Why Buy Vintage?

In a world filled with easily obtained massed-produced clothing and accessories, you may be wondering ” Why should I purchase a vintage (i.e. “used”) item? “It’s a good question, so let me entertain you with my thoughts on this subject.

Vintage clothing is unique.

Most items of vintage clothing are “one of kind” or more accurately, one of a few left that have stood the test of time. These dresses, sweaters, pants, shirts, shoes, hats etc. have made it through decades. Movie stars, celebrities, and other famous types often choose vintage over new items, simply because they don’t want to be seen in the same dress as the next up and coming starlet.  These items make great investments as they have been carefully preserved in somebody’s closet or drawer, because they were expensive or special occasion wear and actually meant something to the original owner.  Which takes us to the second reason why vintage is a good buy…

Vintage has History behind it.

That beautiful dress or beaded sweater you just purchased may have been worn at somebody’s wedding 25 or more years ago.  Those vintage shoes may have walked the streets of Paris, Miami or New York in the 1960′s.  Those hippy blue jeans may have been worn at Woodstock. You just never know.

Vintage is great for petite women

When I was younger, skinnier, poorer and in college, I just could not afford those fashionable clothes in the mall very often. My friends and I culled through thrift stores on a regular basis to find nifty outfits to wear out clubbing. I was also a “petite” which meant there were fewer choices in my size, and back then it seemed like the petite size clothes were made for little old ladies and  did not appeal to me in my 20′s. Years ago I was visiting my Grandma in Punta Gorda, Florida, over Christmas break,  and went out one day on my bicycle to check out the thrift store at the Methodist church. Wow did I cash in that day! I remember finding black baby cord pedal pusher pants, button down “Grampa” sweaters, vintage pumps from the 60′s, a little black “Jackie O” dress that I wore until it was threadbare, a pink coat with a multi-colored striped lining and a bunch of other things. I had two paper department store handle bags packed with my treasures, looped over my handle bars, riding back to Grandma’s on my bike. Funny thing is, some elderly lady in a car stopped me and asked me if I was running away from home on my bicycle with my bags of clothes. I guess I looked young then!

Buying vintage builds excellent karma

Yes, I know, it could get a bit preachy, but hear me out peeps. Vintage clothes, housewares, shoes, furniture, jewelry, etc. have already “paid off” their burden to the environment. In short, since these items are being bought for the second or more time around, they no longer carry the associated costs  to the environment of production and shipping that brand new items have. When you purchase these  vintage items, you are essentially re-purposing and recycling in an environmentally friendly way. Go you!

The vintage shopper can also build “good karma” by patronizing second hand shops that support charities. Haven Hospice Thrift Store, The Salvation Army, The Humane Society Thrift store and various church thrifts are all on my “shopping circuit”.  I find that the shop keepers are friendly and the daily discount specials at some of these shops make already inexpensive items amazingly affordable.

In Conclusion

All in all, shopping for, collecting, wearing, and gifting vintage items is a great opportunity to do some good for the environment, preserve some history, and show your unique  individuality. But, just in case culling through thrift store merchandise is not for you, may I suggest checking out my Etsy shop.

http://www.etsy.com/shop/jmyoho

 

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