Men’s Boots: What’s keeping us warm (and dry)?

2 Mar

There are a few different survival skills you pick up living in Toronto through the winter. While we are avid fans of spending the night curled up in a warm blanket with a great book, we also don’t think a silly thing like winter weather should stand in the way of you and your plans to go out! That’s why we believe in mastering the art of dressing to stay dry and warm so that you can spend more time outside of your home, truly enjoying our wonderful northern winters!

A key part of surviving a winter like the ones we get up here is proper attire: if you don’t dress the part, you’re not gonna make it in these parts! They say that we humans gain/lose most of our body heat through our extremities – that is, our heads, hands, and feet – so, keeping those parts warm is rule number one for making the most of these cold months!

We’ve shared some of our favourite outerwear looks for men before, so today we’re adding to the list some wise and wonderful footwear choices for snowy, wet northern winters.

1. Sorels

Sorel is a no-brainer in the winter footwear world. Built for a range of temperatures and in lots of different styles, chances are there is a Sorel that will fit your lifestyle perfectly. We like the classic, rugged look as much as we like the waterproof construction.



2. Tretorn Abisko

Tretorn has been making great boots inspired by the Swedish climate and landscape since 1891. From sneakers to rain boots to waterproof leather winter boots, they have produced a wonderful marriage of practicality and design.


3. The North Face Ballard 6”

You might know North Face more for their waterproof rain or winter jackets, but don’t doubt that their shoes are just as winter-ready as their outerwear. The Ballard 6” Camel Browns are some of the nicest waterproof, but not-your-typical-snow-boot boots we’ve come across this year!



4. Blundstones

This Australian brand has been around a long time – since 1870, to be exact. So, there must be something pretty durable about them, right? Glance around the streets of Toronto and you’ll see plenty of Blundstones, especially now that they have a boot fit for our winters. “The Winter” is a classic Blundstone boot with a northern twist and its sheepskin sole makes it oh so cozy.

There you have it! Our four top picks for staying active and staying outdoors during the cold seasons we spend a lot of time in, here in the Greater Toronto Area! We hope it inspires you to make the most of what remains of winter, even as much as we are looking forward to spring.

Hey, Torontonians! If you got a little ambitious and tried to wear your Uggs out in the snow, we can clean your Uggs and get them ready for those cold, but dry, days!

Valentine’s Themed Wedding

17 Feb

Just when we were needing a little bit of inspiration and romance to come our way, January ended and February began, bringing with it one of our favourite excuses to celebrate: Valentine’s Day!

Now, some people are a little contentious on the subject, but not us! Whether you used it as a reason to go on that easily put-off date night with your partner, stayed in with the girls and watched movies, or made yourself a delicious meal and read your favourite novel, we don’t mind – there are so many variations of love out in the world; it would be a shame to think February 14th is only meant to celebrate one kind!

And as we found ourselves surrounded by all kinds of pins and posts about how people celebrated Valentine’s Day last weekend we thought we should find a way to bring these ideas into another celebration of love: weddings! Here are some love-themed décor inspirations we think would be perfect at a wedding.

Totally modern, geometric heart menus


Green Wedding Shoes (Pst! This entire heart themed wedding shoot is gorgeous)

Heart backdrop – perfect for a photo booth!



Origami heart place cards (or invites!)



Chocolate! (Ok, it’s not Valentine’s themed exclusively, but it’s still on the list!)

100 Layer Cake

Rose garland


Apartment Therapy

Love letter cookies

love letters-0387.jpg

Dreambook Design

A sweet signature drink!


Sainsbury Magazine

Now, we’ve noticed that Valentine’s themed weddings are extra sweet, but did you know that sugar is one of the worst kinds of wedding dress stains? You might not even realize that you spilled some frosting, but as time goes on, those stains will start to discolour. Of course, we’re not suggesting that you skip on the sugar, just that you make sure you bring your wedding dress to us for a cleaning. We specialize in wedding gown cleaning and preservation in the GTA.

Parkers and the History of Dry Cleaning in Toronto

3 Feb

Hello there! If this is your first time visiting our blog, welcome; if you are a regular, welcome back!

We thought it would be a good idea to start off the new year by briefly re-introducing ourselves. For those who may be new to the Parkers blog or to Parkers Custom Clothing Care in general, it’s a chance for us to say hello, share who we are and where we have come from. For those who are familiar with our company and what we do, well, maybe you’ll discover something new!

Our current York Mills location

Of course you already know that Parkers is dependable, environmentally friendly, and always striving to be the best dry cleaning business in the Greater Toronto area! But do you know how it all started?

Robert Parker, our founder, emigrated from England to Canada in 1876 and upon relocating to Ottawa, purchased an old church with his sons where R. Parker Dyeing and Scouring Works was born. As dry-cleaning had not been invented yet, all items were washed in this old church, until 1903 when a brand new 3-storey building was constructed. Here, the main order of business was dyeing ostrich feathers and cleaning gloves – however, there was one room, fire-proofed for the new technique dry cleaning.

Dry cleaning was a bit different back then! The room had to be fire-proofed as the garments were brushed with benzene – a very flammable liquid – and then hung up to air dry.


With the arrival of WWI, Parkers received government contracts to dye khaki duffle bags (remember, we also used to be a dyeing house!), as well as dry cleaning. By then, in 1930, dry cleaning was done with a petroleum-based solvent. It wasn’t until after the war, and after the dry-cleaning business began to decrease, that Parkers began to use a new synthetic, non-flammable solvent.

Parker’s Dye Works & Cleaners Ltd was established in 1951 and has passed through a few hands since then! Parkers as you know it today was purchased from Canadian Corporate Management Co. Ltd in 1977 and now stands as one of the oldest dry cleaning businesses in Canada.

Since our very start, we have been at the forefront of our industry and interested in how we can keep improving what we do! We have come a long way from brushing garments with flammable liquids to boasting top of the line, environmentally friendly clothing and home textile care methods.

Home Textiles: What’s Keeping Us Warm?

30 Jan

You’ve made it through January. Congratulations! Unfortunately, the weather lately has reminded that there is still a whole lot more winter left. Sorry about that. For us, the holiday season feels like the peak of our winter… but we quickly realize that after the New Year’s (sparkly) dust has settled, there is still so much winter left to go!

Thank goodness we Torontonians are used to this sort of thing! Bundling up is second nature to us, both indoors and outdoors. We’ve shared posts in the past on how we like to stay warm outside (scarves, knits, and outerwear), so we thought it was time to share our favourite ways to keep warm inside!

We’re talking about blankets! The height of comfy coziness on a cold winter’s eve is the blanket. Whether a big fluffy faux fur throw, a knitted afghan, or a beautiful quilt, there is just nothing that says “home” quite like wrapping yourself up in your favourite blanket.

Some of our coziest blankets this year have been:

1. (Faux) fur throws



West Elm

2. BIG knits




3. Plaid, plaid, flannel and plaid

Design Sponge



Hudson Interior Designs


4. Woven wonders


Interiors from the Attic


Urban Outfitters

Moroccan Tribal

And while we’re talking about it already, do you mind if we ask: how often do you clean those throw blankets? Not surprisingly, blankets, coverlets, throws and the like are some of the most forgotten should-be-cleaned-regularly items in a household! Why not start the year off on a good foot and give your blankets a bit of TLC? Bring them in to us to be professionally cleaned, and we will give them back to you packaged nicely in a breathable bag – perfect for storage once we get through the rest of these cold snaps!

Variety at the Golden Globes 2015

23 Jan

Who else out there watched the Golden Globes a couple Sundays ago? We look forward to this and the Academy Awards every year, both as avid lovers of creative film and television, but also keen fans of fashion. This year, we were thrilled to see just how much variety there was walking down the red carpet! Pantsuits, crop tops, oversized jackets, velvet dresses and suits, sparkles on dresses and suits, dresses with one strap, two straps and even strapless all found their 15 seconds in the limelight.

While beautiful gowns are always fun to look at, we thought it was so refreshing to see men and women alike dressed in ways that just seemed to fit – and we don’t mean just by excellent tailoring! We kept finding ourselves exclaiming things like, “Yes!”, “Perfect!”, “Those colours!”, “That dress!”, or “I can’t get enough of all this velvet!” over and over, and over again.

As clothing-care specialists in Toronto, there will always be a special place in our hearts for great wardrobes (which we always find at awards shows), but what we love the most is when people are comfortable enough in their own skin to not only wear what they want, but to be who they want. There seemed to be this common thread woven through the night, one that celebrated differences, embraced commonalities and applauded those who stood firm in both.

We love it when clothes aren’t just clothes.

What were some of your favorite looks this year? Some of ours were:

US Weekly



US Weekly

And a very special mention to one of our favorite moments of the whole show…

The Kansas City Star

What were your thoughts? Tweet us your favorite parts, wardrobe or not, of this years Golden Globe Awards: @ParkersCleaners.