Michelle Rizzardo is one of Vancouver’s coolest (and camera shy) entrepreneurs. Together with her husband, Trevor Fleming, she works tirelessly to provide our city with stylish clothing options so that we might be a well dressed crowd. We at Scout are big fans of their work (One of a Few, Two of a Few and Lifetime Collective), and since they’re presenting at this Thursday’s sold out Pecha Kucha Night at the Vogue Theatre, we thought it prudent to squeeze a few minutes of time out of Michelle (between her preparations for Pecha Kucha, running a small clothing empire and logging untold hours as a supermom) so we could get to know her favourite local shops, find out where she finds inspiration and learn what we should be adding to our spring wardrobes…
Three things about Gastown that made you want to set up shop there: The community, the architecture and the creative energy.
What will Vancouverites find at One Of A Few & Two Of A Few? We work hard to showcase an edited selection of clothing, footwear and jewellery from local and international designers. We focus on one of kind pieces and unique designs that are simultaneously classic and edgy.
What inspires you? People, creativity, customers, designers, traveling, friends, family and conversation.
Tell us what fashion item you are most looking forward to seeing on the streets of Vancouver this summer: I love collared shirts and little cardigans. Silk tops tucked into high-waisted pants. I love seeing natural colours in shoes: browns, rusts, greys. Pick up some good heels and classic sandals. Chino pants and a well tailored top is another good look. Oh, and I’m obsessing over long skirts and long dresses. They look so beautiful, easy and classy.
Favourite summer accessory? Shoes. Absolutely shoes. And any hand crocheted piece by Arielle de Pinto.
Why is Vancouver a good city for independent design? We have a really supportive community that actively searches out local design.
Is there a local designer that you admire above all others? I admire the creativity and hard work of many local designers. However, I hold Dace from Dace Clothing [see] really close to my heart. She has been a huge inspiration in my work. She is one of my best friends and a mentor. She is amazing not only in her designs, but as a business women, friend and mother. Her accomplishments are to be admired and she truly is an inspiration to those following in her footsteps. She works very hard and still takes the time to help others. I really look up to her and respect her business opinions and choices.
Best Vancouver place to find fashion inspiration? On the streets.
Best Vancouver location for people watching? Either at Prado [see] or on the benches outside my store.
The three places you like to take out of town guests? I always try to fit in a trip to one of the Gulf Islands. I also love taking people to the Capilano Suspension bridge and I ALWAYS take people to Gastown for at least a day.
Where do you enjoy shopping in Vancouver? Tell us about some of your favourite local haunts: I really only shop at my two stores for clothing and footwear; it’s one of the luxuries of owning a clothing store. For the home, I go to Old Faithful (see), they have a well curated selection of everything from stationary to light bulbs. I also really like a little store in Kitsilano called Step Back (see), very cute and full of antique treasures. For menswear and gifts, I like Mr. Lee’s Haberdashery (see) on Broadway. For food, I am currently obsessed with Bao Bei (see). I love the staff, the energy, the decor …okay, and the food.
Favourite destination for a buying trip? New York and Paris…I dream of Italy.