Big buzzwords at this year’s mega outdoor art festival Artscape were re-purposed and recycled—which fit nicely with Baltimore’s ongoing urban renewal. While farming vacant lots and joining bike shop co-ops are perhaps better suited to residents, visitors can embrace re-use at the city’s many second-hand shops.
Here are six of the best:
Newbury & Smith: This consignment boutique in North Baltimore has women’s fashions, but the real reason to go is the accessories—and particularly the stunning selection of designer handbags at Great Recession-friendly prices. (5708 Newbury St., newburyandsmith.com)
Fashion Attic: If accessories are why you trekked to Newbury & Smith, you’ll head to this Fells Point shop for clothes. Lots of clothes. Hit up their website before stopping in for a coupon for 20% off one item. (1926 Fleet St., thefashionattic.com)
Vogue Revisited: Another consignment shop, focused on high-end labels and clothes that aren’t quite old enough to properly be called vintage. Still, the shop has a cult following in town, perhaps helped by a 2005 Best Of award from Baltimore’s City Paper. (4002 Roland Ave., voguerevisited1.ypgs.net)
The Book Thing: Back in 1999, Russell Wattenberg gave a group of teachers a batch of books, unwittingly starting a “book thing” that’s evolved into an enormous warehouse in Charles Village, housing thousands of titles. But don’t call it a book store: Every single tome is yours to take for free if you like, no strings attached. (3001 Vineyard Lane, bookthing.org)
Station North Flea Market: With everything from clothing to jewelry to gifts to odds and ends up for sale, this once-a-month event is an IRL eBay. (They even claim to have “everything and the kitchen sink.”) The market happens on the first Saturday of every month, through November. (100 block of W. North Ave., loadoffun.net/FleaMarket.html)
Killer Trash: This vintage shop is the place to go when you’ve got absolutely nothing to wear to next weekend’s ’80s party. Just off Fells Point’s main drag of Fleet Street, near Fashion Attic, the store has so much to offer that racks of sequined whatsits often spill out onto the sidewalk. (602 S. Broadway, myspace.com/killertrashboutique)
How to get there: Both Amtrak and BoltBus stop at Baltimore’s Penn Station, at 1515 N. Charles St. Check schedules and fares at amtrak.com and boltbus.com. Baltimore’s MTA operates a wide reaching bus and rail system that can get you from Penn Station to just about anywhere. Plan your trip at mtamaryland.com.
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