The Heart of Barrie is a small paper about the downtown of Barrie Ontario (where my shop is) Recently an wonderful article written by Erin Corcoran was featured about Le Petit Chapeau. Below is the entire article because it is just full of such kind words and I really appreciate the support. Erin Corcoran is a real estate agent with Remax in Barrie and also writes, et al, for Simcoe County Shop Local. Check her out at http://www.ericocrcoran.ca
Le Petit Chapeau
Walking into Le Petit Chapeau, I instantly feel the urge to travel to Paris and stroll its streets: taking in the sights and sounds of the city, inhaling the delicious smell of fresh baguettes and stopping at a small outdoor café to enjoy an espresso, all the while watching fashionable Parisians go by,wearing ‘fascinators.’ Fascinators? You may ask. If you don’t know what they are, you will after visiting Le Petit Chapeau!
I discovered Le Petit Chapeau because I needed a fascinator for an event. A quick Google search for hat shops in Barrie brought me to their door. I stopped in and quickly realized this store is much more than just hats! It’s a trip down memory lane, where you can buy vintage tea cups, lace gloves, men’s cufflinks, or handmade soaps that are all natural and smell absolutely heavenly!
Many items in Le Petit Chapeau are created in store by owner Meaghan Armstrong and her apprentice Sara Czech, including hats, gloves, stationary and bath and beauty products. The shop also houses a collection of vintage items such as jewellery, accessories, negligees and robes.
Meaghan believes in the importance of community and supporting local business, so the shop also features products by local artisans. You will find paper Eiffel towers by eco-artist Lisa Brunetta and jewellery lines by Loved and Jill Price. On one visit, I bought a beautiful pair of decorative hair pins for my mother, crafted by Jill from glass and bits of paintings and fabric from her mixed media art. Le Petit Chapeau is located across from Heritage Park on Simcoe Street in the Lakeshore Mews. The store faces the lake and , on warm spring days when the wind blows through the open shop windows and the wind chimes sing outside, it makes me feel like I really am in a little shop in Paris.
Meaghan is one of the most knowledgeable shop owners I’ve ever met. She’s an incredible woman whose passion makes your shopping experience so much more enjoyable. For example, she sells Le Petit Perfume – oil based, preservative -free perfumes, handmade in small batches. I knew nothing of how scents are composed – just what I liked and what I didn’t like- but Meaghan taught me about low notes, medium notes and high notes, and helped me find a scent that suited my tastes and my chemistry. The perfumes come in small roll on applicators; it’s fun to mix and match the different scents, which include rose, lily of the valley, jasmine, cherry blossom and even maple bacon!
Le Petit Chapeau is online at http://www.littlehatshop..com where you can follow their blog, sign up for hat-making classes, order a custom creation or shop their collection. Meaghan’s hats have traveled the world, being ordered from locations such as New York, Luxembourg and New Zealand.
You can also keep up to date on their latest creations by following them Instagram http://www.instagram.com/littlehatshop, Pinterest http://pinterest.com/tinychapeau and Facebook http://facebook.com/le-petit-chapeau-handmade-millinery . For serious shoppers they even have their own app! And, if you’ve visited the shop and are a fan like me, I recommend leaving a review for them on TripAdvisor to help new customers find the store when visiting Barrie.
Like Meaghan, I’m a big fan of supporting our community, and one of the ways I contribute is by creating Simcoe County Shop Local videos, which feature local businesses. After meeting with Meaghan I was inspired to feature Le Petit Chapeau in an episode, to help you understand why I LOVE her store so much. You can find the video on my YouTube channel by searching “Simcoe County Shop Local” or my name “Erin Corcoran”
Le Petit Chapeau is much more than just a store: it’s a complete experience that draws you in and keeps you wanting more.
(I apologize for the quality of this photo. It is a shot of the page of the magazine. -Meaghan)
Thanks again for the kind words!
Heart of Barrie, Seventh Edition