Articles Tagged ‘Shopping’

SHOP TALK: Five fashionable and functional finds for the back-to-school season

This story appears in the September edition of Ottawa Magazine, on newsstands now. Click here to subscribe to the print or digital versions.

Time to put away the flip-flops and summer dresses – September signals a return to elegance (but with a little whimsy thrown in for good measure). Photo: Dwayne Brown.

Trail Blazer
This classic cropped blazer adds a layer of propriety to office attire. Expert tailoring and a unique wool blend mean the Juliet jacket ($425) won’t crumple on long commutes — or hold you back when you’re working the room. Designed with the busy professional in mind by Canadian company Judith & Charles.
Judith & Charles, Rideau Centre, 50 Rideau St., 613-234-7042.

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MY LOOK: Restaurateur, shoe salesman, and “man about town” Stephen Flood waxes poetic about footwear

This story appears in the September edition of Ottawa Magazine, on newsstands now. Click here to subscribe to the print or digital versions.

By Matt Harrison

Stephen Flood is wearing a linen shirt from Harry Rosen, linen Matinique pants, a watch from Axcent, and CYDWOQ shoes. Photo: Scott Adamson.

As co-owner of The Black Tomato, you must be pretty busy. Why do you also sell shoes?
I really like [owners] Andre Schad and Chantal Biro-Schad, and when they opened Wolf & Zed, I wanted to help out. So I said to them: “I’ve got this crazy idea. I’d like to work on Saturday afternoons, and I’ll work strictly for shoes. You don’t have to pay me.” They thought it was a great idea — and why wouldn’t they? I don’t technically cost them anything. Instead, I get a discount on shoes.

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MY LOOK: Stand-up paddle boarding instructor Harmony McGrath shares the secrets of her laid-back look

This story appears in the Summer edition of Ottawa Magazine, on newsstands now. 

Harmony is wearing a bikini top by Local Honey, Level Six Slipstream shorts, and a handmade SUP girl necklace. She is riding a Rogue board and using a Kialoa paddle with Crown grip. Photo by John Rathwell.

Is Harmony your legal name?
Yes. Harmony Dawn McGrath.

You run courses in stand-up paddle boarding (SUP) all summer on the Ottawa, Mississippi, and Rideau rivers. SUP has exploded in the past couple of years. Why do you think the sport is so popular?
It’s fun and it’s easy to do. It attracts people of all ages and abilities, families — even pets! I paddle with my dog and my cat. And there are so many disciplines, from flatwater to racing and whitewater.

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WEEKENDER: The Beatles Experience, a cool art party, and an orchestra outing for families are on the bill this April weekend

Relieve the magic that was the Beatles with Day Tripper: The Beatles Experience on Thursday night.

Though it’s been almost 45 years since The Beatles last played together publicly on a London rooftop, you’ll feel as though it was only “Yesterday” as you behold The Beatles Experience. Four accomplished Montreal musicians take the stage as John, Paul, George, and Ringo, reviving the nuances, mannerisms, and musicianship of the band that forever changed the world. From Beatlemania to Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band to Abbey Road, this concert will have you twisting and shouting for more. $51. Thursday, April 4, 8 p.m. Salle Odysée, 855 boule. de la Gappe., Gatineau,

As the weather (hopefully) warms up in the city, things are cooling off at the Canadian Museum of Nature. The Extraordinary Arctic Festival kicks off this weekend, featuring films, storytelling, performing arts, games, and activities. Coinciding with the 100th anniversary of the Canadian Arctic Expedition (a scientific expedition in the Arctic Circle), the Festival’s feature exhibit, Flora of the Canadian Arctic, contrasts flora specimens from 1912 and 2012. Get out and discover the remarkable heritage of Canada’s far north! $12, students and seniors $10, children $8, children three and under free. Thursday, April 4, to Sunday, April 28, Canadian Museum of Nature, 240 McLeod St.,

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MY LOOK: Jonathan Browns, a cultural planner for the city’s art collection, chats about his eye-catching personal style

Jonathan sports a blue pinstripe suit, bought in New York, with a floral Nodus shirt from Paris. On his feet, MoxyMaüs socks and Ansarina shoes. He’s also wearing Anne et Valentin glasses, a Knox Tom ‘n’ Jerry fedora, and a bow tie handmade by an artist from Medicine Hat. Photography by Jonathan Hobin.

Interview by Erica Eades

How does your work as a cultural planner for the city’s art collection affect your style? It gives me freedom to have a more artistic sense of style and to be able to push boundaries in a corporate setting. It allows me to have a bit more play involved in what I wear.

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THE INSIDER: Renée Lévesque closes two Ottawa locations in advance of new, larger lifestyle boutique

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

Choker with amber pendant, Renée Lévesque, $159. Ann dress, $238, from BCBGMaxazria, Rideau Centre, 50 Rideau St.,

Over the holidays, we noticed the tell-tale paper covering the windows at the Renée Lévesque store on Wellington. The shop, the jeweller’s second location, only opened a few years ago, could it be she was pulling the plug already? Upon further investigation, we learnt that her downtown store had also closed; only her Montreal boutique remained.

We have adored her elaborate accessories for years, enjoyed her careful eye for clothing (she began selling cute, affordable dresses and shoes in 2009), and always appreciated her fun, helpful staff. And we lauded her as one of Ottawa’s best jewellery designers in a fashion feature less than a year ago. We began to fear that another independent retailer had given up on little Ottawa.

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LET IT SNOW: Five fab gift ideas for those who love skiing, snowboarding, and — well — playing outside

Let’s be honest: Canadian winters could use a little colour. So we’re highlighting five fabulous pieces that are as functional as they are funky. Embrace the season with the latest gear that will keep you safe and stylin’ in the great outdoors By Vanessa Ortynsky

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GAINING GROUND: Checking out Fab Baby Gear’s flash new digs

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

“Much like the little ones it caters to, Fab Baby Gear is always growing,” wrote Elizabeth Balsom in Ottawa Magazine’s 2012-13 Shopping annual. And anyone who has stepped inside the store’s new West Wellington location will know the truth in that statement. It’s huge!

And while fans of Danish furniture might miss the cluttered-but-creative chaos that was previously in the 8,500 square-foot commercial space, stroller mamas love the wide aisles and soft lighting.

Photo by Marc Fowler/Metropolis Studio

Fab, which is run by husband-and-wife team Ying Lui and Ching Lau, offers everything from skin care products to cribs, maternity wear to those irresistible little onesies. The larger store allows Lui and Lau to showcase their wide range of nursery furniture via four showrooms — perfect for nursing moms needing a break from their West Wellie latte tour!

The Look: Chic and bright; sensible products, as well as cute baby shower gifts.

Perfect for: Getting prepared for an upcoming arrival; presents for new parents babies.

USP: Seminars for new parents and other caregivers are held regularly in the store; infant and child CPR classes, taught by a representative from the Ottawa Paramedic Service, focus on choking and other emergencies.

 Fab Baby Gear, 1244 Wellington St. W., 613-729-8838 ext. 2.  

Get the full story — complete with more photos and quotes the owners — in the 2012/2013 edition of Shopping, available at Chapters locations, Brittons magazine stores, and other newsstands around town. Or order your copy online by clicking here.

URBAN HIPPIE: Seeing Green! Check out these stylin’ eco-friendly Christmas gifts

Urban Hippie by Jen Lahey is published every second Tuesday at Follow Jen on Twitter ‏@Jen_Lahey.

‘Tis the season, and green is an ever-so-popular hue this time of year, don’t you think? Here’s a few UH-approved gifties to shower upon those you love (that could include you) to make everything that much merrier — and greener.

Canadian company Totem makes adorable yet handy bags, laptop sleeves and ipad sleeves using upcycled materials. Ditched promotional banners, inners tubes, tarps and seatbelts are the playthings of Totem’s designers, who fashion them into different handy bag designs. The Urban Hippie on your list will be delighted to receive one to haul his lunch about town, or to impress her coworkers by stylishly shlepping her afternoon memos to and fro. $34-160. terra20, 2685 Iris St., 1-855-terra20.

Also from terra 20, beautiful ‘bark’ bowls and trays from Shiraleah are made from reclaimed and recycled metal and would worked equally well filled sparkly baubles as a holiday centerpiece, or filled with something green and fresh like a spinach and citrus salad at lunch or dinner. $60-$82. terra20, 2685 Irish St., 1-855-terra20.

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SO CANADIAN: New website sells collectors on the accomplishments and eccentricities of the Great White North

This story appears in the Winter edition of Ottawa Magazine. Buy the magazine on newsstands or order your online edition.

Josh Fine can find no definitive list of Canada’s icons — those things that we, as Canadians, can agree are “definitely Canadian.” He and his father, Ray, have set out to rectify the situation, launching the website as an online exhibit that rejoices in, and tells the stories of, Canada’s national treasures. And — bonus — if browsers like what they see, they can purchase a bit of that Canadian cool. By Matt Harrison

Josh Fine and his dad Ray (not shown) created a website for all things "Canadian." Photo by Dwayne Brown.

How did the idea for this online exhibit come about?
For the past 10 years, I’ve been marketing and distributing Canadian items abroad. I realized that people weren’t buying these items just because they’re exceptionally made. They were also buying them because of their history.

You call your website “an online curated exhibit.” What are the criteria you use to determine Canadian icons?
While we seek to represent different geographies and cultures in Canada, there’s nothing definitive. We see it as a kind of living exhibit that we can continue to add to as people approach us with items and a desire to share their stories.

Were there any items that you had difficulty deciding whether to include?
At the start, we had lists of hundreds of items. There were iconic things like the hockey stick, which was not included because it isn’t a Canadian invention although it’s become a symbol of Canada.

What is the most significant icon?
I wouldn’t say any one icon is more or less significant, but I’m personally connected to mukluks, the parka, and the culture of Aboriginal people of Canada. When we speak about defining “what is Canadian,” we’ve got to go back thousands of years before Confederation.

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