Spring style Revamp: Three Runway Looks For Less!

TEXT: Chris Zaghi and Claire Ball

Gone are the days when the standard polyester pantsuit or pencil skirt were the go-to for every woman at the office. The new 9-5 wardrobe should tastefully represent your personal style, as well as the atmosphere of your workplace. The same goes for your beauty routine. You want to look professional and put together without foregoing some extra oomph to your everyday makeup look.

When looking toward the weekend, most of the times all you want to do is throw on a t-shirt and sweats, but hear us out. Loungewear is great for picking up groceries, walking the dog, and laying about and watching Netflix. But sometimes the weekend calls for a little pizazz! An easy weekend solution is to keep your makeup minimal instead of your clothes. Why not amp up your weekend style with some comfy show stoppers that’ll have all your friends begging you for fashion advice and opt for a minimal makeup look?

Now evening wear and formalwear can be a bit tough. There are tons of rules and guidelines on what’s right and what’s wrong. No white at weddings, no stretch fabrics, avoid things that are too casual. All of these rules can make it almost impossible to find something that won’t be gasped at by the rest of night’s guests. Luckily, over the last few years, how we look at formal attire has changed drastically. Outfits that would have never gone over well at formal events are now slowly being accepted. And more outlandish and gaudy designs are being celebrated at events instead of being shunned. This opens up a lot of doors to what you can wear to a formal event this year. So keep your makeup relatively classic with a bit of a twist and let your outfit do the talking!

Office Ready: Chanel vs. Zara

Photos: Vogue Runway – Zara

Zara Textured Weave Cardigan &  Zara Structured Mini Skirt With Ruffle:

$135.80 online or in store

Zara has a long-standing tradition of providing the fashion-forward masses with reasonably priced and well-made clothing inspired by the world’s most exclusive luxury labels. The clothing you find in most Zara boutiques tends to lean toward a very elegant and trend-positive style. And when looking for the perfect 9-5 outfit, elegance, assertiveness, and freshness are key. For example, Zara has recently added this beautiful tweed set to their lookbook. Elegantly trimmed with a fire engine red hem and buttoned with faux pearl accents. This classic style mirrors the suits Mademoiselle Coco made famous decades ago, but with an added flirty twist. This especially helps with keeping your 9-5 wardrobe fresh and exciting (and you can mix and match the set too!)

Office Makeup look: Blush(ing)

Photos: Vouge – MAC Cosmetics

MAC Casual Colour in Hi Jinks: $31.00 in store or online

In case you were absent during the ’80s, now is the time to embrace a retro throwback in your beauty routine. The spring/summer runway was both subtly and extravagantly reminiscent of the decade and one of the most popular makeup tributes to it was bright blush and lips. Designers like Kenzo, Reem Acra, and Adam Selman all participated in various versions of the retro blush. This look from the Chanel spring/summer 2017 runway features a strong, bright coral cheek contour with a hint of coral on the lips to evenly brighten up the face. MAC has a line of creamy multipurpose lip and cheek stains that are perfect for recreating this look for the office on your own! Just trace the cream colour up the cheekbones, and around the eyes. If you’re really feeling the 80s vibes, finish it off by dabbing a little bit on the lips for an added pop of colour. This beauty look screams springtime while also keeping it professional and pretty for work.

Weekend Chic: A.P.C vs. ASOS

Photos: Vogue Runway – ASOS

ASOS Denim Crop Jacket with Ruffle HemASOS Ridley Skinny Jeans

$138.62 + Shipping

Weekend outfits often tend to lean towards whatever is the most casual (and clean) that’s laying around your room. This can lead to some serious drab moments when going out and hitting up the town. Luckily, ASOS has a slew of different dressy yet uber-casual options for you to beef up your weekend wardrobe. Now, most people don’t want to wear a blouse on the weekend. No problem. Denim is your best friend in this case. The denim jacket and jeans give you the same refined, high fashion silhouette that the A.P.C ensemble gives you, just without the high fashion price tag. The pulled in waist and ruffles paired with matching skinny jeans give this look a fresh and expressive take on your traditional Canadian tuxedo.

Weekend Makeup look: No-Makeup Makeup

Photos: Vouge – Sephora

Laura Mercier Illuminating Tinted Moisturizer SPF 20: $55.00 in store or online

The bare skin “no-makeup” look has been seen before, but this season it seems that it was more popular than ever. With designers like Isabel Marant, Michael Kors, Tommy Hilfiger, and Christian Dior all displaying a minimalist approach to makeup on the runway, there is no denying the obvious appeal of the “no-makeup” look. Radiant, clear skin like this look from the Stella McCartney spring 2017 show, is the perfect way to keep it casual, fresh, and chic on the weekend. Just apply a good tinted moisturizer, like Laura Mercier tinted moisturizer with SPF 20, to even out your skin and bring out your natural radiance with a dewy glow. If you need to cover some blemishes, just touch them up with a little bit of concealer and blend it out. To complete the ultimate natural look, brush up your eyebrows and you’re good to go!

A Beautiful Evening Out: Gucci vs. Free People

Photos: Vogue Runway – Free People

Garden Life Maxi Dress$327.50 online or in store

Evening wear can be a tricky thing to get right. With all the guidelines surrounding what to wear, most people opt for something black and that’s that. However, modern evening wear doesn’t have to end up being so uptight. One big trend we’ve been seeing are florals — explosions of colourful blooms completing outfits in exotic prints and embroidery. And that’s just the right amount of punch your closet needs to fulfill all your formalwear desires. Free People does a wonderful job of merging elegance and hippie-chic in a neat little package, and the Garden Life maxi dress does just that. Mirror the beautiful blooms seen at Gucci this season. The dress is perfect for this year’s upcoming wedding season and any other spring/summer event that requires a little evening magic. Who knows, maybe you can even turn a dull winter party into a tropical paradise if you have the guts to do it.

Evening Makeup look: The Smudgy Eye

Photos: Vogue – Sephora

Marc Jacobs Gel Eye Crayon Eyeliner: $31.00 in store or online

This “still wearing last night’s makeup” look is the new smokey eye. The spring/summer runway was all about the smudgy eye. Runway looks from Rag & Bone, Christopher Kane, and Balmain featured similar versions of the black, ashy, smudged out liner look. Pairing this makeup with the floral Garden Life Maxi Dress adds an edgier vibe for a perfect night out look. The best part about this beauty trend is that you no longer have to stress about drawing a straight line! Use Marc Jacobs Gel Eye Crayon Eyeliner to rim your eyes, and using a smudging brush, Q-tip, or your fingertip, smudge out the liner to create an “already worn out” smudged and smokey look.

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It’s A Pastel Dress Party And Everyone’s Invited!

Written by Aliecia Brissett

In 2012, after frustration arose from bridesmaid shopping for her sister’s wedding, Karen Tsoi decided that a made-to-measure dress company would be in not only her favour, but countless other women feeling the same amount of frustration and difficulty in finding a proper fitting gown.

Taking a serious mental note on her revelation, Tsoi contacted her friend, and now business partner, Janny Lam, and the two women have set out to create a one-of-a-kind of made-to-measure women’s dress and apparel line that cater to all women’s shapes, sizes and style.

Much like its owners, Pastel Dress Party holds many faces than just a made-to-measure brand. It is a confidence booster for women who feel like dresses in mainstream retailers and department stores don’t cater to their body type. As well as a one-of-a-kind aesthetic to the brand where the colour palettes change every season.

Janny and Karen let us into what drives Pastel Dress Party to please their clientele, as well what personal influences makeup the up and coming Toronto based brand.

Jessilynn Wong Photography - PDP Karen & Janny-0974

What are your favourite colours that you like to work with?

Janny: Usually for myself, my favourite colours are more neutrals. We actually do work with a ton of colours in our design process. We probably have around 35 different colours that we use for all of our designs. And right now for our fall line, a lot of the colours are more muted tone, pastel colour.

Karen: It’s the whole customization and that option not only for bridesmaids dresses, but for women and formalwear as a whole. We understand each woman has their own taste in colours and we want to provide as many choices as possible. As Janny mentioned, the whole Dusty Line that is coming out with five to six new colours again. So we’re always coming out with trendy colours and taking away what’s not trending.

What are your favourite accessories to add to a Pastel Dress?

Janny: Our sparkly belts. All of our dresses do come in a particular style, but we offer opportunities to change out our belts, so it depends on how much bling you want on your dresses.

Karen: I think I have the most fun styling with our Kimmie skirt, which is our tulle tutu skirt. I have the most fun styling it because I can pair it with different tops, and I think I have the most fun with shoes because it’s the pumps that I can work with and I can pair it with stilettos and even runners; different styles.

Who is your favourite celebrity and how do they embody Pastel Dress?

Janny: Beyoncé. I just like her because she’s exactly what she says she is, and she’s fierce. She’s just powerful and speaks on a lot things that girls do and she empowers. She’s all about women. We’re two women trying to run a company and she’s done great things. You know that saying, “Beyoncé has 24 hours in a day, so do you,” that’s exactly what it is.

Karen: Emma Stone. I think her style and how she carries herself is so laid back and all about human rights, and how that plays along with Pastel Dress is really interesting. I don’t share this a lot, but we don’t do price discrimination against sizes. Meaning, plus sizes, even though they may be more costly for production, we don’t add additional costs to the customer. We want all women to feel comfortable in their clothing and made-to-measure should make them feel that way. Especially for women that might be insecure about their body, and that sort of ties in with my celebrity crush with Emma Stone. Especially with her image in Easy A, it’s all about I am who I am, you either embrace it or leave it.

Jessilynn Wong Photography - PDP Karen & Janny-0761

How do you work together and how do you set yourselves apart from other designers in Toronto?

Karen: In terms of setting ourselves apart, the fashion world is very crowded. For me, it’s more so being true to myself and also for the company as a whole. Our integrity is very important to us and that means we won’t try to be who we’re not and attend all these fashion events. We attend events where we feel we’ll meet the right people. For example, we’d love to speak at events that enable fellow entrepreneurs, or just sharing our experience as a whole. Toronto is building up to expectations in the world as well, and we just have to stay focused. Our focus is really providing that product to our customers and not anything else. As long as we get inspirations and know where the trends are we don’t necessarily have to always put ourselves out there and have people know about us [personally], but more so our brand. We’re not about the label, we’re about our customer and putting garments out and getting feedback and providing a service.

What is your favourite type of women’s clothing?

Janny: I think it would be a well fitted dress. It’s one piece and you can just throw it on. It just wraps everything together and all you have to do is accessorize.

Karen: I can’t agree more with Janny. I well fitted dress is a magical in a way where you get the confidence not necessarily people can see but feel. You feel comfortable in a piece of clothing, particularly a dress, and when you step into a crowd you get an aura and that confidence is what makes women beautiful, and no one can take that away from you.

All photographs courtesy of Jessilyn Wong Photography.