Retro punk kitsch: an interview with Vintage MRKT

What eras or decades are your favorite, to shop for and/or go with your shop ethos? 

Jenny: Okay this is hard because it’s like I’m inspired by every decade in some form! I love tight fitting silhouettes from the 60s and 70s, mom jeans and midi skirts from the 90s. But grunge fashion is probably my favorite; dark colors, ripped denim, loose tees with Docs all day for for me. That’s the thing about our shop: we love that weird retro stuff from all eras.

V: It really depends on what we find. You’ll find more designer in LA and other big cities. And you will find Western and older pieces in Arizona and New Mexico in antique and thrift shops, or from estate sales and family members passing them on and so forth. For me, 50s and 60s rockabilly are big influences. I love that era, the music and style. It definitely plays a part in our shop and I say: if it’s something I would wear, than it’s in our shop.

“My rule is don’t pass up a great treasure: you have to look at everything…”

Jenny in all vintage everything

This is will be tough one, but what is your favorite piece in the shop?

V: Well we don’t have it anymore, so it clearly sold. It was a oversized fit Moschino Teddy Bear graphic tee from a few seasons ago. We had the pleasure of selling it to one of our friends. Now, the new favorite piece that we DO have (for the time being) is from Pleasures a few seasons ago as well. It’s dead stock, so it probably won’t be remade. It’s a lightning Jesus t-shirt, which I thought about keeping for myself. Of course we’re tempted to keep a few, but we filter in and out a lot of different items in the way of band tees, Simpsons and other cartoon merchandise.

Jenny: I feel like a mother having to choose her favorite kid, (ha!) but anyway, we have a CBGB lined crew neck tee with sleeves that is worn to perfection. I’ve thought about keeping it for myself. V and I have to discipline ourselves to not keep almost everything we find. We used to have this shirt, always on display at our popups, and an older lady that lived the punk scene in her youth complimented us on that one. 🙂

What do you look for in a brand that would determine it a positive addition to your inventory?

V: What they stand for. Are they a respected company? Are they doing their part? Representation in the LGBQT community, supporting sustainable action and eco-friendliness. That’s just off the top of my head while we’re looking for merchandise. Otherwise I would dive deeper and research brands more in depth before promoting them in the shop.

Jenny: I would say classic brands that are known by skaters, music lovers, artists… but overall I go on intuition my first reaction to items: “Wow! this is so cool, someone will appreciate it.” V is the expert with brand recognition and knowing which items or brands oversaturate the market. I make every decision of my life with my heart. Its hard to let go of items sometimes, because we’ve got all the cute hookups.

What are the most popular items that keep your customers returning for more?

V: Graphic tees. They’re pretty unisex. Thats something we always have an abundance of. You know you can’t be selling heavy denim in the middle of summer in Vegas, nor shorts in the middle of winter. It’s kind of a trade off; same with suit jackets and leather, not everyone wants those items year around. So yeah, definitely t-shirts.

Jenny: So, my partner is better that this than I am, haha. She is so good at her craft that she knows trends before they hit Las Vegas. I admire that so much. But to answer the question, we both are always on the hunt for dope graphic tees. The more worn in the better. The same goes for denim too; denim is a must. Once you find the perfect pair of denim, jeans and denim jacket, it’s game over. You’ve won the game.

Jenny in some denim flair at Vesta Coffee in the Arts District, Las Vegas

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