Spicy new thrift store in Pointe-Claire

Spice Daddy thrift store in the Pointe-Claire Village opened its doors on Dec. 1 2023, sharing a new and fun twist in second-hand shopping. Photo by Yasmine Chouman / The Concordian

Friperie Spice Daddy in Pointe-Claire adds a new twist to second-hand shopping.

Gian “John” Carlo Pengue, 43, has always had a passion for clothes. Having been involved in the fashion industry most of his life, he developed a keen eye for interesting items. 

In the early 2000s, he worked for his family’s lingerie business that manufactured their own clothes in the East of Montreal. His family sold their line at ‘Marché Aux Puce flea market’ in St-Eustache during the summer time. 

Constantly being surrounded by interesting and unique items, Pengue quickly gained a special eye for collectibles: “I would go explore the second-hand goods,” he said.

Once Pengue realized that he could sell these collectables and make a profit from them, an idea sparked. He started selling the items he found while working at the flea market and sold them on sites like kijiji or market place. 

He then started working at a recycling company, 1-800-GOT-JUNK?, and would collect furniture, amongst other goods. “That’s when it really changed for me,” he said. 

He collected these unique pieces and continued to sell them online. Multiple storage rooms and his parents’ garage were filled to the brim.

Around the same time, eight years ago, Pengue recalls being approached by his former business partner Marcello telling him: “Hey John, why don’t you come sell these antiques at my store in Pointe-Claire?”

They combined their mutual love for collectibles and fashion to create a thrift store; Tricky Ink. This was the first store Pengue ever opened. 

He started to lean off the antiques and collectibles and focus more on fashion and second hand clothing, since combining the two businesses. “Thank you to my ex business partner,” he says. 

Pengue sold Tricky Ink last year, but it still exists today in Pointe-Claire. Not only does he own Second Chance, his family’s antique store in Hudson, he is also now the owner of  spicedaddymtl, a thrift store opened on Dec. 1 in the heart of the Pointe-Claire village. 

You can walk around the village, grab an ice cream or some food, do a little thrifting and make a day out of it. 

Pengue’s welcoming environment makes the shopping experience worthwhile. Expect to be greeted with a “Hello friend!” or “Hello human!” as you walk in. He says his shop brings the proper amount of spice to the business.

“I like looking good. I like expressing my personality through fashion,” he added. “I love finding unique pieces. I love looking different.” 

This is apparent through his careful selection of the pieces placed on the racks. When walking around his shop, sifting through the different tops, pants and jackets, it’s impossible to not grab something interesting. 

Pengue gets a personal supply filled with unique items from the 80s, 90s and early to mid 2000s, as well as more recent pieces, which he labels on his yellow tags. Need a belt? A hat, perhaps? You can get all the items you want and a complete outfit costs around $15. Once you start, you won’t be able to stop!

He added his own touch by putting a skatepark in the basement of his place. It’s currently under construction, but will soon be available to the public. You can skate with Pengue too! “I’m going to put up a cool sign in the front so people know about it,” he says while standing at the front of his store by the window. 

Pengue describes the store as loose, comfortable and chaotic. He enjoys riding his skateboard inside the shop, making videos for his Instagram account, or making his customers participate in silly games and giving them free knick-knacks. If you know how to do a cartwheel, show him and you’ll get a free vintage Beanie Boo just because. What’s not to love? 

Pengue prioritizes letting people do their thing, all while he does his. “I don’t sell, I serve,” he said. “I want people to come here, make a good friend, get some good clothing, have a chuckle and some fun with a good human,” Pengue said. “That’s the goal at Spice Daddy.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related Posts