Vintage Visits: Brighton
Thursday, 05 December 2013

Vintage Visits: Brighton

There is plenty of fun to be had in Brighton, from shopping in the Lanes to dining out. Here is a round up of our favourite bits

Written by Melonie Clarke
I love nothing more than hopping on the train to Brighton and indulging in a spot of vintage shopping. With the festive season very nearly here, I thought why not combine two passions, vintage shopping and Christmas shopping.

With countless boutiques and thrift shops you're sure to find something unique for a loved one (and yourself. Confession, time most of the presents were for yours truly).

Where to shop

If you're a fan of thrift shopping Brighton is perfect. The Lanes are jam packed full of vintage shops and higher end boutiques.

For me the boutiques were a little out of my price range, my heart ached as I put THE most amazing dress back on the clothes rail, having seen the more than £200 price tag. But they are still fun to browse around if you know you can restrain yourself from whipping out the credit card.

Having been a fan of thrift and vintage I couldn't wait to get rummaging and after a good couple of hours I not only had a few new outfits for myself but some great gifts for a few of my friends. The idea of buying something second hand as a gift doesn't appeal to some people, in my opinion, if you find something perfect for your mum or whoever, who cares how many previous owners it's had.


Here are some of my favourite places to spend a penny or two:

  • All Eras: Vintage goodies, clothing and furniture – 29 Upper St James's Street, Kemptow, BN2 1JN.
  • Beyond Retro – has thousands of items ranging from the 1900's to the 1990s. Gigs also take place here and events. 42 Vine Street, North Laine, Brighton BN1 4AG,
  • Bobby and Dandy – Men and women's vintage – from 1940s to 1980s. 18 Blatchington Road, Hove, BN3 3YN.
  • Dig for Victory – dresses which are off the peg or custom made – appointment only, 175 Edward Street, Brighton BN2 0JB,
  • Dodo Vintage – great place to find furnishings and accessories.1A Brooker Street, Hove, Bn3 3ZN,
  • Green Brick – has a range of vintage and designer pieces. 21 Queens Road, Brighton Bn1 3XA.
  • Kate and Aud – Handmade charm jewellery, cotton dresses and vintage accessories. 27 Trafalgar Street, Brighton, BN1 4ED. www.kate&
  • Penelope's Portmanteau – offers furs, jewellery and handbags. 42a Ship Street, The Lanes, Brighton BN1 1 AF.
  • Tresami Antiques and Collectables – Ceramics, jewellery – period ranges from Victorian to Modern. 35 Upper St James' Street, Kemptown, BN2 1JN. www.tresamiantiques&
  • Hope & Harlequin – vintage clothing, wedding dresses, bespoke creations. 31 Sydney Street, BN1 4EP.
  • Utility – homeware goods. 28a North Road, BN1 1YB.
  • Lavender Rooms- vintage accessories, from jewellery to lingerie and handmade candles- 16 Bond Street, BN1 1RD.
  • Snooper's Attic- a vintage and creative heaven, you could spend hours rummaging through everything they have to offer. 7-8 Kensington Gardens, BN1 4AL.

For the culture vulture

The Artist Open House project offers a great oppourtunity to view and buy original artwork straight from the artist's home.

Artists of all ages take part, from those starting out to marginalised artists. With so many artists getting involved you can find all sorts on offer from ceramics and photography to sculpture and textiles.

There is an Open House Christmas festival which runs until the 15th December. Entry to the houses is free and there might even be a tea and cheeky mince pie on offer.

Get the look

Getting dolled up is the start of the fun for a night out with friends. On my visit I went along to the Parlour Rooms, sadly now closed down to get my hair done vintage style, Marilyn curls anyone?


Here is a list of other vintage hairdressers operating in the area:
  • Kitty's Vintage Ltd – a mobile beauty service which operates across London and the South East of England. The professionals will come to your home, hotel or whatever venue and assist you to 'retro it up' for any occasion. They also do a series of pop-up salons.
  • Hair that turns Heads – run by a freelance hair stylist, the service operates in the South East, must be a minimum party of five, lessons also offered.
  • Betty Lou Brighton: opened seven months ago on a budget of £100. It is on Preston Street , in Brighton and does events, make-overs and tutorials.

Where to eat

In my opinion, if you go to the seaside, any seaside, a meal of donuts, fish and chips (or saveloy and chips in my case) and ice cream is a must, nee a necessity. But if seaside food isn't really to your taste (perish the thought) there are numerous other places around.

  • Metro deco is great for a spot of afternoon tea or a lunch time cocktail when shopping with friends. Cakes, scones and sandwiches are all handmade and are all delicious. They also sell their loose lead tea blends (the perfect gift for any tea lover) and vintage tea ware.
38 Upper St James Street, BN2 1JN

  • Riddle & Finns is just one of the many great seafood places in Brighton. In 2006 they opened their first restaurant in the Lanes and recently opened a second on the beachfront. Gordon Ramsey said of the venue "seafood as it should be". The first of the two does not take reservations.
12 Meeting House Lane, BN1 1HB 01273 721667
139 Kings Road Arches, BN1 2FN 01273 821218
  • English's is another fab seafood restaurant which is definitely worth a visit. You can chill at the marble topped oyster bar or dine in the Red Room for a real touch of Edwardian splendour.
29-31 East Street, BN1 1HL
  • If you're a steak fan the bistro at Hotel Du Vin is for you. There is plenty of choice on the menu (even for non-steak lovers) and the staff really know the wine menu, so let them choose your tipple of choice.
2 Ship St, BN1 1AD

Going out

  • Marlborough Theatre is buzzing all year round. I went along to the Steampunk Hidden Tea Room evening which left me laughing so hard I thought I had done myself some damage. Specialising in the weird and wonderful, you can expect an evening of cabaret, song (you will be encouraged to sing along, but just try to get the words right) and competitions- oh yes, yours truly proved her cherry bakewell and tea drinking skills and only went and won herself a bottle of gin.
4 Princes Street, BN2 1RD
  • If you like an evening of dancing with friends and One Direction (insert any other chart topping musician you wish there) just aren't your thing then Mesmerist is the place for you. Inspired by 1930s gin palaces, burlesque and the steampunk movement, it celebrates the best bits of eras past. With the dj playing vintage classics and a midnight show (listen out for the chiming bells), you're sure to have a fab evening. They also serve food, including a roast at the weekends.
1-3 Prince Albert Street, BN1 1HE

Shall we dance?

Anyone that knows me will know that swing dancing is a big thing in my life. So getting the oppourtunity to slip into my dancing shoes is always exciting.

Ragroof Tea Dances at the Emporium feature authentic music (played by a swoontastic dj called Champagne Charlie), dance classes, performances and afternoon tea and last 3 hours (from 2-5).


The lessons mean you don't have to be an expert and you don't need to have a dance partner to go along and trip the light fantastic.

88 London Road, BN1 4JF

Where to stay

The Grand Brighton 01273 224 300

Pelirocco Hotel 01273 327 055


Drakes Hotel 01273 696 934

Hotel Du Vin 01273 718588

Artist Residence Hotel 01273 324302

Hilton Brighton Metropole 01273 775 432 

This Vinatge Visit was organised by Visit Brighton. Accomodation was provided by Hotel Du Vin.

Forgot your password?
Click to read our digital edition

Boarders Dormitory Master-Mistress
We are looking to appoint a Dormitory Mistress/Master for 5 nights per week, weekday evenings and nights only, term time. (35 weeks). [...]


Housekeeper to Headmaster
We have an opportunity for an experienced live-out housekeeper. You will provide a cleaning and hospitality service for the Headmaster and his guests and help to ensure the household runs efficiently. [...]


Full Time Housekeeper, Nanny
We are looking for a full time, live-out housekeeper/nanny. We are a relaxed young couple living in a large country house, and will have one newborn baby. [...]


Experienced Carer, Companion, Housekeeper needed
Our elderly mother needs a live in carer/companion on a part time basis. Must be warm hearted, calm & compassionate, with a good sense of humour. [...]


Cook, Housekeeper wanted
Good cooking skills required to cater for light meals for the Principal and a small staff, as well as occasional lunch/dinner parties. [...]




What the stars have in store for you this week.2017

Capricorn Aquarius Pisces Aries Taurus Gemini Cancer Leo Virgo Libra Scorpio Sagittarius

Sign up to receive our weekly newsletter