I used to find vintage shopping quite intimidating. Rails and rails of clothes from different brands, all different sizes and all previously owned. I didn’t think it was for me at all. But I’ve learnt to go in with a plan and get to know the vintage stores around you so you know what what stores best fit what you want.
I’m lucky to be living in Brighton, perhaps one of the best places in the UK for vintage shopping. My friend Sophie and I regularly make use of the abundance on thrift stores around us. I’ve gotten to know a few of the vintage stores around the area quite well and while they all sell vintage clothing, they all seem to have a different theme or niche. Once you get to know what store sells what, then it makes it a lot easier to shop there.
A few of my top tips for vintage shopping:
if you can, go in knowing what you’re looking for. It’s makes the search process a lot easier.go to the shop that suits your style. Some vintage shops cater to 50’s styles, some for 90’s etc. If you’re looking for a Nike jacket, probably best to skip the 60’s themed thrift shop. If you want branded or designer items, go to a shop that solely sells branded and designer pieces. Some vintage shops will have those items mixed in with unbranded items, which is fine if your just browsing. But if you really want a designer piece, go to a shop that only sells those items, it will save you a lot of time. There are even shops that sell preloved Chanel and Dior etc if you really want to go all out. There is a fabulous one in Sidmouth in Devon of all places! if you can, look up the original price of the item. This will help you decide if the item is a bargain or not. Some shops know people will pay a high price for a vintage designer piece, but you might not always be getting the best deal. A lot of vintage shops over price even unbranded items, especially since vintage shopping has become more popular. So get an idea for what the item is worth and set a budget. For example, the Calvin Klein dungarees I bought on this day cost me £37. Mine I believe to be from the 90’s but on their website today, their dungarees are between £108-£130 so I made quite a saving! The Levi and Calvin Klein jeans I tired were priced at £30 each. On the Levi and Calvin Klein websites today, their jeans range from £85-£110, so again a huge bargain.
Grabbing a drink at LARDER, Brighton
All Vegan food, LARDER, Brighton
Our first shop, Starfish, Brighton
Starfish is great but I felt it was slightly over priced for some of the items
Trying on a tennis dress, it was cold so I put it on over the clothes I was already wearing, hence the bulging bits
Next up, Flock
Flock had some amazing jewellery pieces. I wasn’t keen on the style of the clothes but will definitely go back for the rings!
Dirty Harry’s, perfect urban outfitters kind of style
My favourite vintage store, Beyond Retro
I found Levi and Calvin Klein jeans for £30! Beyond Retro is so well stocked for designer jeans and one of the only places that stocks my size (26inch waist, 32inch leg)
When the jeans fit!
Then I found Calvin Klein dungarees
When you find the perfect dungarees!
So I hoped this helped! Out of all the vintage shops we went to, Beyond Retro is my all time favourite. It’s so well stocked, has amazing designer brands and for a really good price. I can get Levi and Calvin Klein jeans for £30, when Topshop jeans are £40! Every thing is railed in categories and in size order so it’s so easy to shop there. I always find something I love, that fits and all for a good price. It’s also the place where I got my Lee jeans which I love!
Me in my Lee jeans I picked up at Beyond Retro