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Gallery: 25 top products and installations at the Interior Design Show Toronto 2013

The Interior Design Show brings more than than 50,000 design buffs, decorators and house-proud Torontonians to the Metro Toronto Convention Centre to ogle innovative exhibits and the latest in home design. Given the sheer size of the show floor and the crowd, we suggest heading in with a game plan. Here, our 25 favourite products and installations, from the practical to the spectacular.

Interior Design Show Toronto, Metro Toronto Convention Centre, North Building, 255 Front Street West. The show is open to the public on January 26 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and January 27 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tickets are $19 online and $22 at the door.

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The Goods

Shopping

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Target Canada: the full list of the brands and designer collaborations coming to stores

Target-Canada-brands

Target Canada brands were unveiled today

Target finally revealed the brands, collections and designer collaborations that are going to be available in Canada when its first stores open in March and April. (Toronto is getting four stores to start: Centrepoint Mall, Coverdale Mall, Shoppers World Danforth and East York Town Centre). The most exciting news: limited-time-only collections from Roots and Hollywood stylist Kate Young, both of which should give locals a taste of competitive shopping. Below, the full list of Target Canada brands, including long-term collaborations and the retailer’s in-house labels.

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The Goods

Shopping

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Holiday Gift Ideas: 21 quirky kitchen products for cooks, bakers and cocktail makers

Holiday Gift Guide: Kitchen

For amateur chefs, cooking enthusiasts and the moms and dads who make the myriad meals that feed their families, the kitchen is likely the most frequented room in the house. It’s important that it looks and feels like their own space. From kitchen kitsch like this bike chain bottle opener to high-end cooking products like this super-cool Hario Nouveau vacuum coffee brewer, we have a holiday gift idea for everybody who makes the kitchen their home within a home.

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The Goods

Shopping

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Holiday Gift Ideas: 22 fashionable finds for the clothes-horses on your list

Holiday Gift Guide: Fashion

As much as we appreciate a pair of sensible socks, the best gifts are never strictly practical. That’s why we scoured local boutiques for clothes and accessories that deliver an extra shot of style and luxury. Our 22 picks include both show-stopping items like these red suede boots by Oliver Spencer and a buttery-soft and wonderfully cheeky Vlieger and Vandam purse and small pleasures like a pair of bold and bright dress shoelaces.

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The Goods

Shopping

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Holiday Gift Ideas: seven gadgets that are indulgent and good fun

Holiday Gift Guide: Gadgets

We love a good gadget. They’re fun, they’re indulgent and they’re the kind of thing that you probably wouldn’t splurge on for yourself. Which is exactly why they make such good gifts. Take this Magic Cube iPad keyboard that’s straight out of a futuristic sci-fi flick, or the iPhone alarm clock that makes the most modern of tech products look positively old-timey. These aren’t just great presents—they’re status symbols and conversation starters.

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The Goods

Shopping

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Holiday Gift Ideas: 14 awesomely random odds and ends

Holiday Gift Guide: Odds and Ends

The best gift isn’t always at the top of your wish list. Sometimes, it’s the one that’s a total surprise. We combed the city’s shops to find an unexpected assortment of products that your friends and family might not know they want—like a high-end shisha pipe, a local handmade baseball bat and the finest toothpaste and mouthwash—but will be excited to receive.

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Toronto Life Holiday Gift Guide 2012

Our annual list of the city’s most jaw-droppingly, list-makingly awesome stuff—starting with a puppy

Holiday Gift Guide 2012
See all 100 gift ideas
Over $200
$50 to $200
Under $50

The Goods

Shopping

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Holiday Gift Ideas: 100 perfect presents for everybody on your list

One hundred of the things we want most this year—starting with a puppy

Holiday Gift Guide

Holiday shopping is equal parts excitement and stress. The thrill of the finding the perfect gift is all-too-often mitigated by the chaos of frenzied shoppers, crowded malls and long lines at the counter. That’s why we’re here. We’ve made our list (checked it twice!), so that you can shop with the utmost efficiency. We have holiday gift ideas for everybody—kids, cooking lovers, gadget enthusiasts, fashionistas and more. Plus, an assortment of fun, wonderfully frivolous stocking stuffers to keep the season bright.

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The Goods

Shopping

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Happy Glamping: an indoorsy person’s guide to the great outdoors

The woods are supposed to be romantic. Our collective national identity depends on it. Remember those youthful summers at camp, where we learned how to do the J-stroke (and how to make out)? Or the northern lights? Or those Coureur de Bois Heritage Moment commercials? For urbanites whose idea of roughing it is ordering rare venison at a restaurant or looking in the windows of Mountain Equipment Co-op, Mother Nature can be a hard sell. But glamour and camping don’t have to be mutually exclusive—there’s a host of products available to make the woods just a little bit friendlier. What follows is an urbanist’s guide to not roughing it in the bush.

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The Dish

Random Stuff

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President’s Choice vows to kick the artificial colour and flavour habit

(Image: Like_the_Grand_Canyon)

Loblaws has a new enemy and no, it’s not Metro or Sobey’s (those are old enemies): the supermarket conglomerate is now banishing artificial colours and flavours from its President’s Choice products. The move is in response to more consumers clamouring for natural goods in the wake of concerns about dyes and colouring leading to hyperactivity in children and even some types of cancer—or perhaps it’s an attempt to muscle in on the granola-happy customer base of places like Whole Foods. In terms of roll out, all artificial colours in the PC line (which includes Blue Menu, Organics and Green products) will be removed by the end of the year, and the flavours should follow suit by the end of 2013. Sure, there are reasons for skepticism about the health claims associated with “natural” colours and flavours, but as long as this move does nothing to change the taste of their Decadent chocolate chip cookies (whose chocolate chips do contain artificial flavour), we’re not complaining. Read the entire story [Globe and Mail] »

The Informer

Features

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Memoir: I’m usually loyal to a fault—so why do I always betray my hairdressers?

It’s time I faced the truth about my philandering ways

Memoir: My Cheating Hair Janet opens the door to her house, already wearing her powdery white latex gloves, left over from her mother’s kidney dialysis.

“Did you bring the foils?” she asks.

“Yeah, I cut some at home.”

“We should get the ones from the beauty supply store for next time,” she says. “They’re thinner and easier to work with.”

I put down my bag of contraband hair products, procured from my sister, a professional stylist, and pick up a glass of wine. Our friend M. is already here, with a towel around her shoulders. Her hair is swirled around her head in a muddy paste. (M. has asked for anonymity out of respect for her former colourist.) She checks her watch; eight more minutes to go.

“Shall we start?” Janet says to me, snapping her gloves. I pull out assorted bleaches, toners and potions, along with my sister’s handwritten instructions. One sentence is underlined: “No more than 10 minutes under dryer,” it reads, “or hair may fall out.” We mix up a nasty-smelling brew that turns a purple colour—a horrible Easter pastel that, when slathered on my hair and blasted with heat, will result in lustrous streaks of blond.

Homemade highlights.

I was tired of spending $120 and long afternoons in a salon chair. Everything else today is high-speed; I eagerly await the blond app. In the meantime, our colour cabals have become a pleasant ritual. We save a pile of money, while also enjoying a nice sauvignon blanc. And so far no one has run screaming from the results. Our DIY salon intervention is working out well.

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The Goods

Homes

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Ten impractical picks from this year’s Interior Design Show

Every year, thousands flock to the Interior Design Show to see the latest and greatest offerings in design. While some exhibits are inspiring and innovative, others are just plain weird. We’re all for dreaming big, but in a show where the theme is the recent condo boom in Toronto, we had a hard time envisioning a practical use for an enormous hammock or weighty stone sink. Here’s our roundup of some of the most impractical, albeit cool, offerings from this year’s IDS.

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