Walking into Bicyclette (880 Queen St. W.) is like being transported into Sofia Coppola’s “Miss Dior Chérie” commercial. With its pastel palate, effortlessly feminine frocks and whimsical personal touches, it’s impossible not to get excited by the carefully curated fantasy. Described by owner Paige Boersma as “street style meets fairy tale,” Bicyclette calls to mind lazy summer afternoons, floral macarons and picnics in the park.
“It has that urban sort of aesthetic,” says Boersma of her shop, “There’s definitely a touch of whimsy, a touch of nostalgia… it’s really about [showcasing] those unique pieces.”
Bicyclette seems to be about affordable luxury. With its mid-range price point (starting at around $40 and going up to $250), Boersma’s store is all about bringing “unique, interesting pieces” at an accessible price point. It carries clothing lines such as Wildfox, Dolce Vita and Functional. Bicyclette also works with Canadian designers, as well as local Toronto designers (Lauren Elan and Corrine Anestopoulos of Biko).
For Boersma, owning a boutique like Bicyclette has “always been a dream.” The idea originally began as the Ryerson fashion communication grad’s final thesis project.
“I figured I may as well use [the project] to further my interests in owning a shop, and I started to create the brand and develop a brand book for that…and that’s how I came up with a name and kind of the concept behind everything, and it just kind of evolved from there.”
The boutique launched March 12th, after being introduced both as a pop up shop and an online storefront. Boersma says that the transition from an online store to a physical shop was “very different…because with online you don’t get that customer interaction and you don’t get to merchandise in the same way.”
However, Boersma believes that the both types of stores compliment each other. She says,
“We’re continuing the online store…its nice to have the compliment and people can kind of pre shop online and then come into the store and see what we have available.”
Our Bicyclette Photo Shoot
Bicyclette’s right on trend with adorably girly pieces like blush pink blazers, dove gray denim and dark mauve maxi dresses. The store itself is divided by colour and palate, so even shoppers with more eccentric tastes can find something to love. I ended up drooling over much of the “made in Toronto” jewelry (Biko, Lauren Elan Collections), and even splurged on a pair of black, high waisted leather shorts (Mink Pink, $108).
Bicyclette’s romantic meets street style approach really suited my friend Elle, who’s an amazing mix of classic Lauren Bacall and bright eyed collegiate. We tomboyed up Elle’s usually super feminine style with grey skinny jeans (James Jeans, $198), a blush pink boyfriend blazer (Audrey Blazer, $168), while breaking up the androgynous line with a flowy, floral tank top (Blvd Blouse, $68). Completing the look was the “Gold Dawson” gold leaf necklace (Lauren Elan Collections, $85).
Bicyclette owner Paige Boersma is really loving “anything with lace” as well as “light colours, and all those neutrals, and bringing in pops of colour”.With the next outfit, we kept in the same pastel family with an ivory, lace overlay shift dress (Blvd Dress, $148), and let accessories shine with the “Marx” Bracelet (Lauren Elan Collections, $80), and the “Juliet” Necklace (Lauren Elan Collections, $160).
The last outfit was a belted-at-the-waist, deep mauve maxi dress paired with a cream, crocheted clutch ($32). Accessorizing with a chunky, statement “Yvonne” Necklace (Lauren Elan Collections, $200), bangles, and the turquoise “Anna” Bracelet (Lauren Elan Collections, $65), we introduced a hint of that trendy, 70’s bohemian style, while keeping the overall look classic and streamlined.
~ Natasha Hunt