….Is apparently where all the vintage’s at! I didn’t stray much further than Queen Street, but there were vintage gems aplenty in this area. Upon recommendation, I visited these two places:
Tribal Rhythm and Black Market clothing. The former was an amazingly-edited selection of mostly ’60s-’70s vintage. I regret not purchasing anything there. The latter sold mostly t-shirts and kitsch, but I did get my floral fanny pack from there.
I tried to go to 69 Vintage, but it was closed when I tried to visit. Booo.
At this point, I had not yet hit the gold mine that is the Kensington market.
In terms of clothing shopping, it wasn’t so much a “market” as simply an avenue with a string of vintage stores. All indoors, all air-conditioned.
The types of shops ranged from vintage, to costume shops to wholesale to those rastafarian shops that smell of sweet hashish and sell lots of harem pants and Bob Marley t-shirts.
One shoe shop stood out to me in particular: Cinderella Vintage Shop.
Well, I think it just stood out because it was the only shop that sold solely shoes.
Like this Doc Martens arrangement out in front. I was particularly fond of the greenish fruit-print Docs.
And, well, that’s all I have to say about that.
Check out how ornate and thick these pairs are.
Snow shoes and accompanying sock: the precursor to Uggs. I can’t help but think that is the most adorably bulky sock ever.
More ornate silky stockings, from the Baroque or Rococo period, I think? Ironically, stockings were ornate despite being hidden under dresses…
…and then when legs started getting exposed in the 1920s, socks got a lot more sheer and plain. Though this was, of course, to emulate the look of bare legs.
I was mesmerized by this pair of super-sheer, apple green stockings from Schiaparelli. Shocking Schiaparelli, the only alliterative adjective ever used to describe the designer.
There was also “On a Pedestal: From Renaissance Chopines to Baroque Heels”, an exhibit dedicated to, well, the title.
Chopines were the precursor to high heels. Well, now I know where Olivier Theyskens got his inspiration.
Gorgeous red. Looks like the shoe is bleeding onto the floor.
And some Baroque heels:
I’ll get to the vintage shopping part of Toronto in a later post, but first: what I wore.
I tried to pack as light as possible for Toronto. So the outfits are pretty boring, but hey. I cannot help but post pictures of myself.
I was in a vintage store with the security TV right in front of you, so I took a meta picture.
Gypsy top: F21
Camo pants: Zara
At said vintage store, I bought a floral fanny pack. I’d been wanting a so-called “bum bag” for a while now, and I must say, the whole hands-free quality of it is so liberating. Now that I’m back in DC, carrying a fanny pack around makes me feel like a tourist but WHO CARES.
Stupid pictures ahead:
Posing in front of a foot mirror in the shoe museum.
I was trying to do “fashion poses” on a log. It…failed.
And as this brief vacation was a family reunion, I now present a family picture:
THE KAO FAMILY. I found out that I do my make up just like my great aunt.
Top, skirt, secondhand
Fanny pack: secondhand Jordache
Sunglasses: Linda Farrow for Dries van Noten
I will warn you in advance that this post will be image heavy.
Sooo…. I’m back. Relatives were visited. Purchases were made. Sights were seen.
In particular, my family and I visited the Bata Shoe Museum in Toronto to — why else — examine some shoes.
Obligatory cheesy museum sign posing:
Turns out the museum is more of an anthropological study than a “omg shoez” type of space which made the whole visit quite educational! The exhibits were lacking a bit in the contemporary, cultural aspect (like the “famous shoes” exhibit: pretty lame), but there was plenty of info on how the first shoes came about and how the style of the shoe developed according to the nature of the time and place.
Like how many early shoes were a huge-ass sole with a rod for the toe. The museum sure contained some of the most extravagant flippy-floppies I ever seen. Obviously not created for walking, but for status symbol for royalty.
Anyways, I should just shut it and let the pictures do the talking:
Tiny and somewhat disturbing shoes for foot-bound women in ancient China. The “ideal” foot length for Chinese women during this time was 3 inches.
Didn’t take notes of the captions, so I only have vague recollections of the context of each shoe. This pair is Middle Eastern, the style of which is still worn today. I know, Moroccan flea markets sell nearly the same kinds of slippers.
This shoe was made for horses, but honestly, Lady Gaga would also be a good candidate for it:
In fact, it was made more apparent to me than ever how much designers take from shoes made for certain functions and making them “fashion forward”. Like these:
This was made for walking in the snow, but I can imagine it on the Viktor & Rolf runway and someone screaming, “KILLER!!!!”
There was a special exhibition for Native American moccasins.
Such intricate beading…
I can see where Karl Lagerfeld got some of his influence.
That’s mostly it of the “historical functional” shoes. Next post: all about da aesthetics, baby.
A reader motivated me to get off my ass and finish off that vintage/thrift list of Florence, so here it is! Link also available from the side bar. Image preview:
It’s organized a bit differently than my DC Secondhand List, obviously given the different natures of each location. I felt it was more necessary to give a description of each Florence shop.
Hope that helps, whoever-is-next-going-to-Florence! Of course, if anyone has questions about OTHER Florentine aspects, don’t hestitate to ask me. =)