Vintage fashions reappearing and trendier than ever

Salina wears vintage
A personal favorite vintage ensemble that looks trendy and contemporary.

Ever heard the saying “out with the old and in with the new?” Well what if I told this has been wrong all along and it’s really, “out with the new and in the with old!”

Times have changed folks: what’s new is old and what’s old is new.

Confused yet?  Let me break it down for you…

With the development of Instagram stores and personal shopping apps, it has become superfluously easy (eye roll) to get the exact look that EVERYONE else is wearing. Even the rap songs have called girls out on this phenomenon: “Because all these Instagram famous bitches sharing clothes” (“Dope Man” by Tate Kobang).

Fast fashion is all about the hottest styles – for right now – at the lowest possible costs. The clothing is insanely cute and equally insanely dirt cheap so even the poorest fashionistas can look trendy. This of course is very appealing to teenagers who do not have their own disposable income, college students who are broke, and emerging adults who are barely making ends meet.

No wonder everyone is dressed the same. Thanks corporate America.

But for millennials, being “style copy cats” is just not their way of doing business. Rebellion is sweeping fashion in the form of vintage. Vintage is the new hipster fashion. It is working against the mainstream mass production to surface as an “off the grid” (and off the Instagram grid) unique style.

What is really cool, even though most shopping addicts would not know, is that buying vintage actually is cost effective, environmentally friendly, and an effort at being globally responsible.

Outfit from a top vintage Etsy shop that has had $3,000+ sales in a few short years.

Vintage boutiques will generally only sell garments that are in the best conditions for being, well, old. You might fall upon clothing from the 1940s that does not have a single flaw because everything was handmade with careful attention and quality materials.

With this being said, some boutiques will rack up the $$ just because of the vintage tag. BUT it is worth it. Your well loved vintage piece will wind up lasting way longer than the $5 shirt from Forever 21 that will fall apart in the wash; heck, it has already sustained a couple decades. Keep in mind I am talking about authentic vintage, not vintage replicas. Those are still made in China.

Oh, and about that $5 shirt…Before it was constructed, the process it underwent to dye the fabric most likely is the culprit of much toxic waste and environmental destruction. The excess from the dyes usually ends up contaminating waterways making the natural resource unavailable to many people and killing many animals. The $30 shirt from that awesome vintage boutique? Harmed no one except maybe your bank account.

Since vintage clothing has already been produced years ago, no living human NOW is involved in making it. Much of the fashion seen on social media that is “soooooo super trendy” has been made in third world countries by women who are struggling to make $160 a month. They are treated with brutish violence, horrible working conditions, and a very low quality of life.

By buying vintage you are rejecting these appalling practices and practicing global responsibility (aka you actually care about other human beings). Who knows, you could have been born in their shoes if the universe operated a little differently.

Vintage is not simply a trendy way to look unlike all the style clones, it is a lifestyle. The power to be unusual is one that millennials wield like a sword. They dislike the conformity and the complacency of what has been becoming of our world.

Vintage is the statement: “I am an individual, not a mass production and I am going to prove it to you!”

Salina Bowe, '16

My future goals include being a superhero (preferably Catwoman reincarnated) so I can save the Earth, and finding enlightenment.