Shop Local: Canadian Retailers To Look Out For

Shop Local: Canadian Retailers To Look Out For

If you’ve been paying attention to the Canadian retail landscape, you may have noticed that it seems like a big international retailer is planting its flag and marking its territory within our borders on a weekly basis.

With the increasing number of international retailers popping up, it can sometimes be easy to forget that Canada, and especially Toronto, has some of the best local shops in the world. Shopping at local retailers and keeping your money within your local community instead of spending it at an international retailer fosters a better local economy, supports local creatives and entrepreneurs, and prevents local communities from turning into corporate showrooms.

With the influx of international shopping available to Canadians, it’s important to take a second to think about where you want to spend your money. If you choose to do so locally, Toronto offers some great choices…

Park & Province
Originally starting out as an online-only business, Park & Province has blossomed into a full-fledged brick and mortar store that has become a standout shopping experience for men in the Queen West neighbourhood. Run by Gray Butler and Chris Naidu, the store’s mission is to carry products that have never been sold in Toronto or Canada while mixing that offering with iconic and staple brands/trends. It’s a great place to stock up on your favourites while discovering new and exclusive pieces. The careful curation of products from owners Gray and Chris make this shop a must-visit if you’re in the area.

While Vitaly hasn’t opened their flagship location yet, this is definitely a brand/future retailer that you will want to look out for. As yet another Toronto-based startup, Vitaly has made a name for themselves on an international level. Originally starting out as a unisex jewelry brand, Vitaly now offers a selection of clothing and accessories for both men and women. The new store will be located on Queen Street West and will tout a massive multi-level shopping experience. According to founder Shane Vitaly Foran, the new store will offer products by Vitaly, Clock & Colours (sister brand), and locally designed products from friends of the brand.

Gerhard Supply
If shopping local and buying locally designed items is your thing, there is no place better than Gerhard Supply. Located in Toronto’s Junction neighbourhood, owner and operator Langton Willms has built a destination where men have easy access to Toronto designed and manufactured goods/garments. Gerhard Supply carries a variety of locally designed brands such as Outclass, Muttonhead Collective, OSC cross, 18 waits, and in-store exclusives by Philip Sparks.

What was once voted as one of the best menswear stores in Toronto by GQ, Nomad is truly a mecca for connoisseurs of high-end designers and streetwear. For those in the know, Nomad has quietly been outfitting the city’s coolest men, making coveted and hard-to-access goods their bread and butter. While Nomad carries mostly international brands, their commitment to Queen Street West and their impact on raising the level of men’s streetwear retailing in the city makes them a local favourite.

Community 54
Community 54 is one of Parkdale’s retail gems. Focusing on the promotion and support of local Toronto brands, Community 54 has made a name for themselves in Toronto by creating an amazing retail experience that gives shoppers access to a beautifully curated selection of vintage goods, local designers, and some of the hottest kicks on the market. Co-owner of the shop Joel Reilly is a local Parkdale champion, and part of the reason why Community 54 is so awesome is because of his integration into the local Parkdale community.

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