Tailored Talk Interview
The lovely Sam from Tailored Talk came in to snap up some pics and interview yours turely. Click read more to see the full interview below!
There is something special about finding a unique Vintage piece. Unlike brand new items, a Vintage piece has a story; a unique past that today’s mass produced lines of clothing and homewares simply can’t compete with. Every piece is different.
I love Vintage clothing because I know it will be one of a kind. I pride myself on having a unique sense of style that pays tribute to classic silhouettes while not being ‘old fashioned’. Vintage clothes have a better quality of make and material that you simply can not find in today’s fashion market unless you are willing to pay the price of a small car.
Designer Op Shop, in Lonsdale Street Braddon, brings you all the aspects of Vintage that any woman loves. Mother-Daughter duo Sharyn and Taylor have created a space where style and vintage are combined to suit any age. Their range of pre loved womenswear is wide, stocking sizes 6 through to 18. And the range isn’t just in the sizing. Designer Op Shop have a stunning selection of embellished evening wear, daytime dresses and silk shirts that ooze class and extravagance. And I haven’t even mentioned the jewellery and accessories!
I had the pleasure of meeting Taylor, the daughter in this amazing Mother-Daughter duo.
We’ve all walked into a store and been greeted by the same old ‘How can I help you?’, usually drawn out in length due to lack of enthusiasm or that they just looked at the clock and saw that it wasn’t yet time to close up shop. Either that, or a person’s tone is so fake and over-the-top that you instantly start planning your get away.
I think it was Taylor’s genuine passion for what she does and the pride that she must have (and should have!) for the gorgeous endeavour that is Designer Op Shop that made her approach to customer service so genuine, as were her answers to my interview questions:
What was the initial inspiration behind the creation of Designer Op Shop?
I grew up spending Friday nights and weekends at my mother’s previous boutique called Chin Chin for as long as I can remember. It was inevitable for me to want to do the same one-day. Mum and I both share a love for fashion but vintage is really what makes us melt.
We see the beauty in things that people no longer have a use for. We buy and resell for the purpose of recycling but also to fuel our creative vision of giving something beautiful a new life, where it can be appreciated. We also want to offer our clientele something unique to embrace their personal style, not only in fashion but home wares too.
Since its inception in 2012 what has been the highlight of your work at Designer Op Shop?
Back in 2013 we were lucky enough to travel to Paris and London for a buying trip that was truly incredible. It was beyond inspirational to see the outstanding amount of breath taking vintage throughout Europe.
An everyday highlight would have to be the incredible amount of compliments we receive at DOS. It continues to inspire us to keep striving for a bigger and better Designer Op Shop for our customers.
Many Op Shop items tell a story. Has there been a memorable story behind any of your pieces?
We do come across some beautiful stories and memories behind vintage pieces. Once I had a lovely elderly couple bring me a black and white photograph of them in their 20’s and she was wearing the dress she sold me. It was so special. We also have been given hand written receipts for things like vintage fur and bags that cost a fortune back in the day. People tell us where they wore things and how much they mean to them so it’s nice to be able to pass that on.
Designer Op Shop accepts clothing and pieces form the general public. How else do you source your items?
We go to private buying appointments after hours but we also go out hunting for things. We’re open 7 days a week which is restricting as there is just two of us working in the store but we do the best we can do find one of a kind pieces for our clientele. People come from all over Canberra and the surrounding areas to bring us their items for sale, many coming time and time again.
As a mother daughter duo do you find that you both gravitate toward different aspects of the retail process?
Definitely, mum has an incredible knowledge of the history behind some of our vintage home wares which I am learning as we go on. She has an unbelievable eye. As far as our social media, photo shoot campaigns and website, that is definitely more my forte. We’re both very into visual merchandising and pride ourselves in the way we present our items. When we are buying the clothing and accessories we have the interest in our customers in mind but we do tend to naturally gravitate to our respected age groups. Inevitably there is something for everyone.
Your favourite piece in the store at the moment?
It actually just sold last week but we had an incredible black silk and velvet Versace dress that retailed for over 2K.
Have there been any pieces that you’ve found during your scouting that haven’t made it to the Designer Op Shop floor? (have ended up at your home?!)
Guilty. Our home is filled with Designer Op Shop pieces, from marble coffee tables, vintage dressers to crystal and glassware. My wardrobe is at least 50% Designer Op Shop and it’s not small… but there is a lot of give and take, it’s a constant cycle!!
What’s ahead for the mother daughter duo of Designer Op Shop?
We’ve just passed our 4th Birthday, which was an exciting achievement for us. We have an online store in the works that is soon to be published. Our vision is to continue finding beautiful and unique pieces for our customers. Keep up to date on our DOS Newsletter and Instagram!
All words and images by Samantha - Tailored Talk.