{ BlogPodium: what’s in your bag? }

Wow, time is going by at lightening speed. I feel like I was just at Alt Design Summit in San Fran and now it’s already time for Toronto’s BlogPodium this coming Saturday. I’m really looking forward to meeting local bloggers and experts. One of my goals is to do more collaborations in the future so it will be great to build relationships and make contacts that can grow beyond the conference.  

But on to the important stuff. What will I bring? And also what will I wear, but I haven’t quite tackled that one yet. There’s nothing worse than being unprepared at a conference and you also don’t want to overpack and have to carry around a huge bag all day. Here’s everything I think you need to be ready for your day at BlogPodium. (and don’t forget your business cards!)

1 / hydrate2 / take lots of notes 3 / a sweater for cold conference rooms4 / pretty case for your iPad 5 / and a super cute iPhone case for lots of social media snapshots 6 / a case to hold business cards, yours & all the ones you’ll collect7 / don’t forget your glasses for presentations 8 / a pretty pen for all your note taking9 / hair ties to keep your beautiful mane out of your way 10/ a hands-free and cute tote bag to carry all your stuff


{VINTAGE STYLE: black, brown & gold}

I’m very excited to bring you the first of many creative photo & style posts that I worked on with the talented Maya Visnyei. Maya and I met back in May when my loft was photographed for Covet Garden (pre-order here for November delivery). I can’t tell you how happy I was when she reached out recently and asked if I wanted to collaborate on some creative projects. As a blogger I’m kinda a one-woman-show doing everything from art direction, designing, DIY’s, cooking, writing, and 99% of the time also taking all my own photos. Being able to work with a professional is amazing because obviously she knows what she’s doing and I’m able to express my ideas with so much more quality for y’all to enjoy.

This was a style shot we did pulling from my personal vintage fashion collection. Since fall is in the air, I thought we would do an artistic style post showcasing a brown, black & gold palette. 

Although my closet is proof of how much I love colour, one exception is how much I love the combo of mixing brown leather with black and pops of gold. It’s such a classic combo that you can wear to a formal event, a night out with friends, an afternoon shopping or even to work. The black background really makes your vintage brown piece stand out. And of course you can always add some colour with a great silk scarf or some colourful lips/nails.  

Are you loving it?! Do you want to fill your closet with some beautiful vintage style? Well you’re in luck if you live in Toronto because much of what you see in this shot will be for sale this coming Sunday at the Leslieville Flea. I’ll be there for the first time trying to purge some of my vintage goods to make room in my closet & loft. If you’re not in the Toronto area, you can get this look with a few mouse clicks on Etsy. Here’s a collection of great black, brown & gold finds. 

BONUS: as a special bonus, if you’re in love with that beautiful silk scarf from The Birdcage Vintage use promo code TAKE10 to receive 10% off exclusively for The Sweet Escape readers. Score!

shop Etsy: 1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6 / 7 / 8 / 9
>>PHOTOGRAPHYMaya VisnyeiSTYLING: Melissa / The Sweet Escape 

{ style: love your lunch }

Happy Labour Day! It’s kinda sad that this long weekend marks the unofficial end of summer because summer doesn’t technically end until September 22. But we all know that the major sign of the end of summer is that time of year that some people dread and others are giddy with excitement – back to school kiddos! Even if you’re not in school it’s still a fresh start and a time to get back to routines so how about treating yourself to a new grown-up lunch bag? There’s so many great ones out there. Now if only they magically filled themselves up everyday. 

shop: 1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6 / 7

{STYLE: vintage wedding dresses from etsy}

I swear I wasn’t sitting around dreaming about a wedding but something made me search vintage wedding dresses on etsy. I totally underestimated what I found. So many beautiful and timeless pieces and all under $600! Of course if the stars align and you fall in love, it has be your size (the dress, not the man). The truth is that I was never a wedding day dreamer until the invention of Pinterest and I’m single so it hasn’t taken over my brain just yet but that being said…..I do envision a very vintage inspired dress. I’m gravitating towards the style of the 1950’s but I think these would all make a bride stunning. The key to wearing vintage – formal or casual, is to mix it up with some modern styling. Here’s my picks for what you may pair up your beautiful vintage dress to complete the look. 

I bet you don’t remember anything that beautiful coming out of the 1980’s!? And you can be a blushing bride, literally, with that sweet dress from the 50’s. It was fun being wedding stylist for an afternoon! 

{style: blinged out shades}

I don’t want to hear any of this ‘back to school’ or ‘end of summer’ stuff. That’s just the marketing dept. trying to get you to shop more. It’s still summer! I think summer fashion should be fun. Blinged-out cat-eye sunglasses…..too much? Dame Edna would fight me for these. Happy Monday!

shop: available at Aldo

{STYLE: braids for the summer}

It’s taken me forever to grow my hair. Now that it’s finally longer my favourite thing is to wear it in braids. Along with the classic top knot it’s another a great summer style to help with heat and summer frizzies. And depending on what style you choose I find that people are super impressed by your effort. I once showed up on a photo shoot with a crown braid wrapped around my head then all bunched up at the bottom that took me around 5 minutes to do and the photographer asked me “do you make love to your hair like that every morning?”. That kinda attention is worth 5 minutes! 

There’s so many different ways to wear the look and it’s a lot more stylish than the one you had when you were 12. Here’s some great street style pics to give you a little inspiration. 


photo sources (from top): 1/2/3/4/5/6/7/8/9/10

Are you itching to try the style but need a little help? Here’s some tutorials to help you out. Just remember that it takes a bit of practice and in my experience braids only get better lookin’ as the day (and your hair) begins to unravel. 

{style: live colourfully}

To say that I love colour would be an understatement. Not only do I love it but I really do live it. The proof is in my Instagram feed with the classic outfit selfies. I’m always trying new bold colour combos and patterns. I don’t think I own anything beige or nude. Do you embrace colour or shy away from it?