Places We Love: Toronto's Best Vintage Stores - Dundas West, Ossington and Parkdale

Over the next few months On Crawford St. will be profiling Toronto's best vintage stores, by neighbourhood. To start, we'll be focusing on Dundas West, Ossington and Parkdale.
Vintage clothing is something that scares people. The term conjures visions of Value Village-esque stores, where racks are packed so tightly you have to spend hours picking through polyester suits from the 70’s to find a true gem. Luckily in Toronto there are a chosen few who know good vintage. Their eye for fashion and highly selective shops are like a paradise to those who know the real value of vintage clothing – like how a vintage Pucci mini-dress from the 1960’s can be the focus of entire conversations.

Dalston Grey is the perfect mix of vintage and contemporary. Leah Gust's charming boutique stocks a selection of vintage clothing that is hand-picked, aligning perfectly to current fashion trends. This is actually what I like best about Dalston Grey. At a time when many vintage stores are stocking pieces that sometimes make me shake my head in disbelief (no, I will not wear items that are ripped or stained), Dalston Grey's stock is fashionable and wearable. Dalston Grey also stocks contemporary lines like Gat Rimon and Amour Vert (among others), meaning you could very easily leave the store with a brand new outfit that is totally unique, and won't bankrupt you. Plus, the shop also has a men's section and stocks great accessories like shoes, jewellery and Bay Cooper Neckties.


Places We Love: Bellwoods Brewery

On Saturday, after an afternoon of wandering West Queen West, J and I headed to Bellwoods Brewery. Housed in a former garage, Bellwoods is a microbrewery/bar/restaurant that really needs no introduction. Since opening, it has topped countless "Best Of" lists (like this one, and this one, and even this one).


Places We Love: Local Kitchen & Wine Bar

Whenever anyone asks me what my favourite restaurant in Toronto is, my response is always Local Kitchen & Wine Bar. Situated on the edge of Parkdale, Local is a perfect mix of traditional Italian and urban cool. Thanks to a small menu that changes seasonally, Local is able to focus on quality. J and I have dined here several times - including a seating at their chef’s table. I’m not sure if it’s the decor (hello mason jars full of tomato sauce that remind me of my nonna’s house), or the comfortable atmosphere, or the impeccable wine list and menu, or the friendly and knowledgeable staff that keep us coming back. Maybe it’s a combination of all of the above. But I am sure of the fact that in multiple trips, Local has never disappointed. That’s why J and I quickly made reservations when we heard about their 3 course dinner series, in collaboration with the culinary arts program at George Brown College. 

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