December 6th, 2013
The gingerbread man ran away with the shortbread. Now what?
Jump head first into holiday decadence with fluffy, artisanal doughnuts from Lucky's. An elf dropped a shipment off at our office - Gingerbread (topped with white chocolate ganache, candied orange peel, ginger and cranberries), Red Velvet (topped with peppermint cream cheese glaze and crushed candy canes) and the showstopper - an Eggnog Snowball Bizmark filled with eggnog pastry cream and topped with soft meringue and coconut.
Considering leaving a few out for Santa this year— or risk a coal full of stocking in 2014. —Maria Tallarico
From $3.50/each at Lucky's Dougnuts, 2902 Main St., VAncouver and 2198 W. 4th Avenue, Vancouver, www.luckysdoughnuts.com
December 5th, 2013
The only thing that feels better than giving a great gift is knowing that proceeds from the purchase are helping others, too. Herewith a selection of gifts (all under $40) that will make you the hero of the gift exchange.
A designer mug? Yes, please! This collaboration between Keurig and Pink Tartan’s Kimberley Newport-Mimran ($19.99) is as chic as can be and all profits go to the Toronto East General Hospital Foundation. At Keurig.ca
The rich cocoa butter formula deeply moisturizes and 100% of the purchase price of Lush Charity Pot Hand and Body Lotion ($22.95) goes to support charities around the world. Hello, perfect stocking stuffer! At Lush.ca
We’re pretty much obsessed with mercury glass, so we’re buying Pottery Barn’s Candle Pot ($29.50) and Votive Set ($19.50) in multiples. Hey – we’ve been good. Plus, a portion of the proceeds go to children’s hospital charities. At PotteryBarn.com
Almost everyone has a need for a reusable water bottle – but not many help to build wells. This 500ml glass water bottle ($29) from Obakki features a silicone sleeve and 100 per cent of proceeds go to drill water wells in South Sudan. Drink up! At Obakki.com
You've been wearing your heart on your sleeve with Cause We Care bracelets. Now the Vancouver charity has teamed up with La Notte to create this limited edition T-shirt ($35) benefiting local families in need. Now you can wear your heart on your… heart. At Aritzia.com
Tradeworks employs women at risk in their Vancouver Downtown Eastside Women’s Workshop and trains them in life, employment, and carpentry skills. These refillable maple wood pens ($40) are made from reclaimed Canadian hardwoods and include engraving at no extra cost. Give this to someone who can write a story as meaningful as the one behind the pen. At Tradeworks.com
December 4th, 2013
You knew the inevitable was coming: an invite to an ugly sweater party.
But with the plethora of options, it seems that finding something that is tacky enough to stand out has become increasingly difficult. This year, you can DIY the fug with with the Ugly Christmas Sweater Kit ($20), which provides a red sweater, felt accessories (think snowflakes and reindeer), glitter glue, jingle bells, pom poms and a sewing kit. Remember, when going for ugly, more is more.
Because if Bridget Jones taught us anything, it's that true love can be found wearing a reindeer jumper.
$20 online at www.spencersonline.com
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
December 2nd, 2013
Winter months can be tough: we tend to work longer hours, exercise less and spend most of our time indoors.
All of this can lead to stress and anxiety, and even worse, skin issues. One magical little plant soothes it all: relax with L’Occitane Lavender Foaming Bath ($29 at L’Occitane, left); nourish your skin with Weleda’s Lavender Relaxing Body Oil ($21 at Whole Foods, right); refresh with Green Beaver’s Natural Deodorant ($5.99 at Choices); and escape with Urban Spa’s Lavender Sleep Pillow ($13.99 at well.ca).