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27 posts categorized "WorldTours"

PerfectBound reporting from Winnipeg

Hoppers1

Hi all...some of you already had a sneak peek at PerfectBound reporting from Winnipeg a few days ago...but then they disappeared again...sorry... all my fault...came down with a fever or something while still in the Netherlands (must have been the weather)...and therefore could not write a proper introduction for these two wonderful ladies... Julie & Kathryn...their blog is PerfectBound...I love PerfectBound... always beautifully styled, sleek and very clean... a feast for the eyes and great fun to read too... their home base is Winnipeg in Canada...and by the way... I am back in KL... touched down yesterday early in the morning... feeling a bit better... still on anti-biotics for a few more days unfortunately...we had a good time in the Netherlands...but it is even better to be back home again... so... everything is back to normal again I guess on Bloesem... very much looking forward to catching up with all of you and this week we can all enjoy geust posts from Denmark, San Francisco, Germany and Amsterdam...



PerfectBound reporting from Winnipeg.."Something Special in Our City: Hoopers Bazaar
 
Hoopers Bazaar is one of our favourite shops in Winnipeg. It is filled with retro fashions and home furnishings from the 50's, 60's and 70's. On any given day you are bound to find lovely danish decor and vintage accessories. The owners have done such a great job creating fun vignettes throughout the store, it makes you want to take every piece home!
Hoppers2
We are lucky to have a shop like this here in Winnipeg. It seems that many open but few survive for very long. Recently moving to a new location in what's known as the Exchange District, Hoopers is surrounded by lots of great clothing boutiques and cafes. It is located in a corner suite of a heritage building, which adds to its
charm.
Hoppers3
Whenever we visit, there are always great new additions to the shop, which makes it fun to keep going back. Not only are there amazing home furnishings, but also a wide selection of retro inspired clothing. So if you are ever in Winnipeg, we highly recommend you stop in at Hoopers. We bet you'll find something you just can't live without!"

* * * Perfectbound
* * * contact Julie & Kathryn

{originally posted in May 2008}

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Julia reporting from Queenstown, NZ

Julie_studiohome_4

Bloesem's World Tour is continuing today from a far far away continent ...at least that is how it feels for me...recenlty I have met some terrific new friends form NZ in Kuala Lumpur and online...like Julia Atkinson from Studio Home, a youthful, creative, boutique agency for interior design...not long ago she also started her design blog to share her ultimate passion of hunting out wicked, creative talent in Australia and NZ. Julia lives in Queenstown and today she is going to tell us a little tour of her...a favorite place in Queenstown... VESTA, a store and espressoshop...


I live in Queenstown, in the South Island of New Zealand. If you have ever heard of NZ or visited, the chances are pretty strong that you have heard of my beautiful southern town. Queenstown is nestled between jagged peaks and a very cold, very deep Lake Wakatipu. While its “public” face is one of action central, adrenaline junkie’s paradise and bungy jumping’s birth place…Queenstown also boasts some fantastic modern alpine architecture and an emerging design scene. With this in mind I decided to take you all on a photo tour of the gorgeous, eclectic New Zealand design store of Vesta. (unfortunately no website yet...)

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Vestas home is a landmark in its own right. The cottage was built in 1864 and is Queenstown’s oldest standing building. Owner Kim Turner and her daughter Alex have remained respectful of the original features and made use of the peeling walls and worn wooden floors to offset the clean, modern design that they feature. All the original small room have been retained and are regularly “dressed” to almost resemble a set or gallery. Vesta stocks jewellery, clothing, beauty products, art, furniture, home wares and fantastic paninis and coffee. The café exists between all the goodies and has a very firm and loyal following of locals who clamber to be the special customers allowed to sip their tea in the rambling glasshouse outside.
I love Vesta for its carefully selected range and Kim’s ability to resist turning the space into a slick, white, vinyl squabbed destination store. Come to Queenstown and I’ll meet you at Vesta for a coffee.

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Julie_studiohome_2

* * *Studio Home website
* * *Studio Home Blog

{originally posted in May 2008}

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Laural and Jen reporting from Toronto

Ossington_2

Toronto is a city of many neighbourhoods, and it is fascinating to watch them change over time. Despite being linked to the ultra-arty-trendy West Queen West strip, until recently Ossignton Avenue between Queen and Dundas was lined with booze cans and long-dead storefronts. While the area retains some of its original flavour with Vietnamese Karaoke bars and Portuguese Bakeries still intact, there are more than a few gems to be found by visitors interested in art, fashion, and vintage.


C1art

Since it is more than likely that you will be coming from a Queen Street stroll, we will start from there. On your first stop north of Queen Street pop into shop & gallery C1 art space (44 Ossington) to peruse art and craft objects handmade by local designers. Residents or longer term visitors can also pick up cool art skills here such as ceramic silkscreening. Next, cross the street for upscale vintage treats at I miss you (63 Ossington), which carries a carefully curated and impeccably restored collection of frocks and accessories.
Imissyou

Having your design-buds stimulated will make you hungry for more and Ministry of the Interior (80 Ossington) will deliver. A former auto body shop painted bright yellow & charcoal, this design shop and gallery stocks cutting-edge conversation pieces from around the globe. Find furniture, wallpaper & home accessories from designers such as Dwell, Marimekko, and fun NYC design collective Areaware.

Ministry

For those with vintage tastes that tend towards fringed leather cowboy boots, sequins and shoulder pads, (or flannel & tees for the gents) stroll along to Badlands Vintage (104 Ossington). Then, stop to smell the roses at Jaiden's Petals (130 Ossington) and enjoy the vintage botanical books and Mason jars and recycled bottles filled with simple blooms. As you walk by, just try to resist the pull of Virginia Johnson's vibrantly simple textiles & clothing at her mothership store (132 Ossington).
Virginia

You can settle down your senses next door with Cindyloowho's serene collection of flea market chic antiques and custom-made rich reclaimed-wood furniture (130 Ossington).
OssingtonCindiloohoo

Get your final vintage fix at Vintage Mix 1 (186 Ossignton), stocked full with an evolving stock of vintage suitcases, shoes & accessories from the 70s & 80s, and men and women's clothes from the 60s-80s.
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By now you'll be ready for a rest, and handy for you the retro-cozy & no-fuss bar Communist's Daughter is located just around the corner at 1149 Dundas Street West (no sign). Pop a loonie in the jukebox, order yourself a pint, and chow down on some gourmet pickled eggs while admiring your newly acquired goodies. (For those with a taste for the refined there are plenty of stylish bars & restaurants along this strip as well!).

* * *Laural's beautiful shop GoodEgg Industries
* * *Laural's blog Thimble
* * *Jen's blog Toronto Craft Alert

{originally posted in May 2008}

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Lucy reporting from Melbourne...

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Thank you Lucy for writing the great story about your favorite must-see spots in Melbourne area...

"Melbourne’s Central Business District (CBD) has long been intertwined with narrow lanes and alleyways, largely used as service lanes for the larger buildings and businesses on the main streets.  For a long time, shops and businesses paid premium rent for frontage on these main streets, and the dusty back alleys were largely forgotten.

In recent years, as rent has crept up higher and higher on the main thoroughfares, Melbourne’s laneways have undergone a renaissance. These days, the laneways are full to the brim of smaller, eclectic shops, cafes, and bars.  In fact, the most popular new bars and cafes increasingly position themselves hidden down cobbled streets barely wide enough for a bicycle (let alone a vehicle!), either up or down a dark flight of stairs, and often behind an unmarked door… it appears the more ‘hidden’ the establishment, the more in demand it will be!

 
{Laneways - Block Place}
Adjoining The Block Arcade is a very cute narrow laneway called Block Place, dotted with lovely little cafes… Café Segovia (at 33 Block Place) is a perfect lunch spot.
Melbourne’s laneways are now prized position for many independent retailers, cashing in on the increase in foot traffic along these once-forgotten back streets.   For anyone visiting Melbourne, I highly recommend a stroll through these laneways…  They give the city so much unique character, and offer an amazing variety of window-shopping and people watching!

***The Block Arcade 

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{Douglas and Hope}

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{Douglas and Hope quilt, image by Cathy Hope}
Positioned off the main drag of classy Collins St, The Block Arcade incorporates a grand, high-ceiling interior with a select smattering of gorgeous shops including my favourite – Douglas and Hope, which is an Australian company who design and make unique patchwork quilts and cushions using a combination of vintage fabrics, Japanese silks and reproduction prints.  They also sell a beautiful selection of women’s fashions, accessories and homewares.

***Flinders Lane

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{Journal Café}
Flinders Lane is home to some beautiful older buildings, including the stunning art deco Nicholas Building (corner of Swanston st and Flinders Lane).  The Nicholas Building is one of the few buildings in the CBD which is still leased out relatively inexpensively as artists studios.
One of the best spots in Flinders Lane is Journal – probably my favourite cafe in the City.  It’s located in the same building as the CAE (Centre for  Adult Education, where you can sign up for short courses in anything from screenprinting to breakdancing), and the City Library.  Journal has lovely food, a great atmosphere, and a really cool interior fit-out .

***Centre Place

Lucy_melblanewayscentrepla
{Centre Place}
Centre Place is another very pretty (and very narrow!) laneway adjoining Flinders Lane.  It’s jam-packed with every kind of lunchspot you can imagine (ie Italian, Japanese, Juice bar, Soup bar etc).  Some of Melbourne’s best street art and stencil graffitti grace the walls of this extremely popular little laneway.
Centre place is also home to The Majorca Building (corner Flinders Lane and Centre Place), which is another beautiful art deco building. It’s largely residential, but ALSO tourists can rent an apartment in the Majorca Building for quite reasonable rates – info and lots of lovely photos here:

***Degraves st

Lucy_melblanewayslittlecak
{Little Cupcakes}

Lucy_melblanewayslittlecup
{Little Cupcakes}
Degraves st is home to even more great snack spots! (Feeling hungry yet?)  The absolute best for lunch or coffee is Degraves Espresso (at 21 Degraves st), no question.  Also, Little Cupcakes (shop 7, 250 Flinders st - is a relatively new addition to this lively little strip, where you can select the tiniest, prettiest cupcakes to snack on. 

***Hosier Lane
Lucy_melbournelanewaysmovi
{Movida Bar de Tapas Y Vino}
This cobbled laneway leads from Flinders Lane down towards the City’s main meeting point – Federation Square .  The best spot in this little alley is Movida, at number 1 Hosier Lane. Melbourne’s longest-standing and ever-popular tapas restaurant.  (Make a booking – or try your luck for a spot at the bar).  The food is sensational, and the atmosphere truly international(!).

Lucy_melblanewaysgrafitti
{Hosier Lane grafitti}
Hosier Lane is home to more of Melbourne’s famed street art/grafitti, and is also one of the sites for City Lights (the other site being Centre Place – mentioned earlier).  City Lights is an ongoing project where lightboxes installed along the laneway wall illuminate artworks by local and international artists.

Thank you...Lucy Feagins form the Design Files...

{originally posted on May 9, 2008}

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Anisa reporting from Portland, Oregon

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Anisa and I 'e-met' (i like this, to me, new word very much) via her wonderful shop Makhool Loves You...where you can always find one of kind, different pieces, when I aksed her to join us for the Bloesem World Tour she responded very enthousiastc, so I'm very happy to show your her great information about her her favorite spot in Portland: the Clinton neighborhood...enjoy!


My favorite neighborhood in Portland is the Clinton neighborhood in south east.  It's off the beaten path,  quaint, charming and tucked away on a bike path, in a beautiful residential neighborhood.  Most of the home owners in and around Clinton have restored their homes to the original character of  Craftsman or Victorian style.  The businesses that would bring you out of your way into this neighborhood are mostly amazing restaurants, dotted with a few vintage boutiques, and one great spa. **For breakfast you'll want to head to Broder, sorry no website, for Scandinavian fare. Portlanders and Scandinavians share similar food tastes, and you can get wild berries, wild mushrooms, wild salmon, and world famous Stumptown coffee all right here. It's very hygge. **A few blocks down from Broders you'll find Zenana Spa, they cater to new mothers, but I would like to point out that I had the best pedicure of my whole life here, so don't miss out. **Before you head to your appointment at Zenana stop into The Press Club, they carry a wide range of design magazines, pick up a few up to take to the spa.  If you are hungry, you're in luck because they are a crêperie, a wine bar, and a coffee shop. **After your spa appointment head over to Division Street and grab a table at the kitschy and adorable Pix Patisserie. Choose something decadent like "The Royale With Cheese", it's a chocolate mouse praline with a slice of creamy French Brillat Savarin.  Or you could try the Amélie, winner of the Patis France Chocolate Competition. **After you've had your dessert you might want some dinner, I would reccomend Pok Pok, Thai street food.  Or if your in the mood for something a bit fancier try Lauro Kitchen, for Mediterranean-inspired fare.  {Thank you Anisa}

* * * Makhool Loves You
* * * Anisa's blog

{originally posted on July 7, 2008}

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