Heading to London soon and hoping to hit up some of the legendary vintage stores over here? Brick Lane down in Shoreditch is easily our favourite marketplace to visit, whether you’re after vintage gems, local designers or a melting hotpot of global food offerings.
Sunday is the most popular time to go, as Brick Lane itself is turned into an open-air marketplace with stalls huddled together on every side of the street. If you can’t make it on a Sunday or want to beat the crowds, Saturday offers just as many goodies if you know where to look, and some places are even open seven days.
Claiming to be Britain’s first and best (who knows if it’s true) bagel shop, here you can start your day with a quick bite to eat at a measly 2 pounds, no easy feat in London. Selling everything from egg and bacon to smoked salmon to salt beef, these bagels are an easy, no fuss way to start your day. If you’re feeling particularly Instagrammable that day, they also sell rainbow bagels to really elevate your photo game.
The Tea Rooms
Looking a little like the Cave of Wonders from Aladdin, The Tea Rooms is the spot on Brick Lane where you can go to find incredible antiques and homewares. From wartime memorabilia to beautiful dinner sets and quirky decor, this is the spot for lovers of objects that tell a story. Perfect for those hunting for a gift for someone particularly tricky to buy for, you’re sure to find a little of everything in this little marketplace.
Cereal Killer Cafe
This famous little spot is where you can feast your eyes and stomach on over 100 different types of cereal from all over the world. You can make each bowl even more fun with 30 different milk varieties and 20 different toppings, allowing you to customise and create your perfect breakfast bowl. Don’t stick to social norms though, Cereal Killer Cafe is open from 8am-10pm so you can down a bowl for lunch or dinner too.
Rokit Vintage Clothing
Over the past three decades, Rokit has established itself as one of the best spots for vintage and retro clothing. One of its stores sits right in the middle of Brick Lane and is well worth a visit if you’re after some unique pieces that you can be sure nobody else will be sporting. Rokit is one of our fave places to go for textured, patterned and sparkly pieces, as you’ll find loads of those organised on racks, as well as funky accessories like jewellery, scarves and sunnies.
Brick Lane Food Hall
If you’re popping past on the weekend, the Brick Lane Food Hall is a fab spot to stop for a lunchtime feast (or to avoid an unexpected London shower). Housed in a building dating back to the 1830s it boasts over 30 different food stalls from around the globe, as well as a cafe and bar. From German sausages to Japanese gyoza dumplings you’re truly spoiled for choice, and with each stand offering food at competitive pricing you can easily eat your way through half of Europe.
Hunting for local designers and artists? The Backyard Market is the best spot on Brick Lane to find those, full of upcoming designers proudly displaying their original creations. As well as clothes and accessories you’ll also find artistic pieces like sculptures and paintings, perfect for adding a little touch of East London to your home.
The Vintage Market
Our favourite part of Brick Lane, The Vintage Market is open Thursday to Sunday and is conveniently located inside, making it a great destination any time of year. In winter it’s heated and in summer it’s airconditioned, perfect for London’s unreliable and extreme weather conditions. Whether you’re hunting for a glamorous dress from the 90s or a festival outfit from the 80s you’re sure to find it at this market. Vintage designer goods from labels like Burberry and Fendi can also be found for reasonably cheap here too, as well as records and quirky accessories to add the perfect finishing touch to any look.
As well as the places above, Brick Lane is filled with plenty of other hidden markets, foodie spots and vintage stores. If this is your first time visiting we’d recommend setting aside a whole day to properly explore everything this fun area has to offer, as you’re always going to stumble across exciting new nooks and crannies.