ALDO Fights AIDS. ALDO and Waris Ahluwalia (designer and CEO of Waris Loves You and House of Waris, actor and globe-trotting tastemaker) have teamed up to raise money for Partners In Health and its HIV/AIDS programs. Waris and ALDO created a really cute friendship bracelet that come in four different colours for $5. All the proceeds from the sale of the #FriendFight bracelets will go to Partners in Health.
Partners In Health strives to achieve two overarching goals: to bring the benefits of modern medical science to those most in need of them and to serve as an antidote to despair. In 1998, Partners In Health’s HIV Equity Initiative in rural Haiti was one of the first programs in the world to provide free, comprehensive HIV/AIDS treatment in settings of poverty. The program’s success changed how the world approaches and funds diseases of the poor. Today, Partners In Health provides housing, water, food, and psychosocial support to thousands of people living with HIV; addressing the root causes of poverty and disease, and not just the disease itself.
“I always say my inspirations come from love and history. With these bracelets, it’s about standing side by side with friends and loved ones for what’s right and noble – transforming history together. The arrow symbolizes truth, justice and movement forward. It’s a powerful way to create change.â€ – Waris Ahluwalia
“We have been committed to the fight against AIDS as far back as 1985, when few were willing to take a stand. It’s a cause very close to our heart and today, more than ever, we continue our commitment to raising awareness and funds to help protect and educate people around the world. We’ve come a long way but the fight is not over yet. This bracelet is an important symbol. It represents friendship and solidarity. It’s an invitation to join together in the fight against AIDS.â€ – ALDO BENSADOUN, Founder and Executive Chairman of the ALDO Group
The #FriendsFight bracelets are available online at aldoshoes.com and in select stores worldwide. So pick up a bracelet of three and tag your social media posts with the #FriendsFight hashtag.
The other two bracelets in my photo are from Dean Davidson and are available on deandavidson.ca.
It’s that time of year again and I want – I got is putting together massive Gift Guides of things I think would be perfect to give as gifts this season. The fifth edition of the Gift Guides is the one we’ve been waiting for Fashion, Beauty and Jewellery. This is a big one and I could go on for days with selections.
It’s really unfortunate that I don’t own anything by Comrags yet (Note to self, remedy this in 2014). I love the Quartz Border Ed Tunic by Comrags for $335. It’s available online or at their Toronto location.
Philip Sparks’s Footwear is amazing. I love every style with the tall boots being my absolute favourite. They range in price from $350 to $495 and are available at the Ossington location or online.
I finally bought my first pair of Abel Munoz shoes this year. I love Harlow Gold and Black which retails for $495 and is available online. If you are in Toronto you can book and appointment and buy the shoes in person.
I’ve purchased sweatpants twice in my life since turning 20. They are just something I don’t wear outside the house. Sometimes, I do need something cute to wear when running to the corner store and the laundry room. I’d be totally happy to receive Green Camo Skinnies from Lazypants are perfect. I love camo print, they are slim fit and they aren’t the traditional grey colour. They retail for $118 and is available online or at TNT.
It’s not an I want – I got gift guide if I’m not telling you to get some Lancome mascara. The Holiday Makeup Collection by LancÃ´me contains:
– limited edition HypnÃ´se Star Ã‰tincelle for $33
– HypnÃ´se Velours Multi-Wear Eyeliner Patches for $28
This ultra-precious kit contains 3 pairs of eyeliner patches which can be reused up to 3 times, to enhance the shape of the eye and stretch out towards the outer corner for an incredible wide-eyed look.
– Vernis in Love nail polish in Ã‰tincelle d’Agent, Ã‰tincelle de Neige and Lovered for $16 each.
I’m in love with the nail polish this holiday Ã‰tincelle de Neige has a really beautiful effect. The holiday collection is available online or at your local Lancome Counter (try The Bay, Sephora or Holt Renfrew).
No words are needed to describe the beauty that is Dean Davidson’s Spectrum Collar for $425. Available online and there is a select of merchandise available at Holt Renfew. It comes in several options for stones (Black Onyx, Lapis, White Topaz) and metal (Rose, Silver, Gold).
Eyecatching statement jewellery is always a great gift and Shay Lowe’s Shay Lowe Jewellery Fall and Holiday Collection definitely fit the bill. I’m quite partial to the Glorious Emerald Statement Necklace which retails for $395 and is available for purchase online.
Jenny Bird is such a sweet person. I purchased some earrings from her and she gifted me the Long Horn Tusk Earrings which were inspired by the beauty of elephant tusks. They are amazing and come in a Gold version too. $55USD available online.
Marni Eau de Parfum is my favourite new perfume of the year. It’s exclusive to Holt Renfrew and retails for $125
Statement earrings always catch my eye and I love these Blackhole Hoops by Beaufille (formerly Chloe commes Parris). These Canadian made earrings are available in oxidized silver and brass and cost $125. You can order them online from the Beaufille website.
A few weeks ago, I went to an event for Etsy Canada. We were introduced to some of Etsy’s biggest Canadian partners and talked about their Affiliate program. I received a personalized gift bag at the end of it. It was curated with me in mind and featured some designers the Etsy folks we up my alley. That’s how I discovered Lost Apostle.
Lost Apostle is based in Montreal and creates bronze and silver jewellery for the person who doesn’t want something dainty and feminine. We are talking animal skulls, anatomical hearts, flying picks, syringes, feathers and hand grenades.
If that isn’t enough, there are Lost Apostle Octopus earrings to match. I’m dying. Lost Apostle is pretty affordable also with prices starting around $30 and going up to $300. The Octopus necklaces range in prices from $42.24 to $58.08.
Sunny Fong of VAWK has teamed up with eBay Canada to launch a seven piece limited edition collection called Vawk for eBay on August 12, 2013. Everything will be priced under $120 and will be available at Buy It Now pricing until September 15, 2013. I got the scoop on inventory and it’s really limited, if you have some favourites you need to purchase on August 12th. An added bonus is that eBay is providing free shipping.
The Manta shift dress at $119 is a steal and my favourite piece of the collection.
There is something for the guys too with the Duo leather skinny tie at $69.
Toronto has a number of great jewellery designers and Dolorous is one of them. Danielle Singer, designer, uses brass chains and various vintage components to create her beautiful, minimalist designs. I’m really into her body jewellery right now.
Menat Broad Collar Body Chain is my favourite piece by Dolorous right now. It would make a great statement piece on a long gown for formal occasions. It also would be great more causally too. It’s $278.64 at here Etsy shop.
The Menat Broad Collar Body Chain, inspired by medieval accessories, is a modern style of body jewelry meant to be worn across the shoulders. This beautiful and flattering statement piece is made with two draping strands down the front and three across the back, connected at the shoulders with a section of ornate vintage copper chain from which several strands of brass chain are draped, creating a cap sleeve style look that allows the piece to balance comfortably across your shoulders.(source: Dolorous Etsy Page)
Crystal Lattice Body Necklace is another great piece that would make a great statement on a simple gown. It’s a cheaper option than the Menat Broad Collar Body Chain at $187.55.
The Crystal Lattice Body Chain is a versatile necklace featuring a large vintage chandelier crystal that is absolutely breathtaking in person.The vintage crystal at the center of the necklace is surrounded by layers of draped brass chain, interlaced with one another.
Its constructed to allow it to be worn either as a draped and layered necklace, or as a beautiful body chain with chain interlaced down and around the torso and creating beautiful back detailing.(source: Dolorous Etsy Page)
The Great Gatsby opens on May 10, 2013 and I’ve definitely bought into the hype. Not because I think it’s going to be a great movie but just for the visual spectacle of clothing and jewellery. Baz Luhrmann makes some great visual movies but I’ve never given a damn about the story he’s trying to tell.
I’m not a huge Tiffany & Co. fan but The Great Gatsby collection is pretty stunning and caught my attention. It’s inspired by Baz Luhrmann’s film and created in collaboration with Catherine Martin, Costume Designer. The Savoy headpiece with pearls and diamonds makes me lose my mind. It’s crazy beautiful even to me, a person who isn’t the biggest fan of pearls or diamonds.
Tiffany & Co. is doing the full social media coverage for the collection and created this short video featuring the jewellery.
An exclusive video by director Baz Luhrmann about the exquisite Tiffany jewels featured in his film “The Great Gatsby.” Tiffany collaborated with the film’s OscarÂ®-winning costume and production designer Catherine Martin on the bejeweled creations.
Tiffany & Co. Great Gatsby Collection Descriptions.
Image 2 (Top to Bottom)
Bracelet of diamonds, seed pearls and platinum inspired by Chinoiserie; The Savoy, a diamond and freshwater cultured pearl headpiece with detachable brooch, inspired by a Native American design in the Tiffany Archives.
Image 3 (Left to Right)
Hinged floral bangle of black onyx, diamonds and platinum; Art Deco-inspired ring of sapphires, diamonds and platinum; Tassel pendants of diamonds, freshwater cultured pearls and platinum.
Kara Ross is Queen of the exotic skins. This award winning designer is known for her luxury clutches made of out of a colourful assortment of skins like lizard, python, alligator and ostrich finished with a clasped made from coloured stones. Kara is a certified GIA gemologist and she puts that experience into her handbag and jewellery designs.
To compliment the skins, Kara uses mother-of-pearl, labradorite, black onyx, rock crystal and hematite gemstones. Kara by Kara Ross jewellery uses alternative materials like jet, marcasite, lava, wood and chalcedony to create her statement making jewellery in addition to traditional materials like resin, crystal, Malachite, Lapis, Tiger’s Eye, Amethyst, Turquoise and Onyx.
I attended a preview of the Spring Summer 2013 Kara Ross Handbags and Kara by Kara Ross Jewellery. It was the first time I got a look at the product in person and I’m such a fan of the handbags. I love the Art Deco inspiration in the shape and the clasp design. The skins are so unique and colourful with all kinds of colour combinations including neon available. I’m the lucky owner of a neon pink python Electra clutch (thanks to Kelly Claman Company) and I love it. It’s the perfect statement piece for a completely black outfit but I’m also looking forward to doing some crazy colour blocking in the summer. I’m thinking of paring it with my neon yellow dress and pink cork platform heels.
Kara by Kara Ross is available online at eluxe.ca and The Bay or in store at Holt Renfrew (Made a mistake about Holts, Ursula B in Montreal also carries Kara Ross).
Silly me mixed up my dates and I missed the launch for the newest fragrance in the Les Exclusifs de Chanel collection. I was really excited about it because it would mean playtime at the beautiful Chanel fragrance bar in the Holt Renfrew Bloor Street store.
Chanel’s current nose, Jacques Polge launched the collection 2007 and has released more fragrances over the year. These fragrances all take inspiration from the history of the house and each one explores a singular theme.
In 2012, Jacques Polge creates the Bijoux de Diamants Collection inspired fragrance. 1932 includes top notes of Aldehydes, Bergamot, Neroli, middle notes of Carnation, Jasmine, Lilac, Rose, Ylang Ylang and base notes of Musk, Coumarin, Mulberry, Ambrette (Musk Mallow), Orris Root, Incense, Opoponax, Vanilla, Sandalwood, Vetiver.(source) I’m a fan of fruity, floral and woody fragrances so I do like 1932. Initially, it’s very floral smelling but after an hour it calms right down and the woodiness comes to the forefront.
1932 is available at select Chanel Boutiques and the Chanel Espaces Parfums in the Bloor Street, Vancouver and Montreal Holt Renfrew locations. The collection is $145.00 for 75ml and $240 for 200ml.
Everyone has been buzzing about the new Miu Miu mini boutique that opened up in Holt Renfrew’s Bloor Street location. This is Miu Miu’s first Canadian point of sale.
Architect Roberto Baciocchi designed space that is dedicated to Miu Miu handbags and accessories collections. No clothing folks and shoes are still available in shoe department. The space is very Miu Miu with damask finish covered in crystal and studs, small display windows and polished brass backlit logos.
Miu Miu can be found on the first floor of Holts in the handbag section. It occupies the space where all the Balenciaga bags were hanging about. It’s like walking into a gold box. I stopped by today. It’s not very big and I didn’t see much jewellery but there were a ton of handbags though. It was super busy too. The space looks pretty slick and makes the product so desirable looking.
Miu Miu Toronto,
50 Bloor Street West
I’m in the current issue of Worn Journal. It’s been out since November but I’m only getting around to posting about it now. In June, I got an email from Serah-Marie asking if she could feature me in Worn’s hair issue. As you can imagine, I was a little perplexed at why I would be included. She explained that the piece would be feature on people with interesting hair styles. Accompanying the photos would be an interview with questions related to hair and identity. I said yes without question because it’s Worn Journal and it’s a great topic that my (lack of) hair could contribute to.
The talented Lainee Dee did my makeup before I ventured to the Worn Journal offices to meet the photographer, Brittany Lucas. I brought a few different outfits to choose from for the shoot but the final decision was the Smythe Warbler Tribute Blazer, earring by Eliza Kozurno and a leather Tshirt by Danier. It was late July when this photo was taken and it was roasting outside. With the leather and the blazer on I’m surprised my makeup isn’t’ running all over the place in this shot. Brittany and I went into the alley by the office and took a number of shots against different garage doors and using different angles and mostly stoic facial expressions. I’ve always said I’m terrible at the model scowl, this photo proves me wrong. Smiling comes so naturally to me but it’s nice to see I can do the complete opposite too. I’m pretty much in love with the photo. It turned out better than I could have ever dreamed. Lainee and Brittany did a fantastic job of making me look great. I’m giving myself a pat on the back for the kick ass styling 🙂
I was browsing the Valery Demure online shop and noticed this Fox brooch in the Rarities section. The designer is french artist, Lea Stein. She known as “the most notable and innovative designer of plastic jewelry of the 20th century”. She started working in textiles in the late 50s but eventually grew interested in plastics in the mid 60s. She married a chemist and together they created a new layering technique for plastic.
She worked with her husband, chemist Ferdinand Steinberger, to develop a process of layering very thin sheets of cellulose acetate (or rhodoid) and laminating them to form a “multi-coloured sandwich of plastic”. Each ‘sandwich’ was baked for a long time, then cooled and cut into shapes. The process could take as long as six months. This technique allowed Stein to insert different fabrics (such as brocades and lace), colors and textures into the plastic.(source)
I went to the opening of the SORRY, I’M NOT SORRY, I’M NOT A JEWELLER by Dina GonzÃ¡lez MascarÃ³ show held at the Ossington Philip Sparks shop. Dina is an Argentinian, born Vancouver based artist visiting the city for the Interior Design Show and the Toronto Design Offsite Festival. She has a Master’s degree in Fine Arts with a specialization in sculpture but she is a self-taught jewellery artist.
Dina’s jewellery is very much and extension of her artwork. I really love what she does as it’s so unique. She is really pushing design in a different direction. The jewellery has added dimension and structure not normally seen. Strong women wear these pieces otherwise they end up wearing you.
I’m not a cyclist but her bike series is amazing. The wheels move on the mini bikes and the wheel pendant is just perfect. If you are in Vancouver you can visit Dina’s shop/studio, JewellerBau. She does custom work as well. At the opening Dina described a set of wedding bands she created for an artist couple. The couple knew that they couldn’t wear these rings constantly because of the nature of Dina’s design. Dina cleverly designed the two rings so that they created a self standing sculpture when put together.
Simplicity from this London based designer comes at a price of $1,095.00 CAD. You can find these rings and more from Melanie Georgacopoulos on the Toronto based website Kavut.com which also carries some other great jewellery brands.
Orange and black may bring up a Halloween association for most but that’s not me. I don’t associate black and yellow with bees either. So, I don’t ever get hung up about the combination. It looks great on this Wax silver-plated Swarovski crystal necklace.
I’m a sucker for anything Art Deco related so I was very interested in the Woudenberg Spring Summer 2013 jewellery collection. Toronto based, Emily Woudenberg is a self-taught fashion and jewellery designer with an educational background in Fine Arts and Graphic Design. The spring summer 2013 season marks her fourth collection under the her namesake label, Woudenberg.
The collection titled “Paragonâ€ is inspired by the most eclectic and luxurious qualities of the Art Deco movement. A paragon, defined as “an immaculate diamondâ€, symbolized the frivolity that followed World War I. After the Great Depression and World War II, the opulence of the Art Deco era was out of place and a stark contrast to the sombre reality of the late 1930s. The 12-piece collection incorporates rose gold, opalite, copper industrial materials, rope and hand-sculpted pendants. Staying true to the Woudenberg aesthetic, Paragon is avant-garde and androgynous with each piece as experimental and effortlessly sophisticated as the next.
“I wanted to capture the essence of the contrast between extreme frivolity and sombre frugality that was seen in
The 1930’s. The feeling is strangely current.” Emily Woudenberg(source: Press Release)
These days designers are taking advantage of all the different mediums to use for promotion. The spring summer 2013 Woudenberg collection has a video also.
My favourite pieces are the some of the larger ones. They certainly are statement pieces that will start conversations. Ilike how Emily merges different materials together in her jewellery.
Pieces from the collection range from $58 – $142 and are available online at shop.emilywoudenberg.com and Ukamaku.com. In person shopping can be done at Homeground Boutique (16 Cumberland Street, Lower Level,Toronto). I’m honestly surprised at how affordable this collection is and I thought the Scarab Necklace would be way over $200.
Ever since reading Overdressed, I’ve been thinking about spending my money with a bit more caution when it comes to fashion. High on my priorities are well made, wearability and country of origin. I’ve decided that less is more and I want to stop those random H&M or Zara purchases and save for a couple of big ticket purchases a season. The fall, I want a Maryam Keyhani necklace.
Maryam’s work is as stunningly beautiful as she is. I really feel like these necklaces portrays her aesthetic perfectly. And who doesn’t want a part of that.
Maryam’s necklaces feature folded silks, structured metal and strands of pearls.
Maryam Keyhani is available at Holt Renfrew in Toronto.
One of my favourite Toronto jewellery Designers, Eliza Kozurno has released her Spring Summer 2012 collection called White Nights.
Eliza Kozurno launched her first line of jewellery in 2005 after working with an array of innovative designers, including Izzy Camilleri, Colette Harmon and Rita D. Educated at The Academy of Fine Arts in Lodz, Poland as a decorative textile designer, Eliza’s training in painting, drawing, sculpture and photography helped her hone her skills not only as a designer, but as an artist.
The collection uses white as a base and adds gold, black and silver as accents.Â Materials include crystals, ribbon, chains and beads.
So, the BeachMint team are expanding internationally and now JewelMint, StyleMint and ShoeMint are shipping to Canada. Rock-it Promo sent me a sneak peak package from BeachMint consisting of the Victorian Charmer Necklace and the Pauline Wedge in Wine. The jewellery is the quality you would expect for $30.Â I have stayed away from Steve Madden shoes since the early 90s but I have to admit I like the Pauline Wedge.Â I’m a bit obsessed with e-commerce retailers and packaging.Â The packaging for ShoeMint and JewelMint are pretty nice with jewellery box being my favourite.
I’ve been browsing the JewelMint, ShoeMint and StyleMint sites more seriously since they started shipping to Canada. Here are my top picks.
Shipping costs to Canada are from $9.99 to $19.99.
Dandi Maestre has once again created a visually stunning lookbook for the Spring Summer 2012 collection. Her photos are always very colourful with a wonderful cast of characters with interesting faces. Dandi is one of my favourite Toronto jewellery designers. Her pieces are handmade in Canada and use organic materials such as antlers, bull horn, rough amber and emeralds, reclaimed wood, natural seeds and nuts, elements found on shores, in rivers, jungles and forests.
The Spring Summer 2012 collection is called Raw.
“The raw beauty I find in people and nature inspires my new sculptural pieces. I see my work as artwork, where there isn’t anything too outrageous.
I believe in uniqueness . Nature is unique, and so are my designs, each one of a kind, individual and raw. Beauty is in all of us and I want to make people feel this. My work is all about texture and imperfection, just as us.â€ -Dandi Maestre
Dandi Maestre has a showroom in Toronto at 386 Huron Street. You can also purchase her designs online.