Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Book ~ "How to Get Dressed: A Costume Designer's Secrets for Making Your Clothes Look, Fit, and Feel Amazing" (2015) Alison Freer

From Goodreads ~ Costume designer Alison Freer’s styling kit is a magical bag of tricks, built to solve every single wardrobe malfunction on earth. TV and film productions wait for nothing, so her solutions have to work fast. In "How to Get Dressed", Alison distills her secrets into a fun, comprehensive style guide focused on rethinking your wardrobe like a fashion expert and making what’s in your closet work for you. She provides real-world advice about everything style-related, including:

  • Making every garment you own fit better
  • Mastering closet organization
  • The undergarments you actually need
  • The scoop on tailors and which alterations are worth it
  • Shopping thrift and vintage like a rockstar

Instead of repeating boring style “rules,” Alison breaks the rules and gets real about everything from bras to how to deal with inevitable fashion disasters. Including helpful information such as how to skip ironing and the dry cleaners, remove every stain under the sun, and help clueless men get their sartorial acts together, "How to Get Dressed" has hundreds of insider tips from Alison’s arsenal of tools and expertise. 

I am sooooooo not a fashionista but I thought this would be a interesting book to give me some tips ... and it did.

The chapters are:
  1. Movie magic:  or why movie stars look like movie stars - the insight on dressing stars
  2. Fit:  the true enemy of great style - the right pants, a better skirt, a brilliant blouse and more
  3. Alter your clothes, alter your life - alterations you need to know about, how to find a great tailor, basic tailoring terms and more
  4. Be your own costume designer - finding your style and searching the pieces that are you
  5. Dumb fashion rule that were made for breaking - horizontal versus vertical stripes, don't mix your patterns, redheads can't wear read and blonds shouldn't be wearing yellow, and more
  6. Wardrobe tools to keep your look together - safety pins, Topstick and moleskin, and more
  7. Dressing for success is dead - don't wear dirty clothes, wrinkled clothes, clothes with lint, scuffed shoes, and more
  8. Closet hacks, store your clothes like wardrobe girls do - how to hang clothes and more
  9. Underthings:  you really only need a few - it's okay to wear granny panties and why, how to find a bra that works for you and more
  10. Laundry:  you're doing it wrong - how to wash your clothes
  11. Shoe care:  for all your footware
  12. Old stuff:  a guide to shopping vintage and thrift
  13. Dudes:  this one's for you - what guys should know
  14. Stain glossary
  15. Fabric care glossary

I read it straight through and I think it would work better as a reference book ... if you're wondering about stuff, look it up.

I liked the writing style ... it was informative and funny.  The author, who is a costume designer, obviously knows what she's doing and enjoys it.

Comfort Suites Downtown, Montreal, QC

Today is Gord's birthday and we have been in Montreal since Saturday afternoon 'til today to celebrate.  We stayed at the Comfort Suites on Crescent Street.

Here is our room.

The king bed was comfy

Reuben's Deli & Steaks, Montreal, QC

Gord and I had lunch today at Reuben's on St. Catherine Street W (near Peel).

You are greeted by meat as soon as you walk in!

Happy birthday, Gord!

Wishing my husband, Gord, a very happy birthday!

Monday, 30 March 2015

Trattoria Trestevere, Montreal, QC

Gord and I had supper tonight at Trattoria Trestevere on rue Crescent.

Les 3 Brasseurs, Montreal, QC

Gord and I spent a couple hours walking around Old Montreal this afternoon ... there are a lot of cool old buildings!

Afterwards we stopped in at Les 3 Brasseurs (3 Brewers) on rue St-Paul E for a couple beer.  We've been to a couple of their locations in Toronto and have had good experiences and so-so experiences.

It is the location of the first Bank of Montreal (in 1817) ... the brewery has been there for about ten years.

Notre-Dame Basilica, Montreal, QC

Gord and I walked around Old Montreal this afternoon for a couple hours.  We spent some time at Notre-Dame Basilica.

Dedicated to Our Lady the Blessed Virgin – “Notre Dame” – the small original chapel was operated at first by the Jesuits. Then came the Sulpician Fathers, who in 1657 undertook construction of a larger church. The Sulpician François Dollier de Casson was its architect, and the present-day Notre-Dame Street served as the original site. Its construction, in Baroque style was completed between 1672 and 1683.

By 1800, Dollier’s church had become too small and the Fabrique decided to build the church we know today. To design the new church, the building council engaged the services of the New York architect James O’Donnell – himself an Irish Protestant by origin. O’Donnell and the Fabrique opted for the Gothic Revival style then in vogue in England and the United States. The main construction work took place between 1824 and 1829.

O’Donnell did not live to see his work completed. He died in Montreal in 1830. Just prior to his death, he had converted to Catholicism, and was buried in the new church’s crypt, where his grave is marked by a plaque.

The old church set back from the road was demolished in the summer of 1830, except for its bell tower, which survived until 1843, when Notre-Dame Basilica’s twin towers were completed by the architect John Ostell. The western tower, nicknamed La Persévérance (Perseverance) and finished in 1841, houses the great bell christened “Jean-Baptiste,” weighing 11 tons (11,000 kilograms or 24,000 pounds). The eastern tower, nicknamed La Tempérance (Temperance), was completed in 1843 and houses a carillon of 10 bells.

A new chapel In 1889, Curé Léon-Alfred Sentenne commissioned the architects Perreault and Mesnard to build a chapel that would accommodate ceremonies for smaller congregations, such as marriages and funerals. Named the Chapel of Notre-Dame du Sacré-Cœur (Our Lady of the Sacred Heart) and consecrated on December 8, 1891, the date of the feast of the Immaculate Conception, it was built in Gothic Revival style with a wealth of sculptural motifs.

Admittance was $5 each.

I'm not religious but I find old churches interesting ... and this one is beautiful.

Dunn's Famous, Montreal, QC

Montreal is famous for its smoked meat sandwiches so Gord and I had lunch today at Dunn's on rue Metcalfe (at rue St. Catherine O).

Myer Dunn founded Dunn's Famous Restaurant in 1927. Due to his unique recipes and high quality standards, Dunn's Famous quickly became a local institution for Montrealers and visitors alike.  His grandson now runs Dunn's.

Sunday, 29 March 2015

McKibbin's Irish Pub, Montreal, QC

Gord and I had supper tonight at McKibbin's Irish Pub.

It's a cute spot.

Gord ordered the Belfast Chicken Wings with no sauce.  The wings were HUGE and they were delicious (I had one).

Dieu du Ciel, Montreal, QC

Gord's a big fan of craft beer so we went to Dieu du Ciel for a few pints of beer.

They brew some of their beers onsite but most are brewed at their other location in St. Jerome.

Mount Royal, Montreal, QC

Gord and I climbed to the top of Mount Royal this afternoon.

The jewel of Montreal’s city parks is, without question, Mount Royal. This 200-hectare park occupies part of the mountain that lies in the midst of Montreal island, and includes the highest spot in the city (234m). In the 1860s, mass cutting of trees on the mountain for firewood outraged the populace and led to the area’s designation as a park in 1876. It was originally landscaped by Frederick Law Olmsted, perhaps best known for New York City’s Central Park, although not all his proposed plans for Mount Royal were eventually carried out.

The lookout facing over downtown towards the river was first built in 1906 and is now officially known as the Belvédère Kondiaronk, named for the Huron chief who signed a major peace accord with the French regime in 1701. 

Mount Royal is where Montrealers go to get a breath of air on a hot day, to cross-country ski without leaving the city, to walk off a hangover or a bad mood, to picnic, to jog, to ice skate, to look out over the city, rest their eyes on the horizon and dream.

Just walking up Peel Street to get to stairs is quite a hike!

Peel Pub, Montreal, QC

Gord and I had lunch today at the Peel Pub.

Gord ordered a Meat Lovers pizza.  He said it was good and he'd get it again.

I ordered a BBQ Bacon Burger with mashed potatoes.  It was delicious and I'd get it again!