August 23 2014

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Vena Cava Cleans Out Its Closets


“We both grew up in L.A. and we were kind of weaned on garage sales,” says Vena Cava’s Lisa Mayock. She was talking about herself and her partner in VC, Sophie Buhai, both veterans of the flea market scene. “I think part of our aesthetic is formed by found objects, which is the best part of garage sales—you never know what you’re going to find.” That’s definitely true at Vena Cava’s virtual garage sale, which runs June 1 through June 30 (or until it’s sold out) and keeps the spirit while dispensing with the garage. (Space in New York—not to mention garages—isn’t as plentiful in New York as in L.A.) Lots can be viewed online and purchased by text message.

The goods for sale are all from Mayock and Buhai’s personal collections and range from paperbacks and decor to clothing. Vena Cava pieces are included (an oft-requested archival piece, a hardware-covered slip dress from Spring ’09, pictured, left, is back on offer), but so are pieces from their own wardrobes: Buhai’s much-beloved Contempo Casuals leather jacket (“I wore it all last year,” she says) and a YSL suede Safari jacket. Any favorites? For Mayock, a bright yellow, sixties-era telephone (below, left); for Buhai, a vintage book of celebrity bad dates (below, right). “It has the weirdest compilation of eighties celebrities talking about their bad dates,” she explains. “Like Mark Mothersbaugh from Devo, and then the next chapter is Tom Selleck.”

The duo are seasoned vintage shoppers (Buhai lists the Salvation Army on Brooklyn’s Atlantic Avenue—”it’s pretty untapped”—and the Goodwill on Vine in Hollywood, a frequent drop-off spot for Hollywood costume departments, as her favorite secondhand shops), and many of the goods on offer are on their third or fourth go-round (at least). But a few of the pieces come from closer to home, like Mayock’s birth certificate (bottom) and social security card. It comes packaged with “her self-esteem.” Your own personal self-esteem? “Yeah,” she says, “it’s a free gift.” Will you be OK without it? “Yes.”

Items will be available to view and purchase beginning June 1 at

Photos: Courtesy of Vena Cava



  1. styleicon1 says:

    desperate times call for desperate measures, I reckon…

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