2020 was a year filled with many unpleasant things, but some good came out of it too. For one, it was the year that vintage and upcycled fashion rose in popularity.
Fuelled by Gen Z-ers on TikTok, it’s the younger generation who are recognising the harmful effects of fast fashion that millennials such as myself loved so much. Instead, slow fashion has become the in thing.
What is slow fashion, I hear you ask? As its name suggests, it’s the opposite of fast fashion — rather than focusing on micro trends that come and go in seasons, it focuses on sustainability in fashion. This means taking the time to source for secondhand and vintage clothing that can still be given new life.
While there has always been a stigma towards secondhand clothes, the younger generation has gained an appreciation for it.
Gen Z-ers are extremely adaptable creatures, even learning how to upcycle secondhand clothes and turning them into items that fit better and look completely different. Just take a look at how popular TikToker @thenavarose turned this thrifted dress into a gorgeous Bridgerton-inspired piece.
While I’m no stranger to thrift shopping in Malaysia – or bundle shopping, as we call it here – I, too, recently gained further appreciation for vintage and secondhand fashion. It also helps that most vintage finds are very affordable, even the branded ones.
The pool of online Malaysian vintage and thrift shops is small, but I’m willing to share six of my favourite online thrift shops where you can source new fashion finds without breaking the bank.
If you love the bright and bold fashion of the 70s and 80s, you’re going to love Hello Swissify. The owner sources vintage clothes from all around the world, carefully curating pieces that embody the bright and sunny style of the shop. Some pieces have also been reconstructed into more modern styles.
The Simple Piece
Consider yourself lucky if you’re able to score an item from The Simple Piece whenever the shop is updated. The owner based in Sarawak gets her vintage clothes globally, culminating in unique, one-of-a-kind pieces. Each collection released centres around a different theme, so be sure to turn on notifications on Instagram to find out when they’re updating.
For something with a modern and edgy touch, you’ll need to visit Upsygals. It’s the lovechild of two best friends who wanted to give new life to preloved garments. Together, they rework and upcycle old clothes into trendy, qipao-inspired designs that will certainly turn heads.
There’s something romantic about vintage lingerie, and you can get a piece of love from Delicate Dahlia. Based in Selangor, the shop sources vintage nightgowns, robes, camisoles, and corsets. The best part is that Delicate Dahlia constantly sources larger-sized pieces too, so no one is ever left out. Delicate Dahlia also ships to Singapore.
2ndhand Pick Store
Featuring an array of handpicked vintage clothes that can be worn every day, you’ll need to visit 2ndhand Pick Store on Instagram. I love the curated jackets and corduroy jeans here — these are one-of-a-kind pieces that you definitely won’t find elsewhere.
Never Naked Club
If you thought vintage clothes were shabby and old-fashioned, then you’ll have a second opinion once you see how Never Naked Club styles its finds. Think paisley printed cropped tops styled with high-waist baggy pants, retro varsity jackets with bralettes, knitted vests, and more.