The best places to shop second-hand homeware in London

BY William Bishop

London

The best places to shop second-hand homeware in London

Oliver Bernard Private have rounded up their favourite places to hunt down vintage and pre-loved homeware that go beyond eBay and Facebook Marketplace

BY William Bishop

19th September 2023

Pre-loved homeware is a joy to find, better for the environment, and it means you can add pieces to your home that feel that extra bit special with some added history too. This second-hand September (an Oxfam initiative), the team at Oliver Bernard Private have rounded up their favourite places to hunt down vintage and pre-loved homeware that go beyond eBay and Facebook Marketplace. Here you’ll find our guide to the best London car boots as well an inside scoop on London’s largest indoor antiques and vintage market.  

Vinterior

Often doing collaborations with trendy influencers, Vinterior is our go-to online spot for a sustainable and hassle-free way to buy second-hand. Here you can scroll through everything from ‘80s armchairs to antique cocktail cabinets. There’s a whole lot of character here and you’d be hard pressed not to find an abundance of items you want to bring into your space You can filter your search by item or even era for a seamless shopping experience, and rest assured there’s a great return policy if it doesn’t feel quite right when you get it home.  

Aelfred

Though there is some ease to shopping second hand online, nothing quite compares to searching for new homeware in real life. That way you can measure, touch, know that the colours are just right and check for damages. Opening just a year ago in Hackney Wick, Aelfred is known as the ultimate emporium for vintage mid-century Nordic furniture – if that’s your thing. There’s seriously an impressive variety here that feels expertly curated, so be prepared to splurge.  

Louisa Grace Interiors

Situated a little out of London in Chipstead, Surrey, Louisa Grace interiors specialises in rustic and original vintage furniture with a shabby chic aesthetic that makes any home feel all the more inviting. They are open 5 days a week but are currently only doing appointment only viewings for the ultimate shopping experience. If a French boudoir aesthetic is up your street, this is the spot for you.  

The Old Cinema, Chiswick   

You could easily spend an entire afternoon at The Old Cinema in Chiswick, with 10,000 sq ft of showrooms spanning over 3 floors. A west London gem, this is the capital’s only department store devoted to selling antique, vintage, retro and upcycled furniture. The best part is the store is nestled among the independent boutiques and cafes at the heart of Chiswick High Road so you can make a day of it.  

Alfies Antique Market  

Just off Lisson Grove, lies London’s largest indoor antiques and vintage market. Almost a hundred dealers occupy four floors here and we class it one of the best places to find interior furnishings, textiles and silverware – not to mention they also stock great vintage fashion and antique jewellery too. You can browse a lot of their collections online, but we always find it best to head there directly to get a real feel for the pieces. Also, under the Alfies umbrella is Grays Antiques in the heart of Mayfair; a two-floor arcade housing some of the best antique jewellery dealers in London. 

London car boots   

One of the most classic ways to shop second hand, is of course a good ‘ol car boot. We love the Battersea Boot for its lunchtime opening and its frequent stock of designer goods and high-end antiques – it’s one of the longest running London car boot sales and is just a quick walk from Battersea Park for a post-shop walk. Another favourite of ours is Pimlico’s Capital car boot sale, it’s in a great central location and has indoor and outdoor sections, which is useful if it begins to rain. But mainly it’s one of the capital’s largest car boot sales, meaning you’ve got a good chance of finding yourself a real gem.   

London charity shops  

London charity shops, you’ll often find, are the places that stock those special gems you didn’t even know you were looking for. Though many of them are fashion focused with the odd novelty mug on a shelf, there are a number that specialise in furniture that we’d recommend.  The British Heart Foundation has many furniture and electrical stores throughout London and they’re usually a great size so have plenty of pieces to browse.   

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