Consulting fashion gurus Bugs, Elmer

CANDID CLOSET

June 09, 1994|By Mary Corey | Mary Corey,Sun Staff Writer

Tim Potee has a fashion confession: He has worn his curtains.

That's not all. Mr. Potee, the owner of Dreamland, a vintage clothing emporium in Mount Vernon, has donned Victorian skirts, Lurex overalls and many unmentionables in the name of making a clothing statement.

"I use clothes as a tool to express myself, to hide or to say something that's too difficult to say," says Mr. Potee, 36, who lives near his shop. "If I was in the right mood, I'd put on a used tire and wear it."

Where did you learn to dress this way?

From cartoon characters -- Bugs Bunny, Olive Oyl and Elmer Fudd. I look at a lot of human beings as being cartoons anyway.

How would you describe your style?

Bargain basement. It's basically a mishmash of things that have been marked down or discarded.

Sometimes, I just put on clothing, usually a T-shirt and shorts, get out there and do the best I can. Other times, when I take time to get into my ego, I'll either go high end in a suit or go for shock value.

What in your closet is shocking?

I'll put on a pair of curtains to run out to the grocery store. If you tie them in a certain way, they look like an oversized shirt or pair of shorts. Most of the time no one knows.

Where do you shop?

K-Mart. I always look at the Jaclyn Smith line. It's not made all that well, but it's cheap.

Is there anything in your closet you wouldn't dare wear?

I have a 1960s orange and black leather cycle suit. It's skin tight. I don't wear it now because it would take about three hours to get into it and two other people to help.

If you could trade closets, whose would you most like to have?

Phyllis Diller. She wears the same colors as I do -- sea-foam green and red.

What outfit of yours has elicited the strongest reaction?

A mirrored suit. When I wore it, people called me Michael Jackson.

What do you wish you had more of?

I collect vintage bowling shirts. I pay highly for them, as much as $100. I would always like more. A lot of times, I don't wear them outside. I'll wear them to do my dishes.

What do you put on when you're in a funk?

I have a military jumpsuit with zippers and pockets everywhere. It's blue-gray and completely generic. I feel like a code number in it.

Do you have a philosophy of dressing?

Take it one dress at a time.

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

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