When I find myself missing 'home' I oftentimes find myself in vintage shops, which really only makes me more homesick. . . I end up looking at things which can be way out of my price range and leave wishing I could transport myself back to the North Carolina thrift shops to really feel like I was walking away with a deal!
I've spent quite a lot of time in South London over these past few months, and found two great shops I wanted to pass along to you. 'Cenci' in West Norwood was also previously in Covent Garden. No photos are allowed inside the shop, but just imagine floor-to-ceiling stacks of letter sweaters and Breton sweaters in every colour and every size. You will need to give yourself several hours just to take it all in. There are also several charity shops along the high street which will keep you busy, and be sure to check out the cemetery behind the library - perfect for a summer's day picnic.
If you are ever in Brockley grab a coffee from Brown's of Brockley and head to 'Good As New / Birds Dress Agency' in Malpas Road. I was drooling over the fur-baubled bag in the window (up top here) and after several weeks walked by at a time when they were open, only to fall in love with a tartan cape. The cape, which I've yet to successfully photograph in all its magic, was hands-down my top purchase of Winter 2009, and has won me many a compliment. With the mood-swings of London weather perhaps we will have one more outing this year yet!
I don't know much about the shop, aside from there are some real heart-breakers inside, but I hope to make a further investigation very soon! With such a sweet name and 'established 1830' there's bound to be a story there, right? If anyone out there knows. . . or if you can recommend other great vintage stops in South London please do.