The last time you checked YOUR calendar I'm sure it said nothing of the impending holiday season but my Blackberry has been beeping daily reminding me to race my ass down to another holiday preview.[rssbreak] You see, us style writers live in the future and while one glance out the window suggests I should throw on my swim trunks, I'm already binging on candy cane flavoured coffee (maybe I'll swim in my t-shirt today).
We source most of our 300-plus gift guide finds from local retailers, designers and artisans but that doesn't mean I'm not curious about what the big brands are pushing in their over air conditioned hotel suites scored with a Jingle Bells loop.
The first preview was hosted by the One of a Kind show folks who rented out the Berkeley Church and installed a gospel choir on the front steps to welcome editors. I'm not dishing on this event's goodies because we'll be featuring a lot of its merch when the show arrives in November. I want you to think I've spent hours wandering its aisles to bring you our finds.
At the Yonge and Eglinton Kiehl's store, the beach ball and sunscreen display in the window looks summery but there's red velvet bows and miniature pine trees sparkling in the back. The festive decorations stumped more than one customer as employees merried up the shop on Monday but it's all in the name of unveiling wintry gift boxes and toiletry bags ready to be custom stuffed with Coriander Liquid Hand Soap and Body Scrubs. Other bath goodies like a new Kiehl's For Your Dog line and Forest Rain-scented Eau de Toilette will be on-counter before the first flake hits the pavement.
I haven't hid my enthusiasm for the Gap's handsome fall collection and after visiting the holiday looks at the company's Bay and Bloor HQ this morning, I'm happy to report things will only get better. Lumberjack plaid toppers with three quarter sleeves and layered, men's herringbone waistcoats pushes the well-received, polished grunge look into 2009.
Next up is marketing firm Strategic Objective's bacchanal of M&M meat shop eats and Body Shop treats, and champagne cocktails at Holt Renfrew's swanky pre-holiday soiree tomorrow evening. It all sounds wonderfully festive but as you grumble at the sight of that first inflatable Santa at the Can Tire in October, remember us poor media types have been swearing off Saint Nick for months.
Start spreading the news: I'll be in New York City next week serving up NOW Daily style bites.