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What's old is new again at Augustine vintage boutique | Made in SA

A San Antonio designer uses vintage finds as his inspiration to create the next fashion-forward pieces.

SAN ANTONIO — At Blue Star Arts Complex, inside Augustine, you'll find a clash of old meets new. The 40, 50s and all the way to the 2000s – every decade is represented in these pre-loved finds.

"Because everything comes back," Augustine's owner and designer, Agosto Cuellar said. 

For Cuellar, vintage is a treasure hunt of unique finds.

"I see the craftsmanship, I see the love, I see the passion people put into designing it," Cuellar said. "Where as today it's just about buy it, wear it and then we are on to the next trend. It's not that I don't follow trends – I just try to make my own."

He mixes his love for vintage and design to create something new. From garments to accessories, nothing is seen as trash.

"Second-hand stuff kind of became that source of me buying stuff cheap and I call it 'Frankenstein' it together, and just patch it up and make something new and contemporary out of it," Cuellar said.

Cuellar is now on his 24th collection, and having shown his designs in New York and Paris, he appreciates the tilt the fashion industry is making.

"I think it's changing in a good way... Fast fashion does pollute a lot of the waste and a lot of landfills get filled with it, and I want to save some of that stuff," Cuellar said. "I try to say I'm keeping it out of the landfill and turning it into fashion."

He's an artist using clothes as his canvas and San Antonio as his muse.

"You have to find your way. I always got told, 'You are not going to make it in San Antonio... You need to move to the big markets – LA and New York.' I just couldn't," Cuellar said. "I just felt like San Antonio – I had to give it some time." 

Cuellar continues to share his eye for fashion and passion for his craft.

"It is a form of artistic therapy, it really is, because it allows me to do something that is productive – it helps my community. It also inspires the younger generation," Cuellar said. "I think that's important about being an artist. You have to share your gifts."