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In a store window on 24th Street in Midtown, a 1950s-style sewing machine sits in a window next to a mannequin, draped in an ‘80s floral top and a thin leather belt. A collection of miniature cacti sit atop a shelf near the window, and a ‘50s billiards ad hangs from the back wall, reading “Easy Eight’s Pool and Billiards: The Best Racks in Town!”
This will soon be Midtown’s newest vintage clothing store, Racks, which celebrates its grand opening Saturday, at 1822 24th St. Racks joins other boutiques in the area such as Prevues, Sugar Shack, Bows and Arrows, Heart Clothing and Cheap Thrills.
Owner Rachel Fowler, a native of Sacramento, said it took her a while to get to this point, but she's ready.
“I’ve been collecting vintage for years in hope that I can open my own shop,” Fowler said.
Browsing the racks at the boutique, one can find clothes and accessories from almost any decade: black and brown leather cowboy boots sit below the window alongside dainty 1960s era ballet flats, and a 1950s black leather jacket adorns the wall next to plaid shirts from the '90s.
The focus of the store is broadly defined as vintage, but will also include “mid-range, reasonably priced” hard-to-find items and local designer clothing and jewelry, Fowler said. Custom tailoring will also be available.
For Fowler, the opening of Racks has been a dream since for as long as she can remember.
“When I was a kid, I shopped at thrift stores – not because I had to, but because I wanted to. I used to go to all the vintage stores,” Fowler said.
Later, that passion carried her into retail and “mom and pop shops” such as Midtown’s Cheap Thrills, giving her 13 years of experience in vintage fashion.
More recently, she has put on fashion shows in the Sacramento area, designing and orchestrating hair, make-up, and the fashion itself, which was in the style of recycled, “cut and sew,” said Fowler.
“It’s a passion, definitely,” she said.
Fowler said she is a connoisseur of the designs of the ’30s, ’40s, ’50s, and will bring that expertise to bear when choosing items for the store.
“I can just look at a label and tell if it's vintage or not,” she said. “Vintage stuff is built to last.”
Rack's grand opening will be Saturday, from noon to 9 p.m. Store hours will be Tuesday through Saturday, noon to 9 p.m., and Sunday, noon to 6 p.m.