When I created a mood board for my blog redesign last year, several photos I used throughout were shot by the photographer Yvette Inufio. Other than the fact that she is from my neck of the woods (South Florida), Yvette’s photos are whimsy and fancy, which is totally me – Maddie. Her photos are like a Disney movie of ‘The Beauty and The Beast’ type with lace, flowers, and tulle thrown into the mix. Almost like a Monet but in the photographic form. When I happened upon the shop Adored Vintage, my favorite photographer was now in the form of an online vintage shop. When I sparked up a conversation with the owner, Rodellee, my favorite photographer was now in the form of a person. Just like Yvette’s photos, Rodellee is whimsy and fancy with a touch of tulle and lace. What’s most striking about her is how every chord in her life – her personality, her studio, and her products – resonate the same aura and ambiance – Grace Kelly, beauty, and poise. Please welcome her as she answers some questions and gives us a peak into her world. Thank you Rodellee!
Q: Can you give a brief introduction of you and your shop, Adored Vintage?
A: Hello! My name is Rodellee (sounds like Natalie) and I am the vintage loving gal behind Adored Vintage. I live in sunny California where some of my favorite Hollywood icons once glittered and sparkled. Adored Vintage is an extension of everything I adore and love and beautiful vintage clothing that sparks historical interest. It’s vintage that is accessible and completely wearable for any modern gal.
Q: How did you get into selling vintage clothing?
A: I’ve always adored vintage clothing and styles. My Mom sewed a lot of my clothes when I was younger based on clothes from the 50s and the 60s. I never thought of selling vintage until I was a preschool dance teacher who spent most of my paycheck at thrift shops. Needless to say, my small closet started bursting at the seams. I have a background in web development and design so I thought of creating a little online store to help clear out my closet. And well, it’s grown from there.
Q: What is your process for acquiring vintage clothing?
A: It has to be love at first sight. I can look through racks of clothes and will leaf through it one by one. Something has to catch my eye before I’ll take an actual look. It’s a quick process especially at the flea markets where so many other buyers are looking to get what I’m getting.
Q: Do you ever wonder about the life of a garment before your acquired it?
A: ALL THE TIME! Oh my gosh, I have a small confession. I collect vintage photographs and I have a blank book where I glued these photos in and wrote little stories about the women in the photos. I pretty much do the same thing for vintage dresses – invent little stories about their previous lives.
Q: What is your favorite vintage find to date?
A: A vintage skirt from the 1940s and I actually do know the story behind it, which is why I adore it even more! The previous owner used to bring this skirt with her whenever she would travel in the late 1940s and into the 1950s. The pale yellow skirt has ACTUAL signatures (and some dates and addresses) of the people she would meet and even has little drawings. It is such an amazing piece of history that I am so happy to own.
Q: If your shop was a place or a person, who or what would it be?
A: Would it be silly to say me? Does that make me sound a bit egotistical no? But if my shop were a person, it would have to be me because everything I do for my vintage shop is truly from my heart and soul. All the vintage clothes I choose for the shop are all garments I would wear. The branding, the photography, the lookbook… everything really is a reflection of who I am. Awhile ago, I was going through some doubts about the direction of Adored Vintage and some voices around me were buzzing that I should make it appeal to more people by carrying pieces that I personally wouldn’t like but a lot of younger gals would like (cropped denim shorts, 80s new wave, 90s). I considered it (and stressed over it) but in the end, I knew I had to stay faithful to my brand because I knew I wanted to stand behind my vintage shop knowing that it’s genuine and authentic and it’s not trying to be anything that it isn’t.
(Maddie: Bravo! Bravo!!!)
Q: What’s on your Christmas list this year?
A: Oh goodness, I’m not sure. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve found that I want less and less. I think I would rather have experiences than actual things. I can’t say product specifics because most modern day products I really don’t pay much attention to. Let’s just say for Christmas I would love an antique or vintage treasure however small or large that might be.
And just for fun…
Q: Chiffon or tulle?
Q: Hard top or convertible?
A: My dream car is a hunter green MG Midget, so definitely convertible
Q: Statement jewelry or statement heels?
A: Statement heels. When I wear vintage jewelry it is very, very simple
Q: Rear Window or High Society (movies)?
A: Oh gosh, I feel kind of lame, but I don’t know what these mean :/
Q: Degas or Cezanne?
A: Cezanne. Despite me being a ballerina once upon a time, I prefer Paul Cezanne’s techniques and subjects more
Q: Dessert or appetizer?
Q: Friday, Saturday, or Sunday?
A: Sundays definitely. On Sundays, I usually spend my mornings at a flea market (there is a flea market every Sunday in California), go to a farmer’s market for fresh flowers, attend church with my beau, and the rest of the day is spent catching up with friends over a long lunch. It’s a day of rest since I work 6 days a week
Q: Hair up or hair down?
A: Depends on my mood. I love wearing my hair down in soft waves but my hair is nearly waist length so it’s mostly worn in a knot or bun
Q: Winter or summer?
A: Summer. Especially late summer going into fall. The sunsets are just beautiful in California during this time of year and it’s perfect dress and cardigan weather!