If you Google ‘Vintage Norwich’ you’ll be pretty disappointed only a few shops get a mention and they pose quite a walk between them to be able to ‘do’ the Norwich second hand scene easily. However, Google doesn’t know everything and even though Norwich cannot boast a vintage quarter like London or Manchester it has some great places and the prices are much lower than in bigger cities.
Lets think about the shops first, Prim vintage on St Benedicts has a good selection but the pricing can vary hugely. Weirdly here they seem to price dependent on the decade. A 90s dress will be £20, 80s £30 etc up to a 1920s dress costing around £100 or more. Their website http://www.primvintagefashion.com has some of the best items and they deliver.
Norwich Lanes is probably the best place to head to for charity shops and genuine vintage and vintage reproduction. Unfortunately, shop buyers rinse charity shops before normal shoppers get a look in. Goldfinches in Norwich Lanes is a bit of a jumble, more of an overpriced charity shop and tends to favour casual vintage rather than any kind of glamorous dresses with lots of Diadora tracksuit tops, day dresses and beat up trainers – cheap though with dresses at around £10-15. On Lower Goat Lane a similar store has opened with two floors of vintage finds; again more like a cross between a charity shop/car boot/TK Maxx but worth a look.
To save you traipsing around all the tiny boutiques in Norwich a new Vintage Market has just opened in the heart of the city. At the top of St Stephens (blink and you’ll miss the doorway) this market has selections from an array of vintage boutiques and all pretty fairly priced. As well as picking up clothes and accessories you’ll find some great pieces of furniture and Bric a brac. I can’t wait to move house so I can pick up some gorgeous pieces. The stock turns over pretty frequently too so worth a few regular visits. This has a great selection across the decades and some gorgeous jewellery – my vintage drop pearl earrings from there are the best things ever!
Ruby Vintage and Upmarket Vintage form a huge sprawl of yesteryear clothing stalls on Norwich Market. This whole section can be found on the far right hand side. These all offer some great buys, especially where fur coats are concerned. Prices tend to be much lower too with a rabbit fur coat selling at £25.
Norwich Fashion Week is worth a look for anyone visiting the city early March. Take in the vintage fashion show at Norwich Puppet Theatre Sunday 9th March or get along to Olives on Elm Hill for the 10th March for a beginners guide to vintage hairstyling.
Don’t under estimate little Norwich – it’s pretty great for vintage and at prices you want to pay. With prices from only £9 from London each way on the train make a day of it and enjoy some of the excellent little tea and cake shops to keep your throat well lubricated for bartering. Check out Biddys tea shop on Norwich Lanes for a cute 50s tea experience.