Friday, April 20, 2007

The Rage for Page

 New store caters to the rage for Page BY SARA CURETON A pinup legend's first-ever official boutique, Bettie Page Las Vegas, has made a home in the newly renamed Miracle Mile mall, inside the Aladdin Casino & Resort. The store caters to vintage-fashion and fine-art appetites alike. Fifties fashion on the sales rack acts as a mere sidekick to the decor: The boutique also serves as an exclusive gallery of paintings by renowned pinup artist Olivia DeBerardinis, who has painted Bettie Page since 1977. "I belong in Vegas," DeBerardinis said. Her Bettie-inspired paintings, popularized by monthly publication in Playboy magazine, were a natural addition, she opines. "The boutique stands out. It has an exotic-ness to it." Tatyana Khomyakova is co-owner, general manager, and lead designer of the dress and lingerie line of Bettie Page clothing inside the first Bettie Page boutique, located in the newly renamed Miracle Mile mall. "I was a model all my life but I never designed," Khomyakova said. "Now I am older, some things you don't have to 'learn,' it just comes from the heart." Since the doors opened last month, sales have far surpassed the mall's average. "It's one of the few stores that has fashion and art, and both are doing extremely well," said co-owner Jan Glaser. Due to the ongoing popularity of Bettie Page's style, there is no shortage of good help, she adds. "It's the easiest job in the world to hire for," Glaser said. "The people that work here want to be here."

The boutique owes success to a cultural icon who seems to become more popular with time. Each generation yields fans of Bettie Page style, from her blunt bangs to the big belts. The continuing fascination with Page recently yielded a Hollywood biopic, too: 2005's "The Notorious Bettie Page." "She is famous but she is also kind of mysterious," Khomyakova said, summarizing the Page mystique. "She is an angel and she is a little evil. It's appealing." scureton@lvbusiness.com | 871-3298 x394

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