Beloved New York Vintage Haunt James Veloria Opens a Los Angeles Outpost

Beloved New York Vintage Haunt James Veloria Opens a Los Angeles Outpost

James Veloria, the vintage emporium-slash-Gaultier-inflected wonderland located on the second floor of a Chinatown mall, is expanding. After six years in New York, they’ve set up a pop-up shop in Los Angeles’s Lincoln Heights neighborhood. It’s open till October 15th, and owners Collin James Weber and Brandon Veloria Giordano have their eyes on a permanent space in the city. For LA-based lovers of vintage Gianni Versace and Todd Oldham and little ‘90s Miu Miu belt bags, this is manna from heaven. Or maybe 2001 Milan.

For Weber and Giordano, opening up a shop in LA was a no-brainer. They’ve been coming out to California regularly since 2017, selling at the A Current Affair Vintage shows. So when longtime friend Humberto Leon, formerly of Opening Ceremony and Kenzo, told them that a space was opening up directly above his new restaurant, Arroz and Fun, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to go bicoastal. “We were planning to finally take a break and go on vacation this summer, but we couldn’t pass up the opportunity,” says Giordano. “The space is so beautiful, and it felt like a perfect fit to be hosted by someone we respect so much and have worked with in the past.”

The store’s signature tinsel wall. 

Lucia Foshee Adler

James Veloria LA is on the top floor of a sun-soaked courtyard (Giordano made a helpful TikTok to direct customers to the shop, in which he struts and spins from the street to the store). The place is awash with natural light and flowers (by LA floral design studio Under New MGMT), and there’s a balcony where visitors can tan in vintage sunglasses. Wares like Jean Paul Gaultier jackets with detachable belts and Commes des Garçons handkerchief hem skirts and Versace Jeans Couture butterfly tank tops are displayed against a glittering tinsel wall with cut-outs of cartoon teddy bears and bunnies looking joyful and slightly twisted, with big eyes eyeing the merchandise.

“I always want people to feel at home in our spaces,” says Giordano. “Of course, there are JV signatures like our silver tinsel wall and ceiling decor by Confetti System and paintings of cheeky teddy bears and bunnies by Sadie Spezzano. Designer vintage can sometimes feel intimidating, so it’s important to us that the store feels fun and approachable and never too serious.”

Weber points out that they wanted to bring sentimental elements from the NYC store to the LA location. “I sewed a long patchwork tablecloth made from our first store’s dressing room curtains and other fabrics we’ve used in various projects over the last 6 years in NYC,” he says. “There are also fun furniture and objects for sale from interior design studio Roleplay L.A. We have a little more room out here so we thought it would be fun to expand into having some more home goods options.”

A selection of items at the Los Angeles James Veloria store. 

Lucia Foshee Adler

JV LA carries Weber and Giordano favorites, like Gaultier, Versace, Oldham, and Vivienne Westwood. But they say the clothes they’ve selected for the Los Angeles store have more of a “sexy, laid-back feel” (Giordano’s current style icon is Madonna in her Ray of Light era, “coming out of yoga wearing a Chrome Hearts tank and Gucci shield sunglasses”). Weber says they ship new pieces out from NYC weekly, and are meeting new collectors to source from in LA.

“We’re not fully jumping off the deep end,” he says. “But it feels like there’s a little more freedom to test the waters here by including different designers and eras we maybe wouldn’t experiment with in NYC.”

Beyond looking fab, perhaps the best part of JV is the vibe. Both the New York and LA locations have a warm, welcoming feel that one doesn’t usually get from somewhere so capital-F Fashion, like a hug around your neck from a Stella McCartney for Chloé halter top. In their beloved Instagram stories, Giordano and JV salespeople pose and play in the shop mirrors, inviting you to come in and try things on. I can’t wait to go back.

James Veloria Los Angeles is open from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday-Sunday, at 1822 N Broadway.

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