5 Tips for Shopping for Vintage Fashions

What is Vintage? Essentially, ‘vintage’ is just another name for second-hand clothing, but it can be expensive. Antique flapper dresses from the 1920s and original Raoul Dufy designs are gorgeous, but discovering unique pieces doesn’t have to be expensive.

  • Thrift Shopping If your funds are limited, but you are adventurous, try thrift store shopping. It sometimes takes effort, depending on how the shop is set up and organized, but the results can be very rewarding. My most recent finds were a full length Eileen Fisher silk skirt and a vintage Valentino Boutique Couture Blouse (tags still on) for $17.00, total. Another trip netted me several silk designer scarves (Echo, Ferragamo, Valentino, Liberty of London among them) for $20.00 total for the bagful. Even if I had the money for these at retail, I would choose to spend those 100’s of dollars on other things. I love owning a beautiful designer piece, but love even more that I own them, and spent so little.

  • The List The key to a successful shopping trip is to go with a piece (or pieces) in mind, otherwise it can be overwhelming. Do you need a skirt for a special event, a belt to freshen up a t-shirt and jeans look, or a silk blouse to brighten a dull business suit? This way you can scan shelves and racks for the colors and textiles you want, and only pull those items out. It is safe to say, if you are looking for a black slip dress, you can skip the obvious yellow neon plaid and green striped numbers.

  • Choose Well Build up a list of ideas whenever you go out and come up with your own thrift shopping rules. Steer clear of anything stained rather than just a little dusty, and things with the strong scent of mothballs should be avoided because that scent will never come out 100%. Tiny holes can be mended if they are not very visible, you want to look good not like a little rag doll (unless that is your personal look). Fabric and pattern choices should fit your current wardrobe if you want to incorporate it in everyday use. Choose the wilder looks for parties and special events.

  • Patience Give yourself time. You may not find the perfect piece the first time, or the second, but the third time you might. Take the time to build a perfect wardrobe. Explore the shops and flea markets and if you find yourself frequenting one shop, introduce yourself to the owner and ask if they will give you a call the minute new things come in.

  • Accessories If you’re still unsure about ‘second-hand clothes’, just shop for accessories. Bags, belts and scarves are easily incorporated into an everyday wardrobe. Finding pretty pieces sometimes takes as much dedication as scanning for clothing, but when you find that perfect pair of 1960’s pink rhinestone basket earrings for $2.00 you’ll be converted. Then you just might look around and take a chance on a new ruffled tuxedo shirt or a fun 1970’s mini skirt, and you’ll never see shopping the same way again. Look at it this way, it’s closet of fashion you can raid without mom and grandmom getting mad at you!

    Socially Responsible Shopping Thrifting and vintage shopping is also a great way to recycle. With so many beautiful fashions in thrift and vintage shops you may be able to find what you need and in essence recycle a well-made garment. If the current trends aren’t your taste, you may find past looks in great condition. If you are like me, and dress to express yourself, not follow the trends to the letter, then I think you’ll be very happy. Many thrift shops benefit charities too, so in some cases just by shopping, you’ll be doing a good deed. Just get out there and look!
    Photo, vintagevibes.com

  • Click here for more Vintage Fashion articles
  • Vintage Fashion Fair in London April 6

    Are you going? I have a feeling this one is going to be even more amazing than the last. The Vintage Fashion Fair will be held on Sunday 6th April in Notting Hill.
    Anita Bott founded this one after the end of her previous partnership with Battersea Vintage Fashion Fairs. Anita’s Vintage Fashion Fairs (AVFF) organizes six fairs a year and features vintage clothing, textiles and accessories dating from 1800 to 1970. Everything from vintage buttons, braids and trimmings to stage costumes and high fashion can be found at the Vintage Fair.
    She is hoping to make this the Number One Vintage Fair in the UK and is off to a great start because AVFF was voted 16th out of Vogue’s 100 ‘Guide to the Greatest Shops off the Beaten Track’.
    Click here for more info: Anita’s Vintage Fashion Fairs

    Skinny, klutzy kids always have dreaded the senior prom

    freshmess.jpgThis was a pretty cool article about an observant principal and his solution to a Prom for everybody to enjoy.. šŸ™‚

    We have no date. We have no money. We cannot dance. We’ve never worn a tux or a ball gown. We are too fat. We are too skinny. We are too ugly. The list goes on and on encyclopedically. And each day brings it 24 hours nearer, as all around us the excitement rises like an ocean tide in which we will undoubtedly drown, socially obliterated and globally warmed.


    Check out Prom Gowns at the Expo in MI

    grwe07forwebl.gifHeading to the Women’s Expo in Grand Rapids MI? Here are a few cool things you can do there:

    Browse through the racks at on-site “boutiques” offered by local stores Clothing Matters, An’ginas Boutique, Elle Boutique, Kimberly’s Boutique and Boutique Emmanuel. Young ladies also can check out the prom dress sale, and Shoe Fetish will offer plenty of fancy footwear.

  • Get a mini-makeover with a spray-on tan, Jessica Simpson hair extensions, color analysis, spa treatments and manicures.
  • Indulge your sweet tooth. In celebration of the Girl Scouts’ 95th anniversary, four local chefs will create desserts using Girl Scout cookies. The goodies will be available for sampling throughout the weekend, with judging at 2 p.m. Sunday at the Healthy Living stage.

    When: 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Friday-Saturday, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Sunday

    Where: DeVos Place, 303 Monroe Ave. NW

    Admission: $7 for adults, $3 for ages 6-14, free to children 5 and younger; advance tickets are $5

    More information: www.kohlerexpo.com

  • Find Wonderful Fashions for Less

    Daily photo by JonathanĀ PalmerYou’ll never know what you can find at a thrift or vintage store if you don’t look! Check out this amazing article to see the kind of wonderful fashions you can find, yes even for formal events and Prom! Imagine too the things you can get for everyday at amazing prices. You are also helping charities in many cases too. So if you can’t afford a gown or tuxedo don’t despair just get looking. Department stores are not the only places you can find fashions like these. Why miss a wonderful night because the mall shops are too expensive there are alternatives and as you can see by this article you can find wonderful things. You friends may even be envious you found so much for so little!

    Armed with fashion, Spring looks at bargain prices at Salvation Army fashion show
    By Patrice Stewart pstewart@decaturdaily.com

    Maythion Casteel of Falkville got his first chance as a fashion model Saturday and bought the Brooks Brothers suit he wore for just $6.

    To brighten the black suit, he spent another $3 for a purple dress shirt by D’Amante.

    This bargain buy and others could have been yours if you moved quickly after the fashion show presented by the Salvation Army’s thrift store in Decatur.

    Pretty In Pink and Beyond

    9c830f2f0e6f0c21a7d8ee8cdc7f4a99.jpgJust wanted to point out some Pretty In Pink and Beyond! prom dresses the cool kids at Prom Girl have. They are fun and flirty and you won’t get too sweaty dancing all night in them if its warm weather. You’ll look sweet as cotton candy in these creations. Some under $100 so check it out. Barbie isn’t the only one who can rock Pink! I love it in all its shades, I also love a minty green.. for summer these are cool.

    Casual Formal Wear for Guys

    dressy-guys-lg-1.jpgCan’t get your guy in a tie? Check out this cool hoodie, yes a hoodie! Price: $45.
    “Santa Monica, CA (PRWEB) For many high school and college students, proms and Spring formals are just around the corner. This year, there’s no excuse for not hitting the after parties in comfort and true nerd-chic style, with a brand new dressy casual black hoodie for men just released by www.NerdyShirts.com. This latest original shirt design offers a casual yet tasteful option for keeping both warm and fashionable.

    The latest of the weekly, original shirt designs is a slim-fitting, zip-up, black hoodie (available only in men’s sizes), sporting a white printed-on “tie” for that “I don’t need to be stuffy to be classy” look. Now guys in this traditionally casual generation can lose the tux when they step off of the dance floor, and slip into comfort for the after-hours.”

    Inexpensive and Stylish

    teen.jpgIf you are creative, inexpensive options can be just as pretty as higher priced fashions and accessories. Here is a big list of places you can start looking in your city. It can be a fun afternoon out on the weekend with friends wandering the thrift and vintage stores to see what might be tucked in these shops. Plus there are online vintage sources to browse through.

    “CosmoGIRL Magazine fashion director Tara McBratney suggests finding a simple slip dress to pair with a “cool, wild shoe and a sequined brooch in a bright color,” for example.
    Think you have the matching earrings, bracelet, necklace and bag to look like a glamour queen? Do as the stars do. Pick one focal point and make it memorable like actress Scarlett Johansson did at the Oscars with her diamond star tiara. If you have a big dress with lots of detail or sequins, you don’t need a glitzy necklace or a sparkly purse, only a long pair of nice earrings, McBratney said.”

    Vintage and thrift stores are also great sources for alternative or themed fashion. If your prom is going to have a 1950’s theme for example, then you just might find a genuine poodle skirt from the 1950’s. You can’t get more authentic than that! Have fun searching for vintage gowns and party dresses and keep an eye out for fashions you can add to your everyday wardrobe. Many of these shops benefit charities so you could very well be helping your community while helping yourself and that’s a cool thing. Vintage gown photo by Dan Henry

    Meet Nick Verreos, enter to Win a Free Gown


    Related stories:

  • Nick Verreos Prom Gown Designer Speaks
  • Nick Verreos Takes You To The Prom
  • New Helpful Prom and Party Pages

    img_0599.jpgFree and Low Cost Gowns for Prom. Don’t let finances keep you from having a wonderful night like everyone else- there are places that help people get formal fashion for free! Photo, Fairy Tale Closet VA
    The Big List of Prom Theme Ideas
    Still growing! Hopefully will help you come up with a great Prom or Party Theme!

    Get The Little Black Dress For Less

    White may have dominated the recent Golden Globe’s red carpet but the famed Little Black Dress will never go out of style. Here are some recent party pictures where the “LBD” looked lovely. Below this celebrity gallery check out some amazing sales where you can have this timeless look for so much less, you may be tempted to fill your closet. Photos, Style.com

    Byrdie Bell and Tina Chai, in Thakoon, with the designer at a cocktail party thrown in his honor at Maurice Villency. Sabine Heller, in Ruffian, with Annie Churchill, in Thakoon, and Vogue’s Valerie Boster. Tinsley Mortimer and Dabney Mercer, both in dresses by Julie Haus, with Fabiola Beracasa, in Chanel. Marchesa’s Georgina Chapman and Keren Craig, in their own designs.


    Top 5 Party Dress Picks By Body Type, Under $150

    _5305030.jpgIf we all had the same body type the world would be very boring. So love and appreciate the shape you have and feel pretty with a flattering fit. Here are my personal picks for party dresses based on body type and under $150 so you can look chic and not go broke!


    Nick Verreos, Prom Gown Designer, Video Interview

    nick_spread.jpgHe of course designs much more, but here in this You Tube Video he speaks about the Prom Gowns, and Amanda Fields, the lovely model also from Project Runway, shows off another of his designs. I know some of the other models weren’t saying the nicest things about Amanda on the show but I have met her and spent time with she and her mom and sister and she is very sweet and wise about all of that. It does not bother her and she just keeps going for her dreams and wishes the others well no matter what.

    I love Nick’s passion for design and wanting to create lovely affordable gowns for the Prom. Check his designs out here! Watch the video:

    Nick Verreos Takes You To The Prom

    gse_multipart39672.jpgMy friends at Blogging Project Runway report that Nick Verreos has designed some wonderful Prom Gowns that are fun and flirty. Ads for these are running in Seventeen Prom and Teen Prom and can be ordered direct from Windsor Fashion. The prices for these A-List creations are so reasonable too!

    How To Make A Shawl For Your Gown

    sparkling_evening_shawl.jpgSome gowns come with a shawl when you purchase them. They are usually made of the same fabric, and are pretty I’m sure, but if you don’t want that “matchy-matchy” look consider creating a shawl yourself. It could be another creative expression on your glittering night. Photo, Sewing.org
    Dream a little dream of shawls..

    Five Lovely Plus Sized Prom Gowns Under $100

    2006_06_21_jane_russell.jpgWhen you think of goddesses you don’t think of stick figures. Plus sized gowns are as gorgeous as any other sized designs. These sites have more choices at different prices too, but as you can see, lovely pieces come in under $100. Some of these are on sale so check it out quick if you like one because sizes and quantity may be limited. Bookmark the sites for checking in on later for more sales. I linked to two gowns just slightly over $100 (in addition to the five, scroll down) since they were so lovely you had to see them.

    What To Wear, With Lord of the Rings Hair!

    studio.jpgSince I mentioned that sexy romantic hairstyle look the LOTR films inspired I thought I’d point out one special shop that makes fashions (not costumes) that would look wonderful in the holiday season with hairstyles inspired by Lord of the Rings or medieval times. Wearing a costume for fun is one thing but to be in the inspired fashion and not have it be costumey is something not every clothing maker can achieve. I will from time to time feature one special clothing designer (send in suggestions too!) and this one seemed appropriate to show now, Gypsy Moon. Photo, Gypsy Moon

    Six Modest, Beautiful, Prom Dresses

    asset_medium.jpgA modest prom gown or dress does not mean a burlap sack and a rope around the middle. Here are a selection of gowns offered online that if you didn’t know they were qualified to be called “modest” you would have just thought they were pretty prom gowns. Some can be found for under $100. Photo, Eddie Gist

    Five Beautiful Prom Dresses Under $100

    concord_ma_fall_102604_190_.jpgIts possible! Remember it’s you that’s the star and your gown is merely decoration. Here are some recommendations for new 2007 season dresses and sales that are under $100. One suggestion comes from a bridesmaid source, you can also look through local vintage and thrift stores, because I want to remind you to be creative when looking for affordable lovely gowns. No one will know where your dress came from, they’ll just love how pretty you look. Photo, TradingTree.com

    Top 5 T-Shirts for $20 and Under

    Fetch T-shirtCelebs make a fashion statement by wearing words and logos on their tees, and other stars are making their statements differently. Lindsey Lohan, Hillary Duff, and other teen idols have been creating custom-cut tees like cutting the collar off the shirt or shortening the bottom. Then they are pairing these tees with anything from diamonds to skinny jeans.

    It’s up to you what you want to do to your t-shirts when you get them. Leave them as is or get creative. Check out these links for some great tees and then leave them as you get them or do some crafty embellishments.
    (photo credit, “Fetch” Threadless T-shirts)

  • Threadless T-shirts A very cool site where people design their own tees and upload the designs to be voted on! Winning designs can be bought on the site for $10. Upload your design then let us know if it gets picked to be sold on the site!
  • RockRags Vintage and Modern Rock tees, under $20.
  • T-shirts.com Fun art and logos tees for $20.
  • Vintage Edge t-shirts under $19. Pick any of their designs and they will print them on their girly style-tees for you.
  • Those Things Spooky cool gothic tees for $20.

    Related articles:

  • Re-make a T-shirt
  • History of the T-shirt
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