Sabrina, a young Viennese woman turns her dream into a wonder. Or Wunderladen, to be correct. We visited her café/fashion concept store blend to get a taste of her cozy and innoventive concept. Ever tried on sunglasses while waiting for your coffee?
Upon entering Wunderladen, I’m immediately drawn to the retro couch/bed hybrid in the middle of the room. It possesses a coziness that not only invites you to sit on it, but drown in its cushions. My eyes water. Too bad there’s another girl occupying it. Instead of plotting on how to get her off, I manage to tear my gaze away from the said magical object and spot the counter, housing cakes and cookies in glass cases, nicely presented and seemingly ready to be tasted – now my mouth is watering.
Sabrina, the owner of Wunderladen Modecafe in Vienna’s 4th district (right behind Karlskirche) is standing behind the counter with a broad smile. The young woman emits a certain vibe that’s the stuff of fulfilled dreams. This shop is her baby. She started it from scratch and rebuilt it herself in only three weeks. New floors, new walls, a selection of subtle retro furnishings strictly arranged to blend.
“When my mum closed her internet shop, I saw the opportunity to quit my job as a flight attendant and open my own café right here in this place,“ she says happily.
But this place is not only for those craving coffee and cake. Sabrina’s shop also sells young Austrian designers’ clothes and accessories on what we call a indie fashion fair trade basis.
I totally agree. Many Austrian fashion designers fail to receive the attention they deserve. Wunderladen offers their creations a home.
The coupling of coffee and clothes brings a unique dynamic to the interaction that goes on in the place. People come here for various reasons – a coffee and piece of cake, to sink into comfy cushions and chat the day away, to drink an Aperol Spritzer in front of the shop in the warm light of dusk after work; to browse the neat array of clothes, shoes, jewelry, accessories, sunglasses or the big trunk full of second hand fashion. Or even just to admire the delicious breakfast cookie in its glass jar, as an elderly man on a bike did while I was there.
It all plays out before me while I’m there – A group of three girls chat and order a second round of Rosenspritzer (the bestseller of the shop Sabrina tells me); Two girls splayed all over the sofa study with books and notepads; A young guy stops by for a quick espresso; Two women hunt for new shoes. The blend of people here is as unique as Wunderladen’s concept.