Toronto-based furniture store Elte, purveyor of $5,000 wing chairs, is bringing in a new brand to compete with its existing high-end locations, which currently include the original Elte home furnishings store near Dufferin and Eglinton, and nearby bath-and-kitchen spin-off, Ginger’s (both extremely popular among well-to-do Toronto moms). Come October, the family-owned company will open Elte Mkt, a market-style store aimed at a “younger, more contemporary” crowd—a.k.a those who aren’t ready to spend over a grand on an end table. Located at the corner of Castlefield Road and Caledonia (just west of the other Elte locations), the 40,000-square-foot space was designed by local interior decorators Burdifilek to resemble a refined factory, with stylish rugs, furniture, bedding and accessories (sourced from countries like India, Turkey and Belgium) laid out in an enormous open-concept space. And, unlike Elte, most products will be available on the spot. Shoppers can expect prices to be a notch or two below Elte or Ginger’s, but it still won’t be cheap—according to the owners, they’re looking to appeal to “first or second time home buyers” (which, in Toronto, is a pretty exclusive group of young people).
Luxury furniture destination Elte is opening a massive, market-style store aimed at younger shoppers
While an in-store barista may not draw hordes of customers into a store, it can certainly encourage shoppers to linger—and provide a jolt of energy to anyone tired from a long changing room session. No wonder Toronto’s cadre of retail-coffee shop hybrids continues to grow. Below, five of our favourite spots to sip and shop.
OK, what’s wrong with this picture: white ceilings, white walls, white mouldings, white lacquered floors and two kids under five. Robyn Scott, a 37-year-old former institutional equities trader, freely admits to being a textbook type-A personality, which may explain why she chose such a crazy-making colour scheme. When she and her husband, Steven, the owner and CEO of Access Storage, decided to gut their newly purchased Forest Hill home, her friends tried to dissuade her from the all-white crusade, but Robyn was determined. She wanted a striking backdrop for her eclectic antique furniture.
Robyn approached 10 different contractors before she found an industrial flooring company willing to take on the lacquering job. Most of them balked at the idea of covering the beautiful hardwood. Then she found Michael Pelaic of Paint-Co in Mississauga, who approached the commission as an art project. The process was gruelling: sanding, epoxy primer, more sanding, more primer, then four coats of semi-gloss epoxy coating and two coats of high-gloss polyurethane topcoat—on all three storeys. The job took three weeks to complete. Read the rest of this entry »
Read the rest of this entry »
As any good designophile knows, Toronto was host to the annual Interior Design Show this past weekend. The show’s offerings ranged from humdrum soaker tubs to avant-garde lighting installations. No easily discernable trends overwhelmed the experience this year, but there were certainly some bright lights that stood out from the rest. Below, our eleven picks for the best of IDS 2011.
Elte’s Second Life rugs ($545–$2,565) are a great way to bring a pop of colour to the home: they can pretty up a masculine black and white space, or add interest to a neutral palette. Each piece is recycled from a traditional Turkish rug over 40 years old, which is stripped of its colour and given new life with a modern-day dye job. The rugs are available in a range of sizes, from three-by-five feet to six-by-nine feet, and a rainbow of colours.
Elte, 80 Ronald Ave., 416-785-7885, elte.com.