"Local Tuesdays" - a weekly series on cool resources in the Columbus, OH area
GOOD IF YOU'RE LOOKING FOR: Something new (well, new to you) and a personal touch!
Tell me about Smartypants!
Smartypants is about integrating vintage into everyday, not just a costume. Pairing these classic pieces with modern is a challenge, but it’s fun to change who you are everyday - like a 50‘s housewife, or a 70‘s hippie.
What gave you the idea?
The antiquing came from my father. He was obsessed - he collected fans. Every weekend we would go picking, antiquing, and hit flea markets. Spending time with my dad was something I loved - along with getting old toys for a dollar!
I suppose I should have accepted I’d run a vintage store a lot earlier!
How long have you been here?
We’ve been at this physical location three months, and five years online.
Why Columbus, Ohio?
I worked at another vintage store in the area, and loved the interaction with with customers. I didn’t plan to be here, but I’d accumulated too much stuff to only sell online! One day I woke up, spotted this location, and asked [the landlords] if they were interested in a vintage store. They said yes and here I am!
How do you find the clothes you feature?
Estate sales, antique shows, and auctions. We travel a lot. There’s the chance to talk to lots of people and learn the stories behind each piece. Estate sales have the widest variety - you never know what you might find, but you have to be ready to do a lot of digging through mold and grime!
Yuck! Do you have to do a lot of repairs?
I used to, but I’ve gotten pickier and try not to buy items that need a lot of work. I might alter them a little to make the silhouette more modern.
Anything you’re looking for right now?
Western shirts in 50‘s rodeo style. I love leather fringe!
What’s one thing you’re really excited to share in here?
A sheared beaver capelet from the 1890‘s. I don’t care if I ever sell it! It’s unbelievably soft. In this business, you learn to identify fur. I’ve even seen gorilla fur!
Fur is interesting. I’m moving away from it, but the items do exist. It seems better to repurpose them and utilize what we already have, instead of making new clothes.
What did you want to be when you grew up?
This is not in the slightest what I thought I would do. I’ve just been letting things happen. I’ll have done this with absolutely zero regrets. Everyone is so supportive, and I didn’t know I could be so happy in a work environment!
What’s one piece of advice you would give to someone looking for a unique item?
What do you typically wear? It’s nice to get people out of their comfort zone and get them to add new things to their wardrobe.
People are often scared of vintage. It can seem like a foreign country!
My [fashion] skills have been finely honed in vintage. I guide people through eras to find a good fit. And when things fit, that’s it! There isn’t another size, another color. This was made for you!
The best part is helping someone find something they’re comfortable and happy in. I’ve had customers bag their old clothes and walk out of the store in the new outfit!
Sounds like you’re a combination of a time traveler and a tour guide!
*laughs* Exactly! Oh man, I’m going to have to get that as a tattoo!
Thanks Justina for sharing Smartypants Vintage!
You can check out her shop in Columbus, Ohio, her online store,
and be sure to visit Smartypants on Facebook