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From rugs to aged Levis, shop for must-have vintage items at this new West Adams store

Having outgrown a rented shop in Atwater, Brooke Bailey and Johnny Wiskerchen recently relocated to their own showroom in West Adams
Having outgrown a rented shop in Atwater, Brooke Bailey and Johnny Wiskerchen recently relocated to their own showroom in West Adams
(Christina House / Los Angeles Times)

Brooke Bailey has always dreamed of a minimalist lifestyle but admits it’s just not in her DNA.

“I am a nester,” Bailey says with a sly smile. “I like 1930s and ’40s quilts and textiles, camp blankets, woods and natural fibers.”

She also likes romantic Victorian tops, vintage rugs and the Japanese ceramics she sources from estate sales, local flea markets and the Brimfield Antique Flea Market in Massachusetts.

“Jewelry, home and clothes all overlap,” Bailey says. “Buy impulsively,” she adds with a laugh. “It’ll all work out.”

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Vintage goods at Carny Couture in West Adams.
Vintage goods at Carny Couture in West Adams.
(Christina House / Los Angeles Times)

Her maximalist instinct has served Bailey well at Carny Couture, her new West Adams shop that specializes in vintage clothing, housewares, ceramics and antique oddities.

Having outgrown a rented shop in Atwater, Bailey and husband Johnny Wiskerchen recently relocated to their own West Adams showroom not far from their home in Leimert Park. Here, the couple have quickly become a part of the West Adams Arts District that includes Pop Up Home across the street and Diamond Foam and Fabric, which moved to Jefferson Boulevard last month.

“This is a happy place for us,” says Bailey as she holds her Shih Tzu mix, Ophelia. “It feels so good to be in a neighborhood.”

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On a recent visit, rugs, baskets and colorful quilts were on display inside antique cabinets flanked by weavings, thrift store paintings and silver jewelry from the 1930s. Elsewhere, a 1980s-era fishnet lamp ($420) by Lazy Susan illuminated a farm table lined with a set of 1970s earthenware and an antique hat stretcher.

“I want our customers to feel excited about thoughtful, handmade things,” Bailey says. Indeed, Bailey’s own enthusiasm is visible as she pulls out a Chinese rag rug bursting with indigo tones ($850) before sharing a detailed Japanese cape ($785) and an unfinished needlework pillow she found at the Santa Monica Airport Flea Market. “I want things to feel modern and not impact the environment,” she continues. “I hope that people feel like they made a thoughtful purchase when they come here.”

Blankets, quilts, jewelry and more at Carny Couture in West Adams.
Blankets, quilts, jewelry and more at Carny Couture in West Adams.
(Christina House / Los Angeles Times)

The couple have dedicated a sizable portion of the showroom to vintage clothing in addition to selected gifts including hand-poured soy candles ($30) by Los Angeles maker Billy Del Puerto, sage bundles and Bodhina facial soap.

Looking ahead, the couple hope to host events at the new space, and plan to release a wearable fragrance that Bailey describes as “citrus top notes that meld into complex earthy wood spice with a subtle musk finish” in October, in time for the holidays.

Vintage clothing, ceramics and housewares at Carny Couture in West Adams.
Vintage clothing, ceramics and housewares at Carny Couture in West Adams.
(Christina House / Los Angeles Times)

What: Carny Couture

Where: 4423 W. Jefferson Blvd., #104, West Adams

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Hours: Mon., Wed.-Fri., 11a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sat. and Sun., 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Info: carnycouture.com

Carny Couture will sell vintage clothing, jewelry and accessories at the Pickwick Vintage Show on Sunday at Pickwick Gardens, 1001 Riverside Drive, Burbank. 9 a.m. (for early buying), 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tickets: $8 general admission and $16 early admission. pickwickvintage.com


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