Snug & Cozy Day 1: Comfy Style

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Emily Skublics & Naomi Brearley

During exam season it can be ridiculously difficult to put together new outfits that aren’t pyjamas. If you’re running late to a study date or just can’t even think of clothes amongst the end of term stress, don’t worry. StyleCircle has you covered.

For the first instalment of our style segment, we put together the ultimate cozy outfit. Layered sweaters, knit socks, and denim make for a comfy alternative to our hoodies and sweats.

We told StyleCircle writers Emily and Naomi to get creative with their closets and choose:

  1. 2 sweaters to layer
  2. A pair of knit socks
  3. Your favourite denim bottoms

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The final product? Two unique, cozy outfits that are perfect for snuggling up on your couch, or proudly leaving your home (without looking like your mom heading to yoga class).

 

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By Meg Power

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Snug & Cozy: A Holiday Guide

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StyleCircle’s Snug & Cozy Holiday Guide is here to help you brave the winter weather while still staying snug n’ cozy n’ stylish.
Our guide brings you twelve days of style inspiration, do-it-yourselves and winter adventures that embrace the student budget (and sustainable fashion practices).
The style inspo section showcases cozy, party, outwear, and formal outfits that you probably have in your closet! We highlighted basic items that most people own, and styled them two different ways on two different people. We want you to get creative this holiday season with your closet.
The DIY portion shows you step-by-step guides to create anything from an up-cycled old shirt to aromatic home décor and festive beauty products. You can do them yourself or with friends and family. They make great gifts, but can also be a self-fulfilling treat for yourself.
The winter adventure section offers you four different activities to do in downtown Toronto over the winter break. We want to give you alternatives to the classic (boring?) trip to the Toronto Christmas Market or annual skate at Nathan Phillips Square. Get outside and explore the beautiful city we call home this holiday season!

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Dressing for Day to Night

By Victoria Zander

As students, life is often a balance of classes and jobs during the day and a busy social life at night. But with only so many hours in a day, we sometimes find ourselves without the time to entirely transform a casual daytime look into a glam night-look. The solution is a look that can go the distance – suiting any situation you’ll find yourself in – day or night.

An efficient day to night look doesn’t require lugging an extra large bag around with you, stuffed to the brim with an entire wardrobe change, but rather it is a look that is appropriate whether its 7am or 7pm. The most effective outfit for this would require little to no adjustments when moving from the work scene to the nightlife scene.

via DotComWomen
via DotComWomen

One of the easiest ways to bring a look from day to night is starting with a simple dress, (consider a tailored shift dress, or perhaps a slim sheath dress), and topping it with a blazer or otherwise tailored jacket. This look is neat and professional. Switching out the jacket for something more playful after work or class is a great way to make that same dress appropriate for a night on the town. Or consider that same dress – now paired with a neat pair of black or nude pumps. Switching out those shoes for a bright red pair of towering stilettos or fuzzy leopard print heels instantly turns a daytime look into night.

 

via TheVivaLuxury
via TheVivaLuxury

Jewelry is another sure-fire outfit transformation key. Changing out your stud earrings into a pair of dangling hoops or adding a bold cuffed bracelet or chunky ring will instantly shift your look. Long chain necklaces, statement pieces, bangles, pendants – all of these are standout items that you can easily add to an outfit to quickly transform it.

 

via The Editorialist LA
via The Editorialist LA

Also consider the bag that you’re carrying – while a large leather tote bag or a patterned backpack may be practical when you’re on the go during the day, it’s not that ideal for carrying around all night. Think about bringing a smaller metallic clutch or a small bag with a top handle with you. This way, after work or class you can switch your essentials into the smaller bag and leave your large bag in your locker or drop it at home before heading out.

 

via ShopBop
via ShopBop

However, even the best accessory, shoe, or coat transitions can’t transform your outfit if you don’t start with the right base. The key here is avoiding overly luxurious pieces. If you’re starting with a shining violet silk blouse pair it with a matte black pant instead of your leopard print skirt. If you’ve got a great patterned skirt going on, tone it down a bit for the day with a plain cardigan. Starting with a base like this where a quick change of pants or the removal of a sweater is all you need to glam up your look is the essence of day to night dressing.

Day to night dressing is a great skill to have as a busy student with demanding social, academic, and possible professional lives. Mastering small outfit changes like these are key in balancing these hectic schedules.

 

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Campus Style 03: Adam Fatemi

Writing & Creative Direction by Yasmin Momeni

Photography by Paige Furtney

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Name: Adam Fatemi

Age: 20

Program: Mechanical Engineering

Instagram: @adamsfa

 

How would you describe your look?

“This is a question I get asked a lot, but I don’t really have a word for it. So I just say sort of European Metrosexual. I draw a lot of inspiration from European style.”

 

Does the fact that you’re a student impact your clothing choices? 

“For sure. Especially at a school like Ryerson where you’re exposed to a variety of styles, but you kind of have to paint your own picture. I may see a jacket on someone that I really like but in my head I have different ideas about how I would style it. The diversity is what separates us from other universities, there’s more of a creative expression.”

 

What are your favorite stores to shop at in Toronto?

“Right now I like Uniqlo and Zara, but I also go thrifting a lot. I like Plato’s closet, Value Village, Salvation Army, any thrift shop to be honest. I’ll go around Ossington a lot, there are a ton of thrift shops there.”

 

What factors do you consider when purchasing a new item of clothing?

“The quality is important to me. Also when thrifting, I don’t like if the item is too old. There’s a difference between an item being old and an item having a little bit of soul. For instance, this jacket is around 20 to 30 years old, but its been worn in and has some character and that’s something I look out for.”

 

In terms of image, how do you want the public to see you?

“I don’t want a specific word to define me, or something specific that people see me as. I’m just a regular Ryerson student.”

 

What or who is your style influence?

“I’m influenced by Zayn and Steven James on Instagram. I’m also very inspired by UK style, specifically a lifestyle blog I follow called Mister Porter.”

 

Glasses: Lens Crafters

Jacket: Thrifted

Hoodie: Value Village

Bag: Free from Indigo

Pants: Topman

Shoes: Doc Martins

 

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Not your average internship

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We all know how to find those internships that are available to everyone – the ones that fill up our inboxes, sent by well-meaning school staff. But these easy to find, coffee fetching internships leave us all wondering, what else is out there? How did that one girl in class score that epic job she keeps oh so casually posting about on social media? Voila – here are some of the tips and tricks to finding that one-of-a-kind internship.

Finding student resources outside your own program
If you’re looking for an internship off the beaten path, there’s no better place to go than where no fashion student has walked before. The job boards and inboxes of non-fashion students can be full of highly relevant internships that just didn’t make their way to the School of Fashion staff. Ask a friend or join another program’s Facebook group to find the listings just for them. This is especially easy to do if you offer to forward some of your internship emails in return!

Actually checking LinkedIn
Sometimes there’s a company you love, but their online presence is a brick wall – the info@company.com email doesn’t reply, and they haven’t tweeted since 2013 (has anyone?). Search up the company on LinkedIn, try to find any current or past employees, and then see if you have any mutual connections. Last time I did this, I found the company’s founder was my classmate’s uncle, and she was more than happy to introduce me.

Those boring guest speakers who surprisingly have cool companies
Look out for events in the specific industry you’re interested in, then muster up the effort to attend and actually introduce yourself to the speakers. No, it’s so not fun at the time, and yes, it usually turns into nothing, but it is always worth a shot. I once attended a speaker event on sustainable fashion, listened to an innovative entrepreneur speak about his start-up, then went straight up to him after and told him I loved his company and just had to be involved with it somehow. He gave me an internship on the spot. Be frank with your passion.

Scrolling through Facebook groups
Job postings on Facebook fall somewhere on the sketchy scale between Monster.ca and Craigslist. Think of it as thrifting – combing through groups like the Bunz Employment & Entrepreneurial Zone can be tedious but worthwhile. This is especially useful for finding an internship with a lot of responsibility. Working in a young, small company provides unique experience and could even grow into a real, paying job.

If all else fails: make your own job
When the company you’re coveting doesn’t have an internship position, make one. You cringe when you see your fave Toronto designer just doesn’t know how to keep a clean Insta aesthetic? DM her and ask if you can run her social media. You miraculously found the Suits stylist’s email? Toss her a line, ask to assist, and see what happens. Sure, most of your messages will end up in the endless abyss of someone’s Gmail trash, but as long as your message was professional and polite, it will never hurt to ask.

 

By Emily Skublics

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Continuous Consumer Consumption

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We have all heard about the issue of fast fashion driving overconsumption, but today I want to share my thoughts on why we continue to buy clothes (regardless of the price point) even after being educated on the negative effect this has on the environment.

As one of many lucky retail workers who had the experience of working over Black Friday weekend, I decided to write about my experience as a part-time retail employee. I have to say, it definitely allows you to see consumerism through a different lens. Instead of being the curious consumer it is now your job to encourage customers to buy more. I have witnessed many customers come in and drop large sums of money on clothes without batting an eye, and I have also serviced customers who come in weighed down with bags but still hungry for sales.

My intention for this article is not so we can judge others, but so that we can try to understand our own core values in terms of consumerism. To most of us, myself included, seeing a sale is like pushing a button that automatically flips us to shopping mode. We dig for hours searching for a good deal and after we purchase something on sale, we feel momentary bliss and a sense of accomplishment, but really, we use sales as an excuse to buy things we don’t need. Afterwards, we rationalize it by telling ourselves that because it was a “steal of a deal”, it was okay! Giving ourselves excuses so we don’t need to face the facts is the foundation for the overconsumption prevalent in our modern age.

Personally, I still don’t fully understand why I continue to shop other than perhaps the reasoning that in order to “dress to impress”, I need to update my wardrobe. I used to think that if I went on a one-day shopping spree with a large budget, I would have enough clothes to satisfy me for a long time. I know now that this is untrue because fashions change, and I will always find a new style that I prefer. Even if I am conscious of the current trends but I don’t follow them exactly, they still push me to update my wardrobe in some way. Regardless of our knowledge of overconsumption’s negative effects, our heart wants to buy more clothing and our brain rationalizes it by buying articles on sale.

I definitely do think that it’s possible to be on trend without over-consuming, by buying key pieces and styling them differently through matching and accessorizing instead of buying new clothes every time you visit the mall. Changing our habits is not going to be easy and, as corny as it sounds, each of our decisions do make a difference. I hope this article will urge you to think more in terms of consumption and, over time, form your own conclusions.

By Joanna Ho

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The Dos and Don’ts of Wearing Heels in Winter

By Victoria Zander

High heels are a staple in the wardrobes of many, but living in Canada means that when winter comes ice and snow cover much of the outdoors – not a very practical surface for a towering pair of heels. If you’re looking to elevate your outfits despite the weather, then this is your guide for navigating the dos and don’ts of heels this winter season.

DO: Choose a pair with a wedge or block heel. This gives you more stability when strolling the icy streets.

DON’T: Choose a heel higher than 2-3 inches – especially if you’re not super experienced in walking in heels. Anything much higher than this and you can prepare for some extra difficulty.

DO: Look for a rubberized sole to help provide traction. This can be harder to find on a standard pair of high heels but easy to find on heeled boots.

DO: Consider a pair of heeled boots. Not only is it easier to find a pair with rubber soles, but they also provide more ankle support which can be helpful through ice and snow.

DO: Distribute your body weight evenly when stepping. Putting more weight on your heel or toe when you walk will increase your chances of slipping.

DON’T: Rush. Walk carefully and look where you’re stepping.

DO: Look into a waterproofing product if your heels aren’t already waterproof. These are fairly inexpensive and can go a long way saving your shoes from snow-based destruction. Look for a spray that is compatible with the fabric of your shoe.

Canadian Tire - Woods Instant Waterproofing Spray ($9.99)
Canadian Tire – Woods Instant Waterproofing Spray ($9.99)

DO: Consider something with ankle straps if boots really aren’t for you. This will still provide a bit more stability.

DON’T: Wear anything open-toed. It’s just not worth it.

DO: Wear a warm pair of socks whenever possible. It might not be worth wearing your best pair of heels if your feet are freezing.

To start you on your search:

 

 

 

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Coming Full Circle

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In my four years as a fashion design student, I have never been so struck by an idea as I was in my Fashion and Society class on Monday. Our professor had screened the majority of a fashion documentary entitled China Blue. It told the story of a young woman named Jasmine who moved from her tiny village in Sichuan province to the city of Shaxi, Guangdong to pursue a career at a garment manufacturing company. The life she imagined for herself upon leaving home was nothing like the world she found herself in upon arrival. She worked 15 hour days, was never paid for overtime, shared a room with 12 other workers and was seldom handed a paycheck. While Jasmine maintained optimism throughout the workday, her life was incredibly hard and there was little room for improvement.

After finishing the film I had an hour to myself between classes. A thought-provoking documentary always makes me think, but something about this film kept nagging at me. It forced me to think about some of my own choices as a consumer. I own many clothes made in factories just like Jasmine’s. I consume when I feel like it, and appreciate a good deal above all. I keep up with the trends, meaning I often buy new clothing for the sake of self-image alone. And worst of all, as a fashion student I possess the skills required to make my own clothing, yet rarely do.

I sat with my shortcomings as a conscious consumer for the rest of the day, wondering how I could change my habits. The documentary was a hot topic among my classmates that week, so I spent some time sharing my thoughts with a friend in our sewing studio. This friend had implemented a change in her own life already. For over a year she had not purchased new clothing, in hopes of contributing to a more ethical and sustainable fashion industry. Inspired by her difficult choices, I thought about implementing them into my own life and devised myself a challenge.

For the next six months, I will refrain from purchasing any new clothing. Anything that I do need must be thrifted or vintage, and anything brand new must meet a set of criterion for ethics and sustainability that I will determine in the first few weeks of my challenge.

This post marks the first of a bi-weekly instalment that I will be contributing to StyleCircle for the duration of the school year. I’ll be sharing my research, interviews, and trials and tribulations in this space. Above all this challenge will be an opportunity to learn about my own habits and share some of that knowledge with you. Stay tuned!

By Millie Yates

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Winter Jackets on a Budget

By Joanna Ho

Now that Halloween is officially over and retail stores have started to set up their holiday displays, we can begin to pump ourselves up for Christmas! We are beginning to see more and more of knitted sweaters, cozy blanket scarves, cute beanies, cinnamon scented candles, and fully decorated Christmas trees around the downtown area as well as festive Christmas lights making their annual appearance.

 

What this also signifies, is that winter is coming! Being in Toronto, a necessity for this season is a sturdy winter jacket to keep you safe from the icy winds and wet weather. When hearing the term “Winter jacket,” one often thinks of a big, bulky, shapeless, and generally unappealing silhouette but it doesn’t always have to be this way! These jackets are meant to be worn almost every day in the winter season year after year so picking out the right one is definitely an important first step and as these are pricier apparel items, it is important to do a bit of research before investing in the perfect jacket.

 

Everyone comes from a different financial background and, as students, we definitely understand that not everyone wants to spend north of $1000 on a jacket (we certainly don’t). Shopping on a budget doesn’t mean you only have “sportswear” options with more focus on performance than style aesthetics, it just means you may have to do a little bit more research. We’ve compiled a list of women’s winter jackets at a variety of price points (all under $1000), all of a similar style from different brands to emphasize that winter fashion isn’t price exclusive.

We’ll help you pick a jacket that works with your style without straining your budget!

THE JACKETS

Jacket 1:

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Brand: Canada Goose: The Lorette Parka

Price $950 CAD

This iconic down-filled Canadian winter jacket brand dominates the market for jackets that will keep you nice and toasty in extreme winters up to -20 degrees Celsius. This is one of their newer designs that is practical, durable, and also comes in seven different colours to help you find your personal favorite.

Jacket 2:

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Brand: Marmot: The Waterbury Jacket

Price $400 CAD

This is also another down-filled brand that is known for their reliable quality as well as their stylish winter wear. It has the classic slick city silhouette that comes in black, grey, and navy blue. These jackets are found online only and they are well praised for their warm fleece accents and durability.

Jacket 3:

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Brand: London Fog: Side-Braid Walker Coat with Faux Fur Trim

Price: On sale for $166.80

Another well-known brand for winter wear, London Fog designs stylish pieces for those of us who enjoy winter style without spending a large sum. This jacket is predominantly made of polyester so although not as warm as the down-filled ones mentioned above, it is still quite warm, just less sturdy.

Jacket 4:

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Brand: Vero Moda: Polar Arctic Three-Quarter Parka

Price: $99.00 CAD

Found at Hudson’s Bay, this polyester fill jacket is sold at an affordable price and although slightly less durable than others, it provides comfort and most importantly, warmth. The exact temperature range it is designed for is not stated but based on the inclusion of “Polar Arctic” in the name, we can assume that it is pretty warm.

Hopefully this provides some guidance for ladies who are looking to enjoy this winter staying nice and toasty!

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Campus Style 02: Jess Kasi

Writing and creative direction by Yasmin Momeni

Photography by Paige Furtney

 

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Name: Jess Kasi

Age: 18

Program: English

Instagram: @flisspo

 

How would you describe your look?

“I would describe my look as thrifty. I love to layer with colours, textures and patterns. Kind of like a patch quilt!”

 

What item of clothing makes you feel the most confident?

“I recently bought these big and billowy and striped pants, those are currently my favorites. I also love bell bottoms.”

 

What was your thought process behind today’s outfit?

“Well, the jumpsuit I’m wearing is from Tokyo. My friend brought it back for me during a recent trip. She told me a lot about the street style there and how experimental it is, so I guess and I was feeling experimental today and decided to just go for it!”

 

Does being a student impact your clothing choices when you shop?

“I think financially it does. It makes me stop and think what can I really afford. It really pushes me to shop second hand more often.”

 

So do you prefer shopping second hand as opposed to mainstream retail?

“Yes I prefer to shop vintage, curated vintage specifically. It’s definitely a good option for people who like vintage but don’t want to spend the time thrifting.”

 

What are your favorite stores to shop at in Toronto?

“I’m from Hamilton so I don’t shop too much in Toronto. But I like Black Market Vintage, It’s a cool deal that everything there is $10. Shops that I like in Hamilton are Out Of The pass, New Olds, and Value village.”

 

Scarf: Made by her sister’s ex-girlfriend

Sweater: Band sweater from a concert

Jumpsuit: Vintage from Tokyo

Socks: Gift from a friend

Shoes: Value Village

 

 

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