Thrift shop owner sports killer style


June 03, 1993|By Mary Corey | Mary Corey,Staff Writer

When you sell leopard-print lamp shades, kimonos and platform shoes, it's hard to show up for work in a T-shirt and jeans.

No matter. That's hardly Elaine Ferrare's style anyway. As the owner of Killer Trash, one of Fells Point's newest and funkiest thrift shops, she likes to dress on the wild side -- and sell the stuff, too.

How would you describe your style?

Everyone has always told me I have my own sense of style. I dress for fun. I used to say I'd get dressed, look in the mirror, and if I laughed, then I'd go out. Today I'm more low-key about what I wear.

What do you consider low-key?

Clothes that don't have everyone looking at me. I dress a little conservatively, but that's only because I've gained 10 pounds. Now I'll wear black pants with holes in them, a tight black top, high heels and a brocade vest with fringe.

It sounds sort of sexy.

Yes. That's the kind of dresser I am. It's a little sleazy, a little hippy, a little glamorous.

What would you have worn during your wilder days?

A see-through beaded top, satin pants and 6-inch platform shoes with lots of jewelry. My friends called me Gypsy.

Where did this style come from?

I came into my own in the late '60s. I was very conservative up to that point. I remember in school I couldn't wear blue with green. Then I just started doing my own thing. I started cutting up curtains and wearing them. That was the creative side coming out in me. My family didn't understand it at all.

I'm having more fun with my clothes now. It used to take me two hours to try to look perfect. Now five minutes and I can be out the door. Some days, I'll walk out with six different patterns on.

Do you ever think you dress for shock value?

Absolutely. But I have no regrets about what I've worn -- whether it's my padded push-up bras or my see-through clothes.

What's your favorite outfit?

Anything with leopard on it. I have more than 40 things with leopard prints on them. Coats, jackets, pants, shorts, tops, belts, earring shoes, purses, scarves, rugs and lamp shades.

What wouldn't you wear today?

I wouldn't want to be seen in a two-piece double-knit suit, navy blue A-line with a little bow shirt. I'm not into that.

Where do you shop?

Wherever I am. I go to flea markets a lot. I'm not a Macy's shopper. I'm not an off-the-rack kind of person. I don't want to look like everyone else.

If you could choose anyone, with whom would you most like to go shopping?

Madonna and Cher. I like their sense of style. They dress for themselves.

What's the biggest mistake you see women making with their wardrobes these days?

They take it all too seriously. Women are so conscious of their bodies. They worry that they don't have shoulders big enough, ** so they wear shoulder pads. Or they want a smaller waist, so they wear a tight belt. They should just relax.

If we dropped by on a Saturday night, would would you be wearing?

I dress the same way on Saturday night as I do Monday at noon. If I'm staying in, I'd be wearing a leopard nightgown and running the water for a bubble bath.

Do you know some dressers? Let us know. Write to Mary Corey, The Baltimore Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore, Md. 21278.

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