We talked to KC treasure-hunting experts on where and how to find the best vintage anything.

Provided.

Unbeknownst to many Kansas Citians, KC has one of the most established vintage and antique markets in the country, where treasure seekers can find everything from a 1940s felt fedora to the perfect mid-century coffee table. We talked to experts who own some of KC’s best vintage and antique spots to get their insight on how to best find hidden treasures.  

1. Try before you buy 
Photography provided by Wonderland Vintage.

“Vintage sizing and fabrications are very different than modern clothing. You never know what could really suit you or spark your style by just looking at it. While high-end designer clothes are great, a lot of vintage is well-made and has a lot more to offer than just a designer label. KC is spoiled for choice when it comes to vintage. We have a vast selection from so many time periods, and it’s not as picked over or expensive here in the Midwest.” 

Photography provided by Andrew Chambers.

Andrew Chambers, owner and curator of Wonderland Vintage, a vintage clothing store (307-309 Westport Road, KCMO). 

2. Rely on the experts
Photography provided by Daisy Lee Vintage.

“The biggest mistake is thinking you’ll find what you’re looking for on your first try. It takes time and various locations to hit the jackpot. Always have an open mind. Also, when going to a curated vintage shop, don’t be afraid to tell the employees what you’re looking for. So many of our customers come in with a vision and we love to help them fulfill it.” 

Photography provided by Caleb and Cortney Fangman.

Caleb and Cortney Fangman, co-owners of Daisy Lee Vintage, a vintage clothing store (122 W. 18th St., KCMO). 

3. Look around 
Photography provided by Bella Patina.

“Thoroughly review items before purchase. Vintage sales are almost always final sale, so do your due diligence and open every drawer and door—once you put it in your car, it’s yours. Keep your eyes open. Many times the piece that you’re looking for might be covered in other items, hanging from the ceiling, piled in a stack of other things. Part of the thrill of finding that gem is the hunt itself, so keep after it.” 

Photography provided by Megan Allen.

Megan Allen, co-owner of Bella Patina, an antique shop with furniture and decor (1320 W. 12th St., KCMO).

4. Make a wish list 
Photography provided by Peaches Vintage Collective.

“Finding great vintage or antique pieces often takes time and persistence. Be willing to put in the effort to find what you’re looking for. Having high or unattainable expectations can lead to frustration. Thrifting and vintage shopping is supposed to be fun! You never know what you are going to find, so it is very important to keep an open mind. Trust the thrift gods. Many people come into the shop with a wish list, which is a great way to stay on track and alleviate unnecessary or impulse buys.” 

Photography provided by Tara Fay.

Tara Fay owner of Peaches Vintage Collective, a vintage clothing store (2765 Cherry St., KCMO). 

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