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If you’re not from Toronto, or if you’ve been living under a rock (I kid, I kid), The One of a Kind Show ran from March 29th to April 2nd at the Enercare Centre at Exhibition Place.
What is it? The One of a Kind Show (or OOAK) is a collection of artisans from across the country that come together to showcase their handmade products all within one venue. It allows for us to "support the handmade revolution” which is one of the catch phrases of OOAK and buy from local artisans instead of spending money at large corporations.
I went to the show on Friday afternoon after taking the day off of work (I gave myself a long weekend ye yee) with a good friend of mine. Read below to see where I spent my money!
I went in to the show knowing very well that I wanted to add another piece of jewelry to my collection. I found exactly what I was looking for at one of the first booths that I went to called Lanabetty. The owner Lana was very friendly, telling us her story about how she started making jewelry as a hobby and then it developed into her full time career. If you want justification as to why supporting local is better, Lana explained how when she first started her company, she would get so excited about selling something that she would hug the buyer. So what do you think that me and my friend did once we bought something? We gave her a hug and it was really nice to be able to support someone who put their heart and soul into their company. The ring that I bought is as simple as it gets, just a thin twisted gold band, but that’s exactly what I was looking for. I couldn’t find one that fit my finger, so she resized it for me to fit perfectly. Talk about great service!
Next, we stopped on over at a booth called Demo Soap that was selling bath items like bath bombs and soap. What drew me to buying some bath bombs was how fragrant they were! They had a large collection of different scents so me and my friend each bought (the same) three scents; rose, grapefruit and yuzu (a Japanese fruit similar to a lime). It was $5 each, or 3 for $12 and you can breakup the bath bomb in half because it’s so large, so (pricewise) it was a great steal! I haven’t used any of them yet, but I’m excited to relax in my bath with one of these after a long day or an intense workout…. I’m just imagining how incredible it’s going to smell once I throw it in a hot bath. I’ve never used a bath bomb, so I’m also excited to see what it’s like to use one and add it to my bath routine.
We stopped off at a tea stand called Clearview Tea, where a mother-daughter duo from Creemore ON were selling their organic tea. My friend promptly picked up two packages of the organic ginger tea (she’s Persian and she swears by ginger for everything!) whereas I decided to buy a black tea with rose petals and vanilla flavouring called Ivory Cable Knit Sweater. The name of the tea alone makes me feel so cozy and warm, so I’m sure that when it gets colder in the fall and winter that I’ll be drinking even more of it. The owner said that they’re opening up a store soon in Creemore, which is on the way when you’re driving up to Blue Mountain to do some skiing, so I can see myself stopping off to pick up some more tea when winter comes and I’m going to tear the slopes up!
Next up, another bath item store based out of Burlington ON called The Soap Bar Organics. There were sooo many options for different types of soaps to buy, but I was able to hone in on one particularly. I didn't buy it for myself, rather my dad who is the real OG when it comes to using charcoal as soap and shampoo. He literally made it himself from the charcoal that he used to cook food with as a kid (#thatyugocountrylife). Anyways, the soap is pine tar (sounds appeasing right? Nothing else I’d rather slather my body with than pine tar!) and it smells like a mix of charcoal and Irish Spring (that green shitty bar soap that all older men in their life use and is drying af). Ya… that one. I really enjoy the scent of this soap as I do prefer muskier scents and Irish Spring is a scent that reminds me of my dad. Although I haven’t used it yet, I’m sure that if you have any old school, all natural, mountain men in your life, this is the soap for them. It’s vegan, GMO, SLS, paraben, preservative and petroleum by products free, so you could say that this is as organic and natural as it gets.
If you’ve gone through the entire show and want to rest your feet, there’s a stage where they have fashion shows that you can watch at designated times with different themes and announcers. Across from the stage there’s a café where you buy and munch on some coffees and goodies. On the other side of the café is a bar where you can try some fancy drinks, so you can take your pick!!
Due to unforeseen circumstances (i.e. a heavy brunch with too many sugary drinks making me nauseous) I decided to head home (my wallet sighed a sigh of relief) and thus didn’t go through the entire show. There are a few things that I wish that I went through such as the food aisle (there were specialty chocolate bars that I wish I saw) as well as more skin products and some succulents. However, fear not! There is also an online version of the show where you can shop from the comfort of your bed if you missed out.
Overall, I had a great time! I went on a Friday early afternoon and although it was busy, it wasn’t incredibly crowded. Later in the day or on the weekend likely would have been much busier to the point where it was uncomfortable to look around. They have the One of a Kind show twice a year- in the spring and for Christmas, so I’ll be back to revisit some of the same artists and some new ones as well. The people that I met were so nice and down to earth, and their products are made from great quality, many times organic or all natural.
Have you guys been to this one or one in your city? What goodies did you pick up?
Thanks for stopping by, let me know your thoughts below!