Shopping: Stay Warm All Winter Long With SHOP.CA

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We are in the final stretch, people! Holidays are just around the corner, and I can almost taste the cocoa. I don’t know about you, but for me, the best part of the holidays is the time I get to spend with my loved ones, indoors and out, watching Christmas movies, sipping hot chocolate playing in the snow, and eating EVERYTHING. And since “baby, it’s cold outside”, I put together some of my must-haves for a warm and enjoyable winter, so that even after the holidays are over, you can still find joy in little things instead of wallowing in misery over the slushy snow and bitter winds.

Kind of a no-brainer, but investing in a high-quality winter jacket is a must for Canadians. Get one with a cozy hood to protect your head and face from the wind. A fun colour will add a bit of joy to otherwise grey days. This Moose Knuckles coat is a great option. Touchscreen gloves is another must-have. You really don’t have to make a choice between keeping your fingers warm and using your smartphone outside. Everyone should have a pair of these handy gloves.

For those days, when going outside is not an option, my winter essentials include a fluffy throw, a cozy sweatshirt, a great movie, and some hot chocolate. On frigid winter evenings, I park myself on the couch between my husband and my cat with all of the above, and enjoy a toasty night in. When I feel especially Martha Stewart-like, I pull out my cast iron pot and make some hot chili, tortilla soup, or something else equally hearty and delicious. Come to think of it, that pot is probably the most used item in my kitchen – you can use it for so many things!

And there you have it, my must-have essentials for staying warm all winter long, no matter what you do. Share yours in the comments!

Holidays 2014: Selfies with Fashion Santa at Yorkdale!

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Christmas is just around the corner, and if you’re still scrambling to pick up gifts for your loved ones, take a deep breath…it’s not too late! If you’re planning on stopping by Yorkdale to do some shopping this weekend, you should take a much-deserved break and go visit Fashion Santa this Saturday. Who’s Fashion Santa, you ask? Well, he’s the dapper bearded model Paul Mason, who was recently named one of Toronto’s Best Dressed by the Toronto Life, and he’s the adult Santa you never knew you wanted to meet.

Every Saturday in December from noon to 8 p.m. at Yorkdale, shoppers can snap #SelfiesForSickKids with Fashion Santa for $5, with proceeds going to Toronto’s Hospital for Sick Children. You get a priceless holiday shot with the best dressed Santa ever, and do good at the same time. Win-win!

After that Fashion Santa meet and greet, you can continue with your shopping, and this season Yorkdale has launched a full suite of services designed to offer shoppers the most relaxing shopping experience possible. Check out the festive happenings after the jump! Happy Shopping!
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Holidays 2014: Last-Minute Gifts That Don’t Suck

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Christmas is just a week away, but if you still haven’t finished (or start) your gift shopping, don’t panic. You can still come out of this alive and victorious without having to resort to those impersonal gift cards, I promise you. All you need to do is pick up a few of these last-minute gifts that don’t suck, and you’re all set. Extra points for personalizing your gifts with special monograms, but if you’re reading this and it’s Christmas eve, then don’t worry, even sans personalization, these are the gifts that anyone would be happy to open come Christmas morning. Here we go!

1. Touchscreen Gloves

With the prevalence of smartphones and other smart touchscreen devices, regular gloves just don’t cut it anymore. If your giftee lives in a climate with cold (and long) winters and is never seen without his/her phone, then touchscreen gloves are a perfect gift for them. Pick up a luxurious pair that goes with everything, and you’re all set!

2. Pajamas

I know, I know…pajamas sound kind of boring, but come on…who doesn’t love a new pair of PJs come Christmas morning?! Anything that’s a little fancier than your usual sleepwear will do – Gap and J.Crew do awesome sleep sets, and LaineyGossip just released a super cute line over at eLUXE. Bonus points for luxurious fabrics like silk, personalized monograms, and a pair of cozy slippers to go with those PJs. If you know your giftee’s taste and size to a tee, then a little something special from Agent Provocateur or La Perla would certainly be a hit. And I’m not talking lingerie either, a fancy robe or a silky slip are little luxuries that anyone would appreciate.

3. Booze

This one’s a no-brainer. Everyone loves alcohol, and fancy alcohol is even better. Grab a bottle of deluxe bubbly, designer liqueur, revered scotch, or better yet, a bottle of sparkling icewine, wrap it nicely, and you just picked up an awesome Christmas present.

4. Beauty Sets

This one’s obviously for beauty junkies in your life. On my last visit to Sephora, I spotted a ton of eye-catching, value-packed gift sets. Advent calendars stuffed with beauty must-haves, superstar product packs, sets for skin, hair, eyes, nailslips…you name it! Kiehl’s skincare essentials are always a hit, and those gift sets are usually packed with extras to make it worth your while.  The Body Shop does wonderfully festive seasonal gift sets, and for every specially selected gift you buy, The Body Shop will make a contribution of approximately 6 cents to War Child to fund a class for a child. Get great gifts, and do some good while you’re at it.

5. Cashmere

Last but certainly not least, cashmere is a perfect last-minute gift that people on your list would absolutely adore. We don’t always get the little luxuries for ourselves, so it’s extra nice to receive such a treat for Christmas (or whenever, really). Whether it’s a luxurious sweater, a soft scarf, a pair of cashmere-lined gloves, or a cozy throw – one can never have too much cashmere in their life.

And there you have it, last-minute holiday gifts that don’t suck. Do you agree? Would you be happy to be on the receiving end of these? Share your last-minute gift ideas in the comments!

Style Days of Christmas: Samsung GALAXY Alpha Giveaway

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I can’t believe it’s the last day of Style Days of Christmas giveaways, you guys. Hope you all had fun entering, and perusing some really cool prizes from Style Blog’s most favourite brands. Pretty soon, I’m going to start selecting the winners and emailing them just in time for the holidays. Can’t wait to share the love. But, it’s not over just yet! We still have one more prize to give away, and it’s a good one. A really good one!

As you may have gleaned from the title of this post, today, we are giving away a Samsung GALAXY Alpha phone (valued at $699.95) from our friends over at Samsung Canada. What makes the GALAXY Alpha such a coveted phone? Well, check out some of its fab features below and be amazed:

- Enjoy a premium visual experience: With a 4.7-inch Super AMOLED screen, the Alpha offers richer colours and a vivid experience that will make your festive photos look like professional prints.
– Run your holiday errands in style: Brushed with an aluminum frame and at less than 7 mm thick, the GALAXY Alpha is one of Samsung’s slimmest devices ever.
– Keep all of your holiday surprises secret: The GALAXY Alpha comes with upgraded and personalized security technology. An intuitive finger scanner unlocks the device, ensuring it only works when it’s in the owner’s hands, and can be used to log into your favourite sites and authenticate online purchases.
– Capture kisses under the mistletoe: The 12MP rear camera gives you the power to capture your favourite holiday moments and offers Phase Detection for faster auto focus and Selective Focus for more artistic shots.
– Don’t miss any holiday moment: Ultra Power Saving Mode conserves battery life, helping you stay connected for longer.
-Match any winter wardrobe: The stunning GALAXY Alpha comes in Dazzling White, Charcoal Black and Frosted Gold.

Sounds like a phone you’d like to win for the holidays? Enter below!

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Details after the jump!
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Style Days of Christmas: $200 Forever 21 Gift Card

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Here’s the thing, I’m not 21, nor have I been 21 in quite a while now, but the truth is…I shop at Forever 21all the time. The site is bookmarked on my laptop, and once a week or so, I click through and browse their selection of trendy, affordable wares. I’ve been a fan of the brand for many years now – ever since I was first introduced to it in Texas (which come to think of it, was over 10 years ago!) – and still have pieces I bought a while back. Not everything from Forever 21 lasts forever, but a lot of pieces do. I love their stores for printed tees, cheap and cheerful jewelry, and their fun summer dresses. And I couldn’t be more excited about Forever 21 opening at Yorkdale on December 20th at 9am! First customers in line on grand opening day will receive $21 gift cards. And because we’re cool like that, we are also giving away a $200 Forever 21 gift card right here, so you can buy whatever your heart desires at their brand new store. Don’t miss out, and enter below!

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Details after the jump!
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Style Days of Christmas: Starbucks Giveaway

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As you probably know already, I am not a fan of winters, but seeing those red Starbucks cups for the first time each season, makes me super giddy. It may sound funny, but for me, the arrival of the red cups signals the arrival of the holiday season. And since those Starbucks line-ups are always long, I know I’m not the only one. Which is why I’m super excited to be giving away a whopping $200 Starbucks gift card to my amazing readers. This should provide you with at least a few months’ supply of energizing and yummy drinks, or if you’re still on the hunt for holiday gifts, you can purchase some of those fun mugs from the Dot Collection! Either way, I know you won’t have any problems figuring out how to use that gift card this winter. Sounds good? Enter below!

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Details after the jump!

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Style Days of Christmas: $200 Target Gift Card Giveaway

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One of the many things I missed when I first moved to Toronto from Houston was Target, so when a few stores opened up in the GTA, I was ecstatic! Finally, I would be able to shop the most adorable housewares, loveliest pj sets, and cute clothes all in one place. There’s just something so inviting about Target stores…they are bright, well-organized, and carry a selection of stylish knick-knacks you can’t find anywhere else. AND they do killer designer collabs too. Needless to say, I’m a huge fan!

So today, on day 4 of Style Days of Christmas, we are giving away a $200 gift card from Target, so you can deck your halls, pick up an ugly Christmas sweater or two, and buy a few gifts for the people on your list while you’re at it. Buy whatever you like, spend it however you want. Maybe you’ll choose a TOMS for Target blanket for a friend, with proceeds from this collab going to the ones in need. Your options are pretty much endless. Sounds good? Enter below!

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Details after the jump!
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Style Days of Christmas: Cougar Boots Giveaway

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You know what sucks? SNOW! It was on the ground last night as I trekked home from the subway, and as I tried not to wipe out, I wished the boots I wore had better traction. Pretty soon, I won’t be able to get away with my regular ankle booties and will have to switch to my Cougar Boots for proper waterproof warmth, and yes, traction. And because I’m awesome like that, I want you to have a pair of warm boots this winter too…and I’ll even let you choose ANY PAIR OF COUGAR BOOTS your heart desires (valued up to $200)!

I have two pairs of Cougar Boots – one pair of rain boots, and one pair of pillow boots. I’ve worn both for years, and both still look perfect. The quality is truly superb. These boots are designed in Canada, with Canadian winters in mind, and they really do get the job done. So whether you want a new pair of rain boots or winter boots, you know your feet will stay dry and warm no matter the weather. Want a pair? Enter below!

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Details after the jump!
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Style Days of Christmas: Yorkdale $200 Gift Card Giveaway

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As one of Yorkdale’s Style Council members, I am obviously biased, but I think Yorkdale is the bombdiggity! Expansion after expansion, retailer after new retailer, the amazing team over at Yorkdale never stops trying to improve the shopping centre, enhance visitors’ shopping experience, and bring the coolest, most coveted brands to Toronto. It’s no wonder so many retailers choose Yorkdale as their first point of entry into the Canadian market!

Well, with a huge new extension in the works, to be completed in Fall 2016, Yorkdale’s about to get even bigger and better. Nordstrom (188,000 square foot store!), Forever 21, and Bulgari stores are coming soon, and that’s on top of the newest additions of VERSACE, Jimmy Choo, Montblanc, and Vince Camuto…oh my! It really is the one-stop shop for all of your shopping needs.

And because Yorkdale is awesome, they partnered up with Style Blog to give away a $200 gift card, to make your holiday shopping just a little easier. Tell me the name of your fave new Yorkdale retailer, and you’ll be entered to win. It’s that simple.

To enter, and for more details, please see below. Good luck!

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Details after the jump!
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Style Days of Christmas: Artemano Gift Card

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It’s officially December, and our annual Style Days of Christmas are back for the fourth year with some amazing giveaways courtesy of our favourite brands! Make sure to bookmark this page and come back daily for a chance to win a new prize each day. Who’s excited?!

To kick things off, we are giving away a $500 gift card from the amazing Canadian furniture shop Artemano just in time for your next holiday party. Pick up some glamorous lamps, colourful cotton poufs for extra seating, or put it towards a stunning rosewood bed. Truth is, everything at Artemano is beautiful, so spending that gift card won’t be a problem at all! Sounds like something you’d like to win? Enter below!

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Giveaway details after the jump!
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