Wednesday, August 26, 2009

DC's King Of Vancouver

The top finishers from the DC Nationals City Qualifiers all over Canada hit the famous Vancouver Skate Plaza in the heart of the city this past weekend for DC's King Of Vancouver, the final stage for this summer’s series.

DC’s King Of Series is a global grassroots skateboarding contest. It travels to local street skate spots in cities across the globe, welcoming the city’s best unsponsored skateboarders to compete in a jam format contest. This weekend Vancouver also welcomed members of the Global DC skate team including Colin McKay, Josh Kalis, Lindsey Robertson, Marquise Henry and Matt Miller.

The choice to have a King of contest in Vancouver was obvious—Vancouver has always been one of Canada’s best skate cities. The streets of Vancouver have spawned many pros including DC riders Colin McKay and Ryan Smith, with Vancouver's wooden indoor play lands (like the Skate Ranch) bringing up other future pros like Moses Itkonen, Sluggo, and Rick Howard. The city’s skate terrain is unique and versatile. On any day, you can skate the streets of downtown, the plaza in the heart of the city or hit up one of the many parks.

DC's Canadian Team Manager Trevn Sharp did an incredible job of heading up the DC Nationals Tour, culminating in the big show at KOV this past weekend. Reflecting on the summer's events, Trevn said, "We saw some amazing skating go down and realized that kids are getting better and better every year. This year we saw a lot of young guns coming out and ripping hard to secure a spot at the finals, proving that anything is possible when your knees are still fresh. Because every city is different, as is every skater, so were each of the city qualifiers. With different elements associated with each province, each skater had their own unique bag of tricks that they brought to the table.The line up for the King Of Van is a mix of raw street skaters, buttery smooth control freaks, big gap assassins and young 'ins who seem to think that nothing is impossible. Fifty skaters will meet up in Vancouver and each has a shot at becoming the king."

In the end, it was 16 year old JS Lapierre from Notre Dame, QC who reigned supreme. He placed first on both Saturday and Sunday, earning him the title of King. Lapierre walks away with instant global exposure throughout the skate world, a spot on DC's Canadian amateur team and $7000 of the $10,000 purse. He will also receive a “SHAZAM” in Color Magazine, where he will be partnered with some of the best photographers and writers in the industry.

Plus, not only did DC hook up the skaters this weekend, at the end of the King Of Vancouver, a cheque for $10,000 was presented to the city of Vancouver for repairs and maintenance on the downtown skate plaza. The money will help ensure that the plaza remains the center for the Vancouver skate scene for years to come.

Under sunny blue skies, it was a fun filled and entertaining weekend at the skatepark for myself and the massive crowd who joined me.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Back To Fall Basics

After being holed up in my apartment for what seemed like an eternity last week...with barely enough energy to get popsicles from my freezer and capable of little more than sleeping and whining (on account of being taken out by a case of strep throat), I found myself with time to think about what lies ahead...that's right kids, fall fashion! Today I felt inspired to share with you a few key things that I have on my radar for the coming season.

1. First up, jeans are an absolute wardrobe essential. Jeans go with everything and there’s a pair out there to flatter everyone. No matter your personal style, there’s no way you can go into fall without at least one amazing pair of jeans. They’re the foundation of a look, part of countless great outfits, and one of the most comfortable and classic pieces you can own. This season there's no one style to have but rather, there are several great fits and washes that work. Skinny, bootcut, boyfriend, ripped, bleached, tie-dyed, wide-leg trouser, ankle length, black, grey, dark indigo or brightly coloured- you can do no wrong with a great fitting pair of jeans this fall.

2. Who wouldn't want their hands free to sip a latte, send a Blackberry message or flip through the sale racks? Enter crossbody bags. Totally practical, totally hip. This fall you can sling your purse across your stylish outfit. I just picked up a cute one by Roxy; it's perfect for Saturday shopping trips.

3. Another key piece for your fall wardrobe is the basic tee. I don’t know about you, but I can’t think of a top more versatile or essential for daytime than the slouchy basic tee. It keeps you cool when it’s hot out, layers perfectly under everything, never looks too dressy and can be worn a million different ways. Even better, if you’re shopping on a budget, you can’t get more budget friendly than the slouchy basic tee shirt. I own the American Apparel one shown below in several colours, and I love it. Soft, comfortable, and cheap. What more could a girl (or boy!) ask for? the Quiksilver Women's line also has a ton of perfect, slouchy tees. Dress it up or dress it down, a comfy t-shirt never disappoints.

4. A great jacket is perhaps the most essential fall piece that every girl needs in her wardrobe. Not only do jackets keep us warm on cool fall days, but they’re also important for wardrobe versatility and layering. Feeling like you wear the same thing every day? One new jacket can add tons of new looks to your rotation. Jackets are also the perfect way to cover up any perceived body “problem areas” – a well-cut blazer, for example, can cinch you in at the waist, making you look thinner and perfectly proportioned. The hottest jackets this fall include: the denim jacket, the motorcycle jacket, the embellished military jacket and the boyfriend blazer.

5. Sweaters are another must have for fall. I don’t know about you, but when I think of fall fashion, I always think of layering – it can be warm enough that you don’t need always coat but cool enough that you do need sweaters, scarves, and the occasional fabulous jacket...perfect layering weather. Of course a great cardigan remains a staple in every wardrobe, but the "destroyed sweater" has become a must have item this year as well. The incredible Alexander Wang got us obsessed with this trend last fall when he sent his coveted grunge sweater dress down the runway. Ever since, high-end retailers and discount shops alike have been stocking their own versions of his shredded knitwear. A destroyed sweater is a perfect piece for fall because it will keep you warm but not too warm, it can be layered over your favourite tanks and skinny jeans, and will give you that effortlessly chic grunge look.

Photo: Fashion Toast

6. One of the most talked-about trends for fall? Over-the-knee boots. This trend first appeared at the Spring 2009 Ready-to-Wear shows when Givenchy sent an amazing shiny black pair (pictured below) down the runway. Then Blake Lively’s character Serena famously caused an internet uproar when she wore a suede pair during Gossip Girl’s first season. Ever since, the trend has taken off! Over-the-knee boots showed up on all the Fall 2009 RTW runways, spotted everywhere from Louis Vuitton to Prada. Celebrities love this trend too: everyone from Lindsay Lohan to Rihanna to Kate Moss and even Miley Cyrus has worn over-the-knee boots recently. Whether they’re thigh-high or slightly above the knee, leather or suede, flat or stiletto-heeled, every possible incarnation of over-the-knee boots will be available in stores this fall.

My big purchase of the season (I hope) will be the perfect moto jacket. I'm officially on the hunt. What items will be tops on your shopping list this fall?

**Photos are not property of Work In Progress. They have been taken from various websites. If your photo has not been credited and you would like it to be, please e-mail me.**

Saturday, August 22, 2009

The Heat Of The Summer Sunshine

I felt compelled to share with you how much I've been loving Reese Witherspoon's style lately. Her outfits, no matter where she is or what the occasion, have been absolutely flawless this summer.

Reese is so graceful and classy. She really knows what works for her. Boyfriend jeans, gladiators, cute dresses, high waisted skirts, eclectic jewellery, fedoras, amazing bags and a large collection of stylish sunnies. Reese embraces trends that she likes and she wears them well. I think that her style is classic, elegant and effortless, even when she's enjoying a casual chic afternoon with her family.

Let's take a look at some of my favourite outfits, shall we?

Keira, that last one is especially for you!

**Photos are not property of Work In Progress. They have been taken from various websites. If your photo has not been credited and you would like it to be, please e-mail me.**

Friday, August 21, 2009

Louie, Louie

Today is my lovely friend Leah's birthday. What can I say about Leah? She's truly one of a kind. She is hands down one of the funniest people I've never known and she has this really contagious, positive energy about her that I can't even describe with words. I laugh until my face hurts every single time we hang out. There's no doubt in my mind that Leah could be a famous stand-up comedienne, but she chooses instead to take her talent and ability to create smiles to her very important work as the Community Relations Coordinator for Union Gospel Mission. She's changing the world, she really is.

Leah is also a brilliant photographer (check out her work here) not to mention, an awesome basketball teammate, fantastic tennis partner ("give it to me!") and someone who I share over 15 years of hilarious inside jokes and fun memories with. Happy Birthday, Louie! I hope that all of your wishes come true!

Monday, August 17, 2009

I Like To Dance All Night

Photo: Sony Music

So Christine and I casually bumped into the Kings Of Leon when we all happened to be dining and drinking at Yew on Friday night (P.S. Zac Efron and Vanessa Hudgens were there too!) It was a pretty stellar start to the weekend, I must say.

A humble little band from Nashville, Tennessee, Kings of Leon consists of the Followill brothers; Caleb, Jared, and Nathan, and their cousin Matthew. They are among a small handful of bands today, mainstream or otherwise, who keep themselves fresh. Their most recent album Only By The Night is a much slower paced, but cleaner sounding record than previous efforts. That's part of what makes them good, in my opinion. They didn’t just find a formula that worked and stick with it, plowing out repetitive record after repetitive record (I’m looking at you Nickelback.) Their formula is that they just click...and when they click, they write music. The Followill boys simply play amazing music without an agenda- which is refreshing.

Last night, they took the stage at GM Place for the second time in as many nights. The setlist was a perfect mix of new and old favourites- featuring tunes from all of their albums. The energy on the floor was absolutely mind blowing. (This is also why I hardly took any photos. I was way too busy singing and dancing and trying to maintain my spot in the crowd to fuss with my camera.)

It’s pretty easy to be cynical about the current state of “live” music in an era of pre-recorded tracks and lip-synching artists; but the Kings Of Leon proved that rock and roll is alive and extremely well, thank you very much, with a scintillating and booming performance last night. It was a hell of a night. I can't wait until this modest and brilliantly talented family rolls back into Vancouver.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Search Your Heart

Photo: E-Online

Pete Yorn and Scarlett Johansson are scheduled to release a collaborative record this fall. Entitled Break Up, the nine song set is due September 8. The lead single "Relator" is available via iTunes and streaming on the album's website now.

While best known for her film work, Johansson released her first album Anywhere I Lay My Head in 2008. The album featured 10 Tom Waits covers along with one original and was met with mixed critical reception.

Yet the conception and recording of Break Up predates Anywhere I Lay My Head by two years. Inspired by a bout of sleep deprivation and the 1960s duet recordings of French song craftsman Serge Gainsbourg and his muse Brigitte Bardot, Break Up includes eight original compositions by Yorn and a cover of Chris Bell's "I Am The Cosmos."

“I was having a strange week of insomnia and when I finally passed out, it came to me in a dream,” says Yorn. “I woke up and the whole thing was in my head, fully formed.”

With his idea laid out, Yorn became one of the few lucky men in the world to actually act on a dream they’ve had about Scarlett Johansson. After receiving an out-of-the-blue invitation to record with Yorn, Johansson was readily on board. “It sounded like an interesting little adventure,” she says. “The idea of two people vocalizing their relationship through duets.”

I'm totally digging this first single...what do you think?

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

If Only...

...I could just escape to this place on days like today.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Sweet Darlin' Come Hold Me

I have always had an enthusiastic love affair with vintage clothing, but the more I see indie darling Zooey Deschanel in vintage dresses, the more my need for vintage dresses increases. After watching her in (500) Days of Summer the other night, I wanted to run out and buy a whole new wardrobe à la Summer. With her saucer-sized blue eyes, her thick bangs and her impossibly cute clothes, she inspired me. Zooey's offbeat and charming style has stolen my heart.

She is one of the most adorable women on the planet, and her style really seems to transcend time. She wears vintage like she was meant for it and in a way that never looks outdated. She has the ability to make vintage look...fresh? Oxymoron much? I love the contradiction.

Everything about Zooey is out of another era, including her singing voice which is often heard on-screen. (She also sings in a band called She & Him). Her fashion choices reflect this throwback style. While most young actresses are showing boobs and legs, it's surprising how many times you see Zooey covered up in a sweet frock and tights. She wears dresses that have a retro feel with charming details like bows or flowers. Her ensembles range from French hippie with her high-waisted, wide leg trousers to sixties mod in a crisp, bell sleeve dress and nude stockings. Although the style and cut of her ensembles could come off as stuffy and prim, Zooey has a carefree attitude that softens the look. She's absolutely flawless.

**Photos are not property of Work In Progress. They have been taken from various websites. If your photo has not been credited and you would like it to be, please e-mail me.**