Be Mine – Valentine’s Day Want List

I’m a sucker for Valentine’s Day merch. Everywhere I look there are red and pink hearts, kisses and bows smacked on everything from cupcakes, to shoes, lip gloss, jewelry and handbags. Maybe the fact that my birthday is two days after Valentine’s Day makes me love the commercial holiday so much, but I like to think that it’s because I’m a lover of all things hopelessly kitsch in fashion, beauty and design. To celebrate Valentine’s Day, I’ve compiled some of my favourite fashion items that get my heart all aflutter.

ALDO GIRIDDIN SHOULDER BAG
This cross-body heart-shaped bag by Aldo gives a new meaning to the phrase “arm candy.” The heart candy-inspired bag comes in light pink, green or yellow and reminds me of a similar-looking Charlotte Olympia clutch, but for a fraction of the price tag.

Aldo Giriddin Shoulder Bag, $30

Aldo Giriddin Shoulder Bag, $30

VON FOLLIES LINGERIE BY DITA VON TEESE
There’s nothing sexier than retro-inspired lingerie and Dita Von Teese does it right. I know most women would be hesitant to buy their lingerie online, but I purchased pieces from Teese’s Von Follies line through ASOS and found they were true to size. The quality is great, the price is pretty sweet and if you’re a lover of retro-tailored lingerie (high-waisted, slimming and smoothing) then give this collection a try.

Her Sexellency Suspender and Her Sexellency Overwire Bra, &73.71 and $80.03 at asos.com

Her Sexellency Suspender and Her Sexellency Overwire Bra, $73.71 and $80.03 at asos.com

KATE SPADE OOH LA LA TOBYN
Kate Spade is the queen of cool kitsch with a good dose of posh, upper east side, pretty sophistication. I just knew she would deliver a Valentine’s-inspired collection that would have me oohing and aaahing. One of my favourite pieces is the Ooh La La Tobyn cross-body bag with top handle, which has just the right amount of quirk and ladylike polish.

Kate Spade Ooh La La Tobyn, $348

Kate Spade Ooh La La Tobyn, $348

BATH & BODY WORKS SWEET SHOP CANDLES
The Sweet Shop candle collection from Bath & Body Works not only has a range of sweet, mouth-watering scents perfect for anyone with a sweet tooth, but it’s also cute as hell. The Mason Jar Candles would look perfect anywhere in your home and the Sweet Shop Pedestals elevate your candles to chic new heights.

Bath & Body Works Raspberry Peach Macaron Mason Jar Candle, $12.50

Bath & Body Works Raspberry Peach Macaron Mason Jar Candle, $12.50

TOO FACED TEDDY BEAR HAIR 5 PIECE BRUSH SET
Don’t be fooled by the cutesy name or heart-print cosmetic bag, because this is one fierce brush set. These five essential brushes – powder, contour, all-over shadow, blender and liner – may be made of synthetic materials, but they feel identical to real hair.

Too Faced Teddy Bear Hair 5 Piece Brush Set, $79 at Sephora

Too Faced Teddy Bear Hair 5 Piece Brush Set, $79 at Sephora

BATH & BODY WORKS VELVET SUGAR BODY LOTION
Get super soft and smooth skin that will leave you irresistible to touch and smelling good enough to eat. This shea and vitamin E rich lotion smells divine thanks to its sweet blend of red velvet crème, golden plum, sugared musk, pink jasmine and strawberry.

Bath & Body Works Velvet Sugar Body Lotion, $12.50

Bath & Body Works Velvet Sugar Body Lotion, $12.50

MAYBELLINE COLOR ELIXIR BY COLOR SENSATIONAL
To get a look-at-me pout for Valentine’s Day – or any day of the year, for that matter – look no further than this lip product hyphenate from Maybelline that delivers the colour of a lipstick, the cushiony feel of a balm and the glassy shine of a gloss. I have a few shades on rotation in my makeup arsenal right now, including Caramel Infused, a neutral rose, and Dashing Orchid, a bright purple that’s in line with Pantone’s colour of the year.

Maybelline Color Elixir By Color Sensational, $10.99 at drugstores

Maybelline Color Elixir By Color Sensational, $10.99 at drugstores

– Jodi Goulart

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She’s A Lady

It’s no secret that when it comes to my preferred retro beauty look I gravitate towards a strong red lip and black cat eye. Lately though, I’ve been wanting something softer, but still with a retro edge and when I first saw the 1940s heroines on Carolina Herrera’s fall runway, I was smitten.

Carolina Herrera Fall 2013

Carolina Herrera Fall 2013

The models wore satin pussy bow blouses, wide-legged trousers, tweed pencil and a-line skirts, and dresses with nipped waists and dramatic high shoulders. The look was 1940s sophistication with a touch of vixen. I thought of Lauren Bacall in How to Marry a Millionaire, a tough-as-nails woman driven by ambition whose sexiness came from her brash but classy attitude rather than a wiggle when she walked or a breathy voice – no offense to the incomparable Marilyn.

The hair and makeup was equal parts soft and strong, with hair pulled back into a low victory roll and cheeks and lips kissed with pretty pinks.

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Victory rolls and pink makeup at Carolina Herrera

To create the look at home, I tracked down the products you need. For the victory roll, apply Sebastian Potion 9, which is a styling cream with flexible hold, to damp/almost dry hair. Part your hair in the middle and twist each side and pin it to your head as you work towards the back. Gather the ends into a ponytail, roll it inward and pin it in place. To give your hair some high-wattage shine, apply a couple of drops of L’Oreal Professionnel Mythic Oil that leaves hair glossy thanks to avocado and grape seed oils.

L'Oreal Professionnel Mythic Oil, $26 at TK

L’Oreal Professionnel Mythic Oil, $26 at salons

To achieve a pretty pink flush, I applied Lancome’s new Highlighter Blush in Rose Ballerine from the super feminine French Ballerine collection fronted by the beautiful Lily Collins. I looked to Lancome’s vast range of pinks shades from the Rouge In Love lipstick collection and went with Rose Flaneuse, a bright rose pink.

Lancome Highlighter Blush in Rose Ballerine, $52 at department stores and select drugstores in February

Lancome Highlighter Blush in Rose Ballerine, $52 at department stores and select drugstores in February

Lancome Rouge In Love in Rose Flaneuse, $30 at department stores

Lancome Rouge In Love in Rose Flaneuse, $30 at department stores

– Jodi Goulart

Fit For A Queen – Get Dolce & Gabbana’s Regal Beauty Look

December’s almost here and with its approach comes all of the shimmery and shiny glitz and glitter of holiday fashion and beauty. Lately I’ve been drooling over the pages of December issues in wide-eyed amazement like a kid staring at a Christmas toy display.

One of my favourite gilded collections this year came from the Dolce & Gabbana Fall 2013 runway. The beauty look was inspired by sultry style icon Sophia Loren and featured a matte powdery complexion, crimson lips and a black cat eye topped off with a chic chignon with volume at the crown. Speaking of crowns, some of the models even sported bejeweled, Byzantine-inspired crowns.

Dolce & Gabbana Fall 2013

Dolce & Gabbana Fall 2013

To recreate the regal beauty look myself, I turned to Lancome’s new Artliner 24H in Black Diamond. The precision-tip, foam applicator makes it super easy to create a bold line and the perfect cat eye flick. The formula boasts 24 hour staying power, which I haven’t been able to test yet, but come party season I may just have the chance.

Lancome Artliner 24H, $37 at Lancome counters

Lancome Artliner 24H, $37 at Lancome counters

For the luscious crimson pout, I would recommend Anna Sui’s Drama Queen lipstick collection – shade 401 to be exact, which is a brilliant red. This shade is part of the Vivid Base range, which offers 17 vivid colours in an ultra-smooth and almost emollient-like texture, which is something I love about Anna Sui’s lipsticks, along with the glorious rose scent of course. As well, if you didn’t know Anna Sui cosmetics are now available at select Shoppers Drug Mart locations!! Thank you beauty fairies.

Anna Sui Drama Queen Lipstick, TK at select Shopper's Drug Mart locations

Anna Sui Drama Queen Lipstick, $29 at select Shopper’s Drug Mart locations

If you really want to bring some wattage to this look without going the crown route, then I would add some dangling, chandelier earrings. Below, I’ve included a couple favourites that I’ve found to complete the Dolce & Gabbana-inspired look.

ASOS Filigree Chain Chandelier Earrings, $22.51 at asos.com

ASOS Filigree Chain Chandelier Earrings, $22.51 at asos.com

Forever 21 Floral Chandelier Earrings $6.80

Forever 21 Floral Chandelier Earrings $6.80

– Jodi Goulart

Dita Von Teese Continues Fragrance Domination with Erotique

Dita Von Teese continues her reign as creator of the darn sexiest fragrances around. The modern burlesque queen has just released her fourth fragrance called Erotique, which Von Teese herself describes as an “aphrodisiac accomplishment” and “an elixir of alchemy inspired by a time when perfume meant something different than it does now.” It’s this inspiration and olfactory embodiment of a glamorous and elegant bygone era that hooked me after purchasing her signature first fragrance, Dita Von Teese, at her Strip Strip Hooray! burlesque revue in Las Vegas.

Dita Von Teese Erotique Ad

Dita Von Teese Erotique

Von Teese’s self-titled first fragrance is a sophisticated floral with notes of bergamot, Bourbon pepper, Bulgarian rose, musk and smoky Gaiac wood and sandalwood. After falling for this fragrance, I quickly snatched up the second, Rouge, as soon as it became available to purchase online. Rouge is a soft, mysterious, floral musk with notes of pick pepper, magnolia, amber, bergamot and Lapsang-Souchong tea. Dita didn’t stop there and followed Rouge with FleurTeese, a lighter eau de toilette blooming with florals. I haven’t experienced FleurTeese yet as there is no online retailer that will ship to Canada.

Dita Von Teese Signature Fragrance

Dita Von Teese Signature Fragrance

Dita Von Teese Rouge

Dita Von Teese Rouge

Luckily for me and other Dita Von Teese fragrance fans, Erotique recently landed online at Ron Robinson, where you can also find the first and second fragrance. Erotique is the rebellious younger child in the fragrance family and one who I would imagine has a penchant for tight, patent leather. The scent is much stronger and statement-making with notes of leather, cedar, sandalwood, coriander and spicy, smoky pepper blending with Bulgarian rose.

Erotique 40ml, $50 US at Ron Robinson online

Erotique 40ml, $50 US at Ron Robinson online

Von Teese has been heavily involved in the creation of her fragrances right down to the bottles, which are modeled after vintage flacons from the 1930s. Erotique’s faceted bottle is adorned with a heart-shaped lock and key. With her Von Follies lingerie line at ASOS, dress collection that just became available at Bettie Page in Vegas and NYC, and a fragrance brand firmly in place, I wouldn’t put it past Von Teese to continue dominating the worlds of beauty and fashion with a crystal-studded whip in hand.

– Jodi Goulart

Pretty Dreamy: Narces at World MasterCard Fashion Week Spring 2014

The spring collections at this year’s World MasterCard Fashion Week have been nothing short of inspirational. I’ve been adding to my list of spring inspirations daily. Runway highlights have included the pop art prints at Pink Tartan, the oodles of silk chiffon and laser-cut lace at David Dixon and the wash of navy all over the Joe Fresh runway seen everything from fitted tuxedo suits to delicate slip dresses. Another collection that I knew would be out for my retro heart was Narces.

Described as a designer influenced by iconic women of the 1940-60s synonymous with romantic glamour and who embrace a unique sense of style, Nikki Wirthensohn’s after-five and evening wear collection was a true pleasure to see up close.

Narces had me with the first look that graced the runway. A pretty, ballerina style dress in frothy white and silvery beading set the tone for the remainder of the show – one that was elegant and glamorous, but also fun, fresh and unpretentious.

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It’s difficult to pick only a few favourite looks, but those that really grabbed my attention were the dresses adorned with giant pearls, the sugary pastel frocks and the long-sleeved dresses dripping in sequins.

See just some of my favourites below.

What have been some of your favourite WMCFW runway looks?

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– Jodi Goulart

Photos by George Pimentel

Full Skirt Frenzy

I have a confession to make. For the last few months I’ve developed an obsession over full, midi skirts. I’ve always had a soft spot for the full-skirted ‘40s silhouette and thanks to the style having swept down Fall 2013 runways, popular retailers, including H&M and Topshop, are now offering the style in stores. This is a blessing for me as I’ve always had a tough time tracking down full skirts, except for on ModCloth which has offered the style for eons.

Prada Fall 2013

Prada Fall 2013

Ulyana Sergeenko, fashion designer and my current obsession

Ulyana Sergeenko, fashion designer and my current obsession

I’ve tracked down a few of my favourites that are in stores or available online now, along with some sweet sweaters that will pair perfectly with a midi skirt.

Buttoned Up In Style Skirt, $67.99 US at ModCloth.com

Buttoned Up In Style Skirt, $67.99 US at ModCloth.com

H&M Wide Skirt, $59.95

H&M Wide Skirt, $59.95

ASOS Midi Skirt in Animal Baroque Print, $67.52 at asos.om

ASOS Midi Skirt in Animal Baroque Print, $67.52 at asos.om

Banana Republic Floral Beaded Pullover, $69.50

Banana Republic Floral Beaded Pullover, $69.50

Gap Cable Knit Pullover, $44.99 on sale

Gap Cable Knit Pullover, $44.99 on sale

– Jodi Goulart

Retro Fitted: Paris Fashion Week Spring 2014 Highlights

There’s something about Paris Fashion Week that stirs up a feverish swoon among the fashion industry elite and enthusiasts alike. This season was – of course – magnificent. There was Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Lanvin and Alexander McQueen that had everyone buzzing, myself included. However, as you know, I’m here to bring you the retro-inspired looks that had me falling head-over-kitten-heels for. I’ve compiled some runway looks that did just that.

What were some of your favourite looks?

ALEXIS MABILLE
Imagine Rosie the Riveter as a runway model and all-out-glamour-girl and you have Alexis Mabille’s Spring collection. Though I’m not one to favour anything labeled “tomboy,” military pants and jackets and denim workwear-inspired dresses were softened here in slinky silhouettes and flowing silk. There was a dose of Dixie-fried Americana thrown in with crystal-embellished rodeo shirts that added an element of kitsch to the collection.

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NINA RICCI
The Nina Ricci collection harmoniously brought together a perfect juxtaposition of structured 18th-century shapes like tailcoats and cropped, tailored pants with romantic pieces such as lace slip dresses and satin bow blouses. The collection felt like a breath of fresh air over the English countryside but with a strong, masculine edge.

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ROCHAS
Shortly before news broke that Rochas designer Marco Zanini is heading to Schiaparelli as the creative director of the revived house, Zanini’s final collection for Rochas graced the runway. What a swan song it was!  The collection was lush and exuberant with sugary, pastel shades of yellow, blue and pink that gleamed and shimmered in gold and silvery tones. There were crystal embellishments on jackets and ostrich plumes on shoes that added the perfect amount of whimsy. The highlights included satin coats with jacquard velvet that I could just live in, thank you very much.

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OLYMPIA LE-TAN
Olympia Le-Tan gives me that thrill that Betsey Johnson once did when I was a teenager. Don’t get me wrong, I still love Betsey! Le-Tan’s brand of sexy, in-your-face quirkiness is something that I will never tire of. The Spring collection was dubbed a Girl in Every Port and Le-Tan described this season’s girl as going for a long boat ride where she mingles with sailors, pirates and mermaids. The designer’s mood board that was shared on Style.com featured images of Marilyn Monroe and Bettie Page and definitely explained the hyper-sexuality of the collection presentation.

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– Jodi Goulart

All images from Style.com