Pop-up shops taking over weekend shopping in Toronto

by | Apr 1, 2016 | Biz/Tech, Life

Krysten McCumber

Pop-up shops are springing up all over the city as smaller businesses and brands find a new way to attract a crowd and make a connection with shoppers.

For Ontario College of Art and Design (OCAD) student Miranda Victoria it was her class assignment to organize a pop-up shop to expose artists’ work to new audiences.

“It shows up for a few days or a few weeks and you display, for us we’re displaying emerging artists and young artists and start up businesses,” Victoria told Humber News. “It’s just something to give exposure for a short period of time. And then we’re gone.”

Victoria’s team’s P.O.P. Pop-Up Shop is open from April 1-3, selling textiles, jewelry, home decor and paintings. Friday marks the launch of their pop-shop with a $5 entry to the party.

“It’s something that pops up for such a short period of time so it’s kind of limited edition and a lot of people really love the idea of limited edition.” -Miranda Victoria, P.O.P. project manager

Artist Yovska and his OCAD team have put together an ice cream-themed pop-up shop, selling ice cream coloured and inspired items along with vegan ice cream as a treat. The Ice Cream Pop-Up Shop will be open April 3 from 4:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

“We thought ‘why don’t we do ice cream?’ It’s fun and summer is approaching soon too,” Yovska said.

From a business perspective, shop owners can get a vibe on whether their new ideas and products will sell well in the market. Sunny Singh, owner of Love & Greed and coordinator of The Bespoke Pop-Up Shop, said it’s a great way to test the waters.

“Pop-up shops kind of gives you an idea if you should open up some more or just do pop-up shops at different venues,” Singh told Humber News.

Pop-up shops have become a popular trend in Toronto, featuring smaller businesses and artists to sell their products in a “limited edition” form. Victoria said she credits the popularity to people’s desire for one-of-a-kind products.

“It’s something that pops up for such a short period of time so it’s kind of limited edition and a lot of people really love the idea of limited edition,” she said.

Yovska said the rise is because of people’s growing love for arts and crafts and handmade items.

“It’s partly just because of the rise of arts and crafts and the popularity of people wanting to get a touch on handmade items, items with just more personality and emotions, rather than mass-produced items,” he told Humber News.

Singh joined up with local designer Tre Paul to host ‘The Classic Bomber’ event where consumers can get a custom bomber jacket made. The customized product is what Singh predicts will make the event a success.

“You get measured, you pick your fabrics, you have your glass of whisky, for us that’s a big thing,” he said.

Regardless of the reasons for these shops popping out throughout Toronto, the teams involved in putting together these shops agree the experience is what will continue the trend.

“It’s just about the experience pop-up shops give people that it’s a more personal connection between the shoppers and creators of the items as well,” Yovska said.”

See below for a map of pop-up shops to check out this weekend in the city.