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      Your 2020 SHOP LOCAL Holiday Gift Guide

      Your 2020 SHOP LOCAL Holiday Gift Guide

      10 Canadian, femme-founded small businesses to support over the holidays

      If you’re planning on gift-giving for the holidays this year, we would love to encourage you to SHOP LOCAL small businesses! That’s why we’ve joined forces with 9 other small, Canadian, femme-founded businesses to bring you a gift guide that will have you crossing off your holiday shopping list in no time.

      Locally-made products that are crafted with care ALWAYS make the best gifts! 🎁 We know it takes a lot of work to research and find small businesses that have high quality products and even higher values. Rest assured that all the businesses we’ve partnered with have a focus on quality products, pay fair wages, and make sustainability a priority in their production processes. As if that wasn’t enough, every single brand included in this gift guide is also femme-founded! 🎉

      Before we jump into this INCREDIBLE Holiday Gift Guide, we are running a giveaway on Instagram—have you entered yet?! Click here to enter the giveaway for a chance to WIN $1000 in prizes from all the brands on this gift guide.

      We have special discount codes from EVERY small business in this blog post. Read through for each brand’s special offers, using the code “SHOPLOCALGG” across ALL their websites. This code lasts from December 2 to December 15, 2020 at midnight PST.

      Now, let’s dive into these incredible brands!

      Accessories

      Berg + Betts

      Pictured: Mindful Rose Gold and Brown timepiece

      BERG+BETTS crafts every watch out of surplus leather off cuts that would otherwise go to waste. They create sophisticated timepieces that are truly timeless and can be worn every day! All their watches are designed and assembled in Canada. Get 15% off BERG+BETTS sitewide with the code SHOPLOCALGG. Expires December 15, 2020 at midnight PST.

      Tish Jewelry

      Pictured: Tessa Mustard Resin Earrings (L) and gold tassel earrings (R)

      Lateisha started her namesake jewelry line with the intention of creating collections that enhance a woman’s inner beauty. Each and every piece is made by Lateisha in her home studio in Calgary, Alberta. Get 20% off Tish Jewelry sitewide with the code SHOPLOCALGG. Expires December 15, 2020 at midnight PST.

      Clothing

      Buttercream Clothing

      Pictured: The Cardi Coat

      Buttercream Clothing designs ultra soft styles with a focus on comfort and ethical production. This is fashion that you can feel good about purchasing, and feel just as good about wearing! Every piece is available in sizes XS-3X and made from scratch in Calgary, Alberta. Get 20% off Buttercream Clothing sitewide with the code SHOPLOCALGG. Expires December 15, 2020 at midnight PST.

       

      Miik Inc

      Pictured: the Cami dolman sleeve top

      Hey! It's us! Miik offers buttery soft workwear and lounge styles with eco-luxe fabrics and a focus on timeless design. Every piece has the look of luxury, but the feeling of PJs! We make clothes that are built to last. And the best part? It's all ethically produced within 50km of our head office and warehouse in Toronto, Ontario. Get 15% off regular priced items at Miik with the code SHOPLOCALGG. Expires December 15 at midnight PST.

      Undergarments

      Azura Bay

      Pictured: Organic Cotton Reversible Bralette

      Azura Bay is a small shop based in Winnipeg, Manitoba, with a curated collection of cute, comfy and conscious lingerie, PJs, and loungewear from ethical brands. They source suppliers that use eco fabrics and ethical production processes. Founder Ashley selects every piece in the store herself! Get 10% off all regular priced items at Azura Bay with the code SHOPLOCALGG. Expires December 15, 2020 at midnight PST.

      Mayana Geneviere

      Pictured: Lace nursing bra (L) and Eyelash face mask (R)

      Mayana Geneviere is based in Toronto, Ontario. They create lingerie for real life, including beautiful nursing bras that you can wear before, during and after breastfeeding! They use eco-friendly processes and have inclusive sizing. Recently with COVID-19, they have also started designing one-of-a-kind lace face masks that are both functional and beautiful! Get free shipping on your Mayana Geneviere order with the code SHOPLOCALGG. Expires December 15, 2020 at midnight PST.

      Skincare and Wellness
      Cocoon Apothecary

      Pictured: Lavender Care Package

      Cocoon Apothecary is a botanical skin care company based in Kitchener, Ontario. They make skin and body care products that are as good for your skin as they are for the Earth. All their products come in refillable glass containers and they have a bottle return program, where they are able to collect hundreds of bottles a month, sanitize and reuse them! Get 20% off sitewide at Cocoon Apothecary with the code SHOPLOCALGG. Expires December 15, 2020 at midnight PST.

       

      Matter Company

      Pictured: Me Kit - Mini Essentials Self-care Kit

      Toronto-based Denise Williams founded Matter Company, a luxe range of all-natural skincare products, in 1996. Matter Company embraces a holistic approach to personal care, recognizing the relationship between our natural environment and our physical and emotional well being. Their slogan is, "the ingredients are the product.” Get 15% off sitewide at Matter Company with the code SHOPLOCALGG. Expires December 15, 2020 at midnight PST.

      Two Sisters Naturals

      Pictured: Face Love Bundle

      Two Sisters Naturals handcrafts natural skin, bath, and home care products using plant based ingredients you can read, understand and trust. The business is founded, owned and operated by East Coast born and raised sisters Crystal Mills and Jillian Anderson. All ingredients used in their products are 100% plant-based and packaged sustainably. Get a surprise gift with purchase at Two Sisters Naturals with the code SHOPLOCALGG. Expires December 15, 2020 at midnight PST.

      Seventh & Oak candles

      Pictured: Winter wonderland candle

      Seventh & Oak makes hand poured, natural soy and coconut wax candles that are smooth, creamy and burn evenly. Founder Annabel started her company from a need for quality, eco-friendly candles that smelled great but were not overbearing.  Annabel has sold out of her collection since joining this collaboration! Follow her at @seventhandoak on Instagram for updates on her next candle restock.


      Don’t forget to enter our Instagram Giveaway worth over $1000 in prizes with all the brands in this blog post. Click here to enter.

      Happy Holiday Gifting! (or treating yourself 😍)

      Work From Home Capsule: 10x10 Challenge

      Work From Home Capsule: 10x10 Challenge

      This new season has come with a countless number of changes to everyday lifestyle. We're all trying our best to stay home, keep our families safe, and stay connected through technology.

       

      One of the biggest things that may have changed for you is what you're wearing from day-to-day. Those jeans have likely gotten pushed to the back of the closet, and your leggings, sweatpants and pyjamas are having a big moment! (sound about right?)

      Working in your pyjamas feels great for the first week ...but by week 9 or 10 of working from home, they don't feel so great anymore!⁠ One of the best habits we can add to our daily routine, is getting properly dressed for our day.

      Our community has been asking for cute styling inspiration for WFH. So, we're bringing you JUST THAT today! Johanna, our social media manager, is showing you 10 effortlessly cute but cozy outfits for working from home, with just 10 pieces of clothing! All 10 of these outfits are luxuriously comfortable, but they can be dressed up for work and evenings out too once we go back to normal life! 🙌⁠ 


      Click here to shop our WFH capsule.


      The 10 Miik pieces we used in this 10x10 video are:

      1. ⁠Jessie jumpsuit
      2. Rory waterfall cardi
      3. Anya drawstring pant
      4. Eden twisted hem top
      5. Shea tulip pant
      6. Daisy centre seam top
      7. Liz rolled sleeve striped dress
      8. Ezra wide leg capri/culotte
      9. Eliana high-low tank
      10. Ivy soft cropped blazer

      A conversation with Miik community model Kim, a nurse on the frontlines of COVID-19

      A conversation with Miik community model Kim, a nurse on the frontlines of COVID-19

      What's it really like to be on the frontlines of COVID in Canada?⁠


      Meet Kim. She's a Miik community model, but more importantly, she's a nurse on the frontline of COVID-19. We were able to chat with Kim about what it's really like being a nurse right now, and how we can help. Last week, we were able to send Kim and her coworkers some care packages with cozy Miik socks, handwritten cards from our kids, and fabric face masks for the hospital admin staff.⁠

      Right now, we're making non-medical masks that are available for donation to the frontlines and essential services including hospital admin staff, grocery store workers, and community shelters. Donate Now! We've already paid for the first 100 masks - and now you can help carry it forward! We are so much stronger when we come together 💪

      Thank you again to those on the frontline, or working in essential services. We acknowledge your incredible bravery and strength today!⁠

      Here's 3 simple ways you can help!

      1. Stay home if you are able. Kim said it best in our video conversation: "be mindful of your practices and keeping your hands clean. And stay away from people, to hopefully make this end quicker." Listen to your local authorities and be compliant so we can keep people safe.

      2. Donate a mask. We are now making non-medical masks available for donation. These masks are going straight to essential service workers. Click here to add one to your cart!

      3. Spread love, not germs! As Kim touches on in this video, it can get to be a lot, seeing scary news headlines constantly on our tv, social media and conversations. We say, try and make an effort to encourage someone today and let them know something you appreciate about them!

      Q&A with Donna Smith, founder of Miik

      Q&A with Donna Smith, founder of Miik

       

      As the co-founder and Creative Director of Miik, Donna Smith designs every single piece of clothing we've ever released. Today, we’re letting all of you in on a huge treat! I sat down with Donna over a cup of coffee, to talk about the story behind why our brand exists. Donna is the heart and soul behind everything Miik. She is behind all aspects of the brand – from marketing, to photoshoot direction to messaging and graphic design.⁠

      Sometimes, it’s important to refocus and remind ourselves and our audience of the story and our WHY. Daily life can get crazy, running a company can be pure chaos at times. But this Q&A totally put things back into perspective for our whole team, and we hope it gives you a little more insight into who we are and what we’re all about. Miik would be nowhere without this powerhouse of a woman. Now let’s get into this Q&A!

       

      Q: How did Miik start?

      A: Well, 10 years ago I was happily running my own graphic design company. My husband Michael, became interested in ethical and sustainable fashion. He was pretty much obsessed with it! I loved the idea of sustainable fashion but in my head, I had no time to run another business. Then one day he brought home a bamboo skirt that was actually kind of ugly. Not my style at all. But when I put it on and walked around the house in it, I thought, “OH WOW, now I get it.” It felt so unbelievably soft against my skin, I just kept wearing it! So much so that Michael went back to the store and bought me two different colours! That was the first moment I thought there could really be something in this. Nothing in my closet felt as good as these bamboo skirts. If I was willing to wear an ugly skirt all summer, what would happen if I could design beautiful pieces that were just as soft?

       

      Q: What made you change your mind from thinking you didn’t have time to start a company, to co-founding Miik with your husband?

      A: The main thing that grabbed me and had me hooked, was walking into the mall and being so overwhelmed. As a 40 something woman, I just didn’t know where to shop. It seemed most stores either catered to teenagers, or they had clothes my mother would have worn. I couldn’t seem to find clothes for me. And then when I tried stuff on, things never seemed to fit me properly. I felt there was a niche that needed to be filled.

       

      Q: What were the next steps you took to start the company?

      A: We concentrated on the fabric the most at the beginning. Making sure that what we were creating would be durable, lasting and sustainably sourced. We were obviously using eco-fabrics, but the most important thing from the beginning was making sure the clothes would last. I looked in my closet, and almost all my clothes were faded. After 5 washes, the cheap fabric would pill, fall apart or lose its shape. Our first season was about solving that. We sourced a bamboo fabric, and started making basics. I tested the products myself. I still own four tank tops from our very first collection. I wanted to see how long they would last, so I wore them to work out, and every week they would be in the laundry. They are still my workout tops today. That was 9 years ago.

       

      Q: What strategies did you start using to make sure the clothes you designed would fit right?

      A: At the beginning we did a lot of focus groups. I would have women to my house and ask them what issues they had shopping for their body types. I asked them what their problem areas were and what they wanted to show off. I listened and I learned a ton. I’ve always had a standard shape - but based on age and body type, there are so many differences. I couldn’t just design clothes that I liked and looked good on me, but clothes that looked great on every body type. The goal was to have a streamlined collection that had something for everyone. We never went the route of designing just the latest fad. We just wanted to make clothes that made people feel beautiful and confident. And above all, be comfortable! Most women I know care about that a lot more than the latest trend.

       

      Q: Where does your design inspiration come from?

      A: I have all different kinds of inspiration. Sometimes when I’m on a holiday, I’ll see something in a store or on a person. Sometimes it just comes to me when I first wake up in the morning. I always have a notepad and pen on my bedside so I can quickly sketch out the design before I forget. I like to take a bunch of different elements and put them together in a unique way. I always try to design versatile pieces that can be dressed up in a corporate setting or more casually on their own. Versatility is huge for me.

       

      Q: What makes it difficult to blend together the world of eco-friendly and the world of fashion?

      A: Unfortunately, fashion itself is not very eco-friendly. It’s hard to argue that. We have our beautiful sustainably sourced bamboo fabric – available in heavy and light weight. But our biggest challenge is sourcing a new, eco-friendly fabric to feature each season. Using only environmentally friendly fabric limits your options significantly. Which really limits us creatively. It’s also so much more expensive to use sustainably sourced fabrics. It’s cheaper to purchase synthetic fabrics and to produce the garments overseas. But that’s not us.

       

       

      Q: So, why do you decide to keep producing clothing locally and eco-friendly?

      A: It’s the whole reason we’re doing this, we can’t let go of that. We’re trying to go against what’s happening in the fast fashion world. People are buying a $10 dollar t-shirt or dress, wearing it a few times and then it ends up in a landfill site. If we let go of all our ethical values and eco-friendly standards and just make clothes for a profit, I no longer have an interest in this and I would let the company go. The whole reason Miik exists is to create durable, fashionable pieces that last not just for a season or two, but for the next 10 years. I have a closet full of clothes that range from when we started the company 9 years ago, until now. They’re still in great shape and they’re still in style.

       

       

      Q: What makes Miik’s clothes last so much longer than a conventional, fast fashion piece?

      A: What differentiates Miik and makes our pieces last so long has to do with our custom milled fabrics, like our bamboo. Bamboo absorbs dye differently to other fabrics, like cotton. So the colour is more saturated and does not fade over time. Most companies use an off-the-shelf bamboo/cotton blend that does not hold its colour as well and is not nearly as soft. It also doesn’t have the same rich drape. Many people stop wearing their clothes because they look faded or worn. When I compare a top I have been wearing for 8 years against a brand new one, I can’t see the difference in the colour. That’s huge, and that’s something Miik is known for. 

       

      Q: How would you describe your personal style?

      A: I would say effortless. I just don’t have time! I want to look put together, but I don’t want to have to try. But I do really care about my clothes fitting me beautifully, and I want to feel great in them. I guess that’s reflected a lot in the clothes I design. Effortless. 

       

      Q: Where do you see Miik in 5 years?

      A: I want Miik to be a household name. I want people to know us for everything I’ve just talked about, and to trust us with their wardrobe. But the biggest thing is that I see us giving back a lot more in the future. I want to connect with our causes, and have time for it. I would love for the day to come where 50 percent of my time is spent giving back, rather than getting lost in the day-to-day tasks of running a business. I want all of this to be for something great.

      Kicking off 2020 with our first 10x10 challenge + giveaway!

      Kicking off 2020 with our first 10x10 challenge + giveaway!

       

       

      Happy New Year! We're so excited about 2020, and we know that it's going to be a big year for our brand and community. Rather than reinventing yourself in 2020, we want you to take some time to appreciate all the amazing things in your life that don’t need changing. To start the year with gratitude and mindfulness, we’re running a 10x10 wardrobe challenge on Instagram. The 10x10 challenge is simple: choose 10 items in your closet, create 10 different outfits, and wear them over 10 days. Created by Lee Vosburgh, fashion enthusiast and blogger at Style Bee, this challenge is all about getting creative with your style, getting more use out of fewer things, and learning to love what you already own.

      Starting Monday, January 6th we’ll be sharing our 10 outfits on Instagram, created from 10 core pieces: 7 of these pieces are Miik, plus we’ve included 1 pair of denim and 2 pairs of shoes. We’ll also be adding a few other accessories like hats, scarves and hosiery which don’t count towards the 10 item limit.

      Enter to win a $200 Miik gift card

      Many of our styles have been designed with a "less is more" mentality, prioritizing versatility and timelessness over trends. Capsule wardrobes and the 10x10 challenge encourage you to make the most of the items you have, but they're also great exercises to identify any key pieces your wardrobe are missing and really consider which styles make you look and feel your best.

      We invite you to participate in our 10x10 challenge on Instagram and be entered to win a $200 Miik gift card. Use it to kickstart your capsule wardrobe or invest in a new foundation piece you'll wear for years to come! Here’s everything you need to know:

      1. Follow @miikinc on Instagram. The challenge begins today, Monday, January 6 and runs until Wednesday, January 15 at midnight (PST). We will be posting one outfit every day in our Instagram stories, so be sure to follow along there!
      2. Pick 10 pieces from your closet. We suggest 3 tops, 2 bottoms, 1 dress, 2 top layers (like blazers or cardigans), and 2 pairs of shoes. Don't stress too much about the rules; accessories, handbags, and outerwear don't count towards the 10 item limit, and some people prefer not to include shoes in their 10 items either. Have fun with it and adapt as necessary to make the challenge work for your lifestyle!
      3. Share your 10 outfits on Instagram (in your stories or feed), tag @miikinc and use hashtag #10x10challenge. Every day you tag us in a 10x10 outfit, you’ll be entered to win a $200 Miik gift card (up to 1 entry per day). The more outfits you share, the better your chances of winning! Please note: Your Instagram profile needs to be set to "public" for us to see your tagged photos. If you prefer to keep your profile private, feel free to DM us your photos.
      4. We'll randomly choose a winner on January 16. The winner will be notified via Instagram direct message.

      That’s it! We can’t wait to see your creative outfits as you learn to love your wardrobe all over again in 2020.

      Love from,

      The Miik Team