Dearest friends, compadres and lovers of all things vintage… the time is here. Our latest Vintage Loves holiday collection, Egyptian Revival, has graced us with its presence… one of a kind…. too good to pass up… timeless, historic, full of decades of true love. That’s what makes our love for vintage so deep…. a connection to the people of the past that felt drawn to this same piece. Oh… the parties this sequin vintage number must have attended! Keep the tradition rolling…. holiday parties are right around the corner, New Years eve is creeping up faster than any of us are willing to admit. Stacked and draped in shine and glitz, these pieces were truly love at first sight. Get your party started ladies… shop these looks here!
To get the scoop on how these incredible collections come to be, I sat down with our beautiful and ever inspiring Vintage Queen (ie: Buyer), Ali. Accompanied by images of our recent shoot, White Sands, which features some of the gorgeous items you’ll find in the collection, Ali’s thoughts below are sure to inspire… her life’s passions, her foray into vintage, and the inspiration behind Vintage Loves Holiday: Egyptian Revival. It’s all there. Thank you Ali, for doing what you do and keeping the good times alive.
Vintage Silver Bust Necklace (above)
First… how did you fall in love with vintage?
It was love at first sight! At twenty one, I went to work for Ralph Lauren as the assistant vintage buyer for the Double RL label. After ten amazing years there, I set out to create a new vintage business with Free People. I’m obsessed with my job. I’m obsessed with the people I work with. Every day is filled with fun.
How long have you been finding the pieces that everyone else wishes they could find?
Vintage Loves represents my life’s work as a collector. After RL, I’ve had four successful years of Vintage Loves at Free People and will continue to grow and evolve to keep our customer inspired.
When was the seed planted? Did you thrift as a girl? Maybe have a love of mom’s clothes?
I’m still wearing the same clothes from when I was 16. I don’t let go of much. Everyone would copy me when I was young — very flattering to lead with good ideas. How I dressed was my form of self-expression. It still is today.
Your greatest find of all time?
I’ve been collecting my entire life, so it’s hard to say. My home is an archive of my personal collection.
What was the inspiration behind this collection?
I was trying to search for something different and inspiring for our customers. I found myself drawn to what the Free People designers were working on. I went searching for art deco-esque geometric patterns and embroideries, Grecian inspired draping, back cutout details, and accessories with touches of metallic.
What’s different about buying for holiday?
Holiday is fun. This year we have everything from candlesticks to rock posters. I think the collection of rock posters is my favorite.
Your favorite piece in the collection? How would you wear it?
The gold metal mesh t-shirt. I would wear it with bell bottom vintage jeans, layered beneath overalls and paired with heels, or with a pair of high-waisted pants.
If this collection were a record,what would it be?
The Bangles “Walk Like an Egyptian” … definitely new wave ’80s.
Greatest challenges in your job?
I feel like I could go out looking for something and the supply is just not there, because the demand is too high. So I have to buy things when I see them, I can’t afford to miss an opportunity. That’s why I’m always working.
Is finding the right piece for the right customer and hearing them brag about how amazing that piece is, and how happy they are.
Buying new vs. used?
I think technology is AMAZING now-a-days. It’s getting harder to distinguish the difference between old and new.
How often do you think of the stories that different garments tell?
I like to think that everything has a story — something that you can remember a person by, or an experience. I think that’s why I hold onto things for so long.
Love to you Ali…. you rock our vintage lovin’ souls.
Photos by Rus Anson
HMU: Stacy Tan
Models: Delila @ Next & Karol @ Next