Describe a day in the life of Meika Franz in one sentence:
Wake up, feed baby, feed dogs, paperwork, pick vintage, steam/clean/ price/restock, eat, displays, manage employees, promote, put baby to sleep, answer emails, hang with husband, sleep well if baby lets me. 😉
How did you get started with your career – and how does your current role reflect your personal aesthetic?
As my family was in the sewing industry I have been involved in the fashion industry on some level for the past 20 years now. It was when I moved to London in 2004 however, to be with my now husband and business partner that I began working in vintage stores and found my ‘career’ in vintage. It has always been important to me to be unique and stand out from the crowd and vintage is a great way to do that as each piece is basically one of a kind.
How have the women in your life been instrumental in developing your craft?
I am fortunate to come from a family of many interesting, creative and strong willed woman. My great Aunt May, the teacher and principal at the MGM studios school in the 50’s, taught everyone from Mickey Rooney to Judy Garland, my great grandmother an actress/singer and pre-follies Ziegfeld girl, my grandmother, a sewing shop owner, my aunt, an inventor of sewing products and my mother another creative, from designer to singer. My life has been full of inspirational creative woman. Growing up with this inspiration definitely helped to fuel my drive and taught me that I can do anything I set my heart on.
Cultural trends constantly change. What do you do to stay relevant,
connected, and ahead of the curve?
Vintage tends to attract a lot of trend setters so I can often see from my customers what is on trend for the moment as well as what is to come for the mainstream. I also sell a lot to the design industry so I can see what they are looking for to inspire their future collections and keep me aware of what lies ahead in fashion.
Doing my best to maintain a balance of both my personal and business life helps to keep me driven and clear headed in setting and attaining my goals. The goal is keeping focused and positive, try not to think too much! The fear of becoming irrelevant and the excitement of attaining my goals drives me to keep working hard no matter how tired I am;) The creative process is something that I enjoy and is part of what drives me.
How important are mentors? Who is your mentor?
I think mentors are very important. I have been very lucky to have several wonderful mentors in my life from family members, previous bosses, to past and present vintage store owners who pass down their tips and who offer advice to us. I know so many wonderful people I couldn’t choose just one.
Do what you love, live your passion and stay positive no matter what. Never stop learning, and when things get tough, use that time to figure out what can be done to make things better and put it into action. Also, surround yourself with inspiring people!
Meika and her husband Warren in front of Another Man’s Treasure in downtown Jersey City.
- Place that inspires me the most… I think I would have to say England. I have always been inspired by its creative and colorful history; I even named my daughter after one of its legendary shops and clothing lines ‘Biba’. I feel English culture encourages self-expression and standing out in a crowd.
- I feel most powerful when… I am not sure powerful is a word I would use, as I am always aiming to be better at what I do and I am easily my worst critic. However, seeing people wear the clothes that I choose and the positive feedback that I get about how the shop looks, and my eye for style definitely make me feel great .
- I love what I do because… So many reasons! I guess I could start by saying now much I love clothes. Since I could talk I was writing songs about dresses and modeling every piece of clothing my parents bought me. Haha. It’s always been a slight obsession. With vintage you are seeing a quality that is rare these days in clothing, hand details like embroidery and beadwork that would take months or years to recreate today due to the lack of skills, as well as richness in fabrics, prints and colors unseen in modern clothing. I love the hunt of finding each piece and the story that sometimes comes along with it.
- I also love helping people find themselves with the clothes, creating a look that they feel expresses and empowers them. I have seen many people come out of their shell with vintage. Also helping women feel good about their bodies as you can dress for your body shape with vintage, choosing from every style and cut ever made, rather than just the modern cuts of the moment. I could go on and on…
- My idea of success is… Success for me is being able to do something I love so much and having the time to spend with those I love whilst doing it.
- Best advice I have ever received… To enjoy every day because life moves so fast!
About Another Man’s Treasure:
Established in 2006, Another Man’s Treasure is a kaleidoscopic array of vintage fashions, accessories, shoes and jewelry for men and women from the 1900s to 1980s, with a focus on classic vintage, high fashion trends and designer finds. The shop also includes an intriguing mix of records, books, collectibles and other vintage oddities. Another Man’s Treasure has been featured in various publications including Paris VOGUE, Harper’s Bazaar, Elle Mexico, Cosmopolitan UK, New York Magazine, Lucky, Time Out New York, NY Post, Vogue.com, Elle.com and numerous other blogs, video/movie shoots, etc.
Another Man’s Treasure
353 Grove Street
Jersey City, New Jersey 07302