Back in the days of blogger.com, I was obsessed with a girl named Maja Ravn. She was in the era of Tavi Gevinson but was very understated. She took pictures in her garden and wrote about her day, which I emulated by taking gross photographs of myself at age 14 with a shed in the background. Ravn would wear Acne Atacoma wedges, weird looking shoes with silver strips on the bottom. She was on the cover of a magazine you couldn’t purchase in the UK.
Somehow, I managed to gatecrash my parents’ trip to Copenhagen so I could buy the magazine, pretend to be her and visit the places that she’d visited. Among beautiful houses on a backstreet no tourist would find, FN92 was a tiny vintage store she loved. It was full of antiquated items and felt like going back in time and walking into a Victorian dressing room. There were incrediblepieces from as early as the 19th century, many of which were very expensive. I didn’t come out with much.
I always want to find the spots only locals would know. On a trip to Belgium, my friend from Antwerp told me I had to go to this shop, which isn’t well-known but truly has the best vintage stuff in the city. It’s called ROsier 41and is on the ground floor of a modern building. Entering is to be exposed to a large dose of synaesthesia; there is so much going on you’ll invariably think you need more money in your bank account. When I was there it had a great selection of Belgian designers, and a host of archive items from the infamous Antwerp Six, from pre-loved Ann Demeulemeester to vintage Dries Van Noten.
My parents were having a coffee a couple of streets away, enjoying the sunshine, when inside the shop I found a white Balenciaga Mini Bolsa bag for only €200. I thought, the stars are aligned: this is meant to be mine. The shop took cash only, and naturally I had nothing in my purse. I shoved the bag in a corner and ran outside to take out €200. ‘You don’t need another bag,’ my parents said. ‘You don’t understand. You’ll never pay €200 euros for a Balenciaga bag.’ I ran back in and begged the shopkeeper to keep the bag aside for five minutes. I remember sprinting back, worried she wouldn’t have kept it there. But I bought it and it has pride of place on my arm today.
FN92, Bryggervangen 76, 2100 Copenhagen, Denmark; FN92shop.com.
ROsier 41, Rosier 41, 2000 Antwerp, Belgium; rosier41.be
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