My friend Helen commented on my jacket I wore in one of my outfit posts the other week (modern day vintage post), asking where it was from. When I said an online vintage store, she responded, 'Oh not Brick Lane'.
'Brick Lane? The Curry Mile?' I'm not sure they give away clothing with your Biryani.
Well turns out I was being very innocent in all things East London. I needed to roughen up a bit and play easterners for the day, because Vintage is THE name of the game.
Upon arriving at Brick Lane your immediately drawn into little nooks and crannies, down flights of stairs in to basements and warehouses filled with vintage treasures. Sometimes it feels like your drawn into a whole era past, as fur coats and circle skirts line the bare brick walls of an under ground cavern.
Retro stickers of rock bands, posters of pin ups and 90's Nike T-shirts adorn the buildings and people of Brick Lane. Quirky and alternative doesn't begin to cover it. Leave your posh, pretentious attitudes at the door.
With my vintage jacket in mind, me, Helen and Maria headed straight for a clothes warehouse. I've always been wary of 'Vintage' as I don't consider something from 10 years ago vintage. A real dress worn by a woman in the 50's yes, an ASOS dress made to look vintage, no.
However here, vintage means vintage. I spied Dior sunnies from the 40's, 70's Nike T-shirts right through to unknown brands who designed the beautiful silhouettes of 50's pencil skirts and peplum jackets. Of course there some not so real vintage things, I'm not naive, but I do think this is the best place to find the real deal gems.
After we moved onto more of your typical market, where traders sell everything from crafts, to home made soaps to quirky jewellery made out of computer pieces (As a computer nerd by career I feel I would gain respect at work for this. Promotion is jewellery form perhaps?)
For those of you are more musically inclined, oh boy you would have a field day. We stepped into one warehouse that was stuffed to the brim with vinyl. I couldn't see the end of the room it was so big. What I loved most is all of the traders are incredibly knowledgeable and if you ask them a music question, they have that super human database trick where they just real off the answer and more. One day I hope I'm as passionate as that about something (I'm not sure shoes and food count).
However talking of food...
However talking of food...
I tweeted about going to Brick Lane, and I received a couple of tweets back from people telling me I would love the food (Oh you guys know me so well!) and wasn't you correct.
There is a whole warehouse filled with street food vendors, cooking every nationality dish you could think of. The air smelled intoxicating.
I also got my first taste of Ethiopian food. The pancake looking dish is an Injera which is is a yeast risen which has a very light spongy texture. Helen educated me that actually it is multi purpose in Ethiopia as it serves as an utensil too.
Of course we couldn't forget the cakes, epically when we found other nationality cakes too. I considered it cultural research.
It was rather funny when the cake trader wanted my blog address because she was so intrigued as to why I was taking pictures of custard tarts... oh life of a blogger eh?