So to kick off our new series about bricks & mortar stores we talk to co-founder Emily Dyer of ‘Advice From A Caterpillar’ – a children’s lifestyle store based in Toronto, Canada. The store opened in 2010 with brands from Europe that weren’t easily available at the time.

Advice from a caterpillar family photo
Emily and Elizabeth Dyer, founders of Advice From A Caterpillar.

When did you open ‘Advice from a caterpillar’ ?
In 2008, my first daughter, Penelope, was born and my family dived head first into the children’s universe. We started paying attention to this world that had been growing steadily with creative designers and new innovative approaches to children’s products. Together with my sister, Elizabeth, and mother, Susan, we decided to open a concept shop for modern families. We searched for a place off the beaten track and we opened in the spring of 2010.

Is it just you or do you have a business partner?
We have a partnership with my mom, Susan, and my sister, Elizabeth.

How did the idea come to you and what were you doing before ‘Advice from a caterpillar’ ?
The idea came when I would look online at international brands and realize that so many of these collections were not presented in Toronto in the way that they were in Europe.  Before our shop, I worked in consumer public relations in house and then agency side. I had always been drawn to making connections. 

How many brands do you carry?
We carry over 50 brands of clothing, toys, decor, books, and baby necessities. We also have an in-store vintage selection that we will be making available online this summer.

What trade shows did you visit? Which brands did you develop a crush on?
We visited Pitti Bimbo and Playtime before we opened. We had so many crushes! Bonton, Album di Famiglia, and Makie definitely stole our hearts.

Did you find everything you were looking for at the trade shows ?
We found so many exciting brands –  we loved the hand drawn prints and wooden toys. We wished we had a 3 floor shop! We found everything we were looking for (and more, honestly) and it was our goal to bring them all together under one roof in Toronto. We love the story component to our selections where we curate the objects that we think our clients will find amusing, beautiful and useful.

Advice from a Caterpillar -store Toronto

Advice from a Caterpillar -store Toronto

Advice from a Caterpillar -store Toronto

Bonton sandals
Finger in the nose.
Stella McCartney Kids



Advice From A Caterpillar
a lifestyle store for children ages newborn to eight.
8 Price Street, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, m4w 1z4
Hours:  Monday to Saturday 10am – 6pm

In the heart of the city, just off the beaten path, lies Advice from a Caterpillar, a curious and curiouser place devoted to enchantment of childhood. Featuring exclusive collections curated from around the world in a blend of style and eras, Advice from a Caterpillar is inspiration for the modern family.

Customers will be well rewarded by the collection of unique, new and vintage children’s clothing, furniture, toys, books, lifestyle accessories and baby necessities with many collections being introduced to Canada for the first time.

And as the name implies you’ll also find “advice”.