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2016 in Review: TO’s Best New Design Stores

10 newly opened stores giving us the urge to splurge

As 2016 comes to a close, we revisit the furniture showroom and accessory shop openings that made a splash throughout the past 12 months.

For even more great Toronto shopping destinations, visit our Where to Shop page.

Shown above: Augustus Jones.

a pair of red chairs from Augustus Jones
Photo by Naomi Finlay.

Augustus Jones

Based in a loft-like storefront off Queen East, this boutique showroom opened last December with a choice selection of European brands previously unavailable in the city. The space’s raw industrial elements contrast with the elegant profiles and refined materials of desk chairs by Germany’s Wagner and bentwood seating by Czech brand Ton.

Kitchen system from Ernestomeda

This Designer’s Walk showroom features tailor-made, Italian cucinas from the Scavolini Group’s luxury line. Each one is as thoughtfully composed as an entree by a Michelin-starred chef, with such details as elegant groove strips that make it easy to slide out drawers, plus under-sink storage systems for keeping recycling bins and washing supplies orderly. Also on offer: bath fixtures by Antonio Lupi.

dining table with chairs from Jalice Interiors
Jalice Interiors

Not far from the bustling flower markets at Ave & Dav, JI’s two-storey furniture and lighting showroom offers a different kind of fresh air. The European-manufactured wares are sophisticated, but thanks to colour, curves and quirk, there’s not a stuffy item in sight. We’re big fans of Germany’s Freistil by Rolf Benz, which includes playfully handsome armchairs, sofas and beds.

Bunk bed and other kids accessories from furniture store Kids at Home
Photo by Daneta Budalich

Kids at Home

This Leslieville children’s shop is divided into different room environments that cater to a range of ages and personalities. Each one is filled with Canadian-made furnishings by the likes of Dutailier and Monte, plus accessories that playful pizzazz. The pirate-themed bedding, for example, complete with a skull and cross bones-patterned duvet, by Deny Designs, is sure to appeal to young adventurers.


Person reading a book near a table

Dustin Kroft has an affinity for original, solid-wood furniture, and it shows in his made-in-Toronto collection that works as well in homes as an office or shop. The trestle tables, available in a variety of species, like oak, ash and walnut finished with hand-applied oils, are handsome with a nod to Japanese, Shaker and Scandinavian styles. New to the shop: seating and side tables.

Some are rugs from Mellah store in Toronto

A trip to Marrakesh is now just a streetcar ride away to a sweet little shop at College and Dufferin. Inside, the love the owners, Miriam Zittell and John Honeyman, have for Moroccan rugs is palpable, with most of the handpicked offerings being one-of-a-kind vintage. Each one is made in one of the traditional Beni Ourain, Azilal or Boucherouite techniques.

Colourful fabrics rolls
Memo Showroom

Break free from greige with the vast selection of colours and prints at this textile showroom. A central workstation is circled by samples from U.S., U.K. and Australian fabric houses. Enlist the on-site team of pros for upholstery and window-covering services, or pick up pillows, wool dhurries, wallpaper and printed grasscloth to go.

Chair from furniture store Porch Modern
Porch Modern

Owner Colen Colthurst’s collection of rare, high-end and historically important Scandinavian and American furniture, as well as 20th century contemporary art and sculpture – plus his encyclopedic knowledge – make PM a favourite with savvy buyers in NYC and LA.

A chair next to a coffee table and plants from Furniture showroom Souvenir
Photo by Naomi Finlay


This west-end boutique hosts a rotating selection of artisanal wares curated to reflect a different theme – some seasonal, some abstract, some specially-commissioned creations by local designers. The shop’s recent youth-themed collection, for example, introduced a limited-edition cup-and-ball game by Oscar Kwong and a metallic letter tray by Mercury Bureau.

Accessories from Task, new design store

Inside this white space in the Beaches, with its original tin ceiling, are tabletops and shelves lined with rare housewares handpicked by Brooklyn expat Anne Seally. The tempting stock includes delicate Japanese spoons, chased brass-plated serving trays, hand-carved rosewood muddlers and soapstone sake sets.

Categories: Editors' Picks

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