Location: Richmond, Virginia & Hilton Head Island, South Carolina
Vintage shopping is one way that we can engage in conscious consumerism while also finding unique, one-of-a-kind pieces. Or as ethical journalist Lucy Siegle points out, “If we think of a hierarchy of ethical ways of dressing, vintage should be near the top. It is the antithesis of throwaway fashion, being rare, covetable and tradable.” For me, vintage shopping is a treasure hunt. And sometimes, when the stars align, you find the perfect piece to add to your wardrobe.
Richmond is fortunate to have some great vintage stores along with expert curators. Recently, I stopped in Halcyon Vintage store to peruse and came across this colorful 1960’s dress. This dress makes a statement, and as I’ve previously mentioned, I do not shy away from bold prints or patterns. Fortunately this dress fit perfectly and didn’t need any alterations. However, if you do find a piece that needs mending, you can contact Lisa Hutchinson of Topstitch RVA. She’s a pro at mending and repurposing clothing. You’ll also find her working part-time at Halcyon and can answer any questions you have about vintage pieces.
Here are a few tips when looking for vintage clothing:
- Know the difference between thrift and vintage. You can definitely find nice vintage items in a thrift store; however, vintage stores are typically curated to carry unique, special pieces.
- Condition of the garment is key. Carefully inspect for any rips or stains.
- Pay attention to sizing. Sizing nowadays is quite different than in times past, so be sure to try items on.
- Look for pieces that can easily integrate into your wardrobe.
- Finding the right piece(s) takes time. Do not give up or get discouraged if you do not find something right away.
- Classic, well-made pieces can last a lifetime. Think cashmere sweaters, wool coats, black dresses, etc.
- Proceed with caution when buying vintage clothing online. There are plenty of reputable online retailers; however, many do not permit returns.
Do you have any vintage shopping tips to add to this list? Please share in the comments below!