Spring weather = shopping season. After months bundled in sweaters and winter coats, who doesn’t feel the sun’s rays finally hitting their bare skin and experience the urge to buy something new? Or at least “new-ish”? Vintage shopping is a great way to find unique pieces for less, but along with fair-trade coffee, bike share, artisanal kombucha, and all other pursuits that have come to characterize bougie Brooklyn, vintage often gets an unfair rep (well, maybe not artisanal kombucha).
“Why buy something someone has already worn?” goes the well-worn skeptic cry. “Why not get something at Topshop? I heard they’re having a 40% off sale!” Please, silence this inner critic. Forget the images of well-worn muumuus and crusty flannels dancing in your head. If you’re looking for cool clothes on a budget, then you’ve gotta give vintage another chance, especially since we’ve handpicked you Greenpoint, Williamsburg and Bushwick’s best vintage shops.
Now I know what you’re thinking and I’m going to let you finish. But vintage and thrift shopping are not the same thing– while both are indeed some iteration of “clothes other people have worn,” vintage stores often curate their merchandise to a greater degree. This means its easier to find flattering pieces in quality condition, including original versions of the silhouettes and styles being replicated at places like well, Topshop. So why wear the same “’90s Knitted Ribbed Crop Top” (available in Red and Camel) as everyone else, when you can find the real thing? Talk about a true #TBT.
Seven Wonders Vintage
606 Manhattan Ave.
12pm-8pm Monday- Saturday and 12-7pm Sunday
A small, cozy, sunlit shop off right off the Nassau G, Seven Wonders is a vintage lover’s dream. The storefront hosts a small range of merchandise, all hand-picked by owner Melissa Blumberg. The vibe is equal parts 60s/70s flower child and prim, lady-like ribbons and lace–essentially if Betty and Sally Draper from Mad Men shared a wardrobe, with some Megan Calvet thrown in for good measure. On my wish list were a pair of beautiful pastel floral cigarette pants ($48) and two beautifully delicate white lace tops ($40 each). With vintage in this amazing of condition, you can’t go wrong.
People of 2morrow
65 Franklin St.
11am-8pm Monday – Saturday and 11-7pm Sunday
People of 2morrow is an acid trip in the form of a store in the form of mission– to bring “carefully chosen, rare + wild pieces on track with today’s conscious fashion sense” to the weary mass-market shoppers of today. A psychedelic emporium on idyllic Franklin Ave, walking in presents a swirling barrage of colors and prints, patterns and textures. Featuring a mix of vintage, modern designer consignment, and items from local artists and makers, the store carries not only eclectic men and women’s clothes and accessories, but also stocks housewares, jewelry, home goods, shoes, lingerie, and even plants. Best finds from poking around the racks: an extremely rare Marc Jacobs black and white floral silk skirt embroidered with electric yellow sequins ($58) and neon pink heeled clogs ($24). Come in and consign your gently worn threads for half-off store credit!
110A Nassau Ave
12pm-8:30pm Monday-Saturday and 12-7:30pm Sunday
With a wide selection of men and women’s wares, Mahps Vintage covers all its bases. Perfectly soft threadbare tees? Check. Flowing batik dresses in every color of the rainbow? Check? Leather jackets galore? Check. Stand outs from my visit included a vintage royal blue Bill Blass for Neiman Marcus polo dress ($42), spring sandals in a variety of sizes (between $24-32), and mens shirts in pretty much every iteration of plaid imaginable ($20-35). Come here to get standby pieces you’ll wear with everything.
117 Wilson Ave
Worship brings the West Coast aesthetic to Bushwick, which is only fitting considering the shop is opening an L.A. outpost later this May. Channel Hollywood starlets in silk faille gowns ($58) and mirrored shades ($20). Or if the Venice Beach look is more your speed, pair floral paisley shorts ($22) with towering wedges ($78) and a leather fringe jacket. The store runs off a buy/sell/trade model, so bringing in your gently worn items for 50% off is definitely your best bet, as designer pieces run a higher price point.
23 Bogart St
I know what you’re thinking. Seriously, Beacon’s? Been there, done that. Not so fast. Beacon’s newest, yet most often over-looked, outpost in Bushwick boasts some amazing vintage finds. Scope the racks of adorable shift dresses galore and you’ll be sure to find something great on the cheap (I saw an awesome striped mesh mini dress on my most recent visit for $21.95, score!). There’s also stuff for the guys, too, including a cool selection of vintage graphic tees.
10 ft. Single by Stella Dallas
285 N 6th St
12:30pm-7:30pm Monday-Friday and 12:30pm-8pm Saturday and Sunday
Holy crap. If you’re looking for the perfect pair of “Oh my God, I can’t believe it’s not designer” jeans, then you’ve found the right place in Stella Dallas. Racks on racks of Levis, Gap and Wrangler denim pieces are sure to yield some well-fitting finds (between $25-30). Also worth checking out– the smaller array of merchandise in the back of the store, all mint, albeit pricier, finds ranging from the 1920s’ to the 1970s’. Some favorites included a gorgeous pink and green silk gingham dress from the 50s’ ($75) and a beautiful mauve eyelet shift ($60), both classic silhouettes that look surprisingly chic dressed down.
119 Grand St
12pm-7pm Tuesday-Saturday and 12-6pm Sunday
Featuring a strong mix of ’50s-’90s vintage and a smattering of wares by local designers, Antoinette is a great one-stop shop in the heart of Williamsburg. Whether you’re into patterns and prints (hello floral 80s jumpsuits, between $50-75) or prefer a monochromatic palette (the pairing of a cool crop top and column skirt by designer Viva Aviva caught my eye), Antoinette offers versatile items for every girl’s city wardrobe. The vibe in-store is breezy, casual and friendly– not to mention there’s the added bonus of receiving a free Antoinette tote bag with your purchase.