A Shopping Tip from Hotel Erzherzog Rainer
Vintage fashion in the Freihausviertel
Always on the lookout for a new insiders’ tip, my colleague Marlies Hobel told me of a terrific vintage store not far from her workplace, the Hotel Erzherzog Rainer. It’s not just any shop, it’s one of the top 3 vintage stores in the world – the FLO Vintage.
Marlies Hobel is currently training to become a hotel and restaurant industry assistant. After one year working in breakfast service at the Hotel City Central, she now looks after guests at the reception of the Hotel Erzherzog Rainer. Before she decided to undergo this training, she attended a secondary school for the arts. She is particularly interested in Impressionists, loves paintings by Van Gogh and she likes to draw, especially the eyes. This is surely the ideal prerequisite for being able to read guests’ desires in their eyes. A blog entry on her on her favorite paintings in Vienna will soon follow.
Today it’s about shopping
On her way to work, Frau Hobel always passes FLO Vintage, located at Schleifmühlgasse 15a, admires the display or, if she has time, looks around the inviting sales room.
She was already taken by the mannequins – all original mannequins from the 1920s, which further increase the vintage flair. On offer are many exclusive items, Chanel, Dior…. You can accessorize starting at around 50 euros.
Marlies Hobel’s eyes light up when she thinks of the large selection: “Many dresses have artistic appliqués sewn on; therefore, they always have to be hung up in a different way so that they don’t lose their shape due to the weight. Yet there’s not just unusual, striking items – there’s also a lot that’s timeless.”
The term “vintage” is often used too generously. In reality it stands for fashion that was worn 30 years ago as of any given date and was modern at the time. True vintage clothing therefore has nothing to do with the current collections of many fashion chains.
FLO Vintage stocks fashion from the years 1880 through 1980, and only original clothes, not new items that were made to “look old.” You can say this is quite an exclusive kind of second-hand.
“The shop owner,” Frau Hobel recounts, “Frau Ingrid Raab, has managed the store already for 37 years. She finds new items while on vacation, at flea markets or via private sellers who come directly into the shop and she inspects the items very precisely.” She definitely recommends speaking with Frau Raab, whose passion and joy for fashion come across immediately. You may soon find yourself in an intense conversation about how “mini, midi and maxi” sizes came about, or you’ll discover that famous visitors to the Schleifmühlgasse have come by, including Marc Jacobs and Karl Lagerfeld.
In a folder you’ll find collected excerpts from various newspapers that tell about the on-the-go owner and “her FLO.”
Marlies Hobel calls this “a must for all vintage lovers during their visit to Vienna.”