To appease my designer wants at realistic prices, I’m discovering the brilliance of high-end vintage stores in Pasadena. Where designer labels are sold for a fraction of the price. This is the second report in that series.
You can imagine my excitement when I discovered another of these chic shops right in Pasadena. Clothes Heaven, a quaint shop with gorgeous window displays, resides in the heart of Old Town Pasadena, just one block north of Colorado Boulevard.
Upon entry, I’m welcomed by a sweet worker who eagerly informs me of the store’s 30th anniversary. Impressive, since 30 years ago, Old Town Pasadena wasn’t the retail-driven, shopping and eatery center it is today. The owner, Larayne L. Brannon, however, has built a solid reputation along with a loyal following, whether her customers are buying clothes or selling their own. (Clothes Heaven buys designer pieces and gives 50% back to its seller.)
And I can see why. Designer labels fill the store, and I mean fill it. Everything from Chanel, Louis Vuitton, and Pucci to Dior, YSL, and Christian Louboutin decorates this vintage store’s walls. Manolo Blahnik and Jimmy Choo heels (both $198 for worn yet well maintained pairs) are only a hint of the type of designers you’ll find on their shoe rack against the back wall.
While designer pieces do run high, (we’re talking $798 for a Roberto Cavalli bird-print dress, $898 for a darling Chanel sweater with a black tulle neckline, and $898 for a small Louis Vuitton purse), the center of the store houses contemporary designers, such as Marc Jacob and BCBG, which range from under $100 to over $250. Hats, scarves, belts, and jewelry at all prices fill nooks wherever clothing isn’t. And the back room –which resembles a small walk-in closet — stores half-priced sale items.
As I wander through the labyrinth of clothing racks and shoe piles, I’m not surprised at this store’s lengthy history. Clothes Heaven is a mini-warehouse haven for high-end vintage pieces. And a rather accessible gateway to otherwise out-of-reach designers. So, watch out wallet. A purchase might be forthcoming.
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