Whether you are on a budget, or love breathing new life into old items, vintage stores are a great way to fill your closet with unique, hard-to-find options. Toronto has many vintage and consignment shops through out the city, that can cater to anyone’s style. So whether you are hunting down a pair of Louboutins or a vintage ocelot coat, here are the top places to snag a rare vintage find.
I Miss You (63 Ossington Ave, Toronto, ON)
This shop is one of the quintessential consignment and vintage shops in the west end. The store is often colour coded with pastel-hued suits and dresses, and elegant beaded shifts. I Miss You stocks covetable brands like YSL and Chanel, while also carrying one-of-a-kind statment pieces as well. Their shoe collection is top notch and well-priced for designer labels, however you have to get lucky to find the right size. A jewelry cabinet is full of elegant baubles and luxury watches, but I once snagged a Ferragamo scarf here for a song. Situated on the Ossington strip, they’ve now expanded into a location next door, the Emporium, that features a wide selection of vintage leather goods, (including vintage Coach and Dooney & Bourke), southwestern jewelry and cowboy boots.
Courage My Love (14 Kensington Ave, Toronto, ON)
Kensington market is a great place to find vintage items, and many stores are dotted along the bohemian strip. My favourite store, however, is Courage my Love. When you enter, you get hit with the scent of patchouli. The front usually houses creations made from repurposed, vintage items (think tie-dye vintage cashmere sweaters) and I usually make a beeline for the jewelry cabinet which contains a variety of vintage baubles and handmade creations. Along the opposite side is a bead and button counter, a mecca of vintage and deadstock items that can be inexpensively purchased to add a unique touch to a wool coat or blazer. Their stock is seasonal, and in the winter, they carry a rainbow of soft cashmere, or cute day dresses in the summer. The walls are lined with vintage handbags and kitschy decor. Their prices are fair and marked, making transactions with the friendly owners easy as well.
Black Market Vintage (256 Queen Street West, Toronto, ON)
If you’re into band tshirts and grandpa sweaters, this is the place for you. Nearly everything is $10, and the basement of this Queen West shop is lined to the brim with rolling racks of quirky vintage finds, and new ironic tshirts. Don’t be dismayed by the teenager-centric look though, I scored a pair of barely worn Stuart Weitzman peep-toes for only $10 in the shoe department.
Magwood (886 Queen Street West, Toronto, ON)
If you are looking for luxury vintage, look no further than Magwood Boutique. Located on Queen West and online, Sarah Magwood keeps a refined stock of art deco prints, vintage lace and cute cocktail dresses, as well as the designer accessories to match. Featured in numerous print and online editorials, Magwood is the perfect place for the vintage devotee, or to find a unique look for a special occasion.
Penny Arcade (1177 Dundas Street West, Toronto, ON)
Located on Dundas Street West, west of Ossington, is Penny Arcade. The store is a cool place to find everything from tacky the 1980s era to cute and girly vintage dresses. There’s also a $5 rack for bargain hunters. While many pieces seem like thrift store finds, the selection is curated and easy to navigate, and the prices are fair. The decor is also delightfully kitschy, giving the store a fun, laidback vibe.
69 Vintage (198 Walnut Ave, Toronto, ON)
This list wouldn’t be complete without a mention of 69 Vintage. Located on West Queen West, this shop holds a large selection of unique pieces and wardrobe staples. From Bay blankets to fur coats, the store houses a lot of Canadiana, and an ample mens’ section as well. A friend of mine snatched a stunning pair of ankle booties with gold lion buttons, but the selection is always rotating and it’s always fun to hunt for treasures.