Contributor Helen met one of last years award winners recently. Find out more below…
Rummaging through heaps of bin bags for hours on end searching for vintage gems may not sound like everyone’s cup of tea, but for one Prestwich retailer it’s just another day in the office.
Sam Ludlam, 32, owner of award-winning boutique J’adore Vintage Clothing is in her element when meeting up with her wholesaler and unearthing new stock.
“Part of the fun is rummaging through bin liners,” she explained with a grin.
“I met my wholesaler, who shall remain a secret, at last year’s Vintage Manchester Awards – it proved not only to be a wonderful night, but a great networking event too.”
Although she loves sourcing the boutique’s latest stock and wooing customers with her vintage treasures, her heart truly belongs in fashion styling.
She explained: “The styling is my favourite part of the job – the shop is part of the whole, but I love putting looks together.”
So how does a woman who started life in the banking sector a few years ago end up running one of Prestwich’s most successful vintage emporiums?
“Banking was never an ambition of mine – J’adore Vintage first started online two and a half years ago”, she explained.
“I took a career break and spent three months in America and loved the vintage clothes and style over there.
“I’d been thinking about it for ages as I was bored of banking, so when I came back I went part-time – that way I got the best of both worlds.”
The threat of redundancy in a shaky jobs market would ordinarily put people under an enormous amount of stress; however for Sam it proved to be the perfect business scenario.
She said: “When I was made redundant I put my money and attention into opening the shop on December 15 last year – it was tough but I wanted to be open before Christmas so people could buy their party outfits.”
The business proved successful since its digital inception and notched-up Best Vintage Clothing Shop at last year’s Best of Vintage Manchester before opening a bricks and mortar shop.
Ever since Sam’s been kept busy with the day-to-day running of the shop, sourcing the stock and putting her creativity to the test with numerous vintage and retro-themed photo shoots.
And if that isn’t enough to be getting on with, this Friday, July 12th, J’adore Vintage Clothing will be holding a charity fashion catwalk at Prestwich’s newly-revamped British Legion club.
Sam added: “The theme is old school Hollywood glamour and it should look really great as the club’s been refurbished and it’s now a really cool little venue.
“It’s always chaos behind the scenes but I love how the show comes together at the finish!”
So what now for this vintage fashion powerhouse? Once the last model has sashayed down the catwalk she can turn her attention to the next item on her fashion agenda – retaining her Best Vintage Clothing Shop title.
“We were so surprised to win last year, and we’re hoping that we can do the same this year – it really would be great!”