TGC Interviews LA Vintage Connoisseur, Toni Walker, of Fair Season Vintage


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Prepare yourself! This feature is guaranteed to inspire you! The Goddess Column was given the opportunity to interview LA Vintage Connoisseur, Toni Walker. Toni is the owner of Fair Season Vintagethe cutest vintage sourced in LA. TFGFounder, Isis Nezbeth, started following Toni on Instagram for her incredible vintage fashion style and her amazing throwback photos of artistic geniuses like 2Pac and Whitney Houston. Eventually, Isis pretty much became infatuated with Toni’s love for denim and vintage culture. It was also a huge plus that she is friends with one of our other favorite interviewee’s Chérmelle Edwards, The Coffeetographer. We really couldn’t wait to learn and share Toni’s story, inspiration, and talents with you. So everyone, please meet Miss Toni Walker of Los Angeles:

IG Caption: portrait by @thecoffeetographer that she took during the first @walkingforcoffee tour. she shot each of us against this pink wall. brilliant!! #walkingforcoffee #thecoffeetographer #coffeeisaculture #echopark

IG Caption: portrait by @thecoffeetographer that she took during the first @walkingforcoffee tour. she shot each of us against this pink wall. brilliant!! #walkingforcoffee #thecoffeetographer #coffeeisaculture #echopark

What is a typical day like in the life of Toni Walker? “Coffee comes first!  I start working as soon as the first cup is ready.  I wear a lot of hats, so depending on the day and the hour, I’m responding to customer questions, listing new things, packing orders, shooting, editing, and measuring.  If I’m not doing one of those things, I’m shopping and washing my finds.” 

How did you fall in love with vintage clothing? 

My mom and my grandmother got me into clothes.  They’re both thrifty, and sticklers for quality, so they taught me what to look for.  My sister and I played dress up with our mom’s things from the 60s and 70s.  It was a big deal to borrow something when I got older.  Now some of the things that I loved as a kid are mine.  Very special hand me downs.  I love the memories that come with vintage.”

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IG Caption: many thanks to @reissued for featuring my vintage collection on their well curated site. there’s a link to my reissued shop in my profile. take a look #reissued #vintage #denim

Tell us a little more about Fair Season Vintage: “Fair Season started while I was still living in New York.  I got laid off from a retail job and used my severance to start the company.  I never looked back.” 

When did you realize that vintage clothing was your passion? “I’ve been thrifting and collecting vintage since I was a teenager.  It’s been a  serious habit since then.  When I was in high school I wanted to look different from everyone else, and I got the look that I wanted with vintage.  Since then my style has changed, but I’ve never stopped wearing vintage.  In my opinion, it’s the only way to buy!”

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IG Caption: preview of what’s comng today: levi’s & really cute vintage sweatshirts. #levis #vintage #jeans #70s #80s

What is your favorite article of clothing you own?  “Jeans, hands down.  I have many pairs, but right now I’m wearing my high waist Levi’s whites all the time.  They work with everything.  I wear them with a tee, or with a silk blouse, ankle boots, or espadrilles.  I’m trying not to ruin them, I wear them so much.” 

What are your favorite pastimes? “I’m a public radio addict–I listen to so many podcasts it’s hard to name them all.  I cook and bake as much as I can.  Being in the kitchen is a big de-stresser for me, so when I have free time, I’m in the kitchen with something streaming.” 

#tbt flying around at the flea market. shot by @maceopaisley for @ctznsofculture blog #bts #vintage #smallbusiness

#tbt flying around at the flea market. shot by @maceopaisley for @ctznsofculture blog #bts #vintage #smallbusiness

What has been your greatest experience in your journey so far?

Meeting customers is my favorite thing.  I’ve had a few chance run-ins that have made me very happy.  It’s so exciting to meet someone who is wearing something that I found and loved.  It’s the most satisfying feeling.”  

Are you influenced by any particular artists, musicians, etc.? “I have a lot of style muses.  Jane Birkin is probably the biggest one.  She wears jeans and a t-shirt like nobody else.” 

IG Caption: spring is coming, I swear. perfect time for these. #jordache #80s #overalls #highwaist #denim #vintage

IG Caption: spring is coming, I swear. perfect time for these. #jordache #80s #overalls #highwaist #denim #vintage

How do you go about selecting the clothing for Fair Season Vintage? “I spend time looking at analytics so that I can understand what my customers want.  That’s what guides me first.  I’m really focused on denim, so I look for all incarnations of that incredible material. Finding U.S. made pieces is pretty important to me because I know that those are the older, better quality items.”

Do you have any specific methods for keeping your closet organized? (We assume it’s loaded with vintage goodies!) “I just re-organized actually!  I used to sort by color only, but now I sort by garment type, and then by color.  So, for example, all of my shirts are together and they go from light to dark, pants & skirts come after that, etc.  It’s a little psycho, but it’s been helping me find what I’m looking for a lot quicker.”
IG Caption: hi ladies! do you want to buy boxy cropped tanks & tees like this one? if you do, I'll make them! reworked vintage of course. like, comment, tell me what you think xoxo #vintage #croptop #tanktop

IG Caption: hi ladies! do you want to buy boxy cropped tanks & tees like this one? if you do, I’ll make them! reworked vintage of course. like, comment, tell me what you think xoxo #vintage #croptop #tanktop

Does anyone in the fashion world inspire you?“I’ve been lucky to meet several local designers since I moved to LA.  I think there’s a great movement of people who are making beautiful/thoughtful things here.  I have to shout out Rivi Goods, they are denim veterans making incredible things for big brands, and they have a line of raw denim that’s amazing.  I also love the tees that Jungmaven is making.  They’re the perfect basic.  They’re also local to Cali.”

Have you had any setbacks or difficult moments along the journey? “Oh my goodness, all the time.  I’m doing pretty much everything on my own, so that’s challenging every day.  I always want my brand to feel consistent, and I think my biggest frustrating moments have come when I feel that images aren’t good enough.  I’m constantly learning new photography tricks, and I’m never satisfied.  Time for a new camera!”

thank you @ctznsofculture for having me rep this message. do what you love & create something! the sweatshirt is for sale now at citizensofculture.com #youarecreative #citizensofculture

IG Caption: thank you @ctznsofculture for having me rep this message. do what you love & create something! the sweatshirt is for sale now at citizensofculture.com #youarecreative #citizensofculture

What advice would you give others who may be wanting to pursue a dream similar to the career you’re in now?

Make a plan and go for it!  Working for someone else’s dream just can’t compare to building your own every day.  It’s stressful, but it’s worth it.”

Is there anything else you would like to share with TGC readers? “Wear clothes that make you feel good.  We have to get dressed every day, so it might as well be fun.”

We truly hope you were able to be moved and inspired by Toni’s story because we definitely were. She is exactly right. Entrepreneurship is incredibly stressful, but people like you (the ones who show support) make the struggle and the journey completely worth it.

Thank you Toni for sharing your light with us here at The Goddess Column. You’re truly amazing.

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