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How to achieve the most of Vintage + Contemporary Fashion


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When was the last time your mother said: "Old is Gold!", and used it as an excuse to keep her age-old saree and refuses to let go of that handbag that doesn't go with the current trends but is just there?

Before you discard them, those exact old sarees and handbags can be brought back to life in the name of Modern Vintage Fashion – an undying trend to keep fashion alive!


Vintage Contemporary or Modern Vintage fashion is about mixing two (or more) eras of fashion and mixing them to inspire an entire look. This look is familiar, this is comfortable to think of, and is reminiscent of a simpler time that although we weren’t a part of, life seemed simpler back then.


The increasing number of younger fashionistas opting to wear decadent fashion is

Image Source: Sabyasachi Instagram

baffling the industry. The 'younger the person, the older the look' has become a social media trend. It confuses the Fashion Designers as they have to make the moral choice of giving the wearers what they like or designing something entirely different today. Global fashion moguls like Sabyasachi, Yves Saint Laurent, Ali Xeeshan, Christian Dior, Emilio Pucci, etc speak the same language when it comes to marrying the fashion eras in their designs. Each piece, from any region, pays homage to the fashion of yesteryears and brings them back in a revised, sleeker packaging.



Image Source: Komal Pandey Instagram

Online retail companies, social media influencers, celebrities have all given into this style and the trend continues to grow. The rise of updated vintage wear is seen everywhere and social media is playing a major role in contributing to the popularity of the trend in the name of "hipster fashion". Instagrammers like Komal Pandey, Kita Katuri are well-versed in mixing contemporary with vintage attire and accessories and their huge following is proof of the fact that women and girls can relate to their effortless style and are influenced by them to do the same.


Before we dig deeper, for a lot of our readers, the "vintage" era can be personal to their liking, some like the 80s, the 70s, while some consider even the year 2000s their idea of classics. The general idea is whichever era you relate with, that is not the current trend is considered classic. Ideally, something that is 20 years or older than the present times is considered "classic".

Moving on, the following compilations can be regarded as guidelines when attempting to put together a Vintage Modern Look:


Pick and style current garments and accessories that 'look' vintage:

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Vintage contemporary does not always mean choosing everything from the era. The art of making something current look vintage or making something vintage look modern is key. Blouses with flouncy sleeves can best be paired with a modern drape of a saree. A vintage handbag can be carried as an accessory to an otherwise modern, monochrome outfit. The beauty is in the balance of the look.

Contrastingly, pairing an old pantsuit with a sheer top underne

ath and some heels or sneakers, pairing high waisted pants with a sheer, vintage top is a way the balance can be achieved.



Keep the style vintage, fitting modern:

Image Source: BigOrNot

Fashion designers are constantly updating the latest trend by making tweaks to the silhouette and drape of their clothing. As opposed to earlier, modern fashion celebrates all types of body shapes, sizes, figures and styling any body type is easier as compared to what it may have been earlier. Fashionistas around the world are comfortable styling themselves in any era as modern fashion celebrates all shapes and sizes. Plus-size model and influencer Big Or Not aka Audrey's Instagram page is filled with pictures with retro looks that look decadent yet, super stylish.

This rule can also be applied to vintage items of clothing, with the right alterations can be the perfect fusion of modern vintage.


Modern hair and makeup:


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Hair and makeup trends go through phases as well. The infamous cat eyeliner is nothing new contrary to the belief of the millennials. Winged eyeliner, ample blush, sleek hair is an age-old formula, though modern hairstyles may have gone through a lot, the idea to represent the same era with styling hair may seem outdated today.

Makeup Artists like Shaan Muthyal, a Bollywood favourite may follow the same idea of makeup over the ages but his techniques over time have changed and he points that the essential approach is still the same, concealer, blush, stained lips. It is commonly known among makeup YouTubers that retro makeup and hair can still be represented, albeit with a modern twist. It is great to pull off a look, but I think, pencil-thin eyebrows are a thing of the past and should never return!


In light of bringing back recognised and appreciated fashion in a country like India, where tributes and reminiscent craftsmanship are still relevant, the uniqueness and representation have increased in a world of mass production and following trends. A fundamental accolade goes to the rich culture and heritage of the past and the ability to merge western fashion with ethnic style. Lastly, everyone identifies with a certain era and an age entirely personal to themselves and chooses self-representation in the quest to remain one step different from the rest.


We leave you with the words of Gianni Versace, "Don't be into trends, don't make fashion own you. You decide who you are."


- Maryam Syed

Views expressed are writer's own. Images sources are specified

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