Hidden away near the entrance of the Elgin Street car park, Wolf Vintage is not the easiest place to find. Even for a Carlton local such as myself, it took a while to discover what was being referred to when I heard people speak of "that sweet little vintage place off Lygon". Once tracked down, however, this store soon became a favourite of mine: a place to feed my vintage cravings between classes, without having to make a trip all the way to Brunswick Street.
Guarded by mannequins in wolf masks and fluttery dresses, this desolate gem has a touch of the surreal about it from the outset. Inside, the atmosphere is warm and relaxed, with rows upon rows of unique, printed dresses, in the styles of the 50s, 60s, and 70s. All of the dresses are vintage, or made from recycled vintage fabrics, and many of them come with cinched waists and prim, pretty collars.
For those who are sceptical of "girly" styles, there is also a good range of separates, mostly by local designers, on the other side of the store. These pieces are usually sophisticated, and made from quality fabrics, though are not always befitting of a student budget. At the back of the store, there is a pleasant little selection of leather goods- cowboy boots, jackets, and hand-carved bags-, silk scarves, and, in winter, mink fur hats (which, according to the owner, had been brought back from Paris).
The staff at Wolf are laidback and friendly, often reading or doing their assignments at the same time as they look after the quiet store. While happy to engage in conversation, they will always provide you with enough space to browse on your own, and an amiable farewell if you decide that nothing is to your taste that day (or within your means).
It is difficult to say how long you can expect any given item to stay on the shelf at Wolf. While some hang around for months, others are snapped up in a matter of days. I still mourn the loss of a lovely Japanese silk dress, with a leopard painted on the skirt, which I put off buying until after my payday. That said, however, there is always new stock to be consoled by.
Befriend Wolf Vintage on Facebook for updates on stock and sales.
Those prints are darling and am intrigued by this wolf theme... once I've finished trawling all the vintage stores in my own neighbourhood I may have to head over to yours and check this one out.
I feel for you and the loss of your silk dress - I did the same with this little woven clutch that had whittled handles. It was adorable but I thought, "Oh, I'll come back tomorrow and get it if I decide I love it over night." I decided I loved it but by then someone else was clutching my clutch... Have learned my lesson - put Mastercard to good use and spend immediately to save disappointment!