Hester Fleming Vintage

Sourcing Vintage Treasures for the Modern Woman

Vintage Seeker

Vintage Style Seeker

Vintage Shopping Tips, Vintage Markets, Vintage JewelleryHester Fleming

Since launching my book, How to Buy Vintage Jewellery and Accessories, I’ve had a surge of new interest here, which has been great. With my eldest at school and my youngest in a good napping routine, I now have a bit more time to pour into this blog.

Every Tuesday, I’m aiming to publish an interview with a fellow vintage enthusiast. Doesn’t matter what type of vintage, could be music, could be furniture, could be fashion. Anything older than twenty years is good! This week, given I haven’t had time to look for someone to interview, I thought I’d introduce myself again and talk about my background.

Where did I grew up and who are my family?

I grew up in Melbourne, Australia. I have two younger siblings. A sister who’s a Chef and a brother who’s an Architect. My mum is a retired antique jewellery dealer and my dad, a retired scientist. I have an Arts Degree from Monash University and my professional working background is in Marketing. After university, I started off buying media at an advertising agency and then I moved into client side marketing and in-house creative account management.

What took me to London?

Melbourne was a good place to grow up and start my career, but at 25, I felt like there had to be more. So I packed up and bought a one way ticket to London. Once I arrived in February 2007, I finally felt like my life had lift off. I was completely taken with the energetic, cosmopolitan nature of London. Everyone was so young (or so it seemed). I made friends quickly. I found a job quickly. Finding somewhere permanent to live however, took a while. I lived in a great share house in Balham, South London, but the dreadful issue of mould eventually pushed me in the direction of moving in with my now husband!

What aspects of London did I enjoy the most?

I loved the ability to visit Europe on a whim. It seemed amazing to be so close to some of the greatest cities of the world, Paris, Rome etc etc.. I also really enjoyed Saturdays in London. Catching up with friends, browsing all the glorious food available at Borough Market, shopping in Covent Garden or exploring the antique shops in Camden Passage, Islington.

What lead me to starting my own vintage jewellery and accessories business?

Back in 2010, Vintage seemed to be turning into a buzz word of its own. I could see with the high turn over of new collection jewellery and accessories, it was a very competitive marketplace. So, given my family background in the antiques trade and understanding a little about how the trade works, I knew there was an opportunity to source vintage pieces. Mostly from the big antique flea events that happened around the UK. At that stage, I had a few years of working in b2b digital and print publishing, so I also had a few skills under my belt, to help build my own webshop.

To reach more customers, I also rented a showcase at Grays Antique Market Mews in Mayfair. However, with the global financial crisis in full swing, keeping that showcase was too expensive. So, I traded solely online, until I moved to New York and participated in a few of the Manhattan Vintage Clothing Shows and the Brooklyn Artist and Flea market in Williamsburg.

Today, I”m based in Sydney, Australia. I trade online and at vintage pop up events. You can follow me on Facebook and Instagram. You can also learn about how to source beautiful pieces of vintage jewellery and accessories, from my newly published book, How to Buy Vintage Jewellery and Accessories, available here.

Where would I like my vintage business to go?

I see such a great opportunity to keep showing everyone how well crafted pieces of the 20th century can fit so well into our lifestyle today. We also have a responsibility to help limit landfill. We’ve produced so much stuff over the years, it’s time to take stock! I’d also like to write more books about sourcing vintage in London, Paris, Melbourne and Sydney. Watch this space.