In November, the uber-chic sustainable general store Logan & Finley celebrated it’s fifth anniversary. Over the past five years, Julie Skirving has created more than just another shop on Queen Street. Customers quickly become friends and Julie is always there with a smile and sage advice on sustainable products for any occasion. I have bought everything from Christmas, to birthday, to wedding presents at this store.
I asked Julie to answer a few questions for GreeninTO followers about some of her favourite products and starting a business with environmental sustainability at its core.
WHEN DID YOU COME UP WITH THE IDEA FOR LOGAN & FINLEY? AND WAS IT ALWAYS GOING TO BE A SUSTAINABLE LIFESTYLE SHOP?
I had dreamed of having a store for about 20 years before opening Logan & Finley, but when I considered it seriously, yes, sustainable living was my direction. It’s a reflection of how I live my life and also a way to give others inspiration to take some steps themselves.
HOW DID THIS IDEA BECOME REALIZED? WAS THERE A MOMENT WHEN YOU SAID “OK, LET’S DO THIS!”?
There was a moment actually, when a series of things came together and I knew that it was time for me to put down some roots, move back home to Toronto and open up “my shop” I was living in San Francisco at the time and I was considering a few job offers, and I decided that I didn’t want to build anyone else’s brand – I wanted to build my own. So I made a plan and Logan & Finley began.
WHICH TWO ITEMS FROM YOUR STORE WOULD YOU RECOMMEND TO SOMEONE WHO IS JUST LEARNING ABOUT ENVIRONMENTALLY SUSTAINABLE CONSUMERISM? AND WHY?
It’s hard to narrow it down to two, since I am passionate about so many, but Abeego would have to be one, since it’s product I use personally every day and share my enthusiasm with customers everyday. It’s a reusable wrap, that’s made in Canada & helps to keep your food fresh.
And since we specialize in clothing, I would have to also include the Miik blazer. It’s a bamboo blazer that’s made here in Toronto and it looks great on everyone and is an essential piece to a minimalist professional wardrobe.
AS A SUCCESSFUL ENTREPRENEUR AND SHOP OWNER, WHAT PIECE(S) OF ADVICE DO YOU HAVE FOR BUDDING ENTREPRENEURS?
“Go confidently in the direction of your dreams” I’m sharing this from Thoreau of course, but it’s important because being an entrepreneur is not easy and you have to have the plan, the passion and the persistence to be able to navigate all the unblazed trails that come with building a business.
I would recommend following Logan & Finley on Instagram. In addition to selling eco-friendly products, Julie hosts a variety of informative events at the store. She is truly an eco-trailblazer!
Amazing work, Julie, and good luck on the next five years!