Vintage Fashion Style, Retro Fashion or Vintage Inspired Fashion – the clothing of the yesteryears

Unique elements and influences of vintage fashion, retro fashion, and vintage-inspired fashion, highlighting the nostalgic and timeless clothing styles

Vintage Fashion refers to clothing that was made in an earlier period, particularly dating back at least 20 years from today. This term often refers to clothes from the 20th century, typically spanning from the 1920s to the 1980s, with a particular focus on the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s.

The word Vintage means ‘being of an earlier time’ . The vintage-inspired style is a contemporary fashion style inspired by the styles of the period mentioned above.

Vintage clothing

A vintage clothing is an article of used clothing that is highly valued today, because of its uniqueness, style and timelessness. True vintage clothes are clothes designed by famous designers of yore. They are exclusive and very expensive. Vintage clothing can also be handmade or factory made. It can be used or new. You can get real vintage clothing in shops that specialise in them.

vintage fashion

Fashion is cyclical in nature and many fashions of yesteryears are revived and stylized to suit the modern taste but this is not Vintage Fashion. It may have vintage fashion elements but is made to suit the modern sense of style.

Some clothes are made to look like clothing of the past. They are made as replicas of vintage clothing. Fashion trends of the respective periods are copied and worn, with the same elan as then. This is ‘vintage-inspired fashion‘. Another term used for Vintage Inspired fashion is Retro Fashion.

Clothing from the 19th century is called ‘Antique’, not vintage. To be exact, clothing made 100 years and over is classified as antique.


Vintage Style

Vintage inspired fashion draws inspiration from various vintage elements, combining them with modern design and materials. Silhouettes, fabrics, patterns, and design details typical of specific historical periods, particularly that of 1950s, 1960s and 1970s.

Vintage fashion as such can be said to be closely aligned with sustainability as most of the clothes used are used or old clothing sourced from thrift stores.

1950s vintage style

What would you wear if you like vintage clothes?

  • 1950s clothes– A-line dresses and skirts, high-waisted pants and shorts, Polka dots and gingham patterns, Voluminous full skirts with petticoats inside, shirt dresses, cat-eye sunglasses, and pearl necklaces.
  • 1960s clothes – Mini skirts, shift dresses, bell-bottom pants, turtleneck sweaters, shift coats and capes, headbands and head accessories, go-go boots, Bold and psychedelic prints
  • 1970s clothes – Flared jeans, Wide collars and lapels, Wrap dresses, Denim jackets and vests, Disco fashion clothes including jumpsuits with sequins, and metallic fabrics, and jumpsuits, Bold prints and vibrant colors, Suede and fringe details, Platform shoes. Bohemian style eas also popular.

Some of the clothing that has seen such revival are drop-waist dresses with intricate sequins work of the 1920s, cloche hats and long coats of the 1930’s, big hair bands, large dark glasses, short mini-skirts of 1960s, knee-length sleeveless full polka dot dresses with ricrac trims of the 1945s, floral designed short shift dress of the 1950s, Gladiator sandals of the 1940s,  puffy bouffant floral printed party dresses of the 1960s, cardigan twin sets popularised by Coco Chanel, Swing coats of the 1950s. 

You can find many inspirations for your Vintage style dressing online – the collections in the National Museum Scotland is worth drooling over for those who love Vintage fashion. Check it out here. 

Facebook groups to checkout for learning more about Vintage Fashion styles :

If you want to know the period your vintage clothing was made, check out this post How to date Vintage clothing

Where can you get vintage clothes?

Garage sales and yard sales, Thrift stores and secondhand shops, consignment shops, vintage clothing stores, online shops for vintage niche like Etsy, ASOS Marketplace, and Ruby Lane, flea markets,poshmark and antique shows, Listings on online social media marketplaces like facebook,

Related posts:

Evolution of history of Fashion

Clothes in the 1920s

Clothes in the 1980’s 

Clothes in the 1990’s

Modern style names

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Author: Sarina Tariq

Hi, I love sewing, fabric, fashion, embroidery, doing easy DIY projects and then writing about them. Hope you have fun learning from sewguide as much as I do. If you find any mistakes here, please point it out in the comments.

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