Peter Barnato—local musician and co-owner of the Loving Cup, 188 California Ave.—is planning to open a vintage clothing business upstairs from his bar.
What are you calling the shop?
It’s called Velvet Pill. It’s going to be more of a workspace/showroom—more than actual retail. People will be able to come in. … And I’ll be there a lot, to buy stuff that way. But I’m mostly focusing on online and Instagram sales worldwide. I have a lot of Japanese buyers I work with, and stuff like that. It is going to be a retail shop, but I’m not going to be there all the time. I’ll have my number on the door. When I’m there, it’ll be unlocked. My sign will be on, and I’ll have some set hours people can come.
What do mean by workspace?
I’m going to be making my own clothes and stuff, too, again. So I’m doing my own line—going to start out with vintage, obviously. I have really high-end vintage stuff. And I’m going to keep doing my customization, but another side of it that I’m going to unveil is the stylist side. So, I’m going to, obviously, offer that service to whomever would want to use it, but mostly I know a lot of bands and musicians and people who are doing movies and stuff like that. I have enough stock to be able to style on that side of things.
So, like, style a band for a music video or something?
Yeah, or a tours. So that’s another side of the business. I kind of want to take it a little further than just being a retail shop. … I’m going to have a little area in the shop where Jaxon Northon is going to have his interactive art, some of his pieces there. And he’ll rotate that. It’s just going to be a good, kind of a creative workspace. And the biggest thing is to create my clothing line that I eventually want to get to.
Is a date for this clothing line TBD?
Yeah, I mean, I have ideas and stuff for it, I’m just going to take it one page at a time. It’s just me, which was important to me. And that’s why it’s taken me so long to get it together. I’m doing the build out myself. Everything’s me.
You’re stylish, for sure. Where did you get your interest in fashion?
I don’t know. It’s always been something I was interested in since I was a little kid. And I was always obsessed with rock ’n’ roll, you know, ’70s rock ’n’ roll and David Bowie and the Rolling Stones. And I always noticed the way they looked. … Growing up with my mom, she was also kind of into fashion, too, so she used to let me wear whatever I wanted and let me do my own thing. I’ve always kind of dressed strangely, even since I was in kindergarten, she would say.
Tell me more about the space.
It’s above the bar. It’s a tiny space, which has been hard for me because I love making a space look great. This is going to be very organized, but it’s going to be very full. … It’s going to be mostly a showroom, workspace. You can come see all of my collection and stuff. My collection is insane right now. I’m really proud of it. I’ve been working on it for a really long time.