What Would…

bf552f89320758e2d0dad2558c47b63eAshley Olsen Choose?

When thinking of the Olsen twins and style they are usually thought of as a collective; two peas in a pod. But today on our ‘What Would _____ Choose?’ series, we are focusing on Ashley individually and the pieces she would choose from our shop. Although, I’m sure MK wouldn’t be opposed to sporting some of them, they probably share clothes anyways. Oversized, layered and comfortable are a few words that come to mind when thinking of Ashley’s style…

Common Sort | What Would Ashley Olsen Choose?vintage suede coat, size S – $75

Common Sort | What Would Ashley Olsen Choose?ripped Levi’s jeans, size L – $28

Common Sort | What Would Ashley Olsen Choose?Club Monaco bag – $25

Common Sort | What Would Ashley Olsen Choose?Mantles cardigan, size L – $26

Common Sort | What Would Ashley Olsen Choose?sunglasses – $10 + Aldo loafers, size 10 – $32

Common Sort | What Would Ashley Olsen Choose?Babaton loose tee, size XS – $20

Common Sort | What Would Ashley Olsen Choose?Joe Fresh knit oversized sweater, size S – $10

Common Sort | What Would Ashley Olsen Choose?Tiger of Sweden bag – $70

Designer Pieces / 2

Common Sort | Designer Pieces at Affordable PricesToday we’ve got another roundup of some designer pieces we have in store. If you love designer but can’t imagine paying regular price for them, then thrift stores and consignment (or the internet) are probably your best bet. We are lucky to have sellers that bring in some pretty amazing designer pieces, so here are some of them at significantly reduced prices.

Common Sort | Designer Pieces at Affordable PricesCéline leather boots, size 37.5 – $230

Common Sort | Designer Pieces at Affordable PricesChloé jeans, size M – $120

Common Sort | Designer Pieces at Affordable PricesDior sunglasses – $75

Common Sort | Designer Pieces at Affordable PricesValentino Orlandi bag – $125

Common Sort | Designer Pieces at Affordable PricesArmani Collezioni jacket, size M – $72

Common Sort | Designer Pieces at Affordable PricesMiu Miu mules, size 38.5 – $130

Common Sort | Designer Pieces at Affordable PricesDior suit, size S – $180

Common Sort | Designer Pieces at Affordable PricesCéline slingbacks, size 37.5 – $215

Five Under Twenty / 3

Common Sort | 5 Pieces Under $20Welcome back to another roundup of clothing and accessories you can find at our stores for under $20. It’s probably obvious at this point that shopping secondhand is generally much cheaper than buying new; not only do we keep an eye out for more expensive brands that you can buy at a reduced cost with us, but we also stock our racks with some brands that are already fairly inexpensive and offering them to you for even less. It’s possible to come away from shopping with us with an entire outfit that cost you less than $100, which is pretty darn great, if you ask us.

Common Sort | 5 Pieces Under $20vintage short sleeve turtleneck; size XL – $18

Common Sort | 5 Pieces Under $20vintage Rafferty skirt; size S – $17

Common Sort | 5 Pieces Under $20leather Keds; size 6 – $15

Common Sort | 5 Pieces Under $20velvet H&M pants; size M – $19

Common Sort | 5 Pieces Under $20JCrew stripped long sleeve; size M – $17

Get This Look / 4

photo via Pinterest

Each day – even several times a day – new things make it out onto the floor of our stores; no two days are the same. The vast selection of styles and pieces we receive make it the ideal place to find everything you need to recreate your favourite looks from around the internet. Today we are recreating this Parisian inspired, masculine look. It’s simple, classic and easy to put your own spin on if totally recreating another’s look is not your thing.

Emporio Armani blazerCommon Sort | Get The Look / 4

Personal Styling Service

Common Sort | Personal Styling ServiceCommon Sort | Personal Styling ServiceCommon Sort | Personal Styling ServiceWe are so excited to announce that we are now offering a personal styling service at our stores. When Megan came into our lives we knew we needed to use her many years of personal styling and shopping experience to create a space where our customers could come to her to find what they are looking for. Whether that be a look for an event or a total wardrobe overhaul, Megan’s experience with seeking out individual styles, her keen attention to clients’ personal needs and welcoming personality make her the ideal personal shopper/stylist.

So, how does it work?
Easy! We have a questionnaire found on our site where you can fill out all the information Megan will need to pull pieces or looks that will be perfect for you. Depending on your needs, she will compose 5 separate looks for you to try on during your session. We will also be offering coffee, tea or wine during your appointment.

How much does the service cost?
Nothing! It is free and there is no obligation to buy anything from the session, but we bet you will want to.

Where will the session take place?
Your choice! You can pick the Common Sort location that is ideal for you for the appointment, however, Megan will search all 3 stores before your session so she can find the best of the best for you.

We are so happy to be able to offer this service and we can’t wait to offer you a relaxed, positive space to try on clothes and help you feel and look your best.

Holiday Inspired Pieces

get yourself
Sparkly maxi skirt – size L $18

With the holidays around the corner, we felt it appropriate to share some holiday inspired pieces we currently have in store to help you figure out what you will be wearing for the holiday this year. This time of year we have our eyes peeled for those pieces that would be perfect for easy days and evenings in with family or for that special party you may be attending. These are some of the pieces that caught our eye, for those who love being festive all month long, or those that just want something special for an evening sipping egg nog and eating a ton of gingerbread.

Common Sort | Holiday Inspired Pieces
Vintage a-line mini skirt – size S $25

Common Sort | Holiday Inspired Pieces
Vintage plaid mini skirt – size S $26

Common Sort | Holiday Inspired Pieces
Jenni Button sequin dress – Size M $98

Common Sort | Holiday Inspired Pieces
Dex gold dress – size M $22

Common Sort | Holiday Inspired Pieces
Elizabeth & James trousers – size S $63

Common Sort | Holiday Inspired Pieces
Banana Republic red trousers – size 2 $30

Common Sort | Holiday Inspired Pieces
Steve Madden velvet sandals – size 6 $30

Common Sort | Holiday Inspired Pieces
Topshop velvet heeled sandals – size 37 $30

Common Sort | Holiday Inspired Pieces
Banana Republic blouse – Size S $29

Common Sort | Holiday Inspired Pieces
Vintage scrunch top – size S $18

Common Sort | Holiday Inspired Pieces
Marciano sparkly purse – $38

Common Sort | Holiday Inspired Pieces
Box purse with floating sequins – $24

Inside My Closet: Erin Hemmerling

Inside My Closet: Erin HemmerlingWe are excited to be starting a new series where we visit the homes and closets of some seriously stylish and interesting people. Erin has been one of our beloved sales associates for a few years now, and just by looking at her you can tell she’s a cool and noteworthy gal. She let me snap some pictures of her bedroom and told me a bit about her favourite clothing pieces she has found over the years.

Inside My Closet: Erin HemmerlingInside My Closet: Erin HemmerlingTell us about your style.

Having literally just thought about it, my style is basically an accumulation of influences from all the female figures I’ve looked up to in life. My mom, my Barbies, the early 2000’s pop divas who’d make me late to school cuz I’d be waiting for their videos to come up on the Countdown, and my younger, purer self who dreamed someday of being a fashion designer (my million dollar design was a ¾ length baseball shirt with a heart in the middle) AND a DJ (I’m selling my DJ controller if anyone’s interested!!!)

My truest self comes out when the sun goes down – something feels weird about taking the TTC in broad daylight wearing my rainbow jumpsuit and 5-inch platforms, I guess. I’m a huge clothing collector and I’m not crazy about wearing the same thing twice which is why I’m so lucky to be a part of Common Sort. The funny thing is, a bunch of us CS gals live together and we NEVER share our wardrobes. I often end up coming home with Amalia or Meghan’s old clothes which had been sitting in their closets the night before. It’ll always comes back to the ladies in my life.

Inside My Closet: Erin HemmerlingThis is the dress I’m being buried in. It’s also one of the first pieces I ever collected when I started working in second-hand clothing. Missoni is one of my favourite brands, but you gotta admit they’re kinda hit-or-miss. Obviously the story of this dress had to do with a fancy grandma passing it down a few generations. I’ve only ever worn it once when working the Vintage Crawl and I distinctly remember wearing nothing underneath (Ou La La!) and later finding out from my co-worker that it was completely see-through (C’est La Vie!)Inside My Closet: Erin HemmerlingI am OBSESSED with hoops earrings. I have a monthly allowance for at least 2 multi-packs from Claire’s. They just compliment every outfit I own. I got my Erin earrings custom-made at the CNE on my birthday, cuz how could I not?Inside My Closet: Erin HemmerlingInside My Closet: Erin HemmerlingI attach memories to EVERYTHING I wear, and the last time I wore this cloud print shirt in 2015 I knocked over a lava lamp on stage at Double Double Land deeming myself “The Girl Who Broke The Lava Lamp On Stage At Double Double Land”. I am still not proud of this moment and I haven’t been able to wear this shirt since, but it’s still the best shirt I own and it’ll forever have a special spot in my second drawer.Inside My Closet: Erin HemmerlingInside My Closet: Erin HemmerlingI made these 8 ball earrings out of keychains. I have a growing keychain AND earring collection so it made sense to combine them. I think jewellery design is my next pursuit in life – but don’t hold me to it!!! Inside My Closet: Erin HemmerlingInside My Closet: Erin HemmerlingI don’t shop fast fashion stores often, but If I do, I’ll check out the sale section. The crazy thing about this two-piece is I found the top at Forever 21 and the bottoms at Zara. This has happened to me on a few occasions working in second-hand where I’ll buy something one season and have a totally matching piece come in the next, and every time it feels like it was meant to be. I once called this outfit “I just auditioned for ABBA Mania” and it makes its way out on special occasions. I’ll NEVER get over the fact that it cost me less than $20.Inside My Closet: Erin HemmerlingInside My Closet: Erin HemmerlingInside My Closet: Erin HemmerlingOk, these are a story. Whatever the internet says – listen to it. There is NO way to successfully apply glitter to Crocs.

I love to add a comedic element to my outfits when I can, and my friends know this. When my best friend Ashlyn got married this past May, she let us choose our own shoes to wear with our bridesmaid dresses. She was apparently going to let us choose our own bridesmaid dresses until she remembered she’d picked me to be in her wedding party.

I spent 3 nights decking out these Dollarama Crocs in $40 of fine glitter. I thought cheap foam would work better than the special plastic. We all grew up in small towns where Crocs became classic but I’d also had a weird feeling that they were about to make a comeback. There’s still glitter on our kitchen floor and apparently it’s forever embedded in Ash’s living room carpet.

As I was walking down the aisle, I felt the layer of glitter snag on the bottom of my dress and COMPLETELY lift up from the shoe. I thought I was going to trip up the altar and I think my heart sank further than hers. Luckily, I was holding her brother’s arm and made it up alive, but obviously my shoes did not. The photographer was just as sad as I was, but hey, at least my feet were comfortable!!!Inside My Closet: Erin HemmerlingMy method of thrifting has always been this: I walk into the store and pick up whatever (literally) catches my eye first. I’ve always been attracted to bright colours and crazy patterns, and this Custo Barcelona jacket was sticking out like a sore thumb – I HAD to take it home – so badly that I think I still owe my friend shopping with me $100 for buying it… (Sorry Pete)Inside My Closet: Erin HemmerlingInside My Closet: Erin HemmerlingThis jacket was the first thing I ever bought at Common Sort! Straight off of the repairs rack! I still haven’t fixed the giant hole in the shoulder but WHO CARES when you have an Ace Of Spades as a zipper pull. I dress thematically whenever I can and one of my biggest style regrets was not wearing this to the casino in Niagara Falls – my friends and I dressed up in wigs and fur coats instead. It probably wouldn’t have been worth it anyways considering we almost got kicked out for taking a picture of the Britney Spears slot machine.Inside My Closet: Erin HemmerlingInside My Closet: Erin HemmerlingThis is one of the first things I bought at our Common Sort in the Annex. I’d been feeling really down on myself for most of the summer, and when I found this jacket embroidered with “One Of The Elite” on the back, I couldn’t help but cheer up. I never thought a children’s dance jacket could make me feel such a cute confidence!!!

Personal Style: Inez Genereux

Common Sort | Personal Style: InezCommon Sort | Personal Style: InezNext up on our personal style series, one of our buyers, perpetually colourful with a smile that could brighten anyone’s bad day, Inez. Common Sort | Personal Style: InezCommon Sort | Personal Style: InezCommon Sort | Personal Style: InezTell us a bit about yourself.
An angel who lives for love and laughs.

How long have you worked for Common Sort and what’s your favourite part of the job?
I have worked at Common Sort for a collective time of about 2 and a half years. I took a break for a year to work on my art practise, styling and fashion presentation.
While I was away from Common Sort I found myself thinking about the communities that the stores are apart of more than any other part of the job. There are very few retail businesses where people of many different levels of economic status’ can enter and find clothing that suits all of their needs, aesthetically, functionally and financially. The price of new contemporary clothing that you buy in a mall is outrageous. Those prices are lies, and it isn’t fair that some folks have a more challenging time paying the price of those lies than others. The amount of times I have heard people exclaim while shopping at Common Sort  “this regularly retails for so much more“, is in the hundreds. The cost of living in Canada is so high, I feel that Common Sort offers a tiny bit of reprieve from the oppressiveness of consumerism.
As much as I truly love fashion, the nature of fast fashion is destructive to the planet. Even independent designers struggle with needing to make their clothing affordable enough for themselves to make small runs of garments, so most of all the clothing we see is made from synthetic materials and flown across the earth to be sold in North America. Common Sort buys directly from the general public, and we get so much clothing in every single day. It blows my mind to think that almost all of what we get in would end up in a landfill otherwise. Well! these are some of my politics in a nutshell, but I should say I also LOVE the thrill of finding a piece of clothing with a lot of character, especially vintage. Garments were made with more consideration towards fabric and wearability in the past. Things were made to last.Common Sort | Personal Style: InezCommon Sort | Personal Style: Inez

How would you describe your style?
A cartoon of Cameron Diaz playing a pop star who by night, is the secretary of a cult.

What’s your favourite piece you own?
ALL of my clothes are each my favourite pieces. I don’t buy clothing to have a cohesive wardrobe, I buy individual pieces that barely go with anything else lol. They all stand on their own. But honestly.. my favourite piece of clothing I have is a very very plain, boring ass mid calf length black cotton skirt with a thick elastic waist band. Originally from Forever21, I bought it because one summer I was very sick and it was all I could handle wearing on my lower half. It kind of looks perfect with everything and I also feel like I would have gone totally bonkers that summer without it. It’s kind of a horcrux for a part of my soul now.Common Sort | Personal Style: InezCommon Sort | Personal Style: InezCommon Sort | Personal Style: Inez
Some tips on how to style an outfit.
Instead of styling tips I’m going to share the best advice I ever got on getting dressed. I used to feel soooooo stressed out about finding the perfect outfit for work, or a party or a date or something. I felt like if it was an important event then I had to have a new combination of clothing pieces so the memory would be preserved in that outfit. But it is so hard to put together a new look under pressure. Someone told me just to wear your favourite go-to outfit, the one you KNOW looks good, even if it isn’t very special anymore. The last thing you want is to be pulling on the hem of a dress or constantly checking your self out in a mirror every second you get because you feel uncomfortable. Put comfort first always, but consider expanding the boundaries of that comfort zone sometimes. Everyone has the capacity to push a little bit here and there. Go for it.Common Sort | Personal Style: InezCommon Sort | Personal Style: InezCommon Sort | Personal Style: Inez
Favourite trend at the moment?
Literally I have no idea what is trending. I’m really into clogs and ska inspired outfits right now tho.
Favourite designer(s)?
ReBaie by Rebee,  Atelier Wonder and like Gucci lol.
Favourite season for dressing?
A few years ago I made a promise to myself I would NEVER wear an all black outfit in the winter, so I think it’s fun and challenging to come up with exciting looks throughout the darkest days of our year.Common Sort | Personal Style: InezCommon Sort | Personal Style: InezCommon Sort | Personal Style: Inez
Think of your style 10 years ago…are you embarrassed by it now? 
My style when I was 16 was really similar to where I am at now *in theory*. I liked and wore vintage clothes, I have always been really inspired by the Fruits fashion blog, and I liked to make my own clothes sometimes. One thing I should note is that 10 years ago I was really into Happy Hardcore and raving. Just let that simmer in your imagination for a moment. I think I looked sick and I have so much respect for my younger self for absolutely not giving a heck about what other people thought about how I dressed. I still apply the PLUR vibe to my visual and empathetic self now.

WHAT SHE WORE// Shorts, Top and Shoes: CS, Sunglasses: vintage, Bag: Courage My Love

*photos by Alex Spence and mural by Caitlin Taguibao

4 Ethical Clothing Brands To Know

We have come so accustomed to clothes being cheap and thus disposable that we often forget to look at the reasons why that is. Clothing was once something you invested in, looking for pieces that would be timeless and worn over and over. But now we are able to buy clothes weekly, wear them once or twice and forget about them because they barely cost us a thing and new seems to always be better. Certainly we can’t all afford to buy designer pieces or shop independent all the time, but I think it is important to start taking note of the brands who have very questionable ethics and look to brands that pay fair wages, focus on sustainability, make an effort to be transparent and create really well-made pieces that will last. Looking at clothes the way we look at investing in good furniture may help us to see that our view of clothing and the whole industry has become a little skewed. Of course our first thought is buy secondhand, but if you want to support independent businesses and brands that are doing it right, these are the ones we think you should lookout for.

Common Sort | 5 Ethical Clothing BrandsCommon Sort | 5 Ethical Clothing BrandsCommon Sort | 5 Ethical Clothing BrandsEVERLANE

Everlane is known for doing immense research on the factories they work with and visiting them often to ensure the factory’s integrity. It is important to them to remain transparent so you know exactly what you are paying for and why.

Common Sort | 5 Ethical Clothing BrandsCommon Sort | 5 Ethical Clothing BrandsCommon Sort | 5 Ethical Clothing BrandsELIZABETH SUZANN

Focusing on careful consumption, Elizabeth Suzann creates timeless pieces that can be worn several ways. All their clothes are manufactured in their studio located in Nashville and they strive to create as little waste as possible.

Common Sort | 4 Ethical Clothing BrandsCommon Sort | 4 Ethical Clothing BrandsCommon Sort | 4 Ethical Clothing BrandsMAISON CLEO

Maison Cléo is a mother-daughter brand based out of the North of France, creating pieces that are easy to wear and making French girl style accessible to everyone. Every single piece is handmade in their studio by mother of the duo, Cléo. They are extremely transparent when it comes to breaking down cost of materials and hours put into making each piece so you know exactly what you are paying for.

Common Sort | 4 Ethical Clothing BrandsCommon Sort | 4 Ethical Clothing BrandsCommon Sort | 4 Ethical Clothing BrandsÖHLIN/D

Based in NYC, Ö/D focuses on effortless style while putting forth effort into being a brand that supports social and environmental consciousness. They source high-quality fibres from vendors that adhere to a “do no harm” policy, which is to say they do not harm the environment or animals.