While Eeyou Istchee’s grounds have long been blanketed by several layers of snow and the Halloween decorations have been swapped out for Christmas lights (or a Habs crest, depending the home), people throughout the land are gearing up for the annual pilgrimage south to shop until they drop.

Whether you’re planning a mad southern dash to purchase all of your gifts in one fell swoop, or you’ve pulled out the credit cards for an online buying extravaganza or you’re picking up whatever you can as close as possible to home, the shopping season has long since sprung!

So if you’re looking for something incredible to please your bush man, the latest kitchen gear for the foodie in your life, some cutting-edge tech item for your technofile, a flashy bauble to please your lady or a toddler toy that the wee ones won’t tire of too quickly, we have many suggestions, all in one story!

On top of that, this year our literate elves at the Nation have been scoping out the best in books for the young and old to stimulate your mind during the darker hours of the indoor season.

Of course, all of this information we’re getting directly from Old St-Nick himself, as the Nation has forged very close ties with the fellow over the years and so we can get first-hand advice from him whenever we request it.

So here are some of the suggestions that Santa has offered up.

Fabulous fashionables with a traditional edge

If your lady loves the leather goods and you want to swathe her hands and feet in something luxurious, exclusive, handmade and breathtaking, the out-of-this world creations from the West Coast Cree designers at Cree Nisgaa.

Featuring boots, mitts, vests and other accessories in brilliant colours with either hand-painting or leather-work designs based on the traditions and styles of the Nisgaa Cree Nation, these incredible items were actually featured on the runway during New York Fashion Week.

For more info: www.creenisgaa.com

If fabulous mukluks are more her thing and you want something that’s both a couture brand name and intended for warmth in extreme cold, the Métis-owned Manitobah Mukluks company makes some of the best footgear around.

Whether you’re looking for classic mukluks, fur-wrap mukluks, Buffalo Dancer mukluks or the Cadillac of the batch, $1599 red-fox-fur mukluks – probably found on the feet of the rich and famous – these incredible foot fancies start at around $169 and feature footgear for the whole family.

For those wanting to Native-up their snowboarding gear, the company actually makes decorative snowboarding mukluks that can be ordered off their website.

For more info: www.manitobah.ca/

For those looking for off-the-runway couture garments for both men and women that feature the bold and distinctive artwork of B.C. Natives, world-renown Haida designer Dorothy Grant makes and ships her creations to you with a few mouse clicks.

One of the first major Native designers to take her culture’s artwork and place it onto the runways, creating something haute-gamme that would be coveted by both the Native and non-Native world, Grant offers something for every budget – ranging from a $35 leather keychain pouch to a one-of-a-kind cashmere cape with black fox trim for $3500.

Over the years Grant has expanded her collections into several lines and now features sportswear, accessories, day and evening wear as well as special high-end “feast wear” and gala gowns you could wear to the Oscars.

For more info: www.dorothygrant.com

Whether you’re shopping for a brand-new ribbon shirt for him or a gorgeous new eagle-feathered shawl for her, Mohawk designer Tammy Beauvais sells all sorts of fabulous goods that make great gifts on any budget.

For example, who wouldn’t appreciate a simple eagle-feather scarf-and-glove set for only $40?

At that, Beauvais can often accommodate special orders for personalized details as was done with this ribbon shirt where the feathers were swapped out for geese.

For more info: www.tammybeauvais.com/

Make your lady sparkle

As the holidays are all about “Silver and Gold” (and crystals, diamonds, platinum), if you are thinking that you lady might be more inclined towards an accessory that shimmers, and might out-sparkle the Christmas tree, there’s something out there for just about every budget.

For the budding mademoiselle looking to be the life of the holiday parties, H&M has this adorable satin-covered metal “Alice” headband with sequin-embroidered lace cat ears; it’s the perfect crowning glory for a young lady’s ensemble. At only $9.95, it’s a great stocking stuffer and is just really cute.

If your lady wants to project a “tougher” image, H&M also has this edgier gold-coloured “elasticated” bracelet in plastic with studs and sparkly stones, for $9.95.

For more info: www.hm.com/

If she is more of a “bo-ho chick” (for older readers, think Bohemian) and you’re looking for a gift with a bit of whimsy, the Charmed Design Handcrafted Jewellery Company makes a wide variety of items that feature leather, silk or cork with charms and energetic stones to create meaningful pieces.

Whether it’s an item that expresses her fascination with other cultures or her love of Jesus, these divine wraps range from $29 to $68 and can be purchased online or through various retailers.

For more info: charmeddesign1012.indiemade.com

For the girly-girl who loves to personalize her belongings with a touch of glitter anywhere she can, this Swanflower Silver Smartphone Incase is the perfect thing to set her iPhone apart from everyone else’s. It’s got a touch of dazzle that is chic but not over-the-top. At a cool $50, it’s one that Santa says he would select.

For more info: www.swarovski.com

Since Swarovski is the go-to store for glitter-glam without a diamond price tag, if you want to give her something that screams all-out glamour, check out the Sheena Pierced Earrings. These rounded rhodium-plated crystal earrings have their own seductive sparkle. They can be dressed up or down for any occasion and are versatile enough to go with just about anything. At $85, the price is right for her big holiday moment under the tree.

For more info: www.swarovski.com

If your gal is a fan of turquoise, and you want to order something fabulous for her online, look no further than these pear-shaped turquoise earrings in yellow rhodium-plated sterling silver from Peoples. They are the ideal day-into-night look as they can be worn with anything and have great value at only $109.65.

For more info: www.peoplesjewellers.com

If your lady is all about prestige and you want to get her something that she will never, ever forget, there’s always Tiffany’s or Tiffany.ca, for those who don’t want to hit their Montreal store in Holt Renfrew.

While there’s no limit to how much you can spend at Tiffany’s, they do offer some spectacular baubles that won’t break your bank.

Our recommendation from Santa is to check out the new Paloma Picasso collection available both online and in store. Featuring simple pendants and chains that start at $165 for the “Tenderness Cross” and go all the way up to $16,700 for a hammered-gold necklace, there’s plenty available in a tiny blue-green box to blow her mind.

For more info: www.tiffany.ca/

Sprucing up your fellow

For the pampered guy who’s in need of a little “manscaping” to pretty him up for the holiday season, Santa gave us the following suggestions.

For the man in need of a new electric shaver, Walmart has the Philips PT710/20 PowerTouch Electric Shaver, an ideal product to get the job done well and quickly (so it makes a good gift for a busy Dad).

At just $39, this shaver features a “super lift and cut system” for a comfortably close shave.

For more info: www.walmart.ca

If he’s handy with a blade and can do it old school, there ain’t nothing like a straight razor for the ultimate close shave! The Centre du Rasoir, Quebec’s razor specialists, features a wide variety of blades, brushes and other shaving accessories.

But for the man who wants to get it right (and has incredibly steady hands), this ornate DOVO straight razor makes for the ultimate gift. Featuring a hollow ground Swedish steel blade, this item is of the highest quality and comes in its own carrying case.

For more info: www.centredurasoir.com

To spruce up his skin or to simply maintain his man-beauty, the perfect accompaniment to a razor gift is the man-cosmetics to go with it. And, if you really want to indulge him, why not go with something that’s both über-natural and of fabulous quality like this Art of Shaving brand 4 Elements of the Perfect Shave Carry-On gift set in either sandalwood or unscented?

Available in Sephora stores or online, these products are ideal for men with “sensitive and normal-to-dry skin, ingrown hair, razor burn or tough beards. They are free of alcohol, synthetic dyes, synthetic fragrances and other ingredients that can be harmful when absorbed into the skin.”

For more info: www.sephora.com

If you want to pretty him up with some special adornment, that will make him stand out in the business crowd, check out these sterling-silver rectangular engravable cufflinks from Birks. At $125, these classic cufflinks make for an unforgettable gift, particularly with his initials on them.

For more info: www.maisonbirks.com

But, if he needs a brand-new suit to stand out at the office party or to look good for his lady come New Year’s Eve and he happens to be a gentleman of the larger or taller persuasion, M.H. Grover now offers online shopping.

Featuring gorgeous garments from sportswear to Ralph Lauren suits, M.H. Grover offers quality big-and-tall clothing for those who want to stop in at their Montreal store in Verdun or measure themselves at home to shop online.

For some all-out-holiday glamour, get a fabulous Ralph Lauren suit – available in a wide variety of colours – for only $595.

For more info: www.groversbigandtall.com

For the sports fan

But, if your special someone is more of a super-fan, whether they are into the Habs, the Blackhawks or the Bruins, there is no limit to the sports merch out there to please the home team (in your living room).

Perusing through the official NHL site (where Santa often shops), there were several items that jumped out as awesome Christmas gifts that would make any hockey fan happy.

While all the fans in your household are already rocking their own team jerseys, jammies and headgear, if you really want to enhance the at-home-game-watching experience, there isn’t anything like having this Fan Fever Goal Light.

With its puck-shaped remote control, this fancy little contraption, with a flashing LED light, replicates the goal horns of all 30 NHL teams. Plus, it comes with team labels so you can customize it according to your loyalty – or who is winning come playoff time.

At $49.95 on the official NHL merchandise site, it will no doubt be a crowd pleaser for your super sports fan!

For those cold, dark and blustery Eeyou Istchee nights, the best way to envelope super-fan in warmth and comfort is with this Sports Coverage snuggly queen-sized comforter. These officially licensed NHL team full/queen comforters are available on the NHL website and make for a great way to show spirit while snuggling up with the one you love. Available for $140 and customizable to just about every team.

As so many hockey fans love to share their joy of the game with anyone who will listen, even when the season is long over, one fantastic way to keep the hockey love going well into the summer is with this Team Golf Montreal Canadiens Golf Cart Bag.

At $274.99, this exquisite golf bag will make your fan the envy (or aggravation) of everybody out on the links. The product features an integrated top handle, 14 full-length dividers, five zippered pockets, and three lift-assist handles plus a fleece-lined pouch is ideal for valuables, while the removable rainhood ensures that your clubs stay dry.

For more info: shop.canada.nhl.com

If he/she doesn’t have one already, why not trick-out your fan’s phone with this awesome Coveroo-brand phone case?

Running from $29.99 to $31.99 and with various models available for iPhones and the Samsung Galaxy S3, these sports-glam cases are available for nearly every team and with various team logos to suit your taste.

And, for those who are fans of other sports and want a different variety of phone case, visit the official Coveroo site to purchase your baseball, football, golf and even camouflage-themed phone cover.

For more info: www.coveroo.com/

Fixing up the home

If your special someone tends to be the home-fix-it type, Santa told us about a few fabulous items that he thinks will bring on the cheer come Christmas morning.

For the budding fix-it type or the person who has loved his tools to death, the Mastercraft 20V Tool Kit is a great gift for someone in need of some decent quality power tools. This tool kit includes a 20V drill/driver, 20V multi-tool, and a 20V circular saw and comes in a soft case. Each of these products also has a lithium-ion battery that offers more power and a longer run-time. Currently available for $179.99 at Canadian Tire, this product features some incredible value.

If a new multi-purpose tool kit is their desire under the tree, Mastercraft also offers this ultra practical 28-piece general multi-purpose tool set and bag that features a wrench, pliers, tape measure and screwdrivers as well as a hammer, knife, saw and scissors along with other goodies – all in a very portable format for only $66.99.

For more info: www.canadiantire.ca

For someone looking to do more detailed work, the Makita 124-piece Impact Driver Accessory Kit available at Home Depot for only $49.99 makes for an excellent gift.

This set features a 1/4″ hex shank, includes unique bits like a flex extension, a centre punch and scribe and comes in a blow mold plastic case. This item could cause some real excitement come Christmas morning for the right person.

For more info: www.homedepot.ca

Bush gear

However, if you are on the market for gifts that celebrate bush life, or are planning to get back to nature over the Christmas holidays or want to start planning for later trip during the season, Santa has given his stamp of approval for all of the following bush gear and other comforts.

There is nothing like bringing out some liquid gold for when you’re on the go in the winter. Whether your choice is coffee, tea or some moose-meat stew, you can now keep it at the perfect temperature with this Thermos’ Urban Elements bottle.

This stainless-steel container holds up to 1.8L of fluid and utilizes Thermos’ TherMax vacuum-insulated system to keep beverages hot or cool for long periods.

At $49.99, this practical high-quality item is available online and in-store at La Cordée.

For more info: www.lacordee.com

If you want to buy your winter hunter some awesome snow camo gear to keep him incognito in the bush, the Bass Pro website ships quickly to Canada and offers a wide assortment of items designed for warmth and stealth in the bush.

Take the ArcticShield Onyx Performance Fit Jacket as it is designed to keep you warm, dry and comfortable out in the field with windproof and waterproof protection along with breathable, moisture management for comfort.

At $133.99 US (plus shipping and handling), it’s available in sizes up to 2X and is a great deal.

For more info: www.basspro.com

If you’re heading out to the bush camp, packing light is ideal, especially if you’re on skidoo. This is why having an excellent multi-tool isn’t just an asset but a necessity. If you’re looking for something of excellent quality, Leatherman Brand is one of the best since they are the ones that invented it.

One of their most upgraded models is the Leatherman Charge AL Multi Tool as it offers
stronger pliers, diamond-coated files, and aluminum alloy handles as well as large and small bit drivers. It allows you to customize the tool to the task from a great selection of bits and big and wide knife blades still fit in a compact 10.2cm (4in.) multi-tool.

Running at $115 from Mountain Equipment Coop, this item ships quick as MEC is a Canadian company. It has various stores throughout Montreal and other regions, if you want to scope out these tools in person.

If you’re looking for something high-tech to keep him (or her) ultra-warm while getting away from it all in the great white north, these incredible Smartwool NTS Micro 150 crew shirts are the ticket.

A lightweight garment that is made from merino wool, Smartwool is really smart-wool because it can keep you warm in cold weather and cool in warmer weather. Plus it can provide significant sun protection when worn alone so it’s the ideal garment for just about any weather. On top of that, Smartwool garments are core temperature balanced, prevent chafing, will keep you dry and are naturally antimicrobial.

Starting at $95 for the basic top, this high-end item is an asset for the outdoors person.

If you are looking to embrace him or her in luxurious warmth at your bush camp this holiday season, Mountain Equipment Coop offers their own brand of sleeping bags for extreme cold that are not only top-of-the-line but ultra-sophisticated and lightweight.

The MEC Thor 2 Windstopper Sleeping Bag 30C runs between $465-$520, and can be considered the Cadillac of winter sleeping bags as it will keep you roasty-toasty. Featuring exquisite tailoring and copious down to keep you in lavish comfort while roughing it, according to MEC, this sleeping bag features a cut that “concentrates the down where it’s needed, without compromising weight or compacted volume. A yoke and muff collar system completely encircles the neck to seal out drafts.”

For more info: www.mec.ca

Food, food, food

Whether your special someone simply wants to get into making better meals or is a seasoned foodie who wants to try out the latest gear, if a food-related gift was what you had in mind, this is what Santa told us would be hot this season.

As spices actually do need to be replaced every few years because they lose their potency, this black Cole and Mason Herb and Spice Carousel Rack with 20 glass jars and spices makes a great gift for the person whose cabinets could use a little perk. And, why even hide it in the cabinets? This rack and its accompanying glass-and-chrome bottles are so sleek and stylish that they can be kept out on the counter.

For more info: www.amazon.ca

For the family who lives for weekend morning pancakes, this Nordic Ware Smiley Face Pancake Pan is a great way to make that cherished morning ritual even better.

This novelty product is perfect to make the kiddies smile and giggle while helping you create thin, light 3” pancakes. Made from heavy cast aluminum, it features nonstick coating for even heat distribution and easy cleanup. At Sears stores or on their website, this wonderful gift sells at $35.

For more info: www.sears.ca

For the foodie who is also a hockey fanatic, Future Shop now features a whole series of NHL appliances for the individual who wants to see their team’s logo on their toast or waffles. Available only on their website, Future Shop carries toasters for the Canadiens, Maple Leafs, Jets, Senators and Flames as well as waffle makers that feature the Canadiens, Maple Leafs, Jets, Senators, Flames and Oilers. Each product costs $40.

For more info: www.futureshop.ca

For the foodie who likes to make the most of their wild meat, this Cuisinart Meat Grinder is a wonderful way to ready your moose-meat scraps into fabulous burgers and prep your caribou for meatballs.

This high-end meat grinder features a powerful motor and large die-cast metal hopper that allows you to grind generous portions of fresh meats quickly. With professional-quality performance, this sleek and stylish grinder is the ultimate northern kitchen accessory at just $90.

For more info: www.bestbuy.ca
If your foodie is looking for something fabulous to make smoothies and other frothy concoctions, look no further than incredibly powerful and state-of-the-art Ninja Professional Blender.

While this product runs for $150, it features an industrial-style motor that is powerful enough to crush ice into snow and literally pulverize whole fruits and vegetables. It also features a large 72-oz pitcher with Ninja’s six-blade technology. But what makes this product attractive is that for someone who really likes to make smoothies and homemade frozen coffee confections, this product will blend them to perfection, over and over again.

For more info: www.canadiantire.ca

While some have said that the idea of a deep fryer that lets you make crispy and delicious French fries with only a single tablespoon of oil is way too good to be true, the T-Fal Actifry Deep Fryer apparently does this and has become Oprah’s favourite kitchen appliance as a result.

Costing $195.98 at Future Shop, this handy appliance can also prepare a wide variety of healthy and tasty recipes with vegetables, meat, poultry, seafood and fruits. It also features automatic stirring paddle mixes and coats food with sauces or oil for even cooking results.

For more info: www.futureshop.ca

Tech gadgets

If your partner is a lover of gadgetry and is all about what is hot and new in tech, it is one area of gift giving that is now almost without borders. Every year, this industry offers us new wonders to wrap up under the tree.

If you want to get her a “purr-fect” set of headphones that are completely functional and totally awesome to wear, these furry ones are available on the ThinkGeek website.

Available in black or white, kitty or brown-bear ears, these headphones have animal ears on the adjustable headband. They are compatible with iPhone, iPod, iPad, Android phones, Nintendo 3DS, Wii U and laptops (anything with an audio jack). Plus they come with a built-in microphone and an adapter for PCs so you can use them for video chats with friends if you want. Get them for $25 US.

For more info: www.thinkgeek.com

If you are shopping for someone who is a military-gaming junkie, a Comrad Gaming Helmet is the ultimate gift to enhance his gaming experience.

Designed to add as much realism as possible to your Medal of Honor, Call of Duty, ArmA or Battlefield playing experience, this helmet is designed for a fully immersive FPS audio experience. It features wireless connectivity and is compatible with Xbox 360, PS3, Wii U, Wii, PC, and Mac (Wii U and Wii game audio only). Plus it has a microphone port and Xbox 360 Talkback cable port.

As war can happen anywhere, now you can customize your helmet with the three interchangeable camo covers (digital desert, forest, digital forest) that this helmet comes with so that the player matches the game. It costs $60 US.

For more info: www.thinkgeek.com

If your present is for a music lover and you want to give them the ability to pump out some serious sound, wherever they go, the Beats By Dr. Dre Pill Portable Bluetooth Speaker is the gift that keeps on giving.

Featuring Bluetooth technology, this sleek and styling speaker is designed for streaming tunes from a smartphone, tablet or other Bluetooth-enabled device and features a built-in microphone for easy-peasy hands-free calls, and NFC technology for one-touch pairing with NFC-enabled devices. It’s available for $220.44 at Best Buy.

For more info: www.bestbuy.ca

For those who loved futuristic spy/space movies as a kid, this contraption takes a page right out of there, delivers the future right to you. Samsun’s Galaxy Gear Smartwatch slaps incredible app power onto your wrist.

While only compatible with the Galaxy Note – sold separately – this watch snaps photos where you go and syncs with your devices using Bluetooth 4.0. It can serve as a suped-up pedometer, a TV to stream content and a GPS device to help when lost. This device is all about helping you streamline your productivity. Costs $329 at Future Shop.

For more info: www.futureshop.ca

On the market since mid-November is Sony’s long-anticipated PlayStation 4 console. Featuring generation graphics and just about everything else, there isn’t much that we have to say about this product because those in the know already know all about it. It’s this year’s hot-selling tech gadget and retails at $403.74.

For more info: store.sony.ca/

One of the most buzzed about products this season is the Apple’s new iPad Air. It’s all about being thinner, lighter and more powerful. Not that anyone was actually complaining about how heavy and cumbersome the last versions of the iPad were, but this one can do a lot more than its predecessors.

Designed with 64-bit architecture, the iPad Air can deliver up to two times faster CPU and graphics than the last iPad, without sacrificing battery life. Plus, the wireless has an upgrade and the apps are mightier. It starts at $519.

For more info: www.apple.com/ca/

If you are looking to propose a life-long commitment question to your special lady this holiday season or just want to buy her something special to commemorate your many years together, Bijou Majesty could just be your solution.

Specializing in loose diamonds, custom diamond rings and fine diamond jewelry, Bijou Majesty can produce and at decent prices.

For more info: bijouxmajesty.com

Toys for the small ones

While the bigger kids have no doubt already told you everything on their wish list and more, it has a game of whittling it down to the practical. But when it comes to buying toys for toddlers, it can often be a guessing game.

This is why Santa, with a little help from the Canadian Toy Testing Council (CTTC), made the following suggestions.

Among the CTTC’s recommendations for the under four-years-old crowd are items like the Walkness Monster. It’s a walking toy ideal for children as young as 10 months, yet has broad enough appeal for kids all the way up to four.

The Walkness Monster is sturdy and colourful, and gobbles up nine brightly coloured balls through the handles and the kids can watch them swirl around. Creative little minds will like how this toy can be also used as a stroller, shopping cart and a wagon.

For more info: http://www.amazon.com

For all little ones who have tried to put their dollies into the tub during bath time, now there’s Mon Premier Bébé Bath Doll & Accessories, a doll designed specifically for that activity.

This petite mademoiselle is designed for kids 18 months and older. According to the CTTC, she is the perfect size and weight to be carried around by your toddler and is made from quick drying materials. The doll comes with all sorts of tub-swim accessories, such as flippers, snorkel, goggles and arm waders.

For more info: http://us.corolle.com

If you want to get your toddler prepared for the upcoming baseball season, the Clearly Sports Baseball playset is another CTTC suggestion. The colourful baseballs inside of the bat are enticing to the kids while it is great for promoting coordination and motor skills.

For more info: www.littletikes.com

Also recommended by the CTTC is the Spot It! Alphabet by Blue Orange Games as an ideal learning game for the 3+ crowd. Comprised of 31 round cards in a handy tin storage case, the object is to match up items on two cards and the game can also be played three different ways. What the CTTC found about this particular game was that it had wide appeal for players of multiple ages and could be played in larger or smaller groups, making it some ideal family fun!

For more info: www.blueorangegames.com

For more info on the CTTC: http://toy-testing.org/

Penguin Books for the young and young at heart

If you are looking for a selection of holiday books for story time with your children, Penguin has a handful of titles that discuss all sorts of holiday themes in the perfect context for wee ones.

Jon Agee’s Little Santa is an adorable picture book that has a particular appeal for the younger children but also offers a hilarious look at what Santa Claus was like as a young boy. Discover what happens to him when his family announces they want to move to Florida.

Trying her hand at writing children’s book, award-winning actress Emma Thompson has penned The Christmas Tale of Peter Rabbit. It comes with a disc so that you and your child can listen to Thompson read the book about what happens to Peter Rabbit and his cousin Benjamin Bunny when they befriend William the Turkey.

In Lauren Long’s An Otis Christmas, discover what happens to Otis the tractor when his farmer needs his help to save a birthing mare on Christmas Eve. Brilliantly colourful with a heartwarming message, this book appeals to children who may have been into a certain talking Train Engine and is all about bravery.

For the child who loves to colour or is learning about colours, Drew Daywalt and Oliver Jeffer’s The Day Crayons Quit is a cute little story about just that, with individual messages from each crayon. With childlike drawings about each colour, this “colourful” story is quite funny and may inspire your little one’s imaginary conversations with crayons.

A wonderful kind of a first book about bullying, Llama Llama and the Bully Goat by Anna Dewdney is a great way to get an important message out to kids about how to behave at school and what to do about a bully. With sweet and endearing illustrations, this lovely picture book is a wonderful way to deal with a difficult subject.

If you are on the market for a novelty picture book for your older teen or an adult, the amusing Diary of Edward the Hamster 1990-1990 by Miriam and Ezra Elia is a sarcastic and artsy look at the life of an existentialist hamster. This dark, witty diary is good for about a half-an-hour of amusement but is well worth it.

One of the season’s most talked about biographies, for the fashionista thinking of going into business for herself or the gal who wants to get an inside view into the exciting world of Jimmy Choo shoes and how they came to be, In My Shoes by Tamara Mellon is all about that and more. A dramatic tale of hard work, corporate takeovers, fashion, addiction and motherhood, Mellon’s autobiography is a gripping tale of her rise to the top and survival in the fashion business.

For the sci-fi/fantasy fan, The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon is another one of this year’s most talked about reads. This detail-oriented futuristic novel is all about 19-year-old Paige Mahoney living in 2059 London and her job working in the criminal underworld of Scion London, based at Seven Dials where she scouts for information by breaking into people’s minds. An action-packed tale, this book reads like a video game and will appeal to those into gaming.

For the foodie out there or individual who is trying to learn more about cooking and needs some new inspiration, the following three titles will no doubt be incredibly popular this season and found under many Christmas trees.

Back to Basics by Michael Smith features classic recipes with a special twist. Smith is one of Canada’s most successful cookbook writers and a hugely popular celebrity chef on Food Network Canada. This book offers great advice to revive old standards. A great bet!

In the Kitchen with Stefano Faita is one of this season’s most accessible cookbooks with hundreds of simple recipes. This TV tie-in companion cookbook is a great gift for those who are fans of Stefano Faita’s show and will no doubt bring some excitement to your table.

Written by one of North America’s most popular celebrity chefs, At Home with Lynn Crawford provides all sorts of tricks and techniques to prepare a bevy of delightful dishes.

And with that, Happy Christmas to all and may your shopping be merry and bright!


Editor’s Pick

When I got my Scottevest I didn’t stop wearing it for almost two weeks. The damn thing is not only styling but has 24 pockets. It’s water-and-stain resistant and that’s something I needed with a two-year-old. The pockets are also a little more difficult for probing hands making it easier to keep my iPhone and lotto tickets intact. Seriously this is one of the greatest pieces of clothing I have. When wearing it, I no longer need my man purse… knapsack to carry all my junk. And it’s even engineered to balance all the stuff I put in it without bulges. You technojunkies will love the iPad pocket and other features. They also have coats for both men and women. Get one, you won’t regret it!

For more info: www.GetSeV.com