Heels on Wheels: The Styleliner Mobile Boutique Drives On
Jan 18, 2012 - by Jessica Lapidos
There is currently a truck en route to Park City, Utah. It's going to delight the Sundance Film Festival crowd with it's contents: designer and artisan jewelry and accessories. And a handful of fabulous furs. Though this truck once used to be a potato chip delivery vehicle, Joey Wolffer tricked it out into The Styleliner, a mobile boutique that is spreading good looks around the nation. We dropped in on the day they disembarked from Meatpacking to talk to Joey and get a good look inside. Here's what we found.
So whos actually driving the truck?
Im the driver. A GREAT driver too. I think Im really good!
And all the merchandise just stays stationary on the shelf?
No. Everything has to go in those back compartments over there and the drawer here. Now it only takes 20 minutes to half an hour to make this truck a beautiful gallery.
When youre traveling, do you also find designers on the way and pick up pieces as you go?
Oh yeah, from flea markets to high end designers in these obscure towns.
What has been your favorite way to discover a new designer?
Its usually when Im in an obscure city. Like when I was in Athens, I found this one piece, and I was determined to track down the designer. By contacting people you know or people youve met, you get to them. Like this girl, Lamprini, I dont even know how to pronounce her name, she hand makes it all in her home, and it's just so ornate and fun and interesting. This guy is Dassios. Hes Greek. He worked for the opera so hes used all these old components from different costumes in his work. Its so interesting. I love that theres a story behind everything.
Do you ever foresee a bus in your future?
Maybe, I want a boat.
When you set sail, please give me a call!
Yeah! Im thinking a boat in St. Barts would be great.
Instead of scuba tours you could do shopping tours.
It's crossed my mind. We'll always have the truck, and hopefully multiple trucks soon. We realize we can do what we do anywhere. It's about my style and the designers that we work with. We can pop up anywhere, whether it's an igloo, a boat or a truck. It's about creating interesting environments to shop. They don't want to go in and see what they've seen in every other store.
Hold up... An igloo?
For Sundance, I nailed down the opening starting gate from the olympics, and we got it. So we're converting into an igloo by printing vinyl ice stickers and putting it all around. We're going to have hay bails outside with rugs over them. I love the idea of this bohemian glam space filled with beading and fur and rugs. Just like this glamorous mountain covered in fur and bling, and tasty warm cocktails.
Yum! Well, if you're going straight from Park City to Miami, how do you switch up your merchandising?
Right now there's a lot of fur in here. For warmer weather we have a lot of beach bags and sarongs offsite, and we switch them out. You know We Are Handsome? We carry all of their swimsuits. I think theirs are so interesting. I have them and Adriana Degereas from Brazil; she's going to be big here. In Palm Beach, I'll have cleaner stuff. I never really step away from what I believe in. For instance, I went to Greenwich, C.T. and they were like this is stuff I'd never think to buy. It's getting people to change things up. I always have new product coming in. Every two weeks, I have new stuff coming in.
Could you even imagine having a brick and mortar store?
No. My personality is so not married to one spot. Ill always be traveling, Ill always be moving. And I love meeting new people. So it allows me to get out of one area. Its very hard to think and be creative outside of the box when youre locked in one spot. On the street when people come in, you don't have time to talk to them. We have so many pieces in here with interesting back stories, and I like to explain them. When it's a small shopping party, it's always successful because I'm able to speak to the product.
What's your favorite part of being on the truck?
I love working with customers. The excitement! There's a superficial value to it yes, but a girl can walk in with a little black dress, and she puts on an epaulette, and all the sudden she's a different person and she feels great! When someone says, "I've never seen this before," it literally validates what I'm doing.
The Styleliner parks in Park City, Utah for Sundance this Friday and will stay there for 5 days. Then onto sunny Florida for February and March, L.A. for April, San Francisco for May, D.C. in June and the Hamptons, Joey's hometown, July and August.