Tuesday, August 3, 2010

handmade sister cities { part 7 } : chicago, illinois, USA & toronto, ontario, canada!

row one
designsbyamber : toronto
device : toronto
lepapierstudio : chicago

row two
pigeonprints : chicago
essimar : chicago
PrettyRaccoon : toronto

row three
Countessa : chicago
truche : chicago
DavidChouDsn : toronto
avrilloreti : toronto

row four
joojooland: toronto
Middleburg: chicago
minouette: toronto
ColetteC: toronto

row five
Countessa: chicago
Jujie: toronto


oh how i've always loved the idea of sister cities.
two great places, joined over sea & sky by the idea of common cultural & commercial ties.
this rikrak studio series explores 2 official sister cities @ a time,
and some of the handmaking lovelies that they share!
i've done a bit of research to find official sister cities, and love seeing what handmakers are up to there! be sure to visit the other handmade sister cities posts here.


handmade sister cities { part 7 }


chicago, illinois, USA & toronto, ontario, canada

delightfully, the family rikrak has just moved very close to the wonderful city of toronto! we're so excited about this, for so many reasons, among them, the fabulous array of arts & cultural happenings in this fair fair city!
so today, while i update my own co-ordinates {changing my shop & twitter locale to toronto - ish seems surreal!}  i thought i'd showcase some of my new handmaking neighbours from toronto, and pair them with one of toronto's official sister cities, the great handmaking city of chicago, illinois.
i think these two supercities are well paired: 
when i think of both, they evoke the thoughts of great museums & galleries, a fabulous array of diverse & delicious gastronomic superstars, and wonderful places to embrace diversity, champion uniqueness and celebrate community!

so yay to toronto & chicago for that!
have you been to either/both of these handmade sister cities? 

tell us your favourite parts/neighbourhoods/delights/sights!
we'd love to hear!

happy handmaking, toronto & chicago!
ps: a fabulous $40 gift certificate giveaway with simple joys paperie ends on the blog tomorrow! hurry!

pps: just a couple more days to win a shopping spree giveaway where you can CHOOSE from over 200+ participating ETSY shops! woohoo!

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  1. I grew up in northern Illinois and have a love affair with Chicago. As soon as I step off the train, this devout woods-dweller gets a feeling of fluttery love in her chest. The architecture and history are fascinating and I love that there are these historical gems hidden amongst the modernity.

    Plus, hello...best pizza on the planet. (take that New York!)

  2. I've been to both Chicago and Toronto and adore both as well! The architecture and green spaces in each are my favorites.

    That lace artwork by ColletteC. is breathtaking!

  3. Hey K.,
    Welcome to Toronto-ish! Thank you for including my jellyfish in you collection. Such a lovely array of moody blues.

    I love Toronto - it is a city of neighbourhoods. Mine (Roncesvalles/High Park) is one of my favorites. It's vibrant (with a significant Polish and Somali communities), full of bakeries, restaurants, antique shops, book stores, and more and more boutiques. Plus it's near the park and the beach.

    I was in Chicago in May. I love the Art Institute and the architecture is spectacular. It seems like a laid back sort of city. I also particularly enjoyed looking for Mexican murals in Pilsen.

  4. I have lived in and around Chicago my entire life. The absolute best part about city is the lake and the skyline. The beach against the beautiful architecture is beautiful.

    Someday I hope to visit Toronto.

  5. Queen West in Toronto...probably my absolute fave.
    Never been to Chicago...
    Sorry been M.I.A...been over visiting the UK and our Net Connection was a SAD state...but I'm back...and happy to be able to visit your awesome World again!!!
    P.S. LOVELY pics, some people I haven't heard of before!

  6. oh i'm so glad we're all in love with these fabulous cities!

    i totally agree, lisa & anna!

    and minouette- i'm with ya! that's my brother's great neighbourhood, too, and it's so fun! yay!

    toronto can't wait to have you, cn!
    and welcome home, nicey weblog! :)

    so good to have you back!

  7. How wonderful! I am living in Toronto and my best friend is in Chicago! Now that she has moved back there, and her beautiful baby girl has been born, I have plenty of reasons to shuttle back and forth!

    Do try flying Porter - if you book early it's really economical, and they fly out of Toronto City Centre.

    As a new Toronto dweller, check out: http://torontocraftalert.ca/ - they list tons of crafty events to go to - they recently had an outdoor artisan show at the distillery district.

    Okay, GREAT Toronto neighbourhoods that I know you would love -

    1. Queen West, between Spadina and Trinity Bellwoods - lots of great little boutique shops and fabric stores

    2. Kensington market - vintage, handmade, cheese stores, bakeries

    3. Honest Ed's - carnival meets dollar store

    4. Distillery district - be sure to see the Sandra Ainsley commercial glass gallery and there's lots of handmade and jewelry and glass blowing

    5. Toronto Islands - it's a short ferry ride to a beach and boardwalk, and I recently discovered there are free range peacocks in the farm area

    6. Little Italy (College between Bathurst and Grace) for cafes and little places to grab a drink and maybe dinner. Try Cafe Diplomatico and Utopia and Sidecar, Kalendar for brunch

    7. Tikka Lahore - best Pakistani food - try the butter chicken and the till (sesame) naan - if you want to buy a sari there are also places nearby on Gerrard St.

    8. Allan Gardens - it's FREE to go inside and it's this gigantic greenhouse on Carlton near Sherbourne. They have an entire room of cacti. Enough said.

    So I know Chicago less well but if you go I love:

    1. Millennium park. I can't say enough things about the giant mirrored bean.

    2. Navy Pier. Hey, the ferris wheel on the water is fun.

    3. Manny's. I crave the beef stew and the corned beef sandwiches are pretty darn good. Obama eats there.

    4. Giordano's - best Chicago style pizza.

  8. i've always wanted to go to Toronto!

    we used to live in Chicago - in Bucktown. Some great things to do in Chicago, including the parks and museums.
    My old neighborhood has turned into a shopping mecca, with Marc Jacobs and Nannette Leopore, to name a few.

    There are also some fantastic restaurants, including Spring, which is in an old Russian bath house.

    And if you saw John Cusack (I ran into him at a bar once!) in High Fidelity, they filmed that in my old neighborhood - ah, The Double Door. we even figured out which building was his record shop :) It was boarded up 6 years ago....but we're going back to visit some friends next month, so i'll have to go check!

  9. Welcome to Toronto-ish! and than you for including me. I've never been to Chicago, well I've changed planes at O'Hare... but I know it's everyone's fave city so perhaps one day I'll get there.


thanks so much for your comments, nicies!
it's a joy to read what everyone writes here.
thank you!