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Vintage clothing is practically a cult in our area, with stylists, flea markets and boutiques offering treasures from pre-owned handbags to red-carpet wear. A local high-end vintage shopkeeper is even getting his own Bravo reality show.

But our vote for Most Creative Secondhand Garments goes to designers Yael Aflalo and Chi Bui at Reformation, the four-year-old clothier that just opened a new store on Melrose. The duo takes used clothing and dead-stock material and fashions them into one-of-a-kind pieces exuding urban sophistication and comfort. 

A silk dress might be narrowed and shortened, for example, to become a cocktail dress ($165). Or a bolt of overstock dotted rayon might turn up as a crazy cool pair of palazzo pants ($185). Even the classic white button-down gets jazzed up, here a bit oversized and flowy in vintage silk and sold at the wear-it-everywhere price of $65.

Reformation’s new shop is 2,000 square feet of browsing fun, from its scattered hand-forged rolling racks of clothing to tables stacked with goodies including summer must-have Soludos espadrilles ($42). There are even hard-to-find international personal care products like natural French toothpaste Botot ($11) and the full range of Tahitian Monoi coconut oils ($13).

And to think that 80 percent of all the materials are recycled: Shopping at Reformation is the least we can do for the environment.

Reformation, 8253 Melrose Ave.; 323-852-0005 or


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