Vintage Therapy in Paris

BBC + Rosewood Hotels & Resorts · April 1, 2017

Delving into fashion’s back-catalogue chimes perfectly with Parisians’ love of timeless fashion and effortless chic.

Fashion is one way into Paris’s heart. The hunt for good vintage is a serious pastime for Parisians.

The locals keep it relaxed and sexy without too many embellishments — perfecting classic looks that get them noticed, not mocked, in the street. There’s a cultural fear of ridicule here that informs what they wear and how they wear it. Nobody wants to look “overdone” or like they tried too hard.

Fortunately, there are hundreds of vintage boutiques dotted all over, lovingly curated and offering myriad unique luxury pieces to achieve the ultimate Parisian silhouette.

Undoubtedly, the finest is Didier Ludot whose namesake shop at the Palais Royal gardens is the institution of vintage haute couture. Ludot, a legend in the world of vintage, is known for his encyclopedic knowledge of fashion and presents museum-quality dresses from the 1920s to the 2000s, such as a Dior lavender Louveciennes dress from the winter 1957 collection, a Schiaparelli silk twill dress from the summer 1938 Circus collection, a 1960 Chanel black sequin mini dress and 1960s Valentino gowns — Ludot’s favorite. Prices can reach the thousands and gowns from the shop have been worn on the red carpet by celebrities including Julia Roberts, Demi Moore and Reese Witherspoon.

Another of the finest vintage stores is Thanx God I’m a VIP, located in a less salubrious quarter of the 10th district. This large store is a favourite among local stylists and fashionistas in the know. The shop takes the vintage boutique concept to the next level by offering an impressive up-market collection of most major labels, including menswear, all organised along colour lines.

Those looking for a rare investment piece go to Odetta, tucked away in a quiet street of the exquisite historic district of Le Marais. This little gem has a wonderfully curated collection of day and evening wear, specialising in ’90s iconic designer brands such as Junya Watanabe, Yohji Yamamoto, Issey Miyake and Comme des Garçons.

Only a short distance away is La Mode Vintage, which stocks the very best of French couture: Chanel, Yves Saint Laurent, Hermès and Jean Paul Gaultier. (You can even find a Courrèges dress originally owned by Anglo-French style icon Jane Birkin.) La Mode is the most popular vintage boutique for Paris “It Girls” – cool model-types such as Jeanne Damas and Lou Doillon.

Photos by Odetta@m___aker and @marquisdelannes.


Didier Ludot: 20-24 Galerie de Montpensier, Jardin du Palais Royal, Paris, +33 42 96 06 56
Thanx God I’m a VIP: 12 Rue de Lancry, Paris, +33 1 42 03 02 09
Odetta Vintage: 76 Rue des Tournelles, Paris, +33 48 87 08 61
La Mode Vintage: 12 Rue Rochebrune, Paris, +33 06 63 79 72 04

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Written By: BBC + Rosewood Hotels & Resorts


Locations: Paris

See more: Style

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