I was super excited to receive this in the mail a couple of weeks back. Not only for the great items, but also for the charities and causes Causebox Supports. I loved that I could see the items I would receive, even if they had different styles or color choices I couldn’t choose as a new member. You can sign up as a yearly member too have this option.
Check out Causebox.com today as they have a great Cyber Monday special on, in the above link. The items in this particular box I loved, as they form parts of many Christmas presents!! The entire box is worth over $250, but since it is a membership, can be bought seasonally from $55 to $60 US. I had a coupon for my first box for $10 OFF.
Causebox searches the world for the best “socially conscious products.” They deliver these products seasonally to customers in a “beautifully designed” box. Each Causebox “highlights companies and products,” which put “people before profit,” and help make the world an improved place.
Artist Designed Postcard, Top Right.
From the October Causebox, this vegan-leather clutch was available in black or tan/cream & handcrafted by artisans in Jaipur, India. It’s magnetically fastens and has thoughtfully designed features such as roomy, open pockets, zippered storage, and a card sleeve. Jaipur unites chic, modern designs with timeless craftsmanship that empowers artisan communities located in central India. I love this for nights out, & the tan/cream vegan leather goes with any outfit. (Worth $54).
I knew right away, this scarf was the perfect present for my Godmom, Aunt J. It was also created in India, and loomed by artisans there. It’s the perfect staple scarf for fall/winter/spring and Causebox partnered with Bloom & Give, to sponsor tuition for 50 girls to attend the Dashak Camp in Rajasthan, India. They receive education and empowerment here, which has changed the course of their lives. (Worth $60).
These Soko Bow Earrings are gorgeous and timeless. They can be dressed up or down, and are handmade by artisans in Kenya. These artisans have been empowered with technological tools, which permit them to sustainably support themselves, learn, and develop as entrepreneurs. These are part of a present for a good friend. (Worth $42).
This beautiful eyeshadow pallet and brush — I kept. I adored the colors and the quality of the eyeshadow pigment. The brush is well-made and perfect for your crease of your eye or the corners. These nine eyeshadow colors are from the brand RealHer and are cruelty free. They are named with strong, empowering words for women/men to be their “own kind of beauty.” RealHer also donates a portion of their proceeds to charities that promote inclusion. (Worth $38.00)
I love Zoya nail polish, it’s such a great brand. The polish colors last a long time. I did not get the colors I wanted with these, but I know the right person will come along for this gift. Zoya is one of the first brands to come out with clean, long lasting nail polish. They are made in the US, but are without formaldehyde, toluene, dibutyl phthalate, camphor, and six other toxic chemicals, commonly found in conventional nail polish. (Worth $20)
Scentuals Grape Fruit and Turmeric Hand Repair Cream is made with 100 percent natural ingredients. It’s a rich and quick-absorbing hand cream that nourishes skin with Shea butter and Cocoa butter. It’s also enriched with Organic Argan, Sweet Almond oil, and Aloe. Besides being all organic in its product formulations, Scentuals also donates a percentage of their sales to the Canadian Cancer Society. (Worth $7.89)
PF Candle Co. began in a garage, and has become the “go to choice” for some of the trendiest boutiques across America. Their candles are hand-poured in L.A. with a love for “apothecary inspired amber jars.” Each of their candles is made with 100 percent soy wax and has phthalate-Free premium fragrance oils inside ( Worth $18).
One of the most popular and environmentally-friendly water bottle brands out there, S’Well water bottles replace plastic disposable water bottles, with ThermaSwell Technology that keeps drinks cold for 24-hours and hot for 12-hours. This bottle was 17 Oz, S’well also has a 9 Oz. Size and 24 Oz.
The latter, can fit a bottle of wine and keep it chilled. I have one of these from before, it washes well, and comes in a plethora of designs and finishes. I was excited to have this as a free add-on to the box, as in Canada the the 17 Oz. Bottles are worth $45 or more, depending on the design. What’s best about them, is that they’re durable, light, easily washed, and have the perfect top to drink from. I use them at home, on the go, in bed, etc. They never spill or break from dropping them. They prevent oceans full of plastic water bottles that don’t break down, and are made from recycled material (Worth $45).
Hello again. I’m here with some more fashion picks this time with sweaters, cardigans, and shirts for fall. Some of them are simple basics, while others are more colourful or have an interesting design.
Please enjoy! Thank you!
Sweaters, Cardigans and Shirts – (left to right):
1. Gapcanada.com – Softspun cold-shoulder Tee (White) – $39.95 CAN
Good Afternoon! It’s been awhile since I’ve done a fashion piece so every couple of days I’m going to provide my picks from a certain categories in ladies fall Fashion.
I liked too many clothing, shoes, and accessories to put everything in one or two blogs posts or to put all pictures on one mood board. I have tried to have a variety of price points, to some degree, as well.
If I have time I’ll try to do some men’s fashion after the ladies! Enjoy!
Dresses and Jumpsuits — (left to right):
1. Zara.com – Stripped Jumpsuit with Ruffles – $69.90 CAN
*NOTE: in the US and Canada, Banana Republic often has sales. There is pretty much a sale going on 75 percent of the time. Sale prices range from 30 percent off to 40 percent off. Sometimes at Christmas are Black Friday items are 50 off.
If you could choose your favorite place to get ready in the morning or when you’re going out to a party or special event, wouldn’t it be wonderful to have a vanity area? Yes, I know for many women (and some men) this seems like a dream.
I would adore haveing a dressing table area where I could have all my makeup and hair tools, have everything organized well, and have my vanity area designed exactly the way I would like it to be designed to my unique preferences.
While modern vanity tables for women and shaving tables for men developed in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries,beauty items such as cosmetic boxes, ointment jars, and perfume jars, were found in 1910, in “inlaid cedar cosmetic box[s]” in the tombs of Ancient Egyptian Pharaoh.
Madam Pompadour of France, however, was one of the first women of the aristocracy to perform elaborategroomingrituals. The french aristocracy had boxes called ‘Neccessaires’ which held perfumes, combs, nail files, and tiny scissors. Madam Pompadour (mistress of King Louis XIV (1638 to 1715)) aided the French king in developing the ‘toilette’ or beauty regime for both men and women in the royal court.
One fantastic example of an early vanity table was used by Marie Antoinette who had a dressing table specifically made to fit makeup items, writing implements, and a mirror. The piece was commissioned as she was due to give birth to her son and the vanity served multiple purposes also being used for eating and receiving visitors.
In the twentieth century, the vanity table developed significantly in the 1920’s and 1930’s. Glamorous Hollywood films made popularskyscrapers with luxuriouspenthouses and “femme fatale [movie] heroines.”
These starlets sat elegantly at their dressing tables which were streamlined in form compared to vanity tables of the past. Many women wanted to emulate these actresses and the vanity table became an essential piece of furniture for the modern woman.
Considering my dreamvanity andhow I would design it and the area around my vanity, I realized there are many vital factors to consider. What I ended up with was a mood board of decor items I would adore in a vanity area. You can find my mood board at the beginning of this post.
There are many aspects I considered when I thought about designing a vanity area. The first being what styleof vanity (the dressing table) I wanted. There is such a variety of styles of vanities to choose from but many are actually writing desks used as vanity tables, not the actual vanities which for instance, my great-grandmother Ida owned.
I tend to love antique vanities which have been repurposed.There is something curvilinear, ornate, and luxurious about the carving and details in the design of some antique vanities. What I love about repurposing old furniture, is that much of it is made from quality hardwoods, not cheap soft wood. Much furniture today is made of wood which easily breaks or splits.
Also, I would choose to paint my repurposed (or designed to appear antique) vanity my favorite color of light-blue. I would make it a feature piece of furniture in my bedroom and would paint the walls a neutral beige or gray with the same warm or cool hue found in the color blue used on the vanity. Below are three examples of vanities which caught my eye would be similar to my dream dressing table. I wouldn’t want such a roughed up quality to the paint but a nice sheen or solid color.
Another choice for my dream vanity would be to paint it with a pearlescent paint in a light sheen of bronze, gold, or silver. These dressing tables are more glamorous than the blue ones but would also retain a unique but more modern design such as the opulent vanities of the 1930’s.
A significant reason I chose antique vanities versus modern streamlined ones, has to do with my personal aesthetics and especially, drawer space. I think a vanity should have significant drawer space for you to put your makeup, hair tools, lingerie, or whatever else you would like to store in your drawers. My favorite vanities have both slimmerdrawers up top and larger deeper drawers on the sides. Storage is a major issue when choosing a vanity for yourself.
Many of the vanities pictured above have attached mirrors. I would be happy to have one of these mirrors refinished, but I also felt you could remove the mirror and hang a mirror with an interesting frame on the wall, behind your vanity. The mirror might be a little farther away from where you would sit, on the wall, but I don’t think this would be a problem if a person had enough natural and artificial lighting in their vanity area.
Another important detail to consider is the chair you sit on in front of your vanity. Whether you purchase a vanity that’s antique which you refinish yourself, or you find you like already refinished, you can replace what is often a small stool or bench, with a fancy and comfortable chair.
Especially if it’s for a special occasion, I prefer to have back support, personally, and be comfortable while I’m doing my makeup and hair. I want a cozy place to sit and a chair with a cushioned back and seat. Here are a few examples of chairs I like below, the gray one is my favorite chair; however, you can also find yourself a fancy dining chair, or some other kind of comfortable chair which matches your vanity and decor scheme.
Another aspect I would consider for a vanity area, if you have space, would be a soft but stylish chaise lounge near your dressing table. I would include this in a dream vanity area because a chaise lounge or sofa, would make you feel more at home and enjoy being in this space, even when you’re not preparing yourself for the day or an event.
A chaise lounge or a couch could be somewhere your significant other sits and talks to you while you’re getting ready, or your kids. It would also be a comfy and plush hideaway to read a book when you have the time, especially if you have a space with excellent natural light or a floor lamp nearby, as I would in my dream vanity area.
As well, it makes sense to have a plush chair of some kind here because a vanity area would be close to my closet as well, so I’d probably need something to throw clothes on as I try on several outfits or change out of my work clothes after arriving home.It’s also a place to sit on while you put on your shoes and zip up your tall boots.
I talked briefly about lighting but it’s one of the most significant aspects of all to consider, not only for aesthetics but because women require fantastic lighting when putting on makeup and doing their hair.
There is no substitute for natural light and in my dream vanity area, I would have many windows nearby. You never want to walk outside and see you’ve put on your makeup too thick for daytime or used the wrong color of foundation for the season so your foundation ends up appearing orange in the daylight.
In addition, having a chandelier or some kind of pendant light above your dressing table makes it the area appear more opulent as well as making it easier for a woman to see what she is doing at her vanity. A small chandelier, for me, makes the area all the more appealing. It aids in creating a space where would enjoy spending more time and I would probably be spending alot of time there, so I want a beautiful light fixture.
I had trouble choosing between three different light fixtures. On the Restoration Hardware website, I found this lovely light made of “tiers of translucent white capizshells” and I love the movement created when light shimmers through these iridescent shells.
Another especially favorite pendant light of mine is the flower pendant light from Arhaus. This light is gorgeous, unique, and sculptural. I think the “Italian glass” crystals hanging down would be perfect for a vanity area. This light fixture is superbly classy with this flower having “dark silver clay finish;” the artist in me adores it.
Lastly, I was drawn to another indoor/outdoor chandelier made from recycled glass andwrought iron from Pottery Barn. The glass circles made me think of bubbles and/or a pair of pretty dangling, bronze and glass earrings. I think for me interior design and fashion often overlap.
A third issue to consider with lighting is actual lighting where you sit at your vanity, on top your table. Here is the place where you or I would apply our makeup or remove it, perhaps along with our jewelry. I’m not a fan of those big bulbs that go around vanity mirrors, to me they’re a bit tacky (my opinion).
I think I would browse for some trendy table lamps which went with my decor scheme and weren’t too large. My thoughts are that they would appear classier and provide morenatural lighting as you can put light bulbs in lamps with more of a warm glow. One lamp might be enough, or you might prefer two, depending on how much space you have. There are a couple of different ones I liked and you can see them below. They’re both from Arhaus, here and here.
One final issue to consider with lighting and mirrors, is a having a magnifying mirror. Yep, the kind where you feel scared when you can see every mark or wrinkle on our face. While I hate that aspect of these mirrors, they can be helpful. They’re especially great when you’re plucking your eyebrows, getting rid of a few stray hairs, or when you’re trying to apply liquid eyeliner or any eyeliner for that matter.
I would buy one of these magnifying mirrors which lights up. It could sit on my dressing table top or be attached to the wall behind my vanity. I prefer one not on the top of the vanity since I need the space for other items.
Certain mirrors with LED lights can be moved closer or a farther away, whichever way you need. There are also various degrees of magnification. You can check out this magnifyingmirror below, from Bed, Bath, and Beyond. Lastly, ensuring my vanity area is near plugins where I could easily plug in a power bar with more plugins for curling irons, a blow dryer, and my table lamps would be a must for my vanity area.
Now to tackle one the largest issues in my vanity area, having the best kind of storage for makeup, makeup brushes, hair devices, and any other products I store in and around my dressing table. A wonderful place for these organizational items is Bed, Bath, and Beyond because they have a ton of well-priced organizational items, many of which are also attractive for certain decor schemes. Home Sense is another excellent place for this.
A third place you might consider buying storage for on top of your vanity is an office supply store, as many of their lines for storing stationary work well for storing makeup and skincare products. You can also use decorated or lovely colored trays and special storage from any home store, these products are easy enough to find.
Hanging a few decorative shelves nearby to house some of your personal items, is also an option I would consider for my vanity area, along with this neat holder I found on Pinterest, which is specifically designed to hold your blower dryer, hair straightener, and curling irons and can be found at Home Depot and mounted on the wall. For specifically made to hold makeup organizers on top of your vanity, Amazon is an excellent place to search for these holders at a great price.
For makeup brushes my favorite storage solution is to find a pretty container, it could be a pencil holder a candle holder (whatever fits your brushes) or a couple of each, and fill them half-full with little rocks/beads or a similar vase filler. Stand your brush handles in these containers along with your mascara and eyeliners. Your brushes and makeup products will stay upright and it works superbly well. I would use the same method on my dream vanity table; however, any pretty container which stores your brushes upright along with eyeliners and mascara, works well as long as they suit your design scheme.
For makeup, you can also find some beautiful trays to put your makeup and skincare products on. Sometimes even trays with divided off sections, so it makes it easier to store certain items such as blush or lipstick. I prefer stylish storage for on top of your vanity, such as silver or gold trays, decorated or colored candle holders, and mirrored makeup supply/brush holders. Below are some photographs of these ideas I liked for my own vanity space.
It’s also helpful to find some see-through jars or containers to hold items such as Q-tips and cotton rounds, used for toner and taking off makeup (etc). For haircare products, a shelf that can fit hairspray, mousse, dry shampoo, and other taller hair products is useful with a shelf on top which leaves you with storage for smaller bottles of hair care products.
The last and hardest part of storage is finding containers which will fit in shallow top drawers and in deeper side drawers for a dream dressing table. Since I would like my vanity area to not look so cluttered, I would like it if most of my makeup could be organized in the top drawers at least.
It is possible to purchase makeup dividers which fit inside draws or find your own little baskets or boxes, which will fit different kinds of makeup. Makeup storage also depends on how much makeup you own and should still be keeping. Amazon is an affordable and easy place to find this type of storage.
Makeup storage also depends on if you want to store your makeup visibly on the wall or hidden (such as I do) in the drawers of your vanity. I prefer drawers, they appear so much neater than makeup storage in wall-mounted containers or on a magnetic board. I can close messy drawers if they need cleaning and if my makeup has dirty cases.
I believe in keeping a vanity top clean and clutter free as possible because it makes it easier for me to find what I need each morning before working or if I was Mom, for instance, before dealing with my children.
For me, I would only keep the makeup I use the most out and put everything else away. I would like the top to be clutter free so I have space to work and to display some of my prettier pieces of jewelry and perhaps perfume.
It would also like to personalize my vanity space with authentic artwork to my taste, which matches my decor in my vanity area. I have chosen some of my favorite watercolor paintings off of Etsy which work into the blue vanity scheme and have this Chanel, posh and classy feel about them. Also, I like how this spice wrack became the perfect place to store perfume and display bracelets.
I enjoy purchasing my artwork prints on Etsy because the prints you buy are less expensive and they are from local artists and small businesses. The prints are more unique than art you would find in most home decor stores. I would order the prints I’ve chosen off of Etsy and then visit Winners/Home Sense or the Craft store to find frames to put my art in.
I could choose to search for frames which are all the same style of frame or look for frames which are the same color. I believe what I would do is mix up frame colors and styles, have frames in black, gold, and silver, as long as they fit in with the vanity area them I’ve created and its ambiance.
For me, this would be my perfect dream vanity area; however, as you can tell, it’s difficult to choose precisely what pieces fit and what pieces don’t. Thanks for reading!
1. Lists – I make lists for most everything, to remember information, to remember items I have to buy at the store, to make note of something I want to research more, etc. It’s a memory tool but I also feel such gratification when I can cross items off my list.
2. Spiders and bugs – I despise them. Spiders are the worst but I’m not fond of any kind of bug. I wish they would stay outside, all of them good bugs or bad.
3. Dishes – I like to wash them in the dishwasher. I don’t understand people who do their dishes by hand when they have a new working dishwasher (unless it’s a pot or large dish). Your dishwasher uses hotter water to wash your dishes to kill bacteria and not to mention, it uses less water than you do washing dishes by hand. Washing dishes which could go into the dishwasher, is a waste of water.
4. Organization – I’m quite organized. You may not be able to tell I’m organized but I know exactly where I put things and why, so I get annoyed when people try to organize me because it pretty much puts me into chaos and then I have to go and fix everything. So, if I do something a certain way, I have my reasons.
5. Clothes/Makeup – I like to look put together and stylish. I know in the end clothes and makeup are things but when I dress nice and my makeup appears nice, I feel better. I feel prepared and I feel like I can face whatever will come my way. Also, having to attend medical appointments or whatever kind of appointments, and meetings, I have found looking your best effects how you are perceived and often treated. I like to look as if I take care myself well and my appearance matters.
6. Eating – I’m a picky eater. I’ll leave it at that. I don’t eat carbohydrates almost at all. And when I follow a diet, I do better eating healthy, than not planning my meals.
I vaguely remember writing on this topic before, or maybe I read other people’s posts on it but I will give it a try nonetheless.
Many of you know I suffer from a depressive mood disorder which has caused me severe fatigue these past eight-years. I only mention it because I have experienced great improvement with my mental energy levels especially, and a bit with my physical energy levels this past year. Particular supplements have also aided my increase in energy levels.
But I always have bad days now and then. When I was worse I had more bad days than good days and now I would say I only have a bad day one or two days every couple of weeks. What makes a bad day a bad day varies but often means I’m too mentally and physically worn out to do much of anything; I wake up this way.
Today, I found until tonight, I could not concentrate well on writing or reading blogs or books. I would try going through my email to read through some of your posts and I didn’t have it in me to pay attention and give thought to what I was reading or what to comment. I also found myself glossing over pages in books where I regularly would be intent on what was happening to the characters.
I decided to catch up on some TV shows I’d missed the finales of and a show I miss because it’s on in the morning. I like Fashion Friday on a Canadian morning show called Cityline so I watched that as I often sleep through it. Additionally, I watched The Vampire Dairies’ grizzly season Finale and the season Finale for Grimm. I loved both finales and I’m eager for next season’s storylines for each show.
But today mostly consisted of me sitting and watching TV and even after awhile I went to my room and I laid down, needing to sleep a couple hours, feeling as if I needed the nap today. It’s odd, usually I don’t need to nap. I tried to put effort into healthy meals and I thought about walking, but I didn’t have a walk in me.
Most often, I’m up untill 11:00 pm or 12:00 pm but tonight I’m lying in my comfy bed in a sleep shirt, tucked into my cozy duvet and fresh sheets and it’s only 9:00 pm.
I cleaned up my room on Friday and Saturday, completely organizing everything. It’s a nice feeling being in a clean room, no dust, no papers in piles, everything organized, even my clothes and shoes.
At this moment, feeling drained as I have most of the day, I’m writing to you in my perfect writing place in bed on my iPad. I invested in a newer version after Christmas as the old model didn’t have enough GBs. This has 64 GB, enough for ebooks, a large iTunes music collection, and many applications. It also a thinner tablet which is lighter to hold.
The light the iPad gives off in my dim room is fantastic for writing and being comfortable lying down. So, even though this isn’t usually where I write, tonight in bed, is my favourite and ideal writing space.
Tomorrow it will change, but then, tomorrow’s another day and I will have energy to write more and read more again, to take a walk in the warm May weather, maybe even write on the patio. For now, everything is as it should be.
Sorry, I don’t know how to explain a bad day better then I did; it is what it is. It is too difficult to explain unless you’ve experienced it or something similar. Most people are able to keep going in life despite hiccups such as feeling energy-less. But this is a fatigue which stops you in it’s tracks. Nothing can make your body draw on more energy; there is no energy to draw from. Which is why this is severe fatigue I experience and not only being sleepy or tired.
Thanks for reading. Back to fiction, poetry, likes, and commenting on your blogs tomorrow.
Do you ever have days where you feel tired and run down. For some reason you woke up too early in the morning and you’re not able to finish some of the things you would like to have finished in the day? Today is a day like that for me. So, I try to stay optimistic and I find ‘bright spots,’ small things in the day that make me happy and make me feel more relaxed. Here are some objects that help brighten my day:
1. I love to receive a magazine in the mail. It brightens my day. I have been loving Instyle for awhile now. It’s my favourite women’s fashion and beauty magazine. Also, Instyle does great interviews on ‘up and coming’ and already famous celebrities. But who am I kidding, it’s all about the fashion and the fashion advertisements, I love it! Not to mention, if you order the subscription by mail, you can get it on your tablet for free. I adore looking through the paper edition because it’s there right in front of you and is tangible and inspiring. It has many pictures so having a paper copy is a must. Then I go into my tablet edition and click on all the ads and links and find about all these interesting shops and products. There’s truly a whole world of information in this magazine that is only available online.
2. I don’t know quite what you call this thing but it looks so fun doesn’t it? I received it as part of a present from my friend S. It’s a tea ball made of rubber. You put a teaspoon of your favourite tea leaves in the grey piece with holes in it and attach the grey piece to the flower. You let the tea ball float in your teacup and then when you are done with it being in your tea, you place it in the red rubber pot so you do not get water drippings everywhere. It makes me smile when I use it because it’s bright, colourful, and cute. It’s a unique item and a great idea for a tea ball.
3. How could I not know that there was such a thing as chocolate tea? I didn’t know until I went to my friend S’s condo and that was the only kind of tea she had. I was leary of chocolate tea at first. The slight bitterness of black teas with chocolate in them and peppermint, I wasn’t sure. But I tried it and it is so delicious. I have never tried any of David’s Tea before, I have another favourite tea shop I frequent. But this tea is so good and has some caffeine which helps a great deal when you are tired. Thank you S for the chocolate tea, it’s amazing.
4. These are hair bands from Shoppers Drug Mart. You can find a package almost anywhere for about $8.00. They are the perfect elastic to put your hair up and do nothing with it or if you are feeling as if you want your hair to look good, you can put your hair in a messy bun using these bands and they are easier on your hair than clear elastics. They don’t hold their size so well but you can wind them around your hair two or three times and they still work fantastically. It makes the day easier when you don’t have to deal with hair in your face.
Thanks to Jacqueline for hosting the Echos of My Neighbourhood challenge every Thursday.