By Janee Law
Lotus Vintage is not a retail store offering a vintage style, it’s the “real deal,” said owner Adriene Passannante, selling only vintage clothing that’s 25 years old, or more.
“The word vintage is overused,” Passannante, of Bayville, said. “People would come in and say, ‘Oh, it’s vintage style,’ and we’d say, ‘No, it’s the real deal,’ It’s not like you’re walking into a store and you’re buying a reproduction, you’re buying a piece of history.”
Lotus Vintage, located at 147 Woodbury Road in Huntington, sells items that hail from the 1920s through the early 1980s. Passannante said the shop sells “fashion history,” offering dresses, skirts, tops, pants, outerwear, shoes, boots, jewelry and more.
The showroom is open twice a week, but Passannante said the clothing is easily accessible through a website (Lotusvintage.com) and Etsy account.
Through her online store, Passannante sells worldwide to places like Australia, Japan, United Kingdom and Mexico. The job has also brought Passannante to areas like California and Pennsylvania where she hand picks items to sell through the store.
“I don’t buy anything in bulk, and everything is washed and repaired,” she said.
Previously a yoga instructor, Passannante said she was always into vintage clothing since she was young and started selling it online through eBay in 2006.
“What started out as just a way to make some extra money turned into my passion, my main source of what I do for a living and I love it,” she said.
In 2009, Passannante moved the online business to Etsy. By 2010 she opened up her first storefront in Bayville, but eventually moved to 12 West Carver St. in Huntington in 2011.
In December 2015, Passannante moved the business once more to a 500-square-foot showroom on Woodbury Road where she maintains around 1,500-2,000 pieces of vintage clothing. She said she stayed in Huntington with a physical location because many people within the area sell her vintage items as well.
“It allows me to focus more on the online store but I still wanted to offer something to our hardcore clients,” she said, adding that she loves the hunt, and when people come in with great vintage items.
“What I find with vintage is that a lot of people that shop vintage are looking for things that are uniquely them, their style,” Passannante said. “You’re not going to walk down the street and see someone wearing the same dress or pants or top. It’s one of a kind.”