November 19th, 2013
Soon enough, our schedule will be packed with cocktail parties, gift-wrapping and cookie-eating.
Translation? Better get those workouts in now while we still can. And because nothing inspires us quite like new gym-going outfits, we’re heading straight to Reitmans.com to get our hands on Hyba, the brand’s all-new athletic line.
Our favourite piece? These fun patterned leggings ($30) because really, nobody needs another pair of black bottoms.
Consider this a sneak peek: The full line debuts in store this January just in time for – you guessed it! – New Year’s resolutions. —Christine Laroche
November 16th, 2013
It's that time of year when summer swimsuits don't fit, but winter pool classes are in full swing. What's a doggie paddler to do?
NoZone swimwear, based in Victoria, BC, are a year-round lifesaver. With fast shipping and a fair selection of body suits and two-piece sets from 6 months to 12 years, they dry quickly and have high salt and chlorine resistence (and SPF 50, in case a family trip to Hawaii is in the works).Cannonballllllll.
From $34 for babies and from $45 for kids, www.nozoneclothing.com
November 15th, 2013
It's the most widely consumed beverage in the world after water - whether you like classic cup of Earl Grey or a partake in some of the trendier flavours like Birthday Cake, a nice cup of tea feels oh-so-grownup.
Just in time for the holidays, our favourite cookware line, Le Creuset, has expanded their Café Collection to include ceramic teapots and presses. The Large Teapot comes with a stainless steel infuser ($60) for loose leaf teas, it’s great for entertaining and looks pretty sitting on a stack of coffee table books. The Tea for One set ($40, pictured) includes a teapot that sits atop of a teacup, perfect for those cozy afternoons alone.
It's tea time. —Sara Samson
November 14th, 2013
No kids, no TVs, no phones.
If this sounds like your idea of heaven, it's paradise found at Sparrows Hotel, a former motor court that had fallen into desuetude and has just been brought back to life by an enterprising couple, she a former Calvin Klein model (that's her Brigitte Bardot likeness you see mounted in the bar) and he a rakish entrepreneur who built the outdoor furniture and did the stone work by hand.
This being their second hotel project in Palm Springs (they were drawn back to the desert from their horse ranch in Portugal), the pair have created a unique, and rough-hewn boutique hotel in the early modernist style — think Georgia O'Keeffe and Frank Lloyd Wright, not Mad Men. With olive trees, citrus, a vegetable garden and a horse shoe pitch, there's a communal feeling to the property. Rooms have private courtyards inside, but the benches around the property and in the central barn beckon for book reading and making new friends. And if that new friend happens to be Cameron Diaz, so much the better. —Sarah Bancroft
From $175 per night, Sparrows Hotel, 1330 E. Palm Canyon Dr., Palm Springs, 760-327-2300, www.sparrowshotel.com
November 13th, 2013
At first glance, we loved Phoenix Comic’s bright new Inglewood shop — no trace of the, ahem, enthusiastic fandom we stereotypically associate with comic book shops.
Inside you’ll find comics, graphic novels, books, action figures, toys and apparel. You can pick up a toy or nostalgic comic for yourself or get cracking on the holiday shopping for a younger relative and pick up a graphic novel or a robot (and forever be known as the cool aunt).
It's the coolest thing since Wonder Woman's invisible plane. —Sara Samson
1325 9 Ave SE, Calgary, 587-352-9870, www.phoenixcomics.ca
November 12th, 2013
Our favourite British-retailer has opened in Chinook Centre
The two-level flagship Topshop and Topman store is almost 15,000 square feet and carries all of the trendiest looks straight from the runaways and the streets of London. The store is conveniently arranged by trend so you can decide if you’re feeling British grunge or ladylike chic and if you need help deciding, book a personal shopping appointment and leave it to the pros.
We couldn’t help but gravitate towards the massive shoe section to try on a Chelsea boot, the brand's signature shoe for the season.
A jolly good choice for Calgary’s streets. —Sara Samson
November 11th, 2013
Though it’s been awhile since we’ve seen our natural hair colour (I mean… yes, my hair is naturally this blonde), Rocky Mountain Soap Company's new chemical-free shampoo and conditioner goes easy on overworked hair.
The calming and soothing ingredients like coconut oil and chamomile extract promote hair health, plus we love the new winter blossom berry scent that’s a fresh change from the traditional spices and heavy scents of the season. —Sara Samson
$14 each at Rocky Mountain Soap Company stores, www.rockymountainsoap.com
November 9th, 2013
Whether it is playing, snuggling, reading, eating, or sometimes even napping, kids spend a lot of time on the floor.
So we are going to make our floors better looking and more fun with these Deuz Tapikid playmats. Featuring beautiful illustrations of a village, park, or city, the mats can be used with trains, animals, or doll houses. The only thing that is mandatory is imagination.
The mats are made in a fair trade factory in India with 100 per cent certified organic cotton and printed using non-toxic inks. Add to that the fact that they are machine washable, and we’ve realized they are both safer and cleaner than our kitchen floors. —Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
Deuz Tapikid Playmats, $69.99 at Raspberry Kids, www.raspberrykids.com
November 8th, 2013
Made by Marcus has us addicted to macarons (seriously, you have to try the peanut butter and jelly, pictured), but now he has us hooked on his ice cream and sorbet, too.
The ice cream flavours change seasonally to incorporate locally sourced ingredients; right now you can get vanilla bean and salted caramel or mint chocolate chip made with a base of free range eggs from J&M Farms in Lethbridge and organic dairy from Rock Ridge Dairy in Ponoka.
Oh and did we mention the ice cream sandwiches? —Sara Samson
Available at Janice Beaton Fine Cheese, 1017 16 Ave. SW, Calgary, 403-229-0900, www.jbfinecheese.com
November 7th, 2013
When it comes to ordering our morning coffee, we all have our quirks (extra hot non-fat easy milk no foam latte, anyone?).
Our high maintenance taste in java just got a lot cuter thanks to the limited edition Alice & Olivia tumbler ($21.95) at Starbucks. Featuring the label's signature stripes and black-and-white palette, designer Stacey Bendet finished off the cup with a black bow tie, gold buttons and trim and tutu.
We just love designer coffee.
Alice & Olivia limited edition tumbler, $21.95 at select Starbucks and online at www.starbuckstore.com