I had a small business on eBay in the early 2000’s, buying and re-selling vintage clothing. Some truly beautiful pieces passed through my hands, and I wish I had some of them back — 1940’s midnight velvet gown, I am talking to you. But mostly, the fun was in the hunt, the restoration, and the selling to happy new owners.
|The picture doesn’t do it justice. A true 1940’s beauty.|
|And a fabulous early 60’s office dress. I’d wear it now.|
I learned to spot an authentic vintage piece from a repro by studying labels, seam finishes, zippers, and fabrics. I still swoon over a genuine 1940’s or 50’s dress, and the fine workmanship.
Having been fully dressed for success in the 80’s, I don’t find 80’s fashions very appealing now. But give me a few years, and they’ll probably look fabulous again.
There are online retail sites that specialize in vintage reproductions. Their dresses, skirts and shoes share similar silhouettes to the “real thing”, but in modern fabrics. There are some advantages to buying repro’s:
- The fabrics are easier to care for, usually hand or machine washable.
- Your size is likely to be available, and:
- The sizing is more predictable. I’ve worn a vintage size 14 dress, but my modern size is 6, so you need to know your measurements well when buying vintage.
- Repro’s are mostly more affordable, especially on sale. Unless you have time to haunt the thrifts!
- Modern usually smells good.
Of course, repro’s are lacking in that vintage je ne sais quoi. They don’t have history, romance, or the thrill of the find. Here are some cute repro’s I’ve seen online lately:
|Love this 50’s style skirt from ModCloth.|
|And this 60’s-inspired dress from eShakti.|
|Fab-u-lous 40’s style peep-toe heels, at REMIX shoes.|
I’ll buy and wear a good quality repro dress, and enjoy tossing it in the washing machine. I save my few remaining 50’s crepe and rayon dresses for events. I do wear true vintage 50’s, 60’s, and 70’s skirts, jewelry and scarves all the time.
Where do you stand on the vintage/repro discussion? Or are you a modern woman all the way, with no pre-owned in your closet?
Have a happy day and stay fabulous,
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