Lake Tahoe & The Hat

May 19, 2015


Miriam and I love a good head accessory. In the distant past, we endured the strain of studded headbands pressing against our temples. And of course when temperatures drop, you will be hard pressed to pull our slouchy beanies from our small but curiously strong hands. However, there was a wide-brimmed hole in my heart for quite some time, as I had been longing for the perfect warm-weather hat. But ta-da! Just in time for a recent mini-vacation at Lake Tahoe, I found this beauty!   Yes, do expect this dome to  be well-shaded this summer. 

Samantha Cameron: The Clear Election Winner

May 12, 2015

Now that the dust has settled on what was undoubtedly a surprise election result and we've all had the chance to either toast to victory, or drink ourselves into an oblivion, which will hopefully last for the next five years, we can now reflect. Labour will look to how they can reconnect with the electorate, while the Lib Dems are probably all struggling with severe cases of P.T.S.D. But here at R.F, the only thing that we care to reflect upon, is the election highlight that was Samantha Cameron's wardrobe.

Double Denim and a Really Nice Wall

May 7, 2015

Canadians, your time has come. For too long you have been the butt of Americans' jokes, the way you say "aboot", your position as America's hat and of course, your unyielding love for double denim. But this season the catwalks have been awash with denim and now it's a case of how much can one cram into a single outfit. Here at RF, due to haunting memories of the 2000s, we're still a little afraid of denim accessories, so have kept our magpie thing going, while embracing denim shirts as though we are ready to saddle on up, just like Calamity Jane on speed.

Bathsheba Everdine: Steal Her Style

May 4, 2015

Bathsheba Everdine, fiercely independent, hardworking and untamable, was there ever a more perfect heroine? In cinemas this weekend, Far from the Madding Crowd, is far and away one of the best films that will be released this year. Fact. 
How is it that Thomas Hardy, in 1874, perfectly understood the conflicts that a woman faces when confronted with the very idea of marriage? Bathsheba's stand out quote being the brilliantly put, "I shouldn't mind being a bride at a wedding, if I could be one without having a husband. But since a woman can’t show off in that way by herself, I shan't marry - at least yet”. 
Yet it's not just the story which feels strangely relevant, but the wardrobe too. No wait, let us explain, 19th Century feminist farmer, or Bathchicba, if clunky portmanteaus are your thing, seems to be having a bit of a style moment. The silhouettes, perhaps not, but look, bandanna print - check, heavy indigo cottons - surely just denim by another name, gingham - yup, all that plus dainty gold hoops. Truly she is a modern heroine with a wardrobe to match. Oh and put your hairbrush down, because while there are many lessons that we can learn from Bathsheba, the most important has to be that scruffy hair wins.


Clockwise from Top
Gingham blouse: Zara
Bandanna: ASOS
Hoop pack: Topshop
Linen shirt dress:Whistles
Gingham skirt: Richard Nicholl
Bandanna print jacket: Topshop
Gingham dress: No. 21
Indigo culottes: Topshop

Belt Up

May 3, 2015


When playing a word association game, the image that would follow, "Belt", would be either Zelda (Siobhan) or The Rock (Miriam). Well, thanks to Elliot Rhodes, our associations can go back to chilling out in the '90s, preferably on some lime green inflatable furniture. 

Fjallraven Kanken Classic Bag Review

May 1, 2015


Photography by Erika Pham

If you know anything about us RF girls, you know that we love a good backpack. Being the slightly clumsy ladies we are, we truly need to have both arms free for balance and a large compartment for storing a densely-packed makeup bag for when we realize that our eyeliner flicks were not as even as we thought.

However, I thought there had to be fashion sacrifices made in exchange for a backpack's functionality and comfort -- and then, the Fjallraven Kanken bag snuck into my tundra of conundrum, like the arctic fox it is named after.



Materials: Kanken is made of waterproof fabric which makes it a great city or outdoor bag. I use mine primarily as a work bag and it has protected my belongings against light rain. The outer shell feels very sturdy and resistant to holes or rips, but don't be surprised if your bag looks wrinkly when it first arrives. Once I filled it up, the creases came out but as you can see in the photos, the bag always has a crinkled texture.

I also found that the outer shell's fabric attracts surface stains easily. Many times after my commute, I've looked down to see my bag has some mystery marks. (Don't ever change, public trans!) I was pretty disappointed by this, but fortunately the surface stains do not penetrate easily, and stains can be rubbed off easily with your hands or a dry towel. I've spotted some Kanken's in the wilds of San Francisco and seen that lighter shades show the most stains, so keep in that mind when selecting your color.

Comfort: For such a no-frills bag, is it amazing how comfortable it is! The Kanken is incredibly lightweight even with all it's sturdiness. I thought the simple non-padded straps would cause shoulder pain but I've found it more comfortable then some more cushier straps. What's also great is that you can carry the bag briefcase style with the two upper straps, if you need to give your back a break. There also a removable padded insert for added comfort, but I was surprised that it was just a slab of squishy plastic foam. I almost threw it away thinking it was included in my package to keep its shape! But hey, the thing works.

Design: Absolutely minimalist, I must admit it was the Kanken's looks that initially drew me in. There are 36 color variations and I went with 'Charcoal' after at least 3 days of rumination. (I don't do well with too much choice.) The runners up were 'Frost Green,' 'Sky Blue,' and 'Fog.' The bold branding is absolutely adorable and the logo is reflective in the dark!

The sizing is perfect for the urban commute -- it fits my 13 inch Macbook Air (be sure to use a laptop sleeve for extra protection though), water bottle, mini-umbrella, makeup bag, wallet, and notebook with room to spare. The front pocket is great for stashing a metro pass for quick access. The not-too-big, not-too-small sizing of the Kanken Classic is lovely, because you can securely bring your essentials to work without being the dick on the train whose bag smacks fellow passengers at every stop.
 
Overall, I have to say I'm in love with my Kanken Classic Daypack and I will certainly be a customer for different sizes/colors in the future!

Grey Crop Tee - Madewell
Fjallraven - Kanken Classic Daypack
Cropped Dress Trousers - ASOS
Air Force Ones - Nike
Simple Silver Necklace - & Other Stories