Friday, February 13, 2015

FEEL THE LOVE: 5 Reasons to Love Vintage Clothing

Feeling it: vintage clothing in all its glory (image source)

We're probably singing to the choir here, but in honor of Valentine's, we thought we recount the ways on why we love shopping for, and wearing vintage clothing.


Are we sounding like an old grandma here? One of the best things about buying and wearing a vintage garment is that they are, most of the time, made of better quality than something you're going to buy at a your nearby department store. The fabric is often times very fine, as well as the tailoring. 

If you want to see for yourself the difference between modern and vintage clothing construction, just lift up a hem and compare. A vintage hem is often larger, offering up up to 4 inches of hemline (great for taking up or down to better fit your height, or current trends) and can be beautifully hand-stitched. A modern hem is likely stingy, no more than a quarter inch of give, and likely clumsily machine sewn. 

And let's discuss cashmere, shall we? A vintage cashmere sweater will still be going strong, 20 or more years later, with nary a pill or ball on its yarn. Contemporary cashmere, now manufactured more cheaply, often thinly knit, and is certain to pill up before the year's up. This is because vintage cashmere yarn was exclusively made from the long hairs found under the Kashmir goat belly, and was knit with the intent to last a lifetime.

A LIFETIME OF LOVELY: just face it, sugar-lips, quality IS sexy.

Even when you're buying a fancy-smancy vintage frock from a bonafide fancy pants "Vintage Boutique," where creme de la vintage creme of frilly frocks + follies are pulled off upscale hangers, the price tags set for premium, you'll still be paying considerably less than for something picked up at an contemporary designer boutique. 

Where are our lux vintage dream dress destinations? 

How about a trip to L.A.'s Bustown Modern where you can grab a pristine vintage designer piece setting you back in the range of $500-2000, which is still considerably less in price (but not quality!) than a contemporary equivilent, say a current piece from Celine, Marni or Prada. For a more romantic appreciation of a beautiful vintage gown, visit the dreamy racks of Dear Golden, who makes a pretty living offering primo vintage pieces guaranteed to get your heart racing. 


Personally, our micro-brew budget dare not dream so mighty as a $1600 dollar dress, vintage or otherwise. We thrifty ROSEBUDS are happily content putting $150 down on a nifty vintage wool plaid coat  (of course it's plaid, people!) that's still in better shape 20+ years after production than the equally priced and pretty, Black Watch plaid Tommy Hilfiger coat picked up at Macy's, on clearance two years ago. Due to the fabric piling and seams pulling from wear, it sadly, is soon to be retired. Both coats will cost you $150, but one of them was built to last. So same buck, but vintage is bound to give ya more bang.

NEW VS VINTAGE: equally stylish, a contemporary coat conks out 40 years sooner than a vintage 1970s plaid one.


In a culture teaming with herd mentality, shopping and wearing vintage gives you a leading edge in standing out in a sea of same. Swim upstream, and dress to express. You, snowflake, are truly an original and your way of dress should showcase your true and glorious self, not whatever some whatchamobob-celebrity-echo-of-a-mindless-boobjob dictates what you should be wearing. 

RAINBOW BRIGHT-EYED: This example of style swimming upstream shows off her true colors in glorious technicolor.

You are welcome to enjoy a trend, but PLA-HEESE don't conform for the sake of conforming. Celebrate your authenticity, and zig to their zag. By investing in good, quality pieces, with the intention of wearing them over the long haul, you give yourself the ways and means to reflect your awesome self.  Choose your vintage to reflect your inner zeitgeist, not the passing whims of some arbitrary style dictators. Whatever you wear, make sure you feel #OOAK in your #OOTD for optimal, original dressing.

Forget about blending in, kids. It's time to own your own unforgettable.  Stand up for standing out, and love your vintage! 


And by filling, we mean less landfills. As in keep the good stuff out of garbage dumps. As in choosing to cherish and take care of lovely things, past and present, including people, and our  vintage clothing. 

The one thing we urge you to toss, is the concept of the throw-away. Nature has no concept of trash, did you know that? There is no waste in a natural eco-system, only different forms of matter and energy. There are no landscapes of broken bottles and candy wrappers in a sans human scenario. What Cheetah doesn't use, Mr Hyena takes care of. Then, vultures, and so forth. So while we wallow in a cesspool of discarded consumption,  flooding our habitat with debris, we are denying ourselves the beauty of efficiency and balance found in the natural world. 

SLOW + STEADY: forget fast fashion and take it slow! Shopping vintage means better quality for less denaro.

What does this have to do with fashion, you may be wondering. And rightly so. 

Well, almost everything. In our present day business as usual, products with built in planned obsolescence, fast fashion (basically the fashion industry's business model where you throw good money at garbage clothing) we've not only seem intent to suck the life out of our planet's immense resources, but to choke it up with our monumental, excremental pile-up of refuse, much of it, things that need not be there. 


When you choose to purchase an item designed for longevity, and useful quality, that's one less item clogging up a landfill. When you choose to "make do and mend" rather than discard, you retain the value of the item, and in the long run, the value of a culture. 

The same type of society that throws away objects, also tends to throw away people. We scoot our elders into neglected nursing homes, we push our less fortunate away from our line of sight, pretending while we shop, that there are no homeless, or people going hungry. Rather than seeing the forest for the trees, we often try to escape into a myriad of hideaways: compulsive shopping, old time religion, drugs, drink, and a whole battery of shitty T.V.  

If we don't see it, does it exist? 

FOREST FOR THE TREES: A future of forests over of landfills demands foresight  + follow through. (image source)
Well, certainly it does. And certainly this is a morsel too big for this old dog to chew. But one thing we can do, break away from our addiction to the mindless onslaught of consumption. Steering clear of the siren call of malls, forgoing fast fashion and its throw away mentality can save the world! It's a win-win, when you select quality over quantity, and take pride in cultivating your own personal and enduring style.

BIRDS OF A FEATHER:  loving your vintage  means taking pride in your life and your style. (photo: STYLE CRONE)

LOVE YOUR VINTAGE. By creating a wardrobe filled with garments designed for years of good wear, you do your part in changing our culture from one that tosses aside people, places and things, into one that can proudly rejoin a natural world that honors its rich diversity and resources. 

And, take time to treasure your greatest treasure:  your life is miracle as fact. And the world we live in is filled with all sorts of goodness, least of which may or may not be, that bad-ass pair of vintage leather boots you got at a church bazaar for a fiver.


ABOUT THE CITIZEN: For the past 6 years, we've been trying to eek out a living, writing, blogging and publishing online on subjects regarding personal style, street fashion, thrift shopping and sustainable living. Before that, we made a living as a cafe cook / compulsive poet with a love of organics, seasonal cooking and permaculture.

Presently, we're downgraded to "vintage seller," and sell a mix of vintage and pre-loved items with an eye for American made and Union labelled treasures. As a secondhand shopping advocate and vintage clothing lover, we've taken up shop on eBay and Etsy, and you can shop online, and help support our dream to open up an artist collective showcasing creative and sustainable re-use of just about everything.

Find us: 

EBAY:citizens-of-rosebud is an eBay based thrift store selling vintage and pre-loves with an eye for American + Union labels.

ETSY: citizen rosebud fresh picked vintage is our vintage womens label showcasing the best of womens clothing selected for  charm, quality and timeless appeal.


Patti said...

You know I agree one thousand percent! "Affordable luxury" is lovely, isn't it? And not constantly creating new stuff. xox

Suzanne said...

Amen sister.


Becky said...

I <3 all of this!!!!

Shelley said...

Great post Bella, and a good reminder of the reasons I prefer thrift shopping!

Shelley said...

Great post Bella, and a good reminder of the reasons I prefer thrift shopping!

Sheila said...

Amen! I have wonderful items that are a tiny fraction of what they would cost new. I can't even go into malls anymore - the's all plastic and disgusting. I'll keep shopping vintage, thrift, consignment and save money, AND save the environment, AND give my money back to my city and good causes, thank you.

The Style Crone said...

My sentiments exactly. For all the reasons that you mention in this beautiful written post, recycling is the way to go, for today and for future generations. Thank you for the mention!

Jazzy Jack said...

Totally! ...and you forgot to mention the thrill of the chase. Unearthing a gem that others missed in the sea of bland. Because where I shop, it's not necessarily beautifully curated, and there are still a lot of cheap plastic mall items. But they provide a foil for the gems which seem all the brighter for their surroundings.
You are definitely preaching to the choir...Amen Sista, and we all said Hallelujah! :-D xo Jazzy Jack

Ulla-Marie said...


Bklyngal1962 said...

Great post!!! I really enjoyed reading it.

thorne garnet said...

yes, let's talk about second hand cashmere. I always look for it at the thrift store. I knit and cashmere yarns is $$$$. A thrifted sweater is $3-4. New yarn to make a sweater? $200-300. No brainer