Actually cool Montréal souvenirs
It’s so nice to have things to remember a trip by, but is there anything cheesier than tourist-shop fare? Luckily there’s a crop of stores in Montréal that offer genuinely cool branded gear you’ll actually want to take home not just for you, but for anyone on your gift list. And no snow globes in sight.
From local designer clothing and accessories by Travis Taddeo, Denis Gagnon, Des Rosiers and Okinx to wacky costume jewellery and crazy cellphone covers, Le Rhinocéros is a good-time store in the Phi Centre in Old Montréal filled with unique local finds. Our favourites are the scarves they get printed with art by local creatives like Renata Morales and Joe Becker.
A veritable who’s who of Montréal creators, YUL Designs is like the Etsy of made-in-Montréal ware, ranging from jewellery to foodstuffs to design objects to clothes. It’s an online store mainly, but they have pop-ups and a pied-à-terre on St-Laurent near Bernard. Bring back a taste of the city with syrups by Les Charlatans, designed to mix into cocktails or to make into Italian-style soda for kids.
This mini-chain of design stores in Little Italy offers goods from all over the world, but there’s a particular focus on local products. Bélangermartin has two locations a block away from each other, one with more focus on homeware, the other more clothing. Both are worth checking out. We’re in love with the rope lamps by Annie Legault.
Museum of Jewish Montréal
The headquarters of the street-tour based Museum of Jewish Montréal, right at St-Laurent corner Duluth, are like a community centre: there’s a fantastic restaurant serving Montréal-Jewish classic, a small exhibition space and a shop with a beautifully curated selection of books about the city. How about the Joe Beef cookbook?
Mostly an art gallery focused on street art from all over the world, Artgang is a massive space on St-Hubert in Rosemont that also sells a very cool collection of urban clothing, featuring brands from Montréal like New Regime, Boro and their own house brand of sweats, tees and MTL baseball caps.
We all know the Montréal metro system has mad style, with its public artworks and cool '60s design details, but now we can all get a piece of that coolness for our homes. Shop STM is your web resource for cushions in the shape of old bus tickets, decorative maps of the metro system, cool wall decals so you can build your own map, and a beautiful coffee-table book by Montréal photographer Jesse Rivière.
Isa Tousignant, blogger
Isa Tousignant is an art and lifestyle writer based out of Montréal’s ecclectic Park Ex neighbourhood. She is Contributing Editor for Canadian Art magazine and freelances full-time for a wide variety of magazines and brands. She’s also a jewellery designer and passionate about animal costumes and their role in contemporary art.
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