THE FIRST STEPS

When your theme and your colours are chosen and you’ve done your research on the Web to see everything that’s been done, then you can go scouting, which is the fun part: window shopping! And believe me, it’s really fun, especially when, like in my case, you will eventually shop with someone else’s money! But, really, it is quite ironic that a girl like me, who has Le Plateau tattooed on her heart and who loves to do all of her shopping by foot, would find herself, in her car, on the 30, between the Dix30 and Boucherville, with a silly smile plastered across her face, simply and totally happy. But it’s sooo cool to enter Homesense, JYSK, Bouclair Maison, Stokes, Dollorama, with the sole purpose of finding ideas and bargains. Everything becomes interesting, promising, a starting point. You take notes, pictures, you do drawings, calculation, plans. It’s like a creative whirlwind, very stimulating.

I’m naming my favorite places here, but there’s so many more, quite as interesting, like Simons, Z’Axe, Déco Découverte, Bowring, Pier Import. But if you have a tight budget, my choices are places where you are sure to find great alternatives, at a very reasonable price. I know it’s not a good thing to shop at Dollorama, social awareness speaking, but I’ll change the world in another way, because, for me, it’s a MUST. You can find candles, votives, vases, ribbons, everything you need to create a decor, and it’s all under 1 or 2 dollar.

For the centerpieces and flower arrangements for Lynn’s wedding, I needed soft green and orange coloured sand and I needed a lot of it. I must confess that if you were looking for those kinds of sand last year and you couldn’t find any, it was because I bought it ALL! Seriously, I went to at least 20 Dolloramas to get what I needed, around 40 bottles! Sorry about that. In short, the Dollorama is full of great finds, but you need to have an eye for good deals and to look pass the ugly knickknacks that fill the shelves to discover the little gems you are looking for.

Here’s a little useful advice if you love shopping at Homesense. I discovered it at my own expense. If you find something interesting while you are window shopping, even if you’re not sure, it’s better to buy it now and return it later (the return policy is very good) instead of waiting, planning around it and then, never seeing it again.

I needed 4 tall vases for the ceremony. On my first visit at Homesense, I found a model that had the perfect height and price, $16,99. And there were a lot of them, in all the stores I did that day. But the next week, they all had disappeared! I could only find two of them in the 10 stores I went to and I had to buy another model. I was actually quite lucky to find the 2 identical vases, that matched the ones I had, and, bonus, were on sale. But I learned my lesson, I see, I like, it’s cheap, I buy! Cause, if not, you risk never seeing it ever again, like the nice glass candy box, which was so pretty and only $6,99. It vanished in a few days!

Now, when I shop around, I’m always looking for ideas, for inspiration, for THE great find. And sometimes, when it’s not too expensive, I will buy it, for future decor. Or I will take a picture with my iPhone, so I don’t forget where I saw what. Cause sometimes, it’s in a store you never thought you would find it…  I’m sure you also have your favorites stores and shops, it would be really cool if you could share them with me, I’m always up for new things!

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