Thursday, 5 August 2010

The Emperor's New Clothes

If you are fan of all things Vintage then I suggest you may want to avert your eyes now. (Look away, look away)

Everywhere I look there are people commenting about how much they are looking forward to Vintage at Goodwood (13th-15th August in case you are interested,and if you are, why are you still reading this? I did warn you)

I'm sorry, I really just don't "get" vintage. Is it not just second-hand goods given a fancy name?

Don't get me wrong, I don't see anything wrong with it, I just can't see why it had to have a change of name from second hand to vintage. (It's like the whole Marathon/Snickers debacle all over again)

I suppose if you are at the Ambassadors ball and the wife of a visiting dignitary come up to you and admires your dress and you reply, "Thanks, it's second-hand" it doesn't quite have the effect that you were searching for-I get that.

But it is the whole brand revamp that surprises me. We have Vintage at Goodwood, (It used to be Second-hand at Solihull) Celebrities rock up to red carpets in their "vintage" outfits, (Sue Ryder specials as we used to call them) and they are met with gasps of approval and wonder at their amazing style. (not pity that they can't afford a new dress)

It's like the Emporer's new clothes, we know they are second-hand but you call them vintage and we HAVE to say, "wow, what an amazing find, thats a timeless piece of fashion that you can pass down to your children" (Third-hand?)

But what makes something "Vintage" anyway? Who decides that something is to be loved once more? (Because I have a cupboard of ra-ra skirts that i'm going to flog on ebay the minute they are announced as "vintage") when does something go from gruesome to glorious in just one word? Is it just when someone else admires an old piece of clothing that you have on that it finally becomes "vintage"? Like Tinkerbell, does it need appreciation to survive?

Maybe it's all a big marketing ploy. Somewhere out there is a PR company rubbing their hands with glee, they got the second-hand contract and have turned it into a marketing STAR.

Big Fashionista x x

Everything I buy is vintage and smells funny. Maybe that's why I don't have a boyfriend--Lucy Liu

It is easily overlooked that what is now called vintage was once brand new--Tony Visconte

I just think you would never kill and cut up a human to wear so why do it to animals? I just think it's horrible, I would never wear fur, although I guess if it was a really vintage piece you might just get away with it--Kelly Osbourne


  1. I love it. I don't get vintage either... it usually smells and may as well come from Oxfam. I do have a few vintage bags and scarves etc, but would never actively seek vintage threads.

    Although quite often when someone says they like my dress/bag/necklace/top, I do say "thanks, it's vintage primarni."

  2. See, I like the idea of vintage and I love traipsing around all the vintage shops in Manchester when I've got a few hours free (almost like a museum visit) but the majority doesn't fit in with my style or my figure! I'm not a quirky or up to the minute dresser.

    There is some really pretty stuff but some of it just looks knackered and tatty!

  3. In exeter there is a very clear difference between thye vintage shops and the charity shops...don't ask me to tell you what it is tho, I can't. Other than the products in vintage shops are generally stylish and carefully picked rather than any old tat...

  4. So does this mean I can call the other half vintage? If I big him up a bit maybe?

  5. I think people are to quick to call second hand clothing vintage these days. To me a vintage dress should originate from pre 1980. Often these items are hand made therefore completely unique with unusual patterns you wouldn't see now days. Yes they are second hand but they are a bit more special that last season Primark which charity shops are over filling with.

  6. I have to agree with you. I do luv “vintage” but growing up “vintage” to me was getting stuff from charity shops/jumble sales. I do think that since "vintage" became the trendy word to use, people are too quick to label items "vintage" when it’s totally not.

  7. Vintage scares me slightly. I am a brand new, and high street girl mainly. I think you have to know your stuff if you really want to pull off vintage, otherwise, as you say, you end up a walking jumble sale!
    I think there's is too much snobbery in the world of vintage. I met a lovely vintage expert the other day who said that she gets all the best stuff from jumble sales.
    Tell it like it is!!


  8. I bought a vintage jacket at The Clothes Show once (in my younger days because it was just becoming the 'fashiony' thing to do). The fact that I found and old comb and some old tissues in the pockets when I got it home was an authenticity-proving step too far! YUCK! I do love the jacket still but will always feel a bit funny about wearing it...

  9. I do love vintage, but my definition of vintage is probably different to the next persons.

    But your may be interested in this:


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