October 9th, 2012
Shopping for functional running shoes can be a depressing activity.
Not only are they expensive (that money could go towards some heels), they’re not used for fun activities (we’d rather be at a restaurant than the gym) and they come in a very limited range of styles (usually neon pink with grey or turquoise, yellow, and lime green.) We’ve often wondered why no one makes a discreet grey running shoe.
Well now, someone does. Strike Mvmnt is a local brand that has designed an ultra-light interval crosstrainer for running and weights that comes in various shades of blue or grey. We loved that it was a great shoe to workout in, but mostly, we loved that it matches our black athletic wear.
We may even wear them outside of the gym. Ok, maybe not, but at least that’s an option. —Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
Strike Mvmnt interval crosstrainer, $125 at www.strike-mvmnt.com
October 5th, 2012
One of VitaminDaily.com’s ambassadors (check her out in the banner photo above), the always-chic Sunny Shum, just launched her own online accessory store.
Shut Up I Love This carries a special selection of pieces inspired by some of her most stylish friends (we hope that includes us!). Keep those harmful spirits away with Ettika’s beaded Hamsa bracelet ($58), or make a simple T-shirt look like a million bucks with Ka’kia’s intricately weaved silver necklace ($225). Have one of those noses that can’t hold a pair of sunglasses without them ending up on your lap? Canadian eyewear Kay Tran is especially designed to fit petite noses. Who knew?
Seriously: no talking, just shopping. —Anya Georgijevic
October 5th, 2012
Our favourite kid's craft workshop, Vancouver's Collage Collage, has just opened an online store filled with books, art supplies, craft kits, and toys.
So when you aren't feeling creative about ways to entertain the kids, search the site and leave the creativity to them. Find kits to make dream catchers ($18), sock puppets ($12), or nesting dolls ($35, pictured), this is the perfect site to bookmark for rainy day projects, gifts for friends' kids, and party activities. There's also a great selection of paints, crayons, sticker books, and aprons (a must-have).
Now, if only someone would teach our kids how to use all this stuff. Oh wait, they do. Collage Collage offers a wide selection of children's arts and crafts courses in Vancouver. Soon our budding doctors and lawyers will also be mini Monets and Manets. —Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
Collage Collage online store, www.shop.collagecollage.ca
October 4th, 2012
It would take years to explore one of the world’s largest cities, so this time we focused on Mexico City’s vibrant food and design culture. (For more on Mexico City, click here.)
Located in the ritzy Santa Fe business district, boutique hotel Distrito Capital occupies the top ten floors of a skyscraper, which means breathtaking views of the city and its surroundings, not to mention its trippy Tron-esque entrance. Both Lady Gaga and Bono have stayed there…what else is there to know? Distrito Capital, Av. Juan Salvador Agraz 37, Santa Fé, México City, 1-866-978-7020, www.hoteldistritocapital.com
Searching for the new and hip? You’ll find it in the city’s Condesa and Roma districts. Parque Mexico is a great place to start exploring and discovering beautiful art deco architecture, charming sidewalk espresso bars, local boutiques, and artisanal chocolate shops like Princesse Cacao (Fernando Montes de Oca 81, Condesa, 5211-0276), all while meeting at least fifty dogs and their hipster owners. End your stroll on the sun-soaked terrace of Hotel Brick (Orizaba 95, Roma, Mexico City, 5525-1100) for a margarita or two.
If you’ve already said hello to Frida and Diego, then give Rufino Tamayo a visit for a contemporary art fix. Along with the famed Mexican painter’s works, Museo Tamayo houses a permanent collection of his peers (he did live to almost a 100!) like Rothko, Miró, and Warhol as well as rotating contemporary exhibitions. The museum is located in the Chapultepec Park, which could easily rival NYC’s Central Park in its beauty. Museo Tamayo de Arte Contemporáneo, Paseo de la Reforma y Gandhi Bosque de Chapultepec, México City, 5286-6519, http://museotamayo.org
Mexico City’s food choices are abundant, from taco stands to fine dining establishments. One of the latest favourites is restaurant Azul Histórico in the Centro district, which has taken over the gorgeous courtyard of the newly opened Hotel Downtown. Surrounded by historic brick, lush trees and beautiful people, feast on Mexican specialties like organic hibiscus flower enchiladas and Tixin Xie fish. Azul Histórico, Isabel La Católica 30, Centro Histórico, Mexico City, 5510-1316, http://azulhistorico.com
It won’t be hard to find incredible things to buy in Mexico City, but local designer Carla Fernández caught our eye with her amazing draping and a fresh take on Mexican knitwear — yes, that includes the legendary poncho. Thank us when everyone asks you, “Hey, where’d you get that?” Carla Fernández, Molière 58-A, Polanco, Mexico City, 5912 8010, http://carlafernandez.com
October 3rd, 2012
We know you shouldn't judge a restaurant by its light fixtures… but it's hard not to when the stunning specimens are made from curtain pulleys reclaimed from the late Pantages Theatre further along Hastings Street.
Housed in a building from 1888, Wildebeest has been drawing crowds to its 1930s Toledo's lab stools that bring you up to eye level with your waiter.
All the better to order the more-ish smoked Castelvetrano olives and the delicious country paté that comes in its own mason jar.
Do order a bottle of the Helena rosé (just $21) sourced from a tiny producer in Italy and named for his daughter.
And speaking of children, the restaurant was named by an owner's son, whose favourite animal is the wildebeest.
Will it be yours, too?—Sarah Bancroft
Wildebeest, 120 W. Hastings St., Vancouver, 604-687-6880, www.wildebeest.ca
October 2nd, 2012
With all eyes on the Royals right now (come on, you had to look), we are pretty sure they are going to be staying in the spotlight/telescope for a while, which means their sense of dress, or lack thereof, may continue to trend.
The Royals love their headwear, so for fall we are going to be sporting some fine millinery, in the form of Claudia Schulz hats. Her super chic felt hats won’t be out of place at the pub, the races, or afternoon tea.
The Vancouver-based designer’s fall collection features a brimmed hat and a very chic version of the toque, but we are loving the wool cloche hats, particularly the Claude ($159) with a tiny brim that, when pulled over the eyes, may just offer a bit of anonymity. Which could be handy in case we get up to anything naughty on our next jaunt to France.
October 1st, 2012
We might be digital darlings, but we love us some analog.
Like the work of Porchlight Press, the new studio in Vancouver that offesr graphic design services as well as the not-yet-lost art of letterpress printing. “It’s like the slow food movement of graphic design,” says owner Heather Braun. There’s a handmade element to this printing technology (which is older than your grandmother) that makes each piece uniquely beautiful. The studio can tackle jobs as small as invitations to your kid’s first birthday, or as large as business cards for your company. Plus, we hear they’re going to start offering letterpress workshops so you can learn to print on these decades-old machines yourself.
Charming, these prints. —Kelsey Dundon
Porchlight Press, # 204-25 E. Sixth Ave., Vancouver, 604-790-7202, www.porchlightpress.com
September 28th, 2012
Ever gone out with a group of girlfriends and two hours later been presented with a bill for $400 and think: how'd that happen?
Now there's no need to spend the equivalent of a Phillip Lim jacket on girls-night out. Espana, the new West End Spanish tapas bar from Brit Neil Taylor (formerly of London's famous riverside Cafe by way of Cibo), offers cheap-as-chips (or should we say salt cod and potato croquettes?) options that are as tasty as they are affordable.
Local chorizo ($6), Catalan Spinach with pine nuts and raisins ($6), Tuna Steak ($9), crispy squid with chili jam, yogurt and mint ($9) - you can't really go wrong here.
Now don that Phillip Lim jacket and get out there! —Sarah Bancroft
Espana, 1118 Denman St., Vancouver, 604-558-4040, www.espanarestaurant.ca
September 28th, 2012
Mini burgers, Mini Coopers, Miniature Schnauzers.
Everything is cuter when it’s wee and Mackage’s new line for kids is no exception. The Montreal designer’s pint-size collection (2-12) is also undeniably stylish: Shiny, down-filled parkas with fur trimmed hoods, leather-detailed peacoats, and high-collared wool jackets sporting the brand’s signature military-style buttons. Prices start at $395 so we’ll be sewing our kid’s name (and a tracking device) into the lining.
RESP, be damned. —Marianne Wisenthal
Mackage Mini available at www.mackage.ca
September 27th, 2012
This is the moment of vamp, but winter fresh and retro beauty also found their way onto runways this season.
Vampy is the buzzword of the season, so get ready for very deep wine coloured lips. Seen at Gucci (pictured), YSL, Etro, and dozens of other shows, this dark shade requires some bravery, but once you try, you won’t stop. Editor’s Pick: Ilia Lipstick in Femme Fatale, $24 at ILIA.com and Kiss & Makeup, H5-925 Main St., West Vancouver, 604-922-6292, www.kissandmakeupstore.com
With vampy lips come vampy nails. Intense brights and complex nail art is put on the sidelines in lieu of the classic Hollywood burgundy, as seen at Catherine Malandrino (pictured) and Jenny Packham. Editor’s Pick: Essie nail polish in Skirting the Issue, $11 at Kiss & Makeup, H5-925 Main St., West Vancouver, 604-922-6292, www.kissandmakeupstore.com
Green shadows are making their biggest return since the ’80s. Avoid looking like the Jersey clan from Working Girl and opt for a shadow that’s easy on the glitter and with a slightly pearly finish, as seen at Jason Wu’s presentation. Editor’s Pick: Stila Eye Shadow in Jade, $24 at Beautymark, 1268 Pacific Blvd., Vancouver, 604-642-2294, www.beautymark.ca
Winter fresh is the best way to describe this flushed cheek seen at Michael Kors, Preen and Issa. Keep it looking youthful by keeping the rest of the face clean and opting for a dewy cream blush. Editor’s Pick: Make Up For Ever HD Microfinish Blush in Truth and Dare, $30 at Sephora.
Poof and Band
Channeling Brigitte Bardot and a current It Girl Lana Del Rey, bouffants are the up-dos of the season, seen in the ladylike collections of Oscar de la Renta and Carolina Herrera (pictured). What you need is a lot of hairspray, some backcombing action, and a headband to top it off. With a sultry ‘60s poof, this is not a schoolgirl look. Editor’s Pick: Goody Iconoclass Satin Headbands (2 pack), $5.99 at London Drugs.