Delta Vintage: Old Clothes, New Perspectives
Photo by Mamie Heldman
Since MOXI runs on entrepreneurial gas, built on the basis of collaboration - our entrepreneurial counterparts are our strongest allies. MOXI believes that we are better together and with this initiative always in mind, MOXI MAG will spotlight entrepreneurs and their businesses in every issue.
MOXI MAG entrepreneurial spotlights are contrarians (as most start-up thinker types are) to traditional journalistic practices. MOXI curates these pieces with the entrepreneur, in editorial partnership. The goal is to flesh out business development together and feed the fire that propels us forward to execute those ideas bubbling in our minds. As any entrepreneur knows, the journey is a rollercoaster – the kind that makes you throw-up...high highs, low lows, but really, really fun.
For our first issue, we are delighted and honored to help introduce Delta Vintage. Envisioned and created by our good friend Claire Brandon, Delta Vintage has been gracious enough to give MOXI the first look into her new business that will launch August 25th.
In short, Delta Vintage is an online vintage clothing company operating exclusively on Instagram and is based in Brooklyn, New York.
In reality, Delta Vintage is a tangible, mobile, and ongoing research project influenced by Southern culture & family history, inspired by historic fashion icons, and driven by a strong purpose for sustainability and positive growth.
Claire is a vintage visionary. She has taken the modern idea of reselling vintage clothing on Instagram and fused it with a unique business model and an exceptionally thoughtful brand identity. Enlisting the help of the wildly talented Mamie Heldman, who specializes in documentary style photography, Delta Vintage will exceed visual expectations. As Mamie lends herself to a more editorial style of photography for the project while still maintaining an objective of visual storytelling, and as Claire employs her eye for vintage, knack for styling, and love for history … well, the two together absolutely kill it.
Photo by Will Wu
Thus, @delta_vintage began its Insta life with a number of initial posts – teasers to showcase the brand’s visual direction. On August 25, content shot in the Mississippi Delta will begin to roll out introducing the business model and brand identity. Once they’ve set the scene – ready or not – the first items will be posted - for sale.
And they’re not messing around. “First to comment with your zip claims the item. Invoices paid within the hour via DM. All sales final,” instructs the @delta_vintage IG bio. Once you dive into the masterful curation of the @delta_vintage feed, you will quickly see details, details, details matched with thoughtfulness, creativity, gumption and a LOT of hard work. No mess here.
First things first – WHAT’s the goal? Every good business has a differentiating factor, what’s Delta’s?
“There are two main pillars to this company: clothing and investing in Mississippi, specifically. By selling one, I hope to also sell the other. Delta Vintage is a brand built to see the good in what already exists using repurposed clothing to instill confidence in its shoppers and make way for personal style in a climate of clones. So, yes, it’s a fashion brand, but I’m also asking my customer to better understand and invest in the Mississippi Delta,” says Claire.
But WHY invest in the Delta you may ask? Good question!
Delta Vintage is for The Mississippi Delta. And stands for the hope of giving back.
Photo by Mamie Heldman
“My roots are in the south and for that reason, I wanted to learn further about it and see if I could pay it forward by using skills that I wanted to strengthen,” says Claire. “The Delta is culturally rich but extremely cash poor, and I’d like to highlight and discuss both sides of that equation. There is much to celebrate and much to be done; this is my attempt.
So WHO is a Delta Vintage customer?
“By the time you see all of the content, you’ll know how it was worn in the past, how it can be worn with what’s already in your closet today, how it’s going to fit you and run out of reasons not to be intrigued by us,” says Claire.
Delta Vintage is a brand built by modern women for modern women.
“All sizes and price points will be represented on this account. We support and include the modern woman,” says Claire to her followers. “If you don’t see this continually, let me know! This is not an account that will leave you broke or looking like a try-hard. At least, it better not. Also, I should note that we love men as well as their clothes. Hopefully, I’ll be able to offer menswear one day as well.”
And HOW will Delta Vintage do all this?
Read closely because here is where the magic of Delta Vintage really shines.
With every item for sale (that has been artfully & personally selected by Claire) there will be two IG posts and a story.
And if you don’t know what an IG story is at this point in the game, please ask a friend ;)
First, a story will be added to tease inspirations for the upcoming sale item. This inspo serves to showcase the muses of Delta Vintage.
Musician David Byrne, A Delta Vintage Muse
“99.9% of starting Delta Vintage was an excuse to do a sh*t ton of research,” says Claire. “I wanted the chance to learn more about the people/things that I think are amazing and tell others about them because, they’ve completely flipped me on my head. It’s in our nature to encounter something we like, pick it up, and claim it as our own without being like, ‘Hold on. Why do I like this? How did it even get here? Etc.’ So I’ve at least begun to connect the dots between what I like, why that may be, and will use Instagram stories to speak to that to avoid making Mamie’s photography look like a Google Image database. There’s always more to learn, but I’m proud of this feature and hope people participate. "
It’s really a fascinating concept if you stop and think: who and what influences personal style?
Claire has taken the time and space to investigate.
Once the IG story goes up, followers know to expect a product post soon after. The first post will be a full length editorial - styled by Claire, shot by Mamie – like the gorgeous example below.
Photo By Mamie Heldman
Next, Delta will post a swipe series showcasing fabrication, fit guidelines, detailing, & possible care instructions. This post will often be followed by a video showcasing how the pieces move.
“Fit is everything so, I’m going to give you as much information as possible, especially when you are unable to try it on,” says Claire to her followers. “If I wouldn’t buy it with the information I have for the piece, I’m not going to expect you to either.
Photo By Mamie Heldman
In addition to sale item posts, Delta will intermittently publish still life shots. These highly intentional prop designs will serve as anecdotes - facts about the Delta, stories about family history, or various announcements.
“The more I thought about actually starting something of my own, I realized how easy it would be to exploit that community, only telling the bluesy details,” says Claire. “For that reason, we’re going to go the opposite direction and provide a way for the customer to learn further about the Mississippi Delta through facts and story telling. More importantly, we are excited to give back directly to the communities by donating a portion of the proceeds to local organizations. These facts, stories, and donation announcements will live within the captions of our more vibey, still life, landscape photos.”
Photo By Mamie Heldman
The net, net of the photo above is nothing beyond the fact that my grandfather’s main expense is peppermints. He’s from Pontotoc, MS and the strongest man I know.
“Delta Vintage was created to pay homage to my family roots in the Mississippi Delta. By creating this brand, I gained an excuse to return to the South regularly and make space for family stories to be told and experience them first hand,” says Claire. “I’ve done my best to be truly intentional, especially with props. Be it candy, furniture, or a medicine bottle – those are my family’s stories and I’m thankful Mamie could capture them. She has been a huge asset having studied visual storytelling in a way that I haven’t. I can come to her with a list of things I’d like included to feel good about what we’re doing, and she can add to that, question me, table something for a while, and the end result is 10x better.”
Pretty sure if you’ve read this far you’ve already become a customer… well, a follower … since the two are basically synonymous in 2017. If not, better move those thumbs and hit that follow button on @delta_vintage. You’re welcome. We really are doing you a favor.
At MOXI we could not be more excited to know a company like Delta Vintage. Delta Vintage is the result of creative passion, put to action, for a purpose.
So listen to Claire, “2,700 litres of water are used in the making of one t-shirt. Shop vintage, shop smart. ”
And from us at MOXI, shop Delta Vintage because, it makes YOU smart. It’s education. It’s cool. It’s sustainable. It gives back. And it’s FUN. Got it? K. Ready, set, COMMENT.