Vintage at Heart: Well-priced glamour and style in Studio City

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alisonfreebairnsmith90BY ALISON FREEBAIRN-SMITH

I have been a fan of vintage clothing since back in the 1970’s when I bought my bed jackets and faded Levis at Aardvark’s Odd Ark in Venice because it was one of the only places to buy vintage clothes, at the time.

Tiffany hand crochets these versatile flower pins. Photo: Karen Young

Tiffany hand crochets these versatile flower pins. Photo: Karen Young

In the 1980’s, when I became a collector, I frequented various vintage outlets in North Hollywood, on Melrose and in Santa Monica and made monthly sojourns to the Rose Bowl swap meet and anxiously awaited the annual Vintage Clothing Expo at the civic auditorium in Santa Monica where I would run into people like Daryl Hannah scouring the racks. All of that was before my daughter was born, when I could actually afford to spend a whole day shopping.

Now, when I’m in the mood to buy something pretty to wear, I rarely leave my own neighborhood. With my busy schedule there just isn’t time and traffic makes it impossible to get anywhere, quickly. That’s why I was thrilled to discover that one of the best vintage clothing stores around is right in the middle of my favorite shopping block in Studio City — Vintage at Heart.

Tiffany Neuman has owned a few popular stores on Tujunga over the years,  including Trellis and The Yard Garden

Tiffany Neuman has owned a few popular stores on Tujunga over the years, including Trellis and The Yarn Garden. Photo: Karen Young

Tiffany Neuman has graced Tujunga Village with several tasteful, reasonably-priced shops on the block of Tujunga Avenue just south of Moorpark, over the years. You may remember Trellis, which featured furnishings and some clothing, a la Shabby Chic (only at much more affordable prices) and The Yarn Garden, where her unique hand-knit sweaters made everyone want to learn how to knit.

According to Tiffany, she loves to create and “has to keep her hands moving” so she is always knitting, crocheting, painting, sewing or gluing something. After attending L.A. Trade Tech where she studied fashion design, Tiffany designed and manufactured all kinds of accessories for popular specialty and department stores including Nordstrom, Fred Segal, Judy’s and Contempo Casuals.

Her latest venture, Vintage at Heart, boasts equally stocked collections of vintage clothing for men and women at bargain prices guaranteed to satisfy even the most discriminating shopper as well as those with the tightest budget. In this economy, it’s a real blessing. Everything is stylish and flawless – whether it’s a suede jacket from the 1970’s or a peasant blouse from the 1960’s. Moreover, many of her pieces boast designer labels, such as Gary Graham, Jean Paul Gaultier, Moth, Dosa, Chan Luu. Tiffany has a real eye for current fashion trends and never skimps on quality.

Pick through a selection of men's clothing and western boots. Photo: Karen Young

Pick through a selection of men's clothing and western boots. Photo: Karen Young

Newly showcased in Vintage at Heart is an innovative, but lovely and practical line of clothing and jewelry called ACStudio9, another homegrown production from a local  resident who just happens to be Angela Cartwright, the actress/photographer/artist who once owned and operated her own retail store in Toluca Lake, Rubber Boots. You also may remember her from her roles in Make Room for Daddy, Lost in Space and The Sound of Music.

Tiffany hand picks clothes that look like they were plucked from a Hollywood movie wardrobe. Photo Karen Young

Tiffany hand picks clothes that look like they were plucked from a Hollywood movie wardrobe. Photo Karen Young

Angela and her creative partner, Connie Freedman, have invented a whole new fashion accessory somewhere between a scarf and a shawl, but with pockets. Each one comes with a brooch featuring hand-colored reproductions of Angela’s personal photographs like the ones she took in Austria at some of the locales where they filmed The Sound of Music. Necklaces frame her photos in sterling silver while some of the wraps have them printed right on the fabric. There are large pockets on most of the wraps so you can keep things like eyeglasses handy or just keep your hands warm.

Vintage jewelry. Photo: Karen Young

Vintage jewelry. Photo: Karen Young

At Vintage at Heart, you’ll find blouses ($10-30), skirts ($10-30), dresses ($15-75), hand-dyed slips ($15-25), vintage rock and roll and other T-shirts ($10) and cowboy boots ($25-65) hand-picked by Tiffany that look like they were plucked from a Hollywood movie wardrobe. You’ll also find choice pieces of furnishings including mirrors and chandeliers as well as a hip smattering of jewelry and accessories that would beckon much higher prices, elsewhere, including hand-crocheted flower pins, made by Tiffany herself ($15) that look great on anything, and artful antique bottles adorned with shells and other baubles. Even the fixtures are for sale!

Vintage at Heart also showcases a line of clothing and jewelry called ACStudio9 developed by partners Angela Cartwright and Connie Freedman. Photo: Courtesy Angela Cartwright

Vintage at Heart also showcases a line of clothing and jewelry called ACStudio9 developed by partners Angela Cartwright and Connie Freedman, who are wearing two of their creations. Photo: Courtesy Angela Cartwright

When word gets out, I won’t be a bit surprised if Hollywood’s fashion princes and princesses start heading over the hill to Studio City to pick up something to wear to their next soiree. Why pay a fortune when you can get so much more for your money at Vintage at Heart? On the one hand, I hesitate to tell people about Vintage at Heart for fear that my wardrobe will suffer if too many people find out about it. On the other hand, it’s just too good a secret to keep!

mmmm

Scarves, shawls and brooches (plaid and beige above) are among Cartwright's inventive designs. Photo: Karen Young

Angela Cartwright will be at Vintage at Heart to talk about her line of clothing and jewelry and to sign copies of her three art books at an open house on Saturday, November 21st, from 4 to 8 pm.

Vintage at Heart is located at 4377 Tujunga Ave., Studio City, CA, 91604

Alison Freebairn-Smith is a freelance writer/songwriter and second generation native Los Angelean who grew up in Sherman Oaks where she once owned her own boutique and currently resides in Valley Village.

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About Karen Young

Karen Young is the founder of My Daily Find.

  • http://www.jenevansgardner.com Jennifer

    I love vintage – thanks for sharing!

  • Betsy Ceder

    This is one of my favorite stores and I’m in agreement with you when you say you’re not sure if you should share but it’s just too good a secret to keep!

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