Sunday, November 28, 2010

You May Have Too Much Money When....

An unusual choice for a centerpiece. source


Sunday Morning's = Nostalgia

My favorite way to spend Sunday mornings include white wine, a selection of cheeses and charcuteries as well as artisanal breads. Regrettably, I've not been able to do this since...well not since I lived a short stroll from the Atwater Market in Montreal.

Saturday afternoons I'd make my way over to the Atwater Market.

My first and favorite stop was La Fromagerie. Owner Gilles Jourdenais has owned this boutique cheese and deli shop since 1983. You never buy without a taste. And they will work hard to find the cheeses you like. They have about 800 cheeses! Yes, this is boutique cheese shopping at it's best.

You always walk out with a smile on your face. Just look at can you not be happy after spending a bit of time with him. Everyone behind the glass display and cash are happy in this shop.

I bought my coffee, cheese and deli meats from Gilles every Saturday. One of my favorite coffee mugs, to this day, is one Gilles gave me. They appreciate coffee should be in a Large mug.

Then next up was the wine. Atwater Market is blessed with an SAQ Classique Terroirs d'ici (Liquor store).

I'd pick up a bottle of white to complement the cheese I'd purchased. I should tell you I'm a complete neophyte when it comes to cheese. If I'd had more than a year shopping at La Fromagerie I am certain I'd be a connoisseaur.

I'd grab some fresh fruit and vegetables and perhaps a steak for Saturday's dinner then make my final stop at Boulangerie Premiere Moisson...

for a hot cafe au lait en bol and a fresh warm loaf of an artisinal bread.

Thank you for traveling down memory lane with me this Sunday.


Saturday, November 27, 2010

My 1st Give Away! & What I Got: One Of A Kind Show Toronto

2 Hounds Unleashed is holding a give-away!

Hang out long enough to follow my Blog, Like my Facebook Page and follow my Tweets then comment on this post for a chance to win a ticket to the One of a Kind Xmas Show and Sale in Toronto open now! You have till end of business day Monday to enter! I will have The Girl, at bedtime, randomly select the winner. I will then contact you for your address and Fed-Ex the ticket to you. Good luck!

This is The Girl:

My day at the One of a Kind Show was very fruitful. I walked out with my arms loaded down. Thankfully the organizers of the show have a FREE! package check for shoppers. Imagine that. Customer service is alive and well!

I wanted to buy so much but managed to exercise some control. Here's just a highlight of what I bought:

Julie Pederson's black suede & Tibetan lamb spats (mine have red paint slats):
Julie's booth is where you will find gorgeous Mukluks which are heavenly comfortable. The children's mukluks are outstanding btw! Ok, they are all outstanding. Julie is available to meet and talk with (beautiful woman) and her mother is there with her working the booth. Both very fun ladies. The booth is very busy so don't wait till the end of the show you may end up having to order and *horrors* have to wait for your boots. Booth F-48

Dahlia Drive is artist Wendy Van Riesen. Wendy takes old slips, shirts and kimonos giving them new life with her custom art. I bought a beautiful black slip with lace inserts under the bust and along the hem with the skeleton design on the front and back. Someday I'll post a photo of myself in the dress. I wore it yesterday on our out and abouts, over black skinny jeans with a black velour hoody. Looks amazing and I got many complements and questions about where to get one!

Wendy is overflowing with energy and fun as heck. She will also do custom designs using heat-press, silk-screening and hand painting if you send her a slip.

Wendy had a soft peach slip she'd wrapped around a rusted shovel and left in the ground...if it had fitted I'd have bought it. It is stunning!

These slips totally rock it when you layer them btw. Don't look like everyone else this summer get a Dahlia Drive slip dress! Booth V-56

Honeybea Design Hive is one of the busiest booths at the show. Bea, seen in the photo, makes bags, and other accessories but I got a Bumwarmer for my daughter.

If I'd had more space to try one on I'd have gotten one for myself but this booth was abuzz with activity! Seriously, you have to see these Bumwarmers! Booth N-04

Seriously if I'd had more $ I'd still be at the show. If you where thinking of skipping the show this year you really should reconsider. There are vendors who have not been for years only to return this year to the thrill of attendies. Do not miss out!


Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Motivational Inspiration - get yourself to the One of A Kind Show

I'm so stoked about Toronto's Christmas oneofakind Show and Sale which opens tomorrow (Thursday November 25th) and runs till December 5th.

I have been looking at some of the artists attending the OKS this a.m. and it's gotten me more motivated than ever.

Think about it:
  • No shipping charges (cause most of us do not have a U.S. addie for free shipping).
  • No duty on the gifts you buy (be they for friends & family or for yourself...yes you DO deserve it!). I have confirmed from vendors, Canada Customs has been cracking down on imported 'gifts' and applying duty. I *know*; that's dootie! ;)
  • No waiting for your on-line order to be delivered!! Don't kid yourself. We are in Canada...Canada Post is notorious for being slow.
  • Shop at the show, gift wrap and mail...guaranteed on time delivery for Xmas!
I'm looking forward to meeting:

Artist Kelly Grace

(her blog)

Kelly in her studio. She's adorable. The painting: WANT!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

One Of A Kind Show & Sale - Christmas 2010

I'm looking forward to getting my Christmas shopping done at the Toronto One of a Kind Show & Sale later this month. Not only will I be a shopper, I'll be attending as press. I can't say that without giggling. The perks of being a blogger...industry's want you to talk about them.

It is so easy to talk about this event. It takes place 2 times a year in 4 different cities in North America. My favorite is the Christmas Show.

Where else can you get unique, one of a kind, gifts for all your family and friends in one day?

Artisans from all over the world bring their talents to the oneofakind. This is like Etsy Live. You can meet the artists and learn the story behind the pieces you purchase. For a little while the world will seem like a smaller warmer place. Who'd want to miss out on the warm and fuzzies?

Amazing stocking stuffers for every personality from gourmet coffees, dips, jams and jellies for the chefs on your list; earrings, bangles etc for the fashionista; knit sweaters and designer beds for you pampered pooch...paintings, designer clothing, ceramics, hand blown glass, woodwork...there really is something for everyone.
If you are anywhere near Toronto (November 25-December 5), Vancouver (December 9-12), Chicago (December 2-5) or New York (November 11-14 & 18-21) you do not want to miss the One of a Kind Show. Ok, if you are in or near New York you have missed it...but Toronto is just a hop, skip and a Porter Air flight away.

I can't fail to mention there will likely be huge freshly baked cinnamon buns there. They taste so good while wandering the aisles. I stuffing my face with nibblies for sure.

Speaking of Porter Air, they have a 30% off sale on all flights right now (use promo code: GIFT30) book (before November 24th)!

I can't wait to show you what I find for the loved ones on my list so stay tuned.


Never Overlook Smaller Thrift Stores

I almost never mention where I purchase my thrift store finds. I didn't want to give 'product placement' so I've tried to remain vague. But I think I've been looking at it wrong. It's not about selling for a business with no benefit to myself; it's about helping you find the perfect pieces!

So with that, I'm going to divulge my sources of thrift stores you may not know of. Which you will see include some great finds.

Bibles For Missions:


A sample of what I've found at Bibles for Missions in the GTA:


St. Vincent de Paul:

Canada - you'll have to google for your local SVP thrift stores...unfortunately they aren't quite up on helping us find their local stores...but so worth googling to find one!

Some SVP finds: 


$5 side table (yesterdays find!)

 Of course you all know about the Salvation Army and Goodwill. If they'd like links...they can contact me ;)

I'm going to keep this post updated so if you have any lessor known Thrift Stores in your back pocket let me know and I'll add the links.


Monday, November 22, 2010

The life of a blogger

What a whirlwind weekend it's been for Design Bloggers in Ontario! This past Saturday evening many of us from the GTA (Great Toronto Area for my American friends) and one from Ottawa(!) attended the Canadian Design Bloggers Meet Up at the boutique Hotel Le Germain.

How swanky is that? Not swanky enough...ok. The gentleman at the desk has the best french accent. Every word spoken in the Queen's own sounds over the top chic when said with a thick french accent.

This was no traditional Meet Up. Organizers, Daniella (Dress Design Decor) and Vie (Verdigris Vie), arranged sponsors who went all out providing free flowing wine, hor d'oeuvres, gift bags and top notch giveaways. The mood was cocktail party all the way.

When I heard about the MU I was all over it; excited to meet fellow bloggers who I'd been reading for some time. I was also looking forward to discovering, new to me, blogs by fellow Canadian Design enthusiasts.

The evening was so much fun! I met the most incredible and fun women. Sadly there were no men present. I know you guy design bloggers exist...I follow you.

I was one of a few lucky bloggers to win a prize. The.Most.Coveted.Prize. Delta's Pilar Touch20 Technology and soap dispenser! I have wanted this faucet for my own home since it was first launched by Delta. You can bet when we redo our kitchen this faucet will hold a place of honour...I'm totally stoked. I mean, look at it:

I can not thank Daniella, Vie, our sponsors: Delta, GK Hair, Kravet, House and Home, Style at Home...the list goes on...for a wonderful night. I really hope to get together with these great bloggers again soon.


Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Hot Hot Hot!

A girl just can not have too many...credenzas!

I found this one yesterday. The red of the wood looks wonderful against the bronze of the wall (which accentuates the grain of the credenza).


The credenza which was previously in the hall is temporarily in a client's home. This new one will stay where it is. It's the perfect size for the wall and the legs are so sexy it demands to be seen from afar!
"Yes I'm jumping like a jumping jack.
The fun part now is figuring out where to put the old one when it returns!

I suppose I'll have to start selling off a credenza or two...NOT! Turns out lamps are not my only obsession.

BTW, $49 at a local Bibles For Missions Thrift Store =)


Saturday, November 13, 2010

Stand ins for the right piece

I've been looking for the perfect piece of wall sculpter for above my living room sofa but so far I've not had any luck. I saw this piece at HomeSense for $40. It'll do for now.

This is a superbly bad photo so I included Tallulah my beautiful blue whippet pup...cause y'all tell me how much you love her!



Busy busy - but always time for Thrifting!

I've been busy with a couple of clients these past few weeks so I've had absolutely no energy to post a blog.

Makes this a very boring blog to visit...I'm quite aware and feel guilty about. Truthfully I feel like a poser due to my lack of posts. But I've promised myself and will promise you: 

I will NOT post just photos of other peoples work with nothing written but a verb.
Don't get me wrong, I enjoy those posts for their beauty and simplicity but I think there are quite enough without my contribution.

So here is a quick peek at my latest find. Photo was, as usual, taken with my iPhone. Appologies.

I found the light at Habitat's ReStore last week for $95! You may have also noticed I painted my dining room...railings by F&B. I was feeling stressed from work so when I got home...I painted. One coat that night and the second the next morning. I feel sooo much better with the beige gone...and my new light up!

The dining room is currently a craft room as well for the kids & admittedly for myself as well but since painting and getting the light up I will divest the room of all crafting...promise! Then the table can go in the centre and the light can be lowered.

Some day, I'll style the place and take real photos. For now, however, you see how we live...the blue thing in the lower right corner of the photo is The Boy...tidying his his new Cookie Monster wool winter hat. His pay for being my assistant yesterday at a client site. He has only taken it off to sleep :)



Monday, November 1, 2010

Black Rooms

It's interesting to see how the trend of black(ish) paint on walls has moved from feature walls to our now seeing entire rooms.

(the far wall with the drapery has yet to be painted white and the baseboards have not been painted yet)

I've done the same myself. Once you've painted a wall realize how liberating it feels. Walls seem to disappear or recede.

When I was in the planning stage of using black paint, Farrow & Balls Railings, I kept stalling because I was not happy with only feature walls. I wanted more. Of course my dilemma was a fear of having too much black.

One night while laying in bed unable to sleep I had the brainstorm (yes I have sleepless nights because of paint): I'd paint all parallel walls in Railings and walls perpendicular to those I'd do in my alternate (which has turned out to be F & B's Blackened btw).

I was as excited as a school girl!

Don't you love when you feel that way? 

I got started first thing the next morning.

I've found a happy place. The black does NOT feel like a contrast to the white walls because they give you the sense they are not even there. The art seems to float in the air. What other colour could do that?

The dining room will have all walls in Railings but otherwise it is all East/West walls on the main floor in Railings and the North/South walls are in Blackened.

I've not finished all the painting yet but you can see the hallway in the photo above.

I think it looks beautiful! Of course, our floors are still the ugly tile but I will not wait for the renos to be done before making our house a home. And it does feel so much more welcoming. The black while being dramatic also feels like a big warm hug. That is what a home feels like.

I can't wait to tackle the stairs and stairwell going up to the second floor but it will have to wait till I get the dining room done next. I will keep you posted on the progress.