HUNTINGTON, New York, Jan. 29
BY: Andrew Wroblewski
When Adriene Passannante, owner of Huntington village’s Lotus Vintage, first opened up shop in the village, she didn’t realize that she’d be doubling as an educator.
With Long Island shoppers mostly used to thrift shops or consignment stores, a vintage clothing store is something that people just don’t know much about, she said.
“There really aren’t a lot of vintage clothing stores, so we have a lot of people come in and ask, ‘What are you?’” the Bayville resident said. “We sell authentic vintage clothing…. Everything is 25 years and older so [it’s] from the 1920s up to the 1980s.”
Accessories, shoes, boots, dress hats, clothing, jewelry and more line the walls of the 12 West Carver St. shop. Everything has been hand-picked, cleaned – either dry-cleaned or hand washed – and, if need be, repaired. Women’s clothing is predominant, but Passannante has also made room for a “unisex” section that consists of denim, flannels, old band T-shirts and more.
“I’m constantly shopping,” Passannante said when asked how she maintains the store’s inventory.
“Constantly” may be a bit of an understatement, however, as Passannante not only operates the Huntington village store, but also two online stores as well: one at http://www.lotusvintage.com and an Etsy shop at “LotusvintageNY”.
“It’s a lot to keep up with, but it’s a lot of fun,” she said. “I’ve always been into vintage, ever since I was young. I loved the way the clothes were made, the designs, [etc.].”
About 10 years ago, Passannante said she opened up an online store on eBay and started selling clothes in between her shifts as a yoga instructor. Soon, eBay evolved into Etsy, which evolved into a storefront in Bayville and, eventually, to the full shop in Huntington village.
“Huntington is an amazing town,” Passannante said of her choice to open her business there. I just thought it was going to be a really good fit [since] I personally love Huntington.”
Just last summer, Huntington helped Passannante connect with a costume designer for the upcoming film, “Sisters,” which stars Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, is set to be released in December and just recently filmed in Huntington village and Dix Hills.
“This worked out really well because it was a period piece [that they were filming for] so she was specifically looking for a good amount of 1980s clothing,” Passannante said. “We sold her everything… I can’t wait to see Amy Poehler or Tiny Fey wearing my stuff. It’s going to be really cool.”
For now, Passannante and her crew can be found at Lotus Vintage where they’ll be dishing out knowledge on the vintage fashion scene, along with planning special events – such as live music in the shop – that Passannante hopes to start rolling out as soon as February.
Originally published: Long Islander News: Half Hollow Hills
(Thursday, Jan. 29, 2015; A11)