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I've just found what could be the best little resale shop on the Island: Look Twice, in Rockville Centre. Imagine a black-label Armani woolen ladies' suit jacket for $75 and a vintage Gucci signature print handbag for $44!
You'll get a little art chat with your customer service, because owner Molly Dealbert has an M.F.A. We had a discussion about Diego Rivera's murals, which I just got back from seeing in Detroit this past weekend. Dealbert and I talked about the current show at the Brooklyn Museum, since I'm planning to donate my body to Damian Hirst. That way my pals can visit me when they do their museum crawls.
There are a hundred or more vintage handbags in this little shop: a mint tortoiseshell/ butterscotch swirl Bakelite was $165 (it would be $500 in the city), a cute '50s gray/silver rectangular Plexiglas bag was $50, vintage Gucci wallets are $28-$50 and even alligator handbags are ticketed at under $100. Fur vests, very Velvet Goldmine, are priced at $50. They're perfect with this season's cigarette jeans. Fashionistas will love a Persian lamb jacket reworked with shiny black leather into a '70s car coat for only $100.
While you're in RVC, make sure that you stop in at the American Cancer Society Thrift Shop. Still an arty jumble, like thrifts of 20 years ago, but the manager, Carol Diamond, provides the service of a fine boutique. She calls regulars by name, telephones you when a sweater in your favorite color comes in and allows you to put things on lay-away. There is a special section for large-sized men's and ladies' wear, petites and maternity styles. Coats are currently in rich supply. Best bets are cordovan leather full-length coats from the '70s at $30 to $40. A blanket weave jacket, perfect for the rich hippie look, is $16, as is a snuggly duffel coat featuring a bold geometric Native American motif.
The best thing in the store? A tiny Marilyn Monroe-inspired metallic jersey cocktail dress is a steal at $25.
Look Twice220 Merrick Rd, Rockville Centre, 516-763-2399. American Cancer Society thrift shop44 N Village Ave, Rockville Centre, 516-566-5171.