Saturday 26 April 2014

Brick Lane - The Vintage Market Experience

A couple of weeks ago my sister and I visited Brick Lane, a buzzing retro area located in the heart of East London - a short walk from Aldgate East Underground station. We decided instead of hitting the high street to try out a little vintage shopping. It was an experience I'd never forget, one I enjoyed so much so I thought it's only right for me to share it with you.

I'd been to Brick Lane a couple of times before for events (one of which was the Warehouse Fashion Shooters Festival) but not to go shopping, though I was aware of the vintage markets and stores as well as the handful of small boutiques that surrounded the area. The area was buzzing with a mixture of people old and young, conservative and bold. Some had come for the fantastic food (the area is well known for having some of the best Indian restaurants in East London and also for it's finger licking fish 'n' chips), some had come to merely socialise with friends and family whilst others, like me, had come to do some serious rummaging in the vintage markets.

I spent most of my time in the indoor market, trying on retro shades and checking out the most unusual but amazing items of clothing. Made up of a collection of about 10-15 stalls, almost all offering a good selection of vintage items (clothes, sunglasses, jewellery etc), there was a lot to see and a lot to try on. Though it's a vintage market, there were one or two stalls that also offered their own unique creations. So, if you don't like the idea of wearing or owning something that has been previously worn or used by someone else, you can still visit the market an pick up something new - though that does defeat the whole purpose of going to a vintage market.

I feel in love with a some retro sunglasses, a Moschino phone case/holder and a unusual gold statement necklace. Unfortunately, not all stalls in the indoor vintage market had facilities for card purchases, so I was only able to buy a silk floral drop hem top and a gold statement necklace, from on of the few stools that did. However, a short walk from the market there are a few cash machines should you wish to withdraw some money.

Overall it was a great experience, prices are reasonable and there's a lot of hidden treasure if you have a good look. The stall holders are very friendly and some will negotiate the prices of their items with you, especially if you are buying quite a few things. I'd recommend going to the Franklin Tree stall as it has a good mixture of items, from funky to pretty at reasonable prices, it's also where I purchased my top and necklace from (I'll feature it on my blog soon).

Unfortunately, most stall holders, though friendly, ask that you do not take photos of their goods. So here are jut a few of the photos that I managed to capture of the day, including some art work by Banksy that we spotted. Enjoy...

Photography - Rita Okpuru


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