A few years ago, if you were into vintage fashion, you’d find it difficult to buy in Bangkok, Thailand. Not any more. In recent years, there’s been an explosion of vintage fashion shops, with so many now all over the city it’s hard to keep up with them all. With new ones popping up every day though, there are still a few tried-and-true places that will never let you down, and where vintage fashion lovers go first if they’re looking for something cool.
Again and Again – One of my Thai friends, whose life is vintage fashion, introduced me to Again and Again. Of course, as she’s hi-so (high-society), it’s a fair bit more upscale than Chatuchak or Talad Lot Fai and the prices are too. But it’s the cutest little shop you’ve ever seen, and everything is artfully displayed, not just thrown around at most of the vintage markets.
Again and Again also benefits from being run by a Thai woman who really knows what she’s doing. She markets on Facebook, as well as on the shop’s own website and, if you hate schlepping anywhere in Bangkok’s extreme heat, you can even shop online too and she’ll mail to you.
Look for a huge selection of vintage shoes (all beautifully cleaned and restored), lots of leather belts, vintage designer bags, and costume jewelry. The dresses and skirts here too are pretty and, as she seems to love more pastel colors and girly styles, you’ll be in seventh heaven if you’re the princess type.
Check out the Again and Again website often too, as new stock is added twice a week and sales with extremely large discounts run several times a year.
Again and Again, if you want to shop in person, is at Room B1A, Market Place in Thong Lor, Bangkok.
Chatuchak Weekend Market – Chatuchak Weekend Market is one of the most well known, and best, places in Bangkok to buy vintage fashion. There’s so much of it, they’ve even turned over two sections of the market (Sections 5 and 6, near the end of the market closest to the sky train) that’s mainly vintage clothing, shoes and accessories, and there’s bargains galore.
Clothing starts at 150 baht ($5) for cool indie t shirts, spaghetti strap tops and women’s shirts. Men’s shirts, rare t shirts, vintage dresses and the like go for between 200-500 baht ($6.50-$16). Vintage Levi jeans, flight jackets, leather jackets, pants, coats can go as high as 2,000 baht ($66), depending on how rare it is. And don’t be fooled into thinking, just because you’re in Thailand,stall owners don’t know what it is they have. They’re all up on vintage and indie fashion, and know exactly the going rate. Just remember, the going rate in Thailand is still cheaper than in the US or Europe.
Vintage fashions at Chatuchak are a great mix between imported western clothes (I picked up a cool Hendrix shirt last year), and indie and vintage Thai clothes. Some of the Thai clothing is a must-grab, when you see it, as it’s truly unique and you can guarantee no-one back home will have anything like it.
Get to Chatuchak Weekend Market on the BTS sky train and exit at Kampaeng Phet station, which brings you up right inside the market.
Talad Lot Fai (The Railway Market) – A relatively new vintage and indie addition to Bangkok, Talad Lot Fai, (in English, The Railway Market), opened just last year but has quickly become one of the city’s most popular vintage markets.
Located next to the railway line, hence the name, it’s also right across the street from Chatuchak Weekend Market on Kampaeng Phet Road and is a night market that’s only open on the weekends, so on Saturday and Sunday nights between 4pm and midnight.
At Talad Lot Fai, you’ll find many stalls selling vintage and indie clothing, shoes, bags and accessories. Stall owners are often university students, or collectors of vintage ware, so often have a great eye for what’s in fashion now or likely to be soon.
Don’t miss grabbing a drink at one of the cute bars or cafes either. You can even sit in one of the old railway carriages, and enjoy a beer and listen to live music.
Take the MRT underground to Kampaeng Phet station, and it’s just up the street.