Tuesday, October 11, 2011

CLOSET CONFIDENTIAL!: Playing Dress Up with Decades' Christos Garkinos & Cameron Silver

No matter your age, we all play dress up at some point in life. Whether we were channeling Sleeping Beauty in one of our mother's long, delicate dresses or pretending to be Pocahontas in her vintage pony skin boots, Sally and I still treasure those hours we spent transforming into the heroines from our favorite Disney films and Brothers Grimm books.

Getting Her Beauty Sleep: Dakota Fanning 
dressed in DIOR Fall 2006 for Vanity Fair

Today, we still love holding court in our closets just as much as we enjoy interpreting the style of our favorite, modern day "guardians of good taste" in our own unique way.

But if pillaging your closets' contents to dress your inner Grace (or Minka!) Kelly isn't your forte, don't fret. Help is on the way! For your next fashion epiphany, you need only know two names: Christos Garkinos and Cameron Silver.

Esquire magazine's "Sexiest Woman Alive" 
Minka Kelly dresses up by dressing way down

Famed for their exquisite taste and signature style, Christos and Cameron are the co-owners of Decades and Decadestwo.1, the nation's "top shops" for vintage and ├╝ber-luxe consignment clothing.

Sitting Pretty: Cameron Silver at Decades

So what is this creative duo doing when they aren't scouring the world for one-of-a-kind fashions, transforming clients with their icon-making clothing, (re)defining what's hip and hot around the country, or (Cameron Silver) being named one of the "25 Most Influential Names and Faces in Fashion" by Time magazine? Why hosting their third two-day, pop-up installment at Chicago's space519, on Saturday, October 15 and Sunday, October 16, of course!

Here, Decades' Christos Garkinos gives us the inside scoop on what we can expect and weighs in on everything from reality shows and jewelry collaborations to his personal picks for cold-weather dressing. 

Detroit native and Decadestwo.1's 
Christos Garkinos

Luxe File Chicago: Last April, vintage lovers, fashion bloggers, and the city’s top tastemakers flocked to Decades’ second pop-up shop event at space519 which featured a clever mash-up of fashionable must-haves - from Manolos and Louboutins to red carpet-ready designer dresses donated by some of Hollywood’s most revered leading ladies. What’s in store for shoppers at your next pop-up presentation? 

Christos Garkinos: We are bringing amazing winter wear, sexy cocktail dresses, and insane Chanel accessories. And on Sunday, our $150 shoe event and $50 Decades denim event will be a fashionista’s dream come true! Click HERE for a sneak peek.
LFC: You have a passion for collaboration and your latest venture with Miriam Haskell is no exception. What drew you to the luxe costume jewelry giant and tell us what is unique about the “Uptown/Downtown“ collection, which includes twenty-four pieces and was designed exclusively for Decades? 

Christos Garkinos: We have always loved and sold Miriam Haskell in our vintage boutique. With this collaboration, we were able to go into the archives and apply that special Decades touch to bring a sense of modernity to the line. The uptown/downtown feel lets the Decades girl adorn herself based on her look and it is quite reasonably priced, too. 

Miriam Haskell earrings for Decades

LFC: Although deeply entrenched in LA culture, Decades is familiar with the Midwest’s fashion mentality – conservative luxury. With that in mind, what stylish essentials would you recommend for a Chicago girl who wants to add some spice to her wardrobe this season? 

CG: I'm originally from Detroit, so I get the Midwest fashion mentality. From our winter collection, we are bringing coats that are chic, but also sturdy – those winter winds are brutal! We have great Rick Owens leather jackets, Prada coats, and for some spice – great Louboutin boots!

Warm things up this winter with Louboutin. 
We love this furry pair!
LFC: Most of us know Decades - the Hollywood-based luxury retailer that consigns vintage and modern designer duds from the closets of celebrities, stylists and fashion icons and sells everything up to 80% off retail – but few know how the company got started or the Garkinos/ Silver collaboration. Come out of the closet and catch us up Cliff Notes-style, please!
CG: Cameron started the vintage business in 1997 – he was a cabaret singer before then and would vintage shop in the different cities he performed. A mutual friend set us up on a blind date – it was complete disaster - but we got along very well as friends. In 1999, the vintage clients wanted to sell their more modern pieces, so Cameron and I went into business together. I had a retail background and thought that this would be a great opportu- nity. 
LFC: Bravo TV’s just-launched reality show, “Fashion Hunters”, gives us a behind-the-scenes look into the DIOR-drenched world of second-hand fashion. The savvy staffers of New York’s trendy thrift-store-cum-cult-clothing-emporium, Second Time Around, race around the city dressing their hip clientele while searching for buried treasure in the closets of the city’s most stylish. 

Design Dandy: Second Time Around's 
Wilson Payamps
This show has “Decades” written all over it! What would you do differently if Hollywood came calling?

CG: They have come a calling. You will just have to wait and see! 

Actress Cassie Scerbo at Decades Denim 
Launch Party, Beverly Hills, CA

LFC: Your website, Decadestwo.1, is a treasure trove of designer duds (we’re currently fixated on the heavenly Roberto Cavalli dress with gold metallic accents). Which is your favorite piece and which item(s) would you recommend we scoop up before they’re gone? 
CG: I’m a sucker for a Chanel necklace with Gripoix jewels. There is one on our site in green. It will be coming to Chicago. It’s fab!

Chain Gang: Chanel Gold Chain and 
Green Gripoix CC Logo Necklace

LFC: Your clients and friends are the Who’s Who of Hollywood – from Jessica Alba and Rose McGowan to Molly Sims and Rachel Zoe. Ba-na-nas! Who truly personifies the “Decades girl” and if you could pick anyone to dress head-to-toe, who would it be? 
CG: I think that someone like Marisa Tomei well personifies the Decades girl. She’s timeless, has innate style, and is willing to mix it up. Gaga. Because she needs us.

Gaga The Great: Pretty Monster Makeover?

LFC: Luxe File Chicago has dedicated its site to the “love of living luxuriously”. Finish this sentence, “When it comes to living luxuriously, always…” 
CG: "...be yourself." 

Christos Garkinos and Cameron Silver photo credit: XA, The Experiential Agency

Shoes photo credit: Kate Templin Stahl/PopSugar

Cassie Scerbo photo credit: Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

Posted by Kerry Shorr