Valentine’s Day is officially only mere weeks away! And no matter how you might feel about cupid’s holiday, it’s a fantastic excuse to get your shop on (not that we generally need one!). Whether you have a date or are on the hunt for one, you’ll need a new dress.
The search for a V-Day ready frock calls for a shopping trip to Sherway Gardens, the fashion and lifestyle centre in Toronto’s west end. With over 200 stores on its directory, there are plenty of chic options to choose from (clockwise from top left):
1. Juicy Couture Ponte Banded Dress, $158
Cobalt blue is one of our favourite colours this season, and this ponte knit dress is a surefire way to stand out from the Valentine’s Day crowd. It’ll be a cocktail party go-to all year round.
2. French Connection Denise Crepe Dress, $228
A peter pan collar and full skirt combine for a charming little frock that can be styled with menswear-inspired brogues just as easily as your highest pair of stilettos.
3. Banana Republic Monogram Purple Sheath, $185
With its sweetheart neckline and lovely shade of purple, this ladylike sheath can make a smooth transition from the office to Valentine’s Day dinner date with a quick accessories change.
4. Jacob Crepe Dress with Front-Knot Detail, $79
For the true romantics, a LRD is a must on February 14. Make this bright red crepe dress your own with your shiniest jewels, or the new ones that might be coming your way.
5. Club Monaco Cynthia Leather Dress, $395
For those of you who prefer an edgier vibe, a fitted black leather dress is the way to go. We’re betting it’ll become a favourite in the wardrobe rotation post-Valentine’s Day.
6. French Connection Glamour Stretch Dress, $228
A cut-out neckline, demure skirt length and eye-catching colour make this body con dress a V-Day look that’s more sexy than sweet. Suitors are sure to flock.
Can’t pick just one? Neither can we. Valentine’s Day probably only calls for one dress, but here’s how you can justify buying all of them: by winning Sherway Gardens’ Love Your Style $1,000 shopping spree sweepstakes! In fact, you’d even be able to justify some swanky new shoes to go with your dresses. Click on over to Sherway Garden’s Facebook page to enter the contest. Good luck and happy shopping!
xx, T & S
Sponsored by Sherway Gardens
World Mastercard Fashion Week (WMCFW) is currently in full swing and there’s no more fashionable a city in Canada right now than Toronto. Whether it’s models strutting their stuff on the catwalk, editors and VIPs sitting front row, or bloggers getting a sneak peek backstage, everywhere we turn it’s a fabulous feast for the eyes.
Being surrounded by many of the most sartorially gifted industry insiders for 5 days in a row is both inspiring and dangerous; our fall/winter wish lists have grown rapidly while we’ve people-watched over the course of the week, not so stealthily ogling the sea of chic ensembles around us. Unable to resist the urge to shop, we snuck a trip to Toronto Eaton Centre (TEC) in between runway shows. Armed with the top street style trends we’ve spotted at the fashion week tents just down the street, we scoured the 3-floor fashion mecca for pieces that would help us – and you! – get the looks.
We loved freelance fashion writer Bianca Teixeira’s cobalt blue, double-breasted pea coat, which she donned over a similarly-hued frock for a monochromatic look on opening night of WMCFW. Want a vibrant pop of colour in your fall/winter outerwear rotation too? Stop by Toronto Eaton Centre for a teal lapelless option at H&M ($129), an oxblood wool biker coat with leather sleeves at Zara ($269) or a raspberry wool blazer with contrast piping at Juicy Couture ($361). These are sure to cheer you up on a rainy fall day.
Whether it’s zebra, cheetah, or snake, the animal print trend is going nowhere fast. While it was a wonderfully loud leopard print coat that caught our eye, you can start small with a scarf like Massimo Dutti’s woollen green snakeskin foulard ($59.50) or a handbag like Banana Republic’s ‘Jamie’ box clutch ($150). For those of you who are ready to fully embrace animal print, a dress is surely the way to go. Who needs a LBD when you can rock Ann Taylor’s zebra knit jacquard sheath dress ($98) or Juicy Couture’s ponte knit green python dress ($218) instead?
We’ve spotted everything from crisp white cotton button-downs to colourfully-printed silk blouses so far this week, and one of our favourites has been the studded collar shirt we saw on Jenn Campbell, FLARE Magazine’s Senior Digital Editor. TEC has tons of collared shirts to choose from and whittling the list down to just 3 was a tough task, but J. Crew’s silk boy shirt in heart throb ($158), Club Monaco’s ‘Patricia’ silk shirt with contrast leather piping ($149.50) and Mendocino’s graphic print blouse by Clover Canyon ($312, arriving in November) are our top picks.
When it comes to statement necklaces, blogger Nelia Belkova is the queen; we’ve seen her sporting one fabulous piece after another every day this fashion week. Go big or go home, her accessories philosophy seems to be, and it’s ours too. Hang a conversation starter like H&M’s insect necklace ($14.95), BCBG Max Azria’s rocker statement necklace ($178), or the Lulu Frost for J. Crew crystal petal necklace ($220) around your neck to take your fashion week outfit to the next level with some help from TEC.
It’s the last day of WMCFW today, and U.S. retailer EXPRESS, which is launching a new store at Toronto Eaton Centre next month, is set to close the week. We’ll be live-tweeting tonight’s 9pm show, so be sure to follow @backseatstylers and @toeatoncentre on Twitter for updates straight from the runway.
See you at the tents one final time this season – and then at Toronto Eaton Centre! After all those fashion shows this week, you’ll want to do some serious shopping at TEC’s newest boutiques: Canada’s first unisex J.Crew, North America’s first Massimo Dutti, and Canada’s first Ann Taylor. We know we will.
xx, T & S
Sponsored by Cadillac Fairview
Nothing cures the end-of-summer blues quite like a fall fashion shopping spree, and it seems that’s exactly what the doctor (i.e. yours truly!) has ordered for you. We helpfully suggested recently that you hightail it to Sherway Gardens for your pick of the fresh new outerwear arrivals, and this week we’re proposing a second trip to the upscale shopping centre in Toronto’s west end. The mission for round two is 6 essential pieces your fall wardrobe won’t be complete without (clockwise from top left):
The equestrian stretch belt by Banana Republic is a must-have accessory this fall. At a reasonable $68, it’s a flattering waist cincher and is an easy and affordable way to give new life to dresses, coats and sweaters from last year. It’s available in both black and brown, and obviously you need both.
When it comes to prints, no one does it quite like Clover Canyon. The California-based brand is churning out to-die-for pieces in eye-catching prints season after season. If you don’t already have some Clover Canyon in your closet, now’s the time to stop by Mendocino for your first and definitely not last. The Galaxy blouse ($312) is our pick.
An oversize leather tote or satchel to carry all your essentials with you would be the practical recommendation…but where’s the fun in that? Besides, we’ll assume you’ve already got one. Instead, pop by Michael Kors for a clutch in a gorgeous autumn shade like the ostrich-embossed Gia in crimson.
A new season calls for a new party frock. This highly covetable style from Juicy Couture combines a deep mossy green lace with contrast leather trim, and can be both ladylike and fierce based on how its styled. It’s the perfect dress for date night or a girls’ night out. Retails for $328.
The riding boot is to fall what the wedge sandal is to summer. If last year’s pair is in bad shape, Stuart Weitzman is the shoe shop to head to for a fabulous new replacement pair. Our pick? The Mount boot, which is the perfect balance of style and comfort. It comes in both black and brown, and retails for $675.
Cardigan options for fall are aplenty, but great cardigans are hard to come by. Club Monaco’s Diamond sweater jacket ($159.50) is chic, versatile and oh so warm. It’s a piece that can be dressed up for the office or down for the weekend. In fact, we can see ourselves putting it on and refusing to take it off until spring.
There you have it – six items you should run out and buy right now. And don’t forget those fall jackets you were eyeing last week! Long wish list? Not a problem – that’s where Sherway Gardens’ Fall Into Style Contest comes in. Until September 17, enter to win the grand prize of a $1,000 shopping spree at Sherway Gardens or 1 of 20 $100 Cadillac Fairview shop! card® gift cards over on Sherway Gardens’ Facebook page.
Good luck and happy fall shopping everyone!
xx, T & S
Image Credits: Banana Republic, Club Monaco, Juicy Couture, Mendocino, Michael Kors, Stuart Weitzman
Sponsored by Sherway Gardens