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The Age of Vintage!

9 Oct 2020

The buzz around vintage fashion is bigger than ever! From it being a great way to state your unique style to it being a meaningful and eco-friendly act, the last few years have seen second-hand shopping take the world by storm. But, is this hand-me-down movement here to stay? While many would say, "Yes," others would say, "It has to."

“This time of uncertainty has been a catalyst for reflection,” says Julie Wainwright, founder and CEO of The RealReal, in regards to the trend’s growing popularity. “Seeing the planet visibly healing during quarantine has served as a powerful testament to the positive impact we can all have on the environment. People are making concrete changes to live more sustainably. Brands are rethinking production and the afterlife of what they create. Engagement with resale is hitting an all-time high and it’s helping pave the way for a more sustainable future in fashion.”

By Choosing Vintage, You’re Helping the Planet

As we know, producing new clothes is harmful to the environment. Even though people are growing more conscientious in their decision-making, designers are creating collections featuring more and more sustainable fashion, and large retailers are finally starting to make use of eco-friendly alternatives, there's still a lot of work to be done if we want to widen the gap between fashion and pollution. One easy place to start: vintage apparel!

"Every new item of clothing made has a substantial carbon footprint attached to its manufacturing, but the amount of new energy needed to produce vintage clothing is zero," says Emma Watson, an actress known for her ethical fashion choices. "Vintage clothing has a huge role to play in making fashion more sustainable and reducing a global footprint that includes the 132m metric tonnes of coal used yearly through the production of new fibres, dyeing and bleaching of garments, and the 6-9 trillion litres of water used by the industry."

Looking to join the movement? Here are some easy steps to follow: consume less, but better. Downsize and simplify your wardrobe. Invest in quality vintage garments and accessories. Give articles of clothing a second (or even third) life. Be meticulous in your selection process! Take the time to choose items you know you’ll wear again and again, and learn how to care for them in a way that’ll make them last longer. These may be small actions, but every one of them will have a positive impact on the environment by cutting down on impulse buying and decreasing the amount of clothes you toss in the trash.

In the United States, over 10 million tons of textile waste, like garments and bedding, is thrown out each year according to the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency).

In England, the WRAP (Waste and Resources Action Programme) estimates that the value of unused garments just hanging in our closets is £30 billion (Can$51 billion), and that we throw away £140 million (Can$241 million) worth of clothing in landfills each year.

A little closer to home, in a partnership proposal between a group of NPOs and the city of Montreal in January 2020, it was stated that globally, 73% of the clothes we get rid of are buried or burned and that by prolonging your clothing’s lifespan by only 9 months, you could reduce your carbon footprint by 20-30%.

Turning to vintage apparel encourages the reselling and recycling of clothes, which plays a massive role in decreasing the sheer quantity of textiles that end up in our planet’s landfills. It's one small action that does a world of good!

By Choosing Vintage, You’re Celebrating Fashion

In the '60s, miniskirts and trapeze dresses became popular. In the '70s, boho dresses and bell-bottom jeans were "it" items. When the '80s arrived, neon colours and shoulder pads were the thing to wear, and in the '90s, platform shoes and crop tops were all the rage. And this just barely scratches the surface!

Fashion—like movies, music, and other forms of art—reflects our culture.

Big designers set the standards. They innovate and influence people (and eras) with their wearable works of art. The vintage market offers an incredible opportunity to get your hands on iconic pieces from past decades, celebrate their history, and recognize their importance in fashion!

“We don’t see ourselves as selling vintage designer clothes; we celebrate each designer at their greatest moments, those who influence today’s fashion and beyond,” says Marie Blanchet, the CEO of the London boutique, William Vintage, in her interview with Vogue.

Vintage apparel isn’t just about the planet, it’s about you! Incorporating retro clothing and accessories into your wardrobe is a great way to make a fashion statement and define your own unique sense of style. While pairing contemporary pieces with those from the past might seem a little daunting, fashion has always been about imagination and doing things differently. Being creative leads to fearless looks, fabulous ensembles, and outfits that let you express yourself!

When Choosing Vintage, Shop at the Right Spots

When it comes time to shop for vintage designer pieces, it’s important to put your faith in specialized companies that can guarantee the authenticity of the items. At Simons, all vintage designer clothes and accessories have been authenticated with care by experts in the field.

VSP Consignment

Building on a thirty-year family history in the resale industry, Britt Rawlinson founded VSP with the intention of making vintage clothing relevant to the contemporary client. The Canadian company quickly became a destination for collectors and sustainable fashion advocates alike, offering thousands of authentic designer and archival pieces. For this partnership with Simons, VSP has curated a unique selection from their vast archive, spanning the '70s, '80s, '90s, and early 2000s.

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Édito Vintage

Our selection of luxurious items is rounded out by vintage designer bags and collection accessories made by the biggest names in fashion. Each piece is carefully selected and authenticated by a specialized Canadian company.

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Find that special something in our selection of designer clothes and accessories.

Say yes to vintage