From frilly silk blouses to retro 70’s chic, vintage dressing can give you a chance to dress up or down with a style all your own. There is a trick though, to making it look like high fashion and dressing with intent rather than just wearing old clothes that don’t sync with today’s trends. Make sure you know how to combine true vintage, with modern clothing to give yourself a look that is uniquely you!
How Does Costume Differ from Vintage Dressing?
It’s all in how far you go. If you’re going for a 50s look, give your outfit a 50s flair. Don’t do shoes, bag, blouse, skirt AND hair. Choose one or two pieces that hit the chosen decade, and mix them up with something from today. As Glamour recommends, keep the other pieces simple, for example a simple black blouse, and slacks paired with a funky 50s coat and bag give a boost of vintage without looking like you’re playing dress up.
Updating a Vintage Look
From changing buttons, to adding a modern belt or layering, making just a tiny change can take a vintage look from drab to, you guessed it, fab! If you find an amazing dress but the length isn’t right, or it features shoulder pads that make you look like a well-known linebacker, take them to a local tailor for an update. Shorter hems, necklines with a modern edge, or even a shorter sleeve can give new life to a retro look. But it does result in an inexpensive item from the thrift store suddenly costing significantly more, so make sure it’s something you’ll want to wear more than once.
Used Clothing Aren’t the Only Way To “Go Vintage”
Some people have an issue with shopping through second hand clothing stores, or dealing with the mothball smell of clothing from grandmother’s attic. But you can still go vintage with sweet details like embroidery, lace, and quality pure fabrics like cotton and linen. Pair a pretty short sleeved pajama top (like the one featured in this picture from Jacaranda Living) with a mini jeans skirt, or a favorite pair of jeans and a belt and you’ll have a touch of delicate vintage. As Diana Jone of becomegorgeous.com points out, many modern clothes feature lace, ribbons, bows, and ruffles that will give you an air of vintage and add a fun feminine look to your wardrobe.
Vintage for Every Day
Some people feel vintage is something you need to save for a special occasion. A wedding, an afternoon tea, or a holiday seems like the perfect opportunity to highlight a special look. But sneaking a bit of vintage into everyday can be a great way to stand out, while also fitting in. Consider a lacy pajama top under a sweater or jacket for the office. Pack a sweet scarf-belted lace trimmed nightgown for summer days. Even this cute lace trimmed short set with a simple necklace and flats are perfect for traveling in warmer climates.
Vintage dressing is all about featuring one or two pieces that work with other items in your wardrobe. Whether it’s a one-time thing, or something you build into your own personal style, vintage dressing has a few guidelines:
- Appropriate to the wearer
Give consideration to the setting, dress code, and your own comfort level. Vintage dressing can be fun while providing you with a unique way to stand out from the crowd.