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A Beginners Guide to Vintage Shopping

There’s a stigma around op shopping and vintage shopping that it’s only for the less fortunate or there is nothing good to find. However, in New Zealand this should be reconsidered due to the lack of originality we often see on store racks, and even the impact this is having on the environment. Reduce, reuse, recycle people!

Not only can it save you a bunch of money, but a lot of the time you will score something no one else has – and this is priceless in a little city like Auckland. If you aren’t used to op shopping or feel like you never find anything great, here is a beginner’s guide to vintage bargain hunting in Auckland. These places pick the best of the best for you, so you don’t have to dig through rows and rows of clothing which can be pretty overwhelming. What’s your excuse now, eh?

Recycle Boutique – Darby Street

This store is filled with racks of diverse styles, trends and eras. My favourite thing about this store is they stock the most unique clothing that can be hard to track down in general. Old basketball singlets and American varsity jackets, dungarees and patchwork denims, vintage Ralph Lauren shirts and old school designer brands.

However they also have a designer section for your more upmarket needs (at half the original retail cost). Plus, they are very firm-minded about only accepting clean and stain free clothing in great condition. Further plus, their chic, stylish and young staff have the final say on what makes the cut, so you know most things there will be rad.

Tatty’s – High Street

Similar to Recycle Boutique, their clothes are in perfect condition. Less vintage clothing and more up market, Tatty’s is much more designer orientated. I have never seen anything there that was unwearable due to its condition – everything looks next to brand new.

The High Street store have had an expansion which adds so much more clothing… fine by me! You may have to do a bit more digging, and the prices can be a little high for an op shop (they don’t call themselves designer recycle for nothin’). However when you consider the great condition the clothes are in and the price that would have been paid originally, you’ll realise it’s worth it.

The Bread and Butter Letter – K Road

Sourcing local talent and filled with awesome nick knacks, it’s hard to walk out of this store without something worthy of your money. I could go on forever about the contents of this store, but what really matters here is their racks of vintage clothing.

In contrast to Tatty’s, they have a much smaller collection of beautiful items but still in pristine condition. There is no digging in this store – they have hand-picked the best, most lovable items for you, that don’t break the bank. Even though there is a smaller amount of clothing than other op shops, there’s no way you won’t find something you’ll like – they have gone for quality over quantity.

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Hannah-Rose is a 20-year-old student who's a fresh graduate and is flatting in the city. She is a wine enthusiast, food lover, self-proclaimed DJ, coffee snob and dumpling connoisseur. Instagram: @hannahrosehollins

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