Ten things you need to know (and accept) before you go Stampeding:
- Calgary weather is ridiculous. It’s gonna be unbearably hot, and then there is a 99% chance it’s gonna start pouring rain at some point, as if you weren’t wet enough from all the sweat. Cowboy boots are REALLY hot, and not particularly comfortable.. they are made for work after all. If you insist on wearing them, have fun, but this cowgirl gets enough of the boots on the farm! Its a common occurrence to see ladies meandering the streets in the early morning with boots over their shoulders. I choose flats or sandals to keep my feet cool and comfortable.
- Drink prices are ridiculous. You should definitely NOT sneak your own liquor into the grounds.
- Gate entrance get’s you into the grounds and midway, but the rodeo is extra. Rather than pay to sit in the stands I take advantage of the free entertainment. Mostly the concerts at the Coke Stage, but there are music venues all throughout Stampede Park.
- The midway contains culinary delights beyond your wildest dreams. Come prepared for a gut-busting combination of carnival food! My favourites include the mini doughnuts, cotton-candy, lemonade, candy apples, mozza sticks, chocolate dipped banana, and deep fried avocado. I have never left the grounds without eating myself into a state of discomfort. Click HERE for the full list of noms!
- Girls everywhere will be doing their best Daisy Duke impression. There will be an excessive amount of plaid shirts, push-up bra’s and cut-offs. Most of them look more like Jessica Simpson now… this is a trend I tend to avoid.
- Guys (well, everyone) everywhere will be doing their best cowboy impression. Don’t be fooled by the brand new wranglers or shiny cowboy boots; you might find a few real cowboys in the mix, but mostly its boys playing dress-up. 95% of people will be wearing a cowboy hat, 90% of those people never wear it again. The real cowboys there will be laughing at the city folks; the city folks will be having too good of a time to notice.
- Cabs will not be easy to come by and the C-Train is unofficially renamed “sweaty-death-tube-from-hell” but it runs all night and considering it was underwater ten days ago, we gotta give ’em some serious credit. Plus it’s cheap!
- If you do not like crowds, you’re gonna have a bad time. Accept that a ridiculous amount of people are in a relatively small space and don’t lose your friends (or your wallet)! Entrance into beer gardens and event tents can mean long-lines, so just go with the flow and don’t cut in lines (or I’ll cut you.)
- You can find almost anything you have ever seen on an infomercial in the exhibition halls. Its also really awesome for finding western clothing, jewelry, art, carvings and anything horse related.
- The best part about Stampede is how hands-on it is. Make sure to check out all the animal exhibits and mini-exhibitions. My favorite is the horse hall, I make sure to pet each one of them equally so no one gets jealous. You can see all sorts of different breeds, but my favourite is the halls full of draft horse teams, such gentle giants, I just love them.
Click the photo for more “Stampedisms” and for any other information you need go to the official page www.calgarystampede.com
I hope to see you there! xo, aiyanajane
don’t forget to show off your stampede style on instagram
tag your photos #stampedecitystyle
skirt by MONKI || necklace by H&M || concert tee – 36 crazyfists || pumps by LECHATEAU || sunnies by ARDENE
With Calgary being it it’s current unsettled and somewhat submerged state, I have been feeling a little ironically inspired with everything nautical. Truth be told I just love nautical for spring/summer every year, and normally it’s not ironic because generally Alberta doesn’t flood itself into oblivion but I digress..
You probably all realize by now that I’m a sentimental type… and a bit wordy, but I firmly believe the best kind of fashion is the kind with a story behind it. That’s why this outfit makes me so happy. For one, I’m wearing this old band tee, which was one of the first shows I attended at the tender age of 15 (ish), I love going to shows, I have many more band tee’s to style! This one is a little tight and short from years of dryer assaults so usually I just sleep in it, but looks adorable tucked into a high-waist skirt!
A fit and flare skirt like this is probably my #1 essential wardrobe piece.. seriously they flatter EVERYONE. To find the most flattering fit it should sit at the natural waist (the smallest part of your midsection) and a few inches above the knee if you have short legs like me!
For nautical looks, red and navy are a sure bet and whenever I want to instantly feel more fabulous I put on red heels and red lipstick! This Clinique High Impact Lipstick in Red-y to Wear is another absolute essential.
I found this 100% cotton skirt in Denmark while I was shopping with the beautiful Andrea Rungholm, who sent me this H&M necklace for Christmas last year- she’s so sweet! I chose punk inspired silver bangles from punta cana and rings from a selection of my favourite Calgary boutiques. Wearing clothes that remind me of people or experiences I love is what makes personal style so interesting to me, its why I love reading other blogs to see all the little differences and quirks!
This polka-dot skirt reminds me of one of my favourite bloggers who is always so sweet and happens to really love polka-dots. Who else but the lovely Yi-Chia of Always Maylee, she’s hosting a really inspiring giveaway with Elegantee’s; all of their clothes are sewn by women rescued from human trafficking. Be sure to check it out!
PS – What do you guys think of these video’s ?
Should I post more? Let me know in the comments and if you like, follow @aiyanajane on youtube + vine + instagram
I am constantly up way too late editing, even with work in the morning! You guys loved this look on instagram, look for the full post tomorrow! xo, aiyanajanee
converse super low rider sneakers || blouse by le chateau s13 || faux-leather shorts by topshop
Lately I am having a real moment with monochrome, particularly in shades of blue and green like I mentioned HERE. I didn’t even think about it when I threw this together, I wasn’t planning on blogging it, I was just going for a walk in the forest and listening to The Hurry and The Harm for the first time. Then I realized I was listening to Dallas Green, wearing all green and walking though the greenest forest I’ve ever seen and figured it had to be documented… PLUS it was World Environment Day-go green!!! Though the title suggests otherwise, I actually have no desire to marry Dallas (in fact it was more to brag about my love for clue and the fact that once I beat it on the first guess!) but I do love his music beyond all words. I’ve listened to the album 4 times since I got it yesterday.. like I said here when I love something, I REALLY LOVE IT. (Like, obsessively!)
Its the same thing with my converse, which I just noticed have holes worn though the soles from my abuse.. and these mint pleather shorts, which I have been wearing constantly (literally) since we arrived here in Denmark. (My grandmother thinks they’re awesome, she compliments me every day..) I would have packed more shorts and fewer pairs of pants had I known how beautiful the weather would be, but I wasn’t sure how much rain would be falling since last time I visited it was very damp. The three pairs I brought with me are on constant rotation.. vacation style is always simple because how much can you fit into one suitcase, really? I’m going shopping today (our last day here) and its going to be tight tetris-ing all my stuff back into the suitcase to go home! I’m really going to miss it here, but don’t worry.. I have literally a thousand photos to look back on! I’ll share some more soon.
head to toe look by le chateau
You all know by now how much I love animal print, I pretty much wear it the first chance I get… that said I was jumping for joy over this entire outfit! First up, the tee- I mean seriously how dope is this tiger graphic? I’m loving the face, rather than just the print, it reminds me of the Givinchy dog tee. Patent snakeskin leggings and platform pumps give it some extra kick – I was a little hesitant to pair the snakeskin shoes and leggings together, but I just loved it too much to resist. I wore this for a debauchery-filled girls night out on 17th avenue, an over-size envelope clutch and simple silver accessories finish this edgy look. The panther bangle is a treasure brought back from punta cana, it broke when I got home (he swore it was real silver!) but fortunately for me, I have the worlds best grandfather, and he fixed it for me.
We are still having a lovely time together in Denmark. Today, after 5 years since last seeing her, I am finally reunited with the beautiful Andrea! We went for a walk along the beach tonight and talked as though no time has passed at all – I wish we could see each other more often, but I love that we can keep up with each other through blogging! Being here reminds me again and again how important family is, and how lucky I am to have such an amazing family around me. Last night at dinner my great-uncle sang a tribute to his lost wife (my grandfather’s sister) and to the family he married into. It moved me to tears as I felt so grateful to know that I am surrounded by the kind of love that spans generations. That is what family is meant to be, and that is what we are.
|| denim by american eagle || shoes by guess || watch by la mer || bag by co-lab || leather jacket, tank, pashmina by le chateau ||
When I’m in a rush (which in the morning I often am) I tend to go back to pieces that I really, really love. My favourite color is teal blue, like when you look at the ocean and its the most magical shade – I pretty much like any color remotely close to that blue-green spectrum, which is why this pashmina is possibly my favourite scarf I own. I bought it while I was working at Le Chateau, and I NEVER bought stuff right when it came in, but this scarf was different, as I opened the stock box and unwrapped it from its plastic tomb, I just knew that scarf needed to come home with me. I never regretted it. Maybe this is why I’m okay with no kids – I treat clothing like my little rescue babies. You’ll come home with me my pretties, and I will love you, you will not be forgotten at the back of some unfashionable closet somewhere.
I have similar feelings about these pants ($11), shoes($60), bag ($40) and jacket($35). They have a few things in common, all were on sale – the shoes, bag and skinnies at Winners, the jacket I got at a Le Chateau outlet for half off the sale price. If you go to an outlet and hunt through the racks of polyurethane you will be sure to find a few genuine leather or suede pieces at really great prices! The key to great bargain shopping is patience. I prefer to go alone so no one is waiting on me or, alternatively, slowing me down!
Shades of blue pair so easily together, most people don’t realize that blue is practically a neutral itself!All these pieces are current (or in the jacket’s case, long term) infatuations, so wearing them all together of course just makes me happy. When you are wearing something that makes you feel happy and confident it shows – pairing my trusty leather jacket with trendy mint pants and these killer metallic heels spiked my confidence through the roof. (Okay it didn’t really until I wore this to pick up groceries after work and turned heads in every isle I walked down. I’m certain its the shoes, I caught more than a few people staring at them.) I know Safeway isn’t exactly a catwalk, but the point is that dressing well will lead to feelings of confidence! I’m not the first woman to think so either!
are we friends on instagram yet? why not!? click the pic!
denim – american eagle || blazer + beanie + pashmina – le chateau || shoes + sunnies – ardenes || cross body bag – colab || striped sweater – quicksilver || belt – michael kors
Thank God its Friday! What have you girls got planned for the weekend? I’ve said it before, I live in this kind of business-casual uniform: skinnies, sunnies, blazer, beanie and a blouse.. it’s pretty fool proof! In Calgary knowing how to layer is crucial, cold mornings, hot afternoons. I’m carrying every Canadian’s pre-work staple- the Extra Large Timmy-Ho’s. Something most people don’t believe about me is that I hate coffee, in all its forms- if it’s coffee flavoured I do not want it in or around my mouth. I take after my lovely mum, Earl Grey tea for me please!
This blazer is possibly my favourite ever- I posted The Basic’s Every Woman Needs and at the top of the list is a black blazer. This one has all the things I look for- amazing seaming and tailoring, a single button, three-quarter sleeves and cute polka-dot lining! I love the subtle polka dots with this striped knit top; shades of black, white and grey are perfect for foolproof print-mixing. For work I lose the beanie and the aviators (and the scarf, its usually hot in the office) but these are all staple accessories for me to throw on every day! I usually like to wear flats on Friday to work, that way I can switch my shoes to dress up the look and last all night long in heels!
To dress up denim for work, every woman needs a good leather belt. Truthfully, there are a great deal of hideous and impractical belts lurking on ladies sale racks- that’s why I head to the men’s department whenever I want a great basic leather belt- this one is from one of my favorite designer’s- Michael Kors. Speaking of which, have you seen this Watch Hunger Stop campaign? 1 watch = 100 meals and I really, really want the gold and turquoise watch. A watch is another crucial investment piece for a woman, so why not be reminded that your watch helped someone? And that its pretty. So very pretty.
Speaking of pretty, Happy Friday to you! Have a fabulous weekend!
As much as I love the city, the country is where my heart is… it’s home. Alberta is a harsh place, but every spring the land is carpeted in crocus flowers and for a week or two, and the hillside is tinted lavender. Crocus represent everything the prairie means to me- they are a perfect juxtaposition of soft beauty and hard reality. They push through the dead grass and bloom in tufts of lilac, short stems covered in a fine fuzz to ward off the spring snows. They are the first brief sign of life after an exhausting winter. Its May and we’ve had nearly 7 months of snow and cold, so the sight of purple flowers and blue skies is so welcome. Most importantly, the crocus remind me of my grandmother, who embodies so many of the same characteristics- soft and strong, beautiful and resilient I took these photo’s for her, she wanted to share the subtle beauty of the prairie with our family in Denmark.
Yesterday I talked about how I believe that something good will always come around to make up for the bad. Sometimes it might take a while, but the key is to keep pushing and hold fast to the belief that hard times will lead to greater rewards. Like the crocus, you must push through last years waste and grow strong and beautiful. We like to fool ourselves into believing that life get’s easier, but the reality is life is a constant challenge. If we could just accept that life will always require hard work, we might be much happier and achieve much more.
There is a quote by Scottish writer Ian Maclaren “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.” Our lives and struggles, of course, are relative- but no matter what is going on in your life – how lucky or blessed you may be otherwise, when we fall on hard times it feels as though our whole world is coming down around us. What you must remember is the one thing we can be certain of – life goes on and the world is not quite so fragile as to fall apart on the whims of our emotions. Work hard, keep pushing, and keep moving forward – life doesn’t allow you to go back.
My grandparents, as I have mentioned before, are two of the most important people in my life, and its because they’ve taught me so much over the years. My grandfather, more than anyone I know, is the living embodiment of finding the joy in hard work. I feel sad when people are hesitant to spend time with their grandparents, or with seniors. Youth so often makes us impatient, we don’t want to wait for them to remember the point of their story when we have our iPhone’s in hand to entertain us with instant-updates from the latest celebrity scandal, but their generation grew up during a time when technological distractions weren’t available, and so instead they had to look at the real world, as a result, they kinda know a lot about it. My grandmother loves the crocus for what they represent, that life will carry on being beautiful, even in the harshest conditions and if only for a brief moment in time. We can learn so much if we only take the time.
Shortly after I took these, my grandmother called me with the greatest news ever. Her and my grandfather are feeling well enough to travel, and are planning to visit their family in Denmark… and they’ve asked me to come along. COULD I BE ANY MORE EXCITED?! I visited DK once before in 2008 after graduating high school, this time we leave right after I graduate from college! I finish classes at the end of May, then we watch my youngest brother graduate high school and are on the next flight out- May is going to be so exciting! I can’t wait to spend a week relaxing and eating all the delicious European food! Mostly I am excited to see my beautiful cousin Andrea, who normally I just stalk on her blog.
Spring on the prairie is all about new life and new beginnings. We have lots of cute little calves running around, including the Highland cows in the photos above – bringing a little bit of my Scottish side to Alberta. (Mom’s Scottish, Dad’s Danish). Its so nice to finally see LIFE again on the prairie after a long frozen winter, I am getting so excited for summer! One more month of the tough life – work and school, then I graduate (and little bro!) and fly to Europe. By the time I return it will be June and full blown summer here in Calgary, with Stampede just around the corner. I can’t wait for more summer style posts- my favourite bloggers are all from LA where its an eternal summer.. I’ve mentioned before how different my style would be if I wasn’t hindered half the year by cold temperatures! Back to style posts tomorrow, today I just wanted to share the other half of my life! Thanks for reading babes!
Check out www.rosebudsburningwater.wordpress.com
crossbody bag by CO-LAB via winners || striped tee by JOE FRESH || denim by AMERICAN EAGLE || jewelery by ALDO || blazer, kitten heels, pashmina by LE CHATEAU
Over the last few weeks I indulged in a little retail therapy ..and found this perfect cross body bag! I am forever searching for bags that are the perfect mix of function and fashion and this one is just exactly right. Naturally, Cedric took a bite out of the strap the moment I set it on the ground for a second, just to make sure I remember that he is the most important thing in the universe and would like dinner, now please. Prepare to most likely see a lot of this bag- bite marks and all- I’m super into the nude and gold tones for spring and its ideally sized! I accessorized with a cute little starfish charm bracelet and stacked rings from Aldo accessories. Everytime I go in there I want something else, today I saw this nautical striped bag that would have been perfect for my outfit! Since I linked it and its not in the photos, I trust you can tell I managed to resist. Plus, mine is better anyways 😛
Onto the outfit. When I get dressed, what I really want is to be comfortable. This outfit has my two favourite comfy basics- a relaxed cotton tee and dark wash skinny jeans. My office is pretty casual so I get to wear jeans every day, I usually dress them up with a blazer. This linen blazer kinda reminds me of chambray, and since denim-on-denim is having such a moment, I figured I would show some pride and bust out the Canadian Tuxedo.. sort of… the blazer is a bit of a cheat not being actual denim. I have a love/hate relationship with linen… the wrinkles… there are no words, but this blazer eliminates that by having ruched details already so wrinkles don’t matter, fabulous! The fabric has quite noticeable stretch (which I love in a blazer) and it is very light and cool. Linen is often exclusively a spring and summer fabric (certainly in stores), which is why I find myself busting this jacket out as soon as the snow melts! (This time, stay away you white fluffy devil!)
Blue has always been my favourite color, it can basically be treated like a neutral, many people don’t seem to realize how versatile it is! I’ve mentioned before how a scarf can make a simple outfit stand out- that’s absolutely the case here! I paired simple basics with a bold, red, anchor printed pashmina, I love the black and white stripe detailing on the edges of it, pointy toe kitten heels and ruby lips finish the look. With a few accessories denim basics become a sweet sailor inspired outfit.
be safe at sea, xo, aiyanajane
Lately I have been craving summer like you wouldn’t believe. Probably because its nearly half way through April and I had to brush 3 inches of snow off my car this morning. This needs to stop… I am dreaming of shorts… In the mean time a few styles I am eager to re-create. Since I have been focusing on a healthier lifestyle I have several pairs of jeans just begging to be refashioned into shorts. Maybe its just me but I loathe shorts that are too tight, I often will buy up a size just because of that, so too-big skinny jeans shall be chopped and re-modeled. SOON. Unfortunately my supplies are else where but I am going to rectify that situation promptly.
Which style are you most interested to see a DIY for!? Let me know in the comments below! Thanks for reading!
… and how I wish I could run off to Paris forever some days! My youngest brother is there now so I think my desire to flee to Europe is exponentially higher due to jealousy! We missed him over the Easter holidays but I had a lovely time relaxing with my family, visiting my horses and all the new baby calves! It’s so important for me to get home to the farm and remember that life always goes on- even when it feels like its ending because some moron decided to dump you out of the blue by text message because you finally got the job you’ve been working for and aren’t running back to be with him. Obviously I’m not bitter about it at all. . .
Whenever I find myself having a difficult time emotionally, I find myself turning to strong women for comfort. Sometimes I think about the women in my life and how unbelievably strong and inspirational they can be, I feel blessed to have been surrounded by beautiful, resilient women. As girls, so often we feel like we need a man to comfort and hold us, but the greatest comfort rarely comes from a mans touch, but rather from the kindness or wisdom of a mother. A perfect embodiment of the kind of woman I am talking about is one of the most iconic actresses who has always inspired me, Audrey Hepburn. What I love about her is the openness with which she always gave her heart- she just loved fully and followed her heart without hesitation, even into painful places. The most beautiful women, as she says, are those who are unapologetic about their heart. An absolute fashion icon, you can see in her style that she always did what she loved – something about her begs for classic black and white feminine style. Inspired by Audrey, I love this simple, chic look- perfectly paired with my favorite quotes from a woman I think we all could learn a great deal from.
“YOUR HEART JUST BREAKS, that’s all. but you can’t judge or point fingers. you just have to be LUCKY ENOUGH TO FIND SOMEONE WHO APPRECIATES YOU.” ― Audrey Hepburn
“i believe that LAUGHING IS THE BEST CALORIE BURNER. i believe in kissing, KISSING A LOT. i believe in being strong when everything seems to be going wrong. i believe that HAPPY GIRLS ARE THE PRETTIEST GIRLS. I believe that tomorrow is another day and I BELIEVE IN MIRACLES.” ― Audrey Hepburn
I’ve always been very girly – even though I went through a decade long tom-boy phase thanks to growing up in a tiny farming community – but since leaving I love wearing outfits that appeal to my inner princess. A black and white polka dot chiffon blouse tucked into a flouncy faux-leather mini and accessorized with bows and ruffles satisfies all my sartorial desires. I remember in my week of school (like back in grade one) I wore this beautiful sky blue lace ruffle dress, and all the kids made fun of me.. so after years of jeans and hoodies, sometimes I think I like to wear excessively girly outfits on an average day now just because I can, and because I no longer care if the other kids want to make fun of my feminine side! When I have a bad day I like to wear clothes that make me feel happy and beautiful! What better outfit to start spring (because its finally here in Calgary!)
wearing: blouse, wool jacket, clutch, bow belt, sunnies by LeCHATEAU || pleated faux-leather mini skirt, suede bow wedge heels by SIRENS ||
Peplum continues to be a strong trend for spring, but gets an update with a cut out back and leather shorts. I love these wedge heels, they are patent and suede and ever so comfortable. Wearing shorts with tights is the perfect way to elongate your body- stick to matching colors for the shorts, tights and shoes to fake mile long legs. If you follow on instagram, you know I was over the moon to find the long-lost pair to the earrings that I’m wearing here. I kept the solo earring because I’m a hoarder and then miraculously found its pair two years later in the bag I was carrying here! Keeping with the black and white trend I carry my “Chanel” bag, which I am quite certain is not really Chanel, but its a really well constructed bag that’s the perfect size for every day and it didn’t cost me a grand. Oddly, its also the only purse I’ve ever had multiple MEN compliment me on, so that’s something I guess, since dudes generally don’t notice accessories.
peplum top, tights, earrings and wedge heels by LeCHATEAU || faux-leather shorts by JESSICA SIMPSON || “Chanel” Bag || “red-y to wear” high impact lipstick by CLINIQUE
I used a clip-less curling iron to curl my hair, which is a zillon times better than one with a clamp and I shall never go back. This DIY hair lightening spray is how I achieved the super subtle balayage ombre hair naturally.