Bungalow was established in 2003. In 2003 there was only a small scattering of Vintage shops in Toronto. Most of the shops were jam packed, oozing of incense, mildewed, cramped, and overwhelming. You would either have a vintage clothing shop or what we called junk shops at the time. Junk shops were more like Thrift shops without the clothing, mostly along Queen West and East. There were treasures galore if you had the energy to dig. In Kensington Market a lot of shops were and are still located in Old Victorian rows houses. The neighbourhood’s uniqueness has always attracted people in search of an experience. It really is to me, Toronto’s hidden gem. There are so many nooks and crannies to explore. Elements of the grunge, punk, and hippie eras still remain. I hope it stays that way for many more years. The history of Kensington Market is very interesting, a cool mini documentary can be viewed here.
That said, when we opened in 2003, in Toronto’s Kensington Market, we were coming out of the grunge period and into the Y2K era. Bungalow evolved out of the idea of creating a Vintage Lifestyle store. We wanted to have an open space that was airy and bright, a space where we could truly showcase the curated pieces that we brought in. We wanted a space that would meld vintage clothing with vintage décor, furniture, and lighting. With the addition of new clothing and accessories we were also able to target customers who were not comfortable to explore the world of vintage yet. It was important for us to create a space that was affordable and appealing to a broad range of customers. Somewhere where all generations could shop together. We have always been, and always will be open to the LGBTQ+ community. We consider Bungalow as a safe space to explore your individuality.
We are Jessica Zimmermann and Paul Salsman. We are two friends who came together and created this space we call Bungalow. We both come from a background in vintage, we love design, decorating, collecting, and of course thrifting. There is nothing that brings us more joy then finding great pieces to showcase in our store.