Mrs. Tiggy Winkle's shelves stock innovative and traditional toys, games, crafts, and books to busy burgeoning minds. A helpful staff guides patrons toward the ideal toy to stimulate toddlers or distract newborns from the fact that they have no hair. Jaws gnaw on Sophie the Giraffe, a teething toy crafted from 100 per cent natural rubber ($24.99), and older tykes can nurture a Corolle baby doll ($37.99). Costumes by Melissa and Doug encourage a more theatrical playtime ($34.99), and Thomas the Tank Engine wooden trains and Lego blocks ($6.99+) keeps hands nimble. Pint-sized progeny can also skim the pages of Klutz craft books ($11.99–$24.99) or stitch secret compartments within stuffed animals with an introductory sewing kit ($29.99).
Kimicha founder and professional tea taster Kimiko Uriu sources her selection of teas directly from small farms, helping promote fair trade and sustainable growing practices around the world. Customers can browse teas by origin, from India to Japan or home in on staples such as Earl Grey, the fruity Bouquet Royal, or the award-winning Jin Jun Mei which can be steeped seven times without bitterness. A handsome collection of teaware provides various brewing methods and vessels, and various tea books steep sippers in information about tea's history, its health benefits, and the proper angle at which one's pinky should salute the queen.
A fair warning to arachnophobes: to enter The National Gallery of Canada, you must cross paths with a 30-foot-tall egg-carrying spider. But fear not, the giant insect isn't real—it's Louise Bourgeois' bronze sculpture Maman, which arrived at the gallery's front plaza in 2005.
Maman is one of the museum's nearly 64,000 artworks, including 17,000 pieces from the collection of the Canadian Museum of Contemporary Photography (currently housed at the Gallery), which trace the history of visual art from the Middle Ages to today with an emphasis on Canadian artists. Along with paintings by Hieronymus Bosch, Daphne Odjig, and A.Y. Jackson, the collection includes approximately 9,100 prints, 6,600 drawings, and 19,700 photographs—and not a single one is a cat meme. The gallery also showcases more than 3,000 pieces of contemporary work from Canadian and international artists.
The museum's collection grows by an average of 300 pieces a year, which fill about a quarter of the building's 569,000 square feet. The space features impressive views of the Ottawa River, and houses lush gardens and peaceful courtyards.
Like a cozy attic or room of treasures, Adorit Boutique’s intimate confines envelop shoppers with racks and chests full of vintage clothing, tables strewn with jewellery, and shelves laden with calf-high boots and elegant heels. Specializing in locally made items and fair-trade imports made exclusively from recycled materials, the shop offers Canadian made earrings ($10–$30) and cameo lockets perfect for keeping pictures of a loved one and one’s pet Predator ($24+). Shoppers can also take in the softness of organic cotton fair trade tees for men and women ($32+), slip into a pair of bamboo cloth undies ($18), or adorn torsos in Canadian-made bamboo cloth tops for ladies ($36). With most clothing and accessories made from organic cotton, renewable bamboo, or eco-friendly materials, shoppers can discover inspiration for daily life in each piece’s uniqueness, such as new uses for one’s collection of vintage microwaves.
Greg Best and Natalie Szabo founded The Sassy Bead Company in the early ’90s, creating a sanctuary for more than 3,000 types of beads from seed beads to semiprecious stones. They also fill their shelves with rarer bead types, including Swarovski crystals, Japanese delicas, and freshwater pearls, available individually or as part of finished bracelets, necklaces, or toupees. Along with beads for purchase, the duo accepts beaded jewellery for repair, and crafts custom pieces for special occasions such as weddings and proms.