09. talk too much

++ WE TALK ABOUT HOW TO DRESS LIKE A GROWN UP WITHOUT LOSING YOUR EMO-KID-EDGE

OH, do I have a song for you.

COIN

Guys, honestly, my roommates must be so sick of hearing COIN’s song Talk Too Much — like, over and over, on repeat.  It’s a bop!  Check it out here.

cropped-dots-red.jpgTHE VIBE: BABY PINK BALLOONS, DISCO BALLS, GIRLS IN SKATER SKIRTS, FERRIS WHEELS
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Tell me how much you love it in comments, k?  You’re welcome. Now, let’s talk FASHUN.

So lately I’ve been thinking a lot about “grown up Leah”.  Like, who is that? And, more importantly — what does she look like?  

For most of my life I worked really hard to be edgy.  I was desperate for the world to know I was “different”, though too scared to embrace full on scene hair and snake bites.  As a result, my wardrobe consisted mainly of band t shirts, various colours of skinny jeans, and a lot of scarves that, for some reason, I always wore indoors.

Getting older — not to mention moving to the city — has really inspired me to step up my look, but I don’t want to lose whatever small amount of badassery I was able to cultivate as an angsty sixteen year old.  Edgey rocker vibes are key, but so is looking like a grown up (and one who deserves a job).

The best fashion advice I ever received came from my lovely mother, who has always told me “whatever look you choose, make sure everyone knows it’s on purpose”.  So if you’re rocking blue hair, don’t let it look like you dyed it in your kitchen sink — even if you did. If your jeans are ripped up, make it high fashion, not like a kid who scraped their knee on the playground.  I-woke-up-like-this is a carefully constructed look, not an excuse to roll out of bed and into life — y’know?

So with this in mind, I’ve been compiling all my rules (er, guidelines) for dressing like a grown up… but, like, a cool grown up.  

🔴 Nails on fleek.  I love dark nails — and black nails (short + square are my fave) are a great way to add a bit of edge to your look… as long as they’re not a mess.  I do my best to keep my nails painted, because I think it really pulls things together.

🔴 When in doubt, stick with black and white.  I know it’s not the most exciting option in the world, but monochrome looks are so chic.  When I don’t know what to wear I love a baggy white blouse — tied at the bottom, of course, to give a bit of pin-up flair.

 

🔴 Best foot forward.  I love my converse and vans as much as anyone, but they’re not exactly the most polished look.  I like a cute loafer, anything point-toed, or chunky heeled booties; they can all convey your inner badass, but they’re also grown up.

🔴 Accessories are key.  If you think your outfit is a little bland, throw on a necklace (or 5), some cute hoops, or (my personal fave) some badass rings.  Throw a leopard print coat on over your all black outfit, or a cute colourful scarf. Lipstick is also an accessory, if you ask me.

 

🔴 When in doubt, Paris is always a good idea.  It’s just a fact: french girls do it better. They have effortlessness down to a fine art, and somehow they can make even the simplest outfit look badass.  So if you’re not sure where to start, might I recommend googling “Parisian fashion” or “how to dress like a french girl”.  Here’s a couple of french beauties to get you started:

 

And you? how do you step up your fashion game?

(notice that I wrote a post about a new subject — HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT IT?  this has been a long time coming tbh, and I’m excited about it.)

08. unamused

++ ACTUAL NEW MUSIC (I’M ON THE CUTTING EDGE FOR ONCE)!  PLUS, WE DISCUSS MY TERRIBLE EATING HABITS.

it may still be freezing out, but at least the sun was shining today — and at least I got to hear some new songs from my boys in Made Violent.

Okay, hear me out — I know this particular song came out a while back as a single.  I loved it then!  and, now that their latest EP squeeze is out, I can officially say it’s my favourite track of the five.

That being said?  I’d recommend you listen to all 5 for yourself, because they’re all perfect.  Seriously — they have a very cool indie rock’n’roll vibe that reminds me of the Strokes.  Great for throwing on some big dark sunglasses and heading out for a stroll.

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THE VIBE: VINTAGE RAY BANS, BLUE AND YELLOW BEACH SHACKS, STEALING A KISS, GETTING CAUGHT SINGING INTO YOUR HAIRBRUSH.

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Anyway, that’s what I did this morning after ordering a fucking belgian waffle to my house because I have no groceries (as always) and everything was closed for Easter.  Then it was off to campus to work on a group project — but it wasn’t all bad news, because we ordered a pizza to the computer lab and had a lovely little easter feast.

 

 

The holidays are really about the food anyway, am I right?

 

 

07. i like it like that.

I know it’s not Thursday, but I’m having a serious throwback moment.

It all started on Saturday, when my roommates and I somehow went from listening to 500 Miles (someone was convinced it was the ultimate St. Patrick’s day anthem), to the Backstreet Boys, to… Hot Chelle Rae.

DO YOU REMEMBER HOT CHELLE RAE?  Honestly, iconic.  It turns out they only have two good songs, both of which you probably heard on the radio back in the day, but if you’re looking to revisit your scene hair days then those two songs are enough.  Tonight, Tonight is the classic, but personally I prefer I Like It Like That.

You’re welcome.

If you’re interested in something a little less 2011 Hot Topic, might I remind you that The Wombats released a new album recently?  I am reminding because I also forgot, and am just giving it a listen right now — it is a masterpiece.  Beautiful People Will Ruin Your Life is the painfully relatable name, and it is full of all the usual sassy lyrics and pop/rock sensibility of any and all their previous recordings.  It’s a little less electronic than 2015’s Glitterbug, leaning more toward an indie rock vibe; definitely full of songs that will be bangers live.

what are you listening to lately — is it a throwback ting, or are you always about the new new?  Do you like how I just casually threw in some trendy toronto slang that I have never used in my life?  All important questions, so please get back to me asap.

05. contrasting colours

are you even a pop-punk band if one member doesn’t have a solo acoustic side project?

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I’ve had a super productive day, complete with a soundtrack of old school Lily Allen and sad acoustic jams by none other than Speak Low If You Speak Love.

Ryan Scott Graham, the bassist of State Champs, has been releasing music under this (admittedly long-winded) name since 2015.  If you ask me, though, Nearsighted is miles ahead of 2015’s Everything But What You Need.  While the latter was a solid album, Nearsighted brings something new to the table; a whimsical, nostalgic vibe that is so obviously different from State Champs.  It’s a refreshing change, and a fun departure from what is (and I say this with the utmost affection) the most predictable of pop-punk.

It was a perfect soundtrack for meal prepping, and it had the added bonus of being something I wouldn’t be embarrassed to have on if my roommates came into the kitchen.  The standout track for me was definitely Contrasting Colours, though truth be told I can’t put my finger on exactly why.  It just stuck with me long after the album was done.  If you want to check it out, you can do so here!

Side projects were such a thing back in the day — are they less common now?  Or am I just paying less attention?  Please inform me of your fave down below (or via email at themompunk@gmail.com,  if you want!).

 

04. peach

My boy Leo, new tunes from waterparks, and of course the superbowl halftime show (because I’m relevant…..right?)

Happy super bowl sunday, pals!

I have spent my entire day avoiding my responsibilities and watching confusing Leonardo Dicaprio movies (Shutter Island, which tbh I didn’t find that confusing but apparently the internet did, and now Inception, which let’s be real, doesn’t make any sense at all).  I’m taking a break from this epic marathon to watch the halftime show and eat some chicken wings, because that feels like the right thing to do.

During the approximately 10 minutes of studying I did today I threw on the new Waterparks album, Entertainment, and honestly I am in love.  Truthfully I’ve found these guys to be a little hit-or-miss in the past (I’m obsessed with the songs I like, but the songs I don’t… well, I just don’t).  So far though this album has me hooked; I’m into it.  And Peach (Lobotomy) is especially fun.

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They also just have such a strong aesthetic, and I can’t pretend I’m not a sucker for aesthetics.

ANYWAY, now that my love for Justin Timberlake has been officially reignited and the underdogs are #thriving (right?  I think that’s what’s happening?  I don’t understand football.) I think it’s time for me to throw on a face mask, make a cup of tea, and get down to business.

Please please please share any and all thoughts you may be having on the halftime show, the new waterparks album, or literally anything else!  I would love to hear from you.

 

03. HOLD ME TIGHT OR DON’T

all of my january jams (haaaaa), my feelings about warped tour, and shaking my ass to new fall out boy.

HELLO internet — can you believe it is february already?  Welcome to the month of looooove!  I am currently writing from a booth in Panera, so safe to say my february is off to a pretty good start.  I know it’s a rip off, but my love for Panera is real (though I suspect unrequited).

Anyway!  What have you been listening to?  How have you been feeling?

I have been quietly setting aside songs all month so that once it was over I could hit you all with a playlist of everything I really loved  — so here it is!  my january jams.  Featuring all of my “song of the day”s, some new tunes, and some old tunes that I’ve just been really into.  Check it out below or here and let me know what I missed!

Today’s song made it into January’s list (and might make it into February’s as well tbh) because I’ve been listening to it non stop for several weeks.  HOLD ME TIGHT OR DON’T is, as far as I’m concerned, the stand out track on Fall Out Boy’s new album Mania.  It brings it all — a driving beat, a fun melody, quirky lyrics.  It’s danceable, but not boring.  I’m obsessed and I don’t care who knows it.

The whole album is pretty good (I mean, it’s Fall Out Boy)… but I can’t say it’s on this level.

ALSO I am counting down the days until Warped Tour tickets go on sale — 24 left!  Growing up I was never able to go and it has been my DREAM since I was like 14, so I’m beyond excited to experience it this year.

What’s your dream Warped line up?

Anyway, it’s probably time for me to abandon Panera in favour of the library and get some real work done; I wish I could spend all of my time writing about Warped Tour and Fall Out Boy, but alas, real life calls.

until next time! xx

02. birthday in los angeles

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good morning world!

it’s a dreary Monday here in Toronto, and I slept through my 9am lecture.  Truthfully I’m not that upset about it — something about three hour lectures in an empty movie theatre first thing in the morning is really unappealing, if you ask me.  Instead I spent my morning drinking coffee in bed and writing in my journal.  I may be taking my permanent vacation (congratulations! your imitations! … etc) mindset a little too literally…

I’ve been listening to The Maine all morning after I watched all the snaps from 8123 day yesterday — they’re so cute, it makes my heart so happy — and birthday in los angeles came on.  Honestly I skip this song a lot because it’s sort of depressing,  but it really fit the vibe today and it got me thinking about how I got to do the whole running away to the city thing.

It also got me thinking about the fact that Canada has a very limited number of big cities to run away to.  I grew up on the West Coast, in a little town on Vancouver Island (B.C.), and Toronto was always my dream city.  No one else really talked about moving here the way I did, but in the year and a half since I’ve been around at least five people from my high school have moved here.  Two girls I grew up with actually live within two blocks of me!  It really is the most New York/LA kind of place we have —  where dreams come true, you know?

forever halloween
Forever Halloween

this ain’t a scripted movie… I don’t drive a fancy car… those flashing lights don’t mean a thing to me… 

I had my fair share of I-can’t-do-this-I-don’t-belong-here moments when I moved.  I’ve seen a hundred movies and read a thousand books about people who move to the city and realize how hard it is.  They get caught up and swept away in all the people, lost in the lights and the noise and overwhelmed by the speed of everything.  I always thought it was silly, but I was finally able to see how not everyone was meant for life in a big city — I thought maybe I wasn’t meant for it either.

It’s not like I have it all figured out now or anything, but I feel like I’ve carved out a space for myself here, as one of the millions of confused souls in this place.  It feels pretty good.