Five years old and still going strong, Fresh Collective is a gem of a boutique in Toronto's Queen West fashion district. It offers the work of about 20 local designers who share the expenses and take turns working in the shop. Often, sewing, jewelry-making or other production is happening right there, as the designers do double-duty making their product while running the shop. Because the items are one- (or very few) of-a-kind, the selection is different each time you go in, making frequent visits worth the trip.
Fun and funky undies by Candi Factory create the perfect foundation for any Fresh Collective outfit.
A dotted summer top, by Fresh Baked Goods, ties at the back with a bunch of ribbons and is shown with a wooden pendant by Precious Pink. In fact, with seven jewelry designers, each with their own style, you're sure to find just the right accessory for any outfit.
Brand new Toronto label Momiji makes great one-of-a-kind jackets with vintage buttons - a great match with necklaces featuring vintage Canadiana charms by Buttercup Days. The shop is full of pieces with unique details that make them special, and that's part of what makes shopping at Fresh Collective so much fun!
Paper People Clothing offers breezy one-of-a-kind shirt dresses made from repurposed men's shirts, table cloths and bedsheets.
A flowy Momiji top is a dressier option, but things tend to be casual and cute at Fresh Collective. The overall style is certainly eclectic, but there is a unifying theme of well-made, interesting, different and cute items. And best of all, the prices are reasonable, especially when you consider these pieces are handmade! Dresses range from about $88-165. Tees are $29 and up, and printed cotton tops are around $48-88. Skirts start at just $48, and knit shrugs are $48-79.
Fresh Collective is always buzzing with creative energy, with designers making things right in the store, and others dropping by to restock their sections. It offers the best mix of unique, interesting fashion, jewelry, and accessories made in Toronto. It's a must-visit-often shop for Torontonians and tourists alike.
Review by guest contributor Sarah Campbell, with photos by Laura-Jean2008.