Buried Treasure: A Cincinnati Vintage & Antique Shopping Guide

Jul 27, 2009 at 5:02 pm

Cincinnati is a city that is full of secrets and treasures untold. Among these “hidden” gems are shopping options that too many Cincinnatian’s are not privy to. Of course, there is always the question of whether or not it’s best to disclose information on said places for fear that they may lose their sparkle. In this case, I’m going to vote no. The Cincinnati fashion and shopping scene needs help, especially its small, local businesses. In hopes of accomplishing this and of increasing Cincinnati’s awareness for shopping options, I will be featuring shopping guides in my next several blogs. ——

Today, I am focusing on vintage and antique shopping options. I’ve always enjoyed going “thrifting” or shopping for vintage and antique items. My palms get clammy just thinking about sifting through the piles of long beaded necklaces, trinkets, weird baby dolls,old trading cards or who-knows-what, even if it's just to find that one unique item. It sort of makes me feel like I’m in The Goonies looking for One-Eyed Willy’s hidden treasure. The following is a condensed guide of some of Greater Cincinnati’s best places to find your own version of buried treasure. Comments, suggestions or tips on other great shopping places are of course welcome.

1.The Mustard Seed Boutique 311 Ludlow Ave., Clifton, 513-221-4022

This new & resale consignment boutique may be small, but it sure is homey! With charming crystal chandeliers hanging from the wooden ceiling that match the wooden floors, you can find clothing brands ranging from vintage or local designers, Anthropologie, J.Crew, Chanel, Diane Von Furstenburg, Gucci, Marc Jacobs, or even Oscar De La Renta. Prices are reasonable and the customer service is always friendly with a personal shopping option to boot.

2. Casablanca Vintage 3944 Spring Grove Ave., Northside, 513-541-6999

Casablanca's claims to have the largest selection of vintage in the Greater Cincinnati area with its two floors worth of funky vintage outfits, ranging from old furs, silk gowns, long gloves, 1970's suits and Elton John-esque glasses, etc. If you're lucky you'll run into Hollywood, Casablanca's owner, who lives for finding armful's of vintage outfits for you to try on. More often times than not, you do have to really dig to find the true gems in this establishment. You can be rest assured, however, that even if you walk out empty-handed you will know that you at least had a great time.

3.Chicken Lays An Egg 3107 Hamilton Ave., Camp Washington, 513-265 - 6386

If you're looking for a retro dress and sunglasses,groovy vintage shoes, old suitcases and television sets, funky dish sets, or a 1950s skateboard or other weird toys, look no further than Chicken Lays An Egg! With an interior that practically seems to be glowing from the inside out, the store even offers $10 bouquets of gorgeous flowers to cheer you up!

4. NVision 4577 Hamilton Ave., Northside, 513-542 - 4577

Here you can find vintage, locally designed, handcrafted, redesigned and recycled clothing, art and furniture. NVision even offers clothing alterations and custom fittings. Their Web site also allows you to purchase items online or they will make local deliveries for a small fee. NVision definitely has something for you and everyone you know. You won't be disappointed!

5. Avant Garage 4183 Hamilton Ave., Northside, 513-703 - 4683

Recently relocated, Avant Garage now resides in the back half of Ali's Boutique in Northside, offering vintage clothing, retro bar accessories and kitchenware, and other kitschy knick knack collectibles.

6. Damn Swank 4137 Hamilton Ave., 513-542 - 0045

Swanky 1920's through the 1950's digs and pulp fiction post cards, etc.

7. La Belle's Vintage Boutique 708 Fairfield Ave., Bellevue, 859-907-7155

Men's and women's vintage clothing and accessories from the 1920's up to today.

8. Edie's Vintage Rose Room 3241 Harrison Ave., 513-662-3700

Find that perfect 1970's leisure suit,retro housedress, or groovy home decor in this boutique that truly feels like you've stepped into Edie's own home.

9. Down Town Nostalgic 119 Calhoun St., Clifton, 513-541-6999

Rewind back into time with a selection of vintage fur stoles, pillbox hats, shoes, jackets, shirts, etc.

10. Talk of the Town 9111 Reading Road, 513-563-8844

Find the perfect period costume for rental or for purchase at Talk of the Town. Local theatre groups, such as Playhouse in the Park, and local schools swear by it.

11.Red Polly Space Outfitters 4016 Hamilton Ave., Northside, 513-541-6856


Where else can you find amazing vintage furniture in mint condition that will be delivered to you free of charge? The Red Polly makes it their #1 priority to help set up your space in style. In-house upholstery and furniture restoration services are even offered here and you can rent out the 5,500 sq. foot space for parties, shows, birthdays - you name it. The Red Polly is truly a one of a kind place for Cincinnati.

12. Valley Thrift Store 9840 Reading Road, Evendale

Seriously, the mother of all thrift stores. No further comments.

13. Brass Armadillo Antiques 10132 Business Centre Drive, 513-265-8886

It once closed, but now it's back in all of its glory of endless selections of antique furniture, books, clothing, records and more.

14. Florence Antique Mall 8145 Connector Drive, Florence. 859-371-0600

You'll spend hours weaving through the mazes of antique furniture, books, records, cameras, pictures, trinkets, clothing, jewelry, etc.

15. Sin City Antique Gallery 822 Monmouth St., Newport, 859-291-8486

16. Greg's Antiques 1400 Main St., 513-241-5487

Take your pick from the antique slot machines, juke boxes, brass cash registers, neon clocks and signs, etc.

17. Duck Creek Antique Mall 3715 Madison Road, Madisonville, 513-321-0900

18. Grand Antique Mall 9701 Reading Road, 513-554-1919

19. Esses Antiques 5919 Vine St., 513-641-0159

20. Wooden Nickel Antiques 1410 Central Parkway , Downtown, 513-241-2985

21. Fuzzy Bee Antiques 334 Fairfield Ave., Bellevue, 859-261-1600