Show & Tell: Susan’s Closet

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In many ways, ModCloth owes its start to a crammed closet. With a bevy of thrifted finds taking over her tiny dorm room, then-college student Susan Gregg Koger started an online shop with help from her boyfriend-turned-husband, Eric. Ten years later, our Chief Creative Officer opened the doors of her dream closet to give us a behind-the-scenes look at her favorite vintage items, and to dish on what personal style means to her.

Want to see what Susan’s currently pining for? See what’s on her Love List.

sarah

About Sarah

Who would have thought the little girl in the oversized Goofy T-shirt would grow up to work in fashion? Definitely not young Sarah; she was too busy singing her heart out to Whitney Houston. Today, her eclectic fashion tastes lean toward purses large enough to stash her latest read, way too high of a heel, and the occasional vintage baseball tee.

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86 Responses to Show & Tell: Susan’s Closet

  1. tulleandtrinkets 01/20/2012 at 10:45 am #

    OH my goodness. SWOONING! Absolutely amazing. Love her style.
    Sarah from http://tulleandtrinkets.com/

  2. Stacie 01/20/2012 at 10:48 am #

    WOW!!!! This is such a cool video. Love that there is one of those mechanical racks like at the dry cleaner’s. Haha. :D

  3. Anna (Modcloth) 01/20/2012 at 10:51 am #

    Amazing. The main reason I love thrifting and vintage clothing is to give a second life to something someone otherwise would not have valued or needed. It also forces me to be more creative with my wardrobe with one-of-a-kind pieces that you can’t find anywhere else!

    Thanks for sharing your dream closet with us Susan :).

  4. Angela (ModCloth) 01/20/2012 at 11:11 am #

    Love this! I love what you say, Susan, about dressing each day based on “who you want to be that day.” That’s such a cool way to make each day special and to make each day count. Thanks for the closet tour!

  5. Amber Rose 01/20/2012 at 11:54 am #

    I can’t even. <3

  6. Molly K. (ModCloth) 01/20/2012 at 12:15 pm #

    I love, love, love the way Susan articulates the rich history and unknown stories of vintage items. I like to image my prized thrifted pieces narrating a tale about their travels and adventures, and I take great comfort knowing that I’m only one leg of that journey. They had a rich life before me, and I fully intend to pass them on so that story can continue after me, as well.

  7. Kaleigh 01/20/2012 at 12:25 pm #

    I’ve currently been sorting through old family photos with my grandmother, who loves to sew and is in her 80′s, and I would honestly do anything for one piece of clothing that had been her’s. Susan is so lucky to have pieces authentic vintage pieces from her grandmother’s closet, I’m so glad she appreciates them! What amazing sentimental and sartorial value!

    • Susan (ModCloth) 01/26/2012 at 11:58 am #

      Thanks Kaleigh! I feel so lucky that she kept some of her amazing wardrobe & that she handed passed them down to me. If I ever have a daughter, she’ll be getting them too!

      • cmunk13 12/25/2013 at 4:20 pm #

        You will have the best dressed children in history…

  8. Julie Pinzur 01/20/2012 at 1:00 pm #

    Whoa, your closet is giant!! That’s so awesome.

  9. Kayla 01/20/2012 at 1:15 pm #

    What an amazing closet! That is definitely a dream closet! I love all of the amazing shoes and the necklace with the pictures in it! The stories of pieces are one of the main reasons that I love vintage! My favorite vintage piece of mine is a handmade bag, it came with a letter and an entry into a sewing competition and it also came with her ribbon that she won from the entry. I love that it has a story and I love to imagine what the woman who made it was like. I love that every vintage piece has a story.

  10. Alison 01/20/2012 at 2:00 pm #

    Holy crap. I have a serious case of closet envy. I may not completely share Susan’s style or want all the *pieces* but dang, would I ever kill for a closet set-up like that! Amazing…

    Also, would love to see videos like this from other ModCloth ladies!

  11. Hannah (ModCloth) 01/20/2012 at 2:13 pm #

    I have so much to say about this, but I think it can be summed up in the word ‘amazing’!

  12. Suzanne 01/20/2012 at 4:02 pm #

    WANT.

  13. Lila 01/20/2012 at 4:10 pm #

    This is amazing. Every girl’s dream closet! And I caught so many past Modcloth items I always loved on the video too. Thanks for sharing!

  14. Lee 01/20/2012 at 5:53 pm #

    Ohhhmygod this closet is amazing. I LOVE the shoe shelves. I loved peeking into Susan’s closet, and I really really hope to see more closet features!

  15. Jade (ModCloth) 01/20/2012 at 7:42 pm #

    I absolutely love this closet and how colourful it is! I like to make up stories with my vintage items and wonder what they did in their past lives.. the element of mystery, even that of a simple old book, is the most fascinating part. Looking at this makes me melancholic for all the items that I once loved and ended up getting rid of due to space, and I’m sure there are many ladies out there who share the sentiment ;)
    Thanks for sharing, this inspires me to dress like the-way-I-feel more often!

  16. Brenna Kathleen 01/20/2012 at 10:20 pm #

    That closet is better than Barbie’s.

    • Katherine McManus 07/01/2012 at 10:57 am #

      What a creative,expressive,and inspiring woman and closet!Thanks for sharing and empowering us to be fashionable,fun,and risk dressing a bit different if we chose.

      • krystalons 07/12/2012 at 3:54 pm #

        Thank you for allowing me to speak. It’d not been long since I’ve recently found out about your website. So far, I’ve been rather impressed with what I’ve seen! I love your dresses, and the titles that you give them! Just to let you know, ‘I’, too happen to be a clothes lover myself! I have a friend whom I’ve made clothes for in the past. I’ve been sewing for nearly 20 years. I’ve started designing my clothes back in 2001. I design my own patterns, and had receently started designing jewwlry. Sandy Allen, my best friend designs jewelry. She had introduced me to it.

  17. Eliza 01/21/2012 at 5:16 am #

    She is so cute! She actually organizes her closet exactly like I do; by color and type. I totally wish I could meet her! BTW: Susan, I loved your grandmother’s coat. Stuff with history totally intrigues me.

  18. Katie 01/21/2012 at 8:53 am #

    Wow! I want everything in her gigantic closet!

  19. Bethany 01/21/2012 at 9:40 am #

    aaaah I want my closet to look like that when I get older and I have my own apartment!!! You really inspire me and this is like a job that I would want to do!!!! I absolutely love fashion And I have always wanted to start my own website!

    • Susan (ModCloth) 01/26/2012 at 12:04 pm #

      Thanks for the kind words! That’s so awesome to hear. It’s a lot of hard work, but I definitely feel like I have a dream job.

  20. Kat 01/21/2012 at 11:56 am #

    Is it possible to hate someone for having the most amazing closet ever while still admiring them for their great taste?

  21. Morrie Hudiburg 01/22/2012 at 11:41 am #

    That is the best closet! I’m so jealous

  22. Natasha (ModCloth) 01/23/2012 at 5:16 pm #

    This video is inspiring on so many levels. Love the organization, but also it reminded me to appreciate the gems that are already in my closet. Will be closet shopping this week. :)

  23. Erin 01/24/2012 at 5:46 am #

    I would love to have a closet that sick stocked up!

  24. Savannah 01/24/2012 at 7:50 am #

    I love love love your closet! Not only how its set up, but whats inside. I hope to have a closet that amazing one day! Thanks for the inspiration.

  25. Kate 01/24/2012 at 4:26 pm #

    I wish I knew where she got the white dress that she’s wearing! It looks like something I’d love to wear to my informal wedding this summer! Very interesting video, Modcloth!

  26. Sunny 01/26/2012 at 7:00 am #

    I’m amazed at the organization of it all. It looks like the closet was custom built for Susan and that is wonderful. I loved hearing the stories behind the items. I wonder what her husband’s closet looks like!

    • Susan (ModCloth) 01/26/2012 at 12:03 pm #

      Thank you! I worked with a contractor to build it out to my specifications – dream closet, indeed!

      Eric’s closet is much smaller and mostly filled with animal t-shirts and Converse. I sneak a few of my heavy coats in there every now & then, too :)

  27. Lisa 01/28/2012 at 8:02 am #

    WOW! What an amazing closet! Do you ever get overwhelmed in the mornings because of all the options you have? I LOVE your closet! It’s like a bedroom…for clothes! I’ve been wanting to redo my closet, but I have a tiny walk-in compared to yours! I love your organization and set up! You are truly inspiring!

    BTW, i love that you review items you own on ModCloth! And also, since you mentioned “starting a family”, have you ever considered getting maternity items on ModCloth? I don’t think i’ve ever seen anything like that before. Maternity clothes are never that exciting, would love to see a ModCloth Maternity line, especially since in a couple of years i’ll be in need of maternity clothes. :)

  28. Lilibet 01/29/2012 at 4:09 am #

    Susan, your closet is AMAZING! Love it very much! Do you have enough time to wear all of this beautiful and various clothes?) I really liked your silver shining shoes… I think you are like Cinderella in it=)

  29. Shelby Petersen 02/06/2012 at 2:03 am #

    next time my family tells me i have to many dresses i am going to show them this video. i have nothing on susan.

  30. Claire E. 02/28/2012 at 2:09 pm #

    Your story is so inspiring. I am constantly finding beauty and inspiration in my everyday life. Your story and video of course is one of them. I would like to pursue my dream. I know it’s a lot of hardwork.
    Thanks for opening your soul Susan.

  31. Tessa 03/06/2012 at 7:23 am #

    Love the video Susan! As one who has loved vintage clothes since the 1970′s, I wished I had kept all of my treasures.

    One question: how would you suggest cleaning some of the thrift store pieces ( the ones that are not machine or hand washable)?

  32. Nicolette 03/09/2012 at 9:49 pm #

    There are plenty of thrift stores by my college and it’s just unfortunate that I never find a size that fits me. Your closet is like my dream come true! Beautiful clothes, beautiful style and thanks for Modcloth! Without it I’d never have any vintage looking clothing that fit me.

  33. marian 03/16/2012 at 7:35 pm #

    Wow! Now that’s a closet! Thanks for the peek.
    I love your appreciation of the previous lives of vintage pieces of clothing or jewelry and the people who wore them. (I have a similar fascination, especially with very old mirrors– oh, the faces and events they have reflected over the years, even as they reflect yours!)

    I had such a surprise today, by the way: ModCloth is my neighbor– less than half-mile from my house in Ingram– and I had no idea! I placed my first order recently (certainly not my last!), but unfortunately the dress did not fit and I had to send it back. Apparently I paid no attention to the address on the label when I mailed it from the Crafton post office. Today I had to take a different package to UPS and, as I drove to the facility, what a surprise to notice a ModCloth sign right there! How funny it would have been if I’d driven right past ModCloth to mail that package back to you from right around the corner!
    Anyway, welcome to the neighborhood. I’m so excited to watch you follow you passion and transform the fashion industry, one vintage piece at a time.

  34. Lindsay 03/19/2012 at 10:25 pm #

    what the shit? carousel coat closet!? omg. amazing.
    do you plan on selling any of that? I’d go insane, it seems like too much.

    wouldnt it be cool if those kids in the locket contacted you? :)

    • Abby 05/10/2012 at 2:31 pm #

      I agree with you. I hope that one day ( I know this will never ever happen) she will come to my front door and say “Would you like to rummage through my closet and take everything you like?” I would probably pee my pants because I would be so excited! Just so ya know, I would never pee my pants, that is an expression I use often.

  35. Tanya 03/29/2012 at 11:49 pm #

    I had to actually stop watching halfway through because jealousy was building so quickly. This closet and its contents are INCREDIBLE. Thanks for ModCloth so we can all indulge in our own quirky styles so easily!!

  36. Jules 05/08/2012 at 2:13 pm #

    OMG I hate you! [In that I love and envy you sort of way :) ]

    I remember being young and having kids tease people who went to thrift stores, it was hard to reject the ‘shame’ they tried to impose. I almost feel like a modern-day pirate of sorts as I rummage through long–forgotten and once loved finds, imagining the stories behind them like Susan mentions. It’s so much fun! Always be yourself no matter what anyone else thinks. Thanks for sharing Susan!

  37. gina 05/10/2012 at 7:24 am #

    Love what you do! Great story, thank you for sharing! And the closet … well, what gems!

  38. gina 05/10/2012 at 7:30 am #

    How I found your site … I was looking for 60′s clothing for my 8 yr old son. He is in a talent show end of May, singing, “Hey Hey We’re The Monkees” – by the Monkees. Do you have any advice where to find such pieces .. the shirt with collar flapped over with 2 sets of buttons?? I think the pants are slight bell bottoms? Any suggestion, would be greatly appreciated. Thank you, Gina and Jackson

  39. Abby 05/10/2012 at 2:28 pm #

    Oh. My. Goodness. I can’t even begin to say how much I love her freaking closet. I am sooo jealous! I absolutely adore vintage clothing (and I’m 15!) and this is one of the most AMAZING closets I’ve ever seen in my whole entire life. I mean, that is like a house inside of a house. I want her closet & of course, I want all it contains! Well, maybe not the locket and her grandmother’s coat; those are special items.

  40. samwisegamgee 05/10/2012 at 2:50 pm #

    I looove your closet! and how many pairs of shoes you own!

  41. krystalons 05/19/2012 at 5:57 pm #

    Hi, my name is Krystalon Smith, I just wanted to say that I dig your stuff! I’ve recently found out about Modcloth a few days ago! I cannot resist your dresses, or the name you gave them! They are just so adorable. I prefer the floor-length dresses better. Also, your shoes are very cool, and very unique. I like footwear that are different and unique. As well as the apparel, I’m very much into apparel a great deal!

  42. asha 06/05/2012 at 12:03 pm #

    ok, so here’s my answer to what will heaven look like, i know it’s a bit dramatic but hey!! wow!!! i wish she were my friend so i could borrow some of that stuff :-)
    ps: modcloth is my style inspiration. i am obsessed!

  43. Kelly Devoto 06/06/2012 at 2:04 pm #

    Oh my goodness, I have that exact same green polyester dress with the white collar!!! So crazy! This was a lot of fun to see, thanks for sharing! We are kindred closet spirits :)

  44. Vict 06/15/2012 at 9:45 am #

    Normally not an envious person. Your closet is a true inspiration for us gals that love vintage finds. Mod Cloth is better than …… list would be long. Now if you can start a Mens line for my hubby. It’s very hard to find unique clothes out there for guys who want something other than the Metrosauaraus look ( crosses, eagles and blinged out jeans with white stitching).

    • susie 06/15/2012 at 12:12 pm #

      I agree Vict. Mens clothing is a must!!!!!
      Thanks for sharing Susan

  45. Rachel 06/18/2012 at 11:12 am #

    That story about the locket reminds me of my first time hanging out with my special guy friend :). We went thrifting all day and it was amazing

    • krystalons 06/18/2012 at 5:17 pm #

      It’d not been very long since I’ve found out about ModCloth. I must say…I’m very impressed with what I’ve come across so far. Just to let you know, I’m ‘too,’ am a clothes freak! I’ve designed most of my clothing. I’ve been designing since 2001. I’ve baught fabric left and right. I’d prefer second-hand fabric because you get more yards of fabric for a small price.
      I love designing clothes! I think it’s one of the most rewarding hobbies ever! And another thing, I really like the titles that you give your dresses.

  46. Krystalon Smith 08/01/2012 at 4:48 pm #

    I had just looked at your video of your closet. I was rather impressed with what I saw so far. Needless to say…I wish I had a big closet like that! You are a very lucky lady to have such neat clothes, I just love your dresses! And mostly, I love the titles you give them!

  47. Delaney 08/02/2012 at 4:04 pm #

    Best closet ever!!!!!! I wish my closet was that big! It’s the size of my room! And that organized! I’m sssssoooooo messy. Amazing clothes! And I spotted the traveling cupcake truck dress in pink!! Best modcloth item and purchase ever in the world!!

  48. Sember 08/09/2012 at 7:35 am #

    The closet is so beautiful, I’ve never seen such a movable closet since Hannah Montana! I’m a neutral person but the only print I’ll ever wear is leopard. Not only is Susan’s style unique but it’s a revolution! I love ModCloth <3

  49. Dayne Ramirez 08/23/2012 at 11:46 am #

    LOVE it!!

  50. Djuna 09/08/2012 at 9:59 pm #

    One word! Wow! Your style of clothing is exactly what I’ve been looking for. Keep it coming, please!

    With warmest regard,

    Dj

  51. Moddy 09/15/2012 at 6:07 am #

    What an amazing closet! And such a beautiful and *colorful* collection! I fell like I could look through your closet all day. I guess keeping it all sorted by color is an absolute necessity at this point, huh?

  52. Annette 11/18/2012 at 3:16 pm #

    I found an old purse at a second hand store… a cute brown bag. It looked like someone must have loved it! I paid $5.00 for it. I got it home and went through the outer and inner pockets and in a secret little pocket I felt something… and I pulled out a necklace and earring set that is made of pink crystals and every stone is in place! It’s a beautiful vintage set and I look forward to wearing it soon! I love thrift-ing so seeing Susan’s closet gives me inspiration!

    • Kate 11/19/2012 at 2:44 pm #

      That has happened to me as well.Found lovely gloves in pocket of a jacket and a nice love note!

      • Krystalon Smith 11/19/2012 at 6:40 pm #

        Hello! Long time, long hear! It’s been a while since you’ve emailed me! Look, I didn’t mean to spam you. I wasn’t trying to get rid of you. I’d gotten several emails that I’d not wanted. You’re more than welcome to email me! Just know that, okay? I always look forward to seeing your merchandise. I’m proud of your work! I admire your creativity, and style! And, I never get tired of seeing your dresses! I’m almost envious of your closet! You’re so lucky to have such a large variety of clothing. I’d be almost tempted to go to your showing of your closet! Just two days ago, I’ve made a few garments for my girlfriend, Sandy Allen! She was grateful that I’d made them for her. Dresses are my specialty! I just love dresses! But, your dresses…are just halariously cute, and I just can’t get over the titles that you give them! I just think that it’s just so cute that you give your dresses names. What inspired you to gives your dresses titles?

  53. Autumn 11/24/2012 at 11:34 pm #

    Is that not the best closet you’ve ever seen.
    Omg. I swear, Susan has the cutest shoes.

  54. Tay 12/01/2012 at 5:14 am #

    Her closet is a vintage boutique…only with a much bigger stock.

  55. Elisa K. 12/19/2012 at 8:08 pm #

    Hi Susan,

    Love ModCloth. Your whole way of running the business is so inspiring and encouraging. I’m working towards making my own dream career come true and I really appreciate all the wonderful, thoughtfulness and kindness that flows out of your ModCloth Community Admins and I read your story of how ModCloth started and grew. Wow! I am so amazed and glad for you and your loved ones.

    I want to say so much more but run out of things to say. Thanks for the inspiration^^*

    Much Love & Admiration,
    Elisa

  56. Monica 12/23/2012 at 10:51 am #

    Oh…my….goodness. You are an angel. Your closet is stunning. Not only the pieces, but the…pieces upon pieces of amazing colors and designs and styles. And the set-up of your closet in general. I continue to receive more reasons why I want to work for ModCloth. The newest one is the amazing role-model of a co-founder. EEEEE!!

  57. Zaret 01/30/2013 at 3:59 pm #

    Wow! You are so organized! Thank you for sharing this with us! I love the story behind the locket. I collect old photographs and postcards for that same reason. It’s amazing to think that these objects have a great story behind them, and each photo I collect is special to me because of that. Their stories live on and you can always re-interpret them in your own way. You are an inspiration! :)

  58. Nico 02/01/2013 at 5:51 pm #

    Ohhhh my goodness! That closet….that closet….has left me at loss for words. So incredibly wonderful:) I love the fact that you have a rotating hanger. That’s just amazing. <3

    • Krystalon Smith 02/01/2013 at 8:44 pm #

      Hey! It’s me…Krystalon! How are you…Modcloth? Guess what? I’d just ordered an item from you! I’ve ordered the shower curtain with the sea creature on it. I’d thought it was a very unique item! I’ve never seen such before! You really have some very unique stuff here! I dig them. I recall an item thaat oyy had before…about about geeks! I thought that tthat book was really unique.

  59. krystalons 02/01/2013 at 8:58 pm #

    I look forward to making more purchases in the future from your website…soon!

  60. Diamond Jemison 04/02/2013 at 2:57 pm #

    I love that you have your own style and don’t care what anyone else thinks about it! Maybe next time we can see some of your handbags and purses.=)

  61. Melissa 04/21/2013 at 1:24 pm #

    Hi Susan! I love vintage. I will even scout through local thrift shops to find pieces. I have a bit of an addiction to ModCloth lol. You having amazing taste!!!

  62. Donnette 08/18/2013 at 4:15 pm #

    OMG, I love your closet!!

  63. Mary-Kathryn 08/20/2013 at 4:16 pm #

    I keep thinking that I have a lot of clothes and every time I do that I come and watch this video and remember that my clothes take up a small closet, a dresser, a couple boxes for shoes and them I’m like “Nah I don’t need to get rid of anything, in fact I might just go shopping.”

  64. Marisa Sergi 09/10/2013 at 1:02 pm #

    Susan’s story is so amazing–it gives me so much inspiration to highly consider pursuing my dream, switch majors in college & risk it all. An enology major switched to fiber science?–so exciting! Modcloth is definitely a dream job.

  65. Shilpi Joshi 09/19/2013 at 4:32 pm #

    This is such an awesome video!! Loved, and inspired by, how Susan defines what styling and fashion is. Sometimes I do get a bit bogged down with if it’s the right color, combination, etc,. But, hearing Susan, it encourages me to go with my instinct and style more confidently :-)! And, it was adorable to see her fashioning her grandmother’s clothing.

    While I am sure all we ModLovers know the story behind ModCloth, this video really lets us see how Susan’s love for thrifting and any piece vintage gave us ModCloth, that we all love! This just makes me feel that much more closer to ModCloth :-).

    Thanks Susan for a peek into your closet and thanks Sarah for sharing it :-)

  66. lillielilah 09/21/2013 at 10:57 am #

    That is really amazing love all your clothes p.s the dress you are wearing is beautiful

  67. Elizabeth 10/22/2013 at 10:53 pm #

    Dear Susan,

    Love, love the vid :) I’ve been looking everywhere to find an overcoat similar to the one that you show in this video. The one that your grandmother made from a vogue pattern. It is stunning! Do you have any suggestions as to where I could find a coat like that?

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