reworked vintage clothing

What Is Slow Fashion And How Did It Change Vintage Fashion?

In one form or another, vintage clothing has existed for as long as the concept of “make do and mend”, and this has existed for as long as clothing has.

However, whilst older forms of vintage were about practicality and using whatever you can, reworked vintage clothing makes a different statement, and has done so since the middle of the 20th century.

Exactly what that statement is has changed over the years. For the early counterculture movement, it was largely about convenience.

When vintage fashion was adopted by various punk movements it started as an attempt to bring back styles that had fallen by the wayside although it later became a more political statement protesting the exploitative nature of fashion. 

This mutated into a more general anti-fashion movement led by the grunge rock and later the indie rock scene and the styles of many of the biggest rock stars of the 1990s and 2000s were easy to copy by visiting vintage shops.

However where the meaning of vintage truly changed was with the development of the slow fashion movement, coined by Kate Fletcher in 2007 as an analogue to the already existing slow food movement.

Slow fashion is a broader movement than vintage, since it is not just about wearing or upcycling vintage fashions, but clothing that does not have an added environmental cost naturally appeals to such an ecologically focused movement.

Given that fast fashion was reaching its apex in both popularity and ecological devastation, vintage was the perfect antidote for people who could no longer ignore the human and environmental cost of rapidly produced, expensive new fashions.

It came at the perfect time, as a massive stock market crash that can still be felt to this day made expensive clothing more than a little gauche, and vintage has continued to thrive as not only a statement of intent but an aesthetic that celebrates the history of fashion.

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