Tuesday, 12 July 2016

Toronto Carnival (Caribana) Guide 2016

The #Countdown2Carnival is ON!

18 days to be exact. The photo above is a sneak peak of what I will be wearing on the road. Section is the soldout  Macaw with Toronto Revellers. I have not played with this band before so this will be a totally new experience for me. Kerwin Du Bois AND Kes the Band will be on the road with them too so I am super excited!

Toronto Carnival Launch

July 5th was the official launch and I was there with one of the newest bands on di scene, Island Vybz. We were introduced to the Face of the Festival Azalea Zoe AND it was announced that the high fences from last year will be taken down (this should be interesting). Nonetheless, check out the video below; it also includes clips captured by CTV and CP24.

If the video link is not visible, please click here: https://youtu.be/_63YlYPy80Q

Participating in Carnival (a.k.a playing mas) allows you to be creative, explore, and have fun. Therefore you have to go big or go home! Your costume is your base but it is up to you to elevate it even further. I receive a lot of questions about where to go and what to do. So below are a few elements that you want to consider when vamping up your carnival look; plus a few places to go or people to see that may help!
 My goal here is to get you READY for the road.


You SHOULD NOT play mas without the following items:

- Sunscreen 
Carnival costumes give pretty bad tan lines!

- Refillable Bottle or Cup 
DO NOT rely on your band to keep you hydrated*

- A Bag to secure Identification Card(s), Cash, Keys.
ie. Purse, clutch, wristlet, back pack, fanny pack, - bonus points if it matches your costume!

- Sunglasses
If your wearing a full face of make up though - this would not be a good idea.


DO NOT wear your brand new all-white Jordons on the road! HA! You want to wear something comfortable and worn in, something that you don’t mind getting dirty… and ideally something that matches the colors in your costume. 

One of the most popular carnival footwear options are boots! They are hard to find during the summer, so be on the look out. Try places like Orfus Road, Urban Planet, and Ardene. I have three new pairs from the Carnival Spice inventory for sale at $10
Msg me if interested ASAP! Available are: 
2 black suede in size 7 (SOLD OUT); 1 beige pleather in size 6.

Tip: If you plan on wearing boots or sneakers, apply powder to your feet to prevent blisters, wear comfy socks, and if possible add cushioning insoles ***

Boots EXAMPLE - I designed them myself (by the way)
Next is the fun part - decorating! You can spray paint your choice in footwear  add glitter, or rhinestones to achieve your carnival look. To find unique gems, feathers, or fabrics, head to your local craft store (ie. Micheals), John Beads Craft Outlet or visit the fashion/fabric district by Queen and Spadina. For more cost-effective options (see photos below) try good ole’ Dollarama.

If you are not the crafty type, there are several companies online that offer this service. Please see some examples below; and I urge you to contact them ASAP:

Fete In Flats

Carnival Kicks

Toronto Carnival Bling

Flag Sneakers


Tights were never a “thing” in Toronto until recently… probably because there are a lot less belt options, and a lot more spider panties! Tights also provide clean lines and keep everything in tact. Please do not wear your church stockings or pantyhose on the road… they are not the same thing!!!!!!!  You can find appropriate/SEAMLESS ones in winners, and/or some lingeries stores. 

If you are woman of color, finding tights or fishnets to match your skin tone is challenging! ...Especially the good quality ones you can easily find in Trinidad. Below are a few merchandisers that are selling in Toronto!

Shades Hosiery Club

Matched For Me

Malabar (limited shades)
14 Mccaul Street at Queen
(416) 598-2581


Most costumes now come with bangles and earrings however you can never have too much. Go big or go home! A lot of stores such as H & M and Aldo are having sales on accessories - perfect opportunity to find pieces to match your costume.

Make - Up

Carnival make up is so much fun to wear and to apply. You can totally get away with big lashes, the brightest color lipstick, and glitter or jewels all over your face! Be creative - there are so many products out there! However, if you want to leave it it up to the professionals, definitely get in touch with one of these awesome ladies below - but do it ASAP:

Mobile Make Up Artists (who can come to you):

Purple Box Mobile
Contact Sasha at 647-408-4090

Royal Artistry
Contact Elle at 226 - 972-9176

On Di Road

You can find Nikki D Make Up in the masquerader assembly area doing make up on site.
Contact Nikki at 416-819-6454


Your hairstyle will depend on what headgear your wearing (Ie. Tierra, headpiece, head chain). I anticipate that single braids or cornrows will be very popular ESPECIALLY considering how hot this summer has been. 

If you are looking for a braider/locstress contact Kerry - Ann at 905-999-4258

Carlene’s Beauty Lounge
For all other hair services contact Carlene at 416-241-5694

Fitness and Nutrition
The video below was filmed last year but includes expert fitness and nutrition principles that STILL apply. Get those bodies RIGHT and TIGHT. Check out how:

If the video link is not visible, please click here: https://youtu.be/INS4Dw4krEA

Body Envy
Contact Trudie German at www.bodyenvy.ca

Soul Fuel
Contact Lisa at info@soulfuelwellness.com

Carnival Spice Dance Fitness Classes

Getcha Caribbean Dance Fitness on with Carnival Spice. Summer classes are running in Brampton, Mississauga, Scarborough, and Downtown, Toronto until July 21st. WE CURRENTLY ARE OFFERING 50% OFF CLASSES***
Reserve your spot here before it’s too late: https://spicejuly.eventbrite.ca 

Toronto Carnival Run

Once Carnival Spice summer session is complete we would love for everyone to participate on our team for the Toronto Carnival Run taking place Saturday, July 23rd. This is a 5k run or walk meant to encourage wellness and community involvement with a Caribbean carnival theme. 

For full run details or to register, click HERE
- Our Team Name is "Di Carnival Spice Crew"


The order of the bands on parade day are as follows:

1.Toronto Revellers

2. Saldenah Mas K Club

3. Carnival Nationz

4. Tribal Carnival
5. Fantazia International
6. Durham Mas
7. D'Regulars
8. Concept Creators
9. Island Vybz
10. Sublime Canada
11. Atlantic Mas
12. Carnival Redemption

*I want to be able to find you on the road! 
In the comments below, please let me know *

*#TBT - My Look For Toronto Carnival 2015*

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