Discount Fashion: Learn To Love Vintage

Written by Beth Marlin Lichter
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Shopping for clothing is becoming more and more prohibitive. Money is tight and prices seem to endlessly be rocketing skyward. Gone are the days of being able to spend a Saturday in your favorite shops, coming away loaded down with bags of great stuff. Not anymore.
Budgets don’t allow for frivolous expenditures like they used to, although the appetite for buying has not diminished. It’s time to become a seriously smart shopper.

What to do? Certainly there are items in the closet that can survive at least another season or two. Hopefully, some skirts, dresses or pants can even be called, “classics”, which mean that unless your waistline undergoes a ridiculous expansion, they can be worn forever, or until they suffer a horrible fate such as an untreatable stain.

First, do a wardrobe check and pick something you could really get excited about wearing again, if only you had something new to pair it with. For instance, those sleek black pants, which have been hiding under plastic ever since they came back from the dry cleaner last year…try them on. They look really nice, in fact they still compliment your figure nicely, but they never get worn because the jacket you bought to go with them, seems dated. What if you could find a smart little dinner jacket from the 40s to spice them up?

Now do a little research and find a local flea market that has vintage clothing vendors, not just junk, but interesting pieces. Ask someone you know who attends flea markets regularly, which are the best ones in your area. Not only is it fun to get there early and hunt for that treasure you are seeking, but to come away with something you love, at a ridiculously low price, makes you feel very smart and very lucky. Flea market shopping can become addictive, if you find one that offers goods you think are cool.

Are there any interesting vintage clothing stores either in the area, or someplace you might be traveling to in the near future? It is not uncommon for retail stores to also carry a line of vintage clothes, which are much less expensive. For instance in Los Angeles, American Rag Cie, on La Brea Ave, carries high-end goods, but continuously restocks its vintage department, where a cashmere beaded sweater from the 30s can be priced as low as $45.

If this kind of shopping appeals to you, congratulations! You have now figured out how to save big bucks and add some quirky flavor and personal style to a tired wardrobe.
Happy shopping!


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I know what you mean. We're also dealing with the fact that since tniaring-bra-age, we've been pushing our breasts *up*. So this goes entirely against the grain. But when women wear modern bras, it just looks very wrong. And for years, I couldn't figure out what precisely what so wrong about it.I'm just trying to dispel the myth that 20s fashions only look good on "sticks". The women who made them famous weren't sticks. And the pattern of the time allowed for a larger bust-to-hip ration than patterns do nowadays.That's all I'm saying. =)