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Why Buy Vintage?

When I was in my twenties, I had no interest in antiques.  They seemed expensive, but interesting.  I would go to antique stores thinking I would find some cheap furniture to use in my apartment while finishing my college education.  I wanted something unique with character.  Something no one else had.  Unfortunately, I found out that "antique" furniture was usually more expensive than "new" furniture.

Several years later, after I finished college, I moved to rural Oklahoma to live.  It was there that I discovered "estate" sales, and my opinion of "antiques" took on a new view.  Estate sales were like walking into a unique view of history as seen through the eyes of one person, or family.  I found many things I had wanted as a child, and many things that were just gorgeous and unavailable today.  Thus began my collecting career.  It was not much of a leap from collecting, to selling on Ebay.  Things accumulate, and you have to make way for the new odd item.

Over the years, I have found that people collect/buy vintage to:

- Save money.
- Find the unique item.
- To get in touch with a period of history they like.
- To acquire a desirable item no longer available on the retail market.
- As an investment.
- For creative decorating.
- To complete a collection.
-  Because it is great to own something a famous person owned, or touched.

There are probably many more reasons to buy vintage, but these are the ones I see the most.  Do you have your own reasons for buying, or not buying, vintage?

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Reader Comments  (5)

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Curious George | June 30th 2013 at 1372603513

Question about vintage: Why do most vintage clothing items have an "odd" old smell to them?
Could the dyes within the fabric be the cause?
Thanks for sharing!
Nadanuff | June 30th 2013 at 1372644327

The "odd" old smell depends on the fiber content of the garment, and how the clothing has been stored over the years. The fabric can take on the smell of the box, or closet, it is in. Sometimes bacteria settle in the fabric, and when stored in the dark for years, it starts to emit an odor. Usually, hanging the garment out in the sunlight will allow the UV in sunlight to kill the bacteria. The odor will go away then.

Some clothing made in the 60s of nylon fibers emits an odor because of a particular type of bacteria that is attracted to this man made fiber. Dolls made of the same nylon substance have the same odor. Simply setting them in the sun for awhile kills the bacteria, and rids it of the smell. Overall, there was a reason women put clothes on a line to dry outside, and aired rugs outside.
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Curious George | June 30th 2013 at 1372649526

I did not realize that dolls made of nylon substance offer the same odors.

I have a friend that prefers to buy 70's vintage wears;however, during a recent brunch, we found ourselves helping him from "going up in smoke" outdoors.

Being that he is a smoker, the cigarette ashes must have landed on the FABRIC of his "flammable vintage pants" and here we were ready to spray him off.

LOL. Thanks for sharing.
Nadanuff | June 30th 2013 at 1372650913

If the fabric turned to ash, then his pants were made from a natural fiber. The burn test is one of the ways you tell a natural fiber from a synthetic, or mixed fabric. Nylon and polyester don't burn easily and tend to melt and drip. I hope your friend is OK :)
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Curious George | June 30th 2013 at 1372654625

Yes, he is fine. We keep that smoker "outdoors" when necessary lol.

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