The White Rabbit’s hole to Fashion Wonderland has finally opened in Ghent–and it’s located behind Taphouse Grill.
“I wanted to create an alternative shopping experience for people interested in living a creative lifestyle and who want to create a wardrobe that goes along with that,” Kelsie says. She and her interns, Elisa Nyassom and Angel Graves, knew full well that starting a shop dedicated to selling vintage apparel would face its own unique set of challenges. Many vintage stores carry clothes so outdated that they trend along the lines of costume clothing rather than something the average classical clothing connoisseur would wear daily. Kelsie keeps her inventory relevant by devouring fashion blogs and stays inspired by textures and patterns she personally likes.
When acquiring new pieces, usually from estate sales, Kelsie remembers that she must consider a wide range of tastes and styles.
Kelsie explains, “I like to shop for different personalities: from ‘classic, easy, preppy vintage’ (A-line pencil skirt and dainty blouse) to ‘edgy girl’ (rock art necklaces and wild studded pumps) and everywhere in between.” Angel shares one of her favorite finds currently in the store: “The florals section is super cute and I believe that it’s a good signature collection at the store since Kelsie LOVES flowers and even studied the language of flowers.”
Although each member of this fashion team is below the age of 25, they bring plenty of know-how to the table. Both Kelsie and Angel, Creative Director DIY Girl, earned B.A.’s in Fine Arts and Angel dabbles in fashion blogging, herself. Elisa, the marketing intern, uses her technological skills to keep video and photos for the store edited and current. She also adds a little bit of an international flair and perspective to the store as she originally hails from Cameroon in Africa.
Kelsie proves that age has nothing to do with achieving one’s goals. “I want the shop to serve as an inspiration to girls who are interested in doing something on their own,” Kelsie says. “I hope that it gives a little extra boost to girls that need to see someone pave the way. You can do what you want as long as you have the passion and energy to do it and as long as you stay focused.”
What really makes With Lavender & Lace a perfect fit for Ghent is their ability to take their focus away from the bottom line and onto creating a vibrant community. “I really want the store to be a community headquarters,” Kelsie says, “I think that small creative ideas and collaboration are big themes for us.” With Lavender & Lace has already hosted two very successful events open to anyone and everyone–a late night tea party and a Sunday picnic brought supporters out from all over the 757. The ladies are hoping that sharing music, good eats, and great conversation will encourage people from all over the Seven Cities to feel at home.
So venture into With Lavender and Lace when you’re ready to add some whimsy to your wardrobe. Who knows–you may even see Ghent’s own “Alice” sitting behind the counter, strumming her guitar, helping people add a touch of heritage to their attire.
With Lavender & Lace is open Thursday-Sunday. For more check out their Facebook page.