What is vintage clothing?

What is vintage clothing?

At Baba Yaga most of the clothing we carry is vintage and we get a lot of questions about what that really means. For us, the simple definition is that clothing needs to be at least 20 years old to be considered vintage.  We mainly carry clothing from the 1960’s-1990’s with a few items from the 1950’s or before.  

So, how do we know what era the clothing comes from?  It’s mainly the clothing tags that indicate the age, but also the styles, fabrics and the way the garment is constructed that help identify the era it’s from.

What is the difference between thrift and vintage?

The main difference between vintage and thrift is that thrift stores sell clothing that is used, but not necessarily vintage. 

A typical thrift store

Since the clothing at thrift stores is donated it could be whatever someone has in the back of their closet--usually items that are only 5-10 years old at most. Occasionally you can find vintage items in thrift stores--especially if you enjoy the hunt and pouring through every rack.  However, it takes work, patience, and persistence to find those hidden gems.

Baba Yaga Boutique

At Baba Yaga we hand select and purchase the inventory we carry and only pick pieces that are still in good and wearable condition.  Everything is washed and ready to be worn. And, we also choose vintage styles that match modern aesthetics. Just because an item is vintage doesn't mean it’s automatically stylish or on trend.

The idea behind Baba Yaga was to create the same type of experience you would find at a trendy fashion boutique, but with vintage pieces.  We organize the clothing to give a sense of how the pieces can be worn together or combined. And, every piece we carry is something we would wear--it’s not about searching through the racks to find the one lone gem.  

Why buy vintage?

  1. Quality--it's made to last

    One of the main reasons I love vintage is that the pieces are often higher quality than clothing that you can buy today.  That is especially true of vintage designer pieces, but even ready-to-wear vintage is often made of higher quality fabrics and construction than you find in “fast fashion” of today.  The reason these pieces are still around today is they were made to last.

  2. It's good for the environment

    Buying vintage is also good for the environment. So much used and donated clothing ends up in landfills.  By buying vintage you are saving these pieces from ending up as waste product.  You are also reducing the dependency on the factories that pump out new modern garments and contribute to environmental pollution and more waste.

    Textiles in a recycling center

    Textiles in a landfill

  3. Unique pieces

    When you wear vintage you are wearing something more unique and rare.  Vintage pieces are often one-of-a-kind.  Perhaps you could find something similar, but probably not the same color, size,  or fabric.  That is also why, when you see a vintage piece you love and that fits you, you should probably snap it up.  It could be a long time before you run across a similar item again. And, the great thing is that vintage is often very re-sellable and collectable.  If you buy a vintage piece and decide you no longer want it, chances are you can resell it on Etsy or eBay for a decent price.


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