New Yorkers may not have heard of Cameron Silver and Christos Garkinos, but they're likely to know (or shop at) the legendary Decades sample sales -- lower-priced offshoots of their Los Angeles-based consignment shop, Decades -- which have become a shopping favorite among editors and It-girls alike.
Now, you'll have a chance to get even better acquainted with the duo thanks to Bravo's recently-announced new reality show, "Decades," which will document Silver and Garkinos' day-to-day at the boutique, as well as the travails of the celebrity styling business (Silver recently styled Melissa McCarthy for this year's Oscars). We caught up with Silver and Garkinos to hear how they're coping with the cameras and what they're most excited to show their new viewers.
How did the concept for the show come about?
Garkinos: "We'd been approached for many years to do something both separately and together. We merged last May as a business, and thought it was the right time to tell the Decades story and offer our unique view into this rarefied world of fashion. We liked that we could offer a joint perspective."
What about your business are you most excited to show viewers?
Garkinos: "I'm excited that we'll really be able to spotlight a very interesting and unique part of the fashion world that has never been seen before. The especially fun part of it is the relationship between myself and Cameron. We've been business partners for 12 years, but we had two entrances into the store. And now my desk is about eight feet away from. We've had to adjust our relationship, and that features into the show. It's like going from being engaged to being married, so to speak."
Silver: "Aside from the glamorous aspect of the business, it also lets you go behind the scenes with the trials and tribulations of being an independent retailer. it's very real, it's not fabricated -- I think that there's this false perception that everything with fashion is all red carpet events and G6's, but at the end of the day we're a business that just wants to make its mortgage, pay its staff, and still find room to grow. The show really offers both sides of the business. It's extremely authentic."
What was it like adjusting to all the cameras?
Silver: "Cameras at Decades are just like hangers on clothes -- they've kind of been everywhere since we opened. The first day it was a little bit of an adjustment, and now it's totally fine. We had business to do, we couldn't stop and go, 'Okay, it's time for this scene or that scene.'"
What do you think viewers will be most surprised to see?
Silver: "That the back room is a disaster! Yesterday, I was doing personal shopping with a client at Bergdorf, and when you go off the floor of the store, suddenly everything is not so perfect anymore. Decades is the same way, it's very 'Upstairs Downstairs.' When you go in the back, you're boxing stuff up, and the floor is super organized. i think it's kind of ... Well, it's what I'm scared to show but it's something that's true of every store. You have what's going on on the sales floor, and what's going on in the back."
Garkinos: "i used to work for Disney and we had that same onstage versus offstage dynamic. You walk backstage and see those guys in costumes with the heads off."
What else have you found nerve-wracking? Is it difficult juggling the show along with the business?
Garkinos: "Clothes. I literally have like 85 changes throughout the season, I might be in a denim overall by the time we finish. I know Cameron will not have that problem."
Silver: "Looking fat or sleepy. It's difficult to do all of these things at once!"
Garkinos: "It really is like having several full-time jobs right now, because there's the actual store and everything that happens off camera and everything that happens on camera. It's not just about the store -- it's also what happens outside of the store. So we are definitely wearing lots of hats right now."