A fascinating, highly entertaining story of one woman's adventures in vintage clothing
ALLIGATORS, OLD MINK & NEW MONEY is a celebration of the clothes that capture our memories and imaginations. Narrated by a former fashion model who now runs a Brooklyn vintage clothes and accessories store, this is not only the story of one woman's life in fashion, but a wonderfully entertaining guide for anyone seeking out vintage finds to add to their wardrobe.
Marrying two of our most popular pastimes - shopping and reading - Alison Houtte examines everything from pre-War ball gowns to Seventies glitz, from designer labels to fun accessories. Whether talking about her grandmother's navy blue slip or a creamy white forties alligator purse, Houtte knows that every article of vintage clothing has a story behind it.
For fashion lovers, flea market fanatics and thrift store junkies, this book is the perfect find. Former fashion model Alison Houtte, with the help of her sister, journalist Melissa Houtte, offers an enthusiastic memoir of her family's obsession with fashion, her early days as a model and her second career as owner of Hooti Couture, a Brooklyn boutique specializing in vintage clothing. Houtte's chatty manner and anecdotal storytelling style give the book a quick pace, as she visits country auctions and estate sales looking for the perfect items for her loyal and eclectic clientele. Throughout, she weaves in shopping tips for amateurs and admits mistakes she's made through the years (like the time she priced a jacket by Bonnie Cashin, best known for dressing Ingrid Bergman, at a mere $150, compared with its true worth of $600). The simple line illustrations throughout are a nice touch, and a "Vintage Shopper's Guide" at the end reflects Houtte's extensive knowledge of the trade. Houtte's emphasis on personal style and emotional ties to clothing make this a book that many women and men will enjoy.