Sarah Wilson will be celebrating her fourth year of being an independent vintage seller later this year. The 32-year-old owns It’s Vintage Darling, a gem of a shop filled with nostalgia which sits in the heart of South Shields.
After having her little boy in 2009, Sarah decided to be her own boss, and after taking part in vintage fairs and building up a collection of pieces she decided to bring It’s Vintage Darling to life.
Sarah said: “I just thought why not turn the vintage fairs which I enjoy doing into a business? So I did!”
The mum of one worked with The Prince’s Trust to create a business plan, and started to turn her dream into reality. The location that Sarah had her eye on had been closed for three years prior due to the amount of work that needed to be done to it.
She said: “I knew I didn’t want to be anywhere else so I took the risk. It took four months because I knew exactly what I wanted it to look like. My dad helped me to do the flooring and we managed to keep the cost down by doing it ourselves with the help of family and friends.”
We picked out five outfits from Sarah’s collection, with some pieces dating back to the 1930s! We are loving the seventies skirt and blouse combination!
Walking into It’s Vintage Darling is a delight for those who like something a little different. The walls are covered with retro Polaroid prints and rails are stacked with true vintage garments and contemporary vintage inspired dresses available in a range of sizes.
Sarah talks about her key to success: “I think the key is being open minded in business to change with what people are wanting. I have gone from selling just vintage in the first year to selling the vintage inspired range which people were asking for.”
Cabinets are lined with broaches and vintage jewellery, china teacups and beautifully detailed vanity sets. It’s the type of place you could spend hours in; everything has its own history which is just fascinating, and one of the reasons why Sarah’s customers keep coming back for more.
It comes to no surprise that It’s Vintage Darling has been such a success in the North East, as Sarah only sells the best. She said: “I only deal with grade A vintage, so everything has got to be immaculate. I love things that are still in the box! I would never buy anything that I hadn’t seen before either.
“My customers are so quirky and random and that makes every day totally different. They will always tell me stories and reminisce. I’m so fortunate that people have always been interested since the shop opened.”
A trip to It’s Vintage Darling is highly recommended to those who love to have a retro look.
Have you got a favourite vintage item? Tweet us @Fashion_North!