Vintage shopping is usually more miss than hit, but on the odd occasion, hidden amongst the relics, in a dimmed corner of a leather-scented wood-panelled store overrun with shadows, slogan wall hangings, rolls of film and films of dust, your gaze will stumble across the smallest spec of colour shying away behind the brown and green bombers. You’ll notice a slight change of texture moving, fighting, against a sea of waxy leather.
You’ll stumble upon something with history. Worn for god knows how many years before you found it. History notched with little tears, fabric pulls, buttons that are holding on to the last strands of life. The colour, faded but still, strangely, wonderfully, colourful. It would’ve been a showstopper in its hay, you think, as you run your hand over its seams. The Seventies? Or perhaps a little earlier. Or perhaps it isn’t vintage at all, but a replica that someone made and discarded not too long ago. Whatever it is. You don’t let yourself get caught up in its origins because the beauty of it all, really, is that you’ll never, really, know. You want it, not because you want to include it in your world. But because you want to be a little part of its story. You want to be remembered. You’ve always liked being remembered. The melancholy of vintage boutiques, steeped in history, knowing that they’ve been here long before you ever were, and will stand still as time passes, remaining exactly the same long after you will be.
What a privilege it is to leave your own little mark, your own little tear, your own little notch in a piece that caught your eye amongst the grey, knowing that its charm will be just as charming, when someone else stumbles into a little vintage shop, blissfully unaware of the journey they’re about to embark upon.
Photography by Mohan Singh.