August 20, 2013

Enjoying Penticton in all its glorious summertime beauty


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Outfit details

Red and white polka dot hair scarf: eBay
Strawberry earrings: Handmade by me
Vintage red beaded necklace: gift with purchase from an etsy seller
1980s does 1940s/50s novelty print dress: eBay
Red skinny belt: eBay
Vintage raffia straw and bamboo handbag: Yard sale find
White vintage bangle bracelet: Value Village
Red and green bangles: Forever 21
Red and white peep-toe wedges: Payless
Lip colour: MAC Russian Red


Photography by
Antonio Cangiano
 




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Canada is known the world over for its notoriously bone chilling, snow laden, icy street filled winters, and while that reputation is more than a little bit justified, I have long felt that we also deserve to be know for our incredible summers as well. Granted, some parts of the country experience longer, better and less humid summers than others, but from coast to coast, the country springs to life in the most profoundly lovely way from June to September, and few places exemplify that better than the Okanagan Valley where we live.

I know, you might think I'm being a touch biased, but having lived in cities in both the prairies and Eastern side of of the country, too, as well as a number of different parts of British Columbia (from the Carbiboo to the Lower Mainland), and also outside of Canada, I can tell with the deepest of convictions that there is no where else in the country - and quite possibly the world - that I would rather spend my summers than here in the Okanagan.

Our town of Penticton is hugged lovingly on both sides by sage brush covered hills and sandwiched squarely between two large lakes, which make for some of the best inland swimming and sunbathing you could ever hope to find. This corner of Canada is as close to a desert as one is going to come across anywhere in this country (much as it looks the part though, it is technically a semi-arid shrub-steppe) and the dry, sizzling heat that accompanies such a landscape is a huge part of the reason why the Okanagan has long been one of the most popular tourist destinations in North America.

When I lived elsewhere, I pined for this kind of summer. It was in my blood, and nothing else - no matter how pretty and pleasant it might have been - could quite compete with the resplendency of this season in Penticton. Though the heat can knock the wind out of my sails sometimes, that would happen anywhere the temps climbed into the 20s (Celsius) and higher, so the Okanagan is not to fault there. In fact, I actually find it's dry heat infinitely easier on me than the stifling humidity we experienced for each of the six years we lived in Toronto.

From beaches to peaches, lakes to wakes (behind boats, I mean) I cannot get enough of summertime here. While autumn is technically my favourite season, and I do love the chill of winter and spring at times, I daydream about summer all throughout the rest of the year and love when I have days on which I'm able to get out and let the nourishing amber sun warm my skin and soul alike.

On one such recent day we stopped by Rotary Park down at the east end of Okanagan Lake and grabbed these subtly windswept shots after I'd wrapped up with a doctor's appointment. Medical visits, no matter how many I keep tucking under my belt, are always stressful and unnerving for me, regardless of what transpires during them, so afterwards I typically either want to go straight home or to someplace very serene. Few spots calm my nerves and put my mind at ease more than the beaches here, so Rotary Park seemed like the perfect spot to spend a little time.

We shot in three areas of the park, and I love each one. I've never used such a large tree trunk as a backdrop before, nor, I think, have I posed in front of one of our town's few public flower beds. You've seen Okanagan Lake before a number of times, but it never grows old - if anything, it just gets more gorgeous and endearingly wonderful with each passing year.

My ensemble might, in colder months, channel a certain December 25th vibe, but against summer's stark, warm sky and verdant backdrop, it makes me think more of a garden than Christmas trees, and the light hue of the white dress really helps keep a bit of the heat at bay.

As we sit here right now, hard as it is to believe, autumn is technically just thirty-two days away. I'm eager for its arrival, but am also keen on holding onto summer for just a while longer still. I want a thousand more days with weather as perfect as this, especially because those winters we're so widely well known for the world over live up to their rap - and then some!

Fall and winter and if we're lucky, some semblance of a spring, will happen of course, as they always do, and no amount of wishing will affix summer in place forever. Yet even when the mercury gets frostbite once more, I'll still have photographs of days like this, coupled with the thought of summer's distant return, to keep me nearly as toasty as I was on the beautiful afternoon when we took these lovely photographs.

 
 

73 comments:

  1. Penticton looks so beautiful from all the photos I've seen on your blog, it's great to have somewhere 'serene' to spend some moments in. I go to the seaside at Penarth when I need some quiet time, but I like lakes too! Do you swim a lot?

    Lovely outfit, it is good to hang on to the summer memories isn't it? It's definitely feeling as though Autumn is on it's way here in the UK, but I don't mind as it's my favourite season and I'm off to Spain in a fortnight for a last blast of heat and sun!

    You're so clever to have made those earrings too.

    P x

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    1. Thank you very much, dear gal! At the risk of sounding biased, it really is a stunning little corner of the world. It (and the Okanagan region as a whole that it belongs to) has historically been one of Canada's top summertime tourist destinations.

      I swam like a fish as a child and loved it dearly, but swimming (like almost all sports) has been next to impossible for me for several years now due to me health. Instead, these days, I enjoy sitting in the shade at the beach watching others delight in the nearly bath tub warm waters of Okanagan (seen here) and Skaha Lake (on the other side of town).

      How awesome that you're heading to Spain for a couple of weeks! That sounds so incredibly fun! I hope you have a terrific, safe, enjoyable time, honey.

      ♥ Jessica

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  2. You look great, as always!!

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  3. Ooh I love the red and white with a dash of green in your outfit.

    I too love summer time but unfortunately English summers are now synonymous with bad weather (rain and temperatures around 16 Celsius are quite common.) It never used to be like that when I was a kid though, as all I can remember was scorching sun during the 6 weeks off school.

    Having said that, this summer has been marginally better as we've had one 'heatwave' with another one expected shortly! I hope you get to make the most of the nice weather in your part of the globe :)

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  4. Such a cute dress! Love your strawberry earrings too!

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  5. I saw your outfit as being the colours of Canada, and very much a summertime Canada. The trunk of that huge tree acts as a perfect beckdrop, allowing us to appreciate the detail and the colour. The scenery behind is stunning. You do live in a lovely place.

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  6. I am glad that Rotary park is your sanctuary from frustrating events!

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  7. you look like the personification of summer in this photos :-)

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  8. Jessica...beautiful post. You've transported me to your bit of heaven, if even for a few moments!

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  9. I can't tell you how much I adore this outfit! So fresh and bright!!

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  10. Gorgeous photos and a fabulous outfit - I do admire how you make 80s look great!

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  11. very beautiful outfit and it suits you perfect,
    ciao ciao from Switzerland, Christa

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  12. I love red, white and green together! So cute.

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  13. I love all the red and that print! Great look!

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  14. Penticton must be a delightful place where to live ( and to have some lakes nearby is a real lucky ) .
    You are lovable in red! The earrings you are wearing are very cute. . .

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  15. Jessica,
    You are not alone in this feeling - when one's having a perfect weather (humidity, and that fresh breeze with the hint of Autumn in it).. one of my favorite feelings.

    May I ask you something.. well, more of a request and a plea:
    Next time, when you feel like D.I.Y-ing, could you make it into a post.
    You earrings are simply a work or art, and I would very much love to see how it's done. :)

    Marija

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    1. Thank you very much, my sweet dear - both for your lovely comment and for the post request. In the case of these earrings (and the purple floral cameo ones I wore in my Brag Vintage dress review post a few weeks ago), they're dead simple to make. Just a flat back charm, some jeweler's glue, and some blank earrings backs (nickel-free in my case), and voila, you're done! But pictures are worth a thousand words, as they say, so the next time (once my craft room is finally free of all the boxes from the storage room that we had to pile in their when our basement experienced some flooding earlier this summer) I make some earrings, I will take snaps of the process. I'm touched you asked, honey, thank you!

      ♥ Jessica

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  16. So lovely. You look like a ripe strawberry.

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  17. I love your outfit! How do you find so many great vintage clothes?
    Whst a blessing to live in such beautiful surroundings! We live amongst mountains in East Tennessee, and although I wouldn't trade it for anything, I do hate the humidity. Guess we should visit Canada in the summer? We have really mild winters, though ;)
    Sarah

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    1. Hello dear Sarah, thank you very much for your wonderfully nice comment. It really is a blessing to live in a corner of the country that is this resplendently beautiful. I've lived elsewhere in the province, country and even world, some spots of which were gorgeous in their own right for sure, but no matter where I went, I always longed to return to the Okanagan (the region of B.C. that houses Penticton), and was elated when we finally got the chance to do just that early last year.

      Stunning as Penticton may be, it (like this whole corner of B.C.) is seriously lacking in mid-century vintage clothing stores, so a lot of my vintage pieces (as well as all my vintage repro and some of my vintage appropriate pieces) are bought online (chiefly from eBay and etsy). I do hit the local thrift stores and yard sales fairly often, but they very rarely offer up any pre-1960s (or even pre-70s these days) vintage any more, so, again, it's the good ol' interwebs to help me find most of my vintage garments and accessories.

      I'd love to see the mountains of East Tennessee one day - how about you come here in the summer and I'll head there in the winter? :)

      ♥ Jessica

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  18. Lovely and heartfelt prose - makes me wish to visit Okanagan Valley!

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  19. Replies
    1. Aww, thank you very much, sweetheart.

      ♥ Jessica

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  20. Canada definitely does get a bad rep for long harsh winters, but much like the northern US, there can be beautiful summers. We had cousins just move from Arizona to Minnesota...quite a difference. :) Especially since our cuz's wife is from Mexico. Very different from what she grew up with.

    A lot of people though don't see the beauty in winter. I too have to remind myself that seeing the end of the seasons only reminds me of the rebirth of spring. :)

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  21. Ahhh such a cutie patootie! Red & white are such classic hues, but what's striking about this outfit is the variety of prints & textures. J'adore! So happy to hear you are soaking up summer while you can. Even if these were taken after being a bit stressed by at the doc, you'd never know it - you're absolutely radiant.

    xo Sara

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  22. Jessica you are just too lovely!! I just love this outfit on you. Those strawberry earrings are just too darn cute. This is such a great summer dress and I just love how you are able to make the "80's" the "40's". You amaze me:)))

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    1. Thank you deeply, my endlessly dear friend. 1980s does 40s and 50s dresses are one of the staples of my wardrobe. With the right styling, they can often be take in the most convincingly of wonderful mid-century directions. I've actually got a post in the works for later in the year on that very topic. :)

      Countless hugs,
      ♥ Jessica

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  23. You look so lovely in red Jessica - really loving this look!

    It looks like here in the UK we've slipped into autumn (nobody told me!) so it's time to dig out the essentials and wait for the inevitability of winter - brr!

    www.mancunianvintage.com

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  24. Love your whole outfit, but especially the earrings and shoes! Oh, the cute.

    It sounds as if you live in a lovely place. Being from Michigan, I get a lot of the same thing you probably do—jokes about life in the frozen tundra. But the summers are just magnificent there (granted, I don't mind humidity too much)—warm, sunny, breezy—so pleasant.

    That autumn is so near unnerves me. Summer is my season as well!

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  25. What a fab ensemble, and that is one of the BEST "80s does" dresses I've ever seen!

    xoxo
    -Janey

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  26. Dear Jessica! There are no words in this world to describe the wonder that is for me to enjoy these photos, I can see as far as your dwelling place, know the history of many sites through your words and feel many sensations across my skin as I read your writing ... I love that dress, so beautiful and your earrings, so original! Kisses from a place far away in the distance, but very close to the heart.

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  27. Another gorgeous outfit, my dear girl. Red and white is such a fresh combination. It always appears to be so clear and clean. The headband and the earrings are the icing on the cake. Sooo lovely!

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  28. You look stunning in red and I would love to be able to visit Okanagan Valley one day.
    xo

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  29. Aww, you're darling. Love those strawberry earrings. So adorable! I know, I can't believe Fall is almost upon us. It's nuts!

    Jules of Canines & Couture
    www.caninesandcouture.com

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  30. Absolutely gorgeous, as always. And I love your earrings!!! I need a pair! I didn't notice a Christmas-y theme until you wrote about it, and I had to go back up and re-look at the pictures. The hints of green are so subtle that even after I was thinking "Christmas" it didn't look Christmas-y.

    Deborah
    Hellcat Vintage

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  31. Your outfit reminds me of summer fun and sunshine!!! I love it!!! I love red, though, so I may be a bit biased.

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  32. You look absolutely lovely! I don't want summer to end! I'm like a migratory bird, I'll be seeking warmer climates!
    Drs visits are the worst. I have one neuro down in San Francisco, and after each visit my husband knows just what I need; a burger, beer, and a soft serve cone at Super Duper Burger! ;)
    ~xoxo, CoriLynn

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  33. Your earrings are funky!
    http://balearaitzart.blogspot.com.au/

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  34. I'm not quite sure if my post made it your way so forgive me if you get two:) I just wanted to say how fabulous you look with your outfit and I love the strawberry earrings! It's amazing how you are able to make the 80s look like the 40s, love it:))

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    1. Thank you again very, very much, my darling friend. Many apologies - I have my blog comments set so that I approve each before it goes through (to weed out the massive amount of spam comments that I receive), and it sometimes takes me a while (especially on days when I'm not on the computer much or at all) to get to approving (and if applicable, responding to) comments as they come in. Both of yours were waiting for me this evening, and I truly appreciate them. It's so fun to take 80s (and less often, 70s) pieces like this and style them in a mid-century direction.

      ♥ Jessica

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  35. This outfit could definitely pass as an Australian Christmas outfit! We even have strawberries at that time of year...so your beautiful little earrings would be very apt. xx Shauna

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  36. red and white together looks so beautiful on you. the dress looks really comfortable. perfect for a little walk.

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  37. Such a fresh and pretty look, I love your earrings too, strawberries have to be one of my favourite fruits.

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  38. I too love this time of year where you have warmth but with just a hint of autumnal freshness in the breeze. I like to potter around in my garden when I feel the need to be serene and yes a doctor's appointment is up there on my list too!
    Sadly I live the furthest away you can get from the sea in the U.K and have no nearby water otherwise that would most definitely be a place for me, as I find looking at water very calming.

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  39. Heehee, the particulars of a region's summer weather are such a source of deep personal feelings, I find! So very interesting. The Midwest in the US is largely characterized by having frigid, Scandinavian winters and humid, scorching summers -- and I wouldn't have it any other way! I love hearing the way you muse about your own summer experiences. It's such a commonality among people. :)

    And of course, this outfit is darling, absolutely. I particularly adore the earrings, because on their own, I would imagine them on a 12 year old Japanese girl wearing a tutu and legwarmers, but seeing them in the context of this outfit, they look like they were made for a classy, modest but gorgeous look like this one. :)

    http://dresseduplikealady.com

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  40. Years ago I went to Canada for the summer.
    We visited Montreal and as you can imagine Canadian summer is not the same as Central America summer... it was cold !
    I adore the tone of the lush green grass behind you, its almost magical.

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  41. Oh yes I love days like this as well... but my favorite season has to be autumn. Well, autumn when it´s still gorgeously sunny and the sun illuminates the beautiful shades in the outdoors. Not the crappy rainy kind of autumn haha. You look dashing as ever.

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  42. You look wonderful in red! I love the dress and the handmade strawberry earrings, so many thoughtful details to this outfit!
    Have a great day!
    xo Hannah

    thebraidedbandit.blogspot.com
    thebraidedbandit.etsy.com

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  43. You look very summery, I love the colours on you - the earrings are so darling!

    I love going to the seaside, my hubby grew up beside the sea, he does miss it as he moved 300 miles to be with me and we live about an hour away from the seaside...we are going on holiday to the seaside in a couple of weeks with family, I can't wait to paddle!

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  44. Looks like a gorgeous summer day, the light in the photos is lovely. Your summers sound wonderful, I don't do well in the sun but I do like a sunny day with blue skies even if I can't manage to sit out in the sun. What a pretty outfit, love all the little co-ordinating finishing touches.

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    1. Thank you very much, my dear friend. Ooohh, how I hear you loud and clear. Direct (warm) sunlight knocks me out almost like I've been hit with a bear tranquiler, and so I usually really have to limit my time in it (this is something that only began to happen to me 11 years ago when my chronic health problems started, as a kid I could live outside from June to September without losing steam). If things are under 30C, and especially if there's a breeze, it's not as bad, but I do look forward to when thinks drop down below 25C again, as I usually have a better time handling the draining effects of sunshine then.

      Big hugs,
      ♥ Jessica

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    2. Gosh, the phrase ' if it things are under 30C' made me realise how very different your summers and mine are! That is such a high temperature to manage at! Many people get upset about the poor summers that England has (this one is an exception given the last few years). Secretly though, I am often quite glad of them!

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    3. It can be for sure, yes, especially because most of July and August (and sometimes parts of June and September) are closer to 40C (it should be noted that we live in one of the warmest areas of Canada come the summertime), but thankfully - so very thankfully - where we live is typically very arid and dry. When I lived back east in Toronto for six years, where it gets crazy humid, the summer were a hundred times harder to get through (especially because we didn't have central air!). What's the average summer temp where you live in England?

      ♥ Jessica

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    4. Humidity is much harder, especially on one's hair! The average summer temperature in West Yorkshire where I live is 17C although this year has been warmer. In winter the average is below 8C.

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  45. That's a very pretty dress, perfect for a summer's day. My favourite photo is the second one of you looking down as you have a great expression there, but I love the tree trunk ones too. I think when you live in a 4 season environment like we do, especially one that can be bone chillingly cold (or damp, in my case), one longs for summer all the more. I am please to report that for once we have had a lovely summer in England - dry and warm, I am sure I will look back on it with pleasure for years to come!

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  46. Your dress actually reminded me of strawberry ice cream... and then I saw your earrings! What a perfect matching of accessories to your outfit.
    Based on your blog photos you do seem very lucky to live in such a beautiful part of the world. I guess Canada's winters are stereotypical in much the same way as Australia's summers!

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    1. Oooh, I just love that comparison, dear gal, thank you very much (I'll be craving strawberry ice cream all night now! :)).

      ♥ Jessica

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  47. Beautiful!!! I love red - it's my favourite colour ever! I adore this ensemble - stunning!

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    1. Thank you very much, dear Chantal! Red is one of my all-time favourite colours as well. I love sporting it all year round, but find it comes out to play most often during the summer and winter (especially the winter!).

      Big hugs!
      ♥ Jessica

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  48. Ohhh red and and white looks SO GOOD with your red hair! I love all of the little hints of strawberry in this outfit and the whimsical nautical background :)

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  49. You look amazing in these photos. I love how summery they are. I also wanted to tell you that you inspired me to buy some russian red lipstick Id been looking for a matte red lipstick for a while and yours is always perfect

    kate the old fashioned way

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    1. Thank you very much, dear Kate! Aww, I'm super touched to know that I helped inspire you to buy some Russian Red lippy! I hope that you adore it as much as I do. Though it really doesn't affect the colour one way or the other (because it's so gloriously thick, richly pigmented and matte), I almost always line my lips with a red liner (I use a Canadian brand called Annabelle), just to help give it even more staying power.

      ♥ Jessica

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  50. Hi Jessica!
    Seriously you are one stylish girl! I love the outfits that you put together, you pick the perfect accessories for adornment, and the makeup is perfection! It really takes talent to accomplish such a glamorous look! Hope you are having a great summer.

    Laura

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    1. Hi Laura, that is so splendidly nice of you to say, thank you very much. I'm a firm believe in the importance of accessorizing, and am touched to know that you picked up on my passion for doing so in the vintage outfits I wear.

      Thanks again & have a beautiful Friday!
      ♥ Jessica

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  51. oh i think this will be my new favorite outfit of yours! you look amazing! the dress is a dream and again you show us how to accessorize something to perfection! especially the strawberry earrings are adorable;)
    love and kiss,mary
    http://www.maryloucinnamon.com/

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  52. adorable dress my dear! it looks fantastic on you. I love the way you styled it with thte red detatils!

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  53. Jessica! Another fabulous vintage outfit. No surprise there of course. Your earrings are beautiful and darling. You are talented as well as having amazing taste in clothing. And i love the scarf. This is a perfect summer outfit. Did i mention i love your purse too? Anyway.. i love your purse. :)

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  54. you look like a little strawberry lady, indeed >.<
    you know that I love the combo fruits+fahion, don't you?!
    plus: you've inspired me to craft some fruity earrings for my own <3

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    1. Thank you very much, darling Charlotte! I do indeed know that we share a passion for fruit themed fashion! I've always been inspired by your love of it (as well as by your unending interest in the colour green), and was thinking of you that day as I wore these cute strawberry earrings. :)

      Big hugs!
      ♥ Jessica

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  55. You're wearing the Danish patriotic colours. Very lovely, and very summery. You remind me of strawberries with cream. :) In Denmark we're still experiencing lovely weather, but there is a certain chilly feel in the air, so I suppose it will be long before autumn is here. I also love autumn, all the lovely colours and moving inside again. And - I can wear all my lovely vintage autumn jools! :)

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  56. Perfection as always! Stunning lady and stunning scenery. =)

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  57. Such a beautiful setting for your photos Jessica! Your skin and face are just glowing in that dress. This is definitely a favorite of mine!
    -Jamie
    ChatterBlossom

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  58. as always you look so lovely! your little strawberry earrings are adorable, and i love that handbag too.

    little henry lee

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