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The Launch of QUARTZ Vodka

Nov 29, 2014

Have you heard of the brand new QUARTZ vodka? I think you'll never guess who is behind this fancy label: Lise Watier herself. After having built a beauty empire recognised internationally, the wonder woman had the surprising idea to create a fine vodka by partnering with Domaine Pinnacle.

A few weeks ago, on a cold Monday evening, I was invited to the very private launch party where I had the opportunity to meet Madame Watier in person. As soon as I walked in, I was offered a glass of the new liquor while being greeted to an impressive bar abundantly filled with fruits, ice cubes and various juices. I took a couple of raspberries along with a few mint-infused ice cubes before heading out to the oyster bar. 

Not a bad way to spend a Monday night, isn't?

Now, what's so special about QUARTZ vodka? 

It is carved with one of my favourite waters, ESKA, the crystalline water of the great Quebecois north, which is also one of the world's purest sources. Interestingly enough, the vodka is micro-filtered five times through quartz - hence its name - to ensure a smooth product. Although I am not usually a big vodka drinker, I thought this one was particularly soft and silky. 

Conceived by a London glassmaker, the tall glass bottle that holds the liquor is a true object of desire. It is simply chic and architectural and it would certainly make a dashing Christmas gift for the gentleman in your life.

QUARTZ Vodka is available at SAQ stores at the retail price of $40.25.
Image credit: QUARTZ Vodka

The Nutcracker Market Is Back In Town!

Nov 26, 2014
Maison Christian Faure
The Nutcracker Market opens tomorrow at Palais des Congrès de Montréal! 20,000 visitors are expected to attend this Holiday season must to find plenty of gift ideas for a great cause. Again this year, 10% of all exhibitors' proceeds will go to Les Grands Ballets Canadiens de Montréal's Nutcracker Fund for Children. This fund allows children from underprivileged neighbourhoods to attend educational workshops and a ballet performance while also helping the Nutcracker production. Here are some of the exhibitors I look forward to see this year: Maison Christian Faure, Alpaga des Appalaches, Les Pétards and Toque et Tablier.

Alpaga des Appalaches
Les Pétards
Toque et Tablier
For more information: The Nutcracker Market 

My ELLE By RW&CO Little Black Dress

Nov 24, 2014

About three weeks ago, I was invited to the Montreal flagship of RW&CO's to celebrate the launch of their highly-anticipated ELLE by RW&CO capsule collection comprised of eight chic holiday dresses. At the event, I congratulated Denis Desro, the man behind the stunning collection who also happens to be the Fashion Editor-in-Chief for ELLE Canada and ELLE QUEBEC. While sipping bubbly, he candidly explained how he was inspired to create a modern dress collection that would be both unique and easy to wear.

With that in mind, I eagerly went to the fitting room with four different dresses to try on. After having switched dresses countless times while helping my friends select "the one", I finally picked the retro-inspired black shift dress with leather-like cuffs and flower appliqué. I initially thought that I would go home with the playful black textured dress with the plunging neckline. But when I tried the shift dress something magical happened, I instantly knew this was the one. I think it's the unassuming elegance of that particular dress that felt very Chanel to me. It's not something I would have considered on paper, but sometimes you need to step out of your comfort zone to explore the many sides of your personality. And that's what makes fashion so exciting, wouldn't you agree?

Dress: Elle by RW&CO / Faux fur coat: Joe Fresh (old) similar / heels: Jessica Simpson - similar /
Pearl and citrine ring: Perrywinkle's / Pearl earrings: gift

Have you shop the ELLE by RW&CO dress collection? Which one have you picked in the end?

Photo credit: Denis Vayer

A Very Personal Gift

Nov 21, 2014

Interested to give a truly personalised gift this Christmas? I have two ideas for you from the fragrance department:

1. For the classic lady, you can't go wrong with My Burberry, the latest British scent from the well-respected fashion house who brought us the iconic trench coat. Not only is the glass bottle so pretty, but the floral fragrance - inspired by a London garden after the rain - is as timeless as can be. To make it an even more special gift, Burberry had the brilliant idea of offering to engrave up to three initials on the bottle. This limited service is available at The Bay Carrefour Laval on November 25 and at Galerie d'Anjou on November 26. Just imagine her expression once she'll discover her very own initials on the bottle: #priceless.

2. For the fashion-forward woman who has just about everything, why not explore the luxurious line Les Exceptions by Mugler launched earlier this year and sold exclusively at The Bay downtown Montreal. This Holiday season, the French brand had the idea of offering an empty bottle nicely packaged, which your friend-mother-daugther - or even brother since the line is unisex - will be able to fill up with one of the five fragrances from the collection. Will it be Oriental Express, Chyprissime, Fougère Furieuse, Supra Flora or the enticing - and my personal favourite - Over The Musk? That's what I call a very personal touch.

Hope you'll find these ideas helpful!


Nov 19, 2014

There is an understated elegance about finishing off an outfit with a delicate, yet sophisticated bracelet. I recently discovered a new jewellery line right up my alley. It's called Luxetto and it is entirely handmade in Montreal by talented Jacinthe Piotte. I have been wearing her Nexie wrap bracelet alone ever since I got it. It such a luxurious statement piece that complements just about any look with finesse. I can't get enough of the ultra-soft leather, the neutral taupe shade and the subtle 14-carat gold-plating clasp, what a beautifully designed accessory. 

And I already have my eyes on the Vani bracelet and the Vika Earrings with tiny Swarovski crystals...Santa, I hope you'll remember this.


MIB Awards: Vote For My Blog!

Nov 13, 2014

Made in Blog is hosting its second MIB Awards, a Canadian competition which will crown the best blogs in over 20 categories. Guess what? Pearls & Caramel has been nominated in the lifestyle category sponsored this year by W Montreal Hotel. 

To vote for my blog, you simply have to click on the link below:

Thank you so much for your support and your kindness, I look forward to providing you with more elegant stories for you to enjoy. 

You have until November 26th to cast your vote!


Image credit: Hemingwayandhepburn

Can You Resist Nutella?

Nov 10, 2014

I dare you to resist some creamy Nutella cupcakes with candied pearls? There's nothing like a little sweetness to kick-start the week, wouldn't you agree? 
Lucky me, a few days ago I received a fancy hot pink box with these precious darlings inside. Made with love by the passionate Sophia from Sophia's Montreal Cupcakes, these tiny cakes are such a treat. The frosting is finger licking good and the cake itself is deliciously moist, so yummy! Sophia started to make gluten-free desserts when her own sister became gluten-intolerant. And so she recently decided to launch her own business since she always had a fondness for cupcakes.

Now that I have tempted you (at least I hope I did), you'll be pleased to know that Sophia has kindly offered to extend a 25% discount to all the Pearls & Caramel readers located in the Montreal area (until Dec. 24th). With the holiday season upon us and all the party planning madness, why not put together a nice sweet table with plenty of scrumptious cupcakes? Just a thought!


For more details:
Sophia's Montreal Cupcakes
Please note that the ones I have tried were gluten-free, but Sophia also makes regular one in a completely separate kitchen.

The Pajar Heritage

Nov 7, 2014

Pajar has been at the forefront of the Canadian footwear industry for over 50 years now. And you know what? I just recently discovered that they do much more than winter boots! 

Indeed, at their recent fashion show, which took place at the very elegant Le Windsor hall, I saw their collection of trendy outerwear and fun winter accessories with plenty of lavish fur detailing. It was totally the kind of gear that makes you want to embrace winter in style.

To celebrate the occasion, they had invited six Olympic Gold medalists from our National Women's Hockey Team to walk down the runway. What a festive moment it was to see our winners closed the event followed on stage by the entire Pajar family, including the little ones.

But to me, the highlight of the event was to meet Paul Goldberg, who founded the company in 1963, and his lovely wife Rachel. I was inspired by their enthusiasm, their heritage and by their kindness. Such a precious couple, I was truly humbled by their presence.


Image credit: Pajar

Rigor Lux, Sumptuous Winter Coats

Nov 5, 2014

One of the perks of having to endure long winters every year - aside from hot chocolate, cosy sweaters and skiing - is to be able to wear splendid coats. As much as I prefer quality over quantity in general, I am a strong believer in having many warm coats if you don't want to be miserable during the colder months. Our winters are considerably long, that's why I like the idea of changing coats to fit my mood, my lifestyle and my social calendar.

Since I am always looking for new coats (and excuses to buy new coats!), I was thrilled when I recently got invited at The Bay'Fur Salon to discover an emerging Canadian brand named Rigor Lux. Created by Newfoundland-born designer Miranda Murray, the company specialises in luxury outerwear for women and men. 

I was completely mesmerised by the sophisticated coats on display the night of the event. I was immediately drawn to a gorgeous dark blue cashmere number with black fur at the collar. Beautiful tailoring, fine details such as leather and suede, satin linings, edgy adornments such as zippers and metal accessories and exceptional craftsmanship - the brand's debut collection is simply divine.

It's always fascinating to see ambitious young women passionate about their craft. Miranda is certainly of them. Now just have a look at the photographs from her first lookbook and tell me it's not love at first sight?


Image credit: Rigor Lux

The Weekend De Toute Beauté is Back!

The "Weekend de toute beauté" is back for a second edition on November 7-9, 2014 at Palais des Congrès de Montréal! I had the chance to attend the first edition, what a festive shopping experience it was! 

Once again, the event will showcase the latest trends in fashion and beauty. It's a great opportunity to meet skincare experts, make-up artists, hairstylists, fashion designers and professional stylists - all under one roof. You'll also be invited to see fashion shows, hear conferences, sip bubbly at the champagne bar, take your chance at the "Become a model contest" jointly organised by Dress to Kill and model agency Montage and more! 

Here are some of the personalities that you'll be able to meet onsite: Marie-Claude Savard, Liza Frulla, Clodine Desrochers, Chantal Fontaine, Jacynthe René, Guylaine Tremblay, Julie Perrault, Mélanie Maynard, Josée Boudreault and Alexandra Diaz.
For more details: Weekend de toute beauté

Catherine xo