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So Fresh

Friday, August 31

Oh, the J. Crew bubble necklace. It's pretty iconic. So iconic, actually, that they bring it back season after season. Everyone on the interwebs seems to have one. And I can't blame them - it's a pretty fabulous statement necklace. Unfortunately, it has a not so fabulous price. $174 for those of us in the True North, Strong and Free. Now I can rationalize just about anything, but that's going a little far for non-precious jewels.

Available here.

Luckily for me (but unfortunate for J. Crew), a host of knock-offs have popped up in my price range. When I was in Toronto with my girlfriends last week, we popped into the Joe Fresh store and they had two adorable bubble necklaces for only $15! It came in a pretty turquoise/teal colour (my memory is failing me as to which one it was) and this pinky/red colour, which I picked up. Obviously, the quality is less than J. Crew's beauty, but for my purposes, it's perfect!

It can be worn at this shorter length or a lot longer.

Joe Fresh actually has an awesome jewelry collection. All affordable and a lot of it is very cute! I also have the necklace below, which I picked up a couple months ago at 50% off for only $7!

The links on this one occasionally separate, but it's really easy to hook back together.

Considering my propensity for losing jewelery, dropping a ton of cash on anything short of a wedding band is a baaad idea. I am REALLY hoping that most of my accessories are packed in a box on the moving truck that is currently making it's way toward me because I have NO IDEA where most of my jewelry has gone, haha.


Wednesday, August 29

Today I wanted to share a little DIY project I worked on last month as a gift for my friends' wedding. I wanted to give them something personal that could also serve as a memento of their big day. After a little searching around, I finally landed on this idea from Pinterest, originally from Brooklyn Limestone.
Photo from this post.
She used a porcelain marker, which I tried desperately to find. Unfortunately, my local Michael's only had gross brown left... So I did a little more searching, and found that as long as you don't run the dishes through the dishwasher, a Sharpie will work just as well!
So my next order of business was to choose the right dishes. I knew I wanted to find a serving platter and I thought a cute little dish (for dips, etc.) would be a nice accompaniment. I ended up choosing the set on the right because I thought that the proportions were more appealing.

Then I got to work sketching out different designs. I knew I wanted to include their names and wedding date, and that I wanted it to be fairly simple. They've just moved and I wasn't sure what their new home style would be, so I wanted to be sure that the platter and dish would go with whatever they have in their new place. After a dozen or so options, I chose one and was ready to sketch it onto the platter. I. WAS. TERRIFIED. Luckily, if you mess up - Sharpie will wipe off with a damp paper towel, as long as you do it right away.
In progress
I decided it would be easiest to center the design if I cut it out and taped it onto the platter, as seen in the photo above. I chose to use washi tape because it's not as sticky as regular tape and would be easier to peel off afterwards. I made sure it was level, and then used the tape as a guide for keeping my lettering straight.
Closeup of the final design.
After the hard part, I sketched a little heart onto the small dish...
 And filled it in...

And then it was ready to bake! (30 minutes in a 350 degree oven).

The finished product:

According to A Beautiful Mess, Sharpie will withstand handwashing but not the dishwasher, so I made sure to note on the bottom of each dish that they were 'hand wash only'.  So there's my little DIY wedding gift - what do you think?

Nails done. Hair done. Everything did. (Or you know, just nails.)

Tuesday, August 28

I went for a manicure a few weeks ago to use a Groupon I bought. THIS was the result:
I mean, an 8-year-old could do a better job.

Can you even BELIEVE that?! The girl was so sweet; I didn't want to vocalize what a terrible job she was doing. She didn't even put a base coat under the red! My nails were stained red! Sigh. After that experience (and several other questionable mani experiences in the last year), I've decided not to pay money for a manicure anymore. I can do a better job myself. And one of my favourite ways to do an at-home manicure is with these Sally Hansen strips. Have you used them?

Sally Hansen Salon Effects in Mod About You

These are AMAZING. They're basically thin strips of nail polish (they're not stickers) that you press on your nails and file to the right length. You can even take it off with nail polish remover. So easy. Super fun designs and no worry about smudging. I think they run around $10 at the drug store but I usually pick a few up when they're on sale, usually around $8.

Ignore my awkward pinky position

Once you get the hang of it, they're fairly easy to apply. It takes me about 15 minutes. The first time I tried to apply them though, it took me ages because I didn't realize there were two layers of plastic around the strips. I took a few photos to document the process, so you don't run into the same problem I did if you decide to try them. I definitely recommend them - especially if you're prone to smudging your nails immediately, like I am!

1. Choose the sizes that best fit your nails. (You get two sets of these.)

2. Peel off the front plastic layer. (This is the step I missed the first time!)

3. Peel off the paper backing.
4. Apply to nail.

5. Use included wood stick to smooth out any bubbles.
6. Use light pink side of included file to file along the edge of your nail.
7. Nail polish strip will separate along the edge of your nail.
8. Pull off the section of the strip that isn't attached to your nail.
9. Admire your new mani!

P.S. Excuse the terrible iPhone pics! My camera cord is on the moving van currently making it's way across the country... My packing skills are definitely subpar, haha.


Saturday, August 25

Hello, lover.


Friday, August 24

This song is going to power me through the final leg of my drive home today!


Thursday, August 23

Apparently the weather has the emotional range of a teenager. These photos were taken about 10 minutes apart on my drive through Quebec this afternoon.

p.s. I promise design posts will be making a comeback soon!


Moving is HARD. I don't think I've ever been so physically, mentally, and emotionally exhausted. And I'm COVERED in bruises. But it was all worth it because I'm now on my way home to Hali! I stopped in Toronto for a few days to see my besties and now I'm continuing the journey home. The photos below are just a taste of this new phase of my life. And so far? I LOVE it!
Toronto Skyline

Roadtrip snacks
Burrito Boyz!
Sangria Celebrations!
Pretty Sunset


Friday, August 17

I know I've been seriously absent lately and I'm super sorry. You see, my life is in major flux right now. I'm in the process of packing up the last 5 years of my life in preparation for MOVING BACK TO HALI!!!!! If you couldn't tell by my KANYE CAPS, I'm crazy excited!!! Over these past few months, I've been shuffling between periods of angst and periods of excitement. At first, I flip-flopped every hour, but these days, it's progressed to every few days. I'm like 85% excited and 15% pure fear. What if things don't work out? What if I'm just being crazy and everyone is too nice to tell me to my face? Change is scary, y'all. Luckily, I've got some pretty stellar people who can talk reason into me when necessary (I'm looking at you, TB) and remind me that change is also so very exciting. And it's all coming to a head right-about-now. The movers arrive on Monday! So I have 2 days to get the important parts of my life into boxes and purge the rest. Every time I manage to check something off my To-Do list, I have to add 3 more. FRUSTRATION. But it will get done. It always does, somehow.

The most time-intensive part is definitely sorting through my belongings and determining what to purge. It's ridiculous how much junk you can accumulate in 5 years. It feels refreshing to get rid of stuff. I've always loved the idea of living simply, without all of these knickknacks and accessories and STUFF everywhere. Just the things I need.
Unfortunately, I've never been very good at putting that into practice. I have difficulty with restraint and I like pretty things; what can I say? So I'm trying to use this opportunity to purge the things that don't mean as much to me. A fresh start, possession-wise. A fresh start, everything-wise, haha.

Thus, the reason for my absence. Things be hectic around here. But there's lots of excitement to look forward to! (I'm so sorry I ended that sentence with a preposition; I just can't be bothered to figure out another way to say it). On my way back to Haligonia next week, I'm stopping in Toronto for a little reunion with my essentials. It's our 10-year friendship anniversary!!! Crazy times. The traditional 10th anniversary gift is tin. Prepare to receive some tin foil, ladies. That about taps out my budget, haha.

So please, friends. Excuse my absence a little longer. I promise once I'm settled back in Canada's Ocean Playground, I'll be a better blogger.

With a little help from my friends...

Wednesday, August 15

One of my favourite de-stress activities is Polyvore. Do you know Polyvore? If you love design and fashion as much as I do, you should. Basically, the concept is that you can put together rooms or outfits, using real products, to create sets. It's like shopping but without the price tag. All the fun of putting things together without having to hand out your credit card at the end. The fact that this is my de-stressor probably should have clued me in sooner that this is where my real interest lies, haha. ANYWAY, my point is that I enjoy designing rooms in my spare time. This should come as no surprise. Recently though, I started putting a room together on Polyvore and about half-way through, it started to remind me of my friend, Anf. I'm not sure what it is about the room - maybe its similarity to the jewelry she wears? No idea. But it totally reminded me of her. We were roomies on our vacation last weekend and when I told her about it, she wanted to see. Thus, the impetus for this post. Hope you like!

A's Room

Fabrics Papers
170 CAD -

Petrie Sofa
1,685 CAD -

Garvey Chair
990 CAD -

Tribal Carved Coffee Table
300 CAD -

Gwinnett Floor Lamp
990 CAD -

Factory Side Table
59 CAD -

395 CAD -

Celestial Coaster Set
32 CAD -

You Are My Sunshine Pillow
195 CAD -

Orimono Pillow, Flower
77 CAD -

Calais 43.5 Navy Cabinet
890 CAD -

Mohave Fabric
170 CAD -