Tucked away in the heart of a neighborhood undergoing a renaissance of sorts, Boutique Archive is located at 318 Villeray in Montreal.

This is Sebastien Burns, owner. He opened Boutique Archive along with his girlfriend after a stint as marketing director for Insight Clothing gave him the impetus to set up shop and carry some of the brands he’d encountered during his travels. He decided to settle in Villeray because he is one of its native sons, having been in the area for over 15 years before coming back to open his retail space.

Seb explained to me that his main influence comes from the traveler lifestyle, as exemplified by California beach bums and Australian surf culture. We spoke at length about the importance of narrative and how more and more everyday people are concerned with telling a story, whether their own or the story of the shirt on their back. Narrative and quality are the main criteria in selecting which brands and pieces make it to Seb’s shelves. One of the brands I discovered at Archive that caught my eye was Deus Ex Machina, from Camperdown, Australia. The founders were surfers that built and repaired vintage motorcycles, revamping them and getting them back on the road, where they belong.

Another noteworthy feature is that all fixtures and wooden panel installations were done by Seb himself. Respect this man’s integrity.

Boutique Archive also carries women’s clothing and accessories, as well as handpicked vintage selections in back of the store.

Other lesser-known brands that can found at the shop include Something Else by Nathalie Wood, The Critical Slide Society and Raen Optics.

A special thanks to Seb for opening his doors to us and Mariel Rosenblüth Photography.

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