Thursday, 29 October 2015

West Coast is the Best Coast

I spent the week/weekend on Salt Spring Island visiting my momma (happy bday) and friends. 

My favourite thing of all time...Fresh crab!!!

Dockside Stroll in Ganges Harbour

These Ugg boots kept me cozy and warm (no matter they are not the most stylish footwear) and this sweater dress was easy to slip on in the morning and travel with on the way home! Got a little work done and ate great food. I love being home!

Weekend on SSI

Until next time SSI! 

~ XO, Phaedra

Tuesday, 27 October 2015

Secret Sounds Society ~ Calgary Folk Festival

4 Amazing events. 4 Secret locations. 4 Nights to remember. 

The Secret Sounds Society is a membership-based social club built around music, arts, culture and community here in Calgary. The purpose is to create events for influencers, artists, and urban adventurers to come together for cocktails, canapés and delightful conversation in support of the Calgary Folk Festival and Festival Hall.

Members know the date and the time but the rest is a secret until 24 hours before the party where members will receive an email confirming the location. The first fabulous event is this Thursday Oct 29th, bringing culturally-driven, community-minded people together!

Get in on the secret!

Thursday, 22 October 2015

LOOK 2015 ~ Contemporary Calgary ~ What To Wear

We are proud to partner with Contemporary Calgary on this years LOOK 2015 event on Nov 7th at Centennial Planitarium, the space for the proposed new contemporary and modern art gallery.

The fashion forward event, a fundraiser for the new gallery, will feature Dan Levy as the emcee for the evening and art installations + auction items from over 40 Canadian artist from across Canada. We styled a photo shoot with some notable members of Contemporary Calgary for the Calgary Herald, check it out here.

Attendee's are advised to dress artfully in "cocktail chic" attire. 

LOOK 2015 What to wear

Tickets can be purchased here and under 35 is now only $95!


Tuesday, 20 October 2015

Paris Fashion Week ~ Better late than never!

                   Paris Fashion Week
                  Attention, attention please:
This is the final call for Chanel Airlines.

All passengers are requested to report immediately to terminal No. 5.
Paris Fashion Week arrived this month with no turbulence or delays, and departed anything but oh-la-lacluster. The international style capital saw cyberpunk taken to virtual insanity, sets that came with their own hashtags, bewildering monsters, Alice-in-Wonderland proportions, and, predictably some classic lady-like designs that were superbly French.

But first, please have your ticket and photo-ID ready for check-in.

Critics raved over the space-age details (check the shoes!) that cast the classic Chanel suit into the future, and the at times sheer, barely-there tops mixed with the expensive-looking, “over-materialed” bottoms fit Chanel’s line into the Week’s theme of shameless luxury.
Speaking of “over-materialed,” the, designs – if one dare uses such a mainstream word – by Comme des Garcons were bewildering, staggering and just a little-bit bonkers:

“Blue Witch” is the only instruction we get from designer Rei Kawakubo, whose models squished through the crowded basement stage in layers, and layers …and layers of velvets, furs, feathers and heavy wool-like fabrics. Since 1973 Kawakubo has been redefining what is describable as “clothing,” and while we have no more solid insight into her witchy-world, it’s clear these pieces intend to defy straightforward interpretation.
No Paris Fashion Week post would be complete without highlighting Louis Vuitton, and this month the fashion Powerhouse showed us what it means to rethink cyber-punk for the 2010s without sacrificing glamour, luxury or the label’s gift and propensity for tailoring.

There’s something very “Terminator meets Sailor Moon meets digital empress” about this line, which is my clumsy way of saying it is perfectly futuristic chic.

Finally, let us explore the world of porcelain dolls. Alexander McQueen’s versions make us crave the lady-like ethereality of the Victorian-undead:

Chanel’s Fall collection was dream-like and sophisticated. Model’s captivated their audience with striking contrasts and Tim Burton-esque faces; whether one imagined them more naturally on a cake or in a ballet, these pieces were a celebration of French design, and quintessentially Chanel.

Finally, Alexander Wang’s final show for Balenciaga saw doll-like models in snow-white garments maintain straight faces, however critics lauded the show as an emotional masterpiece.

~ Monica Sommerville 

Friday, 16 October 2015

The Leopard Print Gala YYC ~ Toni Kohn Woodward Foundation
The Leopard Print Gala is an event put on by the Toni Kohn Woodward Foundation with the goal and purpose to raise money and awareness to enhance the lives of young women at risk.  With the money raised through the Gala and the Ride for Toni the TKW Foundation will provide funding for possible programs, housing options, seminars and other resources to local organizations, groups, and charities that meet the same ideals and have the same values as the TKW Foundation. The event will have cocktails, canapés and live music. You can purchase tickets here.

Guests are encouraged to have fun with their outfits while keeping a cocktail formal feel.  Toni dressed impeccable with lots of sparkle and she loved Leopard Print. You are not obligated to wear leopard print or have a ton of sparkle, although they would love if people had a hint of either or both to honour Toni. Here are some suggest of how to accessories your outfit:

Leopard Print Gala

We hope to see you there!

Thursday, 8 October 2015

TRAVEL: Hastings House on Salt Spring Island

I was recently treated by the Hastings House: Country House on Salt Spring Island, to an overnight stay in one of their impeccable guest houses. 

To start, Salt Spring Island, BC, is the largest of the Gulf Islands nestled between Vancouver Island and the mainland. Salt Spring is a magical place, gifted with all of the bounty that nature could offer. Whether your activity of choice is hiking in the dense forest trails, beach combing or strolling through one of the markets hosted on either Tuesday or Saturdays (seasonal), there is something for everyone. 

I was lucky enough to have been raised on this little gem of an island. I lived on the island from the age of four until I graduated from high school. I then left with dreams of travel, education and a career in fashion. I achieved those dreams including living abroad, traveling to over 10 countries, completing my degree in fashion design from Kwantlen University and becoming a partner in Styleista. Having travelled all over the world I can truly say, there is no place like Salt Spring. The old world charm and its residents' free spirited mentality, (which is a mainstay with the locals) blends perfectly to welcome all types of visitors.

Hastings House History

In 1937,  English Naval architect Warren Hastings, moved to Salt Spring Island from Sussex, England with his bride Barbara.  Mr. Hastings said he, “decided to build on Salt Spring Island because we love the sea and we think it is one of the most beautiful places in the world, with a lovely climate.”  Hastings built the Manor House in 1940 to resemble his 11th century Sussex-style family home.

Other historical buildings comprise the resort property, the Farmhouse, the Manor House, the Barn which houses the Wellspring Spa, and the Post Cottage which was the first Hudson’s Bay post on Salt Spring Island.

In 1980, Warren Hastings sold the property to Shan and Donald Cross of Calgary, Alberta who turned the estate into an elegant hotel with ten guest suites and 30 seats in the dining room.In 1995 the current owners Bonny O’Connor and Jerry Parks purchased the property. 

A Day at the Hasting House

I was accommodated with an early check in which allowed me to take full advantage of the unseasonably warm temperatures for early October. I was shown to my guesthouse, Farm House West, which had my last name printed on the original heritage door which was a very nice touch. My first impression was the ground floor had a quaint and cozy interior and a clear view where I could see sailboats drifting in and out of the harbour. The main level was equipped with a wood burning fireplace, sitting area with beverage fridge and a full bathroom with soaker tub. The upstairs housed a king size bed with luxury linens with a full ensuite bathroom.

I poured a mimosa and sat on the veranda deciding what I wanted to see first. I decided to take a blanket and bathing suit down to the private beach so put my toes in the water and enjoy some suntanning. It was beyond peaceful to hear the waves lap on the shore and get lost in the easiness of the day. Once the sun started to peek behind a few clouds I gathered my things and headed back to the Farm House to change for the daily afternoon tea which is served on the patio or in the bistro, depending on the weather. The offering of a traditional tea really lent to the classic British feel of the Manor House and was a nice interlude in the day.

Next I  took a stroll around the 22 acre property starting with the gardens. 90% of the food and flowers used by Hastings House are gathered from the gardens and chickens which keeps the menu fresh by only serving what is in season! This, to me, is key and crucial to the experience that Hastings House offers . From the gardens I wandered up to the Sculpture Trail. Art and sculptures from local artisans dot the winding trail and surprise at each turn. 

From here I once again headed back to the Farm House to meet my mother, Izadaura, who stopped in for a visit.  We watched the sun set from the veranda with a glass of Blue Mountain Pinot Noir while we enjoyed catching up. 

Bistro and Fine Dining

The Bistro is a new addition brought to life by Eric Bishop, Hastings House GM. I was thoroughly impressed at the added option of this menu for variety. Up until March 2015, the Fine Dining Room was the sole option for dining. However, the Bistro is a more casual option for guests and locals who would like to grab a relaxed bite to eat by the fire while taking in the ocean views. I ordered the west coast spring salmon which was accompanied by organic greens from the garden and a parsley citrus vinaigrette. The ingredients were simple yet the flavours were so delicious. I asked to see the fine dining menu and when I return, I will definitely be ordering the roasted Salt Spring Island lamb! 

A Night at the Hastings House

Once I finished up and headed back to my Farm House where I was greeted with a turned down bed and chocolates. However, I wasn't ready for bed just yet because I am a sucker for a cozy wood burning fire. I lit the preset fire had a soak in the tub using the complimentary Salt Spring Island Soapworks products. It was pure relaxation to the max! Finally, I was ready for bed. What a peaceful sleep I had. There is nothing better then pure silence while drifting off into memories of a beautiful day by the ocean. 

A Morning at the Hastings House

I awoke to the sun streaming in the windows and the thought of the complimentary full english style breakfast awaiting me in the Manor House. Breakfast is by far my favourite meal of the day and I was over the moon to see the offerings that they had in store.

Continental - Cereal, fruit salad, yogurt, croissant, toast & coffee or tea
English - 2 eggs, nugget potatoes & tomatoes, toast w/ jam, coffee or tea
Feature - Poached egg on a potato cake with organic greens and croissant

I went with the feature...delicious! All of Hastings House jams are made from berries or fruit from the gardens, the croissants as freshly baked and the eggs are from the free run chicken roaming the farm. Perfection.

Prior to checking out I chatted with the GM Eric Bishop who has worked with other establishments in the Relais Chateaux group and who has brought a modern approach to the management of this heritage resort. For those who may have thought the Hastings House is only open during the summer season, they have also extended their season to operate year round with the exception of a closure of six weeks starting Jan 2. They will also be hosting festive Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Eve celebrations this year.

My stay with the Hastings house exceeded my expectations and I would recommend visiting the property for a romantic stay, corporate retreat or to dine at either of their renowned restaurants. To put it mildly...I didn't want to leave!!!

Until next time Hasting House, keep up the phenomenal work.

Phaedra Godchild


For more information on the Hastings House please visit their website: