Up Close and Personal: Jennifer Taylor
Styles come and go, but if you wait long enough, chances are your favorite fashions from decades past will become the trend once again. Vintage shopping is one way to keep up with resurrected styles while sticking to a limited budget. Deco to Disco Vintage opened in 1994, thanks to owner and vintage expert Jennifer Taylor. Here, she shares the reason for her passion, plus a few tips for finding the buy of a lifetime.
Why did you choose your profession? I’ve always been interested in old stuff. Old fabrics and styles really fascinate me.
How did you learn about vintage clothing? From Barbie ... I’m serious. But I read and study about vintage and go to shows and museums, etc.
Where do you find the items in your shop? Estates are the best place. Stuff still hanging in the closets from 50 years ago ... it’s amazing.
How can you tell whether an item is valuable? Style, age, workmanship, rarity and brand names are all factors.
What items from today do you think will be vintage valuables in the next 50 years? Iconic designs. Cost of an item also determines future value.
Why shop vintage? Better quality, fit, detailing and the “one-of-a-kind” appeal.
What is your cheap thrill? Scarves! I must own hundreds. A great way to change an outfit or make pieces work together.
What trends do you see coming back in style? I’m not that great as a forecaster ... look at the ’80s thing ... who would have thought?
What styles are timeless? A great piece of clothing that fits and that you love is always a classic.
Advice for vintage shoppers? Buy what fits or can be altered; clothes are for wearing. And accessories — you can never have too many.
Favorite piece of furniture? A mirrored art deco vanity we got out of the attic of an old oil mansion.
Vintage item you’re still looking for? There are a couple of pieces of Bakelite out there with my name on them.
Charity of choice? We try to support anyone local.
Favorite thing about Tulsa? Its history — the old neighborhoods and historic downtown buildings.
What magazines are always on your coffee table? Lucky, MSL, Gourmet, VFCJ (a trade publication).
Favorite piece of art? A Higgins mobile.
Describe your clothing style in three words. Funky, casual, vintage.
Favorite trend? Right now, boots, any style — ’80s flat, ’70s stacked heel, laced, suede, cowboy.
What’s your style advice for readers? Own a few pieces of vintage, one-of-a-kind items.
People will always notice and comment on them.
Biggest fashion blunder? I have to be careful — I tend to do vintage a little too costume-y.
Favorite piece of clothing? This winter it’s been my mouton jacket.
If you could do something else, what would it be? I’m not sure yet, but it will always involve vintage.
Favorite thing about your job? Trying to make my customers happy!
EDITOR’S Note: Shop while you can. Taylor plans to retire and close Deco to Disco Feb. 15.