Melbourne’s vintage shopping secrets

Melbourne’s hidden gems aren’t just hidden, and they’re not just gems; they’re eclectic, magical, and most unusually multi-purpose. Take Self Preservation, where you walk in to get a cup of coffee and leave with a one-off piece of handmade jewellery. Captains of Industry, where you can lunch on a delicious pear and blue cheese roll while your boy is groomed in an old fashioned barber chair. Or L’Uccello, where vintage ephemera sits alongside a treasure trove of ribbons and buttons and bobbins and books, underneath the high ceilings and huge bright windows of the Nicholas Building.

Ask Fiona Sweetman, director of Hidden Secrets Tours, about these or any other Melbourne spots and she’ll respond not with a tour-book narrative of information, but with some interesting tidbits that tell you more about the character of any place as well as its people. On a special vintage discovery tour led by Fiona and hosted by That’s Melbourne, we were bestowed with many such tidbits.

L'Uccello Melbourne
L’Uccello, inside Melbourne’s Nicholas Building

Along with those mentioned above the group also stopped into Serena Lindeman and newcomer Harry Wragg, also residents of the Nicholas Building; Subject To Change in the underground Campbell Arcade; and Speed on Degraves.

Last but not least here’s a heads up from the tour: The Golden Age is opening soon at Melborne’s GPO, a little spot that will specialise in made to measure vintage based on original patterns, as well as in vintage alterations and repairs. A welcome Melbourne addition for any vintage lover.

Self Preservation Melbourne
Self Preservation, Bourke St Melbourne

Head to That’s Melbourne for more about the city’s vintage fashion finds as well as events, festivals, wining and dining and pretty much everything else you’d ever want to know about Melbourne. Also check out Hidden Secrets Tours for yourself – whether you’re a Melbournian or not you’re bound to discover something new.

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Some people's wardrobes are about a small selection of pieces that all fit within one aesthetic - Tania Braukamper isn't such a person. With a wardrobe that spans three different rooms, her approach to fashion is a mixture of current-season key pieces mixed with vintage finds she's sourced on innumerous shopping trips around the world's more cultured capitals. Despite a disparate approach to shopping, Tania is adamant that the key to mixing vintage with new season is to stick to key looks and colours that work for oneself. And it's a theory that she works into her writing for Fashionising.com, where she serves as the publication's Editor.