Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Vintage Shopping in Washington DC

As implied in my last post, here is my review of a few of the vintage clothing shops in DC (of course, with some show-and-tell of my finds!)

Selection: Moderate-Varied.  The picture on the website will give you a pretty good idea of how big it is.  Mostly spans the 40's to the 70's, and about a third of the items have dates.  LOTS of accessories and jewelry, and also quite a good collection of mid-century slips.  Clothes are sorted into small/medium/large size groups. 
Service: The woman who was working when I went was laid back, but still helpful enough that I didn't feel neglected (I was there with my mom, so I didn't need too much advice).  
Price:  Moderate. Willing to negotiate a price on items that haven't been marked yet, and I got a 10% discount on a skirt that had lost some buttons. (They don't take American Express)
What I found:  A navy hounds-tooth skirt that I'm 95% sure was home made in the 30's (metal zipper, no maker's tag, poorly hemmed) 
Please excuse the non-matching shoes, I seem to have left most of shoes at school. 

Close-up of the buttons and pleats
A white skirt, probably 70's.  Originally it had white buttons, but some of them has fallen off, so I replaced them with navy ones.

Mercedes Bien Vintage Clothing and Decor

Selection: Varied.  Plenty of 70's dresses, but also lots of things from the 30's to the 80's (I even saw a pair of late Victorian open drawers!).  This place also has a couple of great 50's crinolines.
Service: The owner was VERY friendly and eager to help you; it was a bit intimidating for an introvert like me.  She clearly knows a lot about textiles.  This would be a great place to have a big shopping spree.
Price: Moderate-High.
What I found: How awesome is this: I found an 60's stewardess' tweed skirt that was manufactured by Airways Industries (possible Airway Industries, I'd check, but I'm wearing it right now!)


Selection: Limited-Moderate.  Not as many things and mostly 70's with some 40'-60's. Really great scarves though.
Service: In between Meeps and Mercedes Bien. She gave good advice on things I tried on, but didn't run around finding things I might like. (This was perfect for me)
Price: Moderate
What I found: 70's polyester dress


  1. I truly appreciate you taking the time to share this informative post, I'll definitely be back for more! Thank you!

  2. Hi, Libby, thanks for stopping by my blog. And thanks for adding me to your "blog list." :)

    I really like that last dress. So perfect for spring, very colorful!