Modern Vintage

Unless your winter fringe has been obscuring your view, the presence of all things Vintage inspired in major stores and fashion collection throughout the world will not have passed you by.

Of course the appropriation of old-world glamour has been happening consistently over the last few years but Winter 2012/2013 sees the trend at fever-pitch. And it’s no surprise that designers and clothes horses alike should embrace such dressing: elegant, flattering, ladylike, retro, great tailoring and attention-to-detail are descriptions given to beautiful Vintage clothes as well as traits that all fashion loving ladies would like to emulate.

Some of the top collections for this season have taken a delightful nod from all things Vintage; whether you’re window-shopping, high-street hunting, blog lusting or magazine absorbing, the evidence is clear, retro is Queen! Take the ever-fabulous Twiggy collection at Marks & Spencer, the looks and concepts have a real Vintage aesthetic but are still relevant for today’s discerning lady. So what’s what for the upcoming season meeting our grandmother’s wardrobes?

The Peplum

Although many of the younger people I know thought this was a new sort of dance, the Peplum is having a re-birth and becoming one of the must-haves for the clever dresser. Style icons from every walk of life are rocking the peplum and the flattering silhouettes are speaking for themselves. Essentially, peplum describes ruffles or short skirts worn over the outside of longer dresses or outfits, at the waist. Originally popular during the 1940’s, it made a comeback in the 80s and is now making its mark on the tweenies. And no… ladies, your bum will not look big in this! Contrary to what people believe, the peplum covers rather draws attention to curves that you’d rather be played down. The fact that the peplum begins cinched at the waist and then goes out means that our smallest parts are actually accentuated. Fun, stylish and versatile… what’s not to love?

Instead of having to buy in completely to an entire new wardrobe to support the peplum wave, all you need is a few different pieces that employ the style. In fact, peplum outfits have become so popular with fashionistas and Hollywood elite in recent months that the trend is expected to continue past the winter season and into the spring and summer, meaning that you may want some cool weather peplum outfits as well. For this reason think long term about your investments and don’t pigeon hole clothes in to winter or summer. A good peplum skirt, jacket or dress should see you through an array of occasions as long as you look upon the pieces as separates as well as an ‘outfit’. Be brave! If you still have doubts, look to Princess Kate who has been spotted looking glorious in the trend of late … she is the widely accepted indicator of good style after all.


Somewhat difficult to describe, houndstooth patterns are basically staggered checkers of colour – generally black and white – that immediately evoke thoughts of old-style dressing. A direct throwback to the 1940’s cinema stars that made this fabric so popular, many winter fashion collections are employing the use of houndstooth to up the Vintage feel of what they’re presenting. In fact, some of the Hollywood elite have even been seen wearing houndstooth patterns on the red carpet. I love seeing adaptations of daytime looks hit the events that are usually reserved for satin and silk … thoroughly modern and retro all at once! My ultimate girl-cruch Marion Cotillard does it to perfect.

So in the lead up to the silly season (and I love silly by the way), why not throw caution to the wind and get yourself acquainted with all things ‘new Vintage’? Feel the fear and do it anyway … you’ll be very glad you did, M’lady.