Emily Lynn George and Pointe Foure
Listen up, Erie; there is a new store coming our way. And I, for one, am both delighted and excited.
If you know me, then more shopping options exciting me wouldn't come as a shock. But this is a very special lady I am about to introduce you to.
Turns out, this lady and I had met before at a house sale my parents and I were throwing. She bought some of my vintage clothes, and she loved my dad's nautical bracelets.
"I have wanted to find your dad," she told me. "I would love to sell his work in my store. I was about to just knock on his door."
I guess Emily Lynn George and I were just meant to meet again, and I am so thrilled for the fate of it all. It was kismet, actually – we giggled throughout chatting about our similar tastes, we both went to Westlake Middle School, and we were both awarded 'Most Fashionable' our eighth grade year. Not to mention our sisterly taste over what's chic, cool, and hip in the industry today.
And Emily is the woman behind that new store coming to Erie: Pointe Foure, which is, well, just that – 0.4 miles from her home.
Located across from Frank's Cleaners on Eighth Street, Pointe Foure features racks upon racks of fantastic vintage clothing and accessories. Think modern vintage and contemporary styles then loads of goodies in-between. The pair of '70s platform clogs I picked up to admire were seriously amazing. This girl is onto something, and I am delighted to be near to watch this take off and support her vision.
Who? Emily Lynn George
Where? Pointe Foure Vintage Boutique
Why Emily? Because she's awesome, and she is a blossoming part of Erie's economy.
Tell us about your style's journey and a little about your fashion background.
My style's journey started when I had a talent for drawing at around 8 years old. I always drew and designed outfits. I loved paper dolls and would dress all the neighbor girls up for Friday night dance parties.
After high school, I attended Kent State University for a semester, but I was horrible at academics. As a result, I decided to look at different colleges and ended up in Bauder College [in Atlanta] where I received my associate's of art in fashion design.
I continued and earned my second degree in fashion merchandising because I knew one day I wanted to open up my very own boutique. I worked many retail jobs and was just ready for the change after the birth of my son Cy in 2012. So now my fashion journey of being a boutique owner begins.
At what moment did you know that fashion was going to be as essential to you as breathing?
I think when I got my first Barbie Doll and was able to dress her up in anything I wanted. She was my muse, my very own work of art! I would even make clothes out of socks for my Barbie. My mom always told me that I would never, ever let her dress me for school. When she would try I would make myself as stiff as a board.
What is your vision for Pointe Foure Vintage Boutique?
I see visions on top of visions and much collaboration. Right now, I am working with a local artist/sculptor, Matt Reitkowski, on designing the aesthetics of the store itself. We have used industrial piping, 100-year-old barn wood, scraps from Lincoln Metal, and wood from the peninsula.
The store itself will house lots of vintage clothing and fabulous decor, contemporary clothing, crafts, and works from local artists. I sew, and I can see myself up cycling and revamping lots of one-of-a-kind pieces of clothing, bedding and home decor. I am already in the works of bringing on a 'secret weapon' in January 2014.
What has been the most rewarding part of the process so far?
Spending quality time with my mother, Regina; she is the one who got me started on my thrifting binge at such a young age. We go to many places together and sometimes she scoops out finds that I pass up or don't see. She is an amazing sidekick! Our motto is: "Once it's gone it's gone, so we just have to buy it!" Makes us laugh every time we come home from a fun-filled day of treasure hunting.
Share your best vintage clothing haul.
I would have to say my trip to Toronto where I scored over two-dozen designer jeans! Man, those Canadians know a good pair of jeans; I definitely will be making many more trips over the border.
We talked about how we can tell the story behind where we found each piece...What has been your favorite story so far?
A year ago I went to a house sale in Edinboro, and the house had seven closets full of vintage clothing – I mean full! I walked out with 50 pieces. I couldn't sleep because I knew I had left behind so many other amazing pieces, but I couldn't carry them all. So I called the estate service the very next morning and they had already donated them. I still have dreams about that sale – it was glorious.
What do you dig for? Furs? Sequins? Cowboy Boots?
I really just dig! Everything you have named really gets my heart racing. When I score a fantastic pair of cowboy boots or a sequin gown, I freak. And furs, well, they are just too fun. I have an obsession with vintage scarves; I swear I have over 200 in my personal collection.
Most influential designer of our time… go! Ms. Coco Chanel – hands down.
If you could be a color or fabric, which would you chose? I would be an elaborate silk vintage scarf.
Any style gurus you look up to? Cyndi Lauper, Betsey Johnson, Rachel Zoe, Victoria Beckham, Heidi Klum, Nicole Richie, and the Joan Rivers!
Why is Erie special to you? Because we keep it weird here! Erie is my hometown. I have grown up boating, being very close to my family and enjoying all the goodness Erie has to offer. I just moved into a new home with my new family, which excites me. And my friends, family, and fashion have been good to me here. I moved away once, but there's just no place like home!
Pants or skirts? Skorts! Kidding; I guess I would have to go with pants. Jeans can always be dressed up or down, and let's be real, we women fought for our rights to wear pants.
You can find Emily and Pointe Foure on Facebook at Pointe Foure Vintage Boutique and you can follow her on Instagram @PointeFoure Pointe Foure will celebrate its grand opening 10 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 16. Hours of operation will be: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, so head out to support a local business – after all, it's the most fashionable thing you can do. Find me out on the town and challenge yourself to get noticed by the Erie Reader! Leslie McAllister can be contacted at LMcAllister@ErieReader.com, and you can follow her on Twitter @ShopJuJu.