Why buy vintage clothing?
Here's our top 10 reasons to buy vintage clothing and make a choice that makes a difference
The short answer - vintage shopping would give you more pleasure than “modern” store shopping, not only would you fill your wardrobe with stylish pieces at bargain prices, but it’s also the best way to explore your creativity, stay unique and save planet Earth. So why not give it a try?
You may be or have been an avid consumer of fashion, and the more you delve deep into the world of fashion the more times you’ve probably been exposed to the conversations about fast fashion, sustainable fashion, and ethical fashion. Certainly, if you’ve done your research you’ve been led to question and feel somewhat responsible, if even slightly, for contributing to the damage that the fashion industry has had on our environment. Critical to your journey may have been questions that you asked yourself “what am I doing to make a difference?” And “How can I as an individual address the fashion industry's waste problem head-on?”
Because of all your research, you’re now more aware and confident that there are solutions and alternatives to mitigating this waste problem, and you desperately want to be part of the solution.
BUT what do you really think about vintage clothing? That's the real question and one that your honest answer probably led you to this blog post. Are you sceptical when someone asks you to wear vintage? You may think to yourself – “I would look silly in that!” Luckily that’s not the case anymore! With the ever-increasing style tips and the choice of fashions finest items from the last 50 years, you can pull off vintage clothing, stylishly, and in a way that suits you to a T.
People who love the uniqueness and rebrand of the past epochs of fashion are ambassadors for vintage clothing anytime, any day. There are numerous reasons to consider buying vintage clothing. Perhaps the most important and noble one is that vintage clothing is a sustainable way to shop. That said, you don’t have to do a 180 on changing your entire wardrobe. Even if all you’ve considered trying lately is one vintage item, here are 10 reasons to make the leap of faith and go for it!
1. Reduces material waste
Let’s dive deeper into the significant sustainable aspect of buying vintage. There’s a reason why today’s fashion is commonly referred to as “fast fashion.” You could argue one reason it’s called fast fashion is due to how quickly and critically it’s impacting the environment. Fast fashion contributes to 10% of all carbon emissions worldwide, and it’s the second largest pollutive industry behind oil. Globally, an estimated 92 million tonnes of textiles waste is also created each year and the equivalent of a rubbish truck full of clothes ends up on landfill sites every second.
Well, if you wear vintage clothing, you can help sustain recycling and reselling practices. Like you have recycling processes in almost every sector, the advent of vintage is a similar process in the clothing sector. Yes, having clothing that is accessible and affordable is important. Consumers may be able to get clothing at low costs when it’s mass-produced. Yet these highly profitable brands, and our support of them, end up costing us the health of our beautiful planet. Who can argue with that! Recycling and re-using vintage clothing means you are not only doing your bit to help the earth by discouraging the production of more throw-away fashion, but you are also getting much better quality, unique and individual products at a better price.
2. For your individuality
Why wear something that someone else might be wearing? You won’t see most of these vintage items ever again so there is no chance of turning up at a special occasion in the same dress as the host! Shopping for vintage is like an easy search for treasure, and when you find that amazing piece which you love, there's no greater joy! You can indulge yourself, be your true authentic self, create conversation, and be seen! If you want to be unique, recreate your personal style, and stamp your personality with a fashion sense that sets you apart, vintage clothing is your best bet. With vintage clothing, it’s easy to light up your world, inject some humour, and show others how it’s done - shop vintage! But remember, if you love something, do not hesitate – every piece is unique, and if you don't snap it up there and then, it could be gone when you go back for it (oh, the injustice of it all)!
3. For warm nostalgia
Buying vintage more often than not creates some nostalgia. Get a unique vintage look by drawing inspiration from fashion icons of the past. You will surely turn heads! Newcomers to the fashion scene might have forgotten the moment Kate Moss arrived at a New York fashion week dinner, perfect in a pale yellow dress, worn off-the-shoulder, by 1950s French couturier Jean Dessès. That was 2003 and, for a couple of years, Moss wannabes rifled frantically through the rails of local second-hand stores, in the hope of finding something that would approximate Moss’s air of louche glamour. By shopping vintage, you can recreate and represent these nostalgic moments in fashion.
4. Vintage encourages creativity
Creativity never goes out of style, and neither does vintage clothing. Many vintage styles are simply no longer available or expected to pop up in the contemporary fashion world. This means more opportunities to put together outfits that are entirely your own. Creativity has always been the hallmark of fashion, and it tells a great deal of your style. Vintage clothing allows for a lot of ingenious creativity. They bring out that part of you; you never knew existed since they are not made to fit in with the rest of your wardrobe. You get an opportunity to experiment and create your own look. Quite frankly most of us fashionistas think of ourselves as old souls, so it makes perfect sense that vintage clothing looks so great on us and inspires our creative side to run wild and free.
Being creative has fantastic impacts on your mind and body. You may not be a painter or poet, and you may be tempted to think that there’s no creative side to you, but vintage clothing tells your story differently.
5. Buying vintage is like investing in your wardrobe
As more people enter the vintage clothing club and as vintage clothing becomes more collectable, rare, and popular, the prices rise, so vintage can be a great investment for the future. For example, a good quality 1950's cotton dress sold for around £40 - £50 five years ago would fetch around £70-80 today – quite an increase and a good incentive to look after your vintage purchases.
Vintage stores offer a variety of styles and sizes, making it more likely to find items that fit you better, so it lasts a lot longer. Therefore, if you decide to resell your vintage clothes you can be sure you would still get your value’s worth or you can get more than you originally paid for it. Whilst a steep increase in the price of your vintage pieces is never guaranteed, what is guaranteed is they will hold there value in a way fast fashion never will.
6. Vintage clothing still costs less
Yes, we are contradicting our previous point but only slightly, so hear us out. The vintage market still isn’t as saturated or in enough high demand to warrant prices skyrocketing, and because the clothes are dated, they can’t be sold for the same price as newer clothing especially designer. Unlike several modern designer clothing, which is often very expensive, you can have a fuller wardrobe filled with vintage clothing tailored in different styles and materials. Not only does vintage clothing cost less, but they also hold long-term value. The cost of vintage clothing is usually better than name-brand stores, and the quality can also be higher for a lower price. But with the popularity of vintage clothing booming over the last few years, this might not always be the case so make sure you jump on the bandwagon before it's too late.
7. For superior status and quality
The high street will try to imitate, but you can't beat original vintage – the quality is much better than most high street items produced today, plus many of today's designs lack the originality and attention to detail that give a vintage garment its charm and proven efficiency which gives it its status. In the ’50s and ’60s, people were able to buy more quality clothing rather than purchase a lot of bling to show off. This is one of the reasons vintage clothing is still in vogue. They last longer than many clothes by modern designers.
8. Vintage is collectable
You can indulge your passion for vintage and collect from any designer, style, or era. Perhaps for you, it will be Bakelite costume jewellery or Bally shoes – or maybe you love Horrockses cotton 50s frocks, sixties Dollyrocker designs, Lucite handbags, or 40s fashion. Maybe it's 80s and 90s sportswear vintage from brands like Adidas or Nike, who's blend of fashion and sports apparel that tickles your fancy Whatever makes your heartbeat that little bit faster, the rush that comes with finding that perfect addition to your collection is unbeatable!
9. For the mix of history and culture
People have the intrinsic curiosity to find out the link between the past, present, and future. Vintage is one of such ways to remind ourselves of a colourful past. Vintage items have stories and histories (like the Kate Moss story we shared earlier in this post) that have been worn and enjoyed previously, and now they are here to serve you in a rebranded way.
Clothing, just like art and music, speaks about culture. What’s more, unlike painting, vintage clothing can be modified and customized to fit into a contemporary setting. The trans-generational nature of vintage makes it a great way to explore the culture of a forgotten world in the modern era.
10. Vintage would surely look good on you!
Finally, it gives you a new hobby of finding the diamonds of the rough and wearing your clothes like its brand new! At the end of the day, some people will struggle to tell whether or not you bought vintage or new, so flaunt those clothes because they were made for you!
Whether you are looking for a personal style that’s a little more unique or simply looking out for the earth, you can accomplish this and so much more by making the switch to vintage.