Today, Toronto-based Roots turns 40 years old. Interestingly, it just opened its 100th store in Asia. It will celebrate its birthday in its flagship Toronto store, which it will eventually close.
For those unfamiliar, Roots is a “lifestyle brand” known for its leathergoods, athletic apparel and natural fiber clothing. It has 125 stores in Canada and the United States, as well as stores in Asia. It has furnished Canadian Olympic athletes.
The Toronto flagship store (100 Bloor Street West) will include an exhibit of the history of Roots. The original “negative heel shoe“, with which the brand got started, will be launched again and sold nation-wide. A leather jacket made in collaboration with Smythe will be sold. Also, a commemorative coffee table book called Roots: 40 Years of Style will be launched.
At the same time, the 15,000 square foot flagship Roots store at 100 Bloor will be closing, with a 1,700 square foot replacement store set to open up the street. The landlord has raised rents at 100 Bloor, making the future of neighbouring retailers uncertain. We’re not sure if Roots will open a new flagship in the Yorkville area, though rumour has it Roots could open in a renovated Hazelton Lanes.