Seamstress Jil Cappuccio is a fabric person. An avid thrift-shopper with a collector's eye, she's developed an irrepressible love affair with vintage cloth and prints a yard here, a length there that she magically transforms into reasonably priced, absolutely one-of-a-kind togs that are comfortably designed to fit like your favorite PJs, all while looking unscrupulously hip.
After coming to Denver from the Bay Area four years ago, Cappuccio mainly wholesaled her clothing until last April, when she took a chance and opened the doors of Jil Cappuccio, One of a Kinds, Limited Lines at 1433 Ogden Street. She's thrilled by the human touch retailing brings to her work: "My clothes are personal to me," she says. "I'm so glad to get to see them go home with someone who loves them."
And shopping there is a delight, simply because Cappuccio is so ready to share: With her vintage Singer Featherweight sewing machine, a model she's used since she was a teen, always ready at the back of the store, the amiable dressmaker is open to customizing and has established a special rapport with her menswear customers. "Guys don't usually get a chance to be creative, and they love being able to claim ownership over their look," she muses. For them, she's a good style partner, one who's learned a lot about what silent male fashionistas need just from sewing for her husband and sons. It also helps that she keeps a running catalogue of all the fabrics she's collected in a mental filing cabinet in her head.
What's in store now? Retro-styled men's shirts, easy machine-washable shifts, short print jackets, simple skirts overlaid with swatches of embroidered dish towels, and miniature tiki shirts for little men. And coming up for fall? Cappuccio's sitting on a trove of vintage '50s and '60s tapestry fabric she's planning to turn into hoodies. Maybe granny skirts. Beautifully tailored coats. Everything you could possibly want.
Jil Cappuccio is open Wednesday through Saturday; call 303-832-1493.
Starts: July 5. Daily, 2007
Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.