Leeds has been at the heart of fashion manufacturing and design dating back to the 18th century and quickly became synonymous with the development of textiles. Now in the fast-paced, working city of Leeds, sustainable second-hand and vintage stores are thriving amongst our high-street favourites.
All the notable and popular shopping locations in the city centre from John Lewis, Trinity and Victoria Gate offer customers a variety of luxurious and affordable brands for the perfect shopping spree. If you prefer being more ethical and sustainable in your shopping habits, then make a bee-line for these eight vintage and second-hand stores dotted in and around Leeds.
Popularity surrounding retro and vintage clothing and other products has rapidly increased over the last few years, with a high demand from the younger generation aspiring to be more original and unique with their style preferences and personalities. Consumers like the younger generation are also becoming more aware on the impacts of fast fashion, how it is damaging our environment and educating themselves on how to shop more sustainably.
9-11 Call Lane, Leeds LS1 7DH
Blue Rinse has become one of the leading second-hand shops in Leeds. All clothes are high quality and hand-picked to give their customers the best options. As well as selling unaltered garments, they specialise in reworking recycled clothes and reinvent the vintage clothes.
County House, 82 Vicar Ln, Leeds LS1 7JH
Cow Vintage handpick their ethically sourced items from around the world, selling unique and iconic vintage clothing from the 70s, 80s, 90s and 00s. They also rework clothing into new garments, altering them into trendy, stylish pieces and keep their customers up-to-date with the latest trends while staying sustainable.
22 Queens Arcade, Leeds LS1 6LF
Designer Exchange combines the love of designer fashion and the awareness of environmental issues. By selling pre-loved designer items, their mission is to support sustainability and reduce fast fashion through quick and easy exchanges in designer clothing, accessories and shoes.
SCRAP – Creative Reuse Arts Project
Sunny Bank Mills, The Spinning Mill, Paradise St, Farsley, Leeds LS28 5UJ
Based in Sunny Bank Mills in Farsley, SCRAP is a social enterprise and creative space that is open to everyone looking for cheap materials. The perfect place to stock up on supplies and materials for art projects and educational purposes, they’re focused on helping the environment by reusing waste materials from other businesses for recreational purposes.
35 The Headrow, Leeds LS1 6PU
This independent record shop has been established in Leeds since 1985, contributing to the music scene of the city for over 30 years. They carry an array of CDs and vinyls in a variety of genres, and constantly rotate their stock to give you the best deals and the chance to find some true vintage, second hand goodies.
Leeds Church Institute, 22 New Market St, Leeds LS1 6DG
Best is a well-established retailer in the heart of Leeds, selling handpicked items sourced from around the world. They also have their own label, ‘Best Clothing’. Best rework clothing into one-off pieces using second-hand clothing and altering them into new trends.
1 Bay Horse Ct, Otley LS21 1SB
Similar to most book shops, Chevin Books is home to around 10,000 books on most subjects people may need. There’s no doubt you’ll be able to find some second hand gems within their collection, specifically in their history and military selection of books.
Seagulls Reuse Paint
3 – 4, Aire Place Mills, 103 Kirkstall Rd, Leeds LS3 1JL
Established in 2004, they have since been recognised as a community enterprise that seeks to support the environment through recycling and the reuse of paint materials. Using low cost high quality paint products for learning experiences for disadvantaged people has helped the wider community.
Other than these second hand and vintage shops in and around Leeds, you can find a charity shop almost anywhere which will sell second-hand clothing, household products, accessories and other bits and bobs. So time to get your wallets and purses out and get spending!
Images: Designer Exchange, Blue Rinse, COW Vintage, Designer Exchange, BEST, Seagulls