1. What was your first vintage acquisition and where is it now?
I've always been an avid reader and bought my first collectible book by Goethe at 17. Sadly, it was water damaged during a move due to carelessness (not mine!) but today, my 1920s bookcase is filled with many other old books.
2. What was your favorite or best buy ever?
I've had so many terrific buying experiences it's hard to pick just one! I do fondly remember Amy, a lovely girl I met through Kijiji who contacted me to see if I was interested in her vintage. She lived a good distance away but as luck would have it she was driving friends to a concert nearby and offered to come to the house. She sounded quite young on the phone so I wasn't overly enthusiastic but instead she surprised me with her great taste and fun personality. She had a car trunk full and she went back home with only about five things and a lot of empty garment bags. It was a lot to list but over 90% sold producing the best results I've ever had with a single large lot.
3. What was your most unusual buying experience?
Lots of these too! One experience that stands out involved an infrequent vendor at the local market who invited me to her house to see more. I went to find she was the worst kind of hoarder and wanted to leave the same minute I arrived. I bought a few small items to be polite but we talked up a storm over coffee; she was quite knowledgeable about vintage. A few days later she called me to visit again. With dread, I picked a day to go back but this time she pulled out treasures like 1930s and 40s lingerie and some of the coolest accessories and all priced very reasonably. She said she hated most resellers because they're pushy and rude but I showed her respect so she gave me the chance to buy some of the good stuff. It was a twofold lesson; never assume and always be nice!
4. If you had a time machine which decade or year would you choose to go back to and bring back some clothing or jewelry?
I'm greedy and have to choose two decades. I'd go back to the 1920s and scoop all the diamond and platinum jewelry I could carry! I'd choose the 1930s for dresses and lingerie; love the bias cut garments of the decade.
5. What are your favorite, most helpful reference materials/sources?
The Vintage Fashion Guild's label and fabric resources have been a huge help. Vintage ads are an invaluable resource for dating and Hollywood movies from the the Silver Screen and Golden ages help with dating styles. For jewelry, I frequently refer to Julia C. Carroll's Collecting Costume Jewelry book series.
6. What item were you most tempted to keep that is available in your shop right now?
The 1940s black beaded hat box handbag. It's so sweet, I love whimsical vintage!
Here are more fine offerings below from Rita's shop -