Wednesday, September 27, 2006

CRAFTY CRUSH: canuck design hub MADE


MADE is the latest addition to one of my favourite areas of budding indie goodness, Dundas Street West. Nestled between a Brazilian grill house and a construction site in progress, the gleam of the quirky and ultra-modern furniture, lighting, and homeware on display at MADE make it difficult to miss.

MADE owners Shaun Moore and Julie Nicholson were motivated to open their shop by a perceived gap in the Toronto design world. As Julie explains, “We knew or knew of all these fantastic designers who would occasionally surface as part of an exhibit or show but as soon as the shows were over they would disappear again. There were so few places that you could go to find fantastic Canadian design, yet we knew it was there.” Shaun elaborates: “We really believed that this work deserved a permanent home. We wanted a space where great designers working on a small scale and producing high quality work could be found all year.”

The resulting space houses the work of designers from backgrounds that range from industrial design to fine craft, architecture to fine art. The natural world is a recurring element in MADE’s aesthetic and a push towards a more environmentally responsible design ethic part of their mandate. Hot stuff to look out for includes the nature-inspired ceramic work of coe & waito, log bowls by Alberta’s Loyal Loot Collective, and the Melanie Zanker’s furniture that often incorporates found elements. Canadiana-obsessed collective Castor design is behind the reclaimed fluorescent tube light that hangs above the desk (not to mention the fully portable sauna box that made an appearance at MADE’s soft opening).

Pop by MADE headquarters at 867 Dundas West. Party it up at their Grand Opening on November 4th.


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