Shopping on a budget? Way before Macklemore made it thrift-shopping the new ‘in’ thing, buying second-hand clothes was a practical and creative way to shop, not to mention environmentally sound. Style-wise, it’s also your best opportunity to find one-of-a-kind pieces. Second-hand shops in the Klang Valley vary from curated vintage boutiques to wholesale bundle shops and other thrift stores. We scoured the city in search of the best places to pop some tags.
Vintage Moonriver Walk deep enough in Summit, Subang Jaya, and you’ll find this gem of a store. There are so many clothes in here you literally have to move shelves of them away to get to the good stuff. The store gets the bulk of their items from Japan and is a mixture of contemporary and vintage pieces. You can also find garments from high street brands such as H&M, Gap and Uniqlo. They even carry pieces from high-end designers: Levi’s denims and Burberry trenchcoats going for less than RM100! What a steal.
S2.62, 2nd Floor, The Summit Subang USJ, Persiaran Kewajipan USJ 1, 47600, Subang Jaya (017 3985193). Opens: Monday – Friday, 2pm – 8pm / Saturday & Sunday, 12.30pm – 8.30pm
Red Crescent Shop Who knew that Persatuan Bulan Sabit Merah also sold clothes? We were surprised too. The shop survives on donations and prominent online retailer Zalora happens to be one of them. Expect to find Zalora merchandise which didn’t make the cut upstairs at QC going for about a fraction of the price. Dig well enough and you’ll find other hidden treasures from luxury brands such as Elle and Sergio Rossi.
MRC National Headquarters, Lot PT54, Lengkok Belfield, Off Jalan Wisma Putra, KL 50460. Opens: 9am – 5pm daily.
KLBC Thrift Shop Managed by the Kuala Lumpur Baptist Church, which is located just around the corner, the KLBC thrift shop receives their stock from parishioners and other kind donors. The store has a corner dedicated to clothes, while the rest of the shop is occupied by knick knacks and other household items. Expect to find casual wear for men and women ranging from about RM10 to RM40. All proceeds go to charities supported by the church.
81, Jalan Berangan, 50200, KL. Opens: Monday-Saturday: 12pm – 6pm / Sunday: 10am – 2pm.
The Bless Shop When we found out there was a thrift store in Midvalley Megamall, we were speechless. This store was right under our noses the whole time! The Bless Shop receives donations from anyone who is willing to give their old belongings. The items in the shop are well curated and are in good condition. Ranging from casual wear to evening wear, high street to luxury, this shop’s got you covered. The proceeds go charities which aid orang asli settlements, orphanages, rehab centres and refugees. There are other Bless Shops located in Citta Mall, Ara Jaya and other locations.
Bongkar Vintage / Tam’s Ideas by Vintagefactory Kill two vintage stores with one stone: the former shop Bongkor Vintage has now joined forces with Tam’s Ideas to open this shared space in Dang Wangi. Tam’s Ideas stocks quirky decorative items like old Sardine cans, signboards and other knick-knacks. Bongkar specialises in men’s apparel and we imagine this is what James Dean’s closet looked like. Vintage leather jackets hung up in all their glory, stacks of Levi’s jeans on shelves… this would be every biker’s dream. Many items are branded so expect to pay a little more than other vintage shops.
Lot 141, Campbell Complex, Jalan Dang Wangi, KL 50100. Opens: 12 – 9pm, daily.
Yellow Kombi Vintage From Bongkar and Tam’s Ideas, walk over to the next row and pop by newcomer on the block, Yellow Kombi Vintage. Step into the 70s with vintage finds like antique telephones, collectible toy cars and Coke bottles, radios and lamps then be sprung back into reality with their impressive curation of Vans, Converse and baby Nikes! Yellow Kombi Vintage can also be spotted at events with a mobile shop in a bright yellow van. Follow them on Facebook for event updates.
Lot 159, Campbell Complex, Jalan Dang Wangi, KL 50100. Opens: 12 – 9pm, daily.
Oldees This stall is a regular feature at various bazaars and have a great range of curated vintage clothes. They also carry a beautiful selection of vintage, hand-painted kimonos from Japan, some of which may even be older than you, considering majority of them were made from the 1950’s to 1980’s. Just by the feel of the luxurious fabrics, you know each kimono has a story to tell.
Oldees operate at bazaars and pop-up markets. Showroom visits can be arranged by appointment at 012 665 6790.
Chalk Much like a box full of colour assorted chalks, this store is filled with an assortment of garments in colours of the rainbow. It’s amazing how many things fit in this small little shop in Sungei Wang. The shop feels like you’re walking into somebody’s wardrobe as it has an eclectic mix of everything: Vintage Ferragamo flats on your left and plastic dinosaur earrings on your right. We love how this quirky store ties in the old with the new.
Lot 78, 6th Floor, Sungei Wang Plaza, Jalan Sultan Ismail, KL 55100 (012 262 9110). Opens: 1pm – 10pm daily.
Buntil Buntil was previously located in BB Plaza but has now moved to Shah Alam. This shop is filled to the brim in vintage items. The store keeps an eye out for rare and limited edition pieces like a pair Nike Air Jordans – all yours with a hefty price tag of RM5000. If that’s a little too steep for your budget, head over to their wall dedicated to Doc Martens. Shoes by this cult favourite range from RM500-RM600, depending on their condition and rarity. Wak Doyok has been spotted in Buntil, getting his thrift on.
16 Jln Opera C U2/C, Taman TTDI Jaya, 40000 Shah Alam (03 2144 6414). Open daily, 1.30pm – 11pm.
Sharin’s Bundle Chow Kit If you’re really on the hunt and not afraid of the heavy traffic, head to Shahrin’s Bundle Shop in Chow Kit. T-shirts are going for RM5.90 whilst jeans are being let go for RM12.90. Some clothes have seen better days. The clothes are all shipped by container from Korea and America and the owner buys them without knowing its contents. If you’re rajin to dig around enough, you’ll find some notable brands such as Fred Perry, Adidas and Ralph Lauren.
Jalan Raja Bot, Chow Kit, KL 50300. Opens: 24 hours, 7 days a week (Seriously).
Chia’s Cotton Chic While many of the shops we’ve covered are in KL, fret not, PJ people! Chia’s Cotton Chic, located in Amcorp Mall, is a great place to find women’s second-hand clothes. The clothes are sourced from across the globe from Korea and Japan to Australia and America. Their prices go as low as RM5 and as high as just RM25. Chia’s Cotton Chic now has three outlets in Amcorp mall, with the latest specialising in cocktail dresses and accessories and stocking various designers such as Country Road, Millers, Bardot, Valley Girl, Katies and many more.
Lot 206 & 209, 2nd Floor, Amcorp Mall, 18 Persiaran Barat, PJ 46050 (016 617 7999). Opens: Weekdays, 12pm – 7pm / Weekends, 11am – 7pm.
Parents Without Partners Jumble StationConveniently located in the heart of Petaling Jaya is the Parents Without Partners Bundle Station. The store is a treasure trove of donated goods and all proceeds go the organisation to help single parents in need. There isn’t a changing room in store but if you’re keen on trying on the clothes before purchasing, you are allowed to take the clothes with you to the closest restroom, which is right around the corner. Dresses and jackets all go for a flat rate of RM30, while blouses and skirts are priced at RM20. The store also carries children’s clothes, going for RM10 a piece.
Words by Stephanie Boey and Sian Marie Low. Photos by Stephanie Boey, Sian Marie Low and Ling Low. First published September 2014, updated February 2015.
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