SIX TIPS FOR SHOPPING VINTAGE AND MY FAVOURITE VINTAGE BUYS
The ethos of sarahakwisombe.com has always been about staying true to your own style. Regardless of whether that’s seen as being ‘on trend’. In fact, you’re more likely to see me avidly pushing you to avoid the trends! One of the best ways I find to stay true to your own style and not be influences by mass market mainstream fads is to shop vintage, charity shop and antique, so I thought I’d show you some of my fave finds that I've got for my flat to get you inspired.
Art Deco style cocktail shaker
This was a find in a local charity shop. Ok, in fairness it doesn’t actually work (lol!) but you can’t deny it looks pretty. It’s the perfect bar cart accompaniment and it’s geometric styling suits my pad pretty well. I just got given these diamond shaped glasses from Puik art too, which suit the vibe of the cocktail shaker perfectly.
My tip for shopping in charity shops is to really look. Don’t go in when you’re in a hurry – every time I’ve done that I find I just skim things and sometimes don’t notice great pieces that have been hidden away.
50s housewife style armchair
This mustard green beauty was one of my first big item purchases on eBay. They have some amazing midcentury sellers on there so you’re missing a trick by only frequenting the expensive specialist shops, especially in London. On eBay you can find pieces like this and many more form other parts of the UK where they aren’t pushing the crazy prices of the capital.
Don’t let the shipping costs put you off either – use shiply.com to post your job and let couriers and van drivers bid on your job. This way you get a fabulous price for shipping! Check the feedback from other customers on each driver before you book to make sure you’re getting the best person for the job.
African solid wood carved bookends
Another favourite eBay find of mine. These are quite weighty little things and although they wouldn’t necessarily be what you’d consider my ‘signature style’ that’s exactly why I adore them. Building an eclectic home is about mixing styles and pieces to create a really unique look. I think they’re also a nice nod to my husband’s African heritage, though he’ll probably tell me they’re from a completely different part of Africa!
Another great tip for eBay shopping is to set up ‘saved searches’. That way if you have your eye out for something particular, you will get a notification every time something that meets the description gets listed for sale.
50s French pink glass ashtray-come-trinket-holder
I originally bought this as a prop for a shoot but didn’t end up using it. Love pink glass! It’s just so chic and different – a bit like the neon yellow uranium glass you sometimes find in antique shops and the like. Obviously no-one rally uses ashtrays anymore, so instead I use it as a cool little trinket tray for bits of jewellery or some easy to look after air plants like this.
Glass is often easy to find in charity shops or vintage sites like eBay at a really good price. Look carefully for any imperfections or chips before purchasing.
70s Hollywood regency style cantilever chairs
I got a set of 8 of these dining chairs on eBay for about £250, a fraction of the price of what I’d pay for them in a retro shop, and that was including delivery via my fave, shiply. Since I got them we have talked of reupholstering them in pink velvet. I’ll happen, one day, it just keeps falling to the back of the line when it comes to priorities because the 90s style floral pattern actually kind of works in our eclectic living room!
When purchasing items like this it’s great to get a set as they will hold much more of a resale value should you ever decide to part with them… but why on earth would you?!
Gold ice bucket apple
This is apparently an ice bucket – another great piece for your bar area. We actually don’t get up to much entertaining at our flat, usually because I’m working or it’s not good timing for Marley (our 3 yr old daughter) but maybe we should change that?! So instead of using this as an uber retro-cool ice bucket we use it as clever hidden storage instead. Perfect for little memory cards and wires for my camera.
Use vintage pieces as hidden storage on your shelves. No one will know what randomness you have hidden inside!
Hope this has inspired you to get shopping vintage! I have so many more pieces that I’m sure you will see cropping up in various videos and the like. As I mentioned earlier, don’t be scared of sites like eBay, you are covered if the seller doesn’t come through (but that has never happened to me) and use shiply.com to get the best deal on an affordable delivery.
Do you have a favourite vintage piece? Would love to hear about it in the comments below!
*this post is in collaboration with Shiply*