It’s always fun to watch a debut unfold before you. Tara Rivas unveiled the Fall Winter 2015 collection from her newly minted womenswear line, TMR Collection. Tara began her career altering store bought clothing and after years of that she made the jump into creating custom clothing for herself. This collection is the logical conclusion to those efforts.
“I want to create collections that offer women maximum style with minimum effort,” said Tara Rivas, founder and designer. “My desire is to create clothing that makes women look and feel good.”
For her first collection, Tara has wisely focused on a tight edit of beautifully made foundation pieces that can easily be integrated into anyone’s wardrobe. She’s taken classic pieces and added a bit of flair which makes her collection both stylish and office appropriate. Pleather inserts and mesh detailing bring the style and sex appeal to the garments. In addition to pleather, Tara uses triacetate crepe, bamboo and rayon. The entire collection is produced in Toronto and uses locally sourced fabrics.
Lets take a look at my favourite pieces
Portland Reversible Dress. The reversible dress isn’t a new idea but it’s beautiful to see it done well. This dress looks great on all shapes and it’s perfect for travelling. Nice little bodycon number.
For the last 5 weeks, I’ve been busting my ass at the crack of dawn with Nike and Sidewalk Hustle. Hawley invited me to participate in the Sidewalk Hustle x NTC Sunrise NTC Sessions. Monday mornings, Nike’s Canadian Master Trainer, Eva Redpath leads us through a high intensity 45min interval workout at the crack of dawn. Literally. I’m up at 5am like an insane person to do this workout. The workout overlooks the city as we train at the gorgeous Malaparte space in the TIFF Lightbox.
The first week was very hard on me. I was sore for days. I haven’t kept up with my fitness. I started do yoga at home but I hadn’t stepped foot in a gym in years. That week I swore up and down that I’d never let my fitness sink to the bottom of the barrel like that again.
I’m not usually one for classes but the NTC sessions reminded me of my training days. So very long ago when I was a sport obsessed youth. Many of the drills we performed were exactly the same. It brought back lots of Track & Field memories when I lived and breathed plyometrics.
I downloaded the Nike Training app and it’s really good. This Monday’s workout was almost exactly like Carli Lloyd’s Metabolic Kick Hit which is the featured workout in the app right now. There are so many workouts by master trainers and pro athletes that use little or no equipment. You can even do many of the workouts at home in your living room. I only have a couple quibbles about the app. I love the Chromecast support but the audio should be used by Chromecast too. Right now the picture is on my TV but the sound comes from my phone. Not ideal. The second issue I have is that the instructional video starts several seconds after the exercise timer has begun. So if you don’t know how to do the next exercise you lose time waiting for the video to explain. The Nike NTC app works with Nike+ and Google Fit. I just got a Fitbit and I wish it was integrated with that also.
The sessions are great because Nike also outfitted me in my first pairs of shoes from the brand in over 20 years. It makes sense they would want us to be rocking Nike gear to the sessions and I’m happy to oblige. I love my the funky black and white Nike Free trainers. I wore my Air Max’s all week, I couldn’t take them off.
For this week’s session, Hawley created an amazing workout playlist that helped us push through the burn. Check it out
You can follow the Nike NTC action on social media by following the #BetterForIt, #sidewalkhustlexnike, #nikentc, #nikentoronto hashtags.
Next week is the last day of training for this session but thankfully we are moving to a new time and new place.
My favourite skincare line, Dermalogica has launched their Facemap Our Nation program. Participating Dermalogica partners will be providing free facemapping for interested people.
Facemapping is a zone by zone approach to skin analysis that’s completed by a certified Dermalogica Skin Therapist. They will be able to answer all your skin care questions and give you a skin care regime tailored to your skin conditions. All I can say is once you go Dermalogica, you can never go back to what you have used before. I speak from experience as last year my lovely Skin Therapist put me on a heavy program to get my face in a good place after a year of playing beauty editor and trying all kinds of weird products. I’m back to my never using anything but Dermalogica stance.
Please visit FaceMapNation.com to find out more information on dates and places where you can find across the country to get your facemapped. You have till June 30, 2015 to take advantage of this great opportunity to learn more about your skin.
Follow the action on social media by following the hashtag #facemapnation
Nao Steakhouse teamed up with me, Sidewalk Hustle and The Soles of My Shoes on a special dinner event in which we invited some of closest influencer friends to experience the food and cocktails of this modern steakhouse. Nao sources its cuts of meat from top local and global producers and accents them with spices and flavours of Asia-Pacific. I invited my good friends Andrew Sardone, Editor of Globe Style Advisor and Philip Sparks, a Toronto based menswear designer.
Executive Chef, Stuart Cameron prepared a wonderful menu that gave everyone a chance to try the variety of dishes on the menu. Here are all the mouthwatering details. We were excited for the epic experience the menu hinted at.
Tuna Tartar – Wasabi Leaf + Avocado + Puffed Rice + Wasabi
Lao Raw Beef Tartar – Squid Ink Chip + Kaffir Lime + Chili
Binchotan Grilled Shishito Peppers – Amabito No Moshio Salt
24 Oz Strip Loin – Dry Aged 40+ Days USDA Prime, Nebraska, USA
Whole Branzino – Red Yuzukosho Marinade + Ponzu Brown Butter
Nao has two levels but we were seating on the ground floor at a large table. I called it the “look at me” table as we seemed to be on display for everyone. Nao is great place for people watching. The crowd skews young professional and up. The bar area was busy with customers having a few cocktails and chatting it up. The two floor setup is great because if you want a quieter dinner you can eat upstairs away from the hustle and bustle of the bar. It was a Thursday night and the place was packed. I think there might have even been some Toronto pro athletes in the place.
We started with some cocktails created especially by Nao’s master mixologist. There is a lot of variety on the menu that’s sure to please rye, bourbon, vodka and gin drinkers. Love sake and tequila, Nao has you covered too. The cocktails are presented in vintage glasses that are super adorable and unique. You almost want to stick them in your bag and take them home with you. I know what you are thinking and the answer is No, not that this event. Actually, Nao has amazing branded Japanese steak knifes that you’d wanna take off with too. No, no we didn’t do that either.
We got settled in with the drinks and then the mountains of food for the First Course started coming. At Nao, Beef Tartar is prepared right at the table. This type service gets me every time; it’s a great interactive experience for the customer. Unfortunately, the Beef Tartar was the only item of the night I didn’t like. I love Beef Tartar but I felt Nao’s was a bit to saucy for my tastes. Tuna Tartar and Binchotan Grilled Shishito Peppers are some of my favourite things so I enjoyed those options immensely. We squealed at the arrival the mains and sides. Andrew and Philip loved the 24 Oz Strip Loin, remarking on how it was the best piece of beef they’ve ever tasted. The Whole Branzio with Red Yuzukosho Marinade + Ponzu Brown Butter was exceptionally delicious and the presentation was out of the world. They spilt the fish along the belly and then laid it flat. I’ve never seen whole fish presented that way before. The sides, like everything else at dinner, were excellent also.
Now, I know I’m supposed to be gushing about how great the steak is at Nao and it really is great but it’s really all about the heavenly Baked Alaska!
It’s one of those desserts that I’ve seen it in photos from as long as I can remember. It’s an unbelievable feat of nature. How does the ice cream stay cold in the oven?!!!!!! I didn’t know anyone growing up who made them and none of my Caribbean family touched the stuff. That being said, there was something so appealing about this mysterious dessert to my young self. I can’t believe it took me this long to finally indulge and let me tell you it lives up to the damn hype. If you go to Nao, the Baked Alaska is a must. It’s beautiful and delicious; I didn’t want to eat it. I wasn’t expecting the Chianti Wine Raspberry Sorbet to rock my world but it did.
Overall, we had a really great time. The service and food was excellent. The Baked Alaska is a must and I’ll be back to get that into my life again. Thank you to the Nao Steakhouse staff for their hospitality. And a massive thank you to Executive Chef, Stuart Cameron for the great meal.
Nao is located in Yorkville at 90 Avenue Road, Toronto.
It’s the end of an era. This Saturday, March 28, 2015 is the last PROM at the ROM party. It’s been 10 years and I’ve attended several PROM parties, so it’s a little bittersweet to say goodbye.
The final PROM at the ROM, PROM X is inspired by the works of Douglas Coupland and the ROM’s latest exhibit Douglas Coupland: everywhere is anywhere is anything is everything. I’m a big fan of Douglas Coupland’s work so I’m really looking forward to what the ROM is calling a Pop Explosion Party that pays homage to this iconic Canadian artist. There will be live music, dancing, electric activities, gourmet fare and lounge areas to relax in between all the fun. Guests are encouraged to “curate an artistic or experimental ensemble that screams avant-garde, be playful with neon colours or celebrate contemporary Canadiana.â€
PARTY TICKET includes food and beverage (open bar), dancing, interactive activities and live entertainment
VIP TICKET includes an exclusive pre-party cocktail reception in c5 Restaurant and Lounge with an opportunity to meet Douglas Coupland and receive a signed Polaroid picture of you taken by the artist. Also includes access to exhibition, VIP lounge at the party, private registration and coat check.
DATE: Saturday, March 28, 2015
TIME: Party: 9:00 PM – 1:00 AM | VIP Experience 8:00 PM
LOCATION: Royal Ontario Museum, Main Entrance, Michael Lee-Chin Crystal, 100 Queen’s Park
DRESS CODE: Avant-garde, experimental, and playful
TICKETS: Party: $150 | YPC Member $125
VIP: $350 | YPC Member $300
So, I enter the party and I’m seeing no one I know. I spot Charles on the stairs to the upstairs patio and move in to quickly chat. I keep walking up to the stairs and finally I notice some folks I know sitting down and I beeline over. So, I’m sitting having lovely conversation with Mary Symons. Confession time. Mary is someone I’ve always wanted to get to know a little better for years but my networking style is let things happen naturally. (She’s awesome BTW) As more guests arrive, people we know come by the table to chat. Mary introduces me to some of her friends and they both happen to work on Cityline. One of those people is the producer, Candy Signorini. They are both lovely and we have a great conversation. Eventually, I head home from the party and that’s the last I think of Cityline. That’s until about a week later when I get a message from Mary asking for my contact info. Candy wants to speak to me. I’m not going to lie, I’m a bit confused but Candy is awesome so my contact details get sent over. A few days later, I get an email from Candy and she wants me to come on the show as a guest in a couple of weeks. I’m flabbergasted but of course I write back and say Hells Ya!
We filmed the show on June 27. I was able to get seats for my family to attend the taping which was so great. I was nervous and I’m glad I had a little support section in the audience to help me get though it. It was really cool to see how the show is put together from behind the scenes. I loved how my makeup looked and I met Dave Lackie who is really the sweetest guy. Tracy Moore is an absolute pro and she made that interview so easy for me. I really can’t thank her enough. The show aired on July 4th and it’s online for your viewing pleasure – Cityline July 4, 2014
I haven’t watched the video and I don’t think I ever will. The thought of watching myself makes me feel pretty ill to be honest. I prefer to think about the memory of the event instead. Friends and family say it’s good and I’ll take their word for it.
I was told to wear lots of colour for the show and I decided to take it to obnoxious proportions. So here is my outfit breakdown:
Yellow Zara Blazer
Mint Green Le Chateau Dress (courtesy of Le Chateau)
Nine West Sandals
I’ve been around the event block many, many times in this city and these days it takes a lot to impress me. Luminato’s Big Bang Bash and the Yves Saint Laurent Opening Night Party at the Hearn Generating Station did just that last night. It was a combination of a spectacular venue and major nostalgia that took hold of me and never let go.
I love Luminato. It’s been a great addition to the Toronto arts scene. Anticipation was high for the after I received the press release letting the world know that the Hearn Generating Station would be the location for this year’s fundraising gala. I didn’t know anything about the Hearn Generating Station at the time but clarity happened once I read over the words “The one-of-a-kind venue has never before been used for an event like this, of this magnitude, but glimpses of the facility have been seen in the popular films, Pacific Rim and Robocop.” I just watched the horrible Robocop remake the day before. I knew the movie was filmed in Toronto but I had no idea The Hearn was location of one of the memorable battle scenes. The Hearn was one of the best things in the movie to be honest and now I knew its name. Even better, I was going to get to drink cold beers in its cavernous space.
The Richard L. Hearn Generating Station is located in the Toronto Port Lands. It opened in 1951 and burned coal that was transported via the St. Lawrence Seaway. In the 70s the plant was converted to natural gas and continued until it stopped power production in 1983. The plant played supporting roles in energy production till 1991. There were two major attempts to buy the plant where one group wanted to turn it into a large hockey based sports center and another group that wanted to turn it into a movie studio. Both options fell through but the plant still occasionally shows up in movies.
The Big Bang Bash fundraising dinner had many of the Toronto’s influential benefactors, artists, politicians, sponsors and guest taking in the Berlin Underground theme. Table settings recreated the Berlin wall complete with graffiti and cinderblocks. Jorn Weisbrodt, Artistic Director of Luminato Festival had this to say about The Hearn:
“The moment I walked into the Hearn Generating Station I knew I wanted to do something in this space. It is full of possibilities. It reminded me of the days when I moved to Berlin, just a couple of years after the wall came down. Every week there was a different club opening in an amazing underground location and a few weeks later it disappeared or grew bigger and bigger. The Hearn space asks to be filled with ideas and I love the idea of juxtaposing the glamour of a big gala with the rawness but grandeur of the space. It reminds me of Piranesi’s Carceri etchings. I am so grateful to Paul Vaughan and everyone at Studios of America to let us play in the space.â€
I didn’t attend the fancy dinner but Isabella Rossellini did! She’s here performing Green Porno at the festival. After the dinner the Luminato and Yves Saint Laurent Opening Night Party started. Like everyone who didn’t drive, I took at taxi. It was a really crappy ride. My driver was a dick to be honest, honking and picking fights with other drivers. I also had to break out driving instructions on my phone so we could find the place. To top it all off, he didn’t have change.
All those frustrations sort of melted away when the huge smokestack came into view and the expansive plant grew larger. A wave of nostalgia hit me and I was taken back to my rave days. I went to a lot of raves in 1991 â€“ 1993 and one of the most memorable was held at some factory in the west end. I wish I could remember where it was but I was still in high school and living in Richmond Hill at the time. I had no concept of downtown. We met a shuttle bus at Union station and they whisked us off to this random large factory to party and dance our asses off.
The Hearn brought back those feelings with a vengeance. I felt like a 18 year old again minus the minus the hallucinations. The Hearn dwarfed that factory. It is vast, so vast. 650 thousand cubic metres of space cannot be accurately described. It can fit 12 Parthenons inside! You could lose yourself staring upwards into its cavernous space. The space is in a state of decay but it’s beautiful. Spotlights and colours gave guests glimpses into the dark recesses outside of the party area. Photos don’t do it justice. I’ve never had an inkling for being an urban explorer but I had an almost impossible urge to start climbing any stair or rafter possible. I want a higher vantage point. What hidden secrets did the depths of The Hearn hold for those brave enough? Chatter throughout the night revolved around the insurance price tag and the fact that a concrete floor was poured a couple weeks before just for this event.
YSL had beauty stations where guests could try out the latest makeup and there was a contest for a Saint Laurent handbag which I didn’t win. Previews for the new Yves Saint Laurent movie and YSL ads repeated on big screens throughout the night. Hot Pop Factory (http://www.hotpopfactory.com/) had a booth showing off their 3D printing skills. Guests walked away with laser printed leather bracelets and polymer brooches.
The Luminato and Yves Saint Laurent Opening Night Party didn’t beat the rave on the dancing front. A few of us took advantage of the DJ and dance floor but I couldn’t help wonder how amazing it would have been if Toronto was a dancing city. Despite the very Toronto no dancing thing, The Hearn took me to a place that I didn’t think was possible in Toronto. I felt like I was attending some super exclusive party in London or New York, places that would take advantage of a beautiful, thought provoking space like The Hearn. My hope is that this party sparks some more interest in the space and that someone wants to see it make a cultural contribution to the city like Wychwood Barns, The Distillery District and Evergreen Brick Works.
I guess I should mention my outfit. We were warned about the space ahead of time and I forgot flats and dressed like it was fall. I did the typical Torontonian black with my custom Danier Dress and punched it up with colour using a Gap moto jacket and Kara Ross handbag. Of course, my 3.1 Phillip Lim Chelsea boots were on my feet.
I almost walked away from the Bookhou Totem Dopp Pouch. I was visiting City of Craft for the first time with Monique from MoonRox and we both had our eyes on it. Why the hemming and hawing? Well, I really like cross body bags. They are my staples as they are versatile and easy to carry. Pouches and clutches are kinda a pain in the ass and I only really use them when going to something formal. That being said the Totem Dopp Pouch print was gold and I really liked the oatmeal linen it was made from. So, I spent the 30 bucks and picked one up, at that price it was hard to say no.
Totem Dopp Pouch measures W 25.4 x H 17.78 cm. It’s large enough to carry the essentials (Wallet, Smartphone, Keys, Gum, Mascara and Lip Balm) and it’s not bulky. The print placement varies on each pouch due to its handmade nature. The outer material is 100% linen and the lining is 100% cotton.
The Totem Dopp Pouch has served me well already. It was the perfect accessory to pair with a recent wedding outfit I put together. The gold dress is complexgeometries, the platforms are Aldo and the earrings are by Jenny Bird. You can see how the Totem Dopp Pouch fits in perfectly! And with that, the purchase was justified.
You can get your own Totem Dopp Pouch via the new One of a Kind Online shopor directly from Bookhou. On both sites the pouch retails for $30 plus applicable shipping.
Bookhou is a Toronto based company and all merchandise is handcrafted in Toronto.
I never knew I wanted a linen jumpsuit in pale pink until I saw that Horses Atelier created one for Spring Summer 2014. Now, that’s a bit of a lie, I’ve always had an interest in jumpsuits. A military flight suit is on my military “I want” list and has been for a long time. I haven’t pursued acquiring a flight suit very actively. When I do come across them they are either too weird-looking like this Soviet MIG flight suit or they are just too big and beyond the magic of alterations. Then there are the colour options which don’t really leave much room for light-hearted fun.
Combinaison by Horses Atelier provides a great fitting silhouette that looks slim fitting and roomy at the same time. The cotton linen blend will make it cool for the summer even though you’re encased in fabric. It’s got pockets which are a must. I love that it can be dressed up with some heels and a great handbag or it can be completely casual with sneakers and a baseball cap. I’m honestly having thoughts of this jumpsuit paired with my Danielle Meder Doc Martens. It’s really bringing me full circle into this 90s rehash the fashion world is obsessed with right now.
Horses Atelier also makes the Combinaison in black if you are looking for something more stain resilient. The Combinaison by Horses Atelier is made in Toronto. You can buy it via the Horse Atelier online shop for $400. Proceeds from all online sales go to the Clean Clothes Campaign which strives to improve working conditions in the global garment industry.
Was it the son of a preacher man? A devil in a blue dress? You obviously didn’t listenâ€”but now everyone else will.
On Friday, February 14, 2014, WORN Fashion Journal will get your achey-breakey heart in front of a karaoke machine at Monarch Tavern (12 Clinton Street).
Don’t just feel the pain, spread it around.
We’ve got a karaoke machine, a microphone, sad, sad, sad songs, and enough bitter tears and sweet liquor to fill a swimming pool. What else could you possibly need to mourn your latest romantic folly?
All proceeds will go to the production of WORN Fashion Journal. This year, we’re trying to raise enough money for our very own lighting equipment. Support independent publishing, and sing us a sad song!
$5 Admission if you’re dressed in red or pink
$1 per song
$10 to cut the line
$5 to sing Celine Dion
12 Clinton Street
Friday, February 14, 2014
Bring on the heartbreak: 9:00 p.m.
You don’t have to go home but you can’t stay here: 2:00 a.m.
Preferred: Red & Pink
Mandatory: Heart on your sleeve
The Toronto Design Offsite Festival (TO DO) is a not-for-profit, independent design festival happening annually at the end of January. TO DO’s aim is to provide exposure for local and national designers; to foster public understanding and knowledge of the practice of design; and to create an ongoing presence that promotes Canada’s creativity, drawing on great thinkers, practitioners, and educators to a deliver an innovative celebration of art and design.
The TO DO Festival runs from January 20 – 26, 2014. Here are some I want – I got approved options if you are looking to check it out.
A Film: Eames: The Architect and The Painter
Tue, Jan 21, 2014
Herman Miller Canada Showroom | Film
Narrated by James Franco, the film brings to light a virgin cache of archival material, visually stunning films, photographs and artifacts produced by Charles and Ray Eames with their talented staff during the hypercreative forty-year epoch of the Eames Office.
Mon, Jan 20, 2014 – Sun, Feb 16, 2014
ARTiculations | Exhibition
Out of matte white paper, Christine Kim has constructed light geometrical structures assembled together like cumulus clouds. For this installation, she explores the relationship between light and shadow through the cut, the fold, and the curve of paper.
Thu, Jan 23, 2014 – Sun, Jan 26, 2014
Gladstone Hotel Art Bar | Exhibition
The fourth annual CAPACITY is a contemporary design show featuring new, theme-specific work by Canadian women designers. This year our participants draw inspiration from the work and/or life of design pioneer Ray Eames as a starting point for their Capacity 2014 projects.
Mon, Jan 20, 2014 – Sun, Jan 26, 2014
Delight Chocolate | Window Installation
This two-part installation turns the margins of everyday architecture on its side, quite literally, by illuminating the essential elements of our built environment. Make your own connections by controlling the installed lighting display with the touch of a brick wall.
Come Up To My Room
Thu, Jan 23, 2014 – Sun, Jan 26, 2014
Gladstone Hotel | Exhibition
Come Up To My Room is the Gladstone Hotel’s annual alternative design event with 25 installations and 4000 visitors, all in under 4 days. The 60 artists and designers are limited only by their imaginations, making it one of the most exciting shows in Toronto.
Mon, Jan 20, 2014 – Thu, Feb 20, 2014
Cornerstone Home Interiors | Window Installation
Totem Rug Design and Lori Harrison collaborate on an installation of rugs and textiles inspired by origami. Their window installation titled â€˜Crease Patterns’ will connect the ephemeral world of paper folding with the timeless art of textile design.
Thu, Jan 23, 2014 – Sun, Jan 26, 2014
Various venues on Dundas Street West between Bathurst and Grace Streets | Exhibition
Do Design celebrates contemporary design in diverse settings of a vibrant neighbourhood. Over 20 individual works plus two exhibitions are showcased in local venues including design stores, cafes, bars, salons and boutiques along Dundas Street West (Bathurst to Grace Streets).
Wed, Jan 22, 2014
Graven Feather | Workshop | Collaboration
This workshop is a brief introduction to the use of letterpress to make simple and beautiful cards. It’s the perfect opportunity to come and experiment on the presses using old-fashion metal type and vintage designs.
Oasis Skateboard Factory Pop Up Shop
Fri, Jan 24, 2014 – Fri, Jan 31, 2014
The Baitshop | Exhibition
Oasis Skateboard Factory, the only street art and skateboard design high school in the world, presents their end-of-semester pop-up shop. The exhibit will showcase handcrafted, student built and designed skateboards.
Sat, Jan 18, 2014 – Sun, Jan 26, 2014
Graven Feather | Exhibition
Process becomes pattern in this installation by textile designers Lysanne Latulippe and Meghan Price of STRING THEORY. Here a collection of scarves is presented within walls that describe their making.
Sweetness of the Work – Spinning Jenny
Wed, Jan 15, 2014 – Sat, Mar 01, 2014
Gerhard Supply | Window Installation
A glittering, salt encrusted Singer sewing machine and handmade bobbins of salted hand spun linen paper, plus additional salted tools of the â€˜trade’ and embroidered works â€“ Sweetness of the Work pays homage to the art and history of sewing, revering the virtuosity of hand work interpreted through a modern lens.
TO DO Opening Party at SMASH
Wed, Jan 22, 2014 – Thu, Jan 23, 2014
SMASH | Design Party
Come and find out what the festival is about, meet local designers, experience amazing salvage furniture and curiosities at SMASH, and dance with the amazing community that makes the Festival happen.
TO DO Closing Party with Love Design
Sat, Jan 25, 2014 – Sun, Jan 26, 2014
Gladstone Hotel | Design Party
After an amazing Festival week, there is no better way to close it than with another party. Join us at the free Love Design Party, where we celebrate the 11th year of the Gladstone Hotel’s iconic show Come Up To My Room.
This is just a small selection of events happening during the TO DO Festival. Be sure to check out the Toronto Design Offsite Festival website for full festival details.
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
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 fourth Gift Guide in the series deals with primary with food and the gifts for the home.
Carnivore Club. I have no personal experience with this meat of the month subscription but I’m so intrigued. I’d totally love to receive this as a gift and they do offer gift boxes for special occasions.
Carnivore Club is the exclusive meat of the month club for discerning individuals! Every month members of the Carnivore Club will receive 4 to 6 different selections of unique charcuterie, exotic terrines and artisan crafted jerky’s from around the world.
Carnivore Club specializes in finding you products that cannot be found at your local grocery store or butcher shop. Our partners are all small artisan producers because we believe in the quality and care each partner takes to create their products.
Sloane Fine Tea is so very good and it comes in the most beautiful tins. There are several varieties of tea available and they start at $15. You can buy Sloan Tea online or from a local retailer.
Drink Sloane Tea from a DavidsTea Tea Mug. I love these mugs as they make a big mug of tea and include a strainer. The mugs are $19.50 (or 2 for $30 online) and available online or at any DavidsTea location.
This mug doesn’t have a strainer but the Pink Tartan x Keurig mug is really cute. Kimberley Newport-Mimran created the illustration and 100% of the proceeds from the sale of the mugs goes to Toronto East General Hospital. It’s $19.99 and available online at Keurig.ca.
My favourite kitchen gadget of last year is the Sodastream. I can’t recommend it enough and it would be an amazing gift. Sodastream systems start at $99 and are available online or at your local Walmart or The Bay.
If you are getting someone a Sodastream be sure to get them a gift certificate to BuyCoffeeCanada.com because then they can buy Torani Syrup to make Italian Sodas. I swear by Torani Syrup for my Sodastream.
I’m pretty smitten with the Cucina Kitchen Trio on a slate from Fruits & Passion. I received a package of items from Fruits & Passion and experienced first hand the lovely fragrances from the Cucina collection. How can you resist Rosemary & Cardamom? This gift set includes hand soap, dish soap and hand cream on a slate. Perfect for the kitchen and exactly where I placed mine.
I was finally introduced to L’OCCITANE en Provence this year. It was store that I always passed by but never really entered. I got an education that day on their products. One of their biggest sellers is the amazing Shea Butter hand cream. This holiday season L’OCCITANE en Provence created the The Secret to Beautiful Hands Collection with contains Shea Hand Cream 75ml, Shea Nail & Cuticle Cream 15ml, Shea 1 Minute Hand Scrub 100ml and a Magic Key. The collection comes in ready decorated box and retails for $65. The Shea Embrace Collection is another option. It contains Shea Butter Hand Cream 75ml, Shea Butter Foot Cream 75ml, Shea Ultra Rich Body Cream 200ml, Shea Milk Soap 100g and Shea Ultra Rich Shower Cream 75ml. The Shea Embrace Collection is $85. There are a number of L’OCCITANE stores in the GTA with the closest in Yorkville. L’OCCITANE also has online shopping.
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. So the fashion route is out for holiday gifts. I can’t blame people for that, it’s hard to get the right piece. Don’t worry about sizing, colour or style as this third gift guide in the series is all about the gadget.
My Mom is always asking me to print her photos of my nephew and niece. I didn’t have a proper photo printer until I went to an HP event and got my hands on the HP Photosmart 7520 e-All-in-One Printer. It’s wireless which is such an important part to my home network as I’m trying to get rid of excess cables. I can print photos from my smartphone using HP software or Google’s Cloud Print. Some other great features include a touch screen, duplex printing, Internet access, scanning, copying and faxing. The Photosmart 7520 will automatically print a selection of NYTimes stories on Sunday morning if you want it to. The HP Photosmart 7520 e-All-in-One Printer is on sale for $109.99 right now at HP.com.
So, this summer I got an intimate look at Microsoft Windows 8 and the Surface. Suffice to say, it made me happy as a Windows girl. It only makes sense that I’d put the new Surface 2 in my gift guide. Improvements to the Surface include faster processor, dual-position kickstand, thinner, lighter, increased battery life, Full HD display, better front and rear facing cameras, faster usb ports, backlit Touch and Type covers. Microsoft Office, Skype and Skydrive accounts are also included. The Surface 2 starts at $449.00 and Surface 2 Pro at $899.00 on microsoftstore.com.
I finally ditched the Blackberry + iPhone smartphone combination I was doing this year. I contemplated getting another Blackberry because I knew there was no way I was going to make the iPhone my primary device. I had a real love hate relationship with it. Once it was clear that Blackberry wasn’t going to make another full sized keyboard based phone I decided it was time to ditch the company and go Android. HTC’s PR company send me an HTC One to review for a month. It was love at first sight. Anyone who saw me that month can attest that all I talked about was this damn phone. Recommending it to everyone. I loved the phone so much, I went out and bought one the day before I returned the review device. To understand the importance of this decision you have to understand that I haven’t paid for a smartphone in a number of years (thanks to the blog). I felt so strongly about the HTC One that I went out and spent my hard earned money on it. I don’t regret it for a second. It’s the best phone I’ve ever owned and the best smartphone camera I’ve ever used. Check out my Instagram to see what’s it’s capable of. Telus, Bell, Rogers and Virgin Mobile all stock the HTC One but it retails without a plan for about $650.00.
I was very lucky to be one of the few people that was gifted the Samsung Galaxy Note 3 + Gear. If I wasn’t such a huge HTC One fan, the Note 3 would be my primary smartphone. The size of the Galaxy Note is one of it’s strengths and one of it’s major weaknesses for me. It’s just too big for my hands to use as an everyday device. I do lot of one handed manipulation of my smartphone and I’m not ready to give that up. I never realized how much I miss a stylus until I got my hands on the Galaxy Note. I’m really impressed with the handwriting recognition and it’s damn cool to write longhand on a device and have it converted. The old person in me loves this because sometimes thoughts come out better with a pen in hand. The Note 3 isn’t my primary phone but it’s come to replace my Kobo arc as my tablet. I love playing Tiny Death Star and Restaurant Story on it and Instagram is so incredible. The Samsung Galaxy Gear is Samsung’s push into wearable computing. The Gear is too big for my wrist so I never really used it. It’s a bit of a toy to me but would be a perfect gift for the tech nerd who wants to be the first to try all the new stuff. The Galaxy Note 3 is available at all major telecoms and it retails for about $750. The Samsung Galaxy Gear retails for about $329.99.
I still a fan Kobo devices. I like the Kobo Arc because it runs Android and it’s in colour. With a colour ereader I felt comfortable ordering digital magazine subscriptions from Zinio and purchasing books with photos and illustrations from Kobo..The Kobo Arc has been upgraded this year to include HD resolution, faster processor and improved camera. Kobo Arc 7HD starts at $199.
I’ve struggled for a number of years with commercial grade steamers. They’d last a year or two then break. I swore the next steamer I bought would be profession grade. I polled my stylist contacts and was told Jiffy is the steamer to beat. I tracked down a Jiffy J-2000 steamer on Kijiji and I couldn’t be happier. I was lucky to find a used one but I would have paid full price for it. WM Prager sells Jiffy J2 steamer and it retails for $295.00.
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 second Gift Guide in the series deals with Books of the fashion variety. I haven’t kept up on my fashion books this year but thankfully, my savior, Nathalie Atkinson at the National Post has. I trolled her articles at the National Post to come up with this list. Some of these books like, The Coat Route is already on my list to read and now I have 7 others.
Hazlitt #1 – I tossed this one in the list because my friend and one of my favourite designers, Jeremy Laing is Art Director for the issue.
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 first Gift Guide in the series deals with Culture. I’ve been very lucky to experience some of the great culture events Toronto has to offer. Here is my list of great experiences that would make a fun addition to your gifting plan. These gifts are great for individuals or families.
I have a soft spot for JACOB. It was the shop that helped me transition from student to IT office worker. I didn’t have much use for business casual clothing in school while taking my B.Sc in Kinesiology and Diploma in Computer Programming and Analysis. So, when it came to real world dress codes, I had a lot to catch up on. JACOB was there as an affordable place to get nice pieces for my new environment, the office. Even after my tastes got more expensive, JACOB was always there as a place I went to for basics and cute dresses. There is a lot of choice for business casual clothing out there with all the new American shops in town but I always fall back on JACOB. It’s the Canadian in me. When JACOB approached me about showcasing an I want – I got approved look from their Holiday Collection and I said yes.
I had the Holiday Collection lookbook so I made some preliminary choices in my head before stepping into the Eaton Centre. In the end, I went for a dress and cardigan combo. It’s one of my staple looks for winter office dressing. I didn’t feel like going colour crazy so the look is all black everything. Let’s break it down.
1. JACOB Bustier dress with lace $139.90 – I fell in love with this dress immediately. It’s perfect for the office with the hint of lace in an office appropriate manner. I’m also in love with knife pleats, my favourite pleats of them all.
2. JACOB Black and Crystal Necklace $39.95 – The store manager helped me out with this necklace as I was trying to figure out something to add to the dress. I couldn’t find this one online, but it’s in store!
3. JACOB Cardigan with jewel buttons $47.92 – I have to thank the Store Manager again with this choice. After I picked up the necklace, I decided that I wanted a cardigan as a topper for the dress. The manager thought this cardigan would be great because it matches the necklace. I agreed.
4. Pattern Tights – These are from my closet and I can’t remember where I bought them. I thought they worked well with the lace as they were similar in pattern
5. 3.1 Phillip Lim Chelsea Boots – I was going to wear heels with this look but I thought it would be more appropriate with the shoes I’m currently obsessed with, the Chelsea Boot.
This post was sponsored by JACOB. The views and opinions expressed in this blog, however, are purely our own.
There is a damn good reason the Danny Chelsea Boot by 3.1 Phillip Lim is sold out online is sold out online. It’s the most perfect Chelsea Boot ever!
I wanted the rose gold Quinn loafers but The Room didn’t have my size. My heart was broken. I wandered the shoe racks deciding what to do. Finally, I bit the bullet and went for the Danny Chelsea Boot. I don’t regret it one bit. What makes these the perfect Chelsea Boot? Well the almond toe shape is slim but roomy. The shaft is streamline and fits under slim pants perfectly.
The fit is perfect, they didn’t require breaking in at all. I’ve been wearing the boots nonstop since I got them and they are so incredibly comfortable. My heels are very, very, very lonely at this point. I don’t think they’ll see the light of day until the snow starts and I have to start wearing winter boots.
Operanation might be over for the year but you can still support the Canadian Opera Company with a limited edition KAELEN X Sam Roberts Band Operanation Tee. The T-shirt incorporates elements of this years Operanation theme, Temptation. We may not have gotten the Kaelen x Amy Burstyn-Fritz treatment but the t-shirt is a more accessible way to get into Kaelen.
As a friend of Operanation, I was gifted a KAELEN X Sam Roberts Band Operanation Tee to wear. The first thing that struck me was the fit. It might just be me but when I put on a t-shirt with the perfect fit everything feels right in the world.
The next thing that hit me was the perfect branding. I hate logo shirts so it was really refreshing to have a t-shirt that managed to namedrop without it being overpowering to the design.
The third thing that stood out was the design itself (and that it extends to the back of the shirt). This is a t-shirt that looks like it wasn’t designed by committee. Many times fundraiser t-shirts are barren of creativity and people end up wearing them to bed or they go to Goodwill. This KAELEN X Sam Roberts Band Operanation tshirt is one that I wear outside the house with pride as my selfies attest.
There are only 50 of the KAELEN X Sam Roberts Band Operanation Tee available. They cost $100 and all proceeds go to COC Ensemble Studio. The tshirts can be found online at the COC’s Opera Shop and in-person at the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts at 145 Queen St. W.
When I received the collection from Revlon, l wasn’t even Sure I wanted to use them. They were too damn pretty. l got over myself though and picked my least favourite pair to test out. I’m still not sure that I’m going to use the other wraps yet. My main problems with nail wraps is that it takes me longer to apply than traditional polish. I have polish application down to a science now and nail wraps throw me off. My second issue is the finish on the nail edge. It’s always puckering and my design OCD goes freaking haywire. the Marchesa nail wraps don’t produce the puckered nail edge.
After the first nail l knew these would be a game changer. Application still took longer than regular polish but the finished edge made me very hopeful about the whole process. With other brands l’d stop application mid hand because I couldn’t stand the finish. Not with these babies. The only complaint I have about the wraps is that there should be more larger sizes in the package. I removed the wraps well before the expected 10 days they claim to last. IÂ guess if you aren’t hard on your hands they could last that long but my experience would put these at a week of wear before getting ugly.
There are just too many interesting sounding art installations going on during Scotiabank Nuit Blanche. Too many to post about individually on the site. I started but I realize it’s pretty pointless. So, I’ve decided to share My Scotiabank Nuit Blanche planner. It’s pretty ambitious and I’m sure I won’t see all of it.
The Scotiabank Nuit Blanche website is pretty handy. It’s optimized for mobile and it comes with a handy planning tool that you can share with your friends. So, instead of listing everything out here, I’m just going to link to I want – I got’s Top Picks for Scotiabank Nuit Blanche.
I’ll give you a few hints off my list though:
Forever Bicycles at Nathan Phillips Square
Familia at Church of the Holy Trinity
Garden Tower in Toronto at Metropolitan United Church
The [RE] GENERATOR Project is an interactive multimedia installation that explores the concept of “REâ€ (REcycling, REmixing, REinventing, REusing, REpurposing etc) using elements of fashion design, visual art, social media and projection mapping. It is guided by the Akan ideology of Sankofa which states, “It is not wrong to go back for that which you have forgotten.â€
The [RE] GENERATOR Project will incorporate Gabrielle Lasporte’s organic exploration of “flowâ€ using the Modern Batik technique and Chinedu Ukabam’s digital remix of African patterns and mashup of fashion silhouettes. The installation will close the loop between the creators and their audience, allowing them to “weaveâ€ their own inspiration into the installation in real time. A special hashtag will be revealed on the website (http://theregeneratorproject.org) before the installation goes live, making it possible to upload an image or pattern into the installation using Instagram. The selection process will be crowd-sourced using the number of “likesâ€ or comments.
H&M Eaton’s Centre, Yonge Street & Dundas Street (Best viewed from the south-west corner of Yonge and Dundas.)
Are you dressing on the same wavelengths as your inner palette? Are you ready to discover the right hue for a new you?
Whether it’s mastering the art of throwing shade, or learning how to achieve high level spectrum dressing, #CHROMATHERAPY promises to interpret your colour and style personality via an immersive, vibrant journey through the colour wheel.
Co-led by licensed chromatherapists @REERAW and @FINALFASHION,
this live media spectacle invites participants to be a part of a latenight #SNBTOstreet level infomercial. Join us to get feel-good advice on how to dress in harmony with the way you live and the person you truly are.
Through the transformative powers of silken chakra chroma draping techniques and fashion illustration futurisms, this talk-show-meets-hawk-show will delve deep into the style sub-consciousness of Toronto, uncovering life-changing revelations, one outfit at a time.
#CHROMATHERAPY is an upcoming site- and social-specific
performance by REA MCNAMARA and DANIELLE MEDER for NUIT
BLANCHE 2013, Toronto’s annual free all-night contemporary art event. It is an art project curated by EARL MILLER for the QUEEN ST. WEST BIA’s “OUT OF SITE 2013” group exhibition.
WHERE: PROPER RESERVE (498 Queen St. West).
WHEN: Saturday, October 5, 2013, from 6:51pm to sunrise.
To celebrate Nuit Blanche, the Philip Sparks shop will be converted into a bespoke bow tie workshop on Saturday, October 5. Between 7 pm and midnight, Sparks and his studio team will be taking custom neckwear orders from shoppers and cutting, stitching and pressing them up on the spot.
“Our focus this season has been on highlighting that our menswear and womenswear is proudly made in Toronto,â€ says Sparks. “This event is an opportunity for customers to see local manufacturing in action and order a one-of-a-kind piece made just for them.â€
The installation will also mark the launch of a new, premium bespoke service available through the store. Unlike many other made-to-order offerings, Philip Sparks tailors collaborate with customers to develop coats, suits and shirting from scratch with personalized design and material sourcing and multiple fitting appointments.
Philip Sparks Bespoke Bow Tie Shop
Saturday, October 5, 7 pm to midnight
162 Ossington Avenue (side entrance off Foxley Street)