Searching though a charity shops, vintage shops, second hand stores, garage sales, flea markets, estate sales, thrift stores, rummage sales and consignment shops for unique finds is extremely fun, but also extremely time consuming.
Luckily, sites like Twitch Vintage do the ‘dirty work’ for us AND put it online, meaning those of us trudging thru a 9-5'er, or living somewhere with limited access to vintage wonders, can top up our wardrobe during our lunch hour without having to pry our butts off our beloved office chairs.
Run by an effortlessly stylish Floridian named Robyn, the Twitch Vintage blog features a combination of inspirational images and fantastically photographed outfit pics from Robyn’s Twitch Vintage eBay shop, which is updated with fashionable, one of a kind pieces every Thursday.
I caught up with Robyn ‘Twitch’ Sears to find out more about her blog, her eBay shop and the fashionista behind it all...
When did you first launch your blog and online shop?
I launched the eBay shop back in 2006 during college. It was just for fun and extra cash, but quickly became something I wanted to do full time. I didn't actually start the blog until January 1st 2010. I started it to promote the shop, and to connect with people who had personal styles I admired.
What’s behind the name of Twitch Vintage?
Twitch is a nickname. I scrunch up my nose like Samantha from bewitched A LOT, and it has just stuck with me.
Do you have a background in fashion?
Not at all. Looking back I think studying something fashion, photography, or programming related in college would have been more fun but I never even considered them as majors until after the fact.
What did you study in College?
Statistics and Mathematics. I ended up receiving a BA in Statistics from The University of Florida. (Nerd alert!)
When did you first discover Vintage clothing?
My first pieces of vintage were vintage T shirts (preferably child sized) that I wore with skirts back as a college freshman. It just escalated into an addiction from there.
What made you decide to sell Vintage clothing online?
I saw another online shop, and thought it was a brilliant idea. Then I researched it for 6 months, built a budget, bought stock and supplies, and just started. It was kind of a disaster at first, but I learned on the go. If I had needed to make a living off it right away I probably would have starved.
What does an average week look like for you?
I blog and ship items six days a week. Shoot vintage (modeling/photographing/editing) two days a week. Sew two days a week. Laundry once a week. Shop once/twice a week. I usually take Saturdays off, but will often work through it if I fall behind. My boyfriend is pretty good about making me take time off if I try that though.
Where do you source your clothing from?
I will go anywhere I think I can find vintage. Garage sales, flea markets, estate sales, thrift stores, rummage sales, etc. Thrift stores are my bread and butter though. I storm through them like a tornado, and I'm pretty sure I look ridiculous. I just don't have the patience to go through the racks piece by piece.
You seem to be a bit of a style chameleon, how would you describe your personal style?
I will honestly wear anything that is vintage and near my size. I tend to prefer pretty 70s pieces and high waisted nerdy 80s looks. I am currently seeking a happy medium between the two.
What are your favourite blogs for style inspiration?
I read WAY too many blogs to list them all, but here are a few of my top picks:
Coury from http://fancytreehouse.blogspot.com/ is beyond inspirational, Amanda from http://offofbroadwayblog.blogspot.com/ has that "I kind of want to be her best friend" style appeal, and Sarah of http://sarahlovesdrawing.blogspot.com/ is my newest style crush.
Who are your celebrity style icons?
I'm all over the place. Julie Christie, Alexa Chung, Jane Birkin, Marianne Faithfull, either Olsen, Michelle Phillips, Kate Hudson sometimes, Jenny Lewis.
Your Twitch Vintage ebay store has so many lovely pieces; do you ever wish you could keep them all?
Yes, but I am pretty hardcore about letting things go. One of the only rules I gave myself when I started the shop was to never fall in love with my merchandise. Within a week of buying something it is either on sale or packed away for the next season. Usually by the time I realize how heartbreaking it will be to let go of a piece, I am shipping it off. No looking back.
Blogging is a fairly new phenomenon, when you were little, is this along the lines of what you would have imagined for yourself as a career?
I wanted to be a scientist as a kid. I wasn't sure exactly what that meant, but in my tiny child mind it involved a lab coat and beakers full of colorful liquids. I can definitely say that blogging or writing in general was never even an option I considered. I hated writing as a kid/teen/20something. It's probably the reason I put off starting a blog for so long.
You are very supportive of new bloggers, what do you tend to look for when searching for new blogs to follow?
I still consider myself a new blogger I guess. I read at about 50 new blogs a week. Things that catch my attention are funny, smiling, and uniquely styled bloggers. I cannot stress how much humor makes me fall for a blog. In a sea of serious model faces and talking about new shoes, a funny title is enough to make you stand out. Instant turn offs however are blogs that play music, putting yourself down, and ridiculously wordy posts (I have the attention span of a circus monkey, so don't make me read an essay.)
What are your favourite high street shops?
Forever 21, TJ Maxx, and Zara. They are great for finding pieces to mix with vintage.
What do you see in the future for Twitch Vintage? A store front? A dedicated website? ....
I definitely want to keep it going, but there will definitely be a limit to how long I can stay on eBay. I have no desire to own a real life brick and mortar shop, but my own website is kind of the dream. Fingers crossed.
You have some amazing outfit photography, are you a self timer gal or do you have a photographer friends who help out?
Thank you. I shoot all of my photos for both the blog and shop myself via wireless remote. (Camera: Canon Rebel XTI)
With the revolving clothing you have coming in and out of your life, what are the top 10 staples that are your must haves for outfit creation?
V neck T shirts (I must own 10 colors), black mini skirt, black high waisted shorts, ankle boots, clogs, draped cream colored blouse, gray cardigan, maxi skirt, T shirt dress, oxfords.
Twitch Vintage Blog: www.twitchvintage.blogspot.com
Twitch Vintage eBay Shop: http://stores.ebay.co.uk/TwitchVintage