Skirt is a boutique clothing store catering to the "young and trendy" in the Annex . "Our clothes are geared toward urban, young women," the sales clerk tells me. "University-age."
The store, which opened about seven weeks ago on Bloor east of Bathurst, is actually one of a chain of boutiques, the first originating in London, Ontario. There are seven other locations, the clerk tells me, including Skirts in Waterloo, Peterborough, and Muskoka. My questions about the history of the business, the buying, the decision to open to the Toronto market elicited nothing but shrugs from the girl folding shirts; "you'd have to ask the owner," she tells me. "But he never comes in."
So, I decided to peruse the selection myself. First was the wall of jewelry, with chunky necklaces, bangles, and dangly earrings. Most of the items were priced under $20, and sort of looked that way, so I moved on.
With the clerk again by my side, she pointed me toward the table Modrobes (yes, Modrobes!) and of course then, I perked up. They had leggings ($49.54) yoga pants ($54.95) and other workout gear made with its signature Eucalyptex fabric in a variety of sizes and colours.
But most of the stuff at Skirt is more dinner and drinks attire: lots of printed tops, cocktail dresses, pleats, decals, and extra fabric. Ark & Co. is one brand littered throughout the store; two of my picks included a bohemian grey blazer with a striped inner lining ($119.95) and a ruched pastel purple dress ($114). Lush was another recurring brand, best embodied in a taupe one-shoulder cocktail dress spotted among others on the west wall. And then there was a Pretty Good brown printed shirt/dress for $39.95.
Most of the items seemed very trendy and had a vintage-bohemian feel, yet were naggingly reminiscent of the type of "unique and trendy" items you and 10 others can get from a place like Urban Outfitters. But if you don't care about that (and--full disclosure--sometimes I don't) you're pretty much guaranteed to leave Skirt with something looking fashionable and chic.
Photos by Dennis Marciniak