Oh so Pretty

I’m a big homebody, and now that I work from home making my space a sort of pastel paradise has become even more important. Johanna and I have put a lot of love and attention into every corner of The Pastel Palace, but these days we’re really focusing on making our studio/home office super swoon worthy. From photo backdrops hung on copper pipes to a pretty epic prop shelf, the space is really starting to take shape, and even the tiniest details on my desk are coming together thanks to a bit of early self-gift-shopping on the Canadian Birchbox site.

Birchbox is famous for their amazing beauty boxes and cosmetics shop, but they also have a pretty fun lifestyle section loaded with all sorts of special goodies. From Rifle Paper Co. card sets to Lauren Hope jewels, you’re sure to find something in this section for everyone on your list (and maybe a treasure or two for yourself too!) Here are some snaps of my favourite desktop essentials- they all come together to create a pretty dreamy nook for team RAOP to plan our pastel world from, don’t you think?





In order of appearance- Ban.do tumbler, Tocca mini candle set, December Birchbox, Rifle Paper Co. notepad calendar, Gorjana Chloe necklace, and Benefit Cha Cha Balm

Birchbox – The Box is Monthly, the Beauty & Grooming Possibilities are Endless! Sign up for just $10/month.

Oh so Pretty

Whoever said “Never ask a girl with winged eyeliner why she’s late” really hit the nail on the head. I love playing around with my beauty look, especially around the holidays, but I never quite mastered the art of the cat eye until my recent discovery of felt-tip liner pens. Though I still wouldn’t venture to call myself a pro by any means, the addition of liquid liner pens to my makeup bag has definitely taken my eye makeup from kitten to cat.

I put together this metallic look using a handful of products from the Birchbox shop, including my favourite black liner pen by Cynthia Rowley and the new LOC shadow pens (which are amazing by the way!) As long as you have a steady (ish) hand, you’ll be ready to sparkle at every holiday party from now to New Year’s Eve!




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Supplies //

Vasanti Primer
Cynthia Rowley Black Liquid Liner
Cynthia Rowley Beauty Eyeliner
LOC One and Done Shadow Sticks in “Day Trip”, “On Point”, and “Smoke Screen”
Eyeko Black Magic Mascara
Cargo Blush in “Bali”
LAQA & co. Cheeky Lip pen in “Humble Brag”

Instructions //

1 // Prime your eyelids with Vasanti’s All Star Primer to create an even base.

2 // Start by painting your upper lid with “On Point”, then add “Smoke Screen” to the outer corner of your lower lids, and
“Day Trip” to the inner corners.

3 // Using your trusty Cynthia Rowley liquid liner pen, carefully draw on the cat eye as close to your lash line as possible. Don’t be afraid to go back and fill in any patchy spots!

4 // Draw a line of silver as close to your bottom lash line as possible using the Cynthia Rowley Beauty Eyeliner, and follow under the same line with the black liquid liner to create a double cat eye effect. Finish the eyes off with a healthy dose of mascara on both the top and bottom lashes (I’m obsessed with Eyeko’s Black Magic formula)

5 // Add a touch of pink to the look with a warm pink blush and a berry pink lip- just in case you land a kiss or two under the mistletoe!




Birchbox – The Box is Monthly, the Beauty & Grooming Possibilities are Endless! Sign up for just $10/month.

Oh so Pretty

And so it begins- the long line of pastel gift guides I’ve been crafting for months is finally here! I’ve got a whole bunch of ideas fit for every pastel princess (and prince) on your list, but I thought it made sense to start with one of my favourite themed categories: beauty!

I don’t know how many of you have been watching Birchbox rapidly expand into a massive curated beauty destination over the past two years, but from their incredible NYC brick and mortar shop opening to their launch in Canada it’s been a pretty exciting brand be involved with. I had the pleasure of helping the Birchbox team decorate for a magical event a few months ago, and you’ll notice a whole bunch of collaborative products with them over the holiday season here at RAOP.

I truly love making wish lists and gift shopping no matter what the season, but nothing rivals the joy of curating gift picks for Christmas morning. Here are some of my favourite finds from Birchbox’s awesome new Canadian online shop (don’t worry USA, you can still shop everything too!)

1// Not Soap, Radio Body Wash

Bubble bath is one of those products that no one can ever have enough of (like candles, or wine). I’m a massive sucker for good branding, and Not Soap, Radio had me at first glance, despite my confusion over their mysterious name. Created by two sisters who used to make soap concoctions in the bath together growing up (SO cute), this line can be used as both shower gel and bubble bath, and the clever names and descriptions are so fun to read.




2// BKR Heart Water Bottle

It’s extremely important to stay hydrated over the holiday season, and by that I mean it’s important to be sipping a fancy cocktail or champagne at all times. BKR’s glass water bottles are an absolute staple when it comes to cute beverage transportation, and when you decide to smarten up and get healthy in the new year this little guy will be your best friend (if you actually start using it for water that is!)

3// Davines OI Oil

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it 100 times again: this stuff is GOLD. Anyone and everyone with hair should own this product- it smells amazing and leaves even the most damaged locks shiny and silky smooth. Buy your mom a bottle, buy your bestie a bottle, buy your boyfriend a bottle… and make sure you scoop one up for yourself while you’re at it!

4// Cynthia Rowley Liquid Liner

Liquid liner is a staple in my makeup bag, and I can’t think of a better excuse to perfect your cat eye skills than over the month holiday parties. Exclusive to Birchbox, this Cynthia Rowley liner pen is super easy to use, stays put no matter how much sweaty dancing you do, and it’s oh so festive too!



5// Ban.do Flash Bobbi Set

Tis the season for sparkle! A super simple way to add a bit of glitter to any hairstyle, these colourful clips will have you sparklin’ around the Christmas tree all year long.

6// Birchbox Subscription

You know what no one hates? Receiving Mail! Nothing beats the rush of finding a package waiting outside your door, especially one filled with surprise treats and unexpected finds. Birchbox got started as a monthly beauty sample delivery service, and their still the best in the business. Why not treat your friends and loved ones to the gift that keeps on giving?

Birchbox – The Box is Monthly, the Beauty & Grooming Possibilities are Endless! Sign up for just $10/month.

Get Creative

Throughout the holidays and beyond I firmly believe in the motto “put some glitter on it.” Everything’s better with a bit of sparkle, from hairstyles to place settings to home decor, and I’m always looking for new ways to bedazzle and bejewel. My most recent creation? Glitter Dipped Mason Jars!

I originally dreamed up these beauties to use as vases for a “You’re a Gem” themed event I styled with Birchbox a few months back, and the response was so great that I figured I’d share my method with the masses so everyone can make their masons glittery and magical. Incredibly simple and oh-so-pretty, this DIY is perfect for adding a bit of festive feeling to vases, trinket jars, or whatever other glass object your heart desires. The best part? When paired with fresh blooms these make the perfect holiday hostess gifts!

Supplies //

Mason Jars
PVA glue
Glitter dish big enough to fit the bottom of the jar
Glue dish (same size)





Method //

1. Mix up some glitter in a dish – we used all different sizes and shapes of silver.

2. Mix your PVA glue in another dish and add a tiny bit of water to thin it out.

3. Paint a fairly thick even layer onto the bottom edges of the jars (avoid the very bottom where it sits on tables).

4. Roll the bottom of the jar around in the glitter until evening distributed. (TIP: the larger the glue ‘peaks’ the better it will pick up larger sized glitter).

5. Sit on cardboard and allow to fully dry before filling with flowers, fresh-baked sugar cookies, etc!




Originally Published on the Hooray Magazine Blog

Oh so PrettyParty Time

When Birchbox first asked team RAOP to decorate their upcoming customer appreciation event (and by “team RAOP I mean me and Johanna), I’ll admit I was a little nervous. Though I’ve styled a lot of spaces for party shoots, I hadn’t really ever done an actual full-scale party with strangers who would be actual guests, and it seemed pretty daunting to take on. Luckily, I believe pretty strongly in jumping in with both feet, so I agreed to the challenge, and Johanna and I immediately got to work.

We wanted to come up with a cute theme for our decor plan, so we settled on “you’re a gem”, because really, all of you truly are something special! We put our heads together and came up with some sparkly DIY projects, like folded paper gems and mini gem pinatas (posts with instructions coming in the next couple of weeks), and created a glittery pastel sugar drink rimmer blended with pastel pop rocks for the strawberry mojitos the bar was serving. We dipped mason jars in silver glitter to serve as vessels for the flower arrangements (again, DIY on its way), and bought our weight in blooms at the local flower market. In the end it all came down to a bit of a scrambled mad dash that involved me in high heels on the ladder holding onto a pipe with armfuls of pinatas, but when 6pm rolled around Wednesday night everything looked pretty much perfect.

With glitter and glue all over our faces and hands we spent the evening meeting new friends, snacking on the most delicious finger food, and talking beauty products of course! Birchbox is such a fun and creative company, and I’m always so excited to see what they’re creating and featuring (if you don’t have a monthly subscription yet, do it. Like now.) There was a nail painting station and a spot for beauty touch ups, and it was such a treat to finally meet the whole team (and Ania B!) in person. By the end of the evening, Johanna and I were already planning our trip to the Birchbox store in New York.








Birchbox – The Box is Monthly, the Beauty & Grooming Possibilities are Endless! Sign up for just $10/month.