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The Find: a glam take on a practical fall tote

OPELLEOpelle is a brand of beautifully handcrafted leather purses and totes by Toronto native Amy Malcolm. After five years of peddling her work online, the designer has opened a sleek white showroom at College and Lansdowne, filled with a great selection of chic carryalls, delicate chained clutches and practical weekend bags. Of all the options for fall, we’re particularly enchanted by this silvery shopper, which is handmade in Toronto from an Italian pebbled cowhide. Featuring an of-the-moment metallic sheen and a cotton-lined interior large enough to haul around a laptop and a few notebooks, the bag will elevate any back-to-school look (it would look especially stylish with a pair of overalls and white kicks). Plus, there are three zippered pockets inside, which should keep the tote from turning into a black hole for keys and lip balms. $324

1234 College St. W., opellecreative.com

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The Find: 13 pairs of sweatpants you’ll be proud to sport in public

The Find: stylish sweatpants you'll be proud to sport in public (and maybe even to work)

When summer draws to a close, it can be tough to transition from comfortable cottage wear to high-powered city attire. Luckily, fall’s sweatpants are much more stylish than the baggy Roots joggers in your closet. They’re also versatile, so choosing comfort doesn’t have to mean staying cooped up at home; instead, wear a tapered grey pant to lunch with tough booties, or pair one of the fancier styles (we’re looking at you, Balmain lounge pants) with pumps and a button-down for a work-appropriate look. Here, 13 of our favourite fashionable sweatpants, including affordable chambray cargos and perfectly patterned Philip Lim bottoms.

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The Find: 12 ways to wear bold, colourful African-inspired prints

Toronto’s African Fashion Week returns this weekend with runway shows from over 13 African designers. Though styles differ from country to country, there is a common thread in African fashion: bold, colourful patterns, often splashed across dresses, shoulder bags and headbands. For those hoping to bag the look, we found 12 funky pieces incorporating fabrics and patterns from Ghana, Morocco and Nigeria. There’s a clutch crafted from hand-woven Kente cloth, a designer dress made from Burkina Faso–sourced fabric and an outfit designed by the Brooklyn-based Etsy designer who recently dressed Beyonce.

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The Find: local label Sully Wong designed a stylish new sneaker with charitable ambitions

Sully Wong Sneaker

Sully Wong, the Toronto-based footwear brand comprised of partners George Sully and Henry Wong, makes sleek sneakers for skater kids, urban dwellers and anyone who’s into the athletic trend. Last year, a collaboration with the designer and interior architect Karim Rashid resulted in some funky patterned kicks. Now, the brand has paired with the organization Onexone to create a limited-edition “Hope” sneaker: a simple unisex shoe designed in Onexone’s signature red-and-white, with fifty per cent of proceeds going toward funding a paediatric wing for Haiti’s Hospital Mirebalis. Three hundred and fifty pairs were produced—if they sell out, that means over $25,000 for the Haitian hospital. Plus, an understated white sneaker paired with blue denim is a staple look for fall. $150

Available at shop.sullywong.com

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The Find: an elegant arm chain made locally from upcycled materials

Arm chainI Love Goldie is a Toronto startup that hand-makes gorgeously unique chain jewellery. Instead of standard rings, necklaces or bracelets, the elaborate pieces include body chains that wrap around the waist and the neck, stacked bracelets that loop up through the fingers, and dramatically drapey belts. Everything is made at I Love Goldie’s Bloor Street studio, and most pieces are made from recycled stainless steal, meaning they’re free from irritating materials like lead and nickel. This bold arm chain would add some serious edge to a casual t-shirt and jeans uniform. $95

Available at ilovegoldie.com

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The Find: pretty statement jewellery designed by Toronto-born model Coco Rocha

Coco Rocha EarringsBeloved top model Coco Rocha, who happens to hail from Toronto, has designed a cosmic-themed jewellery line in collaboration with online boutique BaubleBar. Full of eye-catching pieces like oversized chainmail bibs, sharp-quilled necklaces and winged ear cuffs, the entire collection has a bold, high-fashion feel. But—in keeping with Rocha’s down-to-earth reputation—the pieces are delightfully affordable (prices range from $24 to $120). Our favourite bit of decoration? These jewelled galactic drop earrings, which would be perfect for dressing up an outfit on a budget. $40

Available at eluxe.com

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The Find: an abstract streetcar print for the Toronto transit lover

Streetcar_Poster_Large_1024x1024

This week, the TTC launched a new online shop for transit-themed merchandise. The selection is pretty slim at the moment (just six posters and two maps), but apparently “big ideas” are in the works. In the meantime, we love this print from Toronto artist Jerry Waese, who’s known for his abstract graphic style and has a penchant for making the TTC look a whole lot better than it does in real life. The image, which was actually commissioned for the cover of the new TTC Ride Guide, perfectly captures that melancholy feeling of staring out a streetcar window on a rainy day—a potentially traumatizing commute reminder for regular streetcar riders, but also a nostalgic tribute to the iconic cable cars, which won’t be around for long. $15

TTC Online Shop, shop.ttc.ca

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The Find: colourful Martone bikes are now for sale at The Room

(Image: Martone/Facebook)

(Image: Martone/Facebook)

From now until August 10, Toronto cyclists can pick up a chic ride from Martone Cycling Co. at the brand’s new pop-up in The Room at Hudson’s Bay. Previously, local shoppers had to venture online if they wanted to snag one of the New York label’s distinctive bikes, which come in a range of bold, monochromatic hues, including scarlet, silver and gold. Each bike features a subtle handlebar basket, signature red chain and gears that shift automatically based on speed, making them the ideal vehicle for casual urban exploration. Or, forget the cycling—the immaculate, all-white model could double as a piece of modern art. $1,460—$1,560

Until Aug. 10. 176 Yonge St., thebay.com

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The Find: nine stylishly subtle ways to flaunt your patriotic pride

With the wealth of international shopping options in Toronto, it can be easy to forget about the innovative designers north of the border who are producing stylish, locally made products. In honour of Canada Day, we’ve selected some perfectly summery pieces from nine of our favourite homegrown designers. From chic white blazers to rugged lumberjack jackets, here are nine ways to (subtly) flaunt some patriotic pride.

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The Find: eight stylish ways to cheer on your World Cup team


The World Cup is in full swing, and while some football fans prefer to sport a painted face and traditional soccer jersey, others would rather show support in subtler ways. Thankfully, local retailers like the Drake General Store and Over the Rainbow have seized the opportunity to hawk some cool apparel and accessories, including loud undergarments and team bandanas. For die-hard fans and bandwagon-jumpers alike, here are eight pieces of stylish World Cup gear that you may actually want to wear once the festivities have wrapped up.

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The Find: a new board game based on Google’s often hilarious search predictions

query 1People have a tendency to ask the internet some pretty weird questions, which is why Google’s autocomplete technology sometimes comes up with absurd options. (Here’s one of our favourites.) A pair 0f Toronto sisters have capitalized on the oddly revealing function by creating Query, a board game based on 600 of the most commonly Googled questions in major cities across North America. The game, which recently had its launch party at Snakes and Lattees, is kind of like a digital-age Balderdash, except instead of guessing definitions to words, players are tasked with identifying the real endings to various search queries, and tricking other players with their own made-up choices. Based on the positive early reviews, it could make an entertaining alternative to Cards Against Humanity—which isn’t quite as much fun once you’ve memorized the deck. $30

Available at Snakes and Lattes, 600 Bloor St. W., snakesandlattes.com

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The Find: 10 flat sandals that are perfectly on-trend

The strappy stiletto and towering espadrille have taken backseat this summer to a new footwear star: 90s-style “Ugly Sandals,” some of which look an awful lot like clunky Birkenstocks and men’s shower shoes. For those who cringe at the thought of buying a pair of Tevas, there are plenty of prettier options that will still leave your toes blister-free. We’ve chosen dainty pointed-toe flats with ankle straps, chunky platforms in futuristic metallic shades and sleek minimalist slip-ons. Wear these sandals for any summery situation: in the evening with a slip dress, or during the day with a t-shirt and shorts. Here, our 10 favourite pairs.

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The Find: an unusually stylish pair of swim trunks

Bather Trunk Co1When summer arrives, men have to face a grim choice: bare an excessive amount of man-thigh in miniature trunks, or shroud the area completely in baggy, 90s-style board shorts. We’re pleased to discover that Toronto-based upstart Bather Trunk Co. has come up with a happy alternative: attractive, mid-length trunks that are right on-trend, but don’t expose too much skin. The playful shorts are double-lined and made from quick-dry nylon, but they don’t have that annoying mesh interior, meaning more comfort when moving from beach to restaurant. Plus, they come in lots of summery colours and patterns. We’re partial to this cheerful floral print, which will look perfectly appropriate with or without a shirt. $85.

Available at bathertrunkcompany.com

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The Find: 11 exceptionally pretty knee-grazing skirts for spring

The Find: Midi Skirts
The midi skirt may be the best thing to come out of this season’s ladylike trend. Our favourite mid-length looks feature paint splashes, mesh overlays and playful animal prints. Styling is all about contrast: pairing a paisley-print skirt with sporty sneakers, for example, or layering a chunky sweater over a lacy hem. Of course, a longer hemline also looks sophisticated with dainty heels and a matching crop top—but, to avoid looking like a Stepford Wife, we’d recommend steering clear of any type of cardigan (and probably pearl earrings, too).

See all 11 skirts »

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The Find: a cool, Toronto-made fire pit for anyone with $3,000 to spare

Bol-Corten-Fire-Pit-1170x723Here’s a way to bask in the glow of an outdoor flame without wasting time ferreting about for kindling. Paloform, a Toronto-based company founded by designer Khai Foo, makes unusually stylish fire pits designed for smallish outdoor spaces. The pits come in various styles, some of which are distinctly urban—think zen stone blocks filled with white pebbles and a delicate flare. We prefer this bowl-style pit, which sort of resembles a modern-day campfire. The sizeable bowl (42 inches in diameter) is handcrafted from Corten steel, and the open flame gets hot enough to make cool nights feel sultry. $2,900

Paloform, 74 Stafford St., 888-823-8883, paloform.com 

Update: This post originally stated that outdoor fires are prohibited Toronto. In fact, approved “Campfire Effect Units” that operate with propane or natural gas are approved for use in the city. We regret the error.

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