Marketplace

#WhiteCabanaWearsPink: Fashion

For the last couple of weeks, pink has taken over White Cabana mostly through the world of interior design. Today, pink’s coming through brightly through fashion. Get ready to be inspired by some lovely outfits.

Sketch Forty Two

La Petite Noob

Jennifer Lake

Rosie Londoner

If you’re looking to bring some pink into your wardrobe this season, here are some options to get you going.

playsuit, purse, shorts, jacket, earrings, vest, booties, UGG boots, cardigan, shoes, purse

*Affiliate links have been used. All earnings from affiliate links this month will be donated to the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation as part of my #WhiteCabanaWearsPink series.

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Design: Texture in White

We’ve had all sorts of weather this fall. I’ve had to turn on the heat, the fireplace, the air conditioner, and I have even had the windows open. We even had a really warm Thanksgiving! It’s been wild! But the cooler weather is coming – and I think will be here to stay. And cool seasonal weather means many of us crave texture.

Thinking of texture, I found a ton of inspirational images to share today.

via Tamara Magel

via Domino

via Urban Outfitters

via 204 Park

via Tamara Magel

via A Pretty Fix

via Shake My Blog

#WhiteCabanaWearsPink: A Pink Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving to all of my Canadian readers!

It’s been another busy weekend on my end. I found my inner German on Friday to celebrate the first night of Oktoberfest in Kitchener-Waterloo, then feasted on turkey with family on Sunday to celebrate Thanksgiving. Today, I’ll enjoy a day of rest (and take care of a few chores, too)!

Since today is Thanksgiving Monday, for today’s #WhiteCabanaWearsPink, I’m focusing on beautiful Thanksgiving table decor in shades of pink, rose, and fuchsia. Infusing pink into a tablescape is easy to do for other occasions as well. Just keep layering the shades, and switch out the pumpkins for something more appropriate. Miniature disco balls or ornaments would be perfect to include for a Christmas table setting.

via The Glitter Guide

via Sugar Paper

via Floral Verde

via Oh Happy Day

via Tidbits

via Good Housekeeping

via Randi Garrett Design

via Sugar and Charm

via Poppy Talk

via Citrine Living

via Domino

via Maison de Pax

via House Beautiful

Here are some items you could consider to get the look at your home.

candle, pepper mill, chair, cutlery, pumpkin, candelabra, bar stool, champagne flute, dessert plate, serving bowl, pink plate, plate, plate,

* Affiliate links have been used. Get click happy!

Thanks again for supporting #WhiteCabanaWearsPink. I will be donating funds raised through affiliate links this month to the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation.

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#WhiteCabanaWearsPink: Interiors

Yesterday, I ran 5K (well, 4K running + 1K walking at the mid-point) at the CIBC Run for the Cure at the Kitchener run site at Conestoga’s Doon Campus. The weather, energy, crowd, route, and volunteers were all top notch! I am so grateful for all the research that has gone into understanding, fighting, and treating cancer. Raising money and running a 5K with an amazing crowd of survivors and supporters is the least that I can do to honour my family and friends who are fighting and surviving cancer and to remember those who have lost their fights (like my Zia Rose).

In addition to yesterday’s 5K run, this month, #WhiteCabanaWearsPink right here on the blog! Every Monday, pink will take over White Cabana to raise awareness – and funds – for breast cancer awareness. Sounds fun, right? It is! Let’s get going!

I’m starting the 2017 #WhiteCabanaWearsPink series with a selection of absolutely beautiful interior spaces.

Tatiana Wojtan

Cat Therrien

The Blondielocks

BareMalin

This Old Hudson

Four Generations One Roof

French by Design

Lindsay Stephenson

Charlotte Jardfors

If you’re looking to inject some pink into your own home, maybe some of these items* will catch your eye!

pouf, rug, lamp, vase, pink stone pedestal, coffee table, sofa, blanket, ottoman, towel

*Affiliate links have been used. Get click happy!

See more of #WhiteCabanaWearsPink.

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Hotel to Home: 1 Hotel South Beach, Miami

When I was at Sheridan Oakville last week (giving a talk about blogging! #WhiteCabanaGoesToSheridan), one of the students in the class suggested that I check out 1 Hotel in Miami and to look especially for the white lobby. He was certain that I would be impressed. And guess what, I am! And I think you will be, too. Just look at this space:

1 Hotel South Beach, Miami (photo via JetSetter)

Absolutely gorgeous! I want to move in!

But since I can’t move in, I can design a room inspired by this gorgeous space. Here I go:

sofa, chair, chair, fern leaf stem, pendant light, daybed, coffee table

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Design: Mix and Match Prints

I’m oddly drawn to this outfit even though I normally usually always avoid pattern mixing myself in both wardrobe and home design.

photo Diego Anciano, via Vogue Espana

Here are some other images from over the last several years that showcase print mixing in fashion:

Olivia Palermo, via Daily Mail

via LoLoBu

via Mon Monde Fou

menswear, via Pattern Prints Journal

via Maja Wyh

via Taaora

via PopSugar

And here’s what’s going on in the world of interior design:

via Rue Daily

heart sheet set, via PB Teen

via Alquimia Deco

via Sophie Burke Design

via Rue Daily

via Simply Grove

Nashville home of Gen and Ben Sohr, via One Kings Lane

What do you think? Do you mix patterns regularly? How about colours and patterns?

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Marketplace: Back to School Favourites

Back to school season is the busiest for me. While I know many of my readers – and bloggers who I follow – have been getting their kiddies ready for the season, I’ve been busy on the other end of the school life. I work at the university, I teach, and I take courses, too. I have to get myself ready – not just for my professor life, but also for my student life. And this all means that September is the start of everything. These last couple of weeks have been very hectic as I’ve been adapting to my new routine, trying to remember my schedule, and figuring out when to do all the other stuff in my life – friends, family, chores – during the week.

To help me stay organized, here are four of my must-haves for school and work.

1. Agenda

I used to buy whatever agenda seemed cute and affordable. For the last couple of years though, I’ve opted for the Moleskine agenda that has the calendar on one side and a notes page on the other. I absolutely adore this set-up. It’s two notebooks in one for me. I’ve gotten rid of my “ideas/to do lists/things to remember” notebook, and simply carry around one sweet Moleskine. I have yet to find a white agenda version, so I’ve opted for red for the second year in a row.

Moleskine agenda

2. Binders

While I’m fairly tech-savvy, I am traditional when it comes to reading materials and taking notes for my MBA classes. As in – I read off of printed paper, and I write notes on paper, too. The way that my MBA courses are set up this term, I am finding it best to gather my readings and notes in binders.

white binder

3. Water Bottle

I am trying (again) to cut down on coffee and tea consumption. My water intake has always been really good, but it gets even easier when I have a water bottle on my desk. This one from bkr is rock ‘n roll cool!

water bottle

4. Tote bag

I normally carry my Timbuk2 El Rio backpack to/from school/work every day, but I sometimes have to alternate my backpack with a tote depending on what my day holds. I have several Longchamp Le Pliage totes, so it’s easy enough to grab one and go.

tote bag

 

 

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The Friday Five: The Puffy Vest

Fall is the perfect season to embrace your puffy vest. It’s certainly a great option for cool mornings, and easy enough to shed once the warm afternoon weather arrives. I have a bright yellow one – that I originally bought for cold-weather running – but I’d really like to invest in a cream one this year. I love how it looks paired with blue or black jeans – aka my weekend wardrobe!

This illustration by Mark Challen easily convinces us that “the thin puffer vest is fall’s most versatile piece” (for men and women, I’d say)!

illustration by Mark Challen (@MarkChallenLive)

I’ve had a browse around the web, and here are five white vests that I think would suit us well this season.

quilted down vest, $158 CAD, J.Crew

quilted puffer vest, $66.50 USD, J.Crew Factory

fleece lined vest, $59 USD, L.L.Bean

quilted vest, $35.50 CAD, Old Navy

quilted barn vest, $119 USD, Talbots

Any other recommendations?

Have a great weekend, everyone!

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Hotel to Home: Baccarat Hotel, New York

How have I not yet posted about the luxe Baccarat Hotel in New York City? This one is right up my crystal-loving, luxury-dreaming alley. I know New York is all about the city, but wouldn’t this just be a fantastic retreat from the noise and pollution of the city streets?

This room goes for over $1000 USD per night. It’s slightly over my travel budget. But – wow! Gorgeous!

And before I move on to my version, take a moment to drool over the Baccarat Suite and the city car.

And now onto my interpretation:

blanket, duvet, wall sconce, armchair, mirror, pinboard, pillow, curtains, bust

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Two For Tuesday: Headphones

Are you into mini or large headphones? For what purposes?

Apple Airpods, $219 CAD, Best Buy

Bose headphones, $269.99 CAD, Best Buy

I use the set that came with my iPhone – usually when I’m driving – and another set for my iPod when I (sometimes) use it. I have yet to try sound-proofing headphones for travel even though I know they’re a popular option.

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The Friday Five: Squirrels

I’m really trying to hold on to summer, but with lower-than-10-degree weather, back to school week, and colour changing leaves (it’s happening!), it’s really hard. I’m sad to see summer go because it’s my favourite season. Not only that, but I know that once the cool weather arrives, it’s here to stay. For a while. A long while. And even though I try every year to like something about winter, I’m definitely opposed to it. But I digress.

The real point of this post is to feature some lovely squirrels. It seems as though I have some strong memories of this little, wild animal.

When my French exchange student came to live with me and my family when I was sixteen, one of the first things she commented on were the squirrels. She couldn’t believe how many were jumping and climbing around in my parents’ backyard. At the time, I didn’t even know the French word for squirrel (un écureuil). It was fun to watch her excitement about an animal I barely paid attention to.

Of my mom’s Swarovski collection, the squirrel has always been one my favourite figurines (see below). Its curvy tail got me!

And the other day, on my walk home from work, I saw the tiniest baby squirrel. I had never seen one so small before. I was too slow with my camera, so I wasn’t able to snap a photo, but, trust me, it was teeny! And it was moving pretty quickly!

squirrel dish, Urban Barn

squirrel match strike, Jonathan Adler

squirrel figurine, Swarovski

squirrel dish, 1st Dibs

squirrel dish, 1st Dibs

Are squirrels abundant where you live? Do they annoy you? Are you fond of them?

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Hotel to Home: Hotel Mono, Singapore

The colour palette at Hotel Mono is limited – black, white, grey. Classics, if you ask me! This minimalist hotel in Singapore opened just a few months ago in March 2017.

I’m definitely heading toward a reinterpretation of one of the rooms, but before I do, look at the hotel from the outside.

Did your jaw drop? Yup. It happened to me, too.

There are several room options available at Hotel Mono, but today I’m focusing on the most unusual: the single room. Everything in one room. Why create real walls when you don’t have to?

The room is affordable, too, at just about $100 CAD per night (depending on day of week month, and promotion, of course).

If you can’t make it all the way to Singapore, but you are looking to do a mini reno in your own home, here are some options that might get your plan going.

black jug and sugar bowl, tiles, black bed frame, mirror, sheet set, rainshower system, cabinet

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Two for Tuesday: Backpacks

Happy back to school day/week! I do love back to school season because it feels like it’s a fresh start. Sure, this time of year can be anxious for many what with new routines and end of summer vacation, but hopefully after this week, the stress will disappear.

In honour of the season, here are two white backpacks from brands that I know the university crowd supports!

daypack, $44.99 USD, Herschel

backpack, $36 USD, Jansport

Design: Caribou Cabin in My Home

A couple of weeks ago, I shared news of Canadian newcomer Caribou Cabin. This shop designs, customizes, and manufactures chalkboards, magnetic whiteboards, and pinboards. The company generously sent me a beautiful square (34″ x34″) linen pinboard – white a white frame, of course.

Soon after the order was placed, my massive shipment arrived at my doorstep. The board was wrapped carefully and arrived safely to my home in Waterloo. When I saw the grey linen for the first time, I was impressed by the quality of the item. And the grey matched my home perfectly.

I leaned it up against the wall behind a cabinet in my living room which houses my radio, record player, and typewriter. I pinned up some memorable items from my office that I knew would look pretty and would also remind me of happy celebrations.

As I took my photos, I thought that the pinboard in my living room would be the perfect spot to showcase Christmas cards. And the great thing about the pinboard is that I can move it to other areas of my home such as a hallway landing area or office. The office is certainly an obvious spot for a pinboard, but I don’t think it’s the only place for it.

Thanks to Caribou Cabin for sponsoring this post. All photos and opinions are my own.

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The Friday Five: Round Mirrors

Round mirrors haven’t ever gone away in the design world, but I haven’t written about them in a long while, so I thought I’d revisit this stylish accessory today.

via The Design Chaser

via Tiffany Leigh Design

via The Stables

via Vanessa Francis

via Kristina Lynne

via Homey Oh My

via Rambling Reno

Here are five round mirrors to consider if you’re in the market for one.

mirror, Wayfair, $149.99 CAD

mirror, Ikea, $99 CAD

mirror, CB2, $299 CAD

mirror, Umbra, $130 CAD

mirror, West Elm, $392.55 CAD

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Two for Tuesday: The Caged Stool

Today’s pair oozes glam with sleek gold lines and curves.

 Nate Berkus – caged stool, $105.47 CAD, Target

bride’s veil stool, Phase Design, $1540 USD at Twentieth

Marketplace: Caribou Cabin

I’m thrilled to share news of the recent launch of Caribou Cabin – a Canadian company specializing in well-designed and beautifully manufactured chalkboards, corkboards, whiteboards, and pinboards. Organization and art all in one item? Yes, please!

One of the reasons that I’m eager to write about Caribou Cabin is because I have known one of the owners – Tim – since highschool (aka – years and years) and when he emailed to let me know about his newest venture, I was happy to help spread the word.

Each board is manufactured in the company’s Toronto workshop, and great care is taken to design and manufacture high-quality products that suit individual styles and homes. Frames come in multiple finishes for every board category, but you’ll see that (as per usual) I lean toward the white, black, and grey options.

magnetic chalkboard (top: black frame, bottom: white frame)

corkboards

magnetic whiteboards

linen pinboards

Whether you’re in the market for a chalkboard, corkboard, whiteboard, or pinboard, you can browse the selection at Caribou Cabin, choose your size, select your frame, and easily place your order online. What’s not to love?

Stay tuned for another Caribou Cabin feature soon as I’d like to give you an up-close look at the linen pinboard that I have in my own home. Spoiler alert – it’s lovely!

Two for Tuesday: The White Swan

It seems that every year when I’m in Florida, swans come to mind. Last year, I had quite the round-up of swan merchandise, and today I’m bringing you two swans that I’ve come across on my recent shopping trips around Florida.

swan keychain

swan inflatable drink holder

Two for Tuesday: White Coral

I love the delicateness and fanciness of coral. And since it’s beachy, and I’m spending my days and nights at the beach, it seems like a great two-of-a-kind this week.

white coral on glass stand

Michael Aram coral cutley set

Fashion: Pretty White Swimsuits

I have not been to the pool even once this summer. Sad. Truly. Between my crazy work/MBA/extra work schedule and the many rainy days we’ve had, there has not been one moment to escape to the pool and lounge for hours on end. That said, things are going to change as long as the Florida weather is as I’m expecting it to be – full sun, full heat, and full beach.

Here are some swimsuits if you’re still in the market for your own summer vacation plans!

white balconnet maillot, Natori

criss cross one piece, Mara Hoffman

swimsuit, Eres Paris

one piece, Kate Spade

white bikini, Seafolly

Marysia swim suit, Club Monaco

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Cars: Review of the Audi Q5

Have I caught your attention with the title? Audi. Q5. Who’s excited for a little car review? Honestly, I am most definitely thrilled to be writing this post about my recent experience with the Audi Q5 – aka #WhiteCabanaDreamCar.

I’ve been keen on the Q5 for a while now, but it hasn’t always been that way.

A long(er) while ago, you may remember that I became pretty obsessed with the Fiat 500. I loved the look of this little Italian go-getter, but eventually my want/need for this little one faded. I rented it for a weekend, and while I enjoyed driving it around Toronto, it barely fit my luggage, and it was quite a noisy highway ride.

In recent years, it was the Audi Q7 that caught my attention, and I wrote about it here. What a beautiful car. It’s sleek, stylish, and roomy. In fact, once I saw it up-close, I realized it might be a touch too roomy for my liking. With no children in tow, I don’t have a need for its third row of seats.

Enter the Q5. I kept seeing this car on the road, and I kept liking it. And liking it some more. When I drove home from Montebello, Quebec, I spotted many on the highway, and each time I saw one, I thought, “now that’s a nice looking car,” sometimes I said it to myself before I was close enough to confirm that the car I was eyeing was in fact an Audi Q5.

Given that I grew up with an Audi 5000, I have fond memories of the Audi brand. My parents bought our grey Audi 5000 at the Audi factory Ingolstadt, Germany, then shipped it over to Toronto way back in 1985! We traveled everywhere in that car as a family. When my Dad finally retired it in 2006 after 21 years and 344,996kms, it was a pretty sad day for all of us. We all knew it was at the end of its life (21 years!), but it was emotional to see it go. Is that weird? To be so emotionally attached to a car? Hope I’m not the only one!

Dad and our Audi 5000 in Ingolstadt, Germany
(my sister and I are in the backseat – camera shy, I guess)

Okay, so we weren’t too camera shy. My sister and I at a basket shop in Germany. I’m flexing my muscles by carrying the biggest basket I could find, I guess!

So this brings me to my recent, super up-close encounter with the Audi Q5. The AudiKW team generously loaned me a white Q5 for a couple of days of adventuring around the Waterloo region (see #WhiteCabanaxAudi on Instagram for a few more photos). What a treat! I was happy to explore the white, sleek AudiKW showroom while I waited for my car. While dealerships can be easily intimidating for someone like me (who knows very little about cars), I was pleasantly surprised by everyone’s welcoming attitudes. I felt comfortable.

I met with Deon and Robert who set me up with the Q5. Robert – a brand specialist – walked me through all the features of the Audi Q5 Komfort. This model is the lowest end of the Audi Q5 spectrum, so some elements I really liked, and others would come in a higher end model (like the Progressive or the Technik).

When I got in the car, the first things I noticed were the driver’s seat and the size of the front window. The driver’s seat was made for me (or so I like to think). It was comfortable from the beginning right up until I dropped off the car. The front window panel was large and free of obstructions. I know this should always be the case, but it isn’t. Sometimes the frame is too thick or the rear view mirror is bulky. I also loved that the windshield wipers tucked away beautifully – they weren’t visible when not in use. Great design detail!

I love the design of these mirrors.

I currently drive a 2004 Toyota Rav4 – which I really do love – but it doesn’t have the modern features of new cars, so it took me a little while to get used to all the tech in the Audi Q5. Okay – not that long, but you know what I mean. In the Audi Q5, I could actually plug in my phone and connect it to bluetooth. I know many new cars have this feature, but my Rav4 doesn’t, so it took a moment to get used to it. Once I did – let me tell you – I made as many hands-free phone calls as I could while I was driving! I get amused so darn easily!

I think I only managed to use about one or two of these buttons! I’m pretty tech-savvy, but not when it comes to cars!

The cargo space is decent in the Komfort (26.8 cubic feet), but I definitely noticed that it’s smaller than the space in my Rav4 (about 38 cubic feet). The seats fold down, of course, which helps for large loads, but it would be something I’d have to consider and test out before I’d purchase it as I do end up carrying large loads on random trips in and out of town. The cargo space in the Q5 is tidy with a hidden spare tire and a privacy cover, too.

 

Great design – everything has its place!

Because I live in Uptown Waterloo and normally walk or bike to the places I need to go, I forced myself to venture out a bit for a longer drive to get the full experience of this car. I took the highway-route to Cambridge so I could go fast! FUN! The pick-up in the Q5 was amazing, and my comfort level remained high! The car drove smoothly and quietly, and I definitely liked driving fast (within speed limits, of course)!

When I was going over the features with Robert at the dealership, he told me that the car can adjust to various driving modes – dynamic, comfort, auto, etc. I opted for dynamic for the majority of the time because the ride felt fast and smooth. Dynamic mode has tight steering and more aggressive gear shifting. Comfort, on the other hand, has softer, easier steering and less aggressive gear shifting.

Look at the little lights underneath the handles – love them!

Having the Audi Q5 in my possession made my birthday celebrations extra fun! In fact, since my parents came for a visit, they, too, experienced the luxurious drive! This was especially fun for my dad who recreated his Audi pose from 1985. 

Notice my approach to parking? The farther and emptier, the better!

Over the course of my Audi Q5 ownership, I drove as much as I possibly could. In addition to driving to and around Cambridge, Kitchener, Waterloo, and St. Jacobs, I drove over to the sweet town of Elora for a birthday dinner celebration. On the way, I stopped by the Montrose kissing bridge – the last covered bridge in Ontario, and the oldest of its kind in Canada.

And I also stopped by the castle-house on Middlebrook Road (between Montrose and Elora).  While in Elora, I checked out the progress of the Elora Mill. Construction is well underway, and I’m very much looking forward to a return trip here to eat, stay, and relax! It’s going to add so much more prettiness to the already-pretty town of Elora. As you can see in these photos, parking the Q5 was a breeze. Backing into grassy areas and stone-covered roads was a-okay!

For an SUV, the Audi Q5 is extremely fuel efficient. I love this aspect of the car! Apparently, it’s good to go 1000km on a tank of gas. Isn’t that amazing for an SUV?

I took on several passengers over the course of my mini-ownership. Every passenger loved the experience. All agreed that the car was definitely sleek and luxurious and beautifully designed. Back-seat passengers felt that the ride was spacious and comfortable and enjoyed the adjustable back seats as well as the back-seat air conditioning controls.

As a driver, I got easily used to having the control buttons at my fingertips on the console. While some passengers assumed that the navigation screen was touch-screen, it wasn’t. This didn’t bother me at all. I really liked having the circle button on the console to control music, phone calls, settings, etc. It was very easy to operate and comfortable because I didn’t need to extend my arm for touch screen.

While I did absolutely enjoy the Audi Q5 Komfort, and my interest in purchasing one has been confirmed because of this recent driving experience, there are some features that did not come with this model that I would want. My top priority would be a sunroof. I love having a sunroof in my Rav4, and I would definitely want a Q5 that had one. The model that I drove didn’t have all the snazzy sensors and cameras that I would want in a new car. I’d definitely upgrade to include these as I think they’re especially handy for parking and highway driving.

If you can’t already tell, overall, I have become more attached to the Audi Q5 after this driving experience. It’s a beautiful vehicle from every angle, and it made me feel safe, happy, and secure. I also loved walking up to it knowing that I got to get in the driver’s seat. This car definitely suits my style and personality!

Do I still think that this is the car for me? You bet!

Unless, maybe, I should try out the Audi TT first? 🙂

Many thanks to MC and the AudiKW team for sponsoring this post. All opinions and photos are my own.

p.s. Outfit details: jeans – Joe Fresh (last year), top – Kate Spade, eyeglasses – Polette, sunglasses – Rayban, purse – Longchamp.

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The Friday Five: Beach Art

Oh, you know, I have the beach on my brain big tiiiime because I’m heading to my summer home-away-from-home soon! I’m pretty excited for some major relaxation time on the beach under the hot Floridian sun! So, in anticipation of long, lazy days and nights at the beach, I’m bringing some beachy to the blog today in the form of art!

white beach club, Italy, Gray Malin

white beach umbrellas, Italy, Gray Malin

white hot, Erin Beutel, Minted

iconic lifeguard tower, Kate Houlihan, Minted

collection, Sadie Holden, Minted

Have a great weekend, everyone!

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Hotel to Home: Ritz Carlton Dorado Beach, Puerto Rico

Today we’re heading south to the Ritz Carlton Dorado Beach in Puerto Rico. Bring on the sunshine and warmth! The Ritz Carlton Dorado Beach has plenty of beautiful spaces, but it was the simplicity of this hallway that really inspired me to write this hotel to home post.

via Ritz Carlton Dorado Beach

walnut bench, blinds, light, rock art, sea fan specimen, white art

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Marketplace: Sur La Table

I don’t just like it because of its French name, I like Sur La Table because of its beautiful selection of products. I remember visiting the store for the first time in NYC. We don’t have it here in Canada, but since I’ll be heading to Florida soon, I may try to stop in to the Tampa location one day.

Here’s a round-up of items that I’d add to my endless-budget wish list.

spatula spoon, rectangular terrine, lion’s head bowl, chef’s hat (because it’s so fun!), marble and glass cloche, Rosle balloon whisk, lion salt and pepper shakers, coffee mug, mortar and pestle

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Hotel to Home: Serengeti House, Tanzania

We’re traveling all the way to Tanzania today because the Serengeti House – and its surroundings – is definitely worth a visit! Here’s just one of the many beautiful rooms in this luxurious hotel.

If you like the combination of warm whites and muted sand, then here’s a starting off point for the look:

curtains, rug, table, tray table, pillow, chandelier, sofa, armchair, cane chair, coffee table

 

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The Friday Five: Great White Sneakers

In addition to flip flops and ballet flats, the great white sneaker is one that I’ve got in my summer footwear rotation. Mine are off-white Converse, and they’re great for biking and weekend errands. I have yet to pair them with long dresses and floral skirts as I’ve been seeing around the blogosphere over the last couple of years, but maybe this will be a look I’ll try as the summer months move on.

via May Society

via Pinterest

via Atlantic-Pacific

via Atlantic-Pacific

I’ve rounded up five variations on the white sneaker at various price points for you today.

white leather sneaker, $85 CAD

Superga sneakers, $64 USD

Stan Smith sneaker, $81.90 CAD

Lacoste Carnaby sneaker, $98 USD

Chiara Ferragni sneakers, $413 USD

Hotel to Home: Santa Clara 1728, Lisbon

The Santa Clara 1728 in Lisbon, Portugal is a small hotel with plenty of style. The tiled bathrooms, wood plank flooring, and linens look to be of the highest quality. I grabbed a photo of a dining space for today’s hotel to home inspiration. It’s definitely an easy-to-recreate space.

via Santa Clara 1728

Here’s the look I created inspired by the Santa Clara:

tablecloth, chair, dish set, glasses, lavender centrepiece, cutlery set, napkins

The Friday Five: The Classic Striped Dress

I used to avoid stripes at all costs. Now, I embrace them. I have a collection of too many striped tops (but, really, can you ever have too many), and a few classic striped dress. They’re easy to wear, and are good for work and for evening events. And, they come in every price point, so there’s something out there for everyone’s budget. Here are five that have recently caught my eye.

t-shirt dress, $34.99 USD, L.L.Bean

stripe flounce-sleeve dress, $109 USD, Talbots

stripe flutter-sleeve dress, $160 USD, Kate Spade

bell sleeve dress, $192 CAD, via Nordstrom

MDS stripes dress, $245 USD, Club Monaco

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The Friday Five: The Maple Leaf

Canada is celebrating its 150th birthday tomorrow, and cities, towns, villages, and hamlets are all preparing to celebrate with food and fireworks. Red and white is dominating stores, squares, and supermarkets, and Canadians are eager to celebrate!

Since the maple leaf is one of Canada’s most prominent symbols, I’m sharing five versions of it from five Canadian companies.

diamond maple leaf brooch, Birks

maple leaf bookends, Chapters Indigo

Canada – True North art print, Penny Paper Co.

Canada bucket and shovel, Canadian Tire

pure silver coin, Canada Post

I hope all my Canadian readers enjoy a wonderful long weekend! Happy #Canada150!

Fashion: Spring Picks from Club Monaco

Club Monaco releases beautiful collections each season, but its light, airy, and white pieces in the spring/summer collections are particularly beautiful. I rarely get to a Club Monaco store because we don’t have one in the Waterloo region, but when I do, I try to pick up a piece or two that will be a little something special in my wardrobe. This skirt and this skirt, for example, have served me well over the years!

Peibi top, $119 CAD (on sale)

Vidorus scallop tie skirt, $99 CAD (on sale)

coin necklace, $129 CAD (on sale)

Colby scalloped dress, $229 CAD

Isota Lina tote, $285 CAD

Emberlynn sweater, $159.50 CAD

Feed 100 shopper, $38 CAD

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The Friday Five: Classic White Dressers

I’m looking to replace one of the dressers in my bedroom. If you’ve seen my house in the June issue of Style at Home (#WhiteCabanaxStyleatHome), then you know that I’ve got a bit of a French theme going on in there. I’d like a simple white/cream dresser that has more of an open bottom than anything solid. This will allow the air to travel through the vent underneath it.

dresser, $1199 USD, Pottery Barn Kids (spotted at Sarah Gunn’s home)

dresser, $1479 CAD, Wayfair

dresser, $2586 CAD, Ballard Designs

dresser, $893 USD, French Bedroom Company

dresser, starting at $999 USD, PB Teen

Have a great weekend, everyone! It’s a long weekend here, and you can be sure I’ll be taken advantage of some extra downtime.

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Two for Tuesday: Basketweave Pattern

Last month, I bought these Cole Haan sneakers, and I’ve been wearing them almost daily (not in the rain!) since I bought them. They are so comfortable! These white ones are probably just as comfortable, and have their own distinct, classic Cole-Haan, basketweave pattern.

Cole Haan ZeroGrand Huarache Oxford

wicker hamper

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The Friday Five: Mother’s Day Gift Ideas from Urban Barn

With Mother’s Day around the corner – on Sunday, May 14th – it might be time to start thinking about how you’re going to spoil loved ones in your life. Mother’s Day for me usually means a trip to Toronto to spend time with my mom doing everyday sorts of things – a garage sale perhaps, a trip to the mall, or just lounging around at home reading magazines. Mom and I enjoy many of the same easy-going activities. Heck, I’m sure we’ve even spent the day doing DIYs together! Mother’s Day is also a day to celebrate other moms in my life – my sister (mom of 4 cuties!) and friends, and to reflect on relationships I’ve had with other strong women who are no longer with us like my aunt and grandmothers.

In terms of gifts, I think moms appreciate any token. A card, a phone call, an email, a text, or a material object lets your loved ones know that you’re thinking about them. I like to spoil my mom with flowers because I know she appreciates them so much!

If you’re looking for some Mother’s Day gift ideas (and if you’d like to spoil yourself at the same time), you might want to have a look at Urban Barn. This Canadian retailer offers up-to-date items for your home – from big furniture pieces to smaller accessories. I’ve been to the Cambridge location numerous times, and there’s always something in white that catches my eye.

Today, I’m sharing five items from Urban Barn’s current collection that would make great gifts for loved ones.

Here’s an affordable container for a new plant or bouquet of flowers.

murl planter large, $19

Another place for flowers…or sangria…or water…is this pretty little pitcher.

webster water pitcher, $19

Little bowls like this one are perfect for candies, jewelery, or keys.

belize oyster decor dish, $29

If your mom needs a bedroom makeover, this dresser looks like it would be a great piece to add.

parker dresser, $1499

This bench would be beautiful in a garden. There’s also a full patio set, too.

piazza folding bench, $399

Many thanks to Urban Barn for sponsoring this post. All opinions are my own.

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The Friday Five: Designer Tees

T-shirt season is just about here. After months and months of cold weather, I’m definitely ready! While these tees have super cute graphics, their price tags are a tad on the high side. How much do you budget for a graphic tee?

Comme des Garcons t-shirt, $150 USD

Boutique Moschino t-shirt, $225 USD

Peter Jensen fish rabbit t-shirt, $101 USD

Karl Lagerfeld Paris profile t-shirt, $49 CAD

PS by Paul Smith t-shirt, $223

Have a great weekend!

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Hotel to Home: Byron Beach Abodes

About 10 years ago, I spent a month in Australia. It was as wonderful as you can imagine. While I spent much of my time in Surfers Paradise, I did some traveling along the east coast, too. At the time, I was very much a budget traveler, but if I went back now, I’d love to save up and stay in places like the Byron Beach Abodes.  I’m only showing you one small bedroom today, but you must have a browse around the various suites and villas. Everything is just beautiful and inviting.

Byron Beach Abodes

Really liking the look of the bedroom? Here’s where you might go to find similar items:

crystal doorknob, striped duvet cover, chair, air plant, shelf, wood picture frames, salvaged wood mirrors, lamp

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Marketplace: A Basket Round-Up

I’m seeing an increasing number of baskets in natural and white in homes around the internet. Is this a classic or a trend? What are your thoughts?

via Damneras Vorld

via Live 2 Like

via Rose and Ivy

via Looks Like White

via Remodelista

via Coco Lapine Design

If you’re looking to incorporate baskets into your own space, here are some options.

via

via

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Branas, $16.99, Ikea

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basket, $149, The Maryn

via Connected Artisan Goods

basket, $59, Amara

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Marketplace: The Camel Trend

I know flamingos and swans usually come out at this time of year for home and wardrobe, but I’m seeing camels in my trips online.

Tatiana, Mary Rose, and Camels, William Klein

camel pendant, $158, Kate Spade

camel, $131, Jonathan Adler

camel sweatshirt, $128, Anthropologie

camel sheet set, $32+ (on sale), Martha Stewart

baby camel print, $25+, Sharon Montrose

camel ring, $128, Kate Spade

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Marketplace: Spring Bike Accessories

Who is excited for spring biking? I am! Waterloo is a great place for biking because of all the trails. Road biking is decent, too, because of all the designated bike lanes and shared road signs.

After last year’s makeover, my Peugeot is in pretty great shape. I’m replacing my grips with Brooks leather grips, and I’d like to add a sturdy back rack because my vintage version fell apart last year.

If you’re in the market for some bike upgrades and accessories, here are a few design-friendly suggestions.

basket, helmet, headlight, backpack, jumpsuit, cupholder, reflective stickers, pin, lock, storage rack, bell, reflective pant strap, leather toolbag

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The Friday Five: What I Like about My Sea Bags Tote

Recently, I styled some outfits with various totes from Sea Bags – a Maine shop that specializes in crafting high-quality bags and accessories using recycled sails.

Today, I’m taking you on a close-up tour of my customized tote. I adore it! Truly. Absolutely did not expect to love it as much as I do.

But, first, a photo of me during one summer of sailing (which made it onto the cover of Ontario Sailor magazine, by the way):

There I am in red, weighing the boat down…and enjoying the view, ignoring the fact that things were getting pretty wild on the high seas (ha ha – not the high seas, but it sounds  dramatic). It doesn’t look like I was working so hard, but I assure you that my role was essential. That’s what I like to tell myself! As a graduation gift from my Master’s program, my parents contacted the magazine and photographer and got their hands on the original photo. I now have it framed on my office gallery wall. I love it. This is a special photo and brings back many happy memories.

So now back to the whole point of this post – my Sea Bags tote. Do you see those massive sails on the boats? Sea Bags reuses olds sails like those and turns them into an amazing collection of totes.

My custom monogram tote arrived several weeks ago, and I was certainly surprised by the quality of it. For today’s post, I’m sharing five things that I like – really really like – about my customized Sea Bag tote.

1. The size. The tote is large, and it’s going to be a great bag to bring to Florida this summer. It’s also good for trips to the market and short getaways, too. The tote can fit a few towels, and it can certainly fit enough for an overnight trip.

2. The stitching. I knew the sail material would be substantial, but I didn’t expect the stitching to be so detailed and designy (yes, I just made up that word). This was a very nice surprise!

3. The clasp. Another pleasant surprise was the strength and weight of the clasp. This is an optional feature, and I would encourage you to opt-in. It’s a shiny detail that’s functional, too.

4. The custom letters. Anything personalized floats my boat. I’m thinking that my last name initial should have been the biggest and in the middle, but I may have placed my order too quickly to pay attention to monogram etiquette. Word to the wise – investigate the options before you place the order!

5. The extra inside pocket. This was an add-on, and I would certainly recommend it. Inside pockets like this are great for keys, lipstick, money, and more. I also like that the branding is on the pocket. This reminds me that my tote was Made In America by a team of passionate people!

There are so many options that you can consider when you place your Sea Bags tote order. My bag, for example, starts at $185 USD, but the inside pocket ($20) and the clasp ($10) were add-ons. The Sea Bags team used navy handles instead of the traditional hemp version on my bag, and I’m so happy that the Sea Bags team decided on these custom options for me. I’m very appreciative, and this design is definitely me!

Note: If you’re a Canadian customer looking to place an order, call 1-888-210-4244.

Thanks to Sea Bags for sponsoring this post. All opinions are my own.

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