So imagine my surprise when I found that Melrose Avenue is California's vintage and alternative fashion hub. As I strolled down the street, I spotted independent vintage stores selling everything from genuine military jackets through to a variety of novelty sunglasses that even Sir Elton John would be proud of.
Because this was in the first few days of my trip, I wasn't able to invest in any of the timeless fashion items on sale in the area. However, I took photos to remind myself that one day when I have a bunch of money, I absolutely have to go back and spend FAT dollar! Here are some of the pictures I snapped...
*Not a vintage shoe collection exactly, but I had to take a photo of them because they were so pretty!*
*So so many... desperately want some for autumn/winter 2012*
*I loved how this vintage shop was organized like a regular first-hand store rather than a jumble as most are*
*This colourful collection of tube tops and bodycon skirts really caught my eye*
*Some of the store's coolest leather jackets, each with so much character!*
*This store had EVERYTHING*
*Ok, so I have no idea what I would ever wear a dress like this for... However, I thought it was absolutely beautiful. I wanted to buy it because it reminded me ever-so-slightly of something Kate Middleton might wear to an Royal evening event. Anyone else seeing that?*
*I could have spent hours looking through all of these accessories...*
*I loved the loft-esque store design here.*
*How cute are these shorts? All vintage denim, dyed into a rainbow of bright colours.*
*I almost wanted to call this the Topshop aisle because everything on the rack looked like pieces you'd spot in Kate Moss's A/W collection a couple of years ago. Know what I mean?*
Who knew that Hollywood, somewhere so often assumed to be fixated with image perfection, would offer such an awesomely shabby array of vintage stores? This is definitely the place to be when you are ready for a rummage and have a few hundred dollars in your pocket for a spree. The best thing about Melrose in comparison to many UK vintage shops which I've been to was that on every rack there were about five things I wanted, whereas usually I find myself hunting through a pile of rubbish in order to find a gem. Also, there are a few chain stores on Melrose, but most of them aren't your normal North American stores such as Abercrombie and Fitch or Hollister, but alternative trend-concious locations like Urban Outfitters and American Apparel.
Melrose Avenue is now my new favourite place to shop in the USA and I'll definitely be heading back there some day. Have you ever found such a surprising vintage shopping district before? Do you enjoy vintage shopping? Or have any tips for those who aren't used to scouring the racks for hidden staples?
Love and snuggles