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20 THE LIST (31 Jan —1/. Feb 2002

Some of the best places for penny-saving shall remain nameless. Words: Mererid Williams

dress was only $22 from a market stall while yOur friend's designer

garment nearly bankrupted her. But. in my world. this rarely happens. I tend to fall into the ‘friend' category: little money but even less sense. But finances are low and expensive habits must die before the bank balance gets it. So what does Edinburgh have in store for the penny-saving consumer?

I head for the charity shops: Stockbridge, Dalry. Leith and Newington are packed with them. All shops have the same basic layout. selling unwanted but good quality clothing from around 50p upwards. Surprises are also in store such as the Winsmoor skirt found hiding among the rails originally costing £70. I buy it for a fiver. And smile all the way home.

But while the old anoraks found in charity places are very practical for the weather, it might be necessary to search elsewhere for the funky factor. Edinburgh has a good deal of second-hand retro shops to provide this. It pays to take some time to rummage through the range of vintage clothing on offer and ask for assistance to discover what the best bargains might be.

The oldest in the business is the busy Armstrong’s & Son (83 Grassmarket and 64—66 Clerk St) and its side-branch The Rusty Zip (14 Teviot Row). Smaller but just as friendly are Godiva’s. Herman Brown and Smi (all on West Port). Flip on South Bridge is also a popular establishment with a wide range of retro and new Americana- clothing as well as accessories and a good cheap record section. Damona on Leith Walk, while not second—hand. is excellent for inexpensive but good-looking gifts. But the best way to find these kinds of shops is to take a walk around: there are hidden treasures to be found. On 55 St Stephen Street. for example. there's a gem of a vintage clothing shop that despite being in business for years. still remains nameless.

Passing the array of designer discount stores in Leith and taking note that it's actually possible to get a decent pair of pyjamas for 25 (wow!), I stumble across the Edinburgh Architectural Salvage Yard (EASY) on Couper Street. This isn't the type of bargain bin where you can get a screw- together bed for £10. Rather, it's a strictly non-reproduction set-up

T here's nothing quite like that smug feeling of knowing that your

Finances are

specialising in original cast-iron fireplaces. gorgeous Flake-advert type baths and antique home

furnishings at affordable prices. Certainly worth a look if setting up a new home.

A bargain hunt isn't a bargain hunt without visiting lngleston

bank balance Market (off Glasgow Road. 10am—4pm, weekly Sun). This

outdoor event attracts great numbers of people from all over Scotland and everything can be found from spare car parts to wrne glasses. Alternatively. the Greenside Place Car Boot Sale (level 2 car park of‘ Leith St. 10am—2pm, weekly Sun) and the New Street Indoor Sunday Market (Waverley Car Park, New St. 10am—4pm, weekly Sun) are bustling indoor bargain-heavens; but what they say about the early worn‘ certainly applies. or you'll just end up with other people's unwanted junk. And that defeats the purpose.

before the

habits must die

1 19208 cast-iron fireplace £440 (sounds a lot but cheaper than a replica): EASY.

2 Aquascutum second-hand coat 5348 (originally £300): Rusty Zip.

3 Embroidered satin bag $27.99: Flip.

4 Candle lamp £5: Damona.

5 Let’s 60 USA Guide £2.99: Publisher's Clearance Ltd.