Sunday, 3 November 2013

London's best hidden vintage shop

I love London. I love charity shopping. Unfortunately, put the two together and you're at a dead end. The problem with London is that because it's the capital city, not only are rents high but (to be fair, probably a result of this) so are the prices. In one sense it's understandable - if rents are twice the price as outside of London it's only reasonable for the prices to be as well, it's just a shame my bank balance doesn't take this into account.
 Vintage shops in London are the worst for doing this, price wise. Don't get me wrong, some of the best vintage clothes can be sourced in London because as previously mentioned, it's the capital. If you're willing to pay higher prices, the basement level of Oxford Street's Topshop is home to some of the best vintage clothing designers imaginable (check out The Ragged Priest, for example). If though, like me, you're lacking funds yet still want vintage clothes, further out of London is the best, especially the east end!
The East End Thrift Store (EETS) was a stroke of luck I found out about a few years ago. Since then, it's grown in stock size and unfortunately price, but only slightly! The shop itself is split into two parts - the bigger of the two is 'fill a bag' style; you buy either a £10 or £20 bag (depending on the desired size) and literally throw whatever you want in the bag until it's full. Then you pay your money and walk out with as many vintage clothes as can fit in the bag (the answer? quite a lot). A few years ago the £10 bags were the only option but at the size of a small bin bag they were definitely worth the money. Nowadays, EETS seems to have got a lot more popular so the £10 bag has shrunk to a much fairer shopping bag size.
I've been there pretty much every time I go to London (aka quite frequently) and I always walk out with some great stuff. The brands there vary from Levi and Wrangler to old, vintagey American brands. There are thousands (no exaggeration) of plaid shirts, leather jackets, tea dresses, shorts, jeans, t shirts. You name it, they've got it. The amount of stuff I've picked up from there over the years and been complimented on is far higher than my Topshop clothes have received (which could say a lot about my high street taste to be fair). I've posted a few photos of some of the great things I've picked up in the last few months!
Vintage Disney dungarees I bought back in summer - they look better with a belt, unlike the photo.
How cute is Tigger though? I've never found dungarees the same, anywhere.

Fresh from "Pooh Women" direct.

I worked out in total this cost me a grand £2

My most worn jumper - ever. St Michael's vintage and £3

It's such a fab colour and it's so thick and warm!

More Disney themed items (I spy a pattern here) £2.50 cute t shirt
This is so cute and kitsch

In difference here we have "Disney Kids" not "Pooh Women"

The colour of this is so bright - perfect for teaming with jeans on a cold day
I still can't figure out what this says but it was £2.50 so who cares?

I love the design shown on it, it's so original.

And here we have yet more Disney merch! £2.50 well spent.
I think for once I bought a generic Disney jumper, woah. 

Slightly faded yet all the more retro looking

It's still fluffy on the inside, aw
My favourite purchase! Topshop Mom jeans' identical sister - I can't get over these

They are pretty much exactly the same (is that an oxymoron?) as the Topshop ones.

(Except for the fact they're Lee's not Topshop)



EETS itself is tucked away down a little courier road named 'Assembly Passage' in Stepney Green. If you're going from St Pancras Station get on the Hammersmith line and sit on it until you're in Stepney Green. The road it's on is ridiculously easy to miss as the sign is on the other side of the road (ie on the same direction you're walking from) so keep and eye out because it's worth waiting for! Check out their website and Facebook page for events and updates!

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