5 Fantastic Subscriptions That Are Totally Worth It

I’ll admit that, while I love nature, I’m a total city girl who loves the many amenities of urban living. Prior to this year the only kind of subscription I paid for was Netflix and for monthly issues of Elle Canada. The past year has been a revelation and I have discovered 5 game-changing subscription services that make everything from getting ready in the morning to cooking dinner, so much easier and more pleasurable. Whether you’re looking for convenience or a little bit of luxury, these services are sure to elevate your daily life. 

1 // My Stylish French Box

If you’re like me and go wild for all things french, then this lovely box of treasures is going to give you goosebumps. Sign up and every few months you will be sent a parcel filled with fashion, beauty, home decor and lifestyle items by gorgeous french designers from all over the country. It costs a pretty penny, but when you consider how many luxury gifts you get per box and how useful each item is, it’s totally worth it. You can even gift a box to a friend! If you want to live like the french, and who doesn’t, then this is the subscription service of your dreams.

2 // Naturebox

Healthy and yummy snacks delivered to your door? I don’t know about you, but that sounds like a dream come true to me! I don’t snack a ton during the day but I like to have a pick me up or two while I am work and after a workout to keep my energy levels high and my mood pleasant. Because hanger is a real thing my friends! Each snack is made without artificial flavours or ingredients and there are over 100 options. Go nuts – literally and figuratively (the salt and pepper cashews are delish).

3 // ScentBird

I’m a fragrance fanatic and so when I discovered Scentbird I was hooked. For only $14.95 a month they send you a small bottle of perfume so you can see if you love it and want a full-sized bottle. Each month you get to choose the perfume you want to be sent and they have options from some of the biggest brands and designers – think Dolce and Gabbana and Armani – as well as more obscure indie brands. For the cost of a sandwich and coffee, you’ll be sent high-end perfumes bottles. And these aren’t the tiny sample vials you are given along with a purchase at a department store. Each bottle comes with 8ml of fragrance and so if you spray modestly they can last ages! It really is the subscription service of my olfactory dreams. 

4 // Ipsy

I can honestly say that since I’ve started my subscription with Ipsy (early spring last year), I have rarely had to go out and buy makeup. When you sign up you fill out a profile that tells the company what your preferences, skin type and hair type are, and then each month a bag is sent to your door that is specially created with products to fit your tastes and beauty needs. I have to say, their system is effective because I very rarely get a product that I don’t like. They also send fabulous, high-end products from brands like Benefit, Tarte, Too Faced and Makeup Forever, as well as lesser known indie brands. Beauty fiends, sign up to discover new products and brands, and for the joy of getting a little bag filled with makeup every month. Oh, and did I mention that the bags are adorable? I have used Ipsy bags as clutches and wallets on more than one occasion. 

5 // Hello Fresh 

I can honestly say that I love cooking, and so the only real obstacle to me making a home-cooked meal at the end of the day is a lack of energy and ingredients. Hello Fresh delivers perfectly proportioned ingredients and recipes to your door so that you can make fancy-pants, delish dishes in no time at all and with practically zero cooking know-how. I wouldn’t use this service on a daily basis, but it’s perfect for lazy days or when you are hosting a dinner party and want to make a stellar impression with very little effort. It’s also a great way for beginners to improve their cooking skills!

Have you tried any of these subscription services? What did you think? Let me know in the comments!

xoxo,

Alicia

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Brand Spotlight | Cold Picnic

Brooklyn-based indie label Cold Picnic is striving to make everyone’s home, wardrobe and life just a little bit cooler. Launched in 2010 by husband and wife power duo Phoebe Sung and Peter Buer (both of whom were already equipped with mad skills and training in both design and business), they quickly took the New York style scene by storm with their playful collection of home wares, handbags and jewelry – talk about #relationshipgoals! And #careergoals for that matter. Cold Picnic offers an amazing selection that ranges from cheeky rugs (the boob range is my fave), bath mats and wall hangings, to bedding, plant holders and accessories. Phoebe and Peter draw inspiration from cultural expectations, movies, art, interior design and national parks, and all of these motifs are visibly woven into each piece. If your space or wardrobe is in need of refreshing, check out this indie label for stylish treasures that will make all of your friends say ‘where did you get that and where can I get one?!’.

Check them out.

COLD PICNIC PICKS


1 // Old Fort Ring


2 // C is for Canyon Cuff


3 // Hi-Lo Earrings


4 // Cracked Bronze Metallic Backpack


5 // Tonal Boob Bathmat


6 // Talking Rocks Bathmat


7 // Sailor Knot Plant Hangers


8 // Hallsands Wall Hanging


9 // The Kiss Knit Blanket


10 // Objects From Home Rug

xoxo,

Alicia

Falling For Fall | 6 Cozy Autumn Candles

I’m a scent-aholic and so one of my favorite things about fall is filling my home with cozy smelling candles inspired by the delicious aromas of autumn. Candles, and scents in general, can do wonders for creating a specific atmosphere and mood. For example, if I want to relax and unwind, I might light a candle scented with vanilla, woods or lavender. If I want to feel cozy and creative, I’ll light smokier scents with apple, tobacco, cinnamon or caramel. Whether it’s the perfume you wear or the candles you light, scent is such a personal, intimate thing and everyone has their own preferences and opinions on what makes a perfect fall candle. Some prefer sweet pumpkin spice latte scents, while others like candles that mimic the smells of nature – fallen leaves and dewy apple orchards. Whatever your preferences, I am positive that one of these delectable fall candles will tickle your fancy. Here’s to all of the warm and fuzzy feelings and delicious smells that fall brings!


1 // Bath and Body Works – Leaves

NOTES: Red Apple, Golden Nectar, Clove Spice

Leaves from Bath and Body Works is an autumn classic and is one of the candles that I repurchase year after year. It’s sweet and spicy but still fresh, reminiscent of a brisk but sunny fall day spent crunching through fallen leaves in a tranquil park. It’s utterly pleasant and a fail-safe crowd pleaser. I’ve yet to meet a soul that didn’t adore Leaves!


2 // Byredo – Treehouse

NOTES: Bamboo, Pimento, Hay, Labdanum, Myrrh, Leather

If you lean towards green, outdoorsy scents, you are sure to fall head over heels for this refreshing candle. It reminds me of fragrant pine needles, dew-laden grass and fallen leaves. Oh, and apparently it’s Taylor Swift’s favorite!


3 // Max Benjamin – Coffee and Cardamom

NOTES: Coffee, Cardamom, Patchouli, Rose and Vanilla

Is there anything more mouthwatering than the smell of hot coffee in the morning? Only if it’s laced with exotic cardamom, voluptuous rose and creamy vanilla. This sensual candle is exactly what I want to light when I want to cuddle up on the couch with my boyfriend. The definition of cozy.


4 // Nectar Republic – Autumn Pear

NOTES: Fresh Pear, Caramel, Nutmeg, Cinnamon, Vanilla

If bakery-inspired scents are your jam, then look no further than this drool-worthy candle. With nuances of juicy pear and creamy caramel and cinnamon, it smells exactly like a poached pear tart. Light this bad boy and everyone will be wondering what delectable confection you’ve been baking.


5 // Frostbite Studios – Sherlock’s Study

NOTES: Pipe Tobacco, Cherrywood, Fresh Rain

Channel your inner recluse detective and enjoy the mysterious aromas of smokey pipe tobacco and cherrywood. A clean rain accord brings a slight freshness to the candle that reminds me of days spent in a musty study, reading with tea in front of a rain spattered window. It’s very unique and completely sets itself apart from other atypical fall scents.


6 // Often Wander – Apple, Ginger & Sandalwood

NOTES: Apple, Ginger and Sandalwood (obvs)

When it comes to fall scents, the smell of apple and ginger is a classic. This sweet and spicy combination reminds me of a juicy wedge of apple pie, but without all of the guilt and calories. It’s also made with clean-burning soy wax which lasts a lot longer than other waxes, so you can enjoy this delicious candle for ages and ages!

Do you have a favorite fall candle? I’d love to hear your thoughts!

xoxo,

Alicia

Brand Spotlight | Dusen Dusen

If wild prints, bold colours, and monochromatic PJ outfits are key components of your style MO, then prepare to fall head over doc martens for Dusen Dusen, a cool girl clothing and home decor brand based in Brooklyn. Designer and founder Ellen Van Dusen launched her first collection in 2010 and in the seven years since it burst onto the scene, it has expanded to include accessories and home furnishings, all with her signature eclectic aesthetic. Ellen draws inspiration from the typical sources – art, graphic design, culture – but she also creates each collection while considering how the human brain reacts to colour and contrast. Her artful (and somewhat scientific) approach translates into sleek and sharply cut silhouettes, bright hues (often primary colours), and geometric prints. It’s a magic formula that has earned this indie brand a cult following and Dusen Dusen shows no signs of slowing down. My usual style is pretty classic – think sleek cuts, lots of lace, feminine details, and lots of pastels with the odd bright here and there – so Dusen Dusen is not my usual cup of tea. That being said, there’s something about its unapolegtically in-your-face feel that pulls me in. While I’m not quite ready to don their head-to-toe printed panama suits, I am in love with their summery day dresses, cuddly (but with an edge) sweaters, and playful home furnishings line (I NEED the fruit bedding set). If you refuse to remain under the radar and love the ease of matching sets (and who doesn’t?), then allow me to introduce you to your style soulmate. Wallflowers need not apply.

DUSEN DUSEN PICKS


1 // Wrap Dress Lock Stripe


2 // Blue Key Tiered Tank Dress


3 // Floral Tile Jane Dress


4 // Rose Tile Mask Tee

5 // Floral Tile Level Tank


6 // Gray Curl High Waisted Pants


7 // Lilac Key Elastic Waist Pants


8 // Clip Throw


9 // Fruit Bedding


10 // Ladder Pillow

xoxo,

Alicia

6 Home Decor Must Haves

When it comes to decorating, often it’s the little details that truly elevate a space. My own style is eclectic and I look for pieces that compliment each other but aren’t too matchy-matchy. So with that in mind, here are a few items that have recently come onto my decorating radar. From a candle that captures the feel of a lazy spring morning to the most stunning pair of bookends I have ever clapped eyes on, these are the six pieces that I straight up need in my home, like yesterday. 

home-decor-must-have-collage
1 // Maison Margiela – MMM Lazy Sunday Morning Candle

Is there anything better than waking up at noon on Sunday with the sunshine streaming through your window and the smell of spring flowers and freshly cut grass wafting through the air? No. But this candle is almost as good, with gorgeous notes of aldehydes, lily of the valley, rose, orange flower, pear, and ambrette seed.

2 // Wilko – Ceramic 3D Flower Vase

This pretty periwinkle case looks like something Marie Antoinette would have had adorning her dresser! It’s just the thing to display your fresh from the farmer’s market blooms. It also reminds me of an antique cameo.

3 // Copper Magnetic Desk Set

Sleek + chic + practical + pretty = this glorious rose gold desk set. Keep one on your coffee table to store bits and bobs, in the bathroom to stash away your makeup, and in the office to keep your pens neat and tidy. Basically, keep one in every room of your place.

4 // Bluebellgray – Camilla Pom Pom Cushion 

I am all about pom-poms these days and this funky pillow is covered in flowers which takes it from a like to a love for me (P.S. I also flowers). It’s just the thing to add some colour and cheer to a room full of pared-down neutrals.

5 // AllModern – Abhishek 29″ Table Lamp

From its space-age geometric shape to its bright lemon hue, there’s nothing about this lamp that I don’t love. It’s fun and functional with just a touch of playful quirkiness. Win-win-win.

6 // Jayson Home – Gold Rock Bookend

I have never owned bookends in my life but I think it’s time that I did. I love marble and I love gold. Smack the two together and suddenly I need whatever said object is. These are gorgeous and are like little pieces of art in their own right. Use them to dress up your bookshelf, coffee table, or dresser. Or wherever you darn well please! They would honestly look lovely anywhere.

How would you describe your personal decorating style? What’s your favorite of these pieces? Let’s chat more in the comments!

xoxo,

Alicia