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The Appeal of Vintage Clothing

I've been asked many times, in my life, why I feel so connected with vintage & antiques. That's not a cut and dry answer because there are so many reasons why I've been collecting for all these years. There are a multitude of reasons why people enjoy collecting whether they collect cards, stamps, clothing, shoes, etc. I know people who, for example, collect shoes because they weren't able to buy new ones as a child due to financial reasons. I've had another tell me they collect makeup because they weren't allowed to wear it until college. Reasons vary, but all are different in their own ways. 

I remember the the first piece of vintage I ever bought and that was a 1950's, Robin's Egg Blue, Train Case from Samsonite. I was in Elementary School and had no idea what vintage really meant.  It came with it's original tray and key. I took that thing EVERYWHERE with me! To the lakes, on family vacations, you name it! I remember being so fascinated by the structure of it, the color and how I'd never seen anything like it! As corny as it may sound, I was instantly drawn to it. The only thing I can compare it to is when you meet the love of your life and immediately you can't imagine life without them. That's how I feel when I see vintage.

My very first vintage purchase in all it's glory 💖

This leads me to my complicated love & obsession with vintage fashion. One of the most common things I hear when I tell people about my business is, "I love vintage fashion so much, but I could never wear it". When I delve into this statement with them it almost goes back to,

"I can't wear vintage because: ________"
I'm too fat
I'm overweight
They don't fit me
They didn't have my shape back them
Clothes were only made for size 0's

I admit, I felt that way too for MANY years before I started collecting vintage clothing. Let's face it, it has always been a battle to find clothes that fit whether or not you're curvy or narrow. Do you want to know the REAL truth about vintage fashion? It's not meant to fit any real body! I know you're probably thinking, "What the hell does that mean?". I have one word for you that will make this statement make sense: SHAPEWEAR. We know it, may love it, some hate it. The fact is that a lot of vintage fashion, especially in the 40's & 50's, the clothes were made with the intention of the woman wearing it would be clad in shapewear! That could be a waist cincher, bustier, bullet bra, fan corset, etc. Whether you were already petite or curvy, it was an expectation

via nowthatslingerie.com

via Pinterest

The act of dressing yourself in those eras was a mixture of an art form and a chore. You wore shapewear to create the figure that was the desirable standard. That standard has completely changed throughout history.  One could say it was all an act and you can't BELIEVE women would layer on restricting and uncomfortable pieces like this! 
The point is that they worked and now women are wearing them because they love the sheer craftsmanship of vintage lingerie reproductions.

via What Katie Did

I can't lie, once you put these pieces on, however uncomfortable they may be, they way you feel about yourself in them is indescribable! The way you walk and hold yourself is completely different almost otherworldly. The same can be said about a vintage dress, blouse, pants, and again, lingerie! My point is, vintage fashion is more than wearing "dead peoples clothes" or "used clothing". They have history behind them not just from their previous owners, but the history behind how and why they were constructed as they were. 


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Photo by Kelsey Jenson Photography


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