I love this place for the shop name alone: Granny’s Day Out. I found it quite by accident as I was wondering around the weird and wonderful place that is Peninsula shopping centre looking for a lady called Sally who, I had heard, does amazing lymphatic drainage facials.
This shop, Granny’s, must be the touchstone of all things vintage, retro, second hand* and dress-up as well as…sadly…polyester, here in Singapore.
A treasure trove of everything I will never ever wear, (I like retro but up to a point, I don’t actually want to look mad) it is still a wonderful shop that is bravely doing its own thing – it has been here for an incredible eight years – in a country where vintage is not embraced in the same way that it is in, say, the States or the UK.
Granny’s Day Out does carry some designer pieces and when I was browsing through the rails last week, I saw a fabulous and very wearable Dolce & Gabbana long black skirt for $250 that I was tempted by before I remembered that I am on a wardrobe austerity drive until I do a full de-junk: I have so much in it that I never wear. Also I am mean and horrible and like to pay peanuts for second hand clothes, regardless of the label.
Their collection of retro sunglasses were very hip but we are talking $150 a pair, so by no means a bargain. But the mark up is actually not all that unreasonable when you consider the person who owns this store has gone overseas and sourced everything before flying it back here.
Essentially, Granny’s is a charity shop that someone with a good eye has picked through, cleaned and made cool. My problem, I think, is that I want to be the person doing the picking.
So in my bid to find a second hand shop I can make my own hunting ground, I went to check out the ‘New to U’ charity shop which I had read about ages go and never got around to visiting.
Just like charity shops back home, things are badly displayed in buckets, on wonky rails and in corridors. Depending what day it is, different things are reduced: on the last two working days of the month, everything is half price and on certain days you can pick things up for as little as ONE DOLLAR. There is ‘T-Shirt Monday’, ‘Skirt/Trouser Wednesday’ etc.
I did spot some designer pieces on the rails but all unfortunately unwearable/from the 80’s/fake. The silk dress below gives you an indication of the price of most things here….yes, the price tag and labels really do say $8, along with the words ‘Made in Paris’ and ‘silk’.
There was one beautiful – albeit crushed – dress (no label and a terrible picture of it below) which I was sure was my size:
Priced at just $10, of course I tried the zip several times before admitting defeat but not before making the nice lady on the till try too; for that price I wanted to be absolutely sure it didn’t fit.
New To U is not worth a trip with a view to getting lucky with a vintage steal but definitely worth going to if you are passing. It’s only open in the mornings, (10.30am-2.30pm weekdays) so don’t get caught out by turning up in the afternoon like I did initially.
*I can’t stand the term ‘pre-loved’. The person who owned whatever it is that has now ended up in a vintage/charity shop most probably hated it…which is why it’s there. Call it what it is: second hand!
Image featuring rails of clothes at Granny’s Day Out is courtesy of the Tanjong Pagar Guide