The Vintage Showroom is both a collection and a shop in London. This book is written by Josh Sims (who we already know though “Icons of Men’s Style”) and the proprietors of The Vintage Showroom, Douglas Gunn and Roy Luckett, and what a book it is! As with “Icons of men’s style” it perfectly illustrates that almost everything being done today has been done before, and probably several times over. Through excellent photography and to-the-point text, we are guided through examples of the vintage garments in the following categories: Sports & Leisure, Military and Workwear, with over 40 items in each category. Weighing in (and I use the word literally, this is a slab of a book) at just over 300 pages, it’s a substantial work, in all respects.
I’ve visited the shop a couple of times now. It’s right next to Seven Dials in London and easy to find. My first visit was less than impressive, as the shop seemed to be full of flannel shirts. My second visit, in July this year, was more interesting. There was plenty of variation in the selection, and given more time I may have bought something. The musty basement smell and the rather sullen looking staff were a little off-putting though.
While “Icons of men’s style” paints a broader picture, showing more examples of each category, “Vintage menswear” focuses entirely on single garments. Each is given a proper description and enough photos to illustrate the main points. Quite a few of their selections had me going “ah-hah!” as I recognised elements of much more more recent garments I either own or have seen. No wonder pillaging in vintage clothing is such an inspiration for today’s designers.
Very much recommended, essential for all aficionados of both modern and vintage menswear.
As a bonus, here is a video about The Vintage Showroom, to give a bit more flavour:
Note: If you buy this book using one of these links, I receive a small consideration from the vendor in question. This is really appreciated, as it will offset a little of the costs of keeping this blog running and will enable me to retire and become a full-time style icon that much sooner.