Franke 920 Queen West, 416-588-8581
Born into a family of tailors and seamstresses, it-girl Kendra Francis was drawn to the sewing machine at age 13 when her 5-foot-11 frame posed a major shopping problem. After a successful career modelling in the 90s, she returned to Toronto from New York to launch her signature line, Franke (Fran from Francis, Ke from Kendra), then proceeded to open a west-of-Queen-West boutique in 2002. Over the years, the line has evolved from club staples to sophisticated after-5 pieces, and her dedicated clientele prefer it that way. The boutique, which features the pristine Touch Beauty Bungalow spa in the basement - and Nicole LeBlanc 's ultra-soothing esthetics services - is a girl's best pit stop. Where else can you get your body and your wardrobe overhauled in one shot? The atmosphere is lively, thanks to Kendra's easy charm and her sweet, well-behaved Maltese, Louis. Book an appointment for Friday night, when a manicure-and-martini special will only set you back $30.
Francis' Picks : Floral chiffon and linen cocktail dress, made to order, $765; Terme Di Salsomaggiore thermal water and orange flower mist, $65; and taffeta pleated mini-skirt, $150.
Look for : Diaphanous chiffon dresses, LeBlanc's killer pedicures and the ultimate must-have, the shoulder-skimming capelet.
Hours : Monday and Tuesday by appointment, Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday noon to 6 pm, Friday noon to 7 pm or later, Sunday noon to 5 pm.