Shop Local in Ontario and Rep Your Canadian Pride
There are so many incredible makers, creators, designers and innovators who offer unique items that shop local in Ontario should be second nature these days. Not only does shopping local support your local community, but you have the added benefit of knowing that you’re going to be in style.
Want to get started? Here’s a list of 12 hip, socially-conscious, eco-forward and most importantly, homegrown design, fashion, art and lifestyle shopping ideas to get you started.
Wolf Den, Parry Sound
A fixture in Parry Sound for over 50 years, Wolf Den has an unbeatable selection of Indigenous arts, crafts and footwear, including porcupine quill and birch bark baskets, potters, jewellery, carvings, leather goods and handmade moccasins (treat your toes, seriously, you don’t know what you’re missing until you sink your feet into a pair of authentic moccasins).
The Hamilton Store, Hamilton
This downtown James Street North gift shop features a curated collection of prints, postcards, art, gourmet foods, unique products, and souvenirs made locally and celebrates the spirit of The Hammer. Just another example of Hamilton’s hip renaissance.
Maker House Co., Ottawa
There’s a genuine, laid back vibe to Ottawans, and Maker House is the perfect case in point. Located in the vibrant Hintonburg neighbourhood, you’re invited to browse an eclectic assortment of art, furniture, lifestyle products and more that are hand made locally from recycled and sustainable materials honouring the Canadian traditions of woodworking and crafting. You’re also encouraged to #CraftChange, to ‘know the story of your stuff and meet the makers.’ Workshops are designed to inspire creativity and collaboration. What an awesome activity-gift-for-two.
Illbury + Goose, London
Love London? So does Illbury + Goose, a home-grown, lifestyle shop with trendy, locally-made tees, retro neighbourhood toques (because #loveyourcity), hoodies, accessories and apothecary products inspired by the Canadian experience. Brick and mortar is located in London’s Old East Village neighbourhood. Great gift idea for the hard-to-shop-for: a bottle of Mountain Man beard oil (not just for men or beards).
Too Good General Store, Markham
Shop online from an inventory of goods and gifts sourced from across Canada. From charcoal winter ponchos to handmade charcuterie boards, it’s full of thoughtful treasures. Keep an eye out for Too Good General Store’s pop-up markets in the Markham, Ontario area.
Tin Barn Market, Almonte
Farmhouse. Shabby Chic. Rustic. Weathered. Industrial. If these design styles make you weak in the knees, this place is for you. The Tin Barn gives found, vintage, handmade, up-cycled, salvaged and pre-loved objects a second chance to make a space magical again. Who doesn’t love a great comeback story gift? This is what it means to truly shop local.
Ungalli Clothing Co, Thunder Bay
Co-founded by local Thunder Bay sisters, Ungalli is a versatile clothing line designed for the diversity of land and season handpicked in Ontario. The brand is fiercely ethical, with garments produced from 100% recycled, repurposed and sustainable materials. Ungalli says it best with “Founded in Canada. Designed in Canada. Manufactured in Canada. Seriously though, the world needs more Canada!” Agreed. Hint: Get the Rescued Is My Favourite Breed tee for the animal lover on your list.
PTBO Northern Originals, Peterborough
A vintage inspired clothing brand with a laidback, outdoorsy vibe that was born from a love for the city of Peterborough. Sizes range from adorable baby onesies to game day tees to cozy oversized winter-ready hoodies. Are you West End or East City?
Peace Collective, Toronto
Peace Collective is the brand that brought us Toronto vs Everyone, but what you might not know is this Canadian-proud company, in partnership with Breakfast Club of Canada, donates meals to Canadian children in need with each garment sold. This gift that keeps on giving justifies a little ‘treat yo’self’ this season, don’t cha think?