Wednesday, August 31, 2011


I found these cowboy boots at Value Village at the beginning of the summer for $13, and I finally got around to getting them re-soled.   They're made by Boulet Boot company, which has been in business since 1933 and is the first company to produce cowboy boots in Canada.  They are beautifully made, and after new soles and an expert polishing, they look like new.  I won't be wearing them to rope any steers, but I'm hoping I can put together an outfit that works with them, but doesn't look like I'm channeling Annie Oakley.   Any suggestions?

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Dancing Under the Stars

As I mentioned in a previous post, one of my favourite things about Festa Italiana at Covent Garden Market is the outdoor dancing in the square.  Saturday night's weather was gorgeous, and couples of all ages waltzed, polka-ed, and jived under the stars.  Below are some of the photos I took that night.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

The Story Behind the Necklace

I stopped this man to ask about his beaded neck piece, which he purchased at a native powwow, and had a lovely conversation during which he told me the story of how he had been raised as a white man, by white men, and discovered later in life that he was part Micmac.  He has passionately embraced his native heritage; he is learning the Micmac language, and is working on several creative projects that reflect his journey of discovery.   Conversations like this are a large part of why I love doing this blog--brief, but meaningful, connections with people whom otherwise I would have no opportunity to speak with, and all because of an admiration of a plum-coloured shirt and a beautiful necklace.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Reasons to Come Downtown This Weekend

The first of my recommendations for this weekend is Festa Italiana, at Covent Garden Market.  This year's festival marks the 150th Anniversary of the Unification of Italy and features a mix of delicious Italian food, live music, and events such as a grape stomping competition, pizza eating contests and Venetian Mask Making classes.  Aside from the opportunity to eat all the gelato I want, my favourite part of the festival is watching the couples dance outside in the market square to the music of Orchestra Italiana London.  I love watching the older couples who have obviously been waltzing together for years gracefully maneuver around the dance floor.

Art fans will want to check out the following two exhibits of work by local artists:
1)  A juried art show at the Metropolitan Market, the theme of which is "Support Your Local Artists Before They Move to Toronto", features the work of 25 local artists.  The show runs Saturday from 10 am - 6 pm and Sunday from noon til 5 pm.
2) This weekend marks the opening of Artfusion 18, a show featuring the work of local graffiti artists at Chaucer's Pub on Carling Street.  Doors open at 6 pm on Saturday, and the work will be on display until September 2nd.

Yours truly will be checking out the art, food and music and looking for blog photos.  Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

FCF Style Inspiration

I have mentioned Iris Apfel in my blog before--the 90 year old woman whose trademark owlish spectacles,  wildly colourful wardrobe, and "more is more" preference when it comes to accessorizing,  has made her a fashion icon for people of all ages and sensibilities, including me.  Her wardrobe has been a subject of a museum exhibit and a book (Iris Apfel - Rare Bird of Fashion), and she is now venturing into the Home Shopping Network market with accessories of her own design.  The New York Times online has an article about her and her latest project here.

Iris Apfel, photographed by Bruce Weber

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Spectacular Spectators

August is disappearing at an alarming rate, and it seems that everyone decided to leave town the last couple of weekends while there's still a bit of summer left.  It's been incredibly quiet downtown, and very little sartorial activity, so today's post is a photo of a wonderfully stylish man I met in Toronto last month when I was shoe-browsing at David's.  I was completely taken with his cream and brown spectators, and then noticed his summer-perfect seersucker jacket.  Definitely a man who takes his style seriously.  He was working at David's, so the red sandals were for a customer.
Snazzy Spectators

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Primary Brights

This woman has an impressive collection of vintage clothing (see her in her beautiful cape here) and it includes a number of brightly patterned blouses like this one.   I love the cheerful mix of primary colours and the geometric pattern.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

The New Hat

I met a friend for lunch at the Mythic Grill on Monday, and the glorious weather, in addition to the thrill of having a Monday off, inspired me to put together an outfit based around a straw hat I had purchased last week at From Mars' end of summer sale.  I love hats in theory, but in practice, I can never seem to find one that fits well, and that I want to wear on a regular basis.  This one was a pleasant surprise in both its fit and wearability, and I'm hoping we have quite a few more sunny summer days in which to wear it before it's retired for the winter.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Cycling Chic

I think if more women dressed like this when riding their bicycle we would have greater success in making downtown a car-free zone!  Love the green pointy flats, and the bicycle necklace.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

The Truth

Major kudos to whomever is responsible for this....seen on a lamp post on Dundas Street during Pride weekend.

Thursday, August 11, 2011


This is one of my personal favourites of the photos I've taken recently.  There's a strong sense of self that comes through in her style

FCF Cleans Out Her Closet

After recently moving to new digs with very little storage space, it has become abundantly clear that I have TOO MUCH STUFF.  So, in an effort to makes some space, I'm having a "Closet Cleanout Sale" this Saturday, August 13th, from 9 am - 1 pm.  Clothing, shoes and boots (size 10), jewellery, and a few funky household items, all in great condition and cheap prices.  If you're interested in stopping by, just send an email to and I'll provide the address.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Top to Toe Red

This woman, who has appeared on my blog before, was helping out at a booth during Car Free Festival.  Her style always has a vintage flair to it; the full-skirted dress and ankle strap platform sandals she was wearing bring to mind the 40's and 50's, and the colour looks amazing on her!

Monday, August 8, 2011

FCDG at Car Free Festival

The Forest City Derby Girls were one of several groups who set up information booths along Dundas Street during the Car Free Festival on Saturday.   This week I'll be posting more photos of some of the stylish folk I found on the street that day.

Sunday, August 7, 2011


If someone was going to stage a production of "Guys and Dolls" with the cast in modern dress, this man should get the role played by Marlon Brando in the original.  Love seeing men wearing spectators!

The Yellow Belt

I spotted this woman watching the Met Fashion Show -  I love the way she had made a tank top and  pair of shorts into a stylish outfit with the addition of a cropped vest and bright yellow belt.  She is one of the vendors at the Met and her beautiful feather earrings are either from her booth, or one of the other vendors.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Cool Stuff to Do Downtown This Weekend

To those folks from the suburbs who say there's no reason to go downtown, I offer a list of my recommendations of events celebrating the creative spirit that are happening downtown this weekend.  First off, it's the Car Free Festival, which means an opportunity to get out there and play in the street (c'mon, you know you want to).  Jonathon Bancroft-Snell is featuring Matter of Clay III at his gallery at 258 Dundas Street.  The exhibit, which features the work of over 100 Canadian ceramic artists, runs until September 2nd.  You crafters out there might want to check out the Finger and Spool Knitting Workshop hosted by the Handmade Collective at Museum London on Sunday at 1:00 pm.  The workshop is supposed to be on the front lawn of the gallery, but if we get the predicted rain I would assume they'll move it inside.  After the workshop there is a show and sale of crafts made by local artists.   The best part?  All of these things are free......

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Navy and White

This young woman purchased her vintage dress on Etsy, a great website where you can find lots of cool vintage and an excellent selection of handmade goods.  When she turned around, she showed that she had a sense of humour as well as style savvy:

Monday, August 1, 2011

While We're On the Topic of Accessories...

I've found the Metropolitan Artisans' Market to be a great place to find inexpensive and fun accessories, particularly jewellery.  Not only is there a good selection of items for sale, I also get inspired by what some of the vendors are wearing:
Charmain, who sells very cool bags and clothing made from recycled fabrics (check out her website), shows off her bold rings and awesome belt/bag from Fairies Pyjamas.
Ann, who reinvents discarded jewellery into one of a kind necklaces, rings and earrings (find her on Facebook at Ann-Rompf-Designs) also loves her accessories.   I've purchased a few things from her recently, including:
this ring, which was $10
and this necklace, which reminds me a bit of chainmail, for $30