Andre Merlo knows a good look when he sees it. He’s worked in fashion, photography and styling and even had his own line in Milan, but now he’s zeroing in on affordable, quality second-hand clothing.
“I’m from Italy originally, but I’ve been coming to Halifax for 10 years on and off,” he says. “I was 17 when I came here for the first time, and fell in love with the lifestyle, the people and the culture.”
Merlo’s hoping his Anti Fashion can add to that culture. He’s been growing the brand over the last few months, building on the Anti collection and popping up at the Alderney Landing Farmers’ Market as well as at special events like Full Circle Festival, Folly Fest and this weekend’s Evolve Festival. This month, he debuted a bricks-and mortar boutique on the corner of West and Agricola (upstairs at 5687 West Street), offering shoppers a hand-picked second-hand selection and a personal shopping experience.
“I have a really funky taste. I like originality, I like things that are unique, hard to find and I like quality,” Merlo says. “Not everyone loves a Value Village experience. I tell you how it is, I’m always very honest. I want people to walk out with something that looks good and makes sense for them.”
On top of its distinctive selection, Anti Fashion will offer both monthly ($10) and yearly ($55) memberships to its shoppers, which will yield discounts and special deals, and Merlo says he’s dedicated to keeping prices low and calibre high.
“Why do we keep buying new and pouring money into fast fashion? Everybody loves to switch up their look, and if you can do it with little money it’s a win for everyone.”
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