Where To Thrift In Los Angeles From The Cheap To The Not So Cheap
With over 502 square miles to the actual city limits, Los Angeles is an absolute behemoth of day to day goings on. And of course, that translates to tons of places to buy vintage and secondhand goods. It is, after all, one of the top cities in the world for anything fashion related.
So, if we were to ever sit down and write out an exhaustive list of places to hunt for vintage in LA, there'd be little time for much else. By no means is the following list a complete directory of where to go, but it's at least a place to start — suggested to us by local LA hunters too.
GOODWILL OUTLETS ($)
San Fernando / Glendale Bins
If you've been thrifting or shopping secondhand for any length of time we know the algorithm has put you onto "The Bins" a time or two on social media. And everything you see there is true. These Goodwill Outlets are a super cheap way to source, but also a grind few can comprehend. And according to people in the know, the San Fernando and Glendale spots are the places to be.
For over 50 years the Rose Bowl Flea Market has set up in the lot of the famed Pasadena stadium for its monthly series of all things hidden treasure. It’s hosted thousands of vendors, millions of attendees and often regarded as the best place in the world to hunt for vintage.
Melrose Trading Post
The Melrose Trading Post is a weekly event that offers a "continuously evolving experience" with its curated selection of artisan goods, arts, crafts, vintage fashion and more. It's also a nonprofit organization that hosts plenty of programs for those in need around the surrounding neighborhood.
The Silverlake Flea is a weekly endeavor that sets up every Saturday and Sunday to stretch out the experience more for guests. According to its site, everything from "hand selected Vintage, Handmade gems, works of art, rare vinyl, collectible turntables" can be found there along with rotating food options.
Long Beach Antique Market
Y'all this place is absolutely huge. The event itself spans over 20 acres and includes over 800 vendors. That's kind of mind-blowing and for sure a way to drop an entire day, maybe more, to scour through everything available. Yeesh.
With over a dozen locations in California alone, SAVERS is one of the go-to legitimate thrift spots for thousands. And like its peers in the industry, you're able to find pretty much everything here at reasonable prices (and even donate what you don't want anymore to help the cause).
Jet Rag is a legendary joint that The New York Times describes as "an unpretentious thrift store with a maroon facade, wedged between Rick Owens’s stark boutique and an auto body shop at the border of Hollywood and West Hollywood." And for sure hit up its $1 Sundays, they're insane!
Located at 2716 Main Street in Santa Monica, Unholy Saints is a highly curated spot that caters to all eras of Americana be it vintage, leather goods or specialty made custom branded shop gear. Check out its site for store hours or to schedule a private showing.
5 Star Vintage
The location of 5 Star Vintage is only a stone's throw away from the famed Dodgers stadium which makes it a perfect destination to hit while you're killing a day out at the field. It's also a highly curated joint but with value and current trends in mind.
What began as a small Etsy store over 10 years ago is now two brick and mortar locations opened by partners Matthew LaCasse and Rebecca Pieper. The store's goal is to be as fun and relevant as possible, but also to keep the "thrift" value in mind for shoppers.
The Holding Company
If tru vintage is what you're really after, The Holding Company boasts an expertise in old school fashion anywhere from the 1920s-1970s. It also has a one of a kind rental program that's great for Halloween or other special outings without the commitment of a full on purchase.
HIGH END ($$$$)
There are four Wasteland locations that include Hollywood, Studio City, Highland Park and San Francisco off Haight Street. And it's renowned at all of the locations for its ability to stay connected to the neighborhood each location is in, attracting everyone from vintage enthusiasts to top tier designers.
Go check out the online inventory of Supergoodie. It's a shop chock full of designer basics and high end vintage fashion. If you're looking to up your closet with a timeless piece or two this is definitely the destination to hit. Prices are reasonable too, depending on what you're after.
The Way We Wore
This spot looks as good as it sounds. With a high end focused shopping experience, The Way We Wore carries one of the best selections of high end luxury items and vintage finds — for both men and women. Not surprising then that some of the biggest celebrities shop here too.
Rap tees. Band tees. And more rap tees. Earthling.vip has one of the most absurd collections of high end tees that's unmatched by pretty much anyone else in the game. From commons to mind-blowingly rare collectibles, this is 100% the spot to shop if t-shirts are what you're after. (They've got crazy customs too.)
[cover photo courtesy RoseBowl.com]