… or: where all the cool vintage stuff comes from
I can think of many reasons why I love vintage fashion to bits. There’s this special vibe to it. Each piece is unique and tells a different story. It’s simply not the same as buying new stuff, even if the new stuff is made to look vintage on purpose. Whenever I find a good piece at a second hand shop or a flea market, it’s way more special to me than finding any other piece in a „normal“ store. That’s because I’ll know that this exact same piece will hang on thousands of other clothing racks all over the world. And gone is the item’s magic. But with vintage fashion I’ll know that the pieces are unique and and that they have had a long journey to finally find their ways into my hands.
Also, there’s the aspect of sustainability that comes with wearing recycled clothes. I guess I don’t have to say much about this one, pretty much speaks for itself, right? Same goes for the amazing workmanship with vintage pieces. If an item has been worn by several different people over decades and still looks fancy as f*, you know it’s great quality. In other words: with vintage clothing you’ll get great quality, unique fashion pieces plus your shopping habits are sustainable. Could it get any better? I don’t think so.
However, it can be quite hard to find some good vintage items. You’ve gotta be patient and go to many many second hand shops and flea markets to eventually find one piece you’ll like. Most likely you’ll come away empty-handed. If you don’t wanna spend that amount of time and effort in finding clothes and you don’t enjoy the whole process and flair of thrifting as much as I do, there’s another option as well. Luckily some high street stores and boutiques sell pre- selected, washed and ready-to-wear vintage clothes. Chances are way better to find something there, because someone has already made the effort of sorting out the good stuff from the bad.
Now have you ever wondered where all the cool vintage clothing items in these exact stores are coming from? Who’s sorting out all the old stuff and who’s making it reusable? As I’m a huge lover of vintage and second hand clothing I’ve of course asked myself these kind of questions multiple times and I guess I’ve found an answer.
Behind a lot of the vintage fashion you might see in high street stores such as Urban Outfitters with it’s ‚Urban Renewal‘ line, there’s a vintage wholesale company called Glass Onion Vintage. Now can we just take a moment and appreciate that they’ve named their company after a Beatles Song? Right.
What they do is selling large quantities of vintage fashion products to their customers. These are, as I just mentioned, mostly high street stores but also independent vintage boutiques all over the world. Every week they process around 20 tonnes of clothing which they receive from global recycling centers. After that, they quality check the clothes and store them into different categories before packing it all up and selling it to the customers. So if you’ve ever bought a vintage piece at a conventional high street store, chances are good it went through these halls first.