Toronto’s Fashion Week starts on Monday, but with the amount of off-schedule shows and presentations taking place already, it’s safe to say that Fashion Week has extended itself into a full two weeks. That’s two weeks of extra-long days and fashion madness at its finest. But mainly, it’s two weeks full of wondering how to get dressed fabulously in the shortest amount of time possible.
Personally, I prefer to wear classic pieces that will be comfortable throughout the day, brought to life with some of the best accessories in my closet. Fashion Week is always a great time to show off designer pieces that otherwise don’t get out that often, but it can also be fun to surprise with an unexpected mix of brands.
The skirt and sweater in this outfit were both found at the recently opened Ann Taylor store at the Eaton Centre — the first Ann Taylor store in Canada, and the brand’s international debut. I love the challenge of shopping somewhere that wouldn’t normally be a go-to spot for me, because I believe it’s important to have an open mind about where you find your clothes. The classic shapes of the crew neck sweater and pencil skirt, updated in this season’s must-have colour, oxblood, make me feel like a modern day, dark-haired, Brigitte Bardot.
Then there’s the shimmering black and gold leopard print. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: “When in doubt, go leopard.” It is, after all, considered to be as classic as black in the world of fashion, and it can always be relied upon to spice up any outfit.
Fashion Week is that time of year when my feet face the test of enduring true pain for hours on end. This is when the big guns from my shoe shelves come out to play. My newest editions are these incredible wonders by Tom Ford that feature sculptural pearl heels and black velvet wrap ties. Thankfully, I didn’t have to claim bankruptcy after purchasing them, because they were treasures found at Holt Renfrew Last Call on a recent fashion blogger shopping trip to Vaughan Mills.
Last but not least is the bag: the finishing touch to any outfit. This is what I like to call my “mystery purse” because it is a great, motorcycle-style black leather clutch that was found at The Salvation Army. It has no label or tags — not even a lining. It’s made from a beautiful leather, and I’m certain it must be a sample made by someone somewhere, but I guess I’ll never really know. To add a touch of flare — and good luck — I included an emerald green rabbit’s foot from the Drake General Store.
What I Wore: merino wool blend side zip sweater by Ann Taylor, animal jacquard pencil skirt by Ann Taylor, shoes by Tom Ford from Holt Renfrew Last Call, vintage purse, rabbit foot from the Drake General Store, earrings by Blackbird.
Gracie Carroll is a Toronto-based freelance writer whose work has appeared in ELLE UK, ELLEcanada.com, Plaid magazine and FILLER magazine. Keep up with her daily blog at www.graciecarroll.com.