lundi 5 mars 2007

The basics

Paris is a great place for Vintage fashion. From second-hand shops to deluxe outlets, from flea markets to experts, you can be sure you will find the dress or costume of your dreams.

Here is a short selection of the best Vintage shops :

Falbalas : Falbalas, founded by Françoise and Erwan de Fligué, is a true vintage heaven. Hidden in the antique flea market of Saint-Ouen, this Vintage shop aims to provide fashion from the 18th century to 1970, with a very strong output on 1900 to 1950 dresses. The place is especially good for turn-of-the-century skirts, or New Look dresses. The owners are very knowledgeable and friendly. They also sell a nice selection of retro shoes of their own design. Prices start at 30 euros, but can reach the hundreds. Please note they only accept cash or French checks, no credit cards.

Falbalas, Marché Dauphine, 140 rue des Rosiers, Saint-Ouen. M° Porte-de-Clignancourt.

Ragtime : Ragtime is especially famous for its owner, the great Françoise Auguet, who organized a big Denise and Paul Poiret auction in 2005. The shop is on a backward little street of Saint-Germain-des-Prés. There you'll be able to find a Dior dress of 1957 (1000 euros), a 40's Evening Dress of champaign splendour (450 euros) or less-priced bags and shoes. The prices tend to the higher scale, but all the clothes are in mint condition.

Ragtime, 23 rue de l'Echaudé, 75 006. (01 56 24 00 36) M° St-Germain-des-Prés.

Mam'zelle Swing : if you're keen on zazous and 40's fashion, you can be sure to find the rare jacket and matching shoes in this nicely airy shop founded by Bérénice. The stock is well selected and can include anything from a 1900's shirt to a Courrèges suit. The clothes are reasonably priced with many items below 100 euros.

Mamz'Elle Swing, 35Bis, rue du Roi de Sicile, 75 004 (01 48 87 04 06). M° Hôtel-de-Ville.

Casablanca : Casablanca, located by the hip streets of Ménilmontant, has inheritated from the French custom of old "Friperies", with a higher level of style. This big shop is filled with anything from Roaming Twenties gowns to Sixties iconic dresses and also includes a large selection of men clothes. Some items seem not to have been even worn. Very good for a nice retro look at a good price.

Casablanca, 17 rue Moret, 75 011 (01 43 57 10 12). M0 Ménilmontant.

Puces de Vanves : the last true flea market of Paris offers some very good bargains on Vintage clothes, with specialists like Amélie Textiles selling anything from old linen to 50's suits. Some stalls offer bargain prices on 70's and 80's fashion. The search can be quite a hit-and-miss, but on a sunny day it can make a nice adventure.

Puces de Vanves, avenue Marc-Sangnier et Georges Lafenestre, 75 014. M° Porte-de-Vanves.

Didier Ludot : Didier Ludot is worldwide famous for his selection of (well-priced) Vintage including big names like Chanel, Balenciaga or Hermès. His impressive store, set in the historic galleries of Palais-Royal, can be intimidating. Prices are not for the faint-hearted, with tags reaching the thousands.

Didier Ludot, 24 galerie Montpensier, 75001 (01 42 96 06 56). M° Palais-Royal.