Articles Tagged ‘Shop Talk’

SHOP TALK: Pink Palladium shoes for summer

Shop Talk is written by Ottawa Magazine editor Dayanti Karunaratne and Sarah Fischer, Ottawa Magazine account executive and fashion maven.

Palladium2

Love this look! Check out more Flex Collection stylings at http://www.palladiumboots.nl/look-book/flex-collection

Let me say off the top that I’ve always been wary of colourful shoes. While I have yet to do the Middleton nude pumps, I always figured that black, brown, or metallic shoes offered more bang for your buck. At my desk I keep my “work shoes” — right now I’m looking at three brown heels and one pair of black flats. (Can you say bo-ring?)

Flex Lace Palladium shoes in Pink Lemonade

Flex Lace Palladium shoes in Pink Lemonade

So when the kind people at ZOI agency offered to send me a pair of the new summer canvas kicks from Palladium, I balked at the colour choices. I admire people who have the guts to embrace colour, I just question how to wear colourful shoes. Do you try to match? Do you make them the highlight of an outfit? It’s the kind of wardrobe detail that makes one late for work! So I put them aside.

That was, until I broke my toenail. I won’t bore you with the details except to say it didn’t happen in any cool way and I swore a lot. But the darn thing didn’t fall off, and I’m not one for self-inflicted pain (unless, perhaps, there’s a prize to be won). So I bandage and soak — and walk carefully to prevent the whole thing from falling off.

Pink and green feels like spring!

Pink and green feels like spring! Photo by Sarah Fischer

In this case, physical pain overrides wardrobe anxiety and I looked to my pink Flex Lace Palladiums. With a nice big toe box I was even able to do some lunges without bashing that tender big toe, and they put a smile on my face. (In truth, having  a little girl to dress has endeared me to pink.)

And, as often happens when we’re forced out of our comfort zone, I found these shoes added a skip to my (albeit cautious) steps. They made me feel like a kid again — I grew up at a time when canvas shoes were the thing to wear in those perfect last weeks of school. And most of all, I found they went with everything from girly summer dresses to jeans to shorts. Sure, I take a moment to colour-check, but mostly I’m having fun pushing the envelope with these fun flats.

See how my pink shoes match so nicely with my kid's hoodie-dress? She's wearing off on me.

See how my pink shoes match so nicely with my kid’s hoodie-dress? She’s wearing off on me.

STORE PROFILE: Curiosity shop Wunderkammer expands to feature more home decor, jewellery, and other quirky treasures

This week Shop Talk welcomes guest blogger Ashleigh VanHouten

A 16-foot yellow canoe in the front window (also for sale) beckons shoppers.

A 16-foot yellow canoe in the front window (also for sale) beckons shoppers.

Heard of Wunderkammer? It’s a hidden gem of a place, though not so hidden anymore — the curiosity shop recently re-opened in a bigger and better spot just down the block from their original space on Dalhousie Street.

Tamara Steinborn and Nathan Dubo, partners in life and work, moved from Montreal  a few years ago to open their Lowertown shop and are already enjoying  steady success — to the point where their intimate store could no longer contain the volume of jewelry, home decor, and vintage finds that their customers were asking for.

Wunderkammer’s new spot has the same warm, well-curated vibe as the original, just with a bit more breathing room — and a lot more baubles. The new and improved store houses much more in the way of home decor and accents, including bigger pieces like wardrobes and wall art.

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SHOP TALK: The Prom Edition with Erica Wark

On Caroline: Le Chateau dress $129.99, Walmart sandals $19.99, Caroline's own earrings; on Delaney: Marshall's dress $24.99, The Shoe Company pumps $89.99, Ardene earrings $7.50, The Shoe Company clutch $24.99. Click on photo for more images. Photo by Eric Watters.

Shop Talk is written by OM senior editor Dayanti Karunaratne and Sarah Fischer, OM account executive and fashion maven.

Yes, it’s that time again: prom! Whether you are going yourself, have a son or daughter counting down the days, or just want to relive the joy (and pain) of this teenage rite of passage, this week SHOP TALK talks to stylist Erica Wark about all things prom.

Erica is fresh off a media tour with VISA, who launched a free app called Plan’it Prom. The app aims to keep prom-goers (and their financiers) on budget by monitoring spending. Perhaps the most crucial part is the first step: a set budget. The app then manages all prom-related items, allotting a dollar amount for transportation, photos, etc.

All to say Erica has been in the trenches of prom planning for the past few weeks. Here’s what she has to say about traditions, trends, and money-saving tips.

On Delaney: Envied "Supertrash" dress, $310, The Shoe Company pumps $69.99, Le Chateau earrings $18, Le Chateau bracelets $25; On Caroline: Marshall's dress $49.99, The Shoe Company pumps $79.99, Le Chateau bracelet $18. Click on photo for more images. Photo by Eric Watters

SHOP TALK: What are the big trends for prom 2013?
Erica Wark: Embellishment is everywhere this prom season; try it with jewels, lace overlay or even applique. For colours, I love cobalt blues, bold tangerines and corals, or softer hues like mint and sea foam, blush and off-white. In terms of hem length my advice is do what works for you; if you’ve got great legs show them off with a shorter dress; if you’re looking for uber-glam, go long! You can even do the high-low hem, and have the best of both!

For guys, it’s an easy choice — go with a tux. A classic black and white look in a slimmer fit with a bowtie is right on trend this spring.

ST: If you were going to prom this year, what would you wear?
EW: Haha, oh to be young again. There are so many more options now than there were 10 years ago. I’d probably do a fabulous long dress in a bold colour with cut-out or sheer paneled details a-la-Rihanna.

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SHOP TALK: Sussex shuffle and other ByWard Market changes

Shop Talk is written by OM senior editor Dayanti Karunaratne and Sarah Fischer, OM account executive and fashion maven.

Last week, we brought you news of retail changes in the trendy shopping districts of Westboro/Wellington West. This week, we turn our eyes to the ByWard Market. On the tony strip of Sussex Drive, any murmurings of change generally involve speculation of how the National Capital Commission, being the landlord for many of these storefronts, might have played a role.  Us, we aren’t even going to speculate! Sometimes we ask interview subjects about the reasons for closing or the ins and out of their lease agreements. But no one wants to talk about the NCC. Any anyway, there’s enough to talk about this spring, and many new spaces to explore.

Mellow par Melissa Bolduc closed earlier this year. Photo by Sarah Fischer.

Mellow closes
457 Sussex Dr.
We spoke with the Montreal-based designer behind this unique line last summer. Since then, they have closed shop. (Insert speculative gossip.)  Apparently, they are looking for another location in Ottawa because they were having such success. We loved what they did with the Sussex space — let’s hope they bring their minimalist-industrial style to another storefront soon.

Stunning opens
6 York St.
Mandy Gosewich, former manager of Michael Kors in the Rideau Centre, is opening Stunning, a shop foraccessories, and then some.” We hear May 22 is the opening date. Mandy comes from a long line of retailers, and has contributed to the development of a couple other local boutiques in the past year. So far she’s planning on bringing in Sibilia from Buenos Aries, By Boe from New York, Rita D from Toronto, and Charlotte Hosten from Montreal.

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THE INSIDER: Sarah Fischer and other flower fans on BULB, the new artist market at Tulip Fest

Shop Talk is written by OM senior editor Dayanti Karunaratne and Sarah Fischer, OM account executive and fashion maven.

Keen SHOP TALK readers who also frequent craft fairs might already be hip to the fact that ST’s own Sarah Fischer is the force behind Sarah’s Card Company, a small gift card business featuring original nature-inspired photography. This week, Sarah brings her unique insight as a craft-show-hopping entrepreneur to the discussion as we get to know the Tulip Festival‘s new initiative BULB.

Tulips galore! Sarah's Card Company sells cards featuring her own nature-inspired photography.

The Big Urban Living Boutique will showcase over twenty artists, ranging from fashion designers to photographers, soap makers to jewellers. Taking place over two Saturdays (May 4 and 11), Sarah notes that BULB’s location at City Hall (aka Tulip Plaza) guarantees a solid stream of shoppers.

“Plus, it’s always nice when new events pop up in the city, especially ones that are a part of such a historical Ottawa festival like the annual Tulip Festival. It is such a great fit for Sarah’s Card Company and a great way for Ottawans and visitors to our beautiful city to take a part of the festival home with them.”

~ Sarah Fischer, Sarah’s Card Company

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THE Q&A: Rania Abdulla’s menswear line offers classic (and colourful!) options for the metro male

Shop Talk is written by OM senior editor Dayanti Karunaratne and Sarah Fischer, OM account executive and fashion maven.

This week at alt-runway show Fashion Art Toronto, Ottawa native Rania Abdulla launches her menswear line Pairing Paisleys by The Wardobe Stylist. That’s right, menswear! At SHOP TALK we have always applauded stand-out mens fashion, so were excited to hear that Rania was striking out into what can be a void of blacks, blues, and bow-ties. And the timing is excellent: as period dramas recall dandy dressers and the slim-fit trousers continue to dominate the runways, menswear is gaining traction.

Indeed, with the launch of Pairing Paisleys, Rania calls for gentleman to make a comeback, offering them baroque blazers, fitted trousers, dress shirts, capes, and bold paisley prints. Here, we talk to the designer about the line.

Rania Abdulla

SHOP TALK: Why a menswear a collection?
Rania Abdulla: Why not? Womenswear is so saturated, but when it comes to menswear there isn’t as much to choose from. I feel men have been left out because women are the bigger spenders, but men need to dress too, and dress well.

ST: Will we be able to buy the collection in Ottawa?
RA: For the time-being, the collection will only be available for purchase in NYC, Miami, and L.A. for wholesale orders. Hopefully some Ottawa boutiques will see the collection and want to house it in their locations.

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TREND WATCHING: Our take on see-through Oxfords, Technicolour pythons, and other spring shoes

Shop Talk is written by OM senior editor Dayanti Karunaratne and Sarah Fischer, OM account executive and fashion maven.

Three unique trends were recently identified in FASHION Magazine’s spring accessories report: see-through plastic inserts, bright python prints, and woven natural fibres in a range of colours. While clutches are cool and bangles a bold way to add bite to an outfit, let’s face it, shoes are where it’s at. Herewith, our take on these three trends — and where you can step into some of this style right here in Ottawa.

Stuart Weitzman, $195. Available at Holt Renfrew.

Clear panels: We’ll pass on this whacky look. FASHION calls it a way to “lend lightness to polished metallics and patent leathers” but it seems clunky and confusing to us. Plus it reminds us of the coveted pair from the infamous “Shoes” vid. Or maybe we are biased because there is still so much grit on O-town streets to even consider such slick kicks. But there’s no denying that the Stella McCartney wedge featured is a winner.

In town: Stuart Weitzman has a similar style, and in nude this shoe would be both versatile and trendy, so a wise choice for the savvy shoe-aholic. $195, Holt Renfrew.

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SHOP TALK: Kaliyana marks 25 years. An interview with designer Jana Kalous

Shop Talk is written by OM senior editor Dayanti Karunaratne and Sarah Fischer, OM account executive and fashion maven.

This year, Ottawa-based clothing line Kaliyana celebrates 25 years of business — and 20 years at their Sussex location. It’s an amazing feat, really, considering the fact that the line isn’t exactly a crowd-pleaser. With it’s sweeping silhouettes, alternative fabrics, and asymmetrical lines, Kaliyana bucks trends and offers a modern, confident look for progressive women.

The Spring 2013 line from Kaliyana features fresh greens — and sleek, modern lines.

The name is a derivative of the designer’s, Jana Kalous. Switched around and shortened, it reflects the modular concept and the fact that most pieces can be worn together — but the sky is the limit when it comes to styling. Most of all, Kaliyana pieces are comfortable, original, and “all things I would want to wear myself,” says Jana.

In fact, the originality of the line is what Jana attributes to its long-standing appeal. “I’m offering something people can’t get anywhere else,” she says, “the uniqueness of our design has led to a loyal following.” When pushed to describe what makes Kaliyana so different, Jana uses one word: effortlessness.

“It makes everyone feel good when they wear it. It’s an easy makeover, an instant transformation.”

Over the years she has stayed true to her mantra of comfort and style. However, these days she spends more time watching European styles than those of Japan, where she first drew her inspiration.

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SHOP TALK: Canadian fashion scene rising star Erica Wark runs a closet-cleaning session

Shop Talk is written by OM senior editor Dayanti Karunaratne and Sarah Fischer, OM account executive and fashion maven.

Before Erica Wark came over for our much-anticipated closet-cleaning session, I did a little pre-cleaning. I tossed out most of my maternity clothes and I hung garments by category. I thought I was pretty thorough. I was wrong.

Like most mothers who return to work after maternity leave, I’m scared stiff of leaving my daughter in the care of someone else. But I love my job at Ottawa Mag, and part of me misses getting dressed for the office everyday. Not the part between my belly button and my knees; that part would love to stay wrapped in tights and long tanks. But alas, it doesn’t work that way, and if I am going back with a slightly different bod, I am going back in style!

This meant my wardrobe needed a makeover, which meant calling on my buddy — and rising star of the Canadian fashion scene — Erica Wark

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SHOP TALK: Profiling two sets of crafty duos — with retail stores in ByWard Market and Almonte

Shop Talk is written by OM senior editor Dayanti Karunaratne and Sarah Fischer, OM account executive and fashion maven.

At SHOP TALK, we’re always keeping an eye out for beautiful things — all the better if said products are made locally and support the chasing of a creative dream.

Sometimes this means connecting with vendors at craft sales; other times, it means watching the changing ownership of retail real estate. Lately, we’ve been seeing these two aspects come together as local crafters put down stakes and open their doors at permanent retail locations.

The Tin Barn Market during one of its pop-up shops last year. Desa Photography.

Later this month (March 16 to be specific), Tin Barn Market will open its doors in Almonte. As the name suggests, the store started out in 2011 as a flea market in a tin barn.

It was the brain child of Errin Stone, whose career in retail communications included a vision for her own smaller, independent shop featuring re-used and re-purposed goods.

It soon garnered the attention of Vicki Veenstra, a local set designer and artist who herself harboured a certain “store fantasy.” The two quickly became partners, hosting three pop-up shops before eventually deciding to set up a permanent store. The Almonte location was a given, as both reside in the area and the town itself has a youthful, creative energy.

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