Today’s emphasis on sustainability has further incentivized opting for secondhand clothing over fast fashion. Combined with the gratification of finding a truly one of a kind piece, there’s something for everyone in the world of vintage shopping. Every seller and reseller has a distinct take on these curated items from the past which is reflected in their collections, making the experience unique to each store. S/ Shops is your summer guide to vintage shopping in the city, spotlighting both beloved pioneers and fresh faces in the industry, beginning with Mama Loves You Vintage.
Mama Loves You: Vintage Pioneer
Mama Loves You Vintage is home to treasures that range from as far back as the early 1900s to the ’90s. The store houses a collection of gorgeous silhouettes for women and men throughout the decades while staying on trend with unique vintage graphic t-shirts and sweaters. Delicate and one of a kind pieces hang on the walls for shoppers to admire, showcasing the shop’s unique items. We spoke to co-owner Mahro Anfield about her lifelong love of vintage, her favourite finds, and what it’s like being a part of the vintage clothing community in Toronto.
What inspired you to get started in the vintage clothing industry?
“Vintage has been always been a part of my life. My mother, Melo, has been buying and reselling vintage clothing since I was born—when I was growing up she worked for vintage clothing stores as a buyer and organized vintage sales with her friends. We both share a love of vintage clothing and eventually I started working in the industry myself.”
What is your favourite era of clothing?
“I really love the 1940s, especially the separates, playsuits, and jumpsuits from this era. The silhouettes are so flattering and functional at the same time.”
How do you decide which pieces go into your store? Which eras of clothing do you specialize in?
“Since Mama Loves You is owned by myself and my mother Melo, we need to be on the same page. She does all the buying, and I do all the selling. We carry items from the turn of the century to the 1990s. We carry items anywhere from vintage denim and rock tees to 1930s and 40s gowns. Melo and I tend to pick items that we would wear ourselves.”
What do you love most about being the vintage community?
“I love being a part of keeping history alive. Every item has a story, and I love that the clothing gives me an excuse to research brands and textiles, and learn more about history from the perspective of clothing.”
What is your favourite piece in your collection right now?
“We have so many special pieces tucked away—I would have to say my favourite item right now is a striped red knit 1930s beach cape. It’s so unique and special, I feel honoured to own it!”