Exploring Thrift Stores: Harajuku & Shimokitazawa




Sunglasses by OKURI Shades

I've been wanting to make a list of Tokyo's shopping spots that I visited, and this is the time! If you're looking for weird, vintage secondhand clothes, Tokyo is THE place. You don't want to waste your time to visit the retail fashion stores you see everyday. Instead, explore every streets of Tokyo and get surprised with what you may find. Even when you don't find what you're looking for, wandering around the blocks and enjoying the creatively decorated little stores is another amusement. Since I've heard Japan is a wonderful place for fashion cheapskates, I'm prepared with a note filled with the store names & addresses I want to visit. Tokyo has plenty of thrift stores & vintage shops with various price range and clothes, so a resume of the stores I visited might come in handy if you don't have much time to visit them all (and I personally need it too when I go back & want to visit them again!)

Price: ¥¥ - ¥¥¥
My first visit was Chicago thrift store (where I found my teal coat I wore earlier), placed near the Harajuku station Omotesando exit. The price was relatively cheap, you can find used Yukata & Kimono in very nice condition and cheap price ($10-$20) so if you're planning to walk around Tokyo in Yukata, buying one here might be cheaper than renting. You can also find a rack of fine coats & vintage sweater from $9 to $15. They also have another branch at Omotesando & Harajuku. 
My best find: $14 coat and 3 dresses with crazy designer-inspired patterns for only $9 each (gonna post it on the blog soon!).


 
- WEGO Vintage / Retail Store
Price: ¥¥ - ¥¥¥
is a hybrid of retail store and vintage store, but still in reasonable price. Selling cheap new clothes and  vintage jackets and 80s sweaters, this is a softcore thrift-hunting. They also have many branches around Tokyo and the stuff is different in each stores, so you'd better check every one of them! Don't forget to check the men section too because sometimes you can find secondhand docmarts,  streetwear label snapbacks and even designer bags with cheap price, all original. 
My best find: La Riche hair dye, $50 doc mart boots, $15 sequin sweater.


- Kinji
Price: ¥¥ - ¥¥¥
I always enjoy my visit to nicely decorated & themed little vintage stores, but thrift store with so many stuff in it that makes it look a bit chaotic and unorganized, is my other guilty pleasure. It's one of the cosplay heaven where you can find racks of cute and frilly dresses, to black goth outfits, and the price is surprisingly not expensive at all. 

- Nude Trump
Price: ¥¥¥ - ¥¥¥¥
The place is quite hidden in an alley, but you can find it by looking at their 'window' display filled with a couple of vintage clothes that directs you to an elevator. As the elevator door opened, I squealed "OMG, I WANT A CLOSET JUST LIKE THIS." and I couldn't resist to try every vintage hats hung to the vintage chandelier. The price is not so cheap (about $100 for a dangerously cute vintage hat and I'm still thinking about it until today.) but you may find one or two cute shoes that fits your size.


- Don Don Down on Wednesday & All 900 Yen
Price: ¥¥
They are located in Shimokitazawa, next to each other. It's called Don Don Down on Wednesday because they lower the price every Wednesday. And the store All 900 Yen is because all stuff in their store are literally 900 yen (roughly $9), which is really affordable for cute coats and sweaters in winter.





- A Little Trip to Heaven
Price: ¥¥¥ - ¥¥¥¥
A vintage boutique, selling antique clothes, shoes and accessories (inspired by the 20s, I guessed). It's a little pricey for my pocket, but the lovely display on the store will make you feel like you're visiting your grandma's closet (if your grandma is Marie Antoinette).


Other places worth visiting: Shimokitazawa Garage Department (you'll find this the first time you arrive at Shimokitazawa), stores along Harajuku & Cat street. I unfortunately didn't have time to visit Koenji, but I heard there are still many vintage stores there, so you should visit them too!



A cool store selling vintage items (I'm guessing inspired by the 80s?) in Harajuku.







Some useful tips before you fly to a new city where you barely know anyone:
- Google and research every places you want to visit, things to do, what to eat, including food price, tickets, transportation and shopping places. That way you can find out where you want to stay, and how much money you'll need during the trip.
- Ask your friends who'd been there for recommendations.
- Install a GPS, Google Maps will do. Make sure you have full internet connection for a whole day. (We rented an apartment and the owner was kind enough to lent us a portable modem during our stay.)
- Take your first day to wander around where you stay, learning the public transportation route, and most important thing, way back to your hotel. This will really make the next days of your trip more effective because getting lost is a total waste of time.


Thanks to a lovely Japanese couple who took a picture of us.

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22 comments

  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  2. i love the Don Don Down's hats :D
    btw, you guys really made a cute couple ♥

    http:?/inathaita.blogspot.com

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  3. OMG.. that so many cool stuff in there.. :*

    http://bayuradith.blogspot.com/

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  4. those stuffs are so cool! x3
    especially that unicorn looks cute :D

    cheer, michelle
    livedreammagic.blogspot.com

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  5. Thank you for the recommendations! planning to go there for next trip! :)

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  6. Vintageeeeeee!!<3

    xx
    graciellashiaryn.blogspot.com

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  7. Kak Son! What a very very interesting post here <3 Love it

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  8. Thanks for the information! :D
    I love this post so much :D

    http://japobsganbare.blogspot.com/

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  9. tokyoooo >,<
    you are a kind of fashionista queen, right ?
    i'm hwaiting your next post

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  10. keren banget son & thanks buat tipsnya. :D

    www.stepfromsteph.blogspot.com

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  11. Gileeee, barangnya keren semua!! apalagi td liat pattern shirt sama jaket. NICE posting!

    Andisaputrra.blogspot.com

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  12. Thank you soooooo much Kak Sonia for sharing with the whole wide world about thrift shops in Japan! It definitely most helpful and you even post your review about it too... :)

    Definitely gonna bookmark this post! :)

    Much love,
    Dinda Nayaredhanty
    THE HIDDEN MOON.

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  13. NGGAK SANGGUP BANGETTTTTTTT LIATNYAAA!!!!

    aku k jepang nanti tapi ga ada waktu buat belanja sama sekali :( seneng tapi sedih, sedih tp seneng, seneneg seneng sedih apa sedih sedih seneng ya...

    bahaha emosi ga baca komen aku?

    semoga kapan2 bisa ke jepang bersama yuk, seru kali gosip sambil sake-an ! lol

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  14. my favorite post (about Japan) so far..

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  15. Well, I have a plan to visit Japan this year and thank you very much for the recommendation thrift stores! Btw I really love your blog, keep on updating! :)

    Visit my blog
    http://laksitarose.blogspot.com/

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  16. Nice blog, I want to know if those are all secondhand item because they are looks good and brand new. I want to visit that place so that I can find the right one for me. As of now, I already found the best second hand shoe products online and you can also found it on this website http://www.boex.tv/.

    ReplyDelete