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Shopping Vancouver

Break-Up Socks


Say "Buh-Bye" to your boyfriend with these sassy socks

Say “Buh-Bye” to your boyfriend with these sassy socks

If it’s time to ditch that dud of a boyfriend, why risk a long, drawn-out confrontation? Instead, say “Be My Ex,” “Buh Bye,” “Bite Me” and “2 Bad for You” with a sassy pair of “It’s You” socks from Instance. These socks were made for walking—right out the door and into the arms of a super new sweetheart. Find them at Walrus.

Gem of a Store: Lao Feng Xiang


Find sparklers of all sorts at Lao Feng Xiang on Alberni Street

Find sparklers of all sorts at Lao Feng Xiang on Alberni Street

Gold and diamonds and pearls, oh my! Whether the celebration is a birthday, anniversary, Valentine’s Day or no occasion at all, you can’t go wrong with a gift of jewels. Lao Feng Xiang, one of China’s oldest jewellery brands, recently opened its first Canadian store, right here in Vancouver. Find out for yourself why it’s been popular with luxury shoppers ever since. Ready, set, spend.

Scene In the City: Corydon Avenue

20151117_123345_resizedOne of Winnipeg’s most vibrant ‘hoods offers a cultural mix of shopping and dining from around the world, with trend-setting boutiques, specialty stores and restaurants catering to the cool and hip. Start a spree at Radiance Gifts for beautiful salt lamps (pictured), and dazzling crystals like smoky quartz. Zen out with a collection of books on chakras and essential oils. Across the street at Peepers Swimwear, find colourful bathing suits perfect for a winter getaway, with brands like Speedo and Roxy. For all that sparkles, visit designer Matti Martin on Lilac St. This local goldsmith creates necklaces, earrings and rings that fuse modern and traditional design. Nearby, step inside Whodunit and bring out your inner detective, with books on crime fiction. Head north on Corydon to Nunavut Gallery and see over 4200 beautiful works of Inuit art. Paintings and sculptures by contemporary Canadian artists make a statement in any space.

Handmade with Love: Bamboletta


Kids can't resist cuddling with the cute creations from Bamboletta

Kids love cuddling the cute creations from Bamboletta

Who can resist the cute creations from Bamboletta? A labour of love for owner Christina Platt, who moved to Vancouver last year, along with her team of more than 35 women who work from home on Vancouver Island, the small company handcrafts each one-of-a-kind doll using high-quality natural fabrics that are sourced locally as much as possible. Stuffed with local wool, the dolls sport colourful hair made from raw yarns that are hand-dyed and hand-spun. Despite price tags of up to $375, Bamboletta dolls have become so popular that they often sell out within minutes. Don’t fret: new ones appear on the website every Friday at noon, plus at random times on Mondays and Wednesdays. Find your child’s new favourite bedtime companion at www.bamboletta.com.

Here be Dragons: Tea Rex by Alessi



Tea-Rex, designed by Michael Graves for Alessi

Form and function melded beautifully in Michael Graves’ classic Alessi teapot with the bird-shaped whistle. Before his death earlier this year, Graves redesigned his iconic creation to mark its 30th anniversary. This new kettle, named Tea Rex, features a fierce (but adorable) dragon. At Atkinson’s.

Oh Baby: Sweet Charlie Boutique



Sweet Charlie has everything for young fashionistas

You’ll be wishing you were a child again when you step into Sweet Charlie, which opened a few months ago in Kitsilano. The elegant space has the look and feel of a high-end fashion boutique, but everything is targeted to the toddler set. Four years old or younger, to be precise. The uncluttered shop stocks clothing, toys and decor from design-focussed brands such as Huxbaby, Tinycottons and Donsje. If only we could turn back the clock.

Canadian Stocking Stuffers



Henley onesie at Indigo (more…)

Epic Gifts: Star Wars



Channel the Dark Side, and never get burned, with a Darth Vader oven glove

Are you already counting down to the big day? No, not Christmas—Dec. 18. That’s when Han Solo, Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia and a whole host of new characters take over the silver screen in the highly anticipated Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Treat your favourite Star Wars fan to a LEGO advent calendar (at Indigo), Moleskine notebook (at The Original Paper-Ya) or silicone Darth Vader oven glove (at HMV; pictured). And may the force be with you.

Local Shopping: Shiny Fuzzy Muddy



Check out Winterluxe products at Shiny Fuzzy Muddy December 12 and 13

If you’re hoping to find a unique gift for that special someone, Shiny Fuzzy Muddy (Dec. 12 and 13) has you covered. This collaborative market featuring 27 West Coast designers is perfect if you favour local, sustainable goods for presents, as you can find everything from jewellery and clothing to art and housewares. The Vancouver-based line Winterluxe (pictured) epitomizes this by using 100 percent recycled cashmere to create cozy clothing and fun accessories. So if you want to bridge the gap between luxurious and environmentally conscious, or just prefer to buy local, this is the place for you.

Interview: Beauty on the Fly

Travelling can wreak havoc on your beauty regime. We turned to Marc Reagan, Bobbi Brown’s PRO Artist and Manager of Artistry, for advice


Achieve a pretty pout with the luxe lip colour trio from Bobbi Brown

Achieve a pretty pout with the luxe lip colour trio from Bobbi Brown

What’s the key to looking good during and after a long plane ride?

To quickly freshen and plump up the skin, carry Extra Soothing Balm with you. Warm a dab of it in the palm of your hand, and press it into the skin to moisturize and soften while fighting against dry plane air. If your skin is looking dull or extra tired, use a pump of Face Highlighter (new for the holidays), and apply a thin layer to the high points of the face for an instant glow.

How can a traveller fighting jetlag appear less tired?

The ultimate way to refresh skin is to brighten the under-the-eye area with Bobbi’s Intensive Skin Serum Corrector and Concealer. Use a corrector to lighten darkness, and then add a layer of concealer to instantly lift under the eye and look as if you got eight hours of sleep. All it takes is a quick dab, gently tap with your finger to blend, and you’re good to go. Next, to add instant colour to the face, pick up one of Bobbi’s new Luxe Lip Colors in Pink Guava or Bright Peony; for a pop or for a subtle nude, try Pink, Buff, Almost Bare or Soft Berry.

For a traveller who’s bringing only carry-on luggage, and so has very limited space for her cosmetics, what are the absolute must-haves?

There are five essential items that I recommend:

1. Plump the skin with a face moisturizer like Extra Illuminating Moisture Balm to add an instant glow.
2. Brighten the under-eye area with corrector and concealer, whether it’s Bobbi’s classic formula or her new Intensive Skin Serum formula. Bobbi calls corrector and concealer the secret of the universe.
3. Pop on the cheek with some blush using powder blush for normal or oily skin, or for dry skin, a cream blush like Pot Rouge to add life to the complexion.
4. Define the eyes with eye liner and mascara for a quick and easy standout eye.
5. Finish the look with a lip colour that is in the same colour family as your blush, to achieve a balanced look with a fresh, classic finish.

Which Bobbi Brown products are extra-versatile, doing double (or triple) duty, making them perfect for travellers?

1. Art Sticks give the lips long-lasting colour and can be used as an easy on-the-go cheek colour. Apply to the apple of the cheeks and blend in with your finger.
2. Pot Rouge doubles as a lip colour and cheek colour in a moisturizing formula, great for normal to dry skin. Since it comes in a mirrored compact, you can apply it anywhere, anytime.
3. For easy definition and structure, carry one of Bobbi’s Brow Kits, which will not only add depth and colour to your brows, but also double as an eye shadow.
4. Extra Eye Repair Cream combats dry skin and visible fine lines around the eye, and it can also double as a lip moisturizer.

Find Bobbi Brown products at Nordstrom.

Gifts That Give Back

Support charities with presents that make both the giver and the receiver feel great



Olympic mittens from Hudson’s Bay

Raise your hand if you want to show pride for the “True North Strong and Free.” This year marks the 7th edition of the iconic Olympic Red Mittens from Hudson’s Bay. Thirty percent of sales go to the Canadian Olympic Foundation, which raises funds for current and future high-level athletes. Go Canada go! (more…)

Wearable Art: NoMiNoU Clothing


Vancouver-based NoMiNoU clothing

Vancouver-based, eco-friendly NoMiNoU clothing

After Jullianna Smith’s mother died, Smith found a wealth of her art. The Vancouverite brings this art to life by transferring the images to yoga pants and tops (constructed mainly from eco-friendly materials), then she pairs the imagery with inspirational quotes. NoMiNoU clothing is available online.