The Pleasure of the Hunt

This post is also available in: Nederlands (Dutch)

Almost nothing is as much fun as vintage shopping. Preferably in cities where I have never been before, in the Netherlands or abroad.

Before I go I collect a number of addresses that I already save in Google Maps and I plan the route. Once arrived, the vintage hunt is on. I almost always do that in businesses that sell real vintage.

Second-hand rubbish from all kinds of large department stores, often poorly made from bad materials – I don’t need that. I immediately leave stores where it smells. A smell means the clothes are unwashed and dirty. In theory you could discover a true gem, but that time is actually over: clothes ar sorted in advance, expensive items are already hand-selected and sold online or through very expensive shops.

So what am I hoping for? Something that is expertly made, something that is special, of good quality. A unique piece. This does not necessarily have to be from a well-known brand, but I love clothes made from a premiu, beautiful material. It can be cheap, but sometimes also more expensive.

As soon as I enter a store, I am alert. What is there on offer, what is special, is there something in my size? The price must be reasonable. Sometimes I have something altered for me, and I also have to add those costs to the price. This can make a vintage gem more expensive than a “new” item of clothing at a cheaper store. I check if repairs are needed and if any buttons are missing. You often have to replace them all.

These days I do find more online. But discovering a good piece in a store, the excitement when I enter a beautiful vintage shop … that’s the best thing anyway!

I love the excitement of the hunt itself. I love to make a long city walk, from shop to shop, to have a  coffee or a glass of wine during a shopping break, or a nice lunch.

I recently visited at least six stores in Exeter in the UK and ended up not buying anything. Because it must be worth it, it must give me a happy feeling, and it must be something that I do not have in my closet yet. Three almost identical blue dresses do not really make me happy. No matter how beautiful they are!

These days I find more online as wel. But then I miss the search, the excitement when I walk into a beautiful vintage shop. The fingertip feeling of a fabric or a model. Because that is just the most fun.

In Exeter I visited My Ex Wardrobe, where there were many beautiful pieces in stock. Bags, haute couture, expensive ready-to-wear. But I already have an orange bag and a very nice jacket by Escada. After visiting several other shops, tores I finally went home with a felt hat, bought at The Real McCoy. But that was new…

Recommended in Exeter:

This post is also available in: Nederlands (Dutch)

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