Christmas music in shopping malls, dipping temperatures, twinkling lights lining your street... there are several cues that the holidays are approaching, but for me, it's the fall One of a Kind Show that sets off the holiday season. It's a huge event for artisans, crafty types and eager Christmas shoppers every November. This year, there are 800 talented artisans selling their goods, so it's definitely worth a visit down to Toronto's Direct Energy Centre. It opened last Thursday, and continues on until Sunday, December 4th.
I spent the weekend browsing the aisles, and here are some booths and artists that caught my eye:
This wood wine rack is so simple, it's brilliant. The angle of the bend keeps bottles in place without grooves in the wood. Wine Planks, booth V-54.
These bright blue salt and pepper mills would add a fun hit of colour to a neutral kitchen. Sylvain Tremblay, booth X-54.
These cream-coloured vases are hand carved from chip-resistant porcelain clay, and can even survive the dishwasher. Fill a couple with paperwhites for your holiday table setting. Dotti Potts Pottery Studio, booth R-34.
How fun are these fan deck-inspired table linens?! Very H&H. Mix and match different colours, or choose four in similar shades to add some colour to a breakfast nook. Avril Loreti Modern Home, booth W-7.
Woodworker Michael Mathieu carved this gorgeous tray out of yellow birch. It's larger than it looks here — perfect for a New Year's Eve party. Northwood Creations, booth Q-40.
The battle of the coasts lives on. These toss cushions would make a great gift for that cross-country relative. They're screen-printed on super soft linen. Nicole Tarasick, booth P-22.
I absolutely love this poppy painting by Narelle Gibbs. She had others that were just as captivating, so even if this one sells quickly, her booth is worth checking out. Narelle Gibbs Art, booth Y-36.
Remember, the show is only on until December 4th, so if you're in the Toronto area, be sure to squeeze it in — it's an easy way to tackle Christmas shopping in one day. Plus, the H&H booth in row R is selling back issues of the magazine for $2 each, or three for $5! Great deal!
1-7. Gwen McAuley