Donny Swagger: Go Independent

We’ve become a society of speed. We want everything instantly and we cram as much as we can into our everyday lives. This has translated into our clothes. Trends come and go so fast and we want to keep up. The retail industry has followed suit, but not without consequences. Just think about how many people, in both developing countries and our own hometown, have suffered the effects of mass production.
This got us at Doncopolitan thinking about slow fashion ̶ about independent shops, vintage shops and clothes swaps, in particular. If you missed it, our first ever slow fashion clothes swap was a hit. I’ve never seen the quote, ‘One man’s trash is another man’s treasure’ ring so true. There is such an amazing feeling that comes with someone picking up something you once had and looking at it like you once did.
Finding something unique has always been a love of mine. I’m not a person who wants to look like everyone else. Slow fashion works for me a lot more than fast fashion. With this in mind, I have decided to use this edition of Donny Swagger to collate a list of some of Donny’s greatest independent shops for you stylish creatures.
What’s great about Keystone Vintage on Coopers Terrace is the breadth of knowledge owner, Jonathan Phillips, has about each and every piece. He can tell you the era, the style, the material, the use and occasionally even a story behind a piece. He has a website, an eBay store and a showroom where you can walk in or make an appointment, to view pieces selected on request.
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Zeus Vintage, a website based in Doncaster, has an amazing collection of one-off vintage designer pieces. We’re talking Westwood, McQueen, Valentino and Moschino, to name just a few. The site gives you information on the era, the material and the inspiration. The way these clothes are photographed on white mannequins and a white background, accentuating each piece, is haunting yet beautiful.
Wonderland Awaits has recently moved to just outside the Frenchgate Centre. The window is packed with an Alice in Wonderland-themed display that continues into the store. It’s crammed with all sorts of amazing garms. Irregular Choice shoes, tutu skirts, 50’s inspired tops and diner skirts, steam punk accessories, gothic outfits for both men and women ̶ the list goes on.
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Jade Clark is a swimwear designer based in Carcroft. She has a website and a Depop shop, both filled with her crazily colourful, super cool, often flamboyant pieces. Her prints are to die for and the designs range from classic and simple to little extra details, like a high-cut leg, ruffles, pom poms or built-in chokers.
Venezia Designs is situated on East Laith Gate, but transports you into a Venice-inspired couture showroom. With an abundance of champagne, chandeliers and the most spectacular jewellery and designer pieces, this place will make you feel like you’re worth a million Donny dollars.
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Sania’s on Highfield Road is where you can find the most beautiful saris and ethnic-style jewelry, straight off the catwalks of Pakistan and India. If you want to stand out from the crowd at any Christmas do, these stunning saris are the way to do it.
Tiffany on Cleveland Street is the perfect place for occasion wear. Think of all those Christmas parties, weddings and race days: beautiful dresses, jackets, skirts and tops in a range of colours, as well as hats and fascinators.
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Queenies Shoes on Askern Road in Bentley is one of the friendliest shops, with the most stunning pairs of boots, sandals, flats and heels, all at amazingly affordable prices.
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The atmosphere of the Shoe Room on Priory Walk is that of a hunter’s cabin. Bare brick wallpaper, cushy leather seating, wooden shelves and a stag skull make this leather shoe shop every bit the warm, welcoming luxury it feels to slip your feet into one of their boots. Newly opened by Richard and Michelle Smith of Shoe Healer fame, you’re sure to get a perfect fit and the best advice.
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If you’ve passed South Parade in Bawtry, you couldn’t possibly have missed Robinsons of Bawtry. A floor for men and a floor for women, this store is packed with top designer brands. Armani, Hugo Boss, Ralph Lauren, Mulberry, Moschino, Michael Kors, Versace and more. This is definitely a place to have a nosey in at this time of year.
N & A Jewellery on Great North Road is the ultimate shop when it comes to all things gold. Owner Adam Croft knows everything there is to know, whether that’s buying or selling. All the pieces are handmade so can be customised for anyone. Simply tell them what you want and they’ll do their best to make it.
Punch Menswear on Wood Street specialises in quality, stylish menswear, including incredible fit jeans, shirts and belts by Replay and Edwin, as well as some cool classic shirts and tees by Scotch & Soda, and suiting by Remus Uomo and Caliban.
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Bradley Knipe Menswear on High Street houses the very best in designer streetwear. Leading brands like Stone Island, Hugo Boss, Ted Baker, Lyle & Scott and Olymp provide you with cool jeans, tees, knitwear and jackets.
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So for 2018’s January sales, don’t automatically head for high street shops. Try a few independents instead. You’ll not only be helping the people of your town, but you’ll also get some amazing garms that you won’t see on every other local.


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