December 2, 2015

The 'Good' Gift Guide!

Every Christmas that passes I feel more and more conflicted about getting gifts for others and participating so much in consumerist culture. I often try to make things, but there are only so many little things I can make and give year after year to family who already have 5635263 little paintings I've made for them. So this year I've been thinking a lot about how to do some good by buying things for others, even if it's the same kinds of objects I might buy from a big store.

For the Jewellery Junky
One Bead Bracelets are beautiful - a friend of mine gave me one as a graduation gift and I just love it! One Bead partners with a recycled glass blowing studio in Kenya to make these gorgeous beads for their jewellery. On top of that, 100% of the profits go towards helping a school in Kenya where the idea for One Bead began. It's a great project and the jewellery is so nice - I can say that from personal experience! Read more about their story here.

For the Chocolate Lover
Alter Eco Foods is a fair trade chocolate company (and other foods... but you know, the chocolate is the most important obviously). They work with small-scale farmers to fairly and sustainably create their foods. They are very engaged in the communities they work with, helping to replenish the land they are harvesting from. I really like their statement: "Reliably Delicious, Socially Just, Environmentally Responsible". Read more about them here.

For the One Who Already Has it All
Gifts of Change is a Canadian initiative by Canadian Physicians for Aid and Relief. They have many options for donations to be made in the name of someone else. Buy a goat, pay for a safe birth kit, or to plant 100 trees. There are options for a whole variety of causes in Africa that can appeal to a multitude of heart strings. For example - my mom LOVES trees and is very worried about how often they are destroyed. So paying for 100 trees to be planted for her is the perfect gift.

For the Astrologist
This gorgeous speckled, ceramic constellation mug would be great for an astrology lover! And what is "good" about it? It's being sold through Moorea Seal, which donates a portion of its profit to a variety of charities - you can even pick your cause when shopping online!

For the Statement Maker
This fabulous Nim bag by Ixchel Triangle would make such a statement! I've always been such a fan of traditional Mayan patterns and looove that these bags are made out of up-cycled huipils (Mayan blouses).  Ixchel Triangle hires artisans in Guatemala, and the proceeds of the products helps support a Guatemalan family - providing education for their children for example! Read more about their mission here.

What are your favourite "good" gifts to give!?

November 25, 2015

Sneaky Bathroom Waste & Sustainable Solutions

1. Toothbrushes
It is general knowledge that oral hygiene is a (modern-world) necessity. Think about it. When was the last time you didn't own a tooth brush? You've probably owned one since your parents bought kitschy kids ones for you to try and encourage you to brush. We don't think twice about the toothbrush as an object - we focus more on its function. A toothbrush is a big chunk of plastic that you use then throw out then replace. Even if you replace your toothbrush only once or twice a year, imagine how many years you have or will live, and how many chunks of plastic that will equal to. That's a lot of waste.

Solution: Bamboo toothbrush (this is my personal choice!), or toothbrushes with replaceable brush parts

2. Soap containers
Not only can liquid, antibacterial soap have negative effects on your health, the containers that the soap comes in are an added, unnecessary waste in the bathroom.

Solution: A good ol' bar of soap. Handmade, all-natural soaps are even better!

3. Razors
This one is very much like the toothbrush issue. As long as smooth and hairless legs, faces, armpits, what have you, are a cultural norm, people will buy razors. Buying new razor blades instead of new full razors each time is a good start, but that's still a whole lot of waste created.

Solution: Electric razors, waxing, and hey, if you have the budget and time for it, what about a more permanent solution like laser hair removal? It may seem frivolous now but in the long run, that's actually a lot more sustainable.

4. Toilet Paper
Did you know that the toilet paper industry in the US destroys 7 million trees annually? All of those trees just to wipe your butt. That's excessive.

Solution: Recycled toilet paper - no, don't use it twice (PLEASE don't do that!). I mean the kind that is made out of recycled paper. Also - use a little less when you can!

5. Cotton Swabs/Makeup Wipes
Q-Tips are also in the mix of one-use bathroom items. At the end of the day, don't remove your makeup with cotton or wipes, it is another habit that seems like "little things" but adds up when you use them daily.

Solution: Use face cloths. I know there are concerns about germs and whether it's clean enough, so just have enough that you can use one every day and just throw them in the laundry at the end of the week!

What small changes are you making in your life to try and live more sustainably and create less waste every day?

November 18, 2015

Art Fart: Touch me in the Sunrise

It's been a sick week for me - a mountain of kleenex later and I am still a snot factory (is that TMI? my bad). The plus side is that I get to stay home (so as to not infect the general public) and sleep and make things. It's been a long while since I have been able to sit and concentrate on art for hours and hours without interruption. I have had some of the ideas in this image, mainly the hand pattern, for a while and I'm glad I finally went for it.

I also recently acquired a whole pile of vintage playboy magazines which I am really excited to be using - the content is sometimes hilarious, and often quite beautiful. Something about hazy, gentle nudes is a breath of fresh air. There is something nice and subtle about vintage playboy shots, even if they are somewhat pornographic.

Anyway. I hope you don't mind some boobies.


November 14, 2015

A Thought or Two: November, Paris, Loss.

November has not been a cheerful month so far.

I thought it would be a fabulous month - I'm a part of some group art shows this month, which was exciting. Lots of work, which is also exciting. My birthday, and my sister's birthday, and subsequently lots of celebration. There was a lot to look forward to.

But it hasn't really shaped up to be a wonderful month at this point.

A friend of mine from highschool passed away, and we all found out November 2nd.
We hadn't been a part of eachothers' lives for a year or two, but in grade 12 we had a majority of our classes together. They were bird classes, so we had a lot of time to bum around and we spent a lot of time together. There was tech design class, which was first period, so I would start every day with a little dose of his silliness and constant joking. Then there was photography, where we would often slack off in secret in the dark room and sometimes even work very hard in the dark room, making chemical, photo magic happen. We would go on adventures in the nearby ravine to take photos for assignments and end up climbing trees and fences and really exploring. It was difficult to hear of someone who had once been an integral part of my every day, suddenly gone.

There was another young life lost in my neighbourhood, someone who had gone to my elementary school but was a few years older, with a tragic accidental shooting which you don't hear much about in Canada because there aren't usually guns lying about in homes. So it was really shocking for everyone in my neighbourhood.

And now Paris.

Some of you may know I lived in Paris in 2014. It was strange to wake up this morning and be so thankful that I was home, waking up in my cozy bed with my great boyfriend and sunlight pouring in through the window. Thankful that I wasn't in Paris, that I didn't stay, that I didn't go live there now. I woke up thankful, but scared. Scared that I could have been. Scared that I know so many people there, thankful that they all are safe and alive. Sad that so so many people were not so lucky. Scared to think that this sort of tragedy and death happens almost daily, in places less close to my heart. Scared for what conclusions the world will jump to in the wake of these attacks. Scared to what conclusions will be drawn fairly, scared of what this all means. Thankful that I have never known such fear, and that even now, my fear is but a fraction of the fear felt by anonymous others who I find myself caring deeply for, now.

I guess I have been having a lot of thoughts surrounding death and life and gratefulness and what really matters in the world. It's not altogether gloomy - there is a lot of beauty in appreciating the fragility and worth of life. There is beauty in reaching out to those you love and telling each other how much you do love each other. There is beauty in realizing what's important to you - in prioritizing and not letting the little, insignificant things irk you. There is beauty, sometimes, because there is also the ugly.

I'm sorry that this post is a bit of a downer/dumping of all that has happened this month. I've been making some art to meditate on these happenings and create something I can feel good about. This is a collage I made today For Paris. Some of the photos are actually mine, from my time living there. It's nice to reflect on nice memories at times like these.

Rest in Peace, all of November's dead.

November 8, 2015

Logo Designs: Taking Comissions!

In the last few months I have been asked and given the opportunity to design some logos for a variety of people around me! Some for non-profit start ups, some for bands, some for personal logos, and for a variety of other projects too. I really enjoy the process and the problem solving, so I thought I would open up the doors to taking on some logo commissions!

Above is a collection of some of the logos I have done. Can you tell I like circles? Ha! I would be thrilled to discuss your project with you and hear what you're thinking for your logo, whether it is similar to anything I have here, or if it is completely different. I would love to help you get the logo of your dreams for whatever project you have in mind! My prices are fair and my process is quick and inclusive, I love to get to work and get feedback, and I love to work together to turn your ideas into a visual piece of logo goodness!

Send me an email at katia.engell(at) with any questions and if you are in need of a logo and would like a quote.


November 3, 2015

Creative Crush: Manjit Thapp

Manjit Thapp is an illustrator based in the UK. I stumbled upon Manjit Thapp's work on none other than instagram (that's normally how it happens) and was immediately drawn to not just double tap, but to actually check out her website (which doesn't normally happen).
The sense of design in Thapp's illustrations is divine. The balance of colours, the way her lines intersect and overlap, and the geometry - I am so into all of it. It has been a long time since I have looked at pieces of art and thought: I want to turn them into a room and exist in it. Do you ever get that feeling, when something resonates with you just that much?

Take a look at more of Thapp's work on her website.

Who have you been crushing on lately?

November 2, 2015

~*Halloween 2015*~

David Bowie and Michael Jackson hope you had a happy Halloween!

We had a lot of fun dressing up as these two pop icons in their distinctive, colourful outfits. There's something about putting on a wig in particular that really brings me out of my self and makes me feel in character. Also having a partner in crime (a smooth criminal at that... ha!) makes dressing up and Halloween so much more fun!

We started the night with handing out candies at my parents' house, then went to a party at my friend's place. Where we listened to some music (only a little bit of Bowie and MJ though, I'm afraid) and chatted with some other characters including a Troy McClure, a Canadian Tuxedo guy, some tennis players, a batwoman, and more. It was lots of fun!

What did you dress up as this Halloween?


(ps. Both of these costumes were almost completely thrifted! Except the shoes, which we already owned, and the wigs which were our only non-thrifty purchases!)

October 27, 2015

5 Thrifting Tips: Halloween Costume Shopping

I  really LOVE Halloween. I love dressing up, I love planning my costume and finding exactly the right pieces for it. I love carving pumpkins and decorating the front yard/house for the night. I love going to parties and seeing other peoples' costumes and getting into character. I EVEN love social media the next day - to see what creative costumes people came up with the night before. It is such a fun time - how often do you get to dress up and look super silly and wild and be in public where no one cares? It's so freeing and fun.

I have all this love for Halloween yet my most favourite part is dressing up. Coming up with a costume is one of the best parts of my year, and I always try to go all-out! That being said, some pre-made cosutmes are just too repetitive and expensive for me. So I usually make my own out of DIY and thrifted goodies!

Here are my tried and true tips to thrifting for Halloween!

1. Know what you're looking for.
What is your costume? What items do you need for it? It will really help to know your costume beforehand. If you walk into a thrift store without knowing what you want to be, or without knowing what you need for your costume, it can get super overwhelming and you might get a new idea with every cool piece of clothing you pull off the rack. ("Oh! With this dress I could be a witch - but with this jacket I could be a lizard, or maybe a magical dragon? But maybe I still want to be a bumble bee....") Ask yourself what you're focusing on: texture? colour? structure? type of clothing? and start looking within those categories.

For example: This halloween, I ran through the thrift store looking for MINT coloured clothes. The only specific type I needed was a blazer. When it came to bottoms though? I just pulled out any and every mint thing I could find.

2. Use your creative thinking.
Can you pull off your costume in either pants, a skirt, or a dress, so long as it's the right colour? Can you layer tops to get your desired effect? Maybe there are accessories you can add (or make!) to add that extra touch if you've only been able to find half-appropriate costume pieces at the thrift store. Can that belt or scarf work as a headband or cross-body sash instead? Maybe that weird purse can be used as a hat, or that old flag can be used as a cape! On Halloween, nothing is as it seems! And by that I mean not every item has to be used as it was initially intended. ;)

3. Think with an 'editing' mind.
This really ties in with creative thinking! If you find a t-shirt that has the right colour but might need a stripe, you could add it yourself with fabric paint from the dollar store. Or maybe you find the perfect skirt but it is too long/big - Google how to do a basic alteration! It doesn't have to be perfect - since it's Halloween. I have always been big on DIY for Halloween and most often add alterations to the pieces I find. One year, I thrifted a giant pink sweater, spray painted cotton balls, glued them to the sweater, wore a pink afro wig (which I also spray painted) and BAM! I was cotton candy.

4. Try to buy what you would wear everyday, too.
I was very happy this year to buy pieces I will most likely wear on a day-to-day basis too! To be fair, it depends on the costume whether that's possible. But it is always really nice when you are buying something to know you'll get more than one night's wear out of it.

5. Go crazy!
This is your time to buy items you normally wouldn't! Buy that ridiculous faux fur coat you've always secretly wanted but never could justify to yourself. Make it part of your costume, and then make it part of your everyday wardrobe too. Halloween is a really good time for crazy, and it's always fun to shake things up and add a little bit of crazy to your life - isn't it? ;)

Are you a Halloween enthusiast too? What are you dressing up as this year?!


October 26, 2015

Art Fart: Eagle Woman

I've been focusing on trying to create landscapes and scenes in my collages. So here is my Eagle Woman in her natural habitat.

Happy Monday everyone!

October 19, 2015

NEW: Collage Print Shop!

Hello friends! Surely you've seen me post my collage work on the blog or on instagram. I'm really excited to finally have versions that I can put out there, that others can hold in their hands and put on their walls.

So I opened a little online shop! Right now it only has prints of 4 of my favourite collages, but it will be expanding in the future. There will one day be originals and all sorts of other goodies. Stay tuned, and take a peek at the shop when you have a minute - I'd really appreciate it :)

Which print is your favourite? 

Check out the shop here!

Window Shopping || 15

(Handwoven Scarf: Pidge Pidge | Black Heeled Loafers: Night After Night | Embroidered Button-Up Blouse: Windy Peak Vintage | Paint By Numbers Watch: 10North Creative)

Things are getting cold and subsequently cozy around here! This morning I woke up to frost outside and a super windy trek to an appointment. So of course my turtle neck and coziest sweater and biggest scarf came along for the day, and I braved this premature winter weather. Guh!

So logically, my instinct is to eyeball little booties and big scarves online.

This scarf by Pidge Pidge is so autumn-y, with its earthy warm colours and volume! Mmm! I'm a really big fan of all the scarves by Pidge Pidge; their colour combos are all really eye catching and fabulous.

Sometimes in the professional world or in interviews or other situations where pulling out your phone is a big ol' no-no, I find myself wishing for a watch to check the time. I have one that is super chunky and white and funky, and I think I'd be more likely to wear a watch if I also had one that was a little more discreet, but still cool, like this Paint by Numbers watch, or any of the 10North Creative watches, really.

What have you been lusting over lately?

October 9, 2015

Thrifty Outfit .o5

Jacket: Secondhand / Sweater: Secondhand | Black Tanktop: Secondhand | Tie-Dye Tanktop: Thrifted | Pants: Thrifted / Shoes: Winners | Necklace: Thrifted | Earrings: Forever 21

Total Thrift Tally: 6/8! 

Not a bad thrift tally this time, not bad at all!

My outfit posts at this point had might as well be once-a-season occurrences, but that's ok! It's just for fun, really, and serves almost as visual proof that I do in fact make most of my outfits out of my thrifted finds (though I guess you still have to take my word for it.)

This leather jacket is such a thrilling new addition to my closet! My fella's sister wasn't keen on it anymore so she handed it over to me - woah! So generous and kind, and I am really into it so, happy points all around. And then there's my little tiki-man necklace that I bought that at a flea market in Paris the last time I went! It's almost a staple in my wardrobe at this point; just the right mix of simple and small but weird and interesting nonetheless.

My mum took these pictures for me (thanks mumma, it's her birthday today so let's give her a nice big shout out for that too!) when we went to visit my grandmother up in the countryside. This is an under-explored part of her property for me, as there are no set trails made anymore. But I have fond memories from being a really small child and venturing through these trees towards a little clearing that had the most gorgeous white sand. It was our 'beach' and we would play in the sand and crawl under the trees the way little kids do. So it was a bit of a trip down memory lane, as well as a gorgeous backdrop for photos.

Happy Friday everyone!

October 6, 2015

Art Fart: She's a Dreamcatcher

I have a great interest in circles. They are probably my favourite shape - to use in art, to look at in art, to think about in terms of the various cycles our lives and worlds are made of. I definitely tend towards them in my art making, and I particularly enjoy doodling, designing, and making mandalas. My notebooks are covered in them, I have an entire pinterest board for mandalas, I teach classes at work about mandalas, I contemplate and believe in the meditative nature of mandalas, and circles in general. I think it's fantastic that so many cultures have their own versions of mandalas; circular motifs. There are medicine wheels, Aztec calendars, dream catchers, traditional Hindu mandalas, etc. Even nature has it's own mandalas! Anyway. I love mandalas. And circles.

So it's only natural that I should try and throw in some mandala making with my collage work. Here's the result!


October 4, 2015

A Thought or Two: Water and Rain

I experienced a nice moment this past week, and I thought I would share it.

I know this is far from universal - for some love the rain and grey.

But, there are those days where you wake up in the morning and the sky is so dark that you still have to switch on the lights in your home. Those days where the wind is blowing and the outdoors are basically howling "Stay away! Stay indoors, we do not want you out here today."
And you think about leaving your house, you think about walking to work and getting rained on and being droopy and wet and cold, and you want to listen to the outdoors; you want to stay inside as though your life depended on it! Life goes on, though. Society doesn't pause for a rainy day.

Well, I was experiencing one of those days, feeling a little glum. I had work at 10:30am and was thankful to see the rain had eased and I could probably make it to work without getting soaked through and through. So off I went!

It was a beautiful day after all. The rain drops on plants glistened in the peek-a-boo-ing sun and everything was a little bit sparkly and alive. I spent the entire walk to work admiring the life-giving powers of rain and water, and thinking about how hard I am on the outdoors when really, rain is their gift to the plants and the greenery that make this earth we share a beautiful place.

Surely I can give the plants a day or two of rain so that they may thrive too. The sun will be back for me soon - it's a compromise between the Outdoors, myself, and the plants, and I think I can wrap my head around it, be a little selfless, and stop complaining when the earth is getting what it needs.

I took this picture on my way to work and am so in love with it - and the memory I have associated with it. I can't promise to love the rain, but I can say after that walk and that realization, that I won't harbour such hard feelings for it anymore.

Do you enjoy rainy days? Or are you strictly a sunshine babe?

October 3, 2015

Weekly Photo Capsule 10.02.2015

I guess you know you've had an exciting week when the majority of the photos you've taken are of your dog being a weirdo and giving you attitude!

I've been quite busy writing grant applications for a project I am really hoping to get funded. It's an exciting prospect, but man is it ever not fun to live at opposite ends of the city as the many individuals you need signatures from, especially when you travel by city transit! I managed to get everything we needed and dropped off the application yesterday. Needless to say - I currently feel about 500 pounds lighter and will have my fingers crossed for the next... 4 months... while we wait for the results. Ha!

I broke out the loom again and am just tidying up the back of this piece shown here so that I can start a new one. I put weaving on the back burner a bit while on a real upswing in my collage work. It's nice to go back though, and take a little break from things. One of the many reasons I believe artists should never limit themselves to one media. Explore 4EVR y'know?

What have you gotten up to this week!?

ps. Happy October!

October 2, 2015

Window Shopping || 14

(Vintage Men's Ankle Boots: 86Vintage | Aurora Fringe Bag: Native Rainbow | Canyon Girl Mini Dress: Gypsan | Diamond Bend Cuff Bracelet: Diament Designs)

I've been trying to find more shops that actually focus on sustainability- not just 'vintage/second hand' fashion. Even though I'm all for that (obviously), it's really nice to find people that are making an EXTRA effort by selling their handmade goods and choosing their materials from sustainable, cruelty-free sources.

So I was happy to find Native Rainbow's Etsy shop this week. Their bags are beautiful, organic, made with materials sourced from the states, and I love what Lizzie, who runs the shop and makes the goods, has to say on her about page:

"As human beings, it is up to us to make a conscious effort to make positive changes in this world. I will stand up for animals for as long as I'm breathing.
I give a percentage of my yearly sales to various animal charities. My ultimate goal is to establish enough growth to fund a fully-functional non-profit animal sanctuary on my farm to give safe haven to any animal in need. " 

 I'd say that's a pretty sweet mission statement.

The dress in this also comes from a store I admire. Gypsan is a company that gives 5% of their net profits to charity as well, and are also trying to have all their clothing made in the United States. 

Though I don't personally live in the States, I understand that these companies are doing so because there is more assurance that the workplace they are sourcing from is following human rights and environmental laws and the fact that people care and are making conscious decisions to have their clothing created in ethical environments is something I can really get behind!

 Do you have a favourite ethical brand/company that is making great efforts to take care of our world?

September 26, 2015

Creative Crush: Marlen Komar

This Creative Crush is a little something different. Marlen Komar writes beautiful poetry (and a blog!) that has a way of tugging at your heart and making you remember the people of your past in a nostalgic, pleasant way, even if the experiences shared through her poetry are highly personal and often anecdotal.

I often lose sight of how much I love poetry, and writing; the world of writing and how words can purvey so many ideas and images. I'm so glad I stumbled upon Marlen's blog a while back, and subsequently her writing, because now I am reminded whenever she posts a snippet of her pretty words on instagram!
Marlen also has a book, Ugly People Beautiful Hearts, which you can buy digital copies of for kindle reading and such. Her writing is so dreamy and subtle, not-too-mushy-romantic.  I love it!

Be sure to check out Marlen's writing site for a little dose of creative, written magic!


September 25, 2015

5 Thrifting Tips: Finding the Best Treasures

Finding the best treasures in a thrift or vintage shop is not always easy because, in all honesty, a lot of what you find secondhand has been given away/gotten rid of for a reason. Not to mention you have to really work to find things your size or things without stains and rips or missing buttons. But there is a way, and it's not that hard!

Here are my 5 tips and tricks to help you find the very best items when you go thrifting!

1. Know what you want and what you like. Are you in need of t-shirts, sweaters, or pants? Thrift shops can be overwhelming since every single piece is unique and there is so much to sift through. Knowing what you're looking for narrows the search and helps you focus. This holds true for colour, pattern, style, etc. If I'm looking for all-black-everything, I will let my eyes tell me what items to pull out and look at first, given that they are black. Same goes for wanting to spice things up and try on patterns or bright colour!  

2. But don't be afraid to try something out of your comfort zone. Knowing what you want and like is a helpful starting point - but if you're hoping to find some gems, sometimes they'll be outside of what you want. If something on another rack catches your eye (maybe because it's that yellow colour you've been loving lately, or it has a pattern you've never seen before), take a peek! Even if it's something you never thought you'd wear! You may just stumble upon a new favourite.

3. Try things on. Sometimes garments seem a little sub par and unexciting on the hanger, but make you feel like you've hit the jackpot when you try it on and it fits you just so and makes you feel like 5 million bucks! (This tip is recurring, it's also on my  5 Tips for Avoiding being Duped and Disappointed when thrifting list!)

4. Take the time to do it. Thrifting isn't like walking into H&M and knowing exactly which section caters to you (Basics? Business apparel? Or the section that appeals to your inner teeny bopper?). Some thrift stores will have categorization, usually based on what they have in stock at that moment. But it takes time and patience to go through the varied clothing items. So if you want to find the good stuff, you have to take the time and energy to do it, and it is most definitely one of those "it's worth it" activities.

5. Don't get discouraged. As a frequent, somewhat obsessive thrifter, I've experienced almost as many off days as I have had fabulous days. There are times where a store simply does not have anything that suits me. It's all contingent on so many factors; who has donated or sold their clothes to the store that week, who has already come in and scooped up all the good stuff, how I'm feeling that day, what my tastes are that week, what I want that week.... etc. But that's just the nature of the thrift-game, and for every day you find nothing, you will have a day or two where you basically want to buy the whole store.

Are you interested in thrifting? Check out these other posts for more tips to help you maximize your thrifting potential!
- 5 Thrifting Tips: Avoid being Duped and Disappointed
- 4 Thrifting Tips: Finding Workplace Clothes

What is YOUR very best thrifted or vintage find? 
Fun fact: one of my best finds is the sweater in the picture for this post. The part with the pattern, anyway. I bought it years ago and my parents even joke that it's my "signature sweater"!


September 21, 2015

Art Fart: 27

This collage is another example of trying out new things and pushing out of my comfort zone. This time? Combining black and white images with colour ones. I didn't think it would work, but I really like how it looks.

I have a couple of shows coming up with my collage work in them - I'm really stoked and will share more info when the time comes. So I am diving head first into collage work and doing very little else (other than work and, eating, and stuff... the necessities.) I just wrapped up a sewing project that had taken over my work space for a month, so it's nice to have my big table back to do collage work at, instead of in front of the TV in my basement on the mushy leather ottoman. It was productive, but limiting.

So here's to freely creating in a good space, and a happy monday to all of you!

ps. I updated my portfolio website. Take a peek, let me know what you think!

September 20, 2015

Weekly Photo Capsule 09.20.2015

It's been one of those weeks where I take pictures of tons of things all the time. I guess you could say it's been a visually stimulating week!

Top left is a collection of "fairy doors", "porte de fées" in French, at a sweet little bilingual, art and sculpture school that my fella and I want to take pottery classes at, so we went to visit it and it had a very special vibe. I'm excited to spend some time there!

Sometimes I want to collage, but nothing is going together properly. So I end up with a whole collection of little bits and pieces left over. I keep them in little envelopes and categories for future collaging.

And the rest is just pretty lighting and crisp white t-shirts and fun floor patterns.

How was your week?


September 19, 2015

Year of Thrift Update: Fall

Wow guys! My shopping desires have just shot through the roof!

I've been particularly surprised at how much my Year of Thrift Challenge diminished my need to shop - for a while. I mentioned this in my most recent Window Shopping post, but I am realizing that fall is absolutely my favourite season when it comes to fashion! It's funny how paying attention to my consumption habits and reflexes can tell you a lot about yourself.

Man, I would kill for the perfect knit cardigan (or just 'borrow' one from my mum who has impeccable cardigan/sweater taste), and I love all things furry and fuzzy and soft. I love denim jackets and neutral, earthy-tones. I love booties and being able to layer things without sweating enough to fill a modest backyard pool. I love scarves and the texture or colour or length they add to an outfit. I love my various jackets that pull together and outfit just so. I LOVE FALL FASHION!

This week, I maaaybe bought another cardigan/sweater even though my sweater basket is already overflowing. It was absolutely perfect though! I found it at my current favourite thrift shop (for my fellow Torontonians: Kind Exchange at Yonge & Eglinton) and I will definitely take some photos with it and show it off soon! You know that feeling you get when you have an outfit on and you feel like your most powerful, fabulous, comfortable, YOU? That's how I feel with my fall wardrobe. That's how I feel with a killer pair of booties and a badass jacket on top of a cozy layered outfit.

So back to the thrifting aspect of this. I actually find fall a great thrift season too. Thrift shops are stocked full of cozy sweaters and - let's face it, a cozy sweater is likely to look great no matter the fit, as opposed to a summer top that needs to fit you just so. It's easier for sure.

Recently the only things I haven't bought thrifted have been a pair of sunglasses (my thrifted pair broke), some tie-dye, some under garments (one of my original "exceptions"), one dress that was really fabulous and on sale and that I wanted for a job interview (this I have no real excuses for. oops.), a planner, and a computer game from 1997 that I found out you could buy from a site called "Good Old Games" which sets the games up to work on modern computers and Macbooks. Hurray! That made my inner computer game geek really really happy to find ;)

So I am about 3/4 of the way through my year of thrift challenge and I am still holding pretty strong. I have to admit with fall fashion coming out I've been feeling tempted to go into stores. I think I said the same about the emergence of summer patterns and florals and flowy pretty things, though! But I can resist. It helps that I already LOVE my fall wardrobe and don't really need to add anything to it right now.

Do you have a favourite fashion season?

For any new readers, check out my Year of Thrift Manifesto to learn more about my 2015 Year of Thrift challenge! 

September 16, 2015

Window Shopping || 13

(Cactus Flower Tote Bag: Idiopix | Vintage Wolf Eye Denim Jacket: Windy Peak Vintage | Black Suede Skirt: Token | Jasper Round Bead Necklace: Sew a Song)

Now that jacket and boot season is creeping up on us here, with a more-present breeze and chillier mornings, I've found myself on a slight western magic-desert-woman kick again when it comes to style! I crave my denim shirts and leather details, little booties, gold details. I love warm weather for comfort and sunshine, but I have to say fall is my favourite season for fashion! I'm very excited to put my collection of light jackets to good use while I can!

This tote-bag from Idiopix is something I may actually invest in for myself (I have such an affinity for retro illustrations of plants and such!), and the necklaces from Sew a Song make me think of little moons which I just LOVE. Two really good new shop finds!

What have you been lusting over lately?


September 14, 2015

Art Fart: He likes it hot, hot, HOT!

This week I challenged myself to do a collage of a male subject, you know, just to mix it up. I don't want my work to be entirely woman focused. This proved to be very difficult to do with a collection of women's magazines mostly gathered from my step mom and the salon around the corner from me. Ha!

I think I did okay though, I had luck in that most of the male photos I found were close to the same size, face and body wise, so I was able to put them together into a fun new image!

Lately I have been really trying to focus on making art, on applying to jobs that I genuinely would love to do, and learning (again) what makes me feel good (ie: collage, exercise, eating well...). It's hard to find the motivation to get back into routine when you've been out of one for a while. Or rather, when you've gotten into a slightly less-than-healthy routine. But I've bought all the ingredients needed for several new recipes to try - so I'm going to have to, or else they'll all go to waste, right? ;) It's good to challenge ourselves out of our comfort zones sometimes, like with this collage! Usually the results are pretty OK!


September 8, 2015

A Thought or Two: September

This week my brother, sister, their friends, my former school-mates, and (what sometimes feels like) the rest of the world, go back to school.

But not me! Not this time!

It is a super strange feeling, to not be packing my bag with an empty notebook or sketchbook and maybe a few new pens, getting excited to see everyone's new haircuts and tattoos and piercings (the small joys of art school). Instead, today, I am interviewing for an incredibly wonderful job (fingers crossed!) and my fella comes home from a big long trip. So it's an exciting day nonetheless.

That being said, I have been speaking with several people about the sensation of "new" and "starting" that September brings us all - even those of us not in school. My step mom said she always found September to be the exciting new start, not New Years. I argued that's partly because of marketing, and the way companies use Back To School as a way to sell (because we all need back to school lingerie amiright?). My uncle reminded me that it also goes far far back to the timing of harvests and new seasons, so, the arrival of autumn. He said it had might as well be ingrained in our genetics at this point - that September is the start of something new.

I then realized that these starting times for school are very North-American specific. When I studied in France the timing of vacations and starts and ends were very different.
So it got me wondering: What time of year feels like a time for new beginnings to you, in your part of the world?

I'm so curious about how this differs for cultures and places other than my own, so please share!!


September 6, 2015

Weekly Photo Capsule 09.06.2015

Happy September everyone!

I took a step away from the internet this past little while and have been enjoying as much outside time as I possibly can. I am really trying to milk what's left of this summer weather and take advantage of the natural paradises around me.

My aunt's place up in the country side is always the sweetest escape with a cabin in the woods to sleep in, listening to wolves howl and night bugs buzz. And then walking to my grandmother's property next door for breakfast in the early morning. There's also my fella's place which is a good spot to paint in, and the Toronto beach which is a fun place to lounge about and eat snacks with friends.

I've been making art and thinking about art a lot. I always do, but this is really my time to explore it. No school, no full time work, just me and some time to explore my creative side even more deeply. It's actually thrilling, to be falling into something with art that makes me so happy and fulfilled. Yay!

How are you taking advantage of the last little bits of summer?


August 28, 2015

Why I think Sustainability & Creativity go Hand in Hand

As an art maker, I create a lot of waste. This reality can really stink.

As a painter, I regularly throw out a dollop of leftover paint. Every time I spill ink or get my chair pushed while I'm working (cue accidental scribbles) on a drawing, I waste a piece of paper. When I work with water colours and tape down my paper, the tape just gets thrown out after. When I use paper towel to clean my brushes (because I was taught that fiber cloth can contain dirt that gets in your paint), my garbage can fill up by the end of things. The paints that I use sometimes contain toxic ingredients, yet I wash them off my brushes, down the sink, and into the water system.

Moreover, as a human being living in a contemporary, first world society, I create a lot of waste. Did you know that on average, North Americans produce 68 pounds of textile waste a year? Eco Fashion week even does a 68 Pound challenge with Value Village, giving designers 68 pounds of secondhand materials to create a fashion line out of. Reading about this challenge when I was still in high school was what got me interested in sustainable fashion, I even did a final project on it - using second hand materials to create a dress as part of my design class.

So, I like art. I like fashion. These are two of the ways that I express my creativity. I also like living; existing, in this lucky society. Yet the amount of waste I create bugs me. It just doesn't make sense to me - that I should get to live this way, so well, so fortunately, without direct or apparent consequence on myself, but with so much consequence on the environment and on less fortunate workers around the world.

If there is an attainable alternative to creating this waste over and over again, why not take it? Why not pay a little more attention and make a little extra effort to make sure my actions have as little negative impact on the world as I can?

You occupy this world. You exist, in this world and no where else*. If it is good for the world, it is good for you.

Living well, feeling good, and being able to create while doing so, is so important to me. If I feel good, if I know I am having as little negative impact as possible, I feel so much more inspired and free to create. To make to my little heart's content, to exist freely and happily!


*if you do happen to exist somewhere other than this earth, please let me know, that sounds pretty rad and interesting and I'd love to meet an alien one day.

August 25, 2015

Art Fart: Wisdom Tooth Recovery

This has been a bit of a slow week for me as I recover from my wisdom teeth removal surgery. It's not been so bad, just seriously uncomfortable & a couple bouts of pain in my mouth. It's no fun though, to be tired and nauseous from all the meds and recovery. I feel like a numb potato sometimes! I'm sure some of you have experienced it too?

I just wanted to check in and say hello and share my little collage reflecting on this experience titled: "self portrait (with 4 fewer wisdom teeth)".

Have you had your wisdom teeth taken out?


August 21, 2015

Weekly Photo Capsule 08.21.15

It's been a really nice week!

I've seen lots of friends and family. My friend Sabrina got two new pet rats and they are so teenie tiny and adorable and I nearly took them home with me. She named them Miso and Shoyu which are the cutest names too. My friend Tiffany came over for dinner, and my friends Kayleigh and Kelsey got me this beautiful One Bead bracelet as a belated graduation gift (mine is the dark blue!).

One Bead seems like a really cool company: they are a charitable business that supports schools and workers in Africa. The beads are made at a glass blowing studio in Nairobi, and all the profits support schools and other various projects of One Bead. Read more about it here! It's also just super pretty, so I'm very thankful for it!

I'm off this morning to get my wisdom teeth out - gah! Wish me luck.


August 19, 2015

4 Thrifting Tips: Finding Workplace Clothes

As I've mentioned before, I've been applying for jobs, some of which have business-casual environments. I felt great on my very first interview - wearing some nice clothes I already owned, feeling fabulous and grown up. But then I got a second interview and - AHH - what was I going to wear? They'd already seen my one good outfit. Well, shit. If I could barely make it through 2 interviews how would I manage if I got the job? Time to go shopping!

I thought this would be one of the hardest parts of my Year of Thrift challenge yet. I usually find comfy casual cool clothing at my favourite thrifty haunts. I've been determined though, not to fall off the wagon for the sake of convenience (because that's the whole damn point of this challenge isn't it.) So I went out, and I bought a total of 3 pants and 3 tops that I can mix and match and all go together and I feel absolutely ready to take on the business-casual workplace!

So how did I go about getting (nice) thrifted business casual clothing?

1. Mix it up - Go to higher end consignment/designer second hand shops.
There are a ton of independently run small businesses that cater directly to this kind of need! I found all sorts of fabulously priced designer goodies and brands that are normally way out of my price range, all because I went to stores that I knew wouldn't be re-selling your teenage sister's impulse H&M purchases. (Which I normally would go to.) Instead they re-sell your fabulous fashionable aunt's garments from last season, that totally work for you for this season ;)

2. Bring along someone who knows their business wear & designer goods.
This was important for me since, I've never truly worked in a business environment before. Sure, I have as a summer student, but at that point in time it was a little more relaxed since I wouldn't be around very long. My step mom joined me in my thrifting adventure this time (Thanks!) and she was able to tell me if something 1. fit properly, 2. was appropriate, 3. was worth a little splurge or not, given the brand name.

3. Fight your "Ooh Shiny!" impulses.
When I go to thrift shops, I generally tend towards the unusual patterns, funky colours, and overall unique items. Why? That's part of why I love thrifting; the unexpected exciting finds. This time around I made sure to fight that impulse and focus on classic, mixable items, and ones that were still "me" but also professional looking.  
Key word: Classics. Black and/or tan trousers, neutral blouses/tops, a simple black handbag, etc.

4. Shop the Sales.
For me, designer second hand shops can still be far out of budget, especially if I want a whole set of clothing. I splurged on one pair of pants (vintage Prada!) but that was the only item I payed full price for. The rest I bought from the sale section, or from a store that was having a 50% everything sale! Look online for when stores have their sales, and keep an eye out for sales sections everywhere you go!

What is your best business-casual/fancy second hand find?


August 17, 2015

Art Fart: The Cactus Club & Thank You!

A few weeks ago a family friend mentioned a restaurant called "Cactus Club" in western Canada, and I couldn't help this fun image from popping into my head! This particular piece is digital because I had very specific images in mind, which is not usually the case for my collages as I normally just wing it.

I want to thank you all for being so positive and supportive about my collage work when I first posted it. It's something new to me and it really means a lot that people are expressing that they like them. I know an artist should work for themselves first (and I do!) but it's always a bit worrisome when you discover something new that you love love love and are finally happy with, and at first people don't seem quite as excited as you. But all your blog post comments and instagram comments have been really encouraging and I'm so excited with where collage is taking me!

You're all the best!

ps. you can follow me on instagram @katiaengell_ for more collage posts! 

August 15, 2015

Weekly Photo Capsule 08.15.15

This past week hasn't been much of a photo-taking week. I've been working on projects, cuddling my dog, hanging out with the family, going to interviews, etc. That being said, my dog is incredibly photographic even 7 years down the road (even when he's giving me the evil eye for disturbing his sleepy cuddles), and the projects I'm working on are really fun! Right now I have a series of kid-friendly illustrations on the go for a philanthropic start up, a birth banner for my cousin's brand new baby girl, and some personal things too.

Next week I've got an appointment to get my wisdom teeth out- wuh oh! Hopefully my recovery time is speedy so I can enjoy the rest of this summer!

Well, that's my quick little update on me.
What have you been up to this week?


Spread The Love: 3 of my Fav Sustainability Blogs!

Happy Weekend Everyone!

Today I want to share some of my favourite blogs that focus on sustainability in life, makeup, fashion, etc. I'm just going to call them Sustainability Blogs, for lack of better wording. Correct me if there's a better term for them! I found it a little bit tough to find other like minded individuals in the blogging community at first, but once you open the door to it, it's like a pandora's box (of positive things, though). I thought I'd start sharing my finds with everyone, for I'm certain we all cover different territory with our blogs and there is so much good information and so many great ideas out there!

Hello Natural
Full of tips and tricks and lists and how-to's. (and beautiful photography!).  I love how informative this website is on healthy living in general. There are recipes with good-for-you ingredients and explanations as to why each ingredient is helpful and good for you. There are lists of the multitude of ways to use coconut oil in your daily routine, and many topics that I wouldn't have even thought of (ie. Natural Ways to Stop a Headache). From healthy eating, all-natural beauty, to recycling, Hello Natural covers all of my favourite topics! I LOVE it!

TLV Birdie Blog
I love the TLV Birdie Blog for scoping out all-natural makeup and beauty alternatives! The reviews are in depth, and there are often posts about specific ingredients that are good for your skin, like Aloe and Lavender - which are illustrated by one of my favourite illustrators, Kelzuki! (I was sooo pumped when they started this collaboration as I follow them both!) The blog is also beautiful and earthy and super nice to be on.

Chambray and Curls
I was so so happy to come across Laura's blog. She took a very similar pledge as mine, her "Ethical Fashion Pledge" which is super similar to my Year of Thrift Manifesto but with her own special twist! Her fashion sense is fun, and her adventures in Ethical Fashion are really great to follow. It is so nice to discover someone with the same intentions as me and the same ideas as me, all the way across the pond!

What are your favourite Sustainability Blogs? 
Do you have a sustainability blog?

Share your links in the comments!

August 12, 2015

Window Shopping || 12

Indigo Hand Woven Scarf:  Honest Alchemy | Crop Top: MillaLoop Vintage | Black Marble Clutch: Scout & Catalogue | Vintage High Waisted Jeans: Skinny & Bernie 

I am very excited to share this Honest Alchemy Scarf as part of a window shopping outfit this week! I can't even remember how I stumbled upon the Honest Alchemy etsy store but I am so glad that I did. Here's a snippet off the shop description to explain why:

"Honest Alchemy is a sustainable textile and accessory design company that uses 100% natural fibers and plant-based pigments. Handmade by Philadelphia-based artist Elizabeth McTear, each piece is made with a deliberate consideration for tradition and timeless style."

Sustainability? Handmade? All Natural? Textiles? Timeless style? It's like this little description was written exactly to appeal to me! Good stuff, Ms. McTear. This is one of those window shopping moments where I'd seriously consider buying something from Honest Alchemy (They have fabulous wall hangings/weavings too! Ah!) and if it were a fabulous scarf like this I would style it like so! Letting the scarf be the statement, and letting the the clutch act as a nice texture balance.

Have you something on your mind you've been wanting to purchase lately?

Ps. Can you tell I am going through another tie-dye style phase? My fella and I just did tie-dye again last week and decided to do some fabric this time! I'm using some of it for a birth-banner for my cousin's baby. I used an olive green dye and it's looking very fun in the background of the project. Yay!

August 9, 2015

Art Fart: Moon Woman

Don't you love it when the moon is actually a well-shot, ceramic dinner plate?
Another reason I love college.

This is my "troll-doll-esque" Moon Woman collage from earlier this week. I have always been a sunshine kind of girl, but lately I have been venturing into moon and night time imagery.

Coincidentally I have had this Homeshake song stuck in my head all week, though I am not sure which came first: the song in my head, or the Moon Woman collage!

Happy weekend everyone!

August 5, 2015

A Thought or Two: The Creative's Reward

Being a creative in a professional capacity can be very discouraging at the get-go. This isn't a surprise, of course. Society taught me from a young age (as I'm sure it teaches many) that the creative route is not likely to be a lucrative one. Professors at school would warn us; it takes at least 5 years after graduating before you start really making money with your work. But don't give up! People ask us; what now? And it's tough to give an answer because I don't know.

I think that's the hardest part, is the not knowing what path I'll take. It's also the most exciting part, though. I don't know where my personal art practice will take me, I don't know where my professional art practice will take me - if it even will take me somewhere. I love making art, I love teaching art, I love being around art. It's too bad that it's so difficult to sell art, in every capacity! Even art instruction and teaching art is often severely undervalued. Needless to say it can all be very frustrating.

But then you get a job, a fluke, an email sent about art instruction that results instead in a design job. You quote a little too low because you've never written an actual contract in the real world before, and you put tons of time into it anyway and you feel a bit badly that you under-quoted yourself. But then you finish the job and the client loves it so much and loved working with you so much that they offer you a bonus and a tshirt with the finished design on it - What's your size? Come by in September for a T-Shirt! I LOVE IT, in all caps. I'll be back.

That's a good feeling, that's when you realize how rewarding being a professional creative can really be.

What was one of your most rewarding moments, as a creative or otherwise? I would LOVE to hear your stories in the comments, please share!

August 4, 2015

Creative Crush: Sergio Mora

Sergio Mora (aka Magicomora) is an artist from Barcelona whose magical characters and scenes never cease to appeal to both my inner child and outward adult. The naivety of some elements is matched with a wonderful, masterful use of material and technique, which always yields pleasing, playful results. His work is fantastic in all senses of the word!

"There are people who do not settle with what is generally called reality. Due to this their life becomes complex and therefore is enriched extraordinarily, by having an attitude of not limiting themselves to accepting reality without questioning it,"

Mora's bio on his website is just as fun and magical! I love this quote from the very beginning of it. The bio discusses Mora's desire to re-create and define his own reality - an idea that I think most creatives can relate to.

Be sure to check out more of Sergio Mora's work on his website and follow him on instagram.

 What creatives have you been crushing on lately?

July 31, 2015

Weekly Photo Capsule 07.31.15

Finally bringing back my weekly photo capsules.

This week was very hot, so I broke out some of my favourite summer clothing including my eyeball halter top which always gets funny reactions when I wear it.

My sister and I did a lot of bonding this week - we dyed my dog's hair blue (with food colouring, all safe and good!), getting our nails done (where I admired their funny art work and asked for their old magazines for collage purposes), and we giggled at the funny tan line between her shoulders.

I'm off to a cottage for the long weekend, hoping to soak up some sun by the lake and read some books with my family, friends, and my fella! Should be a great time!

What did you do this week?

July 21, 2015

Window Shopping || 11

Trousers: Bless That Dress | Wool Crop Top: Better Stay Together | Black Cage Sandals: Cali Vintage 415 | Necklace: Diament Jewelry

I have been applying to some office jobs recently, which has me daydreaming about office-casual outfits! In particular - nice shoes! I find nice shoes especially difficult in summer time. Sandals can look way too casual way too easily, but sometimes with the summer heat they're the only comfortable thing. 

I find jewellery is a fun way to both gussy up an outfit and give it a little bit of personalty! I love the little landscape on this necklace - it's the perfect, subtle, sunshine-y vignette to liven up an all-neutral outfit.

What items have you been daydreaming about lately?


July 15, 2015

Art Fart: Collage & Colour

Today I'd like to share with you some of my art. It is something I wasn't planning on posting much of in this online space but it feels to me like it keeps creeping in anyway - which makes sense, as it is a big part of who I am.

Lately the only art-making that has really satisfied my soul is collage. It is great fun! The top one I made on the computer because I was away from my collection of magazines and bits. The bottom is a hand-cut collage, which I much prefer the process of.

I made these two pieces in the last week or so and I thought it was really interesting that they both have really similar colour palettes; with teal blues and golden yellows. It's funny to me because I never set out for a specific scheme or image in my collages - I collect my bits and pieces, sometimes with a vague concept or theme in mind, and see what I find. So to see a consistent colour scheme in my choices is really cool!

Anyway. This is my 'Art Fart' for today. I will probably share more on the blog as time goes.


July 14, 2015

Natural Body Products: Sam Wish Deodorant

(Photo property of Sam Wish)

When I first began my adventure into all-natural living, I was very worried about deodorant. Moisturizers and hair-care etc. seem incredibly straight-forward when compared to the task of dealing with under-arm funkiness! Especially when it comes to all of the expectations we place on deodorant: long lasting, invisible, smooth, nice smelling... It's no wonder the big-brand ones are packed with nasty chemicals to try and meet these expectations. But with the idea floating around that aluminum is linked with an increased risk of Alzheimers/dementia, I physically cannot bring myself to knowingly put it on my body, ever again.

It has been very tough to find a deodorant that actually worked - I think I have gone through 5 unsuccessful ones before this! My last one wasn't so bad, but I had to reapply and ended up keeping it in my purse at all times. It was also a liquid roll-on deodorant, so it would be pretty uncomfortable to put on unless I did so a while before putting on a shirt.

I've been a supporter of Sam Wish long before she even dove into body products - she used to be all about the thrifty clothes (a lady after my own heart!). One thing I really love about Sam's products is the way that ingredients and their respective information are listed on her site. It's always really nice to have a proper understanding of what I'm putting on my body. I was eager to try out her deodorant when my last one ran out. I'm SO glad that I did.

The Sam Wish deodorant  is all natural, handmade, organic, AND functional! I ordered the smaller sample size (pictured above) and really wish I had bought a big one - I love it so much! But Sam Wish is located in Texas, so it costs a lot in shipping for me all the way here in Canada. Sadface. I wish I could drop by the various shows and markets Sam does - I highly recommend you do if you're ever in the same area as them!

The only downside to this deodorant I've noticed is when I wear a white tshirt, it seems to leave some yellow in the armpits. I know that sweat does this on its own, but I'm fairly sure it wouldn't all happen at once like this! That being said, I don't wear much white, so it's not that big of an issue ;)

What all-natural/aluminum free deodorants do you use? I would love any recommendation you have!


July 8, 2015

Thrifty Outfit .o4

Sweater: Thrifted / Shorts: Thrifted / Shoes: Sperry Topsiders | Necklace: Handmade
Total Thrift Tally: 3/4! 

This outfit is made of things I sometimes do not have the courage to wear: loose shorts, and BRIGHT orange! I am so happy that pairing two of these garments together turned out to be the exact way to feel comfortable in them!

Check out these linen Wilfred shorts I thrifted a few weeks ago! Score! When I brought them home and tried to wear them though, I was really concerned they'd just look like a giant big-girl diaper... which is, no good. I think I was just wearing them with the wrong thing though, because I have flip flopped back to LOVING them. We have finally had some warm weather here, and they are so perfect for feeling comfortable in the heat! I'll totally settle for the occasional diaper-pant effect just for this comfort. Oh yea.

This orange creamsicle sweater was one of my favourite finds from a vintage market back when I was living in Paris. I've been stuck in a neutral loop though - and this sweater has been sitting on the sidelines while I embrace the blacks and whites and beiges of my wardrobe. Summer is the perfect inspiration to break out the bright pops of colour, though, and I'm diggin' the Sunny-D vibe it's giving me.

I call this funky necklace my "tumour necklace". It's strange, and bulbous, and bumpy, and weird. But I looove it. I bought it at a little handmade market and am so sad that I can't remember who made it, mostly because they didn't have a business card or website yet. It's a beautiful ceramic piece though, makes me want more ceramic jewellery! Any suggestions?


July 6, 2015

Window Shopping || 10

Patterned Playsuit: Nadinoo | Aquamarine Moon Drop Necklace: Foxtail Boutique |  Slouchy Light Pink Cardigan: Chic Vintage Hawaii | Chanel Logo Ankle Boots: James Rowland Shop

Happy July, everyone! I know we're about a week into it, but it's exciting to be in full-swing summer mode (if only the weather would keep up...).  To be fair, I've started breaking out the shorts again and we had a very sunny weekend, just in time for some outdoor concerts and hang outs, so that's been fun!

I'm totally in love with this 'Fine day Playsuit' from Nadinoo. Their "The Good Life" collection is full of the most summer-y, fun patterns and I just love the teal and pink colour combination of this particular one.

So I rolled with those colours for the rest of the outfit. I always love the look of bold, coloured shoes, but I have found myself straying away from them and going neutral - to try and be more functional and have shoes that will match everything I own. These little booties have me daydreaming about expanding my shoe colour range though... I think they'd pop perfectly with this kind of outfit!

Do you have any bold, coloured shoes? How do you style them?