Nestled in the heart of Yorkville lies one of Toronto’s true retail gems. Immense product knowledge, focused customer service, and a complete lack of pretentiousness are just some of the reasons why Over The Rainbow has been one of Toronto’s best retail stores for the last 38 years.
In Toronto, it is either Queen West or Bloor/Yorville as the go-to areas for denim shopping. If you pick the latter, it’s almost inconceivable to pass up Yorkville’s oldest denim mecca. According to locals and hard-core shoppers alike, Yorkville and OTR go hand in hand. We personally couldn’t picture anything else in the location where Over the Rainbow now sits.
Yesterday The SD team was lucky enough to sit down with Over The Rainbow’s second generation Co-Owner/Buyer/Operator Daniel Carman to talk shop and to find out about OTR’s upcoming sale and charity event!
Over The Rainbow is a truly encompassing store and the concept behind the store is quite simple. They sell premium goods to everyone from your youngest son, to your mom. “[OTR] is a premium denim hub that [tries to service everyone]. The concept is that you can come in with your entire family. It doesn’t matter if you are a 15 year old girl, a 20 year old university student, a parent or a grandparent. We offer premium products for an entire family.”
Along with their wide audience, Daniel explains the same variety also applies to Over the Rainbow’s vast product mix. “We don’t just do one certain look or style; we try to provide the best stuff in the market to as many people as possible.”
We all know buying jeans can be uncomfortable, and sometimes overwhelming. The selection is most denim stores these days is mind-boggling! Which is why we love OTR. While they might be classified with those denim stores with endless number of brands, Over The Rainbow is different. If you’ve never shopped there let us tell you why!
Customer service is of utmost importance, and they don’t just sell you a pair of jeans, they teach you how to buy jeans. By giving you the best information about the product, you can justify AND feel good about paying a bit more for a premium pair of jeans.
“Part of the lost art of service based clothing stores, is that they don’t give you enough information or the right information that you need to make an informed decision. The one thing we try to stress here is product knowledge and customer service. They’re not the same and they are both very important to make our customers appreciative and confident in the decisions they make here.”
Carman also stresses their desire to shred the concept of uncomfortable shopping. “We just try to make the shopping experience comfortable, we want to give them enough knowledge on the product that they are buying. Whatever they are walking out with, that will be their favourite item of the season. We want it to be the first item that comes out of their closest. that’s what we strive for.”
The passion of the Carman family for denim and retail really shines throughout the store and it’s no surprise that if you open any list of the “best places to buy jeans in Toronto” Over the Rainbow is always at the top.