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Randolph Street Market ~ Chicago Antique Market ~ Indie Designer Market ~ Modern Vintage Chicago ~ Fashion, Jewelry, Flea Market, Antique Shows
Randolph Street Market ~ Chicago Antique Market ~ Indie Designer Market ~ Modern Vintage Chicago ~ Fashion, Jewelry, Flea Market, Antique Shows
A Fall Fashion Harvest: Modern Vintage Chicago Jewelry And Clothes Explosion October 2011

October is harvest month. A time to reap the benefits of weeks of hard work dedicated to cultivating something beautiful. So it is incredibly fitting that throngs of Chicagoans and fashion lovers from near and far flocked to Chicago’s Near West Side to experience the cornucopia of colors that is Modern Vintage Chicago (MVC). More than 70 vendors from fashion hubs as disparate as North Carolina and Santa Monica came together last weekend, bringing with them the cream of their crops: the best vintage apparel, accessories, and jewelry that they have to offer from such cannonical names as Chanel, Coach, Dior, and Pucci.

At the pre-show event on Friday night, local fashion bloggers stopped by to sip on cocktails and get a sneak peak of the goods.  The room was abuzz as vendors skillfully unpacked their wares, constructing displays that looked more like art installations than retail booths, while the sounds of classic rock reverberated in the background.

We caught up with Jessica, author of Bows & Sequins, a personal style blog, at the start of her treasure hunt.  A self-proclaimed glamour and glitzy girl, Jessica was on the lookout for a pair of Chanel earrings and something fur, and was excited about her chances of finding them. “I think [Modern Vintage Chicago] stands out because it is everywhere in one place; it’s a one stop shop. You don’t have to travel all over the city or out to the suburbs to different vintage shops to find this stuff. I haven’t been to anything like this in Chicago before.”

The next morning, as the coffee percolated and vendors awaited customers, eager shoppers gathered in the foyer of Plumber Hall to be some of the first to set their eyes on the smorgasbord of style that waited beyond the doors. When asked what they were looking to find, MVC first timers Becky and Jessica replied, “We don’t know, it’s our first time here. We are really just on an adventure.”  They had arrived on the crisp fall morning before the doors opened, hoping to get the best deals. “We thought we’d have to fight some people off!”

As the day wore on and the crowd of fashion hungry shoppers grew, it became clear that this was not an average vintage show. Just as each vintage piece is one-of-a-kind, MVC was proving to be a unique show – an amalgamation of vendors and merchandise that is not being reproduced anywhere else.

Vendors Lindsay Segal and Brielle Buchberg run the upscale consignment company, Luxury Garage Sale, whose customers that day had already included a few shoppers from as far away as New York. Lindsay and Brielle had brought with them the best representation of their vintage items, which they feel attract women from age 20 to 80 due to the increased popularity of vintage clothing in the past five years. “[Vintage is] all one-of-a-kind, unique pieces. You are getting something that no one else can ever get again, and it’s like owning a piece of time.” For them, MVC is “a great selection of high and low, all different dealers from around the country and all different aesthetics. It’s fun to come to a place where you can see Western wear but then also high design.”

Karyn Dethrow (pictured left) of Dethrose Vintage, one of the market’s most talked about vendors, described her business as “taking classic vintage pieces and wearing them in a modern way.” In her third MVC appearance, Karyn made a point of bringing something for everyone, with clothes spanning decades from the 30s to the early 80s and price tags covering an equally large spread. “I know that everyone’s prices are super flexible.  My lowest price is usually $10, and then I have a dress that’s $200 that’s a name brand 50s cocktail dress.” When asked for her take on the name Modern Vintage, she answered, “Classic pieces will never be out of style, so I think Modern Vintage is the perfect name for it.”

For lovers of plaid, rustic wear and everything tartan, Leslie Kane and her booth She Comes in Colors (pictured above) offers a lot of unusual, handmade items to pique the interest of shoppers looking to “find something [they] are never going to find anywhere else, ever.” According to Leslie, “this is not your grandma’s antique show. The emphasis is on wearable things and usable things, rather than things people collect.” In comparison to other shows she attends, Leslie remarked, “This market has the youngest, hippest crowd. This is a sophisticated crowd. It’s a very fashionable market.”

Style spies were also in attendance, taking pics of the weekend’s best dressed shoppers. One of the favorites, librarian and 40s and 50s vintage clothes aficionado Rose Schreier (pictured left), offered us a few thoughts on her experience at MVC. “This is the only [vintage market] that is a consistent, ongoing, monthly show, so I always make sure to come support it… Everyone is very willing to bargain, which is nice and they’ll help you if you are looking for something. It’s really a great experience through and through. The dealers come from pretty far away to participate in this show, and I appreciate that.”

In addition to the shoppers and vendors, resident style guru Ramsey Jay Prince was on hand to troll the market for the best finds and tag them with blue ribbons.

Ramsey also showed off a few of his favorite pieces on ABC7’s morning show and talked about why he loves Modern Vintage Chicago. “At Modern Vinatge Chicago you can definitely see things in everyone’s price point.” 

From everyone we talked to, we heard the same thing: this show is young, it’s hip, it’s high quality, and it’s unlike anything else.  Here are a few more of our favorite sound bites from some of our sought after vendors:

"[The show] seems to attract a very wide audience. People like it because it’s a destination, something you will do for a whole day. You’re not just stopping off for an hour, you know that you need to devote a better part of your weekend to get some good shopping in." – Brooke Costello, Tongue Tied

"I have the stuff you can’t find. People say, ‘I’ve only ever seen that in a book.’" – Blair Smith, Man in the Moon

"This market is an expression of recycle, reuse, repurpose. With the vintage that’s shown here, this is the height of it. For this particular market they bring out the really good stuff." - Leslie Kane, She Comes in Colors

"We attract young hipsters and 85-year-old fashionistas. Millinery is a very timeless accessory for anyone who appreciates really well made, handmade things." - Lisa Farrell, Ooh-La-La Couture Millinery

"Antique pieces are so much better than the new stuff that you have now. You can be so creative with it, and it’s so much fun to work with.  Each individual piece is so beautiful." – Jenni Holm, Jewels in Bloom

Well, it’s clear that Ramsey is right: "Vintage is here to stay."


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Marie JakuszSandi BermanJudy Ordonez
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Christina AndersonNicole JoyAshley Herrera
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Andrew NordstromJanelle O’MalleyShari Moncure
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Donna DixonAubrey Dagostino BJ Krivanek & Tim Edwards
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Marcia LaMontagneMaggie PosaMegan Gotz
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Redgi WoodsKimberly AllenWnynita Yancy
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Tim RocafortKatlin GnojekRumya Mirmira
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Adam ReynaMegan ElischerMichael Carey
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Donna PawwsWill BeckerConnie White
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Luis Rios Lauren BeamonJade Grange
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Lindsey SegalLisa PolitoGabriella Gallo
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Rose SchreierKaryn Dethhrow 
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