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Fashion Stores

The Store on Queen

Posted by Robyn Urback / Posted on May 24, 2012

the store on queen torontoThe Store on Queen (or TSOQ, for short), popped up on a whim. Longtime friends Angela and Valentina spotted a "For Rent" sign in the window of a shop on Queen West, and days later, they had claimed the space. Less than a week after opening I meet Valentina behind the counter, and she tells me how their new, acronym-touting shop came to be.

tsoq queen boutique toronto"We were looking to do something together," she says, standing in front of posters of her and Angela modeling the shop's clothes. "We're both very into fashion."

Valentina is the buyer, sourcing affordable (key word) pieces from around the world, and Angela is the designer, though her time is currently occupied working on an unrelated television show. "We'll have original pieces soon," Valentina assures me, pointing to a particular photo on the wall. "These jeans will probably be first; they come in both Canadian and American flags."

the store on queen boutique torontoThe photo shows Angela wearing a pair of tight-fitting jeans with a distressed print of American flag dressing up the leg. Valentina estimates they'll retail for about $90.

Both the women behind TSOQ come from business backgrounds. Valentina dabbled in restaurants and Angela in retail, separately working on their pursuits until this past February. "It's for the young, contemporary woman,: Valentina says about their combined vision. "It's an eclectic mix of patterns — sexy and edgy."

the store on queen torontoEdgy is one thing TSOQ definitely has down. From its bedazzled skull phone dressing up the white counter ($98), to its BLQ MKT black mesh bodysuit with handprints over just the right places ($85), shoppers can definitely find statement pieces in this small boutique.

the store on queen torontoThere are other items, still, for the slightly more modest, including a whimsical peach silk cotton sleeveless blouse for $59, and a black mini-dress with a feather-lined collar for $49.

the store on queen torontoAs I browse through the TSOQ offerings, I note that the prices are surprisingly low (compared to some of the other independent Queen West shops). Valentina confirms that they try to keep mark-up as minimal as possible. "This dress," she says, holding up a black Meeso dress with gold sequins and beading, "I know there's a store in the mall selling it for $150. We have it for $95."

tsoq torontoThe shop also buys in small quantities — about four to six of each garment — to avoid the carbon-copy conundrum of the same dress walking on opposite ends of Queen Street. If you do snag one of the limited dresses at TSOQ, however, you'll probably be sporting some take on a backless, cut-out number.

"We'll be getting things in every week," Valentina says, "and also selling them online." And though the shop is new to Queen, judging by its name, it's planning to stay put for the long haul.

the store on queen toronto

Photos by Denise McMullin

Discussion

14 Comments

Emily / May 24, 2012 at 12:42 pm
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Do you know what the Store Hours are?
The fashionist / May 24, 2012 at 12:49 pm
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Toronto the unfashionable, seriously.
philip / May 24, 2012 at 02:28 pm
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That's one cheesy sign outside.
ESL / May 24, 2012 at 02:39 pm
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Takes the same # of syllables to pronounce TSOQ as it does to say the actual name of the store...
wellllllllllll / May 24, 2012 at 02:41 pm
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At least they're not hawking vintage crap. Those kind of stores smell like Goodwill.
Krystine replying to a comment from Emily / May 24, 2012 at 02:49 pm
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The 5th image down from the top has the hours on it...doesn't get more obvious than that.
Renna / May 24, 2012 at 10:29 pm
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What's with the bike in the window? Is it supposed to evoke the exciting hipster life we could have if we bought that Made in Indonesia blouse?

What's with the rack of antlers? Is this the imprimatur of home grown, feel good Canadiana, when our lives as hewers of wood and drawers of water were simpler and every meal was loca-delicious?
HG / May 27, 2012 at 07:18 pm
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I went into this store last week and was so happy with the service I received. Not only did I get an awesome dress, but the owners were incredibly friendly. Not sure if you girls will be reading this but thanks! I'll be back again for sure. Great store.
Jill / May 29, 2012 at 02:46 pm
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Love this store! fabulous pieces and awesome prices. Valentina was super sweet to my lady friend and I.
Coco / October 31, 2012 at 09:50 pm
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LOVE the store great clothes and service. Got a sexy fierce spiked bra for Halloween and a couple other edgy rare stuff. Thanks to TSOQ I looked fabulous and had everyone's attention. Definetly worth the drive and Angela is so friendly and sweet!!
Daniel Camer / February 4, 2013 at 02:23 pm
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I would definitely like to see these ladies succeed. There's nothing I like more than independents sprouting up around town and doing well! These ladies deserve their hard earned dollars!

- Daniel Camer
Judith / February 4, 2013 at 10:56 pm
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Coming up from Arizona and will be in town Wed...coming to your store...all your clothes are stunning!! Will be there at 5:30 with my beautiful daughter...watch for us!!!
RENEE / March 20, 2014 at 01:42 pm
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I will be coming Saturday to do a little shopping for my birthday!!!. Products are beautiful! See you Saturday!
Bianca / August 7, 2014 at 03:21 pm
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I stumbled across TSOQ while frantically shopping for an outfit for a last minute party. Don't remember who it was that helped me but she really listened to what I wanted and helped me find the perfect dress! All the girls are so sweet and funny, positive energy and good feels all around, not to mention all the cutest clothes!!! I walked out feeling like a princess, fully styled, accessorized and even a list of Mac makeup colours to match!! Definitely will be a returning customer!! Thanks TSOQ!!!

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