January 30, 2017

behind our Queen Street space: Sixteen Degree Studio

There's so much magic that lives in a space, and we love stepping back and admiring all the beauty in the details. At bluboho we want our spaces to be unique, inviting and feel like home! We got to chat with Kelly Smith and Stephanie Vermeulen from Sixteen Degree Studio, the gals who helped bring our third shop on Queen Street West come to life...

How Sixteen Degree Studio start?

"We met eight years ago while working at an established Toronto architecture firm. Not only did we find ourselves very compatible on a professional level, but we also travelled together and became close friends. A couple of years ago we saw an opportunity to start our own firm together and haven’t looked back."

What was Sixteen Degrees vision/inspiration for bluboho? 

"The space itself had great bones – the exposed brick and high ceilings already gave it a lot of character. We designed three pieces of custom display cabinetry to add a crisp clean contrast to the textured brick and natural oak flooring. The display cabinets are intentionally spaced with some room between them, to allow customers to slowly explore the jewellery without becoming overwhelmed. The areas in between are just as important as the area with product. In a way it works like a gallery. Featured pendant lighting hangs lower in three different areas to introduce a more intimate, almost residential scale within the large character filled space."


What's your favourite part of the bluboho space?

"We’re really happy with how the cash desk turned out. It becomes a destination at the end of the space: A simple white Corian box with a glowing oak jewellery case notched out of one corner. On the back side it is a wonder of organization for wrapping paper, boxes and transaction tools, while the front is smooth and luxurious. It was a true collaboration with our favourite millworkers, Gibson Greenwood."


If you could describe your aesthetic in a few words, what would it be?

"Contemporary yet timeless with a little playfulness."


Where did the name Sixteen Degree Studio come from?

"Our name refers to the Toronto city grid which is rotated 16 degrees off of true North. This comes up often in the practice of architecture because buildings are always intertwined with their site which is affected by the path of the sun and predominate winds."

What's the most exciting part when working on a project?

"We love the beginning and the end – getting to know our clients and putting the first ideas to paper – and returning to the space a few months after the client has started using it and really made it their own."

Do you have any exciting upcoming projects that you guys are working on?

"Construction is nearly complete for two projects at Trail Estate Winery, a forward thinking, design focused winery in Prince Edward County. We’ve also started working with a Toronto private school to refresh one of their campuses and we’re working on an addition/renovation to a mid-century house in Don Mills."


Till next Monday,


Written By Affan Imran
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