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Up Closet and Personal #1

Each Friday fortnight we bring you little ditty chats with our fave op-shoppers, artists, shopkeepers and old souls.

First cab off the rank is one half of bams & ted, Rachel Tolosa Paz. She is a photographer and writer who wrote The Food of Argentina with Ross Dobson. Rachel loves all things folk and hand-made and has a thing for textiles.

Favourite place to shop

I love a little shop that constantly surprises, somewhere you can get lost in, taking in all of the little treasures. I can never seem to visit DEA in Redfern without walking out the door with something special. Woollahra Bookshop is the smallest bookshop in Sydney but their taste is impeccable and I always come across a book I wouldn’t necessarily find elsewhere. And locally, Retro Spectrum in Fairy Meadow – Dann does a great job curating the shelves with interesting retro finds.

Online or instore shopping?
I prefer to shop instore but let’s face it, when you don’t live in a big city, sometimes online is the only way to go.

Last vintage purchase?
I bought a fab lavender shirt/jacket from online vintage store, Girl Gone Retro. It’s terry towelling and very 70s.

The one that got away…

When we first started bams & ted back in 2011, we had a pop-up in William St in Paddington and I remember a custom kangaroo fur military style hat that a customer very quickly snapped up. It was nothing if not unique… I’ve never seen another one and probably sadly never will.

Do you collect anything?
I have a real thing for vintage tablecloths and linen. Of course, you have to use them and they all have red wine and olive oil stains but that is the beauty of a used object – it carries with it all of the stories of all of the long lunches with friends and family.

Style icon?
I am probably more inspired by colour than an actual person so I take lots of cues from art, interiors and film. At the moment, I am loving the very English colour combo of cherry red and sky blue.

What film can you watch over and over?
Darjeeling Limited is one of my favourite films. Classic Wes Anderson, the combo of Jason Schwartzman, Adrien Brody and Owen Wilson, hand-painted details and the blue of an Indian train. Need I say more?

Last book you couldn’t put down?
Ohh so tricky… but Stoner by John Williams is a book that stays with me always. I put off reading it for a long time, even started it and didn’t keep going. Then one day I sat down to read it and didn’t stop. A gem of a book. What a novel should be.

Words to live by…
Done is better than perfect. I have only recently come across this saying, but hey, better late than never!