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Thirty years of magic at The Black Market

Downtown’s beloved import boutique celebrates three decades of bringing gems from around the world into the homes of Haligonians.


  • RAchel McGrath
The Black Market Boutique claims its own corner of the city boldly. The rainbow paint outside the Grafton Street shop can be seen from afar, drawing curious eyes to its doorstep. Inside, the boutique overflows with jewellery, incense, home decor and funky clothing sourced from around the world. It’s a downtown icon for shoppers of all ages: from teenagers wanting cheap thrills to adults investing in unique gems for their home.

The shop opened its colourful doors 30 years ago when avid explorers Dawn and Dominique Villermet decided to put down some roots in Halifax. Originally, the two met travelling and would buy things to sell in their next destination. They kept up this lifestyle for about three years, until they relocated to Canada and started street vending. Slowly, their worldly business venture morphed into what is now The Black Market.

Wiebke Kungl and Lauren Parsons, strangers to each other at the