Archive for Alison McGill

A Historic Elora Landmark Is Now A Beautifully Restored Wedding Venue

Local Finds

All photos courtesy of Elora Mill Hotel & Spa.

The charming Southern Ontario village of Elora has been waiting a long time for the rebuild of the historic local landmark, the Elora Mill. This past July, the Elora Mill Hotel & Spa unveiled breathtaking new hotel, spa, and event space that already has a long list of couples signed on to marry in this stunning new space.

The original five-story stone structure was built in the 1830s and was originally a grist mill, then home to a sawmill, a distillery, and flour mill over the years. Situated beside the picturesque Elora Gorge, the Elora Mill Hotel & Spa is set in a stunning location with million dollar views (and wedding photo ops!).

The hotel has just 30 rooms making it incredibly intimate and romantic. The décor is ultra-luxe with rooms done up in chic French style (no two rooms are the same and the design style is one of two vibes, French modern or traditional). Soaker tubs, heated floors and Dyson hairdryers are added luxury bonuses you will find in each and every room and suite. The Elora Mill is a perfect spot for a pre-wedding retreat or mini-moon.

For compete relaxation the Stable Spa (above) is an absolute must-do. The treatment menu is extensive covering everything from body work to manicures and the 365-day heated pool on the spa deck is a perfect spot to catch some serious relaxation.

When it comes to wedding spaces, there are a few to choose from, all boasting dreamy rustic chic décor. Ceremonies happen at The Foundry, a former industrial space that is at once spacious, airy, intimate and cozy. The space has incredible windows that create a warm ambiance bathed in natural light. For reception spaces, The Irvine (above) can accommodate up to 100 guests and can be configured in a few different ways with different tables (circular or long harvest styles) and boasts a luxe old-world feel thanks to traditional Euro details like crown moldings and antique mirrors. For larger celebrations The Grand (below) can host up to 200 guests in its glorious, glittering space filled with twinkling chandeliers and romantic views of the Grand River.

Another thing to adore about the Elora Mill & Spa is the incredible food—all menus for are created by renowned Chef John Bakker and his culinary team. Event menus are creative and completely customizable and dining at the in-house Elora Mill Restaurant is a foodie’s delight.

77 Mill Street W. Elora, ON,

Why The Second Wedding Dress Has Become A Wedding Must

Fashion & Beauty » Wedding Dresses

Photo by Alex Bramall/PA Wire/Shutterstock

When Princess Eugenie stepped out on to the steps of St. George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle in her stunning Peter Pilotto gown, we knew this dress was the first of two that would be worn by the royal bride. No we didn’t have an inside tip, but it’s has become a royal tradition since Kate Middleton changed into her second Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen dress in 2011; Meghan Markle also did the same, swapping her elegant and demure Givenchy for a sexy Stella McCartney halter gown.

Royals, it turns out, are just like us as the second dress has become an essential for many brides. We hailed the trend as one of the biggest bridal style stories for 2018 and it has increasingly gained momentum with famous just-marrieds like Eugenie, Meghan and Chiara Ferragni (she wore three dresses!) We asked Andrea Anastasiou, owner of White Toronto and White Montreal, for her thoughts on the second dress, why it’s become a trend and how to make the wedding dress switch-up work for you.

What did you think of Princess Eugenie’s second dress for her reception designed by Zac Posen and why was it a perfect complement to the Peter Pilotto gown she wore for the ceremony?
“I loved the softness and fluidity of her second dress. The Zac Posen gown reflects her strong fashion sense and although modest in neckline it was quite sexy and youthful with a 1930s-influenced fitted bodice, which beautifully highlighted her figure. It was a compete contrast to the classic detailing  and structured silhouette of her ceremony gown, which was formal and held up a number of traditional details for that part of her wedding day: a long train, covered arms and a full skirt. It was maybe not a perfect fit for a fun reception but her second dress definitely was and this is exactly the reason many brides today are choosing to go with two gowns.”

Why is the second dress now a bridal essential? Are most brides doing it?
“Second dresses are becoming a big thing for modern brides. I think its a very individual choice. Some brides will choose a fuller ballgown shape for their ceremony and really want to be able to move and dance at the reception. Some are torn between two looks and want to be able to wear both on the day. The second dress is often lighter or shorter.”

What should a bride consider when buying a second dress? Also, what if you want a second gown but budget is tight? Any savvy shopping tips?
“If your budget allows for a second gown I think the gown needs to have a huge wow factor. It should be an obvious contrast to your first dress and perhaps a sexier design to make a style statement. If your budget allows for a spectacular gown change then go for it! I really feel a second dress is about elevating your look and should truly be an incredible, memorable change up from your ceremony gown. A great way to find a standout second dress is to be savvy with sample sales where you can score a great gown for less. Also, more and more short or modern gowns are on offer, which are a great choice and you can wear them after the wedding.”

The Biggest Wedding Dress Trends For Fall 2019

Fashion & Beauty » Wedding Dresses

Bridal designers never fail to impress with their creative reinvention of chic wedding wear. More than ever designers look to ready-to-wear collections, street style and the red carpet for their inspiration and never was that more apparent than at the fall 2019 New York Bridal Fashion Week collections, which just wrapped. Here’s our hit list of the 10 biggest style headlines we saw on the runways.

From lace joggers and breezy bomber jackets, to cropped sweatshirt style tops and tennis dresses, bridal has gone sporty (and comfy) and we’re loving it. The above look from Gracy Acaad was one of our faves.

The Age of Excess
Maximalist details like bedazzling hand beading, mile-long trains, three-dimensional accents and oversize bows were just a few of the OTT things we loved for the year ahead and few did it better this season than Pronovias.

Mini Dresses
The perfect dress for an intimate wedding or for your second reception look, the mini was everywhere and our favourite design was at Justin Alexander where it was trimmed in marabou feathers…FAB!

Halter Necklines
Meghan Markle’s second dress by Stella McCartney instantly catapulted this neckline on to the bridal-must list. We love this sleek and sexy sheath gown seen at Theia.

Graphic Lace
Big, bold and statement patterns in bridal’s favourite fabric made lace modern and fresh. Lela Rose had some of the chicest examples of this trend at her garden party presentation.

Goddess Vibes
We’re talking the ultimate in ethereal looks, when the dress, veil and details are ALL otherworldly and nobody did it better than Reem Acra with her exquisite Celebration Collection.

Plunging Necklines
Don’t be afraid to be sexy with your dress and showcase your décolleté…this was the message from many designers, most notably seen at Inbal Dror with most gowns having a deep square-cut or deep V-neckline.

Flower Power
Just like ready-to-wear, designers are having a love affair with flowers and no where do they look more fresh than in bridal. Ines di Santo’s standout collection was brimming with otherworldly floral-festooned gowns.

Blouson Sleeves
This look is perfect if you want to showcase your shoulders AND have a little dramatic sleeve coverage. At Galia Lahav sleeves were light as air and had a decidedly romantic and vintage vibe about them.

Sheer X Sparkle
Transparency continues to be a key trend in bridal, but this season we saw gauzy sheer layers dotted with crystals and sequins like this dress at Berta for a dazzling look fit for Hollywood royalty.

The Essential Las Vegas Honeymoon To-Do List

Travel » Honeymoons

The Las Vegas Strip. Photo courtesy of LVCVA.

The city of glitter routinely tops our list of honeymoon favourites. With a wealth of chic hotels, spas and restaurants, Las Vegas is the perfect adult escape (and backdrop for this stunning fashion shoot from our Spring & Summer 2019 issue!) There is so much to do in the city that never sleeps, it can be hard to pair down the coolest trip essentials. On our recent visit, we experienced some new favourite things as well as classic experiences that have us coming back time after time.

Stay at Park MGM
One of the coolest new sleeps in Las Vegas is the Park MGM (formerly the Monte Carlo). The rooms here are styled with sleek mid-century modern décor and it will also become home to the Nomad Las Vegas boutique hotel opening later this year. Nomad will be a boutique property inside the Park with just 293 rooms located on the top floors of the hotel. We love this hotel not just for its cool vibe but for its central location. It will also soon be home to some of the most incredible culinary experiences in Vegas with Eataly and a new outpost by Roy Choi set open at the end of this year/beginning of 2019.

Photo courtesy of LVCVA.

Relax at the Cosmopolitan Spa
Las Vegas is almost as famous for its luxury spas as it is for its OTT casinos. New on our must-list is the Sahra Spa & Hammam at the Cosmopolitan Hotel. The vibe here is desert chic, with a décor style that is quiet, peaceful and super zen. For an exclusive and private experience book one of the Sahra Suites where you can enjoy your own romantic spa oasis for two. The treatment menu is extensive, so choosing will be the hard part. Our reco: the Mani Lomi Massage, which is based on an ancient Hawaiian treatment.

Photo courtesy of LVCVA.

Dine at Bavette’s Steak House
The renowned Chicago resto has opened in Las Vegas and it’s the place to have one of the best meals on The Strip. With a retro vibe that looks and feels totally Mad Men, Bavette’s offers a French twist that elevates the experience of a great American steakhouse. The incredible menu covers off all steakhouse classics and offers some show-stopping items like the seafood tower and a fabulous bespoke cocktail menu.


Photo courtesy of the LVCVA.

Visit the Neon Boneyard
One of Las Vegas’s most incredible attractions is one that flies largely under the radar. The Neon Boneyard is home to a historic and super-cool collection of vintage Vegas signs that date back to the 1930s. Book a guided tour to see this artful display of the city’s history, which stretches over two acres—the site looks equally amazing in daylight or in the evening hours.

Photo courtesy of Caesars Palace.

Eat At Hell’s Kitchen
Inspired by the hit television show of the same name, Gordon Ramsay opened the doors to his latest Vegas resto in January and within days of opening Hell’s Kitchen logged more than 25,000 reservations! It’s one of the hottest spots in the city and is an incredible immersive dining experience where you can watch the blue and red team chefs at work in the beautiful open kitchen, which is the focal point of the cleverly designed space. Book early, it’s still a hard reso to score!

Photo by Alvaro Goveia. As seen in Weddingbells’ Spring & Summer 2019 issue.

Have a Graceland Chapel Wedding
If you are planning a honeymoon in Vegas, have you considered having a destination wedding there too? If you want something unconventional and super-fun, why not consider having Elvis marry you! For our photo shoot in Las Vegas, we dropped by the famous Graceland Wedding Chapel and discovered not only does The King sing and play guitar, he can marry you too! Jon Bon Jovi famously tied the knot here with wife Dorthea and there are a number of wedding packages to choose from for celebrations of all sizes (we vote for the Blue Hawaii Package where Elvis will give the bride away!)

Meghan Markle’s Makeup Artist On Creating The World’s Most Famous Wedding Beauty Look

Fashion & Beauty » Skin Care & Makeup

Photo via Getty Images

On her wedding day The Duchess of Sussex didn’t just ignite a trend in bridal style with her elegant and minimalist Givenchy wedding dress, she also made a major beauty statement with her fresh, beautiful and unfussy wedding day makeup. Her glowing skin (with freckles on full display), softly smoked eyes and flawless pink-nude lip instantly became the new standard for bridal beauty.

Meghan’s longtime friend and makeup artist Daniel Martin, who is a Dior brand ambassador and Honest Beauty creative colour consultant, was the architect behind her now iconic wedding day look and we had a chance to chat with him about how the two decided on her bridal makeup and how you can easily emulate her gorgeous no-makeup makeup look for your wedding day.

Can you describe Meghan’s wedding makeup look? What was important for Meghan and for you?
“Meghan’s look was about pulling out and showing the world what her internal beauty represents: a confident woman comfortable in her own skin.”

Meghan’s wedding look has been described as the ‘no-makeup wedding makeup.’ As the architect of this now famous look, did you know when you were creating it that it would become so iconic?
“The only concern I had about her makeup was that she feel comfortable and confident in it. When you’re comfortable in your own skin, wearing makeup you feel beautiful in, that confidence shines through and that’s what resonated with so many people around the world. Her makeup was effortless but truly captured the essence of who she is rather than a mask covering up what’s underneath.”

Can you describe the techniques for the look? How did you create glowing skin? Lush lashes? The perfect nude lip?
“For Meghan’s look, I focused on selectively buffing in her foundation allowing her natural skin to come through. Cheeks were flushed with a wash of a cream blush as was the highlighting to achieve her glow. Corner lashes were added to create the depth in her eyes and the her lip was a sheer lipstick.”

For brides (and makeup artists) who want to emulate the look, what are the key things to consider?
“Focus on understanding the skin and finding their favorite feature to accentuate! By doing this, it creates a ‘safe zone’ for the makeup wearer building their own confidence around your work.”

What are the five key products you believe a modern bride needs for her wedding day?
“My top five favourite products for any bride are very similar to what I would use for an actress for red carpet because the two are very similar. You’re dealing with long wear and budge proof makeup. I love Dior Backstage Foundation; Honest Beauty Everything Matte Primer; Tatcha Original Aburatorigami Japanese Blotting Papers; Diorshow Waterproof mascara; and the Surratt Beauty Relevée eyelash curler.”

How important is it that a bride have a relationship with her beauty team before the wedding?
“Its extremely important for the bride and her glam team to understand one another and her needs and wants. This is a moment in time you will always remember and you want to look back at your wedding photos with pride, rather than be shameful of a trend that dates you.”

Finish this sentence: A bride’s perfect wedding day makeup needs to
“… represent her true self!”

A Luxe Toronto Spa For Pre-Wedding Pampering

Local Finds

The beautiful new foyer lounge at The Spa at Four Seasons Toronto.

The Spa at the Four Seasons Toronto is renowned as one of the city’s most beautiful zen zones, but with the space’s recent renovation, it just notched up a little higher.

“There has never been more of a focus on our guests’ wellness than there is now” say Victoria Nickle, senior director of the Spa at Four Seasons Toronto. “We consider so much more than the product or treatment; it is about the experience throughout your entire visit.”

The spa recently underwent an extensive renovation of its entrance and foyer area. The space has been opened up to give an airy modern feel. The check in and retail area has been retooled and is stocked with luxury lines, many made in Canada. To match the new modern look, the spa has also launched some amazing new treatments which are all a perfect way to treat yourself and your girls with a pre-wedding spa party!

Our favourite pre-wedding treatments to try: the Rose Gold Facial, which boosts oxygen and uses rose gold crystals to tighten and tone skin; the Lime & Macadamia Scrub that uses sustainably-harvested cane sugar and macadamia crème lime-blossom to cleanse and soften the skin as well as increase blood flow; and the Himalayan Salt Stone Massage, which relaxes and detoxes body and mind.

The best part about a day at Four Seasons Toronto is you can stay and play all day using the spa facilities and relaxation pool, which is open daily from 6:00am until 10:00pm.

60 Yorkville Avenue, 416-964-0411,

How To Plan Your Dream Wedding In Six Months (Or Less)


Photography by Rob Lloyd Photography. Design, florals and decor by Frid Events. Makeup by Zab Iqbal. Backdrop by MDRN Photobooth.

A quick engagement (à la Ariana Grande and Pete Davidson or Justin Bieber and Hailey Baldwin) isn’t the only thing that’s speeding up in the wedding world. Wedding planning used typically be a 12-18-month event, but shorter timelines are now the norm with a six-month timeline being the sweet spot many couples aspire to to execute the ultimate party. How easy is this to do? Is this timeline realistic?

Wedding planning on a six month timeline is really not that difficult says Brittany Frid, CEO and creative director of Frid Events in Kanata, Ontario (she recently helped a couple pull off a wedding in four days…more on that later). We asked her to share all her tricks and tips for pulling off your dream day on a seriously tightened timeline.

Can you pull off a wedding in six months (or less) without a ton of stress?
“Absolutely! Six months isn’t an issue if you are flexible when it comes to location. Other than that, it’s a matter of prioritization and organization right from the get-go.”

What are the secrets to pulling off this type of party?
“I suggest starting with clear expectations and a discussion with your partner about how much responsibility you can handle, together and independently. Hiring a professional planner will help you dramatically if you don’t have much time or interest in planning. Allow them to use their connections and expertise to efficiently whip together a beautiful event. If you have the time and energy to plan your event on your own, you will need to consider your budget, what your priorities are for the event, determine any traditions or customs that you would like to incorporate into your day, and select your wedding party. Review a wedding planning checklist and delegate tasks between you, your partner, your family and your wedding party. Set deadlines and start with quickly getting contracts from reputable primary vendors such as your venue, officiant, photographer, caterer, DJ, florist, stationery and hair/makeup artists. Once they’re booked, it’s just a matter of filling in the details, finalizing orders, sending timelines and tracking payment schedules.”

How important is flexibility in this type of planning situation?
“You shouldn’t have to settle when it comes to your wedding. There are compromises you might have to make to ensure you get what you want though. For example, change your date to a Friday evening if Saturdays are booked at your favourite venue, or if your photographer isn’t available for your wedding day, have them shoot your engagement session. You will find suitable alternatives that are within budget and surprisingly perfect if you’re willing to be open-minded.”

What will be the biggest challenge if you choose to plan a wedding on a short timeline (ie. a venue, finding a dress, a planner…)?
“Finding an available venue will be the biggest challenge as they are often booked up to two years in advance, followed by finding the right photographer. You can buy a dress off the rack, caterers are typically able to coordinate multiple events a day, and most other vendor categories are over-saturated so you can find a reputable and available company fairly quickly. The most effective thing you can do is to ask a trusted vendor with a similar style to yours who they prefer to work with and take all of their recommendations.”

Why are short timeline weddings becoming a thing?
“My planning team is typically hired eight to 12 months before the event. I honestly think couples are simply anxious to jump in and be married. The length of time together before engagement has dramatically increased over the last decade: our couples spend an average of eight years together before engagement. Most of them met in university and wanted to get established in their careers before tying the knot. Once they do make the decision though, they’re ready to go all in!”

Will this trend become the new norm?
“It already is! Our couples are usually 30 years old when they get engaged and I believe the average age of engagement is only going to get older. With more disposable income in the household, the security of a good job and the desire to start a family soon, there’s really no reason for them to wait longer!”

How did you plan a wedding in four days! Dish.
“We had a bride call us from Sweden in April. She and her fiancé were coming to Canada the following week and desperately wanted to get married due to residency restrictions in Sweden (she’s originally from Canada). They explained they needed help finalizing the contract with the venue, finding a caterer and hair makeup stylists, ordering all of their rentals and florals, and coordinating their wedding with 65 guests. They were flying in the following Monday, and their wedding was being held that Thursday. Thankfully, my company offers a combination of services, from planning to stationery and florals, and the couple trusted our judgment when it came to making all of the major decisions. We tackled the planning and coordination, made their florals and stationery in house, rented all of their decor and did the entire set up/tear down. All they had to do was get the marriage license and their attire. We met for the first time just as the bride walked down the aisle!”


Bridal Nail Trends You Need To Rock Right Now

Fashion & Beauty

ten bridal styles for every type of bride - christos costarellos dress

Photo by Ted Belton. Hair by Tony Masciangelo, Alcorn Hair/P1M. Makeup by Cia Mandarello, P1M. Nails by John C. Nguyen for CND. Dress by Christos Costarellos from White Toronto. Bouquet by From The Potting Shed. Seen in the Spring & Summer 2018 issue of Weddingbells.

Your nails will never be more important then they are from the moment you get engaged until your wedding day. Everyone will be looking at your hands, which means it’s time to step up your manis and have some fun with the looks you choose.

If anyone knows nails it’s the experts at CND, creators of the long-wear gel shellac manicure, and recently-launched Shellac Luxe (which offers all the goodness of a traditional shellac but can be removed from nails after just 60 seconds of soak time). We recently had a chance to chat with CND founder Jan Arnold and newly-appointed Canadian ambassador Jessica Mulroney about what’s haute for brides when it comes to nail styling.

“The modern bride is very individual in how she approaches her wedding,” Arnold shares. “Everything about the event is an expression of personal style and individual taste and that includes the nail look. Because of this, I definitely see brides pushing it a little more with their wedding look than they have in the past.”

Arnold says she loves seeing more women stepping it up and experimenting with colour and nail art. One of her favourite bridal styles of the moment is rocking a long, sleek pointy almond-shaped nail with a crystal clear tip finished with a subtle fishnet pattern, tiny crystal details and even bold pearl embellishments. “I love applying tiny pearls along the cuticle line or adding a bit of chrome to a beautiful white nail to make it a little cooler and fashion forward. For me, nails are about fashion and fashion is fun so people shouldn’t be afraid to get playful!”

Mulroney also sees brides getting a little more daring while still favouring a neutral palette of white, cream and pink. “From the moment you become engaged, your bridal nail journey begins,” she says. “Your hands become such a focal point from engagement onward that you need to make them a priority.” Though she personally favours a soft palette of polish shades for brides, Mulroney loves the idea of incorporating a pop of colour into your nail look for your wedding day with a pale, pretty blue being her top pick. She also loves the idea of making nails the key accessory to your wedding dress. “If you have a lot of crystals on your gown, why not extend that feel to your nails with some subtle embellishments? You nails then become your ultimate bridal fashion accessory!”

Bridal Beauty Inspo From Reem Acra’s Latest Collection

Fashion & Beauty » Skin Care & Makeup

Reem Acra is known for her flair for the dramatic, and her runway show this season took it OTT. Staged at the New York Public Library, Acra pulled out all the stops for her latest iconic bridal collection, a parade of ballgowns and dramatic full-skirted dresses in exquisite fabrics like statement lace and floral jacquard and trimmed with jewelled bows at the neck and waistline.

Backstage pre-show, Acra shared that the inspo for the dreamy collection came from Kahilil Gibran’s The Prophet, a lyrical collection of essays exploring the themes of loss, love, beauty and spirituality. She topped each look with ornate floral headpieces and put the finishing touch on each model with strong nail statement using shades of Gel Couture polish from her bridal collab with Essie.

Rita Remark, global lead educator and nail artist for Essie Canada keyed the nail looks and explained that every model in the show wore one of the six offerings from Reem’s collection. “I love the shades because they stray from the traditional demure sheer nudes. From bold and softer pinks to robin’s egg blue and glittering gold, there’s a shade for every bride and the offer her the option to express her personal style with her beauty look.”

Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses

Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses

Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses

Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses

Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses

Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses

Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses

Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses

Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses

Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses

Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses

Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses

Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses

Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses

Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses

Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses

Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses

Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses

Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses

Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses

Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses

Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses

Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses

Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses

Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses

Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses Reem Acra Spring/Summer 2019 Wedding Dresses

The Prettiest Summer Wedding Scents

Fashion & Beauty

Photo by Adrian Armstrong. Styling by Catherine Doherty.

The vibe of the season is light and airy and your summer wedding fragrance should follow suit. Sparkling floral bouquets that smell garden fresh are a favourite and this season there are many new, beautiful ones to choose from. Here are 10 of our faves!

Valentino Donna Acqua Eau de Toilette, $105 for 50ml

This ultra-sophisticated scent is perfect if you are a rocking a romantic and glam wedding vibe. Frangipani rose combines with green almond, frosted pear and sandalwood to create a subtle, sexy fragrance (the signature Valentino Rock Stud bottle is also stunning).

Ralph Lauren Romance Rosé, $128 for 100ml
You’ll want to wear this delicate, gorgeous fragrance all day, everyday! Bergamot, lychee, red apple combine with rose, white violet and musk to create a sparkling scent that’s classic and cool.

Chloé Nomade Eau de Parfum, $154 for 75ml
A warm floral blend, oakmoss, freesia and Mirabelle plum are the stars of this show creating a scent with an alluring and sparkling earthiness. Perfect if you’re a boho bride!

Gucci Bloom Acqua di Fiori Eau de Toilette, $102 for 50ml
If you want an ultra-chic and unique fragrance, this one’s for you. The original Gucci Bloom has a powdery, floral finish but this reboot has a decidedly aquatic, dewy scent that’s musky and fresh.

YSL Black Opium The New Glowing Eau de Toilette, $99 for 50ml
This oriental fragrance has a sweetness to it thanks to a spirited combo of black coffee accord, orange blossom and cedarwood patchouli. If you are looking for a scent with a fun and fabulous energy this is your juice!

Miu Miu L’eau Rosée Eau de Toilette, $135 for 100ml
A delicate floral scent, this is the a perfect choice if you want a fragrance that’s soft and incredibly subtle. Lily of the valley, cassis buds and woody musk create a super-feminine and fun fragrance.

Prada Infusion Mandarine, $180 for 100ml
The newest addition to Prada’s Infusion line, this citrus blend packs a zesty punch. Orange blossom paired with neroli and bitter orange give this scent a kick and to create a standout scent that’s fresh and chic.

Chanel Coco Mademoiselle Eau De Parfum Intense, $129 for 50ml
Coco Mademoiselle has been given a sexy makeover. The fresh citrus and bergamot notes of the original remain; what’s new is the addition of a higher concentrate of Indonesian patchouli which gives the fragrance richness and depth.

Hermés Twilly d’Hermés Eau de Parfum, $147 for 85ml
This delicate pink juice packaged in a stylish square bottle tied with a Hermés silk ribbon smells as pretty as it looks. A spicy floral, this fragrance gets it’s kick from a heady blend of tuberose, ginger and sandalwood.

YSL Blouse Le Vestiers Des Parfum, $280 for 125ml

The latest edition to YSL’s prestige fragrance line, Blouse combines bergamot, green tangerine and pink pepper with woodsy musks and patchouli to create an incredibly romantic and sultry scent.

Muskoka’s Premiere Resort (And Wedding Destination) Debuts A Beautiful New Look

Local Finds

All photos courtesy of JW Marriott The Rosseau Muskoka

The JW Marriott The Rosseau Muskoka is on the verge of celebrating its 10th anniversary this December, and to get ready for the big event the resort—which has been named one of Weddingbells’ Lovliest Venues—has reimagined its foyer, lobby and public spaces. The results are fresh, modern, cozy and perfect for capturing some beautiful wedding photo ops.

The Lakes Lounge.

The Muskoka Room.

The resort, which is built on a 100-foot granite bluff, offers some of the most romantic and sweeping scenery for a wedding. The newly redesigned Muskoka Room and Lakes Lounge offers incredible views of the waterfront complete with a modern, Canadian vibe. When it comes to weddings on site, there are a host of options including three ballrooms (the largest can hold up to 350 guests, the smallest can host 50) and the Lakeview Lawn, which offers breathtaking views of Lake Rosseau and the most incredible sunsets. For a more intimate celebration, we also love Fish Rock, which is located on a jetty right on the shore of the lake.

Lake Rosseau makes a stunning backdrop for your wedding.

The JW Marriott The Rosseau Muskoka is the perfect spot for a wedding in any season and is a great place to stay on for a few days to enjoy gorgeous surroundings, incredible in-house restos (Teca and The Muskoka Chophouse are both stellar) and the plush Spa Rosseau. It’s one of the most relaxing, picturesque and luxurious resorts in Canada, a total dream wedding escape!

1050 Paignton House Road, Minett, 705-765-1900,

Plan An OTT Honeymoon In London

Travel » Honeymoons

Photo courtesy of The Savoy

London is one of those addictive destinations. There’s never a lack of things to do in this electric city, you could literally spend weeks here exploring all it’s colourful neighbourhoods. It makes for the perfect honeymoon spot as it has something for everyone: history, royalty, art, world class shopping and dining as well as some of the most luxurious and renown hotels in the world. Here’s our hit list of to-dos to enjoy a perfectly posh London honeymoon.

Visit Kensington Palace
With all the excitement of the recent royal wedding, Kensington Palace is a must-visit. The childhood home of William and Harry and the royal residence of the Cambridges and the Sussexes is currently hosting Diana: Her Fashion Story, an incredible exhibition of Princess Diana’s dresses, where you can see many of her iconic outfits including the midnight blue velvet dress by designer Victor Edelstein that she twirled across the White House floor in in 1985 with John Travolta. While here stop by the palace’s famous Sunken Garden, a favourite spot of Diana’s and also the very place where Meghan and Harry had their engagement photo call.

One of Princess Diana’s famous dresses. Photo by Alison McGill.

Kensington Palace’s Sunken Garden. Photo by Alison McGill.

Enjoy a Sweet Sleep in Kensington
In the Kensington neighbourhood across just across from the palace is one of London’s most charming boutique hotels, The Milestone. Feeling more like a luxury home than a hotel, The Milestone has just 43 rooms and 13 suites, all individually decorated with luxe fabrics, antiques and bespoke art—every room here is romantic and quintessentially British. A favourite is the Meghan Suite, a modern, elegant room named after the new Duchess of Sussex. Not to be missed at The Milestone is the afternoon tea renown as one of the best in London. Enjoy tea in the cozy comforts of the hotel’s beautiful Park Lounge then sign on for the brilliant Tea Academy experience where a tea sommelier is part of your tea service, educating you on the finer points of making a perfect cuppa. Your two-hour tea service will include a sample of six tea flavours specially selected to complement the delicious array of tea sammies, scones, Devonshire cream and homemade preserves and sweets.

Photos courtesy of The Milestone.

Treat Yourself to a Luxury Facial
Glowing skin is a newlywed must and so is a spot of spa pampering. We found the best place in the city to enjoy such a luxury: Dermalogica Duke of York Square. The open and airy space is the flagship location for our favourite skin brand and is situated in Chelsea, one of the chicest areas of London (be warned the neighbourhood shopping here is amazing!) Sign on for a personalized skin treatment where you’ll be whisked into a perfectly Zen space where your skin will be cleansed, massaged, masked and moisturized to perfection accordingly to your individual needs. This experience is truly a little piece of heaven.

Photo courtesy of Dermalogica

Dine at Sketch
This is one of London’s buzziest and most Instagrammable restos. Famous for its chic art deco dining room that is a total millennial pink dream, Sketch opened in 2002 but remains one of the hottest tickets in town because of its inspired menu and incredible decor. There are five dining rooms to chose from with the most famous one being The Gallery, which features an incredible array of ever-changing sketch art by British artist David Shrigley. Afternoon tea with a twist is also a specialty at Sketch. Book early to avoid disappointment!

Photo courtesy of Sketch.

Book a Suite at The Savoy
A few nights at The Savoy, one of London’s most iconic hotels is something you’ll remember for a lifetime. Situated in the Strand neighbourhood on the north bank of the River Thames and close to theatres and Covenant Garden, the property boasts a rich history—it was opened in 1889, was a favourite stay of Claude Monet, Judy Garland, Fred Astaire—and is famous for its art deco and English Edwardian design as well as its unprecedented luxury. The hotel has 267 rooms and suites and for the plushest stay book a junior suite with a sweeping view of the Thames. Other musts while in house include drinks at the legendary American Bar, a traditional roast dinner at Simpson’s in the Strand, and daily English breakfast in the Thames Foyer, a breathtaking room complete with a stunning glass gazebo that’s the perfect spot to while away your time at the incredible Savoy.

Photos courtesy of The Savoy.

Edgy Bridal Beauty Looks (Shot On iPhone X!)

Fashion & Beauty » Skin Care & Makeup

Blouse, earrings and ring from the Métiers d’art Paris-Hamburg collection by Chanel. All makeup by Chanel. Editor, Marie-Andrée Guimont, Art direction, Nancy Pavan. Photography, Richmond Lam using iPhone X. Assistant photographer, Emily Velasquez Gilbert. Beauty direction and makeup by Julie Cusson for Chanel. Fashion styling by Yso at Folio Montreal. Hair by Louis Hechter using L’Oreal Professional. Nails by Chira Valiante for Bløme. All flowers by Bell Jar Botanicals. First published in the Fall & Winter 2018 issue of Mariage Québec.

When we had the chance to work with Chanel’s acclaimed makeup artist Julie Cusson, we wanted to create a beauty shoot that was anything but ordinary. Cusson brought a couture sensibility to these five modern beauty looks and photographer Richmond Lam brought it all to life with one simple tool: the iPhone X. We were blown away by the incredible clarity and resolution of the images Lam produced (you can see the feature in print in our sister magazine Mariage Québec) and by the drama and beauty of Cusson’s incredibly fashion-forward looks.

For these looks, Cusson used the latest and greatest from Chanel’s fall beauty collection. The looks are dramatic and daring marrying smoky eyes with both statement lips and barely there nude shades. “To create depth and richness with your bridal eye makeup, I love a smoky eye created by mixing matte brown with midnight blue,” Cusson says. “I love creating eyes with a matte texture paired with a luminous complexion. No blush required just matte beige pink lips.” Cusson also says she loves the idea of playing with textures when it comes to the skin and bridal makeup. “I love matte and shiny in the same look, it’s interesting and sexy.” Cusson’s runway to real way looks offer a fresh look at bridal makeup and we are completely smitten with her haute vision!

Hat, brooch and blouse from the Metiers d’Art Paris-Hamburg collection by Chanel. Veil by Château de la Mariée Nadia. Ring by Ecksand. All makeup by Chanel.

Dress by Stella York from Ivorie Collection. Bracelets and ring from the Métiers d’art Paris-Hamburg from Chanel. All makeup by Chanel.

Scarf and necklaces from the Métiers d’art Paris-Hamburg collection by Chanel. Rings from Tiffany & Co. Paper Flowers collection. All makeup by Chanel.

Jacket from the Métiers d’art Paris-Hamburg collection by Chanel. Dress by Pronovias from Chateau de la Mariée Nadia. Ring by Myei. All makeup by Chanel.

Ireland’s Adare Manor Is The Ultimate Honeymoon Destination


All photos courtesy of Adare Manor

Imagine a honeymoon getaway so grand you feel as though you’ve landed in the midst of a royal fairytale set in rural Ireland. That is exactly what’s on offer at the incredible Adare Manor.

Located in bucolic County Limerick, in the darling Adare Village surrounded by medieval ruins, Adare Manor is an absolute gem of a destination. The renowned castle property, which dates back the 18th century, closed for an extensive multi-million-dollar renovation in January 2016 and just re-opened in November 2017 debuting an ultra luxe new look and vibe embodying everything you want in a dream honeymoon.

Located on 840 rolling acres of parkland with walled gardens and walking trails, everything from the original Adare structure, which dates back to the 18th century, was restored and refinished including the intricate stone work, furniture, woodwork and windows. A new 42-bedroom wing was added on to the original structure bringing the count to 104 guest rooms.

For a truly memorable stay we recommend booking your honeymoon stay in one of Adare’s Signature Suites. With a spacious 1076 square feet of living space, you will have your own sitting room, an incredible oversize bathtub stocked with Acqua Di Parma amenities and panoramic views of the property’s stunning formal French gardens and tranquil River Maigue and a bedroom with the plushest king size bed.

Other new additions to new re-imagined Adare Manor include an in-house cinema, and a luxury spa serving up state-of-the-art La Mer treatments and products. We recommend trying a taste of something local with your service and booking the Sleep Sound massage, which incorporates four magical Irish Ogham stones into the mix of this therapy designed to help you kick jet lag and rejuvenate. It is also now one of the world’s most exclusive event venues with the addition of an incredible luxury ballroom that can hold up to 350 guests. Adare Manor is truly one of the world’s most magnificent spots to host a destination wedding!

Everything about Adare Manor is perfection and you’ll feel as though you’ve stepped straight on to a movie set. From falconry, hiking and exploring to incredible cuisine (the Oak Room, The Drawing Room and the Carriage House are where most meals are served and afternoon tea is served in The Gallery) and the awe-inspiring grounds (Adare is home to a new Tom Fazio 18-hole gold course), it is truly an idyllic country escape, trimmed with the most luxurious bells and whistles. From the moment you arrive in the magnificent Great Hall Reception you will be swept away in the romance of Adare Manor and never want to leave.