Friday, October 06, 2006

Fashionable Fridays -- Everything Old is New Again

It seems to me that even going all the way back to the 90s, vintage and retro styles have been big. That trend continues even now, more than halfway through the "aughts." Different decades have held favor over the years, with the 60s and 70s being the big contenders, classy 40s-50s styles sneaking in every now and then, and now, the 80s are screaming "Hey, aren't we old enough to be retro yet?"

In the world of fashion, old styles show up in a number of ways. Designers might recreate vintage dresses, use retro prints, or even recycle old fabric, beads, and other materials for new designs. The consumer has many choices for expressing their own love of recycled fashion, too, either by purchasing these new items, or by seeking out genuine vintage items. Many thrift stores now have "retro" sections, rather than saving the bygone styles for Halloween. eBay is a source of great vintage finds, whereas a web search will turn up many sites that will either sell you vintage clothes, or educate you on the styles and how to tell the real deal from fakes.

As a jewelry designer, I love working with vintage beads. My Dark Murmurs bracelet (shown above) uses 2 different styles of vintage beads and a vintage button. Dame Autumn and Leaf Fall both feature vintage leaves, which are of course, just perfect for Autumn. Vintage beads abound in my earring section, just check out Midnight Stars, Gothic Garden, or Peachy Keen. This is just a sampling of the vintage selections on my site; I rarely turn down a chance to buy vintage beads!

Of course, I'm far from the only jewelry designer inspired by the styles and materials of yesteryear. Elle B uses vintage beads in all of her creations, and I especially love her earrings! Oasis and Canyon are very cool, and the latter features perfect Autumn colors! The Wing Thing works some awesome vintage buttons into her jewelry, check out this faerie bracelet! Vintage style and beads alike are found in Miss Evil Kitty's floral pins. Dejarnette's Minty Julep necklace also caught my eye. And while I don't normally "do" plastic, this 80s robot necklace from Zlanarama brought a huge smile to my face!

I also got a big, cheezy grin when I saw Rotem Gear's vintage-inspired Tofu T-Shirt. Usually I see this graphic used to say something raunchy, so this was a pleasant change! For other vintage-style clothes, why not check out the aprons from Sweet Pea Handcrafts or Modern June? They almost make me wish that I cooked enough to need an apron -- but that would cut into my bead time! ;)

There's no denying the absolute cuteness of vintage purses, but finding the real-deal in good shape and affordable can be difficult. Why not buy a modern day purse based on vintage designs instead? Goodmorning, Morning has some cute ones, especially the Scalloped Bag. 2 Fresh Petunias also offers several vintage-style bags, but I like the Sophisticate Handbag the best, especially the green bird one! Meanwhile, Teacups and Tadpoles has vintage-inspired lunch totes, perfect for kids or adults!

Those of you with kiddoes either of your own or on your gift-buying list might enjoy the Vintage Baby section over at Hip and Little, or One Little Monkey.

After all this shopping, you might feel the need to pamper yourself (I do after all this typing!). You might not think that spa supplies can be vintage-inspired, but Vintage Body Spa is out to prove you wrong with their retro labels and packaging!

This is just a small selection of the vintage and vintage-inspired items that you can find on the web... and just think of what you might be able to find locally, in boutiques, craft fairs and bead stores!


  1. Thanks so much AJ for featuring us on your blog! Your writing is wonderful! Gabreial ~VBS

  2. You're welcome, Gabreial! :) I really love writing of any kind, so these blog posts are so much fun for me to do!

  3. Thanks so much for the mention! Old is the new black, or maybe old is the new new ... or something like that.

  4. LOL! You're very welcome :)