Toronto’s best places to buy accessories right now
Tanya Heath Paris
7–138 Cumberland St., 416-962-7366
After launching her first boutique in Paris, Canadian expat Tanya Heath brought her eponymous footwear label to a pristine white showroom in Yorkville. The designer spent years developing a line of classic leather pumps, booties and boots with removable, interchangeable heels, allowing women to switch from low heels to stilettos with the click of a button. Shoes range in price from $495 to $925, and heels start at $45—a steal, considering that each pair can masquerade as several different styles.
1070 Yonge St., 416-924-8080
True to its name, the Summerhill storefront from the Montreal brand Want Les Essentiels de la Vie is styled like a Victorian drugstore—albeit one that carries bergamot-scented Swedish lotions. Beyond the cosmetics counter is a collection of exquisitely crafted goods: Iitalla glassware in heaps of hues, Acne lambskin leather jackets and some of the city’s finest handbags. Our favourite is a reversible metallic leather tote—a statement bag that’s hardy enough to withstand a day at Ward’s Island.
Tierre Taylor’s hat-making business blew up when she was photographed by Humans of New York wearing one of her own prim creations—a dainty chestnut cloche. Since then, she’s been bombarded with orders for her handmade headpieces, which are inspired by hats from the ’20s and ’30s. Each pillbox, fedora, Panama straw hat or sculptural fascinator is pinned on wooden blocks, painstakingly stitched and finished with luxurious embellishments like braided leather or clouds of netting.
Gilding the Lily
47 Tank House Ln., 416-360-5459
Annie Jagger—celebrity stylist for Kristen Stewart and Bradley Cooper—knows a lot of independent, burgeoning designers. So when it came time to open her shop in the Distillery District, she sourced a cool array of jewellery, like ear cuffs and knuckle bars crafted with luxury materials. Aspiring Rihannas can pick up a $7,000 diamond-studded cuff from Rona Pfeiffer or, for $2,495, the Panama bracelet from Beaufille: two bangles—one worn at the elbow, the other at the wrist—connected by five delicate silver strands. The piece redefines arm candy.
133 Avenue Rd., 416-962-0133; 100 King St. W., 416-364-0133; Sherway Gardens, 25 The West Mall, 416-695-0133
The Parisian boutique arrived in Toronto in 2014, bringing with it a distinctly European brand of refined ease. Its stores cater to guys who appreciate practical staples—Egyptian cotton shirts for $95, calfskin loafers for $330—but flaunt their flamboyance via cufflinks in the shape of blue-sand hourglasses. Shoppers looking to amp up their footwear can employ the services of in-house “patina artisan” Emmanuel Farré, who turns ordinary oxfords into whimsical works of art.
753 Queen St. W., 647-352-9263; 124 Cumberland St., 647-350-9263
Zane Aburaneh’s boutiques stock an impeccable (and affordable) selection of bags, hats and jewellery for men and women. Our favourites: rugged Jack Spade wallets in vegetable-dyed cowhide, and exquisite leather bags from Rebecca Minkoff, Sophie Hulme and Mackage in a variety of neutrals and rainbow colours.
David Barclay is to shoelaces what the Toronto patisserie queen Nadège Nourian is to cakes: a pop of colour in an otherwise drab world. The Queen West–based online retailer makes beautifully hued laces (from $18 a pair) that will instantly revamp your old brogues, sneakers and boots. For men who like a hit of ostentatious flair, he’s also branched out into dandy felt lapel pins and pocket squares.
The Toronto-based brand is run by Amy Malcolm, who handcrafts leather goods out of her Little Italy studio, in collaboration with Beth Nicholson Crago, a stylist and creative director. Available online, their handbags are made in tiny batches with supple European leathers and look like major investment pieces, but they’re relatively affordable. Most styles are priced below $500. Among the best options for summer: a soft lambskin bucket bag, a mossy suede knapsack and a versatile metallic tote large enough to haul around a laptop.