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Valentine's Day pamper night essentials
As lovely as it can be to celebrate Valentine's Day with a significant other, I'm not exactly one for "romance" — I try really hard to make Mr. AiF feel special all year round, and let's be real, gorging on chocolate and buying flowers are pretty much weekly occurrences for me, so I don't like to put too much pressure on that one particular day. What I do like to do during Valentine's, however, is treat myself to a good old pamper session, or carve out some quality time with my girlfriends to do things our boys would never be caught dead doing — SATC marathons while wearing sheet masks, anyone? What can I say, I know how to show my ladies a good time... I'm taking friendship applications as we speak.
Valentine's Day pamper night essentials
First up, nail polish. After getting my nails in tip-top shape last week, I started to crave a dark mani... shocking, I know. So I decided to give into the hype and try out the Olivia Palermo x Ciate London collection in 'Napa Valley.' It turned out to be as gorgeous as I imagined it would be, and applied like a dream, leaving a super glossy finish to my nails. Plus the packaging itself felt incredibly luxurious, so it turned out to be the perfect choice for an indulgent pamper night in... win-win. 
Pamper night essentials
From there, various beauty treatments ensue, including my favourite sheet masks for face and eyes, a conditioning treatment for my split ends (Kevin Murphy is a God), and a heavy slathering of Aesop's Resurrection hand balm, aka the greatest hand cream known to man... and I never exaggerate.
Pamper night essentials with Le Mystere
Flipping through magazines and snacking on tasty treats (hello, raspberry heart cookies!) while watching all my guilty pleasures is definitely a must during a pamper night — take it from me, it's good for the soul to watch old favourites and have a good laugh or cry. And speaking of good for the soul, a little lingerie never hurt anyone either! Not to get too TMI on you or anything, but wearing something extra special under my clothing always gives me an extra surge of confidence, and I love that it's like having a little secret that's just for me... I basically walk around with a sly grin on my face all day long! So in honour of Valentine's Day, I thought I would kick it up a notch with this sexy little number from Le Mystere's Sophia collection — because really, is there anything better than a lace bodysuit? Of course not.
Le Mystere Sophia lace bodysuit
{ Sophia Lace Bodysuit c/o Le Mystere — available at lemystere.com, $84 }
Valentine's Day pamper night essentials
Thanks for reading everyone, and if you have any ride-or-die pamper night essentials, feel free to share them below... Happy Valentine's Day! xx


This post was brought to you by Le Mystere; all opinions shared here are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that support this blog. 
Photos by Adventures in Fashion

Pamper Night Essentials

Friday, February 12, 2016
Adventures in Fashion's vintage-inspired wedding
It's been a long time coming, but I'm finally sharing some of our wedding photos, and just in time for Valentine's Day! Totally not planned, just a nice silver lining for taking my sweet time I guess. For those of you who can remember that far back (jokes!), Mr. AiF and I tied the knot in my hometown of Victoria, B.C. back in August at the gorgeous Empress Hotel. We had an small wedding including 60 of our closest friends and family, which ended in a 90's dance party — aka, my dream wedding! The overall theme was 'Old Hollywood glam,' which worked perfectly with the iconic hotel, and to sweeten the pot, the Empress is where Andrew and I celebrated our engagement, so holding our ceremony and reception there felt like coming full circle.
Victoria, BC's iconic Empress Hotel
Adventures in Fashion's vintage-inspired Zac Posen wedding dress
Wedding bands- vintage  |  gown- Zac Posen via David's Bridal  |  decorative hanger- Bhldn
Victoria, B.C.
Adventures in Fashion's vintage-inspired wedding
Bridal party gifts
Andrew prepared a few little gifts for his grooms-people, including bottles of gin and neck ties, and accessorized his tuxedo with vintage cufflinks that belonged to his father for a more personal touch.
Adventures in Fashion's vintage-inspired wedding
Our wedding day ended up being windy and super rainy (damn it, Victoria!), so our garden ceremony had to be moved inside the hotel... but with a stain-glass ceiling like that, who's complaining?
Adventures in Fashion's vintage-inspired wedding
Adventures in Fashion's vintage-inspired wedding
Birdcage- David's Bridal  |  heels- Valentino Rock Studs
Adventures in Fashion's vintage-inspired wedding
Simple bridesmaid dresses via Modcloth
Bridesmaid dresses- Modcloth (sold out; more options)  |  black pumps c/o Sole Society  |  necklaces- Hudson's Bay  |  bouquets- THORN & thistle
Adventures in Fashion's vintage-inspired wedding
Elegant bridal bouquet via THORN & thistle
My bestie, Alex, of THORN & thistle created the most gorgeous florals for our wedding day, which I talked about in more detail here
grooms-people
How cute are Andrew's grooms-people? I love them all!
Adventures in Fashion's vintage-inspired wedding
Adventures in Fashion's vintage-inspired wedding at the Empress Hotel
The only wish I had for our wedding photos was to get a shot playing around with the hotel's vintage-inspired luggage trolleys, so this was literally a dream come true for me... luckily everyone was such a good sport about it!
Adventures in Fashion's vintage-inspired wedding
Menu template via Etsy
I sourced our menu templates and all signage, including my Instagram sign below, on Etsy — I couldn't believe how many amazing options there were!
Adventures in Fashion's vintage-inspired wedding
Adventures in Fashion's vintage-inspired wedding
Bhldn Hooray cake topper
'Hooray' cake topper- Bhldn

Thanks so much for sharing in our special day, whether that was via Instagram and Snapchat the day-of (yes, I was that annoying bride who carried her pineapple-cased phone with her all day long), or reading this post now... happy almost Valentine's Day! xx

#AiFSaysIDo

Thursday, February 11, 2016
How to use Snapchat to increase your blog traffic
It's no secret that Snapchat has quickly become my platform of choice (I'm advinfashion, in case you're wondering) — it's quick, interactive and, as far as this can be true of social media, it's real. Plain and simple. But the beauty of Snapchat doesn't just lie in its ability to give you living room access to Kylie Jenner's life — it can also be a powerful tool for bloggers looking to increase their traffic as well. Now I'm by no means a Snap expert (or Snapspert, if you will), but here are a few tips I've discovered for making the platform drive traffic to my blog and increase overall engagement.

1. SHOW YOUR PERSONALITY

It can be really hard to showcase your personality on other traffic-driving platforms like Instagram (all about the photos) and Twitter (too abbreviated), which is where the beauty of Snapchat comes in — people get to see and hear you in real life situations. They get to see your mannerisms, get to know your sense of humour, hear what music you're listening to, see your pets in action, etc. etc. I can't tell you how many bloggers I've come to love (and follow incessantly) based on their Snapchats, so let your personality shine through, and you'll be amazed by how many people you'll convert into hardcore followers. 

2. PROMOTE YOUR BLOG

The handy thing about Snapchat is that you can show snippets of your blogposts while sharing a little anecdote or musing to help pique your readers' interest, encouraging them to check out your site to see more. You could do this by scrolling through your post quickly while talking, or by taking a picture of the post and writing the url across the screen. Either way, I'm always surprised by how many screen grabs these kind of snaps generate.

3. INCLUDE BEHIND-THE-SCENES FOOTAGE

Building off my last point, a great way to promote your blog and create excitement around upcoming posts is to share behind-the-scenes peeks into your workflow. For example, if you're shooting an outfit post you're really excited about, try sharing a piece of the look on Snapchat, letting your followers know when the full look will go live on your blog. If you're collaborating on something fun with other bloggers, be sure to include them in your BTS snaps, teasing toward what you're working on (and share their handles, of course!). I like to show the reality behind my shoots, be that products shot on marble wrapping paper to fake the look of the real thing, or Anton and I freezing in the car in between shots during the winter... #keepingitreal

4. GET SOCIAL

I try to always respond to the snaps people send me (unless, you know, they're inappropriate), because I really want them to know how much I appreciate them following me. Being interactive with people only makes them want to support you and all your various platforms more, so don't forget to get social... after all, you wouldn't ignore someone in real life (I hope), so why should online be any different?

Increase Traffic with Snapchat

Wednesday, February 10, 2016
modal khaki parka
Hooded modal parka- H&M | jeans- American Eagle | mock turtleneck- H&M | sunnies- Miu Miu c/o Fashion Eyewear | pumps- ShoeMint | bag- 3.1 Phillip Lim | necklace c/o Maria Black | rings- Express, Shashi + vintage (borrowed from Thing Finder)
Khaki parka
lightweight khaki parka
styling black accessories
How to style khaki
Stacking rings
How to style a lightweight khaki parka
This past weekend consisted of an unplanned trip home to Victoria to be with family during a difficult time (thank you for all your lovely Snaps regarding my grandmother), but along with the bad there is always good — reminiscing over fond childhood memories, loading up on all my favourite foods that only mama can make, watching Formation a couple dozen times, and being able to leave the house in light layers... hey, a girl's gotta look on the bright side, right? And since I was in B.C. I decided to go ahead and adopt their Family Day and take a day off from posting yesterday... insert evil laugh here. xx


Photos by Thing Finder

Khaki

Tuesday, February 9, 2016
How to Deal With Stress
Let's face facts, stress isn't doing us any favours — it comes with a long list of negative side effects health-wise (including breakouts, for those of us who are superficially-motivated), and to put it bluntly, it's just an overall bummer. Now I'm not talking about the odd bout of stress here and there, but that pesky, prolonged variety that seems to be increasingly more common. As a blogger (which I know many of you are as well), living with a degree of daily stress has just become part of the deal — between emails, deadlines, social obligations and the ever-suffocating need to 'keep up,' how can stress not be an issue? It's unavoidable regardless of whether you run your own business, work for someone else, go to school, or whatever the case may be. So let's not waste time fixating on how to eliminate stress from our lives altogether (I imagine that would lead to a whole other kind of stress), but instead focus on a few simple things we can do to alleviate those feelings. Here we go.

1. WRITE A TO-DO LIST

Knowing exactly what you have to do and by when can be really helpful in terms of making you feel more in control. In my experience, not having a clear and realistic task list for the day makes me feel lost and fearful that I'm forgetting something, which only adds to my stress levels. So regardless of whether you prefer task-management apps or good old fashioned pen-and-paper, write stuff down.

2. CLEAN UP YOUR ACT

I know it sounds incredibly basic, but one of the most powerful ways for me to personally reduce my stress levels is to have a clean, organized workspace. Clutter can be a real son of a bitch in terms of distracting and disrupting your workflow, so get rid of anything that isn't serving a purpose, tidy up the things that are, and do whatever you can to make your space more visually-appealing to you.


3. GET SOME PERSPECTIVE

I know it seems pretty dire in the moment, but will it really be the end of the world if you don't finish that task by the end of the day? Will the world around you implode as a result? Well, I certainly hope not. As important as it is to be productive and GSD, it's also important to remember that you're only human and that some days will be better than others. Just take a deep breath and cut yourself some slack — there's always tomorrow.


4. TREAT YO' SELF

Implementing a reward system can go a long way towards not only being more productive, but actually being happier in your work as well. How you choose to reward yourself can be anything from taking a 15 minute coffee break after you finish a specific task, going to a movie after you hit all your targets for the week, or buying yourself something you've had your eye on after a big project wraps. For me, it's all about reenforcing good work behaviours with trips to coffee shops to see friends and visits to Sephora — apparently caffeine and cosmetics are powerful motivators for this girl.


5. POSITIVE SELF TALK

Sometimes the best way to reduce stress is to just talk yourself off the ledge — much like my third point, giving yourself some perspective and using kind words of encouragement can be really helpful when dealing with difficult situations. Your attitude impacts your actions and the way you handle stress, and having a good attitude goes back to your internal dialogue, so just make it a positive one, would ya?


6. TAKE A BREAK

This one goes without saying and is pretty self-explanitory, but many of us rarely do it. Even while on vacation, I know a lot of people that continue to work, check emails, or whatever the case may be. The best way to recharge and reduce your stress levels is to truly take a break, so book off some time each year to do something you love, and as often as you can manage it, unplug entirely. I've started taking one day a week off from social media, and I've never known a luxury so sweet... even something as simple as going for lunch without feeling the compulsive need to photograph my food has been super liberating... try it sometime.

Image via Ignant

How to Deal With Stress

Thursday, February 4, 2016