DIY: Cut-out tee’s

It’s been awhile since we did a DIY post, and we were itching to get crafty again. After some poking around the Internet (seriously, what did people do before the Internet?) and a timely post from UrbaneBloc.com, we came across some cool cut-out t-shirts that we thought could be pretty easy to try our hand at. 


Some of our inspiration: 

Here’s what you need: 

– An oversized, slouchy t-shirt. Fitted will just look trashy here, not “I’m Coachella-ready”. Pick your colour! We chose tees from Joe Fresh for their punchy colours and solid value. *Protip: learn from our mistakes and pick a solid cotton shirt. The blends feel too flimsy after they’re cut.
– Sharp scissors with pointy tips. 
– Soft pencil or marker if you’re desperate (but a soft pencil works much better).
– Ruler.

We tried two different ideas, one more difficult than the other. There are tons more out there, so try these, then see what else inspires you.
DIY #1: Show Your Ribs
We loved the design of this one, reminiscent of a spine and ribs exposed down the back. Plus, we found a template online from the eternally-handy DIY Queen Martha Stewart that made our first attempt pretty simply. Difficulty factor: 2/10 (but it takes a long time. Have some wine and good tunes on hand while you’re cutting out all of those pesky ribs). 

Step 1: 
Print out the template. Fold the shirt in half to figure out where the centre line is (we like precision).



Step 2: 
Place beneath the shirt. If it’s moving around on you, tape it in place, because you gotta trace that bad boy. Trace the pattern with your soft pencil. Try and keep the pencil lines as light as you can, to make it easier to cut out without leaving any traces behind after.



Step 3:
Repeat above on the other side of the shirt, taking care to make sure the two sides line up. 


Step 4: 
Cut away! Cut out the parts that correspond with the black parts on the stencil – that is, the “spaces” in between the ribs. Take your time, but don’t worry about it being perfect. You are making a torn shirt, after all.


Step 5: 
Wear and collect admiring glances this summer. 

DIY #2: Woven V
This one looks super complicated, but it actually took less time than the one above. The cutting part is super speedy, while the woven effect is a bit trickier. Difficulty factor: 4/10 – we had to play around with weaving the back a few times, but once you get it, it’s a breeze. 

Step 1: 
Lay shirt out and fold *just the back* in half. If you fold the whole shirt in half, you’ll cut through the front. That’s a little too much exposed skin, in our opinion.


Step 2: 
Grab a rule or tape measure to use as a straight line to cut against. Lay it in a “V” along the edge of the shirt, up to the collar. The wider the V, the more exposed your back will be. Pick how much cut-out you’d like and grab your scissors.



Step 3:
Start cutting pinkly-width strips down the shirt, cutting all the way to the ruler. Again, don’t worry about jagged edges or crooked lines – they’ll just add to the effect.



Step 4:
Once you’re done cutting all the way down to the bottom of the V, grab each strip and stretch it out. This makes the cotton roll under, which hides the jagged edges and opens up the spaces between strips. 

Once you’re done stretching out the strips, your shirt should look like this.

Step 5:
This is where it was get a bit trickier. You can either leave it as is, or attempt to weave the back to add a little pizazz. 

To do this, you grab the top strip and the second strip. Pull the second strip under the first and over the top – the second strip should now be at the top of the shirt. Repeat this with the third strip – grab it and pull it under the second and over the top, so now the third strip is at the top of the shirt. Repeat all the way down; you will start to see a pattern forming on either side of the V. 


Step 6: 
Once you’re done weaving all the way to the bottom, cut the very last strip in half and use it to tie the weave off. Tie each half of the cut strip to the strip above to hold your weave in. 

We really liked the look of double weaving it, so we repeated steps 5 and 6 above. Then we realized our shirt looked a little business in the front, party in the back with the V-neck collar in place, so we cut that off to make the front a little edgier. This is the final result: 
Ta da! We’re excited to wear these to Field Trip this summer, to drink tall boys in Trinity Bellwoods, the beach off Toronto Island and backyard BBQ’s. Basically, to any event that involves sunshine and warm weather.

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Fashion-able: Favourite moments from WMCFW

It’s a wrap! After months of planning, another successful season of World MasterCard Fashion Week is behind us. After a restful weekend, we’re just now having a chance to take a breath and reflect on a few of the amazing moments we experienced last week. From the front of house to the backstage, the ladies of the fourth floor saw it all. Here are are a few of our highlights.


We always love when
talent comes out to support Canadian designers. 
One highlight was seeing the beautiful Elisha Cuthbert, who
came out to see one of our favourite designers, Sunny Fong for VAWK. A true supporter (she’s rocked VAWK on the red carpet), it’s always great to see talent supporting each other. Other fave faces spotted include Rudy Gay, 
Arlene Dickinson, Stacey McKenzie, Jessica Lowndes, Amanda Brugel, Carrie-Lynn Neales and Danny Fernandes.


Image credit: CityNews.ca

So many of our designers are so sweet and humble during their big moment! For us, watching
designer Travis Taddeo take a well-deserved walk down the entire studio runway
with one of his models after his show was the best. After all their hard work, the designers
should be celebrated, so we love when they poke their head out from backstage for
more than a couple of seconds. 



Photo credit: George Pimentel

We love seeing what calendar regulars are up to each season, but we always love a new show or face on the runway. Seeing an absolutely filled room for the long-awaited return of Stephan
Caras’ show made us really happy. Every seat in the house was full – with 150 people standing around
the top to get a glimpse of the black and white collection. It was amazing to
see such a warm welcome for the veteran designer returning to show at WMCFW. Similar feelings seeing the outpouring of love for Izzy Camilleri with her return to the runway this season.



Photo credit: George Pimentel
We love seeing how the designers incorporate their personal inspiration in their collections. Another best fashion week moment was during the David Dixon
show – he created a powerful video and audio montage that played for a few
minutes before the models took the runway, and set the tone that women were
strong and powerful – and do not need to “know their place”. The show that
followed was similarly strong and the mood in the room was pretty incredible.
Made us feel full of girl power.

Photo credit: George Pimentel

We may all try to be fierce and stylish at fashion week, but sometimes a little humour is necessary. From our post guarding the backstage door, we had to smile as the (amazing) volunteers encircled Mackage’s black latex runway  – guarding it against anyone stepping on it!



We also love a good zen ‘tude shown by a runway veteran. This season, it was a pleasure working with Soia & Kyo designer Ilan Elfassy. He was so laid back and relaxed
before his show on Thursday that we wanted to bottle up his relaxed energy. We also
wouldn’t mind having a few pieces from his collection.

Photo credit: George Pimentel
Front of house also provides some great moments: particularly the designer guest entrance doors, which are always a fun spot to stand. Chock-full of the designer’s friends and family, the line is always buzzing with excitement. This season, we had the pleasure of chatting with the lovely Ms. Chloe comme Parris – their mom – first in line to see her daughters’ show. 

Photo credit: Slice.ca
In a similar vein, we love the energy of a fan of fashion experiencing the excitement of the runway for the first time. We had the pleasure of meeting and getting to know one lucky Vancouverite who won an all-expense paid trip on Facebook to World MasterCard Fashion Week in Toronto. She brought her friend from Calgary and the two attended all the shows from Tuesday to Friday. They were always first in line to ensure they got the best seat for every show; and watching their excitement and awe of the atmosphere (and seeing Jeanne Beker up close) was incredibly memorable. 

Who doesn’t love the non-models rocking the runway during Heart Truth? Such a fun atmosphere, we love it when they show a little personality! This year’s highlight? A toss-up between beautiful 91-year-old Gladys walking the runway to a standing ovation or Jennifer Valentyne killing it with a little flash of her heart-print panties. 

Photo credit 

Finally, the show-stopping gowns at the Pavoni runway show, complete with a confetti cannon, was the perfect exclamation point on a beautiful and inspiring week of Canadian design.


Photo credit: @mikaelderderian (instagram)



 

Fashion-able: WMCFW Day 1

Today to provide our very first recap of the season, we’re excited to have Septembre Anderson on the fourth floor, a stylish, lovely freelance writer-about-town. She spills on a few of her favourite moments from opening night.


Septembre Anderson (@SeptembreA) is a freelance writer and editor who lives, works and shops in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. While she writes on a number of engaging topics fashion, beauty and lifestyle seem to pop up most often. Her work has appeared in a number of print and online publications including TheKit.ca, Slice.ca, FASHIONmagazine.com, Huffington Post Canada, Sway Magazine, Momtastic.com, OpenFile Toronto and GlobalTV.com. She is the editor of TheFashionEclectic.com


Izzy Camilleri introduces MIZ, a boomer-age
‘50s siren
Izzy Camilleri is known for her fashion
democracy. There isn’t a woman that the pint-sized Toronto-based designer won’t
dress. From high-end furs, including the red coat Meryl Streep wore in The
Devil Wears Prada
, to stylish adaptive duds for clients in wheelchairs, Izzy
dresses them all. For the fall/winter 2013 season of World MasterCard Fashion
Week, Ms. Camilleri turned her fashion lens onto the boomer-age woman with her
newest fashion line, MIZ by Izzy Camilleri.


The fashion show began with a mature model
rocking a silver-haired bouffant and a houndstooth pant suit and it was clear
that Camilleri’s collection was a modern twist on the fashions of the ‘40s and
‘50s. The show was a classic affair and while a muted palette full of neutrals
dominated the collection luxe textures and prints like faux leather,
houndstooth, sequins, wool, snakeskin, brocade and, of course, fur added some
serious visual interest.

A parade of ladies who seemed to be
channeling a very sexy librarian sashayed down the runway in sophisticated
separates and easy-to-wear LBDs. Snakeskin dresses and shirts featured leather
collars and cuffs while blouses and skirts got a massive hit of metallics via nude
sequins.

While the clothes were created for a more
mature woman they would look equally as stylish on all of Izzy’s clientele.

Chloe comme Parris brings luxe rebellion
and a dash of Teen Spirit to the World MasterCard Fashion Week stage
Last season the Gordon sisters brought us
California cool and for the fall/winter 2013 edition of World MasterCard
Fashion Week Chloe and Parris blended that relaxed bohemian aesthetic with the
young rebellious spirit of grunge for their Chloe comme Parris collection.


Models channelled the sullen rebelliousness
of ‘90s youth and trudged to the beat of teen anthems like “Loser” by Beck
wearing a luxe and modern take on the thrifted uniform of grunge king and queen
Kurt Cobain and Courtney Love. Worn plaid shirts were reimagined in richer
fabrics and thigh-high tights featured a carefree baroque-esque print that also
popped up on trousers, blouses and leather skirts and jackets. Even the combat-ready
footwear was given a fashionable twist and was reincarnated as sometimes
tarnished Day-Glo creepers.

Chloe and Parris always manage to infuse
some unexpected details into their collections and for the fall/winter 2013
season punk-ish chain was woven into the collars, hems and cuffs of chunky,
slouchy over-sized knits and a caged version of the chain dangled from the hems
of spaghetti-strap slip dresses and were worn as necklaces.

Dr. Seussian polka dots and prints dance
down the Bustle runway
One of the downsides to fall and winter
fashion collections is that designers usually stick to neutral palettes that are
heavy on blacks, browns and tans. Shawn Hewson and Ruth Promislow of Bustle
Clothing, however, aren’t those designers. Classic, tailored men’s sportswear was
given a heavy dose of lighthearted fun, and funky patterns and colours were all
over the runway.

Dr. Seussian florals, polka dots and an
updated pinstripe scattered with blooms popped up on bisected blazers, crisp
men’s shirts and even socks on handsome male models wearing Doc Marten’s
footwear. For fall/winter, the suits were slightly shrunken and while many of
the patterns were definitely not for the faint of heart there were some tamer
offerings for the more traditional gent. A shawl collar cardigan featured
grey-on-grey polka dots and the aforementioned shrunken slacks and jackets were
also available in tans and greys.



Hewson and Promislow even played around
with gender and androgynous model Myles Sexton and his platinum blonde hair graced
the Bustle runway while female models borrowed some looks from the boys.

*All images courtesy of World MasterCard Fashion Week (George Pimental)

Fashion-able: Most outrageous trends

Very few things are as socially objective or as quickly
evolving as fashion and trends.  What is considered chic, cool or elegant
varies to an insane degree, depending on time and place. What you end up
with is an endless history of fascinating fashion choices – mainstream,
underground, beautiful, hideous and some just downright confusing. Here
are some of the more outrageous fashion trends we’ve seen in recent history.


Bagel Heads
While we are totally on board with Japanese street fashion
being crazy and cutting edge, this is one we can’t wrap our heads around,
so to speak. This temporary body modification was pioneered in Canada and
became a sensationalized fetish trend in the Japanese underground scene. Dedicated bagel heads undergo a two hour saline drip into their forehead to
achieve the look, for results that last a mere 24 hours, until the body absorbs
the solution. At this point, no negative side effects have been reported
(besides looking like you have a bagel embedded under your face skin)
and while there is no proof or real speculation of this, we believe it may have
been inspired by a particularly disturbing Halloween episode of The Simpsons.

Le Sapeurs

For the decked out men of Le SAPE (which stands for Société des Ambianceurs et des Personnes Élégantes for you
franglais speakers,) bold fashion choices are not just a trend, but a way of
life. Inspired by French decadence and style, the so-called Gentlemen of the Bakongo are based in the slums of the French Congo and wear their flamboyant, designer
suits as a sign of their religion of elegance. Sapeurs abide by a strict
code of honour, nobility and morality which includes shunning violence –
A Sapeur does not shed blood. Your clothes do all the fighting for you, otherwise you are not fit to be called a Sapeur.” The men of the SAPE have been embraced as local celebrities, often being paid
to attend parties and weddings, and have recently been featured in the Solange
Knowles video for Losing You.

Meggings

You know the old axiom “what’s good for the goose is good
for the gander”? Well, friends, it might be fair to say this has been
proven wrong in the case of meggings. To clarify, meggings = male leggings, and
it is possible that they originated as an act of revenge from the fashion gods
against all women who used tights and leggings for evil (a.k.a. in lieu of real
pants. If you’re not sure if you’re one of those women please seek guidance
here.) While we do give props to men daring enough to try to pull them off, we urge
you not to put them on in the first place.

Mexican Pointy Boots



When you think of footwear fetishists and enthusiasts, one
generally thinks of a Carrie Bradshaw-esque closet full of Manolos and
Louboutins. Not so with this all-male sub culture of Mexican tribal
dancers. They don elaborately embellished boots with elongated toes
curled up to five feet. Originating in Matehuala, Mexico, the boots rose in
popularity alongside a genre of music called “tribal guarachero” which has
been described as
“a mixture of Pre-Columbian and African sounds mixed with fast cumbia bass and electro-house beats.” Mexican Pointy Boots are typically worn by dance troupes at competitions,
parties and weddings and were the subject of a short documentary by
Vice.

The 80’s

While we did mention the constantly evolving nature of
fashion, we should have also mentioned that it tends to be cyclical. That is to
say, we don’t always forget our mistakes. What was once considered a
decade of fashion face-palming is now creeping back into what is hip. We’ve seen a resurgence of the good, bad, and the ugly of 80’s fashion, including bushy brows, shoulder pads, and Day-glo (thanks a lot for this
one, LMFAO.) Anyone who has seen a hypercolour t-shirt on a hot day knows this
isn’t all good news. What is good news is that in no time, we’ll
have moved on to channeling some other decade’s hits and misses (fingers
crossed for hoop skirts and pantaloons!).






Fashion-able: 2013 Designer Collaborations

Here on the fourth floor we’re not letting articles like this deter us. Why? Because we love designer collaborations (see our 2012 instalment here). Big companies teaming up with high fashion brands so that us plebeians can actually buy them? How kind. Here are some designer collabos we’re looking forward to. 


River Island x Rihanna
Ahh Princess Riri, we’ll always love you even though you’re back together with Cbreezy. You’re a beautiful, smart (we like to still believe) and confident woman with killer style, which is why we’re super pumped to see what you’ve come up with for your River Island collaboration. Even this sneak peek has got us willing to eat the extra £10.00 shipping fee. Now if we could just pay extra for that accent…



Oliver Peoples x Maison Kitsuné
Super cool brands Oliver Peoples and Maison Kitsuné have teamed up to bring us a beautiful collection of sunnies you’ll hopefully see us wearing this summer. The retro model Tokyo has a unisex frame and the option to add coloured lenses. The Paris model is more feminine and available in black and a tortoiseshell-honey colour called 8108 (below).

We’ll have one Paris in 8108 please.



Banana Republic x Milly
Hitting shelves in May 2013, this Hamptons-inpsired collab is the first for Milly designer Michelle Smith, but we hope not the last. The 46-piece women’s collection ranges from apparel jewelry and totes in summery colours like coral and lime, to 16 pieces for men including printed shorts and knit button-downs. Now if only we had a place in the Hamptons to wear this collab, we’d be all set.


We can feel the summer breeze from this Banana Republic x Milly collection. 

Alber Elbaz x Lancôme
We.love.makeup. Especially when it’s Lancôme teaming up with the ever-charming Lanvin designer Alber Elbaz. No details yet except a très adorable video that has been released. The limited edition collection is set to launch Saturday, June 15. 


Prabal Gurung x Target
Having dressed the likes of First Lady Michelle Obama and The Duchess of Cambridge, Prabal Gurung has been taking the fashion world by storm since the launch of his line in 2009. The collaboration between Gurung and Target is a smart one, especially on the heels of the failed Nordstrom x Target collection. The collection hit stores earlier this week and almost sold out within a day (just our luck), so if you want to get your fashion hungry fingers on this collab, we suggest checking out eBay or pleading with your American friends to let you ship something from Target.com to their house.


Once Target comes to Canada, you can count on us being first in line for whatever amazing collaboration is coming up next. 

Fashion-able: Golden Globes 2013

Have we ever mentioned how much we love awards season? Well, we do. And the Golden Globes, with its seemingly bottomless bottles of Moet and more irreverent attitude than the Oscars, is one of the season’s most entertaining. Last night’s 70th annual show was hosted by the amazing, amazing, amazing Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, and featured all the drama, hilarity and fashion we’ve come to expect. 


Hostesses with the mostestes – Tina Fey & Amy Poehler

We’ll get to the fashion in a moment, but first we need to give props to Fey and Poehler for demonstrating how to be cheeky and funny, while still respecting (most) of the people in the room (too bad for you, James Cameron and James Franco). Ricky Gervais, take note: this is how you do it without pissing off Harvey Weinstein. 


Tangerine Tango


FASHION Magazine’s Paige Dzenis tweeted “suck it Emerald Green, Tangerine Tango is still happening.” It certainly did look like Pantone’s 2012 colour of the year was alive and well last night, with Marion Cotillard (in Dior), Jennifer Lawrence (also in Dior) and Claire Danes (rocking an insane post-baby bod in Atelier Versace) all sporting the shade. We’d have to elect Danes the winner of this colour battle, with Cotillard coming in a close second. Lawrence’s breast detailing was a bit too distracting for our liking. That being said, Lawrence did offer one of the most quotable speeches of the night (“I beat Meryl!”).


Claire Danes in Atelier Versace

Marion Cotillard in Christian Dior

Jennifer Lawrence in Christian Dior

Class Acts/Open Backs


In a sea of strapless, there’s something so elegant about Julianne Moore (in custom Tom Ford) and Naomi Watts (in Zac Posen) in their long-sleeved, open back dresses. Each dress featured elegant detailing that landed them both on our best dressed list. We loved the graphic black and white colour-blocking of Moore’s dress – such a far cry from the dowdy outfits she wore in her winning portrayal of Sarah Palin. 


Julianne Moore in Tom Ford
Naomi Watts in Zac Posen

Arm Candy


While neither Rachel Weisz nor Emily Blunt won their award categories last night, they both scored big in the “dreamy husband” category. Truth be told, we’d probably be OK with losing too if we had Daniel Craig or John Krasinski to console us. These two duos top our “hottest couple” list, with Weisz/Craig just edging out Blunt/Krasinski. Because let’s be real, James Bond > Jim Halpert. 

Daniel Craig and Rachel Weisz (in Louis Vuitton)

John Krasinski and Emily Blunt (in Michael Kors)

Aubergine Nightmares


We screamed with joy when Lena Dunham won Best Actress In A Comedy Series and then again when Girls took home the prize for Best Comedy Series. As an office full of 20-something women, we have serious amounts of pride for Dunham and her accomplishments. That may be why we were a bit disappointed to see her in that aubergine-hued taffeta (by Zac Posen). To be fair, we also hated the colour on Taylor Swift (in Donna Karen).  


Lena Dunham in Zac Posen



Taylor Swift in Donna Karen

No Nomination, No Problem


Hollywood red carpet outfits, particularly at big award shows, aren’t necessarily known to be the most fashion-forward. That’s why we were especially delighted by Kerry Washington and Lucy Liu last night. Maybe not being nominated takes the pressure off and allows one to experiment a bit more? In any case, Washington’s sheer, beaded Miu Miu was a show-stopper (we can’t say we were quite as enamoured by her hair though). Liu took a risk with a floral patterned Carolina Herrera and, while some people are slagging the look, we quite liked it. Besides, we’ll take a bold floral over princess-y sequins any day. 


Kerry Washington in Miu Miu

Lucy Liu in Carolina Herrera

Oh Hells No


Over in the “what the heck was your stylist thinking?” category, we have Halle Berry (in Versace) and Giuliana Rancic (in Celia Kritharicti). While Berry’s bod pretty much allows her to wear anything at all, we still couldn’t get on board with her oddly patterned and slashed dress. Meanwhile, Rancic’s ill-fated attempt at goth left us shaking our heads. Perhaps she should’ve taken a cue from Julianna Margulies on how to do lacy and black best. 


Halle Berry in Versace

Guiliana Rancic in Celia Kritharicti

*All photos c/o Just Jared, unless otherwise noted.

Fashion-able: Beauty techniques for 2013

On the fourth floor, we’re always looking to expand our beauty repertoire and switch up our look. Last year brought us the fishtail braid, pink hair and dark lips… what looks are we going to perfect in 2013? Here’s some of our inspiration.


Double-lined eyeliner

A steady hand and a lot of practice is required, but a thick black cat-eye with a coloured or sparkly shade on top? Beautiful. And shows off your mad skills. We think with the help of our new favourite, the Eyeko Skinny Liquid Eyeliner and its felt tip for precision lining, this is totally doable.


Beautiful for a special occasion.
Image source.

More subtle, but equally pretty.
Image source.

Dolly Parton-esque curls

This inspiration pic makes us think this look is achievable, without looking like a pageant queen or the misfit with crazy big hair.


We’ll be the ones casually putting on lip balm with beautiful, cascading curls.
Image source.



Interesting French manis

We’re not sure of your position on French manicures, but when Beauty Editor tells us something is trending, we listen, and she says the French mani is back. We might pass on the classic French, as we’re still having flashbacks to terrible gel nails from our teens (and for some of us, early twenties), but we’re open to interesting versions like this one in black, mixing matte and glossy polishes.


So sleek.
Image source.



Hair bow

Is this weird? We’re not sure, but maybe it would be fun to try. Jury’s out on this one.


The hair bow. Literally.
Image source.

Cut crease

Finding the appropriate time and place to wear this one might be the biggest challenge, as we never like to look too made up. However, when Marc Jacobs sent the SS13 models down the runway with this 60s-inspired look, we vowed to try. Definitely possible at fashion week.


Marc Jacobs SS13.
Image source.

There ya go.. our top looks to perfect (or try once, depending on results and reactions) for 2013. We’ll keep you posted on the results!