12 (well, in theory I should remember them all…), which is a lot better suited for reflection.
I do like big parties on birthdays, but I also think that not every year requires one. This year, with my boyfriend in Australia, my parents in Germany, my sister in Ottawa, and me getting ready to move out of Vancouver, it seems a subdued day of shopping and brunch with some girlfriends is just what I need. But next year? I’ll be preparing for my first birthday in autumn (which is completely and totally weird), and I’m just dying to have a party with a spread as nice as the one pictured. I mean, could you imagine? Cake pops and chocolate and so many other treats laid out so perfect and pretty. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t excited to be in an apartment where hosting a party is possible, even if it’s only a party for 8. So, this year I’ll be counting my lucky stars for all of the things that happened while I was 24, and today I’m looking forward to the year ahead: may it be filled with sunshine, adventure, and a little bit of crazy. Oh, and nautical stripes. I really will never get over nautical stripes.
Update: I’m being featured over on Something Fabulous today, what a lovely birthday surprise! Head on over and check it out here!
This weekend was the first of hopefully very many sunny and gorgeous weekends on the west coast. What was even better was that I was finally able to break out some of my favourite summer sun dresses that have literally not seen the light of day for months (thanks to the perpetual state of boarded-up windows & building construction my apartment seems to be experiencing). But when you’re as close to the ocean as we are in Vancouver, it can get a little breezy even on the nicest of days, which means that it’s imperative to always have some sort of sweater or jacket on hand.
It’s a bit of a struggle for me to figure out what exactly to pair with my favourite dresses, maxis especially, because sometimes my cardigans (generally purchased for/worn at the office) just seem a bit too preppy and dressed up for the weekend. I also have a pretty limited wardrobe right now, and I’m trying to keep it that way, because everything I have in my closet is going to need to be shipped to Australia, which in itself is a costly feat–expanding my wardrobe in the near future is definitely not an option. But during my adventures this weekend, I happened across a lovely lady wearing her maxi dress with a denim jacket, which was a total aha! moment for me. How did I not think of that?
I’ll be honest, I’ve been kind of afraid of rocking a denim jacket for a while, despite loving how they looked on other people. But in light of this recent styling stroke of brilliance, I think I’m ready to take the plunge–it seems like the perfect answer for something breeze-shielding (which cardigans often are not), while being sufficiently cute and stylish. Even better, it’ll allow me to wear my dresses a little further into the fall, perhaps paired with some tights to keep my bottom half warm. Then again, the next time I experience autumn it will be from the city of Melbourne, so I’m not sure exactly how ‘chilly’ it will be, especially in comparison to our Canadian seasons. Either way, I’ll be searching the shops for a denim jacket as soon as I land in Oz. In the meantime, I’ve combed the internet in search of some inspiration so that all of us can enjoy Super Mario’s favourite fabric: denim denim denim. Alright, so I stole Pauly D’s joke… big whoop.