The high end of cannabis cul­ture

Canada preps for le­gal use with luxe finds

North Toronto Post - - Life - LJUBICA KOSTOVIC Ljubica Kostovic is a cannabis con­sul­tant and lead­ing writer and speaker on is­sues re­lated to med­i­cal and recre­ational uses.

Self-care Sun­days will soon get a makeover, when mar­i­juana is le­gal­ized.

As you draw your bath and get ready for your weekly steam, you may sprin­kle some cannabis­in­fused mag­ne­sium bath salts or reach for your favourite CBD strain and have a toke from a hand­crafted ceramic pipe.

As Canada pre­pares to usher in a new age of le­gal adult-use cannabis, brands are set­ting the stage for a new kind of cannabis ex­pe­ri­ence. One that fo­cuses on thought­ful, de­sign-for­ward prod­ucts and heal­ing con­coc­tions to make users feel good in­side and out.

In an­tic­i­pa­tion of le­gal­iza­tion, Canada is also set­ting an ex­am­ple by wel­com­ing the rise of wom­en­fo­cused brands and com­mu­nity builders whose mis­sion is to cre­ate rit­u­als for those look­ing to this new era of cannabis cul­ture.

“Cannabis is some­thing that al­lows me to re­lax and get caught up in the mo­ment of ex­actly what it is that I’m do­ing” says Odessa Paloma Parker, the head of con­tent at Tokyo Smoke, a lead­ing Canadian cannabis life­style brand.

Hav­ing spent years work­ing in the fash­ion and pub­lish­ing in­dus­tries as the fash­ion ed­i­tor for the Globe and Mail, Parker looks to high-end cannabis prod­ucts as a con­nec­tion be­tween her sen­si­bil­i­ties and her ev­ery­day life­style.

“One of the things I love about fash­ion and style is that peo­ple can make things their own. It’s not just Gucci. There are so many great de­sign­ers and es­thet­ics op­er­at­ing to­day. The cannabis in­dus­try is a space to ex­plore that po­ten­tial,” says Parker.

With shifts in at­ti­tude al­ready tak­ing place, cannabis use is quickly be­com­ing less of a ta­boo topic.

Now, brands like Toronto-based Tokyo Smoke are cre­at­ing a space for a com­mu­nity of cannabis con­sumers look­ing for a new kind of ex­pe­ri­ence.

The Tokyo Smoke flag­ship store at 668 Queen St. W. is a hub for de­sign-fo­cused minds look­ing to in­cor­po­rate el­e­vated cannabis ex­pe­ri­ences into the rest of their lives.

Of­fer­ing a di­verse selec­tion of prod­ucts se­lected for their es­thetic, in­ten­tion and imag­i­na­tion, the cof­fee shop lo­cated in the art and de­sign dis­trict is a one-stop shop for a lux­u­ri­ous cannabis ex­pe­ri­ence.

With prod­ucts rang­ing from the $10 sleek grinder card that fits next to your Visa to the $13,000 bong, Tokyo Smoke has some­thing for ev­ery per­son and bud­get.

Of­fer­ing an ar­ray of prod­ucts linked to four emo­tive states (go, re­lax, re­lief and bal­ance), the shop now also of­fers a pre­mium selec­tion of cannabis strains to med­i­cal pa­tients through their part­ner­ship with li­censed pro­ducer Aphria.

Blaz­ing the trail for women-led lux­ury cannabis brands is Seat­tle’s Van der Pop. Re­cently ac­quired by Tokyo Smoke, Van der Pop is a “new re­source for women who seek out what speaks to them” in the world of cannabis and wellde­signed prod­ucts. Ex­pected to launch its sig­na­ture strains in Canada with part­ner li­censed pro­ducer WeedMD this Oc­to­ber, Van der Pop ac­ces­sories are al­ready avail­able for sale at Tokyo Smoke.

Van der Pop’s sig­na­ture Pop­pins Ital­ian leather bag re­tails at $370. The purse comes equipped with a lock for your stash.

Van der Pop is also com­mit­ted to pair­ing cannabis ex­pe­ri­ences with ed­u­ca­tion and cul­ture. The Vandy ad­vice blog is a place for the canna cu­ri­ous to get their daily dose of cannabis knowl­edge.

And for those not par­tic­u­larly ex­cited about the toxic ef­fects of al­co­hol, both psy­choac­tive and non-psy­choac­tive cannabis prod­ucts are a welcome al­ter­na­tive in our so­cial land­scapes.

High-end cannabis brands pro­vide con­sumers with an op­por­tu­nity to ex­plore the po­ten­tial ben­e­fits of cannabis and to cre­ate an ex­pe­ri­ence that fo­cuses on well­ness and self-care.

“It’s all about es­tab­lish­ing your per­sonal re­la­tion­ship with the plant,” says Maya Elis­a­beth, of U.S.-based Whoopi & Maya. And yes, that’s Whoopi as in ac­tress Whoopi Gold­berg.

Cater­ing to med­i­cal pa­tients in Cal­i­for­nia, Whoopi and Maya lead the in­dus­try with an herbal­ist-in­spired line of women’s cannabis prod­ucts that “take the pain away and el­e­vate your mood.”

Although Whoopi and Maya’s prod­ucts are not cur­rently avail­able on the Canadian mar­ket, it is a tes­ta­ment to Canada’s fu­ture of cannabis-in­fused raw ca­cao spreads, mag­ne­sium bath soaks and top­i­cals for that time of the month.

With her eye on the fu­ture, Elis­a­beth en­vi­sions a world where recre­ational cannabis le­gal­iza­tion means cannabis beauty spas and re­treats de­signed for ul­ti­mate lux­ury. For those of us lucky enough to soon be liv­ing in a fed­er­ally le­gal cannabis coun­try, the pos­si­bil­i­ties are end­less.

Lux­ury ac­ces­sories from Van der Pop

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