I'm coming off a ten-day bender with Odacité and it's feeling pretty... pretty good. If you've never heard of Odacité or have yet to experience such things as the feel-good comedown, omigoodness it's more hedonist than a Bertolluci flick, and don't worry, it's new to me, too. Turning up the chillzone, taking extra care– these things almost always extend beyond surface-level vanity projects. You get a peace and respect for your innards, and I am all about brands who can further me down that road in a quality, cruelty-free fashion. Thanks to the sweet folks at The Detox Market in Toronto, my last few weeks have been about home spa-ing and feeling fresh in my jammies with their Ocadité Discovery Kit and acai-rose serum from the Pure Elements line.
Of course it always comes down to good results, but right away Ocadité takes care of many of the particulars I look for in a product. The brand is clever meld of medicinal plant-based ingredients (jojobo, lavender, rosehip, etc– o my) and the do-diligence of science. They prioritize fresh, Certified Organic / Wild Crafted ingredients, research and test them (on their CEO, not animals), and send them out to the buyer almost immediately. This is a format that isn't made to stand for a four-year shelf life– my package was marked made in July 2014. Largely because of this fact, they can cut out all those things like parabens, phthalates, phenoxyethanol, petrochemicals and fragarances. Did I mention they don't test on animals? There's me, below, with happy skin and a perplexed model pose. (forever affected by Zoolander..)
The Disovery Kit for Sensitive Skin is designed for 10-14 days of the full-monty skin regime: cleanser, toner, day cream, night cream, eye cream, face mask and exfoliator. If used sparingly (you don't need a lot), the kit will likely allow for more than that (creams stretch farther than cleansers, fyi), and so you really do get a good crush of time to feel out the product and how it works for you. I can report that the (red!) dry splotch under my nose that's been around since the change of seasons has officially peaced OUT. Everything feels realllll good going on– exceptionally so, and it's almost as if I'm getting a side of aromatherapy here. The quality they preach is presented via clear, matter-of-fact details in the packaging– where they source the ingredients for that specific product; the full breakdown so you know they're not full of it. Also, the brand uses organic aloe vera juice as a liquid base as opposed to water, which is the norm for most big box brands. Can you tell I am diggin' the Ocadité yet? I still don't know how to prenounce it aloud, though. (Oda-cite-eeeee?)
The exfoliator with the jojobo beads – a top contender. Gritty enough but so finely chopped that it didn't scratch up my (o so sensy) skin. Again with the good, fresh smells. Though, the big win, for me, would have to be the acai-rose serum. Like I mentioned, it's one in a line of 18 others that's designed to be combined and used interchangably amongst eachother to suit your specifics. They have all kinds to select from to cater to things from sensitive capillaries to acne-prone skin to rosacea. Accessorize yo faults via face cream? I loved the way this product made my skin feel all summer balmy-like.... fresh before bed, it's as if I am now the glowworm I've always wished to be. The oils used are cold-pressed as to conserve the nutritional components, so maybe that's a contributing factor.
The face mask was also prettypretty delightful. It goes on as a sheer and transparent cream– a lux padding of gloss for your face while you hang out in the beautification process for 20+ minutes. An option for the facemask– one that I tried and recommend– is to combine it with a pinch serum to create this saturated but not too heavy overnight powersurge. It tightens, softens and hydrates the face overnight like nothin' I've experienced in the line of skincare. I try things... this is good.
Another highlight– and I reveal myself as the basic b here– is the sponge pack. At first I just liked them cuz they looked like tiny biscuits. But hey coool: they expand under water into these perfect little face-scrubbing sea foams. Great for travel? Great for LIFE. When you're a nervous bird 4eva, sometimes it's also good to get a reminder via product packaging to "slowly, in a circular motion, rub to awaken lymphnodes and reduce puffiness/redness". I did that, thanks sponge-pack. LOVE THESE SPONGES I DON'T NEED MUCH.
The only downside to this whole thing is that now I am now out of Odacite. I couldn't be more pleased with the product, the keypoints, and the no-gimmick the brand rolls with. Thanks to the gang at the super deluxe Detox Market for all the fun.
Nothing like the catcall of corporate America to get you in the mood. I usually revert into grinch-mode right about meow– hibernation and scoffing at The Man whilst never being too proud to partake in the savoury foods portion of the holidays. There's a lot about this season that makes me uncomfortable– I'm sure you can relate– however, waking to a #BlackFriday instagram feed full of my most coveted independent designers (and jee, there are a few) was a reminder that consumerism ain't alllll bad. Putting my money into a business that's infusing creativity and heart into commerce (e c o n o m y is how the world goes 'round, yo) is an investment in culture and community and future. Choosing the livelihood of respectable makers who work with ethics and the madd hustle makes for better world // better feelings. It's pretty straightforward, really. I've selected a few favourites who are offering sweet deals this weekend. So – thinking alternatively – the Black Friday / Cyber Monday concept is actually an opportunity to show your love to the independent businesses who are making it work. Do it or don't, but if you're into quality aesthetics that enhance your sense of cute, these lovelies are certainly some bookmarks to keep on file.
THE WILD UNKNOWN
Kim Krans is The Wild Unknown. She's an illustrator, a musician, past builder of prisms, and – from what I gather – someone who's generally in love with pushing life buttons (visit her website for more - she's just rad). Kim's work carries themes of the mythical and otherworldly, though, you don't have to practice the tarot way to appreciate her incredible work. I bought the most gorgeous calendar filled with illustrations of classic musicians (Neil Young, Bob Dylan, Joni, etc) a few years back. These are the kind of things you hold onto. www.thewildunknown.com
FORTRESS OF INCA
Fortress of Inca is a footwear company delivering handmade, ethically-sourced goodies for your footies. Beyond the sustainability factor, their aesthetic is grand. Read the details on their website – lots of good moves happening here. Very committed. fortressofinca.com
Oh, P. Love. I feel like after so many years of lusting after her delicious macabre jewels, I've earned the right call her that. (no? ok.) Her brand sure has blossomed overtime, and she's stayed true to the handcrafted, personal quality of her work despite becoming a bit MAJOR in the industry. Unstoppable // Raspect.
MINNA BY SARAH BERKS
The art of the textile is something I've been exploring as if late. Been loving the work of loom-master Sara Berks, a designer working out of Brooklyn. Her website and etsy shop are filled with luminous wallhangings you wanna crawl up on and also ponder decidedly from a far. So can we please get over the antlers-above-the-mantel trend now? #sotired
She had me at "ancient mythology, abstraction, and feminine strength". Nina Berenato of Psyche not only makes beautiful things, she works with all recycled metals and ethically-sourced stones. The spiked ear cuff is kind of a game-changer for me. All production is done domestically in Brooklyn, NY. Excellent.
Another Brookyn bizz that's (o literally) killing it with the jewels. Dark, enchanting, mystical... it is of my taste. Creators Katie Deguzman and Michael Miller started out in furniture design but we're so glad they chose to outfit our limbs instead. The majority of their designs are made of recycled metal and any porcupine quills/horns used are by-products of the farming industry. kllercollection.com
Things were going on in Saint John, NB this past weekend. The place with the grace where uptown is downtown– Duke Street. Jeneca Klausen and Sarah Jones. Did you get there?
It's been a while since I've been able to exercise curious-creep behaviour in a live studio setting. Existing in the flux of admirers / cute people, having chats, hovering 'round the refreshment table (art snacks are the best snacks + don't eat an oiled sundried tomato while getting introduced to someone), this double studio date was a Saturday well-spent. And leave it to the artists to offer up vodka w/ pear + mint-fused mixer (poured from an old glass milk bottle, duh) at two in the afternoon. Bless...
J e n e c a K l a u s e n
If you haven't heard of Jeneca Klausen, you're in for a treat. She's easily one of jewelry design's best kept secrets– quietly tucked away in salty Saint John, New Brunswick. It takes just a scroll through her online shop to realize the level of artistry involved here. Each piece as its own enterprise of distinctions that can only come from an intelligent, uniquely spun mind. When she says no two pieces are the same, like, that's for real– each design is made from her own hardworking hands. I initially visited Jeneca's studio last spring, and seeing her design tools was telling for a girl who knows not such things; appearing like a bunch of torchure props from the set of Saw V. I implore anyone curious enough to read the article –––>> Seven Things You Didn't Know About Handmade Jewelry <<––– which provides a pretty solid breakdown of all the things involved in artisan design. You'll get the general notion that art ain't for pussies.
In smaller cities like Saint John, communities rally around their talent in a kind of support like I've never seen. Fierce, loving, obliging & with things to offer. Loads of "I got you, bae" sentiment, etc. On Saturday, Jeneca's place was pretty much alll a bunch of that. O, I do love east coast disposition. It's something you notice and appreciate (extra) deep down in the pit of your belly after spending time without it. I feel like this city gets overlooked much too easily, and it's exciting to get in on its very distinct community vibe as I work and exist for the winter months. Also pretty glad I got to the event by midday or I'm sure my new third-eye neckpiece would've been pinched up..... o, pretty well-made things. My soft, sweet weakness...
I think of the growing market for handcrafted, artisan design and wonder how this affects creatives like Jeneca; those who choose to live and work outside of the major urban hubs. It's great for equilibrium, but does solidify how crucial it is for said creatives to be so extra savvy with things like online outreach, community efforts and commerce in general. Their market, their income, their livelihood depends on it, as there's no healthcare when you're your own business and sole employee; there's certainly no retirement plan. As we the consumers continue to step away from the big box brands in search of something more personal, the hustle for the working artist becomes more and more complex. A convo TBC.........
S a r a h J o n e s
Just a few doors down from Jeneca is Sarah Jones. The fine artist took a day away from the canvas to serve up cider and ginger chocolate (Like I said, art snacks. Find some.) and chat with the people. Was hoping to get a few pats in with her pretty important pup, Pip, but alas, the cutie was not in attendance. Nice visuals and the gem artist herself were the equalizer...
Jones primarily explores with acrylics on canvas, sometimes incorporating found textiles. I always gravitate to mixed media things, and Sarah's embodiment of industrial landscapes was an instant connect for me. Her style is full of abstract expressionist vibes– edged colour-pops and unharnessed gridlines; floating geometrics for the build. It was all just sexy textures and the stark cool of Saint John realized. Pieces ranged from teeny 5 x 7 canvases to massive centerpieces to be hung above the fireplace.
If you're in the area, Sarah is doing a show with her sculptor pal Phil Savage on Dec. 6, where they'll both (individually) be interpreting things with wings. I need somemore and will certainly be reporting back. (hopefully with little more detailed chats with Sarah because she sure is a neat beet.)
The Dossier is a chance to delve further into the faces, places, builders and brands that make me flutter.
Something to share? Send me a note at hello @ lola-novella.com.