December 3rd, 2013
It's not often that a too-cool contemporary designer who sells in high-end US department stores like Barneys and Bergdorf Goodman opens a pop-up shop in North Vancouver (and even less often that the designer hails from Bowen Island).
But that's exactly what's happening on Lower Lonsdale with Raif Adelberg, the eponymous store open until December 24, 2013. Cashmere is his signature fabric (and a family business) - but think punk, not posh; sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll are heavily represented.
And sticker shock is definitely a shopping hazard - Tees run upwards of $700 and we spotted a toque that topped the $370 range. But no one ever said luxury was cheap.
139 Lonsdale Ave., North Vancouver, http://www.raifadelberg.com
October 8th, 2013
How about an idea? Gather the best independent boutiques across Canada, and create one convenient shopping site.
That’s exactly the premise behind the freshly launched Garmentory, a shop that not only curates the unique selections for us, but also let’s us play the game of haggle. Instead of clicking “purchase,” Garmentory let’s us “make an offer” the old school market way. Your offer will either be accepted or rejected by the store, but it certainly doesn’t hurt to try and save a couple of bucks. On our radar: Suno Rose Sweater ($396) from Violet Boutique and the Braid Ring ($110) from Alynne Lavigne.
Offers made, now we cross our fingers. —Anya Georgijevic
September 24th, 2013
Although we have a closet full of super stylish towering heels (and even more since discovering, The September), we often find ourselves grabbing from the pile of practical shoes next to our front door.
The everyday heroes should get as much of an investment as sparkly heels that get worn once a season. Vancouver’s Umeboshi has gone online with a beautifully curated selection of wearable shoes, flats and low heels that will get us to work – even on our bike – in style. We love the Chloe loafer by Grenson ($345) for busy days on our feet, and the Bernice boot by Coclico ($435, pictured) for a day of meetings followed by drinks.
They might not last as long as those sparkly stilettos because you’ll find yourself wearing them every day, but that's OK. It's money well spent and justification for buying a new pair next season. That’s reason enough for us. —Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
September 17th, 2013
Until recently, the only way to buy designer shoes for the same price as our American counterparts was to head for the border.
The girls behind shoe e-tailer The September decided to make things easier for us – and sell us shoes at the same price as our southerly neighbours. That’s right: no duty and no shipping. Shop classics like Valentino studded pumps ($1,075) and Marc by Marc Jacobs ballerina flats ($208), or statement pieces like these Aquazzura gold sandals ($745.)
If you’re like us, you’re thinking this is too good to be true. We checked up on them – and found that their shoes were priced pretty much the same as their American equivalents. The September is giving the big shopping sites a run for their money. Or maybe a slow walk, because these heels are high. —Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
August 14th, 2013
Mark your calendars and ditch your passport - these 5 fashion collaborations are coming soon and all available in Canada.
We've adored Sunny Fong since he won Project Runway Canada, and his luxe and imaginative Toronto runway shows are always a favourite. His limited-edition fall collection is available now (yes, now!) exclusively on eBay. Seven VAWK pieces are up for grabs (all under $120) - there are precious few pieces left, so don't hesitate. http://stores.ebay.ca/VAWKCollective
What happens when two Canadian icons meet? Well when its Roots (celebrating the big 4-0 this year) and Smythe, the result is a buttery leather bomber ($988) that can be thrown on with jeans or over an evening gown for a classically cool look. Launches September 7 in select Roots stores, http://canada.roots.com
Target has finally come to Canada and the first designer collaboration to hit the shelves will be none other than 3.1 Phillp Lim. Separated into three themes (morning, noon and night) and with over 100 pieces topping out at $300, there's so much to love: cropped trousers, a mixed khaki and floral print dress (pictured) and even satchels in Lim's signature shape - yes, we want it all. Launches September 15, 2013 at Target, http://www.target.ca/en
We've kicked out for her very expensive kicks and have long admired her perfect (if pricey) interpretation of modern boho - her new collaboration with H&M (previewed on Twitter) promises to bring jolie lad style to the masses. Launches November 14, 2013 at H&M, www.hm.com
Former stylist and costume designer L'Wren Scott became a celebrity favourite (Madonna, Sarah Jessica Parker, Nicole Kidman and Jennifer Lopez are just a few of her fans) with the launch of her label. Adding to her cool quotient: boyfriend Mick Jagger. Her holiday line with Banana Republic will include 50+ pieces including lace dresses,a sleek pencil skirt and purse with a sparkly chain that doubles as a necklace. Launches December 5, 2013 at Banana Republic, http://bananarepublic.gap.com
July 16th, 2013
Another day, another e-store? That is what we thought, until we had a proper look at the goodies stocked on Twig & Boat.
Featuring independent designers and artists, the Vancouver-based site’s curated selection of fashion, beauty, art, and home really stood out. We’ve got our eye on the Jordan River Soapwork’s Grapefruit and Bergamot body butter (100g for $32), Justine Brooks’ silver bee pendant ($140) and the Gribouilliz King of Fashion prints (we like Gaultier the best, $140).
We may not have been looking for another reason to shop, but we're sure glad we found one. —Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
May 3rd, 2013
We may have traumatic memories of trying to climb a rope in 9th grade gym class, but one thing we do look back fondly on is our gym class attire.
Toronto's Muttonhead has launched a Locker Room pop-in-shop at Gastown's Board of Trade boutique, and its urban athletic aesthetic has us doing jumping jacks. The unisex spring/summer collection, inspired in part by vintage baseball cards, looks like a '70s track-and-field meet, minus the polyester.
The made-in-Canada pieces include a Henley baseball shirt ($92), a lightweight French terry Camping Hoodie ($132) and Duck Shorts ($143) constructed from sustainable fabrics like tencel, organic cotton, bamboo and hemp.
Now we're feeling like a good sport.
Muttonhead Locker Room at Board of Trade on until May 5, 206 Carrall St., Vancouver and online at www.muttonheadcollective.com
April 30th, 2013
While it is very easy to resort to neutrals, a balanced wardrobe requires a splash of colour and a bit of print.
Loeffler Randall’s spring 2013 collection has just the right amount of both, featuring bags and shoes in a mix of bold patterns and rainbow hues. We love the Dhalia platform ($495) in black and white for those wanting a monochrome graphic to spice up a black outfit, or the Rider bag in cobalt ($495) to contrast with our spring pastels.
And for the colour adventuress, the Mini Rider in floral print ($395, pictured) and neon red leather will add some drama to most outfits, which is a good thing. Playing it safe might be a good idea when it comes to finances, but not always when investing in fashion. —Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
Loeffler Randall spring 2013 collection exclusively at Violet Boutique, 3012 Granville St., Vancouver, www.violetboutique.ca
March 26th, 2013
There’s a new reason to shop in Le Château, and no, it’s not to reminisce about the prom dress we bought there in high school.
They’ve just launched a new collection, Le Château Studio, and the clean lines and simple cuts are a great reason to shop at this well-known Canadian retailer. Think skinny acetate trousers ($79.95), botanical printed t-shirt dresses ($89.95, pictured) and sporty silk tops ($69.95) that will take you from the office to cocktail stylishly and effortlessly.
Since we’re the kind of girls who like to dress high and low, these clean cut looks could nicely complement some great Jil Sander and Stella McCartney pieces or our mix-and-match go-to, J. Crew. —Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
Available at Le Chateau in Metrotown, 4700 Kingsway, Burnaby, 604-439-9415, www.lechateau.com
March 19th, 2013
Denmark is the Scandinavian country best known for its furniture, Lego, and the well-established Copenhagen fashion week, so we are quite excited about the launch of Minimum, a men’s and women’s collection that embodies casual and cool, the Danish way.
The slightly lopsided Denia sweatshirt ($50) is perfect with jeans and clogs (also very Scandinavian) and the Vega coat ($122, pictured) will stand out amongst all the parkas in this rainy city.
Plus, this is a bit of Denmark that is way more affordable than that mid century dining set we have our eye on…. —Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
Minimum at Board of Trade, 227 Union St, Vancouver, 604-681-2111, www.minimum.dk