? vintage

“Vintage” has become a label recently. Seems, if one wears a “vintage” something, s-he is “in”. I have often wondered what is vintage and what is not.

Yesterday, I have read the following explenation in the last issue of Selvedge magazine (issue 21):

  • retro is anything from past 25 years
  • vintage is anything from 1920- 1975
  • antique is anything from before 1920.

I have noticed on Flickr and Etsy a lot of sellers use word “vintage” and I am afraid they mixed up especially retro with vintage misleading customers (on purpose?).

more about vintage and antique at Wikipedia

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8 thoughts on “? vintage

  1. The only problem with using retro is that it is actually a jewelry period too. The retro jewelry period is from the 1930’s to 1950. So that adds to the confusion when purchasing on eBay as well.

    I don’t mind the term vintage, I use it myself, especially if I know the year or date I am referring to. I am careful to look for the term vintage reproduction when shopping on eBay. However, not every seller is forthcoming and will state something is a reproduction.

  2. That’s fascinating. I’ve heard of antique being defined relatively, as anything over 100 years old, interesting to see it given a specific date – I’ll have to ask my father, he’s an antique dealer!

  3. thanks for this. i’ve been “vintage” shopping for a few months now and i’m planning to open an Etsy shop in a few months. because of this little morsel of info, i’ll be able to appropriately label my clothing. 🙂

  4. that’s crazy, I never realised there were such strict definitions! Been parading around claiming something is vintage when it’s onyl retro. What a let down. Thankyou for the information, I’ll be much more vigilant when it comes to ebay shopping in the future!xx

  5. Wow, I didn’t realise it was so rigid! I guess its difficult because in a few years time, what’s at the end of retro will become vintage, whats vintage will become antique and what’s antique will become….artefact? I think vintage is used generally as an umbrella term for ‘old’, but particularly with your definition of antique, I can see how this distinction matters x

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