I am SO looking forward to this weekend bc I’m attending @Twitter’s #SheInspiresMe panel w Jennifer Lopez, Constance Wu and the cast of #Hustlers. Huzzahhhhhhhh! I love Twitter so much. It’s my fav social media platform. I’ve been by there Twitter Canada office a couple of times, check it here.
I love this time of year SO MUCH and am trying to enjoy every single moment! I’m grateful and thankful for every opportunity that comes my way. Please lmk if there is anything you REALLY want to see or if you have a question for @JLO? I doubt I’ll get to talk to her but hey, it’s #TIFF, anything can happen!!!!!
If you aren’t following me on Twitter, do you even tweet?
I’m not sure what else to say right now other than, I’M SO EXCITED!
Today is media day for TIFF, the day before the festival officially opens. This is my 10th year as a media (blogger) type person and each year I cover events, entertainment, lounges, and of course, film.
So far this year I’ve seen pre-screeners of two Canadian films, Black Conflux, and White Lie. (I’ll share a movie reviews post early next week.)
Last night I attended an event for Warner Bros ‘TheGoldfinch’ This is my attempts at painting a colourful ‘goldfinch’ at the event last night w/ The Crazy Plate Lady. Check out her amazing work here, she’s INCREDIBLE.
Yesterday I started my day with a fresh manicure then picked up a sweet red Volvo S60 so I can drive around to everything which is INCREDIBLY CONVENIENT.
Today tho, today is one of the most wonderful days of the YEAR. I’ve got a full day of visiting TIFF gifting suites to experience a range of products and services including a facial, botox, makeup, a blowout, and more.
What is a Gifting Lounge?
A gifting suite (or lounge) is a popup location, often during an award show of film festival, where companies give products to celebrities in exchange for the famous person takes a photo with the product, wears the gift on a red carpet, or while standing in front of a step & repreat wall displaying company logos.
One quick google search for ‘celebrity gifting TIFF‘ will bring up a slew of articles about the business of TIFF gifting. As a media, I get to go behind the red carpet to see and experience some of the stuff celebrities do. Media receive heaps of things but I will tell you right now, the celebrity bags are jam-packed with high-end designer items and top tier experiences you can only imagine. Remember my Biologique Recherche facial from Visage Medical two weeks ago? It costs about $400. On that note, my skin STILL feels good from it, soft, clarified, it feels cleaner, not clogged if that makes sense.
Bask-It Style by GLO Communications – Celebrating its 11th year, this lounge is hosted at Thompson Hotel where celebrity guests can ‘bask’ in great products.
Ann Kaplan’s 2nd Annual Pre-TIFF Glamfest – Hosted in her home ‘Mulywood‘ on the Bridle Path, former Housewives of Toronto star has a lounge in partnership with her husband’s medical clinic offering a range of beauty and cosmetic services.
NKPR IT Lounge – Hosted by NKPR in partnership with the Property Brothers, this lounge has gifting, a Rolling Stone portrait studio, and also presents the TIFF Producer’s Ball.
I’m working on a TIFF giveaway for will hopefully have details confirmed today.
The next few days are going to be full of adventure and exciting experiences. I have a loose idea of where I’ll be and when but it’s TIFF and anything can happen!
On September 12th, I’m speaking at a talk hosted by Irisa inside the Stackt Market. It’s a bit different in most talks I’ve done as it’s not about social media or marketing, we’re talking about alcohol, cannabis, sobriety, and sober curious.
It’s no secret that over the last couple years I’ve stopped going to so many events and drinking as often. I made a lifestyle change to drink less in an effort to be healthier mentally and physically. There was a long period when I moved to Toronto and started going to media events where it was common to drink most weeknights and weekends. After work drinks, tweetups, long lunches, brunches, everything had booze and it was common to be at an open bar. I didn’t want to have that life anymore.
Learning about the Sober Curious movement inspired me. I don’t want to completely cut alcohol out of my life but having a positive relationship with it puts me in control. I’m now more comfortable going to events sober and not using alcohol to deal with social anxiety. I drink here and there but mostly with close friends or at home. As I’ve gotten older, it’s WAY harder to recover from a big night out and not nearly as cute to be totally wasted.
The Pretty Elevated pop-up is presented by Irisa Cannabis and on until mid-September. They’ve got a whole bunch of workshops and talks happening, check out prettyelevated.ca for tickets and event times.
If you weren’t able to get a ticket to our talk (it sold out in 24 hours!), please come anyway! Tickets are free and we expect there will be a few who don’t show up. The panel is hosted the lovely April Wozny, a close friend, and advocate for mental health & addiction. She’s been sober since 2015 and will be sharing stories about sober life including sex, dating, and relationships.
I’m really looking forward to this event and being part of the conversation around living a sober-ish life! On that note, still a big fan of cannabis. 😁
Last week I had a Biologique Recherche facial at Visage Medical Spa, a cult beauty fav The Olsens, Nicole Richie, and heaps of celebs. Honestly, my skin has been glowing ever since, it’s like I have a teenager face.
Biologique Recherche is from France and has alpha-hydroxy, salicylic acids, horseradish extract, and it exfoliates TF out of your skin. My custom facial included caviar, collagen, and placenta! 😳 Highly recommend!
The Visage Clinic space is beautiful. I am totally obsessed with all the designer wallpaper. The swans are GUCCI!
This is inside the FACE LAB where we used the Biologique Recherche tools to examine the elasticity and moisture (or lack thereof) in my skin. Visage Clinic is the only company in Canada that currently has these tools. I received a printout of my diagnosis and it will stay on file at the clinic for my follow up on a few months.
This experience was a gift and I am so grateful! Thank you Ashton Marcus PR & Visage for the invite. I am down to try just about any beauty service. Anything to maintain a youthful glow!
This week is the calm before the TIFF storm that kicks off next week. Excited, can’t wait!
I can hardly believe it’s almost TIFF! It feels like we were just in France for Cannes! After our trip to France, I was so incredibly tired, I’d spent most of May traveling or at conferences. I posted a few photos in this Telus post about our Cannes adventure but I wanted to share more about the experience so I don’t forget anything. It was a really cool experience!
From the moment I saw the red carpet and Cannes main building I was in awe. I’ve been watching celebrities grace that carpet my whole adult life! When I picked up my badge, I had this moment of “omg, we’re really doing this!”. I was there in charge of content for The Holy City, a film co-produced by Sean’s company, Occupied VR.
I loved walking the streets and people watching. Cannes is full of character with old cobble streets, beautiful beaches, a merry go round on the main strip, huge yachts lining the harbor, and bustling patios lining the sidewalks. I was happy to learn there are multiple Zara stores in case you have a wardrobe emergency and a tuxedo rental place if you need one a hurry.
A couple of my fav moments were walking out to paparazzi behind Elton John, walking past Chloë Sevigny, and seeing Tilda Swinton sauntering down the street in a gorgeous muumuu. She was stunning!
Each day we walked or took an Uber down to the festival building. In order to get inside, we had to pass security including bag search and badge check. We spent most our time on the first floor of the building in the XR Hub, on the film sales floor, or at the international pavilions.
The Holy City premiere was on the 2nd day of our trip so the rest of the time was showing it to industry people, doing demos, and taking meetings. I was in charge of social for the film so I spent a lot of time walking around documenting. Totally in my element!
The Canada Pavillion was just outside the main building and a good spot to take a break, get a coffee, sit on the beach, or charge my phone. They hosted a mixer on one of the nights, it was great to see some other Canadians in film.
I ate a lot of baguettes in the first few days. 🥖 After the novelty wore off, I was determined to find other options with less bread and butter lol. I imagine it might be a bit tough in France if you are vegan or vegetarian, lots of meat, cheese, and dairy.
We rented an Airbnb about a 15min walk from the main strip. It was a cute listing and had all the amenities we needed including a pull-out couch in the living room. That’s where I slept we had a big night our because I snore and move around a lot haha.
Our place was the top floor od the building with a huge terrace. It was a nice place to come back to in between long days of being at the festival and then going out at night.
We had a couple fun nights out! Similar to TIFF, there’s big parties by production companies or film studios and a lot of premiere parties. We attended the party for a film that was up for the Palme d’Or (Portrait of a Girl on Fire) after meeting the costume team at a bar on the street. So fun! One of the other hot spots was Petite Majestic, a small dive bar that took over the street when it got late with all kinds of people drinking and talking loudly. It was my fav place!
Sean and the guys went to a couple of big premieres. Getting tickets when you have a pass was kind of like a lottery were you requested admission from the login portal. It was so Sean to see him all dressed up. What a babe!
I stated home and ordered Uber eats including BEER. I love France. Europe is amazing. Maybe one day we will have this in Canada? He did check my ID before handing over the goods from his motorbike.
People were dressed up at all times of the day, there were tuxedos everywhere! Patios were lined with people smoking and drinking wine, even the McDonalds patio was full with tuxedos grabbing a quick snack. I wish I had a photo of them! 😩
There were also heaps of people dressed up looking for tickets to premieres with small handmade signs.
On the way home, we passed through Munich, Germany. Beautiful and clean airport, still can’t get over the smoking lounges though. Crazy!
Thankful for the experience to go to Cannes w/ Sean and work on the film. Hope we can get back to Cannes another time but if not, happy to check this off my bucket list!
We worked a lot but also had a few dinner dates and long walks under the stars. All around great time!
I’m excited for TIFF19! I’ve been to one pre-screening so far and have a couple more next week. Tomorrow I’ve got a pre-TIFF facial! I’ll be doing a wrap up of TIFF films & events in 2 weeks.
Making the most of summer until then! Have an amazing day!