Now Magazine - September 15, 2011
Photos by: Kathryn Gaitens
BLACKBIRD VINTAGE FINDS 55 Mill, bldg 57, 416-681-0558, blackbirdvintage.com
The Distillery District, with its cobblestone laneways and brick and wood-beam retail spaces, has always seemed like the perfect spot for a Victoriana-smitten vintage dealer to open a store. Eight years into the neighbourhood's rebirth, one finally has: Paula DiRenzo of Blackbird Vintage Finds.
Blackbird's showpieces share the Distillery's reclaimed industrial aesthetic. There are boxes of metal sign letters, tarnished silver trophies, bottle racks, washstands and dental cabinets. A two-storey-high bus roll containing the names of stops hangs on one wall, and a collection of oversized sewing scissors sits under glass in a general-store display cabinet.
Though the vintage furniture and knick-knacks take centre stage in the store, 70 per cent of DiRenzo's stock is new, including Red Canoe bags, toast-shaped coasters and bottle-green cut glass goblets.
Blackbird Vintage Finds picks: A Q&A-a-day journal is packed with five years worth of queries, $18.99; those wine glasses are $12.95 each; DiRenzo's personal pick from her bath and body product lineup is a gin and rosewater lotion by Tokyo Milk, $22.95.
Look for: Jewellery including sterling silver wax-seal-shaped pendants by Waxing Poetic and Pick Up Sticks pewter charms.