London’s vintage shops are stocked with stylish pieces to suit any look. The capital is a treasure trove of fashion outlets, from the most premium of designer boutiques to a wealth of charity shops.
Pick up something special at Beyond Retro, an East London institution
Beyond Retro is East London’s best-known vintage store. It first opened its doors on Brick Lane in 2002 and has offered an eclectic selection of clothes for men and women ever since. The owners are self-proclaimed “hoarders at heart”, and they put their success down to a passion for original design and a consciousness of the decline in global resources. The brand now operates online and has opened additional stores in Dalston, Soho
, Brighton and various cities in Sweden.
Dress like a Camden rock star with threads from Rokit
Rokit has four London stores: two on Brick Lane, one in Covent Garden and a flagship in Camden. All stores stock accessories as well as clothing, so expect a wide selection of trilby hats, belts and scarves to complement your clothing finds. If visiting the Camden shop, make sure to go via the world-famous market to get a feel for what the locals wear.
Head to One of a Kind Fashion Archive for rare designer items
Portobello Road is famed for its chic location and eclectic aesthetic, making it the perfect place for a vintage clothing store that stocks designer items by names such as Gucci and Vivienne Westwood
. Owner and founder Jeff Ihenacho keeps the most exclusive pieces in the back room of the store and saves them for high-profile appointments with the likes of Kate Moss and Sienna Miller, who have both been privy to his collections. The staff are extremely knowledgeable, encouraging customers to quote any era of particular interest when they enter the shop.
Give a little back when you buy at Retromania London
Retromania is run by FARA, a charity that works to support orphaned and abandoned children in Romania. Designer pieces feature heavily within the collection, but the chances of seeing something two days in a row is slim as it’s said to receive around 50 bags of clothes to sell each week. The staff are well versed in fashion history and they ticket their items accordingly, but there are low-value pieces to be found, too, and prices start at around £15 for high-street items. Vintage memorabilia is also available in store.
Modes and More’s selection of stylish pieces makes it a celebrity favourite
Modes and More stocks hand-picked pieces that date as far back as the 1920s, and it’s frequented by fashion icons like TV presenter Laura Whitmore and singer Lana Del Rey. It was originally part of Grays Antique Centre in Mayfair
, which is home to around 200 dealers, but it proved such a success that owner Susie Nelson opened a standalone store in Pimlico.
Book an appointment at What Goes Around Comes Around and find your look
What Goes Around Comes Around started life as a Camden Market stall, but its instant popularity inspired a permanent store and showroom, run by appointment only. The stall still exists and both spaces house an impressive selection of items. The focus is on menswear and customers have the opportunity to rent or purchase, so it’s ideal for photoshoots, stage costumes or weekend plans that deserve a little more thought.
Channel your inner 1940s fashionista at St CYR Vintage
St CYR Vintage is named after 1940s burlesque star Lili St CYR. Unsurprisingly, it stocks clothing from the 1940s primarily, but designs cover up to the 1980s as well, and it also sells vintage books and magazines. Dresses are grouped by era, size and colour, and it rewards its regular customers with a stamp card that they can use to get 20 percent off after a set number of visits.