OOAK Christmas Show 2017 Highlights

Hello everyone! My favourite artisan/craft show is back at The Enercare Centre and you definitely don’t want to miss this. The One of a Kind Christmas Show is on now until Sunday, December 3rd and it is the perfect place to knock off a bunch of people on your Christmas list and hey – while you’re there, why not treat yourself? Instead of doing a gift guide as per last year, I’ve decided to share with you my Top 3 New Artisans as well as my Top 3 Favourites. Firstly, let’s start with the new (to the show/to me) artisans! I was immediately drawn to the clean and beautiful branding of Vancouver Candle Co, and I must say that their candles smell fantastic. They are all hand-poured soy wax candles with cotton wicks and are made with the highest quality perfume grade oils. While this company is based out of Vancouver, they are definitely showing mad Toronto love with their candles named after different neighbourhoods of the 6. My personal favourite is the Leslieville which smells sweet however is kept bright with the citrus oils. Go check them out at booth A-56!My favourite section of OOAK is definitely the Flavours aisles where I can discover so many delicious Canadian-made eats. I was intrigued by Penny Candy Jam as soon as I walked by so I had to stop to try out some of their flavours. First of all, I LOVE that these are bursting with flavour and contain less sugar than your run-of-the-mill jams. I’m definitely going to pick up the Blueberry with Lavender and Mint as well as the Raspberry with Bay and Lime. I also love that they support mental health initiatives within Toronto. You can find their delicious jams at booth G-45.The last new (to me) exhibitor that caught my eye was Design Different. I was initially drawn to the wall of Zombie Safe Zones where the artist, Ryan McArthur, has determined the safest areas in Canada in case of a zombie apocalypse based on acreage, access to fresh water, and higher elevations. I thought this was extremely clever and in case of emergency, pretty practical. Each wall in his booth has different themes of artwork; the centre wall has inspirational quotes whereas the left wall has pop-culture inspired art. Look at these sweet Star Wars prints! You can find Ryan at booth R-36 (and wish him a happy belated birthday; it was on Thursday as was the HF’s!)

But really – these next 3 are my absolute favourites and although one of them is *technically* still a newbie, she’s not really. First up however is a OOAK veteran – Gotamago which features the beautiful illustrations of Lichia Liu. Whether it’s a greeting card, tote bag, poster, or gift tag, Gotamago is a fantastic brand that is perfect for any occasion (and as mentioned in my gift guide, great for people who don’t like those glitter-bomb Christmas cards.) Yes that IS an illustration of Toronto and YEAH – you can and should tote-ally get one of the totes. Gotamago can be found at booth W-50.

Alright so if you remember, Alicja Confections debuted at the Spring OOAK show and we just clicked. I dropped by Brika in the PATH when she had her pop-up in the summer and since then, we’d been planning a Toronto ramen date while I lovingly posted photos of her postcard chocolate bars on Instagram. She has rebranded since her last time in Toronto and while I fell in love with the original packaging, her new look is definitely impressive. Her whimsical artwork is still one of the main draws, however the packaging is now more streamlined and overall very chic. But really – it’s what’s on the inside that counts, right? SERIOUSLY EVERY FLAVOUR I’VE TRIED IS AMAZING. The Stodka Sol and The Nicholas Bar are my favourites (salted toffee and potato chips in milk chocolate, respectively.) Even the HF who isn’t a huge fan of chocolate in general let alone white chocolate has polished off a bar or two when I make the mistake of leaving it at his place LOL. These 2 new flavours are literally FLYING off the shelf. Get your hands on them ASAP! I love ramen and donuts so when I saw these – UM OBVI. Go say hey at booth G-23 (and tell her Liz sent ya!)

Last, but not least are my dear friends at Double L Decor. My IG feed everytime OOAK happens and sporadically through the year includes their gorgeous concrete planters. Crafted in Hamilton, Luke and Laura make these awesome pieces of home decor perfection and really – you need AT LEAST one. I have 7 so really – you need to catch up. Every planter in their booth is $25 (except the minis on the counter which are $12 each or 2/$20) and includes your choice of a plant buddy. These are seriously beautiful and well-received gifts (those I’ve given them to have LOVED them) and hey – if you don’t end up seeing that person you were planning on giving it to (which is how I inherited 2 dodecahedrons…) then hey – you still win! You NEED to go to booth A-06.

I hope you’ll visit all of my top picks even if just to meet the awesome creators of these wonderful things and hear their stories. That’s one of the main reasons I love going to the One of a Kind Show; meeting people who are passionate about what they do definitely inspires me to do the same (and of course, buy ALL OF THE THINGS.)

For $2 off your OOAK tickets, buy them online here! The One of a Kind Christmas Show is on now until December 3rd at The Enercare Centre in Toronto. For more information including a list of artisans and show hours, please check out http://www.oneofakindshow.com. Huge thank you to the OOAK team for the media pass!

Thanks so much for stopping by, and as per usual – happy shopping!

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