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What is Vintage?

Rosie Hegarty

Tags vintage

What exactly is vintage dressing?

One of my absolute loves is vintage. It’s a way of dressing that captures fashion trends from between the 1920s up to the 1960s. 

Think Downton Abbey and Mad Men. Fabrics such as silk, faux fur, pearls, felt, brocade, lace, veiling, sheer, fringing, chiffon, satin and velvet. Long pearl necklaces, lace headbands and high feathers teamed with soft silk dresses that fall mid-calf for a 1930s vibe. Or cute cardigans with button up pearls, classic pencil skirts and killer patent heels for a 1950s/1960s look.

Vintage inspired clothing

One of the best places to start for inspiration is a vintage store but you can also find unique gorgeous pieces in the op shops and online.

How can you make your outfit look more like you and less like a costume?

We’ve all been to era themed parties and dressed up to fit the part so it’s pretty normal to feel like you might be crossing the line of costume wearer compared to the vintage chic dresser.

Here are 5 ways to transform your wardrobe into a vintage fashionista that won’t make you look like you’re going to a costume party:

1. Choose vintage clothes that follow current fashion trends. Most modern-day designers use vintage inspired clothing as their go-to for inspo. Clothing today is just a reinvention of clothing from a bygone era. For example a black chiffon blouse from the 1940s can be seen today in 2018.

2. Keep your hair and makeup simple. A cute fringe with ballerina bun works well as does soft waves and natural makeup. Ditch the purple hair and opt for natural hair colours.

Wavy vintage hair style


3. Modernise your accessories. Choose a vintage staple piece and team with modern accessories such as handbags, shoes and sunnies to create a seamless outfit that sings retro chic and won’t make you feel like you’re at a costume party.

4.Mix and match new separates with vintage. Create a fun wardrobe by incorporating vintage pieces with modern items such as jeans, skirts and jackets.

5.Mix eras. Using pieces from across the eras can be a fun way to create a unique style and look that will have a similar impact as modern with old. For example a 1930s hat with a 1950s dress and bag.

Vintage inspired fascinators

When it comes to headwear there are so many cute felt hats and gorgeous fascinators and headbands to choose. Generally fascinators with veiling are vintage inspired.

1920s boater

The best thing about being a vintage-inspired dresser is that you will always be unique. By choosing pieces from a bygone era you’ll have fun expressing yourself and will create a one of a kind statement. You’ll have fun finding pieces and you’ll also help the environment by upcycling.

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