Paris – the
capital of fashion, the home of illustrious couture houses and a city with a
history of sartorial savoir-faire – has also made a name for itself as a top destination
for vintage shopping. From high end to affordable, this selection of Paris’
best vintage boutiques will suit every style.
Didier Ludot set up his eponymous shop in
the 1st arrondissement’s regal Palais Royal gardens
in 1975, and still sells a judicious selection of luxury vintage clothes,
accessories and shoes for both men and women. The museum-worthy pieces include
couture gowns and suits from French fashion greats such as Chanel, Dior and
Yves Saint Laurent. This is the address for fashion insiders seeking unique pieces
with serious cachet, where well-coiffed grand dames drop off their unwanted
pieces for sale and stylists seek out clothes for glossy magazine fashion
rue Henri Monnier, 75009; 01-56-92-19-12) is a chic and stylish vintage shop in Paris’ trendy 9th
arrondissement, selling clothes, accessories and a few vintage knick knacks
too. Clothes ranging from the 1940s to the 1990s are sourced from all over
France and Belgium, then cleaned, mended and sometimes even customized in the
workshop at the back of the shop. Unique creations include a range of denim
jackets with dog portraits embroidered on the backs, somewhat reminiscent of Givenchy’s
recent dog motifs.
Mamie Vintage and Mamie Blue are two shops
on the same street in the 9th arrondissement, packed floor to
ceiling with rail upon rail and pile upon pile of shirts, dresses, hats, shoes,
bags and suits for men, women and children, with pieces ranging from the 1900s
to the 1980s. They also offer retro makeovers, creating a vintage hair and makeup
look for you to match your new clothes.
Kiliwatch is a vast and bustling shop in
the 2nd arrondissement with a large array of vintage and second hand
items that have a youthful, fashion-forward focus. Whatever the sartorial flavour
of the moment may be – denim shorts, biker jackets, Cossack hats, for example -
you’ll find plenty to choose from. There is also a good selection of shoes,
scarves and hats, and all are reasonably priced.
Kim Laidlaw Adrey is the Paris Localite for BBC
Travel. She also writes www.unlockparis.com.