I’ve always loved fashion. Clothes are such a major part of how I express myself and are way more than just material to me: to an extent I channel my personality through them – like so many of us do, I’m sure.
And I’ve had many phases when it comes to styling – though what I’ve noticed in the last few years is that my current look has gone back to being more like it used to be when I was a teenager.
Why? Unless it’s an impending mid-life crisis (I hope not), it’s because I have about as much spare cash now as when I was 16. *Sigh*
And that means my look’s gone “vintage” – ie, secondhand.
While I definitely went through a period in my 20s when I wouldn’t have dreamed of popping into my local charity shop, those days are long gone.
Now the high street thrift stores are my number one shopping haunts, second only to vintage boutiques (but always at the cheaper end of the spectrum) and the occasional vintage fair.
Give me time, baby
I should mention here that while you can save on money, being a dedicated vintage clothes shopper doesn’t always save on time.
A good sift through the local charity shops won’t always bring gold, and if you’re desperate to get something new for a special occasion you’ll need a couple of days’ worth of quality (child-free, if possible) shopping time to find that treasured piece.
Luckily I have a very understanding husband on hand who knows that, a couple of weeks before a date night or wedding, he’ll need to take over parental duties for at least 24 hours so I can scout the best stuff in my local charity stores. Thanks hun ?
What does going vintage cost?
In case you’re interested, the cheapest of the clothes pictured here was £3.99. That’s the orange frilly number top left.
The leopardskin coat was £12 and – keeping with the wildcat theme – the lion skirt next to it was £20.
The embroidered tunic with patchwork skirt (top of the page) is a homage to the mums in my life – my mother bought the top on her honeymoon in Yugoslavia in the 1960s and the skirt belonged to my mother-in-law in the 1970s.
And my crazy tie-dye wedding dress above? Secondhand from the USA. It came in at under £100 and my mates still talk about “that dress” as though it was the third person getting married that day ?
I know that the secondhand / vintage look is not for everyone: the patterns / shapes can be quirky and you certainly won’t be on trend with the latest look.
But you can guarantee no one else anywhere will be wearing the same as you (particularly good at a wedding where there’s always a chance there’ll be 2 of you in the same Zara get-up), and you’ll definitely get known for your individual style.
Even better, if you have a little girl you can let her know they’ll all be hers one day.
I’ve told this to my 5 year old and so far she’s pretty impressed with that idea…though she might not feel the same when she hits her teens ?
What do you think?
Did your style change when you became a mum? Do you like buying secondhand clothes or do you tend to stick to new stuff if you do have any spare cash for outfits? Tell us in the comments below or over on Facebook