A Fabulous London Adventure

I stayed at the Mentone Hotel in Cartwright Gardens- 10 minutes walk from Euston- great for saving on taxi’s and to stay away from the sweaty tube on a hot day such as it was on arrival. A really peaceful location, with tennis courts opposite, you’d have no idea the madness of Euston Road was a stones throw away. They also include breakfast in the tariff.
View from our room

Before the trip I cheekily contacted Naomi from Vintage Secret (book review here) and she, very kindly gave me some tips on where to go vintage shopping wise.

My friends and I were actually astonished at the amount of vintage shops in one place on, and just off, Brick Lane. It literally was every other shop was vintage- and there were also loads of vintage markets on inside other venues along the road.

Obviously the vintage was from various era’s and some of the shops felt like “Vintage for the Masses”, with lots of 1980’s and 1990’s stuff- which in case you weren’t aware, is not my thing. But the places Naomi suggested were, quite literally, the jewels in the crown.

I think it was almost a case of we were spoilt by the quality and the type of vintage available in these shops, that everywhere else seemed to pale in comparison!

So the suggestions were;

  • The Vintage Emporium- a tea rooms above, what probably is the best vintage clothing shop I’ve ever had the pleasure of visiting. Literally all kinds of attire is to be found here- and the best part is its all pre 1970’s. Its like wandering in to the best dressing up box ever with brilliantly friendly and super cute staff to boot. If you are ever in London please, please go- you wont be disappointed.
Cat in a case at the Vintage Emporium
  • The Shop on Cheshire Street, just off Brick Lane. Floor to ceiling stacks of vintage fabrics, scarves and hats, with dresses at the back, all at really good prices. I got this dress for £28!
  • Hunky Dory Vintage right at the top of Brick Lane is worth the stroll and is great for vintage swimwear and the more unusual side of vintage- they also had some brilliant menswear including suits for around £45.

We also stumbled across Spitalfields market, where a branch of Collectif is also based. And I bought this amazing shirt! I’d seen it on the website and loved it there- so couldn’t wait to try it on. There was also (lucky us) a vintage and antique flea market on! I managed to get a couple of bits from this but I cannot show you them as they are presents for my other half.

Flamingos!

At night time we headed to Bloomsbury Bowling Lanes, within stumbling distance of the hotel, and on the second night we jumped in a cab across to Marylebone and to Purl, which has the most amazing cocktails ever. And also the biggest olives I’ve ever seen- which also were a taste sensation I might add!

The final place I’d like to recommend you visit is Drink, Shop, & Do just around the corner form Kings Cross on Caledonian Road. So good we visited twice! Once for afternoon tea and once for late afternoon/early evening cake and cocktails on arriving in London. This place was about 15 minutes walk from the hotel and a real gem! They can even to vegan afternoon teas, or dairy free or gluten free afternoon teas- which are fantastic and good value for money.

And they have games!
Even needlepoint on the loo!


Where’s you favourite vintage haunt?

Also, for all my Manchester based readers- I’ll be judging Best PinUp at The Great British Tea Party this Sunday 3rd June at Stockports Victorian Market. Come along and join the fun!

xx

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6 Comments

  1. Perdita
    May 30, 2012 / 12:05 pm

    My favourite places have to be the flea markets of Brighton and Norwich. Nothing like them compares in terms of price and ‘rummaging’.

    In London, I have to focus with care- good quality 70s is either lost amongst rubbish or overlooked by shops with a simplistic ‘all 70s is tat’ policy. I find affluent charity shops in ‘older’ areas useful, but usually go to fairs (my usuals are Hampstead and Vintazia).

    • May 30, 2012 / 7:10 pm

      Yes I love flea markets- not enough of them around! Thanks for the tips!

  2. May 30, 2012 / 4:43 pm

    Thanks for the tip about the vegan afternoon teas! Will be sure to check that out sometime. Sounds like an amazing trip. I also like the East End Thrift store. My friend works in a school around the corner from it the lucky thing!
    http://www.theeastendthriftstore.com/

    • May 30, 2012 / 7:12 pm

      Yes do check it out! You need to book though don’t forget! Thanks for the tips about the thrift store- will have to check that out next time!

  3. June 2, 2012 / 8:07 pm

    Drink shop and do sounds fun and looks fab, I think I’d like a place like that nearby. I’m glad you found the Vintage Emporium, we’re “related” to Olly who runs the Vintage Emporium via his cat Charlie who we adopted a few years ago, Charlie’s a lovely cat and Olly’s shop is lovely too, really good quality stock and proper vintage. I visited there a year or so ago and bought a black hat with a veil for my gran’s funeral which I’ve since worn as a cocktail hat.

    • June 3, 2012 / 7:42 am

      Aw- such a small world! I certainly can’t rate that ace or the staff highly enough!