On BeingPublished on September 24, 2023


  • Photo by: Mark Holleron

From the moment I walked through the doors of Swathi Kappagantula’s Glebe home, I knew I’d entered a special place.

As a designer, my goal for clients was to create a home that intrinsically felt like theirs so anyone coming through their doors would develop a sense of the people occupying the space. This is often a challenge to achieve. Trends and architecture play a substantial role in décor, which usually means a homeowner pushes aside their tastes and living style to achieve a stylish interior space. This isn’t the case within Swathi’s home, where she used her passion for globally inspired living and talent as a designer to create a home that speaks to who she and her family are as people. Read more on page 8.

The entire issue is a dedication to living our passions, from a haunted house in Smiths Falls owned by magicians to a mom who started cooking classes to help her daughter and the community and the woman committed to making the refugee experience a little less daunting. Each feature inspires an authentic approach to living.

It was a dream for me to spend time with acclaimed author Charlotte Gray, who shared her insights on motherhood as we discussed her latest book. As an aspiring novelist I was intrigued to learn of the flourishing writing community in Ottawa and to chat about Charlotte’s writing journey that started with magazines (Page 34).

It is always a thrill to share inspiring homes and people within the Nation’s Capital, and in this issue, we take inspiration one step further to check out events that encourage us to dress up and get out all in the name of community. Thanks to Melissa Shabinsky, we have a flurry of events to attend and heaps of helpful tips to have us looking our best (Page 44). As always, Mary Ciancibello ensures we are dressed in a style that feels right with plenty of gala-ready options (Page 48).

Passionately  Yours,


Mary’s Must Reads

The Leftover Woman by Jean Kwok
Part suspense and domestic drama about two women making difficult choices for their families and themselves, Out October 10th,  available 
for pre-order.

Burlington by Heather Dixon  

Mae Roberts didn’t think she’d fit in with the affluent Riverpark mothers until she’s asked to join their neighborhood watch and slides into their exclusive world of peculiar dinner parties, secrets, lies, and schoolyard politics. 

Gull Island by Anna Porter  
Set in Georgian Bay, where Jude travels to a family cottage on remote Gull Island and is unsettled by what she finds there.

What Wild Women Do by Karma Brown 

A stalled screenwriter’s trip into the Adirondacks draws her into the story of a missing “socialite-turned-feminist-crusader” that may hold the key to unlocking her future, out October 24th.

Learned by Heart by Emma Donoghue

The long-buried love story of Eliza Raine, an orphan heiress banished from India to England at age six, and Anne Lister, a troublesome tomboy, who meet at the Manor School for Young Ladies in York in 1805 when they are both fourteen.

The Valkyrie by Kate Heart Heartfield, Ottawa Author

For fantasy fiction fans, an epic tale and love story shines a light on the warrior women of Norse mythology. Perfect Books, 258 Elgin Street 

Bright Young Women by Jessica Knoll

A crime novel that brings two women together in search of justice for friends who died at the hands of a serial killer whose name is far more known than those of his victims. #MARYSMUSTREAD book club pick for Rogers Daytime Ottawa

Mary Taggart

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