Hunting for treasures in clothes shelves or browsing an Italian-inspired web store digitally: Five tips for the best vintage clothing stores in Zaanstreek-Waterland

The largest and most famous international fashion brand but in the middle of the Zaanbucht region. Wormerveer’s Biba Vintage & Design sells clothing, bags, jewelry, and interior décor from Dior, Dolce & Gabbana, Roberto Cavalli, Versace, and more. Top-level fashion at a (slightly) lower price.

The store is named after famous fashion brand Biba from London, which also had its own department store in the 1970s. It was a favorite of British-born owner Karen Molloy, and the name pays homage to what she believed to be the height of fashion. “It was a great brand with a beautiful style. Everything in my shop dates back to that time.” The final Biba was honored by a client from Amsterdam. “Someone took a brand dress because she recognized the name. I bought it more and the dress is now hanging prominently in the store. It’s not for sale.”

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British-born Karen Molloy honors her favorite fashion brand with her own boutique.© Wim Egas photos

Her store features a myriad of apparel and accessories that trace their origins back decades, as well as more modern design pieces. “I do both: vintage and design. Everything I personally like.” Molloy won’t reveal where she gets all her stuff. “I won’t reveal it. But I drive cross-country to different suppliers and decide for each item whether or not it fits my store.”

Molloy clothes certainly aren’t always cheap. On the website, for example, the Gucci jacket is sold for 525 euros. She herself says that the prices compared to the new value are cheap. “You can buy some new designer pieces for thousands of euros. Not with me. No need to worry about counterfeiting. I have enough tricks to test if something is fake.”

Its business has been open for just over a year now. A few months ago, the company also had a web store that serves all over the world. It does not have any international clients, other than the tourists who pass by. At the moment it is mainly people from the area and from Amsterdam. Over the past year, it has slowly been able to build a client base. This is going well, I regularly see people walking through Wormerveer with a piece of clothing they bought from me. I recognize them easily because they are all unique pieces.”

Biba Vintage & Design is located in Zaanweg 110, Wormerveer.

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Flavia Greco on her digital store website.© Photo Media House

Italian touch digital clothes rack

Compared to other stores, Keep on Vintage does not have a physical store. Owner’s merchandise, Flavia Greco from Purmerend, has an even clearer difference. “All the clothes come from Italy,” says the Italian expat.

She had only been living in the Netherlands for a year with her boyfriend and her dog, and she started the online store around the same time. “It’s tough,” Greco says. “Because most competitors have a store they can go to.”

For Jericho, wine is part of her lifestyle. “When I lived in Italy, I worked as a store manager in a vintage clothing store. It was my dream to have my own store. Fortunately, I was able to start my own (online) store in the Netherlands. I am a vintage lover for 38 years and 25 years. You could say I’m an expert.” Italians don’t speak Dutch, so the site is in English. That doesn’t make the items any less pretty or ugly: a Missoni scarf, an Armani denim dress, or a bright green nameless hat. They are all from Italy. There is a special section for old clothes.

Orders come not only from the Netherlands, but also from Belgium and Germany. Greco also recycles. New clothes are made from old, damaged clothes and accessories.

Greco’s website can be visited at:

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Babette Schellekens is her shop in Monnickendam.© Photo: Ella Tilgenkamp

Great variety of brands and prices

You won’t find brands like H&M or Didi in the Vintage Brands clothing store in Monnickendam. Chanel and Isabel Marant, but not everything is really old at Vintage Brands.

Fans of vintage and vintage clothing come from far and wide to Vintage Brands in Monnickendam. “You can interpret booze in different ways,” says owner Babette Schlekens. For her, vintage is a name for clothing that is 25 years old or older. And they’re also in store, alongside newer collections from brands like ZARA. The owner says the jacket with shoulder pads is now also ‘in’ again. You see the old trends are coming back. “Last year I had purple and mint green pieces of clothing, which were awful at the time. Now these colors are hip.”

Items from Vintage Brands vary in price, from 15 to 900 euros. Little gal. “Yes, a Chanel coat cost 900 euros, but it was originally much more expensive. Good jeans cost me 80 euros, 200 euros in the store.” Schlekens says the difference in clothing is what makes her store unique. “For some it is a treasure hunt, everything is one piece. Over the years I see more and more seniors in the store. Shoppers are becoming more and more environmentally conscious.”

Vintage Brands can be found at Noordeinde 22, Monnickendam.

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Second hand clothes at Het in the Zaandam.© Photo Media House

More retro than vintage

The second-hand clothing store “Het” in Zaanse Westzijde has a large fan base, and Zaancanters in the area regularly check if there are any acquisitions. In addition to hats, dresses and jeans, plastic bags are also handed out to give to customers.

Lidwien Raaphorst is one of the volunteers who runs the Het Store. It is her passion and her life, as well as her other job as a humanitarian chaplain. She managed to pick up several antique gems off the shelves: a red jacket with a black collar and gold buttons by Escada Couture, Pradaslippers, a “one hundred percent” floral skirt from the 1970s.

Raaphorst emphasizes the difference between vintage and retro. “Retro is imitation and therefore newer than antique.” They are good at detecting if a piece of clothing is old. Often give her a cloth or an old satin sticker. Although the Zaandam is not a big fan of liquor, according to Rabhurst. “I don’t know exactly why. Chanel’s sneakers are gone in no time.”

The volunteer often drinks coffee with regular customers. In the large store there is a wooden table that invites you to do so. Men can also go to Het: there is a “men’s corner” with, among other things, leather jackets and T-shirts.

It is located at Westzijde 72, Zaandam.

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Owner Hetty Hartmann at her nationally listed store.© photo ces hartmann

No Primark or other cheap chains

For nearly a quarter of a century, ‘t Winkeltje has been nesting in a massive building in Landsmeer, where owner Hetty Hartman runs a second-hand clothing store. Primarily based on quality, with a bit of a classic touch.

Hartmann describes herself as a “critical idiot” when evaluating the clothes on display. “But in a good way.” The store accepts women’s, men’s and children’s clothing, with a maximum of thirty items per customer at a time. “Primark and other cheap chains can’t get in here; the Irish fashion store is one of the dirtiest in terms of production. It has a huge impact on people and the environment. I mainly look at the quality and whether it’s salable. Now these are fabrics with rich, stretchy colors.” . .” Intermittently, Hartmann also has some vintage clothes in her collection: “The only requirement is that they be truly unique and beautiful.” It’s mostly for women. “Men are more stamina, they really wear things.”

Winkeltje can be found at Dorpsstraat 53, Landsmeer.

Read also: Het Twiske seen as an adventurous backyard in Zaanstreek-Waterland: 5 tips for a carefree day in nature

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