In a world of increasingly fast fashion, one-of-a-kind clothing is seeing a resurgence in demand.
From mid-century pin-up and prohibition-era flapper dresses to bowler hats, suspenders and saddle shoes, the vintage look has definitively hit the mainstream.
Finding antique threads in Victoria can be tricky, but blogger Reb Stevenson of The Life Nostalgic knows the hidden gems to give you an updated classic Hollywood look.
“The idea is not to try to pretend that you live in the past, but rather look to the past for inspiration on how to live today,” she says.
“I’m not set on wearing authentic vintage garb, because good luck finding something that has the fit, style and odour that you want.”
For new clothing with vintage influence, Stevenson recommends Sarah’s Place in Market Square. The pin-up/rockabilly style curated by owner Sarah Kramer is reasonably priced and sure to make you stand out in an Abercrombie and Fitch crowd.
Before heading out for a day at Willows Beach or Thetis Lake, stop by Paradise Boutique on Lower Johnson Street for some made-in-Victoria vintage-inspired swimwear.
Sisters Dani Dubois and Rosebud Seads also offer a selection of original clothing and accessories, with a focus on independent designers.
For the acutely eco-conscious consumer, check out Lazy Susan’s in Fairfield Plaza.
Mother-daughter owners Nicole Proom and Susan Doyle source the store’s vintage-inspired handmade clothing from North American producers, and make many of the pieces themselves using locally purchased fabrics.
“It’s a surprise find, really funky and cool,” Stevenson says.
Still not finding what you’re looking for? Make House in downtown Victoria offers a drop-in “stitching parlour” for $10/hour. Crafty clothiers can follow vintage pattern books using in-store cotton, sewing machines, cutting tables and more.
“There’s a whole library of vintage patterns. You can sign up for workshops as well,” Stevenson says.
For all your vintage needs in one place, check out the Victoria Vintage Expo, Sept. 27 and 28 at Crystal Gardens, 713 Douglas St. See victoriavintageshow.com.
Check out Stevenson’s blog at thelifenostalgic.com.