THE SANDALMAN 621 Delaware, 416-533-6335, sandalman.com
It's hard to resist a city full of new fall buys, but a smart shopper will take stock of her closet before rushing out for some retail therapy. If you stumble upon some oldie but goodie (and still stylish) leather pieces that could use a little lovin', the Sandalman is the go-to spot for repairs and refurbishing.
Cory Bernatt started making custom sandals at Harbord and Bathurst (two pairs can now be found in the Bata Shoe Museum collection), but as his business hopped to Avenue and Davenport and now Ossington and Davenport, he refocused on fixing up jackets, handbags and furniture. Re-working a favourite vintage jacket can mean a substantial investment, but customers don't mind breaking the bank if it breathes new life into a dried-out piece.
To combat that dryness and keep leather in tip-top shape, Bernatt prescribes a mix of oils and lotions for annual at-home touch-ups.
Photo By Kathryn Gaitens
Sandalman picks: Reconditioning a jacket involves deep and surface moisturizing, $125 to $150; replacing a quality purse zipper starts at $50; customers e-mail Bernatt digital photos of sad leather sofas and he makes house calls to perk them up, starting from $250.
Look for: Custom-made belts starting at $50. Bring your own buckle or pick from boxes of brass options or oversized novelty fasteners.
Hours: Tuesday to Friday 11 am to 6 pm, Saturday 11 am to 5 pm.