Category Archives: Design

President’s Choice Home – Fall Preview

A kitchen scene at the President's Choice Home preview

You’re probably guilty of it. Walking into your local Superstore or Loblaws supermarket with a shopping list for the night’s dinner and walking out with pajama pants and candle holders beside your red bell peppers. Impulse shopping at the Canadian chain is going to get more exciting (or more complicated, depending on who you ask) this fall. With the introduction of a new electronics brand, J+/-, and the launch of new home products, eggs and milk may be beside the point the next time you hit the grocery store. Continue reading

Q&A: Toronto artist Jay Isaac on the state of art in the city

Jay Isaac

When life threw Jay Isaac a blank canvas and an eye for beautiful objects, the Toronto-based artist turned it into a successful art magazine, an antique business and a thriving art career. The magazine is called Hunter and Cook and is distributed around the world, the antique store is the hip and carefully curated Silver Falls store on Queen Street West and the career has yielded colourful canvases that have hung on gallery walls around the city.

Life didn’t exactly hand the New Brunswick native lemons, but Isaac is drinking pretty good lemonade (with chia seeds, to be precise) these days. Isaac and the team behind Hunter and Cook are celebrating the magazine’s ninth issue and he’s about to open a new space down the street from Silver Falls that will act as  the headquarters for Hunter and Cook as well as a gallery. Recently, OurFaves caught up with the Tom Cruise doppelganger over a glass of the aforementioned chia seed lemonade and talked art, the cynicism that often accompanies it and how Toronto’s art scene is changing for the better. Continue reading

Q&A: Biko’s Corrine Anestopoulos

It’s a sunny day in Corrine Anestopoulos’ studio in Little Italy. There’s Chet Baker playing in the background and a lawn mower humming outside the window. Anestopoulos is the creative force behind Biko, the Toronto-based jewellery company, that has been churning out “modern nostalgic” costume jewellery since 2004. Recently, Anestopoulos invited OurFaves into her work space to talk about about where she finds inspiration for her designs, her new spring and fall collection and the creative rut she occasionally has to shake off. Continue reading

Q&A: Illustrator Jack Dylan preps for the Drake Spring Market


Hailing from Montreal but now happily entrenched in Toronto’s Trinity Bellwoods neighbourhood, Jack Dylan is an illustrator whose work has graced the pages of Toronto Life, The Walrus, Maclean’s and The Globe and Mail. Best known for poster art reminiscent of what you’ll find on the cover of The New Yorker on any given week, Dylan’s wares are on display this weekend at the annual Outdoor Drake Spring Market. Alongside handmade jewellery, one-of-a-kind art pieces and vintage furniture, Dylan’s posters depicting the Trinity Bellwood’s gate and a Mount Royal beach scene are up for grabs.

If you’ve ever wondered what went on inside the head of a talented illustrator with a penchant for podcasts and sandwiches, look no further. We cornered the busy artist recently and asked him about the most scathing criticism he’s ever gotten and his favourite place in the city to put pencil to paper.

Continue reading

Christmas crack, paint-your-own plates, ceramic gnomes and other tales from The Drake General Store

We all have them — heck, you may even be one yourself. You know, just the most difficult person to buy for on your holiday shopping list. They’ve got the first edition of Wuthering Heights. They even have a pair of Air Jordan XIV’s in mint condition, signed. Oh, and they already know how to sail, so don’t bother getting them lessons. Recently, OurFaves quizzed Joyce Lo, the co-owner and co-curator of The Drake Hotel General Store, a shop filled with curiosities that are more tongue-in-cheek than run-of-the-mill. Lo spilled the beans on why shopping for the person who has it all isn’t impossible … it’s just a creative challenge. Continue reading

We’ve had an Extreme Makeover!

If you haven’t already noticed, OurFaves is sporting a new look these days. We’ve shed some excess features and trimmed down our focus in order to improve your user experience, provide more context, and create a more trusted source of the best in your city.

We’ve been listening closely to all your feedback over the last 18 months and have been working towards creating the best OurFaves you’ve ever seen – one that gets you sharing and connecting with the city’s best in a way that’s fast, fresh and fun.

We’re excited about this first phase of our multi-stage redesign – and hope you will be too! You’ll notice these big changes:

· ‘Faves’ are now reviews, allowing you to rate places on a five-point scale and talk more freely about what you love (and don’t love) about a business.

· You now have the ability to find the best places by different categories, neighbourhoods, and social groups. So you can search for top restaurants in The Annex, and grab a Foodie’s opinion on where to go too.

· There’s a strong focus on finding and knowing the best through featuring and promoting local expert opinions, not only user generated content. Craving a juicy organic burger? Eco-Friendly experts like Kerry Helston, for instance, are bringing their top picks to the table.

And there’s more to come. The second phase of the redesign will allow you to group your reviews into lists – so stay tuned over the next few weeks for this new feature.

We hope all this, plus a very stylish new look, gives you something to write home about. Or, we hope, write us about. So take a look around, get acquainted with the new OurFaves, and get in touch. Send your kudos, comments, and criticism to us at admin@ourfaves.com, or use the Feedback button on the site. We can’t wait to hear from you!

Enjoy!

Get Closer to Finding the Best

Remember when we told you about our new search a few weeks ago? Well, it just got kicked up a notch.

So let’s just say you just finished eating some awesome pizza with your friends, and now you’re looking for a place to hang out with beer. Are there any good bars around Bloor and Yonge?

Check out the map to see for yourself!

Now, your search experience will include nearby locations from any particular address or intersection. You can even sort it out according to walking, biking, or driving distance.

Not interested in any particular location and just looking to drink beer anywhere in Toronto? No problem, the search engine will still find the best bars in the city if you leave the “Near” field blank.

Love it? Hate it? As always, we’re looking for feedback!

What’s the first thing you’ll want to find on your fave radar?