From the Editor-in-Chief & Publisher Suzanne Boyd
Ireturned to Canada from my sister’ s Istanbul funeral with two possessions dear to Donna that our mother thought I should have – her diary and her charm bracelet. I have never read the diary and never will, on principle, as Donna valued her secrets. And after reading “A Charmed Life”, Nathalie Atkinson’s examination of the timeless allure of the charm bracelet, I feel even more regret at misplacing my sister’s in the blur of my peripatetic youth. The heavy bracelet’s multi-layered trinkets were gathered in souks, bazaars and markets in Europe and the Middle East. It made me feel closer to the life she led the few years we lived apart before a 1990 car crash claimed her.
Emotion, memory and nostalgia are often unconsidered side-effects of possessions at a time when old conspicuous consumption is viewed as a character flaw. Clothes and furniture can have a confounding duality. They are practical necessities, but when filtered through the lens of fashion and design, which can cause price tags to hit the stratosphere, they are often thought to be frivolous indulgences. But leaning into style can have a profound impact on quality of life. In “A Thing for Chintz”, Trish Crawford delves into the throwback cottagecore movement, a trend with multi-generational appeal that provides a comforting salve for the pandemic – and environmental – blues.
On that theme, award-winning photographer Yuri Dojc once again appears in our pages with a personal project. “Buds of Hope” shows how nature renewed his optimism during the darkness and isolation of lockdown. As a grace note, he signed 50 subscriber copies, so your issue may be a collector’s item.
COVID-19 brought to a head decades-long negligence in our long-term care system. In “No Place Like Home”, Nora Underwood makes the convincing case that better building design – from decor to architecture – would have cut down the virus’s death toll. And, by adopting a more empathetic, organic and tasteful approach to future design, long-term care homes can be a place of dignified respite for residents.
In this issue, we also celebrate “Boss Ladies” – self-made, self-employed women who are building brands and businesses in cosmetics, real estate, and food and drink, starting with our cover subject, Monika Deol. As Shinan Govani reveals in “Still Electric”, Deol – who in September is hosting a revival tour of Electric Circus, the MuchMusic show that made her famous – was always empowered to make her own way. She defied family and cultural expectations by leaving home to attend university and going into the entertainment business. Deol told me her first-ever interview as a reporter for the university newspaper was with Bryan Adams, then a newly minted rock star. Now, with an outstanding career of countless interviews behind her and a burgeoning second act as a beauty entrepreneur in front, Deol was photographed by Adams for her Zoomer cover.
Nostalgia – but as the meme goes, make it fashion – reinvented for now.