Expert Vintage Shopping Tips That’ll Make You A Pro


With the recent annual Gentleman’s Vintage Show, I realized that not every man is a vintage shopper and most have no idea where to start. Writing for, I got in contact with David Ornstein, a vintage expert of 40 years and founder of the Manhattan Vintage Clothing Show (whom puts on the men’s show, and whose visitors have included Phillip Lim and Jean Paul Gaultier to name a few), to give us 10 quick tips and points that would help vintage shopping virgins become overnight pros — and maybe give you some new pointers if you think you’re an expert already.

See a couple below, and the full list on (including the latest vintage trends, staple pieces to invest in, and a brief histroy lesson on vintage clothing period and popular items):

1. Dress Comfortably 
Come prepared by wearing shoes or boots that you can slip right off, unbelted pants and not too many layers. This way you’re more willing to try things on as sizing standards have changed over the years.

2. Pay Close Attention To The Condition And Materials Of Your Finds 
Look at everything really carefully and thoroughly, and ask yourself how it feels. Ornstein says a good method is to close your eyes and feel the garment. “If it’s not right you’ll know it.” He recommends always looking for natural fabrics, metal zippers and union labels printed in blue.

3. Check The Label 
Labels tell you the country of origin and fiber content, and the country can tell its age. From oldest to newest: Japan, India, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Pakistan, Vietnam, Korea and China.

4. Bartering Is OK
Dealers don’t mind it if you ask for the best price, but expect to pay a fair price for garbs that have been thoroughly cleaned, steamed and researched.

5. Location, Location, Location
Ornstein recommendeds the following places to shop across the U.S.:

Seattle: Heller’s Cafe
Boston: Bobby From Boston
Los Angeles: L.A. Rose BoutiqueRose Bowl Flea Market and The Way We Wore
Dallas: Vintage Martini
New York: Cherry VintageRue St Denis and Olaf’s Vintage

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About Andrew Villagomez

Andrew Villagomez is a lifestyle journalist, style photographer and owner of He contributes to publications such as, Out Magazine, Logo TV's, Passport Magazine,, and more. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram: @VeeTravels

Posted on November 16, 2013, in Fashion, Shopping and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.


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