Vintage shopping is the way to go if you’re after cool, one-off finds no one else will have. Oxford is a real treat for lovers of retro fashion, with a great selection of second-hand shops and boutiques offering the best in vintage style. Here are some of the city’s must-visit retro shops…
The Ballroom Emporium
This long-running shop has been part of the Oxford vintage fashion landscape since 1984. With a fantastic selection of ball gowns and formalwear, it’s the place to go for vintage evening wear. There’s new clothes on the rails every day, so always worth popping back if you haven’t quite found what you’re looking for. The Ballroom Emporium also has an amazing costume department, where you can hire the very best in vintage fancy dress.
The Ballroom Emporium, 5 and 6 The Plain, Oxford, +44 1865 202303
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Magdalen Flea Market
Once a month, this flea market pops up outside the Magdalen Arms pub. With stalls selling all kinds of vintage goodies – from furniture to retro fashion – it’s a great place to grab a one-off bargain. Keep an eye on their Facebook page to find out when the next market will be happening, as well as what kind of stalls you can expect to see on the day.
Magdalen Flea Market, Magdalen Arms, 243 Iffley Road, Oxford, +44 1865 243159
Starting out on Portobello and Camden market, Reign Vintage now has stores in London, as well as this gem on Oxford’s Cowley Road. Here you’ll find an eclectic mix of great quality vintage clothing and accessories. Each item that goes on sale in the shop or online has been carefully curated by the team to make sure it makes the grade. Reign Vintage is all about cool, original pieces, with a real focus on quality and design.
Reign Vintage, 136 Cowley Road, Oxford, +44 1865 250004
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The Retro Rooms
The new kid on the vintage fashion block, The Retro Rooms is Oxford’s latest opening. They stock a wide range of vintage, new, designer and pre-loved women’s clothing as well as handbags, shoes and other accessories – so plenty on offer, whether you’re looking for a cute summer dress or a formal gown. The Retro Rooms also re-sell any good quality pre-loved items on a 50/50 basis, so t’s a good excuse to clear out your wardrobe to make way for a vintage shopping spree!
The Retro Rooms, 60 St Clements Street, Oxford, +44 1865 251005
Unicorn is a cosy treasure trove of vintage delights. The rails are jam-packed with retro clothes and old suitcases overflow with accessories and knick-knacks. There is a lot on offer here, so be patient, get rummaging and you might just unearth the vintage find of your dreams! There’s no price tags on any of the clothing, so see if you can get yourself a bargain.