Vintage clothing is defined as high quality products of the past, older than twenty years therefore no later than mid 80s fashion. That is the essence of vintage fashion but what instead we are seeing nowadays is vintage replicas, retro style and second hand cast offs which are being worn and styled as a true vintage piece. It seems that the trend of the moment is revival of vintage style not just in female fashion but furniture, architecture and male dandy fashion being recreated and hyper-stylised by the upcoming hipsters.
Vintage style of the moment is all about replicating a previous style era in a modern way. True vintage pieces are floating commodities imprinted with the signature of previous owner, they have the power to evoke memory and cast off identities in the new wearer, that is the essence of a true vintage piece. However with the growing number of people interested in vintage clothing there has been a revival of ‘charity shop chic’ hunting and with this the demand has outsourced the content resulting in increased prices of true vintage and more garments being named vintage which do not have true value.
What we are seeing more of at the moment is nineties fashion becoming more fashionable – velvet bodies, chunky boots, Levis cut offs, oversized jumpers all sourcing inspiration from 90s grunge which are all being named as vintage fashion. It seems that as the demand increases we have to look at new time eras for vintage inspiration and it may seem that the nineties is having their moment.
So for now we must keep a sceptical eye on what we readily name as vintage, charity shops are full of old St Michael oversized jumpers and print blouses which all have qualities that vintage hunters look out for but be honest are they really a high quality products of the past or are they really retro style garments which are made in the style of a certain era without the true history.