Happy 40th! Roots Canada has a lot to celebrate.

The brand’s story began in 1973 when co-founders Michael Budman and Don Green launched a successful shoe company. As success grew, Roots grew into a fashion label, sprouting stores all across Canada. As a  young child, I can still remember going into the Roots located at Yonge and Lytton Blvd for all my camp gear (remember Beaver Canoe?) and it’s also where we bought my school oxfords, that I polished every Sunday night. In my twenties and thirties, Roots is where I go for cozy winter knits, cute toques, riding boots and leather jackets. It’s one of the few brands that has remained a constant in my wardrobe since 1986. Actually, it’s the only one.

At the 40th birthday bash last week, the second floor of the Bloor and Bay St. flagship was a mixture of old friends, family, young fashion writers and some of the original gang of SCTV, or the television series that launched and established the careers of Canada’s most successful comedians. (Or the world’s, for that matter.)

Dan Aykroyd (The Blues Brothers, Ghostbusters)stood proudly against the bar, where his Crystal Head Vodka alongside his Diamond Estates wine. Amidst the crowd, we saw Catherine O’Hara (Home Alone, Best in Show) quietly sussing out the scene while Jason Priestly (Our high school crush) was meandering around with Budman and friends.

It was an exciting night to celebrate Canadian everything: fashion, film, television, theatre, music and food (EAST COAST OYSTERS!) But perhaps the most fun was looking through the 40th anniversary commemorative coffee table book at all the 80s hair and fashion. All we can say is, WOW; you’ve come a long way, Roots.