East 8th Vintage – The Hidden Gem Of Charlotte
A vintage enthusiast walks into a thrift store and the rest is history…
Charlotte’s an artsy city. It has its murals and its musicians, along with the other glitz and glam seen on the surface, but this city has layers. While we’re creating new layers in the city, I believe the old ones have merit. Sometimes it takes a while to get below the surface.
As a woman who values timelessness, the vintage realm feels like home.
You see, living in times of instant gratification, fast fashion, and worldwide trends tends to limit the discovery of new and diverse things like clothing, furniture, and other random thingamabobs we all seem to love. In some odd juxtaposition the world of so much familiarity and repetition has become unrecognizable and the furthest thing from feeling like home.
Typically thrift shops are a saving grace, an escape from the cookie-cutter world. And yet, they too have become idolized and exposed. We’ve been to the Goodwills, and the value villages around the city, barely hanging on to the hope that you’ll stumble across a gem. Just when I thought that all hope was gone, a new layer of art in the city was revealed.
To all the thrifters, you know when you find a good spot you keep it a secret. While I want to do so, I simply can’t be selfish. So, you’re welcome.
The feeling of home returned on a wet and rainy Sunday morning when I walked into the doors of East 8th Vintage. I received a tip about this place from a special friend and local artist (thanks Caryn), At that moment, I had the opportunity to explore this new layer.
The thrift store was cozy and nestled in the Plaza Midwood neighborhood.
Not only were there unique treasures on every corner, but the aesthetic of the shop was compelling, my camera and I had a field day. Nostalgia from timeframes I hadn’t even been to radiated though-out the place.
Contrary to other shops, the establishment was clean and the air was fresh. Ambient music danced softly through the rolling racks making for soothing exploration. It’s astonishing, most thrifters know a trip to the shop can be a hit or miss. Not here. This place was a collection of gems, all the way down to the interior design. The items used to create the aesthetic are open to the public for purchase!
Other sweet sounds outside of the jazz that played were sounds of laughter along with meaningful hellos and goodbyes from the owner, Amanda.
Amanda’s essence was parallel to that of her store. She was timeless, pleasant, and welcoming. Her chic blond bob flowed as she shared stories about her grandmother’s consignment shop. Her narratives are the building blocks of how East 8th Vintage came to be. Starting out with just a simple pop-up during the summers to a full store just three years later. She described the journey as serendipitous.
Her kindness along with her love for things of age kept her very first customers coming back while attracting new ones, including myself.
While I tend to keep gems like East 8th Vintage under wraps the beauty of Amanda’s shop needs to be shared. The new layer of art and creativity in Charlotte should be experienced by locals and visitors, by rookie thrifters and seasoned ones alike.
East 8th vintage brings back the essence of timelessness. It is vintage through and through. It is a warm welcome home.
Author + Photographer: Dee Michel