Calgary is rich with quirky and extremely helpful local businesses. So many, in fact, that many you’ve probably never heard of. YYC is a big place and it’s easy to get caught up in the convenience of familiar corporate conglomerates, but that’s what we’re here for! Here are 7 incredibly unique businesses local to Calgary.


Plant, like most local businesses, has a humble beginning. Co-Owner Kyle Chow decided to try his hand at terrarium making back in 2011, making small gifts for friends and family, and they were a hit! In 2014, they opened their first brick and mortar in Inglewood where, ever since, they’ve been inspiring Calgarians to get their hands dirty or exercise their green thumb with their extravagant terrariums, succulents and plant subscription boxes.

Where: 1327 9 Ave SE, Calgary


There’s not a whole lot of storage space in an apartment or townhouse. Maybe you have a family home but lack room in your garage. When things bust, break or need a little TLC, The Tool Shop is there to help. Whether you need a hammer or a table saw for a larger DIY project, this local business will let you borrow and then return whatever it is that you need to get the job done!

Where: 917 Centre Ave NE, Calgary

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Reduce, reuse, recycle decor, bikes, fabrics, or containers! Upsycle Decor is a one-stop mega shop with a gift store, coffee bar, bicycle rentals, art studio and zero-waste refillery all in one.

Where: 1325 1 Street SE, Calgary


Dogma is a local pet and training service for people who may have a “testy” four-legged buddy. These guys welcome any pup that may have a behavioural issue and give the dog parent the tools, skills and knowledge to deal.

Where: See nearest location here


After studying ethnobotany in France, founder Nathalie Called came back to Calgary and found it tough dealing with mental health in the frigid Alberta winters. A little green can go a long way! We mean when its planted and continues to grow, of course. This company has been building, planting and healing with their living walls, creating indoor tropical paradise’s across North America since 2012.

Where: For inquiries email [email protected]


Pinnovate is the first and only do it yourself freestyle studio in Calgary. Drop-in, creatively pop off and then maybe even leave with a sense of pride. The 1,500-square-foot studio has a safe place for splatter art, tables to work on, and hundreds of different art supplies. This place also offers tasty treats, because you’ll most likely work up an appetite. Fiasco Gelato and cupcakes from the Cake Bake Shoppe, floats, wine, craft beers, and thin-crust pizzas.

Where: 137 Mahogany Plaza SE, Calgary


This non-for-profit has created a bridge between home and school, encouraging parents, educators, corporate partners and the community to develop or deepen their relationship with reading. These guys offer free literacy-building and reading resources including games and books, in hopes of improving self-esteem in children, good health, community engagement and even reduced crime. Big talk for a little company, but studies show that it’s effective so we’re on board.

Where: 105-105 12th Avenue SE, Calgary

Check them out, Calgary, you won’t regret it! You might just find something you never knew you even needed.