Gifted Insights – Likely General

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by Alison on March 17, 2014

While strolling down Roncy I peeped into an awesome new general store called Likely General. Always curious about what prompts someone to delve into a cool new retail space I asked owner Brooke Manning about how it all came together and some of her favourite gifts:

Why did you open Likely General?

I have always wanted to open a shop that acted as a community space as well. During the brainstorming phase of Likely General, I realized that I wished for the main focus of the shop to be the maker. A consumer’s connection to the maker is really important to me and this is one of the main reasons I choose the brands I do for the shop. Nearly everything is handmade by passionate designers, artists, and craftspeople. We hold workshops bi-monthly (named Sunday Gatherings) that perpetuate these ideas. Artists and designers affiliated with the shop come in after hours and invite the community to learn their skill. I suppose it’s all about participating in the cyclical action of consumerism responsibly by perpetuating integrity and supporting the maker.

What were the first products you ordered for the store?

The first items I ordered for the shop were friends print-work. I sent a message to about 15 of my friends to see if they would be interested in displaying and selling their work in the shop- luckily, they said yes.

What are your favourite items right now?

I really do love everything in the shop, but my favourite right now, and the items I’ve taken home with me, are Tatine Creeping Moss candles, Adrienne Kammerer‘s prints, Fat and the Moon products, Helen Levi ceramics, and Army of Rokosz jewellery.

Anything exclusive to your shop people must check out?

Yes! We run bi-monthly workshops where makers come to the shop and teach the community their skill. We also offer some brands exclusive to Toronto including The Vacant North, Kat & Roger Ceramics, Short Stack Editions, prints by Hammish Robertson, Scout & Whistle, Magic Hour candles, Bel Handmade… actually, there are quite a few!

Gift idea: What would you recommend for a host thank you gift?

I think a nice candle is thoughtful, simple, and something that a lot of people don’t think to treat themselves to.

Gift idea: Something nice for the difficult to shop for dad?

We have some really nice pieces by Frederick Scanlen in the shop. Frederick makes beautiful knives and hand-carved spoons. And my wood-worker friend Steven Rollings makes really gorgeous hand-turned bowls lined with milk paint. There’s always beautiful handmade leather wallets and keychains by Toronto’s Apogee Handmade. Plus skincare products by Blind Barber, Toronto’s Rebel’s Refinery, and Toronto’s Province Apothecary too.

Gift idea: What’s your go-to, people-pleasing gift?

I really like giving gifts and so it always depends on the person. I have given friends combinations of candles, sage, glass coasters, tinctures, good scents, and incense. I like to give feel-good gifts.

Annie Axtell Moon Print, $25

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