Originally published in Chasing Vintage magazine, September 2013.
From the London to Brighton Run to the days of bank holiday rivalry between mods and rockers, Brighton has always been the place to be seen! Every visit to Brighton should include a tour of the artists’ quarter of Kemptown and vibrant North Laine, where independent shops abound, evoking memories of the days before chains and mass franchising took away the individuality of our streets.
In the heart of North Laine you’ll find Brighton Architectural Salvage. BAS specialise in reclaimed architectural antiques and home accessories. The beautifully decorated shop draws you in and takes you on a journey, to a time when even the most utilitarian of objects were also things of great beauty. At BAS, you’ll discover a bewildering selection of fireplaces, mirrors and other rescued pieces that will add beauty and, more importantly, authenticity to any home.
As you approach Loot, the retro typeface and the Chopper bike in the window tell you this clothing store is all about vintage. For him, there is everything from jeans to tees and tank tops to jackets. For her you’ll find outfits just oozing vintage elegance. There’s also a selection of vintage home wares available, allowing you to accessorise yourself and your home in the same store!
If you’d rather make than buy, why not visit the Brighton Sewing Centre in North Laine. With stocks of funky retro fabrics, haberdashery, sewing machines and sewing accessories, this has got to be the coolest sewing shop ever. For those who would love to learn how to make do and mend, the centre also offers creative patchwork and beginners sewing classes!
In Portslade, James Ross Jewellers, established in 1944, specialise in pre-owned prestige watches such as Cartier, Tag Heuer, Omega and Zenith. The experienced team thoroughly check and restore each watch to its original condition, to ensure that it really is as good as new. Once you’ve taken a look at some of their watches from the 50s, 60s and 70s, you won’t be able to resist putting that authentic finishing touch to your vintage look!
Into the 21st century, Brighton continues to keep the past alive and a visit really is something to look forward to. If you’ve never visited, the only question that remains is “what are you waiting for?”
In the meantime, you’ll just have to look forward to looking back.
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