Mexican Flair – Collaboration with Frida’s Attic

If you’ve been keeping up with my posts on Instagram and Facebook you’d know that I recently collaborated with Frida’s Attic. I’m so excited to share this collaboration! Frida’s Attic is an Ottawa based business that sells clothing, shoes and accessories by in Mexico.

I love the colours and woven details on their pieces. The store is owned and operated by Ottawa based Mexican-Canadian entrepreneur Adriana Rincon. All the items she sells are made by artisans in Mexico.  Her goal is to promote fair trade and bring awareness about Mexican communities.

Adriana first started her business as a means to help families affected by the earthquake in Mexico in September 2017. Her online boutique offering one of a kind hand made pieces has since grown and gained notoriety in the Ottawa community. This September Frida’s Attic participated in Runway for Hope, a fundraiser  in support of the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario ( CHEO) showcasing local designers and fashion. I was so pleased to attend this event as a guest of Frida’s Attic.

I’m currently loving the ponchos in the Fall/Winter collection at Frida’s attic. They’re bright, colourful and keep you warm on a windy autumn afternoon. If you love bright colours, attention to detail and one of a kind pieces then Frida’s Attic is the place for you. Check them out online and use my promo code WEEKEND to save 20% off your order.

Pink Power Suit

It’s Wednesday and in my world that means one thing – Work Wear Wednesday! I don’t know about you but I’m totally loving pastels this Fall so I was overjoyed when I came across this pink power suit at Suzy Shier. Pastels aren’t typically Fall colours but adding a little dusty rose to your Autumn wardrobe is a great way to incorporate some colour.

I love this pink suit as it adds some femininity to my work clothes. I have many other business suits but they’re typically grey or black – not the most interesting choice of colours. I’m also a fan of the pearl button details on the blazer that give it an extra layer of class and finesse.

I paired this suit with a high neck ruffle blouse that I also picked up at Suzy Shier. The ruffle detail in the neckline and the smocking on the sleeves add to the feminine flair of this outfit. I wanted to go for a monochrome chic look with this suit. I added a pair of pink kitten heels and my go-to tote the Louis Vuitton neverfull MM. I have the neverfull in Damier Ebene (brown) and Damier Azur (white) as it’s such a versatile bag and a great investment piece.

What do you think about pastels for Fall?

Special thanks to Suzy Shier for sponsoring this post.

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Workwear 101: Collaboration with Suzy Shier

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I’m so pleased to announce that I’ve collaborated with Canadian retailer Suzy Shier to bring you some of my favourite workwear pieces and tips for great 9 to 5 style. I was recently interviewed for their Suzy’s Stories blog. You can read my interview below 🙂 Special thanks to Suzy Shier for sponsoring this post.

Hi Praveeni, thanks so much for joining us! So, tell us a little bit about yourself. Where are you from and what do you do for a living?
I was born in Sri Lanka and moved to Canada as a child. I’ve been living in Ottawa for about 26 years so I pretty much grew up here. I work as a Project Manager and Professor at a local College where I teach international business.

How do you balance being a fashion blogger and working full time?
There’s definitely a lot of planning that goes in to balancing blogging and working full time. I like to think I’m pretty good at managing my time. I plan out my outfits and photoshoots for the week. Most of my photos are taken on the weekends – like the name of my blog The Weekend Fashionista suggests.

How and why did you get into blogging?

I’ve always loved fashion and putting outfits and looks together. Over the years I’ve had friends and co-workers ask me where I got my clothing or accessories so I thought what better way to tell them than through a blog. I started documenting my daily style as a hobby and sharing links to the pieces I love with friends.

As you love fashion so much, would you ever consider working in the fashion industry?
I think working in the fashion industry would be an exciting experience. If the right opportunity came along it’s definitely something I would consider. I’d love to contribute to a collection someday, perhaps curating a Weekend Fashionista collection 😉

How do you show your personal style AND stay looking professional in the work place? Any tips?
I find accessories and accent pieces are a great way to show off your personal style in the workplace. I like to incorporate colour and texture in to my workwear wardrobe. I prefer a more feminine look so I’m usually in a dress or skirt at work. Whether it’s a printed blazer, a colourblock dress or a statement necklace there’s always a way to show off your personality and keep things professional at the same time.

If you have a big meeting at work, what will you wear to feel confident?
This is a tough one. I usually wear dresses to work and a structured work dress is a great confidence booster. For a more formal meeting I might throw on a blazer on top of the dress. I may also go for pants and a matching blazer, there’s a reason it’s called a power suit after all. When you’re wearing an outfit that you love you instantly feel more confident.

What’s your go-to outfit outside of the office?
Outside of the office my style is pretty relaxed and casual. On the weekend you can usually find me in a pair of jeans or jeggings and a sweater or blouse. I may throw on the occasional blazer if I’ve got dinner plans etc. after my weekend errands. Weekends are also great for showing off your creativity so I definitely enjoy getting dressed up and going out in the evenings.

What are some of your favourite workwear picks from our latest collection?
There’s so many great pieces in your latest collection it’s hard to choose just a few but here are some of the pieces I’m currently loving:

Suzy Shier Workwear.jpg

This sheath dress is so chic! It totally gives me the Chanel vibes with the fabric and cut. This blouse is so pretty, I especially like the smocking on the sleeves and the ruffle neck. This skirt would look great with a pair of opaque tights and a blouse – perfect for Fall and Winter. Fall florals are all the rage and I’m loving the print on this blouse and the detail in the buttons. I love the feminine detail of the pearl button on this dusty pink blazer, so pretty!

What are your top 3 fashion tips for great 9 to 5 style?
1. Aim for a polished and professional look
Look for fit when shopping for workwear pieces and if that blazer you absolutely love is just a tad baggier than you’d like, consider getting it altered for a better fit. Make sure you don’t have any stray threads or tags hanging off your clothing and always iron or press your clothes. A well pressed outfit just looks more polished and professional.

2. Personalize your workwear looks
Don’t be afraid to show off your personality by incorporating colour or accessories in to your workwear wardrobe. Just be respectful of your workplace’s dress code

3. Add some feminine flair to your workwear
Many people think that workwear should be boring and restricted to black or grey pant suits but a feminine structured dress or skirt does the job too. I find myself drawn to colourful work dresses and feminine details on blouses and skirts. Dresses and skirts are versatile pieces as you can wear them year round, simply add opaque tights and a cardigan for the Fall and Winter.

When it comes to having great style and looking well put together I think Coco Chanel said it best “Dress shabbily and they remember the dress; dress impeccably and they remember the woman”

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Pearl Detail Blouse

 

It’s definitely feeling like Fall outside and one trend I’m loving this season is pearls. I was thrilled when I saw this pearl detail blouse in-store at Melanie Lyne. Pearls are such a feminine and classy touch to any piece and this blouse is no exception. I love the chiffon fabric in this blouse and the high neckline. The pearls across the neckline give this piece a formal finishing touch. I also like the pearl buttons at the wrist, so classy and elegant.

This is a great blouse for work or an evening out. I went for a more corporate look when styling this piece. I paired the blouse with a checked print midi skirt. The pattern on the skirt helps balance out the plain black blouse. To accessorize I added a pair of basic black pumps – workwear must-have and my favourite satchel bag by Michael Kors.

I like the fact that this blouse adds some elegance to my workwear look. I’ve worn this outfit to work before and I simply love it. What do you think about the pearl detail trend this Fall?

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Red Ruffle Sleeve Dress

Red is a colour I’m absolutely loving this Fall. It’s so rich and chic, nothing says class like a  deep rich red. It’s also a great vibrant colour and symbolizes power – hello red power suit 😉 I was thrilled when I came across this red ruffle sleeve dress at Melanie Lyne.

This Karl Lagerfeld dress has a retro flair to it which I absolutely love. The ruffles on the sleeve give it a feminine touch. I also like that this dress fits a bit looser on the body, again a more retro vibe to it. For some reason this dress just screams Jackie O, don’t you think? The pearl buttons on this dress are so chic and totally on trend as pearls are a major must-have this Fall.

I paired this dress with a gorgeous pearl cascade necklace also from Melanie Lyne. I wanted to accent the pearl buttons on the sleeves. The necklace also breaks up the red of the dress and adds interest in the neckline area. I added my favourite pair of Ted Baker pumps and my go to Michael Kors bag for a more corporate chic look. I love clothing with a vintage or retro feel so this dress is definitely one of my favourites.

What do you think about red for Fall? I’ve linked some similar dresses and jewelry below 🙂

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Blair Waldorf Inspired Outfit

 

It’s good to be back after a short break! Although I’ve been pretty active on Instagram I haven’t done many blog posts lately. With Fall just around the corner I’m hoping to change that 😉  Even though it’s been off the air for quite a few years now, Gossip Girl continues to influence my style. I was a huge fan of the show and the fashion. I most identified with Blair Waldorf, as I simply loved her elegant and chic looks on the show. I even went through a phase where I wanted to be brown Blair Waldorf, headbands and all. When I saw this adorable blazer in-store at Suzy Shier I was thrilled to be able to put together this Blair Waldorf inspired outfit.

The blazer just screamed Gossip Girl with its embossed check patterning and double-breasted gold buttons. This is a piece you can dress up or down. I wanted to go for a more casual chic look so I paired it with a white tank top and jeans. I dressed up this look (Blair never dresses down) by adding some sophisticated yet feminine shoes and accessories.

Pearls never go out of style, in fact they’re very much in style this Fall with pearl details adorning everything from dresses to jeans. I wore a long pearl necklace which I layered for a fuller look. I also added my go-to bag from Michael Kors. It’s a great piece for work or the weekend. To finish off this look I wore my favourite pair of black pumps by Ted Baker. I simply love the bow detail on the front of this shoe, so cute and feminine.

Were you a fan of Gossip Girl? If so which character’s style did you like the most?

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Favourite Fall Sweater Dupes

Is it too early to start shopping for Fall yet? I don’t know about you but Fall is one of my favourite seasons for Fashion. The air is cooler, the leaves are changing and people just seem to dress up more in the Fall. I’ve  been doing some browsing for my new Fall wardrobe and lately I’ve been loving all the designer sweaters and their more affordable dupes! If you know me personally you know I love a good bargain so here are some of me favourite Fall sweaters and their dupes.

Colourblock is back and trending this Fall and these sweaters are no exception.

This pullover sweater from Topshop was all the rage during the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale. Unfortunately it’s not available in-stores in Canada and doesn’t ship to Canada.

Source: Nordstrom

Luckily I found this dupe at H&M for a fraction of the price 😉 This striped colourblock sweater is only $20 and readily available in-store and online in Canada. It’s a great way to get the look and stay on trend for less!

In keeping with the colorblock trend I also found this pullover from B.P. at Nordstrom. It’s available in Canada in-store and online and was also part of the anniversary sale.

Source: Nordstrom

Don’t feel like paying close to $70 for a sweater? Garage has you covered with this adorable dupe for half the price!

Source: Garage Clothing

Rounding out my choice of Fall sweaters is a cardigan. I loved the Halogen varsity knit cardigan but I couldn’t get it in my size and it’s no longer available in Canada.

Source: Nordstrom

I was so glad when I came across this dupe from Dynamite that looks just like the white version of the Halogen sweater, with a splash of color. This sweater retails for $55 and gives you the same preppy chic look.

What do you think about designer dupes – would you splurge on the real thing or get the look for less?

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Mustard Midi Dress

Hi everyone! I’m back after a small blogging hiatus. I’ve been so busy with South Asian Fest that I haven’t kept up with blogging, although I’ve been consistent on Instagram 🙂 Can you believe we’re almost in to mid-August?! Like it or not Fall is around the corner and one must-have trend I’ve noticed this year is the colour mustard! Traditionally yellow is more of a Summer colour  but the rich tones in a mustard yellow are perfect for Summer to Fall transition pieces. I was thrilled to find this adorable midi dress that’s a great transition piece.

This shirt dress is on trend with it’s deep yellow colour and bold floral print. The reds in the print make it great for Summer or Fall. The longer length is also great as midi length dresses and skirts are very popular at the moment. This dress is so comfortable and easy to wear. The belted waist gives it some definition as well.

I paired this dress with some nude Sam Edelman sandals and a basket bag I picked up on my travels. I also added a pair of bauble drop earrings in various shades of red and pink. To take this dress in to Fall you can add a pair of nude closed toe shoes and a perhaps a red cardigan. I would also swap out the basked bag for a nude or tan purse.

What do you think about mustards for Fall?

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South Asian Fest 2018

It’s Summer and with Summer comes . . . Festivals! Ottawa may be a smaller Canadian city compared to Toronto and Montreal but it sure has its fair share of festivals and events to keep you entertained all Summer long. Those of you that know me personally are aware that I’ve been involved with one festival in particular for the past three years. South Asian Fest is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year and is officially Canada’s largest South Asian festival, offering 10 days of events!

My Experience

I first heard about the festival at a business event where Mirch Masala Radio was present. After a bit of coaxing and a few texts and emails I decided to check out a committee meeting and the rest is history. I’ve always believed in giving back to community and have volunteered in many different capacities; as professional on non-profit boards and as an individual engaged in community events. I have to say that being part of the South Asian Fest committee is one of the most enjoyable and rewarding experiences. I’ve gained and improved upon so many different skills and made close friendships that I truly treasure. It’s also been a great outlet for me to get back in touch with my South Asian Roots.

Growing up in Ottawa I didn’t have a lot of friends from the same ethnic background and  being part of South Asian Fest has put me back in touch with the South Asian community.

You’re probably wondering what I do on the committee right? Well I’ve been fortunate to handle a myriad of different tasks from community outreach, artist management and filling in as a M.C. on stage. I’ve also learned a lot about event management in the process.

The Festival

This year is special for South Asian Fest as we celebrate a decade of family friendly fun and entertainment. The 2018 Festival will consist of 10 days of events starting August 10th. There’s a broad range of events this year ranging from a Boat Cruise, Desi Nite with the Ottawa Redblacks, Cricket and Cooking Demos, an Art Exhibition and culminating in a Mega Mela from August 17th-19th.

We’ve got a great lineup of artists this year comprised of headliners like Mickey Singh and Tasha Tah along with homegrown talent from Ottawa. The festival offers a great platform for performers from the South Asian community to showcase their talent.

A full schedule of events, dates and locations can be found on the festival website.

Get Involved

If you never heard about the festival before there’s no time like the present to get involved. There’s something for everyone at this year’s event whether you’re a foodie, dancer, singer or just want to sit back and watch the show, everyone is welcome at South Asian Fest.

If you’re looking to showcase your art or photography there’s an opportunity for local artists to participate in the Art Exhibition – taking place on August 16th. Love to sing, dance or play music? Check out the performance page.

Not sure about taking centre stage but still want to participate? Volunteering at the festival is a great way to gain new skills and experiences, make new friends and get involved with the festival.

Spectators and audience members are also welcome! If you’re going to be in or around the Ottawa area between August 10th and 19th come out to one of the events. Don’t forget to come by and say Hi if you see me at any of the events 🙂

See you at the Festival!

Praveeni

Noticing something different with my photos on this post? Photo credit goes to Amar Studios – official photographers for South Asian Fest.

 

Chiffon Overlay Cocktail Dress

I recently decided to do a quick audit of my current wardrobe and noticed one glaring gap! I had next to no cocktail dresses. It’s easy to get caught up with the Summer weather and splurge on pretty sun dresses (totally guilty here) but cocktail dresses are a wardrobe staple and should never be ignored. I found this floral chiffon overlay cocktail dress in store at Suzy Shier and I simply had to have it. I was surprised by how affordable this dress is, it retails for under $50, a fraction of the price of some cocktail dresses.

I like the poncho style overlay on this dress as it gives the piece a more formal look. Although this dress is black the floral print gives it a summery flair. The overlay hangs down toward the back of the dress as well, giving it long sleek lines.

The bottom part of the dress is made from a scuba type stretchy fabric that is also figure flattering. The overlay hangs down about 3/4 of the way over the front of the dress; so this is a dress you can eat to your hearts content it. What’s a cocktail reception without the hors d’oeuvres right?!

I went for a more formal look with my outfit and added a pair of red ombre bauble earrings. I wanted to pick up on the red in the floral print. For shoes I kept it simple with some Sam Edelman sandals that I picked up at the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale last week.

Have you done a wardrobe audit lately? If so what parts of your wardrobe need replenishing?

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