Mak­ing kitchens cool

Thorn­hill shop cel­e­brates 30 years of top­notch gad­gets and giz­mos

North York Post - - News - By Jes­sica Wei

Cayne’s Su­per House­wares in Thorn­hill has been a beloved des­ti­na­tion for kitchen gad­gets, ap­pli­ances and house­wares for 32 years. The com­pany was founded by Jerry Cayne in 1986. His daugh­ter Jami re­mem­bers shred­ding pa­per in the of­fice at the age of eight. Af­ter work­ing as a cashier and mov­ing her way through the com­pany, she left to pur­sue a ca­reer in hos­pi­tal­ity be­fore re­turn­ing to the fam­ily busi­ness.

Over the years, have you had any celeb clients?

Har­ley Paster­nak, my fa­ther and I met him in Chicago for the In­ter­na­tional Home and House­wares Trade Show. He’s from North York, and now he’s a trainer to all the stars, the Kar­dashi­ans and ev­ery­body in L.A. He wanted to make a high­power blender that was af­ford­able, and he did just that. He loved our story, and he loved that we were sup­port­ing his prod­uct. Now we chat on In­sta­gram and share our recipes and share our ex­pe­ri­ences with the prod­uct.

How has Cayne’s adapted to new trends?

Sin­gle-serve cof­fee has been a trend for a few years now, but it’s a mar­ket that is al­ways chang­ing. We went from car­ry­ing 30 va­ri­eties of K-cups to over 500. I con­sider my­self to be a bit of an en­vi­ron­men­tal­ist. I had a real prob­lem with how we were contributing to the garbage. We work with two sep­a­rate com­pa­nies that fo­cus on com­post­ing, up­cy­cling and in­cin­er­a­tion. We started be­ing a free des­ti­na­tion for re­cy­cling.

How else has Cayne’s helped sup­port its cus­tomers?

I had a cus­tomer come in about three years ago. She had some health con­cerns and was try­ing to go on a diet, but she found it so over­whelm­ing. She was in to buy a blender for smooth­ies. Smooth­ies was one of the first things that I did for my life­style change. I showed her pic­tures and recipes. I ac­tu­ally went to her house, and we did it all to­gether. I set her up on a plan and gave her a gro­cery list. I said, “You just have to do this ev­ery week.” We’ve be­come friends. You don’t get that any­where else.

What are some of the fun items that Cayne’s sells?

We have 250 feet of gad­gets. They’re cutesy; they’re fun. My favourite is the av­o­cado tool. It de­pits and slices av­o­ca­dos. I buy them for gifts a lot. I al­ways say to our staff: we’re not sav­ing lives, we’re not doc­tors, but we’re def­i­nitely im­prov­ing them. Peo­ples’ life­styles mat­ter, and the way into that is through their food.

What have you learned from your fa­ther?

He has taught me some keys to suc­cess in terms of be­ing an en­tre­pre­neur. Your word is ev­ery­thing, your rep­u­ta­tion is ev­ery­thing, and hon­our is very im­por­tant. So you need to be proud of what you’re do­ing, and you need to con­duct your­self in a way that you can be proud of (112 Don­caster Rd., 905-764-1188).

Jerry Cayne (right) and his daugh­ter Jami

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