Sleepwear fashion shouldn’t be a snooze!

So winter is upon us and well, after a few years of lockdown, I feel home clothes and pajamas can no longer be sloppy, ugly or unthoughtful. Wearing sweatpants and baggy t-shirts for home and sleep feels almost like a post-traumatic stress uniform. I don’t want to be reminded of the veggie like state that the quarantine had imposed on the world, and the void it put on fashion over the last few years. Isolation had made people unfit and uncaring about looking gorgeous, whether going out or staying home. Nobody cared about image, and it hurt the beauty and fashion industry for a long time.

Fleece jogger pants are softer that sweatpants and much more attractive too!

So now comes the overcorrection; I find myself dying to look amazing even if it’s my day off and I am doing house chores at home. I ask myself why can’t I look cute for that? For answering work emails at home, or for working on social media content online? Wouldn’t it be more honest for me as a beauty professional to look good at home in real time while promoting my services online in the digital world? But on this same note, I don’t think I will be comfortable dressed to the nines at home while doing dishes and taking out the garbage. I can’t be decked in pearls when it’s evening and I want to sit in front of the tv. with a bowl of noodle soup and watch a scary movie. So, what to do?

How do I fix the gap between the stylishness of my outside/work wardrobe versus my home wardrobe? Time to do some shopping and revaluate what makes certain clothing functional and stylish for use at when being cozy at home is the mood:

This is a really comfy and cute set. It almost looks like a romper! but it is a two piece made of a cotton waffle material. The print cheers up the deep green.

Stylish Lounge or Pajama Wear Musts:

  1. Be comfortable. Part of the main function of pjs and homewear is comfort. While at home, the formalities of the work world are far away, loose and boxy cuts can be embraced. But go too oversized and it’s sloppy. There is a fine line between relaxed and just plain messy. Focus on soft fabrics with stretch, breathable cotton and flannel. Imagine a cloud and how to dress if living on one!
  2. Colour: I am not a fan of black for lounge wear. It seems depressing and can look sloppy, because it’s the colour that hides all stains. I like light colours because they are uplifting and remind me of sunny days. They also look fresh and clean and put together.
  3. For the boyish styles: I find lounge wear can be very unisex. Boxer shorts on girls, show off long legs, and waffle henley tees that are fitted show off feminine curves in a rustic, earthy way. It’s a no frills pretty.
  4. For the girly: Sleep dresses come in all styles, lengths and materials. The most casual would be a strappy tank dress style. But for more oh la la, add some lace and satin to the mix. I own a lot of satin/silk camis and find they are so girly while remaining a realistically functional item for sleep and loungewear layering
  5. Stick to the basics: soft leggings, fitted t shirts, body suits, tank tops… if it looks like something American Apparel made, it’ll probably do the job.
The softest leggings and warm socks keep the drafts away! A lace cami is feminine.

Is there any loungewear articles or musts that I have forgotten? Let me know in the comments below and stay cozy and gorgeous at home!

Spring DIY: 4 ways to uniquely transform your T-shirts

Yay. It’s spring. So…ya…but it’s still cold here in Toronto. *sigh. In anticipation of warmer days, I wanted to keep busy with a few t-shirt DIY’s to get me through the last of the cold gloomy winter, as these days summer only feels far away…but it’s coming! And a great summer basic is the T-Shirt, and knowing that distressed cut up tees are still in, why buy when I can DIY? What I love about transforming these clothings is that it’s super easy, no sewing and wearing them just has got a crafty cool, edgy vibe to them. And when I saw Forever 21 recently had a buy 1 get 1 free sale on all sale items, I wanted to take advantage. Buying really cheap sale clothes to cut up makes sense, since the sale stuff are often pretty boring, they are left over stock after all…and asking for transformation via distressing/cutting! Here are the 4 shirts/shifts that I bought from there and will be cutting up:

My “buy 1 get 1” haul from Forever 21. Let’s start cutting and distressing!

  1. Long Beige T-shirt dress with cuffed sleeves:

For this DIY, I wanted to use this shirt as a sleep shirt, long and comfy, no shorts or pants needed to lounge in around the house! But with the thick cuffed sleeves it was not that comfy, or cool looking. So first I cut out the cuffs, for an unfinished sleeve look, and then, cut vertical slits 1 cm wide in the front upper portion and got this:

I like it a lot more now. It’s airy with the slits and so comfy to sleep in. Long enough to wear without sleep pants and not be scandalous!

2. Black tank dress with lace trim:

This dress had all kinds of wrong things going on. It was a thick stiff cotton shift material, the lace trim was too long and not delicate, and the way it hung on me originally was just not flattering. After cutting it up, and doing a “bow tie” tee cut up on the the back, I liked the way it hung a lot more, and it looks more like a party dress now, don’t you think?

“Bow tie” cut up at the back consists of two horizontal cuts and then cinching the material together with another frabric. Super easy and shows off the back…

3. Plain White tee with Pink Trim

I loved the open neck line and soft material of this tee even before I DIYed it. But this tee was still a bit on the boring side, and the big side. I figured that a back weave and side weavings might make it smaller if not more interesting. If you really like this look, it’s easy to find instructions on line on how to do it. It’s actually as easy as braiding hair.

I thought the back/side view of this tee was more interesting, but I did keep the pink collar v-neck trim more visible from the front.

4. Super plain blue pocket tee:

So this t-shirt reminded me of a shirt that an artist/painter might wear in her studio. Loose, flowy, and distressed beyond recognition. But as a new tee, this  shirt wasn’t going to tell that story. So, after sandpapering holes, cutting holes and just destroying the colour of the shirt with bleach, I got a more raggedy worn-in look. Now the shirt tells the story that I might be a struggling artist and this shirt has been destroyed since I use it for art making and everything else the imagination will allow. Kind of cool…

Faded, and with tons of holes, this shirt is just asking to be replaced…but loving that worn in, and careless look.

So after 4 T-shirt transformations, I’m not sure which is my favorite look. Do you have a favorite? Just a note about why I didn’t post instructions on how to do these looks; I wanted this article to be more about being inspired to transform your own clothes in easy effortless ways, but not as a tutorial. But I learned all these techniques online via articles and youtube, so just type in “DIY shirt cut up” and you’ll find all you need to do this too! And other tutorials would probably explain it better than me anyways. Happy Spring DIY-ing!

Ways to feel better on sad days…

When I was growing up as a teenager in the 90’s, a lot of the culture around me was sad, angry and depressed.  From Grunge music, to the death of my mother, to the uncertainty of generation X and being on the cusp of a new millenium–my youth was a depressing time.  I wrote a lot in journals, made poems, I also drew and sketched in my spare time.  I remember being sad and alone, but I didn’t suffer.  As an adult though, I find it gets harder and harder to handle negative emotions properly and healthily.  And since I’m all about natural ways of living, there are simple ways to deal with days where I feel crappy.  They take a bit of work…but are better than a day of crying in bed and not getting out.

Whether it’s about a job, a relationship, family…etc.  A lot of things can get us down…if it’s a chronic kind of thing, we may turn to drugs/medication, which is not the best.  And we sometimes even ignore our feelings until they implode on us and we get into even more trouble.  I physically have headaches when I ignore my sadness.

So let’s first understand that sadness stems from when we realize situations/problems are out of our control, and the despair grips the emotional core. But this is sort of a good thing, because once we recognize that whatever happened is not in our control we stop wasting energy fixing it or blaming ourselves.  We finally have time to heal, and not dwell.

Some ways I beat depression and avoid dwelling:

  • Take a hot bath and relax…this distraction not only de-stresses, but it cleanses and renews you, and reminds you that you need to take care of yourself.
  • Re-play all the sad songs that you know will help you.  I am a sap for Fiona Apple, since I grew up on her, and well, she made being pouty so cool! Sometimes skidding into sad emotions help more than avoiding feeling it.
  • Write a journal entry, expressing everything.  Be careful though, this is a double edged sword.  Sometimes purging helps, but it can also trigger past emotions of hurt that you also have to deal with.
  • Put on loads of make-up: after a night of crying, believe it or not, covering up and pretending nothing happened feels great! check out my article about make-up for puffy eyes! I wrote it for allergies, but it works in this case too!
  • Moisturize and pamper your skin.  When you are sad, and stressed, your skin seems to need extra moisture and pampering, so be sure to get a good lotion and slather generously
  • Work at a slower pace, take on less tasks: work is a great distraction, but if you take on too much, the stress will add to your already weakened state.
  • Understand sad days should be treated like a physical illness.  Allow yourself to feel sad, let it run its course and rest, have chicken soup!
  • Resist the urge to eat away emotions.  When I was sad a few years ago, I would go for sweets…they comforted me.  And I’d eat even when I wasn’t hungry.  Not only do you gain weight, but you’re using food to block emotions…and that’s unhealthy
  • Resist the urge to shop away emotions: I also used to buy things I didn’t need to cheer me up.  While the initial purchase lifts you, your credit card bill will not.
  • Hang out with a good girlfriend.  You don’t even have to talk about what’s got you down, just having someone around and going out for coffee is an amazing lift.
  • Sleep in and then some: make sure you get sleep.  For some reason, problems and conflicts look worse when you haven’t gotten a good night’s sleep so do yourself a favour and put your alarm on snooze.

↑My sad girl icon Fiona Apple.  A lot of her music is about being tortured, sad and misunderstood…obligatory listening for the moody.

What things do you do when you are really sad, and in pain?  Are your thoughts sometimes too much to handle?  Is life dragging you down in various ways, and you feel like you can’t cope?  Do you feel freakishly alone during your sad days?  Believe it or not, you are not alone.  I think we have to understand our sad days and let them have free run, or else they creep into our happy days, and make living ever much so harder.