Shout-outs from Kiyonna

Ooooooo!!!

 Just discovered that Kiyonna Clothing gave me shout-outs on their Facebook page and their “Real Curves” Pintrest page of me in their Valentina Illusion dress!!! ❤

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If you missed my original blog post about this dress, not to fear….just click here 🙂

 

And if you wanna buy this dress for your very own, or anything else from this lovely line….with a special PPMeow! 20% off….click here 🙂

 

For other blog posts I’ve done on Kiyonna Clothing check these out:

FRUGALISTAS UNITE: KIYONNA SALE!

and

KIYONNA’S BLACK LACE

and

#MYVEGAS STYLE

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Photo credit: Rebecca Northcott, Rebecca Northcott Photography

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Classically Feminine

There’s just something about wearing pink that just makes me feel pretty!  Pink lace, to me, just screams “classically feminine”.

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I picked up this dress from Forever21+ with frost still on the ground and have been dying to make it work for a summertime office look.  How cute are these sleeves!??!   Love them so!

(Click here to see how I wore it this past winter/spring)

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Wanting to keep all my accessories Black and White to match my thrifted flats and new paten-leather Kate Spade purse…..I removed the brown belt that came with this dress and replaced it with this cute skinny black bow-tie belt instead.

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How I Got The Look:

Blush pink lace dress from Forever21+; shoes and earrings vintage/thrifted; Stripped paten-leather purse Kate Spade;  Skinny Bowtie belt SWAK from Gussied Up 

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 How would YOU style this dress?  Would love to hear your thoughts and ideas within the Comments Section.

Also…did you know PPMeow! is now on FACEBOOK?  YUP….LIKE the page already!!!  🙂ppmeow-logo1.png

Black Summer Prints

I usually try and avoid wearing too much black … especially in the summer.  But there are a number of fun black-summertime-prints that I just couldn’t resist!

This hi-lo maxi dress (Target) has been with me for a few summers now – don’t look too closely, as you’ll see the black bits fading due to wash and wears.  It’s one of my easy-peasy-favourite pieces.

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Being petite (short) the train of this dress does sometimes cause me  trouble.  I’ve been known to trip up the stairs in this dress and also had a horrible experience with an escalator that nearly ended this dress’ life!  Luckily, I managed to rescue and repair it and keep it among my summertime wardrobe still 🙂

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Since the dress has a giant pattern with solid black boarders, I added a pops of colour with my coral purse (Aldo) and bright green stoned earrings (Stella & Dot), plus my stroppy gold & white sandals (Le Chateau) plus my vintage cat-eye sunnies to keep the looks casual for weekend wear of errands and city roaming.

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Are you a fan of wearing black in the summertime?  How do you incorporate it into your summer looks?  Use the comment section below and let me know how YOU’D style this dress?

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Have you LIKE’d the Facebook Page yet?  You should!!!! 😉

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Vintage Gypsy Cabaret?

I was at it again, representing with the Toronto Vintage Society at last weekend’s Electro Swing night-o-fun … looking for Best Dressed guy and gal.   This time the theme was: Vintage Gypsy Cabaret.    My immediate reaction was…..Whaaat!?!  This made me dig deep when coming up with an appropriate look to match my TVS Sistas.

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Outfit planning has been tricky to say the least….what the heck is Vintage-Gypsy-Cabaret anyway?!  Google’s answer was the following…

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….and from which inspired my overall outfit of excessive accessories (Thank You Jacquie, Founder of TVS) and giant hair inspiration of Kate Moss Biba.

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I’ve been dying to somehow create a look with these fabulous silky Ali-Baba/Harem Pants I picked up on my trip to the Motherland a few years ago … just never really found an occasion where they would really fit.  But they totally worked to help create that Gypsy feeling for this fantastic themed event!!!!

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The evening began with pre-drinking at Erin’s … followed by excessive photo-taking of our outfits:

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The Event & Best Dressed Winners:

10372023_1417699938513079_3269260952603268638_nMe and my TVS Sistas on stage….asking the audience to determine who BEST DRESSED was for the night.

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Final Three for “Dapper Dude”: Alex, Patrick and Daniel
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Final Three for “Darling Dame”: Sam, Foxy and Clair
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Moi …. introducing TVS and the Best Dressed Contest. Clearly I enjoy having the mic in my hand
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TVS selected these three for Best Dressed ‘Dapper Dude’

The ladies really stepped it up tonight….It was uber difficult to pick ‘Darling Dame’ based on these three finalists.  Check out their costumes up close – all three were fantastic!

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10455390_809591812385043_3285205773006176795_n   10464368_809591639051727_2202255012207624312_nBest dressed guy and gal went to:  Daniel and Sam – winners of gift certificates from Gaddabout Vintage Clothing –  congratulations you two!!!

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TVS with the Winners of the Best Dressed Contest!

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10469488_809589305718627_8987115282781696494_nWith Taste of Little Italy happening that night just outside of Revival’s Electro Swing — the TVS Sistas took to the street to dance along side this One-Man-Band!

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Other shenanigans of the evening included….

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Photo Credit: David Tom — for the full album of photos taken from Electro Swing’s Vintage-Gypsy-Cabaret night click here

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How I got the Look:

Black crochet tank from Forever21+; Black lace bra from Lane Bryant; Golden-green Harem/Ali-Baba pants  from my travels in Jaipur, India; excessive accessories, plus turban and feathers courtesy of Jacquie of TVS; sandals from Payless

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Stay tuned to the Toronto Vintage Society and Electro Swing Facebook pages for the next speakeasy event!

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Speed Dating with 25Dates.com

So, if you’re a 30-something who’s looking to meet a good guy to date before (hopefully) finding one to call your ‘boyfriend’ …. how does one find HIM?  Dating is tough.  Dating after divorce, tougher.  Dating as a petite plus sized beauty, even tougher.  (Click here to link to a clip from Louie to see what I’m talking about).    I’m not one to write about dating advice nor do I want to start recapping all my adventures in dating via this forum…but I recently found a GroupOn for a speed dating event with 25Dates.com … and since Petite Plus, Meow! is both a fashion AND lifestyle blog, I wanted to share my experience and thoughts in this review with ya …. along with my outfit choice.

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How It Works:

In one night, you will sit down, one on one for up to 25 three-minute dates.  You will decide who you like, and who you would like to see again. It could be 5 people, it could be all 25!  Now we all know there’s nothing without mutual chemistry, so the 25 people you talk to will also be deciding if they want to see you again.  If there is a mutual match, your contact info is forwarded to them, and theirs to you. You are then free to explore your connection.  Typically, the cost for a ‘regular event’ like the one I attended is $50.

The GroupOn voucher allowed me to attend this event for $25…plus HST once you secure your spot for an upcoming event via 25Dates.com’s site for a date and location and age group that best suited your preference.

Sounded like a good deal.  But then I thought, “Do I really want to be meeting men who used a GroupOn to participate in this dating avenue?”

I’ve found with dating in general, it’s best to keep hopes high, but expectations looooow! 😉  I’m thinking these men clearly made some effort in searching out and investing in this event and possibly share a similar view on value vs. money  – which is an important characteristic to have in common I think – so why the heck not!

What I Wore:

I picked up this dress from my recent cross border shopping trip from Rainbow Clothing at a fantastic $15!!  I decided that it was smart-casual enough with just the right about of cleavage to be “date appropriate”.  After all, the mission was to get handsome, eligible bachelors to mark ‘yes’ beside my name in their scorecards after a mere 3-mins of chit-chat and banter.  A girl’s gotta use all her assets, so to speak, to hook a guy’s interest at warp-hyper-speed 😉

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The Event:

The event I signed up for fell on a Thursday night hosted by Vagabondo Italian Resto + Lounge, a really nice upscale spot just east of the Financial District, specific to Women 30-40 and Men 35-45.

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Upon arrival I found the facilitators of 25Dates.com to be a bit disinterested.  In fact, there were no official welcomes or icebreakers or formal introductions by the 25Dates.com reps at all.  As participants trickled into the venue they were given a scorecard, name tag and a quick rundown  as to how the evening was going to unfold: Women to sit on one side of table, Men would do the actual rotating around from table to table.  And that was it.  If you arrived at the designated time, you were then left on your own until the event official began.  I made my way to the bar and ordered a drink – as you’re left to fend for yourself – the fee for this event supposedly covered hors d’oeuvres, but I personally didn’t see any.  Those who did said they were sad state of affairs and not nearly enough for everyone in attendance to have a taste.

Considering how much time was allotted to the ‘registration’ portion of the evening, I think 25Dates.com should have included a free drink (or two) instead of hors d’oeuvres with the price of the ticket.  This way EVERYONE gets one and a little liquid courage is always helpful, possibly needed and appreciated in a meet-market-event like this one.  Also, another benefit to this ‘first drink free’ approach … the facilitators could/should be encouraging everyone to mingle in the bar, rather than having people sit alone at tables until the event was ready to begin.  I mean, isn’t that the whole point of this event?  An opportunity to meet new people.  It’s uber difficult to get motivated enough to come out and try an event like this in the first place, so it’s critical that the facilitators create a more welcoming environment, create rapport building opportunities perhaps by way of some general ice breaker activities to get people comfortable and chatting, prior to the exclusive 3-min one on one dates.  Just my two cents.

As the name of the event and company implies, I was expecting to meet at least 25 guys.  But there were maybe 16 men at most.  With this reduced attendance turnout, you’d think the facilitators could/would modify the event and increase the 1:1 time for each meeting, but this wasn’t the case. Again, another improvement that could have been made that would ultimately benefit all attendees.  Also, it seemed that the facilitators didn’t really factor in the time it takes for these men to get up and rotate from table to next table…which ate into the precious 3-min timeline of the next mini-date.  Not cool.

When the event ended, everyone hands in their scorecards to the facilitators….if you have matches (that is, you picked them AND they picked you), 25Dates.com will send you an email with your matches’ email address – and then its up to the two of you to take it from there!  What I found interesting about the attendees of this event is how quickly people cleared out of the venue once the event concluded.  I mean, if you did  select ‘YES’ to someone, isn’t this now the perfect opportunity to chat them up a bit more, have a drink with them, grab a bite to eat, etc.?!    Since I had plans to meet up with a gf afterwards, I made my way back to the bar and chatted up the last two participants (a guy and girl, friends who work together) and we debriefed our experiences of the night together.  Much of my above thoughts and overall mediocre impressions of the event resonated with them also.

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The Results:

I have to admit that I was pleasantly surprised at the calibre of men at this event.  Most of whom worked for financial institutions, like myself, were dressed well and seemed generally positive.  This is a nice change from what I’ve been finding on free internet dating sites.  It does seem that if men have some ‘skin in the game’, i.e. made an effort and shelled out some cash to be a part of a dating/introduction event like this, they seemingly put in more of an effort.  Click here and here for my previous thoughts on the Art of Manliness.)

Needless to say that after my 16-mini dates, there wasn’t an instant love connection with any of them.  11 of them seemed very interested in reviewing my CV in full, asking job-realted-interview type questions.  Sigh… guess its sort of default topic, but seriously, asking me ANYTHING else would have made for a more enjoyable mini-date.  Of all the dudes I met….5 gents really held my attention.  Those who made it to the YES category of my scorecard were those who DIDN’T ask me about work right off the bat, those who not only dressed well but uniquely with a bit of swagger in their own personal style, and last but certainly not least, were Tall and Handsome 🙂

Turns out 4 of the 5 men I selected YES to, picked me as well!  Since I couldn’t remember what any of these dudes looked like, I used their email addy’s to find and friend them on Facebook.  And so far have already begun chatting and making plans with two in particular ……weeeeeee!  So there you have it – speed dating, way better experience than online dating.  Buying the voucher via GroupOn pricing for this event was of fair value, but had I paid the full price for this event with 25Dates.com I would have been very disappointed.

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How I Got The Look:

Coral & navy patterned faux wrap dress from Rainbow Clothing; Brown sandals from Payless; Purse from Guess; Gold bracelet Michael Kors watch + gold drop earrings AND new fantastic lipstick: Rouge Artist Intense by Make Up Forever

20140613-163031-59431061.jpgHave you ever gone Speed Dating?  What were your thoughts and experience like? Would you go again? Why/Why not?  Tell me in the Comments section friends.

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The TVS Pin Up Picnic

The Toronto Vintage Society hosted a lovely Pin Up Picnic at Trinity Bellwoods Park a few weekends ago…. A simple social gathering to celebrate the amazing whether, show off our summer vintage gear and meet new people in our vintage community.   Celebrating Sun, Fun and Vintage!

The Admin & Events Teams met up earlier in the afternoon for photo ops, to set up and to pow-wow about the various other exciting events TVS is planning for the upcoming months (stay tuned to the TVS FB Page and new blog site so you don’t miss a thing friends!)

Outfit planning was done with careful colour consideration, with special instructions and effort to keeping the ‘patterns’ to a minimum of 10-25% of the look.  Our team photo was going for a more monochromatic look. I was to wear RED!  I used the following image as my inspiration…..

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Here’s what I wore:

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Click here to see this dress in a ‘wintery’ look 🙂

I studied the following Hair Tutorial to get my hair into Pin Up perfection:

…But ended up cheating by creating a faux bang with half a foam hair donut instead  🙂

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The TVS Admin & Events Team took some long awaited shots for the website – along with some fun candid ones too.  Take a look at all the shenanigans that took place that afternoon amongst Vintage Pin Ups, Greasers, Teddy Boys, Retro Divas and Rockers:

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TVS Admin & Events Team! Photo taken by Shermette
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TVS Admin Team – photo taken by Shermette

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A few snaps taken by Bianca Baumann Photography ‘behind the scenes’ as we got ourselves organized for the group pic:

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Photo Credits: Shermy Freeman of Shermette and Bianca Baumann of Bianca Baumann Photography

How I got the Look:

Red Swing Dress from Collectif + white short-crinoline from Rosie The Rebel; White crop sweater from Old Navy (was wayyyy too hot to actually wear during the day tho); Vintage wicker purse earrings and bangles; Zebra stripped head tie & wedges from Payless

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The Toronto Vintage Society did a great blogpost of their own….check it out for more Pin Up Picnic pics and fun, complete with other picnic-ers and favourite pin-up poses 🙂

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Cross-Border Shopping Extravaganza

After the Victorian Tea event at Your Big Sister’s Closet last month, I met a delightful lady with whom an instant friendship was born.  Turns out this chick, Annika Reid is the chief designer and owner of Candi Apple Couture (who was soon to be launching into the bloggosphere)  struggles with finding affordable bra options in Toronto.  Naturally, our tea-time conversation quickly turned to planning a road trip to Buffalo to empty all of the Lane Bryant locations of their Cicaque bras!!!  Annika had yet to learn of the magic of this brand – and I was more than happy to show her what a proper fitting bra could do.  🙂

So we took a day off work and left for the border bright and early …. but first a stop at currency exchange followed by the church of i.HOP…their Strawberry Banana Cream Pie Pancakes is an AMAZING and religious experience!  God is Good!

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Now…this was meant to be a very purposeful and focused cross border trip.  There is absolutely no reason for me to be shopping.  My closet is full and my shoe selection ample.  This trip’s Mission was strictly for  Over-The-Shoulder-Boulder-Holders!  Buuuuut some how the following sofa-full of bags ended up coming home with me….

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My Shoe Haul!

The deals on footwear in my size were just too good to pass up friends…. soooo this happened:

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This was my very first time visiting Torrid … and I must say, when they throw a sale…they mean business!!  Check out these two pairs I got from them:

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Torrid: Black High-top platform kicks $14!!!
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From Torrid:  suede black sling-backs with gold pointed studs were $5! (I signed up for their store card…and got them for $2.50!!! Crazytown!)
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Payless:  each pair was $17!!!! Naturally I had to get them in ever colour that fit my feet!! 🙂

 

Then of course, we had to stop at the NineWest Outlet … they’ve never let me down yet…and with their Buy one Get one 1/2 off, these two babies became mine:

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Kate Spade New York

I’ve been eyeing the Kate Spade bags for sometime now, but wasn’t sure if I was a “Kate Spade kinda girl”.  But then I saw this paten-leather stripped beauty in the window, whist waiting for the girls to find WiFi service within the mall…..and I was hooked.  I visited this shop TWICE before making my decision.  I cradled and petted it.  Wore it with its detachable cross-body strap.  Held it by its handle and walked around the store a bit to see if I liked the look and weight of it.  It was beautiful.  But, did I really need another designer purse?

Then a conveniently placed shop-girl quickly informed me that this particular bag was not only discounted at 40%….but there was an ADDITIONAL 20% off this bag TODAY ONLY!!!!   Well…that did it friends!  She.  Was.  Mine!  🙂

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Dresses 

As I mentioned above, I truly set off with good intentions to keep my wallet tight….I had no intention of buying additional clothes this trip.  Buuuuut then this happened….

The girls took me to a shop I’d never been before called: Rainbow.    I was immediately drawn to this fantastic nautical cut-out hi-low dress….but at first glance I was too intimidated by it.  But upon trying it on – I really really really loved it!  And have been kicking myself for not buying it in the summer-tastic teal colour it came in as well as the navy I picked up.  It pays to go shopping with two pushy chicks I tell ya 😉  (Thanks again ladies! You make be brave!)

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Rainbow: Hi-low nautical stripes cut-out dress was $16!!!

I did end up buying TWO more dresses….a scalloped neck and hemlines lace dress from DressBarn ($39) and a coral-navy patterned faux wrap dress from Rainbow ($15!).  I ended up wearing this one to this Speed Dating Event I recently attended …. stay tuned on my blog post on that friends 😉

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Oh…did we buy bras?  You bet we did!!!  Lane Bryant’s Cacique bra selection goes right up to F, G and H-cup …. and they often have Buy one, Get one 1/2 off sales also!  Which typically means this girl can get up to FOUR bras for less than the price of one in Toronto that doesn’t need to be custom ordered and fitted by a pricy lingerie shop.

Sadly, the selection was rather limited in terms of the styles vs. sizes needed this time around — strongly recommend you pre-order if you’re making a trip out there specifically for bras friends.  I did pick up a deep plunge for those dresses that are cleavage specific, a perfect tee-shirt bra, a racer back lace french cut and a regular lace french cut.  Curious of what these look like?  Click here and visit their site friends 😉

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All smiles with full bellies, empty wallets, and sore voices from all the Car-aoke singing all the way back to Toronto. ROAD TRIP COMPLETE! Woot! Woot!

 

There you have it!  A Breakdown of my Cross-Border Extravaganza and Shopping Haul!  It was a fantastic day.  How many of y’all go cross border shopping on the regular?  Would anyone be interested in coming along if Petite Plus, Meow! + Candi Apple Couture were to HOST a cross border shopping trip in the near future?  Tell us what you think of this idea in the comments section friends….and we’ll take it from there 🙂

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Rainy Day Office OOTD

Rainy Hump Day in Toronto … which led me to put together this multi-patterned fresh office look of navy and white + a combination of polka dots, stripes and paisley.  Yup – three patterns, one outfit.  AND White Pants!!!  Crazytown, I know!  🙂

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At first glance, the outfit looks pretty monochromatic and simple.  Navy button-up sleeveless blouse with fabulous white bib, and white pants with wedge platform sandals.

But, if you look real close, these crisp white pants have a delightful paisley pattern on them. I introduced a third pattern by unveiling my new paten-leather Kate Spade purse today (isn’t she a beauty — another spectacular find on my recent cross-border shopping trip – click here  for a blogpost on my haul from that extravaganza folks!)

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Like most offices, it’s either freezing cold or ridiculously hot – so keeping a blazer handy always works well, and gives you that polished look in case you’re pulled into a meeting last-minute.  Today, I went with my navy polka dot ¾ sleeved blazer which is perfect for summer time wear, as the lining is cotton. #winning  😉

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Overall, this was a pretty functional and fashionable office outfit – minus the pain of breaking in new shoes.  Picked up these fantastic beige-tan-black platforms in that same shopping trip (click here for blogpost)….but as you can see, they’ve massacred my left-foot’s baby toe.  #fashionbeforefunction.20140611-144138-52898558.jpg

My hair started out looking relatively lovely….buuuut throughout the workday it got rained-on repeatedly while running in between buildings from meeting to meeting.   The hair situation continued to diminish, finally it ending up getting tied back and outta-da-way.  Sigh…

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How do you keep yourself looking versatile and cute on rainy days friends?  Tell me all about it in the Comments section below!

Have you LIKE’d PetitePlusMeow on Facebook?  Wachu waiting for? 😉

 How I Got The Look

Navy button-up sleeveless blouse from Reitmans

Navy polka dot blazer, Jessica Simpson from The Hudson Bay Company

White paisley Diva pants from Old Navy

Beige, tan & black platform sandals from NineWest

Black and white paten-leather purse from Kate Spade

White bib from Aldo Accessories, White ceramic Michael Kors watch, White & clear Birdcage umbrella from Shoppers Drug Mart20140611-195834-71914863.jpg 20140611-200414-72254213.jpg

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OOTD: Sea Foam Swirls

I have to admit, this past weekend with the release of Orange is the New Black season 2 on Netflix, I’ve been anti-social… or rather ‘selectively social’.  In my defence I haven’t been feeling in tip top shape …and what better way to regain ones umph than by marathoning episodes of a fantastic show like this? 🙂

Monday, Monday – back to the grind.  It is a absolutely beautiful day in Toronto today … which encouraged me to bust out this lovely sea foam swirl dress I picked up from Forever21 a few weeks ago…when I was on the hunt for a sea foam blazer.  Alas, the blazer is still at large….but let’s look at how I took this fun, flirty, cut-out back dress from 9-5 and  beyond 😉

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Office Ready — I had to travel to the depths of Scarborough this morning to deliver a training session…but covering up the backless-ness of this fab patterned dress with a simple black open blazer (Reitmans), gave me the polished office appropriate look with this airy number, I think.  I paired it with simple gold earrings and my MK bracelet watch, and my one of MANY new shoes from my recent cross-board shopping extravaganza trip.  These brown wedge sandals are from Payless.  Stay tuned for a blogpost on that all on its own friends…I did REAL good in the footwear department.  Holla!

 

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5pm and beyond:   Remove the blazer….and head to your nearest patio STAT!

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EASY PEASY, LEMON SQUEEZEY!   What do you think of this sea foam colour on a darker skin tone like mine?  Shall I still continue the hunt for a sea foam blazer or should I leave this colour alone?  Would love to know your thoughts – share in the comment section.

Oh – have you LIKE’d Petite Plus Meow on Facebook yet?  You should!  Do it!  Do it NOW! 🙂

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Custom Suiting – Thoughts?

Most of what I like to do on Petite Plus, Meow! is to write posts featuring “what I did” and “what I wore“.  Occasionally I’ve spoken about other topics, one in particular is how disappointing it is to see a handsome & eligible bachelor who’s wearing crumbled pants and a hoodie.  Even more rare, apparently is one who actually OWNS a pair of dress shoes….le sigh (click here to read what I wrote in that post).

I get that not everyone loves clothes and shoes as much as me.  Buuuuuut I don’t think too many people – men in particular – realize how important looking your best is when interacting with others – after all you only get one chance to make a first impression – and those first impressions are lasting impressions.   Looking your best is directly related to your ability to influence and persuade others and is the basics in the ‘Art of Manliness’.

Anywhoo, I recently received an email announcing a fantastic opportunity and deal and wanted to share: HIRAS are Custom Tailors based in London & Hong Kong now visiting Toronto – specializing in custom suits, shirts, jackets, coats and many more for men and women.  With a focus on bespoke tailoring.

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Bespoke tailoring means to design garments from a bare canvas, and the client provides his/her personal choice of style in addition to those of the fitter. They do not have any established patterns. Individual paper pattern is cut from scratch using individual measurements of the clients. HIRA only keep individual paper cut outs of patterns and measurements in file for the client’s future orders.  This means your suit/shirt/whatever will be one of a kind and only for you!

Ladies – this means you too! Suits in softer silhouettes with feminine accents enhance a woman’s style to provide a distinctive form and fit with functional pieces that can go beyond the board room in any occasion.  From the sleek suit jacket to the silk blouse and shapely skirt, made to YOUR body – how are you not excited?!

Andy Hira, is exhibiting in:

Toronto (Richmond Hill) on Tuesday 10th & Wednesday 11th June 2014 (from 3pm on Tuesday to 3pm on Wednesday) at the Sheraton Parkway Toronto North, located at 600 Highway 7 East, Richmond Hill, ON L4B 1B2.

Toronto (Downtown) from Thursday 12th to Saturday 14th June 2014 (all day on Thursday onwards) at the Sheraton Centre Toronto Hotel, located at 123 Queen St. W., Toronto, ON M5H 2M9.

Click here to book an appointment.

Now – if this is wayyyy outta your price range or lifestyle needs at the moment…perhaps you’ll find this video an easier alternative to custom suiting.

Antonio Centeno is one of the founders of A Tailored Suit, an online maker of custom suits and clothing. He’s put together this vid talking to men about the Top 10 Inexpensive Ways to Upgrade Your Style.  Included below for your viewing pleasure:

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