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Fashion Stores

Simon Carter

Posted by Staff / Posted on July 13, 2010

Simon Carter TorontoSimon Carter, a UK-based label, has been a menswear competitor in Toronto for 2.5 years, but did you know that its Queen St West location is the only store in Canada?

Simon CarterAn exclusive to Toronto, Simon Carter offers a taste of Britain outside of Burberry at more affordable prices.

Simon CarterThe store layout is fairly generic, looking more like a one stop shop for father's day than an all-purpose menswear vendor. It's easy to be fooled by a gingham shirt, embroidered with paisley-pattern stitching (it looks like it should be in a Le Chateau showroom), but Simon Carter offers plenty for the modern dandy.

Simon CarterClassic french-cuffed shirts ($125 - $195) make up the majority of Simon Carter's sales and they are available in indigo, blush, white, herringbone and pinstripe. Paired with what seems like an unending supply of cufflinks, it's easy to see why Simon Carter sells these essentials so well.

Simon CarterSwarovski crystal encrusted cufflinks cover the animal kingdom from domestic poodle to wild seahorse, but seem too Liberace-inspired to be wearable. However, silver hearts and more minimal shapes offer a modern appeal ($75-$140 per pair). My favourite pair was a set of anchors, perfect for summer.

A novel piece is a summer shirt, complete with a print of mustachioed swimmers ($195), which is well-suited for any gent rocking the 'stache this summer.

Simon CarterSimon Carter is a top to bottom retailer, offering every piece you'll need to have a finished outfit. Nautical-inspired watches range from $185-$455 and if timepiece accessorizing is something you cannot do without, Simon Carter may be hard to shake. Their watches are simple, but look expensive without being too pricey -- faces are easy to read, well-polished and simplistic to complete an effortless summer ensemble.

Simon CarterSimon Carter isn't marvelous, but it isn't too shabby either. Suiting is inexpensive (in the $500s), shirts are well made, but select styles show some missteps, like a marine brocade paisley blazer ($550) or the earlier mentioned gingham paisley shirt (which, should never be worn by anyone).

Simon CarterYou will not love everything in the Queen St. West store, but you will find something to cherish, because Simon Carter specializes in key timeless pieces that will update any man from schlub to sartorialist (or something like it).

Simon CarterWriting by Kevin Naulls. Photos by Jason Tavares.

Discussion

17 Comments

pz / July 20, 2010 at 10:34 am
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what's the price range for the suits??
freddie / July 20, 2010 at 10:43 am
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I fell in love with Simon Carter stuff years ago on a trip to London, but after trying a few pieces on, the love faded. They need to work on their slim fitting stuff, which is still baggy fitting. Unfortunate since all of their stuff is super nice.
marios / July 20, 2010 at 10:59 am
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Thanks for the bokeh that shows me very little of the product!!
LJ replying to a comment from freddie / July 20, 2010 at 02:31 pm
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I second Freddie, there's no love at Simon Carter for slim guys.
Michael / July 20, 2010 at 08:03 pm
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Where can I find slim fit clothes? I'm swimming in Brooks Brothers extra slim fit but don't want tiny euro style collars.

K. / July 20, 2010 at 08:44 pm
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Can't comment on most of their stuff, but their shirts are a bit sub par material-wise. Try Green Shag down the street for awesome (but expensive) shirts.
Goose / July 21, 2010 at 03:14 am
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I order my custom made-to-measure slim fit shirts from online service called Jantzen Tailor - C$50-60 from Hong Kong. Another HK company called Maxwell Clothiers tours Toronto twice a year, setting up shop in the Sheraton Centre downtown to take your measurements. These MTM shirts fit well but may not be quite as nice in terms of quality as Simon Carter. And you have to accept that you may screw up the measurements, so it makes more sense to refine it over time.

Note fabric shrinks and this allowance if built into shirts. A few of mine have tightened up perfectly with a few washes (and a few others have tightened up a bit too far!)

Alternately, taking in the sides costs $12 at the tailor, so you can pick up a shirt that fits properly in the shoulders and collar and then dial it in perfectly. I had a few nice shirts I didn't wear due to excessive bagginess, but after the tailor they're some of my best fitting shirts.

I will say that I tried on a jacket at SC and found it to be acceptably slim with high armholes, again with tailoring it would have been perfect, British stuff does tend to be cut slimmer than mall brands like Banana Republic.
Marc / July 21, 2010 at 12:25 pm
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Interesting, but it's too bad, I could imagine the prices due to it being a UK-based company (Pounds conversion).
Liz and Cedric at Simon Carter / July 24, 2010 at 07:30 pm
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Thanks for all the comments folks. Not sure when you slimmer gents visited the shop but we introduced a new collection called West End by Simon Carter in Fall 09. (Suits and Shirts)It's a completely different body and might be worth trying as it's been received really well.
Appreciate the time taken to comment and thanks Kevin for the article...not sure if I agree with you about the paisley shirt though ( Wink )
Goose / July 25, 2010 at 04:08 pm
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I think paisley and floral shirts are much more common in London than in North America. While it might not be a good Monday-Thursday look for a Bay Street guy, it can work on Fridays and weekends, or through the week for those who are in a creative industry.
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Ted / August 23, 2011 at 08:01 pm
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I'm a tall slim guy and have a Simon Carter suit and it fits like a charm. I love the UK suit style and while not high end, it works like a charm. Just picked up a Ben Sherman suit from Saville Row in London and fits similarly.
Cedric / December 5, 2011 at 03:48 pm
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Hi Everyone just wanted to let you know that we have expanded we have added about 500sq ft to the back of our store. Please come by and have a look let us know what you think.

We are now carrying a limited selection in the Japanese denim collection Edwin jeans and the handmade British shoe collection Loake. We look forward to seeing you!
Steven / April 5, 2012 at 09:11 pm
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I'm 5'9" weighing 200lbs and I own 3 Simon Carter suits. It's the only store I can get a suit for under a thousand dollars and not have to spend extra on lots of alterations. They fit great, the quality is as good as suits twice the price from more mainstream brands. I love this store. Thank you Liz & Cedric for having the guts and style sense to bring a line this cool to Toronto
Augustina / October 28, 2012 at 03:16 pm
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in the morning, as i enjoy to find out more and more.

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