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Telltale Hearts in The Los Angeles Times

Shopping: Telltale Hearts in Silver Lake

The new L.A. fashion boutique carries new and vintage clothes and vintage jewelry priced at less than $100.

Telltale Hearts

The new Telltale Hearts boutique in Silver Lake. (Leva Schneider / Telltale Hearts / April 17, 2011)

The merchandise mix at Telltale Hearts, a cozy new fashion boutique in Silver Lake, could pass for the inside of any fashion-forward, farmers-market-going pretty young thing's closet in this L.A. neighborhood.

The jewel box of a store has a lock on the area's penchant for eclectic dressing, mixing vintage pieces — mainly no-name dresses from the '70s and '80s and big, gold-toned '80s jewelry — with new tops and tees from edgy-but-pragmatic contemporary brands including Kain, Funktional and Seneca Rising.

Co-owner and vintage buyer Melissa Patchett lives mere blocks from the store and has worked for years in the West Coast fashion industry, as a buyer for big-name stores and a stylist. Co-owner Brandy Linstrum, a self-professed "contemporary girl," said the two friends, "wanted a place where we could blend the two types of clothes we really love."

The tiny shop on traffic-heavy Hyperion Avenue — which Patchett initially leased as a warehouse space for the e-commerce arm of Telltale Hearts (launched before any thought of a boutique came into play) — "isn't really in a good retail spot," Patchett said. "But all the stuff at my house started to be too much. Then we thought, 'Why not have it be a store too?'"

The boutique's very-affordable core prices have already made it a popular neighborhood spot, with repeat buyers beginning to materialize, Patchett said. Almost all the clothes — both new and vintage — and retro jewelry are priced under $100.

If you're hunting for something more rarified, Telltale Hearts is the only boutique that carries dead-stock designer sunglasses from Kings of Past, an L.A.-based vintage eyewear company. But the privilege of walking away with a pair of oversized Yves Saint Laurent or Christian Dior sunnies from a bygone era will cost you $200 to $488.

1837 Hyperion Ave., Los Angeles. (323) 522-6725. 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday.



Telltale Hearts on LA Racked

The Vintage at Telltale Hearts Will Make Yours Beat a Little Faster

We were automatically predisposed to like new Silverlake boutique Telltale Hearts based on the name alone. The boutique just opened on a sunny but unhurried stretch of Hyperion, where they offer a mix of vintage and edgier staples by brands like Kain, Funktional, and Seneca Rising.

Within a minute of walking into the store, we fell in love. They offer a very tightly edited selection of vintage from the late 70s, 80s and 90s that's extremely girly and fun. There's a lot of sparkles, lace, and ruffles; predominantly dresses. It's not a collection for everyone, admittedly. We couldn't find a thing that you would call "frumpy", "handsome", or "matronly". (Which, for whatever inexplicable reason, is what a lot of people go for.) This is the kind of fare you'd wear on a horseback ride -- if your horse was a magical disco unicorn. Seriously, some of this stuff is from Paris, and if that doesn't say "magical"…

Everything you need to complete the look, right this way>>

The new merch provides an intriguing contrast. It's mostly interesting tees and tanks by Kain and Funktional, with a few dresses from Seneca Rising thrown in. And it's all mixed in with the vintage. The idea is that it's merchandised the way most people wear it -- a sprinkle of this, a pinch of that.

Another one of the store's huge selling points is how reasonable the merchandise is. We found blouses for $40; most of the vintage dresses we picked up were in the $60 - $80 range. We're told that they aim to keep it in the sub-$100 range, with a few exceptional exceptions. One of the Seneca Rising dresses, a convertible black and white maxidress, clocked in at $116, but that's still pretty reasonable.

The store also carries new and vintage jewelry, and a few pairs of vintage shoes, as well. Since they've been open for barely a month, Telltale Hearts will have new additions pretty regularly. If you like wearable glam vintage that won't break the bank, you really need to take a look. They're open Wednesday through Saturday, 1pm to 6pm.
· Telltale Hearts [Official Site]