WAYWARD COLLECTION

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Hi Haley, tell us a lit bit about yourself

I grew up in Lancaster, Pennsylvania and went to college in New York, studying English and Creative writing at NYU. From there, I went to San Francisco and lived there for 7 years before coming back to the East Coast to start my business. I worked in book publishing for most of my relatively short "working for others" career. I always felt, at my core, I was doing the wrong thing until I started Wayward Collection. And after taking the leap into self-employment, so many of my insecurities about who I was and where I was going kind of fell away--I'm good at this! I have other worries that plague me now because that's my nature, but the existential dread of my 20s is gone!

I live in Philadelphia with my husband, Ryan, and our small and very bad dog, Susan! We run Wayward out of a Showroom/Studio in the Kensington neighborhood in Philadelphia. We buy vintage all over the country and sell online and at shows and events up and down the East Coast.

 
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Tell us about your first experience with vintage

Well, my parents are antiques dealers--though they don't do clothing--and they were always friends with vintage clothing sellers, many of whom are still in the business, probably because my mom has always been such a fashion plate. So when I was a kid I was wearing 30s gowns for dress up and Edwardian lawn dresses at Easter, baby Navajo jewerly, little 70s Levi's jackets....I distinctly remember my favorite "dress-up dress" being a 30s velvet gown in royal purple with long pointed sleeves. I started thrifting in middle school because I was obsessed with fashion and I already kind of knew that everything I saw in Vogue could at least be approximated with vintage/used clothing just because I had so much exposure to vintage already and saw a lot of people in my life wearing it. I actually started selling my thrift finds on eBay when I was 14 and in my first listing, my dad thought I was such a genius because I wrote that a 1960s bouclé skirt suit was "SOOOO Marc Jacobs." It sold right away!

 
 

What is the most amazing vintage treasure that you've ever had come across your shop?

 

That's a hard one! I always love to find antique and vintage Japanese and Chinese garments, like pajamas, souvenir jackets, WWII souvenir lingerie...all that good stuff. A 1950s horsehide motorcycle jacket with a very outsider-y pin-up girl painting on the back was one of my all time favorites. OH! I know--one of my favorite pieces ever actually belongs to my friend, and she wears it a lot. It's a 1950s indigo and white cotton/linen robe with this fabulous Gaugin-style nude woman motif--we think it was made for a Gentleman's club. It was/is sublime and I'm glad someone I know has it just in case I have to buy it back some day....

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What are some pieces that you just CAN'T let go of?

 

I lucked into an amazing collection of early 1970s Glam Rock Marc Bolan/David Bowie-worthy pieces from the London boutique scene last year and sold pretty much all of it, but I still have a crazy rare Mr. Freedom Mickey Mouse t-shirt that is kind of priceless.

I am too afraid to sell it because I tend to lose my nerve on those high ticket items and I'm sure I'll never find one again. I also have an 80s polka dot Christian Lacroix silk wrap dress that I got at a Housing Works Warehouse sale in college and it has always been my lucky dress. I even wore it on my first date with my husband.

 
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What is your favorite look or era?

 

I love the 1970s--the glam, louche silhouettes and drapey materials and then the sporty, body-conscious side of it as well. Everyone looked good in the 70s. But I also love the 1930s, probably because I love the 70s so much--beach pajamas, lounge sets, silk palazzos pants, bias cut dresses, dramatic sleeves....divine.

What is one vintage look that you just can't pull off?

I actually kind of like the super 90s club kid look that is everywhere right now but I don't feel like I could ever get it right. I'm too much of a goodie goodie...I will wear a turtleneck to the club. A tight one, but still... I'm that girl.


 

 

Tell us, what part of the process do you love most?

 

The best part is traveling and hunting for stuff. I love to shop, and this job 100% scratches that itch. I barely buy anything for myself anymore (except for skincare products!). I also really really love styling for my web shop. I hope that I can pursue that more seriously in the future. Hire me for you next photoshoot, people! 

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Wayward Collection Vintage Studio

Any passions outside of selling vintage?

I'm sad to say, this job is all consuming for me so I don't have many hobbies or even things that I do that don't involve work, but I would like to get more serious about my political involvement--I spend 70% of my waking hours thinking about the business and the other 30% worrying about the latest injustice meted out by the powers that be. There are so many issues that I feel drawn to, and I definitely need to pick one and run with it. I also REALLY love to eat good food and drink martinis....like I know everyone says that, but I really do like to eat :D

 
 

THE SHOP LIST

Shopping vintage is a LIFESTYLE choice, a SUSTAINABLE STYLE SOLUTION.

We are supporters of all the retailers who do the work to save these amazing pieces, and offer them back to those who appreciate them