Local business and consumer news. Openings, closings, deals, sales, what to buy and where to buy it, we round it all up and give you an insider's shopper's special on small business in Halifax. Contact shoptalk@thecoast.ca to send a tip.


Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Mind Hack opens in Hammonds Plains

Another escape room for all you problem solvers

Posted By on Wed, Jan 4, 2017 at 5:08 PM

Matt Hall loved escape rooms so much that he decided to open one of his own—even if it meant giving up his all of his free time. His Mind Hack Room Escape (1410 Hammonds Plains Road)—the city’s fifth escape room— debuted quietly December 18, providing a little friendly problem solving for folks looking to keep busy over the holidays.

“I worked full time but wanted to do it, so I decided to limit my openings to evenings and weekends,” says Hall. “It’s a labour of love, you know?” After much beta testing, his Railroaded room—a treasure hunt of sorts—has about a 20 percent success rate. Hall says making it challenging was important for him, but also making it unique.

“Every room in metro has the same scenario, there’s an element of peril. With the treasure hunter room I wanted to do something different,” he says. “It’s a crossroads decision.” He’s currently working on a second, spy-themed room that you’ll have to break into, not out of (oh, and defuse a bomb) for early spring.

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Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Game on for a second Board Room cafe

Halifax's board game cafe opens a Bedford location later this fall

Posted By on Wed, Aug 31, 2016 at 6:34 PM

Board Room rolls the dice on a second location - LENNY MULLINS
  • Board Room rolls the dice on a second location
  • Lenny Mullins

The Board Room Game Cafe (1256 Barrington Street) wants to invite more players to the table. After three years of bringing fun and games—like hundreds of games—to downtown, the city’s first board game cafe/bar has announced it’ll open a second location later this fall, giving Haligonians another place to exercise their brains.

“We wanted to be accessible to a different part of the city,” says owner Kris Moulton of the upcoming expansion. “A lot of people don’t like driving downtown and parking can be a challenge. We hear a lot of people say they’ve heard of us but have never been.”

He hopes that’ll change in late fall, when the Board Room will welcome board-gamers from beyond the peninsula to its new spot at 932 Bedford Highway (the former Aplaydia Indoor Playground). Moulton says regulars can expect the same experience they’re used to on Barrington Street—good, clean, friendly competition.

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Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Massage and yoga meet at Pramana

Gottingen street, zen is coming your way.

Posted By on Wed, Jul 13, 2016 at 1:29 PM

Pramana's Alica Wright and Lara Frankcom - SUBMITTED
  • Pramana's Alica Wright and Lara Frankcom
  • submitted

Massage therapist Alicia Wright and yoga instructor Lara Frankcom will combine forces at Pramana—a new business coming to Gottingen street in August.

Wright describes Pramana as a space to learn about your body. A client’s needs can dictate the service they receive. For example, if someone is trying to correct an injury, Wright and Frankcom would work together to assess and treat the client, and also provide them with a set of exercises to take home. The services will be offered separately as well. Yoga at Pramana will be focused on small classes sizes and body alignment work. Wright will offer deep massage therapy, with roots in tissue work and physical rehabilitation.

“We didn’t want to look like a yoga studio, and we didn’t want to look a wellness centre,” says Wright. “Our vision of health and wellness and the way we approach the body is similar—but it’s hard to get that across.” In order to try and communicate their vision, the business partners decided on the name Pramana, which refers to the philosophy of attaining “true and accurate knowledge.”

“We want to bring community together—to be a non-pretentious, accessible and open place,” says Wright. “Once you learn about your physical body, you can go deeper into connecting with yourself.”

Pramana is set to open at 2207 Gottingen Street—Megan Leslie’s former office— in early August. See its website for price listings.

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Wednesday, June 29, 2016

11 Street Boutique opens this weekend

The Hydrostone gets a women's and men's clothing store

Posted By on Wed, Jun 29, 2016 at 12:11 PM

  • via @11streetboutique

Erica Cormier is inspired. The north end resident and entrepreneur is opening her first venture into small business—11 Street Boutique (5649 Hennessy Street, on the corner of Isleville)—this weekend in the Hydrostone, and she says she couldn’t have done it without her local retail muses.

“I’m really into shopping local, and boutique shopping, and I saw a lot of younger women opening stores,” she says. “I started feeling like, I can do this because I’m seeing other women like me do it. Seeing Sweet Pea come so far in the last few years was definitely inspiring.”

Her boutique—named for the 10 historic streets of the Hydrostone neighbourhood, from Sebastian to Young, the 11th being Kaye—will sell women’s and men’s clothing and accessories from brands like Beck and Boosh, Cake for Breakfast, MACCS and Muttonhead Apparel, carrying limited numbers of each piece, and replenishing regularly, to ensure to give shoppers that few-of-a-kind experience. Located in the ground floor of a brand new building, Cormier hopes that 11 Street will bring something different to the already popular shopping strip. The shop will officially opens this Saturday, July 2, from 10am to 5pm.

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Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Trainyard General Store pulls into downtown Dartmouth

The new shop and creative space opens in June

Posted By on Wed, Apr 20, 2016 at 4:00 AM

Coming soon to 53 Portland Street - @TRAINYARDSTORE
  • Coming soon to 53 Portland Street
  • @trainyardstore

There’s yet another addition to Dartmouth’s budding downtown— The Trainyard General Store is a new shop that’ll open this summer. The store is going to be focused on all gifts, goods and furniture crafted in Nova Scotia, and there'll be workshop space for people who want to do their own creating.

Saturday "Open Project Days" will feature craft experimenting with a weekly featured material. Other crafter-led workshops will be held throughout the week, giving the those of us unskilled at craft to try our hands at it.

Jason MacDonald, who’s opening The Trainyard General Store with his wife Kimberly, is happy to be adding to downtown Dartmouth’s development.

“Dartmouth has a really cool vibe going on right now," he says. "Why not bring a little more awesomeness to the community?"

The shop, which will call 53 Portland Street (right between New Scotland Yard Emporium and the Portland Street Creperie) home, is getting ready for a soft open in mid-June.

Stay tuned to Trainyard's Twitter, Instagram and Facebook for updates.

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Thursday, March 31, 2016

Cyclone Group Fitness spins to Barrington

The downtown fitness studio gears up to open in its new location next week

Posted By on Thu, Mar 31, 2016 at 4:37 PM

Breaking in the new location with some kettlebell action - SHANNON GEORGE PHOTOGRAPHY
  • Breaking in the new location with some kettlebell action
  • Shannon George Photography

“This is the second chapter, and it’s so exciting,” says Elana Liberman of her Cyclone Group Fitness’ brand-new location at 200-1717 Barrington Street. “I look at Barrington Street as growing up. I look at Cyclone that way too, it’s kind of grown up. We now know what the community wants and needs and we’re trying to offer that.” Moving into the bright space overlooking Parade Square—the former home of Studio in Essence—means floor-to-ceiling windows, hardwood floors, newly renovated changing rooms and an excuse to add more classes to the Cyclone schedule, which has added TRX, barre, kettlebell, pilates and yoga to its indoor cycling offerings. Liberman says she was planning the move for about a year before landing on the perfect location and after renovating the heck out of the bathrooms, and lugging all of Cyclone’s gear from its Salter Street location this weekend, Cyclone will officially re-open for classes on April 4.

“I sometimes feel like I’m in The Twilight Zone. It was four years ago that we signed the lease at Salter Street and it didn’t have floors or walls and somehow we built this incredible community around that space,” says Liberman. “If it wasn’t for my staff and this community downtown that’s embraced us, I wouldn’t be moving at all.”

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Monday, March 28, 2016

KoKo Mod Floral Design blooms on Portland Street

Out-of-the-box special event flowers from Korayne Romanchuk hit Dartmouth's downtown

Posted By on Mon, Mar 28, 2016 at 4:00 AM

  • via Koko Mod

Korayne Romanchuk’s passion for floral design bloomed when she was sweeping floors at a flower shop in Calgary. Her curiousity for the art led her to put down the broom and learn for herself, by working in high-end floral design and soaking up skills from the experts around her. But the dream of opening her own flower shop didn’t bring her to Nova Scotia—the film industry did. “I’m doing this because I’m a product of the Nova Scotia film tax credit cut,” she says of her latest venture. “This is how I stay in Nova Scotia.”

Stepping away from film, Romanchuk got back into the flower world through working in wholesale, and eventually selling her own bouquets and arrangements as KoKo Mod Floral Design at farmers’ markets—a move that inspired her to open her own shop at 158 Portland Street (next to curated second-hand shop, Room 152).

“It was really interesting to me coming from a busy economy like Calgary. It had just boomed, there was money everywhere and people didn’t think twice about spending a couple of hundred dollars on flowers,” she says. “I really had to dial it back and learn and understand the industry here.”

The bricks-and-mortar KoKo Mod, which she aims to open by early April, will sell plants, flowers and handmade gifts, and focus on modern, out-of-the-box design. “I approach my work from an artistic viewpoint, it takes me a long time to put an order of flowers together,” says Romanchuk. “I love looking at the world through curious, questioning eyes. And I love sparking that in people. I’m passionate about not just flowers, but being able to share my passion with people.”

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Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Made in the Maritimes hits the Hydrostone

A second location for the artisan boutique

Posted By on Tue, Mar 22, 2016 at 1:32 PM

Joel Kelly and Mark Smith in the Bedford store - SUBMITTED
  • Joel Kelly and Mark Smith in the Bedford store
  • submitted

“People are looking for high quality, and they want to support local,” says Joel Kelly. He’s learned that in the last year, during which he’s been bringing beautiful things to Bedford via art, craft and handmade boutique Made in the Maritimes (Sunnyside Mall, 1595 Bedford Highway), which he runs with Mark Smith.

Amidst a busy first year in business Kelly and Smith quickly realized they wanted to grow the brand and open a companion location closer to downtown Halifax, but were waiting for the right place and time, which came together just in time for spring. This week Made in the Maritimes announced that in a perfectly fitting tenant swap it will take over the home of the recently retired Bogside Gallery—a business that dedicated decades to local artisans—and open shop number two at 5527 Young Street on the Hydrostone shopping strip. “It will look and feel the same,” says Kelly of the slightly smaller space. “But it’ll be really nice to have two locations to bring different things to.”

The Halifax location of Made in the Maritimes aims to open in early May.

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Friday, January 22, 2016

Yes, a "full size" IKEA is opening in Halifax in 2017

Swedish design embassy coming to Dartmouth Crossing

Posted By on Fri, Jan 22, 2016 at 10:00 AM

The Halikea is a thing. IKEA is opening a Halifax store in Dartmouth Crossin
  • The Halikea is a thing. IKEA is opening a Halifax store in Dartmouth Crossin

Haligonians have been pining for the impossible furniture store's return since its Burnside outlet closed late last millennium. Today's announcement from IKEA Canada's president, Stefan Sjöstrand, earned media coverage as if it was the biblical Second Coming—which might happen before IKEA's new shop in Dartmouth Crossing is built.

The press release says the giant (328,000 square feet) store "will take roughly 14-16 months to build once ground is broken in summer 2016." And you know from bitter experience with Allen keys and non-lingual direction sheets that IKEA always underestimates how long stuff takes to put together. Of all the people excited about this, local divorce lawyers are probably at the top of the list.

The Dartmouth Crossing location of the big box heavy-hitter will be Canada’s most sustainable IKEA store, zeroing in on energy efficiency and waste management. It also will create hundreds of jobs—350 to start, closer to 500 by the time the store opens.

You can while away the time in your unfurnished house watching this IKEA Shining tribute ad.

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Thursday, January 7, 2016

Trapped queen: a night at Captured Escape Rooms

Going behind lock and key to find out what the heck an escape room is.

Posted By on Thu, Jan 7, 2016 at 10:38 AM

The gluttony associated with the Holiday season is (sadly) behind us and we’ve been left scrambling for an activity to replace the mind-numbing mounds of food and booze we once indulged in. I suggest skipping the bar, rallying your buds and entering Captured Escape Rooms (1649 Barrington Street)—which opened back in December— for a new kind of race against time.

Though Captured has six different rooms to choose from, co-owner Kelsey Keddy suggests my friends and I choose Pirates’ Brig room as beginners. Keddy hands us flashlights and a walkie-talkie that we can use for two hints while in the room. She then reads us a spooky backstory relaying why we’ve been captured and leads us into the room handcuffed. The door locks, eerie music plays. With only 45 minutes on the clock, we’re quickly jolted with adrenaline. We hastily bustle around the dim room, moving the clutter and searching for keys to set ourselves free.

The room is packed with false bottoms, hidden corners and codes that may or may not contain the information or pieces you need to escape. Keddy had told us not to be afraid to literally tear the room apart. Since the space is small with clues aplenty, you have to multitask and communicate consistently with your group. Each key we find or puzzle we solve leads to another obstacle. Both the fun and the frustration lies in the seemingly never-ending riddles.

At 20 minutes in, my group has used up our hints. We shuffle around, unorganized, and as seconds melt away, Keddy slips in another hint. We come so very close to freedom, but the final riddle stumps us and we don’t escape. As disappointed (and embarrassed) as we are, Keddy assures us not many make it out. I suggest you endure the challenge.

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Thursday, December 17, 2015

The year in business: 2015's openings and closings

A look back at this year's arrivals and departures on the retail scene

Posted By on Thu, Dec 17, 2015 at 10:34 AM

Lemon Tree opened on Queen Street - PHOTO BY MELISSA BUOTE
  • Lemon Tree opened on Queen Street
  • Photo by Melissa Buote

Good on ya, Halifax. A look back at 2015’s notable retail and restaurant openings and closings reveals some really good news: our hellos doubled our goodbyes this year. Ninety-nine brand new storefronts and eateries brightened our neighbourhoods since last winter and helped lessen the blow of the 49 dearly departed local businesses. That doesn’t even include the movers and shakers that saw renovations, expansions and new locations. (Sorry, there just wasn’t room for all them.)

High-fives and back-pats all around! And if we missed something major, let us know in the comments below.


Brenton Restaurant, 5677 Brenton Place
Fantasie Music Instruments, 5512 Spring Garden Road
FYidoctors, 5523 Spring Garden Road
Hong Yun Chinese, 5677 Brenton Place
In Spring, 5518 Spring Garden Road
Lemon Tree, 1532 Queen Street
Neighbour Witch General Store, 1526 Queen Street
Project Fit, 1456 Brenton Street
Primal Kitchen , 1463 Brenton Street
Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory, 5525 Spring Garden Road
Shanti Yoga, 5508 Spring Garden Road
WaxOn, 5475 Spring Garden

The Cellar, 5677 Brenton Street
The Clothes Horse, 1532 Queen Street
Fiasco, 1463 Brenton Street
Maritime Frame-It, 5512 Spring Garden Road
MidPoint Cafe, 5425 Spring Garden Road
Mills , 5640 Spring Garden Road
Nestle Tollhouse Cafe, 5475 Spring Garden Road
Ottoman Cafe, 5411 Spring Garden Road
Rogues Roost , 5435 Spring Garden Road
Saege , 5883 Spring Garden Road
Something Elsie’s , 1528 Queen Street


Bubba Ray’s, 1717 Bedford Highway
Cintimani, Sunnyside Mall 1595 Bedford Highway
The Compass Rose Health and Wellness, Suite 200-36 Brookshire Court
Flowers of Spring, 1149 Bedford Highway
Freeman’s Pizza, 552 Sackville Drive
Purdy’s Pub, 552 Sackville Drive
Made in the Maritimes, Sunnyside Mall 1595 Bedford Highway
The Makinso, 1129 Bedford Highway
Mezza Lebanese Kitchen, 753 Sackville Drive
Spa-Dee-Da, 1175 Bedford Highway
Thai Ivory, Sunnyside Mall 1595 Bedford Highway

Goji’s Bedford, 620 Nine Mile Drive
Purdy’s Pub, 552 Sackville Drive

Long Alley Bicycles opened on Quinpool Road
  • Long Alley Bicycles opened on Quinpool Road


Burrito Jax, 287 Lacewood Drive
Courtside Sneakers, 6247 Quinpool Road
Golding Lighting, 6238 Quinpool Road
Forged in Vinyl, 6351 Quinpool Road
Fruition, 6389 Coburg Road
Happynest Antiques and Home Store, 6448 Quinpool Road
La Piazza Resto Cafe, 6430 Chebucto Road
Long Alley Bicycles, 6164A Quinpool Road
Ray’s Lebanese, 120 Susie Lake Crescent
Scallywags Barbershop, 6513 Chebucto Road
Yanjing Chinese Restaurant, 6430 Quinpool Road

Brewdebaker’s Tap & Grill, 287 Lacewood Drive
Garden of Eat’n, 6293 Quinpool Road
King’s Palace, 6140 Quinpool Road
King Wah, 6430 Quinpool Road

The Old Apothecary opened on Barrington Street - PHOTO BY MEGAN TANSEY WHITTON
  • The Old Apothecary opened on Barrington Street
  • photo by Megan Tansey Whitton


OPENED: Captured Escape Rooms,1649 Barrington Street
Canook Trading, 1669 Barrington Street
The Chameleon, 1587 Barrington Street
The Old Apothecary, 1549 Barrington Street
Pars Persian, 1261 Barrington Street
Temple Bar, 1537 Barrington Street
Urban Outfitters, 1650 Barrington Street

Ace at Bearly’s, 1269 Barrington Street
Halifax Feast,1505 Barrington Street
J&R Grimsmo, 1533 Barrington Street
Menchie’s Frozen Yogurt, 1715 Barrington Street
Night Magic, 1711 Barrington Street


Burrito Jax, 121 Ilsley Ave
Blossom Shops, 958 Cole Harbour Road
Get Air Trampoline Park, 612 Windmill Road
Goodies Thrift Store, 202 Brownlow Avenue
Heng Fung Chinese Restaurant, 179 Wyse Road
Paradise Syrian Cuisine, 171 Wyse Road
Pita Pit, 15 Cuddy Lane
Smoke’s Weinerie, 393 Pleasant Street
Spindrift, 21 Frazee Avenue
Truckside, 600 Windmill Road
Twiggz, Mic Mac Mall 21 Mic Mac Boulevard

Absolutely Delish, 635 Portland Hills Drive
Brewdebaker’s Tap & Grill, 612 Windmill Road
Eats Urban Lunch, 250 Baker Drive

Portland Street Creperie opened on Portland Street - VIA FACEBOOK
  • Portland Street Creperie opened on Portland Street
  • via Facebook


Battery Park Beer Bar, 62 Ochterloney Street
Custom Curves, 135 Portland Street
Dartmouth Yoga Centre, 122 Portland Street
Food Noise, 158A Portland Street
Humble Pie Kitchen & Lemon Dogs Lemonade, 77 King Street
il Trullo, 67 King’s Wharf Place
King’s Pier, 13 King’s Wharf Place
King Street Cafe, 65 King Street
New Scotland Emporium, 41 Portland Street
North Brewing Company, 62 Ochterloney Street
Portland Street Creperie, 55 Portland Street
ReFound Furniture, 5 Thistle Street
Sailor Bup’s Barbershop, 7 Pleasant Street
Seventy3, 73 Alderney Drive
Souper Duper, 156 Ochterloney Street

Nectar Restaurant & Wine Bar, 62 Ochterloney Drive

Black Book Collective opened on Kaye Street, but is now on Cunard - PHOTO BY LENNY MULLINS
  • Black Book Collective opened on Kaye Street, but is now on Cunard
  • photo by Lenny Mullins


24 Carrots, 3200 Kempt Road
Blackbook Collective, 5571 Cunard Street
Crossfit Ironstone, 2631 King Street
Chi Bistro, 5687 Charles Street
Dime Salon, 5525 Cornwallis Street
Good Robot Brewing Co., 2736 Robie Street
The Floatation Centre, 2631 King Street
Halifax Buy and Sell, 3081 Gottingen Street
Hali Cuts and Spa,3180 Isleville Street
Hometown Furniture, 6054 Almon Street
Hue Design, 5558 Sullivan Street
The Local, 2037 Gottingen Street
Rockhead Beer + Wine, 2651 Windsor Street
Seven Bays Bouldering, 2019 Gottingen Street
Studio East, 6021 Cunard Street
Unfiltered Brewing Co., 6041 North Street

The Carrot, 2063 Gottingen Street
Chrysalis Spa, 5521 Young Street
Formally Yours, 6029 Cunard Street
Honeybee Bridal, 2130 Gottingen Street
Nauss Bicycle Shop, 2533 Agricola Street
Pat’s Kitchen, 5530 Kaye Street
Quantum Frontier, 3132 Robie Street
Steve-O-Reno’s Drive-Thru, 2854 Robie Street
Tess, 5687 Charles Street


Alexa Pope, 1477 Lower Water Street
Basha Lebanese, 5361 Inglis Street
Beaver Sailor Diner, 1820 Hollis Street
Cass Burr Designs, 1574 Argyle Street
Dave’s Lobster, Queen’s Wharf
Dandelion Cafe, 5228 Blowers Street
East Coast Lifestyle, 1009 Marginal Road
Heartwood, Queen’s Wharf
Indian Maple,1873 Granville Street
Johnny K’s Donair, 5246 Blowers Street
Lot Six, 1685 Argyle Street
Noreaster Barber, 1574 Argyle Street
Pearl & Daisy, 1869 Upper Water Street
Shawarma Stop, 1588 Argyle Street
Stillwell Beer Garden, 1617 Lower Water Street
Tony’s Donair, 1735 Grafton Street

Blowers Street Paper Chase Cafe, 5228 Blowers Street
Boutique Joliette, 1870 Hollis Street
Canadian Bacon Cookhouse , Queen’s Wharf
Cass Burr Designs , 1574 Argyle Street
Grand Taj , 5175 South Street
Indian Maple , 1873 Granville Street
Lighthouz , 120 Troop Avenue
One More To Go Chinese , 1820 Hollis Street
Pizza Pizza, 1735 Grafton Street
Salvation Army , 5280 Green Street
Soled Out Sneakers, 1587 Dresden Row
Sushi Jet , 5171 Salter Street
Unicorn Trading Company, 1477 Lower Water Street
Vinnie’s Pasta Bar, 5361 Inglis Street

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Thursday, November 26, 2015

Wishful thinking: Wish Book starts today

A holiday pop-up shop inviting you to gift your loved ones with locally-made fancies

Posted By on Thu, Nov 26, 2015 at 12:24 AM

  • Conor Sweeney

It’s that time of year where we’re all goaded to gift, dish out some dollars and hopefully warm some hearts during the holidays, and local ladies Maggie MacCormick, Hannah and Sarah Sears are here to help.

The trio initially wanted to give local artists another platform to sell their work and thought the holiday season was the perfect time to pop-up, but they just weren’t sure where. "We saw Fred [Connors] posted that his gallery space was available,” says Hannah Sears. “He was donating it for the sake of growing small business’ and that was a huge help, so we all thought, ‘OK, we have to open a shop now and make it the best we can'."

Sears assures the space will be filled to the brim with local goodies as well as a handful of pieces from Toronto-, Montreal- and Brooklyn-based designers the gals both know and admire.

So what can browsers and buyers expect?

“Everything,” says Sears, laughing. “Everything from men’s and women’s clothes, to children’s clothes, underwear, to bedwear, jewellery both high-end and affordable, ceramics, stationery, home accessories, apothecary and a lot of outerwear. There’s something for everyone.”

Wish Book hopes to be your one-stop shop for all your gift giving and receiving needs. Each customer will be greeted with a wish list notepad where they can write down the pieces they admire, hinting to loved ones what they’d like to unwrap.

Pop-in to to the pop-up shop at FRED (2606 Agricola Street) this Thursday, November 26 for Wish Book’s launch party from 6 to 8:30pm and you’ll be complimented with booze and beats. But if you can’t make it, the shop runs Tuesday through Saturday, until December 12, so be sure to treat yourself to a merry Wishmas.

And while you're in the giving mindset, Wish Book will also be a drop-off location for The Halifax Shoebox Project.

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Sunday, November 15, 2015

Where I work: Flowers of Spring

A budding artist and entrepreneur, Yidan Li brings her handmade, nylon floral arrangements to the Bedford Highway.

Posted By on Sun, Nov 15, 2015 at 3:27 PM

Yidan Li and her floral creations - SAM KEAN
  • Yidan Li and her floral creations
  • Sam Kean

There’s no better combination than culture, talent and creativity. As a matter of fact, Yidan Li does it perfectly through her love of making traditional “tori” nylon flowers. Starting her own business, Flowers of Spring, couldn’t have been a more perfect fit for Li, who before the shop opened possessed 25 boxes of nylon fabric and a humble eagerness to share her gifts of flower making and arranging. “I liked flowers all my life. In my city there are a lot of flowers many different kinds,” explains Li, who moved from China to Canada in 2005.

Depending on the type of flower being made, the process can be different each time. To start, Li uses plastic rings that range from size one to eight. “For different flowers you use different ring sizes,” she says. “The bigger the size the more petals the flower will have.” Once she carefully crafts the petals she attaches the stem and, depending on the flower, the leaves. For the most part, everything made in Li’s boutique is one of a kind—sort of like the real thing.

You’ll find Li waiting with open arms at her bright Bedford Highway boutique, Flowers of Spring, which opened in September. Not only does she sell flowers and bouquets, but teaches her craft as well. Li holds classes there Tuesdays and Thursdays from 1 to 2:30pm or 7:30 to 9pm. But register early as this hands-on, personalized class serves only six students at a time.

Li’s husband and business partner, Russ Gaudet, jokes about franchising, but in the meantime patrons can kick back, drink Chinese tea and enjoy the art of making (or buying) nylon flowers. In the past two months the class has been well received by the public and therapeutic for students who participate. “People who come here have fun, because you are using your hands and mind,” says Li. As this newborn business continues to blossom, watch for more from one of Halifax’s most unique crafters.

Flowers of Spring
1149 Bedford Highway

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Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Noreaster Barber storms Argyle Street

Jesse Resk returns to Halifax to open a barbershop

Posted By on Wed, Oct 14, 2015 at 1:00 PM

Jesse Resk, at your service - EMMA WALLIS
  • Jesse Resk, at your service
  • Emma Wallis

Jesse Resk's appreciation for the art of barbering blossomed after being raised with a front-row seat to the action. “I always got to see him being so happy doing what he loved. You get to chat with people which is one of my favourite things to do.” says Resk of his uncle and inspiration, who’s been cutting hair for 47 years at Birmingham Street’s King’s Krown. After growing up playing in Halifax punk banks, and experimenting by cutting friends’ hair, Resk left Halifax for California in 2007, and worked barbershops both there and in Toronto over the last eight years before making the choice to move home this summer.

“I always dreamed of opening a shop like this in my home town. It’s perfect, not too small or big—and people are so supportive,” he says of his downtown shop Noreast Barber (1574 Argyle Street, Suite 5—the original location of Sailor Bup’s Barbershop), which officially opened October 1.

Noreast Barber - EMMA WALLIS
  • Noreast Barber
  • Emma Wallis

Resk keeps things traditional there, with haircuts, hot towel shaves and beard trims from his one-chair operation. “You develop a relationship with your clients. They become your friends a lot of the time,” he says of his intimate set-up. “And every one is friendly in the barber scene, it’s been nothing but positive vibes. That’s the charm of Halifax.”

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Friday, September 11, 2015

Joel Plaskett is opening a cafe/record store/barbershop

Truthfully, truthfully—it's happening

Posted By on Fri, Sep 11, 2015 at 1:42 PM

Elusive cafe owner, Joel Plaskett - VIA JOELPLASKETT.COM
  • Elusive cafe owner, Joel Plaskett
  • via joelplaskett.com

Joel Plaskett loves this town so much that he's opening his own business on Portland Street. What a meta Dartmouth moment. Soon, you'll be able to take the Dartmouth ferry into the town, and spend your pennies bumming around—at a Plaskett cafe.

Last night both Halifax Retales and allNovaScotia reported that the former location of Dartmouth second-hand clothing shop, Uptown Girl (45 Portland Street) will soon be home to a cafe, record store (more specifically Taz Records) and barbershop.

We've gotten confirmation from Plaskett's team that "it's true, but premature", so for now we'll sit back and watch the pun-times roll.

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In Print This Week

Vol 27, No 12
August 15, 2019

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