Friends of JV: Lovely Alice
Alice says that she has been steeped in the tea leaves of Jane’s Vanity. That is how she describes her time behind the counter at Jane’s bricks and mortar store in downtown Portland (now replaced by the JV website). Alice’s background in New York’s design world, and her love and knowledge of fabric, made her a natural to make the transition from customer to employee. That was in 1995. For seven years she assisted in creating the world of Jane’s Vanity.
It was Alice’s great pleasure to do so. She loved working with Jane, like a sister whom she adores. And Alice brought a special touch. Understanding that customers often need to be educated about fine lingerie, Alice found her own way of talking with them about the pieces and the designers. Caring for customers was important to Alice. She treasured the relationships that she developed with a loyal clientele...and with the daily foot traffic wandering in the door. Any male customer would soon be put at ease and educated, as well.
Alice also dreamed of ways to cultivate the store’s unique character. Visits to Paris with Jane were an inspiration. Earlier in her design career, Alice had traveled to Paris to see the French fabric and yarn shows. With Jane, Alice attended the annual Salon International de La Lingerie. On these trips they shared ideas, edited down each day’s cavalcade of designs, considered items for specific customers, and agreed, “We must get this!” They also found time for a little fun. Spare moments were spent exploring various Parisian hotels and often moving to a new one on the spot.
If you are a newcomer to fine lingerie, Alice suggests you simply choose something you love. Find the item that brings joy every time you see it. Sizing is important, so let the experts help you.They know how each designer label fits and can translate the mysteries of European sizing. A good fitter has a sixth sense about what will work for you. For a gift, consider a chemise. It is easy to fit, its bias cut is so flattering, and it provides many possibilities for wear. A chemise is just the right amount of intimate.
Alice continues to follow her passions. When something seemed missing from her life, she returned to the horsewomanship of her youth. She has also found new ways to work with fabric. Of course, she continues to be a Friend of Jane’s Vanity. Latest purchase? The Christine Vancouver Diva Silk Velvet Kimono. Its devoré velvet is a delight to the eye and the touch. It will join an inspiring closet of beloved pieces, ready to mix in Alice’s own special way. She would be the first to remind you that fine lingerie is “the ultimate power-dressing, because it comes from within.”