My love affair with vintage goods started quite early. After coveting a green bomber my sister bought at Courage My Love, I convinced my mom to take me to Kensington Market, in Toronto, on a mission to find some pieces for my first day of high school. The excursion produced only one band t-shirt, but it filled me with so much excitement for the next great find.
I’ve never enjoyed purchasing clothes in bulk. The thought overwhelms me and it’s simply irresponsible from a sustainability standpoint—buying fewer things more thoughtfully has always been my goal. I credit my incredibly selective spending habits to my first retail job at Toronto’s I Miss You Vintage, where I was exposed to the luxury of vintage—whether designer or not—as well as unique brands I’d later come to collect and adore, such as Courrèges.
Since I don’t shop all the time, what I look for are keepsakes—pieces I won’t be able to find new—with timeless silhouettes, colours, and fabrications. What I’ve accumulated over the years lives in harmony with the newer items in my wardrobe. It’s thrilling to mix the past with the present to create an ensemble unique to you—without vintage, this would be impossible and, frankly, less rewarding.
I always carve out time during my trips to discover the vintage scene in the cities I visit. While I’ve picked up some impressive second-hand souvenirs, no city has come close to Toronto’s excellent offerings. Some of my personal favourites include (but are not limited to): the aforementioned I Miss You Vintage on Ossington, MHC Vintage in Cabbagetown, Gadabout in Leslieville, and Stella Luna in Parkdale.
Like many, I’ve found that getting excited about clothes in the absence of occasions has been challenging. Having spent the past year indoors, I’ve had to push myself to get dressed as I would if I were going to the office or meeting friends for dinner. With the arrival of spring and some signs of better days ahead, I’m welcoming the new season by reacquainting myself with pieces in my wardrobe that inspire joy, and finding new, creative ways of styling them. And with that in mind, I hope our Spring issue serves as a gentle nudge of encouragement and sparks you to rediscover the thrill of dressing up and finding your new style groove.