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THE SHOPPING CHRONICLES: The Truth About Vintage (1 Viewer)


Senior Member
Oh, how I admire vintage girls.

You know, girls that state smugly when you ask where they purchased their stunning dress, "Oh, it's vintage. I got it for, you know, like five bucks." And there I stand, feeling totally generic and borderline pathetic in my $119.95 dress that I estimate another 2000 women across the country are currently standing around in, also feeling totally generic and borderline pathetic.

This happened to me only a few weekends ago, when my friend and I attended a 21st, only to bump into the always unique but never-failingly chic school friend, who was wearing the most gorgeous off the shoulder black eyelet dress. When I asked optimistically where she bought it, in quiet hope that she would reply with a store I could access readily and afford, she pulled the vintage line: "Oh my god, this! You like it? I got it like, two years ago for $12 in this op shop in Sydney!"

How lovely. I'm so happy for you. Now go away.

So, the following weekend, my friend and I headed for the famed local Op Shop. We were both very excited at the possibility of finding something cheap, unique and completely "us". But as I sift through the piles of 80s shoulder-padded disasters, marvelling at the fact that someone actually purchased the hideous creations, my fixation on fashion shrinks before my very eyes, Nicole Richie style.

It was here that I realised that the joy of shopping does not lie in the clothes themselves, but rather, the hunt. If, centuries ago, men hunted and women gathered, I think it's fair that we get to have some fun hunting in 2007, in a safe and controlled, female-friendly environment.

I love walking into a store and being greeted with a chirpy "Hi, can I help you with anything?" There's certainly no other context in my life where someone actually asks if they can help me!
I love scanning my eyes over the carefully coordinated mannequins and knowing that I don't even need to bother to engineer a way to wear my new leopard print beret and navy culottes- they've already done it for me.
I love the flattering lighting in the change rooms with their "skinny mirrors", and the way someone is always there to get me another size or to tell me if I can tie the neckline differently. Or that I seriously look like Mischa Barton.

Am I really this pathetic that I actually need someone to compliment me whose job it is to do so?

The smell of the dressing rooms at the Op Shop purely and simply does not compare to those in the boutique, and to this my friend wholeheartedly agreed.

So perhaps I will never be quite cool and original enough to be accepted into the Vintage Club. Maybe I'll always be the kind of girl who on rare occasions, wears the same dress as another girl to an event, or pays $299.95 for a jacket that probably cost $7.50 to make.

But I'm okay with that.

At least I won't smell like mothballs.


Senior Member
This was not what I expected. I was ready for a scathing, ripping-to-shreds rant against the banditos who sell old junk for good money under the guise of ¨vintage¨ goods.