Mar 14, 2011

Top 5 vintage stores in London

Leda & St. Jacques Author: Elle Canada Credits: Leda & St. Jacques

Mar 14, 2011

Top 5 vintage stores in London

The city of London, with its rich history of style, is home to some of the best vintage clothing in the world. And with the growing popularity of vintage amongst fashion hungry shoppers, increasing numbers of retro-filled boutiques are popping up all over the city. However, to be stylish and thrifty in this city requires savviness acquired only through insider knowledge; we trawled through the lot to bring you our top five picks:

1. The Vintage Emporium

Tucked away on Bacon Street, just off of Brick Lane, The Vintage Emporium is lavishly decorated in a Victorian décor. The first floor operates as a quaint and cozy café, while the downstairs plays host to their selection of delicate vintage pieces, aged only between the Victorian era and the 1950s. This is an ideal spot to find exquisite and delicate, one-of-a-kind pieces, and enjoy an afternoon tea with friends.
14 Bacon Street, Brick Lane, London E 6LF

2. House of Vintage

Dennis Adamidis, one of Toronto’s best vintage buyers, has crossed the pond and opened up shop on London’s cooler-than-cool, Brick Lane. Having only recently re-located his Toronto boutique from Queen and Portland to 1239 Queen Street West last summer, Dennis ambitiously opened his first UK store mid-fall. Thanks to his incredible eye and knack for knowing exactly what vintage pieces we all want right now – the arrival of Dennis’ House of Vintage has been welcomed by London vintage snobs with open arms.
4 Cheshire Street, Brick Lane, London E2

3. Mint Vintage
Beautifully merchandised and spacious, one would be forgiven for thinking that Mint Vintage, located in Covent Garden, was not a vintage store at all – too clean and tidy! Upon closer examination, you find that each piece on display is an extraordinary find. Owner and buyer, James Wright, says his high-standard selection comes down to “watching all the fashion shows, two trips to New York, three trips to Canada, two to Amsterdam per year, along with the odd find in England.” Whew! Wright is confident that his customers are able to find one-of-a-kind pieces that reflect each season’s hottest trends, at a fraction of the runway price. So what can be found in store right now? Aviator jackets, key utilitarian pieces and varsity jackets, for spring you can expect disco, 70s folk, more denim, more double denim and tailoring.
20 Earlham Street, Covent Garden, WC2 H9LN

Where do Lindsay, Sienne and Namoni shop for vintage? Find out on the next page ...

4. Dynasty

On the opposite side of London, past Notting Hill, one can find the quaint area of Chiswick, which is home to designer consignment shop, Dynasty. From Topshop to Chanel, this narrow shop is chocca block full of fantastic, lightly worn or new, finds. Two elderly ladies can always be found sitting at the shop desk chit-chatting away and most-likely ignoring you, which is fine when you are busying yourself by working through all the amazing shoes, bags, jewellery and clothing. When hunting for second-hand goods, one must always keep the shopping areas in mind. Saying that, situated amongst some of the city's wealthiest and best dressed, Dynasty is never short of a discarded wardrobe treasure. Don’t be afraid to pop into the charity shops along the way, you never know what you might find.
12A Turnham Green Terrace, London W4 1QP

5. One of a Kind Vintage
This shop, on Portobello road, is literally packed from floor to ceiling with designer vintage. In fact, the rammed window display alone is enough to make any fashion-lover’s heart palpitate with excitement. Upon my first visit, my face was glued to the window in adoration of a pair of circa early1990s Jean Paul Gaultier sunglasses. Once buzzed in, I was greeted by One of a Kind owner, Jeff Ihenacho, sitting amongst the many pictures of his celeb regulars (Lindsay, Naomi, Sienna, Kate…) and his many, many nice things. Prices reflect that of a vintage designer piece in good nick (those sunglasses turned out to be £200), so I wouldn’t recommend a visit without a healthy bank balance.
259 Portobello Road, London W11

Check out our UK shopping guide, from Manchester to London to Newcastle.

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Top 5 vintage stores in London