In this week's Thursday Styles, Critical Shopper Jon Caramanica presents readers with what seems like a first. VFiles is, apparently, a store based on a social platform. While we were wrapping our heads around that idea, we took a quick look at Vfiles.com, which appears to be a compendium of fashion and pop-culture images and media that could easily send the distracted down a rabbit hole of time-wasting from which there may be no escape. Caramanica calls it "consuming the existing in order to make something new." The value of the result may be open to debate.
But back to the store. Our shopper compares it to "shopping in an office," but finds fascination in the shop's fixation with 90s fashion, nightlife and media —think of it as the internet discovering the last minute before everything in our culture got processed through the World Wide Web.
But the items themselves are alive with history, building blocks for someone inclined to mainline the 1990s in all its forms. That’s the sea VFiles is swimming in — short-burn nostalgia, a choice based on beauty or convenience or both.
It puts Caramanica (and The Shophound, for that matter) in the odd position of seeing someone pore over the detritus of a lost era that doesn't actually seem too far away. It also reminded us that when retro styles come around you need to think twice about re-embracing them if you wore them the first time around.