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The Vintage Clothing Shop

  • Shopping
  • Sydney
  • Recommended

Time Out says

Popular with magazine editors and costume designers, this store is renowned for its impeccable collection of bygone era dressing

Owners Lorraine Foster and Grayson Cole have been collecting and selling vintage clothing for over 40 years, and their vintage shop attracts the likes of fashion magazine editors and TV producers looking for authentic clothing for period film and TV productions. It’s the only vintage store in the CBD, found inside the time warp that is St James Street Arcade. Everything in store is highly curated, from Victorian era blouses up to a pair of gold Manolo Blahniks from the early disco days.

When the store opened in 1974 there wasn’t another vintage clothing shop like it in Sydney. Store worker Annette Twemlow says the store’s enduring appeal is thanks to the “unique pieces, classic styles and good quality items” in store. “We’re temporary custodians of these things. They’ll live on after us,” she says. “People come back for the curated stock. They don’t have to rifle through racks of clothing to find something special.”

Twemlow picks out one of the more unusual items in store, an embroidered antique shawl from Shanghai dating back to the 1930s that’s on sale for $1590. Most pieces are mid-century and very wearable. The store is comprised mainly of clothing and costume jewellery from Australia, Europe and the US, with prices starting from $45 for a silk scarf.

If you want to pay off the cost of an item over a period of time, you can. They ask for a 25 per cent deposit and they’ll hold it for a month, which is handy if you’ve got your eyes on a beaded evening gown from the 1920s or one of the men’s smoking jackets. Most pieces are under $200, from a pair of Bally shoes to a Swiss cotton blouse. Our tip is to head to the back of the store for the cabinet of beaded cardigans. There’s a collection of pastel coloured Scottish cashmere, perfect for a fifties-style date at the diner.

Emma Joyce
Written by
Emma Joyce


Shop 7, St James Street Arcade
Castlereagh St
02 9238 0090
Opening hours:
Mon-Fri 10.30am-5.30pm; Thu 10.30am-7pm; Sat 10.30am-4.30pm
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