February 27, 2011

Tiny Closets: Organization 101

This weekend, I was overcome with the sudden desire to reorganize my closet a bit. The problem is it's way too small for the amount of clothes I own and I refuse to stop shopping (common dilemma for us shopaholics, no?). Oh, how I long for the day when I can finally have a walk-in closet!

But until then, here are a few things I've been using to try and maximize the tiny space I have:

1. Flocked Hangers

These hangers are super thin and lightweight, so you can fit a lot more in your closet than with those big wooden and plastic hangers. Plus, they're covered in velvet flocking so that your clothes don't slip off!

I believe that the original ones were Joy Mangano's "Huggable Hangers" and sold on the Home Shopping Network. However, lots of other companies have begun making their own versions, which are just as good and cost much less. I got mine on sale for only $5.99 for a pack of 10 at London Drugs. You can also find similar ones at HomeSense and Costco.

2. Baskets on Wheels

I'm in love with IKEA's Antonius frame and wire baskets, which like everything from IKEA, are completely customizable. If you don't like the wire baskets, for example, there are plastic ones. I also added wheels to mine so that I can move them around easily.

These baskets are great for anything that can be folded/doesn't need to be hung up. I use mine for basic items like tees/tanks, sweaters, and pants. And they may not look it, but they do hold a fair bit... I can fit about 40-50 t-shirts in one basket.

3. Hanging Organizers

Because of the way my closet is laid out, there is an odd corner section with no bar/shelving. Basically, useless. However, turns out it's the perfect size for two of these hanging organizers (also from IKEA).

I bought four (two of the clothes-sized ones and two of the shoe ones) and then sewed them together to make two organizers that are double the length. The clothes organizers are great for stacking out-of-season items/bulky sweaters or things I don't really wear much but don't want to get rid of yet. I keep most of my shoes/boots in the hall closet, but use the shoe organizer in my bedroom closet for heels/dress shoes.

4. Baskets and Bins

Baskets and bins are basically the easiest storage solution ever. Got some clutter? Toss it all in a box and suddenly everything looks cleaner and more organized!

Plus there is such a huge variety of options out there: plastic stacking boxes, wooden baskets, etc. so it's easy to find ones that co-ordinate with your decor.

I use the bins in my closet for miscellaneous accessories like scarves, hats, gloves/mittens, and belts.

February 20, 2011

Cake Beauty Velveteen Hand Creme

A while ago, I blogged about Cake Beauty's Milk Made Smoothing Hand & Cuticle Buffer (see my review here) and mentioned that I was looking forward to trying their Velveteen Hand Creme. Thankfully, Sephora was selling a holiday hand creme trio over Christmas and I managed to pick up Desserted Island, It's A Slice, and the limited edition Vanilla Snow.

According to Cake, the velveteen hand creme "soothes and nourishes dry hands with a luxurious and silky formulation that absorbs quickly into your skin, leaving your hands feeling smooth but not greasy." They are not lying! This stuff is amazing. Plus, all the hand cremes are paraben-free! Since I am constantly re-doing my manis, I've been using this stuff religiously and it's kept my hands looking great.

But not only that, the scents are to-die-for. All of Cake's products smell delicious and these are no exception. Desserted Island is infused with tropical scents of Tahitian vanilla and coconut; It's A Slice is infused with fresh scents of sweet orange and vanilla cream; and Vanilla Snow is scented with notes of sweet vanilla cream. Even the descriptions are drool-worthy...

And now, for Strawberry Shortcake's 30th Anniversary, Cake have released a line of strawberry-scented products - including bath & shower suds and a new decadent hand creme. I tested this out at Sephora last week and it is now on my to-buy list. Yummy!

February 17, 2011

Hand-Knit Scarf

Leather Jacket: Mackage / Cardigan: Zara / Jeans: Rock & Republic
Boots: Steve Madden / Scarf: knit by me / Bag: Marc by Marc Jacobs

February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day!

I know, I know... it's a Hallmark-created holiday. But I found these adorable Hello Kitty valentine cards at Shopper's Drug Mart and had to have them. So cute!!

I also couldn't pass up the opportunity to cover my nails in pink and purple hearts... after all, what's more appropriate for such girliness than a Valentine's Day mani? This one ended up being a little over the top, but still fun.

Essie Blanc, China Glaze Fairy Dust, Haute Nails decals, Viva La Nails heart-shaped rhinestones

February 10, 2011

Lancome Pure Focus Matifying Moisturizing Lotion

I've been testing out moisturizers for the past few months, on my search for that "HG product." I have combination skin and my biggest woe is constant shine. Anyone who knows me knows that I am basically attached to my MAC Blot Powder, haha! But in conjunction with my powders and foundations, I realized that a good mattifying moisturizer might also help.

I had been using Lush Enzymion (which did nothing and I do not recommend) before I decided to splurge on this Lancome Pure Focus Matifying Moisturizing Lotion. And I mean splurge... this stuff was expensive! I think it was almost $60 CAD with taxes (although you can get it for much cheaper in the States and possibly elsewhere in Canada though I'm not sure).

You get 50 mL of product in rather nice packaging. The bottle comes with a removable plastic cap, and of course, the best part is the pump applicator. This allows you to control how much product you use so you don't have to waste any.

The actual product is very light-weight, almost like a gel. It absorbs into the skin quickly and doesn't feel heavy. In fact, it's quite refreshing in a "cooling sensation" kind of way. It also leaves the skin feeling quite smooth and velvety. Initially. This is where my positive impressions kind of end.

Pure Focus is supposed to be a mattifying moisturizer, but when it came to shine protection, I was rather disappointed. Although this moisturizer does work better than others I've tried and at least didn't break me out, my skin stays shine-free for maybe 1-2 hours before I am back to blotting away. Honestly, if I am paying this much for a product, I expect it to last longer than that.

I'm also not a huge fan of the scent. It's a very strong floral-type fragrance that I'm sure some do like but I personally cannot stand.

So unfortunately, Pure Focus and me were not meant to be. I'm starting to wonder if this mythical shine-free moisturizer actually exists...

P.S. On my nails, I'm wearing Wild Orchid from the Color Club Indulgence Collection which I just blogged about. It's an awesome grey with subtle purple tones (has much more dimension than the "flat" AA Factory Grey.)

February 5, 2011

Color Club Indulgence Collection: Pretty in Platinum

I recently picked up one of Color Club's Fall 2010 sets, Indulgence, from the Untamed Luxury Collection. It's a collection that's very "me" - full of neutral and dark colours that are mostly creme formulas. My faves!

L-R: Pretty in Platinum, Wild Orchid, Positively Posh, Soft As Cashmere, Nothing But Truffle, Jewel Of A Girl, Ready To Royal

I've been wanting to try Color Club for quite a while now but it's not readily accessible here in Canada. Thankfully, every so often, sets will appear at Winners (where I found this one) or London Drugs.

I decided to start out with Pretty in Platinum because it was the first colour that caught my eye and I don't have any similar polishes in my collection. It's a gorgeous silvery-greyish-white with a very subtle shimmer. LOVE IT.

Application was great. This was opaque in only two coats though the streaks are somewhat visible due to the light colour. Not really noticeable, however.

Dry time was really fast, as well. I sometimes like to skip top coat if I'm in a rush, but you definitely need to wear a top coat with this polish. I initially had Pretty In Platinum on my nails without top coat for only a few hours and was left with visible tip wear.

Nonetheless, this was a good first experience with Color Club, and I can't wait to try out the other colours in the Indulgence set. You can expect to see more blog posts featuring these polishes soon!

February 3, 2011

Avenue Q

Blouse: boutique in Sydney, Australia / Bandage Skirt: Talula (Aritzia) / Wool Tights: The Bay
Booties: David Dixon (via Town Shoes) / Beaded Cuff: gift from South Africa

Yesterday, I went to see Avenue Q! I've wanted to see this musical for ages, ever since I first found clips of the song "What Do You Do with a B.A. in English?" on Youtube. I also have a B.A. in English so this was kind of funny, haha!

For those of you who haven't heard of it, Avenue Q is an award-winning Broadway musical that features both puppets/their puppeteers and human characters. It's pretty unique in this way, and the storyline/topics are clever and relevant. Not to mention the fact that the songs are hilarious (i.e. "If You Were Gay", "Everyone's a Little Bit Racist", "The Internet is for Porn", etc.)

I had a great time and left feeling thoroughly entertained. Avenue Q is on tour right now and will be in Vancouver till the end of the week. So glad I managed to get tickets... if you get the opportunity to see this, I highly recommend it!

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