The one-stop in Los Angeles where you’ll be sure to bump into celebrities is the popular Kitson store on Robertson Boulevard. However, Kitson’s roots are actually Canadian. Owner Fraser Kitson Ross originally opened Ice Boutique (613 Cumberland Avenue) in Toronto’s trendy Yorkville area near the Four Season’s hotel in 1989. As I remember, Ice was a small store overflowing with the latest accessories, clothing, and cosmetics. Whenever I was searching for the most unique gifts Ice never failed in its selection. Therefore, in 2004 when Ice closed its doors and Ross decided to concentrate on Kitson I was a bit sad to say the least. Gone were their bright pink shopping bags with black writing and instead replaced with their signature blue bags (however only available in L.A at Kitson). Obviously, Ross’ decision to move south proved to be a success. Kitson is available online (http://www.shopkitson.com/) and has recently expanded its LA location to include Kitson Kids (across the street), Kitson Men (down the street), and luxury stocked Kitson Studio (next door).
"People come to us now expecting us to have the hottest new things," he says over lunch at Chaya Brasserie, another "it" restaurant for film and TV types, just around the corner from his store. "See this," he says, picking up the rather ordinary white plate from the table. "If I sold it, it would be trendy just because it's from Kitson. You're either a leader or a follower when it comes to setting style. I guess I'm a leader." (May 2005 issue of Canadian Business magazine)
Ross is not only a smart business owner but he has also developed customer relationships with his high profile celebrities. Alas, if ever in the Los Angeles area and want to run into a celebrity, Kitson is a good place to check out. But, for those less interested in star gazing and want a taste of Kitson, a few times a year they head back to Hollywood North and have a liquidation sale.
ICE Boutique Sale at The Church of the Redeemer
162 Bloor Street West
Toronto, ON(Avenue Road & Bloor St W)
MAY 23 & JUNE 13
MAY 24 & JUNE 1410am-5pm