Vintage versus High Street fashionSeptember 7, 2014
Vintage versus High Street fashion, Which is it?
You can’t help but have noticed the rise in popularity of vintage fashion helped along by the success of Chanel 4’s “This Old Thing” – the vintage clothes show with Dawn O’Porter, bringing vintage fashion to the uninitiated. Men and women both old and young, are paraded reluctantly in front of a hanger full of delectable vintage garments and accessories by Dawn, while they twist and turn, pulling their faces into a wide selection of facial expressions worthy of a remake of The Exorcist that tell us clearly, they’re not enjoying the experience one little bit.
But one by one they eventually succumb to the allure of vintage.
Is this the case for everyone – have you been lured by the vintage virus and float around in Ossie Clarke specials and 1940s tea dresses? Or are you the type of person that much prefers the throw away fashion of the high street, with its here today and gone tomorrow cycle?
Pros of Vintage versus High Street fashion
Question is – Vintage versus High Street fashion, which is better? I myself am probably biased, for me, there is nothing better than vintage, if they’ve been well cared for they’ll be in pristine condition and ready to wear with probably a few more years in them. What’s more and as Dawn Porter is quick to tell us in her Channel 4 programme, you’re unlikely to see anyone else wearing the same garment. That’s the originality of vintage for you.
Wear high street fashion and you’re more than likely to see at least 5 other people wearing what you’ve bought and what’s more it’s even more than likely you’re going to meet them on a night out. Imagine it, you grace the floor in your new high street straight-from-the-catwalk-copied-down-to-high-street dress and someone looms up from the back lit floor, wearing exactly the same outfit – not a good feeling.
Cons of Vintage versus High Street fashion
Many complain that when they wear high street at least they smell better. It’s the same old chestnut, vintage clothes smell of old people, dead people, old musty wardrobes. This is rare, as any vintage store worth its salt will tell you. If you’re not convinced then wash them or have them dry cleaned when you get home. Don’t miss out on a one-in-a-million dress, jumper or skirt just because you don’t think it smells the way you want it to.
High Street clothes smell of retail and what’s more they smell of sameness – they smell the same as every other identical dress on the rack. And I’ll tell you what else they smell of – landfill sites, that’s what high street fashion does, it’s in fashion, then suddenly, it’s not in fashion. You chuck it in the bin, because it’s not fit to go to the charity shop and it ends up on a landfill site, where it will sit as it rots slowly in the earth.
Most clothes aren’t biodegradable which means they produce their own special methane gas and with the rain, they pick up all the other poisons from trash lying around on the site. And if that hasn’t put you off completely, it soaks through the earth and pollutes the water and it even has its own special name – leachate. Great? No not great, and with landfill sites filling up faster than you can say Diane Furstenberg, it’s enough to make you think.
Find out for yourself – Try it
Still not convinced? Vintage may take a bit of perseverance and detective work, but that’s part of the joy, finding something that you know no one else will be wearing, a diamond in the rough, a beautiful dress that stands out from the crowd. And perhaps just as importantly, a dress or two piece that no one else will be wearing. So you’ll have an original outfit that you can wear again and again and (seen as they’re better made), and you’ll be doing the environment a favor. That has to be a good thing…doesn’t it? Vintage versus High Street fashion, how could there be any competition?
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