By now, we are all aware of the power that 5 by 5 square photograph holds. Instagram can give us breakfast (or even life) envy, make us book a holiday or even change our hair colour.
Above all, 'The Gram' has users pining after the look the girl in the picture is wearing. It's is one hell of a money maker for brands, one good outfit pic sees an item sell out, with followers heading off to the shops to buy the piece. It was only a matter of time before the app became came ultimately shoppable.
This ups the game from social media stars merely tagging the brands they wear so users can emulate the look, or using websites such as liketoknow.it, which allows you to 'shop your favourite influencer's pics'. Recently, I've been getting a Depop vibe from the photo app; Vintage Boutiques that you can shop from directly are on the rise on Instagram. If you like it, you can buy it. With one comment or DM, the piece in the picture is on its way to you.
The carefully curated feeds of these stores and their items feel luxe, no stained T shirts here. I like that the stores edit 'the best of the best' and really show it off. Vintage stores are often overwhelming, packed floor to ceiling with product, only half of it good. As I've written about in the past with ASOS Marketplace, it's great to see the piece you want to buy on a model. Too many times have I bought vintage from eBay, trying to imagine how the item would look on from a badly snapped, sprawled 'floor' picture.
Though Instagram isn't all the Boutiques' primary place of sale (many link to Etsy stores) I wondered the legal terms of selling on Instagram, with other apps like eBay and Depop claiming a percentage of sellers fee's.
Though in places, pieces seem overpriced, (at £60 for a plain T Shirt) some pieces are literal gems. I champion buying second hand, it's better for the environment, and if anyone watched the recent documentary 'The True Cost' you have seen the ramifications of 'Fast Fashion'.
Though there are many, these 8 vintage stores are killing it on Instagram RN. The order corresponds to the above photos.
1. Na Nin Vintage
Founded in 2009 by Kate Jennings, after a year living in South Korea. She aims to support other small businesses and showcase their work. In the last year Kate has ventured into creating fragrances and collaborating with other designers.
2. Dirty Disco Vintage
'his Manchester based boutique also sells on ASOS Marketplace. It 'Curates the most badass collection of vintage so you don't have to.' Dirty Disco is full of easy, wearable items that would be welcome in anyone's wardrobe.
Annie and Nicole, based in Georgia, US offer hand selected, effortless and eclectic vintage fashion. They are fantastic supporters of many worthy causes, and believe it's crucial to state the politics behind their business. They explain, 'We feel that in times such as these it is crucial to assert the personal beliefs and values we hold as the individuals. We are anti-Trump and oppose everything that this administration stands to represent. We are an LGBTQ owned business, and we stand proudly with our community to demand and protect the rights we deserve. We are feminists who stand in favour and full support of the Black Lives Matter movement, Immigrants' rights, religious freedom, and climate change awareness.
4. The Corner Store
Based in LA, The Corner Store was founded by Stacey Nishimoto, an Instagram star in her own right. The store's dreamy feed is full of whimsical whites and girly ruffles. Stacey began the store after working at Nasty Gal and cult beauty site Into The Gloss.
5. Bird On A Wire
The brain child of Fashion Promotion graduate Buki Fadipe, BOAW mixes on trend vintage and one-off modern indie designs. The BOAW team travel the world sourcing unique pieces for the fashion forward, free thinking girl with a conscious. The brand is based between East London and their new HQ in Lisbon.
6. The Zoo
Perhaps the most eclectic of all the boutiques features, this LA based store offers truely unique items, from crochet tops to corsets. The Zoo doesn't seem to stick to one era or style, providing a diverse range of retro garms from every time period. With so many trends coming around again, why not bag yourself a gem you won't find on the high street.
7. Persephone Vintage
Perhaps my favourite of all, Persephone Vintage is ran by Susan Choi. I adore the dark maroon and leaf green backdrops, the styling of the shoots and overall feel of this boutique. Born in South Korea, Susan now lives in Southern California. The West Coast seems to be ruling in the vintage stakes, I think I need to book a trip ASAP.
8. Desert Vintage
Salima Boufelfel and Roberto Cowan took over the already established Desert Vintage store, which was founded in 1974. They 'desire to curate an undeniably stylish and eclectic mix of true vintage items for both men and women.' The store is forever evolving, including textiles from around the world, jewellery, a great leather collection, wearables and accessories.
All cut out images are copyright of the stores in question. Artwork by me.