If you've ever been to Queen Street West, then you know it's much more than just a street - it's a vibe.
There's just something about the combination of interesting people, interesting shops, and electricity in the air that makes Queen Street West an incomparable and unique part of Toronto.
But... it can be a little bit overwhelming to navigate. After all, how do you even begin to discover what it has to offer when it has the most?
Well, no worries! If you're looking to begin discovering the street, or just looking for a new place to spark your interest, look no further than this list below.
Each spot also has the added bonus of featuring local Toronto and/or Canadian brands and designers, which, let's be honest, is a huge plus when it comes to deciding where to spend your hard-earned dollars. After all, supporting local vendors and brands means you're not only getting a quality-crafted good, but that you're helping out a fellow Canadian/Torontonian. And really, what could be more beautiful?
Oh, and no worries if you can't make it to Queen Street West yourself. There'll be a great way to shop right from your own home very soon. Narcity's launching a project called Narcity Market, an online, curated platform that'll let you shop the streets of Toronto, starting with Queen Street West. And yes, you might even be able to find some of these brands on the market. Interested? Click here to sign up, and be the first to know soon as Narcity Market drops.
Address: 888 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6J 1G3
Trust, if you're looking to be ahead of the trend, you're going to want to go browse the selection of clothes and accessories at Tusk. Not only are the clothes beautiful and unique, but this shop places an emphasis on selling items handpicked both from local Toronto designers and brands that are typically difficult to find in Canada. The result? Quality outfits not seen on the masses.
Approved merchant on Narcity Market
Address: 361 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M5V 2A4
Lovers of active wear, rejoice. RYU - an acronym for respect your universe - is one of those brands that gets a lot of love, and for good reason. Creating clothing that highlights usability above everything else (seriously, their design process even involves consulting with athletes to ensure they've created the most optimal garment), RYU's pieces are equal parts beautiful and functional. Oh, and the best part? They manufacture their goods using local fabrics and factories wherever they can. That's a win.
Address: 1380 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6K 1L7
If you're of the camp that jewellery is meant to be special, then trust, you're going to absolutely adore Armed. Specializig in bold and unique pieces designed and created by local Torontonian Desiree Girlato, this Queen Street jewellery shop proves that you can both set trends and be timeless all at once - and all without sacrificing quality.
Toronto Designer's Market
Address: 1605 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6R 1A9
This shop allows local designers to sell their products, ranging from clothing to furniture and everything in between, directly to the consumer. Which basically means that this is probably the ultimate hub for local Toronto designers and brands to showcase their talent, and for everyday people like you and me to get our hands on some seriously one-of-a-kind items!
Address: 682 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6J 1E5
A menswear shop that carries a wide array of brands (including their own in-house brand, which features garments made right here in Canada), the coolest thing about Sydney's is definitely their custom services. That's right: if you want a custom suit made locally, Sydney's is absolutely the place you're going to want to check out.
Approved merchant on Narcity Market
Address: 609 Queen Street West Lower Level, Toronto, ON M5V 2B7
If you want your clothes to scream "unique" and "custom", look no further than this Queen Street West shop. Featuring clothing designed by local Toronto graphic design and screen printing experts, Paranoid Apparel features high-quality clothes with unique designs printed by hand on location. If you need something special, they also offer custom design services for clothes, print, branding purposes and more.
Logan & Finley
Address: 670 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6J 1E5
Looking for a spot where you can find sustainable, eco-friendly, gorgeous products that make your everyday life more simple? Of course you are! And luckily for you, that just so happens to be Logan & Finley's entire M.O. They sell things like clothing, skincare, candles, household items and more; and as an added bonus, more than 20 of the brands they feature are based right in Toronto!
Address: 795 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6J 1G1
Providing gender-neutral, simple and sustainable children's clothing, Mini Mioche proves that good quality, long lasting, simple clothing for kids can exist. Mini Mioche's garments are also organic, and are created right here in Toronto.
Lavish & Squalor
Address: 253 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M5V 1Z4
Described as a "lifestyle shop", there's probably nothing you won't find at this cozy boutique (which, BTW, also doubles as a cafe - so it's a win/win). They carry a variety of items created by locals, like candles, accessories, skin care and more!
Address: 753 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6J 1G1
If you're looking to slay the accessory game, look no further than this popular (for a very good reason!) Queen Street mainstay. Selling sunglasses, bags, hats and more - many of which having been produced by local Canadian designers - Zane absolutely deserves a stop the next time you're combing through Queen Street.
Sylvie And Shimmy
Address: 1640 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6R 1B2
Sylvie And Shimmy sells fun and classic accessories, clothing and footwear... but with an emphasis on all things local. They source most of their high-quality, functional items from local Canadian or South Korean designers. One thing you won't find here? Mass-produced goods. Sylvie And Shimmy are all about highlighting independent designers!
Address: 849 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6J 1G4
This clothing boutique's tagline is "made in your neighbourhood for women, by women". So, if you want to own some unique, high-quality and all-around beautiful pieces and help support local talent at the same time, you know exactly where you need to go.
Address: 1692 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6R 1B3
Selling cosmetics, menswear, womenswear and accessories with an emphasis on eco-friendly products, Chartreuse Style has something for pretty much everybody. Not only can you feel good about purchasing quality products that place an emphasis on sustainability, but they also happen to carry a bunch of locally-made products - so you know you're supporting local, too!
With a bunch of locally-owned shops showcasing brands from Canada (and even from Toronto), Queen Street West truly is the place to explore if you're interested in shopping local. And why wouldn't you be? Shopping local not only ensures you get some high-quality items, but it also means you're supporting the dream of a fellow Torontonian!
Of course, not everyone can - or wants to - get to Queen Street West everyday. And if you're someone who'd rather shop online, but still wants to discover the best of Queen Street West, then you're going to want to stay tuned to Narcity's platforms. There just might be a solution coming your way.