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How to Combine Vintage Fashion and Modern Styles

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I look at today's fashion and see how it's all inspired by vintage fashion. The character & uniqueness of old-age chic. That's what I love!

Chic vintage style - Old Hollywood dress with faux fur details an the characteristic red color. Fashion accessories include stiletto heels, clutch handbag, and costume jewelry. A Vintage Inspired Style

Chic vintage style - Old Hollywood dress with faux fur details an the characteristic red color. Fashion accessories include stiletto heels, clutch handbag, and costume jewelry. A Vintage Inspired Style

Dressed up in vintage style clothing is a distinguishing attribute of women who dare to be different. A bold fashion signature, it is for women who desire to create their own unique style in a world that’s practically clad in high street clothing.

Most women’s fashion stores have almost the same styles of clothing or at least similar types, but if you are a discerning shopper, can search carefully, and also have an eye for vintage designs, you will find, among the whole jumble, styles that are inspired by vintage fashion.

The style is for those who wish to stand out from the crowd, for those who are die-hard vintage fashion enthusiasts, and for those who are more inclined to wear very feminine clothes that give them a silhouette of a mid-20th-century woman.

Women who dress in vintage-inspired clothing are always admired for their sense of style. Unlike the average fashionista, they are usually creative and dare to wear anything from the swinging styles of the 20s to the typically flared pants, far-out flamboyance, and bold prints of old retro.

Vintage style clothing can be combined with modern accessories like worn (shoes, hats, and stockings) and carried (handbags and scarves) accessories, creating a look that is as stylish as it is trendy. Wearing head-to-toe vintage will appear like you are dressed up for a costume party, a look that will be unappealing for everyday or special occasion wear.

The vintage-inspired fashion trend hasn’t gone unnoticed by fashion designers and merchandisers in the industry as some are now 'burrowing deep' into the archives of classic clothing styles for inspirations to create new clothing for the fashion runway.

As the interest in the style continues to grow, more of today's fashion-conscious women are beginning to join the trend.


Include Classic Designs in Your Wardrobe

To dress in vintage style clothing probably means you want to change your way of dressing or you wish to incorporate classic stylish clothing into your wardrobe. But not every woman can pull it off effortlessly. However, cultivating the style is no ‘biggie’. Just think of the glamorous styles of the past and remind yourself about how fabulous all the silver screen ‘goddesses’ of the 20th century looked, then develop these 7 attributes:

  • Have an open mind.
  • Stir up your creative juices.
  • Don’t worry about what people will think or say.
  • Be bold.
  • Be daring enough to be different.
  • Have some sense of style or research on past styles.
  • Develop the art of fashion and style combinations.

You don’t have to be an avid follower of the latest trends and you don’t necessarily have to be an established fashionista either. All you need is to be comfortable with deviating from the norm, and you are on your way to having a personal fashion signature.

Creating a style wearing apparel inspired by fashion of the 20th century - Fashion Signature

Creating a style wearing apparel inspired by fashion of the 20th century - Fashion Signature

Develop a Vintage-Savvy Style

Developing the style is easy if you can do some fashion research, a task that is quite interesting and captivating. There are hundreds of sites online that will inspire you, just as old classic black and white movies and vintage fashion magazines will too.

Look at photographs and other images of women of the 20s, 30s, 50s, 60s, and 70s, omitting the 40s because those were austere times and fashion and style were relegated to the background because of the war.

Search for famous fashion designers and well-known fashion icons of the last hundred years. You will find more than enough information to set you on the right path.

Consider having some of these wardrobe must-haves for a vintage-inspired fashion signature. With any of these clothes and accessories, you can dress casual, semi-formal, or formal.

Vintage style clothes

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  • Slacks
  • Pencil skirts
  • Swing skirts
  • Cropped jackets
  • Side zip pants
  • Boxy jackets
  • Blazer
  • Ski pants
  • Halter-neck fitted dresses
  • Tie-neck silk blouses
  • Culottes
  • Damask Jacket
  • Turtleneck tops (sleeveless)
  • Embroidered jacket
  • Beaded cardigans
  • Bowling shirts
  • Vintage Coco Chanel suit

Vintage-inspired fashion accessories

  • Vintage inspired costume jewellery
  • Silk scarves
  • Cameo brooches and earrings
  • 20th-century sunglasses
  • Embellished bangles
  • Chandelier earrings
  • Boater hat
  • Cloche hat
  • Women turban
  • Velvet or satin purse
  • Jelly bean bracelet
  • Over-sized pair of rhinestone clip-on earrings

Vintage-Inspired Fashion Tips

  • Avoid clothing made from polyester or rayon because they have a way of looking dated and unfashionable.
  • Consider natural textiles such as cotton, velvet, brocade, silk, satin, damask or wool.
  • Wear classic styles with modern accessories and shoes.
  • Wear a modern dress with vintage Mary Jane shoes, a box handbag, and cat eyes dark sunglasses
  • A vintage tie-neck blouse worn over a pair of jeggings and enhanced with antique costume jewellery and modern pumps.
  • Choose classic fabric patterns like houndstooth, plaid, pinstripes, bold stripes, and polka dots. Accessorize with stiletto shoes, a clutch bag, and classic pendant earrings
  • Boxy Chanel jackets over black slacks. This style will last season after season and will always be fashionable.
  • Shirts with skinny vintage ladies tie.

A good rule of thumb is to wear a different era dress with different period accessories which basically means you can mix and match the traditional with the modern.

A mix of the classic and the modern - 50s Vintage Style Clothing with Modern Fashion Accessories

A mix of the classic and the modern - 50s Vintage Style Clothing with Modern Fashion Accessories

Where to Find Authentic 20th-Century Vintage Clothing and Accessories

You may find a few at online stores that retail only genuine vintage and antique apparel but if you want authentic vintage clothing, they are hard to find. And not only that finds may have flaws have faded with age, or come in only small sizes. The women of a century ago were smaller in size than we women of today, so finding the right size is always a challenge.

Some women have decades-old clothes packed away in boxes, old trunks, or suitcases and stored away in the attic. Others have treasures in their parents or grandparents collections. Don’t give them away just yet. You may be surprised at what you may discover among the layers of clothing. You may even find things of great value like a piece of vintage jewellery, a cloche hat, a tie-neck silk scarf, or a musical trinket box with mother of pearl inlay.

If any item is broken, or a piece of it missing, you can always have it fixed. Perhaps you found a beaded vintage flapper dress in your great aunt's trunk box. If it is too big for you, have it reduced by a professional seamstress and then dry clean it and if it is too small because women are always searching for vintage style clothing online, you can sell it on sites like eBay and make some money.

© 2009 viryabo


viryabo (author) from Lagos, Nigeria. on March 06, 2013:

I'll be happy to do that SomeOneStylish.

Welcome to Hubpages.

SomeOneStylish on March 06, 2013:

Thanks! I would also appreciate it if you would take a look at my hubs, and give me some feedback and suggestions :)

viryabo (author) from Lagos, Nigeria. on March 06, 2013:

Thanks SomeOneStylish. Will add new images as you suggested.


SomeOneStylish on February 27, 2013:

LOVE anything vintage!! Please post more fashion ideas for this topic!

viryabo (author) from Lagos, Nigeria. on July 25, 2012:

Thank you Carol7777, and thanks for the vote up.


carol stanley from Arizona on July 23, 2012:

Just found this charming hub. Fashions come and go...and change on a moment's notice. I love to follow the changes.. today we can do whatever we want. Lots of jeans and t-shirts as long as we don't have to dress for work. Great read...Voted UP.

Tonette Fornillos from The City of Generals on April 28, 2012:

Vintage is really fun! I'm with you viryabo, to be stylish and different doesn't need to be expensive. Blending vintage to the touch of today can be very rewarding. All these makes help the world go green. Thank you.

viryabo (author) from Lagos, Nigeria. on March 04, 2012:

Thanks Celeb.

celebritie on March 04, 2012:

These are really great and I love the 1960's Dior fashion show.

trust1 from Winnipeg, Maniitoba on November 22, 2011:

Thanks for sharing Great stuff.

Earl Flournoy on March 18, 2011:

Yeah, you have a point. My wife and I are big big fans of vintage fashion, but some of the designs are just too conservative that they bore us. Good thing my wife knows how to tweak dresses and accessories. She has raised the hemline of some of her skirts, restyled her Jon Renau wigs, and altered her cocktail dresses to show more cleavage. It's a good way to make vintage and modern styles meet halfway.

bohemian cocktail dresses on December 28, 2010:

Wow such a nice post thanks for sharing.

fashionboy on December 08, 2010:

really like these designs!

Korean fashion

japanese fashion

viryabo (author) from Lagos, Nigeria. on November 13, 2009:

And i wish you the same too. Enjoy yourself keira and thank you for your visits.

GodBless you dearly.

keira7 on November 13, 2009:

Great hub my dear friend. Have a lovely weekend. :)

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