Meet 661. Where Function meets Fashion. Where Art meets Eye.
Came across a funky little eyeglass shop In an equally funky little neighbourhood of Vancouver that is becoming affectionately known as Fraserhood. It borders on Fraser and Kingsway and is sandwiched in between a high end hidden gem of a French Restaurant Les Faux Bourgeois and a long standing for those in the know Japaribbean restaurant Lion’s Den not to mention cool coffee shops, a Mexican street food bistro among other interesting establishments. I’m telling you if you haven’t been you should check out the area. You might feel like you’re in Soho, New York. The shop, like the area itself is definitely not your run-of-the mill. The frames are strewn artistically on plain white shelving units not typical of your usual framing shop. More typical of an art gallery. In fact at one time it was.
The eye glasses and sunglasses are from Italy, France and Japan. Designed by Anne et Valentin from Paris, France.
Even if you don’t need to wear glasses you’ll definitely want a pair of these, if only to make a fashion statement. There’s a pair (or more) for every face shape in pretty much every style imaginable. I’ll be back!
On Saturday, November 8th between 1-5 pm Ann & Valentin will be in store with all the framing styles available.
Effortless Essentials to go with Everything. For starters Danielle Nicole’s macrame handbag and Machete’s lucite hoop earrings (you can choose either plain or tortoise). The earrings are understated and timeless. They can be worn with everything from a bathing suit to a business suit.
A macrame handbag is not something I would have considered until I saw this one. Macrame usually reminds me of 1970’s bohemian plant holders and wall hangings. Now, macramé is back, making waves again as creative crafters come up with contemporary patterns that have revitalized the historic knotting techniques. This modern version can be worn across the body or hand held. I’m wearing it a lot.
And I’m very picky about beach towels. So when I found out that Missoni Home (the famous Italian fashion house) was including a colorful striped terry towel as part of the package I was excited. Missoni goes with everything. I will definitely be using this chic towel even if I only drape it over a chaise lounge à la Rachel Zoe.
Included in this box are two special beauty products which I’ll blog about separately because they deserve their own post.
I think of all the summer whites, linen is my favorite. Linen is not a year-round fabric like silk or cotton. Linen is the definitive summer staple. It breathes well and you can even blame the creases (which will inevitably show up) on the material instead of not wanting to iron it. Of course it doesn’t travel well unless you pack your trusty steam iron. However it just looks crisp.
Derived from the flax plant, linen is a highly sustainable material that doesn’t need any pesticides or fertilizers to grow plus very little water compared to thirsty cottons. One of the oldest fabrics in the world, the ancient Egyptians used it to wrap mummies, whilst in the 1930s, wedding gowns combined linen with lace.
Formal date aside, this year summer started more than a month earlier than expected. It’s been mostly warm and sunny since I got back to Vancouver in early May. June is usually an iffy month for unreliable weather. Now you never know what to expect as normal patterns everywhere are changing. Some drastically. Most people are starting to get used to diverse changes in climate but I’m not here to talk about climate change. It’s real and it’s happening and we all have to weather the storm (pun intended) and hope we’re not too late to save this stressed-out planet.
Personally, if I could control the weather by a push of a button I’d have it on perpetual early Spring mode with a rain shower here and there just to break up the monotony and to make sure everything stays green. Then I’d have it snow in the city for 3 days a year max – December 24th to the 26th. Also, the setting for sun would never feel too hot with “0” humidity and not enough wind to throw too many dried leaves everywhere which is a pain to sweep up…again. But sweep up I must. And every time I do, I admire the brand new flooring on my two outdoor spaces. I did some Spring cleaning to be Summer ready. Starting with…
Noticing that some of the wood boards were starting to rot on the upstairs deck,
I enlisted the services (after careful consideration) of Khatsalano Builders who specialize in outdoor decks and patios. I like that they’re local. They were professional, managed everything on schedule as planned (contractors are notorious for not sticking to schedule) and cleaned everything up as promised. They also helped with added extras like moving two very heavy large items for me. Thank you Jason, Jeff, Antoine, Davin and Mike. Great guys.
They totally re-constructed a large 500 sq. ft. deck pulling up all the wood and replacing it with timber-tech composite flooring. It looks great now, very clean, modern and best of all…bye bye maintenance! No staining needed from now on. I’m super happy about that.
Why composite over wood? For sustainability purposes Timber Tech decking is made from a combination of 100% recyclable wood fibers and 73% polymers. Even their packing materials meet the sustainable forestry Initiative requirements. They’re working to achieve the highest level of recycling in the decking industry with a goal to make 95% of all TimberTech decking from recycled materials by 2020. Almost there.
Talk about saving trees? Over the past six years, more than one million trees have been saved because people have chosen this type of decking over natural wood. And they’ve specifically designed products to look just like exotic hardwoods like Ipe which is cut from rainforests.
For the downstairs courtyard which has French doors opening up to the outside from the main living area, I considered a clean-up only. A sanding and staining. That was until one of the contractors stepped onto the middle of the courtyard and his shoe went right through the wood. He didn’t intend to make a hole but let’s just say it didn’t look good after that.
So… decided to replace the previous wood with new wood. I really wanted wood for downstairs with the realization that every 3-5 years it will most likely have to be re-oiled. So…sorry trees. At a little over 300 sq. ft. it’s not a large area but wow…does it ever look amazing. They did some leveling, sealed up some areas which were bare and added two lights to light the way towards a step-up dining area.
After narrowing down from a few samples I chose an exotic hardwood called Red Balau from tropical hardwood forests in Indonesia which are essentially public lands, managed and protected by the Government of Indonesia.
The rich reddish-brown hue is a durable hardwood that is often compared to teak but less expensive. My concern is that it be resistant to shrinkage, splintering, extreme weather conditions, decay, mold and insect attacks (you know; should that ever happen). Better to be safe than sorry. It is. I’m very happy with the whole aesthetic of both the upper and lower spaces.
I also highly recommend VanCity Washing for eco-friendly exterior power washing and cleaning. They made my awnings look like new again. Of course they couldn’t do anything about the fading but I had totally forgotten that my awnings had stripes until they were finished cleaning them. Fast, friendly, efficient and cost-effective. Justin also power washed my outdoor furniture. They use all bio-degradable supplies when pressure washing everything from walkways to windows and everything in between.
It’s been a month since I’ve received the Spring Box and I can’t believe that I haven’t shared what’s inside. Until now…
Thoughtfully choosing versatile, well-made pieces is the key to building a timeless closet. These photos and main descriptions are taken from Rachel Zoe’s Website. I find everything to be thoughtfully curated. Pieces to mix and match with what you already have. To order see below.
Tribe Alive Leather Clutch
Classic items like the leather clutch is an exclusive size available to Box of Style members. Just big enough to hold every day essentials like a wallet, keys, cell phone and lipstick (that’s an essential right?). I stow it inside a larger bag and simply take it out to use alone when need be like going out for dinner. A versatile hue, like the black of this clutch, pairs perfectly with all manner of ensembles.
Chan Luu Silk Scarf
Another essential is a silk scarf. Even though I own a numerous amount of silk scarves you can’t really have too many. Right?? Plus they’re so easy to store and tie in a multitude of ways. The Chan Luu silk scarf shown is available in 2 exclusive Rachel Zoe Collection prints: cactus flower or leopard. It was a toss up but I went with the leopard. This coming from the woman who wears scarves meant for her dogs (I know; it’s a problem).
Michelle Campbell Gold Talon Bracelet set
These dainty gold bangles offer a simple elegance on their own or can be worn with other pieces and mixed with other metals for a more dramatic effect. The open design allows for easy adjustment. A little bit of added bling never hurts.
Edible Beauty Gold Rush Eye Balm
The all natural ingredients in this eye cream make it safe enough to eat, but you won’t want to waste it once you start incorporating it into your regimen. The coffee and cucumber extract work to reduce puffiness and inflammation while the gold leaf improves circulation and radiance. My full review will come later but so far, so good.
Skin Gym Gua Sha…..are you ready?
You heard it here first, gua shas are the new jade rollers. This rose quartz massage tool helps to drain toxins from the face by increasing circulation and decreasing puffiness. Great for long flights and mid-day pick me ups but with regular use as a part of your daily regime, you’ll see the best results.
Long before they became our new favorite beauty tool, Gua Shas were an integral part of traditional Chinese medicine for thousands of years, used for tissue and muscle massage for the entire body. Gua Sha literally means ‘to scrape’ in Chinese, and this (gentle!) scraping motion helps to increase circulation, decrease the appearance of wrinkles, boost collagen production and encourage lymphatic drainage. For many of us this sounds great, but we’re not clear on exactly how to reap all of these benefits. Start by applying a face oil to clean skin, then read on for the top motions to master to get the most from your Skin Gym Gua Sha from the Spring Box of Style.If you’re a visual learner, find a handy video tutorial by acupuncturist and holistic medicine practitioner Debbie Kim. For more Gua Sha tips, visit Skin Gym’s site.So if you want to Spring for it:https://www.boxofstyle.com/and don’t forget to tell them where you heard about it
A person carries off the hat. Hats are about emotion. It is all about how it makes you feel. – Philip Treacy (Milliner).
Remember ALEX, the sane hatter I met from the Vintage Market? I bumped into her again at yet another venue – of all places “Yappy Hour” at the Riviera Hotel. She did not bring a dog however she brought her boyfriend who is definitely not a dog. She really has great style.
Here is a little heads-up (pun intended) about her hand-made hat designs and her company appropriately named “SuperBloom” …coming soon.
Superbloom is about putting meaning into color. There are 10 colors with 10 original patterns inspired to accompany each color and meaning. Each one reflects one of the following… Self Love, Uniqueness, Passion, Equality, Reflection, Boldness, Loyalty, Offline (?), Optimism + Mysteriousness.
Whatever the meaning; they’re lovely to look at and even lovelier to wear.
“Take off your hat,” the King said to the Hatter.
“It isn’t mine,” said the Hatter.
“Stolen!” the King exclaimed, turning to the jury, who instantly made a memorandum of the fact.
“I keep them to sell,” the Hatter added as an explanation; “I’ve none of my own. I’m a hatter.” ― Lewis Carroll, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland & Through the Looking Glass
The LE CHIENfabulous fashion event I attended on Sunday wasn’t only for fun; it was for a meaningful cause. Presented by Animal Samaritans and sponsored by the Westin Mission Hills Golf Course & Spa, proceeds from ticket sales and silent auction items go towards rescue, shelter and adoption of homeless animals. The Animal Samaritan group champion compassion for all living creatures, with a primary focus on dogs, cats, and the people who love them…like the people in these pictures.
Professional models rocked the runway posing for paparazzi with adorable rescue dogs who put their best paw forward. The models wore San Francisco street artist and fashion designer Victor Tung‘s (a Project Runway alumnus) artsy yet elegant fashion.
People in the audience and at the cocktail reception proceeding the show were almost as fun to watch as I’m hoping these photos go to prove.
Animal Samaritans (the same people who put on the monthly “yappy hour” at the Riviera Hotel I previously blogged about) require financial support from community and fellow animal lovers to continue their good work of improving the lives of animals and the people who love them.
The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way in which its animals are treated– Gandhi
and a healthy dose of kitsch. A boutique with a culture all their own. Sharing some things that caught my eye…
However you want to describe it, Peepa’s in Palm Springs is an all around FUN place to visit with almost something for everyone.
Palm Springs is known for its chic pool parties. They curate a wonderful assortment of product for all your lazy poolside, or nighttime pool party needs such as:
This boutique houses an exciting collection of local artists and brands, beautiful books on the cities culture and architecture. An exclusive carrier for the apparel brand, Twin Palms, you will also see their private label, David Mason in their Palm Springs Collection. David Mason is designed by the owner of Peepa’s and this product is found no where else.
Peepa’s features residence artists, and pop-up artists. It is curated to fit the Palm Springs aesthetic. Bright, colorful, modern, contemporary, sophisticated, edgy, and above all, original.
Introducing Alexis, who moved to Palm Springs one week ago from New York. Stalked Approached her last Sunday at the once-a-month Palm Springs Vintage Market. My friend and I couldn’t help but notice her put together from head-to-toe unique look. Had to talk to her.
Alexis told us she’s starting her own line here in Palm Springs. More on that later. She previously was assistant to designer Stacey Bendet of Alice & Olivia – a New York City-based contemporary clothing company which I happen to like very much. The global brand launched at Barneys in 2002, and is now sold in over fifty countries.
It’s no secret I Love Hats. Among her personal line will be hats (she makes them herself) with interesting interior linings such as this. Hidden surprises are always nice. Can’t wait to see what she comes up with. Until then….