Being old doesn’t mean getting outdated; at least that’s how it works in the world of vintage fashion. Clothing pieces from the 1920’s to 1970’s still find a space in today’s fashion setting and are increasingly becoming more visible in modern times. But vintage style clothing doesn’t stand only as fashion alternative, but as a window to the past.
They give people firsthand information on the fashion history and the clothes’ elaborate evolution. However, as with any other clothing styles, vintage clothes need to be mindfully assembled. You wouldn’t want to look like you’ve just come out of a 1920 portrait, would you? To get the most out of vintage style clothing, you have to know how to wear them in the modern times without looking out of style. Here are some tips.
Tips To Look Good In Vintage Style
1.) Never wear a complete vintage ensemble, and this means vintage from head to toe. If you do, you have big chances of being mistaken for a Victorian play actor. Town down a little. One vintage piece can already bring the style and uniqueness to your ensemble. For example, wear your vintage blouse with a pair of contemporary jeans and not with its original skirt. Or dress in a vintage jacket with a nice shirt and skinny jeans. The idea here is to keep one vintage piece your focal item and pair it up with other pieces from your closet.
2.) Keep your personal style. The thing with vintage is that some items are temptingly attractive and entice you to take them home without any careful thought. However, not all of them suit your personal style. Vintage clothing allows you to be a little experimental, but never go overboard. It’s okay to try new things, but make sure that whatever you put on expresses your individuality and makes you look good. For instance, don’t buy a skirt just because it’s leopard. Assess if it looks pretty on you, complements your body shape, and goes with the current trend. Make sure as well that you are comfortable in it. What good is it to wear a flattering wardrobe if you can hardly breathe?
3.) Try to accessorize. Remember that you don’t necessarily have to go vintage all the way. In some instances, you can do well with vintage accessories. If, for example, you are wearing an evening dress, try using vintage earrings, bracelet, or necklace. Vintage jewelry perfectly transforms your getup from being plain to extravagant as much as other vintage accessories like pins, brooches, and bags do. You should, however, try to limit your accessories to one to two pieces at a time, so you can keep the harmony in your ensemble.
4.) Alter the vintage piece if you deem it necessary. Others don’t feel like altering their vintage thinking that doing so loses its historical sense. But there’s nothing wrong with doing some changes in a vintage piece, especially if you want to fit into it and to make it more updated.
5.) Be confident. You sure are wearing old stuff, but vintage style clothing has a way of making things sophisticated. It should, therefore, translate in your attitude. Whatever reason you have for buying a vintage piece, never walk down the street feeling inferior and dowdy. There are women who own vintage clothes and wear them like they are worth a million. The secret? It all lies in their attitude. They feel good with vintage—its style and classic element—and it manifests in their looks.
It is true that there are more vintage clothes available for women than men. Women, after all were, and still are, observed to be more careful with their clothes and kept them in good condition. Still, although men’s vintage clothing pieces are in inferior number and often have more holes, stains, and all sorts of damages, men can still scour the whole of a vintage store and successfully find vintage garments that can still be worn for many more years.
There are many vintage choices for men that are still in style today. Classic, if we may say. And interestingly, classic pieces look very good on men, whether as casual, office, or evening attires. Vintage stores offer these classic vintage garments, and some of them are the following:
Classic Vintage Clothing
1.) Zoot Suit. Made popular in the 1940’s, zoot suit is composed of slim, high-waisted trousers and long, broad-shouldered jackets. Its bright colors and structure give it a highly stylish appeal, which is why it was mostly worn by teenagers and young men in its heyday.
2.) Eisenhower Jacket. It has short collars and is cinched in the waist. Also appeared in the 1940’s, the jacket took its name from General Dwight Eisenhower who was fond of wearing it.
3.) Buffalo Plaid Shirt. It has a very formal structure, although the checkered print is very casual. It was common in the 1960’s and was worn by older men.
4.) Turtleneck. Another popular item in the 1960’s, turtleneck comes as a basic garment among men as it can be paired with practically everything—jeans, slacks, vest, blazer, or coat.
5.) Nehru Collar. It is a buttoned garment with short, stand up collars, hence the name. It is tight fighting and can be paired with a jacket. Also popular in the 1960’s, nehru collars were worn by The Beatles and other celebrities.
6.) Khaki pants. Khakis are essential in men’s wardrobe, which is why they appear in all eras. Classic in every sense, khaki pants can be paired with any shirt and can add elegance to any wardrobe
7.) Wool Blazer. Another basic item in men’s wardrobe, wool blazer has been around for many decades now. But its lingering presence in the fashion world has given way to many developments in style.
8.) Vintage Shirt. It can be anywhere from concert shirt to sports championship shirt. Many celebrities, particularly music artists, are seen wearing vintage shirts these days.
9.) Fedora. An appealing and masculine accessory, fedora was the most popular hat in the years prior to 1950 and probably of all time. It is usually made of felt and was worn by detectives and gangsters. By 1950’s, however, fedoras began to disappear. But in the modern times, men still wear fedora hats to make a commanding fashion statement.
Men from the earlier eras liked to dress up as much as modern men do. This, therefore, provides vintage-loving men more fashion alternatives. However, there are certain challenges that modern men might face when looking for vintage clothing. The smaller sizes, for instance. People then were much smaller, with 30 inches the average male waistline. As such, the sizes considered large before could only fit small-built men today.
Other garments are also not in very pristine condition because, as mentioned, most men failed to take good care of their clothes. Male teenagers, for example, wore their clothes until they rip apart. Men’s vintage clothing pieces can be fixed, of course, but there are items that may never have its original structure and excellent condition even if repaired.
There is a new trend in fashion that is so old it is new. Vintage clothing is the old and new of fashion and people are becoming more and more aware of the benefits and the rewards that it can give. You can see Hollywood big names very much in to it, you can see common folks trying to make the best of it, you see big names in the fashion industry looking back to it’s possibilities and you can read all over the internet about the its biggest comeback. Perhaps the biggest comeback that vintage clothing has ever made is when people are making more money out of what used to be relief goods.
There is no denying that before the big comeback vintage clothing made, people were ready to discard dad’s old pair of jeans, mom’s old boots and other stuff that used to be the all the rave in the 50’s, 60’s, 70’s and the 80’s. It was either the trash can or the big boxes that we use to gather clothes at the back of the church for the hurricane victims. That’s right, it was like that before. People found no use for these clothes that are still in good condition just because they were out of date or yesterday’s news. Some people did have the good sense of having a garage sale to make some money out of these clothes that were part of the “Boys don’t cry” era. While some others just held on to it as memorabilia but never to be worn again in public.
But because of the big revival in the fashion industry, vintage clothing was given second life and another chance to make people feel, look and dress good. Some kids started looking for vintage tees and jeans in the attic so they could be more “in” with their circle. These are kids are lucky because their parents couldn’t let go of the past but for some people who do not share their luck there are still places where you can dig up old treasures of the times that passed. Here are a few good places to look for vintage clothing.
Antique stores-Aside from really old furniture and fixtures, antique stores are one of the good places to hunt for vintage clothing. There are a good number of antique stores that carry clothes along with furniture in them, they may have mostly shoes and bags and only a handful of clothing. However, there is nothing bad in trying. Who knows what you might find.
Second hand stores-These places are like vintage heaven. These stores carry a huge selection of clothing ranging from vintage to the modern ones. You may need a great deal of patience though as it takes a little while to find the good items.
Garage sales-It’s amazing how much clutter and junk people can gather in their lifetime but it is also a good place to hunt for vintage clothes.
Surplus stores-Usually these stores have multiple items that are the same. Nonetheless, try your best at looking for the ones that are unique and have good quality.
Specialty shops-There is a number of stores and shops that specialize in vintage clothing nowadays. It wouldn’t be too hard to find what you are looking for here. Remember, vintage clothing is all about where to find and how to find it.
Vintage clothes are indeed old, secondhand, and passed on, yet there is evidently a current craze about going vintage these days; it’s as though clothes from past eras have never gone out of fashion. The streets are populated by people with distinct and elaborately crafted vintage pieces and vintage clothing shops are packed with eager clients. Why is it that to buy vintage clothing is as appealing as buying brand new clothes? Following are some of the explanations.
1.) Vintage clothes are unique. Most items from the previous decades were produced in small quantities, if not custom made. If you wear a vintage piece, therefore, hardly will you bump into someone who is wearing the same item as you do. Though some contemporary and high-end manufacturers reproduce vintage clothes, they cannot completely imitate a vintage piece. They can probably copy the silhouette, but not the fabrics, the extraordinarily shaped beads, the interior seams, handmade finishing, and other elements. A vintage clothing piece, in all respects, remains one-of-a-kind.
2.) Vintage clothes were made from the finest and robust materials. Synthetic materials were not available until in the 1960’s, so people used natural materials, such as silk and wool, which in turn promise quality in each finished item. Some of the materials used before, in fact, are not anymore available today, or if they are, would cost handsome amounts.
3.) Vintage clothes were created with better sewing and detailing techniques. Most of the pieces before were actually handmade—from sewing to embellishing. Unlike the present-day clothing pieces, vintage items were designed to stand the test of time since people before did not buy clothes as frequent as we do today and that that the clothes were supposed to be passed on from one family member to another.
4.) Vintage clothes are highly stylish. From the silhouettes to the handmade lace and down to the buttons, vintage pieces were obviously well though of. This is very unlike the mass produced clothing pieces we have today, which are too common and sometimes lopsidedly done. The detailed embroidery, the ladylike designs, and the overall beauty of vintage clothing can make any wearer a standout in a sea of commonly dressed individuals. Whether it is used as a main piece or an accent, there’s no mistake in wearing a vintage item.
5.) Vintage clothes are relatively cheap. They usually cost a fraction of the price of new clothing items, but can lend your wardrobe a classic and sophisticated look. For less amount than what you are normally willing to spend, you get the best out of fashion. If, however, the vintage item is a dead stock, meaning it has never been worn, it is reasonably sold at a higher price.
6.) Vintage clothes open opportunities for you to protect the environment. You may not realize it, but wearing vintage clothes is a way of recycling. When you wear and buy vintage clothing, you are not contributing to the environmental perils of making new clothes. This means you are helping curb the emission of air, land, and water toxins from factories; save energy; and decrease the use of natural resources for making clothes.
Wearing vintage clothes, therefore, is not only satiating your fashion sense, but is also a whole new way of contributing something for the upkeep of the environment.
People everywhere are caught up with one of the hottest fads to sweep the planet since sliced bread, and it is not even something new. Vintage clothing is making a big comeback everywhere and people are raving about how old can be so in and new. What is it about vintage clothing that people cannot get enough of and why is it so popular?
For us to better understand what vintage is and how to spot vintage clothing we have to first know the story behind its slow rise to the fashion scene. Typically, vintage clothing is something that was created back from the 1920’s to the 1980’s. Items of clothing like shirts, pants, tops, vests and other clothes worn in those eras are considered vintage. Other items like boots, shoes, accessories and other materials that were created for the purpose of being worn are also vintage items.
Fashion trends back in those days influence the slow rise of vintage clothing to the modern fashion scene. Some notable personalities have contributed to the comeback of vintage in the modern fashion scene. One of them would be the late King of Pop, Michael Jackson. If we remember during the height of his career as a music icon, he bravely sported the Napoleon look with his military uniform inspired coat and gloves. He was the main influence of people when it comes to the maverick fashion that he had.
Though he later settled down with less flamboyant color schemes, he nonetheless made an impact. While it is true that a lot of celebrities have tried their hand in bringing back a certain period in vintage clothes, there are also some that really didn’t work out well. After all, not everyone or anything for that matter, which makes a comeback, is readily accepted by the people. Still, there are some that really made an impressive mark in the vintage fashion scene.
If we trace back the roots of the rise of vintage, we will find ourselves in the shores of Japan where some of the most eccentric and iconic fashion statements have been made in the last century. After being closed to the influence of the outside world for centuries, the Japanese have made a big comeback in terms of fashion.
The young and talented Japanese designers have tapped into the years of fashion trends and have put on a certain degree of ownership to the design. For example, corsets were a main fashion must have back in the 20’s and 30’s, the young Japanese designers put a twist to it and helped give the corset a comeback. Though there would be a few disputes as to where the corset comeback really originated, it is still undeniable that the Japanese have helped a lot in the resurrection of an antiquity.
Aside from eccentric designers and mavericks that bravely delved in to the past t look for viable designs that could be brought back, one of the main contributor to the rise of vintage clothing to the modern fashion scene would be the second hand stores that could be found almost everywhere. These stores have an abundant supply of Vintage clothing that dates back to the civil war.
So if you are out to find that perfect vintage look don’t be afraid to look into these stores and get a great find.
Because vintage clothes have been around for many years, they are more prone to disintegration. One act of negligence and you are likely to jeopardize their condition and value. But how do you actually maintain and clean vintage clothing? Many people end up ruining their vintage clothes because they know little about the fabric, cleaning chemicals and solutions, and procedures. If there’s one thing you have to keep in mind when cleaning vintage items it is to be extra careful.
Wash and Handle With Care
Some are not naturally good at washing; they cannot even be trusted with their ordinary clothes. If you are one of them, it’s better not to attempt washing your vintage items. It would do you better if you bring them to a cleaning specialist. Washing vintage clothes is unlike washing your ordinary clothes, for one, because they require special effort—you need to handwash them one at a time. Remember that the fabrics have aged and weakened considerably and subjecting them to rigid rotation inside a washing machine may cause damages. Same is true with the dyer, so to be on the safe side, consider air or drip drying your garments. Only make sure to use padded hangers instead of wood and metal, as these kinds may cause stains.
Take note, however, that washing is good only to certain fabrics such as cotton, nylon, and some wools and silks. Others may shrink, lose their body and finish, and get distorted, thus requiring dry cleaning. Examples are rayon and lace. In some cases, though, they only need to be aired. For instance, if the garment is relatively clean but has a persisting odor, hang it outside. But keep in mind that some fabrics, such as white and cream wools and silks, may be prone to discoloration if put under direct sunlight. To preserve their color, hang them in a room with a bowl of vinegar for some days to remove the odor.
For some reasons, stains and undesirable marks manage to settle in vintage clothes, and usually they appear in the most exposed areas. Whether they are caused by storing conditions or constant use, you need to get rid of them. To remove stains, you can either use commercial cleaning solutions or simple household ingredients. Lemon juice and white vinegar, for instance, can work well in removing deodorant, rust, and mildew stains.
For deodorant stains, use pure lemon juice or white vinegar and dab the stained area with a clean white cloth. Rust stains, on the other hand, can be removed with a mixture of salt and lemon juice. For mildew stains, mix lemon juice or white vinegar and water in equal amounts and spray the mixture on the stain. You are likely to kill the mildew this way and therefore prevent it from reappearing.
Check the care label of your garment to see if there are additional or special maintenance procedures. After cleaning your vintage clothes, make sure to store them properly. You can even put moth holes in your closet to prevent moth damages.
Cleaning vintage clothes on your own assures you they receive proper care, but you should also know when it is more appropriate to bring them to a cleaning specialist. It may cost you some amount, yet doing so guarantees you not only clean vintage clothing pieces but also pieces that are in undeniably good shape. In the end, it’s a good investment.