"You're going to Iceland? For NOW?? That's SO not local."[rssbreak]
So goes the response I've been receiving lately upon sharing my mid-week travel plans to Reykjavik and the land of the midnight sun. The confusion is understandable.
I am indeed off to Iceland today on the dime of the vodka distilling folks at Reyka and their friends at Icelandair. The tie-in to my Toronto-centric style beat? Does "You (who most likely live in Toronto) might be inspired by my trip to visit Iceland too" suffice? The Reykjavik tourism folks sure hope so.
After researching Reykjavik's fashion and design scene (try Icelanddesign.is or Grapevine.is for some independent Iceland study) to prep for the junket, I'm actually surprised by how many parallels there are between our two towns design-wise (don't tell Winnipeg, Reykjavik's official Canadian twin city).
Take the Snagar, horn-shaped coat hooks and Brennivin wine cozies knit to look like traditional Icelandic sweaters at Kraum. They instantly remind me of the Toronto designers who twist classic Canadiana and native, natural materials that sell at MADE, Distill and The Souvenir Shop. A Farmer's Market pullover with its intricately knit yoke is as authentically outdoorsy as a striped Hudson's Bay coat.
It's worth the trip to scope indie label names like Skaparinn, Ostwald Helgason and Nakti Apinn that are hard to pronounce but increasingly easy to find in international boutiques (Skaparinn is sold at Basia on Dupont). For a country with a population that just tops 300,000, its long designer roster is quite impressive.
So have I convinced you that I'm on assignment for more than just a free trip to the edge of the Arctic Circle. Probably not but I promise NOW Daily reports through Monday and as many geyser shots as our camera's memory card can muster.