Vintage Shopping Tips & Tricks by Ramario Chevoy
To prepare for when we can actually start shopping IRL again, we ask Dancer, Model, Stylist and Vintage Connoisseur Ramario Chevoy to take a break from curating looks and choreographing shows for the likes of Nao, to take us through his top 10 tips on shopping vintage. Aside from his own incredible collection of thrifted wardrobe wonders, Ramario works in vintage retail so is fully qualified to educate us on the best way to sift through the trash and find the treasures. We get to know a bit more about him below.
Photography by Karis Beaumont
- Give yourself enough time.
Vintage shopping should be fun however if you’re trying to shop in a rush it’s probably not the best idea, finding those rare gems can be time-consuming however well worth it
- Try items on.
Unlike the high street when it comes to sizing especially with vintage pieces it’s essential to try them on to make sure the fit is correct.
- Invest in pieces you know you’ll get the wear out of.
When I say this it’s important to purchase pieces that you can style in multiple ways so that you can get the most out of the item.
- Check for faults.
As with any item that’s vintage that’s exactly what it is......vintage so checking for holes, stains missing buttons etc is vital. Again you want to make sure you’re getting your monies worth.
- Quality over quantity.
Don’t let designer labels have you buying it for the sake of it. Make sure you love the piece & will actually wear it & if it happens to be designer then that’s a bonus point but don’t let that persuade you into buying it if you know you won’t wear it .
- Don’t forget charity shops.
As well as traditional vintage stores there’s a lot of charity shops that have specific vintage sections where those hidden gems can be found for dirt cheap. I once found a vintage YSL stripe shirt in a charity shop for around £3.50 & a vintage Fendi t-shirt for around £2.50 both authentic. It still shocks me to this day that people still aren’t aware of what they throw out however one mans trash is another mans treasure.
As well as great physical vintage stores there’s also a lot of amazing vintage brands online to find those rare gems. I’ve found some amazing items from sellers on Depop, eBay & Asos marketplace.
Just like anything in life it’s good to do your research about vintage stores in your local area as well as others in different cities which are recommend to visit.
Vintage stores are well known for their reasonable pricing however don’t be put off by shelling out a little bit more than expected for that rare one off gem.
One thing to always remember is items found in vintage stores are one offs so the beauty is knowing you won’t see anyone else in the same piece as you. Also bare this in mind if you decide to not purchase that piece that you saw that you loved, I’ve made that mistake a few times then gone back the next day & the piece has been sold.
I would say I first properly got into vintage clothing in my mid to late teens. I would always try to incorporate it as often as possible in the majority of my looks during this time of my life but when I began working at a vintage clothing store at around the age of 21 that’s when my love for vintage clothing was taken to a whole new level.
What’s your most treasured vintage item??
My most favourite vintage find? That’s a really tricky question as there’s so many but if I were to pick one I would say it would have to be my vintage leather & suede Chanel bum bag from the 80s.
Tell us about your favourite vintage or charity shop?
Again another hard question (lol). I would say I don’t have one favourite vintage or charity shop however some of my favourites are: Cow Vintage, Rokit, Nordic Poetry, Serotonin Vintage & Sue Ryder
What was the first Lazy Oaf item you owned?
My first Lazy Oaf item I believe was the poison t-shirt I got a few years back in the sale in store.
What’s the trashiest TV you love to watch?
I love watching Google box it’s honestly my weakness!
Who has been your favourite person to style and why?
To be honest I love everyone/artist I style as my motto is if I don’t listen to their music or believe in the vision I couldn’t style them just for the sake of styling them as I’m very passionate about what I do. If I had to pick one I would say Nao simply because I started out choreographing for her in 2018, I choreographed the whole Saturn world tour which for my dance career literally changed my life & the first time I got to style her was for the Mercury prize awards in 2019 which was such an honour & prestigious event.