We’ve all been there. Entering a party, feeling confident, then feeling your stomach sink as you notice someone else is wearing the same outfit as you. Of course, there are much worse things going on. But you can’t help but wish you were wearing something more unique. If you shop exclusively from the high street, there will inevitably be thousands of other people in the same clothes as you. So how do you put together an outfit that will be unique to you? The answer is vintage. Anything from the 1990s or earlier is considered vintage, and it’s extremely unlikely that anyone else’s wardrobe will replicate your own if you shop historic stock. These clothes give you a unique edge that will leave a lasting impression. But there’s a fine line between vintage and just looking like your old great aunt, Mabel. So, here are a few things to bear in mind before purchasing any old stock.
If you’re considering looking into purchasing old clothes, you need to remember that they are exactly that. Old. This poses a few problems. For one, you need to ensure that any items you buy are in good vintage condition. Unless you’re lucky and come across the rare buy that is deadstock (clothes that are still packaged and never worn), then you’re going to have to give the clothes a good once over. No vintage item is going to be completely perfect. Some problems can be tolerated. There might be a little bobbling that can be removed with a razor. Perhaps there’s a small hole that’s hidden in a crease of the clothing, or along the seam which can be stitched up. There are often small marks on clothes that can be removed with a good, careful dry clean. However, there are some problems which are irreparable. If you see them, that’s a red flag. Large holes, permanent stains, water marks and discolouration are hard to cover up or reverse. Do not buy items that are damaged beyond repair. When you find a good vintage condition piece, treat it with respect. These items can be tens of years old. Chances are, they’re older than you. Be gentle with them.
Vintage shoes are beautiful. Not all stores stock them, but when you find an iconic pair in your size, they make a beautiful statement piece. Shoes are a little more forgiving when it comes to condition, as many places offer great footwear repair services. You can get boots reheeled and soles glued. Buckles and laces can be replaced. Dull shoes can be polished up. So don’t toss a good pair aside just because there’s a lace missing or the heel looks a bit worn.
Skirts and Dresses
Skirts and dresses are one of the more forgiving vintage buys. Why? Because they can be altered. If you find a beautiful dress and it’s too big for you, you can take it in. If your ideal skirt is too long, or would look better as a mini, you can take them up. Wonderweb makes this as easy as cutting the hem in a straight line and ironing it up. However, we recommend that you take the time to stitch the hem in place to avoid it falling down. Remember to measure everything precisely before cutting.