I’ve heard that the best things in life come unexpectedly. And I guess that’s true indeed. Not even 7410 kilometers or 9 time zones could keep us from finding each other. I’m talking about Kayla Browne & Suzanne Stewart from The Neat Blog and this little collab that came to me by surprise. After a small chat on twitter, we all realised that we should do something great together and so we did. But we’ll get to that a bit later, first I’ll introduce you to them.
Meet Kayla & Suzanne, they’re from Canada and are a part of the amazing blog called NEAT which you should check out right after you’ve read this post. Kayla is from Calgary and Suzzane is from Vancouver and they started NEAT as a way to collaborate with each other and as a creative outlet for themselves. ‘Co-managing a blog with your bestie is a dream come true! We feel creativity is best when it’s shared and collaboration is the name of our game. We are also good at very different things and that’s perfect, actually that’s magical.’
But they both don’t just stop at being fashion bloggers. For example, Kayla is an upcoming architect and fashion designer ‘I’m intern architect at a small multidisciplinary studio. I’m really close to becoming an underpaid registered architect. I’m also working on a cute little fashion line with a super talented lady who happens to be an architect/fashion designer. Just slowly building an empire really’. While Suzanne’s a Registered Nurse and also a trained pastry chef. ‘Right now nursing pays the bills and pastry is a side job but hopefully one day that will be reversed!’ And I can relate to that on so many levels.
I was really interested in the local street fashion over there and Kayla admitted that it’s not as great as she wishes it would. ‘It’s honestly not great. Which is a strong driver to facilitate change. There’s a massive corporate culture that rocks very generic, bland looking gear and everything looks the same. Don’t get us wrong there are some super stylish individuals, they are just difficult to find.’ She adds that it’s very different from the rest of Canada and that there are a lot of cities with fantastic street style. ‘Calgary just isn’t there yet. We’re trying!’ While Suzanne tells me that the street style in Vancouver is all over the place ‘It changes drastically from neighbourhood to neighbourhood. It can go from yoga pants, puffer jackets and hiking boots, to very fashion forward amazing looks in a manner of a few city blocks, it’s really all over the place. But overall it’s very relaxed and casual.’ But, in my opinion, diversity is what makes a city beautiful.
Kayla describes her personal style as ‘business edgy with some serious colours and patterns happening’. While Suzanne’s look is more casual weekend wear with an emphasis on texture and colour and minimal jewelry. But they both agree that comfort is very important to them and have some fashion advice to share: ‘Don’t wear anything that makes you feel uncomfortable because it will look forced and awkward. And… More is more and less is a bore.’
I was interested to find out their views on fashion. They point out the huge difference between fashion and style: ‘Fashion to us is a bought item or tangible good, opposed to style, which is something you can’t buy you just inherently have and becomes a means of self expression’. They admit that this is a topic they like to discuss quite a bit. ‘The notion that if you spend a lot of money on fashion you must look good, right? WRONG, It’s so much more than that! It’s putting something together, taking vintage pieces and modern pieces, old and new, wild and subtle and having the confidence to rock it and not give an f.’ I couldn’t agree more.
I also wanted to find out some of their sources of inspiration. Kayla admits being inspired by Solange ‘I’m always inspired by her In terms of her personal style and also her creative endeavors and direction, and really marching to the beat of her own drum. And Jenna Lyons mainly for redirecting a company into such a successful high fashion and affordable brand and then echoing that development in her everyday style, she is JCrew.’ And as for Suzanne – it’s always the strong females ‘Florence Nightingale was such a pioneer in Nursing and health care. Tilda Swinton is so amazing! She really is such a unique presence in cookie cutter Hollywood, I love everything from her brave fashion choices to the unique women she portrays on film. And as far as fashion and style is concerned, Miroslava Duma can do no wrong in my eyes.’
And with so much going on in their lives I wondered what do they like to do in their free time and if they even have any free time. They tell me that they don’t really get much free time these days, so when they do they like to squeeze a workout in. ‘I also like to hang out with my cats and Suzy likes to hang out alone, in solitude, in her sweats, watching movies and eating treats.’
And so you’ve met them. I just wish that I’ll get to meet them in real life as well. But till then we’ve got this amazing collab that we’re gonna tell you all about in just a few short days, so stay tuned and head on over to NEAT.
Image credit Blair Marie Photography