While everyone else is competing for vintage finds in the shops and markets of the North Laine, here’s an exclusive hidden boutique on the other side of town to discover it’s likely you’ll have all to yourself, too, called Hope and Harlequin. Let’s go…
From your stroll along the seafront or running errands around central Brighton, head to Ship Street and take a detour up Ship Street Gardens, one of Brighton’s oldest streets, with old cobbles underfoot and bowing flint walls.
Head past the vinyl shop of London record label, Bella Union, on your right…
… and a few seconds later we reach our destination, Hope and Harlequin, Brighton’s exclusive hidden vintage boutique. Quick word: If you’re looking for that cheap and cheerful fancy dress-style vintage stuff, turn around now. If you’ve always been curious about elegant vintage clothes, but have never been sure where to start, you’re at the right place.
Walking through the front door, you’ll feel a million miles away from the madness of central Brighton.You also might need a moment to compose yourself as you take in your new surroundings.
Hope and Harlequin is a treasure trove of beautiful vintage clothes, specialising in elegant dresses and gowns, as well as bridal wear dating from the 1920s.
They’ve everything from 60s and 70s Ossie Clark, Biba and Bus Stop, 70s kaftans and jackets from India, big sunglasses, platform shoes, 40s tea dresses, 20s lawn dresses… So much to take in!
So well-regarded is their collection that a few dresses have even made it onto screen, most recently having been worn by cast members of Downton Abbey for the show’s Christmas special.
Psst. if you’ve worked up an appetite, you’ll find a good Indian restaurant called the Curry Leaf Café on nearby Ship Street serving tasty southern Indian street food, a charming French restaurant called Petit Pois, and Brighton’s only underground cocktail bar.