The ’90s were the best years of my life. I remember my obsession with all things Hip Hop, RnB, Black sitcoms, and the best Black movies.
That’s why I was excited to discover a Black owned vintage clothing business that specializes in ’90s-era paraphernalia and other cool items. We caught up with Eric Brown Jr, the owner of Backtrack Vintage to find out more about his business.
What inspired you to start your business?
I’ve always had an appreciation for great retail experiences and, initially when I decided to go into the business full time, I wanted to build an amazing brick and mortar location for people to get their vintage clothing fix. Unfortunately, I couldn’t land a retail location no matter what I did or where I looked.
So after months of searching and hearing about seven “no’s” from different landlords around the city, I decided to bet on myself and build my store inside an old school bus.
I spent about 5 weeks from sunrise and sunset building the inside of the bus and I took it to the streets in April of 2019.
How do you find the items you sell?
During the early days, I would basically spend an entire day inside different thrift stores, flea markets, and weekend garage sales. Now we have a great network of sellers who we source high-quality vintage garments from, as well as sourcing from some of the best vintage rag houses in Los Angeles.
In addition to those items being mindfully hand-picked to be a piece of nostalgia, we also go above and beyond to find items that are like new and restore items as needed.
What is it about the ’90s era that appeals to you?
How has business been during the past few months and what are you doing to adapt?
If you could wake up tomorrow as an expert in any area of business, which would it be and why?
I’d have to say “communication.” In all aspects of running a business, communication is key. Whether it’s with customers, vendors, or employees if you can effectively communicate you will be effective at getting your desired outcome.
It’s something that I’ve forced myself to become better at over the years and it’s definitely paying off.