Easy Tiger is the kind of shop those in their twenties who work in design/fashion/media go to purchase birthday gifts for their friends in similar lines of work. Yes, it's that specific. But luckily, the shop is located right in the heart of that demographic, on Dundas West at Gladstone. Obviously, I want everything in sight, like this .
Owner Zai Rajkotwala, who is utterly charming, opened her doors last week. If the shop fails, which I can't imagine happening, this gal has an easy second career choice in interior design. She designed the space herself, with help from friends, of course, and she was totally irreverent about it. (Her friend Sara Nickleson used hot pink spray paint to apply an ombre effect to the exposed white radiators. What!? I want her to decorate my house). This isn't Rajkotwala's first crack at running a business—she used to co-own Lost&Found just down the street. This time, she's got the atmosphere right: soft jazz tunes waft around the store from a turntable behind the counter, and she offers up coffee and sweet treats, like cookies and candy, to keep shoppers' blood sugars in top form.
Though unbelievably trendy, Easy Tiger distinguishes itself in that it caters to both men and women, and carries a huge array of items. "I was nervous about opening up," Rajkotwala jokes. "I mean, I sell cleaning supplies and underwear."
She sells a lot more than that, though. Gifts for the dudes in your life include a series of Burroughs toiletries by Prospector Co., like beard oil (hot!), shave cream and cleanser ($40 each). There's also a series of glassware made in Toronto, pieces of which range from $20 to $35, and shark tooth inspired necklaces for $50.
While there's no real theme to her sourcing (some stuff is local, some is from B.C., and some is from as far as Germany) it all has a clean, yet sort of whimsical, style. This spot is definitely worth checking out for birthdays, as I said, or to get a cute, romantic treat for your partner (they sell fresh flowers, too, guys).
Photos by Morris Lum