Hot Buys June 2014
Our favourite new products from across the West—the best beach bags, cool throwback seating, modern office furniture and more.
1. BOATING BEAUTY
It’s a little early still to be hitting the beach, but we’re packing a bag anyway. After all, the roomy canvas Baggu Boat Tote ($68) was made to be shown off at the seaside, with its nautical stripes and its pockets for your favourite trashy beach read and uber-SPF sunscreen. Paboom, Victoria, paboom.com; Vincent Park, Vancouver, vincentpark.ca; Urban Outfitters, Calgary, urbanoutfitters.com; Earth’s General Store, Edmonton, egs.ca; Chapters, Regina and Saskatoon, chapters.indigo.ca; Tiny Feast, Winnipeg, tinyfeast.com
2. SWEET SUDS
We’re a sucker for pretty packaging, but these Jody’s Naturals soaps ($7) are just as beautiful on the inside. Made from pure essential oils and cured over four weeks (the super-firm bars last for months), the only downside is choosing a scent—grapefruit bergamot or lavender lemongrass? Whisk Public Market, Victoria, victoriapublicmarket.com
3. FLOWER POWER
Created as a protest by Marimekko designer Maija Isola after the company announced that it would never print floral patterns (after all, the founder reasoned, how could one compete with the beauty of flowers in nature?), the Unikko poppy design has since become the brand’s signature. Celebrate the design’s birthday by picking up a ream of Unikko 50th Anniversary fabric ($62 per metre)—then use it to cover just about everything (cushions, duvets, unattractive pets, et cetera). EQ3, Vancouver, Calgary and Winnipeg, eq3.com; Urban 1, Regina, urban-1.ca; Palliser Rooms EQ3, Saskatoon, pallisereq3.com
4. WHAT’S YOUR NUMBER?
Rag and Bone has your number with a limited-edition line of canvas totes ($55) printed with jersey numbers from old American surf teams. (Though the bags are better suited for carrying a farmers’ market haul than a surfboard.) Proceeds benefit the Right to Play charity. Holt Renfrew, across the West, holtrenfrew.com
5. SPIN ME ROUND
Though you’re certainly not buying your records at Woodward’s anymore (wait—are you buying records at all?), this Woodward’s throw cushion ($95) is printed with the iconic image of bags from the department store’s beloved music department. It’s a little piece of history courtesy of the always-creative archive department at the Museum of Vancouver. Stylegarage, Vancouver, stylegarage.com
6. DESK JOCKEY
A sliding top conceals or reveals a slim drawer with a flick of the wrist, making the Blu Dot Swish console desk ($839) a multifunctional marvel—use the white-washed ash veneer piece as a work station or as a particularly stylish junk drawer. Designhouse, Vancouver, designhouse.ca; Domicile Interiors, Calgary, domicileinteriors.com; Dwell Modern, Edmonton, dwellmodern.ca; Area Home and Lifestyle, Saskatoon, arealifestyle.ca; Hutk, Winnipeg, hutk.ca.
7. GREEN SCENE
Vegan fashionistas Matt and Nat transformed recycled bottles and bike tires into the slim and simple Dwell tote ($128)—and we suspect wizardry was involved. The result features an alluring, asymmetrical adjustable handle, but the real draw is the colour palette: forest green, earthy taupe and soft peach put a sophisticated spin on the sustainable bag. Simply Gifted, Victoria, simplygifted.ca; Front and Company, Vancouver, frontandcompany.ca; Twisted Goods, Calgary, twistedgoods.ca; Miss Boss, Edmonton, missboss.ca; Coda Clothing, Regina, codaclothing.ca; Twisted Goods, Saskatoon, twistedgoods.ca; Out of the Blue, Winnipeg, outoftheblue.ca
8. CIRCLE BACK
Though we find it hard to resist a classic wayfarer frame, round eyewear is making a strong case for reconsideration. These Yetti glasses ($230) from Sunday Somewhere channel hippie cool, not Harry Potter, with coloured tortoiseshell rims and a whole lot of attitude. Citizen, Victoria, citizenclothing.ca; Bruce Eyewear, Vancouver, bruceeyewear.com
9. BETTER TOGETHER
BoConcept’s new Fusion collection is Japan by way of Denmark: beloved design group Nendo, led by Oki Sato, pulls inspiration from origami—check out the folded paper pattern of the low-lying, backless sofa ($2,795)—but the slim wooden legs and simple profiles are pure Scandinavian cool. BoConcept, Vancouver and Calgary, boconcept.com
10. MIX MASTER
Alberta-based potter Brenda Danbrook’s stoneware platters and plates (from $80) are covered with prints of vintage photos—snapshots from a time of historic barns, power lines and grain elevators—to turn simple servingware into works of art. Brenda Danbrook, online, bdanbrook.com
11. THE REVIVAL
The Spanner chair ($995) is a blast from the past, an iconic piece of Canadian mid-century modern furniture design that’s back in production after more than 50 years thanks to Gus Modern. Though the perfect shade of cotton-webbed seating is negotiable (choose black, deep red or olive green), the exposed bolts and finger-joint details are standard. Chester Fields, Victoria, chester-fields.com; Stylegarage, Vancouver, stylegarage.com; Crave Furniture, Calgary, cravefurniture.com; Inspired Home Interiors, Edmonton, inspiredhomes.ca; Crocus and Ivy, Regina, crocusandivy.com; Sew and Home, Saskatoon, sewandhome.com; Kesay, Winnipeg, kesay.ca WL