Just after the launch of outofuseberlin, we received a request to be part of the first concept store by H&M in Berlin. The idea of bringing local companies on board and building a kind of sharing location was very interesting for us from the beginning. Growing together was our biggest and most important aim. A large selection of our vintage beauties can be found at H&M Mitte Garten for almost a year now — it's crazy how fast time goes by. We are very happy to be able to present our products in such a beautiful location... the possibility to have a contact point for our customers, who can touch and try the vintage pieces live and in colour. The location is also suitable for simply being inspired and for exchanging ideas, which is amazing.
The love for treasures from past times has lasted for some years. The story that each piece tells us is very attractive and makes it really special. Emotions are triggered, memories are set free and dreams become reality. Music, art and photography inspire at the same time — groups like punks and hooligans are very interesting for fashion. Different times have their charm and make us dream. It is fun to dress according to your mood and to show your true self again and again but in different ways. Lightness comes only when you are free. That is what we try to be — free from all pretensions of what has to be beautiful and what not. We are often interested in unusual cuts or dramatic shapes and loud colours. Things that do not necessarily appear beautiful at first sight.
It is very important to us that the pieces are always in very good condition. However, even special pieces get their chance to have little defects, like missing a button. We take care of this and sew the pieces mostly at home. The special thing is what attracts us. Mostly only after the preparation of the products, you see their true beauty. The cleaning of the beautiful individual pieces is of course part of it. We are also interested in the inner workings, the composition of the clothes or the material the product is made of. The tag is a very important part, because it gives information about where the piece comes from and when it was made.
The question of which pieces we can give away or keep has become an everyday issue. We love our treasures and after the time and effort put into each piece, it is often even harder to give them away. There are also moments when it is love at first sight or even sometimes after the fourth or fifth inspection you can't get it out of your head. Nevertheless, we have made it our business to sell these beautiful unique pieces with all of the stories and emotions they bring with them.
Many of the beauties have of course found a home with us. We now have a large archive of designer vintage pieces from the past. From Hermès leather jackets to classic pumps by Chanel that we found in Italy, or soft silk shirts by Dior that Pat almost collects. We count many of these pieces among our favourite pieces in the wardrobe. It is our opinion that we would never give them away, no matter what happens. That sounds a little dramatic — when we say it while our hearts are beating faster.
To maintain your beautiful vintage pieces, you should pay attention to how old and used the material of the products is. Careful maintenance when washing is essential. The pieces should always be turned inside out. Make sure you hang the delicate pieces without staples and do not dry them in the sun to avoid discoloration. Silk for example needs a lot of attention. The natural material is dry and brittle after many years — it tears quickly. Protect your favourite things from moths, that's probably one of the most important points. Our wool and silk pieces are closed airtight. We check and move our wool jackets and blazers regularly and protect them with lavender from Pat's mother's garden.
We have found a management agency in Milan. As Milan is one of our favourite cities, we are more than happy about it. As soon as it is possible again to plan and implement Pop Up Stores in other countries, we are looking forward to going this way with new exciting partners. We are also looking for a small house in Bavaria — a place that will become our home. Cosy and quiet and our own.