Pick ‘n’ mix vintage in East London

Whilst spending my regular excess time on Twitter one day last week, I spied this post by Vintage London, and immediately my interest was piqued. A friend of mine had been to this sale at the beginning of the year and picked up a vintage fur coat for less than £10, so of course I’ve been dying to go ever since. I called my partner in vintage crime, Shannon, and together we set out on Saturday to hunt for some serious bargains at 123 Bethnal Green Road.

123 Bethnal Green Road. image source: voltcafe.com

From the front, it looks like a cute vintage-style boutique, but it’s so much more than that! There are three floors in this Victorian building in London’s hipster-hangout Shoreditch, including a cafe/tea room and a vintage bazaar. The pick ‘n’ mix sale basically involves grabbing a small bag for £10 or a large one for £20 (I highly recommend the £20 option), and shoving as much vintage stuff as you like (or as much as can fit) into said bag. There is an entire room full of clothing and accessories, and stocks are replenished multiple times each day; there’s no danger of getting there ‘too late’ to find only the damaged or hideous items remaining.

Shannon and I arrived before doors opened, and joined the queue of about 10 early-birds. When doors opened, we began rummaging eagerly, but after about 10 minutes we looked at each other in dismay as we realised we hadn’t found anything we liked. We decided to share a £20 bag instead of carrying one each and proceeded to go through the many racks of clothes more methodically. Within a few minutes, amidst triumphant cries, we’d managed to fill the bag to bursting with dresses, skirts, jackets, shirts, and even some men’s shirts for Brendan. There were a few items that we ummed and ahhed about, only to realise that if there was room in our bag for it, we didn’t have to be completely convinced as we would pay the same amount either way (a very liberating feeling), and so the items were thrown in.

my purchases (excluding Brendan's 2 shirts)

We eventually tore ourselves away from the sale, which had by that time been populated with 30 or so more shoppers, and went out for a much-needed lunch to examine our loot. We seriously bagged a lot of stuff! When I got home and was able to try everything on, I was pleased that every item except one (super cute) skirt fit me perfectly! What a success! Some of the items require some alterations, but it’s nothing I can’t do myself with a little bit of patience.

The sale is continuing daily until Sunday June 26th – I highly recommend it to anyone looking for a vintage bargain. You won’t be disappointed!

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