One Of A Kind Christmas Show, At Thursday’s One of a Kind Christmas Show press preview, after a bite of chef Bruce Woods’ first-ever brunch menu, I buzzed past the Glissé ice dancers at the entrance and all my usual stops – Reiner’s leather animal ottomans (Booth Q-38, $260 each), Sabine Alpers’ Felt Factory faux fauna (she has added zebra and unicorn to her menagerie, $65-$95; V-33) to see what new variations on chunky Swarovski glitter costume jewellery designer Daniel Pollak has come up with (R-56; Answer: large faceted stones and ombré crystals mixed with beads).
Across the aisle from Pollak’s bustling corner booth is new vendor Skinny Sweats (R-53), designer Adrienne Butikofer’s line of slouchy leggings (some screen-printed with clouds, roses or woodgrain, $59) and stretchy pants. Her pleated black “tuxedo” sweats in particular are tailored with a wide cummerbund and grosgrain pocket accents, and look all dressed up for a night out, yet designed with relaxed strategic pleats to still feel like you’re lounging at home on a Friday night ($98). Everyone wins!
I never get enough of Quebec artisan Hugo Didier’s message (Not Made in China, V-09) and judging by how high his booth shelves are piled with it, in the wake of Bangladesh especially, conscious shoppers have started to share that sentiment. Didier has left his insider slang mugs back in Montreal for their upcoming craft show and bet big on the Not Made in China mugs that now have a following ($25), alongside his poutine bowls and stands, mugs and vessels adorned with a new anchor motif (inspired by the lifelong sailor’s recent purchase of his own sailboat, moored at Lac Champlain). Didier’s limited-edition piece this year is Not My Cup of Tea – and as any cuppa aficionado knows, sipping tea from a good mug just tastes better.
At String Theory (V-28), woven scarves and shawls are geometric and cozy – one design is repeating chevron, another is inspired by Albers ($140-$250). For their label Woodwater (V-35), Amy and Holly Boileau upcycle and re-piece knits into children’s clothes and outdoor apparel, like their cozy “Sweater” pants ($45) and lined hooded dickies ($55). Lovefresh (S-19) is a new line of natural bath and body products, and the hand lotions make good stocking stuffers – the tube packaging is patterned already, no wrapping required.
By popular demand, illustrator Dave Murray has added two new Toronto neighbourhoods to his typographic street-name maps of the city – Bloor West Village and Yonge&Eglinton ($40). New this year is a colourful screen-printed poster of characters called Puck Pals ($50) that recalls 1960s children’s book illustration and animation à la Tomi Ungerer.