• Featured,  Form

    OUI

    Indigo Books & Music Inc. is a Toronto based company that doubles as a world cultural department store, filled with curated collections of books, music, art, and lifestyle products. Its fashion branch spans jewelry and sleepwear to backpacks; while its curated home goods branch includes décor, glassware, furnishings, and more.  Recently, an exclusive new brand, called OUI, has joined Indigo’s home collection, and it is led by Nathan Williams, chief creative officer for Indigo and founder of Kinfolk magazine. Available at Indigo and chapter locations across Canada, OUI is a thoughtfully designed and curated collection of home décor, tabletop, and wellness products inspired by the natural world, contemporary art, and…

  • Featured,  Form,  Print Edition

    Grenadier Pond contemporary

    Set near the wetland shores of Grenadier Pond on the western edge of Toronto’s High Park, this low-profile, contemporary home in the Swansea neighborhood is unassuming upon approach with limited street frontage. Yet, as the onlooker is drawn down the drive, there is a sense of procession and shelter to the three-story, 3,500-square-foot home nestled into the forested hill and ravines inherent to the protected park. Its envelope and clean lines are modest interventions on the site, allowing for interaction and relationship with the unique biodiversity of Grenadier Pond.  There is a thoughtful connection between built and natural landscape—a concept that is central to the founding philosophy of the architectural…

  • Creative Endeavors,  Featured,  Form

    Upcycle and silk

    With millions of tons of textiles being produced around the world each year—and a similar amount ending up in landfills, according to the United States Environmental Protection Agency—fashion labels and industry entrants have become increasingly creative with what would be considered their “waste” fabric, though countless practices would need to be reversed to create a sustainable industry. For one Toronto-based fashion brand, a comprehensive investment in the sustainable fashion movement manifests in garments crafted from one sustainable, often overlooked material: traditional South Asian saris.  When Priya Mohan founded the brand sariKNOTsari, it was in the wake of a rich period working in the Canadian antiques market and sourcing items for…

  • Creative Endeavors,  Featured,  Form

    Oji Masanori x Mjölk

    Solid brass and soft light are the main ingredients in this delicate light fixture created by the Japanese industrial designer Oji Masanori. The Diamond Pendant lamp was conceived for the Toronto-based lifestyle shop and gallery, Mjölk, as part of an exclusive collection, and it was handcrafted by artisans in the city. Fundamentally, the pendant recalls Masanori’s careful attention to form, proportion, and even utility in housewares design. A solid brass pulley and counterweight matching the light’s conic cover plate allows the nine-foot cord to be moved and adjusted vertically, and the fogged casing emits a diffused, calming glow. Masanori, who is CEO of the studio Oji & Design, is largely…

  • Design Spotlight,  Featured

    Natural advantage 

    Since initial records of design in ancient times, there has been evidence of what it is now classified as biomimicry. From the early utilization of silkworms for textile production around 4,000 B.C. and Leonardo da Vinci’s skeletal flying machines in the 1400s to archaic umbrellas inspired by Chinese lotus leaves in the 18th century, designers and inventors continue to turn to the concept—and full-fledged practice—to spark innovative solutions for complex issues that impact the world at large.  One of the most notable modern innovations, which also poses a solution for sustainable energy, was sparked decades ago when Dr. Frank Fish, a marine biologist, stumbled upon a peculiar anatomical characteristic on…

  • Creative Endeavors,  Featured

    Project Atigi

    Nearly one year ago, Canada Goose Inc., a luxury performance wear brand in Toronto, Ontario, launched its social entrepreneurship program known as Project Atigi in partnership with the Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, or ITK. The representational organization is the national voice for the four Inuit regions of Inuit Nunangat, representing Inuvialuit, Nunatsiavut, Nunavut, and Nunavik in northern Canada.   The first of its kind in Canada, Project Atigi featured an exclusive, globally-released parka collection handcrafted by 14 Inuit seamstresses, and was designed to celebrate Inuit craft while returning the profits back to the community.  Leveraging the success and impact of the initial collection, this month Canada Goose released its expanded collection…

  • Creative Endeavors,  Featured

    Healthful interiors

    The International Interior Design Association’s eighth annual IIDA Healthcare Design Awards continue to honor and celebrate the originality and excellence of current designs shaping interior healthcare spaces around the world.  Beside those based in the southern and eastern United States, this year’s winning firms and projects—announced in late September—also bring the Great Lakes region into the spotlight.  “With this annual competition, we witness the latest innovation and transformation within the healthcare design world,” said Cheryl S. Durst, Hon. FIIDA, executive vice president and chief executive officer of the IIDA, in a press release.  “This year, the winning projects focused on both function and overall end user well-being, offering elegant, creative…

  • Creative Endeavors,  Featured

    ADFF: Toronto

    “I always thought there was this intersection of architecture and film. It started for two reasons: one is that film is a great way to talk about architecture. There are ways you can see and feel the space in three dimensions. You can tell the backstory and the future story,” said Kyle Bergman, founder and director of the Architecture & Design Film Festival.  “[Second], it is a way to expand the dialogue. As artists we talk amongst ourselves all the time. It’s dynamic, but film is an opportunity to expand on who comes to the conversation,” Bergman added.  For its 11th season, the Architecture & Design Film Festival, or ADFF,…

  • Featured,  Travel

    Public space, reimagined

    In recent years, there has been a growing initiative in urban landscapes to look beyond the imminent tomorrow and reimagine the next generation of public spaces. It is a movement encouraging cities, architects, designers, and urban planners to reclaim underutilized infrastructure and transform it into hybrid spaces of both city and greenspace: parks that also serve as public squares, gardens, transit corridors, and living, moving performance art. For several public-private partners in Toronto, Ontario, the Frederick G. Gardiner Expressway connecting the downtown city to its surrounding neighborhoods presented the perfect opportunity to posit a new take on the cultural destination and city park. The Gardiner Expressway, which carries thousands of…