In Their Shoes: Denisse Rodarte, Owner of Sunday's Best Thrift Apparel
What does Dr. Martens fan Denisse Rodarte do in her 1460 Cherry Docs? She owns and operates Sunday's Best Thrift stores in Echo Park and Maywood, California. She shared her insights on the inevitable repetition of fashion, the inspiration behind Sunday's Best and why she believes in establishing spaces for art to flourish within her community.
Sunday's Best Thrift Apparel has been procuring vintage and thrift fashion since 2011. Sunday's Best's goal is to offer reasonably priced (think under $5) pieces in great condition to local residents, stylists, creative spirits and anyone else who happens to walk in. The store is organized into a thrift section with gently used clothing from recent years and a vintage section with items from past decades in excellent condition, sometimes with original tags still attached. When Denisse envisioned her thrift store, she knew she wanted to create a space that was different from other thrift stores. She wanted a record store feel for Sunday's Best. Eclectic music plays throughout the store (songs you've heard recently and songs you haven't heard in foreverrr) and vintage cartoons, commercials and movies are shown on screens so shoppers can reminisce while sifting through vintage treasure.
Denisse is actively involved in the Southeast Los Angeles Collective - or SELACo - a grassroots collective of local residents working to bring artists and musicians together with spaces in the southeast communities of Huntington Park, South Gate, Bell, Lynwood, Cudahy and surrounding cities. Part of the reasoning behind opening a unique vintage/thrift store in Maywood was to create a space where local residents could connect and just hang out.
Forever fashionable in Dr. Martens, cuffed jeans and a New Kids on the Block tee, Denisse describes her personal style as 'a mix of the 50s, 80s and 90s'. Dr. Martens fans tend to be passionate about their boots. Denisse's love for Docs began when she got her first pair at age eleven. She recalls it was no casual relationship, she loved and wore that first pair through high school.
As a thrift fashion entrepreneur, Denisse has to keep her finger on the pulse of retro trends. Denisse sees shoppers of every age and interest seeking everything from theme party costumes to one of a kind pieces they can be sure no one else will be wearing. She also extends her knowledge of vintage clothing by occasionally styling photo shoots. Last summer she was challenged to create a look that combined 80s and Victorian fashion for Garbage singer Shirley Mason. (If you're curious how it turned out, check Sunday's Best Instagram.)
Sunday's Best conjures nostalgic blasts from the past, but Denisse looking to the future when it comes to establishing Sunday's Best's roots within her community. She's currently working on a Sunday's Best website and you'll always find her setting her footprint in the emerging art community through SELACo.