Do you want to stay warm this winter, but hate the fact that everyone on campus has the same black leather jacket as you? Steer clear of the Gap this season and experience Philadelphia’s many vintage and consignment stores for original and fun winter fashions. Although vintage wear is expensive more often than it is cheap, decades-old clothing is unique and truly one-of-a-kind. For many, the style compensates for the price. Fashion gurus and those in need of serious wardrobe revamping can all agree on one thing: vintage fashion is the way to go for this season’s top trends.
Buffalo Exchange, 1109 Walnut St.
Not only does Buffalo Exchange carry an abundance of winter coats for guys and girls, but they’ll give you cash or credit for your old threads too! A vintage store with an emphasis on modern consignment clothing, Buffalo Jeans sells plenty of coats, jackets, sweaters, hats, gloves, and shoes for both sexes. Guys can find professional leather, urban down, and fun fur jackets from brands like Kenneth Cole, Gap, J.Crew, and Sean John. Sporty girls and guys can pick up soft Adidas hoodies and old school Nike windbreakers from the men’s section. The store also carries a variety of winter coat styles for girls, including 40s to 60s style vintage pea coats to the modern Steve Madden brand leather jacket with fur trim and 60s design. Coat prices range from $20 to around $100, with most costing between $50 to $65.
Blendo, 10th and Pine streets
This funky shop on Antique Row sells vintage men’s and ladies’ hats, and offers a surprising selection of vintage leather gloves from the likes of Strawbridge’s and Saks Fifth Avenue. Girls should check out the old 20s style hats, and guys can try on old bowler hats of the 40s and 50s. Unfortunately, these vintage finds are a bit pricey. Some of the men’s hats cost up to $55, and the lady’s hats aren’t much cheaper. Still, if you are looking for a quirky winter accessory, Blendos is the place.
Sugarcube, 48 South Third St.
A brand new store in Old City, Sugarcube offers the best in women’s vintage winter fashions, but at a steep price. According to store owner Elisa Buratto, 80 percent of Sugarcube’s merchandise is vintage. Today’s styles can be found in the stores huge selection of winter ware, including vintage wraps, shawls, blazers, tweed jackets, and capes. A good jacket at Sugarcube costs upwards of $250, so be warned that this store is best for serious spenders only.
Me & Blue Boutique, 311 Market St.,
Me & Blue Boutique caters to the young female and fashion-conscious crowd with an eclectic mix of moderately priced modern designer and vintage clothing. The store is home to barely-worn, high-end designer vintage clothing like leopard print fake fur jackets, lambswool jackets from the 40s and 50s, and 60s fur trim jackets reminiscent of Kate Hudson’s look in the movie Almost Famous. Check out the store’s selection of vintage gloves and scarves and a table piled high with hand-knit beanie hats. Me & Blue has quick turnover and stocks new clothes every Thursday, thanks in part to the store owners frequent trips out west to estate shows auctioning upscale clothes from era’s past. Thank goodness for pack rats, because without them vintage finds this good would be hard to find!
Lucy, 1118 Pine St.
Lucy is truly a one-of-a-kind store. The Pine Street boutique sells vintage hats in every color, size, shape, decade and design. The store owner is passionate about her merchandise and you can often find her wearing a silly hat when in the store. She personally selects each hat, even selling her own designer finds from time to time, and hand sews any rips or tears to hardly-worn perfection. Prices are reasonable at Lucy. Quirky hats from the 20s to the 80s run as low as $12. The store also has a fun $10 rack full of ladies’ 80s blazers, jean jackets, and sweaters. Gloves and leg warmers from the 80s in colors like bright purple can also be purchased at Lucy.
Sammy Davis can be reached at S.Davis@temple.edu.