FASHION | First impressions of my Polene Numero Un Nano in Terre de Sienne / Terracotta

Polene Numero Un Nano in Terre de Sienne Terracotta Sienna review

I said to myself last year that I am at “purse peace” with my designer handbag collection. That just means I feel like I’ve invested in my designer handbag collection that I have bag options for pretty much every situation, and there’s enough coverage in my collection that I shouldn’t need to add any more to it. That being said, I still love bags, so despite being at purse peace, I’ve still been into watching bag reviews and looking at new bags to buy, albeit no longer at that ultra premium price point.

I’ve seen Polene bags floating around the internet for a few years, but it wasn’t until recently that I started becoming interested. The Numero Un bag is their first design, originating from a few years ago. It reminds me of my Celine Belt bag, in a super cute, dumpling-like shape. It comes in four different sizes – the regular, the Mini, the Mini Backpack, and the Nano. The Numero Un Nano is the latest Numero Un style to be released, as it came out in late 2019/early 2020. I absolutely fell in love with the super cute size, and I immediately did a bunch of research and purchased it with my own money.

Disclaimer: this post is not sponsored, and I purchased the bag with my own money. All of my thoughts are my own; I am not affiliated with Polene.

Background

I won’t talk too much about the background since a lot of bloggers and Youtubers have covered this extensively. Basically Polene was founded and is based in Paris. They have one physical boutique in Paris, but the majority of their business is conducted through e-commerce sales. They ship worldwide from their workshop in Spain.

The products are all handmade in Spain by artisans, and the quality is said to be comparable to some of the higher end brands since everything is hand made.

Ordering and logistics

Polene has various different website “formats,” for example for shipping to Canada, you can order from the EU site in Euros or the US site in US Dollars. I read on Purseforum that if you order in Euros, you get charged less duty. I’m not sure why this is the case since all of their orders are shipped from Seville, Spain.

I placed my order on a Monday night, it shipped on Wednesday morning, and then I received it the following Monday afternoon (one day in advance of its scheduled delivery date) in Vancouver. The shipper was DHL and I paid 20 Euros for shipping.

Fellow Canadians, specifically if you live in BC, I placed my order for the Numero Un Nano using Euros and I paid C$64.36 in taxes and fees. This is broken down as:

  • $17.85 in DHL processing fee (like custom brokerage fees)
  • $46.51 in GST/PST, which is about 12% of the bag (at the time of purchase, 280 Euros was approx. C$388).

Because the item is being shipped from the EU directly into Canada, and it’s also made in the EU, due to CETA, there is no duty. I was just charged sales tax.

First impressions

You’ve probably seen some of the unboxings on Youtube but the bag comes in an absolutely beautiful shimmery white box. The box is incredibly sturdy and well made, and is better than some of the luxury designer boxes I have. The dust bag is also very nice quality and is superior to some of the luxury dust bags I own. It was very nicely packaged in bubble wrap, and then wrapped nicely in branded tissue paper. First impressions and presentation are A+, especially considering the price point.

Quality

The colour I picked was the Terre de Sienne. It’s translated to Terracotta or Sienna on the website depending on which page you’re looking at, but the French is consistently labeled as Terre de Sienne. It comes with a contrasting cream stitching, which I absolutely love.

I don’t know if its just because of the amount of reviews I watched which said the leather quality is amazing, or if I’m just used to the leather on ultra high end handbags, but I found the smooth calfskin leather to just be okay. It’s not the softest or smoothest of leathers, and it looks and feels like the colour was painted on top rather than dyed. My vintage Chanel bag was also painted so I can kind of tell the difference between a dyed and a painted bag now; a painted bag isn’t as supple compared to a non-painted bag, and you can definitely tell the difference when you touch this Polene. You can also see in the detail photos below that there’s a lot of wrinkling in the leather, and that happens more often with bags that are painted. Yes leather does wrinkle normally, but a painted bag would show more significant wrinkles than a non-painted bag. The leather is also quite stiff, which could be because the design of the bag requires a more structured leather.

Even though it is advertised as smooth leather, it feels a little bit textured, so I think that’s why a lot of reviewers have said don’t find scratches on it even after months or years of use. If you are worried about buying a smooth leather bag, I don’t think you have to be worried about this one. I think it’ll be pretty durable, especially since it is protected by a layer of leather paint as well.

The stitching was even, and I couldn’t find any issues with the construction quality. The interior cotton fabric lining felt thick and strong.

The hardware is gold hardware and you can tell that it is very high quality, each piece stamped with the word Polene. The magnetic closure is also very strong and I don’t have to worry about it randomly popping open.

Versatility

This bag is super adorable. It’s a really good size for me when worn handheld, slung on one shoulder, or cross-body. I’m 5’6.5 and a US size 8, and at the longest length, it’s just about the perfect length for me cross-body. If you are a bigger size or taller than me, then it might be a little snug.

I was a little bit worried about the colour initially, because some Youtube reviews are showing it as almost a dark orange, and I had a hard time finding more “real life” photos of this bag. I do have to say the bag in real life is a tinge darker than the online photos, but it is mostly true to colour.  It does have some orange in it, but it’s not an orange bag.

In terms of what fits in the bag, I don’t carry around that much — a compact wallet (LV Victorine wallet), a 6 key holder (from LV), iPhone 10, hand sanitizer, mask, hand cream, and maybe a soft sunglasses pouch, and I can fit everything inside no problem. If you’re someone who carries a lot then this bag is not for you as the folds at the front significantly decrease the bag’s capacity. I can fit a transit card in the back pocket, and nothing else.

Note: I took the “what fits inside” photos later in the day in a west facing room so the bag looks warmer in these pictures than in the other pictures. The bag doesn’t look this warm in real life. The other photos are quite accurate in terms of real life colour.

Polene Numero Un Nano in Terre de Sienne Terracotta Sienna review
Polene Numero Un Nano in Terre de Sienne Terracotta Sienna review
Polene Numero Un Nano in Terre de Sienne Terracotta Sienna review
Polene Numero Un Nano in Terre de Sienne Terracotta Sienna review

Final thoughts

If I had to summarize my thoughts about this bag in one phrase, it would be “it’s pretty good for the price.” The style is super cute, like a dumpling, and it’ll be a great weekend go-around bag. I could see myself using this for a long time, but I wouldn’t see it as an investment bag I can use forever because I don’t think the leather will stand the test of time (i.e. 10+ years of regular use). The price is pretty reasonable, as after conversion and taxes it was around C$480. It does feel luxurious to use, without the luxury price tag. Overall it’s a great purchase for those who want to get something that is well made without the ultra high price tag.

Would I buy another Polene bag? Yes, yes I would. The styles are very chic, practical, and the prices are reasonable. I can definitely see why they have such a loyal following of customers.

Polene Numero Un Nano in Terre de Sienne Terracotta Sienna review

Polene Numero Un Nano in Terre de Sienne Terracotta Sienna review

Polene Numero Un Nano in Terre de Sienne Terracotta Sienna review

Polene Numero Un Nano in Terre de Sienne Terracotta Sienna review

Polene Numero Un Nano in Terre de Sienne Terracotta Sienna review

Polene Numero Un Nano in Terre de Sienne Terracotta Sienna review

Polene Numero Un Nano in Terre de Sienne Terracotta Sienna review

Polene Numero Un Nano in Terre de Sienne Terracotta Sienna review

Polene Numero Un Nano in Terre de Sienne Terracotta Sienna review

Polene Numero Un Nano in Terre de Sienne Terracotta Sienna review

FASHION | Review of Veja Campo sneakers in Extra White / Matcha

Veja Campo review and sizing

I’m back today with another fashion post! Today I wanted to write about my Veja Campo sneakers. I ordered these from Nordstrom a few weeks ago and I struggled with the sizing so I wanted to share my thoughts with you in a blog post. I’ve been seeing Veja sneakers featured by several Youtubers for over a year now, but I was never tempted by them until I saw a photo of the new Spring 2021 colours, which included a pair in white and a beautiful soft mint green. I didn’t even research the different sneaker designs offered by Veja because I knew I wanted the specific pair in this mint colour.

Veja Campo review and sizing

Style

The Campo style is one of Veja’s less athletic-looking, casual sneaker styles. It comes with a rubber sole with not a lot of arch or insole support. The upper is made of a beautiful soft grained calf leather, with vegan suede accents on the back and side of the shoe. In terms of casual leather sneakers, Veja offers the Campo and the Esplar. You can tell the difference between them quickly because the Campos have the word “Veja” stamped twice on the shoe — once on the back and then once on the outer bottom heel of the shoe. The Esplars only have Veja stamped once on the back of the shoe. The Campos are in a grained leather, versus the Esplars have a smooth leather upper.

In terms of design, the Campos are a slightly wider shoe compared to the Esplar. The Esplars are slimmer and sleeker looking. I have relatively large feet (size US 9) so the Campos can look a bit chunky, since they are wider. That being said, I don’t mind at all because I love the mint colour. If you’re not particular about the colour, then you might need to take a closer look at the Campos vs. Esplar. I personally prefer the grained leather on the Campo as well because it helps to mask imperfections. Smooth leather is hard enough to maintain, let alone being on shoes!

Price-wise, these are on the more expensive side for Vejas. They are priced at C$190, versus the Esplars are C$120-150. The V-10s, which are the most popular Veja style, are slightly pricier at C$200.

Sizing

Contrary to popular belief — Veja Campos do NOT run big.

I had a lot of trouble finding my size, especially since I ordered online. Vejas come in full sizes, and I kept reading on multiple sites that they fit large and if you have a half size shoe, to go down the half size. I’m a European size 39 for 98% of my shoes, so I ordered my true European size 39. Unknown to me was that European size 39 were converted by Vejas to be a US size 8, which is not my size (I’m a US size 9). Also when I got the shoe, they ended up being too small. I returned those and then got the European size 40, which were a perfect fit with a bit of wiggle room in the toes, which is how I prefer my sneakers to fit.

I really think that for these shoes, you should go into the store to try them on if possible, or order online from a place that has flexible returns and exchanges. I almost ordered these off of MatchesFashion, which would have been cheaper for me but the return process would have been a lot harder.

Comfort

The Campos are pretty darn comfortable pretty much immediately, however similar to other people, I had some issues with the tongue irritating the top of my foot. I ended up trying to break them in at home while wearing thicker athletic socks so that I can soften the tongue. Otherwise, the shoe itself didn’t require much breaking in, just the stiff tongue.

Quality

I love the grained leather on these shoes. They immediately make the shoes look and feel more higher quality than say a pair of Adidas Stan Smiths (or other Adidas white sneakers). The Campos feel very substantial and well made, and are slightly heavier than my Adidas sneakers, but they don’t bother me at all. After wearing them for a while, the leather does crease, but it’s not super noticeable because of the grained leather. I’m pretty happy with the quality and believe they will hold up well even with a lot of wear.

Overall

I love these, and I actually immediately ordered another pair — the V-10 in white with black accents (got them for half price at Nordstom!). My only issue is I tend to be clumsy and also quite lazy with my shoes, so I need to try extra hard to maintain the cleanliness of them over time. White sneakers are classic, and are super easy to style, so you can wear these for years and years to come.

What do you think, do you like the look of these shoes?

Veja Campo review and sizing

Veja Campo review and sizing

Veja Campo review and sizingVeja Campo review and sizing

FASHION | Stuff that social media influenced me to buy

Veja Campo sneakers review

I watched a recent video by Carol Chan where she talked about all the things that she was influenced to buy because of social media, so I was influenced by her to create a post of my own.

I will openly admit that I am highly suggestable. Sometimes all it takes is a beautifully staged photo, or even just a random snapshot, and I will be hooked.

1. Veja Campo sneakers

I’ve been seeing these sneakers float around on Youtube for quite some time now, but it wasn’t until I saw a post by a Nordstrom sales associate that I follow that it clicked in my brain that I needed these sneakers. I got them in a white and mint green combo, which is just so beautifully spring.

2. Chanel Classic Flap in the Jumbo size

I’ve actually always wanted the medium/large in the Classic Flap, but I watched a Youtube review posted by Chase Amie, who absolutely loves her Chanel Jumbo, and it started to get me interested in the Jumbo. I had also went to the boutique to try on the medium/large and the Jumbo for myself, and found that the medium/large doesn’t quite fit all of my essentials (which included a full size long wallet at the time). While Chase Amie’s review wasn’t the thing that sold me on the Jumbo, it was definitely the thing that made me think differently about which size bag to buy.

3. Acne Studios Mini Musubi bag

I saw a picture of Helen from Lumiere d’Helen wearing her Mini Musubi bag, and I ordered it online without even trying it on or seeing it in person. I didn’t do any research on it, which is super unlike me since I like to research something to death before buying. It’s also a style that isn’t something I gravitate towards, as it is a bucket bag-like style and quite boho. I normally prefer something that is more structured and classic. The bag is uber cute though, and I bought it in a beautiful burgundy colour which is a colour that I’ve been wanting to add to my collection for a while.

4. Max Mara Manuela coat

Meagan’s Moda posted an incredibly detailed and unbiased review of the Max Mara Manuela coat, which is what inspired me to ultimately buy that coat. I had been researching Max Mara coats for a few weeks at that point, and my original intention was to buy one of their cheaper, unlined options, but upon seeing Meagan wearing it in that video, and styling it in her Instagram posts, I was hooked. I think I want the 101801 coat next, Meagan makes it sound so perfect!

5. Plants… many of them

I was never a huge plant person because I’ve always had a black thumb. Plants just die under my care (I’ve killed several cacti). But ever since I saw these Instagram posts by my friend Melody and my now-friend and fellow cat-mom Le, I’ve been completely hooked. I have around 13-15 plants now, and so far they’ve been doing okay *knock on wood*. Half our house gets a ton of light (west facing) while the other half gets not as much light (east facing), so I’m forever trying to find different types of plants that will thrive under different lighting.

Thankfully, my office is south facing and gets a TON of light, so my plants that are in my office have all been doing pretty good! Of course, I’ve killed a few plants in my journey, but thankfully my husband doesn’t mind so much because most of them are still doing pretty okay, again *knock on wood*.

FASHION | Initial thoughts about my new Classic Teddy Coat in Camel from The Curated

The Curated Classic Teddy Coat in Camel review, the curated coat review

Hello! I’m back today with another fashion post. I’ve noticed that my blog has transitioned from skincare and makeup to more fashion, and I apologize to any long term readers who aren’t the biggest fan of fashion. I feel like as I age, I’ve become way less experimental with my skincare, preferring to use products that are more suitable for my skin type, and I also rarely wear makeup now that we’re working from home all the time. I still love fashion, as whenever I do get to leave the house, I try to be a bit more dressed up since the opportunities to do so are so limited now.

That being said, this isn’t a true review. The weather in Vancouver is still really warm, and I haven’t been leaving my house or needing a coat this warm. However, since we are slowly entering fall, I know many of you are looking for coats like this, and I wanted to get this initial thoughts post out as soon as possible so that you can have some kind of information to help you make purchasing decisions. I also noticed that The Curated is reopening pre-orders for this coat (and other teddy coats) this week, so I hope that this post will be useful to those who are looking to buy a teddy coat from The Curated.

Anyways, onwards with the post!

[UPDATE – I’ve since made some updates based on my latest experience. Please read to the end of this post!]

The Curated Classic Teddy Coat in Camel review, the curated coat review

Research

I’ve never been a fan of the teddy coat trend, but since we’ve been working from home all the time, I’ve been spending more and more time with my fleece blanket. That’s when it clicked that I could technically be wearing a cosy fleece blanket with me everywhere I go, and still be fashionable, in the form of a teddy coat! I was a little concerned that the teddy coat trend had already been over by the time I caught on, but based on an Instagram poll, it looks like 2/3 of you still believe that teddy coats are on trend. Regardless, the potential to be walking around in fleece blanket was too much of a draw, and I started researching teddy coats.

You know my love for all things luxurious, so I had to start my search at Max Mara, whose teddy coats are amongst their most classic coat lines. Unfortunately, they are also priced at astronomical prices so I had to let that go. I also searched on Etsy, as well as other more conventional websites for clothes such as Saks, Nordstrom, The Bay, and Simons, but it seemed like most of the teddy coats that were available were either thousands of dollars for real wool, or a few hundred for synthetic materials. As I grow older, I really prefer to invest in a good solid piece of clothing and then I never have to replace it again, so I prefer natural fibres to synthetic. That means looking at wool, silk, cashmere, alpaca, camel hair, etc. I also didn’t want to pay a ton of money for something that was still considered a trend item.

I randomly stumbled on the brand The Curated on Instagram, which has just been around for the last 2-3 or so years. It was started by a female entrepreneur, a lady who is South Korean by heritage, but adopted to Australia, lived in China for a few years, and now she has set up her home base in Norway. Initially, the brand focused on affordable yet luxurious double faced wool and cashmere coats, but in the last year, they’ve expanded to teddy coats, alpaca, and other materials. The coats are very minimalist, and most of them are made of double faced wool / cashmere and is unlined. The products really remind me of Max Mara but without the steep price point.

The brand philosophy is also centred around sustainability. The Curated works with vertically integrated suppliers (those who harvest the wool, make it into fabric, and also manufacture the coats) in Inner Mongolia, in China, where a lot of the world’s wool and cashmere production is located. Most of the fabrics used are leftover from prior seasons, so it is more sustainable. Lastly, the products ship directly from China, so customers don’t incur the additional costs of having the items stored in local warehouses, and having to pay shipping twice (from the supplier to the warehouse then to you). Because the fabrics are mostly past season leftovers, the coats are made in limited quantities and sell out very quickly.

The coats are all very reasonably priced. The wool / cashmere blended coats start at US$295 and then the 100% cashmere coats are US$875. Shipping is not free, but it’s a reasonable US$25. You can also see how much taxes you will incur before you order, so you know the all-in cost and there won’t be surprises upon arrival.

The Curated Classic Teddy Coat in Camel review

Ordering

I ordered the Classic Teddy Coat in Camel, which was priced at US$295, plus US$25 for shipping and another US$97 for taxes and duty (prepaid at the time you order), so all in I paid US$417, which converted to approximately C$550. It shipped from China (directly from the manufacturer, to save costs), using DHL. My order arrived super fast. I placed my order on Sunday night (past midnight), my item shipped on Tuesday from China, and I received it Thursday afternoon. Estimated delivery was supposed to be the following Monday, but then I received a notification on the Thursday that my order was out for Delivery.

The Classic Teddy Coat is made of 100% wool outer, plus a silk lining. The texture for teddy coats vary significantly on the market, you can get ones that are more fleecy, and ones that are more like faux fur. The Classic Teddy Coat was inspired by the texture of the Max Mara classic teddy coats, so you get a very luxurious product without the $5000 price tag. The Classic Teddy Coat comes with beautiful lapels, as well as is single breasted using metal eye and hook closures.

The Classic Teddy Coat is one of two teddy coats offered by The Curated, the other is the Modern Teddy Coat, which does not have lapels. In addition to camel, the Classic Teddy Coat is also available in a sand colour, which lighter and more cool-toned. I love my camel coats, and I also love warm tones for fall, so it was a no brainer which colour to pick. Both the Teddy Coat and the Modern Teddy Coat come in a long version, which comes down to your calves, as well as a shorter version, which is thigh length. I wanted something that would be wearable through the winter, so I picked the longer version.

In terms of sizing, I went with my usual M size. I’m 169 cm (5’6.5) and I usually wear a size M or US Size 8 / UK size 12, and it just so happened that the founder of this company, Nicola, also is my size, so I was able to use her sizing for reference. I also sent a message to their customer service just to confirm the sizing, and they did confirm that I would be best with a size M.

One thing to note is that it just so happened that my coat in my size was available for sale right then and there, but because The Curated primarily uses past season leftover fabrics for sustainability, based on my research, they primarily rely on pre-orders for their product sales. As such, the item you want might not be available to purchase and ship right away. Pre-orders will be announced via their Instagram and Facebook group, so keep an eye out if a particular item you want happens to be sold out now. There’s a schedule posted on the Curated’s website that has an estimate of when things are expected to ship.

The Curated Classic Teddy Coat in Camel review

My initial thoughts

My teddy coat arrived in a vacuum seal bag. I understand this is to save costs and so that customers don’t to pay extra for an extra large shipping box. I have no issue with this because the box will get thrown out anyways, whereas the vacuum seal bag is great to be reused for future travel or packing. Because it’s vacuum sealed for so long, you do have to fluff it out a bit before you wear it. You can either throw it into the bathroom after a shower so the steam will allow the coat to fluff out and straighten, or you can also gently steam it to steam out any wrinkles. Do not use an iron on this!

Of course, being the impatient person that I am, I had it hung up for an hour and then I decided to steam it, first on the silk side, where I spent most of my time steaming, and then very very quickly on the wooly side. The wrinkles mostly steamed out, with some faint lines still remaining, which I’m pretty sure will fall on their own as the coat wears. As I was steaming it, I did make a note of the quality of the fabric and stitching. The silk is very soft, and is not a thin layer of silk – it felt quite substantial, which I’m sure is necessary to prevent ripping as the coat is pretty weighty.

The stitching is okay – not amazing, because the knotting was done a bit messily, and the stitches aren’t evenly spaced out or as tight in some areas, but it’s fine for the price point. I found one very light snag in the silk lining, but it’s very faint and not very noticeable. I also noticed a few of the wool fibres detaching from the coat; it was just a few standalone fibres though, which isn’t unusual for a furry coat like this.

The medium size that I purchased fits me pretty much perfectly. It is slightly oversized, which is what I prefer. The sleeves are a tiny bit short, but it’s not a huge deal. It’ll look wonderfully layered over both thin and thick sweaters. As mentioned previously, I am 5’6.5, and the coat is pretty long on me, hitting me at my upper calf (modelling shots below). I think this is a good length for me.

The coat is heavy. It is also very warm and cuddly. I love wearing it, even just around the house, because it feels like I am just walking around in a cuddly blanket. I haven’t worn it out very much, but wearing it at home does feel very warm. It’ll be a great piece to wear if I don’t feel like wearing my parka, and it’s too cold for my Max Mara Manuela coat. It’s not waterproof, but wool is naturally water resistant so it would be okay to wear in the snow as well, just not in a rainstorm or downpour.

This wasn’t a huge deal to me, but it might be to some people – the colour of the coat is not a true camel. Next to my Max Mara Manuela coat, which I consider to be a true camel colour, the Curated Classic Teddy Coat in the Camel colour is more of a warm, rusty brown. That being said, the colour still looks great on me, and the warm tones make it absolutely perfect for the fall season. I just wanted to point it out in case people were looking for a true camel coat. I posted about this on the Curated Community Facebook Group, and Nicola the founder responded saying she’s noticed the colour difference and they’ve been thinking about changing it, so in the future there might be a truer camel teddy coat coming. In the meantime, if you’re not the biggest fan of the warm tones, the sand colour is a much cooler-toned colour.

I’ve read people say that the feel of this coat is more akin to a faux fur coat than a true teddy coat. I disagree. Even though I don’t own any other teddy coats, I’ve touched them in store, and I do think this feels like a true teddy coat made of natural fibres. If you buy a teddy coat made of synthetic fibres then you might end up with something that’s more faux sherpa, but that wasn’t the look I wanted.

This coat doesn’t have buttons, rather you close it up using a set of hook and eye closures. They’re very easy to use, and well hidden in the teddy material, so it maintains the minimalist look.

The Curated Classic Teddy Coat in Camel reviewThe Curated Classic Teddy Coat in Camel review

Comparison with Max Mara coats

As you may recall, I did a lot of research on Max Mara coats last year as I was trying to decide which one I wanted to buy. As I wasn’t looking at buying the Max Mara teddy coat at that time, I didn’t specifically try on or do a deep dive at Max Mara teddy coats. That being said, I can do a quick high level comparison between the quality of my The Curated Classic Teddy Coat, and my Max Mara Manuela coat which I’ve had for about a year.

The biggest difference between the Max Mara coat I have and my teddy coat is that the stitching on the Max Mara coat is done absolutely beautifully. If you’re a stickler for little details like this, then you can’t beat the even, tight stitching on the Max Mara coat. There’s a reason their coats are so expensive, and part of that reason is the attention to detail is really there. That being said, if you are okay with not 100% perfect craftsmanship, but the items are made with quality materials, then I don’t think there’s a huge difference between Max Mara and The Curated. I’m very happy with the wool fabric of my The Curated Teddy Coat.

In terms of materials, Max Mara has several teddy coat styles that come out each season. They are all very similar in look and price, BUT they can be very different in terms of material. I’ve seen Max Mara teddy coats come out in 100% wool, a wool / cashmere blend, a wool / synthetic blend, and even other types of materials. I haven’t looked too deeply into why there’s a discrepancy but I’ve just noticed that there is one. Obviously if you are comparing a wool / cashmere or alpaca blend teddy coat by Max Mara, then the quality of the material and the softness should be superior to The Curated teddy coats, but if you are comparing a wool / synthetic blend or even a 100% wool Max Mara teddy coat, then the quality differences will be debatable, especially since the Max Mara version is nearly 10x more expensive than The Curated.

Max Mara often releases double faced wool / cashmere blend coats, and they are way pricier than The Curated’s coats. Something like this would be indistinguishable from a The Curated coat. Even the Weekend Max Mara Ted Coat I tried on last year, which was 100% wool but not that soft, was more expensive than the 30% cashmere / 70% wool coats put out by The Curated. The S Max Mara coats I tried on were softer than the Weekend Max Mara coats, but those are even pricier (and are still only 100% wool). If you are looking for a double faced wool / cashmere blend coat, then I don’t think you can go wrong with the price point of The Curated.

The Curated also has 100% cashmere coats for US$900. By comparison, Max Mara’s 100% cashmere coats are usually over C$5,000 and can go up to C$8,000. Both are lined.

Conclusion

Overall I’m very happy with this coat purchase and I’m very excited to get a lot of wear out of it this fall and winter. For a price of C$550, you get a beautiful coat made of quality and natural materials. I can’t wait to incorporate it more into my fall wardrobe (or just continue to wear it around the house).

I already have a minimalist coat from Max Mara (my Manuela coat), which I am very happy about. If I had discovered this brand before I purchased my Max Mara coat, there’s a chance I might not have even gotten the Max Mara coat and just bought something from The Curated. The styles are all beautiful and I think worth a look if you are interested in getting a minimalist wool coat.

UPDATE

Hi everyone, I thought about whether I wanted to post about this here because I know that the Curated is a small brand and sometimes small brands have issues catching up to their demand, especially since they’re a small team, but I decided that I’m honestly so disappointed in the brand’s customer service that I’m going to speak about my experience on it. I am writing about this nearly two weeks after I first brought up the issue to the brand, after multiple follow-ups, posts on the Curated Community facebook group, their live chat, and Instagram messages. In the meantime, they’ve been completely active on social media, posting new releases, commenting on people’s posts, etc. while largely ignoring my correspondence.

I’m in Vancouver, Canada, so I got my coat shipped to Vancouver, Canada. I mentioned above that I paid approximately 33% in taxes and duties on top of the price of the item and the shipping cost.

My work VPN is in Toronto, so when I was shopping during my lunch hour, my shipping address defaulted to Toronto, which is when I noticed that for shipments to Ontario, people were only getting charged sales tax of 13%. That was a 20% difference, which is pretty huge for a coat that is hundreds of dollars and in USD.

I contacted the Curated customer service about it via live chat (they were showing online at the time). After several days there was no response, so then I sent an email. The customer service person, Mary, responded saying that she will have to ask Nicola, the founder about it. A few days later, it was still silence and no one had gotten back to me or addressed the issue. I finally posted on the Curated Community Facebook group as a PSA for Canadian shoppers to be aware of this issue with the taxes being calculated wrong, and to hold off on ordering until this is figured out.

Finally, after many other Canadians said they just made orders and paid the inflated 33% tax, Nicola the founder came on and said that taxes were supposed to be 25% (not 13% or 33%). No effort was made to contact affected Canadians to give them a refund for the difference, and she just brushed off the 33% and 13% taxes as a Shopify glitch. I later emailed her to ask if I can get a refund for the difference, and asked whether the refund would be for the difference between 25% and 33%, or the difference between 13% and 33% (since 13% was what my other Canadian counterparts were paying, I thought it was only fair that I get refunded that difference). I still got no response, no apologies, and no explanation. I ended up getting a refund of 8% (difference between 25% and 33%) via my Paypal a few hours later, but again with no attached explanation or apologies for the inconvenience.

The next day, I got an email from Mary (the customer service person), who thanked me for pointing this out to them, and offered me free shipping on my next order.

I went to try out my free shipping code, and saw that the taxes for a shipment to Vancouver, BC had been updated to 25%, which is what they said they would do. Just for the heck of it, I checked the price for a shipment to Ontario and it had been updated to ZERO tax. I honestly couldn’t believe it, because now not only were people in Ontario not paying ANY taxes on this (the Curated would still have to pay tax to the government so it just means us other shoppers are supplementing the shopping of Ontario buyers), the difference between the taxes paid is now even greater. It’s a 25% difference now, whereas before it was a 20% difference.

I contacted Mary again, and also Nicola, just to ask about it, and again received no response. Meanwhile, throughout the next few days, the brand was constantly posting things on social media about their new releases. Nicola, the founder, even did an “ask me anything” on Instagram. I sent her a question asking if this had been fixed, and of course she didn’t respond to it. She later posted saying that if we had any questions, to send her a DM.

In the meantime, I’ve had a few people reach out to me on Instagram and Facebook saying they saw my post on the Curated Community Facebook page and ask if this issue has been resolved. They said they’ve been trying to get ahold of Nicola and their DMs go unread and emails are unanswered. Meanwhile, Nicola is still answering questions about products on her “ask me anything,” and also posted a screenshot of her responding to someone sending her nasty messages on Instagram. If she has time to read and respond to nasty trolls on the internet, I’m surprised she doesn’t have time to respond to her legitimate customers.

I saw that they posted recently that they will soon be offering free exchanges and returns to customers in Canada / US. That’s great but that only affects new customers, it won’t be valid for previous orders.

The next day, I went to try to check out my cart again and this time, the issue was even worse. Thankfully Ontario’s glitch had been fixed that it was charging 25% tax, but BC was showing a whopping 54% in taxes. Once again, I emailed Nicola and Mary to ask about this, and also included a screenshot. Finally Nicola responded with a very curt “can you refresh it” (verbatim, with the same capitalization and punctuation). I responded saying I did, I tried using incognito mode, tried removing it from my cart and adding it again, etc. Because this was so unfair to my BC shoppers, I posted an update to my post on the Curated Facebook group to let people know this was still happening. A few hours later, Mary responded to the Facebook thread saying this had been fixed. If I didn’t point this out (or point out any of the times that the website was overcharging tax), The Curated would continue to overcharge taxes for certain Canadians. They also locked my thread from additional comments. Finally the next day, Nicola made an announcement on the Facebook page saying that the Canada tax issue had been fixed.

The products are beautiful, that’s a fact. The prices are also really good for the quality that you get, but the customer service has honestly been disappointing and lacking. I get that they’re a small brand that has grown quickly, but they should be adding people to they’re growing so fast. If they have time to launch new products every week, they should add new team members so they can help them manage this growth. They’re still sending products to influencers regularly to promote their products, but they don’t have the infrastructure to support that boost in demand. It’s very clear where their priorities lie.

UPDATE #2

I really wanted to refrain from talking about this (for months I didn’t) because I don’t want it to look like I’m bashing the brand in any way, but as a consumer myself, I would want to know all of the things I’m saying now and then make an educated and conscious decision about whether I want to embroil myself in any drama. I understand that the company and the people worked really hard to establish it and the products are nice, but it looks like there is zero accountability when it comes to quality control, as well as some very questionable business practices.

Some examples of things that happened:

  1. Another company released a coat that was similar to the Curated’s Classic Coat, so the brand founder asked the people in the Curated Community Facebook Group to go spam the other brand’s Instagram and tell them to remove the coat for copying the Curated’s design. Well the truth was that the Curated actually took the coat from a catalogue offered by an OEM, and made minor tweaks to it (e.g., lengthening the sleeves). This whole time, the Curated founder has called people who don’t design their own clothes “lazy,” and said she absolutely designs all of her own coats.
  2. Related to the above incident, the other brand was running a promotion where customers can submit photos of them wearing the coat to get 30% off. People on the internet, who wanted to get the discount, took photos from the Curated Facebook group. The Curated founder found out, accused the other brand’s founder of malicious stealing, and again told her minions to go attack the other brand. As soon as the other brand realized what her customers were doing, she removed all of the photos, but the online bullying didn’t stop for the entire day. The other brand’s founder said she was having a breakdown because of all of the online bullying, and she couldn’t argue with the Curated’s hoards of supporters… over a coat! Does The Curated’s actions remind you of anyone else out there who is calling for people to bully others?
  3. There were a lot of sizing inconsistencies in one of the batches of coats that were sent out where the actual coat in a particular size was several inches smaller than the measurements that were posted on the Curated website. The founder didn’t take responsibility, said it was the factory’s fault, and instead asked the affected customers to sell their coats in the Facebook group to other customers instead of accepting a return. As a company, asking your customers to sell their items instead of accepting a return for defective items is simply unheard of.
  4. The “silk” lining advertised by the brand turned out to be polyester in the coat pockets of some of the coats. The founder also took no responsibility, said the factory “never told her.” The brand’s founder has since asked the affected customer to sell her coat in the Facebook group rather than accept a return. The last I’ve heard, it seems like the brand is potentially looking into offering a return, so hopefully this is resolved properly. Update – just kidding, the affected customers were provided with store credit of $25 to spend on their next Curated product.
  5. The brand advertised down coats with “100% waterproofed cotton outershell, 100% ethical down fill.” A customer tested this on her down coat and commented saying she didn’t think the coats were waterproofed as the water soaked right in. The Curated founder said they do not use chemicals to waterproof as chemicals are bad, and that they waterproof the coats based on the way they’re woven. But that still doesn’t resolve the issue of the coats not actually being waterproof?? Again there was no accountability from the brand, only deflections.

If you want to personally see some of this stuff happen in real-time (or if you don’t trust what I’m saying), you can go to the Curated Community Facebook Group and see for yourself.

Nicola – if you are reading this, please do NOT attempt to contact me. I gave you my personal number for order fulfillment purposes, not for you to call or text me whenever you want to talk about random things. My order has been complete for a while and I’m no longer a customer so you have no reason whatsoever to contact me personally. Living in the EU, I’m sure there are laws against the misuse of personal information. We definitely have that in Canada. Also please stop telling people that the constructive feedback (or negative comments, if you see them as that) affect “your family’s finances.” I get it, you are trying to make money for your family, but at the same time, consumers also have a limited amount of funds to spend on things like coats. Everyone is trying to make money to support their family. If you spend hundreds on a coat and it ends up being nothing like what you expected and in some cases not even wearable, wouldn’t you be upset?

The Curated Classic Teddy Coat in Camel review

This post is not sponsored. I purchased this coat with my own money. I do not use affiliate links.

FASHION | My experience buying vintage Chanel, featuring my medium Diana bag in beige lambskin

8D93211B-7C66-4DA9-8845-A723AEEDBA52

I recently picked up my very first piece of vintage Chanel and I wanted to share my experience with you in case anyone was interested in getting one too.

Research

I went into this process knowing the specific model of bag I wanted – the Diana. The Diana comes in two sizes; what I didn’t know was if I wanted the small or medium Diana, so I did a lot of research on the dimensions, weight, what can fit into each size, and how each size would look proportionate to my frame. Since the Diana is a vintage bag (they stopped production of it in the 90s, and while it was reissued in 2015, significant design changes were made for the reissue), I wouldn’t be able to go into a store to try it on and had to rely on internet reviews and photos to decide this. Since you are still spending a good amount of money on a bag that was likely going to be shipped to you from overseas, it was important to do a lot of research to make sure that the bag you are getting suits your needs.

Some amazing resources I found to research the bag itself included My Grandfather’s Things, a specialist in Diana bags who owns multiples of each size so she often does comparison photos and also videos; Facebook, specifically the Chanel Reetzy Groups; Instagram, using the hashtag #ChanelDiana; as well as Youtube. I also found this blog post which I thought was very helpful in pushing me towards one of the sizes.

The price of vintage bags has also changed a lot in the last 6-12 months, primarily driven by the multiple price increases, as well as overall consumer awareness to be more sustainable, so it was important to also understand the price trends so you aren’t overpaying for something. The best resources I found for pricing references are Vestiaire Collective; Tradesy; and Instagram. I found them to be the most helpful because the sold listings continued to be published, so you can see what were the historical prices for the style you wanted, as well as the purchase date so you know at what point in time those prices existed.

Based on my research, the Diana small was sized in between a rectangular mini and a small classic flap, and the Diana medium was sized similar to a medium classic flap. The primary difference in capacity being that the Diana is a single flap bag. Since I’m 5’6 and a US size 8 / UK size 12, and I have one Chanel Jumbo and two Chanel minis, I thought that the Diana medium would be a better fit for my body size and my needs.

6D707526-EBD3-4F10-AE11-A7F02F9865A8

Buying

Because the bag has been discontinued for almost two decades, the next challenge was trying to find the bag at the right condition for the right price. I had wanted the beige Diana, which is harder to find than the black, and usually came in worse conditions than the black because light-coloured lambskin is harder to maintain than black. Another challenge was making sure that the bag is authentic, since there are a lot of fakes on the market, some of them looking very similar to the real thing.

I had around 10 websites bookmarked which I refreshed every day to see if there were new stock that came in. Some of them included Hedy; Amore Japan; and eBay. I also looked at Vestiaire Collective; Fashionphile; The Real Real; Tradesy; and 1st Dibs.

Since I was new to buying vintage, I wanted to make sure that the transaction would be low risk, so I decided that I would buy from a Japanese seller. Japanese vintage sellers are some of the most reliable and trusted on the market, particularly because Japan has very strict laws when it comes to counterfeits, and from what I hear, Japanese bag owners also tend to take better care of their bags, so the condition of the item will be better when it hits the resale market. I also wanted to make sure that if for whatever reason, the bag was counterfeit, I needed an authenticity guarantee which would allow me to get my money back.

For those reasons, I ended up getting my Diana bag from a popular Japanese reseller of vintage bags from eBay, and paid using Paypal. The reseller had over 30,000 positive reviews on eBay, and eBay and Paypal also have authenticity guarantees, so I felt like I was protected in case the transaction didn’t go well.

One thing that came up in my research that I didn’t anticipate to be so common was that a lot of vintage bags are re-dyed or re-coloured. I had asked the seller if the bag had been repainted or redyed, and they did not know. They just said they didn’t do anything to the bag while it was in their possession, but the previous owner(s) could have. This is something to be aware of if you are looking for a vintage bag, particularly if its light coloured. It’s hard to tell via photos if the bag had been repainted; one thing to look out for is if the leather looks wrinkled, if the stitches and the corners and nooks of the bag look like there is paint on it. It should be fairly obvious once you receive the bag, as it significantly affects the feel of the leather.

Receiving the bag

Shipping from Japan was lightning fast via DHL. I paid on Tuesday night, it shipped Wednesday night, DHL got it on Thursday morning, and it arrived in Vancouver at around 1PM on Friday. If you’re buying from a Japanese seller, they have the option of shipping via DHL or EMS, which is similar to Canada Post Xpresspost. If you have the option, you should ask if the seller can ship via DHL. I knew of someone else in the Chanel Facebook group who purchased a bag from Japan and their package was shipped using EMS, and it sat in Japan’s export customs for over two weeks before it even left Japan.

There is always risk of buying something sight unseen. The eBay listing didn’t mention the inclusion of a dust bag or authenticity card, so I thought the listing was for just the bag, but when I received it, I saw that the authenticity card and the original dustbag had also been included. This was a good thing, yes, but it shows that eBay listings can be inaccurate.

The primary thing that made me a little bit disappointed about this bag is that the bag looks to have been repainted. The leather is a bit dry, stiff and wrinkled in the back. It is a 2 series bag from 1991-1994, so I’m not surprised it was repainted since I imagine beige bags are hard to keep in immaculate condition over nearly 30 years. The flap of the bag, though, looks perfectly smooth.

I did pay duty on this when it arrived in Canada, but it was very immaterial compared to the value of the bag. DHL didn’t include a detailed invoice breakdown of the duty and taxes owed though, just said that I owed an amount in duty, taxes and brokerage fees. I paid this over the internet using a link they had sent me, so by the time the bag arrived, the courier just dropped it off with no additional paperwork.

After receiving the bag, I did get it authenticated just for peace of mind, and confirmed that the bag was indeed authentic.

Overall

I’m very happy with the bag I received. I’m super happy with the condition and the price that I paid. Even though it was repainted, the leather still feels very soft. I’m also pleasantly surprised that I was able to receive the authenticity card and the dust bag, which I didn’t expect at all since those are things that can be easily lost. I’ve just started using a leather conditioner to enhance the leather and also ensure its longevity, so I hope that this bag will last me for the rest of my lifetime.

The TL;DR of this is that you should do a lot of research to make sure that you know what you are buying, and in the end, it might not turn out 100% perfect and what you expected, but overall it’ll still be a good experience.

Here’s a photo of me modelling the medium Diana. You can see the proportionally, it looks pretty good for my frame. I’ll provide a more thorough review once I’ve had more opportunities to wear this out.

F36620D7-3A47-49E6-B6D2-357EE137583F

WEDDING | Review of our Four-Panel Invitations from Minted

23031E9D-8903-4096-9C4A-FB01B579FCF8

I googled to find reviews on the Minted Four-Panel Invitations but I didn’t see anything, so I wanted to make sure I document my thoughts properly such that other brides can find this useful. This review is not sponsored, none of my links are affiliate links, and Minted has nothing to do with this post.

Note: As with most 2020 brides, our original “big” wedding celebration was postponed to next year. We still mailed our invitations out earlier this year, before COVID happened, so we were able to get good use out of them. Sadly, a lot of other couples basically had their invitations go to waste. I heard from other couples that if your wedding was postponed, Minted will give you a discount code to re-order new invitations. That’s something to keep in mind if you decide to order from them.

One of things I cared about least in my wedding planning process, apart from flowers and decor, was our invitations. I always thought that invitations were a bit of a waste of money, since most people will just throw them away once they read the information on them. This is especially true of entire invitation “suites,” where in addition to an invitation card, you also get the reception information card, details card, accommodations card, etc etc. Yes apparently sending your guests a stack of papers with everything on a separate card is a thing. These “suites” can also cost upwards of several hundred to even a THOUSAND dollars. Nope, I wasn’t going to spend that much money on cards when I can put it towards booze or an oyster shucker bar instead.

I had originally planned on getting my invitations from Costco. They have some beautifully pre-designed template cards for very affordable prices, but it wasn’t customizable and if you wanted to add additional information, you needed to add another set of detail cards. While it was still much more affordable than buying it elsewhere, I still didn’t like the idea of sending a bunch of loose cards to my guests. This is when I discovered the Minted “Bride on a Budget” section and the Four-Panel Invitations.

Invitations on a budget

Minted offers two types of invitations on a budget. The All-in-One Invitations are great if you are doing your RSVPs traditionally by mail, and if most of the details of your wedding will be provided elsewhere, like on your wedding website. The other option, which is what we opted for, was the Four-Panel Invitations. These are essentially folded cards that have the main invitation with the primary details on the front of the card, and then the inside folded part is completely customizable. You can include photos of yourself, or fill the inside with details, which is what we did. We wanted to give our guests as much information upfront as possible in the most straightforward way, so we put the schedule of events, venue address, RSVP link (we are collecting RSVPs electronically), wedding website link, and more all inside the card.

D901D6E7-72CB-4E98-ABA9-D323FF10C912

Designing our invitations

Designing this card was super simple and straightforward. Minted offers a ton of invitation designs on their website, and most of them come adapted for the Four-Panel style. We were able to narrow down the list to a few designs we liked, and then we played around with putting in our details to see which one looked best with our details in them. The design we ended up with is called Heartbeat – Barrie really liked how simple it looked, but I didn’t like the font styles or the heart in the middle. Thankfully, all of that was customizable – we were able to change the fonts from a wide selection of font styles readily available through minted, and we were also able to request that the heart be removed and replaced with a simple ampersand.

I didn’t particularly enjoy using the online editor; it was a bit tedious to use and the lines didn’t line up straight, which was a bit annoying. That being said, after you input your information and submit your order, Minted has in-house graphic designers who will take your invitation and edit it for any special requests, straighten out the lines and spacing, and adjust it so that it looks good from a professional point of view. We had a few small items we wanted them to edit (including removing that heart), and also straighten out the spacing a bit, which they were able to do perfectly. They also made a few small adjustments that we didn’t request, such as edited the font sizing so everything looked more even and balanced. While it wasn’t something we asked for, we’re super happy that they did that because we’re way happier with the end result (designed by a professional!) than the one we put together.

We reviewed two versions of proofs created by Minted graphic designers, which took a bit under 48 hours to do once our order was placed. Once the final proof was approved, our invitations went into production straight away, and was shipped out shortly after that. The total time between me submitting my order to receiving our invitations in the mail was just a week, which was incredible since they were personalized for us. Keep in mind that we’re in Vancouver and our order shipped from Seattle so it came in under two days via Fedex. If you’re anywhere else in Canada or the US, it might take a bit longer.

This is what the Heartbeat template looked like originally:

Minted four panel invitation review

This is what our final invitation design looks like (with certain details blurred out), after it was edited by the graphic designers:

Minted four panel invitation review

Quality of invitations

I’m super impressed with the quality of these invitations. Despite being the “budget” option, the paper quality was just beautiful and thick. Because my cards were bifold, Minted also included vellum paper to put in between the two folds on the inside of the card so that the ink doesn’t transfer from one side of the page to the other. The quality of the envelopes were also very nice, and I think Minted also included some extra envelopes in case we mess up some of the hand-written addressing. Overall we’re very happy with the quality of the invitations and we’re thrilled that we took the leap and ordered from Minted.

We did order some samples (free!) just to see what the invitations would look like, but for some reason they didn’t make it to me until almost a month after we placed our final order. Overall it was a risk that we were happy we took.

54387A8F-C024-4364-8AC9-2B73B2B28F0C

Why Minted

Okay so here’s the important part. Apart from the ease of design and the card-shaped invitations, we picked Minted because they provide free guest addressing. Yes you read that right – instead of spending hours handwriting your guests’ names and addresses on envelopes, resulting in cramped hands, or paying someone to write them for you, resulting in a reduced wallet size, you can use Minted’s address collection form to get everyone’s addresses and then Minted will print them for you FOR FREE. Similar to the invitation designs, you can also choose from a variety of envelope print designs. We picked something really simple with just a nice classic cursive for the guests’ names, and then a clean printed font for the addresses.

The Minted invitations are slightly pricier than the Costco ones, but I think it is totally worth it because you save hours and hours writing out names and addresses.

The other convenient thing is that once the guests’ addresses have been acquired, you can also automatically feed them into your website for RSVP collection purposes.

The cost

We ordered 65 of these Four-Panel Invitations for US$122, but HERE’S A TIP! If you sign up for the Minted FREE wedding website, you automatically get a US$50 credit in your account that you can use towards anything. These credits can’t be stacked with a promo code, but they can be stacked with the refer-a-friend credit of $25. We ended up paying US$72 for 65 invitations, including the envelopes.

We paid $15 for shipping and then another C$16 for tax and duty, which came in a separate Fedex bill afterwards.

Minted wedding website

As a side mini review, I really love the Minted website. My type A-ness basically meant I made 4 wedding websites using different platforms (WithJoy, theKnot, Zola, and Minted), and I finally decided on Minted because it was the cleanest of all of the available designs, the website interface was very easy to use, load times were fast and efficient (the WithJoy website took forever to load), and there were very little reported glitches in the guest list / RSVP process (theKnot was really bad for this). The only downside is there is less flexibility in terms of adding pages or uploading photos (apart from the main one on the front page) unless you upgrade to their premium website, which costs US$20.

The basic website includes pages for the wedding details, RSVP, wedding party information, registry info and travel, but it does not include photo uploads or adding your own custom pages. The premium website includes everything a regular website does, in addition to unlimited photo uploads, a custom URL so you can be nameandname.com, instead of nameandname.minted.us, and adding custom pages (we added a FAQ and “things to do around the city” pages). ANOTHER TIP! If you sign up for Minted, you will often get custom codes in your inbox. I was sent a code for a free upgrade to a premium website so I was able to upgrade without paying the $20.

This post was not sponsored or affiliated in any way by Minted. I paid for our invitations out of pocket.

MAKEUP | The makeup I did for myself for our backyard ceremony

9B66850C-CA6E-4EDC-B25B-8D693A753BEB

Hello! Due to COVID, our original wedding plans were postponed and instead, Barrie and I got married in an intimate backyard ceremony with just our immediate family present and our closest friends watching on Zoom. I did my own hair and makeup for the day, and I wanted to share the details of my makeup look.

Face:

  • Guerlain L’Or Primer*
  • Charlotte Tilbury Hollywood Flawless Filter*
  • Guerlain Parure Gold Foundation*
  • Guerlain Multi-Perfecting Concealer*
  • Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Flawless Filter Setting Powder

Eyes:

  • Paul & Joe Beaute Eye Primer
  • Charlotte Tilbury Dolce Vita Palette (now called the Bella Sofia)*
  • Fenty Beauty Flyliner Longwear Liquid Liner
  • Dior Diorshow Pump n Volume Mascara*
  • Esqido Oh So Sweet Lashes*
  • Burberry Effortless Eyebrow Definer*

Cheeks:

  • Charlotte Tilbury Filmstar Bronze and Glow (for contour and highlight)
  • Charlotte Tilbury Cheek to Chic Blusher in Sex on Fire*

Lips:

  • Lisa Eldridge Velvet Muse lipstick

Other:

  • Finishing spray was Urban Decay All Nighter*

AF3406F7-0768-4590-A4EE-3E37AAE47746

E833A7AE-68F8-4336-8842-509C479F11A4

I used some of my tried and true makeup products for this makeup look. Even though there were newer products in my collection that were more exciting, these were the ones that I was sure would get me through this day and make me look amazing. My absolute must-have makeup items have been highlighted using italic text in the list above. While I loved most of the products I used, the ones in italics are my ride or die products.

I was a little disappointed with the Esqido lashes. I had been saving these lashes for at least five years and I always knew I wanted to wear them on wedding day. I normally don’t save lashes and only wear them for a day, but this time I tried to save them after, and they completely fell apart while I was cleaning them. I used a water-based micellar cleanser to clean the band but a lot of the lashes fell off the band, making them completely unsalvageable. For a $35 pair of lashes, it’s absolutely insane that you can only wear them once. I don’t think I would recommend these. The band was pretty uncomfortable to wear too, as it was a lot thicker than the KISS lashes I normally wear (I highly recommend those, if you haven’t yet tried them). I had two vials of Esqido lash glue and they both dried out within a year, so I had to use the KISS lash glue which was perfect.

We’re still going to have our “big” wedding next year with the reception and party for all of our family and friends. Let’s just hope this COVID thing eases up a bit so that we can have my family travelling here from China for it.

Thank you for reading!

Products annotated with an asterisk (*) were provided by PR for review consideration; all opinions are my own.

FASHION | My designer handbag collection

Recently I’ve been completely obsessed with watching handbag collection videos on Youtube. I thought about doing my own video but then I remembered the horrors of video editing and so I settled on doing a blog post instead. The title of this blog post is pretty gaudy… but hey it caught your attention so might as well read on!

Just a quick disclosure – the point of this post isn’t to brag about how many bags I have. I really enjoy seeing other people’s handbag collections and reading their reviews, so I wanted to share my collection in case anyone is contemplating buying any of these. Honestly compared to many Youtubers / fashion bloggers, my designer bag collection is a more realistic size. If handbags aren’t your thing, or if you think I’m just wasting all this money on bags, etc., please feel free to close your browser. I work full time (very long hours at a very stressful job), and don’t have a “sugar daddy” who sponsors my bags (if you know my fiance at all, you’ll be laughing at how silly this is). I am frugal in many other areas of life that I don’t necessarily always talk about, for example I don’t own a car and take public transit as my primary mode of transportation. Just some thoughts before you read on 🙂

I’m going go down my list of oldest to newest bags in my collection. The first one that I actually won’t be talking too much about is the Chanel Just Mademoiselle Tote in black lambskin and ruthenium hardware. This was my first ever designer bag purchase, and I remember the night that I ordered this off of HGBags’s eBay site, I was completely ecstatic – happy that I bought it and also second guessing myself because of the extraordinary amount of money I just spent on one handbag. I purchased this pre-loved at age 23, a few months after I started my full time career job. The reason why I won’t be talking too much about it is that I rarely, if ever, use this bag. The lambskin was super delicate and it made me very OCD whenever I used it. The bag was quite a large size so the lambskin also meant the bag lost a bit of shape after a while. I’m glad I did buy it though because it made me realize that I should never buy another lambskin bag. At the time, the bag retailed for C$3,600 and I bought it for C$2,400.

The second designer bag I ever bought for myself is the Prada Saffiano Lux Double Zip Tote (now called the Galleria bag) in the medium size with the shoulder strap, in the colour Fuoco (red). I had my eye on this bag for the longest time, throughout university and also after graduation. A friend of mine bought the bag in black, but I wanted it in either the red or the blue. I loved this bag, and it took a lot of effort to find it because Holt Renfrew didn’t order it in either the red or the blue. This is an amazing size for work, and it does carry a ton of stuff in its three compartments. Due to the type of leather and the hardware, this bag is quite heavy once filled with stuff. I don’t use this that often anymore, so recently I also decided to ultimately gift this to my mom. At the time, I purchased this for C$1,840 + tax, now it retails for C$2,990.

Next, I have the Louis Vuitton Alma BB in Epi leather in Rose Ballerine. This was my first mini bag, and something I bought to fill a bit of a hole in my collection. The bag is perfect to wear for both casual and dress-up occasions. The Rose Ballerine colour is GORGEOUS, a super delicate light pink colour that goes well with any light-toned outfit. The Epi leather is also very low maintenance. I’ve worn this bag to weddings, to events, to the PNE, and more. It doesn’t fit a ton, but I don’t carry much with me so it fits all of my necessities. I purchased this for C$1,770 and it now retails for C$2,160.

The Celine Mini Belt Bag in Light Taupe is one of my favourite bags in my collection but one that doesn’t get much use. The Celine aesthetic is so beautiful, the minimalist design, clean lines, and quality pebbled leather makes up an incredibly gorgeous bag. It fits a ton, and isn’t too heavy even though it is such good quality leather. It has a top handle for carrying by hand or in the crook of your arm, as well as a non-adjustable shoulder strap. I love this bag so much, but the light colour means that I can only really carry this in the spring or summer, and I don’t like carrying this in the rain so it really limits the number of days in a year that I can actually use this. I purchased this pre-loved for C$2,400. I can’t remember exactly how much it retails for in Canada (I think around C$3,000) but in the US it retails for US$2,550.

I already did a review of my Saint Laurent Large Kate bag, which is a great grab and go bag but in the last year, I haven’t worn this as much as I’ve wanted to since I tend to gravitate towards cross-body bags now.

I didn’t get my next Chanel bag until five years after I got my first, and it was the Chanel Classic Jumbo in Black Caviar and Gold hardware. I LOVE this bag. It is my absolute favourite bag in my entire collection, and every time I use it, I feel a complete sense of euphoria. I don’t need to say much about the design features on this bag, as there are countless reviews of it on Youtube and all over the internet. I just love that it fits everything I need without needing to downsize, and the chain design is so perfect just for to wear over the shoulder as well as cross body. Despite it being a fancier design, I wear this everywhere – to work, to the gym, to the grocery store, to dinner, to date night, basically everywhere. It does get very heavy when filled with stuff, so if you don’t like heavy bags then steer clear. This currently retails for $7,950 + tax in Canada. I did buy mine new a few years ago, and I got a bit of a discount since I went through my personal shopper, so the price I paid was substantially less than current retail. Chanel prices are going up again soon so this is probably higher in price now.

Next we have my go-to everyday bag that I use rain or shine – the Gucci Soho Disco in red. I originally did not buy into the hype of this bag at all. I didn’t like the huge Gucci logo, and it just looked like a meh design to me. But then I heard about the Gucci price increase last fall and I started looking at more reviews of this bag, and it got me wanting to buy it. I got a really good price for it – right before the price increase, I got 10% off Matches Fashion which allowed me to buy this bag for under C$1,000. After a few price increases, retail in Canada is now $1,480 + tax. This is seriously a super versatile bag. I used this when I went travelling in NYC last fall, and when I was in Toronto last winter. It fits everything I need, and it is super lightweight. The tasseled zipper is very convenient and allows me to open and close the bag with just one hand. I bought this bag for functionality, and it has served me super well.

When I bought the Gucci Soho Disco, I told myself that it would be the last bag I’d buy (HAHA), but then a month later I picked up the Dior Medium Diorama bag in grey calfskin. The one I picked up is the older model designed by Raf Simons, which has the sturdier leather and the fabric interior (the current Maria Grazia Chiuri version has a more supple, softer leather with a suede interior, which I don’t like). This was another bag that I was kinda meh about for the first few years of its release, but then the more I looked at it, the more I fell in love with it. This was after I got my Chanel Jumbo and the Saint Laurent Kate, so I knew that the flap bag + chain strap combo would work for me. Of the bags I have, this is probably the quietest in terms of design / logo. There’s only a small Dior logo engraved on the front hardware, and there’s no loud obvious sign that it’s a Dior bag. I did take this bag with me to Asia this spring and it was a fantastic bag that could be dressed up or down. This bag was recently discontinued but prior to that, it retailed for C$4,700 + tax in Canada.

The third of my Chanel bags is the Chanel Square Mini in Black Caviar and Light Gold hardware. This bag is so incredibly hard to find but I got super lucky because I posted an “in search of” request on a Chanel Facebook group and a salesperson at Saks actually reached out to me saying she had one! I couldn’t believe it because I know there are waitlists for this in Canada and the US. I bought this bag as something I can wear to weddings to pair with clothes that don’t go well with lighter coloured bags (i.e. my Alma BB). I was actually surprised at how tiny this was when I first got it, but it does fit all of my necessities when I change out my wallet to a cardholder. The light gold hardware is perfect – not too gold and can be worn with all metals. I’ve been wearing this casually on weekends as well and it’s just a perfect bag to use when you don’t need to bring much with you. This bag retails for $3,725 in Canada, and I purchased it in the US for US$3,200.

I picked up the Louis Vuitton Pochette Metis in black Empreinte leather when I was travelling in Europe a few summers ago. I got this bag because I love my Gucci Soho Disco as a casual cross-body bag but it was a bit too small if I wanted to carry more than just the bare essentials with me. The Pochette Metis is super comfortable to wear both as a shoulder bag and as a cross-body. I love the adjustable shoulder straps, and also the option to carry it by hand via the top handle. Since I got this, it has easily become one of my most used bags. It is uber comfortable, and can be worn both casually or more dressed up. Compared to my other bags, this one is more hip and almost boy-ish. The quality of the empreinte leather is also just beautiful. This retails for $2,990 + tax in Canada but I got mine in Europe so I was able to save almost a thousand dollars on it.

My most recent bag acquisition was the Chanel Mini Reissue in black distressed calfskin and shiny gold hardware. I can’t find the Canadian price for this model with the distressed calfskin, but the US price is $3,500. The Canadian price for the patent leather one with black hardware is $4,650. I purchased mine through my personal shopper and friend, Orchmelia. I absolutely love this bag as well because its so easy to wear, fits a lot, and still looks dressed up. While I don’t love the shiny gold hardware (it makes it look almost like a F21 or Aldo knock-off), I do love how beautifully supple yet still hard-wearing the leather is.

Out of all of these – my favourite is of course the Chanel Jumbo, the Gucci Soho Disco is my most used casual bag, and the Louis Vuitton Pochette Metis is my most used bag that isn’t casual. Hopefully this was somewhat interesting to read!

Let me know if you are interested in any in-depth reviews of any of these bags. I love reading and writing about luxury handbags in general so I am happy to oblige!

SKINCARE | Top beauty products under $50

0646201E-F802-451E-B0EE-C84099591411

I hope everyone is doing well in the midst of this pandemic. I struggled with whether I should even blog about skincare and fashion since it seems so frivolous at this point, but writing is how I practice mindfulness and cope with stress. I hope that by continuing to blog, I can maintain a sense of normalcy in my life, and if you enjoy reading my reviews, your mind can also take a temporary break from the onslaught of negative news.

I know that historically I’ve generally focused on luxury beauty and luxury skincare, but today I wanted to share with you some of my more budget beauty favourites. Not everything has to be ultra luxurious to be effective, and by reviewing luxury skincare, I’m not saying that you have to break the bank if you want something good. There are a ton of budget beauty products that are equally, if not more effective than some of the luxury ones.

Vichy Mineral 89*

It’s no secret that I absolutely love the Vichy Mineral 89 ($41.95 for 50mL). I’ve used at least 5 bottles of this liquid gold and I love that it is so affordable too. It is completely non-scented, hydrating, ultra soothing, and just overall as a step 0 product for my skincare. I wrote about this more extensively here.

Vichy Mineral 89 Eyes*

Vichy released the Mineral 89 Eyes ($34.95 for 15mL) as a step 0 serum for the eye area. I don’t generally use this alone, preferring to layer it under a thicker eye cream. It helps my eye products sink in better, and it also helps to hydrate and freshen the eye area. I particularly enjoy using this during the day because it makes my eye area feel brighter and fresher. If you have younger skin, for example if you’re just starting out in the world of eye products, this is a great starter product to use alone. I wrote about this more extensively here.

Pixi Peel and Polish*

Pixi Peel and Polish (C$34 for 80mL) is one of my absolute favourite Pixi products. It’s an incredible enzyme and physical exfoliant in one. It is super tingly to eat away at your dead skin cells, but it also has the exfoliating bits for those who prefer a more physical scrub. As someone who sometimes uses relatively expensive exfoliants, this is one of my favourite and I honestly can’t say enough good things about it.

Pixi Rose Tonic*

The Pixi Rose Tonic (C$20 for 100mL) is the toner that I’m currently using. Truth be told, I’ve really enjoyed almost every single Pixi product that I’ve tried – they are fantastic value for still being super effective. I’ve also used the Glow Tonic, which is their top seller. It’s very effective as a gentle exfoliator but I generally prefer hydrating toners in combination with a serum that has actives in it, which is why I don’t enjoy using this on a daily basis.

Now back to the Rose Tonic – it is very gentle, yet still very hydrating, smells great, and my skin has been looking very supple and smooth since I started using it. For $20, you can’t go wrong with it.

Indie Lee CoQ-10 Toner

As a beauty blogger and skincare addict, I love to try new products so I rarely repurchase products. I discovered the Indie Lee CoQ-10 Toner (C$45 for 125mL) a year ago and I absolutely fell in love. So much so that I immediately repurchased a second bottle. This toner is seriously hydrating, and my skin feels so bouncy and supple after finishing the bottle. I could tell a significant difference between this toner and the Diorsnow one I used after (which is not good, do not recommend). I’m currently waiting to finish up the Pixi Rose Tonic before diving into my second bottle of the Coq-10 Toner.

May Coop Raw Sauce

I previously wrote about this product here. The May Coop Raw Sauce (US$29 for 150mL, but often there are $10 off promos) is one of my favourite daytime hydrating essences. I use this during the day only and using a patting / slapping motion on my face, and not with a cotton pad. It’s super thick and very very hydrating – a little bit goes a super long way. I used this for 3 months straight and only went through 30% of it, so the bottle will last you a very long time, further extending the value of this incredible essence.

Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask

I received two deluxe mini samples of the Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask (C$26 for 20g) in the original Berry from Sephora over a year ago, and I’m currently on my second pot. The first pot took me nearly 9 months of daily use to finish, which is fantastic value for a free sample. My lips are perpetually dry, so I love using this lip mask at night before bed. Compared to the Bite Agave Lip Mask, it doesn’t last on my lips throughout the night, but I find it way less sticky and more comfortable to wear.

329A9E02-8BB0-4349-8B4C-FCEA29A5BA04

L’Occitane Shea Butter Hand Cream and Shea Butter Intensive Hand Cream*

In terms of hand and body care, my top favourite product that I’ve been using for over 10 years is the L’Occitane Shea Butter Hand Cream (C$35 for the 150mL). I’ve been using this for so long that I was looking up the prices of this product now and I’m actually a little bit shocked. I recall the price of this hand cream to be around $25 when I was first introduced to it, but now it’s $35. Even then, I still think it’s 100% worth it because a little bit lasts you a super long way. Even before the campaign for hand washing, I was already washing my hands copiously, resulting in perpetually dry hands. This is one of the only things that help keep my hands feeling soft due to its 20% shea butter. Currently, I have the regular formula (in the limited edition blue packaging from a few years back), the rose-scented formula, and the Intensive Hand Cream.

The Intensive Hand Cream is usually what I apply at night right before I go to sleep. It’s a balmy texture that is super rich, making it great for the driest of hands and cuticles. It contains 25% shea butter, and it’s also great for dry elbows and knees. I love both the original formula and this one.

Neostrata Resurface Glycolic Renewal Smoothing Lotion*

This Neostrata 10% glycolic acid body lotion (C$45 for 200mL) is a quick an easy way to gently exfoliate your body. I love using this all over or just on my feet for when my feet are feeling extra dry or crackly. It absorbs quickly and leaves my skin feeling ultra soft.

CND Solar Oil*

CND Solar Oil (C$9 for 7.3mL) is the only cuticle oil I use. I keep a little mini bottle everywhere – on my desk at home, on my desk at work (back when I still had my own desk), next to the couch, on my bedside table, in my travel tote for use on the plane). It is so effective at keeping my cuticles healthy and it also smells amazing.

Hope this was helpful and provided a nice distraction to all of the negativity out in the world!

Items marked with an asterisk were (or have been) provided by PR for review consideration or as gifts. I’ve repurchased with my own money several of the PR products mentioned here, but they are asterisked for transparency purposes.

HANDBAG REVIEW | Chanel Classic Square Mini vs. Chanel Reissue Mini

E72108C8-DFE2-4591-8339-D6241939A8B7

I am back with another handbag / fashion post. In today’s post, I will be reviewing two of my most popular handbags, and then comparing them to each other. The two bags are my Chanel Classic Square Mini in black caviar with light gold hardware and the Chanel Reissue Mini in black distressed calfskin with shiny gold hardware.

Chanel Classic Square Mini

The Chanel Classic Square Mini in caviar is one of the hardest bags to find on the market, not just because they were discontinued in the caviar leather in the last two years, but because Chanel didn’t make very many of them to begin with. Mine was purchased from Saks from the Chanel Spring/Summer 2018 collection, which is either the last or the second to last season that they made the Square Mini in the caviar leather; now all minis are made only in fabric or in the lambskin. It comes with the leather woven chain, similar to other Classic Flaps, but unlike normal Classic Flaps, both the Square and Rectangular Minis only come with two grommets at the top, so you can’t double up your strap and wear it under your arm.

The way I got my hands on this bag was actually through pure luck. The Vancouver Chanel boutique is literally one of the worst stores EVER if you wanted to get your hands on a coveted bag. Unless you buy a ton of stuff there every season, there is little to no chance they will put any popular bag aside for you. It is so bad that despite me owning four Chanel bags, I’ve never actually bought a single bag there, only SLGs, accessories, and shoes. To get my Square Mini, I actually posted about my wishlist on a Chanel Facebook group, and a Chanel Saks salesperson saw it and said they had one Square Mini in the caviar leather left, and asked if I was interested in it. OF COURSE I WAS. While the price at the time, US$3,200, was a couple hundred dollars higher than buying it in Canada after conversion, I knew there was no way in hell I would ever get my hands on one of these locally. I was so over the moon when I received it, even though it is a lot smaller than I expected it to be. I’ve never seen one of these in real life so it was a shock when I saw it for the first time.

The caviar from SS2018 was what people called “shiny caviar,” as it appeared shinier and softer than past seasons. The grains were very shallow and large, and while you still got that grained leather look, it was very soft and supple compared to other caviars. I absolutely love the leather on my Square Mini because it is so puffy and delicious to touch.

This bag does not fit very much. I use a relatively compact wallet (LV Victorine), and while it does fit in the bag, it won’t fit much else after that. I normally put my cards in a zippy cardholder, that way I get my key case (LV 6 key holder), phone (iPhone X, substituted with a Chanel flat cardholder for the photo), and a mini hand cream into the bag. Because of the structured leather, this bag does not have as much give so you can’t just stuff your bag full of stuff – the flap won’t clasp. You probably also don’t want to stuff this bag too full because the structured shape will eventually stretch out, and then it won’t retain it’s cute, compact look.

D40C2F0C-4A8D-4E58-A6C9-F3CE66E79E7E

In addition to the very small size, another limitation is the length of the strap. This strap is short, especially in comparison to the Rectangular Mini. I’m 169cm / 5’6 and while it does fit cross-body on me, I would never wear it cross-body because it hits me high on hip, almost to my waist (see my comparison pictures below).

One other thing to note is that the sizing of the Square Mini varies depending on the season. Before I purchased mine, I looked at countless Youtube reviews, blog reviews, Instagram photos comparing the Square Mini and the Rectangular Mini and it was clear that depending on the season, the Square Mini can fit more OR less than the Rectangular Mini. I relied on Chase Amie’s Chanel mini reviews quite a bit, and her Square Mini is from a season where it was slightly bigger, so her Square Mini in the caviar leather can fit more than her Rectangular Mini, despite her Rectangular Mini being in a softer lambskin leather. Mine also comes without the edge stitching, whereas some seasons will have edge stitching on the minis (example). I believe the discrepancy is because Minis are seasonal bags, so every season they just change how they want things done.

I wouldn’t think of this, or use this, as an everyday bag. To me, it really is a special occasion bag that I can take out once in a while, or if we’re having a romantic date night / stroll around town, I might bring this bag with me if I wanted something light. I really don’t bring a lot of stuff around with me, but even then I still have to downsize my wallet to a cardholder, which is a little annoying.

Despite all of the issues with this bag, I absolutely love it. I’m so happy that I have this bag in my collection and it really does fulfill a need in my handbag collection. I don’t like holding bags with my hands, even paired with evening wear, so this bag fulfills the need of an evening / fancy clutch. I love that it allows me to keep my hands free to do other things (like hold food).

Unfortunately, Chanel discontinued both the Square and Rectangular Minis in the caviar leather. You can still get it in lambskin, which is an absolutely gorgeous leather, but can be very delicate. As someone who is paranoid about scratching my bags, I only have one lambskin bag which I literally never use.

If you want a mini Chanel bag that comes in a more durable leather, a good alternative is the Reissue Mini.

Chanel Reissue Mini

The Reissue Mini is a new-ish bag by Chanel, first released for pre-fall 2019 in June 2019. This is also when I purchased my bag. I got mine from my friend Orchmelia, who is a personal shopper in the US. She ordered it for me from Saks. I paid US$3,600 including tax and shipping

Mine comes with distressed calfskin in black, which is the most common type of leather in the Reissue line. Similar to other handbags in the Reissue line, it comes with the Bijoux chain, which is the original Chanel bag chain. The bag initially comes “collapsed,” so it looks vintage and distressed. Because it already comes collapsed, the bag is soft and not super structured, and you can fit quite a bit of stuff in here. I can fit my normal wallet in this bag, along with my phone, which is an iPhone X (substituted by a Chanel cardholder for the photo because I’m taking photos with my iPhone) and keys, as well as hand lotion and a lip balm. Despite its small size, it fits quite a bit because it is softer and less structured.

The hardware on mine is shiny gold hardware, which I like but don’t *love.* I kind of wished I waited for the more recent iterations of it, which has the brushed gold hardware, which not only is more scratch-resistant, but makes it look less like a F21 or Aldo knock-off of the Reissue bag.

6E672672-16C5-478B-B196-DB0998F15381

The leather is very soft but still durable. I used this bag every day for a few months, and I didn’t notice any scratches or marks on it. With calfskin, you can get that smooth leather look without the risk of damage.

The size is pretty much the same as the Chanel Reissue 224, but it does not come with the double flap so capacity is a lot larger compared to the Reissue 224. It is very similar in height and depth as my Square Mini, but slightly wider as it is more of a rectangular shape. The bijoux chain is longer than the Square Mini, but not as long as the Rectangular Mini. I can wear this both cross-border (it hits me slightly below the hip) and also single strap on the shoulders. I love love love that it comes with the four grommets, as that means I can also double up the chain and wear it under my arm.

When Chanel announced the Reissue Mini, I jumped on it despite not being completely in love with it. After almost a year of owning it, I still don’t feel super passionate about it. When I feel and see my Square Mini, I get butterflies, but with the Reissue Mini, I feel just okay about it. Don’t get me wrong, this is one of my most loved and used bags in my collection. But I love it because it is such a practical bag, and not because of how it makes me feel, if that makes sense.

The one major downside of this bag is that, like I mentioned earlier, a lot of fast fashion brands have essentially stolen the square turnlock flap bag style and made their own versions of it. I find that sometimes I wonder if people think I’m wearing an Aldo or F21 bag because it is so widely copied. While the quality of the bag is quite good, from afar it’s really hard to tell the difference. Even though I don’t wear my bags for other people to look at it, sometimes I do wonder if I could have spent that money on something else that isn’t so ambiguous in terms of Chanel branding.

Comparing the Square Mini with the Reissue Mini

B459ECCA-44D5-498E-93A3-128A3E36A232

You can see in the photo above, and in the modelling shots below, that the Reissue Mini’s strap is about 1-1.5 inches longer than the Square Mini strap. This 1 inch makes a huge difference because the Reissue Mini sits comfortably on me cross-body, whereas I wouldn’t wear the Square Mini cross body.

As described earlier, the softer leather on the Reissue Mini means that I can get more stuff in the bag, compared to the Square Mini which is way more structured and requires you to pare down your belongings when you go out. As a bag for function, the Reissue Mini is way better in terms of everyday wear.

That being said, if I had to choose one of the two, I would still hands down choose the Square Mini because it just brings so much joy to me every time I use it. The CC turnlock is so quintessentially modern Chanel, and it elevates any and all outfits I wear with this. I also love how puffy and soft the quilts are. The quilting on the Reissue Mini is more distressed and flattened, so it’s not as fun to touch.

Sadly the Square Mini is no longer available in the caviar leather. You can still get it in the lambskin, which gets released pretty regularly a few times a year. The Reissue Mini has been available for a few seasons and I don’t see it going anywhere in the time being. Regardless, both styles are very Chanel and you can’t go wrong with either purchase.

038C7979-19B3-4B15-ADA1-FD35E5CC7F7F

31BB450F-46DB-4562-9601-16AF6819E065

57938B47-C604-4879-9BCD-53B4B3DE5F6A

8BA7DB62-E5DB-4AF4-B910-FCE56DDD89CB

Hope this was helpful!