Happy anniversary, JR+LP! The retail amalgam of downtown entities Johnny Ruth & Living Planet are celebrating their co-existence at 181 Water Street with two milestones this year: 10 years for Johnny Ruth and 15 years for Living Planet.

Johnny Ruth is co-owned by Dave Hopley and Kim Winsor, and Windsor says she is happy to be finally nesting at their current location at 181 Water Street. “Although it is approaching five years in this new space, and the merger of both our companies, it is really beginning to feel like home,” says Winsor.

One possible reason the location snatched the “Best Retail Store” title: it’s pretty much everybody’s go-to spot for everybody else’s birthday/holiday gifts. Fun office stuff? Adult colouring books? Design-oriented curiosities for every room in the house? They’ve got it.

JR+LP also has the city’s widest array of silkscreened t-shirts, designed by local artists, as well as housewares, jewelry, denim, scarves, hats, and mitts.

Our silkscreened designs (in collaboration with Living Planet Studio’s new owner, Mark Adams) have always been a favourite for tourists and locals alike,” says Winsor. “In the past year, we have expanded more into silk-screened housewares (pillows, tea towels) and we are hard at work looking for and developing new designs.”

“We are known for our Canadian fashions,” says Winsor. For the fashion-conscious, there’s Dagg & Stacey, Comrags, Melow, Olena Zylak, Anne Marie Chagnon, Kollontai, and more.

JR+LP also stocks Yoga Jeans, the made-in-Montreal ethical-working-conditions-assured leggings. They’re a combination of brushed cotton (97%) and elastane (3%), which makes the jeans stretchy enough to bust out a hanumanasana, while still hugging your butt in a pleasing manner.

Winsor says that it has been a great year for many downtown businesses. “Never before have we seen and felt such support – especially regarding the downtown development ‘Big Dig’…” says Winsor. “We are SO looking forward to the improvements to the downtown infrastructure and the redesign of Water Street.”

“I have been working downtown since the age of 17, and I LOOOOOVE the camaraderie amongst the downtown shops.”

Photos by Joel Upshall for The Overcast

Photos by Joel Upshall for The Overcast