Designing in Denim


When I was 11 I decided I was going to start designing and sewing my own clothes. With limited sewing skills and no patience to follow a pattern, I got busy cutting and glueing pieces together until I had made a pink and blue “tank top” that more closely resembled a children’s swimsuit and was totally unwearable. Sadly, that was the end of my designing career- until the creative team at eShakti reached out and asked if I’d like to try my hand at a little custom dress designing.

The process is super simple. You choose a base that you love (I chose this denim shift dress), and then you customize it with all of your measurements (height, arm length, hips, waist, chest, shoulders) and the style of the dress that suits you best- neckline, length of dress, sleeves or no sleeves, pockets or no pockets.


Then the team at eShakti gets to work and you sit back and wait for your creation to arrive. I’m pleased with how it came out, and even more pleased that the waist tie doubles as a choker necklace! You can use coupon code STATEANDOCCUPATION at checkout to save 10% on your totally customized design.


PS: Shakti in Sanskrit means “power.” As in you have the power to choose a design that flatters your body; as in eShakti’s staff in India are empowered to make a living for their families in safe, fair and comfortable working conditions. eShakti is transparent about the way your clothes are made, and I think that’s so important. You can find them on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest.

[Banner images via left, middle, right
Dress images by Tim Donadt]


Fridays PrIntspo

bordermonogomyFotorCreatedIt’s -23 this this morning, but with the windchill it feels like -29, which feels like I have no idea why I’m out of bed. 😉 I was feeling particularly inspired to show you these three prints today because: if I’m going to cling to my sheets while I hit snooze every morning- it might as well be in the most beautiful sheets ever made, those teeny boobies and baby baguettes because they are killin’ me and the incognito model because I have a thing for faceless human art.

It’s FRIDAY! What are you plans for the weekend? I’m heading eastbound on a weekend road trip, finishing off the last episode of Serial that I’ve been neglecting and checking out an Illusionist show on Sunday night with Tim. Wishing you a happy, safe and extra warm weekend (163 days till summer!). xo

– My all time favourite shop sign
– New desktop wallpapers to inspire you to work it (no diggity)
– A dreamy little place to snooze for a night or 20

To Be Wonderful.


“You are a tree that grew from a seed I never planted. I never bothered asking where you came from, I just started loving the smell of your branches, and falling asleep in your shade.” – Tyler Knott Gregson

Left: My brain has been in non-stop obsession mode over moving out and having my own little house. Decorating it and filling it with groceries, a cat and offices made out of closets. Growing up my dad always talked about a moment in his young life when a switch flicked and he could no longer stand living at home. That switch flicked for me. A year ago.

Middle: Okay, I am a little interested in money. There are serious ups and serious downs about trying to make it as a freelance writer. The ups this week have included doing an interview wrapped in a blanket on the floor, drinking wine at 2pm and landing a cool new job. The downside includes a big question mark when it comes to what my monthly income will look like. But more than consistency, a room full of money or a crowd of adoring fans, I really really do just want to be wonderful. I think that’s what keeps me going. As the saying goes, “Introduce yourself until you don’t have to introduce yourself anymore”.

Right:  I think about this morning all the time. A morning in the summer when I woke up in Kelowna, BC in the comfiest bed. It was my first time ever sleeping under the stars in the box of a truck. I woke up once during the night because it was lightly raining and hitting my face, but I just snuggled deeper under the blankets. By 8am it was already a gorgeous day, and a few minutes after this photo was taken, I rolled out of bed, grabbed a coffee to-go and hopped in the boat to go wake surfing.

PS: State & Occupation now has a Facebook page! Yay!

PPS: something to help you pick out a costume,
something to help you waste time
and a new method of payment that would surely
leave me broke. 🙂 Happy Saturday! xo

Fridays Inspo

“Everything will be different, but also exactly the same.”succesFotor082291456

I got butterflies in my stomach when I read this post, written exactly a year ago by a 21 year old me. It’s a bit of an indescribable feeling, but the best way I can put it is that I felt sad for my old self. For being scared and unsure and nervous about everything the upcoming year would hold for her. In a sense I wish I could have protected her a little and given her something definite to hold on to- “you WILL get through college”, “your relationship WILL survive the year of distance” “baby meal WILL remember you” (haha). As I sit here drinking coffee I realized I have become fairly accustomed to dealing with the closing of chapters- nothing has stayed constant for more than 4 months at a time for the last couple years. I get wildly attached to everything, so it’s hard for me to leave my internship at the Edmonton Woman today with no solid idea of where I’m going next. Today is also the last day my sister will share my last name, as she is becoming a WIFE tomorrow! And after that I am off to Kelowna for a week of sun and boating and giggling. I look so forward to catching up when I’m back. Until then, here are four pictures inspiring me today!

Top Left: If I could describe my idea of success in one photo, I think it would be this one.

Top Right: I’ve been told on more than one occasion, typically in a bit of a condescending tone, “Wow, you really love yourself hey”  ….Well, yep. I do. Not in the way where I want to post 14 #selfies a week or brag about all the cool things I’m doing, but in the way that I feel coworkers who don’t smile back are missing out on getting to know me, and that my jokes are truly some of the funniest I’ve heard. At a fairly low and newly single point in my life a while back, my confidence was at an all time high and I can faintly recall telling people “There is no one I like as much as I like myself“. Eyebrows were raised- but, isn’t that how it should be? Why are you the way you are if you don’t love it? Since falling in love I’ve leveled out a bit and can’t see myself saying something that extreme, but the self-loving mindset remains intact.

Bottom Left: After not seeing Tim for two weeks he made it back home around midnight last night. I was asleep, but when he crawled in next to me I reached out and touched his head, which to my surprise had a fresh HAIRCUT! It totally threw me for a second (his hair was SO long before- now it’s short and pokey!) so I forced my self to wake up a little more and ensure I wasn’t cuddling a burglar. Update: I wasn’t. Second update: This photo is nearly irrelevant to my little story, but isn’t it great?

Bottom Right: This confetti egg serves as a reminder that absolutely anything can be made a teeny bit more wonderful.

PS- I’m loving this song big time right now.
Have such a great Friday, and a happy end to your August. xo!

Meal, Magazines and Messiness.   (Middle // Right)

I offended myself yesterday when I realized how long its been since my last post. Sometimes I get busy living and smooching and working and cooking and sleeping that I leave myself no time to spend with my favourite blog in the world. I’d love to catch you up if you’d like to read:)

On comfort, confetti and Meal:
I’ve been happily living like a little gypsy out of a suitcase and sleeping in all sorts of places. From sleeping under the stars in the box of a truck, afternoon naps on a boat to an unexpected sleepover in a trunk, I was happy to reunite with my sheets and familiar bed for the first time in a couple weeks last night. I’d been dreaming up this shoot with Baby Meal ever since laying eyes on this picture and I am so excited to have brought it to life. Turns out he’s terrified of confetti but it was nothing a few treats and disco fever couldn’t cure.

On magazines and bigger dreams:
Yesterday marked the beginning of the 10 day countdown until my internship at the Edmonton Woman magazine is finished. It’s hard to believe that the same 4 months that felt so daunting back in April are now wrapping up, and I’ll have had my writing published 9 times! I hope to build up a freelance business and contribute consistently to a few different publications in the year to come. (Also- I hope to put together a coffee table book. But more about that later;)
It’s easy to get caught up in feeling like you need to get your life together when a chapter, like college, closes. I definitely don’t have it all figured out, but I’m slowly piecing together some teeny ideas on the components that will make up a happy life. I’d like to live in a small, bright, white home full of colorful and cozy blankets. I’d like to buy my groceries from a local market, and carry my lettuce home in a tote bag over my shoulder. I’d like to write and have my writing be in demand. I’d like to foster baby homeless kittens until they’re strong enough to move in with new families. I’d like to master some sort of talent.

On distance, BC and the importance of vacations:
Long distance is like a rubber band, one of us on each end. When we’re together, there’s no tension. We move freely around and see each other when we please. We don’t sweat the small stuff, we laugh about everything. But when we’re apart the rubber band is pulled tight. With each negative feeling the band pulls tighter. And tighter. And tighter. Something you’d normally laugh at makes you cry and emotions are at an all time high. Everyday stresses seem less bearable because you’re already being pulled so tightly by your relationship, by no fault of the other person. You know it gets better when the band loosens and they’re close to you again but with weeks to wait for that feeling, you start to really have to squint to see the light at the end of the tunnel. For August Long weekend Tim and I drove to Kelowna, BC for a mini vacation. It was everything we needed and a huge reminder of why we put up with long distance. We spent early mornings wake-surfing on the calm water (I finally got the hang of it!), Tim taught me how to catch fish (I screamed each time he caught one) and after spending 24 hours in a vehicle together we still couldn’t get enough. There’s a lot of sweet, good quality photos from the trip but this one is my favourite, because we were laying in the grass laughing our guts out after trying to convince a pair of hippies to let us sleep in their van.
We had no idea where we were going, and we didn’t care.

Happy Tuesday, xxo.

Short & Sweet


The post is short and sweet but despite being the one that contained my 22nd birthday, this week has been anything but.  I can’t wait to get on the road to Saskatchewan for a weekend of camping, surrounded by good people who keep me belly laughing.

Top Left: I came across this photo via this instagram account and can’t believe how much I love it. I’ve never been one to put too much thought into my future wedding, but if it was today- I think I’d pick this gown.

Top Right: I’d happily come home to a mint front door any day of the week. And while we’re on the topic, I picked up this minty bag the other day as a belated birthday gift for myself!

Bottom Left: I’ve found the newest craft to throw in my Things To Make pile. Except I’d design it based on Meal‘s features, naturally.

Bottom Right: This picture made me smile this morning. Looking so forward to shaking up the weekly routine and spending some quality time with nature this weekend. (It’s not you Cubicle, it’s me.)

Happy Friday! xo