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Boutique Shopping in Shoreditch

Published 16 February 2010

I like Shoreditch because it is central, has plenty of bars, and plenty of clubs. But one of my favourite things about Shoreditch is the shopping. The sheer variety of places I can browse in and things I can buy never fails to amaze me. The shops in Shoreditch really do cover the spectrum.

Just the other day I was wondering around and I discovered Wholesome. Disappointingly, for me, it is strictly menswear. Whatever your gender though you can still appreciate this hip-hop influenced shop full of baggy Tees and Supra trainers, skateboards (just for decoration I think) and the odd Graffiti book.

If you have a thing for designer threads, handbags and shoes then Start is the place for you. Forget trekking up to the West-End to check out that Mulberry bag you’ve seen all over the place; you can now head over to Start for that. Handbags, tights, jewellery, sunglasses and of course clothes are laid out over two floors. The staff are also welcoming and friendly which makes going in all the more fun. Menswear is in a separate store which is conveniently located jus across the road.

When I’m feeling a bit rock punky and looking for something a bit different and edgy I like to go to Religion. Religion definitely reflects the Shoreditch sense of style. Its dark, experimental and a little off beat. Located on Shoreditch High Street, Religion stocks its own brand as well as House of the Gods. It has just the one floor but that is large enough to stock both womenswear and menswear. There are no mirrors in the changing rooms so whether you like it or not you have to show off what you are trying on to the entire shop if you want to get a glance of yourself in a mirror. But that is not necessarily a bad thing; some of my better wardrobe decisions have been based on comments I have had from complete strangers. Another brilliant thing about Religion is the people who work there. They take customer service to whole new level and if you don’t want help they will leave you to it.

Okay, so you could argue that Sniff is really in Spitalfields, which is not Shoreditch at all, but I beg to differ. Sniff is on Commercial Street and a strong case can be made for half of that street belonging to Shoreditch. Whenever I’m thinking of getting some new shoes I like to check Sniff out first. Sniff is a great shoe shop where you can find everything. Well almost everything, Nike trainers, Ked’s, heels, boots and Hunter wellies – there is something in there for everyone.

If you’re a fan of vintage clothing and happen to be walking along Curtain Road there is no doubt that you will find yourself drawn to Paper dress Vintage. At Paper dress you can find a whole host of goodies from clothes to wallets to bags to tights. In this bright retro shop you will find a lot of pieces from the 70’s and 80’s but they also stock pieces from earlier than that. This shop is not only a vintage must-see because of the stock it carries there is also an in-house sewing team so alterations can be done onsite. What more could you ask for?

Shoreditch has definitely become a boutique haven. And you can also find your high street regulars there: All Saints, Office and American Apparel come to mind. Boutique shopping tends to be a lot less stressful and a lot more fun. Yes you could go to the West-End but let’s face it, it is overcrowded & busy and you are lucky if you can find anyone who has the time to help you. But shopping in Shoreditch is a much more relaxed and enjoyable affair.  Now… it would be perfect if they would just build a small and chic H&M!

42-44 Rivington Street, London, EC2A 3BN
0207 729 3334
59 Rivington Street, London, EC2A 3QQ
0207 739 3636

115 Commercial Street, London, E1 6BG
0207 375 1580

– 128 Shoreditch High Street, London, E1 6JE
0207 613 0606
– 154 Brick Lane, London, E1 6RU
0207 092 9802

47 Rivington Street, London, EC2A 3QB
0207 729 2899

Paper dress Vintage
114-116 Curtain Road, London, EC2A 3AH

Article written by Ayo Tijani.

  • Andy Goddard

    Great post Ayo! Just like you I love browsing and shopping at Shoreditch. Restaurants and eateries are not bad either.