Antiques shopping can be really exciting, especially if you find the right places to look. Over the last few months, I’ve found some great antiques warehouses and shops in Leicester that are definitely worth a look.
I absolutely love searching for antiques. I think it’s the excitement of not knowing what you might find. Antiques shops hold such a varied array of knick-knacks and it’s hugely fun sifting through it all. It does take some patience, however. Some days you might find a handful of things you like, others you might not see a single thing. But, it’s such a good feeling when you find something that you fall in love with.
One of my favourite places to look for antiques is the Leicester Antiques Warehouse, situated on Welford Road. It’s Leicestershire’s largest antiques retailer and is host to a whole range of different traders. There you will find vintage pieces of furniture, taxidermy, curios and vintage clothing. Even Pink Pigeon have their own pitch there, which, if you’re unaware, is a popular vintage shop in the city centre. It takes a while to walk around, as there is so much to see, but it makes for an interesting experience. Everything varies in age, such as the cartoon figures they sell of characters like The Simpsons, that may only be a few decades old. Other things are very much older. This makes it the perfect place to go for whatever it is you’re looking for.
Myself and my boyfriend have had a few successful visits there, with our most treasured purchase being the oriental, hand-painted wall hanging you can see below. The detailed peacock was what drew me in to begin with. I am also a sucker for anything oriental/Japanese/Chinese. It’s a one-of-a-kind and I knew it was something that I couldn’t just walk past. Most recently, we bought some great taxidermy from there. A wonderful Pine Marten housed on a piece of wood, which you can also see below. Taxidermy can be a bit pricey, but we managed to get a good deal on it as it’s just slightly loose on its stand. Other than that, it’s in great condition and goes well with all the curious things we have in our flat. Leicester Antiques Warehouse is definitely worth checking out if you have a good amount of time on your hands.
Vintage Utopia, on Montague Road in the Clarendon Park area of Leicester, is a hidden gem. It’s a tiny place but they make the most of the space they have. There are things hanging off the ceiling and the walls are covered on all sides. Downstairs you’ll find their smaller items, like glassware and ornaments, whereas uspstairs houses their larger pieces of furniture. I found the most lovely framed butterflies in there once (see below), and although I have many framed butterflies, those ones will always be my favourite.
Another great place for antiques in this area, also on Welford Road, is another small shop called Antiquey Things. It has the most wonderful oriental fan in the window and as a lover and collector of fans, this is what caught my eye. It really is a ridiculously tiny shop that’s crammed full of all sorts of things, but there are some wonderful antiques in there. There’s a little room at the back where the owner of the shop can usually be found. Every now and again I take a quick peek in. The only thing I’ve bought from there is a framed scorpion, but I still dream about that fan a lot of the time. Maybe one day it will be mine.
The final place on my list of antique spots is Kibworth Antiques Centre. This is a little out of the way from the other shops that I have mentioned, but it is worth the journey. The building you first enter looks small, but there is a large hanger behind it with 2 floors full. There are quite a lot of things at the centre that aren’t vintage or antique. Somethings are new but are made to look that way and others just have a vintage feel about them. However, don’t let that put you off. There are some items in there that are great little antique pieces. The second floor of the hanger is my favourite because it’s home to a random selection of antiques, from vintage clothing to taxidermy and books. One of the more quirky things that I have bought from there is a framed feather, pictured below. I love the simplicity of it and the way it is hung. It somehow seems to fit in nicely with the various items I have on the walls of my bedroom. You could easily spend a good hour and a half at the centre and you literally never know what you could find.
If you’re just getting into searching for and buying antiques, the shops and centres I have mentioned are a good place to start. Once you’ve explored the best spots in Leicester, it’s always fun to have a rummage around other cities too!