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Feb 1, 2009
Blowing Your Top
Alison McLaughlin

Hair Cadets, Blo Bros and Pink Wig Girls: my conversation with Judy and Devon Brooks is awash with the playful marketing language that has come to define their fledgling venture. The mother-daughter founders of Blo Blow Dry Bar Inc. hair salons are confident that even women who surrender their full-service...

Jan 28, 2009
Taste of Romance
Jim Hoggan/Alison McLaughlin

Jim Hoggan's Wine Pick If Shakespeare truly believed that “music be the food of love,” he mustn’t have known good chocolate. Chocolate is the number one confection in this season of love – and the best gift. Cheaper than diamonds and more sensual than roses, it also goes better with...

Jan 1, 2009
Piety and Progress: Privatization in Vancouver Hospitals
J Bucher

If it reduces waiting times, are Vancouverites ready to embrace a new, private funding model for their health care? Talking to Canadians about health care is like talking to Italians – in the movies, anyway – about mothers: our brows furrow, we’re quick to take offence. It’s not with open ears and hearts that most British Columbians greet talk of “innovation” and “competition” in hospitals.

Jan 1, 2009
January Style: Business Card Wallets
Steven Schelling

As arbitrary temporal demarcations go, few pack the solid sucker punch of reform quite like the new year. Whether or not one has the willpower to keep one’s pesky resolutions – be it losing weight, finding love, quitting smoking or reading the collected works of Proust – the urge to...

Jan 1, 2009
Value Vintage
Jim Hoggan/Alexandra Barrow

Jim Hoggan’s Wine Pick The only thing better than a really good bottle of wine is a really good bottle of wine that you got for a really good price. It took me a while to figure this out. When I started collecting, I went straight for the name brands:...

Dec 1, 2008
Winter Fashion: Neck and Neck
Steven Schelling

The scarf has loftier sartorial ambitions than would be implied by its (supposed) primary purpose of keeping a neck warm. The right scarf is a physical manifestation of fashion’s Holy Trinity of colour, pattern and texture, and adds a much-needed punch of personality to the otherwise bland overcoat or neutral trench. Personal but not too intimate, and one-size-fits-all, a scarf also makes for the perfect corporate gift (as long as you don’t ruin it with an embroidered company logo). -...

Dec 1, 2008
Holiday Cheer
Alexandra Barrow

Sweet Company Thomas Haas Chocolates of North Vancouver has built a name selling premium handmade chocolates. Now you can add your own cocoa butter logo to make a tasty, personalized impression on clients. The one-time setup fee for logo artwork is $275 for one colour and $375 for two colours. Token two-piece gift boxes start at $3.75 and the 36-piece Keepsake Collection sells for $75. Thomas Haas Chocolates, ­ Jim Hoggan's Wine Pick

Dec 1, 2008
Culture: Scalawags, Holly Cole & the Nutcracker
J Bucher

Music Christmas with Holly Cole: When Holly Cole – best known for her chewy phrasing, especially on the 1993 remake of “I Can See Clearly Now” – takes the stage for her Victoria yuletide show, the results will be as refreshingly strange as a Bond villainess in a feel-good Christmas film. Cole, whose biography lauds the sexy, provocative and dangerous character of her voice, sings a raft of old-time seasonal classics under the watchful eye of conductor Giuseppe Pietraroia. December...

Nov 4, 2008
Botox at the Dentist
Susan Hollis

Botox? Typically, the only filling dentists do is of dental cavities, not wrinkles. That might have been the case until 2007, but, under pressure from dentists such as Victoria’s Rachel Staples, regular tooth doctors can now administer cosmetic injectables. “I...

Nov 4, 2008
In the Bag
Steven Schelling

Thanks to recent technological advancements, many laptops can now fit neatly inside a manila envelope. But just because you can tote a computer around in an inter-office packet doesn’t mean you should. Putting aside purely aesthetic arguments (the first being that it’s near impossible to match your shoes to a manila envelope), there are several practical reasons to invest in a dedicated laptop bag: protection from shocks and spills, adjustable shoulder straps, compartments for peripherals and the like. Below, a...

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