Just finished updating the online vintage shop with all the dresses from our last catalog shoot with Vanessa. So many of my personal favorites made it into this batch! In fact, as I was contemplating keeping one particular favorite, my mom visited the store and picked it out from a full rack announcing, “I like this one!” She never does that, ever! The possibility of fighting my mother for it crossed my mind :D In the end, I offered it to her, but she declined, as she always does. Now you guys get first pick, but if it stays too long in the shop, you know who will be snatching it up! Find them in the Vintage Dress section of the shop ♥
Thank you Jenny King and Conde Nast Traveller Middle East for featuring The Rabbit Hole in their August 2014 issue’s cover story! Yay!
“…off West Dixie Highway, look for the vintage sign that gives away this little nook of a store. Behind the unassuming façade is a whimsical wonderland of tree branches hanging from the ceiling, leaf motif chandeliers and shabby-chic shelves piled high with kitschy jewellery (from AED 25), cowboy boots (from AED 210) and needlepoint bags (from AED 117). Scour the rails to discover a goldmine of wearable circle skirts, floaty maxi-dresses and edgy leather jackets from the Fifties to the Nineties (starting at AED100), hand-picked from around the world for their uniqueness and high quality of cut and craftmanship rather than merely the label, meaning you can stock up on quality pieces at exceptional value…”
In early July, The Rabbit Hole crew took to the road in the beloved big white van again. We arrived in Orlando on the night of July 4th, just in time for the legendary Disney’s firework. Story is, we didn’t have tickets, and it was too late to get into the park. We were told a dinner reservation at the Polynesian Resort was the ticket for the best fireworks viewing in town. TripAdvisor confirmed, so we called for reservation. Nope, couldn’t get in. We drove there anyway and was turned away at the guard gate (Boo!) As we were turning around, huge fireworks started going off RIGHT IN FRONT OF US. We went around the corner, pulled the van over by a pond, put down a blanket, and enjoyed the amazing fireworks privately. It was fantastic. I couldn’t shut up about it for the next couple days.
Then we met up with family for dinner and watched some more straggling fireworks, hit Animal Kingdom (our first time!) the next day, and had dinner while screaming like savages at the Medieval Times.
Following day, we said goodbye to family (except for our niece who was coming with us!) and took off to our first destination: Mount Dora, FL. After some serious shopping and several great scores, we walked around downtown adoring the beautiful little town and came across the historic Lakeside Inn. It comprised of several historic buildings nestled between a lake and a train on a non-working railroad track. We lined ourselves on the rocking chairs on the porch, ran around their garden and pier, and decided to stay for the night. I was completely enamoured with this little white gazebo in the lakeside garden, surrounded by Spanish moss. We rocked ourselves on the porch chairs until the sun went down right in front of us.
Turns out the Inn was haunted. (Yay! Cries.) The whole town, including the hotel, was pretty much asleep by 9pm. We entertained ourselves by chatting with the front desk lady, who was more than happy to share numerous personal and hearsay ghost stories of the hotel. She kept saying how much she hated having to be there alone until 11 pm and how happy she was that we kept her company. Indeed we kept her company until 11pm. She showed us the sofa she stayed away from because that was where the little children ghosts liked to hang out (the fact which suddenly made the sofa very attractive to my niece.) We got to see the old entrance of the underground speakeasy (right under the rug we were standing on!) and the super haunted downstairs bathroom. We also walked around the spooky dark dining room. “I will wait right here, you guys go right ahead”, she said. My niece got to move some silverware on a table in hopes that the little girl ghost would come and play, etc.
We said goodbye the next morning and headed North. Driving through Ocala National Forest, we spotted a sign for “Salt Spring” in so and so miles up. Salt Spring? Hmm. Wondering if it was just a town name or an actual spring we could, you know, swim in; we consulted the internet, which confirmed it an actual spring, so we went swimming. The water was crystal clear and 72 degrees year-round. There were a lot of little fish and also some big ones. I had my goggles with me, so we swam and spied on the little water animals for several hours.
Salt Spring park had this gorgeous 200 year-old tree that curved over the walk way.
After this, we drove and shopped and drove and shopped. I always wanted to see Panama City Beach, so we went there. Got friendly with a person at our first stop who knew a bit about vintage and pointed us to all the secret spots in town. Then we swam in the ocean full of stringy green sea algae watching the sunset said to be one of the most beautiful in the country.
On the way to Panama City Beach, we saw this beautiful old barn on the side of the road. Having a perfect model sitting right there in the back, I asked if she would put on a vintage dress we had just bought for a picture.
Husband was posting our trip photos on his Facebook, and a friend suggested we stopped at this area in Alabama called Fairhope. She suggested a restaurant that she liked, so we went to check it out. After dinner, we headed to the pier for another sunset and came across this beautiful old wooden staircase nestled in the greens right across from the water. Another freshly picked vintage dress came out for a photo.
As my niece was getting into the dress, husband thought we would miss the sunset because it was going down fast. We had about 5 minutes. I told him, “Nah.” with a wink ;) Couple minutes later, we were on the pier enjoying the sunset (in a new dress!)
From there we went to New Orleans where we sought out a favorite place for gumbo and jambalaya for lunch and a long-time local neighborhood spot for dinner. Took a double decker bus tour of the city and did some walking around the city in between.
We drove down to St. Pete and tried to do some shopping but ran out of time. Figured we would make our way home along the beach and enjoy the view from inside the van, but it was such a beautiful day. We just had to get our feet on the sugary white sand for juuust a little bit.
It was really time to go home, as we were already a day+ late. We left the beach area and was heading South via the Sunshine Skyway bridge. The bridge itself was very pretty, and we were excited about it. So before we got on, we did some driving around to see the bridge from different angles. Once we came across some secluded beautiful area, a couple more dresses came out to play. Love having a cute model handy on a road trip!
I took these photos of Martina in our tiny bat cave studio early last week. Vintage scarves are always plentiful at the shop, so my friend Gena and I came up with an idea to collaborate and have some fun with them. Not surprisingly, Gena’s hair/makeup skills are always in demand. She is always busy, so it had been a while since we played together in the studio. I missed working with her magic touch and was ultra excited about our shoot.
Martina and I had chatted about possibly shooting web catalog together a long time ago. She is friendly with several of our other models (I suspect a secret pretty people club), and I had been meaning to get in touch. Night before shoot, I dug up her info and texted/called/emailed/prayed. Even more excited now because I thought she would be just perfect for what we had planned. Finally she got in touch, and it was a go. I was beyond ecstatic! Gena was excited about her, too. Martina only had one condition: she also wanted to model for our web catalog. Who was I to not happily oblige? We worked together 2 afternoons in a row, and her catalog photos will be on the website soon ♥
Model @lil_lamb14 met us at the shop to shoot some fun vintage 1960’s graphic print we had been gathering. Giraffes, sailboats, math problems (!), and chess pieces were some of the prints represented. Love the 60’s and its kitsch!
vintage 1960’s pleated giraffe coat dress (available here)
vintage 1960’s LANVIN green + yellow sailboats belted dress
vintage 1960’s LANVIN 2-piece sailboat set with belt
vintage 1960’s math printed 2-piece mini skirt set
vintage 1960’s LANVIN chess 2-piece set with belt
vintage 1970’s LANVIN black + white printed shirt
“Vintage Wonderland | If you are on the hunt for all things vintage and then some, consider your quest complete once you step inside The Rabbit Hole. Boasting threads from the 1940s through the ’90s, this North Miami Beach hideaway is drenched in classic charm imparted by owner and photographer [ . . . ], who describes the delightful brick and mortar as a sort of “creative sandbox.” The Rabbit Hole has us falling deeper and deeper into its well-clad trenches. ShopRabbitHole.com”
Thank you Cara Long and Luxe ♥
Before shutting off the studio lights, we snapped a quick pic and chatted with Ali, our catalog cutie of the moment. Having grown up in Davie, FL surrounded by animals (horses, cats, dogs, goats, hamsters, rabbits and fish!), Ali loves to horseback ride and has ridden for 17 years. She has a BA in English Literature and a BS in International Affairs from Florida State University, where she was also on the Equestrian team.
You looked super cute modeling vintage clothes. Are you a vintage girl in real life?
I love vintage! I used to raid my mom & grandma’s closets for fun finds. I usually try to mix clothes from today with some of my vintage pieces. I recently just rescued this gorgeous black/royal blue sequin top that my grandma wanted to throw away (WHAT?! Clothes murderer!) Looks perfect with skinny jeans and heels! I love vintage clothes because they allow for better self-expression since each piece has its own story.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years, 10 years, 15 years?
In 5 years I see myself adopting a sister for my cat. In 10 years I see myself with 3 cats. And finally, in 15 years, I see myself with 4 cats. Fingers crossed!
What would your best friend say about you?
that I’m extremely loyal, incredibly sarcastic, and a future cat lady.
So…want to tell us about your cat? :)
I thought you’d never ask! I have one cat named Emmy, and I adopted her from the Humane Society last July when she was just 8 weeks old. Funny thing though, her listed breed was “short-haired tabby,” however the older she got the stranger and stranger she acted. For example, she loves water, and every time I take a shower she gets in with me and attacks the water droplets the entire time. She also loves going on walks and loves dogs. The older she got I started noticing she was looking less like a tabby and more like a wild cat. Turns out she’s half Bengal. (Find Emmy on Instagram @lolemmyz)
What would your cat say about you?
She would say that she doesn’t agree with my vision for myself in 5, 10, & 15 years, and that she intends to be an only child forever.
Thank you NewTimes and Christine Borges for including us in their article on top 10 vintage shops in Miami!
The Rabbit Hole A land of fairytales and furry friends awaits you at The Rabbit Hole. No, it’s not a pet store. And you’ll only spot the store off of West Dixie Highway because of it’s large VINTAGE signage. But once you walk in, you’ll see shabby chic shelves filled with antique children’s books, stacks of vinyl records, and whimsical decor. (Think: Tree branches hanging from the ceiling and leaf motif chandeliers.) You’ll find plenty of fairly priced vintage here: dresses, accessories, collars, jewelry. But if you’re in the market for some indie designers, they mix those in sporadically as well. Upon our last visit we spotted some kitschy wallets and jewelry, and one rack with newish one-of-a-kind pieces from around the world.
(Sherrie Kuper, wearing one of her vintage nightgowns from The Rabbit Hole.)
Against her usual reclusive nature, this vintage-loving New York native indulged my curiosity and sat for a 5-minute photo shoot during one of her visits.
When was your first tattoo? Last? Favorite?
My first tattoo was by a beautiful boy in my eleventh grade homeroom, Renee Soto. I was 16 at the time. My last was 2 weeks ago of a pin up girl. My favorite is my Frida Khalo portrait, she is my only portrait.
You are one of the most creatively stylish people I have met! You seem to always make the most unlikely things work together.
I am a B-girl for life. I will always find the unconventional appropriate.
How did you find The Rabbit Hole? What attracts you to stop here almost daily?
I opened a hair salon nearby and fell into the rabbit hole. (Visit akinkything.com to learn more about her work.) I visit often to escape and to feel good. The Rabbit Hole is my escape place. I always find a good source of retail therapy.
Words you live by?
Be yourself and don’t be anyone else’s picture but your own.