Where to dig for treasure in the Junction
A visit to the Junction is a must for anyone renovating or redecorating their home. The casual ’hood offers some of the best shopping for architectural pieces and unique furniture in the city. Store owners are passionate about both their businesses and the area, so expect personal service the chain stores can’t deliver. Here, the best bets on a thriving strip of Dundas West.
Finding upholstered furniture that’s both affordable and stylish is a trick, but this large shop fills the void with panache. Luxe fabrics play a prominent role: velvet-covered armchairs and sofas come in rich hues, and linen wraps divine bergère chairs. But it’s the one-of-a-kind pieces from the East—antique Chinese cabinetry, for instance—that draw designers (of both the TV and real world variety). 2886 Dundas St. W., 416-767-8170, cornerstonefurniture.ca.
It’s been almost four years since Martin Scott’s store-cum-workshop opened, and it has gained such a reputation that he no longer needs to search out the materials he uses to build furniture. They come to him—sometimes from contractors ripping apart buildings or a local hauling in a door on his bike. “Everything here has a story,” says Scott, who has snapped up all of the hardware, wood and pews from the Victoria Presbyterian Church around the corner, which is being converted into condos. The one-of-a-kind tables and cabinets, often made from doors or floorboards, are well priced and will win over devout contemporary design fans. 2903 Dundas St. W., 416-291-2001, foreverinteriors.com.
The neighbourhood fixture stocks a tidy collection of records—rock, jazz, reggae, funk and blues—and a well-curated library of second-hand books. Owner Neill Cunningham prides himself on carrying books for a more literary set—adventure, romance and courtroom dramas are strictly prohibited. 2862 Dundas St. W., 416-769-5257, pandemonium.ca.
Post and Beam Reclamation
Renovators will delight in the store’s architectural finds: Ontario barn doors, mantels, stonework, signs and stained glass. It’s up to customers (many are contractors, designers and restaurateurs) to adapt them to the modern era, whether for artistic or practical purposes. Those looking for a specific item can make use of the request book, though browsing the shop for inspiration is a romantic endeavour. 2869 Dundas St. W., 416-913-4243, pandb.ca.
The store is similar to Post and Beam, though its pieces are for a more artsy set. The oversized dining tables, fireplaces and shelving are lust worthy, but the reclaimed and vintage pieces are often better suited to raw lofts than cramped condos. But even the space deprived find room for local artwork (curated by Jerome Jenner), amazing Italian wallpaper from the 1970s, vintage bathroom fixtures and other unique accessories. 2880 Dundas St. W., 416-762-3113, smash.to.
Open only eight months, Gabrielle Neveu and Adriana Fulop’s shop is a haven for Canadian clothing and accessories designers, including their own printed tops, undies and jewellery. A pop into the store is a nice break from furniture shopping, but reclamation is still present here: a leather rifle strap and wool blanket become a gorgeous handbag from military surplus recyclers Jack and Marjorie. 2993 Dundas St. W., 647-827-6994, shoptrapdoor.com.