Google+ Google+

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Shiny and New

Pioneer was waltzing down Danforth, just west of Woodbine on the south side, when a beautiful window display leapt out at us. A few steps on, this was followed by a wave from two friendly faces lounging in the window of the brand new community hub Artisans At Work (2071 Danforth Ave). It was local jeweller Tara Shelton and neighbourhood event planner Susan, ensconced in the cozy nook at the front of the shop that we quickly discovered is the best place in the neighbourhood for people watching. It was our first visit to the art space, but it won’t be our last.

This endeavor is a fine addition to the ground swell happening around Danforth East – to get people shopping local. Shelton is the proprietor of the ethereal space, which takes pride of place as the first community art studio and artisan market in this neck of the woods. She says that it's a dream come true for her to provide exhibit space, work space, and retail space for local artisans in the Danforth East area – and a place for affordable, unique gifts.

Pioneer is like a magpie: we're always attracted to things that are shiny and new so of course our gaze settled on the mile-long display case of glittering jewelry. After the sterling silver cameo rings and delicate leaf pendants melted our hearts, Shelton pulled out something that we think must be a new mandatory: the Book of Desires. Similar to a wish list, the little book allows shoppers to write down what they desire so when Daddy Pioneer needs to buy a present for this hard-working career girl, there is no mystery!

The retail space held more delicious things to buy, such as bright handmade pouches from Zipster in Marimekko type prints, hand-crafted all natural skin care products from opera diva Cara Adams and one of a kind pottery from edgy world-famous artist Liz Kinder (Seriously! Only available in Toronto here and at the AGO).

The gallery spaces were just as intoxicating. Delicate miniatures are all the rage in the art world right now, and Leah C. Riley’s pieces are a riveting and well-priced collection of shoreline vistas. Pioneer personally fell in love with Lori Popadiuk’s Birch series of ghostly white acrylics.

Coming up on April 5, Shelton and her team have organized the first of what they are calling the First Friday events: a full afternoon and evening of music, food, fun, drinks and of course art, on the first Friday of every month. Our inside source tells us there may be some opera arias that should not be missed at 7:30. A full schedule of events can be found here.

If you can’t make it to First Friday, fear not. They are open weekends from 11 to 7 and Wednesday through Friday from 1 – 8!

No comments:

Post a Comment