Sunday, 27 July 2014

A Streetcar Named Party

Over the weekend I went to the best birthday party ever! My friends Sheetal, Ola and Niresha booked out the historic High Level Bridge streetcar, and invited forty of us to celebrate from atop an Edmonton landmark in a tram from 1910. It's the tallest streetcar crossing in the world! Here are some snaps from a perfect summer night with so many people I love. 

My outfit. 
Taylor was the first to arrive so we had a photoshoot on the tram tracks. 
Hannah and Lauren. 
Our car! 
River valley views from the car. 
We had it for about an hour and a half, right during the golden hour. Beers were had, Beyonce dance parties ensued. 
Sheetal and me! 

A history lesson from our conductor. They were so chuffed! 
Sheetal and Prashant. I best be getting an invite to their wedding... hopefully soon ;).
The birthday ladies! A nurse and two doctors.
I loved the lighting! Everyone looked so ethereal. 

Great night! 

Charmaine xx

Sunday, 20 July 2014

Orla Kiely and Art Walk

For as long as I can remember, I have coveted Orla Kiely pieces. I love the styling of her runway shows, unique prints and classic silhouettes of her dresses. Definitely in my top five favourite designers of all time. But waaaaay out of my budget, especially as a student. So when I heard Orla Kiely and People Tree were doing a collaboration, I jumped at the chance to own a dress for myself. Still higher than I'd normally pay for a single item, but hey, you only live once. Plus, everything on People Tree's label is ethically made AND certified organic. Which I can completely get behind. This dress is probably my most worn dress this summer. It is made of the most airy, breathable cotton, and I am in love with the "dancing girl" print.  I've worn it a ridiculous amount, and now it finally gets it's own post: 

I wore it to a fun gallery party for an art festival a while back, one I was actually working for! I am surprised I didn't blog about it, as it consumed so much of my time in late May/early June. Here are a few snaps from the Art Walk party. I had all the free wine and busted a move on a make shift dancefloor in a bakery. 
Sarah and Me. Her outfit reminded me of Daria! 

Samim and I candidly taking in art. I hung ALL these pieces, guys. It took a week, and just me and one other person did it all, across over twenty business and spaces for the festival at which I "interned." Such a good experience! Art walk took place all along 124th Street, finishing with a reception at Duchess Bakery. I stole these photos from the the 124 St Business Association facebook page! They were one of the festival partners. 
Hanging out with U of A Art and Design kids. In this photo, Emmanuel, the Nigerian guy in the leather jacket was crackin' me up something fierce. That guy busted out some Michael Jackson style dance moves later in the night, causing a giant dance circle to erupt. I've met so many great people this year and especially this summer. It makes leaving, if I am leaving, harder and harder. The weight of just how interconnected people are in my hometown, and especially in my extended social circles, makes me feel overwhelmed and socially claustrophobic a lot of the time, because no one is a stranger. No one. Everyone knows each other, has dated, fucked, had a class together, went to pre-school together, you name it.  Even if you don't know someone, you've seen them around, or someone you know knows them. There's no real anonymity, ever. But then I go to events like this, where I am surrounded by friends and like minded people, and I feel so inspired and connected to my city. The community here for the arts is pretty incredible, actually. There is such spirit amongst this community for supporting grass roots, local events, workshopping pieces, collaborating. While cliquey, people really do go out and support local art, music and theatre in Edmonton. I am grateful - despite the sometimes unattractive qualities aforementioned. You can't have it all, I guess, and I need to learn to take the good with the bad when it comes to my relationship with my home town. 
Dance circle evidence: 

Here's to the next six weeks of fun and frolics before deciding what I'll be doing and where I'll living. I am currently going around and around in circles trying to decide, so I am waiting until the end of summer and for my new passport to arrive before I make any finite decisions. 

Charmaine x 

Friday, 18 July 2014

Route 99

Route 99 has long been a favourite spot of mine for breakfast in Edmonton. This charming 1950s-themed greasy spoon serves up classic All-American brunch fare for dirt cheap. It's my favourite place to go with my Dad, or hung over with friends on Sunday mornings. There's no pretension, frills or gimmicks at this joint: just down-to-earth breakfasts and honest prices. Check it out if you're ever passing through Edmonton - the jukebox has some great tunes and their rice pudding is heaven! 

Sunday, 13 July 2014

Summer Time, Where The Living Is Easy

My week was pretty damn awesome. Summer took her sweet time coming, but when she decided to finally rock up, she came in full force. It's been HOT. Over +30C all week. I've spent my time lounging in my backyard, or out on patios with friends. I've been feeling particularly blessed and busy since July started, reconnecting with old friends and seeing lots of the usual suspects. Edmonton's fleeting summer is short but amazing. Life right now is simple and easy. The calm before the storm that will be fall and before I need to make some Big Decisions. 
The best part of summer is summer attire! Here's a look from earlier this week. 

Stay cool! 
Charmaine x