Men’s Room Toronto bestows first-ever leather title to Taliesin Wolf
Considered a village gem, Men’s Room Toronto has solidified its place as a leading and involved local business in the heart of the Toronto’s LGBT community. Owned and operated by Steve Palmer and Francis Gaudreault, the one-stop neighbourhood shop offers exclusive fashion, fetish wear, and grooming products for every type of queer man, including a large selection of underwear, lube, sex toys, leather, kink, jewellry, skin/hair care products and more!
The Canadian business has grown exponentially since opening in 2014, expanding with two more locations (in Chicago, Illinois, and Montreal, Quebec) over the past four years. With the popular and internally sponsored “P!tbull” parties, special in-store events, charity efforts, and organized gaycations (like camping and Caribbean cruises), The Men’s Room has managed to reintegrate a slowly diminishing aspect of queer culture back into the veins of our Torontonian rainbow.
Steve and Francis have wanted to produce an exclusive title for Men’s Room Toronto for some time now. Their goal? To bridge the proverbial gap that exists between fetish wear and lifestyle. When the lack of title competitions for leather men in Toronto became clear, the business partners and friends decided it was time for “Mr. Men’s Room 2018” to step onto the scene.
I caught up with the first ever Mr. Men’s Room – the dashing Taliesin Wolf – inside the upstairs studio-style store (above Woody’s on Church Street). The “Meet & Greet” appreciation event for his title was held earlier this month where the store manager, Monty Tayara, presented Taliesin with a custom-made, genuine leather mantle in front of a modest crowd of supportive friends, customers, and co-workers. Taliesin Wolf will represent Toronto as a contestant at IML (International Mister Leather) in Chicago during Memorial Day Weekend.
Congratulations, Taliesin! You must feel honoured. Can you tell me a little bit about the Mr. Men’s Room title and why it started?
Talieson Wolf: Francis and Steve have always wanted to produce a title. They want to bridge the gap between fetish wear and lifestyle. When Toronto didn’t have any title competitions last year they decided now was a perfect time.
What are your goals as Mr. Men’s Room 2018?
Talieson Wolf: Many people say the leather community is dying because people aren’t coming out anymore, I say the community is thriving, but restricted by “exclusivity.” I want to help change the mentality that is keeping young people away from leather events and encourage a healthier more inclusive environment.
What does Mr. Men’s Room mean to you?
Talieson Wolf: To me, it’s the opportunity to represent my peers in something I’m very passionate about, leather and fetish.
A part of being Mr. Men’s Room has to do with fundraising; how are you raising money?
Talieson Wolf: We do monthly bar nights called #LeatherLove at The Drink – Coffee Whiskey Social. Each of the parties has a theme to help raise funds for the Rainbow Railroad, such as a jock auction, jail & bail, and others.
Mr. Men’s Room is a leather title; how does it represent the Toronto Leather community, and what can you tell me about the leather community in Toronto overall?
Talieson Wolf: The Men’s Room has been a staple in the village for a number of years now offering advice and fashion alike to any who walk through the door. Our sincerity has garnered a loyal following from the leather and kink community as well as the greater gay community at large. While we can’t speak for everyone, there has been no end of praise and support from the community in this endeavour. While the Toronto community maybe somewhat fractured at the moment, nothing gives as much pride as standing together. I hope we all can do that again one day soon.
Good Luck from all of us at The Buzz, Taliesin Wolf! Toronto is rooting for you at IML!
About the Author
Joey Viola is the Co-Founder of MoJo Toronto and an LGBTQ community leader who utilizes his passion and flair for the art of writing by bringing a fresh perspective in reviewing entertainment and advocating for equality, tolerance, and social/political justice.