NEW YORK — Resee.com, a luxury vintage e-commerce site, has launched a pop-up shop at Barneys New York‘s Madison Avenue flagship, which will operate for one month. The pop-up is located on the retailer’s fourth floor adjacent to designer ready-to-wear.
Cofounded in 2013 by Sofia Bernardin, a veteran of Vogue in the U.S. and Paris, and Sabrina Marshall, a fashion editor at Self Service and former freelance stylist for Chanel and Saint Laurent, Resee.com specializes in the best pieces from designers’ past collections. For example, key collections include Saint Laurent styles from the Sixties and Seventies, Azzedine Alaïa from the Eighties, Balenciaga by Nicolas Ghesquière and Nineties-era Helmut Lang.
Bernardin described the site as offering items shoppers wish they purchased or “the things that got away. We’re celebrating these moments in fashion that we think impact us and impact the industry in general: Phoebe Philo’s first collection for Céline or Demna Gvasalia’s work at Vetements. It’s about those unforgettable collections that changed the course of fashion yet still remain wearable, modern and relevant.”
Resee.com sources pieces mainly from private collectors around the world. “We scour the world. There are people like us, who love fashion and have collected it over the years,” Bernardin said. “They may not wear some things anymore. Do they want to sell it on a site that doesn’t know the products’ value? They love the value we’re bringing back to their pieces.”
And with vintage becoming a praiseworthy distinction rather than a synonym for “old,” there are generations of consumers who were too young to wear the styles when they were first issued, but appreciate the designs now.
“I loved early Nineties Prada, but couldn’t afford it because I was starting out in my career,” Bernardin said. “Social media has a vintage Vogue site. It’s all coming back.”
In addition to ready-to-wear, Reese.com sells Chanel haute couture jewelry and other costume jewelry collections, objects such as Hermès ashtrays and vintage magazines. “We got a bunch of Interview magazines from cofounder Andy Warhol’s heyday in the Seventies and Vogue Paris issues from the Seventies guest-edited by people like John Huston and Mikhail Baryshnikov.
“We find that people today are looking for individuality,” Bernardin said. “How do you stand out from everyone else?” The answer, she said, is having a special item to wear, or something unique in your home. “You’ve got a story to talk about. It could be a great vintage objet d’art like a Louis Vuitton trunk from the turn of the century.”
Bernardin said the popularity of a designer or fashion house ebbs and flows, depending on what’s happening in the culture. “Saint Laurent vintage is our bread and butter,” she said. “Things go in peaks and troughs. Now people are asking for Dior from the Galliano days. People are also calling and asking for Thierry Mugler. And they always want Gucci by Tom Ford. He revolutionized sensuality.”
Resee.com always strives for wearability. “With our collaboration for Barneys, you can take a Saint Laurent Lavaliere blouse from the Seventies and pair it with jeans you find today,” she said.