Meet the New Fashion Mecca.

When former owner Stephanie Spiegel blessed Miami with its first and only clothing exchange and boutique — the Rag Trade Happy Clothing Company (4600 NE Second Ave., Miami) — hipsters rejoiced. They came out in droves to buy locally designed clothes by the likes of SO-ME, Adrienne Ruffin, and Tinymeat. When the store began hosting regular Kraftworks events in the massive parking lot, the celebration of all things handmade drew to Little Haiti a crowd of crafty chicks, DIY dudes, hot DJs, movers, shakers, and Mongolian cluster painters. When Spiegel put the store — contents and all — up for sale, fashionistas freaked. When she packed it in and moved to an organic farm in Israel, folks feared Rag Trade would suffer the same fate so many of Miami’s quirkier businesses have in the past. Never fear: Sweat Records is here! Sweat’s co-owners, Lolo and Jsin, purchased Spiegel’s store in the nick of time. And they plan to keep the little-clothing-trade-depot-that-could open, in the spirit of Spiegel herself.

“I always DJed at the Kraftwork events, and Jsin buys, like, all his clothes there.... We couldn’t bear the thought of someone owning the store who didn’t have their heart in the right place,” explains Lolo. Now that Sweat has a sister store down the street, all the handmade jewelry, band tees, and local merch they haven’t had room to display at the record store will have a new home. The new co-owners have big plans for seasonal Kraftworks events, as well as crafty classes (origami and knitting circles, yay!), but for now, it’s all about the Rag Trade Happy Clothing Company reopening celebration. There’ll be music and DJs spinning in the store, all beginning around 2 p.m. And of course, there’s an afterparty at The Vagabond.
Fri., May 30, 2 p.m., 2008
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