Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Outfit: Oscar de la Renta

After the Flashdance debacle, I thought it would be hard to convince my husband to go to another musical with me. Luckily, the next musical touring through Calgary was the Book of Mormon.

It's written by Trey Parker and Matt Stone, the creative minds responsible for South Park, with Robert Lopez (Avenue Q) so this should give you an idea of what to expect.

The basic premise: two Mormon boys go to Uganda for their mission. They end up in a village which is under the control of a warlord, General Butt Fucking Naked and set to work helping them the only way they know how: by trying to help them find Jesus.

To be honest, I thought that the show would end with General BFN massacring the entire village for converting to Mormonism. I guess that maybe tells you something about how cynical I am. Or maybe it tells you a bit about my experiences working in other countries.

In any case, that's not actually what happens, although there is a lot of dark humor and irony in the show.

I thought I would find the show offensive and juvenile. It definitely has its moments. One of the most controversial songs, "Hasa diga eebowai" is supposed to translate to "Fuck you, God". Some of the last lines of the song are: "If you don't like what we say, try living here a couple days. Watch all your friends and family die. Hasa diga eebowai". Although I think the show often exploits shock value for laughs, I can't argue with those last lines.

As a musical production, the songs are generally catchy but trite. The second act really seems to drag. There are a lot of cheap shots at the Church of Latter Day Saints, which I found lazy on the part of the writers. In summary: not the best show I've ever seen, but also not the worst.

Bag: Alexander McQueen Knuckle Box Clutch (these are often available for cheaper on The Real Real) (similar)

Outfit details:
Dress: Oscar de la Renta
Scarf: old, from Cambodia
Tights: old, Target
Shoes: Valentino Rockstud Booties (similar but with a low heel)

Saturday, May 2, 2015

April showers...

It's been more than a month since I posted for lots of reasons.

I wrote in my last post that March was tough. It was a really busy month for me at work, and then on March 10, one of our friends, Robson Gmoser, died in an avalanche. We hadn't known him for long but he was such a warm person that we really felt like we'd lost a good friend.

A beautiful day at Battle Abbey
Heading over to a run called "Steepness", with Robson in the lead
I'm not sure how it happened, but somehow April was even busier than March.

The one high point of April was our trip to Fairy Meadow. I wasn't sure how I would feel spending time in the backcountry after what happened in March but that joy and wonder that I've always felt in the mountains is still there. I skied 8 days in a row, most days covering more than 20 kilometers with 2000 meters of elevation gain.


I'm hoping May will be a better month and that I'll be able to post weekly again. Thank you for continuing to read!

Monday, March 23, 2015

Anthro: Reviews, mostly dresses

I have to apologize for the lack of posts recently. March has been an unexpectedly tough month.

I did visit the Anthro store in Calgary today. I tried on a few sale items and a few full-price items too. I have to say, it really annoys me that Calgary never seems to get the pieces that catch my eye on the website, and after being burned on the exchange rate and duties in the past, I refuse to order online.

This dress was hanging in the sale room. There are quite a few sizes. It has a 70s vibe, and I can picture a woman with straight, centre-parted hair at a glamorous party wearing this. The dress is quite sheer with a slip underneath. There is a zipper along the side under the arm. The dress runs a bit small to size and I found it hard to zip up the zipper without catching the slip. It's cute and unique but poorly constructed, so this was a pass.

Equinox Pleated Maxi Dress
This is one of the dresses that I featured in my last post as being somewhat Oscar de la Renta inspired. It's made by HD in Paris, and I have a blue skirt with a similar flounce along the hem. It fits true to size.  The eyelet is lined with a nude material. It's still kind of sheer though, and I could very easily see my tights through the two layers of fabric although this doesn't show up great in this photo (fortunately!) It's very pretty but I wasn't completely smitten.

Georgia Eyelet Dress
This is another dress that seems Oscar de la Renta inspired. I noticed in the catalog that it didn't seem to fit the model well around the waist. This wasn't an issue for me, but the bust was quite large. I guess I don't have quite enough to fill this one out! It's made of a shiny material, which is hard to notice from the website or the catalog. I like the knee length. It's very ladylike and I think you could dress this one up or wear it to work. I passed on this one because of fit issues.

Tea Garden Sheath
Lastly, I tried on this blouse. For the sake of these photos, I grabbed a pair of flared jeans. Pilcro jeans don't usually fit me in the calves, but these ones are very stretchy. And high-waisted. They made me think of mom jeans.

The blouse is pretty and fluttery but kind of shapeless. Even the belt at the waist doesn't do much to define it, and I find if you tie it too tightly, it interferes with the ruffles on the sides. It's also very sheer, with a separate camisole inside. Because it has the two layers and the textures are so slippery, I found that I had to think really hard about how to put this one on and not end up with an arm through only one armhole. Or something. Pass.

Rose Garden Kimono Blouse
Pilcro Stet Flare Jeans
Have you been to Anthropologie lately? Anything that you're coveting for spring?

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Oscar de la Renta and Anthropologie

I have a particular soft spot in my heart for Oscar de la Renta dresses. They're whimsical and romantic and feminine and just generally magical. I loved Carrie Bradshaw's pink dress in Sex and the City, and I couldn't get enough of the dress Sarah Jessica Parker wore on Glee in this video.

I did notice that quite a few of the dresses on Anthropologie right now seem to be Oscar de la Renta inspired. I also found one at Banana Republic that made me do a double take.
Dress: Oscar de la Renta, available at Neiman Marcus
Dress: Banana Republic
I love the floral overlay on this Oscar de la Renta dress. Wish I had the kind of lifestyle where I could a) afford this dress and b) have somewhere fabulous to wear it!
Dress: Oscar de la Renta, available at Neiman Marcus
Dress: Fiona Eyelet Dress, Anthropologie
These two dresses are very similar in terms of the neckline, the colour, the textured fabric and the belt.
Dress: Oscar de la Renta, available at The Outnet (and on sale for 55% off)
Dress: Winnie Sheath, Anthropologie
The spray of flowers around the waist is a common element in Oscar de la Renta designs. They seem to release a similar version of this dress almost every season. I found two dresses at Anthro with a similar pattern. One is an A-line dress and the other is a sheath.  
Dress: Oscar de la Renta, available at Neiman Marcus

Dress: Sweetheart Roses Dress, Anthropologie
Dress: Tea Garden Sheath, Anthropologie
Eyelet seems to have been a trend for spring/summer. The shirt dresses in particular seem very similar. Although white is definitely more summery, I'd be nervous about getting the dress dirty and would probably opt for black.
Dress: Oscar de la Renta, available at Neiman Marcus
Dress: Georgia Eyelet Dress, Anthropologie
Dress: Oscar de la Renta, available at Neiman Marcus
Dress: Openwork Shirtdress, Anthropologie
Do you have any favourites from the photos I've shared in this post? Have you noticed Anthropologie channeling any other famous designers lately?

(Photos are from the Oscar de la Renta website, Anthropologie, Banana Republic and Neiman Marcus).

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Oscar the Weimaraner goes skiing!

Jenni over at Gnomelover recently asked: What is the best thing to happen to you this year? (By the way, she is having an awesome giveaway, and you can enter for a chance to win an Urban Outfitters gift card here).

2015 has been kind of weird. I've worked way too much. Snow conditions have been pretty dismal lately too, with frequent bouts of warm weather turning what little snow we've received into slush and mud. However, the warm weather also means that we've been able to take Oscar skiing with us. He is short-haired and usually gets cold too quickly.


If you can believe it, one thousand vertical meters of this failed to tucker him out. (If you have a Weimaraner, you already know that they have limitless energy). There is also a video of him on the uptrack on Instagram.

Next best thing of 2015? I got new ski boots (Dynafit Neo PX CR). They weigh half as much as my previous boots, which actually does translate into me going twice as fast on the uphill. I was a little nervous about getting them because I had to remount my ski bindings to accommodate them and I was worried they might not ski well on the down, but they handle pretty well. And I did a 30 km ski this weekend without any blisters. I am very pleased.

How has 2015 been for you?

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Outfit: Lavendel and the Many Faces of Oscar

Valentine's Day seems to be a big event in the fashion community if my Instagram and blog feed are anything to go by. There were so many lovely outfits throughout the week. I've really enjoyed seeing them.

My husband and I had reservations for our favourite restaurant. We had the tasting menu. My husband's favourite course was a scallop with corn fritters. I loved the ravioli with slow-cooked pork ragu. The main courses (salmon for me and filet mignon for my husband) were excellent too.

I thought the bright colours and polka dots of this dress were a good choice for Valentine's Day. The fit and flare silhouette is romantic, too. I paired the dress with a leather jacket and booties for a bit of an edge.

If you are wondering what the fluffy thing to my left is, it's a cat toy. You're welcome.

Oscar is actually part robot, in case you didn't know.
My husband thinks we look like we're dancing in this photo. I can't decide if Oscar is enraged or horrified.
"Ok, are we done yet?"

Outfit details:
Jacket: Burberry (similar)
Dress: Anthropologie, Lavendel Dress
Shrug: Smart Set, very old (similar)
Tights: Target
Booties: Browns (similar)
Necklace: gift from a friend, very old
Purse: Sophie Hulme, Twin Keyhole Clutch Shoulder Bag, sold out (similar)
How was your Valentine's Day?

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Outfit: Ted Baker

Overheard in Nordstrom's in Calgary:
Woman #1: Finally, we have something that Vancouver doesn't have!
Woman #2: I know!

I have many disappointing memories of poring over YM or Seventeen magazine as a teenager and never being able to buy the makeup or clothes featured in the articles because they weren't available in Canada. It's not surprising, I guess. We only have 10% of the population of the U.S., so a lot of companies don't find it lucrative to expand north of the border.

Online shopping has totally changed what's accessible to Canadians, but I was still very excited when Nordstrom's finally opened its first Canadian store in my hometown, Calgary, last year. I've only been there once, and I was disappointed to see that they weren't carrying all the brands that the American stores have, but it was still a fun experience. 

Nine times out of ten, when I see a dress or coat that I love on Glee, it turns out to be a Ted Baker item. The only Ted Baker stores in Canada are in Toronto though, so I've always been hesitant to order online without having an idea of how their sizing runs.

I ended up finally trying on some Ted Baker dresses at Nordstrom's. There were two dresses in this floral print, a sheath and a fit-and-flare. I ended up buying the sheath because I have lots of fit-and-flare dresses already.

I wore this dress when my husband and I went to Flashdance: the Musical. This was without a doubt the worst live show I have ever seen in my life. The singing was off-tune, the choreography was cheesy, and the musical manages to lose what little plot the movie actually had. I have never actually contemplated walking out on a show at the intermission but for the first time, I was very tempted. This is also the first time I've gone to a show in Calgary and the audience has NOT given it a standing ovation, so I think other people felt the same way. 

My husband does not share my love of musical theatre. In the past, I have coaxed and wheedled and threatened him into going to The Lion King, Chicago, and Rock of Ages. After this debacle, I think it will be some time before I can convince him to go to another show.

At least I got some outfit photos.

Outfit details:
Dress: Ted Baker (sold out, same pattern in a slightly different style on sale)
Blazer: Aritzia, Talula Exeter Blazer, on sale
Boots: Frye, Paige stud (similar without the studs)
Bag: Sophie Hulme, Twin Keyhole Clutch Shoulder Bag (sold out, similar)
Necklace: very old
I've linked up with Shopping my Closet's Style Me Wednesdays link-up. Check it out!