For weeks now, as we've gone about packing and now unpacking our worldly goods, I've been thinking about how much I've wanted to write this specific post and am delighted that I have the time now to do so on this fine, fresh spring morning.
As lovers of the past, we're all well versed with words such as "antique", "vintage", "retro", and "reproduction", and know when and where to use such descriptions appropriately.
There are times however when one comes across an item (be it a chair, skirt, piece or art, bolt of fabric, or what have you) that while not intentionally designed to mimic the look and/or style of something from the past, does in fact do just that.
One example that often springs to mind for me of such a situation is when I'm shopping for cardigan. Basic, button front, classically tailored cardigans can easily be found at scads of stores (and online retailers) that while made very recently, have the appearance of a garment that could very, very easily have been purchased sixty or more years ago.
Yet, in many cases, the manufactures of these cardigans did not set out to make "vintage inspired" or "reproduction" pieces. The fact that their garments do suit the styles and tastes of decades gone by is merely a happy coincidence for those like you and I who delight in filling our homes and wardrobes with the look of yesteryear.
And so, one day a while back, a term for this situation popped into my mind: vintage appropriate.
As the description above explains, a vintage appropriate piece is one that unintentionally looks old (or timeless), yet was made recently.
It's an item that you could travel back in time to, say, the 1940s or 50s and buy an extremely similar (if not downright nearly indistinguishable) version of, however the one that you're holding today could likewise be brought back to those decades past and no one would raise an eyebrow (because the piece really mimics the designs of the time).
I find that I use the term vintage appropriate most often when dealing with clothing, though I've also applied it to everything from make-up to home furnishings, sewing notions to Christmas wrapping paper.
To my mind, "vintage appropriate" fills a void in the lexicon of those who embrace the styles and history of the early to mid-twentieth century, as it allows us to easily describe a piece that, while not actually old, looks convincingly as though it could be (even if that wasn't the manufacturer's intent).
The description above is an image that I made, and by all means, if you feel like you can relate to this term and would like to help spread its usage, please feel free to copy, save, or Pin it to your own blog, Flickr stream, Pinterest boards, or anywhere else that you desire (I just ask that you please link back to Chronically Vintage when doing so).
I'd love to hear about some of your favourite vintage appropriate pieces and look forward to sharing some of mine with you in future posts.
Wishing you all a marvelously lovely first weekend of spring, darling friends!