‘Out with the old, and in with the new,’ is an age old saying that helps to describe a transitional period in people’s lives, but in an economic climate that is struggling, that is not always possible. Perhaps then, the way has been made for the shabby-chic trend of Vintage to make an impact on the fashion industry. Just as messy hair and ripped jeans became a stand-alone trend, less than perfect Vintage styles are making a comeback.
Vintage doesn’t have to mean granny’s old curtains or a shoddy Saturday morning jumble sale; vintage has battled its way to mainstream design and has earned a lot of respect along the way.
You only have to flick through your Sky plus to see the schedule being influenced by period dramas such as Downton Abbey and Mad Men, causing a stir with their elaborate costumes, and stately homes. They are loved for the dramatic storylines and the elegant class of their surroundings. People love to lust after an era with such decadence. Programmes like these have only heightened people’s desires to own vintage; unique pieces with an endearing appeal, much like key items from decades ago.
All this media frenzy has had a massive impact on the fashion industry. With celebrities and socialites opting for vintage styles in their wardrobes over designer splurges, vintage has rocketed in popularity over the last few years becoming more accessible and more acceptable that ever before. Creating something vintage is like haute couture original; nobody else will have the same thing.
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Consumers are as vintage hungry as ever, eager for pretty, fun, sentimental and quality items to whet their appetite. Unusual buttons, luxurious fabrics and antique jewellery, can all be used in a way that is inexpensive but beautiful. It’s these defining features that set the timeless styles of Vintage apart from the rest.
A prime example of a vintage success story is the mega brand Cath Kidston. After a founding a tiny shop in London in 1993, she re-worked the traditional English country house styles in a witty and clever way and was soon catapulted amongst some of fashions most influential. Another brand profiting from their vintage innovations are Cabbages & Roses. They typically mix signature vintage-inspired florals with contemporary, quirky prints, combining the timeless and effortlessly fresh.
Vintage doesn’t have to mean pricey and it’s often items found tucked away at charity shops that prove the most stylish. The marketing messages hidden within the magic of vintage appeal to the fashion-hungry; phrases such as handmade and handcrafted resonate to style-orientated customers.
With the need to tighten those purse strings and consumers constantly on the prowl to snap up a bargain, vintage offers a way to recycle, re-use and re-create.