Tuesday 30 December 2014

Blogging Goals for 2015

Can you believe it - we're in the last few days of 2014, with 2015 on the horizon!  This year has been an incredible one for me, not only for it marking the 1 year anniversary of La Petite Noob (post coming soon), but also personally as well.  I was thinking of doing a year-end link roundup and while I was going through the blog archives, I instead started to notice many areas that could be enhanced and improved.  Nothing like ringing in the new year with a few resolutions, right?  I've come up with some blogging resolutions for 2015 that will hopefully make La Petite Noob - and my relationship with all of you - so much stronger!

Focus on Sharable Content

When I first started blogging, I didn't have much of a focus and created a lot of ambiguous content.  While my posts are much more streamlined now as they focus on personal style, I've lost a most of my sharable content.  At first I was happy that I had finally decided to focus on personal style, but now miss the hair tutorials, cocktail recipes and makeup reviews that I did when I first started blogging.  I've been so lucky to do the occasional guest post for Wonder Forest, which really forces me to get creative and create content that is easily shared and that is hopefully useful.  I am definitely going to make a point to bring those same DIYs that I create for Wonder Forest to my own blog, adding some variety to my posts!

White Wall - Be Gone!

Speaking of personal style posts, I think 2015 will be the year that I finally get rid of my white-walled background!  Truth me told, that wall is immediately outside of our apartment building and has just been so easy to pop outside to take a few quick photos for outfits of the days (OOTDs).  While the wall has made snapping outfit photos so simple, it really lends to a lack of variety in my pictures and - to me - has become a little boring and dated.  I loved the outfit that I shot for The Blog Issue ( see the photo above), mostly because the background is more natural and much more pleasing to look at!  I live in a particularly beautiful area right outside of Toronto, and work downtown in the hustle and bustle of the city so it's not for lack of areas to shoot in - it's really just me being lazy and relying too much on the easiness of the white wall!  2015 will be the year that I get rid of the apartment wall once and for good, and add a little scenery and variety in my outfit posts.

Move from Blogger to Wordpress

Moving from Blogger to Wordpress is an idea that I've been toying with for the past few months.  I've  read countless reviews and post from bloggers who made the same switch in platforms, and each time   I inch closer to the concept of giving a self-hosted Wordpress a try.  I know that Wordpress is the more expensive route to take, but honestly the money isn't what has held me back - it's the learning curve that comes along with becoming comfortable with a whole new way of blogging.  I'm still not 100% yet, but I definitely plan to make a solid decision in the new year!

Be More Transparent

This goal is one that I struggle with, as I'm sure most bloggers do.  It can be intimidating to put yourself out there on the internet, and there's a definite safety issue in revealing too much about yourself online.  That being said, I do enjoy reading more personal posts from my favourite bloggers and feel so much more connected to them after they've shared a piece of themselves - even if it's just a simple life update!  I would love to start creating some more personal content in 2015 and opening up a little more to you guys - that way, we can get to know each other a little better and build a stronger relationship in the new year.

Blogging is such a rewarding thing, and I feel so privileged every day that I'm able to be a part of such a great community and to have you all along with me for the ride! Let me know what you think about my blogging goals, and of anything that you would like to see in 2015.  I would also love to know if my fellow bloggers have any blogging goals of their own.  Let me know!

xo Joëlle


Saturday 27 December 2014

OOTD - Aritzia Blanket Scarf for Winter

Happy holidays Noobs!  Today is going to be a super quick, super casual outfit since my brain is still a little fuzzy from overindulging in food and drink for the past three days.  You've seen this Aritzia coquette blanket scarf in a previous post, and today I've styled it to be more winter appropriate.  Read on for additional photos and outfit details.


Monday 22 December 2014

OOTD - Faux Fur Snood

What do you guys think about the faux-fur trend thats happening in a big way this season?  I have totally embraced the trend, not only for it's vintage throw back but also for the fact that it's warm - something that we Canadians need! I will admit though I was a little sceptical of wearing faux-fur at first, and it definitely took some baby steps on my part to become comfortable with the trend.  This faux-fur snood is the perfect way to ease into craze, and a nice way to have some fun with a traditional wool pea coat and some shorts and tights.  Read on for additional photos and all outfit details.


Wednesday 17 December 2014

Winter Link Roundup

Brr - can you feel it?  Old man Winter has decided to show up, and bring along the snow and cold weather with him!  I touched on my difficulties during the Winter season in my last post, and for this post I would rather focus on the good!

I had started blogging about a year ago around this time (there will be a one-year anniversary post soon!), so the beginning of my blogging adventure started during the Winter months!  I thought that I would round up some of my best posts - from fashion to cocktails to give you some Winter cheer!

I shared one of my favourite winter beverage recipe - mulled wine!  This warm, spicy and fragrant drink is a Winter favourite for me, and is perfect to serve to guests.  Check out the recipe here!

I also share some tips on how to dress for the holidays - for the conservative gal.  Not everyone is comfortable being decked out in head-to-toe sequins and sparkles for the holidays - check out some tips and tricks for dressing the conservative girl for the holidays.  This post is also strangely one of my most popular posts to date!

I also started to experiment with posting outfit of the days (or OOTDs) last Winter.  The look to the left is my Winter uniform a year ago and I'll be honest - it's the same this year!  The outfit to the right is a dressed up Winter outfit, plus a pretty hilarious face - I was so serious a year ago!

I hope you enjoyed this trip down memory lane!  I honestly can't believe that this blogging journey started one year ago.  I'm looking forward to my anniversary post, but until then - stay warm!

Friday 12 December 2014

5 Ways To Stay Happy In The Winter

I have a confession to make: I really struggle in the Winter time.  The cold weather and the short days really take a physical, mental and emotional toll on me, and I have a hard time with finding the motivation to do anything.  Some may simply chalk it up to the winter blues, but after experiencing this fatigue season after season I knew I had to break the cycle and really make an effort to experience happiness during the Winter.  I have a few tips and trick that I rely on to keep my spirits up doing the frigid season.

1. Get Outside

It may seem counter-intuitive, but I really make an effort to get outside during the Winter season.  With daylight at a premium, I take every opportunity to absorb the sun's rays and get some natural Vitamin D when I can.  The outdoor activity doesn't have to be anything too strenuous - sometimes, just getting out for a walk during my lunch breaks can mean the difference between a good or bad afternoon.

2. Stop to Smell the Poinsettias 

Wintertime can truly be beautiful, especially if you're in an area of the world that gets snow - like we do in Canada.  While I'm making the effort to be outdoors, I also take the time to admire the natural beauty that surrounds me.  I make a conscious effort to look past a slushy, dirty road and instead admire a snowy pine tree, or how the light catches icicles and makes them sparkle.  Documenting the beauty of nature by snapping a photo or two on my phone doesn't hurt anything  either - in fact, it motivates me to seek out these beautiful landscapes even more!

3. Hot Tea, Hot Chocolate, Hot Everything!

As a self described gin and tonic kind of lady, I'm usually one to place a good cocktail above most other things in life - especially a non-alcoholic hot drink.  That all changes in the wintertime, when I consciously limit my alcohol consumption and instead switch it up for a steaming mug of goodness.  There is honestly something so soothing, and soul-warming about a hot beverage - particularly a good tea.  I stock up on loose leaf tea and hot chocolate mixes in the Winter time and always indulge in a mug (or two) after work.  A short day doesn't seem all that bad when you know a great cup of speciality tea is waiting for you at night.

4.  Pour a Glass of Wine

...But if I am going to indulge in an alcoholic beverage, then I'll opt for a beautiful glass of rich red wine.  Watching the snow fall outside while sipping a belly-warming glass of red is nothing short of heaven - and is something that is definitely Winter-specific.

5. Make Plans, and Keep Plans

The Winter months can be lonely - cold weather, snow, bad traffic and dark nights can make it difficult to spend time with friends and family.  During the Winter I try to make a conscious effort to fill my day planner with as many activities as I can - and commit to actually keeping them.  It may take all of the willpower I have to meet up with a friend after work, when it's already dark out and all I want to do is nap - but when I do, I never regret it.  Winter can make you feel isolated, but all it takes is a good laugh or conversation with a friend to connect you with the world again.

Now you know the five ways that I keep the Winter blues away.  Do you struggle with Winter as well?  What are some of your tips for keeping happy in the Winter time?

xo Joëlle

Tuesday 9 December 2014

OOTD - Floral Leggings for Weekend Afternoons

Ahh weekend afternoon style - or lack thereof in many cases.  I don't know about you but on a weekend afternoon, between pyjama-clad mornings and dressy nights out, I'm happy in a comfortable pair of leggins.  These floral leggings have been pulling double-duty as pyjamas and errand-running attire - they're comfy enough for lounging, and the pattern adds a little something to an otherwise plain outfit.  Read on for additional photos and all outfit details.


Sunday 7 December 2014

My Favourite Things + Holiday Gift Ideas

The holidays are just around the corner, and I'm here to share a few of my favourite holiday gifts, based off of items that I love all year round and think are incredibly practical for any gal on your list!

The first is, of course, my beloved Daniel Wellington watch.  I honestly can't say enough good things about this baby, and have re-fallen in love with it since switching up the leather band.  Now instead of the rich brown St. Andrews watch strap, I'm loving the moody black Sheffield strap - especially paired with the gold details on the face of the watch.  I would definitely recommend gifting one of these gorgeous watches to a lady on your list, especially if she has small wrists and struggles with finding a watch that fits.  If you're thinking about a Daniel Wellington watch, use code 'Holidays_lapetitenoob' to get 15% off your entire order - plus free worldwide shipping!

If you follow me on Instagram, you know how much I love a good breakfast tray.  One of my favourite weekend rituals is loading up a tray with an espresso, some breakfast and a few fresh flowers and keeping it in bed with me until noon.  Breakfast trays are so multi-functional, and can be used to help decorate a coffee table or a bar cart (both of which I do when I'm not using the trays in bed.)  The trays are relatively inexpensive, but still luxury item that not many people would think to buy for themselves, making them to perfect gift!  Here are some of my favourite places to shop:

West Elm:  My first breakfast tray was from West Elm, and it's still one of my favourites.  Their trays are quite small, so they're great for decorating small spaces or for preparing an espresso and cookies for one.

Chapters Indigo: The gold breakfast tray that you see from the photo above is from Chapters, and it's become my favourite.  This particular tray is a tiny bit bigger than the West Elm version, making it a bit more practical for breakfast in bed.

Crate and Barrel: The sky-blue tray that you see in the photo is from Crate and Barrel, and it's definitely the largest of the three by far!  I use this tray in bed when I'm preparing breakfast and coffee for both Brian and it also fills out a coffee table nicely.

My gift-giving technique around the holidays is to share my favourite things with the ones I love most.  What are some of your favourite things to give as gifts?

xo Joëlle

Friday 5 December 2014

OOTD - Winter Weekend Casual

I've mentioned once or twice before that I'm not the biggest fan of pants - not in a public nudity way, but more that I just don't find them that comfortable.  Call me crazy, but I'm much happier in a skirt and tights or a pair of leggings - that is, unless the pants are destroyed.  I really like the look of destroyed denim, and will sacrifice a little comfort for a good pair of ripped jeans.  This particular pair has been destroyed by yours truly (find the DIY here), and have become my weekend staple jeans - especially in the winter.  The pants paired with a black shearling fuzzy coat, plain v-neck grey teeshirt and a beanie


Monday 1 December 2014

Date Night Outfit 3 Ways

Ah wintertime - the mother of all curve ball seasons for fashion and style.  I always find that I have to put a lot of extra effort into dressing during winter to avoid living in a parka all season.  Date nights seem to be the most challenging for putting together outfits - it's a fine line between dressing up, staying warm and looking season-appropriate.  Patterned tights are my number one go-to for getting gussied up in the winter, as well as a flirty skirt in an interesting material.  I like to add a statement accessory, and for this particular outfit it's a beaded headband that it's super easy DIY. There's also a surprise at the end of the post - two more outfits from two super talented bloggers to add inspiration for your Winter date night looks!  Read on for all outfit details, and to see how Kristiana and Emily styled their outfits.


Saturday 29 November 2014

Holiday Gift Ideas + Daniel Wellington Discount Code

Happy Saturday Noobs!  I'm lazily enjoying the morning, browsing the remnants of Black Friday sales and starting to draft my Christmas shopping list.  I don't know about you, but I always get a bit stressed out around this time trying to think of the perfect gift for my loved ones.  That feeling of seeing someone you care abouts face light up when they open your gift is intoxicating, and I try to tailor my shopping list so I get that reaction every time.

This year because I've enjoyed my Daniel Wellington watch so much, and because I keep on getting compliments whenever I wear it, my Christmas shopping is easy because it's watches for everyone!  In all honestly, I've been really impressed with the quality of these watches, as well as the comfort - I can wear my watch all day at work without it becoming irritating, and it fits my petite wrist perfectly!

Daniel Wellington has been super generous and has offered a special Holiday discount code for all of you - just put in Holiday_lapetitenoob to receive 15% off your entire purchase!  They also offer free worldwide shipping, so as a Canadian gal I particularly appreciate that.

What's on your Christmas to-do list?

Have a great weekend!

xo Joëlle

Wednesday 26 November 2014

OOTD - Topshop Grey Tunic

Okay, I give up - just when I think I have this crazy Canadian weather figured out, Mother Nature throws me a curve ball.  We had a chilly few days in Toronto, coupled with some pretty serious snow, so I figured that Winter had made an early appearance.  The last few days have been on the milder side and, not that I'm complaining, it has left me scratching my head.  I took this opportunity to wear one of my favourite textured grey tunics worn as a dress - one of the benefits of being 5 foot nothing!  Add some polka dot tights and I'm good to go, treating lightly and ready for whatever else Mother Nature has in store for us.


Tuesday 25 November 2014

30 Before 30 Update - Dinner Party a Success!

Happy Tuesday, Noobs!  I'm happy to report that I have checked another task off of my 30 before 30 list; this past weekend I hosted my very first dinner party! The guest list was a little ambitious for my first time - 9 people including myself.  I'm going to be honest, I was kicking myself as I was trying desperately to get the food, drink and apartment ready for all of my friends the morning of - 'why did I invite so many people', I kept on thinking.  In the end though, I had so much fun that I wish I could have included more friends!

The biggest lesson that I learned through this whole experience is the power of planning.  I'm definitely not a fly-by-the-seat-of-her-pants type of gal, but planning enough food and drink for a crowd took some serious organization.  The best thing that I did was to take an hour to analyze all of my recipes, write out a menu, draft a complete grocery list and do just one full grocery shop the day before the dinner party.  By planning and executing things early, I had enough time to run out and get any items that I may had forgotten.  Another organizational trick I found helpful when planning a dinner party was to prepare as many dishes in advance as I could.  I made one of the two mains, plus the dessert the Friday evening before the dinner party and was so glad that I did.

Were there things that I would have done differently?  Definitely.  I learned that preparing a dish while the party is going on is not the best way to go about things. I thought I was making things easier by pre-chopping all ingredients for the dish, but the fact that I had to leave the party to prepare food was a huge bummer - plus I felt like I was invading the guests who were hanging out in the kitchen (because let's face it, everyone always seems to congregate around the kitchen at parties.) I was also having so much fun that I forgot to take any photos - such a Noob!  Other than those small things, I wouldn't have changed a thing and can't wait until I can host another dinner party!

I wanted to give a quick shout out to fellow bloggers Kristiana from Love Loft Life and Cassandra from the Cassandra Monroe Lifestyle Blog for giving me some pretty incredible tips and tricks.  These ladies are some of my favourites for recipes, D.I.Y and just general awesomeness so I encourage you to check them out.

Another task off of the 30 before 30 list - phew, because I have some serious catching up to do!  Which task do you think I should tackle next?

xo Joëlle

Saturday 22 November 2014

OOTD - Mustard Beanie + Hunter Boots

Well, I hate to be the one to break the bad news but it looks as though Winter has arrived - and isn't going anywhere anytime soon.  I've made my peace with the early arrival of snow and below-frezing temperatures in Toronto and am now trying to strategize on how to make it through another Winter - without living in a parka 24/7.  I've found that heavy knits are my friend; for example, this heavy knitted sweater holds up incredibly well in the frigid temperatures - so much so that it actually becomes too warm to wear indoors for an extended period of time!  Add a thick black tight, a pair of black Hunter Wellingtons and a mustard toque (that's Canadian for beanie) and I'm ready for the early onset of Winter.  Read on for additional photos and outfit details.


Wednesday 19 November 2014

OOTD - She Wore a Raspberry Beret

Yes - I'm wearing a beret and despite being a raspberry colour I did not get it at a second hand store.   Prince lyrics aside, I've been very into headwear lately - hats, beanies, headbands, you name it and I'll wear it.  It seemed like I had exhausted my collection of chapeaus until I came across this adorable deep berry beret and just like that it had to be mine.  There's something about wearing a beret that makes me feel like I've been transported to a more quaint and charming world and I've definitely been enjoying incorporating it into my everyday hat rotation.  Read on to see additional photos and for all outfit details.


Monday 17 November 2014

DIY Beaded Holiday Headband - Guest Post for Wonder Forest

Happy Monday Noobs!  I'm excited to let you know that  I've done another guest post for Dana over at Wonder Forest, showing you how to make your own DIY beaded headband out of old costume jewelry in your collection - a wardrobe remix!  Head over, check out the tutorial, and let me know what you think!

xo Joelle

Saturday 15 November 2014

OOTD - Fall Floral Skirt Plus Exciting News!

Happy weekend Noobs!  This post is little out of the ordinary for me, schedule-wise, but I'm just so excited and couldn't wait to share the news: I've been featured on The Blog Issue!  This new online magazine is completely devoted to bloggers and I'm not only super excited to be a part of it, I'm also really looking forward to following along.  The Blog Issue Instagram has provided me with daily inspiration for some time now, and I'm so glad that their website has gone live.  Check out my write up here, and be sure to give them a follow - as a fellow blogger, you won't regret it! Read on for additional photos of this Fall fashion shoot, and all outfit details.

Floral Skirt - Asos (super similar), Sweater - Club Monaco,
Leopard Clutch - Clare Vivier (sold out - similar), Boots - Aldo Josseline

If you've been following me for some time, you know that I'm becoming partial to patterns - particularly anything and everything floral.  This floral skirt from Asos has carried me through the Autumn season, and will be perfect once Spring rolls around the corner (sooner rather than later, hopefully.)  I've loved mixing patterns, and the floral with a touch of leopard is right up my ally.  Throw on my favourite floppy wool hat, and I am one happy little Noob.

What do you think about Floral in Fall?  Check out the article, and let me know what you think  - you guys are so important to me, and I value your opinion!

Happy weekend,

xoxo Joëlle

Monday 10 November 2014

30 Before 30 Update - I'm Having a Dinner Party

Happy Monday, Noobs!  I'm writing a very quick update post to let you know that I am in the midst of preparing to check off another item from my 30 things to do before 30 list - I'm throwing a dinner party!

My experience with throwing dinner parties is limited.  The closest thing that I have done to hosting a  classy soirée has been regularly offering up my apartment in my early twenties as a pre-drinking destination to a bunch of ladies before hitting up a bar.  Drinks were BYOB, and the only food served would be stale pizza crust the morning after for those who had crashed the night.  Needless to say, as a woman approaching 30, I need to have at least one proper dinner party under my belt.

The hardest part of the planning process so far has been whittling down a guest list.  It's difficult when you want to include everyone, but realize that that space and budget constraints are a real issue.    The second hurdle has definitely got to be a menu - thank the good Lord for Pinterest!  I've been spending my evenings scouring Pinterest to craft the perfect menu to not only feed a crowd, but can served in a more casual setting (we live in an apartment, so a seated and plated meal will have to be replaced by a more casual buffet option.)

I'm definitely excited, but am getting nervous.  I have just under 2 weeks to draft a menu, test out all recipes, stock the bar, and get our home in tip-top shape!  I would appreciate any advice, tips, anecdotes - let me know!

Here's to slowly chipping away at the remaining tasks on my 30 before 30 list - cheers.

xo Joëlle

Friday 7 November 2014

OOTD - Zara Plaid Blanket Scarf Pattern Mixing

Happy Friday, Noobs!  Keeping in theme with my last post, I've been borderline obsessing over pattern mixing lately; stripes, florals, plaid, polkadots.. I love them all, and lately I've been loving them all together.  Today's outfit mixes a brown patterned dress with one of my beloved Zara blanket scarves.  I added some brown-toned accessories to keep everything cohesive and in-line with a Fall colour palette.  Read on to see the complete outfit, and for all details.


Monday 3 November 2014

OOTD - Floral Blazer and Stripes

Does it ever happen to you, when you get something in your head that you would like to have and then proceed to search madly for it?  For me, I feel as though I'm always involved in some sort of clothing scavenger hunt and lately my object of choice has been a floral blazer.  I've had a strong craving to add florals to my wardrobe and after deciding that a floral blazer was an absolute must have - and scouring every mall or online shop that I could think of - I finally found the perfect one.  This Rihan floral blazer from Anthropologie is so beautiful and boasts such rich colours,perfect for Fall - and it's on sale!  Read on to see how I styled this floral blazer with stripes for some serious pattern mixing


Wednesday 29 October 2014

#Instalately: The Zara Plaid & Checked Blanket Scarf

It's no secret amongst my nearest and dearest that I am addicted to social media - particularly Instagram.  I love capturing tidbits of my daily life and - even more so - snooping around to get a glimpse into the daily life of others.  If you follow me on Instagram, you know that now all of my daily outfits make it onto the blog; oftentimes I don't have my SLR camera on me, and just a quick iPhone snap will have to suffice.

Lately, the Zara plaid blanket scarves have been making a reoccurring appearance through my feed.  I  loved the red checked one from this outfit post so much, that I went back and got another (pictured above.)  The great thing about having a blog and being able to connect with all of you is having a platform to share a good thing - and these scarves are a good thing, particularly for those of us who live in a chilly climate.  They're so soft, comfortable and add an interesting element to even the most basic of outfits.  Check out how I've been styling mine lately.

Booties - Aldo Josseline Taupe

What do you think about the Zara plaid scarves for Fall?  Be sure to follow me on Instagram - let's keep in touch!

xo Joëlle

Monday 27 October 2014

OOTD - Grey Knits for Fall + Marc by Marc Jacobs Fran Bag

Monday has arrived, and this Noob can't help but feel a little bummed - this past weekend had been fantastic weather wise and filled with fun fall-themed activities.  Sunday was a little chilly, but still comfortable enough for the ever coveted sweater weather - with just a few extra knit accessories to stay warm and cozy.  I chose to dress in various shades of grey knits atop a monochromatic black bottom that gives the optical illusion of longer legs - perfect for this 5 foot nothing gal!  This sort of outfit will be one that I will definitely fall on as a regular uniform as the colder weather hits because if it's simplicity and warmth.  Read on for additional photos and all outfit details.


Sunday 26 October 2014

30 Before 30 - Tactuo Results and Skincare Update

Happy Sunday Noobs!  I hope you're having a great weekend.  My weekend been incredibly quiet and relaxing which, after the crazy work-weeks I have been experiencing, is much needed.  Today I thought that I would give you a bit of an update on my skincare routine; as I last told you here I was starting a topical treatment called Tactuo to help combat my sensitive, acne prone skin as a part of my 30 things to do before 30 challenge.  I had first started using Tactuo (called Epiduo in the United States) back in June, so I feel as though enough time has gone by to give a fair and honest assessment , as well as let you know a little bit about a new product that I have brought into the routine.

After using Tactuo consistently for 4 months, applying a pea sized amount every night after cleansing my face, I can honestly say that my skin have never looked better.  As someone who has struggled with mild to moderate acne since her early teens, the relief that I feel to wake up every morning without any large, inflamed blemishes is overwhelming.  Before using Tactuo I would usually have anywhere between 1-5 blemishes on my face at any given time, and now I regularly have none (one may pop up during my time of the month, but it's rare.)  Is my skin perfect now?  No, definitely not.  I still have problems with tiny whiteheads and uneven skin texture, a result of battling acne for the better part of my early-adult life - nothing a little Microdermabrasion won't fix (I'm starting in November.) These tiny skin problems are so much more manageable now, and I am so grateful to have found a product that has given me the peace of mind of having one less thing to worry about - acne.  To summarize, I would definitely recommend Tactuo to anyone who is struggling with persistent, moderate acne.

I would also recommend another product that I have recently started using and have been enjoying the results.  The Glam Glow Supermud Clearing Treatment has become a staple in my skincare routine, and has really been helping with both whiteheads and blackheads.  I had first heard of this product through multiple beauty bloggers and Youtube gurus, who were all singing it's praises.  Skeptical - I mean, we all know about product endorsements and how they sway people's judgement - I decided to pick up a sample size to try and have been so pleased with the results!  I especially have been seeing a reduction in the pores around my nose, so much so that I've actually had co-workers notice the difference.  This product is a bit on the pricy side, but I use a very small amount every 3-4 days, and only on my t-zone, so I can see it lasting quite a while.

Have you tried either Tactuo or the Glam Glow mud masques?  What have been your results?  I always love hearing about other "miracle" products as well!

xo Joëlle

Friday 24 October 2014

OOTD - I Love Fall

I'm absolutely loving the weather that we've been having lately here in Toronto.  It's been sunny, and only chilly enough to have to wear a sweater - and this Noob loves her some sweater weather.  With the exception of the Aldo Josseline taupe booties, every item from this outfit had been previously collecting dust in my closet - until I decided to do a bit of a wardrobe purge and found so many pieces that I had long forgotten about!  There really is something to be said for shopping your own closet - I get to play around with some 'new' clothes, and my wallet breathes a sigh of relief.  Read on for additional photo, and all outfit details on how I dress for sweater weather.


Wednesday 22 October 2014

DIY Halloween Costume Ideas for Ladies - Solo and Group

Happy mid-week Noobs!  Today's post is a bit out of the ordinary, but I thought that it would be fun!  Now that we're in mid-October, and quickly approaching the most wonderful time of the year (Halloween, duh!) this is about the time when I start frantically googling inspiration for my next Halloween costume.  Dressing up for Halloween has always been a favourite past time for me, and doesn't look like it's going to stop anytime soon - even though I'm well on my way into my 30s!  I thought that I would share some of my previous Halloween costumes, since I have always been an avid believer that costumes are meant to be DIYed and never bought!  Read on to see my previous DIYed halloween costumes, both for going out as a single lady or as a group costume.

**Warning - what you're about to see delves into my bad-haired past.  Be prepared for overly bleached hair, over-processed styles and a bad weave or two.  You have been warned. 

The Solo Costumes 

I honestly much prefer the camaraderie of a group costume on Halloween, but sometimes a girl's got to go solo.  The above costumes, from left to right, are Zombie Alice in Wonderland (destroyed Peter Rabbit included), Alex Delarge from A Clockwork Orange, and a Mountie.  The mountie attire is definitely not up to code (who ever heard of a Mountie carrying around a western pistol?), but it was so much fun to dress up as since I was spending my Halloween in New York City, and wanted something overly-Canadian as a costume.

The Group Costumes

A Team of Mathletes

Mathletes are such a fun idea to dress up as a group for Halloween.  The hardest part of this DIY is ironing on letters to a plain t-shirt to create the Mathlete jersey (don't forget your last name on the back), and then accessorizing with all of your favourite nerd paraphernalia (yes - that is a calculator I have stuck in my wristband!)  You may not be able to tell in the photo, but we're also wearing matching knee-high soccer socks.  Anything to identify you as the math-loving team that you are - go team!


This costume could't have been easier to DIY, and is perfect for a group of wild ladies.  The animal-print dresses can be found at any discount clothing store, the bats at a local costume store and the bits of faux-fur as accessories from the fabric store.

Rice Krispies

One of my favourite costumes to date has definitely been dressing up as Snap, Crackle and Pop, the Kellogg's Rice Krispies elves.  The DIY can take you in so many different directions, but it's mostly about finding basics at either American Apparel or H&M and mixing them together to create the costume.

I hope you liked this quick, random post.  Do you dress up for Halloween?  If so, what was your favourite costume?

xo Joëlle

Monday 20 October 2014

OOTD - DIY Destroyed Black Denim

Happy Monday Noobs!  I hope you had a great weekend.  My weekend was a busy one with work, but I was able to slow down a little bit and relax on Sunday.  I've been eyeing the very-popular destroyed black skinny jeans, and have been searching for a pair of my own.  Unfortunately, I'm not prepared to shell out the $200+ required to bring a pair of these bad boys home.  So what's a Noob to do?  DIY of course!  I used the same methods in my DIY destroyed denim shorts tutorial, and went to town on a pair of old black skinny jeans that were just collecting dust in my closet. The results definitely satisfy my need for a pair of ripped black jeans, and are perfect for a lazy Sunday of doing errands and eating Pho. Read on to see how the jeans turned out, and for all outfit details.


Thursday 16 October 2014

OOTD - Sweater Weather

It's sweater weather, and the feeling is bittersweet for me!  I'm still mourning the last days of summer, but nothing like pulling an entire new wardrobe out of storage to lift a gal's spirits.  This oversized, chunky knit sweater is definitely going to be one of my favourites for the season - it's incredibly comfortable and so warm, allowing me to wear it with skirts.  I'm most comfortable in neutrals, and am definitely a non-believer in the whole 'no brown with black' rule, so this outfit is venturing on 'Fall uniform' territory.  Let's also not forget the hat - perfect for added warmth and disguising hair that desperately needs a freshen-up at the salon (guilty!).  Read on for additional photos and outfit details.


Tuesday 14 October 2014

Travel Recap - 2 Weeks in Italy

Happy Tuesday Noobs!  I almost feel as though I've talked about my recent trip to Italy to death (see previous posts on what I packed here, here and here), but I thought that I would give a bit of an overview of the trip, share a few photos and give you some tips and suggestions that will help you plan your own Italy trip.


Saturday 11 October 2014

OOTD - All Black + Knit Kimono for Fall


Whats the remedy to overindulging in pasta and pizza for over 2 weeks?  Some may say the gym or a salad but not this Noob - I reach for an all black ensemble and cover everything up nicely with lots of knit layers.  Simple and no gym involved!  Questionable health habits aside, I love bundling myself up in Fall - even when the weather isn't quite cold enough for it yet.  This knit kimono is a great alternative for a jacket on those chilly-but-not-quite-cold days, and the knitted circle scarf adds some volume to the look.  Read on for additional photos and outfit details.


Thursday 9 October 2014

OOTD - Fall Outfit + Daniel Wellington St Andrews Watch & Coupon Code

Hello Noobs - I'm back!  Since I was ripped from the sunny streets of Italy, into the brisk and chilly Canadian weather, what better way to start off my blogging return than to a pretty standard Fall outfit post.  I love knit dresses in the fall - I feel as though I can get away with a bare leg better in the chilly weather if my dress is of a heavier material.  Throw on my favourite leopard scarf, a military jacket and some boots and I'm all set for Fall - so much so, that I consistently re-use this outfit pretty regularly on days where my brain isn't up to par (and jet lag = fuzzy brain).  Yes, I wear the same outfits on a regular basis - such a blogger Noob!  Read on for additional photos and outfit details.


Monday 6 October 2014

Two Weeks in One Carry On - The Outfits

I'm back from Italy!  If you've been following me on Instagram, you had in inside look on my incredible trip - and how I managed to create a number of different outfits from the contents of a carry on luggage. 

I have to say - I'm a carry on convert.  Traveling light came in handy all throughout our trip - from not having to pay extra baggage charges in cabs, trains and airplanes, to being able to sail from one destination to the next without wasting time waiting for our luggage.  The hotel rooms in Italy, as all throughout Europe, are fairly tiny and traveling with one small carry on luggage was invaluable when trying to save space in tiny living quarters.  I just really enjoyed the time saved by traveling light, as well as the simplicity - I never had to think too hard about what to wear, since there were really only a few options!

What would I have done differently?

There isn't really much that I would have packed differently from the items that I brought - however, I did slightly underestimate the amount of tops that I would need.  I had no idea that it would still be so hot in Italy, so most of my colder-weather options did not get much use while my warmer weather skirts, t-shirt and tanks were on heavy rotation.  Thankfully I did do laundry halfway through my trip, so it wasn't a huge issue - however, packing more tops could have tided me over from having to do laundry at all.  It did force me to get a little creative throughout the trip - throw on a skirt on top of a dress and you have a substitute top!

What was I most happy to have with me?

Hands down, my boots and my hat were the stars of the packing show!  Italians love their boots, so packing my own helped me fit in substantially.  Boots are also crucial for walking on uneven cobblestone, as they provide a thick sole and lots of support for your feet - perfect for the streets of Rome and Florence!  My wide brim felt hat was also a lifesaver as it shielded me from the glaring sun during the day, and disguised my messy hair -  as we got more into the trip, my straightener was used less and less so a hat was a godsend!

I'm very happy that I chose to do a European vacation with only a carry on luggage, and I definitely encourage anyone else who has travel plans in the future to do the same.

In case you missed it: check out this post to see exactly what I packed for over 2 weeks in Italy in my carry on suitcase.

Happy to be back in Toronto, and back to blogging!

Have a great week,

xo Joëlle
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