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Wednesday, December 22, 2021

Scotch & Shortbread for Santa (or the Scotch Lover on Your Holiday List!)

Growing up, we always put out a glass of egg nog and homemade whipped shortbread cookies for Santa on Christmas Eve. When I moved out on my own, I continued to make whipped shortbread every Christmas, and it has such a nostalgic taste now for me. That, combined with my love of wearing plaid, especially during the holidays, and it probably comes as no surprise that I've got some Scottish in me.

This year though, I thought I'd go with the Scottish theme a little more and switch out the usual egg nog, instead pairing with some scotch. Jak's, a local BC-based liquor store, has Muckle Flugga Single Malt Scotch Whiskey that is great - all the way from Speyside, Scotland, it's nice and smooth with aromas of sweet spice, blossom, pear and honey, and aged in ex-Sherry casks with over wintering in the Shetland Isles to add a touch of salinity.

I quite enjoyed sipping on this by the fire! If you have a scotch lover on your holiday list, I have a feeling they'd love this as a gift too.

Keep scrolling for a video featuring Muckle Flugga, and some holiday style inspiration!

Headband - Zara (similar), Sweater - Forever 21 (thrifted), Leggings - Zara (similar), Heels - Betsey Johnson (similar)

If you've got a scotch recommendation, I'd love to hear it - just drop it in the comments below!

Happy Styling! xo

~ Britta

Disclaimer: This Muckle Flugga Scotch Whiskey was provided complimentary of Jak's. All opinions are my own.


Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Halloween Costume & Makeup: Cruella

 I always love creating Halloween looks. It's such a fun creative outlet - from creating the outfit to the makeup. Some of my favourites over the years have been Harley Quinn, The Countess from American Horror Story, Maleficent, Marion Crane from Psycho, Zoya the Destroyer from GLOW, and Liv Moore from iZombie. But I've gotta say, I think this year's costume I'm the most proud of.

As I was watching the new Cruella movie, I knew right away that I wanted to do at least ONE of the many looks she rocks for Halloween. Honestly, the movie is so full of great costume ideas, but I really wanted to attempt her 'The Future' makeup look, which is what you'll see below! Let's break down the whole look here:

Cruella Makeup

Good news: this makeup look was actually easier to re-create than I'd expected! It takes some time, sure, but not super difficult. Click here to watch my Cruella makeup tutorial on Instagram. I picked up most of my makeup products below from London Drugs.

  1. Put on your foundation/base as usual.
  2. Use scotch tape and scissors to cut out and piece together 'The Future'. 'The should be smaller, and 'Future' bigger (as seen below).
  3. Stick your 'The Future' piece of tape on your face. Just make sure you've got the letters facing the right direction so they're not backwards for those looking at your face!
  4. Use a black loose eyeshadow powder and a thick eyeshadow brush to dab on the face over top of the tap (just around the eye and nose area of the face). I'm using a holiday set I have from Pixi (the Fairy Dust Favourites). 
  5. Line your waterline with a black eye pencil (I use an Annabelle Kohl Duo pencil)
  6. Line your lids with a cat-eye using Rimmel's waterproof Wonder Ink Eyeliner
  7. Coat your eyelashes with a black mascara (I'm wearing L'Oreal's Lash Paradise)
  8. Peel off the tape to reveal 'The Future' stenciled on your face!
  9. Apply a sparkly red lipstick - like NYX's Glitter Goals in Cherry Quartz
  10. You're done! Makeup give a spritz of a setting spray if you have one (like NYX's Matte Finish Setting Spray).
  11. I found some gorgeous matte black glue-on nails by Quo at Shoppers Drug Mart that have really pretty studded black accent nails. Perfect way to finish off this look!

Cruella Costume

  1. Cruella wears an awesome black cape jacket in the movie, so this SheIn jumpsuit I have was a close enough match. It's out of stock, but there are a few other options here and here on Amazon.
  2. I got this great black and white wig off of Amazon, and I'm actually super impressed! It's not exactly like real hair, but it's waaaay better than any wig you're going to find at a Halloween shop. Highly recommend this one from Haircube.
  3. Then I just accessorized with a few other black & white pieces, including my Gucci belt dupe, Aldo clutch, and some fabulous Zara heels I thrifted last year from Salvation Army. Anything high fashion will work (as long as it's black & white!).

Happy Halloween Styling! xo

~ Britta

Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Halloween Beauty: Vampire Nails

 After picking up a tasty 'blood bag' of wine from Maan Farms, I was feeling inspired to put together a vampy Halloween look (in addition to my main Halloween costume this year!) involving some fun DIY nails!

I spotted a similar 'vampire' nail design somewhere on Instagram, that looked salon quality, and thought hey, maybe I can create my own version that can be done at home without salon tools. I've become obsessed with glue-on nails this past year, so I wanted to create a version that gave me that same look (aka longer than my actual nails). I ended up finding some great Kiss nail kits at London Drugs that come with a bunch of sizes included and are all clear so you can easily paint over top of them with nail polish.

Here's what you need to create your own vampire nails:

And here's my step-by-step (or check out my Instagram Reel to here!):

  1. Pick out 10 nails that fit your nails (Stiletto style for the thumbs, pointer fingers and pinkies. Short Square style for the middle and ring fingers).
  2. Paint all 10 nails with white nail polish. I found it helpful to use some little rolled pieces of scotch tape to keep the nails in one spot while I paint them.
  3. Once dry, apply a second coat of white nail polish.
  4. Check that they're dry, and if so, take the stiletto nails for your pointer finger and pinkie to apply the 'blood' drips. I used a toothpick to be able to apply the red nail polish carefully.
  5. Finally, after everything is dry, apply a coat of clear top coat. Be careful not to run the brush over the blood drips multiple times, as the red colour might run into the white polish.
I love how subtle this nail look is, actually! You wouldn't really notice it from a distance as being a 'Halloween' look, which is kind of nice if you're just out and about. But when you bring attention to them, they just look so cool! 

I've also linked my other makeup products as well as my dress below, in case you're looking to re-create the rest of my vampire-inspired look!

How are you planning to celebrate Halloween this year? Do you have a look or costume in mind?

Happy Styling! xo

~ Britta

Thursday, September 3, 2020

A Quality Summer Cocktail Dress

 Well, I wish I could say I got more use out of this dress this summer, but with COVID, there hasn't been a lot of opportunities to dress up! I had to postpone my 30th birthday in July due to rain (boo! in July??), but went out for drinks to H Tasting Lounge (one of my favourite places for a cocktail in Vancouver) that evening and had a chance to rock this dress. It really is a showstopper.

The price of a Ted Baker dress really isn't cheap, but this is one item you'll understand the price when you feel the garment. The material is so thick and luxurious! And the hardware - the zipper on the back and the straps - both are emblazoned with Ted Baker and have a feeling of quality and luxury to them. But let's be honest, I still wouldn't pay full price for a Ted Baker dress. I picked this one up at the Ted Baker Warehouse Sale for a fraction of the cost. BUT I also noticed this dress in a different print is currently on sale for half price if you're looking for a deal too! It's so nice to have a really good quality cocktail dress in your arsenal (even if you'll need to wait until next summer to wear it!). 

This dress was giving me major 50/60's vibes, hence the fun cat-eye sunglasses and white pumps. I've also become a big flamingo-obsessed since last summer, and love, love, love this flamingo clutch I found at Old Navy! It's out of stock, but I linked up one I found on Poshmark below. All I can say is there will be lots more flamingo stuff to come in my wardrobe! Give me all the Palm Springs vibes!!!

Dress - Ted Baker (from the Ted Baker Warehouse Sale) | Sunglasses - Target | Purse - Old Navy (here's one on Poshmark!) | Lipstick - NYX Liquid Suede in Pink Lust (from London Drugs) | Heels - H&M (thrifted via Value Village)

Happy Styling! xo

~ Britta

Friday, August 28, 2020

Palm Springs Style

 No, don't worry I didn't take a forbidden flight to Palm Springs in the midst of a pandemic! I've been holding onto these photos since last spring! I've still been wearing this outfit a bunch at home this summer. It's the perfect thing to wear when riding my bike to patio drinks. The paperbag-waist gingham shorts are so comfortable, and the top is nice and light on a hot summer day (not to mention the yellow is fun and sunny!). And the little ties on the top are just so cute, and make the straps fully adjustable, as a bonus.

I've also been wearing these braided white mules to death this summer! They are my absolute all-time favourite summer shoe. Why, you ask? They're a good step up from sandals - they just look a little more refined. But they're still easy to slip in and out of if you're at the beach, etc. They're also really comfortable. I wish I had bought 2 pairs!! Unfortunately, they're out of stock on JustFab now, but I've linked up a similar pair below.

The photos below were taken at The Shops at 1345 and Shop(pe) Ice Cream & Shop - definitely two stops I'm glad we made while in Palm Springs. The Shops at 1345 had so many great local vendors under one roof, all with a unique range of products from cute little trinkets to beautiful home decor. And Shop(pe) not only had some awesome ice cream flavours, but a great little gift shop with all kinds of fun gift and souvenirs, like pool floats and tropical cocktail kits (complete with mini umbrellas and palm leaf stir sticks!). I look forward to going back once it's OK to travel again! Until then, I'll just keep rocking my Palm Springs outfits closer to home...

Shirt - SheIn (almost identical one here) | Shorts - Zara (thrifted via Salvation Army) (similar) | Purse - SheIn (similar) | Earrings - Target (similar) | Sunglasses - Target | Shoes - JustFab (similar)

Happy Styling! xo

~ Britta

Monday, August 17, 2020

3 Ways to Thrift Shop Safely (Online) During COVID-19

Spring, summer, resort, back-to-school… we might have all been excited to shop for the trappings for these occasions… but COVID! Sigh.

Even though in BC it’s now socially acceptable to hang out while physically distancing in outdoor spaces, the indoor shopping routines aren't easy to navigate. 

Some stores require masks, some don’t, some have no-touch shopping policy or change rooms are closed (what’s the point of shopping in person then?!). One of the hardest parts probably has to do with not the stores, but how other fellow shoppers respect the 2m rule. Then there are the complications of shopping at thrift stores during a pandemic; while for the most part, it now looks like the virus doesn’t spread easily on contaminated surfaces, it would be fair to have some hesitation about shopping amongst racks of used clothing right now.

We understand that thrifting is at its finest when you’re in-store finding that gem of an item, the way Vancouver blogger Vicki Duong thrifted a Louis Vuitton clutch for a grand total of—wait for it—fourteen dollars!

Not to worry, with the pandemic serving as a catalyst for all businesses to pivot online, thrifting has never been easier. Here are three ways you can maintain your style while saving some dollars and staying safe:

#1) Your Local Consignment Store Is Likely Online

Britta & Lee of LegalLee Blonde visiting Mine & Yours, before the pandemic. Shop them online now!

TBH, I never checked local consignment stores online prior to our current situation. I mean, why bother? The thrill was in the in-store hunt! Be it a double-edged sword, now you can shop in the comfort of your own (WF)H.  

  1. The Main Exchange: https://www.themainexchange.ca/

Find carefully curated styles that cater to a feminine and modern aesthetic. There are plenty of Aritzia brands! The size range skews small, but of course larger sizes are included as well. There’s free shipping on purchases over $150, otherwise a $9 flat rate.

  1. Turnabout: https://turnabout.com/

Over the years, Turnabout has expanded to eight stores. That’s eight stores worth of inventory, all online! Insiders tip: Find items for up to 50% off online during stat holidays. A friend recently got a Chanel bag for just over $2500, spent $295 on a Chloe purse, got Tom Ford sunglasses for $75… you get the gist. Shipping is free for orders over $200, but with such a great selection, it won’t be hard to meet that minimum.

  1. Mine & Yours https://www.mineandyours.com/

Gucci, Hermes, Chanel, oh my! Mine & Yours is one of the top luxury consignors in the city. There are some good deals to be found on brands like The Kooples, Rachel Comey, Self-Portrait, Off-White and more… all the way up to a $16,000 Hermes Kelly bag. All items are authenticated by a third party authentication partner. Shipping is free over $100, otherwise $10 flat.

  1. Hunter & Hare https://www.hunterandhare.com/

At Hunter & Hare, it’s all about community: In celebration of Pride this year, they donated 25% of sales to Vancouver-based charity, QMUNITY. In addition to offering well priced and quality consignment goods, they also support local and independent brands. Shopping at H&H is great for people, the planet, and of course, your wallet. Shipping is free over $150.

  1. Front & Company https://frontandco.myshopify.com/collections/all

From cheap and cheerful to designer brands, Main Street establishment Front & Company carries it all. It’s a crowd favourite for both men and women with a hip/hipster vibe. Be sure to stop by the store in person once COVID-19 is finally over, and check out their renowned window displays. Free shipping in Canada over $100.

  1. Hey Jude https://www.heyjudeshop.com/collections/vintage-clothing

For the true environmentalists at heart, the ones who are adamant that fashion should be slow, Hey Jude is the place to be, online. Owners Lauren Clark and Lyndsey Chow hand-pick vintage-inspired contemporary collections. You can choose to pick up your goods curbside, which are usually ready within an hour.

#2) Secondary Marketplaces are Great Places to Find Gems

Hunter boots Britta purchased through Facebook (which have since gotten lots of use!), for half the retail price!

When you’re buying directly from another seller, and not via an authorized business, we know things can get a bit shady. Just look out for things like how many photos have been posted and how detailed the description is. On the flip side of the equation is because you are buying directly from another seller, you can negotiate! 

What’s great about local secondary markets is that most people are now geared to accept e-transfers or leave items outside their homes for contactless pickup. Warning: shopping from secondary marketplaces can be addicting and cause you to constantly refresh to see new items.

  1. Craigslist https://vancouver.craigslist.org/

It’s a mixed bag on Craigslist, so it’s worth a shot if you’re looking for a deal rather than for something super specific. Personally, I haven’t shopped too much for clothes on Craigslist, but it’s pretty handy for home decor. When I first moved out, I spent only $1100 to fully furnish my apartment, and that was including a few new items not from Craigslist!

  1. Facebook Marketplace https://www.facebook.com/marketplace/

Facebook Marketplace trumps Craigslist simply because it’s a social network, which means you can see if you and the seller have friends in common, how highly rated the seller is on traits like Responsiveness or Friendliness. I found an Aritzia shirt that was worn once for 75% off the retail price. Britta has also gotten a great deal on Hunter rain boots for half the retail price.

#3) Resale Sites are The Real Deal

Britta found a perfect replacement for this blazer on Poshmark, after getting a stain on her old one. Just $15!

There are a slew of these great resale sites, like Tradesy or Rebag for luxury fashion… if you live in the US. The former doesn’t ship to Canada, and shipping for the latter will set you back $50USD. Sigh, again. 

Thank goodness, a few operate or ship to Canada:

  1. Poshmark https://poshmark.ca/

According to Poshmark, they are one of the leading social commerce platforms for the next generation of retailers and shoppers. They boast 60 million community members across the U.S. and Canada, and have about 100 million items for sale. There’s a sale made every second! Their platform makes it incredibly easy to list your second-hand fashion items for sale, as well as makes it easy to find and shop new items in other Poshers’ closets. You can follow Poshers’ closets you like to make sure you always see what’s new, plus you can share and like listings that catch your eye. They even have a new Posh Stories feature which allows you to sell and shop listings with short videos!

Britta has an account and has made a number of sales using the platform, and has been able to put those earnings towards purchasing second hand items within Poshmark - like the tuxedo blazer you see above! Her Poshing tip: prices aren’t firm - there’s an option to make an offer rather than simply buy at their set price, so make them an offer and see if you can come to an agreement that’s a great deal!

  1. ThredUP https://www.thredup.com/

ThreadUP claims to be the world’s largest online consignment and thrift store. They have over two million items at any given time, so we’d say that’s pretty accurate! Instead of shopping by brand or by product category, currently the homepage allows you to shop by product category or style filtered by price (ie. under $10!). It’s a lot of fast fashion, but you’ll also find the odd Elizabeth & James or Vince Camuto. Beware the shipping though, there’s base (not flat) shipping cost that will increase as you add more items. And don’t forget duties!

Notable mentions: higher end resell sites such as TheRealReal, Vestiaire Collective, What Comes Around Goes Around, and LePrix ship to Canada too!

Bonus: Shop Your Own Closet

There are many reasons why we thrift: to find a good deal, to seek unique items, or to help the environment by not buying something new. Most of us have a closet full of options, so why not take a good look and start there? We had to throw this last one in there because there’s no better way to have less environmental impact and be COVID-safe by coming up with new and creative styling solutions from your existing clothing collection.

Stay safe & have fun thrifting online!

Written by Miranda Sam, Edited by Britta Bisig

Miranda Sam is a freelance lifestyle writer, #girlmom, and Italian at heart. Keep up with her most recent venture, a functional + inclusive clothing line designed for petite women, here.  

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