Have you ever dreamt of seeing inside a well-dressed celebrity’s walk-in robe? That’s what it feels like to walk into Vault, a veritable treasure trove of Australian and international vintage in Melbourne’s iconic Block Arcade.
The small yet spacious vintage store has all the details of your dream dressing room: pink and navy blue walls, pale brown floorboards, a regal white staircase and, most importantly, racks of rare vintage and designer items dating from the late-1800s to the present. Vintage fashion aficionados can pick up both designer and home-made gowns, blouses, pants, skirts, handbags, shoes and more.
What demarcates Vault from other Melbourne vintage stores is that it doesn’t just sell clothes, it shares their stories. The staff at Vault, which is run by not-for-profit National Trust of Australia, research the garments’ backstories (most of the pieces are donated). That means a 1980s Jean Muir leather two-piece or a vintage Zandra Rhodes dress might also come with a side of history. A highlight was when the team traced an Alexander McQueen piece back to its original 2005 runway appearance (the garment sold in hours).
Other designer appearances at Vault might include Armani, Valentino, Max Mara and Missoni. But it’s not all international vintage here. At any one time, about 60 per cent of the stock is Australian-made. So you might find rare pieces from Australian labels like Anthea Crawford, Carla Zampatti, Oroton and more, as well as local homemade items from the last century.
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