Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Ms Vintage And Yes That Is A Jacques Fath In The Window

The heart of Venice is meter-free Abbott Kinney where a plethora of restaurants, shops and galleries line the street in a melange of Victorian cottages and poured concrete live/work lofts. Low key, completely indie and vaguely inchoate but there are delights and surprises.

Ms Vintage is not just another shop with good windows and a mixed lot of designer things and just heaps of other things. Marsha Gleeman, one of the owners, knows everything about the designers; she, shades of me, tries every single piece on because that is the only way to "know".  She buys well, there are no almosts here, and takes a fair markup; many of her pieces are shockingly below other vintage houses and one quarter of the recent auction prices. That dotted strapless bouffant frock in the window? A Jacques Fath original and Marsha let me reverently look inside, at the hand stitching (this is Haute Couture, which can make you weep) and the marvel of a circle skirt with a flat hem, not one ripple. The black jacket with a Peter Pan collared white crisp blouse? Chanel and impeccable. The white (yes) Courrege dress in the back was perfect as was a Geoffrey Beene tunic and Romeo Gigli pieces from the runway that we'd once bought a version of for the store across the street.

Marsha is an entertainment lawyer; she works with her clients in the shop on its dark days. This is an important find; she is a fine shopkeeper and her ladies love her for that as well as her taste.

The black satin ribbons on the Romeo Gigli kitten heeled shoe are in perfect condition and they are my size.


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