Saturday, May 7, 2016

TOMS Celebrates 10 Years Of One Day Without Shoes!


TOMS is asking Canadians and people around the world to take to social media and help raise awareness of the millions of children around the world who live without proper footwear, exposing them to injury, infection and debilitating diseases. TOMS will donate a pair of new shoes (up to 100,000 pairs; 10,000 pairs in 10 different countries) to children in need for every barefoot photo posted on Instagram on Tuesday, May 10 that tag #withoutshoes. How easy is that? 

Founded in 2006 by American traveler and entrepreneur Blake Mycoskie, after a visit to a village in Argentina and seeing that many children there didn't have shoes to protect their feet, the original TOMS style was created in the classic Argentinian 'alpargatas' style. Since then, the company has grown to include accessories, eye wear, and coffee - all while based on a One For One® philosophy of giving. This month, TOMS is celebrating their 10 year anniversary. 


"At TOMS we believe in a world where everyone can live For One Another. We're incredibly grateful for the support we receive every day from our community and the Giving we're able to do because of it. To celebrate the 10th year of TOMS and a decade of Giving, we're inviting you to Give back with us on One Day Without Shoes. Post a photo to Instagram on May 10th of your bare feets and your TOMS Shoes with the hashtag #withoutshoes to help us give 10,000 pairs of new shoes to children in need in 10 countries - up to 100,000 shoes" said TOMS' founder and chief shoe giver Blake Mycoskie.

To show gratitude to all its customers, partners and champions for a decade of support, TOMS is offering a special edition grey chambray 10 Year Anniversary women's classics (available for $65 on TOMS.ca), and is posting a 'thank you' shout out every Thursday in 2016 on the @TOMS Instagram account, tagging #ThankfulThursday.

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Simons Opens March 17 at Square One!


There have been a lot of changes to the retail landscape in Canada over the past year, with many U.S. based companies finally opening outposts north of the border. But one of the most exciting additions to shopping in Ontario is the arrival of one of Quebec’s most beloved names, and one of my personal favourites – La Maison Simons.

Simons has been a staple in La Belle Province since 1840, when John Simons opened his first dry goods store in Quebec City, selling imported goods from Europe. Over the next century, the Simons family transitioned their namesake brand into a specialty fashion retailer.

For those of you who haven’t experienced Simons before, you will instantly fall in love with the concept. Simons focuses on clothing, footwear, and accessories for women and men, as well as gorgeous home d├ęcor and linens.

Labels include internationally known favourites Diane Von Furstenberg, Nina Ricci, Mary Katrantzou, Just Cavalli and many more. Simons is a big supporter of Canadian names featuring Denis Gagnon, and jewellery designer Dean Davidson. You will also find their fabulous private label lines such as Twik, Contemporaine, Miiyu, and LE 31.

Simons opens March 17 at Square One in Mississauga. To learn more and to shop online now at www.simons.ca.

Monday, March 14, 2016

Yorkdale Makes Prom Shopping Fun Again!


Last year, one of my friends went through an extremely difficult time in her life. She had to take her daughter PROM DRESS SHOPPING! I listened with sympathy about the countless weekends she had spent driving across town, into the city and back again and finding nothing. I shared her disappointment and dismay that came from all the hours of her life that she would never get back. And I revelled in the joy she had – likely even more than her daughter’s – in finding THE PERFECT DRESS!

When Yorkdale Shopping Centre asked me to share the news about their Prom Shopping services, I agreed immediately. Because that is how my friend and her daughter finally found exactly what they were looking for. They met with a Yorkdale Style Expert, who gave them great advice on prom trends and what looks would work best for them, and which stores they should check out. Problem solved.


Prom has become a much bigger event over the past few years in Canada, and girls are really upping their game. And because it is such a memorable event, the pressure is on. Yorkdale gets that, and that’s why they are pleased to help prom goers AND parents get ready for this special day. March Break kicks off prom season, and is a great time to spend finding the perfect dress as well as killer shoes, accessories and makeup.

From March 11th through March 20th, guests who visit Yorkdale Prom Style will also have the chance to win back their prom purchase, up to a maximum of $1000. After visiting the Style Centre, guests will receive a special shopping booklet that they can use to make note of their tops picks that they discover while shopping, and when they return to the Style Centre, they can show their receipts and be entered into the contest.


Yorkdale has also put together their #YorkdaleProm16 directory with an assortment of gorgeous gowns, knock-out jewellery and fabulous footwear, as well as handy tips on what else to have on hand for fashion emergencies such as blister pads and to-go spot remover. Oh! And don’t forget a phone charger for all those fabulous pics! Check out all of their hot looks and helpful hints here.

Parents, let the experts help make prom shopping a truly happy, stress-free experience! Trust me – with the help of Yorkdale Style Expert – it’ll actually be fun for you too!

*Winner will be drawn at random at the end of March Break and will win back the cost of their prom purchases in the form of a Yorkdale Gift Card.

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Saks OFF 5TH Is Opening Next Week!


Anyone who lives shopping and lives in the Greater Toronto area has likely been giddy with excitement over the recent openings of legendary designer retailer Saks Fifth Avenue in the CF Eaton Centre as well as CF Sherway, there is even more exciting things to come this Spring. Next week, the brand’s off-price division – and one my all-time favourites – Saks OFF 5TH will also grace Canada with their presence.

Saks OFF 5TH offers incredible prices on hundreds of luxe labels for men, women and kids, including many of the lines found in their Saks Fifth Avenue store such as Diane von Furstenberg, Marc By Marc Jacobs, Rebecca Minkoff, and Armani Collezioni, to name just a few. I still adore a butter-soft Michael Kors leather jacket I picked up at the OFF 5TH a few years ago for a steal of a price.


The new Saks OFF 5TH locations at the Outlet Collection At Niagara, Toronto Premium Outlets and Vaughan Mills opens March 17, and the Tanger Ottawa location is set to open on March 24. Be sure to sign up now at www.saksoff5th.ca to receive an exclusive invite and find out more! Follow the hashtag #WhenOFF5THMetCanada for updates on Instagram and Twitter too! Happy shopping! 

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Nordstrom Rack Is Coming To Toronto!

The Nordstrom Rack in Amherst, N.Y. *Photo credit WGRZ.com 
I am still eagerly anticipating the opening of Nordstrom in MY part of Canada. As a long time devotee of the retailer from eons ago when I would drive from my home in Vancouver to Seattle just for a Nordstrom visit, to many hours spent in locations in Orlando and L.A. while on vacation. I was thrilled when they announced their entrance to Canada a couple of years ago but still waiting for one locally in the Greater Toronto Area – although I confess to almost driving to Ottawa JUST for a ‘Nordies’ fix in recent months. Trust me, I am really trying to be patient.

But now I have something else to look forward to. Yesterday, Nordstrom announced the plans to open one of their off-price stores, known as Nordstrom Rack, in downtown Toronto. The 38,600 square foot location will be at One Bloor, conveniently at the corner of Yonge Street and Bloor Street – otherwise known as the shopping mecca of the city.

“We’re excited to announce our first Nordstrom Rack in Canada in such a wonderful location and provide Canadian customers another way to shop their favourite Nordstrom brands at great prices,” said Karen McKibbin, president of Nordstrom Canda. “We want to be a part of compelling locations across the country and this is a great first step. We look forward to getting our doors open to serve customers in Toronto.”

While the location won’t be open until 2018, if you haven’t experienced the thrill of the hunt at the Rack, you can try and fit in a visit to the closest one in Amherst, N.Y., just near the Boulevard Mall. I checked it out a couple of months ago and loved the great selection of labels including Michael Kors, Kate Spade, Tory Burch and more – as well as incredible ‘start the car’ prices. Patience people - lots of patience! Trust me, it'll be worth the wait!

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Holt Renfrew Launches New Online Shopping - Handbags!

A few months ago, I announced that Holt Renfrew was finally – FINALLY!! – launching online shopping with the introduction of their beauty and fragrance department offerings and now they have taken the next step with at least a small portion of their luxe handbag collections. With more styles being added moving forward, at least it’s something for us Holts-loving shoppers.

The designer handbag selection debuts with a handful of labels, including big names such as Alexander McQueen, Alexander Wang, Balenciaga, Chloe, and Salvatore Ferragamo, as well as cult favourites Longchamp (hello ubiquitous Le Pliage!) and MCM and features relative newcomers to the accessory world Sophie Hulme, Uri Minkoff (yes, Rebecca’s brother) and contemporary label Vince.

Hopefully Holt Renfrew can step up the pace and offer more categories sooner rather than later – this slow roll out is KILLING ME! I’m still dreaming of the day that all of my favourite things are just a click away – including Holts incredible footwear department, but hey – it’s a start! Happy shopping! To see all the available hangbags now please visit here.


Sunday, January 10, 2016

The Twentieth Annual Ron White Shoe Drive


It’s time for the Ron White Shoe Drive, and this one is a milestone. This year marks the twentieth annual charitable footwear donation event and the largest in Canada of its kind. Canadian celebrities including Toronto Mayor John Tory, Russell Peters, Celine Dion, Jeanne Beker, Dina Pugliese and Rachel McAdams as well as international stars such as Kevin Spacey, David Spade and Matt Damon have been kind enough to show their support for the cause. Just donate gently worn or unused footwear for women, men and children at any Ron White Shoes retail location in the Greater Toronto Area.

“Even though we’re experiencing milder weather this winter, the need for warm footwear is always present. There are many new families in our communities who have not experienced the Canadian winter – and we want to be ready for them,” said CEO and Creative Director Ron White. “As we celebrate 20 years of this initiative, we are dedicating a significant portion of our donations this year to the New Circles GLOW clothing program to help Syrian refugees who are new to the city.”

The Ron White Shoe Drive has collected over 35,000 pairs to date. Shoes are sorted, cleaned and distributed to organizations in the Toronto area to help those in need. This year, charitable partners include CAMH (Centre for Addiction and Mental Health) Suits Me Fine and the New Circles GLOW clothing program.

Please drop off your donation to any Ron White location, including Manulife Centre, 55 Bloor Street West, Bayview Village, 2901 Bayview Avenue, Sherway Gardens, 25 The West Mall, Downtown Oakville, 189 Lakeshore Road Eat or Leaside, 1553 Bayview Avenue. As a thank you, all donors will receive $50 towards a future purchase at Ron White Shoes. Donations will be accepted until January 31, 2016.

$50 off your purchase of Ron White label footwear only. Valid in-store only until March 31, 2016.