Friday, 9 May 2014

Mittwoch: Humana VS Stiefelkombinat Berlin

Two vintage shops in Prenzlauer Berg. Three expat girls with a limited income. Two tonnes of second hand boots. Who will emerge victorious? There's only one way to find out...SHOP!

Stiefelkombinat Berlin

Stiefelkombinat Berlin lured us in with their six foot stack of beat-up suitcases and excellent selection of vintage roller skates. The shop itself is a joy to behold; their phenomenal selection of 1930's - 1990's gear is enough to send any vintage maven worth his or her salt into a delirious joy-frenzy, the walls are lined floor to ceiling with the largest offering of quality vintage boots I've ever set eyes on, and the haphazard, clutter-chic decor makes browsing for hidden gems a time-consuming but exciting pursuit.

However, Stiefelkombinat is a bit on the pricey side. Lower grade vintage pieces tend to start at the 18-25 Euro mark, whereas the higher grade pre-60's dresses and jumpsuits average out at around 65 Euro. Shoes are much the same; a pair of scuffed court heels will set you back around 35, and boots generally weigh in at around 75. Many of the items are deserving of their steep price tag, but I have a hunch that Steifelkombinat know the current value of the 'it's vintage, darling' brag and have chosen to exploit it. If you're prepared to invest in a quality piece, Stiefelkombinat should be one of your first choices. However, shelling out on a beaded 1960's mini would decimate our meagre internship allowance, so reluctantly we left empty-handed.

Eberswalder Strasse 22, Prenzlauer Berg, Berlin


Our next port of call was Humana, which has a couple of other, larger second hand outlets across the city. It seems to be the Berlin version of Oxfam, and having seen precious few charity shops during my time here I was immediately sucked through it's doors by the familiar sight of jam packed rails and bargain bins full of headscarves.

The shop floor may not be as aesthetically pleasing as Stiefelkombinat, but Humana makes up for it's lack of eye candy with it's ridiculously low prices. A good quality second hand skirt or blouse will set you back between 6-14 Euro, whereas a 70's maxi dress clocks in at around 28. The shoe selection is pitiful compared with Stiefelkombinat's wall-to-wall boot fiesta, but the hefty selection of cheap as chips mohair cardigans and jumpers more than makes up for the lacking footwear department.

Humana also have a five-storey second hand emporium on Frankfurter Allee in Friedrichshain, which is as insanely wonderful as it sounds. However, much of their stock is made up of the general charity shop fast fashion fodder - yes, it's cheap and yes, you will no doubt find yourself a killer bargain, but you'll need to set aside enough time to sort the quality wheat from the fast-fashion chaff. If you're looking to shop vintage without the fuss, make the trip to Prenzlauer Berg.

Eberswalder Strasse 27, Prenzlauer Berg, Berlin

Bis bald,
Betti Baudelaire xxx


  1. Wow, that German mannequin has more sass than me!! Hahaha. And oh me gee, SEQUINSSSS!!!! I can imagine us spending all day in these shops FairPlay!

    It's a shame that they've exploited the 'cool vintage' theme, hopefully there's a few items they haven't got round to changing the price tags ;) I definitely like the sound of the second store more! Let's go check it when I visit, yusss?

    Much love xxx

  2. YOU HAVE A NEW BLOG. AND YOU ARE IN BERLIN. Stawp it, you're so cool! I went to Berlin once and almost threw up because a German dude who thought I was American made me a bad kebab. True story. ANYWAY these look like badass shops. I haven't really gotten into thrifting yet, but there are some cool thrift shops around where I live. A girl on my instagram keeps going on about how she is "so good at thrifting". Is it a skill to be learnt? Or is it just luck? Anyway YAY you are blogging again! Wie geht es Ihnen! Schnitzel! Auf Wiedersehen!

    Kirsten |