Inside Vitaly, the buzzy Toronto jewellery brand’s first flagship
After almost five years of building a loyal following through social media and strategic store partnerships, Vitaly—the edgy accessory brand of choice for tatted-up Torontonians—has finally opened its own Queen Street shop. Founder Shane Vitaly Foran launched the eponymous label fresh out of university on a trip through Asia. He met an artisan in Bali and designed a few wooden double-finger rings to bring home for some friends—his initial goal was to make enough money to afford another backpacking trip. Now, the unisex label has hundreds of thousands of Instagram followers, a super-popular clothing line and is carried by over 700 retailers around the world (needless to say, Foran left his day job in media sales immediately).
Over the years, Vitaly’s aesthetic has evolved from sorta-grungy handmade pieces to sleek unisex staples (these days, their jewellery is made in China mostly from stainless steel). The main floor of the shop was designed to represent the brand’s most modern incarnation, with white-washed brick walls, pale wood floors, zig-zagging LED lights and minimalist fixtures:
“I think people wanted something less in-your-face but still unique,” says Foran of the brand’s initial success. Especially for jewellery-averse guys, the simple yet architectural silhouettes—like this beehive-inspired ring ($44)—make it easy to accessorize without going over-the-top:
The brand started designing basic clothing two years ago. They recently collaborated with local designer Sully Wong on a pair of slick, synthetic microfiber leather sneakers (priced at $130).
As Foran says, this season’s Yeezy-hued scooped-neck cotton tees ($49) are “crushin’ it right now”:
This past year they’ve also started designing slick watches, like this gold-plated piece ($289):
The back of the space displays photos from Zack Vitiello, the brand’s creative director and photographer:
Upstairs, the brand has curated a mini concept shop, featuring stuff from a variety of other brands. The decor is more rustic than on the main floor, as an ode to the brand’s beginnings:
Here, visitors will find leather jackets and distressed denim from British brand Violent Rose ($205—$265):
There are also knapsacks ($75—$145) from American accessories brand Focused Space:
The 24-person team also has an office on the third floor, and a kitchen and lounge area just off the second:
505 Queen St. W., 416-901-7467, vitalydesign.com