I wear black

“The average person, too often estranged from fashion, taking ownership of it” by hallaek
November 25, 2009, 12:28 am
Filed under: Fashion | Tags:

Nice quote, huh? If only I came up with it…but it speaks volumes. My lovely blog-crazed friend, Ally, showed me this article which is extremely interesting and is full of some great lines like the title above. It’s a fairly long read, but a good one and if you read this blog, other blogs, have a blog, want to start a blog, [insert verb here] blog, then I highly recommend taking the time to read it.

Onto pictures from last Thursday onwards that I’ve been too exhausted to put on! The last 2 weeks of school…Rocky crunch time, class crunch time and school applications crunch time. Remember in grade 12 when there was that moment of “What if not one school accepts me?!” I’m back there only this time directing a show and anticipating 2 class presentations which I am highly unprepared for…great. So now I’m blogging instead. Way to be, self.

Thursday: QMT & Rocky Horror Karaoke Night! We were all very artsy and sang in a coffee shop, like Friends…the Musical. Friday: PLAYERS! Oh how I miss Players. Luckily we got to sing onstage at the end, I don’t remember the logistics, but it was probably whether they liked it or not. Saturday: Hockey Rookie Party…yeah. It was an experience? Yup. I’m sticking to that. As tempted as I was to wear Charo all weekend (my new pet’s new name) I didn’t want to overdo it, so she made 2 appearances. Glad I didn’t in the end because besides my new boho vest that I wore to be boho at  karaoke in a boho coffee house, to the untrained eye (okay, anyone but me) I wore black dresses all weekend. Apparently I don’t feel comfortable wearing Charo against anything that’s not black or navy…actually all I really wear are black and navy…colour intervention? Maybe I’ll do that over the break…

And check this out! (And then watch all the classic clips. All.)

Mademoiselle Julia by Lauren Kerbel
November 24, 2009, 11:21 am
Filed under: Beauty

Hello All You Beautiful People,

My wonderful (and stunningly beautiful) friend Julia Sheasgreen is a fashion model who has spent the last year modeling in exotic locations all around the world including China and London. Julia reports to us this month from Cape Town, South Africa where summer is just beginning (allow for a collective jealous sigh.)


Tell us a little bit about your job in the beauty industry? What are your experiences with getting your makeup done as a model?

Getting my make up done before a job is fantastic. I usually watch what the makeup artist does in silence, observing his/her technique. It’s really amazing meeting so many talented and lovely MUAs. About a year ago I lost the bulk of my beauty collection flying home from Shanghai. After relaying my sob story a couple of times a wonderful makeup artist Vanessa Jarman gave me a couple of brushes and the best mascara on the market (Dior Show, duh!).

What are the ups and downs (beauty-wise) of being a model?

The best beauty perk of the job is when the makeup has managed to last throughout the shoot and I can take it out at night, especially if they let me keep their false eyelashes!

The worst part is when the hair/makeup up is a little too…imaginative for the real world, and impossible to get off! (i.e. Painted white hair…thanks team.)

What is your every day beauty routine?

Oooh it changes every single day! I’m not very obedient to the number one beauty rule. I bought a face moisturizer last week to “be good” and it turns out it has shimmer in it! I’m sorry, but you canNOT put glitter in your product and not warn anyone. Anyway, there are a few constants in my routine: Benefit’s Erase Paste for my night-owl tendencies, mascara, some sort of colour on my cheeks to make me a little less NC15 white…and usually I’ll make myself time to do more because I love it!

What is your beauty product obsession? (a.k.a. your desert island product)

Yeah phew, whenever I read that question in magazines I try to think what on earth my answer would be.  I think I’d choose a dark grey liner (MAC Eye Khol in Phonenumber) because there are a lot of diverse looks to create with it. And maybe a nice lip/cheek colour duo (perhaps MAC crème blush in Uncommon).  Basically products that aren’t limiting, I want to have fun with it.

Best Beauty Tip?

Make it clean and even. You can still go dramatic, but there’s nothing fabulous about a crooked smokey eye and joker-style lipstick.

Most Regrettable beauty moment?

For years, trotting around with some sort of shimmery-without-telling-you product on my face while thinking I looked natural.

You are currently living and working as a model in South Africa, any beauty tips and or trends from Cape Town for us?

Natural makeup is all the rage here. I met a model today who wasn’t wearing any eye make up but had a rad colour on her cheeks- it was stunning. You don’t NEED to put make up on every feature. I don’t wear foundation, which is a very good one to skip if you don’t need it.

Anything else you want to tell us?

I have a MAC obsession, this isn’t MAC product placement, it’s just really really great!

Thanks so much Julia for being our first Experte de la Beauté! We all miss you back in Canada and wish you luck in South Africa!

xx Lauren

Julia Relaxing on the Beach in South Africa

And some modelling shots from her portfolio

Self Test: Skin Analysis from the Bobbi Brown Makeup Manual by Lauren Kerbel
November 23, 2009, 10:41 pm
Filed under: Beauty

Hello All You Beautiful People,

Not sure what your skin type is? Check out this quick self test from my favourite makeup book The Bobbi Brown Makeup Manual.


Look at your own, clean, unmoisturized skin in the mirror. Is the overall texture flaky (dry), shiny (oily), or smooth (normal)?

How does your skin feel after you wash it with your current cleansing regimen? Tightness through the forehead is an indication of dry skin.

How does your skin normally look by midday? Is there oil breakthrough or dryness even though you have moisturized?

What lifestyle factors are influencing your skin’s current condition: stress? Hormonal fluctuations? Sun exposure? Diet?

Does your skin have noticeable sun damage? How are your protecting yourself against the sun?

Image courtesy of amazon.ca

xx Lauren

I’m a cougar! Grrr! by hallaek
November 17, 2009, 10:45 pm
Filed under: Fashion | Tags: ,

Only not…I’m really not. Those boys would have to be awfully young and illegal so I don’t think I’ll be going down that road just yet. The reason I claim to be a cougar is due to the fact that it’s the nickname I was given yesterday because of the belt I was wearing (which is definitely a spotted jaguar, maybe a leopard to clarify!)

If you’ve done what I’ve been urging in most posts and read what I tell you to read then you’ll have heard of Christopher Ross belts which are these big animal belt buckles that are usually done in gold from the 80s. I know there’s also a bow and other non animals, but the animals are the highly coveted ones. Until very recently you could only find them on ebay or by luck on some other second-hand website and even then actually getting one was near impossible. There was a unicorn one I desperately wanted (at work this summer I was asked if I could be one animal what would I be…I said unicorn, so when I say desperately I mean DESPERATELY), but I wasn’t sure how high my mum would really want me going since I was using her credit card so I didn’t bid high enough and poof! Unicorn gone. Ever since my love had dwindled, I didn’t want to go through the trauma of losing another gawdy-animal-head-belt-buckle…and I haven’t seen a unicorn since. Then through my everyday readings on AtlantisHome I found out that the blogger, Judith Aldridge, had acquired a bunch of Mimi belts which are pretty much Christopher Ross belts, but not as nice. So I went to the website, PlainObjects, and found my new best friend…and pet.

Thoughts on what I should name her?

She cost about US$42.00 which is far thriftier of me than spending between US$800-1,250…yeah. Unfortunately for Santa (or “Mommy”) our buddy Christopher has done something absolutely genius and re-released these famous belts from the 80s. There’s no unicorn, but there’s a giraffe, elephant, kitty and frog! There are a bunch of others, but those four are my favourite. Hint. Hint. (One more time…) Hint: Christopher Ross Collection.

And now that there’s a working camera in the mix the November Natur-Elle will be up soon and for now you can swoon at my purdy mug…

“Moon shoes Potter! Traversing the galaxy for intergalactic travels to Pigfarts!” by hallaek
November 16, 2009, 12:03 am
Filed under: Misc. | Tags:

So I’m directing a musical, The Rocky Horror Show, so of course I’m pretty…”into” musicals. Okay, mildly obsessed. A bit fanatic. I get fixated on things easily…(SeaofShoes), but musicals are a true love. I know, they’re usually kind of corny and even if they’re not it’s still a musical. They just make me so happy. Even the extremely upsetting ones. It’s because it’s true love! The music, lyrics, characters, eee! I often blast a musical as I shower and play…every part. I am releasing far too much information on this blog, I just want you all to understand that it’s not just a lame theatre thing it’s…okay, the only word I can think of over and over is “love” so: love, love, love, love.


A Very Potter Musical


I swear it's cooler than it looks...

Recently I have been introduced to two musicals that I thought wouldn’t be my style, but I am obsessed. They’re on a playlist together on repeat. The first is an internet sensation that was brought to my attention by our Magenta in RHS when our rehearsal was cancelled last week and I had nothing to do, but didn’t want to work. A HUGE thank you to her for sending me that link asap because it was a much better use of my evening! The musical theatre program at Michigan University put on a student written and run production of their fan musical, A Very Potter Musical. Can you guess what it’s about? I have to admit that I’ve never read the books, only seen the movies, but I loved it! Way more entertaining than any of the movies, as far as I’m concerned. Now I obviously don’t really know the story, but from what I gather they somehow worked it out in their 2 act show. Yes, lots and lots is cut, but deal with it. Draco and Voldemort are by far the best in terms of character and actors, hilarious. The title of this blog is actually one of Draco’s quotes from one of my favourite parts. WATCH IT: A Very Potter Musical

On to the next musical! The Toxic Avenger Musical which is currently playing in Toronto.



My mum told me she heard it was great and would get tickets for the night I came home which I agreed to because I figured why not, even a bad show is interesting, but I honestly expected it to be horrible. 1. My mother is anything but a theatre buff (some of you know what kind of buff she is…hehehe). 2. With a title like that…none too high expectations. 3. I had never heard of it, I realize that sounds bad, but you’ve all said it when you’re looking for a movie to see in theatres so hush. We get in the theatre and I immediately look at the cast list…Jamie McKnight. If anyone saw the awful production of Hair that Canstage put on 3 years ago, he played Claude and started out the show naked with his back to us, it was love at first sight…of his backside. So the second I saw that name my expectations grew, just a bit. Then I realized it was a 5 person show…they sunk again (I dislike it when one actor plays several characters…usually). In the theatre, lights out, music up, “White Dude” and “Black Dude” enter and sing…I love it.


"Black Dude" and "White Dude" as some of their many characters.

The songs, the actors, the voices, immediately amazing. It sounds silly to say they were all so into it, but they were and more! They were excited, and having fun, and playing, and joking, and proud! Ah! It was so wonderful to watch! Everyone excluding the two leads, the romantic ones of course, play multiple parts and it’s done so well! There’s a lot of making fun of theatre as a convention which I love and the quick changes were so impressive and all the characters were so different and…I could continue forever. I highly, highly recommend it. It doesn’t close until January 3rd so you can see it over Christmas break and the most expensive tickets are $41.50 so the ones down from there are reasonable and there are $15 rush tickets! All the songs are pretty great, but this one is definitely one of my favourites: Choose Me, Oprah!

“Stumble Upon” is so last summer… by hallaek
November 11, 2009, 4:27 pm
Filed under: Fashion | Tags:

I have found somewhere new to waste all of my incredibly non-precious time…StyleCaster.

It is addictive! You get a profile and can list your favourite brands, stores and your “style”. You can favourite looks and items and pretend that you’re friends with all these fashionable people (yes, I’m sure we all know who I immediately “added to my network”….shut up). The best is the inspiration board! You can upload whatever pictures you want and when people go to your page it looks a little something like this:


Yeah, I’m pretty trendy and up and coming…NBD. For those of you that click from site to site saving pictures of things you like with nothing to do with them, this site is a must. There’s also a section for forecast to help you make fashion decisions!

Go! Go now! One more time: StyleCaster!

These are a few of my favourite things… by Lauren Kerbel
November 10, 2009, 4:44 pm
Filed under: Beauty | Tags:

Hello All You Beautiful People,

Let me begin this post by sincerely apologizing to you for neglecting my duties as beauty writer for so long. October was a very busy month at school and multiple essays have crept up on me and there was an entire weekend of Halloween festivities to plan for! But I am here now and will be putting up a flurry of articles for your reading pleasure soon! One of the things that I have wanted to do since beginning to write for La Mode Au Naturelle is to do a few product reviews. There are thousands of beauty products out there all claiming to be the best, but it can be difficult (and expensive) to test all of them out. As a full-fledged beauty addict, I would know, so I am going to share some of my opinions with you because I just love you that much!

Here are a few of my favourites, beginning with Smashbox High Definition Healthy FX Foundation with SPF 15. This is by far my favourite foundation for younger skin. It is very light-weight, oil free and looks very natural on the skin. Bonus points for the SPF 15, although my moisturizer has SPF 25 in it, if you happen to not already have SPF on your skin this is an added bonus. I will admit, that thanks to my mother, I have been blessed with wonderful skin which I am very grateful for, my biggest problem being some redness. This foundation is perfect if you want a great polished but natural look, whenever I wear it at work clients always remark how “flawless” my skin and always remark that “it doesn’t look like you’re wearing foundation!” It may not be the best choice if you are looking for a full coverage base. For an easy every day application I usually just use my fingers and only where I need it, for a more polished evening look I usually use the Smashbox PhotoFinish Light Primer and apply both with a foundation brush. This gives the face a more polished look (are you getting sick of that word yet? It’s a makeup artist standard, like making you’re eyes “pop!”)

Everyone has a desert island product, the one beauty product that the absolutely can’t live without and I would say that mine would be lip balm because I can’t stand my lips being chapped, but my collection of lip balms have become more of a daily necessity like putting moisturizer on in the morning. This leaves way for my favourite obsession: mascara. The tips of my less than luxurious eyelashes happen to be blonde, making them seem more non-existent than they already are. Anything that can make my lashes look longer and fuller without clumping and the dreaded “spidery” effect is magic. I have been a devoted fan of MAC Mascara X in Black for the way it makes my teeny lashes look voluminous and longer. I also recently discovered Benefit’s BadGal Lash Mascara in Black which is not as great as the X Mascara for volume but lengthens my lashes to the extreme! TIP: Black mascara is always the most effective for defining your eyes but if you have light lashes like me and want a more subtle look try a dark brown instead.

When it comes to my hair, I have to admit I can get pretty lazy. The life of a university student can be hectic and busy at the best of times and I don’t always have time to wash and style my hair. If I wake up a little late in the morning and my hair is looking a little greasy and limp (hey, it happens to the best of us) a little bit of Oscar Blandi’s Dry Shampoo Powder is the best solution that I’ve found. Although it doesn’t really replace an actual shower, it does allow you to go outside without worrying about a bad hair day or grabbing the nearest hat.

Of course I can actually live without these beauty products (at least I’ve never heard of anyone dying from cosmetic absence) but they do make my life just a little prettier.

xx Lauren


p.s. All of these fabulous products are available at Sephora and Shopper’s Drug Mart in Canada (with the exception of the MAC Mascara, available at MAC stores and counters.)

I am not covetous for gold… by hallaek
November 9, 2009, 7:51 pm
Filed under: Fashion | Tags:

And this post will prove it!

(Disclaimer: there are more sequins in this post, I apologize…but deal with it.)

Unfortunately, rehearsal was canceled tonight which meant I could get a head start on my essay! Wrong. It meant I could discover Jane Aldridge’s Twitter page and it has been completely downhill from there. From some guy getting shot during an interview to searching through The City clips to find her cameo. I think I’m a bit too SeaofShoes crazy…I’ll work on getting my own life eventually.

Anyways, it always ends with me clicking from site to site creating a life wish list in my head…and some on here:

sequined sweatpants

Sequined Sweatpants!

Sweater Bootie

Plaid Sweater Bootie!

Koala Ring

Koala Mum & Baby!

November 8, 2009, 11:54 pm
Filed under: Fashion | Tags:

Those words were shouted far too often this weekend…even though I don’t do shoots. I don’t think I’ll explain the humour that lies in that phrase cause I’m lazy, it is a Sunday night after all. After getting a cumulative 15 hours of sleep since Thursday one might think that I would take this opportunity to sleep, but of course I’m wide awake.

Sparkly Louboutins

Two of my besties visited me this weekend which was very exciting (even though lame Tila only stayed for one night) and I really hope they got a vibe of a day in the life of me…gossip, drama, alcohol, paparazzi, drugs, sex, rock n’ roll, alcohol…yeah, as if I’m that cool. It was just nice to finally show them places I constantly talk about (my mecca: the QP) and the people I go on about (all of you). And at around 3am in the student center we went into this huge room and had photo fun! Most are pretty ridiculous which obviously makes them Facebook worthy. The next night (minus lame Tila) we went to a cast party and it is always fun to put someone new in a situation where they’re surrounded by not only “theatre people”, but a cast especially when it’s one like The Rocky Horror Show. Who knew most of them could dance like that? Faux krumping, crazy bum shakes, extremely entertaining! But being the director of a show that is known for extravagant costumes (fishnets, corsets, sparkles) I think I just have to do this before I post our pictures: Sequins. They’re back in a big way! As far as I was concerned they never went anywhere, but for any of you that frequent ShopBop there is a sequins revolution and it is FABULOUS. If I ever work in an office, which is highly doubtful, but IF, I will be wearing a full sequin suit. Sequin pants, skirts, blouses, cardigans, shoes, bags…walking disco ball. I realize I sound completely looney, but I just love them! I don’t own too many sequined items, mostly because I go shopping with people that talk me out of them because they don’t want to be affiliated with the walking sparkle. Sequins are also bloody expensive for what they are, shiny plastic. Remember back in the day when sequins were so normal? Sparkly baby animals on knit sweaters, red sequin mary janes, sock detail! Oh, to be 6 again!

Ça fait ouiii! Ça fait toc, toc! Y’a des bruits dans mon salon! by hallaek
November 2, 2009, 12:09 am
Filed under: Fashion | Tags:

TFS. Grade 1. The first year I remember learning a bevy of ridiculous french Hallowe’en songs. The one in the title (“Les Fantômes”) is pretty fantastic because it has a lot of onomatopoeia which is a hoot when you’re 6, but one of my best friend’s and mine’s favourite has to be “Dans Une Citrouille” because it’s a never-ending song (starts with “dans”, ends with “dent”). We would sing it as loud as possible over and over and over and over…because we were hilariously entertaining of course.

So Hallowe’en as a 20 year old…not too different from Hallowe’en as a 5 year old. I had a piece of candy thrown at me which I then bragged about and ate as slowly as possible in front of people without candy. Hah. Candy-less suckers. Although my lovely housemate had to continue to remind me that I was “in my twenties now…” Thanks. After the first “twenties” remark I insisted she put french braid pigtails in my hair, adult my ass! So night 1 I went as Mrs. Peacock along with the Clue crew and night 2 I was Little Red because…Lauren had it in her closet. I found a great Urban Renewal dress for the Peacock, it’s an old 80s dress that’s been revamped to look a bit more modern and therefore, trendier. I bought a Peacock feather headband thing to make my costume clear which I didn’t love on my head so it became a very tight belt, but it worked.

You’ll notice that these pictures are pretty blurry and not so…nice. Cameras hate us now. Sure, I abandoned one of their kind, but now they’re punishing both Lauren and I. Could it be the end of in focus pictures? Will the blog become even more of my ramblings about sparkles and pitchers? I hope not. More for your sake though, I could ramble forever. Some of the blurry ones from night 2 kind of make us look like illustrations or cartoons…like from a fairy tale book? Hmmm? I’m trying. And one of the pictures Lauren took of me actually turned out to be really cool. She was just snapping pictures in different settings hoping that one would finally give us a proper flash and now I have this very artsy photo. I realize it’s not artsy to say artsy, but I’m not artsy so: artsy, artsy, artsy. (Take that you candy-less suckers.)

P.S. Lauren is not, NOT, a beer garden girl. She is the wind up doll from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. You know in the end when they present the child-hating king with these elaborate gifts to get in the castle, but they’re actually people! Woah! Tricksters.

P.P.S. Les Chansons d’Halloween!

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