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Wednesday, March 26, 2008

It's Always (Vintage) Fashion Week in St. Louis

Posted By on Wed, Mar 26, 2008 at 9:56 AM

In honor of St. Louis Fashion Week, I resolved to learn the method to what I previously could only characterize as fashion madness: the selection criteria wielded by the good folks behind the counter at that nexus of local fashion, Rag-O-Rama in the Delmar Loop.

So it was that one day last week I joined the nice folks at Rag-O-Rama, including assistant manager and clothing buyer Jenny Beausang, to watch as they cast judgment on what to buy and what to pass on.

I'm no fashion expert, which is to say I occasionally found their choices mystifying. Sure, seasons play a role (no Starter parkas in July, no jorts in December), but some decisions left me scratching my head.

When you submit your clothes for approval at Rag-O-Rama, you also lay your pride on the line. Walking out of that store with the same duds you went in with can be a lonely, shameful experience: "How could they not like your favorite pair of jeans or your sweet 1992 St. Louis Cardinals 100th anniversary T-shirt? WTF, bro?"

So I salute the bravery of the two Washington University students who agreed to have their wardrobes-for-sale scrutinized by the thread-watching eyes of Beausang.

Before we get started, a quick note: St. Louisans, be proud. We are sneaker savvy. Whether they be Nike Dunks, Air Jordans, old-school Reeboks or fresh Adidas, the employees at Rag-O-Rama know St. Louis is home to some selective sneaker hounds.

On the downside, don't try to bring in your stretched-out tank tops. (Would you buy them back?) Take that ish somewhere else.

To see what's in and what's out in vintage fashion, play along with the first installment of "Sell That Dress!"

-Nick Lucchesi

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