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Dublin: Vintage shopping with Cheapo prices

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Powerscourt Townhouse Dublin
Head upstairs to the "Loft" in Dublin's Powerscourt Townhouse. Photo: Informatique

By Jessica Colley—

During the years of the Celtic Tiger boom, it was just about impossible for a Cheapo to do any shopping in Dublin. Sure, it’s fun to marvel at the gorgeous window displays at Brown Thomas department store on Grafton Street, but buying anything? Not in the cards, especially not with the exchange rate.

That is unless you know where to look for vintage stores. These stores have been offering affordable shopping since the boom, and have survived even as many of the glitzier stores have closed in recent years.

Seek out the following shops and you can afford to bring home some gifts for friends and family–and maybe a little something for yourself, too.

The Harlequin
13 Castle Market, Dublin 2
Web site (Facebook)

Besides being located smack in the middle of one of my favorite areas of Dublin, this shop has everything you could want in a vintage store: racks and racks of well-organized, interesting clothes, bags, and jewelry–without even a trace of that musty vintage smell. Some parts of the store are organized by decade, other parts by item.

If you love handbags–beware–this store has an incredible selection of gently-used bags. And belts. And even hats, too.

The Loft at Powerscourt Townhouse
59 South William Street, Dublin 2
Web site

Cheapos walking into the indoor shopping center that is the Powerscourt Townhouse might think at first that they’ll never find anything affordable. Yet if you’re visiting on a Friday, Saturday, or Sunday–climb the stairs to the very top floor where you’ll find a space called “the Loft.”

Here, independent designers and vintage enthusiasts set up a little rack of their items. Handmade jewelry, bath products, affordable little dresses and vintage belts are all on offer here. You can shop happily knowing your purchase will support small businesses.

A Store is Born
34 Clarendon Street, Dublin 2

Only open on Saturday from 11 a.m.–6 p.m., you could walk by this space any other time of the week and barely notice it. It is the size of a garage, and is packed with interesting sweaters, scarves and jackets. If the Dublin weather has you wishing you packed something heavier, stop into this store on a Saturday to stock up on warm items.

If possible, arrive early as the small space gets crowded by mid-afternoon. The earlier you arrive, the better the selection.

All three of these vintage stores are located within a 5-minute walk of each other, making a manageable day of shopping. There are other vintage shops in Dublin that specialize in gowns or silk blouses–but Cheapos will be best served by sticking to this list.

About the author

Jessica Colley is a freelance travel writer and poet. She blogs about Dublin and more at www.thegreatamericantraveldream.com.

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