Best Summer Deals Hiding in Thrift Shops

Find a vintage piece and make it your own!

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By Christina Pippin

Local Shopping & Fashion Blogger

I’m going to spill the beans here. There’s a gem of a vintage shop that many us have been walking by day after day (maybe even year after year!) without taking note, and it offers a plethora of pretty pieces.

A tiny space hidden away in the lower level of Antiques Etc. on Marion Street (125 N. Marion in Oak Park), it’s a small room, amidst the furnishings and home decor, dedicated exclusively to vintage apparel. Oh, and some truly fun and curious make-you-wonder items.

After moving to Oak Park, I remember stopping in my tracks and scratching my head as I walked by the antique mall.

I’m not sure why I never noticed it, but there it was. Case upon case of colorful baubles: costume and fine jewelry, handsome furniture pieces, and an entire room of fine Persian rugs.

The Gold Hat Pin is a jewelry shop ensconced in the mall, filled to the brim with lovely fine jewelry.

Downstairs is where you’ll find the barely-noticeable space where frothy skirts, flouncy dresses, and blast-from-the-past shoes can be found. To put a smile on your face: vintage tropical Hawaiian shirts, wonderfully modest lacy lingerie, and baby’s clothes that have still managed to maintain their sparkle.

You’ll also find some urbane purses and shoes. Truly chic are the antique clutches and envelope purses in eye-catching metallic hues, elegant elbow-high leather gloves, and sophisticated hats: tilts, slouches, pillboxes, fascinators, cloches, and berets.

But it’s the darling skirts, mod dresses, downy cashmere sweaters, and quality structured blazers that intrigue me. I love turning the garments inside out to take in the superior craftsmanship, often hand stitched.

If it weren’t for the tags, I might have imagined the taylor sitting at home in a rocker (I never sew in a rocker, yet I don’t know why I imagine my fellow seamstresses needle in hand, in this fashion, and wearing -of all things- a bonnet!) stitching together these now one-of-a-kind pieces.

Those who know about the room on the lower level stocked with vintage finds love it and name it as a favorite shopping haunt for hand sewn, Made in the USA apparel. I love it for the no-one-else-has-it treasures and trinkets.

For store hours or for more information call 708.386.9640.

Have you had great luck at the Antique Mall? Tell us about your fantastic find!

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