A Brief Look into the Rise of Vintage Fashion

words Al Woods

In recent years, a major trend towards vintage fashion has emerged and continues to grow in popular culture. Everywhere you look, you can see glimpses into the past as the people of today make vintage looks their own.

Vintage fashion is often characterized by unique designs (often dependent on the era in which it was made) and strong quality. These characteristics draw many into its sphere. In this article, we’ll take a look at what caused the rise of vintage fashion in modern society.

How Is This Term Defined?

The term “vintage fashion” has been used to describe clothing produced during a previous era. Typically, this range includes clothing made between the 1920s and the 1980s. Anything made before the 1920s is typically considered antique.

“Retro”, or retrospective, is a name given to modern clothing that is made to resemble clothing from previous eras.

Rise of Vintage Fashion

Factors That Influenced the Comeback of Vintage Clothing

Many factors have contributed to the rise of this trend. It is the combination of the below factors over time that facilitated a renewed interest in vintage clothing. Some of these factors include:

Old and New Media

The media has had one of the most lasting impacts on consumer interest in vintage clothing. Film and television have always influenced fashion. People view old shows and films and wish to imitate their favorite characters. New films and shows set in the past also heighten interests in retro looks.

Fashion sites like HeartMyCloset have entire sections of their sites dedicated to period shows like Mad Men and Agent Carter. The introduction of the internet has also made it easier for people to research this branch of fashion as well as buy and sell unique pieces online.

Celebrities and Designers

Celebrities often start trends or pick up on them as they’re first beginning. Many celebrities have gotten on the vintage fashion train. As a result, their fans have as well.

In addition to celebrities, popular designers have also contributed to the rise. Many designers draw inspiration from period fashion and use it to create amazing retro looks.

A Sense of Nostalgia

Some people gravitate towards older clothing pieces because of the sense of nostalgia they offer. It may remind them of simpler times, or what they imagine simpler times to be. Clothing tells stories and holds on to memories, which is attractive to many people.


Vintage fashion offers unique looks and promotes one’s sense of individuality. In earlier decades, most clothes were made by hand, which resulted in few articles ever being exactly the same. This made-by-hand approach also led to high-quality clothes that were made to last, which vintage clothing lovers admire.

Environmental Awareness

In the last few years, the increasing popularity of vintage fashion has also been linked to growing environmental awareness and interest in sustainable fashion. Fast fashion, which relies on mass-produced clothing that has a high turn-over rate, is beginning to be combated.

Fast fashion clothing is made using cheap, foreign labor that endangers workers. This cheap labor allows companies to put out thousands of items at low costs that attract consumers. But these cheap articles wear out quickly, unlike vintage items that are made to last. Another side effect of the fast fashion business model is the use of environmentally harmful chemicals, non-biodegradable materials, and huge water wastage.


These are just a few of the contributing factors to the rise of vintage clothing. However it got here, this trend seems like it’s certainly here to stay. People enjoy the thrill of finding small treasures from the past. What vintage looks will you be adding to your closet?


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