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Chocolate and Eggs

Easter: A time to celebrate and appreciate Christ and also a time to devour in chocolate! And that's exactly what my weekend was all about.

Being that Easter is a religious holiday, I began to wonder why we participate in traditions like dying eggs or doing egg hunts. Here's what I found out:

Easter eggs symbolize new life, celebrate the coming of Spring and are actually linked to the pagan traditions. On the other hand, Christianity views Easter eggs as a representation of Jesus' emergence from the tomb and resurrection.

Decorating and dying eggs for Easter is a tradition that apparently goes back all the way to the 13th century. One reason why some do this is to mark the end of the Lenten season, as eggs were formerly forbidden during that period. In turn, people then eat the died eggs once the Lenten season is over as celebration.

One thing my mom and many others in my family will make for Easter is sweet bread called choereg. Typically, you would hand make the dough, let it sit for a few hours then braid it together. Put some egg yolk over top with sesame seeds and pop it in the oven! If you would like a detailed post on this, I would be more than happy to deliver! Just send me a tweet @JanineMaral letting me know.

This is the end result of my eggs. Each year, I try to get more and more creative, but often I will fail. This year, I tried to use this special foil to give the egg a different kind of look. Another thing I tried was to tie around elastic bands on the egg then putting it in the dye (refer to blue egg in image above). My favourite would have to be the marble eggs. It's simple, but sometimes it may not turn out exactly like some images online.

All you need to do is dye our egg fully in one colour first, let it dry, then mix oil, water and another dye colour in a shallow bowl and dip your egg in there. After it dries completely, you should get something that looks like a marble pattern!

Easter is also known for it's pastel colours since it is the start of spring. For this holiday, this is what I wore: A light blue blouse - H&M scarf - RW&Co two toned blazer - Ralph Lauren knee high boots - Lululemon leggings. 

How did you spend your Easter or long weekend?

Jaine Maral

Toronto Fashion Week 2015

One of my dreams came true last week. I went to Toronto Fashion Week, also known as World Mastercard Fashion Week. Before I get into the good stuff, let me give you some background info on why this has been a dream of mine.

Photo Credit: Augustine Ng

When I started a blog roughly two years ago is when I actually started investing time and effort into gaining knowledge of the fashion industry. At that time, I also found out about this thing called "Fashion week" (which I never knew about before) held in cities worldwide including Toronto. Every time there would be a fashion week, I would spend hours scrolling through photos from the runway and getting inspired by street style photos. It's what I live for. At one point, I would even watch live shows online during class.

At the time, I wanted to go so badly so I figured I would volunteer. Unfortunately the minimum age to volunteer at TFW was 18 so I waited until the year after. After I turned 18, I noticed they changed the volunteer age limit to 19. This bummed me out big time.

I recently turned 19, which also happens to be the minimum age to attend a show and also happened to land during Toronto Fashion Week Fall/Winter 2015. It could not have worked out any better. Here is my day 1 of Fashion Week.

My first of two looks was more of a safe route outfit. I wasn't sure if I wanted something professional or casual so I went for an in-between. I was also filled with nervousness and excitement that I just wanted something I new I would be comfortable in. 

RW&Co Blazer (similar)

The first show I went to was Kania, a luxury sweatshirt designer and brand. What I loved about this show was that it started and ended off with a dancer doing mostly ballet. It was something so unexpected and unique to add to a show. 

When I first arrived, I felt really out of place. Everyone looked good, knew people and knew how to act. Also, I felt an odd vibe when I was in the tent. It felt like I didn't belong, and that everyone was kind of 'snobby' and doing their own thing. Let me tell you, I had expectations from what I see online from fashion weeks and the first time I went that afternoon did not fill my expectations. It wasn't the show, it was the just environment.

Things changed later that night.

At around 9:00p.m. was the Rudsak show. This was a big runway show that was going to be a full house and everyone who is anyone was going to be there, so I heard. After having dinner with one of my good friends Olivia, I went back to the tent at David Pecaut Square about a half hour before the Rudsak show. This time, I felt a completely different vibe; a good vibe; an inspiring vibe; a motivation type of vibe. That was exactly how I imagined it to be like.

I walked around squeezing by all the fashionistas trying to find the line for the show while also exploring the reception area of the tent. Next thing I knew, I was walking by big-time bloggers I loved, models, and people who looked like they played a big role in the fashion industry. It was remarkable and I loved every second of it. 

At one point, I overheard a fashion student talking to her friends about how she gave her business card to a fashion designer. This was the perfect networking opportunity. 

One thing I regret not going to that night were the after parties. I really wish I went but I was just way too exhausted after a long day of shooting and fashion shows (first world problems at it's finest).

Also, this Rudsak show was probably my favourite from the week. I ended up sitting beside a very lovely lady named Carla. Her nephew walked in the show and this was going to be her first time seeing him walk the runway (P.S. he did a great job.)

Here is part two of my fashion week experience.

For my birthday and before my third show of fashion week, I had brunch at the Drake Hotel with my mom. I can't even put it in words of how good this brunch was. It definitely looks as good as it tastes. 

As a little dessert after brunch I got a banana pie. This was magnificent. It was unlike any other pie I ate and if you are a lover of bananas, you will love this.

What I wore? I particularly loved this outfit I put together. It was simple, more comfortable and more my style which I'd like to describe as preppy and professional with some edge.

Today's shows included Tatsuaki and Jaan Choxi. Tatsuaki's show was based around the theme of aliens and what he had to present was really different and interesting. The photo below is an image I took from his show.

As I begin to create or 'find' my style, I realize that I enjoy wearing men's pieces weaved in with preppy and girly looks. I also enjoy men's fashion a lot too which is why I loved the Jaan Choxi show. He is a menswear designer and created looks and pieces I would have never even thought of until that point.  

One thing I want to talk about are street style photographers. I live for street style and photographers taking photos of street style. Like I mentioned before, during fashion week seasons, I will scroll through hundreds of street style looks from fashion weeks. I'm not going to lie, when I saw the street style photographers outside the tent, I was filled with excitement. It's not because I wanted to be photographed, but because I was witnessing the behind the scenes of the street style photography I see online. I found it so fascinating. 

That being said, that basically wraps up my week. It was a wonderful experience and I am so grateful that I got to attend a Fashion Week. 

Janine Maral

March Madness

I'd like to take this time, and this post, to reflect on my life throughout the month of March. You might have been able to tell how busy I was due to the lack of posts. March is usually one of my most favourite months, partly because it's my birthday month and because it's the start of the spring season. Here are some of my highlights.

In the beginning of the month, my good friend came back from Montreal where she studies and we had a lovely time together. We went out for thai food and crepes in downtown Toronto. Later on in the beginning of the month, I went to an inspiring panel all about the creativity, entrepreneurship, and breaking into the media industry. My favourite bloggers, Kastor & Pollux, were at this panel and I actually got the chance to talk to them afterwards.

Mid-March, my friend Tamar and I went out and had a successful photo shoot and eventful day all together. At this point, I learned how to be comfortable in front of the camera because I never really was before hand. March 20th was macaron day! Because I am a basic blogger, I bought macarons, obviously. I went out for brunch later that day with my friends Chloe and Natasha. Deliciousness. During this time, I was emailing blogger Nikki AKA The Stylish Foodie, asking to do a profile on her for a class. I got to interview her, and later on in March, we did a shoot together! It was seriously the best, I learned so much from her, and I'm so grateful I got to meet such a wonderful person!

The last full week of March was Toronto Fashion Week and a few days before, I found out I was going to four shows. The level of excitement I felt was unreal. You'll definitely hear more about that in my fashion week post!

Friday, March 27th was my birthday. I spent it with brunch, two fashion shows, then a Journalism gala! The day was filled with lots of food, fashion and friends. The night after was spent with my good high school friends and a cute dinner and sparkling wine (because we are just so fancy). The sunday of that weekend was spent with my family and lots of card games and cake!

Because March was my last full mont of school somewhere between all these events within this crazy month, I had to write 4 mid-terms, a research paper, a group project, and other pieces of journalism while also making it to all my classes.

I'm so grateful for everything that went on this month and in my life in general! All the people i've met and the knowledge and experience i've gained. Although i've been lacking on my blog, I have big plans come up within the next few months.

P.S. Thank YOU.


Janine Maral

Chuck Season

There may still be snow on the ground but that's not stopping me from wearing my most worn shoe of the spring and summer seasons - Converse. 

I never wore Converse that much until about early last year when I purchased my first pair. I wore those 'till they were worn out and this year, I purchased another. I think the main reason I like to wear them so much, besides the fact that they are comfortable, is because they are the perfect shoe to work with any outfit and are thin enough to stand in the summer heat.

My friend Tamar and I had a fun little photo shoot at one of our favourite places to go and hang out in the greater Toronto area. This post would not have been possible without her help so shout out to her! 

Janine Maral

Try // Read // Listen

On the daily, I read several articles, scroll through my Bloglovin' feed endlessly, listen to music, and often listen to podcasts. I'm a journalism student and social media addict so this is normal, I think. So, I want to try something new out where I share my favourite articles, DIY projects, YouTube videos, and random tunes and podcasts. I enjoy sharing the things I find fascinating online with my friends, so why not share it on my blog? Let me know if you liked this post! 

~ TRY ~

DIY Emoji Easter Eggs - Studio DIY

~ READ ~

A Designer's Guide to living in L.A. - Conde Nast Traveler


Janine Maral

Birthday Wishes

March is my birthday month and my favourite month. It's also the final full month of school before exam season and summer. One thing I would love to receive for my birthday is a higher GPA but that is highly unlikely this semester. Besides that, there are three items I have had my eye on and am wishing for on my birthday.

Olympus Pen E-PL7
THIS CAMERA. Chances are unlikely that I will actually get this camera because 1. It is pretty pricey and 2. I don't know if it is entirely worth it. The main reason why I enjoy this camera is it's small, pretty, and takes the perfect selfie (so I hear).

Nike Air Force 1
I don't do well with keeping shoes clean so if I get a pair of all white sneakers, which is what seems to be all the hype these days, it will be a struggle to keep clean. I will either never wear them to keep the pure white colour or just have to wash them after every wear, or just be careful with where I step. But, I just love the way these sneakers look with any outfit, especially for the Spring time.

Classic Rayban Aviators
Alright, these sunnies have been on my mind for over a year now and I figure now is the perfect time to purchase them since Spring and Summer are right around the corner. I'm also loving the tinted and mirrored versions of these with the green or blue tint.

The one thing I don't want for my birthday that I know I will definitely get is going to be growing up and getting older. Too bad life doesn't work that way!

Janine Maral
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