Having a background in theater costuming, owner and fashion designer Michelle Metens knows what it takes to dazzle her audience with the delicate designs of her San Francisco based brand. Since the beginning of her online store Dollhouse Bettie in 2004, Metens has wowed her crowd with delicate garments from authentic vintage pieces to handmade beauties that would dazzle both the stage life and in the bedroom. So popular in fact that in 2011, not long after the global financial crisis (GFC) Metens and her team grew to open their brick and mortar store in the popular San Francisco district of the Haight-Ashbury. This district is also called The Haight and is known for its history of, and being the origin of hippie subculture.
Throughout the growth of Dollhouse Bettie Metens and her crew now showcase over 25 lines of original designs featuring a number of styles mixing fabrics and trims with the elegance vintage brings. Blending pinup and burlesque fashion with vintage class Dollhouse Bettie is known as 'The best racy, lacy lingerie in San Francisco' by it's local media, The San Francisco Chronicle.
The Dollhouse Bettie Madison Mon Amour Noir Playsuit (pictured) is a mix of soft stretch lace finished off with a generous length of inky black double face satin ribbon allowing an adjustable fit over the bust. Metens designs are well thought out and accentuates every aspect of the feminine form. Dollhouse Bettie prefers to produce inspiration pieces rather than replications states Metens. They like to pull ideas from vintage archives and use elements to manufacture their designs rather than just using a copy paste procedure. Dollhouse Bettie products are proudly designed, manufactured and owned in the United States (San Francisco). After finding difficulties reaching out to local and international manufacturers as a small business, Metens found it best to manufacture her goods locally to oversee production, so local in fact she has set up her own studio at The Haight separate from the Dollhouse Bettie shopfront.
The Deja Vu Dessous line is separate from the Dollhouse Bettie original design collection which is a soft compilation of vintage revamp lingerie pieces, forming yesterdays treasures into today's delights. Each piece is one of a kind and made from authentic vintage garments and trims while preserving original charms and giving them a fresh modern face. Designer Valerie Santillo has been revamping vintage wears with Dollhouse Bettie making the old new, cutting away damaged materials to form an original elegance.
The popularity of Dollhouse Bettie has been welcomed on all bodies throughout America, so much so they have spread to over 37 retailers around the United States including their flagship store in San Francisco. Not only does Metens work with national retailers, she works with local performers and models including burlesque starlet Miss Dasha Cayenne (pictured). Turning clients into associates that assist in the marketing of these stunning designs only adds to the popularity of these lines. Meten dabbles in natural light photography for the sake of her business and doubles her manufacturing studio into a photography studio. Decked out with historic vintage charms and furniture, Victorian windows with alluring natural light the 3rd floor space is perfect to showcase the gorgeous pieces Dollhouse Bettie has to offer.
Describing Dollhouse Bettie, model and burlesque starlet Dasha Cayenne explains: "Dollhouse Bettie does an exquisite job of fashioning classic, vintage beauty into their lingerie while still making a product that's accessible and easily wearable. I frequent their shop on Haight Street to pick up pieces to wear in my burlesque numbers... I don't know what I'd do without them."