Style Feature || Renee Palkovsky

Photos & Words by Kate Wotherspoon

If you ever meet this girl, you’ll instantly love her, if you already know her, you know what I’m talking about!  I met her only just last year in one of my fashion classes at Blanche Macdonald Centre.  We became fast friends after our assigned seats in class had us sitting next to one another. After only knowing her a day, I could already tell she was headed for big things.

She’s only 21 years old and habitually jets off to New York City to buy for (212), a trendy boutique in Gastown representing NYC Style, rides her own motorcycle and is currently taking multiple courses to prepare her for the fast paced world of Stock Exchange. Yes, I know, she’s such a cool chick – I absolutely adore her.  Renee’s personality and sense of style is filled with greatness, her shoe collection is to die for and not to mention she’s sample size and drop dead gorgeous.  Everyone, meet my fashionable friend, Renee Palkovsky!

Renee rocking the Beach Chic!

Sheer Cover up: (212) || Bag: Cole Haan || Orange Bikini: H&M

Hat: Aritzia || Rings: From Mexico || Bracelet & Earrings: Blue Ruby – Giles & Brother

Just the cutest! || Sunglasses: Prada ||

Kate W: What is your current state of mind?

Renee P: I’m happy and content. I’m ready to make things happen, I feel like an eager beaver – ready to push.

KW: Where do you feel most at home?

RP: In my bed, it’s super cozy.

KW: What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?

RP: “Don’t Settle”.

KW: What was the last thing you bought?

RP: I bought this hat that I’m wearing yesterday.

KW: What was the last film you watched?

RP: I watched Grease in Stanley park the other day.

KW: What makes you laugh?

RP: My girlfriends always seem to get that deep tissue laugh out of me.

KW: What’s your favorite breakfast dish?

RP: I’m really into waffles with whip cream, lots of syrup and berries.

KW: What sites do you visit everyday?

RP: I went through a phase when I was 18 and was on religiously but now I mostly research the stock markets.

KW: Black or white?

RP: Black.

KW: Prints or neutrals?

RP: Neutrals.

KW: Favorite fashion city?

RP: Berlin. They make winter look good which is a very difficult thing to do.

KW: Do you dress mostly by the day’s events or by your mood?

RP: My mood. But, I will usually pick one item that I need to wear and decide what else to put on according to that piece. Today it was my earrings.

KW: What are some songs on your playlist right now?

RP: “Say My Name”- Destiny’s Child (Cyril Hahn Remix) & Trials of the Past – SBTRKT

KW: What’s your most prized possession?

RP: That’s so hard! They’re all my babies!  But, if I had to say something it would be my rings and bracelets that I’m currently wearing.

KW: What’s your biggest fear?

RP: Failure.

KW: Which living person do you most admire?

RP: My dad. He’s always so happy even if the worst things are upon him. He really knows how to stay positive. I admire that.

KW: What’s your signature drink?

RP: Dirty Martini – extra dirty, extra olives.

KW: What are your favourite brands?

RP: I don’t have any. My personal style is always evolving just like how numerous fashion houses and designers are continuously evolving their own brand. One thing that has stuck with me though is how I incorporate vintage pieces in my day to day outfits.

KW: What’s next for you?

RP: I was originally planning on going to NYC in the fall to buy for (212) and was looking forward to being apart of that crazy Fashion Week culture but I’ve realized fashion isn’t what I want to do, it’s just a part of who I am. My strong suit is reaching the top and working hard for it. I didn’t get the nickname Ram for no reason. What’s next for me is the financial industry.

KW: You’re incredible and so driven! Thank you Renee!


Big City Shell || Styling Project

A little insight: Last year I attended Blanche Macdonald Centre for Fashion Merchandising and one of my favorite classes was Styling, taught by the notable Tyler Udall. (Google him, he’s done your fashion dream job and more…) Below is half of my final project for the class. We were asked to style two looks and come up with the complete creative for both. We were also in charge of finding hair & make-up gurus, the perfect model, the clothes/accessories and anything else we could muster up on a student budget to help jazz up the photo.  Here is what I came up with for my second look (and my favorite of the two). Share if you like.

BIG CITY SHELL: Shoot Concept
I am really inspired about how people become so closed off and shield themselves from others in their daily lives. There is a complete loss of connection with reality and a loss of spirit. Everyone is so consumed with their phones, celebrity gossip and time. People (myself included) who live in big cities, subconsciously create barriers from others and are careful to trust anyone, even themselves. This thought along with adoring the harnessing Rag & Bone did for Spring 2011 really fabricated my shoot idea.

To demonstrate my concept, I wanted to showcase the innocence and kindness we all carry within by having the model in delicate fabrics and create metal or leather harnessing as an overlay.

To add to the shell concept, copious amounts of jewelry was used as well as rings on every finger to create make-shift brass knuckles. Unfortunately, after cruising through multiple naughty shops down Davie Street, there was not one harness I would be able to return.  (Not surprised, considering where I was looking.) With so little time left, I still could not fathom the idea of buying a non-refundable $200 leather and metal harness from an X-rated shop for a school project…Luckily hours later,  I found four belts at H&M to use as a harness instead. I used one to wrap around her neck, one around her waist and the last two made an X across her chest. I borrowed silver jewellery from various friend’s closets and used silver because it would contrast well with the brass harnessing. I was unable to use metal pieces in her hair like I originally planned, but instead used a black scarf to intertwine in her bun.  I found this mesh lace dress from American Apparel and thought it added the necessary vulnerability for the “under-shell” and besides, who doesn’t like a little black bra under white? Voila!

Dress: American Apparel || Harness: H&M || Jewelry & Shoes: Stylist’s own

TAH DAA! Thanks for reading. Follow @KeightW

Photographer: Andrew Volk

Stylist: Kate Wotherspoon

Hair: Jeanna Brayford
Make-up: Jeffery Ho & Joyce Yeh
Model: Tia Haraga
Teacher: Tyler Udall