in vintage we trust toronto

Ebay store In Vintage We Trust opens its doors to the public

In Vintage We Trust treats vintage as gospel. In that way, a camo jacket is not just a camo jacket, but rather, an excuse to discuss the camouflage clothing evolution from the Napoleonic wars to countercultural 1960's youth. A Detroit Lions warm-up jacket might spawn a 400-word blog post about the 1957 season, and pair vintage aviation coveralls most certainly demands discussion of the Air Force during the 1940's and 1950's.

in vintage we trust toronto

Vintage clothing, in other words, is not just clothing to Josh Roter and Chantal Varela, but pieces to examine, contextualize, admire, and yes, sometimes also to wear. The couple started In Vintage We Trust, an Ebay store, about two years ago, quickly rising to become one of the top international names in vintage menswear and winning the "Service-preneur of the Year" award for 2011.

in vintage we trust toronto

And this weekend, In Vintage We Trust will host its first ever public warehouse sale from its headquarters on Dufferin Street. "We really want to test the market," Josh tells me as he and Chantal tell me a bit about the event. "We have retail aspirations, but then again, we're mostly just trying to introduce ourselves to the local market."

in vintage we trust toronto

Josh and Chantal estimate that only about three per cent of their online sales come from Canadian shoppers. Of the other 97 per cent, buyers include individual international customers, various abroad wholesale operations, labels such as Ralph Lauren, J.Crew and Nike (who want to get their hands on their own vintage duds, mostly for promotional purposes), and the odd name-drop-worthy celebrity such as John Mayer and Sting (or rather, Sting's son...close enough).

in vintage we trust toronto

The pair met working at Over the Rainbow back in 2005. Chantal later moved on to work for Le Ch창teau corporate out in Montreal, while Josh stayed in Toronto and engrossed himself in the vintage industry. He bought and sold select pieces on a full time basis over the past several years, eventually partnering with Chantal to create In Vintage We Trust in 2010.

"Most of the time, I'm out sourcing product," Josh says. "And Chantal is here, basically running the business."

in vintage we trust toronto

Without giving away his sourcing secrets, Josh says he generally looks across the border for those formidable metal t-shirts or vintage sneakers. "We do a lot of traveling during the summer," Chantal says. "One time, we ended up out in rural Maryland, digging through a barn on a farm where we expected to find a store."

"I think it was something like the wife's ex-husband who used to own a skateboard shop," Josh adds. "And she got all of the inventory in the settlement. Anyway, that's how we got some great Vision Street Wear.

in vintage we trust toronto

While some In Vintage We Trust finds are both history-laden and affordable, the most beloved, generally, come at quite the price. I ask Josh and Chantal to recall some of their best vintage finds, to which they respond a 1920's denim Carthartt first-version Chore jacket, and a 1940's Cincinnati Reds jacket worn by Jimmie Wilson. Both items were tagged with several zeros before the decimal.

The price tags this weekend, however, will generally be between $10 and $50, with sportswear, rock tees, military clothing, footwear, and accessories all on the roster. And if you want any context, just ask Josh or Chantal. But prepare for much more than a one-sentence answer.

in vintage we trust toronto

The In Vintage We Trust sale will be held Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. at 215-2770 Dufferin Street

Photos by Brian Chambers


Join the conversation Load comments

Latest in Fashion & Style

Arlene Dickinson cuts hair short and admits she kept it long to avoid offending men

This Toronto woman has collected over 300 bras from people across Toronto

You can now order plants to your door on a Toronto food delivery app

Toronto department store's new facade has transformed part of Bloor Street

Drake's OVO Flagship store in downtown Toronto appears to have closed for good

Toronto beauty brand Deciem selling to Estee Lauder in $2.2 billion deal

Suburban wine moms flock to HomeSense as York Region enters Ontario's red zone

Toronto company just launched a line of denim jackets with swappable backs