Winter Wardrobe

April has arrived, the weather is still cool and there’s nowhere to go. All my dance classes are canceled. So I thought I’ll put together a collection of what I wore this winter.

Left – skirt from Maggie’s clothing exchange.

Right – Necknots: fabric necklace adds sparkle to my gray and black outfit, looks like jewellery but it’s silky soft. Cardigan is thrifted.

Left – tartan trim on these sleeves brightens up black and white.

Right – thrifted top with a fun print.

Left – top from DressBarn    Right – asymmetrical secondhand top

Left – Alchemy, ethical fashion.  Right – Leopards and Roses, ethical fashion

Pink was my go-to colour whether I wore a jacket or a coat this winter. Both are non-feather and vegan.

Our getaway in January was not south of the border as I had hoped but it was fun visiting Crystal Beach in Fort Erie for the first time in my life.

Wearing pink, florals, bright colours and lively prints makes winter a little more bearable.

Left – I wore my colourful patchwork skirt for my birthday dinner date.

Right – Pink sweater and floral jeans

I had a chance to wear green for a dance party before all my classes were canceled.

Polka dots liven up the dreary, dull days of winter. I bought fleece-lined leggings in black and burgundy.

Visiting my grandchildren and having the family over for my birthday was the highlight of February, including a tobogganing party.

Life is precious!

Posted in Active Lifestyle, eco fashion, Fair trade, Fashion, Memories, Winter | Tagged , , , | 8 Comments

ALCHEMY FASHIONS: ethically made, organic clothing

A recent find in a thrift store was this ALCHEMY FASHIONS dress–CANADIAN DESIGNED * MADE WITH LOVE. Alchemy is sweatshop-free: they pay more than fair and living wages to their garment workers and provide a safe workplace.

I had never heard of Alchemy before, so I checked out their website and was pleasantly surprised to learn that they are an ethical company.

“We use only environmentally friendly, water-based, AZO-free dyes and softeners. This G.O.T.S inspection also certifies a high level of fair labour, and safe workplace, standards.

We guarantee that all our workers have regular hours, breaks and holidays, and that they work in well-lit, healthy environments.”

The quality is superb 100% organic cotton. It’s so comfortable and has pockets. I love the simple style and artistic design with bold colours that pop! I’ve paired it with these pinstripe leggings.



❤ carmen

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This outfit is totally SLOW FASHION

If you are reading my blog for the first time you’ll find out immediately that I support SLOW FASHION. In a world filled with cheap, throw away, fast fashion–which is bad for our environment and even worse for the garment workers–we can each do our part to help.

Thrifting is one way of helping to keep clothes out of landfills and save money. Then we can spend the money saved to support small businesses that sell quality, eco-friendly and fair trade clothing. Thus, I bought this new necklace from a small boutique while visiting Fort Erie, Ontario.

This top has an asymmetrical, abstract design with black sleeves: makes it look like a vest and goes great with black pants. These ones bought at least 12 years ago. The shoes are from a clothing exchange party, making this outfit completely SLOW FASHION.

Top: Thrifted
Necklace: Village Boutique in Fort Erie
Pants: Le Chateau (12 years ago)
Shoes: Maggie’s clothing exchange party

Compassion for people, animals and our planet.



Posted in eco fashion, Fair trade, Fashion, jewellery, Shopping, Thirfting | Tagged , , , , , | 27 Comments

DressBarn: gray top with paisley back

Jeggings are comfortable and practical, so I’m glad when I find tops long enough to wear with them. I found this top at the DressBarn in New York just before they closed their stores forever in December. Besides the length being perfect for leggings, I love that the back is a pretty paisley print and the sleeves also have a printed fabric sewn on at the cuffs.

I was pleased that the vintage scarf I bought in the fall goes so well with it. I wore this scarf in a previous post with my colourful patchwork skirt. It’s the perfect accessory for a casual look and an elegant outfit.

Thanks for stopping by!

Posted in Fashion, New York, Shopping, Vintage | Tagged , , , , , | 14 Comments

Thrifted and Gifted

One of the ways I promote SLOW FASHION is to buy second hand. Thrifting saves money too so I have more to spend on quality clothes.

I love the artistic design on the front and back of this top. The label has been removed so I don’t know where it’s made or the manufacturer, but I can tell it’s a very good quality and super soft.

The jeggings were a gift from one of my dancers: faux leather and faux suede, very comfortable and I get a lot of wear out of them. Black pants are a must for every woman (and for men too) I can wear any top that I own with these.

No signs of Spring yet and it may be a while before she arrives here in Ontario. We’ve swept the snow off our front porch for photoshoots but here’s what our back deck looks like.

Happy March!

Posted in Fashion, Thirfting | Tagged , , , , , | 22 Comments

Turn on the Brights: Patchwork Skirt

My daughter inspired me to do pattern mixing. Jean started when she was a preschooler and insisted on choosing what she wanted to wear. She perfected the art of pattern mixing through the years. I suppose patchwork quilts are the original pattern mixing.

This skirt caught my eye at Macy’s on a day trip to New York State. It looks like patchwork but it’s really not; it’s the print of the fabric made to look like patchwork. It’s so vibrant and cheerful and makes me feel like dancing, so that’s just what I did–I wore it to a dance party and for a date night on my birthday this month.

Typically, Jean and I stick to monochromatic pattern mixing, but this skirt is so artistically mixed with every colour of the rainbow and several prints like leopard, houndstooth and florals. All I had to do was play it safe with a black top and black bamboo tights from Drizzle and Shine, my daughter’s eco-boutique in Seattle.

The vintage scarf I bought is a perfect match! I just love it when something I already have goes so well with something new. I’m wearing two necklaces with animal print beads, both made in Canada.

(Above photos were taken at INTERNATIONAL HOME INTERIORS. This store showcases exquisite, quality furniture and unique art from around the world. It’s worth the drive to Kitchener if you live in southern Ontario.)

Scarf: antique store
Necklaces: made in Canada
Top: old
Skirt: Macy’s
Tights: Drizzle and Shine
Shoes: Maggie’s clothing exchange

If you can’t see the bright side of life,

polish the dull side!


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WORKSHOP in Fort Erie

Through the years we’ve gone to many WORKSHOPS. That is to say, my husband works and I shop. Whether a flight across the ocean to Europe or an adventure out west to Seattle, or it could be a cottage on Lake Huron or a condo in Florida, my husband will be painting for family or friends while I have an opportunity to go shopping.

On a recent workshop in Fort Erie, Ontario–my first time there–I enjoyed touring the town of quaint cottages with my dear friend Maria; some people have summer homes and others live there all year ’round. A charming section of Ridgeway has some lovely stores. I also love to support local shops and Canadian companies.

Crystal Beach is empty at the moment because it’s winter, but it will be a blur of bodies in the summertime.

Happy Valentine’s

Linking up at FANCY FRIDAY


Posted in Fashion, Nature, Shopping, Travel, Winter | Tagged , | 10 Comments

How to Beat the Winter Blues with PINK

and polka dots!

Ever since I bought my Save the Duck puffer jacket last year in Seattle, it’s become my go-to jacket when it’s cold. It’s an instant pick-me-up when I step out my front door on a cold day and feel so cozy and chic.

That’s why I decided to buy a pink puffer coat last week. Same light-as-a-feather feeling without the feathers and not as bulky. Cruelty-free is important to me because people and animals should not suffer for fashion.

I bought two pairs of these polks dots leggings which are fleece-lined. Not only do they make fashion fun but they’re so warm I can tolerate the cold.

What are you doing to beat the winter blues or are you blessed to live in a warm climate?



Posted in Cruelty-free, Fashion, Winter | Tagged , , , | 8 Comments

Tickled Pink

Pink makes me happy and it’s one of my favourite colours for winter because it reminds me that spring will return someday.

My pink puffer jacket is light as a feather but made without feathers. Save the Duck jackets and coats are incredibly warm without bulk, 100% ANIMAL FREE Outwear. My daughter Jean sells them in her eco-boutique Drizzle & Shine.

I love the diagonal knit of this sweater and the buttons on the cuffs. I bought it at the Dress Barn at their going-out-of-business sale.

Pink and gray are a beautiful pair. First, I’m wearing a gray hat with a gray ruffled scarf.

Here I’m wearing the gray hat with a pink scarf.

Pink beret and pink scarf. Life looks rosy through pink sunglasses.

Pink beret and gray scarf …

Gray hat: street vendor
Pink beret: Zacks
Gray scarf: RW & Co.
Pink scarf: Cracker Barrel USA
Puffer jacket: Save The Duck
Sweater: Dress Barn
Floral jeans: United Colors of Benetton
Pink Booties: store in USA

I bought this pink beret at Zacks recently; it has little pearls sewn on.

Always look at the pink side of life!                                                   

Linking up with the fashionable ladies at FANCY FRIDAY


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Boxing Day Sales at Zacks

The first Zacks opened in Kitchener, Ontario almost 100 years ago (1921). Today there are 19 stores across Ontario and Quebec: working with Canadian manufacturers and some importers. Everything in the store was 50% off for Boxing Day.

I bought this sweater because I like the tartan sleeves which gives this top a layered look. It’s everything I love in a sweater: style and cozy comfort and it’s long enough to wear with my burnt velvet leggings.

I wore it for a luncheon at my place during the Christmas holidays and for a day trip to Sarnia with my family.

Sarnia is a two-hour drive from where we live. We took a walk by the St. Clair River; across the bridge is the USA.

Thanks for stopping by!

Posted in Day Trips, Fashion, Photography | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 15 Comments