AS VINTAGE CRAWL TORONTO NEARS, WE MAKE THE CASE FOR PURCHASING PREVIOUSLY LOVED PIECES
Story by Odessa Paloma Parker
It’s no secret that there are amazing vintage stores all around Toronto; from those that sell designer dresses to those that focus on more laid-back looks, there’s hardly a neighbourhood in the city that doesn’t have at least one cool spot to pick up a vintage piece. To illustrate the point, our upcoming Vintage Crawl Toronto (happening Tuesday, October 23rd from 7pm until midnight) includes over 20 vintage retailers from across the city, each featuring their own distinct brand of vintage goods.
Vintage retailers go to such great lengths to find their wares for us – and in most cases, this merchandise is just waiting for the right owner to find it. Leah Gust, owner of the vintage and contemporary shop, Dalston Grey, remembers one such case of true vintage love. “I had a dress in the shop – a beautiful black linen wrap dress. Everyone loved it, and I must’ve watched 30 women try it on to no avail. Yet another woman came in and I added it to her fitting room, thinking to myself, ‘Here we go again.’ But she came out of the fitting room and it looked like it was made for her! She felt wonderful in the dress and it looked stunning on her – it was perfection! What I love most about vintage is that it waits for you. Sometimes I feel like a matchmaker!”
And so, we present to you five great additional reasons to buy vintage. Need more? Check out our slideshow above; each image is from a Plaid photo shoot styled exclusively with vintage pieces from Toronto.
You Support Local, Independent Business
Many Torontonians are in a tizzy about the amount of big business taking over our shopping districts; from major Canadian companies to those from around the world, mass manufactured goods are more prevalent than ever in the city. Vintage retail is a means for style savvy people in our city to make a living and contribute to our local economy; keep the cycle of consumption city-based by shopping at these small businesses, and in turn the owners and employees will lend support by using their revenue to eat, shop and live in Toronto.
It’s Environmentally Sound
For those concerned about the environmental impact of manufacturing production, vintage is a great way to reduce your personal contribution to it. Invest in garments that were made years ago, and have lasted this long, and help reduce the continuous cycle of creation and consumption.
The Price Is Right
We’ve all been there – an event is coming up, and while you’d love to spend a pretty penny on a new dress or suit, your budget just won’t allow it. Checking out a vintage store that has a selection of styles meant for special occasions is a perfect solution. Shops like Cabaret Vintage, I Miss You Vintage, Rescue Vintage, and Magwood all have an amazing array of previously loved, event-worthy attire, many by high-end labels like Chanel, Dior and Givenchy. The piece you leave with will be priced well below an equivalent contemporary garment, and you can be sure that you’ll be the only one at your event wearing that particular piece.
One problem that plagues many a fashion lover is indulging in one trend too many each season, to the point where you’ve got a closet full of neon florals and peplum as far as the eye can see. Stop the madness and focus on pieces that make you happy, and that add a certain something to your wardrobe above-and-beyond its en vogue value. Vintage garments and accessories have lasted decades, their quality and fit unmatched by many of today’s styles. Gust reminds us that, “…. Some people still associate ‘vintage’ with ‘quirky’, which is not always true. In a lot of cases you’re getting good quality pieces in classic, timeless styles.”
A quick glance at any street style blog will reveal that today, individuality reigns. The style savvy go further and further out of their way to cultivate a chic, unique look with designer pieces. But if you’re not in a position to fill your closet with the latest extreme, eye-catching looks, vintage affords anyone the opportunity to wear clothing creatively. Accessories – from figural jewellery to colourful silk scarves – are an especially easy way to transition vintage into your wardrobe and add some impact to your look.