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Workshop Studio + Boutique

The Ottawa Style Files

Shopping is an essential part of exploring a new place, so WHERE gives you the scoop on five top shops. Whether you’re from a big city or a small town, Ottawa’s got just the store for you. By Misa Kobayashi.

Pretty dresses abound at Victoire.

At the downtown location, an old dresser displays knickknacks and vintage jewellery, while pretty party dresses line the wall. This girly shop boasts clothing lines with classic designs that flatter a woman’s body, while still offering a bit of edge. Nearly all the stock comes from within Canada, and popular items include Laura Langford leather bags (made locally), Preloved clothing made from recycled materials, and walls of funky jewellery made by Ottawa artists. Prices range from $5 for quirky greeting cards to $220 for a dress or coat.
246 Dalhousie St., 613-321-1590, and 1282 Unit B. Wellington St. W., 613-421-0089. www.victoireboutique.com

Workshop highlights local, female designers.

This is the home of the handmade. Workshop carries more than 180 small designers — half of whom are local, and nearly all of whom are Canadian — with an emphasis on startup women designers. One such brand is Twiss & Weber, a line that features eco-fabrics and great hats and scarves for fall. While higher-end items like dresses could go for $200, you can also find a range of delightful and inexpensive gifts, such as $2 fabric brooches, hilariously raunchy soaps, and cards. Check out the selection of fun print bags, unique stuffed animals, and jewellery (there’s plenty in the $25 to $50 range).
242 1/2 Dalhousie St., 613-789-5534. www.workshopboutique.ca (more…)

Weekend Roundup: Best Bets for Feb. 18 to 20

Friday, February 18

The Cecilia String Quartet performs "The Snow Queen." Photo credit: Melissa Sung.

As part of the Ottawa Chamber Music Society’s winter series, take your little ones to a performance of the Hans Christian Anderson classic The Snow Queen. This fairytale sees a young girl rescue her best friend from the icy monarch, and is set to an original score by Canadian composer Patrick Cardy (performed by the award-winning Cecilia String Quartet). Praised for its thoughtful story and captivating choreography, it’s touted as suitable for ages five to 95. Enjoy either a Friday evening performance or one of three afternoon sets on Saturday.

Today is the start of Kindness Week (Feb. 18 to 25). Now in its fourth year, this city-wide initiative encourages community members to make a conscious effort to show some love to to their fellow people and recognizes those who engage in everyday acts of kindness. There are activities and events taking place throughout the week, which include “Kindness Cupcakes” in the ByWard Market, a blood drive, musical performances, “Grandparents’ Night” at the movies, and plenty of other feel-good fun. (more…)