Probably, it is now part of student culture to wear something vintage. Wherever we go, we can see young people dressed as if they just appeared from the 1980’s or 1990’s for example. In Sheffield the amount of vintage clothing shops has doubled. There are about five vintage shops in the city centre and at least three of them have opened in the last year.
Shop on Division Street in Sheffield has no name, because the shop owner Nick has specific idea about his policy in selling second hand items. It is therefore people who want to find their individual style by combining something old and quality with something new and trendy. He said: “I remember when I was a student in London in the 1980’s I used to shop at Camden and Portobello flea markets, every single shop there looked exactly like mine. This is nothing new! My store looks eclectic, like in the 1980’s and I think students of the 80’s were the beginners of the individuality, they were trying to find their identities through clothes.” Nick believes that old clothes used to be better quality, because it is still wearable after 20-30 years, whereas if we buy clothes from Primark buttons are falling off the next day. High street shops and fashion magazines recreate the vintage look – all the patterns and style is now being copied from the most popular eras like the 1960’s or 1980’s for example. Therefore, this store offers unique and genuine pieces of clothing from the era each individual is interested in. It is also cheaper than high street prices, which makes it attractive for students especially.
The Freshman’s store on Carver Street is one of the oldest in Sheffield. Its owner Matthew and Paul in business for a very long time and have experience in sales in different places around the world such as Los Angeles and New York. Their shop is different to Nick’s store, as it looks neat and clean. Every item of clothing is ironed and carefully hanging on the rail. There are a lot of accessories, mirrors and lights, which creates an atmosphere of an individual and independent shop.
Generally it doesn’t matter what type the vintage or second hand shop is. People who buy pieces of clothing from previous eras find it attractive for various reasons. Firstly, it has been advertised a lot in the fashion world and has been very popular among students and hipsters. Secondly, it is always nostalgic to go twenty or ten years back, wear it today and stand out from the crowd.
All pictures by Yvan Rodic (Facehunter)
By Tanya Andrejeva