Kensington Market has long been known as one of Toronto’s prime hotspots for vintage and thrift shopping. And while it’s still bustling with secondhand shops, Bloordale Village has become a recent rival when it comes to vintage shopping. More and more vendors have been moving west to set up shop around Landsdowne’s Value Village, making it a hub of vintage stores, all within a 10-minute walk from each other.
On Bloor West between between Lansdowne and Dufferin in the Bloordale neighbourhood, you’ll find a strip that is a gold mine for thrifters and vintage hunters. Start on one end and make your way to the other – on your way you’ll be able to make stops at several popular Bloor thrift shops where you’ll find a graphic tees, streetwear, curated sneakers, cowboy boots, unique decade pieces and fun accessories.
Where: 1319 Bloor St. W.
Vibe: Anything and everything! A warehouse of clothes donated in abundance by (often very stylish) locals. This location is closing down soon to make way for another condo development, so squeeze in as many visits as you can before the inevitable closure.
Price range: $3-$40 on average with select outerwear being the exception
Hot tip: Self proclaimed Toronto thrift experts will advise you to check every section for optimal finds, including sections usually outside of your size range (because not only do people move things all over the place, but you may be surprised at the versatility of an oversized piece). Also visit frequently to take advantage of restock days.
Where: 1344 Bloor St. W.
Vibe: The staff refer to the store as a community and cultural hub. The selection includes ’90s streetwear, military and utility wear and bold graphic tees. The overall focus is self expression.
Price range: Student friendly options $50 and under— premium tees starting at $200 and going up to $1000.
The Salvation Army
Where: 1219 Bloor St. W.
Vibe: Eclectic, like a large closet belonging to multiple people. Stock includes clothes, shoes and accessories, housewares, bags, outerwear and athletic wear.
Price range: $5-$30 on average with select outerwear and behind the counter items being the exception.
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Where: 1282 Bloor St. W.
Vibe: When you enter into the open space, you immediately notice the high ceilings and the graphic t-shirts hung strategically on the wall. The selection includes a wall of premium vintage graphic tees, rare tees, band tees, sportswear, granola wear like Carhartt and button ups, and funky printed shirts for summer.
Price range: $50 and under, with the exception of premium wall tees starting at $150 and going up to $500 (and one special Wilson leather jacket priced at $16,665USD).
Where: 1267 Bloor St. W.
Vibe: Super chic and curated space featuring ’60s and ’70s pop art style, rock and roll vintage tees and vintage furniture. Walking into 96 Tears is like walking into a stylish Pinterest board.
Price range: A mix of designer brands and more affordable curated pieces— there’s a $10 rack. The average item sells for closer to $40. The higher exceptions include a pair of Herman baker shoes at $450.
Where: 955 Bloor St. W.
Vibe: Funky and cozy thrift store known for it’s decade selection, ranging from the ’50s to ’80s with an affection for formal dresses, ’70s denim and casual wear (lots of stripes) and floral prints.
Price range: $35-$60 on average with special items costing upwards of $100.
Where: 1178 Bloor St. W.
Vibe: As of this year, this vintage shop is celebrating eight years in Bloordale! The shop is known for unique decade pieces featuring items from the ’60s, ’70s and ’90s, as well as handmade pieces made by local designers. Expect to find bright and colourful pieces, and bold patterns. Particularly popular items include ’60s mod dresses, jumpers and rompers, as well as silk and linens.
Price rage: $25-$40 on average.
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Where: 1425 Bloor St. W.
Vibe: Known as the “tiniest vintage shop in Toronto,” what they don’t have in size they make up for in super curated selection that will guarantee you a few good finds! Not only are their some true vintage items from the ’60s all the way to the ’90s and beyond, Boomie also offers some housewares, jewelry and even beauty finds from local vendors.
Price range: $20-$120 on average for clothing, with a few special items on the higher end
Bloor Street bonuses
These places may not be in Bloordale, but a quick stroll east on Bloor Street will get you to these vintage gems in the Bloor West area.
First Kiss Tattoo and Vintage
Where: 652 Bloor St. W.
Vibe: The best of both worlds – vintage clothing and tattoos, all in one! This shop made the move a little further west on Bloor recently, and the smaller space is chock full of vintage gems, including ’80s frocks, stellar denim and graphic tees.
Price range: $30-$60 on average, with a few special pieces over $100.
Where: 605 Bloor St. W.
Vibe: A one-stop-shop for all your secondhand needs! Ed’s Mercantile is a family-run business that opened earlier this year, and the shop offers homewares and vintage goods from a whole bunch of Toronto vendors. You could easily spend an hour perusing all the gems at Ed’s!
Price range: Clothes range for $30-$250 on average.
Happy thrifting, Bloordale!