Delightful Shops Along Toronto Streets

December 28, 2006 at 5:03 pm Leave a comment

Toronto definitely fills unique shopping needs. Queen’s Way West (West of Spadina) had a wealth of fabric, button and bead shops. People in that area must really sew! Seems like good fabric stores in the U.S. are gone and we’re left only with marginal fabric chains. I also noticed a number of milliners in Toronto. Hats are very much in fashion and they have not abandoned the practice of shopping at millinery shops.

La Cache and Roots. It was a delightful surprise to run across a Roots store at Spadina and Queen’s Way West. A beautiful array of christening outfits at LaCacheVery nice merchandise. Saw some trendy flat purses (called Roots Flats) that I loved — about $108 for a mid-size version. You’ll find a number of Roots stores around the city. LaCache was another terrific find and practically next door to Roots. All the merchandise is based on the designs of April Cornell — a contemporary of Laura Ashley. Her designs are for women, children, the home — focusing on natural fibers, pretty designs, and comfort in clothing. Plus everything seemed Little girl’s coat, dress and hat set at LaCache.affordable. She had a spectacular collection of baby christening gowns — most around $99. Little girl’s sweater and dress set. LaCache.Lovely little girls’ coat/hat/dress outfits — most with a matching dollie (an April Cornell original). Her table linens were lovely and I purchased a nice luncheon tablecloth and napkins in a lively rooster print on black fabric. Roots and LaCache were our two “finds” of the trip.

Vintage. Shoes. We found plenty of vintage design shops around Toronto — clothing, purses, jewelry. One we had time to stop in was Shoppe d’Or at 18 Cumberland. Very fun. I had The Shoe company on Yonge Street on my list of “to do’s” but would not recommend you bother with it. Not quite the caliber of store I thought it would be. But if you’re interested in shoes, you might enjoy the Bata Shoe Museum on Bloor near Spadina. Footwear fashion throughout history. We didn’t have time to stop, but it was a fairly large building and looked interesting. Many antique shops are located around Bloor and Avenue Road.

More Shopping. The large department stores are around Blooor and Yonge — an area you might want to consider for your hotel as it is close to many things. Holt Renfrew is there as well as Hudson’s Bay Company and you’ll find most of the top designer shops there as well. Hold Renfrew is absoutely elegant to browse, if only browse. Spacious, elegant, a real treat to wander through.

Entertainment. Toronto has much more to offer beyond shopping. Art galleries, museums, historic sites, top entertainment. We only had time for one venue and we chose The Reservoir Lounge. It’s a swing/jazz and blues bar with light meals as an option. Very laid back, low key, down a few steps from the street. It’s said that a number of celebrities stop by when they’re in town, including Nick Nolte, Peter O’Toole, Rod Stewart and Tom Jones. The Reservoir is small and intimate and a terrific way to spend an evening in Toronto.

Getting to Toronto. Of course, I recommend Midwest Airlines (Midwest Connect). Two daily flights between Toronto and Milwaukee. A comfortable regional jet gets you there and back quickly — barely an hour each way as I recall. (You can connect to the Toronto flight on Midwest from many other cities.

Don’t forget to bring a passport. New regulations for air travel between U.S. and Canada require that you have a passport.

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Entry filed under: Toronto.

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