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Thursday, 27 July 2017

INTRODUCING: VANESSA

Vanessa and I first met in person back in May at a clothing sale that we were both taking part in but we've been following each other on Instagram for a while now. Her bold personal style is what first drew me to her on social media - it's a fantastic mix of colourful athleisure and retro '90s pieces. Meeting people that you follow online is a unique experience. People either surprise you by being nothing like they appear to be online or it feels like you've been friends for awhile and you're able to skip the awkward stages of getting to know someone. Meeting Vanessa was the latter.
Vanessa is an extremely creative and passionate person in all aspects of her life and she expresses herself through dance. As someone who's rhythm and coordination can only be compared to a drunk toddler, the world of dance is a world that I know nothing about but Vanessa is amazing at explaining every aspect of it - from what it means to her, to why it's important, to different genres and steps - she has a wealth of knowledge on the subject and she never makes you feel left out and silly for asking questions.

She is currently teaching at The Flava Factory in Wellington West and this is what she had to say about why she started dance and why she's so passionate about the art:

I have been dancing since I was a kid, but started taking lessons in the studio around age 12. I grew up listening to various types of music, but hip hop resonated with me the most. I didn't officially start teaching until I was in my early 20s and that was through my boss at the time putting trust in my talents and giving me the opportunity to teach. While I was in University I took a brief break from dancing, due to me listening to other people's opinion saying it isn't a real job and in my final year, I ended up working at a dance studio. During my time at the studio, it reignited my love for dance but also opened my mind to various styles. I mostly focus on Hip Hop and House. But I like to learn the foundation of various street styles. Once I moved back to Ottawa, I kind reconnected with old dance contacts and then met new people and ended up at The Flava Factory. I now teach solely at The Flava Factory and do workshops in schools here and there. I teach the Intro and Inter Hip Hop classes at the studio. I'm passionate about dance because as someone who doesn't consider themselves to be that strong in verbal communication; I am able to express myself through dance. It's always another awesome way to learn about other cultures. Understanding the music and history of these various dances helps you to be that much more open minded.

The Flava Factory Vanessa's Instagram

Thursday, 13 July 2017

NEW SERIES // Introducing: Introducing & Felix Embroidery

Introducing: Introducing

I want to begin this post by introducing a new series here on my blog. It has taken me a long time to come up with the details behind it but I've always known that I wanted this blog to be more than just about me and what I wear; I knew that I had to include other people somehow.  Community is such an amazing thing and I don't know where I'd be if I weren't surrounded by such an amazing and inspiring group of people.

This new project is going to be called 'Introducing' and I'm going to be highlighting different artists and fashionable people in and around various communities throughout Ottawa. I've met these people through many different avenues; some are longtime friends, some are friends of friends and some I've met through Instragram (or other forms of social media). I decided to title the series 'Introducing' for a number of different reasons. The first being that I like the simplicity of the name and the second is because I wanted to keep this series as personal as possible. I want it to feel like we're just sitting down, drinking coffee and I'm introducing you to a friend.

The only 'rule' that I have for this series is that I won't be featuring bloggers. While I love, support and respect bloggers, I feel as though I can continue to support them in different ways.

I have a number of amazing people lined up for this series and it's going to be a weekly instalment here on my blog. I'm learning so much from the people that I'm photographing and interviewing and I can't wait to introduce them to you. 

I hope you're as excited as I am about this series.

I'm going to be opening this series today with a local artist whose work truly speaks to me.

xxxxxxxxxxxxx

Introducing: Felix Embroidery 

Catherine is the creative mind behind Felix Embroidery and it was love at first sight when I saw her creations on Instagram.

Catherine is the type of person that, even when you've only known her a handful of months or weeks or even hours, you feel like you've known forever. She has very strong and quirky quality to her that definitely shines through her work.

Feminist art is my absolute favourite kind of art and I adore how inclusive and body positive her pieces are. I currently own two Felix Embroidery designs (one that says 'feminist' with a floral background and another that says 'love wins' with a rainbow detail under it) and I can't wait to get my hands on more. Felix Embroidery sells many different kinds of embroidered pieces from wall art to jewellery and I knew she would be the perfect person to kick off this new series. If you aren't already familiar with Felix Embroidery take a second to prepare for your new found love affair.

Wednesday, 5 July 2017

164/ ON REPEAT

I've talked about outfit repeating several times on this blog - it's something that I do often and it's something that I've never been ashamed about. I never understood why ~fashion~ people look down upon it. If I own pieces that I love, I'm going to wear them. A lot.


This look is tweaked version of what I wore in a recent post. It's something that I feel both comfortable and confident in so I decided to wear it again. And again... And again... And again.

I sometimes swap out statement or outerwear pieces so that the looks aren't exactly the same. Like in this look vs what I wore in my post about anxiety - the basics are the same (I'm wearing the exact same top and skirt) but I switched the faux leather jacket for a floral duster and I swapped out the accessories. Making simple adjustments to an outfit that you already adore is a great way to breathe more life into it. It's also a great way to make use out of things that you already own.

This fringed floral duster from the Melissa McCarthy x Seven7 line is everything I want in a piece of clothing and more. I love how it adds character to plain and boring outfits. It's so bold and eccentric that it goes with everything, it even looks fabulous with pieces that it clashes with. I consider this look a bit more fun and it's definitely more suitable for the day time compared to the leather jacket look. I've been dying to wear this duster and I finally found the perfect day to do so. I bought it at the end of the season on super sale last year and it's just been sitting in my closet taunting me since. The weather here has been rainy and gloomy until recently so I couldn't justify breaking this bad boy out. Expect to see it a lot now that summer weather is officially here. 

DUSTER/ Melissa McCarthy x Seven7 via Penningtons TOP/ Forever 21+
SKIRT/ Penningtons (similar
BELT/ Addition Elle (similarSHOES/ Vans
HANDBAG/ H&M (similarLIPSTICK/ Fuchsia by Joe Fresh
SUNGLASSES/ eyebuydirect
Photos by Laura Kidd

Monday, 26 June 2017

163/ NEON SUMMER

I bought this neon duster years ago and I remember that day vividly. My friends and I were shopping at H&M in Montreal (before H&M came to Ottawa) and I found it on the sales rack. I wasn't going to get it because I thought that I'd never actually wear it. Two of my friends, and the $5 price tag, convinced me that I needed it in my life.

It has since become a staple in my summer wardrobe. I have blogged about this piece a lot (1,2,3) and I love it more and more each year. I've worn it to the beach, on dates, to work, to music festivals and just about everywhere in between.

I originally hesitated to buy it because I have always been told that as a fat person, I should aim to take up as little space as possible. To go unnoticed, to stay out of everyone's way and to blend in. This neon duster is a huge middle finger to all of that nonsense. I deserve to be seen, I deserve to take up space and I deserve to rock the bright pieces that I love.

DUSTER/ H&M TOP/ Forever 21+ PANTS/ Penningtons (similar)
SHOES/ Urban Outfitters BAG CHARM/ Ardene
HANDBAG/ Louis Vuitton Multicolore Pochette (via consignment // similar)
Photos by Laura Kidd