Admit it, we’ve all probably wasted many a day drooling over Etsy.com. This online marketplace, where crafters can showcase and sell their wares ,
is a veritable labyrinth of whimsy, kitsch and well made collections. Whether hunting for that daring yet demure vintage dress, or some stunning artisanal jewelry, Etsy can become a bit of a time suck. With so many e-shops competing for your hard earned cash, it can get exhausting wading through mediocre collections to get to that perfect piece.
Fear not! We’ve assembled a quick rundown of some of our favourite Toronto based Etsy shops for clothing and accessories (so you hopefully don’t have to pay that pesky shipping and handling cost).
Why we love it: Local boutique owner and blogger Sarah Magwood has an eye for deliciously decadent vintage clothes in figure flattering shapes. This Etsy store is an extension of the 1418 Dundas St. West storefront.
Price point: Mid to High. A vintage 1950s floral style circle skirt retails for $26, but is an outlier amongst items that range from $80-$325. Want to justify the price? Well curated, designer items that are pieces you will cherish and want to turn into family heirlooms.
Best to browse when: You’re got the Bossa Nova on, a big event to go to, and Mad Men on mute.
Why we love it: Quirky hand printed designs let that regular old t-shirt make a statement. In particular, Nicole Brayshaw Bond’s signature sugar skull designs are an irreverent and refreshing take on the skull trend.
Price point: Low to Mid. T-shirts begin at $25, with most being comfortably in the $30 dollar range. The “Pirate Treasure” slip costs $50, while the “Till Death Do Us Part” large tote bag costs $40.
Best to browse when: All you want to do is just wear your jeans and Converse–and dance to some Le Tigre.
Why we love it: Based off of designer Breanna Musgrove’s experiences living in Mexico, this Etsy shop exudes bohemian cool just in time for your lazy summer. Scout and Catalogue’s “Scavenger Series” repurposes thrifted fabrics and turns them into Talitha Getty worthy accessories accented with buttery Italian leather, and just the right amount of tie-dye. These bags and scarves are environmentally friendly and fantastic.
Price point: Mid-low high. Hand dyed cotton scarves are $98, while gauze scarves can go for $128. Totes, pouches and bags range from $42-$218.
Best to Browse When: You’ve got some slightly cooled jasmine tea, beach bound dreams, and Devandra Banhart at an almost whisper in the background.
Why we love it: Tweek reclaims the dreaded Windsor knot and turns it into a must have accessory. More pretty than punk, Cassandra Ellen gives us an alternative way to the Avril Lavigne school of wearing these neck accessories. Ties are turned into necklaces, bracelets, rings, and even an adorable “noggin topper.”
Price point: Low to mid. Bracelets, broaches and necklaces begin in the $25 range, while the tie fascinators go for around $40.
Best to Browse When: You’ve got a Mad Hatter’s Tea Party to attend, and the kicky, new wave sounds of Bow Wow Wow on full blast.
Why we love it: We adore Foe and Dear designer Katharine Huie’s delicate approach to jewelry. Repurposing vintage charms and turning them into new treasures, Huie’s work is subtle yet striking. In particular, we love the baby brass “4 Crosses” earrings. Better snap ‘em up, some of these pieces are one of a kind!
Price point: Low to mid. Gold plated animal studs and reworked vintage bead jewelry is a steal at $20, while more labour intensive pieces and semi precious stones retail anywhere between $30-$60.
Best to Browse When: You’re psyching yourself up for the beach with summer’s newest indie sensation, while looking for something to match your wide, brimmed floppy straw hat and floral maxi dress.
Why we love it: Danielle Singer’s lariats and harness inspired chains straddle the line between bold and delicate. Finely crafted brass chains feel fluid while still maintaining clean, strong lines. Many of these pieces are certainly classic enough for more feminine types, but definitely still are eccentric enough for the sartorially fearless amongst us.
Price point: Medium to High. Be prepared to shell some mad cash for these handcrafted beauties. Some harnesses and collars go for an upwards of $150, while smaller pendant style necklaces are in the $40-$60 range. Lariats are $50, while bracelets and rings are nestled in the $55-65 range.
Best to Browse When: You need that little extra something to kick up that experiment in deconstructed, “minimalist” dressing you’ve been seeing everywhere, and have been wanting to try– all while tapping your toes to Lykke Li’s newest album.
Why we love it: If you’ve been admiring the charming window displays at Queen West boutique Robber, then let’s just tell you now that those were designed by the Fieldguided team, Anabela and Geoff. In addition to their cute totes and ties, we’re especially loving Anabela’s blog,
Price point: Low to mid. Handprinted totes with lyrics on them retail for about $20-$25, while handmade ties are $30. Photo prints go for $10.
Best to Browse When: You’re feeling super dreamy (a la Fleetwood Mac and Lee Hazlewood), and want to explore botanical gardens and have picnics, rather than being stuck on the internet.
Why we love it: Naughty Mess is brought to Toronto by way of Montreal fashion blogger (and brand new Flare intern) Chloe Wise. Her urban, street-style vintage picks are evocative of a breezy, laid back California girl cool, with just a hint of New York neurosis.
Price point: Low to mid. Blouses and tops begin at $12, while some dresses sell for upwards of $45.
Best to Browse When: You want to impress your hipster friends with your knowledge of semi to totally obscure British post punk, and have Rumi Neely’s blog “Fashion Toast” open on another tab.
~ Natasha Hunt