Is it just me or do years fly by even quicker the older you get? I mean, I’m only 25 years young but it feels like I was spraying champagne all over the streets of Newtown, Sydney ringing in the new year just yesterday. But alas, the end of 2016 is here.
A lot of people are saying that they’re welcoming the end of 2016 with open arms – that the year totally sucked. I prefer to focus on the bright side of things. I’m excited to ring in a brand new year but I’m also enjoying looking back on what I’d say wasn’t a total loss.
Sure, there were lots of events that I wish didn’t happen this year (like sort of getting fired from a job) but as with anything, you can always find a silver lining.
THE END OF 2016 | A recap of a year in the life of The Lady-like Leopard
The start of the year was spent soaking up the sun in Sydney, Australia. It was my first time back to my home away from home in almost 2 years so I spent a few months there catching up with my university friends, my family and making some new connections along the way. I also bought my 2nd Zimmermann dress!
HIGHLIGHT: Discovering new restaurants with my sister like Uncle Ming’s and Miss Peaches. I’d definitely recommend both.
I was back in Toronto by February. It was one of the coldest winters I’ve ever experienced. I thought by going to Sydney from November to January that I was skipping the worst of winter – I was very, very wrong. The grass was starting to look a hell of a lot greener in Australia.
HIGHLIGHT: Going to Montreal with my friend Stephan and discovering that it can be colder than humanly imaginable. Also, wolfing down authentic Montreal poutine.
Even though we didn’t know it at the time, this was the final month of Toronto Fashion Week. I wasn’t able to make it to all the shows but I made time for a few of my favourites: Hilary MacMillan, David Dixon and Mikhael Kale. I also started my position as Associate Editor at Vane Airport Magazine! It’s been my dream since I was a kid to work at a magazine. (Next stop: Vogue.)
HIGHLIGHT: Interviewing David Dixon backstage at Toronto Fashion Week about his Gene Collection and why it was such an important project for him.
Lot’s of exciting things were happening in April. Besides meeting Coco Rocha at Greta Constantine’s collection unveiling party at Casa Loma, I got to travel to London and Paris. There was so much going on in Toronto too – the tattoo exhibit at the ROM, a collab I did with Lips by Danilea (best locally made lipsticks btw) and my opportunity to help film/assist a music video at KaSpace.
HIGHLIGHT: Sitting at a sidewalk cafe in Paris sipping a glass of white wine and thinking about how I had wanted to be in that city my whole life.
This was a crazy exciting month! I went to New York City with my friend and editor Cristina (of Vane Airport) and got to style Mya in head-to-toe Atelier Guarin for her Toronto concerts. This was my third time to NYC but that city never gets old to me. My dad told me when I was 6 years old I told my family I was moving there and that was that. I’ve also been obsessed with Mya since I was a kid and styling her was a surreal experience.
HIGHLIGHT: Hanging out with Mya backstage and chatting with her while she did her own hair and make-up. She gave me a great piece of advice that you can read here.
June is my birthday month so whatever happens, it’s always fabulous. This year I got to go home to Victoria and spend my 25th birthday with my oldest friends and family. My friends threw me a house party and then we went out dancing! It was definitely a fun way to ring in twenty-five. I also went to Annapolis, Maryland for a birthday party the weekend before my birthday.
HIGHLIGHT: Spending the night at Magnolia Hotel, poolside partying in Annapolis and ringing in my 25th birthday with a shoot by Morgan Cross Photography.
Summer in Toronto is short and sweet so you’ve got to make the most of it while it lasts. It was a pretty lazy month lounging at the beach and having drinks on multiple patios (something I discovered is all the rage in Toronto). I styled backstage at Mississauga Fashion Week for my friend Paola and her line of ethical jewellery, Shilango. I also started copywriting for Harry Rosen this month and I love my job.
HIGHLIGHT: Meeting someone exceptional. That’s all I’m going to say about that.
The majority of August was spent lounging by lakeside pools – but when that wasn’t happening I was hitting up TOM* Fashion Week and seeing my favourite singer JoJo live at Molson Amphitheatre. Other than that, it was a pretty chill month.
HIGHLIGHT: Obviously seeing JoJo was the best part of the month. I’d only been waiting 10 years for her to come back.
Toronto International Film Festival happens in September and you can be sure that that’s where I was for the most exciting part of the month. My friends and I hit up many parties, had too many glasses of champagne (no, wait, there is no such thing as too much champagne) and shrieked with delight at our fabulous gift bags – oh, and maybe at some James Franco, Michael Fassbender and Stacy McKenzie mingling.
HIGHLIGHT: Getting to wear my two favourite Zimmermann dresses. They make me feel the sexiest, ever.
I met up with my bestie from Australia in New York this month! We had been planning since university to go to New York together one day and we finally made it happen almost 4 years later. We were constantly talking about being in New York and I remember one girl telling us to shut up “because it’s never going to happen” – well, look at us now.
HIGHLIGHT: Pulling up in a taxi to Zach’s Airbnb and leaping out to give him the biggest hug of all time – and then everything else that followed in the next couple days.
This month I quit one of my jobs. I rarely like mentioning it (because of the job, not because I quit) but I will just to show you guys that life goes on. It can be a terrifying thing to quit something that’s not adding to your happiness but ultimately, your life will be so much richer if you do. I also did a DIY project on my vintage Chanel slingbacks and was featured on CBC’s The Goods talk show for a fashion jeopardy segment.
HIGHLIGHT: Not letting people’s opinions affect me and taking charge of my own life. Also, being on tv was incredible.
I got to come back home and spend Christmas with my family in Victoria this month! I was so depressed thinking about spending Christmas alone in Toronto and when I came across a deal of a lifetime on flights, I had to jump at the chance. I booked my flight 4 days before leaving! I was also interviewed by Perspectyve Magazine, which was pretty cool.
HIGHLIGHT: Surprising my best friend Jaimie by jumping out of a closet at her. I love surprising people and this surprise went exceptionally smooth.
All in all, whether I just choose to only see the silver linings or not, this year was a pretty good one for me – and my blog. I’d like to thank everyone who’s been a supporter and follower of The Lady-like Leopard and who has encouraged me to work towards my dreams every single day. Remember, stay humble with a hint of Kanye.
Love you guys! Hope you ring in 2017 with champagne, glitter, confetti, friends, finger food and a romantic kiss as the clock strikes 12. I’ll have all except one.
WHAT I’M WEARING:
black velvet dress | NORDSTROM
lace choker | DIY BY THE LADY-LIKE LEOPARD
earrings | ASSORTED
All photos by Morgan Cross Photography at Magnolia Hotel & Spa.