Fancy a Marilyn Monroe set of playing cards? A life-size cardboard cutout of James Dean? Or perhaps some retro bunting to brighten up your bedroom? Who doesn’t! Better get yourself down to the Vintage Magazine Shop in London’s West End in that case…
I love it when I discover shops which are slightly off the beaten track and given that I live in London, luckily this experience isn’t as few and far between as it could be.
The Vintage Magazine Shop is set right in the heart of SoHo – amongst the seedy sex shops, lapdancing bars and ever-so-slightly petrifying ‘massage parlours’. Anyway – this place is all it’s cracked up to be and more – and is /definitely/ worth a visit (and getting lost as you almost definitely will…)
The shop itself sells much than it stipulates on the tin. Much, much more. From jokey retro items (often revolving around the Royals, The Beatles or 50s pin-up girls) to prints of Hollywood’s finest (Gene Kelly, Grace Kelly, Clark Gable, etc) this place really is a haven for fans of everything and anything vintage, retro and kitsch and caters for both the niche and mainstream market perfectly.
Aside from being one of those places where you just have to have EVERYTHING, including a Sex Pistols bar stool (me) a Cliff Richard calendar (me) or a ‘Dig for Victory’ wall mount (me), the shop is also a place to satisfy your cravings for good, old-fashioned investments in the form of vintage magazines (surprise surprise.) Naturally a few are rather uninspiring – Kate Moss on the cover of Vogue for example, however, I am assuming a Doris Day cinema magazine wasn’t all that thrilling to audiences in the 1950s either, so I won’t judge.
Anyway – the sheer enormity of the collection is truly inspiring and of course, everything has its price (£10 upwards). Whether Rolling Stone, Playboy or The Beano takes your fancy i’m sure you’ll find something entertaining and informative in the downstairs cavern. Most importantly, every magazine is authentic and original. No copies here. I myself bought a Judy Garland mag from 1947 and it is UNBELIEVABLE! Interview with Cary Grant – check, advertisement for new knitting needles – check, lowdown on the latest Judy flick – check. Wonderful! (Smells amazing too – like someone’s attic!)
If you’re in the area, or a fan in particular it really is worth a visit. (Don’t go after payday though – you’ll regret it. As will your overdraft.)
P.s, non-London fans – don’t feel left out – you can only blummin’ order online! (Maybe technology isn’t so bad after all!)