When I decided to become a “Vintage girl“, I had so many things in my mind. How do I start? Where do I get my clothes? How do I do my hair and makeup properly? And what will other people say? So many questions, but what are the answers? That’s what I’m going to discuss today. I’m going to try my best to give you some of my tips & tricks, tell you how I started and what you should expect if you’re deciding to wear Vintage on a daily basis.
Also, please keep in mind, when I’m talking about Vintage Fashion, I mean the Woman’s Fashion of the 1940’s-1960’s. I’m sure that some of the things I’m going to tell you, will be helpful for other decades, styles and maybe men as well, but that’s nothing I can guarantee you.
First things first, you have to do your research! If you’re really passionate, then that’s something you probably already did but I want to mention it anyway, because it’s the key to success. It will help you to find out what you like, what you want to wear and what not. Researching is something I do everyday, whether it’s with books, magazines, blogs, movies, Instagram or Pinterest. We have so many possibilities these days and it takes only seconds to find some photographs on the Internet from back then. One of my favorite sources to use is Pinterest. What I love about this social media is that you can create your own pin boards and save your favorite pictures so you can find them again whenever you need. I think it’s a nice way to hold all your inspirations together and I can only recommend it. You can find my Pinterest over here.
2. Your collection/Clothes
Now that you made your research, the time has come to build up your vintage collection. That is the hardest part if you want to go fully Vintage and I can tell you, it’ll take some time. And I don’t mean a few days, it can take weeks, months, even years to get were you want to be. My advice is to start with the basics – a nice skirt, a button up blouse, a cute cardigan, cigarette pants or some ballerinas. But before you buy something new, look into your closet. You should always start with what you have. If you sorted out your closet, found some nice pieces and still want more or you had bad luck and didn’t find anything – it’s finally time to buy some new clothes. Authentic Vintage clothes and some reproduction companies are known for being expensive. But that’s not a barrier. What a lot of people in the Vintage Community do is to go into Secondhand, Antique or even Modern stores.
I haven’t been in a Secondhand store myself yet, but when it comes to the upper parts, I wear a lot of modern tops and cardigans. You’ll be surprised how many modern and also 70’s and 80’s clothes are inspired by shapes and patterns of the 40’s and 50’s. And it’s actually pretty easy to make them look more vintage with a circle skirt, a pair of sailor pants or just some accessories. If that’s still nothing for you there are also our good old Ebay and Etsy and if you want to try out some reproduction stores TopVintage, LindyBop and Dolly & Dotty are the ones I can recommend for those on the cheaper side.
Another tip I have – watch out for the big sales. If you desperately want a dress from Vivien of Holloway or Collectif, you only need to know the right time. As far as I know, there are always huge sales in January, around Spring time and of course after the Summer is over. A lot of my reproduction clothes are actually from the sale section and you won’t believe how many money I saved because of that.
3. Hair & makeup
Now you have your clothes, but there is still something missing. Right. Your hair and makeup. This is a step you don’t have to do but in my opinion the right hairstyle and makeup can make a vintage outfit more authentic and even a modern outfit more vintage. Some curls, an eyeliner and a red lipstick can really do wonders. But if you want to wear your hair straight and prefer a more natural look that’s also fine. You just have to find out what fits you the most, because at the end, you’re the one who has to feel comfortable and beautiful. For those who want to be as authentic as possible I can only recommend you Glamourdaze. It’s a vintage fashion and beauty archive and they have a lot of tutorials from back then. Besides, Youtube has been my biggest friend when it came to hair tutorials. The Pinup Companion, Loepsie, Miss Bee Town and Karolina Żebrowska are only a few of all the Vintage Youtuber’s who helped me during my journey.
4. Things you should remember
Doing your research, getting your collection together, finding your right hair and makeup style – seems like we discussed everything important. Well, almost. Even though the 1940’s, 1950’s fashion etc. seem to be very in vogue again, it’s still very “unusual” to go fully vintage (at least in Germany, where I live). And that’s what scares the most. People asked me, how I’m so confident about my style? But to be honest, I was a little bit scared too. I was scared about how other people would react. But my love to this style was bigger than any fear. I finally found myself, I knew who I wanted to be. So I started very slowly with my family, my friends and after their positive reactions I wore it in public. It’s true that people will look at you and ask you questions, but as long as you’re feeling beautiful in your own skin, you shouldn’t care about that. All that doesn’t matter as long as you feel happy. I know it’s easier said than done, but life is too short to hide yourself!
I really hope that some of these tips & tricks were helpful and if I forgot something important, feel free to contact me anytime. I’m currently wearing Vintage on a daily basis for over 2 months now and I still learn something new everyday. If you want to follow my journey as a new Vintage Girl, check out my Instagram @shirinatra where I post a lot of OOTD’s and other vintage related things. I’ll hopefully see you guys soon!
Your Shirinatra xx