On April 10th, Wink Vintage opened a new shop on SE Stark Street. The owners merged two successful online vintage businesses into their first physical store. Located at 7909 SE Stark Street, this collaboration from Jennifer Strom and Courtney Kimball provides a curated vintage store where anybody can find something they like.
Having taken over the recently vacated Union Rose space, the store only required minor updates before opening. Outside of painting walls and sanding the floors, the shop was in a usable condition. “They left it in good shape, so there wasn’t a lot of work to be done,” explained Strom. “[We] just adding our own flair,” added Kimball.
Although both are veterans of the vintage sales market, they had day jobs that provided additional income propr to opening this new shop. Kimball has worked for 20 years as a hairstylist and continues to see clients one day a week. Strom left a five-year-long bartending career to pursue her passion for vintage retail full-time. Both are enthusiastic about their new location in Montavilla and have already found foot traffic encouraging when neighboring businesses are open.
The owners are still adding items to the shop, particularly expanding non-clothing goods. However, they are intent on not overcrowding the shop. Items on the racks represent a fraction of what the pair have collected. They regularly scour garage sales, estate sales, and private collections for the best vintage items. Additionally, they invite people to sell items directly to the store. The expanded collection outside the store allows the business to provide personal shopping services. The store staff can hunt for particular items or recommend something based on past interest. They continue to sell online for the many customers across the country and have a devoted audience on the company’s Instagram.
Vintage clothing will not be the extent of the store’s apparel offerings. Working with a local seamstress, Wink Vintage will produce an in-house line using selectively sourced textiles. The backroom will soon become a workspace for clothing production and the occasional alteration of purchased items.
Only a month old, and the shop is already vibrant and active. They are open from 11 AM to 7 PM Wednesday through Saturday and 11 AM to 5 PM on Sundays. Visit them online and in person to get an idea of what items they have, and don’t be shy about asking them if they can find you a particular item.