For this blog we welcome guest blogger Ireti Odugbesan, who has put together a fantastic piece showcasing some of the best second hand and vintage shops in the city. Over to Ireti!


As we become more aware of the huge impact our fashion choices and clothes are having on the environment, sustainable fashion and shopping responsibly are terms we frequently hear circulating around this conversation and how as contributors to the climate crisis we can all make a difference.

Fast fashion, as it’s aptly called, refers to the production or rather overproduction of low-quality garments at very cheap prices, that are churned out at rapid speed in order to maximise on the latest, fast moving trends. The industry is responsible for approximately 10% of global carbon emissions each year and it’s also the second biggest consumer of water.

Sustainable fashion on the other hand is a term used to describe the production and consumption of clothing and also the ethical and environmental impact. Changing how and where we shop is a crucial step in the right direction to reducing our environmental footprint and shopping second-hand and vintage is a good place to start.

Leicester has a lot to offer when it comes to vintage and pre-loved shopping. From retro, to gems from the 80s and 90s, one of a kind finds and luxury designer pieces. There is an eclectic mix of clothing and accessories to be found in independent, local businesses scattered throughout the city centre.

BluTit Thrift – Silver Street

BluTit Thrift is located on the quirky Silver Street. It’s home to curated vintage pieces, beautifully hand-crafted clothing and reworked blouses, dresses and skirts. Selling both men’s and womenswear. When it comes to sustainable shopping, BluTit Thrift is your go to.

Sue Ryder – Loseby Lane

Situated in The Lanes, another great location for independent clothing and homeware shops dotted along the cobbled streets. Sue Ryder is a real gem, selling vintage and retro clothing and accessories. With plush shearling coats and jackets, trouser suits, colourful neckties, and leather belts. Sue Ryder is stocked with one-of-kind pieces. If that wasn’t enough, they’re also a charity that provides palliative, neurological and bereavement support.

The Vintage Scene – Silver Street

If you’re looking for vintage sportswear, The Vintage Scene has got you covered. Also located on Silver Street. The Vintage Scene specialises in streetwear, with brand names such as Nike, Adidas and Carhartt.  Retro jumpers, track pants and NASCAR jackets. They’ve got a great a selection of accessories too, from beanie hats to reworked bags.

Above Ground – Royal Arcade

One of the coolest vintage shops in town. Above Ground, previously known as Pink Pigeon Forever has been part of Leicester’s vintage scene for 10 years. It’s located in the Royal Arcade, a hotspot for independent, unique shops and antique bookstores.

From leather jackets to designer labels such as Burberry, Prada and Fendi to streetwear brands Stussy, Stone Island and Supreme. Selling both men’s and women’s clothing, Above Ground has everything you need to inspire your wardrobe with pre-loved pieces.

Above Ground’s founder and owner Josh told us why shopping vintage is important to him “Everyone who is into vintage has their own personal relationship with it. For me, I’ve never been comfortable in new clothes, so naturally it just made sense to me. I’m a big fan of the way things age, patinas, and repairs. That authenticity is something fast fashion hasn’t managed to recreate.”

The Wardrobe – Royal Arcade

The Wardrobe is the city’s longest running vintage clothing store. They offer a selection of vintage, new and retro clothing. Their selections are inspired by each season. You’ll find everything from classic Levi denim pieces, Fred Perry polos, leather biker jackets, dresses from the 60’s and flannel shirts.

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