Your Guide to Thrift Shopping in London

It’s hard to move to a new city when you know nothing about it. You may wonder: Where are the best places to eat? Where are the best places to shop? Maybe, if you’re like me, you’re asking yourself: where are the best thrift stores?

You may not see it at first, but London is full of art and culture. London’s community of local creators and collectors is right in front of your eyes, you just have to know what you’re looking for.

The best vintage stores in London are more than your typical Value Village, Salvation Army or Talize. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good Tuesday student deal at VV as much as the next guy, but the people behind the greatest thrift stores in London are the reason why they’re worth visiting.

So, I’ve compiled a list of the best places in London for you to thrift your heart out. Below are a few of my favourite hot spots for vintage shopping in Forest City!

 

Filthy Rebena Vintage

As a popular hot spot among Western students, Filthy Rebena is the youngest vintage store on this list and perhaps the most modern of the bunch. Filthy was started in 2015 by Natalie Bradshaw and Darlene Davis, a two-girl duo committed to quality thrift. Located beside the hub of Dundas and Richmond, Filthy is full of the sweetest staff that you’ll come to recognize each time you walk in. The store has a wide range of vintage pieces curated by the owners themselves. Filthy is committed to supporting Canadian creators as well as local creators by carrying brands like Montreal’s Stay Home Club and Forest City’s own Soft Flirt. They’re also a good friend to Western kids, as they’ve held a few events for the student-run publication, Iconoclast. They also have an ongoing kick-ass student “buy one, get one” deal.

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Blue Pepper Vintage

Described as “cool vintage to your already spicy style” and just a few doors down from Filthy Rebena on Dundas Street is Blue Pepper Vintage. Since 2012, Blue Pepper has been nestled in the heart of downtown and is your more traditional vintage store. Like Filthy, Blue Pepper loves to support local creators and carries items like jewelry by Stone+Bone and handmade bowties by Spruce Moose. There’s always a friendly face in this shop willing to give you the best vintage shopping experience possible. Blue Pepper is the place to find your next funky hat or sweet new patterned button up.

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The Sentimentalist Vintage Clothing

          Melinda, owner of The Sentimentalist

Down in its new home in Old East Village is The Sentimentalist. Run by a woman named Melinda Steffler, The Sentimentalist is the place to go for all your thrifting needs. Melinda describes her shop as a “thinking person’s vintage shop that uses divining powers to acquire the best vintage clothing”. They have everything from cowboy boots to patterned dresses—and not to mention amazing prices. Stop by and spend a day in OEV, while also getting a sweet bargain on your next pair of thrifted Levis.

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Back to the Fuchsia

          Owner Mary and some of the oddities from her store 

Attached to The Sentimentalist is Back to the Fuchsia. Owned and operated by Mary Hinton, this vintage shop is a little more on the weird antiques side of London’s thrift shopping. I could spend hours upon hours in this shop browsing through their various oddities. Everything from old school children’s toys to antique chairs and tables, Back to the Fuchsia has a conversation piece for any home. Plus, you get a two for one deal since The Sentimentalist is right next door!

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Did I miss any great vintage spots in London? Where are your favourite places to shop? Let me know in the comments below!

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