SAM Fashion Show Recap: Part Two

Last Thursday night, the biggest charity fashion event at McMaster took place and I had a front row seat! The clothes were trendy and fabulous, the models were on point and the music was bumping…making for a pretty awesome night! If you’re inspired by fashion, trends and even creating your own clothing brands, websites such as can be really helpful in making items of clothing look professional and high quality. If you’re not a designer yourself but still love fashion, read on and enjoy!

SAM Fashion Show Recap: Part Two - Pearls and Polkadots

On Monday, I gave you the full run down of the madness that was backstage prior to the show and at intermission, but today I want to give you a recap on runway walks, the designers, the musical guests and the awesome charity that made #SamAirlines take off!

Ronald McDonald House Charities

This year, Style at Mac chose Ronald McDonald House Charities to raise money and awareness for. This program was designed to assist families who have had the misfortune of their child being ill and hospitalized. Often, children’s hospitals are located a distance away from a family’s home, so with the help of Ronald McDonald House Charities, they are able to stay at a house in order to stay connected with their children while they undergo treatment or a stay in the hospital.

SAM Fashion Show Recap: Part Two - Pearls and Polkadots

“Helping families stay close to their child through a network of local chapters” – Ronald McDonald House Charities Mission Statement

The Hamilton House

The McMaster Children’s Hospital is steps away from the Hamilton House run by Ronald McDonald House Charities Hamilton. The Hamilton House was built in 1933 and houses 40 families. Not always being such a large house, the Hamilton house underwent a major renovation and reopened in the Spring of 2012, serving more families who were in need, than ever before. Ronald McDonald House Charities Hamilton aims to provide a “home away from home” for these families in need.

For more information about Ronald McDonald House Charities, please click here.

#SamAirlines Takes Off

I was pretty excited sitting in my seat while I waited for the night to take off. The lights were dimmed, the music was beginning and everyone was anxiously waiting to visit the first location.As you can probably assume, I am not the most skilled runway photographer, and probably could have got up to position myself a little better, but nevertheless, I will tell you all about it. #SamAirlines took us to several locations including Paris, Japan and Miami (to name a few), the fashion showcased for each location was marvelous.

SAM Fashion Show Recap: Part Two - Pearls and Polkadots

Pre-show Runway

The Runway

We went everywhere on Thursday night – Miami, Brooklyn…even the Hamptons! It was perfect. The models were coordinated, the fashion was on point and the vibe in the room was great! I think my favourite part about fashion overall is the fact that you want wear and be whoever you want. Everyone has their own style, so no matter how you decide to put an outfit together, no one can judge you for it. Your style may not be everyone’s taste, but that shouldn’t be a problem, especially not for you anyway. Whether you buy your accessories from a company such as Jacobs the jeweller or from Primark, this shouldn’t make a difference as to how you decide to pull it off.

Check out some of the photos below:

SAM Fashion Show Recap: Part Two - Pearls and Polkadots

Left: The Gap / Right: Mendocino

SAM Fashion Show Recap: Part Two - Pearls and Polkadots


SAM Fashion Show Recap: Part Two - Pearls and Polkadots

Left: Designs by Mallory / Right: The Eye of Faith

SAM Fashion Show Recap: Part Two - Pearls and Polkadots

Designs by Mallory

The Designers

I wish I could have captured every single piece that walked down that runway, but fortunately, I can tell you all about it! Every designer at Sam En Route showcased their trendy style and the crowd was loving every bit of it!! Fierce. That’s all I have to say.

The Gap

Getting on the plane, models showcased several looks styled by the Gap. Clothing was kept cool and casual and totally in style this season, complete with a lot of jeans, cardigans and cute totes.

Shop Josette

Our first stop with #SamAirlines was in Miami – the land of the sun. Models showcased cute swimsuits and beautiful beach accessories styled by Shop Josette. Shop Josette is a unique line based in Hamilton, Ontario. Each item is hand made and custom to fit your style needs. Coming up to summer, I was really loving the cute bikinis and one pieces that SAM styled.

Parlez de Nous

Next stop – Brooklyn! PDN brings cool, trendy and unique into one clothing line easily. Based in Hamilton, the line serves for the fashion forward individuals. I loved seeing the male models strut the runway in this line – chic, risk taking and trendy.


The Hamptons brought white two pieces, flirty dresses and fun styles by Mendocino. Mendocino is a Toronto-based boutique that exercises the full right to “6” style. Looks at the fashion show were airy, light and totally chic. My favourite was a two piece white set that was modeled. The line was definitely wearable fashion that anyone could pick out and look great in!

SAM Fashion Show Recap: Part Two - Pearls and Polkadots

Designs by Mallory

One of the student designers supplied the fashion for our next stop on #SamAirlines to Versailles. This designer’s name is Mallory and she did not disappoint. The line that was modeled on the runway was a mashup of great patterns, fabrics, textures and which overall, came quite nicely. My favourite piece in the show that I wish I had captured properly was a beautiful lilac textured dress with dragon flies on it.

Johnston & Murphy

It was off to Washington DC and who better to dress the men than Johnston & Murphy. All I can say is this is the most classic style that I personally love on men. The male models were certainly dressed to impress, and looked great.

SAM Fashion Show Recap: Part Two - Pearls and Polkadots

White Elephant

In keeping with the timeless, classic theme, we headed to Paris to view some of White Elephant’s best pieces. White Elephant is a boutique located in Hamilton, run by two ladies – Jane & Holly. Complete with colourful clothing, summery pieces and beautiful prints, we felt right in Paris with these gorgeous styles!


Time to head to Japan! In an instant climate change, we saw drastic lines, shapes and angles in the styles sported down the runway by Angelou. Although the initial reaction to the styles were outlandish, I found that as more pieces came down the runway, I found myself taking a stronger liking to the trendy styles that were showcased.

The Eye of Faith

Last stop on aboard #SamAirlines was Milan. Vintage style and chic trends by The Eye of Faith were brought down the runway in Milan and was everyone loving it? Yes! I was certainly loving all the unique looks and definitely could see myself strutting down a runway in one of the looks myself. I personally loved all the texture and fabrics that were used in this line. Definitely was feeling the cool vibe of Milan here.

The Entertainment

There were so many great acts at Sam En Route this year, and I was fortunate enough to hang backstage with the starting act, The Juicy Boys. Michael, Zack, Erik and Brian are all second year engineering students at McMaster. With similar interests in jazz funk style, the boys bonded over their love for the music and formed a band just two months ago.

SAM Fashion Show Recap: Part Two - Pearls and Polkadots

The Juicy Boys prepping pre-show

SAM Fashion Show Recap: Part Two - Pearls and Polkadots

The Juicy Boys: Zack, Erik, Michael and Brian

“How we got our name is my last name is Jobity, so we called [our band] ‘Jobity and the…’ and then we wondered what adjective starts with J. So we went on the internet and we saw ‘juicy’ and we just kind of went with it…” – Michael, The Juicy Boys

SAM Fashion Show Recap: Part Two - Pearls and Polkadots

“We’ve been juicy ever since…” – Brian, The Juicy Boys

On stage, the boys killed it, keeping the vibe fun and jazzy to start off the night. Definitely a great start to the amazing entertainment that accompanied us en route.

I could go on and on about the entertainment that we saw last Thursday night – it was enjoyable, entertaining and kept the night so upbeat! It was truly a night to remember. We raised some great money for the Ronald McDonald House Charities and saw some excellent fashion forward pieces. More importantly, we traveled around the globe in two hours flat!

A big thank you to Style at Mac, the Juicy Boys, and all the lovely people who put up with me scrambling around interviewing and photographing backstage all night! It was truly an amazing evening!

SAM Fashion Show Recap: Part One

On Thursday night, #SAMAirlines took off and landed at the Cotton Factory to walk the runway for a cause. What is that cause? Ronald McDonald House Charities. The stage was set, the clothes were lined up and everyone was certainly ready to take off that night.


As much as I love coordinating fashion, I love watching fashion as well. Having a seat to view all these gorgeous styles was marvelous and the night ended with me wanting more! Today, I am going to give you the low-down on exactly what went down at this trendy event…

What is SAM? 

Other than my nickname, “SAM” stands for Style at Maca fashion outlet to showcase the diverse fashion sense sported around McMaster University. SAM aims to promote the fashion found on campus. A campus blog is run to broadcast those outfits that just make us all wow in awe.

SAM en Route

A hypothetical plane of fashionistas took off to view the fab styles around Hamilton and I would say it was nothing less than a success! We all put on our best to watch, sport and support fashion and  it was a night to remember! So let me dive into the details. I got to go backstage to see the crazy madness first hand, and I have to say…it was a blast.


Make up was being done. Models were getting dressed. Photographers were everywhere. It was quite overwhelming and totally amazing at the same time. Every one was having a blast pumping up before the big runway show and I couldn’t have been happier to be apart of the action.

The Models

All the models who appeared in Sam En Route are students who have a love for fashion and style. I got to speak with some guys and gals who rocked the runway, learn more about them and get their stories on how they got involved with SAM.

“Every girl thinks, I can do that…maybe. I just said let’s just go for it and it’s been an awesome experience” – Folasewa, SAM Female Model


SAM Female Models pre-show



SAM Male Models hanging backstage pre-show

“It’s a lot of fun, you meet a lot of cool people, and you get to wear a lot of cool clothes” – Jalal, SAM Male Model

Most models emphasized how great the experience is in general. After all, how many people can say they walked the runway in a fashion show? It was amazing seeing how connected the group was with each other. It’s not all fun and games though. Walking down the runway is a process to learn, and many hours went into perfecting choreography, timing and the walk itself.

The Model Coordinators

I got to know a little bit about the process in speaking with the model coordinators themselves, Samantha, Cynthia, Diana and Margaret, the Model Director. Each line walked on the runway was choreographed, right down to the poses and expressions.

“The most important thing was getting the models comfortable” – Diana, SAM Model Coordinator


SAM Modelling Coordinators and Director: Cynthia, Diana, Margaret (Director), and Samantha

It’s important to remember that these aren’t professional models…these are students who are getting involved to support a great charity, wear great designs and have fun. However, runway modelling is tough and can, at times, be uncomfortable. Practice makes perfect, and did it ever!

“Practices consist of walking, making sure you’re on time, and the pose – you gotta practice your poses” – Braeden, SAM Male Model

It’s no wonder that modelling could be uncomfortable for some of the models. Besides, this isn’t something you do every day. Practices typically ran 45-60 min. each week. If a model was walking more than one line, practice was doubled. It is so important to get that choreography down so that come show time, they are completely prepared. I learned from the models that walking down a runway is no easy feat.

The Pilot of SAM Airlines

Every plane has a pilot, and the SAM team couldn’t have been led by a better gal. I got to chat with Belicia, the SAM president, at intermission to get her thoughts on the group, the show and the night overall. Not to mention, she was definitely dressed to impress! Belicia is a first-time president, and a long-time member of the club. Working with her amazing team and models, this year has made it her favourite and final year of SAM.


SAM President: Belicia

“I’ve made some amazing friends, wonderful opportunities, and the chance to put on this show is pretty spectacular” – Belicia, SAM President

This year, the team grew from 20 members to 60 members (not including the models) so it was key that everyone kept up with their role. The hard work and dedication that all team members put in this year clearly showed that night. Belicia will be graduating this year, leaving the SAM community, but hopes to see the “baby club” continue to grow with the amazing people who bring creativity and passion to it each year.

All in all, it was a great night! Going backstage was amazing and getting to know the models, executive team members and of course the president was awesome.

Check out SAM on Social Media: 

Facebook | TwitterInstagram | Website

Of course, that is definitely not all the night brought. I will be covering more later on this week so you can get all the details of the runway, the clothing and the music that stole the show!!

Stay tuned for Part Two…

Homemade Beef Burgers

I’m stepping out of my comfort zone today and bringing to you an experience I had a few weekends ago. My very first try at homemade beef burgers! When it comes to cooking, I am not the greatest, but with the help of my housemate and best friend, we cooked up some real good beef!

This is the year that I really started getting into cooking and baking. When you have someone helping you who knows what they’re doing and you have access to hundreds of Tasty and Buzzfeed Food videos…it’s easy to get inspired.

Homemade Beef Burgers - Pearls and Polkadots

I am a huge meat lover. I really never gave homemade burgers a second thought. Being a student, I usually opted for the Happy Meal at McDonalds, or everybody’s favourite…the frozen patties from Costco. Well, my mind sure did change after kneading the beef, combining a mixture of savory spices – simply amazing.


For the patties… 

1/2 lb. of ground beef

1 egg

1 pinch of ground pepper

1 pinch of desired seasoning

1 pinch of salt

A dash of cayenne pepper (add to liking)

1/2 clove of garlic (or pinch of garlic powder)

1 c. of shredded cheese

For everything else… 

Various vegetables (tomatoes, red onion, pickles)

2 large hamburger buns

Desired condiments (ketchup, mustard, relish)



Going to the grocery store, buying the ingredients, and prepping the burgers to cook took all around about two hours. Most of that time was spent gathering the ingredients.

  • In a large mixing bowl, put the ground beef for the patties along with one egg. Mix and knead well.
  • Add garlic, ground pepper, cayenne pepper (as well as any other seasonings you wish to add to your patties) and knead well.
  • Divide the mixture in half, lightly shaping the half into a pattie (Note: DO NOT pack together hard – the beef will not cook as well). Do this again with the other half of the beef.
  • Place on a plate, cover with saran wrap and refrigerate for 20-25 minutes.

Once we got home, we broke out the meat, put it in a mixing bowl, added one egg and all of the spices except the salt. After searching and watching lots of different videos (linked below), we found that adding salt into the mix dries out the meat.Homemade Beef Burgers - Pearls and Polkadots

Once the meat was mixed up, we stuck it in the fridge with some cling wrap over the top to let the meat get nice and cold. This was a trick we picked up from this video. It helps to keep the patties’ shape and conserve all of the spices! While those were sitting in the fridge, we cut up the toppings of the burger – tomatoes, cheese, avocado, and onions – as well as made our side salad!

Homemade Beef Burgers - Pearls and Polkadots

Homemade Beef Burgers - Pearls and Polkadots

Cooking the Beef!

Since we are living in a student house, we don’t have access to the finest of cooking tools (a.k.a. no grill), so we used a pan! While the patties were chilling, we heated up the pan.

  • After the patties have been in the fridge, take them out and season with salt.
  • Place each patty on the pan – seasoned side down. While cooking, season the face side up patty.

We placed the patties directly on the seasoned side and let it cook for approximately 15 minutes – watching to see it cook all the way through the face down side.

Homemade Beef Burgers - Pearls and Polkadots

Look at the juicy beef!

Once we could see the beef had cooked about half way to the middle, we flipped the burger over, and let it cook for another 15 minutes until we saw that it had cooked all the way through to the other side! Letting it cook a few extra minutes, we tossed on some cheddar and mozzarella and let it melt all over the two patties – yummy!


Side Salad: 

The side salad was an added bonus that my house mate made. Together, she mixed up some diced cucumber, tomatoes, onions and added balsamic, garlic and avocados with a light topping of salt! It was delicious. It was super easy to make and tasted delicious with the burgers!

Homemade Beef Burgers - Pearls and Polkadots

The Final Results

Making something from scratch just tastes so much better when you get around to eating it. Making our own patties was well worth the prep time and I must say, that packed pattie was the most delicious burger! As a side, we added the above salad mentioned, as well as some yummy baked crinkle-cut fries! Yum, yum, yum!!

Homemade Beef Burgers - Pearls and Polkadots

Homemade Beef Burgers - Pearls and Polkadots

Give this a try and let me know what you think! Bon Appetit!

Happy International Women’s Day!

Today is a day for us to look back in history and cherish every single woman who had a hand in getting us where we are today! The social movements, the fighting for equality, the hard and determined work that so many women have had to do in order to get their voices heard. This is an amazing time and we should be celebrating the hard work that women do for society every single day!

Happy International Women's Day! - Pearls and Polkadots

Happy International Women's Day - Pearls and Polkadots

Happy International Women's Day - Pearls and Polkadots

Happy International Women's Day - Pearls and Polkadots

Happy International Women's Day - Pearls and Polkadots

Happy International Women's Day - Pearls and Polkadots


Blazer: Jacob (similar here and here) / Blouse: mark. by Avon (similar here) / Pants: Winners (similar here and here) / Flats: Ardene (similar here) / Ring: Kate Spade New York

I love this classic look of a blazer. A lot of people assume that blazers are for work, professional environments or interviews…but I personally think that a blazer can be styled casually and professionally. A blazer brings a level of sophistication to your outfit.

I am bringing this collaboration to you, along with women from all over the world. Join me and 1000+ other women today, on International Women’s Day, to celebrate 40 years of liberation by having this #Right2SuitUp. Take a picture of yourself in your favourite blazer or suit and share it with the hashtag #Right2SuitUp! Together, we can make a movement and bring awareness to this great day of celebrating women!

I also want to give a shoutout to one of the most influential women in my life, my Mother. She has always been someone I look up to, admire, love, care about and appreciate so much and coincidentally, she celebrates her birthday today!

Happy Birthday Mama! Thank you for always being there for me!

It’s time to celebrate our #Right2SuitUp

Oscar Watching Activity + Free Printable

Countdown to the Oscars: 3 Days! That’s right, in three marvelous days, all of the beautiful ladies and gents of Hollywood will be floating down that red carpet, gracing us with fashion wins and fashion fails…all of which are going to be amazing to watch! Not to mention, I may finally get to see Leo DiCaprio get his well-deserved Oscar (will he do it?!).

Oscar Watching Activity + Free Printable - Pearls and Polkadots

Watching the Oscars can be super fun with family and friends, but it can also be a good time watching by yourself. Yesterday, I gave you three key things in planning the perfect Oscar watching night. I also promised you a little printable something…

Oscar Watching Activity + Free Printable - Pearls and Polkadots

(stay tuned)

Oscar activities are a great way to stay engaged throughout the night. If you are Pinterest addict, like me, you will know that the Oscar Ballots for 2016 have been circling the boards lately, and although I love to make my predictions on who is going to win in which category (Leo for Best Actor! Leo for Best Actor!), I also like making predictions about the fashion that will also show up…

This year, I want to encourage everyone to make their prediction of who is going to be the best dressed, have the best hair and which is the cutest couple (along with many, many other categories). That’s why I created this free printable Oscar Fashion Ballot of 2016 (click to download).

Oscar Watching Activity + Free Printable - Pearls and Polkadots

What do you do with it? 

1. Download by clicking the above link. 

2. Print off copies for you and all your friends. 

3. Fill out the ballot before the red carpet happens (or fill out while watching). 

4. Check in on Monday to see if you were right. 

Oscar Watching Activity + Free Printable - Pearls and Polkadots

How fun does that sound? Trust me…it will be a blast! I will be printing off my ballot on Sunday, just in time to make my predictions and follow up with you guys next week!

Happy Oscar Week! Make sure to check back next week to see if we had the same answers!!