Green Living

Beginner’s tips for buying secondhand and starting a vintage collection

Vintage enthusiast Fiona Ralph give us three fail-safe items to shop for, that can easily be upcycled to give your home a unique edge

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New to secondhand shopping and unsure what to look for? Keep your eyes peeled for quality, New Zealand-made items that will stand the test of time. Look for iconic, locally made pieces and everyday items that can easily be upcycled to add vintage flair to your home. Here are three fail-safe options:

1. Instead of buying a reproduction mid-century armchair, purchase one made here in the 1950s. New Zealand brands Jon Jansen, Don Furniture, Danske Møbler and Backhouse made sophisticated, Scandinavian-style furniture in the 1950s and ’60s (the latter two are still producing furniture today). Look out for pieces by these brands at vintage stores and on Trade Me.


2. New Zealand-made woollen blankets are in plentiful supply at op-shops. They’re warm, come in an array of beautiful colours and are often in great condition.

3. There’s an abundance of vintage New Zealand crockery in op-shops. Look for iconic styles by local companies Crown Lynn and Temuka Pottery (which is still in business today).

Words by: Fiona Ralph.

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