What to Buy at Vintage Gift Shops


Vintage gift shops in Denver offer a treasure trove of antique finds, whether it’s a vintage teak dresser or a mid-century sunburst clock. There are so many wondrous items available that it may be difficult to determine what you should buy.

We will provide some helpful hints to make it easier to decide.

Why Choose a Vintage Gift Shop?

Vintage gift shops offer a unique experience that can make your home, fashion, or accessories stand out, and shopping at your local vintage gift shop helps the local economy as well.

They are the most sustainable way to shop, avoiding the fast pace of consumerism in other department stores and purchasing fewer items that you know are going to last you for a long time.

Buying vintage ensures you’re keeping clothes, home décor, and other goods out of landfills and being responsible with your use of resources. Aside from the ethical reasons to choose a vintage gift shop, you just never know quite what you’ll find.

From exciting fashion items to interesting accent pieces for your home, there are plenty of ways to experiment with your style and go against the grain of traditional interior decorating.

What Should You Buy at a Vintage Gift Shop?

The best rule for choosing what you want to buy at a vintage gift shop is “go with the flow.” Each shop is different and offers unique treasures to take home. In general, you’ll want to be on the lookout for great deals on clothing, home décor items, and accent pieces that strike your fancy.

Here are some incredible items you can only get your hands on in a vintage gift shop:

  • Scandinavian credenzas
  • Brass interior decorations
  • Vintage glass bottles
  • Velvet upholstery
  • Ladder back chairs


Credenzas are beautiful pieces of home décor that are excellent for furnishing your home, offering both form and function. On the outside, they’re a beautiful addition to a room’s interior. On the inside, they serve the practical purpose of managing clutter and creating a hidden storage area.

Authentic vintage credenzas are hard to find, but they are well worth picking up if you spot one in good condition at your local vintage gift shop.

Brass Interior Decorations

Brass is a metal that doesn’t see much use nowadays, often giving way to more subtle metals like zinc or pewter; however, that doesn’t mean that you should pass up an option to pick up a gorgeous brass interior design piece at a vintage gift shop.

Brass plates, for example, add a lot of class and elegance to an indoor space, and a pair of decorative brass candlesticks can complete the room.

You may even spot some brass wall décor plates with designs in the center that have some history to them. Brass certainly isn’t for everyone, given its reputation for being rather cold in appearance and too-brilliant nature, but a finely aged vintage piece might be just the interior decoration you’re looking for.

Vintage Glass Bottles

The vintage gift shop is the place to be if you’re a bottle collector. Although it’s not much of a tradition anymore, families used to hold onto and pass down bottles of all shapes and sizes—sometimes for aesthetic reasons, and sometimes because the bottle served an important purpose.

Some of the more valuable pieces have a story attached to them, and while you might not find the rarest of the rare at your vintage gift shop, bottle collecting is an engaging hobby with hundreds of thousands of unique bottle designs produced in North America alone during the 1800s.

The physical characteristics and manufacturing details of bottles prove useful in guessing their age, and if you’re interested in getting started, The Federation of Historical Bottle Collectors offers weekly updates for serious collectors and hobbyists alike, giving your important details on the most prized bottles.

Your best bet to find your first glass bottle is to drop by the local vintage gift shop. You might find yourself stumbling upon a rare bit of history.

Hand-blown glass bottles are extremely valuable, both in a monetary and historical sense, especially ones made in a variety of rare colors, like the following:

  • Amber
  • Straw
  • Strawberry Puce
  • Emerald Green
  • Black
  • Cobalt Blue
  • Aqua

Behind each of these bottles is a story, and who doesn’t want to have the opportunity of having a living piece of history sitting on their living room shelf?

Velvet Upholstery

A piece of history lost to modern automation, nothing beats the vintage look and feel of velvet upholstery. Pair its luxurious comfort with its rarity, and you’ve got a recipe for a great buy at a vintage gift shop.

Well-reputed for its elegance and spectacular aesthetic value, velvet fills a room with its inviting sense of beauty. It feels as smooth as it looks and matches just about every kind of décor you could imagine—from a contemporary design to a sleek minimalist room.

Better yet, vintage gift shops often boast some unique furnishings with velvet upholstery that are well worth looking into.

Ladderback Chairs

Ladderback chairs are an aesthetically beautiful way to enhance a space, most often a living room. Also known as a slat-back, this chair gets its namesake from the horizontal slats on the back, which resemble ladder rungs.

Their materials vary, with English ladderbacks constructed from ash, oak, and beech, while American ones made use of maple, oak, or other hardwoods.

Stemming back to the Middle Ages, the ladderback used to be the layman’s chair. Simple to make and sturdy enough for use, ladderbacks have lasted through the centuries.

It was only in the latter half of the 19th century that the advent of Victorian-style furniture unseated the ladderback as the most popular parlor and front porch chair.

Ladderbacks still hold a great place in modern furniture schemes, making a gorgeous addition to any room and adding a reminder of days gone.

The Bottom Line

From chairs to upholstery, vintage gift stores have it all, and the best part is that you never know quite what you’re going to find at a vintage gift store. Whether it’s for you or a loved one, these historical shops have something on the shelves just waiting for you to discover.

Rachel Crib
Rachel Crib
Rachel has lived in Lancaster her whole life. Trish has worked as a journalist for nearly a decade having contributed to several large publications including the Yahoo News and the Lancaster Post. As a journalist for The Tiger News, Cristina covers national and international developments.

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