Shop these unique Toronto markets and boutiques for fresh finds for everyone on your list, from hungry foodies to fashion hypebeasts.
Get your steps in as you browse these local-fave holiday markets and independently owned shops. They’re just as popular with locals as visitors, so enjoy the bustling vibe as you gift-shop like a Torontonian.
Holiday markets & pop-ups
Distillery Winter Village
Set in the Distillery Historic District, this outdoor Christmas market (formerly known as the Toronto Christmas Market) runs November 18 to December 31, 2021. Expect wooden stalls featuring handmade goods that in past years ranged from gluten-free butter tarts to fair-trade knitted sweaters to handblown glass ornaments. The market includes bricks-and-mortar shops, too, from trendy clothing at Gotstyle to fine chocolate at Soma to curated housewares at Blackbird Vintage Finds.
One Of A Kind Show
The expansive One Of A Kind Show runs from November 25 to December 5, 2021 and is the place to shop till you drop in aisles upon aisles of items from makers across Canada (400 vendors!). Expect: opulent ceramics, fine and fashion jewelry, artwork (often with the artist on-site), apparel from local designers, and a huge array of specialty foods for every taste.
Shipping containers repurposed as storefronts make stackt market a distinctive shopping setting. The holiday season brings pop-up weekend vendor markets, outdoor winter games and even bonfires! Shop for Asian-snack stocking stuffers from Auntie’s Supply; fresh kicks from Makeway, a women’s sneaker shop; and home decor from COFO Design, which specializes in emerging Canadian designers. The retail festivities run from November 23 to December 31, 2021.
Thousands of handmade products from 135+ local vendors are up for grabs at two Arts Market locations, one in Riverside and the other in the Junction neighbourhood. Special finds like illustrator Mia Dang’s cute stationery and clay art are available at the Riverside location. In the Junction, grab something truly unique (for yourself or the slow fashion devotee in your life) from Sweet Tang, specializing in colourful vintage fashion in sizes 12+.
Black Owned Toronto
The glam lovers on your list will drop their brushes over the Curae Beauty Boxx, a luxurious portable cosmetic storage vanity in a lovely pastel pink or white with an ingenious removable LED mirror. Other fabulous Black Owned Toronto finds include Kink & Coil’s satin-lined toque to minimize frizz and breakage, Neeky loose-leaf teas and Koda skin oils. Its two shops, located in the Scarborough Town Centre and CF Toronto Eaton Centre, support a wide array of Black-owned businesses from the local area.
Blue Banana Market
Need a Schitt’s Creek greeting card for the Moira in your life? Check. Local Firecracker Nuclear Bacchanal hot sauce? Check. Socks printed with a likeness of Justin Trudeau? Check. Quirky novelties aside, there’s also an appealing selection of tea and coffee accessories, practical kitchenware, toys and snacks here. Blue Banana Market is located in eclectic-boho Kensington Market, where you can also find vintage clothes and jewelry from nearby Courage My Love, Exile or Sub Rosa Vintage.
Shop from moccasins, musical instruments like hand drums, beaded earrings, basketry, books and original artwork from First Nations, Métis and Inuit artists. Cedar Basket is located in the Native Canadian Centre of Toronto. In-person shopping is currently on pause due to the pandemic, so check ahead for pickup options or shop online.
Made You Look
Drop into Made You Look in Toronto’s west-end Parkdale neighbourhood for locally made jewelry by 100+ artisans, including finds made with ethical stones and recycled metals. Proudly LGBTQ+ friendly, this low-key, approachable shop offers lewks at all price ranges, from affordable, adorable ice-cream sandwich earrings from Piglet Miniatures to Reuven Kassai’s exquisite textured wedding band in recycled gold.
Pacha Indigenous Art Collection
Pacha is a cozy, South American Indigenous-owned shop located in Koreatown. Offerings include beautiful tapestries from the Kichwa people of Ecuador; paintings and prints by Chief Lady Bird, Mark Nadjiwan and other notable artists; copper and uchi jewelry and more, all from Indigenous artists from Turtle Island (North America) and Abya Yala (South America).
With two locations, one in the Roncesvalles neighbourhood and one in Leslieville, Scout is the spot for thoughtful and fun gifts for craft lovers. Think: cross-stitch kits and paint-by-numbers kits, fine stationery, plus games and puzzles. Waste-free living is a focus, too, with kitchenware like beeswax wrappers, cotton string market bags and furoshiki fabric gift wrap.