Vintage departments in charity shops were once a rarity, with dedicated space devoted to showing off treasures of yesteryear being something you’d only find in key locations. For everyone else if you were a fan of vintage you’d have to rummage through the rails of your nearest charity shop in the hope of discovering a gem with the bonus being that if you found a beautiful 1970’s paisley print maxi dress, it would be very cheap. Of course there are still a great number of shops that haven’t tapped into the vintage market, if you’re looking to snag a bargain I would recommend checking out newly opened charity shops where they haven’t quite decided on their customer base to be the best hunting grounds. Today vintage is no longer a trend, its become a staple and reflects the beauty of charity shops more than any other department because every item will be completely different, a real one-off. Some of the most well-known charity’s tapping into the vintage market are the Red Cross, Oxfam, Barnardos, Cancer Research and Sue Ryder.
There are a great deal of different types of vintage display.
The simple display (fashion)- This type of display works best to show off really great pieces of vintage fashion, drawing attention to the detailing on the garment.
The less is more fashion/homewares mix – Making the vintage look more accessible and a little less overwhelming for customers who might just want to incorporate some items into their lifestyle.
The in-store vintage visual merchandising – Whether it’s a charity shop that’s pure vintage like Sue Ryder (the Vintage & Retro shops) or if it’s just a department of vintage, there are all sorts of ways of creating a unique shopping environment.
The eclectic vintage style – Sometime there is nothing wrong with going all out and embracing the full on Vintage look like these Barnardos displays.
The mix – Mixing modern with Vintage is a great way for a shop to show all its treasures and it helps the customer to avoid feeling overwhelmed with a tip to toe vintage look. There’s nothing quite so appealing as styling a plain tee with a very patterned vintage skirt.
The Vintage homage – It’s a great idea to look to the past to influence displays and icons like Audrey Hepburn and Marilyn Monroe continue to influence today’s styles. This homage pictured below from The Hospice Shop Westport is a very chic example.