My Secret London: The Old Bookshop

Located on a residential street in Enfield, The Old Bookshop, isn’t your typical fashion destination. But then fashion and typical don’t often go together.

The Old Bookshop, owned and run by Felicity Warnes, is a fashion bookshop which has been specialising in costume and fashion books and ephemera for 42 years.

The shop is home to more than 20,000 books and magazines – many of which are out of print and hard to come by.

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There are not many fashion-specific book shops left these days, but this is a real treasure trove of titles to explore –ranging from lace-making to costume, embroidery to lingerie – you could easily spend a whole day browsing the shelves.

Although almost everything on the shelves is on sale, Felcity’s collection of Vogue, spanning a number of bookcases, is something she keeps for herself!

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However, the magazines can be explored for research purposes, along with many other original magazines from back to the 20’s, as well as all the books. There is a desk upstairs where students can research and find inspiration at their own leisure.

Felicity has used her specialist knowledge to create her own book, entitled ‘Nineteenth-Century Women’s Fashion’.

In the book, Felicity follows high-style couture trends over a 100-year period from 1800 to 1900, as illustrated in 372 colour photographs of original, hand-coloured fashion plates from her private collection.

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If you’d like to find out more about The Old Bookshop, you can browse the online catalogue of approximately 2,500 books at www.fjwarnes.co.uk.

Felicity also sells books through her daughter’s vintage shop, St Cyr Vintage in Camden, North London, as well as a select few fairs throughout the year.

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2 Comments

  1. Trisha Scott February 8, 2018 / 2:29 pm

    Hi – I’m trying to trace a book and wondered if you could help me? It’s by Alan Weller called ‘Teddy Bears Clip Art for Machine Embroidery’. It was published by Dover Publications in 2012 and reprinted in 2016. No copies are available on Amazon, Abe Books, eBay or other sites. And the ‘download’ ebook sites, although claiming to have it, do not do so.
    I would be very grateful if you let me know if you have a copy that I could buy.
    Many thanks for your help.
    Kind regards
    Trisha Scott

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