Tried and Tested- Reiss Summer Offerings

As the weather heats up, it’s time to refresh your wardrobe with new easy breezy summer pieces. I decided to checkout the popular London-based fashion brand REISS, which landed in Canada two years ago. REISS is well known for it effortless and elegant style with unique and sophisticated designs, which set them apart on the street.

The perfect summer styles that’s also up to date and flattering at the same time is a challenging task, but luckily REISS offers a variety of collections with a recent trend guide from tropical palm prints to breezy dresses; and of course tailored pieces that never go out of style and can suit for any occasion.

Here are five options for the hot season that will also bring on the sun to your wardrobe:

Ladylike Silhouettes

Step into the sun with a pretty lace dress that embodies the fresh feel of early days of summer. This dress is the perfect choice when you can’t decide on what to wear for a wedding or a rooftop cocktail party. The dedicated lace details in a shade of thyme green makes it a one of a kind piece and evoke an elegant femininity and playfulness. It’s not just that the lady like shape flatter almost any body shapes, but also that the lace texture will photograph beautifully for your social media.

Shorts and bright

The warm weather season welcomes loose-fitting shorts and a rich colour palette. Therefore, these shorts are on my list of Summer must-haves. They are lightweight and super feminine, which goes to show that shorts can totally be sophisticated. The beach-inspired hues create the perfect summery outfit that also works as an evening look. On breezy nights, just add a soft jacket and a pair of heels for a classy take on the ultimate summer staple.

When in doubt wear culottes

Culottes are the ultimate solution for achieving a chic and sophisticated look while feeling comfy. The breezy and light fabric will allow you to wear them all summer long. This pair, which hang right below the knee in a blush hue, was balanced perfectly between a tailor silhouette and an effortless vibe, which makes them look smarter yet playful. To avoid looking too girly, I teamed it with a black top that is also work appropriate. To take this look from day to evening, just add a fancy bag and a pair of heels and a vivid colour like red.

Tropical getaway  

Palm tree print is one of my favourite looks for the summer. The traditional tropical leaf usually comes in bright colours but Reiss’s maxi dress in soft pastels caught my eyes immediately. There is something about the light green, pink, and blue hues that can take your mind to sunny places even on a gloomy day. This maxi dress is a stylish and defiant take on the tropical trend and will look amazing with nude accessories.

Walking work of art

This watercolour dress is the simplest way to be chic yet effortless this summer. For me, fashion is a form of art — the rich colours along with the abstract prints look like a walking work of art. The feminine silhouette with the long sleeves will be suitable for chilly days. Keep in mind and let the pattern do the talking and pair it with simple accessories that won’t steal the focus from the dress.

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Novella Picks Wedding Dos and Don’ts

Art by Michelle Cheung

Natasha Grodzinski, Arts and Culture Contributor 

DO bring a cheque in a card as a gift if you don’t know what else to give. There’s the idea of money being a tacky gift, but the reality most young couples face is one of tight budgeting due to big expenses like moving or buying a house. It also helps you out if you don’t know the couple very well or are pressed for shopping time. Judge the amount accordingly with how close you are to the couple and what your own budget is.

DON’T ignore the RSVP portion of the invitation. Whether you do or d not attend, it’s important to let the couple know so they can plan accordingly. This isn’t like a Facebook party invitation. If you don’t RSVP but show up anyway, there may not actually be a place for you to sit or a plate for dinner.

Drew Brown, Editor-in-Chief 

DO be patient and remember its not your day. All events may not go as smoothly as planned, so don’t add to the stress by complaining that your chicken was dry or that you are not happy with who your sitting with.

DON’T, with all the events that comes with weddings, it can hurt your pockets a little bit especially if you are in the wedding party. That being said, this does not mean you should drink all the alcohol you want to try to make up for the cost lol You don’t want to be the guy or girl who is a hot mess during the wedding.

Meg Summers, Contributor

DO be a good sport and hit the dance floor early. Dead space and awkwardness can be really stressful for a bride and groom if they think their guests aren’t having a good time. Gather some friends, grab a cocktail and bust a move to whatever the band or DJ is playing. You’d be surprised by how quick other people will get up to join you if they don’t have to be the first to make the move!

DON’T be offended if you are not asked to be a part of the wedding party. People have lots of commitments to make and sometimes, your friend’s loser cousin takes precedence over you. Just be happy with all the money you’re saving and be the one at the party who is the bride or groom’s saving grace from the family overload.

Hoon, Managing Editor

DO make a conscious effort to congratulate everybody involved. Don’t be passive-aggressive to the in-laws who’ve been torturing your friend. Sit, smile, drink, and collect dirt on them on the down low. Make friends with the relatives. If the need comes in the future, sabotage from the inside.

DON’T make requests to the DJ or the band or go up to the stereo and pick some mood-killing music. If the music is bothering you and you can’t leave, join me & sit and sulk in a corner away from others. No need to ruin things for everyone. Unless, of course, your intentions are to swerve people away from the disaster that is Taylor Swift lyrics — in this case, ignore above advice. Oh, and also, don’t go over your caviar allotment.

Claire, Contributor

DO pay attention to the dress code. You don’t want to be that person who is underdressed at a wedding. Even if the dress code is labeled as “casual” always keep it classy and wear a dress, skirt, or suit of some kind. Keep in mind the location and weather, and listen to the bride and groom’s instructions and advice. And if you’re a girl, DO NOT even consider wearing white.

DON’T assume you can bring a date. If it doesn’t say “and guest” on the invitation, only you should be attending. If the bride and groom wanted to extend the invitation, they would have.

I said ‘yes’ to Livia Diamond

Photo Credit: Nix Frances

For decades and decades, we have been told that diamonds are eternal, well, they are probably right. The most expensive precious gem on earth is the symbol of commitment and expression of love.

With the wedding season around the corner, when loving couples hunt for one-of-a-kind diamond ring, this unique piece of jewelry will make anyone say “I do.”

Livia Diamonds is a custom-made engagement ring design studio located in the downtown area in Toronto.

We attended Livia DiamondsSay Yes to Livia Diamond” event and got to explore their latest extraordinary collection that features exceptional diamonds, and met the talented designer behind the label: Aret Oymakas.

Livia event
Photo Credit: Nix Frances

While enjoying a glass of champagne and delicious bites in an excellent atmosphere, Aret himself explained to us, step by step, how the custom design process works. He also highlighted the value of encouraging customers to bring their very own personal vision to add uniqueness to the piece.

When it comes to diamond rings, couples now prefer to design their engagement ring yet be updated with the latest trends.

-Be bold-

The engagement ring industry has seen the importance of being creative and thinking out of the box. Rose gold is a very attractive shade during spring summer 2016, and colored stones will add a modern twist and make your piece of jewelry stand out.

-Romantic soul-

Floral never goes out of style, and so it continues being the favorite option for brides who want to keep her ring classy and timeless.

-Vintage life-

For the artistic women among us, a vintage ring with elements taken from art deco, and strong Victorian influence are the ultimate choice. Old school never sounded so appealing.

Photo Credit: Nix Frances

Photos by Summer Yang Art

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.