A vintage heavy metal tee is something that every fashionista has hanging in his or her wardrobe. Some of the well-maintained, harder to find pieces - especially tour T-shirts - have been known to go for a few hundred US dollars a pop. However, in Hong Kong you can snag one without breaking the bank. While many people sport replicas, they pale in comparison to the real deal.
Also, many women may be put off by the fact that many authentic vintage tees come only in men's sizes. Luckily, you can have it altered by one of the many tailors around town. Go for something longer that can be taken in at the waist or nipped with a belt, converting it into a tunic or mini-dress.
Pair a tee with skinny jeans and a shrunken blazer for a look that is sophisticated with an edge. Or, tuck a tee into something high-waisted and look womanly but tough at the same time. Just keep in mind that you don't have to pick a tee that is black as they also come in other colours such as white, grey, purple, etc.
Men have it a little easier.
All they have to do is slip on a cool tee, a pair of jeans and some unusual trainers and they're good to go. Take a tip from these two guys I spotted walking around Stanley. Thomas Murphy (below, right) paired a vintage black Iron Maiden tee with slim grey trousers, purple trainers and pink vintage sunglasses. The pink sunglasses, in particular, are an unexpected addition to his ensemble and work because most guys wouldn't think of wearing the two together. Gavin (below, left), on the other hand, has paired his black vintage tee with a pair of vintage sporty Oakley sunglasses for a look that is also a nice mix of styles.
I've also seen some savvy men wearing heavy metal tees under suits and with trainers for a cool evening look.
So, where to shop? There are a few sources in Hong Kong where you can buy a tee for less than HK$300. In fact, if you pay more than HK$150, I'd be really surprised. Check out Midwest (Shop 53, Victoria Centre, North Point, tel: 2802 6886) where you can find loads of vintage tees that are organised by colour and size.
Another place to shop is Retrostone - a vintage chain with one store in Hong Kong (1/F, 304 Lockhart Road, Causeway Bay, tel: 2838 6419) and two in Kowloon. They have a smaller selection but the majority of their T-shirt stock features heavy metal acts.
If you're chasing a specific band T-shirt, try eBay (ebay.com). Be prepared to put up a fight though as rabid fans stalk the online auction site for anything commissioned by their favourite rockers.