Attention, vintage shoppers!
I spent last weekend in Atlantic Highlands, New Jersey, a scenic little town that's not quite part of the Jersey Shore but is close enough to the Sandy Hook beaches to qualify it as a weekend retreat of sorts. There is a ferry that goes there directly from Lower Manhattan; I suppose some residents actually commute to Manhattan this way. There are a bunch of cute restaurants in town, as well as a first-run movie theater, but I was most pleased to find a store called Vintage Variety Shop, carrying vintage clothing, accessories, toys, and other bric-a-brac. Even more surprising was how incredibly awesome the merchandise is--in a world where "vintage" can mean "five years old," Vintage Variety has actual vintage clothes from the 50s, 60s, 70s, and 80s, much of it deadstock (which means never-worn) and, luckily, very reasonably priced. I could've spent hours in the store, but since my companions were getting a bit restless, I settled on a Prada-esque knit and brocade dress from the 60s that still had its original tags; I paid--get this--a mere $17.50. The unfortunate news is that the proprietor, Meredith Peltz, is selling much of her stock in preparation for a move, but the good news is that until the store closes, most of it is 50% off (hence the bargain on my dress). The store is currently located at 76 First Avenue in Atlantic Highlands; Meredith said she was looking at a new space down the street, so hopefully she will reopen there soon. In the meantime, you can find her on MySpace (apparently people still use that).

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