On a beautiful hot, summers day my friend and I arrived with sea legs via the Thames Clipper in leafy, historic Greenwich. After making our way through the thriving market area with many colourful and interesting stalls, we came out on Nelson Road to discover an intriguing shop owned by someone my friend used to work with. The shop is called Joli Vintage Living (Joli being a clever combination of the owner and her son’s names) with the added bonus of being like the French word ‘Jolie’ meaning pretty. The quirky shop, selling all things vintage, opened around two and a half months ago. The owner, Jo, used to work in charity shops for Save the Children and The Maypole Project. She has always had a love for vintage things and previously had her own shop that she had to give up due to family commitments; now her son has encouraged her to once again follow her heart. She selected Greenwich for its diversity in terms of people from every nationality and a good mix of tourists and locals.
As we entered the store the sweet sound of a baby grand piano welcomed us. You feel like you have been transported back in time as you are surrounded by beautiful furniture and crockery, some of which has been previously sold in high end stores such as Harrods. This then gives way to jewellery, bags and other accessories. As we made our way through to outside there is a back yard, harbouring many more classic items including an old highchair and pram, a stunning dolls house and a London bus stop sign as well as a rail of clothes.
Heading downstairs via a staircase decorated with London scenes on each step; a nod to the tourist clientele as well as vintage posters down the wall such as an advert for Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s there was the distinct sound of a vintage record player, before we reached two further rooms with more furniture and a host of clothes, shoes and bags. Everything is displayed expertly, with clothes ordered by era; it is like an Aladdin’s cave – every time you look, you see something new. Jo sources at auctions mainly as well as doing commission sales; EBay is not for her as she prefers to see items in the flesh so you know exactly what you are getting.
The shop began with furniture and home accessories but fairly swiftly branched into clothing when the demand for it became clear. Currently 80’s and 90’s stock is flying off the rails. I asked Jo what she thought the best era for fashion was and she thought the 50’s were very elegant but the 60’s and 70’s stand out for her due to the new found freedom people had. I couldn’t resist this beautiful dress, which although new, has been made in a 1960’s style. Currently I can’t quite fit into it but there is some motivation for the diet.
The most interesting pieces she had when I visited were the baby grand piano which attracted many a budding musician to tinkle the ivories; and some London traffic lights.
Only a short boat or train ride from Central London, a summer trip to Greenwich is a must on any tourists bucket list and this shop is not to be missed. The shop opening times are below:
Please visit the shops Facebook page for the latest arrivals. Happy rummaging!