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Aztec Holiday

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This summer, you might not be lucky enough to be embarking on a Roman Holiday (unless of course you are in fact Audrey Hepburn and this is 1953). But hopefully you are planning to take a summertime getaway some time in the next few months. For your travels this summer, think Aztec Holiday. 

These bold colours and prints evoke the life and spirit of the Mayan Riviera. So even if you're travelling no further than the edge of the patio this summer, you can still feel like you're in your own tropical paradise. 

There are so many reasons why this look is a great addition to your summer wardrobe (aside from it being completely gorgeous). Take this number, pictured below. It's light, airy and flows away from the body to keep you nice and cool without sacrificing style. You can wear it simply, like this, all through the day and then style it up in the evening with a waist-cinching belt (try brown leather) and some chunky heels or wedges.

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Print Dress in Purple, Orange, and Blue, $89

Now, I know that this is a bold print and I know that can be scary for some. But honestly, taking prints along when you travel is some of the best packing advice I could offer. Prints have this almost magical ability to camouflage wrinkles and stains, making them the most low-maintenance articles to wear.

If you simply can't take the leap and become a total print-cess, pair an Aztec print top with white jeans for a toned-down version of the same look. And that's all there is to it! With your travel wardrobe taken care of, all you need to worry about is enjoying your summer!

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Print top in Blue, $59

Cropped jeans in White, Black, and Ink, $120

Purse by Co-Lab, colour pictured above, $85

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New Lines and Other Plum Finds

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Print Smash Dress, $80

As you can see, this week on the blog, we’re featuring a brand-new dress from Smash. The bold geometric floral print is not only completely gorgeous, it’s also part of a huge trend for spring and summer this year. For women who might shy away from the girly floral, a geometric print is the perfect answer. It’s an effortless way to balance femininity with a modern edge.

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Our buyer and merchandiser extraordinaire, Katie O’Brien, has a knack for finding lines like Smash.  She seeks out lines that keep up with the trends yet are still not “disposable fashion.” Translation: current styles that won’t look out of place next season. This can often be a tricky balancing act. Katie knows that the majority of Plum customers would rather have a well-made, stylish item rather than the absolute-trendiest-thing-on-the-market-right-now.  When it comes to building a wardrobe that lasts, being stylish trumps being trendy every time (I'm hearing a collective sigh of relief from everyone who wasn't quite ready to hop on the neon trend bandwagon).

Image - Katie O'Brien

Katie is in charge of assessing what Plum can produce for itself in Vancouver, and then filling in the gaps with other brands. While it is taxing, she confesses that this process of sourcing is her favourite part of the job. Her search for quality merchandise takes her to New York and Los Angeles several times each year. And a lot more goes into her hunt than "Oh, that's a cute top, we should carry that." She specifically looks for colours and styles that will complement the merchandise that Plum is producing itself, while still retaining quality and affordability. The end result is a store full of clothing that has been hand selected to work together as a complete wardrobe. Katie puts in the leg work so you don't have to!  

So I'm curious, what are your favourite brands? You can let me know by commenting on the post or by tweet tweeting at me on Twitter! @PlumClothing

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Early Markdowns Here

(Pro tip: this link will not take you to our full Spring 2012 collection. To see even more photos of the great items we have in store, click here instead!

 

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Trending: Romance

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For this spring and summer, think eyelet lace, candy-coloured pastels, and sheer, flowy fabrics. This look has been all over the runway lately. We like Ralph Lauren's Gatsby-esque take on it.

Check out his Spring 2012 runway show

If you're not about to strut down the catwalk, you can find many wearable alternatives at Plum this spring that have that same gorgeous, feminine movement.

It’s not about being over-the-top girly, it’s about having fun and being playful! It’s about trading in your heavy winter knits for light spring florals and helping you rediscover your own lovely stems. This look is great for anyone who doesn’t vibe on the colour blocking and larger-than-life tones that are also very popular right now.

Elle Canada this month called the romantic look "sweet but chic," which I think captures it perfectly.

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Ruffle Bodice Dress, in Tan/Coral and Black/Coral, $135

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Sleeveless Dress with Full Skirt, in Rose, Black, and Off-white, $129

Dresses like these look amazing with a nude-coloured pump, like the one in the photo above. These understated shoes elongate the leg and -bonus- the colour can be worn morning 'til night.

Chunky chain necklaces, exposed zippers, and small studded accents prevent this style from looking like it's en route to a little girl's tea party. You can even try leather fringe accessories, like we saw in RL's spring show (link above) although, admittedly, that is a liiiittle bit trickier to pull off.

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A safe starting place is a dainty chain necklace. This is just a small sampling of all of the gorgeous jewellery at Plum. We've had tons of new arrivals in the last week, so definitely come by and take a look! 

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Plum carries Mavi Jeans and Yoga Jeans, two of the best names in the business. Mavi's have a fantastic fit and they're available in just about every cut and colour under the sun. And Yogas, they are the comfiest pair of jeans you will ever own because of their unique, 5-way diagonal stretch.

The right pair of jeans is one of your most valuable wardrobe staples. You know the pair I mean. They are your go-to's, the kind you just have to slip on to feel good. You wear them with a plain white tee on Monday and look great. Wear them again on Friday night with your favourite heels and look even better.

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                      Mavi Alexa Jeggings, $98                              Yoga Skinny Jeans with Zipper Ankle, $120

In stores now...NEW low priced coloured denim New from Judy Blue Jeans company, we now have coral and light blue, at the too-good-to-resist price of $79. We don't have pictures of our gorgeous model wearing these yet because they are brand, BRAND new, but I couldn't wait to show off these colours to you! So forgive me, but here I am sporting our new denim.

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Judy Blue Coloured Denim, $79

Get 'em while they're hot! Some of you may remember just how quickly our short-lived red Mavi's sold out...

In support of National Denim Day, $5 from every pair of jeans sold until May 15th will be donated to the CURE Foundation in support of breast cancer research.

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May is also Big Sisters month at Plum. For every $2 you donate in-store, you’ll also be automatically entered to win a $350 gift card to Plum! Philanthropy feels pretty good, hey? Check out the link below for details.

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Big Sisters Information

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Community matters to Plum. What matters to you? Tell us in this quick survey and you'll be entered to win $200 in cash!

Survey Here

 

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In Love with Linen

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It is a lucky lady indeed who is able to totally reinvent her wardrobe every time the seasons change. It’s simply not realistic for most of us. 

Recently graduated student here. Apart from my new degree, my university experience has given me the ability to stretch a dollar. Sometimes I stretch it really, really far. There have been times when I've had to get pretty creative to give my wardrobe a much-needed shot of life after a long Vancouver winter. But the process doesn't have to be painful.

I like to invest in quality pieces that are versatile, and then switch them up with fun and inexpensive accessories, like jewellery and scarves.

Take the Tobias linen jacket (in stores now, I’ve seen it, love it, must...have...). Linen is perfect for the spring and summer because it travels well, still looks great with a few wrinkles, and pairs beautiful with dresses and skirts.

The best part? You don’t need to spend a lot of time thinking about how you’ll wear it. You can just slip it on over jeans and a t-shirt, like you see in the photo below, or over a sundress, a maxi dress, a pleated skirt, coloured denim, a navy pencil skirt...ok, I'm getting carried away. But you get my point. Versatility is the name of the game here.

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Linen boyfriend jacket in Sand (pictured here), Purple, and Steel, $165

 

Our stylist took a simple look, just a jacket over jeans and a tee, and made it more unique by adding an armful of bangles. Imagine this is Monday's look. You could give this outfit a totally different feel altogether by adding a brightly coloured scarf for a pop of colour and a leather belt around your hips. Then it's easy to wear it again later in the week if you're in a rush and need a go-to outfit.

 

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One more thing: Don't forget to enter our feather necklace giveaway! You've got until May 7th to enter to win. It just takes a minute, all you need to do is complete a very short survey for us and you'll be in the running.

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You can find the entry survey here: http://plum.ca/i.cfm/p/survey/sid/84

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Behind the Scenes at Plum HQ

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Hello and happy May! Spring is (finally) in the air and we at Plum are hard at work on shooting some new photos of our spring styles for the website.

Some of you lovely No Guru readers might recognize me from Plum's Kitsilano location (W 4th Ave at Vine). I'm a sales associate there in addition to being your friendly neighbourhood blogger/Twitter-er/Facebook-er (and in case you haven't seen enough of me yet, I'm about to add amateur jeans model to that list). 

Part of the reason that I love being so involved with Plum is that I get an in-depth look at the behind-the-scenes action at every level. I can chat with customers, the owners, and the designer all in one day and still have time to update the Twitter feed (really, the most crucial part of the job). Today, I've been working from head office, where a spring web shoot has been in full spring , er, swing, all day. 

Here are some of my photos from the day to sneak-pique your interest for our upcoming season!

(Don't worry, the professional pics will be up on the webpage soon, I promise)

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Designer, Claudia Agusti, with Photographer Richard (www.rdolmatphotography.com) and our fit model

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After that, it was my turn to step behind the camera and model some jeans (I don't want to give everything away but I can tell you...we're getting more coloured deni ). Italics, in case you didn't know, are blog speak for whispering so if anyone asks, you didn't hear it from me. 

This was the first Plum web shoot I've ever been involved with, and I really wanted to share a glimpse of it with all of the No Guru readers. I think it helps illustrate how hard the team here at Plum is working to make fashion fun and accessible for our customers.

Once again, happy May everyone! I'd love to hear from you, what are you most looking forward to this May?

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