J'AIME SEPTEMBER 2020

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uy something that they know they can keep for

decades?”

Clothes from the 1980s and 90s are particularly

sought after at the moment, but Ginger’s own

personal preference is for pieces that are considerably

older than that.

She specialises in items spanning Victorian times to

the 1950s, both to wear herself and for her business.

“I find clothes from that time the most interesting,

although I do occasionally buy and sell later pieces.

If I am going to buy something that was made

later then it has to be good quality and not mass

produced.

“When the 1960s came along there was a move to

mass production for clothes and the quality changed

so much, so for me to delve into that era or later it

really has to be a good label that was well made.”

Clothes from Ginger’s era of choice weren’t designed

to be washed every day, so that’s a principle that

Ginger tries to live by with her own wardrobe.

“I don’t wear and then wash,” she says. “If it doesn’t

smell and it hasn’t got marks or stains on it then I

don’t wash it. I certainly don’t take my clothes off at

the end of the day and automatically drop them into

the laundry basket.

“I wash my knickers every day, but most other things

can be worn more than once before being washed.

It’s just not necessary to put them through the

washing machine so often.”

It was around eight years ago that Ginger’s love of

vintage clothes started to become a business rather

than a private passion.

She was working as a primary school teacher at

the time and started off by selling some of her own

wardrobe.

GINGER EWART, OF

GINGERMEGS VINTAGE

“To begin with it was nothing more than a hobby

really. Selling some of my own things was something

to do. Then I decided to try it as a business.

“I switched to doing supply teaching then woke up

one morning and decided that making a go of a

business selling clothes was what I really wanted to

do. Fortunately it worked.”

She opened a Gingermegs Vintage shop in the

Custard Factory, trading there for around six years

before moving the business to the Jewellery Quarter.

Gingermegs Vintage has survived during lockdown,

largely because Ginger already had a strong online

presence and didn’t have to start launching a new

business model in the middle of a global pandemic.

She sells items through her own website and also

through Etsy. The Jewellery Quarter shop has now

reopened, but by appointment only.

That’s not to say that things have been easy for

Ginger and her business in this strange new world we

are living in.

“At the beginning it was awful,” she says. “Then a

month into lockdown it seemed to go nearly back to

normal. Now things have started to quieten down a

little bit again.

“Some people just don’t have the disposable income

to spend at the moment and for others the future is

feeling uncertain.

“A majority of my customers are international, a lot

of them are in America, and they have been having

things very bad. It hasn’t helped that postage prices

have gone up too.

“I have to say that business is not as bad as I initially

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