Inside Out Pop Up Shop

Furs and hats the game at new Inside Out pop-up shop

The new Inside Out pop-up feels sort of like the inside of your grandmother's closet. And just as you would when you were four years old (without a nagging social conscience about fur and like materials), owner Eva Tolkin wants you to come and play dress-up.

"When we did it in Montreal," Eva tells me of her first go at a pop-up, " it was a really relaxed environment. People would come, hang out, have tea, and try on some hats."

Inside Out Pop Up Shop

Those hats decorate both walls at the West Queen West pop-up, boasting fur, feathers, fasteners, and fabric. "This one is my favourite," Eva says, pulling out a black and white 1960's-era hat from Eaton's. She's not sure if she's going to add it to the wall collection or keep it for herself. "It's just so great."

Inside Out Pop Up Shop

Eva spent the last five years in Montreal completing an art history degree and having a bit of an existential crisis. "I didn't know what I wanted to do with my life," she says. "I was with a friend--a woman I met there--and she has the most amazing stuff. So we came up with the idea to start a pop-up."

Inside Out Pop Up Shop

The Montreal pop-up lasted four days as part of POP Montreal. Here in Toronto, Eva has just decided to sign on for an extra month, originally planning just to stay open until the end of October.

Inside Out Pop Up Shop

The vintage here is mostly '40s, '50s, and '60s (with a few '80s odds and ends), and very "posh woman on the town." There's lots of fur, of course, (coats are around $150 to $200), but Eva made the deliberate decision not to go as far as selling the once-glamorous fur stoles with heads and paws dangling off the ends. "A bit too much," she tells me.

Inside Out Pop Up Shop

Eva leads me around the small space showing off a fabulous red and black smoking jacket ($95), a suede tassel coat ($95), and lifting many of the hats and fasteners off the fixtures on the wall, including a vibrant turquoise peacock feather hat priced at $130.

Inside Out Pop Up Shop

While a boastful peacock hat can certainly make a statement, I'm more drawn to the little accessories, including a whole collection of brooches and clip-on earrings scattered about a table ($15). As I leave I notice a few pairs of bone china cup and saucer sets ($20), similar to some I know I've actually seen inside my grandmother's house. This calls for a tea party, and a round of dress-up.

Photos by Dennis Marciniak

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