From Decades to D.NOLO. Vintage fashion guru Cameron Silver, whose store, Decades, is a Los Angeles institution, will appear at North Loop boutique D.NOLO this Thursday for a book signing and trunk show. Silver is author of "DECADES: A Century of Fashion." He also starred in a Bravo TV show about his store and styling business, Dukes of Melrose.
Silver’s appearance is the first in a series of lifestyle events planned by D.NOLO. Silver will be joined by Minneapolis based-jewelry artist Gretchen Ventura, showing her latest work. The two became fast friends after meeting in Scottsdale—where all roads to Minneapolis begin, Silver joked.
This is not the first time Silver has appeared in Minneapolis. Before retail, he was a singer, and a regular performer at Bryant Lake Bowl. “Theater and retail are very similar: you treat the customer like your audience, and welcome them into your world.”
I talked to Silver as he packed for his visit.
What’s your favorite fashion decade?
I'm a child of the '70s, so I’m drawn to '70s fashion . . . it was also the first time domestic fashion found an international audience—Halston, Oscar de la Renta, Bill Blass. They were all doing American sportswear, which is still incredibly important to what we wear today.
What should every woman have in her closet?
You need something you could wear to a funeral, or to meet the Pope. Chanel. Or something Chanel-like. Conversely, you need something super glamorous for 11th-hour Cinderella invitations. It’s amazing how many women don’t have any evening wear in their closets. Also, a little black dress. And I love every woman to have a tuxedo, or a tuxedo jacket—it’s so cool to pair with skinny jeans, or a vintage Yves Saint Laurent blouse.
And what about vintage pieces?
Vintage will get you out of your comfort zone. It’s a great way to get things that are not ubiquitous. A gold statement necklace, a funky handbag.
What’s the secret to the success of Decades, the store?
Thank you notes. I built the business the old-fashioned way. I write thank you notes.
You’ve dressed dozens and dozens of A-listers. Do they actually come into the store, or send a stylist?
Give me Julia Roberts over a newbie on a Disney show any day. The bigger the star, the more accessible she is. And some don’t want their entire life handled by a third party.
Did Dukes of Melrose drive a lot of traffic to the store?
It did absolutely nothing for the business. Those who were interested in fashion already knew Decades, and those who weren’t didn’t exactly rush to the website to buy something. Ironically, the book has brought more business to the store. It says something about culture: people do still like to read and be stimulated. Actually, no one watches TV anymore anyway!
Meet Silver for a wine and appetizer reception and trunk show on Thursday, 5 to 8 p.m. at D.NOLO, 219 N. Second St., Mpls., 612-584-3244 (free valet parking in Monte Carlo lot)