The Downtown Beat - Klash VintageJun 20, 2022 10:06AM ● By Nina Welch
1960s vintage carpet bags. Over 120 bags line the store and are in pristine condition.
by Nina Welch
There’s a new vintage store in town. Pamela Vandergrift, owner of Doheny Clothing Exchange, moved her shop from Capistrano Beach to San Clemente this year. After 12 years in Capo, she will have a fresh start at 305 N. El Camino Real and a new name, Klash Vintage.
Vandergrift has operated a lighting design business for 25 years, and continues with that company while also running her clothing business. In fact, she recently finished a big lighting project in Ecuador.
Doheny Clothing Exchange, ten years in Capistrano Beach, was known for vintage-wearable clothing that could be integrated into everyday fashion. Vandergrift has now transferred her style expertise and products to the San Clemente store nestled alongside Pizza Port.
Originally opening the new location with her daughter, Caia - who has moved on to focus on motherhood and working in her husband’s contractor business – Vandergrift decided to move the clothing store to San Clemente during the pandemic, and has refined the merchandise by adding vintage carpet bags.
According to Vandergrift, Klash Vintage is a boutique with new and used clothing and accessories. A big seller is her carpet bags. She is the supplier of 1960s vintage carpet bags, styled right out of grandma’s closet. Over 120 bags line the store and are in pristine condition.
Shoppers can find an abundance of cowboy boots and western attire there as well. Every year, she has a booth at the Swallows Parade, and she sells merchandise out of her store for Stagecoach, Coachella, and Burning Man events. She also styles outfits for customers who want to reinvent themselves.
Along with vintage, new and used clothing, one might be thrilled to find silver and gemstone jewelry, scarves, hats, textiles, rugs and quilts. Klash Vintage also has a wide collection of the ever-popular rock and roll Tees, both original and new. Another great find, hanging on a rack near the register, are vintage slips that Vandergrift dyes in an array of colors and styles as dresses.
Living in San Juan Capistrano with her three rescue dogs and one rescue cat, Vandergrift says she has been an animal rescue advocate since she was a child. Not surprising, this creative store-owner’s hobbies include jewelry-making, sewing, and wedding design. Her biggest joy was planning her daughter’s wedding decor. Vandergrift describes the event as rustic meets glamour. A one-of-a-kind wedding, it included burlap and black-laced table decorations, feather bouquets and centerpieces, and the groom and ushers even wore feathered bullet-shell boutonnieres.
Shoppers at Klash Vintage will be browsing through a treasure-trove of affordable, unique, and handpicked pieces. Store Hours: Mon-Sat, 11:30am-5:30pm, Sun, 1-3pm; Instagram and Facebook: dohenyclothinbgexchange.