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StreetStyle: Erin Thiessen

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Erin Thiessen

Erin Thiessen, business owner and colour lover, was spotted in her store, Rhymes with Orange. In the heart of the Exchange District, the shop specializes in vintage clothing and housewares, and it's filled with gems like '50s teapot sets or '70s style travel bags that are used for display purposes as well as being for sale. Thiessen told us the store inspires her personal style -- she likes the '50s era colour and bold prints. The store mirrors that retro taste and she sticks with what works in the store, not cluttering it with trends from different decades. Thiessen and her best friend, Stefanie Hiebert, who runs the store with her, are off to Thailand in a few days to shop in vintage markets, which Thiessen says are gold mines.

What she wore...

Coat -- "It's a Hudson's Bay coat. I found it at Value Village for five bucks. I saw the wool and I ran to it, I got it about five years ago at the Pembina location."

Shirt -- "I think it's from Walmart or Zellers, something basic. It's just a striped long-sleeve top."

Skirt -- H&M in Minneapolis

Tights -- Target in Grand Forks

Boots -- "Boots are thrifted. I think I also got them in Grand Forks from Savers, which is equivalent to Value Village. It's good -- always a gold mine. I found three pairs of these roper boots I'm wearing right now; they're hard to find here."

Glasses -- "Glasses are from here, Rhymes with Orange. The cat-eye frames."

Wedding ring -- "That's it, keeping it basic today."

Fashion essential

"That's a good question: usually some kind of vintage dress, like a print. I just love how you can dress it up or down or throw on a cardigan. They're so much fun, pants are just so boring to me," she said with a laugh.

"I love bold bright colours, stripes and polka dots. My closet is rainbow-organized. There's not too many neutral colours in there."

How do you stay warm wearing skirts and dresses in the winter?

"Tights, knee-high-socks usually. I'm tough. I have many coats, but one I wear to stay warm is turquoise and has fur on the side -- my wool coats are so toasty."

Style inspiration

"Anything '50s and '60s, Mad Men, obviously. I'm so attracted to the lines and the prints back then. I can't wait for the new Mad Men season to start. I've also gotten into the show Bomb Girls. It takes place in Canada during the (Second World War) and is about women making the bombs; it's really interesting."

What is it about that era you like?

"I like the simplicity, the simple lines. Everything was so well made and there was so much attention to detail. It was never just a dress; it was the gloves, and the matching hairpiece."

Does the store inspire you?

"The store definitely inspires me, too. My best friend and I run it together and we have a lot of fun. We wear some of the clothes and then sell them after. It's vintage anyway, so it's been worn."

Where did the name Rhymes with Orange come from?

"My best friend and I were working at a boutique for years and decided to do something different, so we bought a old camper-trailer, gutted it and turned it into a shop. We went to different festivals in Manitoba and did really well. After the festivals were done, we moved into the store Vintage Glory. Doug, the owner, needed help in the women's section, so we moved in -- it took off and then we needed a bigger space, so we wanted a new name and a fresh start for all of us, so we moved in here. We picked the name with our partner Doug. When he opened up Vintage Glory, he wanted to name it Rhymes with Orange but he was told he had to have the name vintage in the name. He told me that name and it stuck with me when we were thinking of a new name for this place. It just makes you think: nothing rhymes with orange, even though people all try it when they walk in the door."

Fashion tip

"So many people over-accessorize and it's over the top. I like to tone it down when it comes to accessories. But be bold in colour and prints..."

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition March 30, 2013 E10

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