Thursday, July 31, 2014

love is that condition in which the happiness of another person is essential to your own.

Things seem to be moving quickly lately. Everyone I know is talking wedding, wedding, and more wedding. Meanwhile, I am still trying to process the engagement! So, instead of thinking about to-do lists and making plans, I am dedicating the next week or so to enjoying the moment. My boyfriend and I are engaged....and I am happy. Everything else can wait.

On that note, I thought that I would post about our trip. As I mentioned in my last blog post, we had gone away for the weekend when he proposed. Our trip started off with a 3 and a half hour car ride to Upper Canada Village (which is a village full of old houses and artifacts from 1800s Ontario, Canada). The day there was really fun. We just explored the village and acted like kids. It was really nice. After we finished up there, we walked around the grounds - where he proposed! - and then got back in the car to spend the rest of the day in a nearby town.

The rest of the Saturday was a flurry of phone calls, text messages, and oh my gosh....we're engaged! moments. Even the normal moments seemed pretty special. We ended up eating dinner at Kelsey's because they have the best drinks ever. It was a really nice end to the day.

Here are some pictures from Day 1 of our weekend trip:

On the Sunday, we made the most of the free breakfast at the hotel before driving to see Fort Henry. It was interesting but there wasn't a whole lot to do there. We just looked around and snapped some pictures for a couple of hours. Then it was back in the car to head home. Along the way, we stopped off at The Big Apple - which is apparently a super giant apple that you can walk inside. They also sold apple based products, had a little zoo, and stuff like that. It was so novelty and cute. I loved it! After that was over, it was back home to share the big news with our families.

These are some of our pictures from Day 2:

So that was it! Our memorable weekend away. One thing is for sure: I will never forget it.

When is the last time you went away or took a vacation? What did you do there?

xo Shannon

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

true love stories never have endings.

Remember a few posts back when I talked about wanting to have the best summer ever? Well, it happened. It actually happened. How? My boyfriend and I took a weekend getaway on the 19th and 20th. The plan was to go to Upper Canada Village on the Saturday, grab dinner, and then go on to Fort Henry on Sunday. We did all of those things....but that wasn't all that happened.

He proposed!

Yes, I am officially engaged to my amazing boyfriend - and I couldn't be happier about it. The proposal came as a complete shock to me. I mean, we had talked about getting married and our future....I just didn't expect it to happen during our weekend away. It was a total surprise but by far the best moment of my entire life. I am so excited to spend the rest of my life with him.

How did it happen? We had just left Upper Canada Village and he took me over to this beautiful fountain on the grounds. We snapped a couple of pictures and were being normal when....bam! He got down on one knee and popped the question. I have no clue what I said or did (other than cry). It is all such a blur in my mind. After saying yes, we sat on a rock in front of the fountain and talked while I tried to process everything that had just happened.

Needless to say, I am very happy and excited. I feel so blessed. I've found the person I want to spend the rest of my life with. I have family and friends who love and support us. Life is pretty great.

We're all a little weird.  And life is a little weird.  And when we find someone whose weirdness is compatible with ours, we join up with them and fall into mutually satisfying weirdness - and call it love - true love.  
- Robert Fulghum

xo Shannon

Sunday, July 27, 2014

you're lucky enough to be different. don't change.

Any Taylor Swift fans? Over the years, I've been a big fan of her music, her perfume line, and even her fashion sense. I love the way she pairs classic pieces with bold colours. She manages to effortlessly blend feminine style with fashion forward pieces....and I love it! Recently, she stepped out looking better than ever. I immediately fell in love with her street style outfit.

It featured a crop top and skirt in a gorgeous colour with a subtle, summery print. The style was sweet, flattering, and chic. She added more colour with a mustard coloured purse and a perfectly pink lipstick shade. Add in her signature cat-eye winged eyeliner, a laid-back hair style, and a pair of gorgeous nude heels - and you're left with a totally stunning summer outfit. It just came together perfectly. I wish I had this outfit hanging in my own closet!

In general, I think Taylor Swift has incredible style - and she always looks great. This street style outfit proved just that. Taylor is without question talented, stunning, and a total fashion icon.

What do you think of this summer outfit? Are you a fan of Taylor Swift?

xo Shannon

Friday, July 25, 2014

life is a great big canvas, and you should throw all the paint you can on it.

Have you ever had one of those days? You know, one of those perfect, special days? A couple of weeks ago, I did. My boyfriend planned out this entire day for us. Why? A few months back, I made a declaration that this summer would be the best one ever. I didn't know that it actually would be - but that was the goal, anyway. We are halfway through the summer now....and I don't know if it is the best ever, but I am doing my best to get out there and have fun!

Which is exactly why this day was so special. We started it off by going to Jungle Cat World, which is basically a small zoo a half hour away. It has tigers and lions, monkeys, birds, bunnies, and a bunch of other animals. It wasn't a huge place, but I had a lot of fun there. You could get pretty close to the animals and there wasn't a massive crowd of people there. It was nice! The highlights? The bunny rabbits! I have always wanted one, so I just spent a lot of time looking at the bunny cage. They were so cute.

After our time at Jungle Cat World, my boyfriend took us to a hiking trail. Now, I'm not a super outdoorsy person...but it was fun anyway. (Minus the eleven bug bites I got. Yikes!) We followed a trail, took some pictures, and my boyfriend even picked me a flower. It was different for us. So, that was really nice. We stopped to take this picture on a bridge about halfway thorough - and it always makes me smile.

To finish the day off, we headed to the local RibFest. I don't actually eat ribs but my boyfriend does and he enjoyed them. The line ups were massive everywhere, so we didn't stay too long. But it was a nice way to end the day. Then it was back to his place to watch our favourite TV shows.

I don't know if I'll have the best summer ever - but days like this make it seem possible.

What have you been doing this summer? Is it your  best one yet?

xo Shannon

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

don't wait for old age to wear purple.

Sometimes, my biggest makeup inspiration is my makeup collection. There are times when I'll see a picture in a magazine and think: I want to re-create that look! And then there are other times when the look comes to me. Simply going through the makeup I own is enough to inspire me to try something different, use a shade I haven't in a while, and get a little creative.

That happened the other day. I was getting ready to see my boyfriend and I wasn't sure how I wanted to do my makeup. Should I go for something bronzey? Shimmery? Bright? Then I started riffling through my eyeshadow drawers. I came across a Wet n' Wild quad I bought in the wintertime. It had a pale purple, a deeper purple shade, and some cool greys and blacks. Instantly it hit me: purple everything.

I made a grab for my purple Rimmel eye pencil, my radiant orchid blush from Sephora, my Grape coloured Bite lip pencil, and the purple tinted gloss from Clinique. It was purple overload. I don't know quite where this love affair for purple came from - but it just felt right. So, I created a purple inspired makeup look. Take a look!

What I did to create the look? I applied that pale purple shade all over the lid and added the darker purple shade through the crease. A little purple eyeliner added some definition - but kept the look soft and feminine. A sweep of radiant orchid blush on the cheeks (blended out with my foundation for a softer look) and a bold purple lip.

I'm happy with the way this look turned out. It was a lot of purple....but definitely fun to create. It was nice seeing where the inspiration took me!

What inspires your makeup looks? Do you wear a lot of purple makeup?

xo Shannon

Saturday, July 19, 2014

there is nothing like staying at home for real comfort.

I am a comfy kind of girl. As much as I love getting all dressed up, when I'm at home, I like to be as comfortable as possible. That usually means sweatpants and a band t-shirt - or maybe even an over-sized hoodie. When it comes to lounging around the house, I am certainly not thinking: high heels and distressed denim! I can't be the only fashion lover who is like this, right?

Well, the other day I came across a cute outfit from Hard Candy. (Yes, the same brand that makes some of my favourite blushes and bronzers.) They had lightweight hoodies with lace and matching lace shorts in a bunch of different colours. The moment I saw these summery sweatsuits, I thought: that would be perfect for a comfy night in! So, I chose one in green. Since buying it, I've worn it around the house and even for a movie night with my boyfriend. It's the perfect combination of comfy and cute.

Are you ready to see my comfy outfit of the day? Take a peek at my makeup and of course, my summery sweatsuit:

Do you like this comfy look? What do you normally wear around the house?

xo Shannon

Thursday, July 17, 2014

new in: lovelywholesale

Like many fashionistas out there....I love clothes. A lot. There is nothing quite so exciting as putting together the perfect outfit. Another pastime I enjoy? Online shopping. Okay, this one may not be good for my wallet most of the time, but it sure is fun! Thankfully, there is LovelyWholesale. They have tons of gorgeous dresses, tops, skirts, and accessories to choose from - all at affordable prices.

I recently placed an order with them - and got super excited when it arrived. I couldn't wait to try everything on! After doing some browsing and whittling down my wishlist, I ended up ordering two dresses, a t-shirt, and a ring. Truthfully, I wasn't quite sure what to expect, quality-wise. Sometimes great deals mean lower quality. But I was very impressed with LovelyWholesale. The materials didn't feel harsh on my skin and the designs were just as gorgeous as they looked on the website pictures.

Are you ready to take a closer look at what I ordered? Let's start with my absolute favourite piece: the Sleeveless Gold Peplum Dress:

As you can see from the picture, this dress is super sparkly! It is absolutely covered with gold sequins. The look is super dramatic, for sure. It's absolutely perfect for a night out dancing. The top section is sheer and there are cut outs at the sides. The dress is also layered with a long peplum style. This dress cost just $16 USD and it's a total showstopper! I love how glitzy and glamorous this piece is.

Next up is the second dress that I ordered, the Striped V-Neck Mini Dress: 

This next dress cost $10 USD and is totally gorgeous. (My boyfriend actually prefers this one to the glittery gold dress. Go figure!) What I love about the striped v-neck dress is that it is really easy to wear. The stripes are super flattering and the piece is basic enough to be dressed up however you like. It's great for a night out or a special dinner. I can't wait to find an excuse to wear this!

Now for a t-shirt I've been wearing way too much lately. This is the Short Sleeved Letter T-Shirt: 

Sometimes, you need a cute basic to add to your wardrobe. I was instantly hooked by this cute t-shirt. It was $7 USD and it seriously goes with everything. I've worn this top with skinny jeans, a leather skirt, and with glittery shorts. It's just so versatile! The material is super soft and it's a great casual piece. I absolutely love it.

Last from my LovelyWholeSale haul? This Anchor Ring: 

When it comes to cute accessories, I have zero willpower. So, I threw on this $3 USD ring before checking out my order. It's big, bold, and covered in rhinestones. What could be better than that? I absolutely love nautical themed accessories and actually have a necklace that this goes well with. Needless to say, I really love it! The ring band is adjustable which not everyone will like, but I find to be very useful, since it sits on two fingers. Overall, I am very happy with this one! And you seriously can't beat that price.

I am so impressed with everything I received. My only regret is not splurging on more! Honestly? I'm already plotting my next order. Must be good....must be good....must be good.

Have you ever bought anything from LovelyWholesale? What do you think of these pieces?

xo Shannon

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

these are a few of my favourite things.

Staying positive is important. It's so easy to get bogged down by the stresses and strains of every day life. There are pressures at work, at home....just about everywhere! That is why I do my best to look for the beauty around me. It could be a simple moment, an object around my room, or even a quote. I just have to keep an eye out for them!

Lately, there have been so many little things making me happy. They may not seem like much but for whatever reason, they always make me smile. That is why today's post is all about recognizing those little things - and letting simple moments of joy carry over to the stressful areas of my life. Yes, today is all about my favourite things. Here goes!

This picture. It was taken on Canada Day when my boyfriend and I went exploring on the Toronto Islands. Whenever I look at this picture, I smile. I love us. 

My necklace from Eternal Girl. I ordered it last month and I love it! 
Whenever I wear this piece, I feel inspired and powerful.

My favourite summer makeup at the moment. Coral, coral, and more coral. I just love this set from Benefit!

This quote keeps making me smile. I am doing my best to remember that I need to breathe and let go.

These lipstick pens that my mom bought me. They are so cute! 

This issue of SHAPE magazine with Jillian Michaels on the cover. She is such an inspiration to me. I admire her so very much.

This scent. I've been wearing it a lot lately. It just makes me feel confident and beautiful.

These are just a few of the little things that have been making me smile lately. It's amazing how focusing on small joy-boosting things can re-focus your mind. My challenge to you all? Take a look around your room, your old pictures, or books on your bookshelf. Find those things that make you light up inside....and hold onto that feeling!

What things are making you happy? Do you have any summer favourites?

xo Shannon

Sunday, July 13, 2014

wrinkles merely indicate where smiles have been.

Like a lot of ladies out there, wrinkles are on my mind. Okay, I'm not exactly a senior citizen, but I am getting older. And they always say, there's nothing quite like preventative measures! The last time I was at the drugstore, I stumbled upon the Soap & Glory Catch a Wrinkle In Time Daily Moisturizer. In general, I am a big fan of the Soap & Glory products. The packaging is cute, the products are diverse, and they really work well.

So, I decided to give this wrinkle reducing moisturizer a try. I actually needed a new moisturizer anyway, so it was worth a shot. The price of this moisturizer was a lot more than I normally pay for just a daytime moisturizer (it was about $25 CDN) but....I thought I would splurge. Why not, right?

Like all Soap & Glory products, the packaging was adorable. Pink and white with just a hint of retro styling. Gorgeous! On the box itself, it gave anti-aging tips, like stay out of the sun, don't drink or smoke, and of course, use this moisturizer! The product came in a simple squeeze tube which is easy to use and store. I really liked the simplicity of it.

As for the product itself, so far so good. The moisturizer has a very light scent. In fact, it is so faint you can barely smell it, even when you're trying to! It has a nice creamy texture and sits on the skin very well. It's quick and easy to use and feels quite nice. My skin tends to be fairly dry, so I didn't find this product to be super moisturizing, but it is definitely great to put underneath your makeup.

When it comes to keeping wrinkles at bay....well, I couldn't tell you. I suppose only time will tell how it works on that front. But overall, this is a really good moisturizer to add to your collection. I didn't experience any breakouts and it makes my foundation look fantastic. My suggestion? Give it a try and see how it works for your skin.

Have you tried the Soap & Glory Catch a Wrinkle In Time Daily Moisturizer? What did you think of it?

xo Shannon

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

birthdays are natures way of telling us to eat more cake.

It's hard to believe....but tomorrow will be my three year blog anniversary. That's right - the creation of beauty is art. is turning three!

Since starting this blog, I have interviewed people, shared my thoughts on makeup, fashion, and celebrities, and have experienced plenty of new and exciting things. My life has changed a lot, but one thing remains the same: I love writing this blog. There is something so rewarding about having a place that is truly my own. It's amazing to connect to other beauty bloggers and broaden my horizons.

From the bottom of my heart, I want to thank you all for every comment, like, and share. Your support means the world to me. Thank you, thank you, thank you!


To celebrate the event, I thought this would be the perfect time to do the Confessions of a Blogger tag that was recently posted on Handpicked Beauty. Here goes!

When Did You Start Your Blog: 
I started my blog three years ago. I had this need to channel my passion for makeup, fashion, and beauty into something. At the same time, I had graduated from University and was struggling to find a job in the writing field. So, I decided to combing my passions and bam! the creation of beauty is art. was born.

Have You Had Any Past Online Presence? (Other Blog, YouTube, etc.)
Somewhat. I briefly wrote another blog about music and entertainment, but I only posted on it a few times. As much as I love just didn't click with what I needed at the time.

Why Did You Start a Blog?
My love for makeup and fashion had blossomed and I needed a space to share my opinions, thoughts, and my journey. Having a blog of my own was the perfect place to do it. It allowed me to express myself and get creative.

When Did You Become Serious About Starting a Blog?
I'm not sure! I think as I continued to write and started to carve out my own little space on the Internet, it became more serious to me. I started posting on a schedule, trying out new things, and really pushing myself. It just sort of happened naturally over time.

What Was Your First Post?
This one here. It was my introduction to the fashion world! Even today, reading that post makes me smile.

What Has Been Your Biggest Challenge With Blogging?
Time. There are certain moments in my life that are quite busy and hectic. This can make it difficult to put the time and energy into my blog posts. It can sometimes be a struggle to find that time....but I always seem to. For me, blogging is just worth the extra energy.

Where Do You See Your Blog In One Year?
I hope that my blog will have grown as I continue to grow. I want to make improvements to the layout and really make this space as 'me' as possible.

What Is The Most Rewarding Thing About Blogging?
I think it is being a part of something bigger. Sharing my life, my thoughts, and my dreams allows me to be a part of the blogging community - specifically the beauty blogging community. I love that! It lets me connect with new people, learn new things, and have fun.

What Is The Most Discouraging Thing That Has Happened To You?
I don't think there are a lot of things. For the most part, people have been very positive, supportive, and caring. There are times, though, when you put your heart into a particular post and think: wow, I can't wait for that to go up! ....and then no one seems to care about it. That can be discouraging. But it's important to separate yourself from the posts as much as possible, because you never really know how people are going to react.

What Is Your Lasting Inspiration or Motivation?
To find beauty in the world - and to let that beauty remind me how wonderful life truly is.

So, there you have it. Three years of blogging. I am very proud and excited. More than anything, I am looking forward to the coming years for the creation of beauty is art. Thank you again for all of the support. It means so much.

xo Shannon

Monday, July 7, 2014

review: maybelline the nudes palette

Several weeks back, I watched a video from Beauty Broadcast announcing a new eyeshadow palette from Maybelline. Yes, an eyeshadow palette at the drugstore. Let me just say: I got excited. The drugstore is loaded with duos, trios, and quads....but rarely any palettes. And certainly none like Maybelline's The Nudes palette.

This band new eyeshadow palette isn't just different for the drugstore. It comes with 12 shades in different netural colours, like taupe, brown, rust, and black. While I wouldn't compare the shades to any of the Naked Palettes from Urban Decay, at $14 this is an affordable way to add some neutrals to your makeup collection.

Let me just say, there are some good and not so good things about this palette. Are you ready to find out what they are? Here is a closer look at the palette itself - and of course, the swatches.

Maybelline The Nudes Eyeshadow Palette:

Swatches: Top row and Bottom row (as shown)

The Good:

- Great price. Coming in at $14CDN this palette is a great choice for budget conscious beauties.
- A wonderful range of neutral eyeshadow shades. There are browns, creams, blacks, taupe, golds, and rust.
- The shimmery shades are very pigmented and have great staying power.
- Packaging for this palette is sleek, simple, and sturdy. Plus, it isn't massive or bulky. That makes it simple to store or take with you!

The Bad:

- It comes with a small sponge applicator rather than a shadow brush. This was a total missed opportunity!
- Certain shades lack pigmentation, particularly the lighter colours and matte shades.
- Fall out can be an issue, so use a primer and apply carefully.

There are many looks I could have created with this palette. For my first attempt, though, I used the gold shade, the rust shade, and the taupe colour. This is how it turned out:

Overall, this is a bit of a hit and miss type of product. While it is undoubtedly exciting that there is a nude eyeshadow palette available at the drugstore....this leaves something to be desired. The shimmery shades are gorgeous - but the matte ones were a letdown. They just lacked the texture and pigmentation I expect from an eyeshadow.

Have you tried this palette yet? What did you think of it?

xo Shannon

Saturday, July 5, 2014

are you listening?

Hanson. Say the word and people automatically think MMMBop and make comments like, "Are they still around?" It's been happening to me for years. In fact, even when Hanson was at their most popular, I was made fun of at school for my musical preferences. Now that I'm older, it bothers me less, but I've long grown weary of the remarks.

See, Hanson is a big part of my life. I've been a fan since 1997. I've gone to every concert in Toronto, have every album, live track, and enough merchandise to last a lifetime. Being a Hanson fan is more than just loving the's almost part of my identity. This summer, I've got lots to be excited about, music-wise. Hanson is coming to play a show at the end of the summer (thank goodness!) - and I just received my order of summer Hanson merch.

What did I order? A Hanson tank top and a pair of Hanson sunglasses. Well, I also picked up a poster - but it's not exactly summery. The tank is a gorgeous coral colour (perfect for the warm weather) and it has one of my favourite Hanson quotes on it. It has a V-neck cut and will look totally perfect at the concert. The Hanson sunglasses on the other hand, are red and have "Hanson" written along the sides. So cute! Plus, I love the cute red sunglasses case. Again, they'll look totally perfect at the outdoor concert.

New merch from my favourite band? A great way to keep the summer months rolling along! Now I'm just counting down the days until the show.....

What is your favourite band? Do you love band t-shirts?

xo Shannon

Thursday, July 3, 2014

self-confidence is the most important element of true beauty.

It's summer...and thank goodness for that! I don't know what it is about the summertime that make me so happy. Maybe it's the sunshine, cute clothes, and all of the fun social events. Whatever the reason - I love it! Lately, I have been trying to have fun as much fun as possible with my outfits, makeup, and accessories. It just makes me feel good. 

That is what inspired this makeup look of the day. I have been totally obsessed with coral colours and bronzey eyeshadow shades. To create this look, I used the Urban Decay Naked 3 Palette, the Benefit Coralista blush and lip gloss. It's simple but super pretty for summer! There is something about shimmery shadows and coral shades that just scream summer to me.

Ready to see my makeup look of the day? Here it is......

So, there you have it - my makeup look of the day. I ended up wearing it on a date night in with my boyfriend and I absolutely loved how it turned out.

When it comes to creating makeup looks that I love, I always try to use products I love just as much! Whether it's brushes or products....they just make the whole process fun. Plus, they make the application a whole lot simpler. Bonus!

What do you think of this makeup look? What are your favourite colours to wear during the summertime?

xo Shannon