A guide to wavey garms in Glasgow
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Despite the stuffy air of all things antique, the hard work of passing the hipsters of the hipsters in the tiny aisles and the stressful task of grabbing that one perfect piece before your friends get to it, shopping second-hand in Glasgow seems to be the right way to be stuntin’ and flossin’. Yet while Macklemore is savin’ money and being hella happy about the cheap prices, some parts of Glasgow’s second-hand scene would make the poor man scream and shout.
To keep everybody calm, stuntin’ and knowledgeable of how to successfully manage one’s own finance, here is a down to business guide for what to expect where.
$ – Grandpa’s style
Students are well aware that The Salvation Army on 91 Dumbarton Road is not only a great charity shop that helps people in need, but that it’s also the place to shop for furniture when it’s time to move into a new flat. With couches, armchairs, beds, cupboards and even antique dressing tables, The Salvation Army has it all to make your apartment look nice and cosy. Clothing items are available as well.
However, if you ever find yourself a host of a fancy candlelight supper without any dishes or decorations, then Magpie’s Nest on 25 Burleigh Street in Govan is the place to go to. This charity shop beats many others with its low prices and is known for providing the locals with starter packs.
The price rage varies from 20p to 2£. Clothing might not be glamorous as some might want it to be, but it’s great for finding chic textiles with all kinds of funky patterns. Besides all the super cute cups, vases, sports equipment and electrical appliances (even TVs) make it worth going there whatever the distance.
Similar to Magpie’s Nest, Barnardo’s in the West End of Glasgow (116 Dumbarton Road) sells everything for around a pound. Even though it’s quite small and can get pretty tight if crowded, Barnardo’s displays their clothes by size which makes browsing much easier and faster. In general most items are very casual, yet it’s hard to imagine walking out of the place without a hip 70s item.
$$ – I’m digging, I’m digging
A little more expensive, but still affordable.
Charity shops like Save the Children, British Heart Foundation, Oxfam and others are usually priced from around 3£ to 15£, which is still affordable, but makes you think whether it’s worth buying something relatively plain and simple if for the same price you can find a similar item that hasn’t been worn before.
In this category Oxfam on 231 Byres Road stands out the most with its youthful interior, light and colour, however, the clothing seems quite casual attracting those aged 40+ who like to take part in charities, but play it safe fashion-wise.
Yet it’s still possible to find more daring items such as going-out type of dresses and the 60s-80s patterned shirts and blouses. If you’re lucky.
Glasgow Vintage Co. on 453 Great Western Road can be put in the same category. It can be truly proud of its organization skills. Items are grouped by their colours and the ground floor is packed with men’s clothing. Leathers, furs and knitwear are almost as good as new.
The amount of furs, coats and beads available makes the price range go up to around 30£, but this place is most likely to have what you want (and don’t yet know you want) – casual, fancy, funky or hip. A true goldmine, what can I say.
Student discounts are available.
$$$ – It was definitely not ninety-nine cents
Most items that come from this category are pure eye candy. However, with these shops we move away from the idea of second-hand clothing being cheap.
Those who pick these places as their second-hand hot spots leave an impression of not only dressing to impress, but also wanting to show off their very bold characters.
With prices varying from 5£ (only offers) to 50£, Vintage Guru on 195 Byres Road is fairly similar to Glasgow Vintage Co.
Offering everything starting from the early 20th Century, including footwear (for tiny feet) and accessories, the friendly staff will prepare you for bohemian nights, fancy dinner, the 20s swing, disco and groovy gatherings in all seasons.
Vintage Guru is located in the heart of the West End, so don’t be surprised to always find the shop crowded with students already wearing massive fur coats, floppy hats or round sunglasses, which can make browsing quite hard. The upside, though, is that you might bump into someone famous. Susan Boyle and Lana Del Rey are known to have done their shopping right there.
The 60s tunes are often played in the background which creates a magical atmosphere and makes you want to go on a magical mystery tour.
The bright colours of massive princess dresses and furs are blinding, but keep your eyes open and stay focused. Sometimes you pick up a white blouse that’s way too yellowed or a shirt that’s clearly too worn out.
The charity shop CHAS on 135 Byres Road is like a very clean yet crafty vintage boutique and every girl’s dream of the perfect walk-in wardrobe. Clothes and accessories you can buy here will make you look more sophisticated and prepare you for acting in a romantic drama.
Even though the most popular second-hand shops are located in the West End, The City Retro Fashion on 41 King Street lets the city centre crowd stay in the city centre.
Most items leave either the 20s or the 60s vibe. By looking at shirts and dresses, this second-hand shop could easily fall under $$ category, but the impressive beaded dresses hidden in the back rank this shop in the $$$ category.
With Glorious on 41 Ruthven Lane, which pretty much is a second-hand shop to the best of what can be found in H&M, Zara, Mango and other widely-known brands, I move on to the last category of this guide.
Right next to it is Circa Vintage, pricey and completely vintage from accessories to dresses, coats and shoes.
$$$$ – Damn frosty
With prices skyrocketing to 100£+, these second-hand shops come across as too damn frosty.
Minted on 7 King Street should be included in this guide just because it exists. It’s very clean, light and looks nothing like a second-hand shop. In fact, many of their items seem to be brand new and some of the same pieces come in numerous sizes.
It might appeal to skaters, lads and the hip fashion admirers more than to vintage praisers.
The only second-hand shop that makes sense with its high prices is Starry Starry Night which sells well preserved high quality clothing items and accessories, and has the value of a fashion museum.
The cheapest clothing item I was able to find was sold for 20£. Many of their dresses, coats, jackets, costumes and even accessories cost around or more than 100£. However, the beautiful and gracious items bring you back to all the history lessons you’ve had, so it’s definitely worth a peek.
In general Mr Ben on 101 King Street summerizes the $$$$ category. With the same price range as Starry Starry Night’s, Mr Ben sells, well, everything.
From the 20s swing through the 60s florals, through punk and disco, this second-hand shop can please any taste in fashion and dress up soldiers and cowboys, lost hippies, romantic bohemians, nostaligic rockers and modern hipsters.