If there's one buzz word in the fashion world at the moment, it's 'vintage'. It has become the ultimate trend of the moment, with people cottoning on to the appeal of owning something retro, and in many ways unique.
The funny thing is that some people have been championing vintage clothing for years. They've been rummaging through charity shops, inheriting items from family members and creating their own style for ages, and it's only now that it's been offically given the cool label.
Celebrities such as Kate Moss and Agyness Deyn are huge fans of vintage fashion, as are Sienna Miller, Daisy Lowe, Fearne Cotton and Alexa Chung, which begs the question- how has this failed to be cooler sooner?
Charity shops have seen a surge in shoppers, as people abandon the big names in the hope they will find a rare gem, a designer cast-off or maybe a celebrity inspired outfit for the night. What's also pretty great is that most of the main trends this season are inspired by decades gone by, so you may bag a retro leather jacket from the 50s or a funky fur gilet from the 70s, the choice is yours.
We as a nation love the thrill of uncovering a bargain and charity shops undoubtedly give us that outlet to do so. Where else can you get a sequined mini-dress for less than a tenner? And before you say 'Primark' let me rephrase the question- where else can you get a sequined mini-dress that you are guaranteed not to see on all of your friends?
Specialist vintage shops are also cleaning up with this new boom. Despite always making a modest profit, as the doom and gloom of the recession starts to hit, people will be going to these places to pick up some unique and less pricey items.
The only downside to this fabulous boom in retro fashion is the fact that people are capitalising on this in an uncharitable manner. Claming a pair of manky old knickers are retro and charging a fortune for them is not vintage, it's just wrong, but unfortunately some shops seem to think we are stupid.
The key to bagging a truly vintage piece is to do your research about the shop and what exactly you are looking for, also set aside an amount that you are willing to spend and stick to it!
If you don't fancy hunting around in your local charity shop, or indeed visiting a specialist vintage haunt, then why not try the high-street. Yes, it may sound like an oxymoron trying to find genuine vintage on the high-street, and of course you won't, but you will find some vintage inspired pieces, which can be just as good.
It all comes down to your preferred method of shopping, some tend to mix vintage pieces with high-street finds and create a really funky look. Either way, this is a nice way to introduce yourself into some 'make-do' vintage, if you're unsure of the real thing.
High-street retailer Topshop has its own vintage section in London's Oxford Circus, Miss Selfridge has some gorgeous vintage inspired jewellery and Warehouse seem to have perfected the their range of 1920s art deco inspired dresses.
Considering that experts are predicting the worst for retailers this year, why not spread a little Christmas joy and go and bag yourself a bargain in the process- It will keep you and the retailers very happy this festive season.