Introducing: Woodlawn, a boutique for basics on Dundas West
The place: On Dundas Street West, far from the din of the new watering holes popping up everywhere, lies Woodlawn, a small boutique from Jen Kim and Ainaz Maleko. Shoppers might recognize Kim from her other gig as hair stylist extraordinaire at Grateful Head. At Woodlawn, she and Maleko have shifted their focus to simple pieces for ladies and gents, stocking a well-edited selection of basics—oxford shirts, polos, raincoats, silk dresses and simple shoes—for style-conscious patrons.
The stuff: Impossibly cool brands—wallets from Brooklyn-based Maxx and Unicorn (featured in GQ and made from one solid piece of Italian cowhide) lie in cases next to a small but growing selection of men and womenswear. Check out sturdy leather men’s ($135) and women’s ($100) belts made by Joseph Tanner, the owner of nearby bar Camp 4. For days in the sun, beach-ready bags by Wm. J. Mills and Co. ($185) come in a variety of colours.
The shoppers: This strip of Dundas isn’t subject to the same kind of foot traffic as Queen West is, but plenty of pedestrians have popped in, despite the store being open for two weeks. The store is a far cry from the funeral home across the street or the myriad Portuguese bakeries, but word of mouth has garnered traffic: nearby shop owner Sarah Magwood has been heard directing customers Woodlawn’s way.
Our favourite things: The General Assembly oxfords ($115) with mint-green collars are slim fit, but have enough room to hide hipster pot bellies, and the patent leather loafers with leather soles, by Industry of All Nations ($160), look just like cool-girl favourites by Dieppa Restrepo—for a fraction of the price. As an added bonus, if the Han or YMC jeans purchased are too roomy, Kim and Maleko offer a complimentary tapering service.
Woodlawn, 1491 Dundas St. W., 416-551-8000, woodlawnshop.com.