ANYWAYS, while I was flogging through my editing it occurred to me that a crucial post was missing in my Thrifting 101 series. I've covered fashion history, thrifting etiquette, cleaning tips, and thrifting protocol. I've given advice regarding the best thrifting blogs, easiest ways to locate thrift stores, and most fruitful days to thrift. I've even pontificated on my great, sweeping love for thrifted pleated skirts and sequins. But I neglected to offer what might be the most powerful chapter in the series - a post regarding how to style and wear thrifted and vintage clothing.
If you've never worn vintage before, it's ill-advised to wear a head-to-toe outfit comprised completely of vintage pieces. For the novice or expert, it's best to mix thrifted and vintage clothing and accessories with more modern silhouettes already in your closet. Here's some advice for incorporating thrifted and vintage pieces into your wardrobe:
- Start small: If you're a newbie to thrifting and intimidated in regards to blending vintage with modern, start with accessories and jewelry. Vintage accessories such as scarves, belts, bags and jewelry are great gateway tools for incorporating vintage into your daily wardrobe. Choose just one vintage accessory per outfit - any more, and the effect could be lost.
|An outfit built around a vintage 1980's clutch|
- Avoid the costume effect: Wearing head-to-toe vintage will make you look like an extra from a movie set, or Mad Men. I love Mad Men as much as the next girl, but I have no desire to have my neighbors mistake me for Joan Holloway. Mixing one focal vintage piece with the rest of your wardrobe basics will make you look modern. Ideally, there should be no more than a 50-50 mix between vintage and new in an outfit.
|Thrifted vintage prom dress paired with denim|
- Dress around one dramatic piece: Take one head-turning vintage find – in my case, a thrifted amaze-balls sequined vest – and wear it against a background of simple silhouettes. Pairing the vest with a white tee and jeans helped it stand out.
- Separate vintage pieces to give them a new look: Bought a cute vintage suit but don’t know how to wear it? Pair the blazer with a fitted tee and skinny jeans, and the skirt with knee-high boots and a blouse. This trick not only maximizes your dollar, but also brings a little creativity into your wardrobe.
|This thrifted cropped tuxedo jacket came with a floor-sweeping skirt. I separated the two pieces and voila! New outfit!|
- Use a tailor to update old styles: A seamstress can remove shoulder pads, bring up a hemline, replace missing or unstylish buttons with new ones, and alter blazers for a slimmer fit. Modernizing silhouettes makes vintage much more wearable.
|My tailor hemmed and took the waist in on this thrifted Escada lace skirt. Now it's the perfect silhouette for my petite frame.|
Hopefully this post has helped you find ways to style your own thrifted and vintage pieces. Do you have an other tips for styling vintage clothing and accessories? As I return to editing (sigh), please catch up on all the other posts in my Thrifting 101 series.