About Pandora's Emporium
How it all began...
It all started on a random visit to Pollock when my (estranged) grandmother showed me her collection of shoes…high up by the picture rail on the walls of her bedroom in the beautiful old red sandstone Glasgow mansion flat - all the way round!!! Shoes of every description in pristine condition, still in their boxes, all Size 2 - my size at the time. She gave me a pair of 1950’s Black suede winkle picker ankle boots with an Astracan cuff……..it was around 1967 - I was 8 or 9 years old. I had only seen my Gran a few times….but right then she became my favourite person……and shoes have had a special place in my heart ever since!
I was an unusual ‘fashionista’ - going from the stay pressed’s and braces of Bay City Roller mania in my early teens, followed by Glam Rock snakeskin platform boots and huge flares…..to slick 40’s/50’s siren when I moved to London in the latter part of the 1970’s! I just loved vintage….before it really was a ‘thing’ - my favourite era’s have always been 40’s to 60’s - but anything colourful, quirky or fantastically ‘classic’ - well made, beautiful fabrics, great cuts….I’ve just always had a passion for eclectic and different clothing - eventually turning it into a full time business in 2007.
I had been selling internationally on line for a couple of years - really just a hobby - spending hours carousing the great Charity shops in and around my patch of London. Hampton Hill and Kingston were favourites….but having decided to move back to Scotland after over 30 years in London - I took the plunge and opened my very first shop!
Pandora’s Emporium is situated in the small Highland village of Brora - it was so different and off the wall for this part of the world that people came in from the beginning just to find out what it was??!!
Pandora's Emporium offers an eclectic mix of quality vintage, retro, classic and modern ‘with a twist’ pre loved clothing……mainly for women but with a few choice pieces of menswear - some quirky, hand made and unusual cards, gifts, artwork, jewellery, shoes, bags, hats…….plus a few collectables and antiques - all blend into the fantastic world of Pandora’s - often greeted with a gasp as new visitors enter the crazy world.
I’m a natural collector………have been since my teens - anything that makes me smile, or my heart sing - that’s the stuff I love!! Every item in Pandora’s is hand picked by me! I have become a wee beacon in the Highlands for Vintage lovers who make pilgrimages maybe once or twice a year to see what treasure lies within! Visitors come from all over the world - including a client from Japan!
Happily I also seem to be a ‘destination’ for a day out….groups of friends coming from Caithness or Inverness make a day of it - visiting the beach or getting a Sid’s (no 2 Indian restaurant in Scotland). The locals have been fantastic and if they are having a ‘clear out’ will often bring me their pre-loved favourite pieces or treasured family heirlooms to pass on to a new home.
It’s been an honour for almost the last 20 years, to re-purpose all kinds of wonderful items from the late 19th Century through to Mother of the Bride outfits, hand made kilts, couture gowns and hats, wedding dresses and a plethora of genuine vintage treasures……it brings such joy to be able to help someone feel fantastic in their own skin, wearing a unique outfit that just found it’s new owner!
After 13 years of running the shop and now Corona Virus turning everyone’s lives upside down - making it more difficult for me as a sole trader - I have decided to move to selling more ‘on-line’ - special items will be listed regularly on the website and a huge clearance sale is happening on Ebay
Thank you for taking time to read this blurb - if you have any questions please feel free to contact me - I am available to open the shop, by appointment and wearing face masks etc to comply with Government guidelines - but please do keep an eye on new listings……………don’t let that treasure get away!!