Tuesday, 27 April 2010

A Load of Cox & Baloney

This afternoon I paid a visit to Whiteladies Road to investigate a vintage boutique that has been on my brain for weeks. I first picked up a Cox & Baloney flyer at a launch party for Crack magazine, then when M and I went out for dinner with some friends last night the name cropped up again on a flyer for a vintage event at the Thali Cafe. Despite the boutique having been up and running for five months I never quite got round to visiting but I simply couldn't wait any longer so went to take a peek at the store, located inside Woolies Indoor Market.

This bizarre market used to be a Woolworths (RIP) so I was surprised that inside it was full of entrepreneurs selling everything from pies and coffee to soft furnishings and books. Wandering towards the back of the market a sign helpfully pointed me towards the stairs which took me to Cox & Baloney, and I felt like I had stumbled back in time.

Leather trunks, retro lampshades, tweed jackets and geometric 70s prints were just some of the gems I noticed as I ventured in to the boutique which had been lovingly decorated with kitch flower garlands and grand gold framed mirrors. I fell in love with some 'reworked' Laura Ashley dresses and a carpet bag but sensibly, perhaps somewhat too sensibly, left my credit card at home.

Co-owner and vintage enthusiast Joney Lyons mans the till

However this did give me the opportunity to chat to shop gal on duty and co-owner of Cox & Baloney, Joney Lyons, above. Joney was kind enough to fill be in on her transition from working in the production office of the BBC to running her own vintage empire, along with friend Amy Cox. Tired of working on projects such as Lark Rise To Candleford and Hollyoaks, the girls teamed up to create Cox & Baloney, a vintage boutique focused on recycling and "putting something back" into the community.

Cox & Baloney source many of their vintage finds locally, encouraging customers to bring in unwanted garments in exchange for a share of the profits. "People bring stuff in and sometimes we buy it from them or otherwise we'll split the profit, or give [the item] back if we can't sell it" says Joney, "this way locals get to make some money and recycle their old clothes".

As a customer comes up to the counter to pay for her black suede fringe boots I finger through the rail of vintage dresses and soak up the charming atmosphere. Soon Joney and I are back to chatting about fashion in general and how trends look to the past for inspiration. "Why go out and buy brand new when there are so many fantastic originals? We're giving granny clothes a new life again."

With all the vintage treasures on offer I'm inclined to agree - every piece in this boutique no doubt has a story behind it which is more than can be said for a brand new Topshop denim jacket. The clothes and accessories in Cox & Baloney are competitively priced, even cheaper than what some high street retailers charge so this hidden gem is worth checking out. The lovely ladies also attend regular vintage fairs such as Gimme Shelter at The Lanes and for a list of all upcoming events check out their Facebook page.

Trunks, suitcases and hat stands all help to display gorgeous vintage treasures

Table linens and cloths have been carefully folded and displayed

A display of shoes, fabric scraps and vintage buttons: swoon!

A deliciously tacky carpet bag - Mary Poppins and River Island would be proud...

Funky furniture creates a cosy space within which to rummage

Vintage dresses from the last four decades

The indoor market boasts more than just boutiques, including cafes, book stalls and a Pieminister!


  1. I keep spotting their flyers around and the name 'Cox and Baloney' has been mentioned in passing several times.....after seeing this, i've just popped up there and bought an amazing original 80's leather jacket!!

    Great review and thanks for filling us all in with the best (and secret) shops in town! ;)

    Katy, Redland.

  2. Thanks Katy, you're more than welcome! Glad you found a special something - I'm dying to go back for one of those Laura Ashley dresses...