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Fashion Stores


Posted by Dayna Winter / Posted on November 5, 2010

Philistine Vintage TorontoPhilistine was founded in 2007 as a once-per-month pop-up shop, but only settled into permanent Parkdale residency this September. The tiny space houses mostly vintage duds (peppered with choice new accessories) curated by co-owners Aaron Doucet and Colleen Ramage. Doucet shares intentions to amp up the content of new items in the shop, including plans for their own line. Samples of the in-development brand - camel and black houndstooth capes - hang above the women's wear.

UPDATE FEB 2014: Philistine has moved to 928 Queen St. West

PhilistineIn men's vintage, workwear and Americana rule. I feel like I've stumbled upon the time capsule closet of Springsteen's Born in the USA days. Well-worn-in demin, barn-collar jackets and down-filled vests are perfect seasonal toppers for plaid flannel button-ups. Fellas can channel The Boss or even Paul Bunyan, in pieces that are ruggedly, classically manly.

PhilistineWhile the shop's menswear collection feels unified, I don't detect a clear story in the women's racks. "Colleen is really into making it contemporary," Doucet explains, "She alters everything herself." Altering the pieces means shortening dresses and converting leather pants to shorts, to mimic what's happening on runways.

PhilistineA narrow rear hallway is lined with an impressive (and massive) collection of immaculate vintage footwear. Bestsellers include booties for women, and, naturally, work boots for men. Shoes are priced from $20.

PhilistinePhilistineNotable finds are light grey fold-down suede ankle boots ($40), a button-up short leopard jumper ($35) and new tortoise Clubmaster-style shades ($15). There are deals to be had here too - all button-ups and blouses are $40 for two.

PhilistineWhile I didn't find many pieces that I couldn't live without, I'll be back, curious about the evolution of the shop. For the wood-choppin', grown-up boy scout types, however, Philistine is a must-visit.

PhilistinePhotos by Dennis Marciniak.



brian / November 7, 2010 at 11:26 am
went in last weekend and bought a shirt. pondered over a few other items. they had a really great selection. and i didn't have to wade through a bunch of crap to find the good ones.
sarah / November 8, 2010 at 01:06 pm
I'm undecided about this space. the selection and prices are great but, the owners seemed very stuck up and I felt uncomfortable in the tiny space. no small talk was made and all they did was talk poorly on people.. needless to say, I didn't buy the shoes I was interested in because of this....maybe I was ignored because I am an 'older' (39 year old) women and maybe not that fashionable.. it's a shame, because us 'mature' women tend to have money to spend.....
kerry / November 8, 2010 at 02:05 pm
Great little vintage shop. Glad to be neighbors!
David / November 8, 2010 at 08:16 pm
Been waiting for a men's vintage selection like this for quite some while. Love the selection, the prices are very reasonable and great customer service.
sarah / November 9, 2010 at 03:20 am
The boots sold here are my dream shoe collection. Affordable too. Easily one of the best vintage stores in the west.
Kostas / November 9, 2010 at 09:00 am
Love this shop, been a few times since they opened and they always remember me. I've purchased some great pieces from here from a classic cardigan to a pair of combat boots, no bullshit, nice kids selling nice clothes.
Amanda / November 9, 2010 at 12:08 pm
In a strip of Queen West inundated with vintage stores, I was skeptical when I first went in...

But now, after a few visits, I must say this is probably the best curated selection of vintage I've seen in a while in the city. Nothing peeves me off more than having to sift through weird and funky pieces to find wearable vintage. The selection here is amazing...all very wearable and all very current.

I'm also curious to see how the store evolves. I believe this is one to watch out for.

Also, they always have the best classic rock blaring! I had a sing-a-long to Heart's "These Dreams" with the guy who works there. Very fun!
Colleen replying to a comment from sarah / November 10, 2010 at 02:12 pm
Hi Sarah,

I am a co-owner of Philistine, and it's unfortunate to hear that your first visit to our store didn't leave you with a positive impression. Everyone has bad days, and I would love the opportunity to create a more positive experience for you. Rest assure, we welcome customer both younger and older than ourselves!
Caitlin / November 10, 2010 at 03:51 pm
I have been into this store many times, so glad to see that since the shop became philistine the place has been fixed up and it looks awesome! Great selection and the jewelry is amazing! I have purchased two long necklaces with vintage charms on them; pair of binoculars and a wrench. love love love it. Will MOS DEF be back for more!!!!
Robert / November 11, 2010 at 03:44 pm
I had a great experience at this place. My impression of the staff were friendly and kind. The selection was great.
Thanks for reviewing this place!
Steph / November 15, 2010 at 06:00 pm
I bought a pair of boots from Philistine a while back (when it was a web-based store only) and not only are the boots nice to look at but I must say the quality is unbelievable! They have lasted me through two Canadian winters, much better than any other boots I have owned in the past. As for the new store, I find the sales staff both helpful and congenial, the music the play rules, the decor is impeccable and, as many have said before me, no more wading through psychedelic, hippy-flowered moomoos. I hope they stick around for a long time, a great addition to the Parkdale area!
judy / November 17, 2010 at 05:04 pm
I have shopped at Philistine on many occasions and have always found unique items that were priced well. I've been a fan since they hosted their own sales out of an appartment several years ago. The new shop is very welcoming and the selection is great. The boot selection alone is amazing I own atleast four pairs! I recently bought one of the capes that Colleen, one of the owners, had hand made and I love it. This is a very special little shop that packs a big punch. Really worth a look.
jr / February 7, 2011 at 11:08 am
Terrible place. Bought boots that had soles completely falling off and the woman denied that they were damaged to begin with. Plus, the store is far too small for the selection to be decent. Don't go here.
Caroline / February 8, 2011 at 11:18 pm
I love this place. It's the best curated in the city and the women's selection is definitely on trend. Wearable, classy and decently priced! I'd rather shop here than at a new clothing store.
Adam replying to a comment from jr / September 16, 2011 at 12:00 am
After reading every single other comment, I'm inclined to believe you are completely lying. Since I've also been there myself, I know that you are lying.
Kimberley Marquis / January 25, 2012 at 07:42 pm
Hi there,

I am a student at Ryerson University studying Fashion Communication. For my final Thesis I am doing a book on people who love and are obsessed with Vintage. I was wondering if I could interview you. It would be an email interview. I would need a few photos from your store that you could send me, and photos of your life that make up who you are as a person who loves vintage. If you are interested, please email me and let me know! This would be greatly appreciated! Thank you for your time.

Alexa D'Argenio / March 2, 2012 at 05:19 pm
My name is Alexa D'Argenio and I am a Producer for Cineflix Productions. We are working on a new show; created by the Producers of the hit TV shows “Canadian Pickers” and “American Pickers". This new show, tentatively titled “Top Collector” will be a competition TV show, as several teams will set out in pursuit of the BEST PICK, ultimately earning the title of Top Collector!
We are currently casting for Canadian "Picking Partners"- two people that pick together at flea markets, yard sales, barns, sheds, etc. We are looking for people that are charismatic, knowledgeable about collecting, know how to spot hidden treasures, and flip items for profit. Pickers who specialize in collecting items such as vintage toys, oil and gas memorabilia, pop culture items, cast iron, TV & movie memorabilia, and other interesting and unique items!

If there is anyone you think might be interested in entering the competition and being a part of this show, we would love to hear from them! I am also attaching a flyer that you can post on your website, Facebook page, etc. or distribute as you see fit.

For more information or to APPLY to be on the show, please email me at adargenio@cineflix.com.
Colleen replying to a comment from Kimberley Marquis / March 12, 2012 at 05:26 pm
Hi Kimberley,

I don't know if I found this comment in time, but please email us at inquiries@philistinevintage.com
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