NYC Consignment Shop Guide
The prime locations for premiere vintage clothing and unbeatable deals
By Sarah Emily Gilbert
With our weekly “Savvy Shopping” articles that feature designer sample sales in NYC, it’s clear that the Urban Agenda staff loves a good deal. When those affordable finds involve vintage clothing and one-of-a-kind pieces, we’re officially swooning. Lucky for us, New York City is brimming with consignment shops that capture the eclectic cosmopolitan fashions of the past and present. Here, we selected the best of NYC consignment shops to ensure you’re vintage fashion is on-point without breaking the bank.
1041 Madison Avenue at 79th Street, 2nd Floor
Providing women with high-end labels since 1954, “Michaels sets out to help every woman look like a million without spending a million.” Exclusively selling designer label shoes, jewelry, and furs, there’s no question that Michael’s delivers in their claim. All of Michael’s resale items are no more than two years old (unless they’re Chanel, Hermes, or Pucci) and must be in like-new condition. Located on the Upper East Side of Madison Avenue, Michael’s Consignment caters to the chicest clientele who are wise enough to shop smart.
Various locations including Queens, Williamsburg, Brooklyn, East Village, & Chelsea
For the quintessential vintage look (i.e. Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen) way to one of the NYC Buffalo Exchange locations, especially the Brooklyn store, which has an enormous selection of clothing. A mix of modern and vintage styles, there are always a few golden items that are well worth the long weekend lines. Started in 1974 in Tucson, Arizona, Buffalo Exchange has exploded to 45 stores and 3 franchises in 17 states. With an average price of $15 per item (with higher priced designer items mixed in), Buffalo Exchange is a go-to spot for serious deals.
84 East 7th Street
Titled after shop owner, Kate Goldwater’s last name in chemical symbols, this vintage boutique is as unique as its name. Featuring everything from recycled clothes to shoes and accessories, AuH20 is known for their unbeatable selection of vintage jewelry. While most of their items are priced around $25, there is a permanent $5 and $10 rack, so there’s always a deal in store. If you don’t feel like venturing away from your computer to see Goldwater’s selections, check out their Etsy shop.
252 Lafayette Street
223 Bedford Avenue
Not only does Amarcord offer impeccable vintage fashions ranging from the Victorian era to the 1990s, but most of their clothing is also imported from Europe. Since 2000, Amarcord’s Italian owners have been making seasonal trips to their home country to bring back the most exclusive vintage clothes from European designers. Each season’s finds are considered a collection and have a limited availability. However, you can make a special appointment to go to their showroom and archive on 22 Conselyea Street in Brooklyn to view selections from seasons past. While Amarcord might not be the most economical consignment shop, we think their exclusive Italian, vintage, designer items are well worth the money. You can also shop their incredible selections online.
13 West 17th Street, 2nd Floor
Known as the “Vintage Retailer to the Stars” there’s no second-guessing the quality finds at SHAREEN Vintage. Founded by former actor and employee of Vogue, Mademoiselle, and Elite Model Managements, Shareen Mitchell, Shareen’s clothes are top tier fashion finds. Tucked away in a New York City apartment in Chelsea, this woman-only boutique features girly dresses, ready-to-wear pieces, and bridal selections for ridiculously affordable prices.
135 North 37th Street
24 West 26th Street
If you want second-hand clothing prices with a brand-new look, make your way to Crossroads Trading Company. With shops located in Brooklyn and the Flatiron District, Crossroads sells gently used clothing from trendy designer brands like Rag and Bone, Alice + Olivia, J Brand, and Helmut Lang. Better yet, Crossroads doesn’t consign, but cash-sell-trades, or more simply put, immediately gives cash for clothes. From high-end labels to popular brand names, Crossroads allows you to achieve fashionable looks for less.