by Haley Cullingham
Daniela Bosco had more then a lust for beautiful things and 10 years in the fashion business driving her to open West Queen West boutique Chasse Gardee. “It was a ‘How am I going to feed myself’ kind of choice,” she says. There are few more stylish ways to put food in your fridge: Chasse Gardee is a bright, comfortable space, filled with wood and leather. The shoes, bags and sunglasses perch atop brushed steel shelves and tree trunks, beside antique books and empty milk bottles. Silvery fur is draped over a seating space. Chasse Gardee is as good a place to spend a day drinking mimosas as it is a place to shop, but anyone who enters the store will be pained to sit still for long. The shoes at Chasse Gardee are truly scrumptious and for most styles, Bosco orders one size run of each, ensuring each purchase is “like Cinderella-that’s your shoe.”
Chasse Gardee is a perfect West Queen West addition: “My decisions [of what I sell] are based on a combination of price point, personal like and hopefully a reflection of some of the choices of the people in the neighbourhood. I try to think about all three things, that’s why i try to have price points that start at $50 and go all the way to $600. It’s really easy to find $600 shoes, you could buy tons of $600 shoes, but i think what makes this area so beautiful is the combination of different incomes and different backgrounds and different occupations, so i try to reflect all of it in my choices.”
The designs carried in the store are the unusual, rare, ethically responsible, and just plain obsession-worthy. Lines like Tashkent by Cheyenne, based in Brooklyn, and Jeffrey Campbell, whose many-buckled booties are so popular Bosco has them back-ordered ’til May (sigh), are in especially high demand. She carries one of a kind bags handmade in Morocco, and beautiful shoes from Finsk, all of which are handmade in Brazil from sustainable leather and re-claimed birchwood. Another favourite is Slow And Steady Wins The Race, whose unexpected t-shirts crafted from leather and lace, canvas takes on statement bags, and a beautiful ’4-sided Birkin bag’ handcrafted from buttery leather typify the kind of unique, exceptionally made pieces that populate Chasse Gardee. From Toronto-based designer Loid to Karen Walker sunglasses and YMC Pennyloafers, it’s impossible to enter the store without finding at least three things you can’t imagine your wardrobe surviving without.
“I was ready to commit to something,” Bosco says of opening Chasse Gardee. “Some people dogs, men, for me it was a store.” We’re really happy Bosco isn’t a pet person.
1084 Queen St W