Autumn Edit

J Crew leopard print wool Tippi, last year's version.
Brora aran knit jumper and cardigans.
Brora turtlenecks in plum and a dark brown.
 I approached my wardrobe this autumn with an eye to editing out everything that I don't wear or that didn't fit properly.  I'm usually quite good at this process, I tend towards being ruthless rather than careful when it comes to de-cluttering.  What I didn't want to do was replace wardrobe items for the sake of building up my items again (which I've done in the past, aargh), rather my goal was to fill in a few key gaps with some neutral pieces.
The whole premise of "will I wear this item 30, 40 or 50 times at the minimum" can really change up the way we shop for clothes.  My end goal is to spend less money while honouring the purchases I do make by wearing them a gazillion times. Overall I want to have less things in my closet, it soothes my mind by making it easier to get dressed and it keeps my money in the bank- where it belongs.

Autumn Frocks with a gold Brora cardigan.
 I have a few frocks left for autumn after the ruthless edit, and no surprise they are all older J Crew items.  This one is my favourite, I bought it in 2014:
Wearing my favourite J Crew silk frock with a Brora cropped cardigan.
That's my darling father-in-law, Poppa Max. 
 I bought one new dress for the autumn, and it's such a versatile one as far as colour and shape.  I've already worn it loads, it's got that autumn look but is suitable for the extra-warm days of September and October.
Tiered Fatigue Shirt Dress J Crew
I bought it in store while we were visiting Chicago in August, and I couldn't resist adding this little piece (below) to the belt, perfect for carrying a credit card and key while I'm out walking Scout.
Coin purse in Italian calf hair, J Crew
 I really wanted a little corduroy skirt that I could wear with my long yellow sweater coat, or with a ruffled ivory blouse, or with my leopard print wool sweater... I knew it would have so many uses.  I found the perfect one, the fit is terrific (I ordered the 2Tall, it's above the knee but not mini-mini).

Corduroy mini skirt in "masala chai", a pretty autumn brown.
 You can see the skirt below, next to my favourite yellow sweater coat (J Crew 2007), some ivory ruffly blouses (from April Cornell), a silk shell in brown and yellow, and some Brora silk blouses to the right in turquoise and black.  The skirt looks good with everything, and can be worn with bare legs and loafers in the warmer weather and tights and boots as the weather gets colder.  

Autumn items, worn in heavy rotation these days with brown loafers.
 How about adding a non-clothing item to your wardrobe for a bit of a refresh?  I'm talking about a gorgeous new bottle of perfume, such a treat, and I'm loving this new, lighter version of the classic No5.
Chanel No5, the new one, it's gorgeous.
 I brought two of my J Crew coats (one in black, the other pink, colours I haven't been wearing) to consignment in September after I was able to finally find that elusive camel coat, the perfect shade, fit and fabric... I've been looking for one for years.
Club Monaco Daylina Coat
 It's a lovely classic cut, and while I thought it was a bit pricey it's very well made and should go on for years... I did have a one-time discount code from subscribing to the newsletter which was helpful.
Camel coat with a Wolff et Descourtis scarf.  
Have you done an edit of your wardrobe this season?


Scarf as Sash

Dress from eShakti with original sash removed.
Hermes bangle.
 This cotton frock has been my favourite and my best this summer, I just love the fresh white with the blue printed Provence-ish pattern.  It had a dull navy polyester ribbon as a sash but it was so uninspiring, so -voila- I swapped it out for this Hermes Zebra Pegasus scarf in shades of dark blue and white.
With some navy Repetto heels.  

 The whole scarf-as-sash thing, it's a great way to wear a scarf in the summer when it's far too hot to have something around the neck.  Typically my scarves would stay in their boxes all summer long which was a ridiculous waste of accessorizing opportunities.

I wore this red Hermes scarf sash with a polka dot Brora dress on Canada Day weekend:

Brora Dress
 Even in the cooler months I often find a scarf wrapped around the neck a bit much, I'm thinking of autumn weather when it's not quite cold enough to want to wear a minimum of nine layers.

Thinking ahead to wearing a scarf with a wool dress this fall I'm inspired by these images of Grace Kelly:
 She had a way of draping a scarf so it didn't fall awkwardly but rather provided such a pretty decorative touch to a plain frock.
A scarf draped loosely over a plain frock: so perfect!
These images and others can be found on my Pinterest board devoted to Accessorizing With Scarves.

Have you been on top of your accessories game lately?


Colour Story: Summertime

Pineapple Print Dress from eShakti
Summer!  It couldn't be easier to get dressed when the temperature outside is so lovely and warm.  I've always loved summer clothes even though our season is so short, or perhaps because of it?  The best thing to wear on a hot summer day?  A cotton dress of course:
Assortment of eShakti frocks for daytime.
I discovered eShakti a couple of years ago through my friend Janet over at The Gardener's Cottage.  She featured a charming chinoiserie print dress in stunning white and blues and I shamelessly copied her.
This spring I realized I needed to replace some of my cotton frocks, most of which I had purchased in 2013.  I had a difficult time trying to find the sort of frock I had in mind: cotton (with cotton linings), fun prints, knee-length, back zippers, pockets and a sleeve.  I ordered some frocks from various retailers and sent them all back.  I tried more expensive lines and they were no better, back they went.  Finally I thought "hmmm it's too bad I can't have some dresses custom made and for affordable prices, and darn I wish I could sew properly..." which led me to finally remember eShakti and their reasonably priced semi-custom frocks.  Some of us are slow on the uptake.  If you'd like to read all about how frocks are made at eShakti please go here.
Ferragamo's, available in Canada at The September
While I have saved money on reasonably priced day dresses I can no longer skimp when it comes to footwear.  My feet are becoming more finicky with age, I'm most comfortable either barefoot... or wearing a pair of Ferragamo's.  I know, talk about an either/or situation reminiscent of Kierkegaard.
I have three pairs for summer: low-heeled red and bisque as well as ballets in black.

Ferragamo ballets in patent leather black.
I have a few frocks in an ivory and black colour scheme that I like to wear to evening events in the summer.  The one at the left is a Kate Spade, the solid black poplin frocks are also from eShakti, and the solid ivory is from a Canadian designer I discovered this spring, Betina Lou.
I purchased a straw tote for the pool and cottage visits from J.Crew this spring which I keep ready for travel with some black swimsuits (also from J.Crew) stuffed inside, as well as a stripey cotton wrap/blanket type thing from the Canadian brand Kit and Ace.
MrBP bought me something shiny and beautiful for my birthday a few weeks ago, a mini handbag from Louis Vuitton in a stunning shade of dark gold.  It has a long strap so it can be worn cross-body, though it also has the short handles I prefer on a handbag.  The colour is a perfect neutral, it goes with everything:
Accessories: trusty pearls and LV bag in dark gold.
For special daytime events I wear lots of blue:
Brora coat, Repetto heels, ekhakti dress shamelessly copied from Janet.
 This Brora coat is such a great item from their Spring 2013 line.  Like all good coats it never fails me!
 I wore it a couple of weeks ago to a very special daytime event, Old Rascal's graduation from University of Toronto:
Here I am in my trusty Brora coat with my Sweetie, Old Rascal.
 I have another special daytime dress in shades of blue and gold from J.Crew, I like it with those bisque Ferragamo's:
What colours are you wearing this summer?
Have you ever ordered a semi-custom frock from eShakti?

Have a lovely day Tooties, I'm off to have lunch with a fellow blogger and friend today, so excited to see her!  XOX Dani


Brora, Best of British

The Brora Summer Sale is on.
 There may be quite a bit of uncertainty across the pond today but one sure thing that we can count on?  Fabulous, cozy and beautiful finds in the Brora Summer Sale.
The fair isle cardigan, above, is stunning.  I have a similar cardigan from a few years ago, a different colourway but so warm and useful in the winter.  I wear mine over black basics for ski weekends and it makes a bland outfit fabulous. 
And... it was manufactured at the Brora mill in Hawick, Scotland, with loving and caring hands.  Brora produces pieces for life, for handing down generations.  

Textured Tweed Skirt
 This skirt, above, such a gorgeous tweed!  I bought this last fall and I give it 11/10.  I wear mine with black, or with brown... it has a modern shape and a lovely texture.
 The Harris Tweed Satchel, above, is the type of thing Brora typically does each fall, how great is this for autumn, falling leaves, back-to-school? 
 A Brora scarf or stole is always a good idea.
 I'm super in love with this neutral fair isle, above, and it would be so gorgeous paired with the ivory alpaca skirt, below.
Ivory, alpaca... so pretty.
 I have to admit I was gnashing my teeth looking at all of the lovely cashmere, wool, textured tweeds, silk Liberty-print dresses... but I stayed on task and ordered my winter coat for the upcoming season.  I've worn my navy alpaca Brora coat 900 times so it was time for a refresh:
Tweed Cocoon Coat in Ivy
Look at that deep ivy green, perfect with black, with dark brown, with navy... I can't wait to see it in person.  I shall report back!
Feeling stunned by the news of the looming Brexit? Soothing your soul by shopping the Brora Sale?


Coral, Pink and Yellow

J Crew Mia shift dress in Casbah Moroccan Print, 2008
This shift dress from JCrew (above, issued in 2008) was one of those frocks I looked for on ebay from time to time.  I finally found it in my size last month and it has me thinking about all of the coral, pink and yellow that feels so good to wear in summer and early autumn... and on holiday time of course.
My pink party dress, a JCrew metallic daisy print silk dress from 2008.
My pink party dress fits the theme, and since it is from the heyday of JCrew it is actually lined in pink silk, it's bliss to wear.  (Here look I found one currently on ebay.)

Let's look at more fabulous coral, pink and yellow from my favourite JCrew summer collection in 2008...
Linen print shift.

Printed knit dress.

Bridesmaid-ish dresses fitting the theme.

Sweet pink jacket, belted.

Perfect pale orange.

Yellow, a scarf, cross-body bag, full skirt.

Love the silk sheen of this blouse.

Say yes to animal print with yellow.

Blush pink shoes, of course.

Yellow coat, coral-orange skirt.

Swim wear in yellow and pink, set off by orange.

Love this dark orange cardigan.  Also like the car.

Moving on into autumn... how about a closed toe fabulous pump.

A very pink coral set off by red, and cute pups.

I have this art deco shell in a fabulous print silk.

I also have the dress, not sure which I like more, they are both so good.

The First Lady prefers the shell, love how she paired it with pale yellow.

This dress!  I still look for this one on ebay. 

I have this coat, it's so fun: the perfect pale orange with RUFFLES.

My autumn colour story, you can see the orange ruffled coat in there.

This yellow coat, so sweet.

But this one... it's my favourite because leopard print!

 Can you tell I'm already thinking about an August holiday we're taking?  The theme will be, you guessed it, coral, pink and yellow.

In the meantime the red, white and blue of high summer is just beginning.  I'm thinking navy day frocks, red and white Breton stripes, blue and white prints for afternoon events and navy and gold party frocks for cocktails.  I must get a summer colour story on the go this week!