Need a little retail therapy? View and purchase the authentic collections The Vintage Contessa and Times Past will be showcasing at a trunk show at Luca Bruno Due in Vail on Thursday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Chanel, Louis Vuitton and Hermes handbags and accessories along with Rolex watches will be on display.
Husband and wife team, Rob and Donae Cangelosi Chramosta make up The Vintage Contessa and Times Past. Rob started collecting coins at age 5 and selling watches at age 15 and Donae has been a self-proclaimed “handbag addict” since her father brought her back a Gucci purse from Italy when she was 13 years old. Their passion goes beyond fashionable accessories. They truly search the globe to find authentic, timeless luxury pieces that become an heirloom that you can pass down from generation to generation.
Why buy pre-owned? “In a world filled with disposable fashion, choosing a piece that creates a lower carbon footprint and has a lasting value gives you a feeling of success,” Donae said. But there is also something about the story behind a pre-owned piece and the lasting craftsmanship that goes into making these timeless luxury goods. “It’s the intrigue of ‘where did this bag travel before?’ ‘Which party was it at?’ or ‘Who was there?’ that creates the allure of owning a statement piece that has a history behind it,” Donae said.
One question the Chramostas get asked a lot is “How do you know it’s real?”
“We own everything in our inventory and therefore make more of a financial commitment to it,” Donae said. “When you’re around the real product all the time, you can tell the difference between if it is real or fake. The stitching, stamping, smell, style, watch dials and bezels, the movement of the second hand, you’ve touched them so many times, you are intimately familiar with each product.” The Chramostas unconditionally guarantee the authenticity of every piece they purchase and sell.
Like many other businesses, COVID-19 has affected this unique jewelry box of a boutique, but Donae and Rob, who hail from Houston but consider Vail their home away from home, took advantage of this time not on the road going to trade shows and created “Living the Authentic Life” podcast. This weekly show covers interesting and stylish personalities sharing authentic journeys of commitment, connection and authenticity. This week their podcast will be live from the Luca Bruno Due store at 10 a.m. with yours truly. I’ll be talking up Vail’s unique sense of style and some of the history behind this town and its authentic, pioneering spirit.
The Vintage Contessa and Times Past has paired up with the Vail Daily to do an Instagram giveaway. One lucky follower will win one vintage Louis Vuitton duffle bag valued at approximately $1000 from Vintage Contessa and Times Past.