November 20, 2021 Giveaway! [Closed]

Edit: Congratulations to our winner, Alexandra!

Last year, I collaborated with to host a paint by numbers kit giveaway in hopes of brightening someone's day as we found ourselves staying at home through 2020. This year, with the pandemic dragging on, I notice I have developed some unsettling new habits: I'm letting my smile get lazy behind my mask, allowing physical distancing to turn into social distancing, and becoming so comfortable on my own that I make my in-person encounters brief and brusque. Can you relate? 

Inspired by the realization that kindness is something we continually nurture within ourselves, I'm reminded of how meaningful showing appreciation to those who are important to usor engaging in a random act of kindnessis. With that in mind, I'm so excited to be partnering with again to give one lucky winner a paint by numbers kit of their choice! 

Whether you gift it to yourself or a loved one for the holidays, a paint by numbers kit is a great way for anyone to relax and unwind. I particularly like because their kits come with a pre-stretched cotton canvas and all the supplies you need to varnish and hang your new painting. As for myself, I've gifted The Enchanted Rose kit to my beautiful soul sister as thanks for being a daily source of happiness, and I hope you'll do the same for someone special this holiday season.


About aims to help bring out the artist in you by selling art canvasses that have small numbers indicating a corresponding colour for a certain area. The numbers serve as a clear guide for you to follow, but still give you room to improvise or add your own touches.

The artworks are sourced from designers dedicated to creating designs that play with varying levels of difficulty. offers a number of collections to choose from and have added many new designs over the past year.

Each paint by numbers kit comes with everything you need:

  • Numbered high-quality cotton canvas stretched on a wooden frame (Size: 20" x 16" / 50cm x 40cm)
  • Numbered acrylic-based paint set.
  • Paint brush set - 2 thin, 1 medium, 1 wide.
  • Varnish to add brightness and preserve the finished painting.
  • Hanging kit, including traceless frame hangers, screws and a spirit level.
  • Easy-to-follow instruction guide.
  • Reference sheet.

  • One (1) winner will receive a kit of their choice. Shipping will be included.


This giveaway is open internationally.


To enter, please fill out the Rafflecopter below. The only mandatory entry is to comment below with your favourite painting from and who you would gift it to. For additional entries, simply follow the instructions!

This giveaway will end December 5, 2021 at 11:59pm EST.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Winners will be selected by and notified by email. Winners will have 48 hours to respond before a new winner is selected. Please note Red-Soled Fashionista is not responsible for sponsors that do not fulfill their prizes. 

Discount Code

If you aren't a winner this time but still need a last minute holiday gift, be sure to use the promo code REDSOLED at checkout for a 15% discount! Coupon code is valid until December 31, 2021.


Thank you to for sponsoring this giveaway.

July 6, 2021

When Worlds Collide

My worlds are colliding and I'm sitting back to watch the sparks fly. In April 2021, BTS, the biggest music group in the world right now, was announced as global brand ambassadors for Louis Vuitton. As an addict of both fashion and BTS, I was very happy with this news. 

I have been wanting to blog about Louis Vuitton for a while now; I have admired Nicolas Ghesquière's work over the past few years and believe his collections at Louis Vuitton to be underappreciated. I sang his praises during his debut Fall/Winter 2014 RTW collection, and he did not disappoint in the years following. Granted, he doesn't get everything right, but he gets right what he needs to get rightwhich is to say, he always has standout pieces. His Spring/Summer 2017 RTW collection portrays a sense of elevated experimentation: draped jersey dresses sliced with daring cutouts, and sheer floor-length numbers sprinkled with crystals and glitter. Spring/Summer 2018 RTW gave us rich brocade coats, and beautiful chiffon dresses trimmed with stiff, ruffled sleeves. His work may seem eccentric and messy at times, but I believe it takes a deep understanding of fashion for someone to break the rules with such discerning abandon.

Virgil Abloh has also been doing excellent work as artistic director of Louis Vuitton's menswear collections. His work is thoughtful and unique; it upgrades the mundane and makes the lavish approachable. The adorable stuffed animals in Abloh's Spring/Summer 2021 Menswear collection were exceptional: a fun way to bring back the childhood innocence we lose through adulthood. His Fall/Winter 2021 Menswear show in January was an artistic, relevant homage to his African heritage using sumptuous textiles and a magnificent shade of green that I can't move on from. Best of all, both these collections have been worn by BTS (including, at the Grammy Awards, no less).

And it is this Fall/Winter 2021 Menswear collection that I want to talk about next. Yesterday, BTS's official account tweeted that the group will be part of Louis Vuitton's upcoming Fall/Winter 2021 Menswear show in Seoul, and included a teaser video of each member wearing looks from the collection.

Let's break things down:
  • Jimin (my OG bias) is wearing this look from #LVMenFW21. I'm glad the stylists kept the fly wraparound sunglasses, because if there's anyone who can pull off playful mixing of streetwear and high fashion, it's Jimin.
  • RM is wearing this look from #LVMenFW21. As is befitting of the group's leader, RM suits classically broad and brooding silhouettes, and the hat is a fine choice for him in particular.
  • Suga (my current bias) is wearing this look from #LVMenFW21. Although not shown in the shot, I have no doubt he is doing justice to the suit's slimmer cut. Besides, his elegantly styled steel blue hair is the real winner here.
  • j-hope is wearing this look from #LVMenFW21. A boldly patterned ensemble with scarlet boots is practically made for him. I smile knowing how much he adores fashion and thinking how ecstatic he must feel to be working with Louis Vuitton.
  • V is wearing this look from #LVMenFW21. He is the image of refinement in a sophisticated long coat, effortlessly living up to his title as one of the most handsome men in the world.
  • Jungkook is wearing this look from #LVMenFW21. He directs his signature piercing gaze towards the camera as his gleaming accessories riff off the thick ridges of a textured blazer.
  • Jin is wearing this look from #LVMenFW21. What could be more appropriate than ending the teaser with a mysterious glance from Worldwide Handsome in a sharp, crimson plaid overcoat?

There will be a lot of eyes on Louis Vuitton's next showmore eyes than runway is normally used to. Runway is not something the general public watches, and even fashionistas may only casually follow runway collections. The BTS ARMY, however, is composed of millions of individuals across the globe from diverse backgrounds. There will undoubtedly be those in the fandom who have little interest or knowledge of luxury fashion, and some may even find it downright ridiculous. So it goes without saying Louis Vuitton will have a lot of pressure to satisfy a much wider audience united in their wholehearted love for BTS, while still fulfilling the features of a high fashion presentation. As Louis Vuitton itself tweeted, "High expectations."

Indeed there will be high expectations, but I think it is important to remember to thank Abloh, Louis Vuitton and BTS for participating in this collaboration. I hope we continue see opportunities like this that break boundaries for underrepresented groups, recognize the adversity they face, and celebrate the hard work that has led to their countless achievements.

Update: I almost choked on my butter. Louis Vuitton did not let high expectations faze them. Virgil Abloh's Fall/Winter 2021 Menswear presentation in Seoul with house ambassadors BTS was so tastefully executed I expect it will satisfy all audiences. Watch the full show here.

Image Source: WWD

May 16, 2021

I'm a Millennial, And Gen Z is Making Me Feel Old

“According to TikTok, skinny jeans are uncool.” I scoff as I ‘x’ out of the article and make a show of reaffirming my pledge of allegiance to skinny jeans. Years ago, I declared the body-hugging fit to be the most flattering style for my body type and I am not going to let some random Gen Zs pontificating on TikTok convince me otherwise. 

Fast forward two weeks and I’m standing in front of the mirror in a cream turtleneck, an apple green oversized linen blazer…and pair of black straight leg trousers rolled up at the ankles. “Honestly, I’m kind of living for this,” I muse as I arrange my limbs into theatrical Instagram poses. And that’s when I realize, skinny jeans are uncool (sorry, fellow Millennials). 

Since learning of Gen Z’s disdain for the skinny fit, I started to notice that everyone who wears skinny jeans are indeed around my age or older. I knew cuts like straight leg, boot cut, wide leg and even *gasp* flared bottoms were in style, but I truly did not expect skinny jeans to ever be considered outdated. And yet, there I was, suddenly seeing skinnies as boring, basic and safe (and being safe in fashion can often lead to blandness). There is something about the way '90s-inspired jeans are “unflattering” that is so decidedly cool. I’m witnessing all these young girls wearing pants that look exactly like the kind of loose pants I would have been (and was) ridiculed for wearing as a kid. But now it’s trendy to wear what used to be shapeless and to go against the laws of attraction by indulging in our attitude of indifference, letting our casual comfort fly in the face of what is conventionally seen as “hot”—which in turn makes it totally hot. 

And so my outfits as of late have involved baggier bottoms. My straight leg trousers and mom jeans have gained more mileage, and I have even gone out in joggers and sweatpants (my goodness, now those are things I really never thought I would wear outside of the house) styled with denim jackets, glammed up with a stack of silver jewellery, or worn tongue-in-cheek with a matching hoodie for a monochrome tracksuit look. 

I haven’t gone full-fledged Gen Z though. I have not ventured into the world of teeny tiny tops (eg. cropped shirts, tube tops, short cardigans buttoned only at the bust) because—let’s be real—I don’t have a Gen Z stomach. I did try experimenting with a pair of white flared jeans, yet upon seeing the dirt swept up along the bottom of my pant legs after a walk outside, I was reminded of one of the reasons why I gave up flares many years ago. 

But all this experimentation led me to a crushing thought—was I making a fool out of myself by wearing trends meant for those 10 years younger than me? And thus, an early-life crisis ensued: I feared I was becoming a cringey old person desperately trying to stay relevant. Was I going to find myself as one of those people who refuse to dress “age appropriately” and are found shopping alongside their daughters and/or bouncy teenagers in a store pumping out boppy pop hits from the speakers? After discussing with my friends, it became clear I was the only one who had jumped on the wagon away from skinny jeans. 

I find myself at a weird time in life: the stage when one first realizes they are not young anymore. I’m at the age where I don’t understand the younger generation (90% of TikTok content makes me wish I could go back and salvage the few seconds of time I just lost...the 10% that don't include @yoleendadong and the BTS TikToks a very important person in my life—love you!—sends to me nearly daily), and where wrinkles, grey hair and sluggish metabolism are newfound topics of conversation. I’m no longer the generation that sets trends, but rather the one that finds out about them one beat too late.  

And yet a desire to stay youthful never factored into my straight leg endeavours—trying to stay relevant is not the reason I follow trends. Ironically, this goes back to a comment I made over 10 years ago. I’ll let my younger (albeit less articulate) self say it: “I love trying out new things when it comes to dressing up. That’s why I love trends so much. Trends are not all about wearing the latest and the greatest, but rather trends are a way for us to experiment with different styles and to explore the innovations of dressing up.” This statement still rings true today. I love discovering new ways of styling the items in my closet. Not a single year goes by where I don't manage to pull together new outfits and change up my personal style. I’m always on the lookout for not only new ways to express myself, but new parts of myself to express. Trends are my guide in this journey. 

So am I trying to compensate for being past my prime? Am I simply grappling onto my final vestiges of youth? I don’t think so, but people are welcome to think otherwise—it wouldn’t matter much to me. One benefit of age is finally knowing it’s not worth spending time or energy on people who don’t support or enrich you, much less care what they think of you. I will continue wearing what makes me happy, whatever the heck that may be. Besides, another benefit of age is knowing that trends cycle. Eventually, skinny jeans will be back in style—and when that time comes, Gen Z, you ready? 

April 26, 2021

R.I.P. Alber Elbaz

Yesterday, we lost a beloved creative in the fashion industry. Designer Alber Elbaz, best known for revitalizing Lanvin during his 14 years as creative director, died of COVID-19 at the age of 59.

Elbaz was a precious figure in fashion, possessing both humility and humanity—characteristics which in and of themselves are rare in an industry where vanity and decadence often impede the ability to simply be kind. Instantly recognizable in his oversized, thick-framed glasses and an assortment of bow ties, he was a shy yet jovial man whose sincere warmth solidified his status as a respected industry darling.

Beyond his affable nature, Elbaz is remembered for transforming the house of Lanvin. In my eyes, Elbaz became synonymous with the label: Elbaz was Lanvin, and Lanvin without Elbaz was not Lanvin at all. I still point to Lanvin Spring/Summer 2011 RTW as a notable collection in the history of runway I will never forget. Elbaz was a master of cocktail dresses: ruffled, shimmery, jewel-toned, and embellished. Yet his designs were neither mawkishly girly nor blatantly sexy; they were romantic in a way that was powerful and determined. Despite being unceremoniously let go from Lanvin at the ruling of the majority stakeholder in 2015 (a decision the company must surely regret in hindsight), I recall reading of Elbaz's genuine excitement over launching his own line, AZfashion, in 2019. We can only wish Elbaz was given more time to showcase what would have manifested under this new freedom.

Elbaz’s passing is a heartache that comes with the frustrating reminder that COVID-19, as with any disease, does not discriminate—it does not judge, it does not evaluate, it does not stay away from those with gentle souls. As unfortunate and disheartening as it is to know that Elbaz became a victim of this pandemic, I have no doubt he battled COVID-19 courageously with grace and quietly without bitterness, just like he always did in fashion. To the man who slowly built an empire with nothing but modesty, may you R.I.P.

Image Source: Belfast Telegraph

February 14, 2021

I Found The One

Dear Donna, 

The moment I laid eyes on you, I knew you were The One. 

Spirits of the universe had their hand in guiding our paths that day, taking care to cross our steps in perfect harmony. What else could explain how I went back to Winners to exchange a pair of shoes I had bought only the day before? A little voice in my head told me to go exchange those shoes for a different colour—and only because of that did we meet. 

You were not there the day before; you must have been freshly brought out onto the racks for your debut that morning. And I am certain had I visited Winners any later in the day, you would have been gone, whisked away by one of the many others I saw ogling you from a distance. But I got to you first, and once I did, I vowed to never let go. 

Shimmering with effervescent energy, you looked divine. Your metallic blue finish lent you such a dazzling glam-rock vibe, while your classic motorcycle cutting grounded you as an investment piece. Your shiny silver hardware, branded with your logo and family name, LAMARQUE (I've always adored French), spoke to your earnest attention to detail. The only one of your kind in the store that day, it was a miracle you came in my size, fitting me like a missing puzzle piece. So luxurious and tender, your lamb leather touch, and at only $90 (down from a retail price of $725), you expected so little in return for your genuineness. There are others out there who demand even more of me, yet upon acquaintance, reveal their faux personas. With you in my arms, I wonder why I would have ever spent all those years desperately searching—why I would have contemplated any other leather jacket—when you were waiting for me at the end of the line. 

My dear, beautiful Donna, till death do us part, I can’t wait to spend the rest of my life with you.

With love,

Image source: Anthropologie

January 24, 2021

Lululemon x Roksanda

As much as Lululemon can be the butt of the joke at times, it is clearly doing something right to be as successful as it is. From fitness buffs, to work-from-home professionals, to women looking for clothing versatile enough to show off shapely curves and perform lunges on demand, Lululemon has wide range of customers in its loyal, cult-like following. Despite the myriad of other brands available when it comes to workout attire, I can attest to Lululemon’s quality: its bottoms fit like a second skin, its fabrics do wick away sweat, and its Scuba hoodies are breathable yet warm. In terms of style, I think the Lululemon aesthetic is distinct, even if it is simple and repeated every season. Lululemon designs pieces that are interesting and have unique style elements, although overall I find its formula has been to produce functional pieces that are stylish—meaning, function comes first, always. 

That formula was flipped on its head when Lululemon released its first collection in collaboration with designer Roksanda Ilinčić in 2019, and then its second collection shortly before the pandemic in 2020. These capsule collections contain stylish pieces that are functional—and I’ll explain the difference.  

Roksanda, Ilinčić's namesake label, is a bold and colourful brand for the feminine yet joyfully self-assured woman. Ilinčić frequently uses colour blocking (or a single saturated tone head-to-toe), and ruching, ruffles or pleating to achieve sculptural shapes. Roksanda is basically a very unlikely pairing for Lululemon, but the result of their meeting of minds is incredible. 

This is the first collection of Lululemon’s I can say is truly fashionable. With punchy neon accents interspersed between rich jewel tones, you get a taste of Roksanda's signature colour blocking. Lululemon is no stranger to colour, but it normally plays with colour in controlled doses, a technique I would consider fairly standard in activewear. It might use geometric colour blocking on a single piece in ways that strategically highlight the shape of the body, or it may offer pieces with stripes, florals, or patterns in varied shades. Never before have I seen Lululemon produce an entire, cohesive look using colour so widely and in such abundance. 

However, the silhouettes are really what make this collaboration stand out. Lululemon generally adds flair in subtle, integrated ways, such as through crisscross or double shoulder straps, mesh inserts, or ruched detailing; it doesn't tend to stray from its tried-and-true, form-fitting silhouettes. Hence why I am stunned to see long, flowy skirts, asymmetrical hemlines, exaggerated bishop sleeves, drawstrings and belts made with thick bungee cord, and a puffer/trench coat ensemble that can be deconstructed into 4 separate pieces or mix-and-matched into 26 different combinations. None of these shapes are necessarily meant for hitting the gym—their purpose is to help you look great going to and from the gym—yet that's not to say these designs are impractical. Every Roksanda piece takes advantage of Lululemon's fabric technology, and the aforementioned coat boasts a hidden interior pocket for lipstick and a hood that can be removed and folded into a travel pouch. See what I mean by stylish pieces that are functional?

I have no doubt some of those who adore Lululemon for its practicality will consider these collections out to lunch, but for those of us who admire displays of artful athleisure, this is a delightful and refreshing collaboration.

Image Source: CIIN Magazine, Chatelaine, Fashion Gone Rogue

January 3, 2021

The Impact of COVID-19 on Fashion

I have felt oddly obligated (in a unique way only those involved in fashion, writing and business can feel) to publish a post with insightful and analytical commentary about the impact of COVID-19 on the fashion industry. But then again, there are a plethora of articles written by individuals far more qualified than I available for your perusal on the Internet. I’ll leave the serious business inquiry to those among the likes of BoF, BNN and HBR, and stick with my schtick—which is the view of things through the eyes of an average fashion lover. We may not all be businesspeople or creative directors, but we are all consumers. And at the end of the day, it is the experience of the consumer that matters. So here are my observations:

Masks as Fashion: Functionality’s Makeover

At first, they were rare. They flew off the shelves along with toilet paper, and for a brief period, we were using anything we could find around the house—scarves, pot lids, menstrual pads—as makeshift alternatives. Now, they’re in oversupply. You can scarcely find a retailer who doesn’t sell them, and mostly everyone has a proper version of it in any colour, pattern and design their heart desires. I am, of course, talking about masks.  

Although already a commonplace accessory in countries like Japan, South Korea and China, North American culture has been uncomfortable with the notion of hiding one’s face day-to-day. Yet when push came to shove, we all adopted the practice. And when something functional becomes necessary, we have a tendency to try and make it look good (see: stylish scrubs and designer PPE for airline cabin crews). The introduction of face masks has opened a whole new realm of fashion. In the same way we analyze what clothing is most flattering on certain body types, I found myself fascinated by what makes face masks suitable for our own face shapes (fit and cutting), what designs look best both up close and from a distance (white masks with floral patterns look a bit like diapers, don’t you think?) and the innovative ways we can make masks fun (luxe lanyards and mask jewellery). Will masks stick around after COVID-19 passes? Probably not. But I hope they remain as an option for those who wish to complement their outfits with a new accessory.  

Digital Drudgery: A Reminder of Why We Gather

The start of COVID-19 led to a flurry of speculation about what the future of fashion would look like. The industry started questioning why everyone wastes resources by travelling so much to attend runway shows, meetings or events when we’ve now proven all of that can be done virtually. From live-streamed performances, to digital audiences, to miniature couture and marionette shows, designers tried their best to convey the magic of fashion—which is so sensorial and physical—through a screen. For a moment, it seemed the interweb advocates were winning. And yet, according to Business of Fashion, the virtual Fashion Weeks over the summer saw reduced online impressions and up to 55% less social media engagement compared to last year, and it’s undeniable people are feeling consumed by wanderlust. 

That brings us to the question of why we gather in the first place. Humans are social creatures, and there is no way virtual viewings will satiate us forever. We gather because we can gain a sense of closeness, community and camaraderie with those we share an experience with. Fashion shows will come back. Travel will return. In-person meetings will still be valued. COVID-19 is a turning point, but it would be a mistake to think of it as a turning point away from everything we have found so fundamentally enriching.

Slowing Down Fast Fashion

Even back when I was an eager newbie to fashion, I struggled to keep up with its frantic pace. If there is one thing I would like to see this pandemic bring about in the industry, it is a more thoughtful approach to what and how we produce. As COVID-19 forced us to catch our breath, we realized our never-ending thirst for newness had worn us out. We looked at all the unsold merchandise hanging in retail stores every season—the several million tons of textile waste we produce annually—and asked ourselves, why? Fashion can nourish our souls, but at what point does it become reckless and wasteful to not encourage better forms of production and longer-lasting apparel? 

Brands can push out up to eight collections a year; in addition to two seasonal ready-to-wear collections across womenswear and menswear, the traditional industry calendar also includes pre-fall, resort and seasonal haute couture. Are pre-season collections really that different from seasonal collections? Does menswear and womenswear really need to be distinguished? New for the sake of new is not creativity. Some designers have already made adjustments to present collections in the season they’re actually designed for (instead of 6 months before), and Gucci is cutting its five shows a year down to two. As we emerge post-COVID-19, I would be happy to see the industry adopt a slower and more sustainable pace. 

The Brick & Mortar Website

Online shopping has shown itself to be extremely handy. Established businesses that didn’t have a robust e-commerce service in place prior to the pandemic were clearly already falling behind the times. So you may be surprised to learn that despite how unparalleled the accessibility and variety of goods online are, Business of Fashion and McKinsey & Company jointly report that more than 80% of transactions in the fashion industry still happen in brick-and-mortar stores. The industry is actually largely dependent on physical retail—and I believe there is a reason for that. 

Fashion is meant to be a 3-D experience. When it comes to clothing, I don’t trust any image online until I see the item in real life. Only in person are you able to verify the colour and design, feel the quality of the fabric, see how the cutting hangs and moves on your body, and scrutinize the item from every angle (including inside and/or underneath, which are not often shown online). And, most importantly, you can judge how a piece makes you feel once you have it on. You might have a positive emotional response when you see an image of a piece online, but that response is a weak predictor of whether you will actually feel confident once you put the piece on. For these reasons, online shopping is an injustice to what the fashion experience is truly meant to be. 

However, I’m not woebegone over the “good ol’ days.” I refuse to purchase clothing online (unless I’ve already tried it on in store), but I am aware of the limited selection available with physical shopping. I think we are facing a great opportunity for businesses to merge digital and physical shopping by establishing both an online presence and a lower-cost physical presence through “try-on” boutiques. Retailers need only maintain all sizes of each item at bare minimum quantities for customers to try on before they make the purchase online at self-service computer terminals in the boutique. I also hope this lower-cost option might encourage online-only brands to set up a physical presence, thus introducing more variety to the retail space and allowing those businesses to expand their customer base. Brick-and-mortar shopping is not dead; it just needs to be reborn. 

Don’t Sweat It—For Now

With nearly 40% of the Canadian labour force working from home since the pandemic, as per Statistics Canada, the way we dress on a daily basis has changed. There is simply no reason to don our office attire anymore. I’ve been in my house clothes looking like a schlep for a good 90% of my existence lately. And I’m not alone—loungewear sales are up, with sweatsuits, yoga pants and slippers becoming 2020’s most coveted items. Entireworld, a line of wardrobe basics similar to American Apparel or Uniqlo, saw its colourful sweatsuits fly off the shelves, landing the brand its highest grossing months since it was conceived by Scott Sternberg, former founder of Band of Outsiders, in 2018. On the flip side, Le Château recently announced its bankruptcy, citing the dwindling need for party dresses as a contributing factor (I’ve waited patiently for this brand to be defunct anyway, but that’s a rant for another time). 

Does this signal changing tides in the way we dress? I doubt it. Fashion is fickle that way. Sooner or later, we will yearn for a chance to dress up again. Why else would The Strawberry Dress, a frothy tulle confection embellished with sequined strawberries designed by Lirika Matoshi, have become a viral sensation despite having practically nowhere to wear it? Dressing in sweats all the time doesn’t do wonders for my mental health, and I’m sure others would agree. A global initiative called “End PJ Paralysis” encourages hospital patients to get up, get dressed in their own clothes and move around to aid in quicker recovery and overall patient experience. I’m glad for the acknowledgement that fashion can play a role in emotional health, and post-COVID-19, I expect we will have newfound pleasure in the act of dressing again. One day, we’ll be grateful for the freedom to do the things we once took for granted before we realized how precious they were. So don’t sweat it—one day, things will return to normal.