ELLE (Canada) - - Insider -

Jan­uary may be the month we’re sup­posed to kick-start our lives and make the changes we have talked about, dreamed about and, for many of us, failed to do any­thing about. (Guilty!) But there’s some­thing al­lur­ing about a fall makeover. It’s al­most coun­ter­in­tu­itive to what’s hap­pen­ing around us. Leaves will soon be fall­ing from the trees, the grass will lose its lus­trous green hue and the flow­ers will be past their bloom. It’s a time of say­ing good­bye to sum­mer and, in some cases, to friends, fam­ily or col­leagues who are head­ing off to school or em­bark­ing on other ad­ven­tures. Yet in spite of what could be a rather melan­choly time, there’s this yearn­ing to push our lim­its—to try some­thing new, to feel alive. That’s why we ded­i­cate this is­sue to help­ing you “fast-track” your life. Start your trans­for­ma­tion by read­ing our tongue-in-cheek “Hack Your Life” spe­cial (page 108). Then get serious #in­spo from health and beauty edi­tor Carli Whitwell’s fall run­ning pack­age, “Road War­riors” (page 162). One woman’s story, how­ever, should re­mind us all about the im­por­tance of not letting our dreams fade. Stephanie Gil­man, our for­mer #lif­ere­boot colum­nist, writes about her emo­tional de­ci­sion to stop tak­ing the drug that may keep her can­cer-free in or­der to have the baby she has al­ways wanted. “What if I gave up hope, let fear call the shots and de­prived my­self of the life I was meant to live?” she writes in “Baby on Board” (page 100). Oth­ers who are liv­ing their lives sans re­grets are the tal­ented women in Cana­dian film whom Birks and Tele­film Canada are hon­our­ing at this year’s Toronto In­ter­na­tional Film Fes­ti­val. Check out “In Cam­era” (page 90) for cul­ture edi­tor Sarah Laing’s spir­ited round-ta­ble chat. An­other woman who is open to ad­ven­ture—and to sup­port­ing ar­ti­san de­sign­ers—is Alexan­dra We­ston, di­rec­tor of brand strat­egy at Holt Ren­frew and the driv­ing force be­hind the H Project. Ex­ec­u­tive edi­tor Christina Reynolds joined her for an in­spir­ing four-day South Amer­i­can scout­ing trip in “Craft­ing a Fu­ture” (page 168). I’m proud of this month’s photo shoot “Nat­u­ral An­them” (page 154), which beauty di­rec­tor Vanessa Craft en­vi­sioned and cham­pi­oned along with her team­mates, Vic­to­ria Di Placido and Carli Whitwell. Fi­nally, in keep­ing with the no­tion of fast-track­ing one’s life, fash­ion di­rec­tor Ju­liana Schi­av­inatto and art di­rec­tor Brit­tany Ec­cles take us (lit­er­ally) to the speed­way to of­fer a new twist on “fast fash­ion” in “Ride or Die” (page 116). So here’s to all of you lead­ing a life that’s au­then­tic, in­spired and me­moir-wor­thy. Start your en­gines, ladies!

P. S .

See­ing as how we’ve de­clared Septem­ber our “New Year,” I think it’s ap­pro­pri­ate to look back on what we’ve ac­com­plished. It has been a re­mark­able time for the über-tal­ented ELLE Canada editorial team. We turned 15! We launched the new #ELLECanadaCloset! And our tro­phy wall is now lined with two gold Cana­dian On­line Pub­lish­ing Awards (COPAs) and the fol­low­ing ac­co­lades from the Cana­dian So­ci­ety of Mag­a­zine Edi­tors: Best Mag­a­zine (Medium Circulation), the Jim Cormier Award for Best Dis­play Writ­ing, Edi­tor of the Year and Run­ner-Up for Best Tablet Edi­tion. In ad­di­tion, the fash­ion team earned a gold medal at this year’s Na­tional Mag­a­zine Awards. Thank you to ev­ery­one who shared their tal­ents so gen­er­ously, in­clud­ing the other mem­bers of the team I haven’t men­tioned yet, like Elaine Jyll Re­gio, Liz Gu­ber, Lisa Gui­mond, Steven Kawalit, Brian Fleming, Danielle Camp­bell, Ciara Rickard, Jane Field­ing and Marge Dun­ham-Landry. I am im­mensely grate­ful, and hum­bled, to have worked with you.

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