A Year In Canada On 35mm | Goodbye Montreal

A Year In Canada On 35mm

Hello! And welcome back!

I'm sorry that posts have been a bit scarce recently - as you read this we are relocating back to England with four suitcases and a cat in tow so to say things have been hectic is an understatement! I have content coming out of my ears at the moment thanks to a recent trip over to the West Coast (Seattle and Vancouver city guides coming soon), which is really exciting because I love writing travel posts. However, I thought it was fitting to kick off all this content with a look back at our year in Canada, to say a proper goodbye to Montreal here on Fashion Et Moi with some images shot on 35mm by both myself and Lewis. Enjoy! X

A Year In Canada On 35mm
A Year In Canada On 35mm

FALL


We arrived in Montreal on Sunday 4th September 2016, exactly 53 weeks ago today. Unlike now, Montreal was having an Indian Summer so we got a little taste of what summer would be like here as soon as we arrived, which was great! Then came Fall and Lewis keeps describing Fall 2016 as "the most beautiful season of his life". As you can see from these photos, he is not wrong there. The East Coast of North America is the place to be during October, as the leaves start to turn there are incredible scenes of trees sporting green, yellow, orange and that oh-so famous red. It is truly stunning and we fully made the most of getting out and about both in and out of the city to see it in all its glory. 

A Year In Canada On 35mm
A Year In Canada On 35mm
A Year In Canada On 35mm
A Year In Canada On 35mm
A Year In Canada On 35mm
A Year In Canada On 35mm

WINTER


Oh winter! The infamous Canadian winter that if you ever get the chance to experience, I would grab it with both hands. It was both incredibly magical and extremely brutal. For over four months of the year, the ground was covered in snow - there no option to wear anything other than sturdy leather boots - and with temperatures constantly below -10 degrees and sometimes getting as low as -30, fashion certainly takes a backseat during winter, even though I tried my hardest not to let it. We lived through a massive snowstorm in March, went ice skating and skiing and got the full Canadian experience doing a Sugar Shack (basically a big feast based around maple syrup, set in a picturesque forest cabin). I will always remember winter 2016 because that was when we got our beautiful cat Macha! She sat on our laps throughout the cold months and we kept each warm - what joy! Although I am not going to miss the cold, I would swap the British rain for months of snow any day and I wish I was going to be around for another Canadian winter this year. 

A Year In Canada On 35mm
A Year In Canada On 35mm
A Year In Canada On 35mm
A Year In Canada On 35mm
A Year In Canada On 35mm
A Year In Canada On 35mm
A Year In Canada On 35mm
A Year In Canada On 35mm

SPRING & SUMMER


Although I do speak highly of the Canadian winter, boy did it drag. When Europe was seeing blossom, we were still getting the odd snowfall, right until mid-May! Once Spring had sprung, it stuck around for a few weeks and then we were into full blown summer. It was so incredible to see grass again and have leaves on the trees! Although the change of seasons can be unsettling, I totally prefer that to living somewhere like Barcelona, where are barely any seasons.

Montreal totally comes alive in summer, with almost too many festivals on - lots of which are free - I would highly recommend visiting the city in summer if you can. On that note, we had lots of visitors during July and August, which meant we were always out and about enjoying what Montreal and the surrounding areas have to offer. 

A Year In Canada On 35mm
A Year In Canada On 35mm
A Year In Canada On 35mm
A Year In Canada On 35mm
A Year In Canada On 35mm

So there we have it – a year in Canada shot on 35mm by myself and Lewis. I hope you enjoyed this post and if you did, stay tuned for a proper travel guide to Montreal coming in the next week or so. Montreal is such an underrated city, it's a real grower and I could not recommend a place more, for living or visiting. Goodbye Montreal, you've been a doll, my happy place and we'll see you soon. X

The End Of An Era | A Life Update

The End Of An Era | A Life Update
The End Of An Era | A Life Update
The End Of An Era | A Life Update

This ‘life update’ post has been a long time coming but I did not want to rush myself and I have only just felt ready to write it. About two months ago, on Saturday 10th June to be precise, my life changed forever. This was the day that my mum told me she had been diagnosed with motor neurone disease and I felt my whole world collapse around me. This news resulted in me flying back home to Bristol where I stayed for around a month to spend time with my mum. I blogged where I could and even though worrying about outfit photos and how many likes my latest Instagram photo had received seemed so bloody trivial, sitting down and writing my British Summer In The City post was a great release. I was also lucky enough to attend Glastonbury last minute, which was a great way of forgetting all my troubles for a few days (until one too many wines were had, oops). It was a very strange month. I did not feel like myself at all. I missed Lewis. I suffered watching my mum suffer. I was and still am completely heartbroken.

I returned to Montreal in mid-July for the rest of the summer because it was something I had to do. Lewis and I had planned to stay in Canada until at least the end of the summer – after that we weren’t so sure - and it was something that I had been so excited about. The city was just coming alive after what seemed like the longest winter ever and I just had to get back to my happy place, my boyfriend and my cat. Of course, you will not be surprised to read that we are leaving Montreal in mid-September to return to the UK. It is something that we had been considering – although just as the news broke my career had taken a step in the right direction and I had started thinking about Montreal more long term. However, when you hear that your mum has a severely limited amount of time left on the earth and you live across the Atlantic Ocean, there is no other option than to go home. However, it is difficult to accept that after four years living abroad, it was not our decision to stop that lifestyle. It was nobody’s decision. It is also no-one’s fault. It is just life throwing a shit storm our way and I need to try and cope the best I can.

The End Of An Era | A Life Update
The End Of An Era | A Life Update
The End Of An Era | A Life Update

I hope this post does not sound too much like a self-involved pity party when actually it is my mum going through the worst of it. I guess I just need to write these things down and hope that if anyone reading is going through a tough time too, I want you to know that it is ok to think about yourself and that selfish thoughts are totally normal. Some of the selfish thoughts I have daily are that I simply do not want to leave Montreal and the fact that this is out of my control angers and scares me so much. So rather than just going back to my hometown of Bristol, as I’m sure my mum would prefer, I had to take control of where I live even if for now I am restricted to the UK. You’ve guessed it – we’re going to give London a try and I feel both excited and apprehensive about it. I am looking forward to reconnecting with old friends in London and being close enough to take regular trips back to Bristol to see my mum. I am worried about finding a job that pays enough to sustain a London lifestyle but I also can’t wait to get stuck into the “career ladder” I have been dodging the last few years.

So there’s a little life update for you. It’s the end of an era, the end of life abroad and the end of life as I know it. Perhaps now you’ll understand my reduced presence on social media and why there have been fewer blog posts recently. My head is so full right now – of things we need to sort out before we leave, trying to job hunt in London and making sure we enjoy our last month here. I have some all-important Montreal posts planned over the next few weeks so watch out for that. Having covered my trips to Boston, Toronto and Vermont with tips on where to eat and places to see, I have not yet posted a travel guide to Montreal, which is a crime! So yes, please bear with me and thank you for reading X

The End Of An Era | A Life Update

Favourite Blog Posts | January

Hello and apologies for the lack of blog posts last week! I have been feeling a bit under the weather so having not prepared blog posts in advance (as per) and with snuggling up watching series and sleeping taking priority, there has been a bit of a radio silence – we are all allowed a week off sick though right?

Anyway, I am here to tell the tale and today I am kicking off a new monthly series where I’ll be dolling out the blogger love by sharing with you some of my favourite blog posts from the past month and writing my thoughts/responses to the post in question. I think this will be a great way to communicate on a deeper level with some of my favourite bloggers and posts – rather than just leaving a comment – and bring to attention to rather special posts and perhaps new blogs I have discovered! So let’s get cracking with January!

Favourite Blog Posts In January Shot From The Street

© SHOT FROM THE STREET

Lizzy Hadfield from Shot From The Street always writes bloody amazing blog posts. Many of them just talk about outfits but occasionally she writes these very meaningful posts that really get me thinking. There were actually two posts from Shot From The Street that I especially loved in January but this one about being uninspired just took the top spot.

With this outfit post, Lizzy takes us back to the street in Leeds she used to shoot on when she first started blogging, which at the time she felt held back her content and was not as inspiring as other bloggers’ shoot locations in Paris or London. She shares links to some of her first outfit shoots and I love that she is able to not only laugh at herself but also recognise how far she has come. She also proves with this outfit shoot with interesting shots of her sitting on the pavement or shot from angles other than just straight on rather than just in the middle of the street, that it is how you use your location – and your resources in general – to your advantage.

This post really spoke to me because I am always blaming things outside my control for why I am struggling to produce content that I am truly happy with. I am currently very frustrated with the snow/ice/grit ridden pavements of Montreal that mean I am basically stuck in my Dr Martens boots (which are burgundy therefore restricting the colour palette) for the next few months and dreaming of a mild winter where I could where some statement ankle boots that I do not own. That’s another thing – I am always worrying about my lack of income so I am unable to just impulse buy a cute shirt because it costs the same amount as my electricity bill. I know that is due to the travelling lifestyle I have chosen over the past few years, working minimum wage jobs and not staying in a place long enough to climb any career ladder. I know that if I had stayed in England it is likely that I would be earning a lot more money but then I would probably be frustrated about my lack of travel experience.

The moral of Lizzy’s post and my response to it is that as humans we are always going to find things to be frustrated about but we need to try and make the best of our situation. I am going to try and find places to shoot indoors while the weather is terrible for the next few months and I am excited by this challenge and the new element it will bring to the blog. I am also going to fully utilise being able to borrow clothes from the vintage shop I work in – I know this will be frustrating for you readers not being able to just click on a link to a new product but that’s the way things have got to go, this girl ain’t got no money! So let’s get creative and I am sure we can all produce content we are extremely proud of!

Favourite Blog Posts In January The Goodowl

© THE GOODOWL

I discovered Charlotte Goodowl’s blog just this month through someone I follow on Bloglovin’ liking one of her posts that really caught my eye – Why It’s Okay To Be Shit…Sometimes. Charlotte uses this post to tell herself off and explain to her readers why she has not blogged since August, which is basically due to a huge case of comparison to others – surprise surprise – and procrastination, both of which are things I can definitely relate to.

Initially it was the title that totally spoke to me because sometimes I consider myself to be a rather shit blogger. I am not saying that I think that the content I produce is shit – oh no – because similarly to Charlotte, I will never publish anything that I am not totally happy. No, I sometimes feel a bit shit that my content is inconsistent, especially on social media. I complain that my Instagram following is stagnant but is that such a surprise when I have a few days of posting consistently, perhaps twice a day, and then I can go into a few days of hibernation because either I don’t have content or the damned comparing myself to others mindset has made me believe that my content is just not good enough.

However, I decided at the beginning of the year that I was not going to let this blog – and social media – stress me out as much as it has done in the past because where is the fun in that? So for now I am taking things slowly for a reason as I want to be fully confident with everything that I publish. Of course, we are only human and it is so natural to compare ourselves to others but instead of it getting us down let’s make it an inspiration! As Charlotte says “you do you” and I guarantee there will be people out there who will find you and I an inspiration next!

Favourite Blog Posts In January Pages By Megan

© PAGES BY MEGAN

Self confessed Mancunian weirdo Megan Ellaby’s style blog Pages By Megan absolutely never fails to keep me inspired with her mix of effortless casual outfits and more eclectic sartorial choices. The post in question today is entitled There’s No Such Thing As OTT where Megan shows just one way she would wear the maximalism trend with clashing leopard and stripe prints and a mix of textures of a PVC skirt and faux fur coat to mention just two of the things going on in this outfit.

As someone who has always experimented with fashion – from attempting to be a goth aged 11 to my phase of wearing skirt over jeans in my teens (which is actually pretty fash these days!), haha – I have certainly learnt to let people stare at my outfit if they want. Either they will be loving it and if they are not, well, as Megan says – it’s not them wearing it so who cares! I guess my response to this post is a little less intense and personal as the previous two but I just wanted to give credit where it’s due – this girl is always inspiring me to up my wardrobe game and is giving the confidence to all fashion-curious ladies out there that we should just wear what the hell we want when we want! 

I hope you have enjoyed this post! I am sure a lot of you will know these bloggers already and may have even read these posts but I have really enjoyed opening up and sharing my response to each one – hopefully you will feel like you know me a little better. I know it has been a hefty post so do let me know if you prefer that I choose just one post per month to respond to (although I imagine that would be bloody difficult!).


Izzie x

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27

New Year and birthday reflections 27 things I've learnt in 27 years

Today is my 27th birthday. Man I feel old – how did this happen?! At least I have my wisdom, which today I am sharing with you as 27 things I have learnt in 27 years. Enjoy and take note, kids.

1. A long distance relationship is possible. 


2. Travel is the best medicine. 

3. Cats make things better.

4. Being native English speaker is both the biggest gift and the biggest hinderance. 

5. Freshly painted nails are one of life’s simple pleasures. 

6. Dressing a bit weird is ok. 

7. You don’t have to be friends with everyone. 

8. It is ok to say “no”.

9. A glass of wine can solve any problem (but a few may make it worse).

10. Paris is the best city on Earth. 

11. I can often tell instantly when I meet someone if we’re going to become good friends.

12. Getting off my face drunk is no longer worth the memory loss or hangover. 

13. Cigarettes are amazing but life is much better without them. 

14. I prefer staying in to going out out. 

15. You can never have enough shoes. Or coats.

16. There is a Friends reference for almost any situation. 

17. I would rather a year of seasons than a year of just sun.  

18. Despite having tried Vans, Adidas and Nike, I will always be a Converse girl. 

19. Cereal doused in double cream is really damn good. 

20. True friends are those you don’t see for months and then when you meet up you natter like you saw them yesterday.

21. A lot of people are morons. 

22. You will work for some unpleasant people in your lifetime. Just suck it up and let’s hope one day you’ll be the boss.

23. Working in a clothes shop is the best way to get in shape. 

24. IKEA makes Lewis and I argue. And we basically never argue.

25. I cannot live without cheese (and I’ve tested this on numerous “vegan weeks”).

26. My mum was right – views and museums are bloody awesome.

27. True love does exist.

Have a fabulous Friday – roll on dinner and drinks tonight!



Izzie x

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Christmas Gift Guide | The Craft Lover

Hello and welcome back to the fifth and final instalment of my Christmas gift guide series! Make sure you check out the previous four posts for FASHION, BEAUTY, HOME and TRAVEL gift inspiration but today is all about crafts.
I have always been into crafts and creating, having been taught to sew and other skills at a young age. Last year I learnt to crochet thanks to the incredible catalog of YouTube videos and I have recently rediscovered the joys of knitting. I truly believe that it is never too late to take up a new hobby and the SUPERCRAFT book has some great projects – one for every weekend of the year in fact – to get your loved one inspired. It is also contains a handy sewing, crochet and knitting course so why not encourage them to learn a new skill with a gift of some stylish PONY bamboo knitting needles, a lovely ball of wool and a cute slogan tote to keep it in?
Alternatively, you could just allow their creativity flow with some beautiful patterned paper that can be used to make table place cards, in origami or even framed and put on the wall for a simple yet effective decoration! The possibilities are endless!
I hope you have enjoyed this Christmas gift guide series – I have loved creating it! It is a stressful time of year so I hope I have helped ease this by providing some gift ideas and inspiration! This may be the end of the gift guide posts but I have lots more festive posts planned throughout December and into the New Year so stay tuned.

Izzie x

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