Who: Lauren Maslin
City: Fort Lauderdale
Quote: “It’s clothes. It’s not so damn serious.”
“When I lived in NYC, I palled around with Bethenny Frankel before she got famous. We would cruise all the thrift and consignment stores where I shopped for clients and for myself. My parents were in the garment business so I grew up knowing my way around good design, fabrics and finishing details and then how to put things together.
I have been a stylist for many years: for Billy Joel, for his daughter Alexa Ray Joel and I have an Emmy for being a stylist for Jon Stewart’s The Daily Show. If I need to be reminded that I am good at this, all I have to do is look at the snakeskin clutch I bought 20 years ago for $50. It draws attention every time I wear it. The cost per wearing is maybe a fraction of a penny. Everything I own are treasures that I have found in stores like the one I own, Luxure by Lauren. Other than Zara, I don’t buy anything in mainstream stores.
I was clear about the kind of store I wanted to have.
C’mon, I’ll take you on a little tour of Luxure by Lauren.
My store carries one-of-a-kind, drool-worthy, high-end designer pieces. See these Jimmy Choo lizard ankle wrap heels? Now that’s artwork for your feet. Touch them. This is real lizard skin, honey, not a stamped design on leather. The price? I will let them go for $75 because they have been worn some. They sold brand new for $900. OK, the laces need to be replaced and your feet have to be a size 9 ½ and but, hey, that is what the hunt is all about.
Shoes like this will elevate your Ross “Dress for Less” bargain frock. Everything in here is like these shoes in this way: Great stuff at a fraction of their original cost.
Here is a little more education: This is a Helmut Lang t-shirt dress with a mid-calf drape made from material so soft you will want to wear it all the time. Or, how about this red Chanel jacket? If you wear a size 2, it’s the bargain of a lifetime.
One of our specialties is purses. We get the best purses here because we give our consigner 70 percent and we take only 30 percent. We get a lot of referrals and that is how people find me.
The fun comes from giving my clients one-on-one attention to help them create their best look, something you don’t get shopping on-line and is unheard of in stores. I know bodies and I know what clothes look good on what bodies I have been doing this for years.
I work the store like this: Bring me the fabulous clothes you don’t wear anymore and I will do a 50-50 split. Some people just shop too much and need to clear things out and recoup some of their investments. Sometimes stores need to liquidate. There is no typical supplier or typical customer.
Customers know that the store is fun every day.Sometimes we turn up the music and dance in here. Just the other day, I had two men who were transitioning into being women. They sprawled on my pink chaise and sang, danced and joked around. Then they bought Chanel bags.
Sometimes the connections I have with customers are poignant. They tell me about their kids. I know about people’s divorces. I am privy to details about their torrid affairs. I like to know my clients. We are friends. I care about them, and if they look good, that reflects on me.
Running a store like this is hard. It is a lot about making deals, writing checks and constant organization but there is nothing else I would rather do. I love the art of the deal. Besides, I am a mom now and this lets me be flexible. With consignment, everybody wins, the consignor and the shopper.
5 tips to make clothes look their best on you
Clothes have to fit perfectly
Flatter your body type
Luxure by Lauren is at 1918 E. Sunrise Blvd in the Gateway Shopping Center Fort Lauderdale
“I am Anita Mitchell and I collect people stories, much the same way people collect shoes or baseball cards or Lladro porcelain figurines. During my 26 years at WSVN7, I had the front-row seat to people stories and it was there I learned about the extraordinariness of the ordinary.
Since retiring from television news, I serve on the Board of Directors of Different Brains, a charitable foundation that supports neurodiverse adults. I also serve on the Board of Directors of the Broward County Sports Hall of Fame. We honor local residents who have set unique standards of excellence through sports.
Since 2004, I have swum competitively with our local Swim Fort Lauderdale Masters Swim Team (SFTL).
I don’t really know how the writing and the swimming and the neurodiverse and honoring local sports figures are connected but I know in my heart that they are.