For everything from classic furniture designs to one-off clothing finds, use our roundup of the best vintage fairs in Manchester.
Manchester has the usual collection of high street shops on Market Street and in the Arndale, as well as higher-end designers around King Street – but the offer isn’t terribly exciting. It’s why the independent shops in the Northern Quarter are a draw, and why the pre-loved fashion, records and ephemera shops in the area are so popular. We’ve got a whole guide to the best vintage shops in the city, and thought it was about time to check out the flourishing vintage fairs popping up here, too. So, here’s a round up to whet your appetite for the clothes and bric-a-brac of yesteryear.
Here are our picks
Victoria Baths, Hathersage Road, Chorlton-on-Medlock, Manchester, Greater Manchester, M13 0FE - Visit now
The historic Victoria Baths just off Oxford Road hosts a regular event that it describes as a “mecca” for vintage homewares and furniture. 1970s G Plan furniture, Nathan and Ercol solid teak dining suites and other items now being called “modern antiques” can all be picked up for a snip at the Vintage Home Show, as well as 1950s display units and armchairs. Also on offer are 1950s textiles, ceramics and glassware, lighting and art, and you can find ornaments and kitsch dating back to the ‘30s. If you want your home to look retro-unique, this is the fair to root around in. This Manchester event is held three or four times a year, upstairs on the balcony and in the Turkish Baths. It was the first location for the show when it launched in 2012. You’ll find a pleasing mixture of furniture exhibitors and home items from over fifty vendors.
Vintage Village in Stockport, Stockport Covered Market Hall, Market Place, Stockport, SK1 1EU - Visit now
This award-winning fair inside Stockport’s Victorian market hall has been running for a long time but remains as popular as ever. On the second Sunday of every month, some 70 traders set up stall and sell everything from vintage fashions and furs to retro homewares, small antiques, collectibles, old prints and Victorian postcards. Be warned – it gets busy, so go early and be prepared to use your elbows to navigate the narrow alleys. If you spot something you like, be sure to snap it up quick, as it may well be sold if you go back later for it.
Manchester Cathedral, Victoria Street, Manchester, M3 1SX - Visit now
Even Manchester’s Cathedral is getting the vintage bug, with its own – somewhat sporadic – pop-up fair. There’s an eclectic mix on sale here: you can find everything from men and women’s clothes and accessories through to vinyl, books, collectibles, curios and furniture. Spread over two days, the cathedral offers an all-round experience, with a big-band playing ‘50s swing music, a pop-up tearoom, fashion show and even a beauty parlour to get styled in that authentic 1940s look. And don’t forget to sip a martini in the gin parlour for a spot of mid-afternoon decadence!
Judy’s Affordable Vintage Fair, Manchester, Royal Mills, Redhill Street, Manchester, M4 5BA - Visit now
Judy’s Affordable Vintage Fair claims to be the UK’s most famous – it pops up all over the country. In Manchester, it has taken place at various venues around the city such as the historic Manchester Hall on Bridge Street, a fitting location with its Grade-II listed 1920s interior. Prices at Judy’s are indeed affordable, particularly the homewares – including everything from tea sets to kitchenalia. The vintage clothes start cheap but be prepared to really pay for certain labels. There are around 50 stalls to rummage through, whether you’re after ‘60s accessories or vinyl and ephemera. Enjoy the pop-up cake stall while visiting, too.