Ever since I started loving fashion I have loved vintage shopping. I think it is the idea of not knowing what I am going to find before I enter the shop, and the surprise at finding an amazing piece that is perfect for me. The thing I love most is that the items have their own story to tell and that by owning them, I am becoming part of their story and their history too. I love to imagine what parties my vintage dresses have been worn to or what foreign cities my vintage jewellery might have once visited. I started my vintage collection nearly ten years ago, and as well as the usual selection of Levi’s jeans and floral dresses, I also collect special pieces with a unique quality. Whenever I travel I search for vintage shops and antique markets so I can take a special souvenir home with me. The favorite pieces I have found are a crocodile-skin handbag I found at an Antiques market in Cape Town, a pocket-watch I found in Buenos Aires and a Dolce & Gabbana scarf I found here in Italy. So as soon as I moved here, I went on a hunt for the best vintage shops in Milan. Here are my favorites…
Cavalli e Nastri – This is a Milanese landmark for any fashion lover in the city. ‘Cavalli e Nastri’ sell an amazing selection of high quality vintage pieces. The price tag is a little high but the pieces are so special. Think hand sewn sequin dresses, lace vintage wedding dresses, antique jewellery and vintage designer handbags.
Madame Pauline – I love this cute little boutique with lovely owners who are really passionate about vintage clothes. They have the most amazing collection of vintage designer pieces, beautiful embroidered kimono’s and special jewellery. All pieces have labels explaining which designer they are and what year they are from.
‘Lo Specchio de Alice’ – Found in the cool Porta Ticinese neighborhood, this vintage shop has the BEST collection of Levi’s jeans, Dr Martins, baseball jackets and sportswear. Think racks and racks of the stuff. You need to be prepared to rummage but you can find the most amazing pieces and at really great prices. I love getting vintage jeans and Adidas jackets here.
Groupies Vintage – In the same area as ‘Lo Specchio de Alice’, Groupies Vintage also sells a cool selection of urban vintage pieces with a great price tag. Denim jackets, woolen jumpers, checked shirts, sports wear, Dr Martins and trench coats. They also have their own line of customized pieces which is really cool if you want to find something a little different.
Sunday Antiques Market – Held on the last Sunday of every month along the Naviglio (canal) in the south of the city, this market is really amazing. A mix of flea market and antique sellers, you can find anything from antique furniture, old records, street artists selling paintings and cheap vintage clothing to collectible designer pieces. Even if you don’t buy anything its so much fun walking around and seeing all the crazy stuff on sale. I love it here and if I have time I visit every month.
If you want to read about more places I love for shopping in Milan, check out my post ‘Shopping Guide – Exploring Milan’s Porta Ticinese District’…