One of my fave Toronto magazines, Plaid, caught up with me for their newest feature called Where To Go. All about… where I go! Check it out below, and HERE on their site.
Saturdays always start with a double Americano with steamed milk from Redline Coffee, made by the owner, Julie, who is not only the best coffee maker in town, but also the most fun! It helps that I live next door to this place, but I’m pretty sure I would make the trek even if I didn’t.
I love to roam around, but since downtown can get so hectic on the weekends I tend to hang out in sleepier areas. I love wandering along the Dundas West strip from Bathurst street onwards to explore all the new shops, bars and restaurants. It’s great to be right downtown but a bit removed from Queen Street craziness on the weekends.
Saturday nights are always reserved for good tunes, good drinks and good food with good friends at 416 Snackbar. It’s my go to spot.
There is only one brunch spot in my life and it is Lady Marmalade in Leslieville! If I could eat there every day I would, it is that delicious. I love that their décor is cobbled together with vintage finds, and that they serve free-run eggs, organic, and hand-made bread from the local St. John’s Bakery. The lineups are crazy on the weekends so you can usually find me brunching during the weekdays instead. Lil’ Baci next door is a pretty good alternative if you can’t get a table.
The Narwhal in Summerhill is my favourite new store in Toronto. Considering I’m such a downtowner, it takes a lot for a shop to lure me past Bloor Street, and this place reels me in on the regular. The shop is very well curated with a cozy feel, and carries brands like Rag & Bone, Helmut Lang, ALC and Preen. Basically, I wish the whole shop was my personal closet.
My wardrobe is a complete mix of high and low labels, but I like to sprinkle in designer pieces whenever I can. Budgetary constraints normally only allow for this to be made possible through consignment shops. I often hit Fashionably Yours on Queen West andLAB Consignment on Ossington. I always find gems in both places that are like new for a total steal.
I went to elementary school near the St. Lawrence Market, so the area feels like home to me. I still live nearby and love taking a lazy stroll over to the Sunday Market on the weekends. The vendors always have an amazing selection of vintage jewellery, clothing and homeware – my favourite mix! This summer I found a lace dress for $40 from the Victorian era, and two years ago I scored a black rabbit for vest on sale for half price. You gotta dig a little, but the best stuff is there, and you can barter!
The Bay on Queen Street has really transformed itself, and is making some serious moves with The Room and The White Space. It’s rare that I can actually afford to shop in there, but I love to have a look at all the designers they’ve been picking up. After living in London, UK for two years, I’m happy to see them supporting some of Britain’s best emerging talents like Mary Katrantzou and Felicity Brown. I also love Sandro, Suno and MICHI in The White space.
This might sound cheesy, but I am most-often inspired by my friends. I am very fortunate to be surrounded by so many talented and creative people. Most recently, I was inspired by the fashion illustrations of my friend Monica Smiley, the illustrator behind Eighty Seventh St.. Her fashion drawings are so fun, sexy and chic, they most certainly make me wish I could draw better!
There is also a young British fashion photographer, name Luc Coiffait, who I had the pleasure of getting to know better when I interviewed him for my blog. I always find it very inspiring to meet talented young people (Luc is a mere 21) with so much ambition and who are just at the start of the exciting career ahead of them.
If Pages was still around I could list it as my favourite bookstore in the city and sound cool, unfortunately all I’ve got to offer now is Chapters. It’s a sad reality that the blockbuster of bookstores is my alternative, but, when I want to stock up on magazines and books, then plonk down on a floor to read them, this place does the trick. The one at John and Richmond is a particular favourite since I usually make a pit stop before or after seeing a movie.
General Hardware Contemporary is a new gallery at Queen and Landsdown that was opened by a family I used to babysit for back in the day. They bought the building and renovated it completely, but left the orginal sign and name of the hardware shop. The space is stunning, and is worth visiting just to look at the transformation, and check out their banana yellow vintage Porsche parked in the back garden.
Frank Gehry’s renovation of the AGO still takes my breath away – the space is so beautiful. I think everyone’s week should involve taking advantage of their free night on Wednesday from 6-8:30pm, and then finishing off with a drink at the Frank Bar.
I’m a big music lover but I don’t buy records and I rarely buy CDs anymore (back when I did, I lived in HMV and Sonic Boom). Now I support music by trying to go out to as many live shows as I can, which takes me to venues all across the city. Personally, I think the annual NXNE Festival in Toronto is one of the best things this city has got going for it. This past summer was the first time I was in town for the full week, I got to see Pharcyde, Digable Planets, Devo, Stars, and discovered my new favourites Twin Shadow and Ty Segall. The week pass price is such a good deal for all the shows you get to see, I think more people should take advantage of it. It’s fun to see the city come alive through music.