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Fall Beauty Trends: DIY Nail Art

Hypnotize: This nail art image from Vogue Beauty should tempt you to mix up your mani. Planting the seed and watering it. Jedi mind trick.

I have always been a big fan of Nail Art — what better conversation starters than the mini canvases on your fingertips?  But I am very particular about what looks I love versus looks that I think are best suited for editorial or the Nicki Minaj’s of the world.  These days, there are many options to DIY (do-it-yourself) your nails.  Instead of taking the weekly trip to salon, save some cash-dollahs by staying home on a Friday night, doing your nails whilst watching Never Been Kissed.  Plus, if your nails are wet, you can’t eat that bag of chips in the cupboard.  Beautiful nails, zero calories!

Here are my Top Fall Nail Trends:

Chanel Frenzy Vernis is the perfect greige (Grey + Beige). And the key to exquisite statement solids is 3 coats to make it opaque.

  • A Striking Solid – Nail art doesn’t have to be over the top to have a high ROC.  Sometimes a very unusual colour can illicit ooh’s and ahhh’s.  Right now, I love colours that look like Pantone swatches from ELLE Decor.  The other day, I was getting my nails done and I chose Essie’s Glamour Purse (an almond taupe shade) and the woman beside me felt necessary to comment, “The colour looks like it’s fading into her skintone.”  Puh-lease, you don’t know.  Insert eye roll.

Mix up your French Manicure by applying black tips. Very Fall 2012! You heard it here first fashionistah-adventuress!

  • Black Tips French Manicure – A MAJOR trend to ignite the runways, this one is very easy to adapt to real life.  All you have to do is take a classic manicure and making it edgier by using black polish striper to finish the tips.  To create an even more daring contrast, you can use a trendy colour (such as a vampy burgundy, a metallic or a tawny shade) as your base coat.  Ooh la, you are so September Vogue right now!
  • Colour Block Those Digits – This is the most fun nail trend.  There are number of easy to follow nail polish tutorials on the web to give you ideas on colour blocking.  Similar to the apparel trend, it would be taking 2-3 contrasting nail shades to achieve a Mondrian-effect on your nails.  My favourite is taking 2 of the same hue (a light & its darker counterpart) to do a French manicure.  There is also the reverse Half-Moon where you use 2 solid colours – very dramatic in black and white!

Katy Perry goes ying-yang for nail art on the cover of September ELLE

Cutepolish on YouTube has many easy to follow Nail tutorials – here are my favourite based on the Fall Trends: 

  • Chevon Nails - This one takes effort so you may only want to do your thumbs or ring finger. Totally Missoni! 
  • Black Lace Nails - Another MAJOR runway trend. Fun idea: Wear a black lace outfit and do black lace on your nails.  It’s another case of life imitating art, imitating life! (micro-macro)
  • Half-Moon Manicure - Vintage 1920’s design will be very popular for Fall/Winter as Baz Luhrman’s highly anticipated The Great Gasby will be released in movie theatres inspiring an Art Deco fashion moment

Art history lesson on The LC: Composition A by Piet Mondrian. Inspiration for many a colour block fashion moment!

What are your favourite nail trends for Fall?  What’s your colour of the moment? Do TELL in the comments!


August 12, 2012   No Comments

The Love Collage Presents Creative Heart Collective Fall Show & Sale @ The Gladstone Hotel

The Love Collage presents Creative Heart Collective Fall Show and Sale for local artisans, crafters, designers, bakers and retailers.  The mission of the event is to give artists, entrepreneurs and retailers an opportunity to connect and showcase their wares with the community in a fun and inviting atmosphere.  We will be hosting a FREE Community DIY “Magnet-ic Attraction” where attendees are invited to make their own magnets and we will be giving away artisan crafted door prizes.

The focus for the show will be:

  • Emerging and local artists (small sized artwork, prints, cards)
  • Indie arts and crafts (toys, art/craft supplies)
  • Fashionable artisan gifts (jewellery, accessories)
  • Gourmet food (baked goods, preserves)
  • DIY presents
  • Apparel & Vintage

Date:  Sunday, September 18th, 2011

Time:  12pm – 6pm

Place:  The Gladstone Hotel, 1214 Queen Street West

This event will be taking place during the weekend of Queen West Art Crawl.  From Trinity Bellwoods Park to Parkdale, hundreds of artists will be showcasing their work.  Enjoy special art exhibits and installations in galleries and cafes open to the public.  Such a wonderful way to take part and experience the vitality of the Toronto art scene – engage, get inspired and support local!  To preview all the ah-mazing exhibitors and vendors, check out the website

This truly has been a labour of love (aka blood, sweat, tears, etc) but it has been worth it to be able to bring such a talented group of artists and artisans together!  Hope to connect with you there! xoxo The LC

It's a ring thing: Bijoux Vintage Jewellery

OMFG! You will go ba-na-na-s for Mehrnaz's fashion illustrations and artwork! Take a sneak peek at

Holy yum-town! Lemon curd cupcakes from Lydia's Gourmet.

Be there! Creative Heart Collective Fall Show & Sale chez The Gladstone Hotel Ballroom.


September 13, 2011   No Comments

Gimme Some of That Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip…

PBC: You don't say no to this...or kick it out of bed, even if you have a no crumbs allowed rule.

Nothing makes the holidays more warm and cozy that taking out a tray of steaming, goey cookies from the oven with ridiculously oversized gingham mitts (silicone is for boobies).  The only thing I was missing was a 50’s style floral ruffle apron from Anthropologie (cough-cough-hint-hint). 

My roomie, akin to the rest of the world, has an allergy to gluten and one afternoon she lamented, “If you could bake me flourless peanut butter cookies, I would love you for-everrrrr.” Or some variation on that comment.  Perhaps I embellished to give you a gist of the fervour behind her request.

This Old Thang: Bake some cookies, then go out in your turquoise halter Anthropologie apron. Just kidding. Please don't go out in your apron.

This recipe is taken from the Kraft website  jazzed up with my LC special touch.  Cooking is an art, baking is a science.  It takes mad skills to mess around with baking.  Even if you want to health-ify it, please refrain from using buckwheat flour. 


  • 1 cup chunky peanut butter
  • 1 cup smooth peanut butter
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup white chocolate chips
  • 1 cup dark chocolate chips
  • 1/4 cup unsalted peanuts
  • 4 heaping tablespoons of flour (you can use rice flour for your gluten intolerant friends)
  • Yields 24 cookies

Directions (Prep time 10-15 minutes)

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a bowl combine the peanut butter, eggs and sugar. 
  3. Fold in flour gradually.  Stir until mixture becomes a stiff cookie dough consistency.
  4. Drop in chocolate chips and peanuts.  The amount you add in is optional.  I choose more chocolate.
  5. Since the dough has minimal flour, you may want to put the bowl into the fridge for a half hour to stiffen. 
  6. Using a tablespoon drop cookie dough onto a non-stick pan.  You should be able to fit a dozen on a tray.  You can also roll the dough into 1″ balls but I enjoy the ‘made with love’ appearance of bumpy cookies. 
  7. Bake for 18 minutes for a softer cookie or until the edges brown.
  8. Remove cookies carefully using a flat wooden spatula and allow to cool before serving with cold milk. 

Why did you ask?  Of course they are fattening.  But sometimes you can’t take the fat out of delicious.


December 17, 2010   No Comments

I Craft Therefore I Am

With Erica, making this grosgrain ribbon necklace is sooo easy. An excerpt from her book, PS I Made This.

Crafternoons are lovely, are they not?  Flipping through a magazine and then realizing you have a bureau of fabric scraps, threads, findings and a glue gun.  Why spend a $500 on a mass-produced bauble when you can make it for less?  Plus, the slow pace of creating has a cathartic quality akin to meditation.  Ooohm-chante-chante, pass the sequins-ooohm.

Erica Domesek of PS. I Made This  blog fame is the modern girl’s answer to Martha Stewart.  With her bright, whimsical storyboards, she makes crafting fashionable with her many easy step-by-step DIY projects.  When I saw a photograph of her craft closet on Casa Sugar, I almost died.  For me, the craft closet is #3 on the list of dream rooms in future dream house, only after #1 walk-in closet with vintage divan and #2 Harry Potter-esque library with wall height step ladder.  While I can always daydream about my castle in the clouds, her new book PS. I Made This would make a great gift for someone who loves to make things.  Hint-hint.

Heavenly: Ahhh! Alleluia, Alleluia, Alle-luia...I think three angels just earned their wings once she opened up this craft closet. Tiny drawers for ribbons, coloured post-its and glue sticks.

Have them asking, “Who’s your dress by? Alice + Olivia?  Alexander Wang?” Reply with, “No you silly.  It’s a (insert your name) Couture!”  Ooh la!  The Party Dress Book by Mary Adams provides sewing fashionistahs with patterns to create timeless silhouettes.  The photos of swirling fabric and printed ribbons, makes me want to shut myself up in a room for days to give a few of these patterns a go.  Compliments are doubly exciting when you can say that you’ve made what you’re wearing.

For more advice on novice sewing, check out my post Sew Impossibly Chic.

The Party Dress Book: Sew be it!

This dress says tra-la-la to me. I can sew a dress without a judy, however, I prefer to use one than poke myself with pins.


December 12, 2010   No Comments

A Parkdale Christmas Compilation

More emo ironic amazingness from Able and Game on Etsy. I mean, have you ever??

 Holy canoli??!!  Today marks the first day of December.  Like many of you, I have been circling potential presents like a pigeon waiting for you to chuck the last few bites of your hotdog.  But now that I only have a few shopping days left, I think I’m going to bite the bullet and begin putting gifts together.  My personal favourite is a sentimental mixed tape cd – indie cover songs of traditional holiday classics.  To add that extra something-something, I like to make a photo collage of our friendship and write sarcastic inside jokes on the cd cover.  That’s a nice touch.

For more ridiculous Aussie humour, visit the card shop Able and Game on Etsy

  1. Christmas Isn’t Christmas – The Boy Least Likely To Be
  2. Last Christmas – Jimmy Eat World
  3. Are You Coming Over For Christmas – Belle and Sebastian
  4. O Holy Night – My Morning Jacket
  5. The Christmas Song – Owl City
  6. Baby Please Come Home – The Raveonettes
  7. I Wish It Was Christmas Today – Julian Casablancas

December 1, 2010   No Comments

DIY Party Girl Hair: Velcro Rollers & Teased Crown

The Bigger the Better: Teased Hair at Rochas

Back in my party heyday, I worked a look called ‘Gina Lollabrigida,’ named after the famous Italian actress.  I had a favourite red gingham halter dress with oversize white buttons down the front and a giant slit.  I once wore Gina on a night out on The Rambla in Barcelona.  When I did a turn to show off my look to friends, a nearby waiter dropped his tray of wine glasses and sangria.  Such was the power of Gina LollabrigidaTrue Story

My retro look was topped off with my favourite hairstyle – voluminous party girl loose curls with a teased crown.  Now that 90’s is considered vintage, I thought I would bring it back for holiday season.  This hairdo is particularly va-voom paired with some glamourous cat eyes.

Step 1 – Start with dry hair (damp won’t do as it has a tendency to lose its curl easily).  Hairdressers always recommend that you let your hair be unwashed for a day or two if you are going to get an updo because it holds a style better.

Step 2 – Using large sized velcro rollers, begin rolling hair around the top section of your head starting from the ends to the roots and pinning using bobby pins.  Use medium sized velcro rollers for the bottom portion of your hair using the same method.  Spritz all over generously with hairspray.  If you have bangs, section them off and leave them uncurled.

Step 3 –  Leave velcro rollers in for a half hour to an hour.  Kill time.  Maybe watch an episode of The O.C. on DVD or paint your nails.

Step 4 – Remove velcro rollers gently by pulling them away from your head on the diagonal.  Your curls will be fairly subtle (unlike hot rollers).  You can touch up the ends by using a 2″ wide barrel curling iron.  Spritz again with hairspray. 

Step 5 – Using a fine tooth comb, take the section of hair on the middle top of your head and begin to tease hair.  Spritz again and finish by gently smoothing over hair from the front of your head.  Do a prolonged all over spritz.

Whoa, a lot of hairspray and effort to look like you just rolled out of bed.  But pain is love my darlings.

My Italian Muse circa 1960's: Gina Lollabrigida

Drew Barrymore loves volume at The Golden Globes. Can't you tell?


November 19, 2010   No Comments