As luck would have it, there is a fabulous place to buy authentic cable knit sweaters from Eire in Toronto’s East End. The Irish Design House is the coziest of finds for men & women, especially on a cold winter day. Shop owner Sinéad Clarke has gathered a colourful collection of warmth that includes shirts, hats and scarves, blankets and pashminas. Her source is mostly 70 small suppliers from across her native Ireland. But there’s also an array of her own designs that she sells under the Fada brand. Even her husband gets in on the act with a line of Toronto tees. I especially like one that reads: L _ ST + FOUND
The thick wool, and softer Alpaca and linen sweaters (cardigans, zips, turtlenecks), just beg to be caressed, as do her collection of soft leather wallets and belts. You’ll also find lotions + potions for your hands and hair, jewelry, candles and cards.
Brand new to the shop are products cut from the roofing tiles of old buildings in Erin. These pieces of slate make extremely handsome trays, cutting boards and coasters.
The real sweet spot of the shop however, is the Aine Hand Made Chocolates. You won’t find a Shamrock flavour, but there is Sicilian Lemon, Toffee Butterscotch, Roasted Hazelnut and many others.
What’s Spot On:
• Learn to draft a pattern of your own at one of the shop’s “Stitch and Bitch” sewing nights.
• Ask Sinéad anything and just listen to her lovely Irish lilt in response.