Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Rooftop Gardening

I posted this laneway conversion from Croft St in 2010 (click HERE to see it) when we were in the midst of summer. This new pic taken a couple of weeks ago gives you an idea of how dull winter can become in comparison. The greenhouse looked to be empty but I wouldn't be surprised that there are some seedlings started up there now. Wouldn't it be nice to have a garden on the roof!

Monday, March 30, 2015

Colour and Texture

I spotted this mural by the artist Birdo, aka Jerry Rugg, on the side of a building on College St near Kensington Market. Birdo is known for his bright colours and wonderful textures in his work and the subjects are mostly animals. This one seems to be some kind of deconstructed creature but you can certainly see his style at its best.
Taking part in Monday Murals. Click HERE for more murals from around the world.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

50s Church

This is Our Lady Help of Christians, Slovenian, a Catholic church located downtown that was built by the Slovenian community in 1954. It has such lovely proportions and I really like that spire that seems so 50s-like in style. Sorry about all the wires but they are everywhere!
Taking part in Inspired Sunday. Click HERE to see more religious buildings from around the world.

Saturday, March 28, 2015


When I was at the AGO (Art Gallery of Ontario) to the Basquiat show I took this shot from under the Frank Gehry staircase, looking up through the middle. I had shown you the wonderful staircase a couple of years ago HERE.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Silver Building

The red brick building in this shot was built on King St W in 1882 for the Toronto Silver Plate Company and the silverplating operations continued here for many years under various names. It was then used for various commercial operations and was given heritage designation in 2010. The building and the properties around it were purchased for the Fashion House Condos a few years ago and the Silver Building was totally restored and incorporated into the complex with its main floor being occupied by a restaurant. It always had good bones but now it looks beautiful after all the work done on it and the glass condos frame it nicely.

Thursday, March 26, 2015


This is a common sight in the older areas of Toronto where you will find a new modern house built in the middle of much older homes. I'm not sure if this was a total rebuild or just an extensive renovation but it works for me. The pic was taken a few weeks ago when we still had snow.
I like their fence and am taking part in Good Fences. Click HERE to see more fences from around the world.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

"Think About Life"

The Art Gallery Of Ontario (AGO) has a major show on now of the works of Jean-Michel Basquiat (click HERE for info). Unfortunately there was no photography allowed but I quite liked this banner at the entrance. I need to go back for another viewing to make up my mind about his work.
Taking part in Signs, Signs. Click HERE for more signs from around the world.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Blast From The Past

I go by this corner store fairly often and always look at it and wonder what it is like inside. The outside seems as if it could be from the 40s and all the old features and signs are still there. I'll have to go in one day. Our snow is all gone now.

Monday, March 23, 2015


This is the mural that was in the reflection, that I showed you on Friday, in the door of the Corten steel house from Thursday. It is directly beside the Green Man mural from last Monday and gives you an idea of the view from the door of the house. I have no idea who the artist is, possibly Muha but could find no info.
Taking part in Monday Murals. Click HERE for more murals from around the world. 

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Rural No More

This is St Stephen-in-the-Fields Anglican church, so named because when it was first built in 1858 it was in the countryside well outside the city. Now it is in the middle of the city in Kensington Market, as the city has grown up around it. The Gothic Revival building burned in 1865 and had to be rebuilt and today with a very small congregation, the building has been split in half with one part used for worship and the other half used for church and community services. This church is very well-known for its outreach programs for the homeless and many other worthy activities. It is hard to catch a shot of it with all the trees, even in winter.
Taking part in Inspired Sunday. Click HERE to see more religious buildings from around the world.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Turtle Plus Friends

This giant turtle figure can be found in a local park near a pond which has a bit of running water dropping into it, keeping a small patch of open water for the ducks all winter. Everyone seemed to be enjoying the sun when I passed by a week ago.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Across The Lane

I took this shot of the reflection on the door of yesterday's laneway house to give you an idea of how narrow the laneway is and also what part of the view from the house is. Of course you can also see me bundled up for the cold and since I had been wandering for about 2 hours by this time I was a wee bit chilly! I'll show you the mural on Monday. It looks like there is a bit of wiring to finish on the house.
Taking part in Weekend Reflections. Click HERE to see reflections from around the world.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Laneway House

This is a relatively new laneway house that has been built along the Croft St laneway and since I love Corten steel I was pleased to see it. It looks like there are a few loose ends to finish but other than that it is done. It was hard to get back far enough in the narrow laneway for a better view. It is actually just across from the mural I showed you on Monday.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Lost Rivers

This painting on a garage door along Croft St shows a stylized map of Toronto and its harbour with the Toronto Islands at the bottom. The Islands became separated from the mainland in 1858 when a very violent storm washed out that very narrow connection to the right so this depiction is from before then. The rivers and creeks shown are the Humber River on the left and the Don River on the right, both of which are still visible. The other creeks and streams have all been buried under city pavement and infrastructure over the years although there is a move afoot to try to uncover at least part of them. The little White Pelican at the bottom left is also no longer here.
Taking part in Signs, Signs. Click HERE to see more signs from around the world.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Little Blue Door

While wandering along Croft St laneway I spotted this small blue door which is actually just above 5 feet tall but looks like it is used judging by the snow in front of it. Cute isn't it?

Happy St Patrick's Day to everyone. I should have had a green door!

Monday, March 16, 2015

Green Mural

I'm back on Croft St which is really a laneway lined mostly with garages but also with interesting laneway houses sprinkled in amongst them. I love this mural which looks like nature and its garden - really looks like Father Nature rather than Mother don't you think? It is painted on one of the garages across from a house I will show you later this week.
Taking part in Monday Murals. Click HERE to see more murals from around the world.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Small Church

There are so many grand churches around that when you come upon a small one it is a bit of a surprise. This is one of the smallest I have seen but its size and simplicity fit quite well into the residential street where it is located. It now houses the Hungarian Reformed Evangelical Christian Church but I would guess that it belonged to different congregation when built in the early 1900s.
Taking part in Inspired Sunday. Click HERE for more religious buildings from around the world.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Laneway Revisited

I first posted this laneway house back in 2010 (click HERE) and went by recently to see how it is doing. It looks great, the trees have grown, and it looks as if they have added a roof-top deck which must have super views of downtown. I'll be posting a few more shots of things I found along this lane, which is called Croft St, sprinkled about in the next week's posts.

Friday, March 13, 2015

Grand Ladies In The Snow

When I was walking to see yesterday's fence I passed this row of grand old Victorian homes and thought they looked quite nice in the snow and it is hard to get a good view of them when the trees have their leaves. I like that the owners have coordinated the colour scheme of the three row houses in the middle.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Cool Fence

I saw a real estate listing for this semi-detached house and the fence looked intriguing and the temperature had gone up to -5˚C so I headed out to see it for myself. I loved the fence - each upright had been individually formed, probably by a blacksmith and the whole structure was quite lovely. The pics of the interior on the listing looked fabulous too - I could gladly move in but it sold quickly for way over $1 million!
Taking part in Good Fences. Click HERE to see more fences from around the world.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Rock On Revisited

I showed you this Guitar in daylight 2 weeks ago (click HERE) and went back one very cold night to catch it in the dark. The guitar guy really looks like a real person in this light!
Taking part in Signs, Signs. Click HERE for more signs from around the world.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Through the Tunnel

Not really a tunnel but actually a walkway through University College from the inner quadrangle to the outside of the building, there is a certain feel of mystery to it don't you think. University College is the oldest college at U of Toronto and arguably the most beautiful too! You can click on the label below to see more pics of it.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Just Ducky!

This quite stylized Mallard Duck appeared recently on a local garage door. It certainly brightens what was a dull corner in the laneway!
Taking part in Monday Murals. Click HERE to see more murals from around the world.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Snowy Lace

In the middle of a recent snowfall this entrance canopy became a delightful example of nature as an artist. A couple of hours later the snow had all fallen off.

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Silos Now

This is what yesterday's silos looked like a week ago. Not much is left of this landmark from the Junction as industries continue to leave the valuable properties that they occupy to be turned into condos, etc. It was rather interesting to watch the demolition proceeding and I wonder what the squirrels, whose nests are visible in the tree to the right, think of it all. Another bit of industrial history gone.

Friday, March 6, 2015


I took this pic in January of 2011 showing silos in the Junction neighbourhood that were constructed in 1893 and used for some of the milling operations served by the adjoining railway line. In recent years the silos have been used by a cement company. Tomorrow I will show you the silos as they looked a week ago.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Strong Fence

This house with its turret is directly across the road from Casa Loma and the very substantial fence always has me wondering whether there is some connection to the Casa since it sits between it and the stables belonging to Casa Loma. The towers just visible over the middle section of the fence belong to the stables which are connected to the main building by a long underground tunnel. I took this pic of the fence and retaining wall in January before we got any snow and before it turned extremely cold!
Taking part in Good Fences. Click HERE to see more fences from around the world.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Blog 5th Birthday!

It's hard to believe but it is 5 years ago today that I started Occasional Toronto and I have only missed 2 days towards the beginning when my wonder dog passed away. I have loved everyday of it and can't imagine not doing a post and not visiting all my blog friends each day. So here is a visual treat to share - it was a tiramisu treat in a chocolate cup with a biscotti on top!
Taking part in Signs, Signs. Click HERE for more signs from around the world.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Spring Occupancy Delayed

The lovely bird's nest I showed you a week ago was covered with snow as I walked by during a bit of snow fall. I think spring may be delayed here this year as the Great Lakes have a lot more ice cover than normal and the jet stream doesn't seem to want to give us any warmth with our temperatures being way below normal. The dark spots on the pic are snow flakes!

Monday, March 2, 2015

"One More Wave ..."

I'm back into my archives for this mural by Elicser which i found along a laneway bordering a parkette on Dundas St W. In the left bottom corner you can see "it's almost dark, one more wave then we go in". I'd rather be surfing than going through more of this cold winter weather but hopefully spring will soon arrive.
Taking part in Monday Murals. Click HERE to see more murals from around the world.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Theme Day - Ageing

The March theme for the City Daily Photo blog community is ageing and rather than a self portrait, I present this old delivery truck which was spotted in the Distillery District and may have been used to deliver some of the local liquor. It is probably from the 1940s and the years look to have been hard on the old thing!
To see more samples of Ageing from around the world click HERE.