Where to Shop in Vancouver: Independent and Hip Main Street

Photo: Mount Pleasant BIA

Named one of North America’s “coolest streets,” Main Street is packed with restaurants as well as unique independent boutiques that make it ideal for leisurely shopping.

Main Street features shops that are found over two dozen blocks, running from roughly 8th Avenue all the way to 30thAvenue. As the primary street of Mount Pleasant (up to East 16th Avenue), Main Street shopping also extends into other neighbourhoods, such as South Main (SoMa) and Riley Park-Little Mountain. What makes the boutiques on this thoroughfare so special is that they are chain-free and proudly local, carrying items you wouldn’t be able to find elsewhere. Plus, there are numerous vintage stores, allowing you to shop sustainably and stylishly.

Below are highlights of Main Street’s many shopping options:


Photo: Front & Company

You’ll find cute stores aplenty on Main Street that carry clothing, footwear, and accessories, many of them a hybrid of both new and vintage selections. Very popular is 8th & Main, a shop for both men’s and women’s clothing, vintage items, as well as accessories. Expect a hip vibe, affordable prices, and an independent spirit.

The Corner Store is a destination for curated streetwear, carrying t-shirts, sweat shirts, jeans, sneakers, caps, and other accessories. Brands featured include Carhartt WIP, Stan Ray, and Stussy.

Antisocial Skateboard Shop supplies “skateboard stuff,” like wheels and hardware, as well as sneakers and clothing, such as hoodies, toques, crewnecks, and shorts. You’ll find brands that range from Anti Hero to Thrasher.

Much & Little is a charming boutique that, in addition to offering beautiful home and living items, carries a thoughtful selection of women’s local, North American, and international clothing items. Brands represented include Loup, Black Crane, Meadows, and Osei Duro. The focus is on high quality, timeless, and conscious clothing.

Front and Company also combines consignment and contemporary clothing at their very large boutique at East 22ndAvenue. You could spend ages in this store since it contains clothing selections for both men and women and tons of sparkly jewelry and accessories.

The long-running Eugene Choo brings together brands such as Eye of Needle, Allison Wonderland, and Filippa K to showcase design-forward clothing and accessories that are well-made and unique. Many of the brands offer garments that are the antithesis of fast fashion by focusing on sustainability and lasting wear.

Barefoot Contessa is the prettiest store on Main Street, selling lovely dresses and other fanciful clothing items, many of them vintage. You’ll find jewelry, accessories, and home décor items for living more beautifully.

Main Street is known for its plentiful vintage shopping. The many options include Woo Vintage Clothing, C’est La Vie Boutique, F as in Frank Vintage Clothing, Bohemia Gallery, and Burcu’s Angels, Mintage Mall, and Turnabout. You can browse to your heart’s content for fashion, footwear, accessories like purses and sunglasses, with many high-end brands represented at more accessible prices.

Home Décor and Furniture

Photo: Nineteen Ten

If you’re seeking a gift for a loved one, an item to decorate your home, or furniture, Main Street has numerous options, with a wide variety of aesthetic styles.

After many years in Gastown, Parliament is now on Main Street with modern, mid-century inspired furniture and décor pieces. The space itself is incredibly beautiful, featuring a wide range of interior items, such as rugs, lighting, and wall accents, in addition to larger furniture like couches, tables, and chairs. Their indoor and outdoor plants for sale are minimalist and striking.

Named after the city’s iconic home style of the 1960s to 1980s, Vancouver Special is a stylish design store that carries furniture, décor items, design objects, as well as art/architecture books. Selections are inspired by Scandinavian and Japanese aesthetics, focusing on modern, clean design lines with functionality. Offerings range from pendant lights to vases.

In addition to a clothing boutique, Front and Company has a gift store, which sells a wide assortment of goods. Once you start browsing, you’re bound to come across something that interests you. The store carries cards, stationary, toys and novelty items, baby goods, homeware, skincare and self-care products, and various accessories, like jewelry and slippers.

Bed specializes in locally-crafted bedding, which is made from muslin, a 100% cotton fabric, which has superior breathability and durability.  They offer duvet covers, sheets, pillow covers, and cushion covers, in addition to duvets

Giving Gifts has a very extensive selection of items in its five rooms, representing the work of over 100 local and fair-trade artisans. The emphasis is on lovingly crafted goods that are eco-friendly and equitable for creators and workers. In addition to skincare and wellness products, you can shop for clothing, jewelry, accessories, houseware, gourmet goods, stationary, and baby and kid items. There’s lots for spoiling yourself and the people in your life.

The Storehouse is all about making the items you wear and the things you put in your home intentional, one-of-a-kind, and sustainable. Combining vintage and handmade goods, this shop features whimsical items, such as jewelry, tabletop items, clothing, and fun accessories.

Nineteen Ten knows exactly what you would like to have in your home. The curation of their products is attentive and thoughtful, with priority given to those goods that are Canadian made and independent. Selections range from local pottery (e.g., vases and planters) to napkins and placemats that will make you want to entertain more.

Main Street is home to numerous florists who sell plants and pots, in addition to fresh and dried floral arrangements. Many of them also carry household products, giftware, and lifestyle items. Some options include Cream Mint Florist, Flower Factory, Blossom and Vine Floral Company, and GG Flowers on Main.

Skincare, Wellness, and Lifestyle

Photo: Plain Jane Skinbar

If you want to pamper yourself with a facial or buy a product to take home for an at-home spa experience, Main Street has plenty of places that specializes in skincare and body care products, and wellness.

Sunja Link Body Shoppe brings together local and international beauty and wellness items that are high quality, small batch produced, and eco-friendly. Brands found there include Living Libations, Salt and Stone, and Provence Apothecary. You can purchase moisturizers, serums, oils, masks, and exfoliators, in addition to make-up selections and hair products, such as shampoos and conditioners.

For those who want to reduce waste, The Soap Dispensary and Kitchen Staples has a really wonderful concept premised on refilling high quality cleaners and beauty products. They also carry bulk food items, such as spices, and package-free products, like potato chips. They sell reusable containers in addition to kitchen tools that are high quality and long lasting (e.g., beeswax wraps, straws).

Welk’s is your dream general store with a dizzying array of high-quality goods—many of them local and artisanal—that you can use and consume in your home. They stock snacks, beauty and health products, home and kitchen items, stationary, and even toys and games for the kids. Make sure to set aside time for wandering the various aisles.

In addition to medical-grade facials and injectables, Plain Jane Skinbar sells products meant to revitalize, clean, correct, and protect your skin. Stop in for a cleanser, eye brightening cream, or sunscreen.

Started in Vancouver, Formula Fig has expanded to Toronto as well as Los Angeles. They offer a range of skincare treatments, as well as stock a range of skin products/brands, such as tanning water, replenishing serums, and lifting masks.

While Main Street is largely chain free, it does have Aesop, the sought-after Australian skincare and wellness brand, which offers a relaxing boutique experience. Fragrances, hair products, skin care, and products for pampering your hands and body are available here.


Those looking for antique curiosities and furniture will enjoy popping into Main Street’s many antique shops. Options include Timeless Antiques, J&J Antiques, Main Street Antiques, and Alexander Lamb Antiques. Most are located on the southern blocks of Main Street.

Where to Go for a Quick Bite or a Meal

Photo: Old Bird

Main Street is a hub of casual delicious eateries and breweries, as well as more upscale establishments, such as Published on Main, currently placing 3rd in Canada’s 100 Best Restaurants. Other elegant restaurants like The Acorn (plant-based) and Burdock & Co. (farm-to-table West Coast) would be amazing for a meal after shopping.

For more casual fare, consider The Cascade Room and Main Street Brewing for pints and comforting eats or Fable Diner for breakfast favourites and diner classics like meatloaf with mashed potatoes. Main Street is known for its diverse food selections, such as East is East for curries, kebabs, roti rolls, and rice bowls, El Camino’s for Latin American street food, and Old Bird for modern Chinese dishes. After fueling up, you can head out again for more shopping!


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