One of the best things about our clothes is that they can say so much about us. Fast fashion kind of kills that with everyone wearing variations of the same thing. Choosing vintage clothes can really help to make your look more unique and more, well, you. I’m not saying you have to buy really out there pieces. Just mixing a bit of vintage in with your fast fashion purchases is going to make your outfits more interesting.
Vintage clothing is more sustainable. Buying any pre-loved clothing, whether nearly new or decades old vintage, means less resources being used to create new things. Given that one t-shirt can use up 2,700 litres of water, enough for one person to drink for 900 days, it’s certainly something to consider. Not only that, but wearing vintage clothes means that they aren’t being sent to landfill, creating textile waste, or being sold abroad.
What vintage pieces should you look for?
If you’re not feeling too confident choosing vintage garments, start with accessories. There are plenty of vintage handbags or pieces of jewellery out there.
Denim is a good place to start clothing wise. Most of us wear denim in some form or another, whether it’s jeans, a jacket or a skirt. To make one pair of jeans takes around 10,000 litres of water, so going vintage is a greener choice. I think denim often looks better when it’s a bit worn and softened up too.
As for what else to look out for, that depends entirely on your style. As a general rule, try to look for more classic pieces that will work well with your other clothes.
If, like me, you can sew, consider whether a garment has some potential to be reworked in some way. You might just need to alter the size of something. Or you could take the fabric and turn it into something new.
Where can you buy vintage?
Depending on where you live, your options may be limited to your local charity shop, which is always worth a look. A quick search and you’ll find plenty of places online to buy vintage clothes from. I recently discovered that you can buy online from Oxfam. Even ASOS has an online marketplace for vintage, which I’ll definitely be having a closer look at!
In Birmingham, where I’m based, there are a few vintage shops such as COW Vintage and there are often kilo sales in the city centre. I haven’t been to a kilo sale before, but I’m definitely interested in going along to one.
Have you got any tips on where else we can all look for vintage bargains?