Today we’d like to introduce you to Carri Dillon.
So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
When I was 21 my boyfriend at the time took me to my first flea market. My mind was blown and I fell madly and deeply in love with vintage. Vintage was not a thing where I was from. New was better. Perfect was the best. I loved the originality, the imperfections and the beauty that vintage brought to a space. To a life. For the next 24 years, I worked in television. I would design and decorate homes and rooms for friends and family, always developing my eye and nurturing my love for beautiful spaces. I hoped someday I would be able to pursue my passion full time. The Universe listened! Two years ago Fox (the studio I worked for) offered everyone who had been there 15 years or more a buyout. It took me about 30 seconds to decide to take it and start my business. It took another year and a half to get up and running!
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
The struggles I have had have almost always lead me to a better place. When I first started looking for my space I found a storefront for rent in Silver Lake. I was sure it was meant to be mine. I was deep in negotiations when suddenly the landlord decided he didn’t like me on paper, I wasn’t a good risk. That hurt. I couldn’t find another space I liked or that fit my needs. One day I was scrolling through Instagram and a designer I follow posted pictures from an event she was attending at a place called Light Lab. It was a legit warehouse space in the heart of Atwater Village that had been transformed into a gorgeous event space. A light bulb went off. Why did I need a traditional storefront? Why not think outside the box. The next day I drove over to Light Lab thinking I would just ask them “hey how did you find this space”? I pulled up and the big doors were cracked open. I asked the contractor on sight if I could look inside. It was filled with junk and trash! I asked him what happened to Light Lab? He replied “oh, that’s the warehouse next door. This one is available. Two weeks later it was mine. Being a small business owner means learning to live with a constant state of low-grade panic and still believe it’s all going to be ok! I really try to trust in my vision. Trust that if I put in the work and the effort the Universe will rise up to meet me with the opportunities I need to succeed. If we don’t believe in ourselves, in our own stories, why would anyone else? Now I am a single Mom and it’s really important to me that my children see me hustle hard. I want them to know that their mama is passionate about her life and choices.
Please tell us about La Commune General.
La Commune General began as a 2500 square foot vintage furnishings store. I sourced and handpicked every item. My vision for the shop has always been for it to be a vintage community. Four months ago my friend and Brooke Bailey of Carny Couture moved in and is selling her amazing curated collection of vintage clothing and accessories. In July we hosted our first Carny Commune. An intimate Saturday flea market. In August, Richard Halverson of Pick Pocket Vintage is moving in and I couldn’t be more thrilled! We are creating our own little vintage commune! A one-stop shop for great vintage. I am very proud of our collections and our price point. Great design, beautiful things for your home, amazing original clothing and accessories. I want everyone to find something they love and can’t live without! Our inventory is always changing and we are always adding new item. I also offer design and decorating services. There is nothing more I love than helping someone create a beautiful, original space to spend their lives in.
Do you look back particularly fondly on any memories from childhood?
From the time I was born until I was 15 my family would rent the same house for two weeks every summer in Newport Beach. My mom would make huge batches of chocolate chip cookies to bring. My dad would go clam diving and bring back fresh clams for chowder. My best friend Beth stayed in the house across the street. We would boogie board and lay out all day then come back to the house and rinse off in the outdoor shower then walk on the boardwalk and eat Balboa bars. A popular DJ from KROQ called Poor Man rented the house down the street and there was always cute, wild boys hanging out there. One of them offered us coke one day. We were so confused. We thought he meant Coca Cola! We were VERY sheltered! We still laugh about it.
- Address: 3401 Glendale Blvd. LA CA 90039
- Email: email@example.com
- Instagram: @lacommunegeneral