TIFF time is, hands down, the busiest time of the year for Toronto film journalists. You’re literally running from one interview to another, then party after party for at least 8 of the 11 days of the festival. First world problems, I know, but it’s tough work and not all glamorous. This year we’re scheduled to see 30+ films, interview 35+ stars, and attend umpteen parties, all while looking professional and well groomed (and did we mention on very little sleep?). So it was a godsend to be invited to some of the hottest TIFF gifting lounges prior to the start of the festival in order to stock up on much needed beauty and lifestyle products.
The following is a quick run-down of some of the respective lounge highlights.
The lovely ladies at Glo Communications were gracious to invite me to their 9th annual twist on celebrity gifting, the Bask-It-Style Lounge. Alhough I didn’t know anybody there (I recognized a few beauty bloggers by face), I found myself right at home with the representatives from Penguin Random House Canada, Rakuten Kobo and DK. Author and aspiring actress Adrienne Kress gave a particularly memorable reading from her novel The Explorers, a book which I eagerly started reading immediately after I left the Lounge.
Also of note from the Lounge was the Harvest Tea Singles and Tea Press from David’s Tea, which I will undoubtedly use when I come down with my yearly post-TIFF cold.
Other highlights: Hearing about the Clean Volume Shampoo and Conditioner from Pureology, meeting inspirational designer Annie Thompson (I highly encourage everyone to check out her designs at https://www.anniethompson.ca/ ), and getting a bag of Toronto Popcorn Company’s kettle corn (which will inevitably become dinner for one night of TIFF).
Tastemakers Presents: Suite on the SIXth
Hats off to the ladies at Rock-It Promotions for having the most laid back and comfortable lounge of the festival. With the move to their stunning office on Richmond Street, the Tastemakers lounge is now better than ever before. In the offices I was treated to a refreshing coffee smoothie from InBalance Smoothie Cubes (an ingenious idea, if I say so myself), the comfiest socks I’ve EVER worn from McGregor Socks (they were even Canadian-themed for Canada 150!), delicious smelling soaps from Perth Soap Co. and peoni oil that’s used by none other than the mighty Oprah herself. Best of all I got to take home all of my goodies in a Hudson’s Bay Company tote bag, which will definitely be used throughout the festival as my go-to bag.
NKPR IT House x Producers Ball
The NKPR x IT House is always where I run into most of my media friends pre-TIFF, and this year was no different. My good pals from Huffington Post Canada, Global TV, Entertainment Tonight Canada, and the one and only Mr. Will Wong gathered here to gossip about which films we’ve liked best so far (before the festival we all screen at least 20 films to prepare for our A-list talent interviews during the festival), and all over scrumptious food and celebratory drinks. Will even introduced me to Ms. NKPR herself, the exceptional Natasha Koifman! The icing on the proverbial cake was picking up luxe items from Lug, Annabelle (I plan on using their mascara for life now) and many others.
With all these lounge gifts I think I’m ready to tackle TIFF now! Happy TIFF-mas, everyone.