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  • Writer's pictureEmma

For The Love of Vintage Dresses

Updated: Feb 1, 2020

Ah the beloved vintage dress – the wardrobe staple of any style-savvy woman. Feminine, flirty, smart and chic; a good dress is easy to style and can make you feel a million dollars.

Throughout history, the dress has defined the character of an era, from the daringly short flapper dresses of the 1920s to the Flower Power movement of the 1960s. Dress styles, shapes and prints have been as varied as the women who wear them, expressing their unique personalities through the clothes they wear.

Perhaps this is why we love vintage dresses so much, not only are they stylish and often beautifully tailored but they also tell a story. We can wander down memory lane and indulge in a little nostalgia whilst looking utterly fierce in a one-of-a-kind number.

So, what defines a dress as vintage? The general consensus dates ‘vintage’ as clothing manufactured between 25 and 99 years old (100 years or more are know as antiques). Think elegant shapes, romantic swirls of fabric and a proud celebration of femininity. Or as we like to put it; Petticoats, Pin-ups and Pin-curls.

A vintage dress is something truly special, harking from a time where accessories matched and leggings didn’t exist. Pull on a vintage sundress and wear your hair loose, or slip into something slinkier for a night out with the girls to simply feel fabulous.

A Guide to Vintage Dresses by Era

Femininity came back into fashion in a big way. The shapes of the 1950s focused on emphasising the female form, so you had nipped in waists with full skirts and wide belts, sexy pencil skirts and close-fitting sheath dresses.

Style icon: Audrey Hepburn

Audrey Hepburn | Vintage Dresses | 1950s Dresses

The 1960s was a decade of revolutionary art and experiment. Hemlines got much shorter and shapes became more minimal. Shift dresses, miniskirts and bold graphic prints were the order of the day.

Style icon: Twiggy

Twiggy | 1960s Dresses | Vintage Dresses

The 1970s saw an emergence of a variety of trends from hippy, folksy style to Eastern influences and of course disco. Frilly maxi dresses, natural relaxed shapes and floral prints defined the folk scene, while Lycra and flares were favoured by the disco set. At the same time kaftans and kimonos became popular and the punk movement took off.

Style icon: Jerry Hall

Jerry Hall | 1970s Dresses | Boho Dresses

This politically charged era saw an emergence of edgy street-wear featuring denim, tartan and graphic prints. Power dressing in pencil skirts and blazers with padded shoulders became popular amongst women as they blazed a trail in the workforce.

Style icon: Madonna

Madonna | 1980s Dresses | Vintage Dresses

Visit my vintage at our vintage store based in Darwen, Lancashire for a wide range of original vintage clothing and vintage accessories as well as our range of reproduction rockabilly clothing and rockabilly dresses. You can also shop online 24/7 at for even more original vintage fashion.

Hope to see you all soon…

Emma, My Vintage.


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