The Big Sheff Clothes Fest celebrates independent retailers

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Last week The Leadmill brought together independent retailers from across the city for the first ever, ‘Big Sheff Clothes Fest’.

The event was organised by textiles student, Fiona Short, to showcase the thriving vintage scene in Sheffield.

She said, “Meeting people face to face is the best way to make connections. Even just making friendships, because it can be quite a lonely place being online and I think just seeing smiley faces talking about selling motivates you and sometimes you need that friendship group, that little trading circle that keeps you going.”

The Leadmill became host to some of the city’s biggest vintage retailers such as As If, Vulgar, Sugar Vintage and TVC.

As If Vintage

But not only did the event strive to highlight these thriving brands but it also shone a light on the young entrepreneurs behind these labels.

Sugar Vintage founder, Harry Talbot, was just 20 years old when he dropped out of Sheffield Hallam university and found himself in search of quick cash.

It was by chance that whilst on a Lads holiday Harry decided to purchase a few shirts for resale on Ebay, with this, Sugar Vintage was born.

Since then, his brand has grown, and he now makes a living by running his own vintage label.

Harry said, “It’s hard when you’re on your own but I want to push it as much as possible, vintage is massive at the minute and I want to make something of this.”

Being predominantly online, many retailers told us how easy it is to feel isolated.

Which is why events like the Big Sheff Clothes Fest, which bring brands away from their online platform, are necessary.

Event organiser, Fiona Short and retailers in attendance explain why events like this are important.

Words by Holly Harper

Flora and Katie are your fashion editors

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