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Perspectives & Viewpoints

Someone sent this to me in a link and I was so impressed I had to pass it along (its copied verbatim and all the content below my little row of dots is Franca's opinion. I went shopping in Toronto on the weekend and went to some vintage shops and one in particular was beautifully curated but there was very little actual "vintage" present (using the definition of vintage being clothing that is 25 years or older). To be fair I have a fair bit on the site at the moment that is LESS then 25 years old, but its a result of pulling specifically for the FT 25th Anniversary Retrospective. I try very very hard to keep the site at about 90% true vintage and I would say that normally 90% of THAT 90% is seventies or older. So I am a little biased already towards agreeing with Franca's viewpoint. A good dress is a good dress but there is a certain magic that clothes up the the 70s have that newer ones just don't. And that is firmly MY opinion - you may have your own of course! This is from Italian Vogue's editor Franca Sozzani. Read it and tell me what you think on this subject......

Yesterday I talked about photography collections and vintage dresses. Today I want to elaborate on vintage fashion.

To go browsing on shops and flea markets
is special, different, not always branded, it can be unique and allow you to dress differently, it's fun, very stimulating and creative. To try not to conform to a totalitarian style and homogenous is a need that not everyone has but that certainly a lot of women and even men feel.

I had talked in a previous blog about how English girls dressed in a fun way by mixing everything together and not one them looks straight out of a store window. Mixing things by yourself is important and doing some searching is fundamental. Lets focus on the individual, its wardrobe, the desire to invent a style on your own. This is the good part of vintage.

Here comes the negative part. Many designers and you can definitely see it on the runways, go on a shopping spree to vintage stores and then use it to create the same clothes.

There are three lethal consequences
. Being bored by looking always at the past, the sensation to go back to school for a class on fashion history; the rising prices in vintage shops, the owners are aware of the trend and push the prices up on brands and beautiful pieces; it's very easy to reproduce this style when you have a big production, this inflates the prices of branded clothes.

The same years make a comeback periodically, for many seasons we had to go back to the horrible 80s, we were all hoping to forget, and then the 60s, 70s, 30s, 40s.

All of this is not good for fashion, it's true that inspiration can come from all the places, but the interpretation is up to the designers and their creativity. Vintage is so famous that many books have been written about it: from the Californian vintage, to the stars, to all the books related to each decade. Not to mention books on designers, past and contemporary. These are an endless source of inspiration, sometimes copied a hundred percent, make-up, hair, and all.

What's interesting about vintage is to see how the clothes are made, how they used to be manufactured, the fabrics, the mood
. To see a copy on a runway is intolerable, as much as I like seeing girls that mix things together.

It's incredible that now you can call vintage something you have seen two seasons ago. Last summer in L.A., in vintage stores, I've found only pieces that came from stock or in stores that put out sales. In the end, you never know who is copying who since the system is very fast.

Better to look at the future and invent. The past can only remain as a source of information. That's it.


The Red Velvet Shoe said...

While many today refer to the 80s as vintage (which, if you use the 25 year rule, makes it so) I find it disappointing to see the attention take away from more authentic vintage.

"What's interesting about vintage is to see how the clothes are made, how they used to be manufactured, the fabrics, the mood."

Well said, Ms. Sozzani.

I pass by hundreds of 80s and 90s designer/high end frocks in my treasure hunting. I'm holding out for the real thing.

Louise said...

Fascinating and thanks for sharing. I've been thinking a lot about this recently ... for me vintage isn't about returning to the past, but rather celebrating the best elements of the fabrics, fits and styles of previous decades in a modern setting.
And while I always like to gaze on vintage inspired modern clothes and editorials, it is starting to feel a bit tired recently. It is happening too much I think ... vintage repro is not the same thing.

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