Koenji, the hippest town on the Chuo Line, is filled with young people and artists sporting not the most recent trends but the fashions of yesteryear.
Thrift shops and consignment stores are commonplace all over Tokyo but Koenji gives them an original twist.
These second hand stores look more like boutiques rather than recycle stores and the clothes are handpicked made both domestically and abroad. Koenji’s vintage stores offer a wide variety of goods, from suspenders to soft graphic tees, to blend in with the locals.
‘80s vintage clothing at Super Old
Super Old describes exactly what the shop sells, super old clothing.
The second hand store sells vintage denim and long dresses that were popular in the 1980s.
The shop is small but packed and most of its merchandise is outside, making it the perfect place to browse aloha shirts and pleated skirts on a warm day.
Gentlemen’s American vintage at Whistler
Whistler specializes in gentlemen’s American vintage from the 1940s-1960s.
Find suspenders, suit jackets and a plethora of sweater vests for both formal and casual wear.
The shop changes to reflect every season and is currently offering linen slacks and silk scarves for summer.
While Whistler specializes in classic vintage, it also offers some casual American clothes.
Army and camouflage are popular as well as plaid flannel for fall and graphic tees for spring and summer. Whistler is open from 12pm-9pm everyday.
Second hand brand names at Re’all
Second hand brand names at Re’all
Re’all is another store specializing in Americana with more of an emphasis on vintage t-shirts and brands.
All of the clothes are from either Los Angeles or San Francisco and range from designer brands like Ralph Polo Lauren to Converse high tops.
Re’all also has two neighboring stores, one focusing on shoes and the other on vibrant jackets that were popular in the 1990s.
Brand name is very important here and most of the products are emblazoned with the designer’s name or company logo.
The store is never close to empty and the best finds have spilled out of the store, onto the sidewalk and street.
Re’all is open on weekdays from 1pm-9pm and weekends from 12pm-9pm.
Experimental outfits at Hayatochiri
Hayatochiri used to be a second hand clothing store but has slowly changed to stock newer, more unique clothing made by imaginative designers.
Blending the line between performance art and fashion, Hayatochiri sells experimental clothing that would not look out of place in a in the streets of Koenji.
The store has been around for ten years and is still run by the same owner, Goto san.
Goto san, a creative himself, has decorated the shop with pages of his favorite manga.
He changes the theme of the shop every season and brings in a new line of clothes that will always shock. Hayatochiri is open on weekdays from 3pm-9pm and weekends from 1pm-9pm.
Vintage denim and American made goods at SLUT
Naming a store SLUT might not be the best idea but the American themed second hand store has only received good attention with it.
Now open for twelve years, SLUT has a loyal following and four other locations all within walking distance.
The staff handpicks all the vintage clothing from second hand stores in America and these frequent trips call for a wide variety of eccentric styles.
Expect to find lots of dad style plaid button downs, army green jackets and American university t-shirts.
The shop revitalizes the Americana aesthetic for the hip teenagers in Koenji.
Shop at the largest vintage store in Koenji: Tatouage by ZOOL PURPLE
Tatouage by ZOOL PURPLE
This spacious vintage store is run by Zool, a longstanding vintage store operator that has four other branches in Koenji.
The collection is heavily skewed towards used American womenswear.
Various styles of items are available here, from punk to retro to street and casual.
If you are looking for something new to add an edgy accent to your style, this is the place to shop.
American vintage clothing at AiLeen by GROG GROG
AiLeen by GROG GROG
AiLeen by GROG GROG is around six minutes on foot from the south exit of Koenji Station and features American womenswear from the 1950s to 1980s.
It features all sorts of vintage items with a slightly modern touch, including formal coats, flower-embroidered cotton tops, bohemian dresses and even some Native American accessories.
Vintage items with a slightly modern touch
New pieces are added to the racks every day, so you'll always find something different at this charming store.
Rare-find footwear at Green Light Koenji
Green Light Koenji
Why are we so obsessed with shoes?
Because style starts from the shoe upwards.
Green Light Koenji takes pride in their collection of sneakers, boots and leather shoes.
Inside this relatively small store, you will find an array of footwear displayed all over the walls.
It’s a must-stop for true Converse All Star sneaker fans, with limited-edition and out-of-production models showcased.
The price tag on each pair indicates their year of production, giving hints to shoppers wanting to find rare models.
A vintage lover's favorite at BIG TIME
Operating seven outlets in Japan, BIG TIME is a vintage and used clothing shop in Pal Shopping Street.
It’s known as a go-to place for savvy vintage fans and showcases an array of American and European garments, furniture, accessories and knickknacks.
The first floor is dedicated to menswear while the second floor is filled with womenswear.
They also carry a collection of colorfully embroidered South Indian skirts and dresses that are in mint condition, offering shoppers a trip around the world every time they visit the store.
Girly re-creation items at Steady-1
Situated in the Look Shopping Street, Steady-1 is a used clothing store that features re-creation garments and bags.
Items include a denim backpack made from used jeans, fringe sweatshirts and lace collar tops, all of which will upgrade your style to the next level.
This friendly store often serves coffee to shoppers while offering jean repair and alteration services.
Chic, retro and European-style outfits at Gaijin
Gaijin means “foreigner” in Japanese but is also the name of a chic vintage boutique for women in Koenji.
Once you step into their warmly-lit store, the fine collection of subtle, cute and feminine outfits will undoubtedly catch your eye.
Items featured include a long blue dress with delicate floral embroidery, a white blouse with a fancy lace collar, and light pink wide pants with small elephant patterns.
They specifically source one-of-a-kind vintage clothes, so you’ll always feel special when you shop there. The store also carries some non-used brand collections from "dearie dada" and "desperate", both of which carefully design items to suit various vintage styles.
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Retro and funky outfits at Small Change
This vintage store stocks carefully-picked items from Europe and America, and operates four additional branches in Japan (Shimokitazawa, Nagoya, Kyoto and Fukuoka).
The first floor houses the menswear collection, which features well-kept brand items such as Fred Perry, Lee, and Church's.
The second floor carries a colorful collection of womenswear, with a good mixture of retro-style, dressy outfits and casual one-pieces.
There’s also an ample choice of accessories that include hats, bags and earrings, so you can easily create a complete outfit.
If you are a fan of styles from the 1950s to 1970s, you will appreciate Small Change’s well-curated garments.
Most affordable garments at Furugisho Otora
The first stop on your Koenji vintage shopping experience should be Furugisho Otora, which is only a minute from the south exit of Koenji Station.
Look for the "OTORA" sign by the shopfront and you will soon find yourself amidst a treasure trove of vintage finds!
This second-hand clothing store is packed with a good mixture of items for both sexes, including T-shirts, jeans, and jackets, as well as dresses, accessories and some kimonos. Everything is sold at bargain prices here, so you don’t have to worry about your wallet while trying out new styles.
Vintage girly fashion at JuRian
JuRian is the place to head if you're looking for sweet, retro-style vintage clothing.
This lady-like store has a dreamy,
European-inspired aesthetic, which is enhanced by its white walls, rustic wooden floors and colorful dried flowers.
Colorful dried flowers
You can find various flattering items that include flower-print skirts, feminine white blouses and long romantic dresses that will appeal to any lover of cute things.
Psychedelic, Showa retro items at Lover Soul
This retro-style vintage store specializes in womenswear, with a focus on pop and psychedelic patterned items from the 1960s to 1980s (the golden age of the Showa era). You can find various retro garments that include A-line dresses, schoolgirl-style skirts and flower-print blouses, all of which are in mint condition.
They provide "dirt cheap" racks at the front of the store from time to time, so keep your eyes peeled for their great promotions.