Introducing: CB2, a middle finger to all surrounding furniture shops on Queen West (also, it used to be the Big Bop)
CB2, 651 Queen St. W. (Images: Fraser Abe)
Nothing seems to get Torontonians going like an American chain finally opening its first Canadian store here (take that, Vancouver and Montreal). So naturally, the feverish frenzy surrounding the opening of CB2—Crate and Barrel’s younger, hipper sister—wasn’t unexpected. We’ve been anxiously awaiting the new arrival for
so we took it as no surprise that on the Sunday we visited, hundreds of shoppers enjoying the unseasonable weather were crowding the space, taking seats on virtually every couch in the place (Morba who? Design Republic what? Urban Barn where?). The space is a far cry from previous tenant the Big Bop, and the landlords have completely renovated the exterior—there’s no more hideous does-it-contain-lead purple paint, and the brick has been beautifully restored and cast aside a heck of a lot of glass. Mid-century modern furniture rules here, for prices slightly more affordable than fellow mid-century modern purveyors Design Within Reach. Get the lowdown on CB2’s penchant for shockingly bright colours, our favourite items and some scratchy sheets in a gallery after the jump. well over a year,
We loved all the grey pieces, like
($169), ideal for dining rooms or workspaces without Aeron chairs; the Joe chair ($1,199); the supremely cozy Uno left- and right-arm sofas ($1,199), which expands into a sleeper bed for two; and the Flex sofa ($1,399), with a high back and arms. For those looking for more Emerald City technicolour, there’s the Avec sofa ($499), the lobster lacquer shop chest ($349), the a forest-green Curtis rocker ($799) and even a headache-inducing iteration of Orange Crush–coloured Parlour chair ($899)—but the latter seems like a purchase you might regret in a few years (in fact, you’ll probably regret it after five months). Those looking for last-minute gifts will also find plenty here in the housewares section— the Parlour chair with bold swirls of colour a hefty little device sure to make quick work of cutting even the hardest Parmesans ($7.95). And though we loved the patterns on the bedding ( our favourite was the Ernie cast-iron cheese cutter, ), the organic cotton and 250-thread counts did little to make the sheets feel less than scratchy. People looking for a step up from IKEA (and a much shorter commute) will flock here, and while CB2 can’t promise meatballs, it’s only steps from especially the crossword-puzzle-like grid block Mini Big Macs are so much more elegant anyway. 416 Snack Bar.
CB2, 651 Queen St. W., 416-366-2828, cb2.com
116031 (Image: Fraser Abe) CB2, 651 Queen St. W. https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_Intro1-96x96.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_Intro1.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_Intro1.jpg 656 400  https://torontolife.com/style/cb2-toronto/slide/feb12cb2_intro-2/ feb12cb2_intro-2 0 0
116032 Reprouve coffee table: evidently for domestic beer drinking. $349 (Image: Fraser Abe) CB2, 651 Queen St. W. https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_311-96x96.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_311.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_311.jpg 624 460  https://torontolife.com/style/cb2-toronto/slide/feb12cb2_31-2/ feb12cb2_31-2 0 0
116033 Ernie cast-iron cheese cutter. Attack your cheese. $7.95 (Image: Fraser Abe) CB2, 651 Queen St. W. https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_301-96x96.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_301.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_301.jpg 624 460  https://torontolife.com/style/cb2-toronto/slide/feb12cb2_30-2/ feb12cb2_30-2 0 0
116034 A walnut box frame, for some other favourite moments. $39.95 (Image: Fraser Abe) CB2, 651 Queen St. W. https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_291-96x96.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_291.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_291.jpg 624 460  https://torontolife.com/style/cb2-toronto/slide/feb12cb2_29-2/ feb12cb2_29-2 0 0
116035 Some stainless steel frames for your favourite moments (Image: Fraser Abe) CB2, 651 Queen St. W. https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_281-96x96.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_281.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_281.jpg 624 460  https://torontolife.com/style/cb2-toronto/slide/feb12cb2_28-2/ feb12cb2_28-2 0 0
116037 Three-piece anemone vases, $39.95 (Image: Fraser Abe) CB2, 651 Queen St. W. https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_261-96x96.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_261.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_261.jpg 624 460  https://torontolife.com/style/cb2-toronto/slide/feb12cb2_26-2/ feb12cb2_26-2 0 0
116039 Random embroidered bed linen, $49.95–$179 (Image: Fraser Abe) CB2, 651 Queen St. W. https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_241-96x96.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_241.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_241.jpg 624 460  https://torontolife.com/style/cb2-toronto/slide/feb12cb2_24-2/ feb12cb2_24-2 0 0
116041 Edison bulbs and staplers (Image: Fraser Abe) CB2, 651 Queen St. W. https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_221-96x96.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_221.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_221.jpg 624 460  https://torontolife.com/style/cb2-toronto/slide/feb12cb2_22-2/ feb12cb2_22-2 0 0
116043 A lobster lacquer shop chest, for people who take the tangerine tango trend very seriously. $499 (Image: Fraser Abe) CB2, 651 Queen St. W. https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_201-96x96.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_201.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_201.jpg 624 460  https://torontolife.com/style/cb2-toronto/slide/feb12cb2_20-2/ feb12cb2_20-2 0 0
116046 Dylan dining table, $1,099 (Image: Fraser Abe) CB2, 651 Queen St. W. https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_171-96x96.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_171.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_171.jpg 624 460  https://torontolife.com/style/cb2-toronto/slide/feb12cb2_17-2/ feb12cb2_17-2 0 0
116047 Avec tweed sofa, $1,399 (Image: Fraser Abe) CB2, 651 Queen St. W. https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_161-96x96.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_161.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_161.jpg 624 460  https://torontolife.com/style/cb2-toronto/slide/feb12cb2_16-2/ feb12cb2_16-2 0 0
116048 Avec sofa, $1,399 (Image: Fraser Abe) CB2, 651 Queen St. W. https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_151-96x96.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_151.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_151.jpg 624 460  https://torontolife.com/style/cb2-toronto/slide/feb12cb2_15-2/ feb12cb2_15-2 0 0
116049 Orange Flex sleeper sofa, $1,199 (Image: Fraser Abe) CB2, 651 Queen St. W. https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_141-96x96.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_141.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_141.jpg 624 460  https://torontolife.com/style/cb2-toronto/slide/feb12cb2_14-2/ feb12cb2_14-2 0 0
116050 Uno left- and right- arm sofas. $1,199 (Image: Fraser Abe) CB2, 651 Queen St. W. https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_131-96x96.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_131.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_131.jpg 624 460  https://torontolife.com/style/cb2-toronto/slide/feb12cb2_13-2/ feb12cb2_13-2 0 0
116051 Movie Pool sofa, $1,299 (Image: Fraser Abe) CB2, 651 Queen St. W. https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_121-96x96.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_121.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_121.jpg 624 460  https://torontolife.com/style/cb2-toronto/slide/feb12cb2_12-2/ feb12cb2_12-2 0 0
116054 The Joe chair. She’s a sturdy yet simple beauty (Image: Fraser Abe) CB2, 651 Queen St. W. https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_91-96x96.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_91.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_91.jpg 460 624  https://torontolife.com/style/cb2-toronto/slide/feb12cb2_9-2/ feb12cb2_9-2 0 0
116055 Parlour chair with bold swirls of colour. $899 (Image: Fraser Abe) CB2, 651 Queen St. W. https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_81-96x96.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_81.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_81.jpg 624 460  https://torontolife.com/style/cb2-toronto/slide/feb12cb2_8-2/ feb12cb2_8-2 0 0
116056 An Orange Crush–coloured Parlour chair. This could be where you drink your sodas. $799 (Image: Fraser Abe) CB2, 651 Queen St. W. https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_71-96x96.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_71.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_71.jpg 624 460  https://torontolife.com/style/cb2-toronto/slide/feb12cb2_7-2/ feb12cb2_7-2 0 0
116057 (Image: Fraser Abe) CB2, 651 Queen St. W. https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_61-96x96.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_61.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_61.jpg 624 460  https://torontolife.com/style/cb2-toronto/slide/feb12cb2_6-2/ feb12cb2_6-2 0 0
116058 An amazing forest-green Curtis rocker for when all of your friends have an Eames rocker and you want to stand out. $349 (Image: Fraser Abe) CB2, 651 Queen St. W. https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_51-96x96.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_51.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_51.jpg 624 460  https://torontolife.com/style/cb2-toronto/slide/feb12cb2_5-2/ feb12cb2_5-2 0 0
116059 Loblaws Maple Leaf Gardens has centre ice; CB2 has the Big Bop sign (Image: Fraser Abe) CB2, 651 Queen St. W. https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_41-96x96.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_41.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_41.jpg 624 460  https://torontolife.com/style/cb2-toronto/slide/feb12cb2_4-2/ feb12cb2_4-2 0 0
116060 Here’s where you exchange money for colourful home decor (Image: Fraser Abe) CB2, 651 Queen St. W. https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_32-96x96.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_32.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_32.jpg 624 460  https://torontolife.com/style/cb2-toronto/slide/feb12cb2_3-2/ feb12cb2_3-2 0 0
116061 If you don’t like colours, you’re going to hate this store (Image: Fraser Abe) CB2, 651 Queen St. W. https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_210-96x96.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_210.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_210.jpg 624 460  https://torontolife.com/style/cb2-toronto/slide/feb12cb2_2-2/ feb12cb2_2-2 0 0
116062 Welcome to CB2, Crate and Barrel’s cool sister (Image: Fraser Abe) CB2, 651 Queen St. W. https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_110-96x96.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_110.jpg https://torontolife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/feb12CB2_110.jpg 624 460  https://torontolife.com/style/cb2-toronto/slide/feb12cb2_1-2/ feb12cb2_1-2 0 0
12 thoughts on “Introducing: CB2, a middle finger to all surrounding furniture shops on Queen West (also, it used to be the Big Bop)”
why does the headline say something about giving the middle finger to the local area’s mostly meh or worse furniture shops? attention getting for the sake of getting attention?
Well this article is about two weeks too late …
What a stupid article – why put down other stores in the neighbourhood? The headline has exactly what to do with the comments in the story? Step it up, TL – when I want this kind of writing I’ll buy the Sun
As one of the owners of DesignRepublic, I can hardly wait for the next weekly call I receive from your sales team flogging ad space..
idiots and their friends run this blog. explains late post. stupid title. ignorant jokes.
Stupid promo piece. I might be interested in checking this place out but, because I don’t live on Queen Street West, or even (horrors!) downtown, I’m not supposed to be reading it. Who would imagine anyone could live in a place where Ikea is closer than QB2? Stupid. Is this what Toronto Life is about?
Exactly the headlines are so infantile and crude. This site is an embarrassment to toronto.
It is dumb, misleading, poorly edited articles (or is it an ad, hard to tell these days with TL) that I will not be renewing my subscription. Thank you Fraser Abe for confirming this for me.
Fraser, you’re a good writer. I enjoyed this. I like your humor. Love the lead paint joke. To the people who commented above, I’m not being sarcastic. I really think this.
Something you should tell your editor is that the tweet function doesn’t include the link to the article.
What a stupid headline. Toronto Life’s editors need better control over a few of their writers. I’m all in for a controversial headline to draw attention, but it has to at least somewhat relate to the content of the story. Come on guys. Also, I’d hardly put the Urban Barn chain in the same category/price point/esthetic as Design Republic and Morba.
As a Vancouver resident now watching the style trendies dropping to their knees in adoration of yet one more America-washed concept, stocked with cheap bling from the land of sweat shops and unsustainability, yawn.
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