Bath is known for it’s fantastic vintage scene. When I lived there, I was always lusting over beautiful vintage gear from the various markets and shops that spring up all over the city. If you’re a visitor, it can be a bit overwhelming knowing where to start. Here’s my guide to the best vintage shopping in Bath.
I used to work just up the road from Yellow Shop on Walcot Street and it was an endless source of temptation. The front of the shop is mostly new clothing, with some cute vintage inspired and repro gear if that’s your thing. Head to the back for the actual vintage. The rails are rammed full, with a particularly large stock of vintage sports jackets and some brilliant bags and footwear too. I always found Yellow Shop much more reasonably priced some of Bath’s other vintage offerings. If you visit on a Saturday, walk a little way down the road, towards Waitrose, and you”ll find an excellent little market, where you can find records, crockery and vintage clothing.
Scarlet Vintage has a totally different feel to Yellow Shop. The shop is small, tucked away on Queen Street (by the rather excellent Magpie pub, and a gin bar, so while you’re there…) and has a very chic, boutique feel. The shop is always immaculate, with carefully selected vintage items from a range of eras arranged by colour inside. Their stock is always very high quality, no cheap tat here! Friendly, knowledgeable staff, and reasonably priced when you take into account the quality.
Vintage to Vogue wasn’t a regular haunt for me, as it’s more expensive than other Vintage offerings, but it’s definitely worth a visit. The shop is just off Milsom Street, and is a bit of TARDIS when you get inside. From a small alleyway entrance, you get into a pretty big shop, stocked with a variety of eras. Vintage To Vogue has a very good men’s selection, which can be trickier to find in Bath. They also have a massive range of accessories and is the best spot to visit if you’re looking for vintage hats or gloves.
Bath Vintage and Antiques Market was always my favourite place to shop vintage. The market is held the first and last Sunday of the month in Green Park Station, an old Victorian train station. Green Park hosts different markets throughout the month, which are all worth a visit, but Vintage and Antiques is the best one. Furniture, clothing, homeware, records, jewellery, you name it, someone is selling it. Prices vary across the stalls, but it’s rarely unreasonable. Most of my collection of vintage teacups came from various stalls here. I miss this market a lot, actually. Excellent for a Sunday potter.
Previously The Frock Exchange, Grace & Ted is an excellent designer resale store. Located on Kingsmead Square, amongst some of the best cafes in Bath, Grace & Ted stock pre-owned designer fashion for men and women. Run by a mother and daughter team, the shop has been a dress agency for 25 years, making it something of a Bath staple. With stock covering Chanel, Mulberry, Prada, and many more, you’re bound to find a gem in here! Great range of shoes too…
Now, clearly Bea’s Vintage Tea Rooms is not a place for vintage shopping. However, trust me when I say Bea’s is a must visit for any self-respecting Vintage fan. The Tea Rooms, on Saville Row, are beautiful, decorated in authentic 1930s/1940s style. Every detail is perfect, with music of the time, beautiful mismatched china, and waitresses in landgirl bandannas and red lipstick. The food is gorgeous too. All freshly prepared homemade fare, the tearooms serve breakfasts, lunch options including soups, pies and sandwiches, and they keep the patisserie cabinet heaving with incredible cake. They also serve the best Afternoon Tea in town. I’m obsessed with this place, and anyone who came to visit me in Bath was usually taken here.
Again, not strictly vintage, but worth a mention. If you’re a thrifty sort, Bath’s charity shops are excellent. Because Bath is a very affluent place, you can grab some fantastic brands if you dig into the racks in most of the charity shops. I picked up some great designer bits for pennies in the Save The Children shop near my old work. Always worth an explore; you never know what you might find.