Shoplisted: Ula Zukowska’s Y5 in Yorkville

The black sequins make this polka dot number party perfect.

Ula’s cropped jackets tie in this fall’s hot structured shoulder trend.

While dodging rainstorms in Toronto’s Yorkville neighborhood this weekend I rediscovered designer Ula Zukowska‘s shop, Y5 (5 Yorkville Avenue). And what a lovely discovery it was! Ula has been a fashion powerhouse in Canada since the 1990’s, and still appears on the runway at Toronto’s LG Fashion Week.

One look at Ula’s runway shows and it’s clear her designs are aimed at an independent-minded, daring fashionista. Ula gets lots of publicity for weaving architecture (something she has a master’s degree in) throughout her designs. She balances this approach nicely with feminine volumes and to-die-for fabrics. It doesn’t always mesh with whatever else is on the runway, but is it fashionable? You bet. (Actually, Ula is spot on right now. Check out the shoulders on those black jackets – perfectly in line with fall’s structured shoulder trend.)

I found a sweet little number of red and polka dots matched with black sequins. The polka dot fabric has a dreamy gold hue to it. Just my luck, this perfect party dress was even on sale! Y5’s accessories include an impressively tight collection of jewellery, belts and bags (I bought an 80’s-inspired green belt right off a mannequin.)

Hint: Hop across the street for coffee and crepes served on the sidewalk patio at Crepes a Go Go. It’s the perfect $10 lunch – so if your shopping wasn’t recession-friendly at least your lunch can be.