Vintage Shopping: Toronto’s Best Vintage Spots – Part One

Vintage shopping in Toronto is any vintage hunters dream even when it is a frozen tundra dream. We wanted to cull a list down of a few great vintage shops that are worth exploring for vintage aficionados, restoration vintage hunters and fashionistas. Some are uptown, some downtown, some east, some west. Price range varies.

Toronto is a veritable hot bed for vintage hunting these days and with the city’s diverse and eclectic neighborhoods all offering something different, you can find groupings of great boutiques and thrift stores scattered in central, north, east, south and west Toronto. And as you will learn Toronto is all about it’s neighborhoods. Here’s a cross section of places you should definitely add to your list in this vintage boom town known as the T dot. Best of luck!

 

KENSINGTON

Flash Back, Flash Back 2 and King Of Kensington Roger D’Souza Toronto’s King of Vintage, opened these stores back to back. When he was asked why he has three stores “because I can’t have four” he says. This pretty much sums up the amount of vintage Rogers has his hands on. Receiving new collections of vintage twice a week every week means you get a massive range. Vintage from the 1800s – 1970s. Roger’s least favorite era is pre 1970s – 1980s, he believes it was “the beginning of the transformation of quality.”

Spend time in all three of his locations, in fact block off at least 4 hours because you’ll need it if you’re a true vintage fanatic. Roger floats in and out of all his stores, if you spot him ask if he has anything in mind for you, he’s famous for knowing exactly what size dress you wear and provides a tasteful eye for fashion on all levels.

Flashback – 33 Kensington Avenue, Toronto +1 416 598 2981
Flashback 2 – 25 Kensington Avenue, Toronto +1 647 343 5569
King Of Kensington – 35 Kensington Avenue, Toronto  +1 416 546 2413

 

 

AVENUE ROAD

Cat’s Meow specializes in vintage women’s clothing 1920’s-1980’s, with some focus on 50’s,60’s & 70’s. Started by Louise Cooper in 2006 with her exceptional eye for fashion and timeless design. She carries vintage fashion from designers such as Pucci, Ceil Chapman, Oleg Cassini, Y.S.L. & Dior, Chloe, Prada, Chanel, Hermes & Louis Vuitton. You might even find some vintage scarves by YSL or baubles by Chanel in beautiful condition. Mint condition to be precise.

The most intriguing part of Cat’s Meow is that Louise has been host to a wide variety of discerning vintage collectors over the years. From young girls on the hunt for a prom dress to industry insiders, designers, press and media stylists who are searching for inspiration as much as they are vintage.

180 Avenue Rd, Toronto, ON M5R 2J1, Canada – (647) 435-5875
Mon to Fri 10:00 am – 6:00 pm, Sat 10:00 am – 5:00 pm, Sun 12:00 pm – 5:00 pm
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LESLIEVILLE
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Love The Design was started by artist and designer Christine Flynn. She combines her photography, signature stationary and art with vintage finds from the 1920s. You will also find chic industrial furniture, the type that looks like it was made by strong men. The love of design and artistic background becomes apparent on the walls, one wall completely covered  in pages from early 1800s books peppering the room with a massive and tasteful vintage pastiche.
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Old industrial vintage here seems to take on a rebirth that is new and restored. Pieces that would fit nicely as a domestic centerpiece, a sturdy table or shelf, that adds history with a new take on vintage. The contrasting of art and history give Queen St. East a refreshing new spot to visit. Come by for a mix of Ontario landscapes, art and some original restoration.
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1362 Queen Street East, Toronto, ON, m4l 1c8
Tues to Fri 11:00 am – 6:00 pm, Sat 11:00 am – 5:00 pm, Sun 12:00 pm – 5:00 pm

 

THE JUNCTION

Smash owner Paul Mercer is an art history graduate who has a thing for vintage collecting (from as far away as Argentine) antiques, art and salvage. An inspired collection of vintage furnishings fixtures and materials covet the brick and beam space at 2880 Dundas St. West. You can find custom furniture, vintage oddities like depression era mug shots. At the center of the store you can eye a vintage Lambretta scooter, done are it’s days of scooting, now modern decor.

Prices can get high when you consider the originality of some of these pieces, however the book section in the back stocks an incredible array of design books so you can leave with something that will at least spark inspiration upon the next return. Take the trip up Dundas to the Junction for an eclectic-vintage mix where art converges with the past and makes it the present.

2880 Dundas Street West Toronto, ON M6P 1Y8
Monday to Saturday 10:00 am to 6:00 pm, Sunday 12:00 pm to 5:00 pm.

 

QUEEN WEST

69 Vintage Kealan Sullivan has been doing her thing on Queen West for a while, and she loves her vintage. With a wide selection of men’s and women’s vintage fashion, you might just be stuck there for the afternoon. You could score a perfectly worn vintage denim jacket you’ve been looking for, or some great vintage boot-heels and a belt. Look over and spot that 1960s shift dress in the corner and that great scarf to match a cute leather jacket, pretty soon you’ll be coming back next week so see what else is in.

She now has an additional store called ‘V’ at 702 Queen Street West, (647) 748‑9119
And the original 69 Vintage at 1100 Queen Street West, Toronto. (416) 516‑0669
Mon to Sat 12pm to 7pm – Sun 12pm to 5pm

 

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