At espy, fashion savant Megan Szanik and her elite style squad orchestrate custom fittings of designer jeans, a method earning the boutique nods from outlets such as the Calgary Herald. The 3,000-square-foot retail space houses more than 150 handpicked denim styles that flatter male and female silhouettes with a wide range of sizes and inseams. Before customers leap into jeans, fashion stylists determine leg and hip dimensions to gauge an ideal fit. Wearers can further complement bottoms with the help of tops by dozens of high-end designers that attract stares from even the most stoic mannequins.
Additionally, the team can beautify clients' faces with makeup and skincare products at the beauty counter. Espy's own line of mineral make-up showers skin with vitamin-rich nutrients, igniting cheeks, eyes, and lips with healthy glows. Its Dermo-Corrective line of skincare products also heals and improves skin, thanks to its bio-tech abilities that condition and fight signs of aging with every nourishing encounter.
Founded in 1994 by former commercial airline pilot Paul Sass, The Home Vintner supplies connoisseurs and novices with an abundance of award-winning pours and do-it-yourself kits for individual winemaking and beer brewing. With Winexpert kits, at-home vino makers blend varietal juices from around the world that will be ready to drink or cellar in 4–8 weeks, depending on the kit. Alternatively, brewers dive into barley bubbles with Barons beer kits that contain measured ingredients to make a hoppy Canadian blond ale, an English-style redwood ale, and a crisp Dutch-style lager, among others.
During classes, the staff of certified wine- and beer-makers walks pupils through each step of the brewing and vintning process, such as carbon-dioxide removal, corking, storage, and determining each libation's year by monitoring its reaction to different Bon Jovi songs. Courses dispense both basics of production and new methodologies, so apprentices can discover new approaches and skills to try with their next batches.
Casablanca Video, like the Warner Bros. classic for which it was named, has become is a special ritual for local film buffs. The business was opened in 1982 by self-described "fan boy" Jon Lord, who at the time stocked only 150 movies. As the 1980s betamax tapes evolved into 1990s VHS, the shop's vibrant atmosphere and knowledgeable staffers gained the respect of renters. Loyal customers and Jon's commitment to serving up interesting titles from off the beaten path of Hollywood resulted in a rapid expansion. During one stretch, the business doubled in size annually for six straight years thanks to booming membership rolls and constantly self-replicating Ernest videos. Today, Casablanca thrives as a grand buffet catering to all filmic tastes, frequently garnering a top place on Fast Forward Weely magazine's readers' choice list. No fewer than 30,000 titles saturate aisles teeming with new releases, classics, and art-house fare—many available on current platforms such as DVD and Blu-ray as well as bygone movie formats.
As a professional dancer, Jonathan Kane consistently turned to tea when he needed help summoning stamina for his routines. These days, he channels that same passion into his shop, The Naked Leaf. Here, he dispenses a range of organic teas that are imported from around the world and free of preservatives and artificial flavours, and he even keeps free samples on hand for visitors to taste test. He also encourages his customers to decorate their tea canisters with customized labels crafted from their own art, photos, and text.
When he's not espousing the benefits of tea, Jonathan dedicates his time to supporting the creativity of his community. Each canister of tea he sells is plastered with a limited-edition label that showcases artwork from locals, whose pieces adorn the shop. The Naked Leaf also stocks handmade tea ware from local artisans, locally made chocolates, and tea leaves harvested from local caffeine trees.
Six times per year, the experts at Wine Access pour their thoughts onto the page and introduce readers' palates to both Canadian and international wines. Each issue includes more than 125 reviews as well as a pairings and recipes section for better dinner ideas than floating corn flakes in chardonnay. There are also regular travel features to help you make plans to sample potables crafted in the diverse climates of international locales. Each subscription comes with a copy of the Canadian Wine Annual, a comprehensive guide to Canada's wineries that points to awards and editor's picks. With newfound expertise on the best vino options in your budget, you can choose with confidence which bottles to load into your complimentary tote bag and which ones to break over armrests to christen new couches.
Originally operated out of owner Carolyn Breven's home, Pure Jeanius has since blossomed into a fully stocked hub of designer denim, where knowledgeable staffers—dubbed "jeaniologists"—help ensure proper, flattering fits for all body types. They dispense honest opinions, astute advice, and insiders’ knowledge, such as why low-rise jeans are so popular with men building high rises, and help patrons peruse the immense inventory, which brims with more than 1,000 pairs of men's and women's jeans from renowned brands such as True Religion, Hudson, James Jeans, and Fidelity Denim.
As parents navigate the bevy of chic threads, a large TV entertains tots with kid-friendly movies and dissuades them from putting wooden clogs in the pockets of every boot-cut jean. The vast range of denim, which can accommodate women up to size 36 and men up to size 40, shares shelf space with Pure Jeanius' own line of all-natural, house-made essential-oil sprays.