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O Mistress Mine, the East Village vintage shop that counted Madonna and Marc Jacobs among its customers, closed its doors yesterday after four decades in business, because it just couldn't afford the space anymore, said owner Wanda Hanlon. It follows Love Saves the Day and Poppet, which also fell victim to the recession in the past year.
Second-hand and inexpensive clothes may be trendy and gaining steam as the recession has customers looking for cheaper options, but The New York Post is reporting that the East Village vintage shops are falling like dominos in the face of still-high rents and decreasing sales. Some are shuttering their pricey doors and looking for less expensive real estate, and a lot are turning away from brick-and-mortar stores and relying on selling their collections by website.
Radford Brown, the owner of Cherry in the West Village, told The Post that many of the boutiques rely on selling vintage clothes to designers looking for inspiration, and now that the designers' coffers are running dry, it's hurting the vintage business, too. He said he plans to close Cherry's doors at the end of January and look around for a cheaper location. "It's just been a crappy year," Brown said, summing up everyone's feelings pretty succinctly.
· Threadbare in East Village [NY Post]