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Category — STYLE-O-MATIC

Storm in a B-Cup

Boobs. Tits. Jugs. Knockers.

Helloooooo there!

When I was younger, I’d go down South to visit my grandparents every Christmas. Aside from the weather, the Apple Jacks, and the all-you-eat early-bird specials, there was the shopping. Aventura, Boca Town Center, Galleria Mall, Pompano Fashion Square. They all had one thing in common, aside from Burdines: Victoria’s Secret.

One of the highlights of each trip would be my annual Vicky’s Secret excursion with my grandmother. My Bubby would install her plus-sized self in one of the fitting rooms – preferably with a snack – while I grabbed as many 34-B bras that I could find. At first they were simple: nothing too lacy, nothing too showy and absolutely no falsies! I’d bring armloads of bras and start trying. One after the other, until she’d find herself at the bottom of a sea of underwear – and underwire. We’d bring them back to Palm Aire and I’d model them for her underneath my various t-shirts and dresses.

This went on from my teens until well-into my twenties. Sure, I erred on the nippy side, but I didn’t care if my headlights were showing. Heroine chic was all the rage. And while I couldn’t compete with the waifs, I certainly had the chest for the tops I liked.

And then I tried on a WonderBra.

Well! Helloooo ladies indeed!

Victoria’s Secret? Out. Marks and Spencer? In.

And so it went. I lived in London and the Florida trips became more sporadic. I still went and we still shopped, but I’d moved on from Victoria’s Secret. A large and in charge Marks & Sparks bra fitter had helped me to see the light – not the headlight. I was loyal to my bras. And they were loyal to me.

And then I got pregnant. And breastfed. Repeat three times. Lovely babies. Lovely boys. Less than lovely boobs despite my fabulous M & S underthings. They helped me through the ups and the downs. And the further downs. Until I noticed there was an awful lot of…room…in them there cups. It was time. To reinvest.

And then a few weeks back I found myself staring into an enormous pair. It was a Victoria’s Secret window and it was huge – as was the bust. Or was it? I stepped over the threshold and let myself go. Shopping American Style. Claire guided me to the bra area. Vivian whipped out her tape measure and got to work. Lynne ushered me into the fitting room. With a bra box. And a t-shirt.

This was not my grandmother’s VS.

Gone were the rummaging through tables and rifling through drawers to find my size, shape and colour. No more undressing mannequins to find a bra that wasn’t fuchsia. This was civilized.

Inside the bra box was each and every bra in the Victoria’s Secret arsenal. In black. The idea being you try ’em all on and find the ones you like. And that like you. Then you ring the “service bell” and they get to work finding your choices.

Incredible.

25 minutes later, I emerged, head held high, tits even higher. Leopard-lined and seamless, biofitted and bombshelled, there were some new bras in town!

The icing on the cake? I was the same size as pre-children. A little lower, maybe, but with the new boob technology out there, who cares? Comfy AND sexy were no longer a contradiction in terms. No fuss, no muss, no knives.

Their latest bra is The Plunge – guaranteed to add two bra sizes for “hourglass ooomph”. A boob job for $45! If my Bubby could see me now….

1 comments:

Rob H said…

Need more Blog Postings… what the hell is up! This year has been sooo slim!

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November 23, 2009   No Comments

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Glutton for San Fran

My man turned 40 last week. Trying to figure out where to go and what to do for this particular fellow was a bit of a nightmare. He’s one of the most social cats I know, so a party could be deadly – in every way. And trying to pick a handful of pals for an intimate soiree would result in no end of ribbing, jabs and possibly even stabs, so that was out. A weekend away with the family was out of the question. Aside from the fact that we’d be going South in December, hanging with the under-6 crowd wasn’t really the ideal way to ring in a 40th. Plus we do that every day, so no chance Lance. The whole thing was giving me enough anxiety to give me a mid-life crisis.

So away we went. Gone. Outta here. Sa-yo-na-ra. Adios suckers.

Aaaaahh….if only it were that simple. Planning an escape in mid-November is less than ideal. The hot spots aren’t hot, the exotic spots are too far for 3 days, and the close ones had the same weather sitch as being home. Hit or miss. My man claims he’d be happy in a neighbouring basement with a couple of bottles of wine. But we all know that would suck. Everybody says that – they don’t care, they could go anywhere, etc. CRAP! Having spent one birthday in Niagara Falls, and another in Los Angeles, can you guess which was infinitely more enjoyable?!? Uh-huh, go west young man.

And so we did. Our surprise destination was San Francisco. My man always talked of it adoringly and I’d never been so it really was a no-brainer (once I got the idea into my head, that is).

The big reveal came the day of his birthday. In verse. I contemplated the at-the-airport suprise but post 911 airports aren’t so festive. Plus half the fun of going out of town is bragging….I mean, getting excited about it. Plus, let’s face it – it’s hard enough to pack for myself, let alone choosing his outfits.

He read my dare-I-say awesome poem (which I wanted to post but he wouldn’t let me and it is/was his birthday) and, as I suspected, he hadn’t a clue. Genius surprise! California wasn’t even on his radar for this birthday, which could be why it was all the sweeter…

That, or the food.

Who knew the City by the Bay was such a gourmet paradise? “Fog City”??? Totally inappropriate. Every day was sunny and glorious. It should be renamed “Food City” because, aside from walking off all the meals on those crazy hilly streets, all we did was eat. And some other stuff which I shall leave to your dirty little imaginations. This is a family site for f&cksake!

Frisco. NorCal. SF. San Fran. In three days we couldn’t possibly sample all the city had to offer….Nor did we have a chance to venture away from the city limits, let alone the rest of the Bay Area or 49-Mile Drive. But we did see – and eat – blew our mind.

First off, the Hotel.

Campton Place
in Union Square. We thought of a couple others but this was the winner for us terms of location – and price. It’s part of the Taj group of hotels. Swanky swanky. Tho this once was kinda Taj-lite, it was still AOK. Especially because of the INCREDIBLE concierge, Kyle. He figured us out in about 7 minutes. Maybe he’s somewhat telepathic, or maybe we’re easy reads, but either way, he had us down and pointed us in the right direction.

Taj Campton Place

But back to the food….

First stop, Yank Sing. Best Damn Dim Sum. Ever. Apparently there are two locations. We hit the one in the Rincon Center. As we walked through a deserted (and very clean) financial district we hit this odd – and empty – mall. And then we followed the waft of garlic and found ourselves in dumpling heaven. Traditional dim sum like Har Gow and Sui Mai? Stupendous! Szechuan chicken? Crazy. And the chili fried green beans? We wanted to take the sauce home….Oh, wait, we did! Yes, you can even get their “delightfully spiced” (their words) chili sauce to go. the only regret? That we didn’t buy some more when we had the chance. And they don’t do mail order (I’ve already checked).

From there it was a short walk to the Ferry Building. On Saturdays there’s a farmer’s market there. We were too stuffed from our dim-sum-a-thon to go too wild, but there’s an old saying that you feast with your eyes. So we did.

After sleeping off the jet lag (and dim sum hangover) we hit Spruce in Pacific Heights. The bar and main dining room were pretty amazing sights to behold. Which is why we were somewhat amused to find ourselves sandwiched between the pensioners’ table in the back room. Kinda felt like losers, to be sure, but, as would be proven time and time again in this town, the food made up for it. Fine food, fine wine, and the nicest waitstaff in the west.

Sunday found us skipping breakfast and hitting the hotel’s open air gym. Nothing like a sweat to get you ready for brunch! Especially at Absinthe in Hayes Valley. Kyle pointed us in its direction, but we ordered two massive breakfasts and some (literally) bad-ass pork product sides all on our own. Duck Confit Hash? Corn Cakes with wilted chard and poached eggs? Homemade sausage and bacon? Accompanied with beers and cocktails? We were outta control. And so was the food. Again. Best Bacon we’d ever had. And, like so many of Our People, we know bacon. A little too well…This one was smokey and maple-y and ridiculous. And stayed with us for hours, so we could enjoy it throughout the day.

Next stop was Foreign Cinema. No, not a movie, another bloody restaurant! This one was in the Mission. With an enormous outdoor patio and screening of flicks on their outdoor screen, we’d heard this place was not to be missed. But to be honest, we could’ve. Missed it that is. The setting far-surpassed the meal. It was tasty enough, and the wines were nice, but we probably should’ve blown it off for a Sunday night movie instead.

Monday took us to Nettie’s Crab Shack on Union Street. We stumbled across it by mistake and it was a damn fine find. Especially the Cobb Louis. And the Bloody Mary. Oddly enough, the woman who ran the place had worked at all the restaurants we had been to. In fact, she overheard us arguing about the gluttonous theme of the weekend and insisted we keep the reservation we had for dinner that night.

Yes, we argued. Once. All over Gary Danko. The restaurant, not the man. I managed to snag us a reservation – apparently quite a challenge. And I’d heard that if there was one place you HAD to go to, it was there. And my man felt full. He was finished with eating. He couldn’t stomach another restaurant meal. It was our last night in Frisco and he was done with dinners.

Except, in the end, we went to Gary Danko. And, in the end, he didn’t like it. He LOVED it. Riding the cable car over there helped, but the meal was over the top. The service was impeccable, the food divine AND they brought us a birthday dessert. They remembered why we were there in the first place – even tho’ I seemed to have forgotten! They have a roving cheese plate that they cut ‘n serve table side. They have petit-fours that come with the coffees. And they send you home with a prettily-wrapped breakfast cake for the next day. Yum yum and yum.

We did other stuff too! I swear. Union Square was shopper’s paradise. A little overwhelming but we managed. Hayes Valley is a great afternoon out. Restaurants and cake shops aside, they have some awesome independent boutiques. Sean, Gimme Shoes, Flight 101 to name a few. Chinatown, North Beach, Russian Hill, Cow’s Hollow… All walks, all the time. And yes, we walked UP Lombard Street, the crookedest street in the world.

We also hit Alcatraz. The cruise, the walk, the audio tour. Aside from being iconic, cool and a great morning out, it saved us hundreds – in shopping and calories. We needed the break between meals. And we needed to NOT spend it shopping. Being shipped off to The Rock was just what we needed to round of our 4-pounder weekend.

If you’re heading to San Francisco, enjoy….And bon appetite!

November 22, 2009   No Comments

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LA Woman

I’ve wanted to go to Hollywood since, well, forever. As a little kid I’d sing songs from Annie, hoping to be discovered… in the privacy of my bedroom. If anyone came even close to my door I’d immediately clam up. Broadway, Hollywood – it was all the same in my 9-year old mind. When I finally got to Hollywood it was the Florida version. And even a 9-year old knew it was pas la meme chose.

And then, I wet my feet in Show Biz, where all roads lead to Hollywood. Except the one I was taking. It went directly to Toronto instead. Yeah, yeah, Hollywood North (or is that Vancouver?). Whatever. I wanted the real deal. And finally, this past weekend, I got just that. My Man took me away from all this and we headed West. To Los Angeles. Hollywood, California. Sun, Sand, Sea…

Stars!!!

Yes, kids, I went on my very own private Celebrity Safari!!!

Everyone who’s anyone knows that when you’re on safari it’s all about the accommodations, the food and of course, the animals. Wildebeest and giraffes are cool as hell, but it’s the Big Five that count. Lion. Leopard. Rhino. Elephant. Buffalo. And when you go to LA it’s no different. It’s about where you stayed, where you ate, and who you saw. With a side of where you shopped.

Off we went, eyes peeled, looking for stars and pretending not to. Which is, of course, the Canadian way. Except in the end we may have been a little too nonchalant. We came, we ate, we shopped. But the celeb sightings? Few and far between.

Our safari began almost immediately, with a sighting of Tanya Kim. I know, I know…. Who? OK, she’s not technically a star, but she is one of the hosts of an entertainment show and, as such, counts as a celeb. A local one, sure, but she was in business class. In full makeup. At 11AM. On the safari equivalency test, we’ll say vulture.

We landed at LAX, rented our love machine, and hit the road. First stop, Shutters on the Beach in Santa Monica. A vision of loveliness by the Pacific, it would’ve been even more idyllic had we not arrived at the same time as June Gloom. Never heard of it? Neither had we when we booked our trip. And, apparently, neither had The Weather Network. But it’s the annual cold front that reaches LA at the beginning of June. Accompanied by grey clouds. Lots of ’em. And blustery winds. Especially by the beach. Still, it was perfect walking around weather. Except we were in LA, where everyone drives everywhere, and we’d rented a car. A convertible.

Shutters on the Beach

Shutters on the Beach

But we wrapped ourselves up in our new scarves and jackets – that’s right – and hit the town. We were on a mission: to relax, eat well, see friends and shop (in no particular order). And of course we presumed we’d see stars on every corner. Because that’s what people do in LA right? Right?!

My Man decided it’d be fun to play a little game where he tells me about the various actors he’s spotted while my head was turned. Kind of like those annoying Euros on African Safaris who claim to have been chased down by rhinos, faced off with leopards etc. Only the Hollywood stars were far more elusive than the Big Five. And my husband was way funnier. Except he actually did see Silver (real name unknown, and unimportant) from 90210 while I tried on outfits. And he did work out with Dennis Leary in the hotel gym while I was sampling free chocolates at See’s Candies. Harumph. I saw Atom Agoyan at LAX. From behind. But my guy didn’t think that counted. And it probably didn’t. Too locally accessible. Raccoon.

Strange thing is, all the locals know that all the visitors are looking for the stars. They know where they hang out, what they do, and no one’s shy about telling you where to go to find them. The watering holes they like, the best season to find them. They’re starf&cking and we’re star-hunting. And everybody knows it. It’s weird.

So it became all about where we ate and who we saw. Ivy by the Shore – pas de. Apparently all about the one on Robertson. We shopped and idled a bit but no sightings. But food at the Shore was awesome. And massive. Seriously. Too big even for us. And for those in the know, that’s saying something!

Next day was a local spot to start- Cora’s. Perfect for breakfast. Not so much for movie stars. Followed by Robertson shopping a cruise down Sunset and lunch at Mel’s Diner. Because it’s funny. And it was en route. Mel’s Diner! Hilarious (tho’ the real one is in San Fran….But you make do with what you’ve got, right?) Out with friends for the food and the vibe at STK. Both very good.

But where were all the movie stars?

We headed to Joan’s on 3rd. A guaranteed celeb hangout. Just not while we were there. But incredible food, and hung out with an old friend who happens to be married to an actor who we actually recognize – by face. We imdb’d him on the spot and shared an “I love that guy” moment. So that was kinda neat! Especially since our pal invited us over to meet him in person if our celeb safari turned out to be less than fruitful. We never had to take her up on it – tho we would’ve loved to, had there been more time….Stopped in at that great Los Angeles equalizer, In ‘n Out Burger and went animal style. Bun for him, lettuce for me. Incredible. All they say it is – and less. No frills, no fuss, lots of muss (mess) and deeeeeelish.

It was Saturday night. That’s the equivalent of mid-day on safari. You see nothing. Still, Katsuya held some promise for us. Food was incredible, and the place was crawling with paparazzi – and loads of loser civilians with cam-corders at the ready. According to the bartender, some Lakers were coming. Whatever. Sports stars don’t count. For me. My Man was on the edge of his seat. But no luck. No shows. We were then befriended by a wacky makeup artist who, I was convinced, was looking to grift us in some way. Told us she was working the red carpet the MTV Movie awards the next night and could get us in to all the parties. Even offered to do my makeup. Thought she was just some freak (until we got home, checked out her website and learned she was totally legit. Ooops. Too late.) As we waited for our car, the gawkers whipped themselves into a frenzy….Over Zach Braff (not that any of them knew who they were looking at. The just knew he was “Someone”) . And yeah, he was. He is. But I don’t watch Scrubs. On the safari scale? Impala.

Where were the Lions? The Elephants?

There’s nothing remotely elephantine in LA, despite it being the land of good food. And also, presumably, the land of pukers, druggies, exercise fanatics. Or probably some sort of combo platter. Chateau Marmont showed us the most magnificent creatures we’d ever seen. Ever. One stunner after the next. Had no idea who they were, but it didn’t matter. They just were. Magnificent to behold, fun to watch in their natural habitat, and interesting to witness life behind The Bubble first hand. Breathtaking. Migration of the Wildebeest.

Sunday was the day of rest for us. No safari. Biking in Venice instead. Carney boardwalk. Drum circle that managed to walk that fine line between between cheesy and cool. Freakshows left, right and center. And the laid back hipster vibe of Abbott Kinney. Which I LOVED. Ate quite well at 3 Square Cafe and spotted what looked like Hank’s wife, Karen, from Californication. Which is kinda funny ‘cuz we were in Venice, it’s set in Venice…And it ended up being her! Natascha McElhone. At last! Someone we knew (not personally) from something we’d seen (and pvr’d!). How exciting! How thrilling! We even ooh-ed and aah-ed over a puppy together, cooe’d over her baby together, and acted like we were really cool and didn’t know she was a star of stage and screen (even tho we did) together. We had a moment. A brush with stardom. More a giraffe than a leopard, but still…

Ended our Celeb Safari in Malibu. At the impossibly romantic (yet borderline geriatric) Geoffrey’s. Which they pronounce “Joffrey’s”. Strange. But tasty. And host to two wedding receptions and many dates. Fun fun fun!

On the very last day I drove. By myself. In our car. It was a bit warmer, the sun poked its head out and I realized I’d fallen in like-a-lot. Despite the dearth of sun and stars, my Man and I had the best time. Amazing what 4 nights in a hotel sans kids can do. And who knew LA was such a perfect destination for a long weekend getaway? Definitely beats Buffalo.

As the good guv says, we’ll be back.

1 comments:

Anonymous said…

sounded great.. the best part.. YOU AND YOUR MAN

June 2, 2009   No Comments

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Lulu’s for Lemons

Check out the following statement:

“Look at your cute clogs…I remember when you only wore high heels, were dressed to the nines, and had your hair cut ‘n coloured by that rip-off guy….Now you’re all comfy and relaxed….”

How would you interpret this?

a) that you’re fabulous and chilled; mellowed with age.
b) that the person speaking has a secret ladies’ shoe fetish
c) that you’ve let yourself go

If you said anything other than (c) you’re a moron. Or a man. Same same sometimes. “Comfy”? There’s not a whole lot worse you could call a person, without being straight-out rude! Fact is, lululemon is the best – and worst – thing to happen to a girl since the invention of lycra.

Lulus, and all their knock-off compatriots, have definitely helped the humble sweat pant grow in leaps and bounds. (Excuse the phys ed refs.) But when once they were seen as a somewhat chic way of dressing shlubby (in my mind that is) they’ve now become the ubiquitous uniform for stay at home moms, exercise fanatics, and those of us who need to shed a few.

In other words, they’re the new Fat Pants.

They’re black. They’re flattering. They suck you in in all the right spots. We all wonder how we lived without them…And yet…they let the world know you’re got nothing to wear, something to hide, or both. Outside of the gym, that is. I have one friend who refuses to wear her yoga pants after 12 noon. Another who will only wear them once she’s inside the actual gym. And then there’s me, who (until the clog/relaxed/what happened comment) refused to wear anything but!

Erm, “butt” being the operative word here.

Having a four-month old baby should be excuse enough for kicking back a la lemonata. And yet, it’s not. With my other kids I always knew another pregnancy was on the cards, so never really invested. Sure, I joined a gym (or two) but rarely went. And of course I’m a Weight Watcher lifer. I always got back down to the starting line, give or take 5 lbs. But this time, it’s done. No more babies to be born from this body. It’s time to get back on the horse. The clothes horse that is.

But with an unforgiving, post-partum, 3-baby body it’s easier said than done. Hence the yoga pants. And now it seems they’re no longer an option. Or are they? Sure I remember the days of yore: not necessarily skinny, but definitely stylish. I was the chick who was dressed and blown dry on Sundays. In my apartment. And now? Jeans are my fancy pants. What happened? Have I let myself go? Is the most stylish thing about me my beloved iPhone?

It is pretty stylish…

But I digress. Someone suggested I don’t care as much now about how I look.

WHAT?!?

I straighten my hair for god’s sake. I may colour it myself now, but I still straighten. With products. So I must care. Right?

Let’s set the record straight.

I’M.NOT.GOING.ANYWHERE.

Or anywhere exciting. It’s a short drive from my home to my kids’ schools. Throw in a couple of detours for food ‘n sundries and I’m done. For that I should dress up? How? Back in the day when I did get styley, I was also getting paid. Most of my money went towards feeding my shopping habit. Nowadays, my money isn’t really mine. It’s “ours”. (Well, actually…my money is mine, his money is ours… but I don’t really have any…And that’s another story…) Either way, it’s spoken for.

But not anymore. I’m turning over a new leaf. Or reverting back to an old one. I’m packing up my yoga pants. Putting away my sensible shoes (albeit high-heeled ones). All dressed up with no place to go? That’ll be me. Suited and booted and rarin’ to go. Nowhere. But in style.

At least for this week……

October 30, 2008   No Comments

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Boots Made for (Winter) Walking

April showers bring May flowers.

So what do March snowstorms bring?

Not a lotta good, that’s what. Icy roads. Snowdrifts taller than most children (and seated seniors). Unpassable sidewalks. An extension of the winter blahs. A renewed interest in weather patterns, records and our role in all of it.

And an excuse to go out and buy new boots. La Canadienne boots.

You haven’t heard of ’em yet? Or you have, but didn’t bite? Whichever, whatever, whoever you are – go go go. Now is the time to bite the bullet, spend the big bucks and spend the rest of this never ending winter in style: toes toasty, feet dry and – believe it or not -in style.

Let’s face it, winter is an ugly time. Sure the snow looks pretty falling down, and when it’s all white and clean it’s quite peaceful. But really, how long does that last? Virgin snow lawns soon give way to grey slush, black ice and worse. The whole season can take its toll on a girl. Especially a footwear girl and, really – are there any other kinds?

I tried Uggs. Of course they’re comfy – they’d better be if they’re that ugly. The suede ones don’t keep your feet dry and the leather ones I had were so halucious they lasted but a season. Yeah, I was that person who went for the leather. Probably the only one. There’s a reason you don’t see more of ’em. H-I-D-E-O-U-S. I tried putting substance before style. It wasn’t easy, And it didn’t last.

So I ruined a pair of hot boots. Froze my tootsies off and wrecked ’em. And for what? So I tried again. This time, went for Sorels. Hard-core Canadian boots. For hard-core Canadian winters. And yeah, I stayed warm (ish) and dry. But again, not the most attractive. Or feminine. Even the long ones that we pretend are kinda like go-go boots aren’t. Not even close.

And then, it happened. A friend of mine discovered winter lady-boots. Lady boots…winter… Contradiction in terms, right? Wrong! La Canadienne boots are warm, cozy, and, dare I say it – kinda hot. In all the right ways. I admit I was skeptical at first, especially with the upwards of $200 price tag. But after another winter of alternating between salt-stained whore or hefty hefty slush slag, a couple hun seemed a small price to pay to be a cozy snow bunny.

My high-to-the-sky lady boots rock. And they work. I’m not sure how – some kind of secret recipe of ultrasuede, rubber and god-knows-what. Who cares? They look fantastic! And trust me kids, they really, really work the winter. And despite their all-kinds-of-hotness, they’re pretty basic. So even if everyone’s wearing the same boots – you can’t really tell. Which beats the hell out of showing up for dinner in your foxy furries – along with half the other girls.

Now that that we’re entering our fifth month of winter, maybe it’s time for a quick shoe shuffle. Snowbanks to climb? Easy. Salt stains and splash back? Laugh it off – they fit over calves of all shapes and sizes. Heels? They’ve got ’em. And need I mention they’re Canadian?

Are you still here? They’re on sale all over town. If you can still find what’s left of them. It’s mid-March after all. What are you waiting for?

2 comments:

John Boy said…

No mas de-boots for me. Why are there no decent boots for dudes on the market? I’m talking winter boots, not fashion boots – I have a million pairs of those (well a million bucks worth at least). I work in a corporate environment and am a self diagnosed fashionista and I wreck a great pair of shoes every winter because I cannot find decent winter boots. I refuse to wear “toe rubbers” as my father still calls them so what’s a boy to do?

2:16 PM

Anonymous said…

I resent the go-go boot comment. They ARE groovy and sexy.

Also, La Canadienes are only guaranteed waterproof for 6 months – did you know that? Although, I am finishing my third season and have yet to feel the water. That being said, I have worn my sexy Sorels a lot! Too much!

March 13, 2008   No Comments

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Hit This Mob

Once there were two friends. Friends with a vision. Some might call them, well, Family. And the vision? A business venture. Like so many great and powerful Families before them, they figured they’d make it worthwhile to pay a small price for protection…. from mass production, mundane home furnishing and, as they’ll tell you, lead paint.

Shopoholics, look out – Mob is back. Modern Objects of Beauty, that is.

What started as a concept back in 2005 has now evolved. Featuring one of a kind objets des artes, painstakingly curated by the women of mob, this is no ordinary retail experience – it’s anything but. Candies, cocktails and humour abound at this travelling salon. And boy, does this mob know how to travel.

Showroom, private home, cafe, design show… these ladies, ahem, get around. And through it all, there’s me, tagging along, desperate to be a made (wo)man, a part of it all. Because, quite frankly, I can’t resist the lure of mob.

The Showroom? Red and pink handblown glass bowl. The Annex house? Bone key ring. The Cafe? Shell necklace. The Design show? Porcelain choker.

And that’s me using retraint!

‘Cuz what I want, what I really, really want is everything. All of it. The lot. The tubular table. The Mitosis cube. At least two of the clocks. Oh, and the folding lamp.

And don’t even get me started on the jewellery! Oh, the jewellery. Animal, mineral, vegetable. Semi-precious, precious, whatever. Hook me up! I modelled a piece for them once (and by modelling I mean I kind of picked it up and flounced around, hoping it – and I – would get noticed). And we did. When I accidentally-on-purpose modelled it all the way home. My man noticed it immediately (that’s right ladies). It was almost like it followed me home. So it was only right to keep it.

And I’m not the only one. Once you go mob, you never go back. Mob hits are the kind of things you see, you stalk, you can’t resist. Crystal drop necklaces? Bone and horn bracelets? Toy images? Talk about offers you can’t refuse…I don’t even know where to begin.

Actually I do. www.mobcollection.com

It’s a start. A hint. A sneak peak. And maybe, just maybe, if you tell them The Mother sent you, you can get in on their next travellin’ show, coming soon, very soon (TOMORROW!!!) to a local hotspot near you . The hits of the season, for every reason. Or not. But they’re bringing out the good stuff, and nothing too pricey either! If you’re local. If you’re not, check out their website, don’t just read it and weep.

My cards are cleared and I’m rarin’ to go. Oh, and if anybody asks,it’s all gifts. For other people. I swear.

It’s not personal. It’s just business.

3 comments:

Anonymous said…

what a fine friend you are

5:01 PM

Anonymous said…

w/ an israeli and brazilian accent i’ll have to agree. you are a classy lady!

November 13, 2007   No Comments

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Montreal Mon Amour

There comes a time in every parent’s life when they look at their wonderful children, thank god (or whoever) for blessing them with such wonderful treasures, and wonder how to get the hell outta Dodge.

At least that’s what happens in our house. Regularly. Sure, my man and I love our babes to bits. But we also love each other, which is why we skipped town, hit the 401 and headed to Montreal.

Montreal, je t’aime. Stunning, accessible, and a helluva lot cheaper than Toronto, what’s not to love? Everyone’s got their fave places and spaces. And here are mine:

HOTEL: Montreal is home to Canada’s largest selection of boutique hotels. Or so it seems. We stayed at Hotel Gault, an award-winning, newish hotel in the self-described “Old Montreal’s bustling west end” neck of the woods. First off, it wasn’t bustling. But that’s OK. Because it was only on the cusp of Vieux Montreal, you felt closer to the city itself And we liked that. Then again, the whole town feels a lot more compact than Toronto. And we liked that too. Anyhoo, Hotel Gault is gorgeous. Loft-like. Exposed stone walls. Concrete floors (heated in the bathroom). Tres moderne. Tres cool. And with a special $99-for-the-second-night deal, tres resonable. Especially when you consider they also include breakfast. Not a loser continental one either. Full menu, full buffet, or full combo. Full being the operative word. Dee-lish. They threw in a dinner too, but who wants to hang in their hotel the whole time?

Actually, don’t answer that.

FOOD: Sit back, ‘cuz this could take a while….The weekend may have been a 5 pounder. But I’ll never tell. What I will tell you, tho’, is that we ate like piggies. Or kings. Whatever.

Our friend insisted we try his home-away-from-home bistro, Lemeac. We did. Superb. And it has a cheapy menu for the hotshots who come in after 10PM. Like my Man and me. Check us out: we get to Montreal and, suddenly, we’re all French and chic and late-night diners. But back to the food. We went prix fixe. There were a couple of translation issues, but it didn’t matter because the waitress was lovely and it was just good grub. Especially the enormouus pain perdu dessert. Basically a massive hunk of carmelized french toast. Was better than it sounds. Much much better. Lemeac also had an extensive, if somewhat intimidating, wine list. Or so it seemed to non-vintner types.

There’s a hot vegetarian resto on St Denis that also does a brusque take-out and casual lunch business. The mini version is called Chuch. Can’t remember the name of the papa place. Anyhoo, it’s cute to look at and has damn fine Thai foood – so good in fact, you wouldn’t even know it was veggie! (No offense.) Actually, you might know. But if you get the deep fried seaweed and spinach you won’t care.

Marathon Mike Schwartz. OK, that’s not really a restaurant. But all good all the same. We went to Marathon Souvlaki to relive a childhood dream. Not mine. And was it worth the drive to Laval? Absolutely. Or so my Man says. I’m not a major souvlaki person, but I know a good tzaziki when I find one. And this was good. Very very good. (maybe not as good as Arahova‘s, but this was somebody else’s memory lane, OK?) Mike’s Submarines – ditto. Not my thing, but apparently tasty enough to make someone very very happy.

Schwartz’s. Oooooh Schwartz’s. Does deli get any better than this? I don’t think so. Spectacular. Even cold and in the car. I’m telling you now, Montreal friends, I’ll be putting in take out orders when next you go home.

But people, I’ve saved the best, le meilleur, for last. Le Club Chasse et Peche. Apparently the hottest spot in town. According to our concierge, it’s worth moving to Montreal for. Well, we aren’t moving (yet) but if we did…. Unreal. Spectacular food, simple yet terrific menu, and sexy as hell. It’s the kind of place when someone says you have to go, you have to listen. So if you are planning a trip to Montreal, remember, You Have To Go. We had fois gras and beet salad and Tasmanian Char and Sweetbreads. No, not all together, morons. All fab. Even the veggies on the side were incredible. For dessert they had some kind of postmodern rice crispy square but, sadly, we never got to try it. We went for something else – some apple, caramel, pastry concoction. Who knows, it might’ve been awesome – but I was too full at this point to judge.

SHOPS: Aaaah shops… For many folks, Montreal equals shopping. For us, these are the handful that stood out:

Zone – pour la maison. Awesome homewares and gifty stuff. They have a few of these scattered round town (plus one in Ottawa). In fact, you could spit and hit a great home furnishing place. We’ve decided when (if) we move house, we’ll be taking a truck to Montreal and loading it up. They’ve got a great thing going on in the design department and, best of all, it’s kind of on the cheap side!

Factorie – for ladies and gents. Divide and conquer. And if you can get the oh-so-chic and helpful owner to help you, do. He knows gorgeous.

Lola et Emily – great ladies wear. Like a combo of my two beloved NYC stores, Anthropologie and Olive & Bette’s. If I need to say more, then just skip it. It’s pas pour vous.

Mortimer Snodgrass – kitschy and fun. Gifts for suckers of all ages.

And, and, and….The list could go on and on and on. But we only had two days and we were driving, so this is it. For now.

Sure, the days of long haul, far flung, exotic vacays may be on hold, but we’ll always have Montreal…

1 comments:

mortimer snodgrass said…

as the owner of Mortimer Snodgrass, I thank you! I was just playing Google the Store and found your post. Thanks again!

December 18, 2006   No Comments

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Go Cheap or Go Home

Is cheap the new black?

Sexy, hip, flattering.

Yeah, yeah, yeah. But is cheap the new black?

Erm, not at Zara. Yeah, it’s chic ‘n cheap but it’s also crap. And not in the disposable way Le Crapeau…I mean Le Chateau… is crap. We’re talking ripped-while-still-on-the-hanger crap, as opposed to wear, tear, and toss crap. Oddly, their kids’ line is not crap. Mind you, it ain’t cheap. But it’s stunning – especially for boys.

Ditto H &M. Awesome duds for the kids, but for ladies? Duds of a different kind. For this gal at least. Believe me, I’ve tried. But ’twas not to be. The fit, the fabric, or just the itch factor – there was always something a bit off.

Winners? Dirty. Old Navy? XXXXXL. Fairweather? Puh-lease. And the list goes on.

So I stuck with fancy. The supersoft shirts, yummy sweaters, perfect pants. All mine. For a price. A very hefty price. And y’know what I found? That a lot of the high end stuff was crap too! No sooner had I washed and worn than I’d find a little teeny tiny hole. Or a snag. Or an unravelled cuff or jagged hem. And don’t get me started on cotton tees that start to ball. It’s the worst.

But what’s a fashion victim to do? Shelling out the big bucks didn’t work. And the cheap and cheerful left me feeling anything but…

Until now.

There’s a new kid in town. Let’s call him Joe. For real. ‘Cuz the place is called Joe Fresh and basically, it’s clothes shopping at Loblaws.

WAIT!

Before you delete and think I must’ve completely lost my mind, read on. I actually debated sharing this dirty little secret. In fact, some friends kindly suggested I keep my mouth shut (at least until after they’d checked it out themselves). But alas loyal readers, you’ve earned it. You’ve shared my blog, you’ve liked my blog – you’ve actually read my blog! So here’s a little tidbit for you.

Joe Fresh. As in Joe-who-used-to-own-Club-Monaco. As in the guy who got lured away by the kind folks at Loblaws. As in who the hell cares? You won’t. Cred be damned! If you can get over the fact that it’s, well, grocery shopping for fashion, you’ll be glad that you did.

Housed in suburban Superstores and in the Old Caban space beside, yup, Loblaws, you will meet Joe Fresh. Nice, plain, simple. And did I mention, cheap? Tees for a tenner. Jeans under $30. And yoga pants and tops that fit and feel EXACTLY like your Lulus – but without the hefty price tag (pants are $29)(that’s right, no type-o: $29)

AND not only are the clothes flattering – the sizes are somewhat generous too. So you can try on stretchy jeans and check out your butt – or thighs, or hips or calves – and marvel at the fact that you’re wearing a size smaller than you thought. Who doesn’t love that? Especially compared to all the fancy pants around that were definitely not designed for women of childbearing age. Paige Jeans excepted.

I got a bit carried away this morning: jeans, shirt, vest, sweater, and more. What with these prices…And the turnover is crazy fast as the stuff flies off the shelves…’Cuz at these prices… Finally, I do hear you, skeptics. It may all turn out to be more disposable fashion crap. Only time will tell. But again, at these prices…

3 comments:

Anonymous said…

Went today and it’s like Club Mon of old, although not as styley. Very good basics, although for me the pant cuts were not nice. Very cheap store-like, although, not the yoga pants which are fab and will be worn on the plane by a non-outside yoga pant wearing person. But I take great offence to your dissing of Winners and Fairweathers. You’d be surprised what basics you can find there that don’t feel disgusting. And well, Winners is for hunters and you ain’t ever been one of those. I have some wicked stuff from there and now I add Joe to my list of easy basics. Thanks for the tip.

11:20 AM

Anonymous said…

This is Dave’s friend Rob… my Wife has been bugging me about this Lulu crap for months now. I sent her right over to the super centre and now she has her Lulu knock off’s and is loving life. Thanks for the tip. You rock. By the way, I personally know one of the managers of Winners and the biggest and best hidden treasures are at the Winners in Barrie right off of the 400. There is a tip for you!

October 12, 2006   No Comments

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Crocs, Crocs and More Crocs

I’ve never been so popular. Never. Who knew a post about Crocs could cause such an uproar? Arouse such passions? Pull so many opinionated folks out of the woodwork? Not I.

Fair readers, you only get to see the comments the brave and the brazen post on the blogsite. But trust me, I’ve had other emails and calls too. There’s a war going on and the folks are up in arms. But not about the Middle East. About Crocs.

So here’s what we know: they start in kids’ size 8/9 in Canada, but you can find falsies that are smaller – now that’s not something you hear too often, is it?! There are knock offs on just about every corner and, rumour has it they even have Croc kiosks at airports popular with holidaymakers. Like, er, Boston. We also know it ain’t the shoe that’s stinky. Sorry kids, but my sources have found that it’s not the wear, it’s the wearer!

So yeah, every kid and their father seem to have Crocs. A friend of mine who swore she’d never succumb to peer pressure did just that – and her whole family’s Crocified. One of my candy mags even had a pic of my Man’s man Jack wearing them. Navy ones. The caption? “This trend must end”. I guess Mr. Nicholson is where fashion trends go to die. Tho’ it doesn’t seem so.

As y’all know I had trouble tracking them down. (And thanks to everyone with their tips, spottings and sightings. How ridiculous is this? For shoes? Hideous shoes?) When I finally tracked down a couple of pairs of honest-to-goodness eyesores I was shocked. Talk about a feeding frenzy! And it was all about the butchy navy Crocs. Everyone was after them. I snagged a couple of pairs – for boys big and small – and proudly made my way home. Triumphant.

My Man wears his – but is very selfconscious about it. Not only because they’re the summer Ugg, but because duh, they’re the summer ugly. He’s no trendoid so he was a little tense. Until we went walking and it rained and they were so comfortable – wet AND dry blah blah blah. But my boy – he ain’t convinced. Like his mama, he knows the good from the bad and the ugly. And he refuses to put them on his feet. Not even 3 years old and already a shoe snob. That’s my baby!!

Ladies, please, trust me. Ditch the Crocs unless you’re gardening. DO try them at home – but not in public. If your teenage daughters want them, by all means, encourage it. Hell, buy ’em two pairs. They’re so unsexy, they’re prophylactic. Again, let’s remind ourselves: they’re cute and comfy and useful. FOR CHILDREN. AND MEN. No woman really wants a purely “useful” shoe. It’s like getting cleaning gear for Mother’s Day. And who the hell wants THAT?!

2 comments:

Anonymous said…

I love love your blogs,I hate the crocs but they seem not to make your feet smell, a very important issue as you age.

12:13 AM

Anonymous said…

As the person who succumed and bought her fam (not me) crocs, I just want to say that I think they suck. Having been througha tornadoa nd waltzing around debris, I decided to borrow my husband’s pair. Those little stupid wholes let every piece of crap in and never let them out. I was constantly stpeeing on little stones and twigs and had to keep removing my shoes. I decided to fuck it and put my flip-flops back on. At least the refuse has a way of getting out.

August 1, 2006   No Comments

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Not a Croc

I remember my first spotting. A neighbourhood chicita making her merry way down my street. Nothing out of the ordinary…until I noticed her shoes. Garish neon pink, holes on the top, kinda cloggy, completely hideous. I chalked it up to a one-off fashion crime, never dreaming that what I saw was one of zillions…..

Crocs. They’re here, they’re HIDEOUS, get used to it.

And then a funny thing happened. Amid all the hoopla, I did. Get used to ’em, that is. And then an even funnier thing happened. Funny-strange, not funny-haha. I became a little intrigued.

The thing is, I am and always have been a clog girl. My faves were my old brown ultrasuede ones with the raffia band over the top. Fabulous. I had black suede ones too. Showed dust something awful. And of course who can forget the true classic: treetorn clogs. Come on people, you know the ones: navy or white leather…A sleepover camp staple if there ever was one. Until they were banned. ‘Cuz all the girlies (and some boys) were tripping over their feet and spraining their ankles. But still, dragging your heels, clip-clopping along in your clogs…nothing beat it.

Until now. The clog, in the form of the almighty croc, is back. And, tho’ I hate to admit it, I’ve kinda jumped on the bandwagon…

WAIT!!! It’s not like I’m wearing them – puh-lease. They’re revolting. But at least now I get it. Sorta. You see last week family friends came to visit us at the cottage. I hadn’t seen them in years. And there they all were: Mama Croc, Papa Croc and two little Baby Crocs. The only one NOT in the damn shoes was the baby. And he might’ve been had they come in smaller sizes. After many furtive glances at the family’s feet I had to ask: Why? They rsvp’d with the usual litany of praise – they’re so light, so comfy, so cheap.

So what? They’re ugly!

But then I watched the ease with which Mama Croc got her babes to put their shoes on. Saw the pleasure Papa Croc got from whipping ’em off to jump on the trampoline. My man thought maybe he’d like a pair and I realized:there really was no escape.They’re here to stay.

And if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em.

After hitting the streets to track down a couple of pairs – one for the Boy, one for the Man, I realized not only were they hot – they were sold out. Everywhere. DEVASTATION! And now I’m desperate. And have hit the world wibe web to track down any non-beige ones. No, no, not for me. Why would I subject my size 9’s to such fashion agony? It’s not winter. For me, the quick-fix-all-purpose-summer-shoes have been around forever. They’re called flip flops.

But I reasure myself that I mst be the perfect wife and mother. Not only letting my boys be seen in such fashion fiascos. But encouraging it.

Hey, it’s not like I’ll ever be caught dead in a pair. Not yet anyway….

10 comments:

jojo said…

Well, I’m laughing out loud as I read! You know who just received a pair for his 71st birthday and is extatic!
Is walking around the house in them even with his suit on…yuk! Loves the feel…. not to mention that all the grandchildren wear them in & out of the water…. and back in the house!!!! By the way, they stink! They are rubber! The holes are suppose to take care of that but, I don’t think so!!!!
Keep looking for them! Costco has them in all colours!
BUT, not “crocs”……. a knock off of course!
Keep writing; you make me smile…. & laugh.

9:44 AM

jojo said…

Well, I’m laughing out loud as I read! You know who just received a pair for his 71st birthday and is extatic!
Is walking around the house in them even with his suit on…yuk! Loves the feel…. not to mention that all the grandchildren wear them in & out of the water…. and back in the house!!!! By the way, they stink! They are rubber! The holes are suppose to take care of that but, I don’t think so!!!!
Keep looking for them! Costco has them in all colours!
BUT, not “crocs”……. a knock off of course!
Keep writing; you make me smile…. & laugh.

9:44 AM

Anonymous said…

Thanks Jojo for finally telling me what I always knew – they stink!!! There is no way someone with testosterone in their body and feet could have a pair of this shundah footwear without them smelling!! My kids sandlas stink – there is no way a full coverage rubber nightmare won’t! I will resist the masses and say no, I will not go gently into that croc night.

1:13 PM

Anonymous said…

You can get any colour any size at the shoe store on bathurst at melrose, in plaza that has Dani’s hair salon. that’s were I got my babes a pair. none for me though.

2:23 PM

Anonymous said…

Crocs are actually designed NOT to stink- you may want to shell out the extra buck and buy the real ones….and wash once and a while

6:00 PM

jojo said…

JoJo again…… for the last person on your list of comments!

My 71 year old honey does have the “THE CROCS”,
the real ones. They really do smell and I know it is not his feet….. they never smell!!!
The knock off ones are at costco!

6:05 PM

Anonymous said…

Croc pot: These things are ubiquitous, horrendous, and the hit of the summer. Can you imagine the fence at the swim docks when the kids check in– the tens of crocs and the confusion when swim is over. Label ’em up with a magic sharpie– otherwise, your kids is gonna be wearing someone else’s crocs when they leave the docks. A pox!

8:45 AM

Messy Mom said…

LMAO! They are EVERYWHERE here. The “real” crocs, the fake ones, etc. My 7 yr old daughter wants them really badly, but I just keep telling her no. I don’t care if everyone else is wearing them, they are u-g-l-y. When I see them in the stores and see everyone wearing them, I just keep thinking of all the other fashion crazes that I have seen in my almost 40 years on this earth. I actually start to laugh at the multicolored rows of this things. Aren’t they supposed to be GARDENING shoes? I just can’t bring myself to look at those “shoes” and laugh and just say no! I am glad to see that I am not the only one that finds these things amusing.

8:20 PM

Anonymous said…

Incredible…..How many people left comments regarding “ugly shoes”????? Fake??? Real??? Who are we trying to impress??? Garden shoes, wear everywhere shoes??? Is this must have trend exclusive only to the 416,905 area??? Is is worth the hunt??? Threr have been many ugly shoes that have made there mark. What color will you be wearing???

July 27, 2006   No Comments

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