- Credit: Archant
Passionate about beautiful vintage wear and classic second-hand designer pieces, Caroline Allen decided to open a new boutique selling affordable high-end clothes and accessories, designed to last a lifetime. She opened her first shop in Fakenham six years ago, but decided to open Turnaround in the newly developed Hoppers Yard in Holt and with everything from Chanel, Dolce and Gabbanna and vintage Mulberry bags to be discovered, it is a Mecca for fashion lovers.
What inspired you to open a boutique? I have worked in the fashion industry since I was a teenager. About six years ago, I decided to start my own business selling high end, good quality second-hand clothes and accessories as my first love has always been classic vintage clothes. It can be hard parting with some of the things I find and often I regret selling them. I sold a beautiful Yves Saint Laurent cream silk jacket to one of my regulars and have borrowed it back twice.
What’s Turnaround’s style? I am very particular about the clothes I stock and my shop is designed like a nice boutique. It is very relaxed and I want people to feel welcome, as if they are trying on things at home in their own bedrooms. I do a lot of evening wear and party wear but also beautiful cashmere, vintage handbags, dresses, jeans and classic labels like Jimmy Choo and Chanel, plus I stock some new leather bags and jewellery ranges.
What’s your bestseller? Second-hand handbags. Everyone is looking for a Chanel, but they don’t come in very often as they are kept in families and handed down. When we have them, they sell fast. We also sell a lot of vintage Mulberry bags and in the winter, lots of fur coats.
Which three pieces are essential buys from your current collection? Anything with lace is fantastic. With the Great Gatsby buzz, I would buy something with lots of sparkles, and finally get a good pair of jeans.
What is the price range? For a vintage Mulberry handbag, you are looking at £200-£300, dresses range from £45 to £300 and fur coats can cost up to £1,000, but we also sell sparkly earrings for £10 and scarves for £15.
Which other Norfolk boutiques do you love and why? I really admire Francois Bouttier in Holt, mainly for his amazing window displays and his eclectic collection of clothes, and I also love Morston Town and Country, especially their gorgeous dog, Reg.
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What are your other interests? I love animals and walking. I also love going to vintage fairs and once a year I try and go to India. I was brought up in the Far East so it feels like going home; I just love the whole area.
Turnaround, Hoppers Yard, 3 Bull Street, Holt, NR25 6HR; 01263 711393.
Open Monday to Saturday 10.30am to 4.30pm.