Decorating & Design

2013 Spring One Of A Kind Show

Wednesday morning began with a press breakfast of mini pancakes and strawberry kale smoothies at Toronto’s One of a Kind Show, which runs until March 31st at the Direct Energy Centre.

More than 450 Canadian artisans are represented at the show, many of them exhibiting for the first time. Also debuting is a new curated Etsy section, where sellers from the popular online marketplace are showcasing their designs in person.

While the spring edition is smaller than the holiday event, there are plenty of gorgeous designs to be found. Alongside established favourites like Bookhou, Porcelaines Bousquet, Jenna Rose and Tissage Magely Weaving, a few emerging designers caught my eye. Here are my top picks:

1. Swaine St. Woodworking

In case you haven’t noticed, wood charcuterie and cutting boards are the latest way to add I-cook-and-I’m-cool style to your kitchen. Just prop a few up on your counters and you’ve got the look. Swaine St. Woodworking from Halifax also offers products to keep your boards looking good. I liked the rounded bottles and labels. Plus, everything looks better with a sprig of rosemary.

2. Akai Ceramic Studio

Yusuke Akai makes pretty pastel vases and cake stands that are perfect for Easter, but I was more excited about her oven-safe ceramic cookware that looks like cast iron. These would make the trip from oven to table with aplomb.

3. Art & Manufacture

It’s impossible to walk by Edith Bourgault’s booth without stopping to look. Her blue and white ceramics — so classic and summery — look extra enticing in the all-black space. If you have a cottage or just want the look of one, this should be your first stop at the show.

4. Objets Mecaniques

This Montreal studio describes itself as a “slow design” laboratory, making items by hand from local and reclaimed wood and other materials. Its bag of little wood houses offers a domestic alternative to Muji’s popular mini wood cityscapes. Green thumbs will also like their apple box-style colour-blocked planters.

5. Nick Chase

I saved the best for last. The glass leaf vases by Nick Chase strike just the right balance between modern and organic, and have a distinctly Canadian feel. They’re priced from $200 to $1,000 and would make a perfect gift for any occasion: wedding, housewarming, cottage host thank-you. Nick also makes glass terrariums, which are landscaped by a friend of his in Toronto. I’ll take one of each, please!

Browse my picks from last year’s spring show.

Photo credits:
1-11. Kimberley Brown